The Internet has been a revolutionary instrument for businesses, whether big or small. Sure, traditional ways of advertising your products and services like printing leaflets and banners can be beneficial.
However, in today’s highly industrialized and competitive world, having your own website has been a crucial part of customer engagement and brand promotion.
For a business to succeed and last long, brand promotion should be a mixture of online and offline methods. Nowadays, people rely heavily on the internet.
According to Mintel flagship report American Lifestyle 2015, 69 percent of Americans seek out reviews on goods and services before purchasing something.
Out of those who seek advice online, 70 percent rely on independent review sites while 57 percent utilize social media platforms for recommendations.
Whether what restaurant is best for a dinner date, what travel agency offers the best itineraries or the best sportswear for pilates, consumers seek others’ opinions to validate their choices.
Moreover, instead of going on an actual store, customers would prefer to browse the company’s website first because of convenience and practicality it brings. Thus, in a world where online connectivity has been a need, a business with no online presence would decrease its chances of having customers.
Lastly, an updated website now equates to building credibility and good reputation.
This is where website hosting comes into play
Website hosting allows both individuals and organizations (both public and private) website accessibility through the World Wide Web. In order to connect your website to the internet, you have to choose a unique domain name. It serves as the identity of the online site.
The moment it gets registered and verified, the website gets a space in the online world. Web hosting also includes other web services such as file maintenance and data center space and connectivity. This type of service is usually offered by internet service providers which charge users a fee depending on the services’ complexity.
Periodic and customary improvement hosting
Periodic improvement Includes webpage and restructure and rearrangement
Customary improvement comprises of content development, ensuring integrity of links and including unique marketing strategies online like publishing blogs, creating newsletters and launching promos or new line of products. Hence, it plays an integral role in business improvement.
Although web hosting companies provide different account functions, there are definite features that offered by the majority of the well-known firms. These attributes should be considered in choosing the right service provider for your company. One of the functions that one should take note of is called cPanel or control board.
cPanel allows business to examine crucial aspects on a website such as internet traffic obtainment and intensification. Through the control board, you will know the amount of people who visited your site for a particular time frame and how they were directed to your site.
Likewise, when looking for a web host, it is important to put into consideration the amount of storage and bandwidth offered. Be careful when service providers offer “unlimited storage” because in the Terms and Services you will read that it is unlimited until you exceed the “normal site usage.” It is best to go with a website host that sets definite data limit.
Bandwidth, on the hand is the amount of data offered by the website host dedicated for you and your online visitors’ uploads and downloads in a monthly basis. For popular brands and blogs, bandwidth is something to keep an eye on at all times. Make sure to choose a website host where all calculated visitors can be accommodated. Online site back-up is also a crucial feature to consider. Remember, business sites are more susceptible to data loss than your personal computers.
Online threats that lead to data loss may come from the following:
1. Website hackers who may want to steal credit card information of clients or to merely cause trouble.
2. Awry updates that can make a website down for a number of hours. Although regular updates mean increased security and new features, it is not a hundred percent guarantee because of the multiple components a website has.
3. Computer malfunctioning. While a lot sees storing of files in the computer in a nice way to keep it protected, backing files remotely is a better option because your computer crash or stolen, you can still have your important files recovered.
4. Human error may come into the picture. It is possible that a contractor, freelancer or a regular employee might accidentally delete an important file or press the wrong button. Having a site back-up would ensure that simple human errors would not deter business operations.
5. Viruses and other malwares can be a pain in the ass. The find ways to pollute your website even if you ensured safety of third parties. They can be included with themes or plugins that would crash your website upon downloading it.
Also, do no hesitate to ask your web host what kind of framework support they offer especially for content management systems. Most online subscribers love WordPress so it is a plus when a host can provide an easy set-up for WordPress or the blogging system you prefer.
Lastly, make sure that your web host will let you host multiple sub-domains to make managing accounts easier. Although there is usually a limit on how many sub-domains a client can have, make sure it suits your company’s needs. Most website hosts would provide you a section in the administrator panel so you can consequently add sub-domains.
Types of web hosting services
Prior to availing any web hosting services, it is important that one has an understanding of the types of web hosting services, the server that caters to your business needs and your allocated budget.
