Choosing a web hosting company for your startup’s website doesn’t have to be stressful. With the right knowledge and some evaluation, you can choose a web hosting company that will satisfy your business needs. This starts from identifying and understanding your website’s requirements to outperform others.
From there, you can look for a web hosting company that meets those requirements and exceeds them. There are plenty of cloud hosting alternatives to choose from in this regard. But first, let’s look at: what web hosting is, what kinds of hosting services you can choose from, and what factors you should keep in mind to making that choice.
What is a Web Hosting Company?
To put it simply, web hosting companies offer internet hosting services that let you keep websites online for yourself, your clients, and more. Usually, a web hosting company will have multiple physical or virtual servers where a site can be hosted. A web hosting company also has a co-location for its servers, domain name system configuration, and a web server.
For each website hosted on the server, the server should have enough space to store all the files relevant to the website. It should also have features and options for site-specific configuration. There should be software like a control panel with credentials so that you can access it and create, configure, and modify your startup website.
What kind of web hosting server you choose depends greatly on the type of website you have. An ecommerce website’s requirements from a web hosting company will be very different from a freelancer’s. Let’s look at the significant kinds of web hosting capabilities available in the marketplace and see which would be best for your startup website.
The 5 Major Types of Web Hosting Companies
There are five prominent web hosting companies that you can consider for your startup website. Let’s consider these types to assess which one would be most suitable.
- Conventional Shared Hosting
- VPS Hosting
- Dedicated Hosting
- Cloud Hosting
- Managed Cloud Hosting
Conventional Shared Hosting
It doesn’t get more basic than this. This budget-friendly shared hosting option is usually chosen by entry-level businesses that typically do not plan to grow more extensively. Think small-scale hobbyist businesses or bloggers that aren’t expanding beyond a point.
As the name suggests, shared hosting involves hosting your website on a single server whose resources will be shared by other websites. This is not an ideal scenario for an up-and-coming startup. Each server’s resources are limited and defined by the hosting plan you choose.
So let’s say you’ve been aggressively marketing your startup. And the website on the shared server suddenly gets a lot of traffic. This means it will require more resources, which the server simply doesn’t have. The result? Your website won’t be able to handle the incoming rush of traffic, and users will experience performance and speed issues that you just can’t fix.
VPS hosting shares some similarities with shared hosting, except the number of websites you will be sharing the server with will be smaller.
VPS stands for “Virtual Private Server.” A central server is split into many virtual servers for individual websites. If you compare it with shared hosting, it has more resources, so the website performance isn’t as bad as in shared hosting. It’s cheaper than some of the more advanced options and more flexible than shared hosting.
That said, VPS providers are still quite constrained by resource limits. Beyond a point, you’ll continue to run into the same scalability problem as shared hosting. And while you might think you can migrate your website to another hosting provider, it’s quite the hassle to ensure a safe transfer without the site breaking or going offline. (However, with some research, you can find a web hosting company that will help you migrate without your website breaking.)
As the name suggests, dedicated hosting is when you have a dedicated server that belongs to you. This means better uptime and faster speeds. Dedicated hosting with durability and great speed, you have full control and complete technical control of the settings and configuration.
That said, this is the most expensive web hosting type out there, so it’s not the most realistic option for startups. Dedicated hosting is only really an option for an enterprise-level company that expects to have 100,000 monthly visits.
Cloud hosting is cost-effective and comes with multiple remote servers. Every server has a different function. If one particular server has a problem, the rest of the servers on the cloud network will make up for it, so your website is never affected by a server-level issue.
Most people are now choosing cloud hosting for this very reason. With a huge cloud network, your website will have a much higher uptime and high-speed performance.
Another factor that sets it apart is scalability. With other types of web hosting, you often have to estimate the monthly visits you expect on your website, and your estimates could easily be off the mark. For this reason, there are high chances that when you choose a server, you will either waste resources by not utilizing them fully or be short on them. However, you can scale resources as and when needed on your dashboard with a good cloud hosting company.
The major issue people face with high-performing cloud hosting is that they might not be technical enough to oversee everything on the server side. After all, you’re running a startup, and your time is precious – you want to focus on bringing in business, not ensuring that the server is running smoothly. That’s where managed cloud hosting comes in.
