Choosing a Web Host – Information to Use

There are many information resources to help you choose the right web host. Sifting through the information from the following resources can help you avoid a web hosting mistake and is well worth the time and effort.

1. Collected Body of Reviews – Read lots of reviews about a web host and you’ll start recognizing patterns. Are the majority of customers happy, or critical? Are there repeated complaints of downtime or billing irregularities? You should be able to get a feel for how a host’s typical customer feels. Remember to check the dates on the reviews. Praise or problems from 10 years ago may no longer be applicable.

2. WebHostingTalkWebHostingTalk is an excellent and popular forum for getting unbiased information about web hosts. Many of the posters are experienced and knowledgeable. Some web hosts monitor this forum and respond to posted questions or complaints. One indicator of a good web host is that it responds professionally to posts, even by those who are ignorant or abusive. Another positive indicator is when the host’s customers defend the host or attempt to help resolve the problem.

3. WebHostingJuryWebHostingJury is a good place to find uncensored reviews of web hosts. Although this website scores and ranks web hosts, you’re better off absorbing the general trend of the reviews. Note that all major web hosts will have some customers who fire off hostile reviews before giving the host a chance to resolve the problem, or before realizing their problems are of their own doing. With practice, you should start to recognize which reviews are useful and which aren’t.

4. Host Forums – Most web hosts will have open discussion forums on their website as part of their support. Good hosts are comfortable having this window on their operations. Browse the forum to learn how the host responds to problems and questions. There’s often a section for pre-sales questions. Consider posting there if you’re thinking of signing up but still have some concerns.

5. Better Business Bureau (BBB) Ratings – For US-based web hosts, take a look at the company’s Better Business Bureau (BBB) page. The stats on the number of complaints and how many were resolved and unresolved might tell you if this is a web host you’d want to commit to.

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