Discussion in 'Hosting Discussions' started by frunze, Nov 28, 2007.
Which features are the most important for you while choosing a web hosting provider?
Support and their policy regarding excess bandwidth use were the two biggest concerns for me.
I wanted a provider who I knew would give me support when I needed it, so that if anything went wrong with my site I could have it fixed as quickly as possible. My host has three ways its members can get support - they can post on their forum (support is normally offered within an hour there), they can open a support ticket (that takes around 2-4 hours on average, but they deal with your specific problem and can go into your site and fix it for you if you need them to) or they can call the company up (support that way is much faster, but more general, so it's not always useful for technical problems).
I also wanted a provider who had a reasonable policy regarding excess bandwidth use. I've encountered some providers who charge a small fortune for every 1MB of bandwidth you use over your alloted amount. On one web host review site I looked at, one woman reported that she had been charged $120 for using 4MB bandwidth over her monthly limit. Whether that's true or not I can't say, but I've heard similar stories in the past. I've also encountered hosts who simply shut sites down when they hit their monthly bandwidth limits. That was something I definitely wanted to avoid for my site.
I moved to my paid host from a free host that offered me unlimited space and bandwidth (and before anyone says that hosts can never keep promises like that, I used 26GB space with my last site and considering I had 6,000 to 8,000 visitors a week on average, the bandwidth drain must have been astronomical). I wanted a host that would offer me something similar or, at the very least, not shut down my site or charge me a massive amount for going over my bandwidth limit.
My current host offers 3,500GB bandwidth a month. I don't know what would happen if my site started getting towards that amount - right now we use around 5GB a month - but I do know that their policy for sites that use excess bandwidth is to contact us and let us know. They then give us three months to either reduce the bandwidth drain by culling content, move to one of their more expensive plans or find another host.
There were other features I looked for, such as addon software, CPanel management features, subdomain allowance, etc, but support and bandwidth management were the primary concerns I had.
For me the most important features are good uptime, frieandly and responsive support plus not very expensive prices on the services from this web hosting company. I get these services from Ahosting.biz and I am glad with their services.
No offense, but I think you just answered your own question, and thus contradicted that statement you made first.
If you're pushing 5 GB a month, I wouldn't exactly call that astronomical (unless you've got a different site?)
I would look for a reputable company for starters, someone who's got techs there, on the clock 24 hours a day, who will answer the telephone if I have a problem, or reply to my request online when I need them. I'd make sure the terms of service fit what I plan on doing (face it, if you can't fit into the TOS, you're S.O.L.) - Also that support team needs to be able to do more than say "we're working on it."
Aside from that, I'd get information and specs off the servers (IE: Processor Speed, Memory, OS, Web Server Program, etc), I'd want to know the location of the server (preferably closer to me), and I'd like to know what additional fees are if there needed to be any.
Basically, everything has to be genuinely ideal to my mind. The keys are finding that host. At first glance I look for a support link or contact us link, and start loading in the questions. If they can answer me timely (and I've read positive reviews), and they can sell it to me, chances are I'll bite.
I got cheated on that once by AventureMedia. That will NEVER happen to me again.