02 Jul Small Business Website Hosting
In order to have a website online, you need to use a web server that is attached to the Internet. Once you establish an account, your small business website hosting provider will email you the DNS addresses associated with your website. After logging into your domain registration account such as GoDaddy, update your domain name with these addresses. This action points your domain name to your website, and usually can be performed by your web designer.
Hosting is no longer expensive; however, many vendors will charge you for items that are already included in their hosting packages. When we perform an initial review for a new client, we check the current monthly charges and have been amazed at what some vendors are charging. We discovered one vendor charging fees for domain management, bandwidth usage, and hosting in excess of $1500 per month.
Many vendors sell small business web hosting, only to buy it from the same hosting accounts that you could have bought from directly. However, it is fair to pay your vendor for technical support if you wish assistance with any issues that may arise. Usually they will just call the hosting company’s tech support number for you to report the problem and then provide the hand on technical solution recommended by the hosting company’s tech support technician.
As with your domain name, we suggest that you own your small business website hosting account. This allows you to change web designers and Internet marketing vendors without impacting your website or interrupting your business.
TIP: Remember it is good practice to change the passwords for your hosting and domain registration accounts when you change vendors.
Changing Business Website Hosting Providers
If you decide to own your own hosting account, you will have to move your current website to the new hosting service and change your domain name’s DNS addresses as described above. We provide this service for our clients and your Internet marketing resource can do so as well. You will need FTP (user name and password) access to your current hosting account; this is necessary to log in and download your current website. If you do not have this information, you need to obtain it from your current hosting provider.
Ensure that your resource understands how to move a website or you can run into issues when your new hosting account is cut over. For instance, your email may not work unless the new accounts are set up on the new hosting account. The following is an itemized list of what may be an issue:
• Email accounts, including remote access by handheld devices,
• Any scripts or software functionality that requires a database, including shopping carts, web based applications and customer log in functionality, and
• SSL security certificates
Most local or small business sites are comprised of simple HTML files and are easy to move, nonetheless, be sure that the email accounts are created prior to cut over. If you are using a template-driven site that includes vendor content and hosting, then you may not be able to move the site. Instead, you will have to create a new website using your own content built on your own hosting account. Additionally, if you have a WordPress site, the database needs to be backed up on the current hosting account and installed on the new hosting account’s WordPress installation. Just transferring the existing files will not work properly.
We recommend that you use linux web hosting, as opposed to Windows hosting and that the hosting provider provide 24 X 7 phone technical support. If you have a simple site, then a shared hosting account is sufficient. Many hosting companies are resellers and only provide email support and do not respond immediately. You should avoid using any hosting provider that does not offer 24 X 7 technical support by phone.
We use Hostgator which is one of the most popular webhosting companies and they support hosting over 5 million domains. Their technical support is responsive and they spend the time ensuring that any issues are resolved.
If you need assistance with your digital marketing, our Niche Dominance digital media marketing strategies are designed to evolve with the rapidly changing search engine environment to ensure your business can attain a competitive advantage even with fierce competition.