Finding the Best Hosting Service Provider for Your Needs
Got your laundry list? As a web host, a number of items will be of prime importance when looking for a hosting service provider and platform for your business. You know what your own customers want when they choose your company to host their websites. Performance, reliability, security, and service are all must-haves, to be provided at a competitive price.
So, as a minimum, you’ll expect those things from a data center or any other entity providing you with system and networking infrastructure. They’re table stakes for doing business with you, but what more should you be looking for?
Understanding of Your Business
Running a web hosting business is not the same as offering a SaaS application, for example. End customers have different requirements and expectations.
Your priorities as a web host using a third party provider may therefore also differ, whether in terms of a high level of responsiveness of support, provisions for maximum availability and requisite redundancy, billing according to different resources used, or other.
A hosting service provider that understands your web hosting business will be able to offer you the service levels and pricing structure that correspond to your needs.
Flexibility and Scalability as a Provider
Customers and their websites come and go. Special events and seasonality may mean peaks in demand for your web hosting solutions. On the other hand, a temporary downturn may mean reducing operational expenses until business picks up again.
A service provider should offer you flexibility in terms of resources supplied, for example, by metering what you use or by offering a transition between different levels of service. As your enterprise grows over the longer term, your provider must be able to scale its service to you accordingly and in step with your business.
Service Level Agreements
Choose a provider for your hosting service that walks the walk, as well as talks the talk, when it comes to levels of service. Look for a clear service level agreement. Check any small print to see if there are any exceptions to be aware of, or if there is a risk of restriction or even interruption of service in certain situations.
The last thing you want as your business rockets upwards is to see your infrastructure shut down because you inadvertently went over a resource limit. A good provider will find a solution with you before any such event.
Your service provider should keep up with technological advances and offer solutions to you as appropriate. That also means taking into account your current technology, including your own hardware platform if you have one, and working with you to map out any desirable integration with or transition to virtualized resources.
Smooth evolution rather than abrupt revolution is often the best way to keep your web host enterprise on track for revenues and profits, now and into the future.
Does it still make sense to be your own hosting service provider, or should you now use a third party and focus exclusively on the value you add for your customers? Let us know your thoughts in the Comments box below.
If you’re a web host and you’d like to learn how to differentiate from other web hosting companies, cloud providers, and managed service providers, watch our webinar recording, “How to Grow Your Web Hosting Business.”