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Ask Your Web Hosting Company These 24 Questions!

Any business these days requires a website. It has become an expectation. Herewith, a list of 24 questions that you should ask your web hosting company before you purchase web hosting.

Technical Support: Technical support must be available to you.

1. What do they provide?

– They should provide live chat, telephone support, email support through a ticketing system and a FAQs / knowledgebase.

2. When are they available?

– They should be available during office hours and preferably after hours. At the least they should be flexible to help after hours if you have requested it beforehand.

3. Does tech support cost extra?

– There should be no extra cost for hosting related queries. Note, that for issues not related to your hosting account there may be charges (for instance, if your website does not display across all browsers and you need help with that).

Storage

Ensure that you have enough space to expand in the future.

4. How much storage do they offer? (A typical Web site uses between 20-30 MB)

5. Do they offer enough extra space for your business to grow into? 100MB is a good starting point.

– You should have at least enough to cover your current hosting needs twice! There should also be a clear and easy upgrade path for when you need more.

Domains

Getting a Domain name for your business is one of the most important things you could do.

6. Will they register your Domain name on your behalf?

– You should not need to hassle with technical details of getting a domain, and besides, you want to pay one bill for both the domain and the hosting.

7. How long will it take?

– If it takes more than 48 hours from time of order to being fully live then look around some more.

8. Is there any extra cost to you?

– Besides the actual cost of the domain name (which should not exceed $15), there should not be a service charge for registering and maintaining your domain name. In fact, many hosting companies will offer you a free domain name in the first year.

Design

There are 3 basic website design options. 1) Hire a web developer to design the entire website. 2) A template solution that is inexpensive, but designs are not unique.

9. Do they have a builder that you can manage easily?

– If you aren’t coding your website with a software package or by hand, then do they have the online Sitebuilder to help you get your site done quickly.

– There should be FREE web templates within your CPanel area.

– There should be resources to doing your own site from theirs, ie, tutorials, how to’s, etc.

10. What type of computer background do you need to design your site?

– Dependant on what option you prefer above, it could be none to rather advanced.

11. Do you have control over content and updates?

– You should have full access to your content through FTP or Cpanels file manageer

Email

12. How many email aliases comes with your package?

– This differs with the packages, but should be enough to cover you for the stage of business you are in.

13. Will your emails have the domain name in them for a more professional appearance (eg, joe(@)mydomain.com)?

– Is there any other way???

14. What is the cost to add extra emails?

– You should be able to easily add up to your package maximum in CPanel at no cost

15. Are there any additional costs?

– This is an easy, self managed action, so there should be no extra fees

Cost

Make sure there are no hidden costs.

16. Are there initial setup fees and what do you get exactly?

– There should be no initial setup fees for a basic hosting account. Systems should be automated, so there is no human effort, hence costs are not incurred in signing you up

17. Are there any additional charges?

– There may be additional charges if you exceed your disk space or traffic quota. Try to find a web hosting company that will allow you some grace in case your website gets busier faster than you anticipated.

Contract

18. Am I locked into a contract?

– You should not sign a contract. You should have the ability of managing your account on a month by month basis

19. May I cancel at anytime?

– This is important as you may want to move to a better web hosting company. You should be able to move your content AND domain name easily

20. Are there any penalty fees for switching or closing your account?

– If you are on a month to month service agreement, you should be able to terminate with 30 days notice without any penalties. Note that most companies will not release your domain name until you have paid for it, but fair is fair!

21. What happens to my content?

– Your content is yours. You should simply get it all via FTP (or as a backup from CPanel) before cancelling. Your domain should also be transferred (note that some registrars charge about $10 to transfer domains, so you may need to pay that to them directly).

Value

22. What makes them better than their competition?

– They need to provide great support. They should use their own servers for their own websites and have all the value added services, like web development, custom software development, graphic designers, etc. This is important because if they are software / web developers they can answer technical question which extend beyond just hosting support

23. What exactly sets them apart?

– We believe the old adage that the “customer is king”, so should your web hosting company

24. Does the web host provide the features that you need for your web site?

– There should be many free scripts like ecommerce applications, WordPress, etc for free and easy to setup in CPanel.

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