Choosing the best web host for your website can be a confusing process and not one you should take lightly.

So what factors should you consider when choosing a web host? In this sponsored post, Robert Mening from websitesetup.org shares six tips for choosing the best web host, from researching speed and reliability to exploring security features.

Take it away, Robert!

If you’re just getting started with learning to code and don’t yet have a web host, it likely won’t be long before you begin the search for one so you can set up your first website and put your coding skills to the test.

However, with so many web hosting companies out there, it’s not easy to know which one to work with–and it’s definitely not a decision you should make at random either. With that in mind, use the following tips to help you choose the best web host for your next web project.

Check out @RobMening’s 6 tips for finding the best web host

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1. CONSIDER YOUR SPECIFIC NEEDS

Unfortunately, choosing the best web host isn’t as simple as picking one from a list. Everyone’s idea of “best” will depend on their unique needs.

For example, if you want to start working with WordPress, you’ll be best off choosing a host like Bluehost or HostGator that’s popular among WordPress users. If you’re planning to run an e-commerce site, you’ll need a host that can accommodate the e-commerce software you want to use.

Before you start shopping for web hosts, sit down and outline what you need from a web host. Consider the following questions:

  1. What type of site will you be creating? For example, will you be working with WordPress or creating a static HTML website?
  2. Will you be creating more than one site? Some hosts allow you to create multiple sites from the same account.
  3. How much traffic do you expect to receive each month? Be realistic. This will help determine how much resources you need. If you plan to grow your traffic over time, you may need a host that offers scalability in their package offerings.
  4. What technical requirements will you require for your site? Most coding languages like HTML and CSS don’t have special requirements, but if you’re working with PHP, for example, you’ll need to find a host who can cater to that language.
  5. Do you need extra features, such as email hosting or an SSL certificate? Be sure the host you choose offers what you’re looking for (and at a reasonable rate).
  6. What is your monthly budget? Knowing this can help you weed out certain hosts and packages before you waste time comparing features of hosts outside your range.

2. LOOK INTO HOSTING RELIABILITY AND SPEED

One of the most important things to consider when choosing a web host is the host’s reliability and uptime scores. Obviously, you want your site to be operating as often as possible. Even a few minutes of downtime per day can lead to lost revenue and a poor customer experience.

While no host can guarantee their servers will be active 100 percent of the time, there are many companies that boast uptimes of 99.5 percent and higher. Avoid hosting companies that report anything below 99 percent.

In addition to uptime, you’ll want to choose a host with fast servers. There are plenty of ways to speed up your website, but if your site is on a slow server, it doesn’t matter how many other tweaks you make to it; it will always be slow.

Speed may not seem important to a beginner with little web traffic, but it will become increasingly important as your site grows. According to KISSmetrics, a one-second delay in page speed reduces customer satisfaction by 16 percent. Furthermore, 40 percent of website visitors abandon a site that takes more than three seconds to load. Tiny delays can have a huge impact on your bottom line.