Managed Cloud Hosting
Managed cloud hosting is the same as cloud hosting, except the hosting service provider fully manages it. This way, you can remain focused on your business. While this may be priced a bit higher than cloud hosting, it’s the most cost-effective measure in the long run. After all, you’re not spending on a technical resource to handle web hosting or wasting time on it yourself. With managed hosting, you can dedicate all your focus to growing your business.
Managed web hosting companies usually have many features and benefits that boost your site’s performance, speed, and security. With so many of them out on the market, let’s consider the significant factors to consider when finding the web hosting company that’s right for your startup website.
What Should You Remember When Finding a Web Hosting Company?
Let’s look at these factors in detail to understand why they are essential for your startup website.
Website uptime is a measure of your website’s availability and accessibility to users. You can calculate your website’s uptime as a ratio of the time your website is available divided by the total time. The goal is a 100% uptime. But keeping certain factors into account, 99.999% of uptime is desired and acceptable.
That means you want a web hosting company offering you 99.999% of uptime and no less than that. Otherwise, unfortunately, you will be missing out on your potential buyers and all the opportunities integral to your startup business.
According to Accenture’s cybercrime study, about 43% of cyber attacks target small businesses. So how can you improve the overall safety and security of your startup’s website?
Well, one of the things to do is look for a web hosting company that offers strong security features. These can include firewalls, database security to protect your customer’s information, login security, SSL certificates, malicious bot protection, suspicious device login control, two-factor authentication, end-to-end encryption, and more.
Your web hosting company should even conduct regular backups to minimize any potential downtime.
As the introduction stated, people wait no more than 4 seconds for your website to load. This means your website should load super fast to capture relevant leads.
Not only this, but your website speed has a significant impact on your website’s ranking on Google. The higher your website’s loading speed is, the higher you will rank on Google and receive more impressions.
Find a web hosting company that offers a whole stack of the best server software. The average server response time should be less than 3500 milliseconds.
Scalability and Disk Space
Your startup will grow one day. When that happens, your website should evolve too. Here is where scalability and the size of the disk space come in.
It would help if you looked for a web hosting company that lets you scale up and down according to your requirements. As for disk space, it should depend on how big your startup website will be initially, and your expectations for its growth over the years.
A good web hosting company will have experts and support available to answer all your questions regarding scalability. It will make it super easy for you to scale your website over the years.
Ease of management is the best thing a web hosting company can provide you. Startups need to pay more attention to business than to managing tools and apps or figuring out cPanel and the dashboard of your web hosting company.
We recommend choosing managed hosting that provides an easy-to-use platform or interface. This will ensure all hosting hassles are taken care of, and you are focused on your business matters instead of managing your hosting on your own.
Don’t waste any time figuring out website and hosting problems whenever something goes wrong. Time is money, and if you are paying a web hosting company, you should be able to seek help with hosting and website issues from their support team.
Make sure you look for seamless 24/7 support via live chat and phone. Remember to check reviews on websites like Trustpilot to read what customers say about their support.
Running a website requires a whole team and your website company should act as an external team when it comes down to tackling server-side issues.
Which Is the Best Hosting Option for Your Website?
When you choose a hosting provider for your startup website, remember that your decision will impact your website’s speed, performance, scalability, and security.
Firstly, choose the type of web hosting you want to look for. This depends on the amount of monthly traffic you expect and the estimated size of your website. It also depends on if you wish to manage the server-side issues yourself or if you want your managed hosting company to do it for you.
If your startup website is small and you expect 1000 monthly visitors, your hosting needs would be different from when you have a website with 100,000 monthly visits. Your startup will eventually grow, so choose the easiest hosting solution to scale.
Make sure you go for a cost-effective web hosting solution so you are not overpaying for unused resources or falling short on resources when you need more. Find a web hosting company that only has you pay for the resources that you use.
I have tried to explain everything regarding web hosting in this article so you can make a fully informed choice.
The market is filled with hosting providers, but we advise you to find the right managed hosting if you are a startup and only beginning your business journey.
When browsing through different web hosting companies, make sure you select one that meets your specific business needs (especially the scope and scale of your business).
Once you know what your startup website needs, research web hosting companies extensively for features you consider the most important for running a successful startup website. The growth of your startup website depends on this decision, so make sure it is an informed one.