Can You Rely On Your Hosting Provider?By Philip Eddon, Feb 2019
A reliable hosting package is one of the most essential resources for any website venture. Big, small or facing rapid growth, a business needs to be agile and minimise periods of downtime. That’s why you must have confidence in your hosting provider.
How much can you rely on your hosting provider to provide reliable hosting, with a support package that communicates effectively with you when things inevitably go awry?
Where many services fail
Without the right choice, your website could become sluggish – and an inability to deal with any extra traffic could result in you losing sales or being unable to receive enquiries. Maybe the opposite is true – you’re paying too much, for something that’s too advanced, when a more modest solution would work just as well for your needs.
Unfortunately, some hosting providers under or oversell to their clients, leading their solutions to not perform as expected. They’re also often exceedingly hard to contact, the personal touch is missing, and when that goes, so does confidence.
Finding the right support
To determine if you can have confidence in your hosting provider, there are a number of questions you can ask yourself:
- Have they recommended the right solution for you? - For example, a service that appreciates how seasonal sales affect an e-commerce business, will be more able to recommend a viable solution. Are they supplying a solution that meets your needs? They may be pushing a package that works for one client, but not others.
- Cloud or Dedicated hosting? - Do you need scalable hosting in the Cloud, or is security and full control over your own server more important? Cloud can look to be a cheap and easy way to host your website, however, costs can easily ramp up when you are charged for every bit of extra traffic. A Dedicated server can often be a better solution with better performance, although the downside is that they are not easily scalable.
- How do they go about solving problems or queries? - Over email, phone, or online chat? Only between the hours of 9 and 5? Do they log a ticket, and pass you between agents? In order to be able to truly rely on your hosting provider, you need to know whether they will be responsive when you need them. Many hosting providers will use Call centres, ‘customer service’, or give you an account manager - but these are unlikely to be able to talk to you about a technical issue. What you really need is to be able, immediately, to discuss your problem or ask advice from an Engineer. Support, 24/7, from an experienced technician gives you around-the-clock peace of mind. And remember, the best providers are proactive, as well as reactive – using remote monitoring to know when to step in with support before you have to so much as pick up the phone.
- How committed are they in keeping you up to date and secure? - All hosting providers need to be on top of security, it’s crucial. They also need to ensure that they are up to date with any software releases that are relevant to you. Do they communicate with you when updates are required and do they help you through any problems that you may have with them? Communication is key regarding security issues, and your provider must be accountable and immediately contactable all the time.
- What are their customer reviews like? - This can often give you an unbiased answer to the question. Use sites like Trustpilot and Google, but also see how they fare on Twitter and Facebook. A reliable hosting provider will respond promptly to any concerns, and customers will be the first to tell you if their host communicates well and how quickly. Always read the bad reviews as well as the good from their clients, to see if the provider is proactive in answering comments.
- Are they ISO 27001 accredited? - Service providers that say they are “secure” must be able to back it up. Such a claim can’t be left to a vague definition. It should be proven – ideally, by a set of rules that every business can follow, laid out and assessed by an official governing body.
- That is just what ISO 27001 represents: - A verified confirmation that a hosting services provider is able to cover you – and themselves – against a hack, theft or security issue. If you are unsure, ask to see their certificate before you agree to any contract.
HA247: doing things differently - and better.
We do things differently than most of our industry - we supply real engineering support and advice. You will always speak directly to an in-house Engineer who will answer your query or give advice. Either through ticket or phone, our team will answer immediately and solve issues as quickly as possible.
Before that however, we carefully advise on the best solution for your business as part of our free consultation.
We will advise whether Cloud or Dedicated server is the best route for you, be clear on the infrastructure that we recommend - and why. Our costing is transparent and we will find the most cost effective ways to provide the solution for your budget. Everything is bespoke - for you, and not off the shelf.
We’re ISO 27001 accredited, security a priority. Passionate about our service and customer satisfaction ratings. Get in touch and tell us about your requirements. We’ll clear the route to an investment that you can really rely on.