Free Web Hosting
Free web hosting can be a fair choice for individuals who just want to build a website for fun and have no plans of monetizing it. In a free hosting environment, connection speed is slow most the times and the website’s downtime is frequent. Additionally, advertising banners are added to your website without your permission. Some web hosts would advise you to purchase your own domain name to receive free hosting services while others would offer a free subdomain under them. It is better to choose the former so that you still have your own domain and web space.
Shared Web Hosting
In a shared web hosting environment, you and other website owners share in a single server. The server includes the physical machine and all the software applications within it. The shared web hosting service should comprise of a system administration to regulate control within users. This kind of web hosting is not suitable for software-extensive website clients since the server’s capacity is shared among the users. On the bright side, it is generally cheaper than other types of web hosting such as dedicated web hosting. The services usually include e-mail and web statistics support and services, auto script installations, up-to-date PHP and MySQL, basic monthly technical support. It also uses various kinds of web-based control panel system such as DirectAdmin, InterWorx and cPanel.
In addition, the service providers are the one responsible ensuring security for the server and maintaining technical support. It may be Linux operating system or Microsoft Windows based. However, the downside of shared hosting is that it can be slower when users are browsing at the same time.
Dedicated Web Hosting
In a dedicated web hosting environment, you have your own website server. This permits businesses to have faster-running websites. You can also maximize the server’s capacities without having to share it with other website users. Dedicated web hosting can be pricey as opposed to shared website hosting but ensures you of a better, more secure system. This is usually availed by businesses that generate a lot of internet traffic.
Dedicated web hosting also bring a lot of convenience because the service provider will handle all concerns such as monthly technical maintenance, security assurance and web server reliability. They would also be in change in ensuring the quality of the hardware. In some circumstances, some web hosts will provide monetary compensation in the event of hardware failure as part of the Service Level Agreement.
Cloud Web Hosting
This is probably the most innovative type of web hosting. Cloud Web Hosting originated from Cloud computing. The servers in this system collaboratively processes tedious tasks while manages huge amount of data. They can act as a supercomputer because it assures flawless experiences for clients and their online visitors. It also permits files to be hosted on limitless number of servers that act together as one system. Lastly, the separation between services such as FTP, e-mail services and content management ensures that if ever there is a failure on one device, the other services would remain unaffected.
Importance of web hosting
An updated website compensates for a company’s fixed working hours.
Your organization cannot operate 24/7 because it is expensive, inefficient and workers would be burned out. However, if the website of the company is up-to-date, this gives utmost flexibility and convenience for the customers to browse upon the services and products offered.
Website hosting makes delivering messages and ideas to consumers easier.
According to Jeremy Ellens, contributor of Entrepreneur magazine and Co-founder of Yamazo effective marketing strategy appeals to consumers’ emotions rather than reason. With that being said, a brand needs to establish deeper value and importance in their marketed products and services. A website can be instrument is propagating the desired message by images, videos, digital content, animation and even customer testimonials to the entire world via a web network.
Website hosting allows companies to create databases and exciting features.
An organized database is vital in operations and marketing because it efficiently stores and systematizes huge amount of data within a single software application. In addition, it allows users to multi-task manageably. Without database management, tasks would be done manually and it would take longer. Hence, the web hosting’s database management would foster a smoother working environment. On the other hand, a lot of exciting features can be added to your website through web hosting. This includes community forums, blog walls, chat panels and shopping carts. These features can definitely attract more customers thereby increasing your revenue.
Website hosting enhances the company’s reliability and professionalism.
During “down time” or moments when a website is inaccessible to online consumers, the business appears unreliable because people cannot see the company’s profile and products. Down times make you lose potential buyers and can be detrimental in your revenues if it happens frequently. In choosing the right web host, calculate the amount of traffic you expect. Having a website also means that a company is accountable to any eventualities like wrong deliveries or shipping issues.
It ensures linked email accounts for correspondence.
A web hosting package should include email accounts that link to your online site. In this manner, business electronic mails are well-organized and separated from personal mails. Furthermore, consumers would remember because the e-mail address matches the website domain name.
To sum it all up, if you are starting to establish an online business website, it is safe to say that website hosting is an instrument to one’s business success. Business owners should be aware of the innovations that can help in their operations. Moreover, and they have to make use of the newest technologies to improve their services and products. If not, it would be a reason for one’s fall down.