Oct 21, 2014

7 Features to Look for in Your Hosting Provider

SLANo matter who you are, I think we can all agree on one thing: Bad hosting is mind-numbingly frustrating.

You depend on these hosted environments to support your lifeblood, your brand, your critical systems, and then an outage occurs. Or a slowdown. Or another technical issue that interrupts your service. Flaws in configuration or a bottleneck in your infrastructure are quickly exposed when traffic spikes and you’re left without a functioning application or website. As anyone who’s tried relying on a shared hosting environment can tell you, these problems can sound all too familiar.

The deciding factor? Avoiding the bottleneck

So when selecting your hosting provider, how do you avoid experiencing crashes? How do you make sure you end up with the right one? Well, you have options, both in terms of what type of hosting you select, and who you choose to provide it. In terms of types of hosting, you have shared hosting, VPS, dedicated server solutions, cloud only, or hybrid configurations. In terms of hosting service providers, you have countless options to sift through.

To assist you with your search, here are the seven guidelines to help you find the right hosting provider:

1. Review SLAs – Make sure the host you’re looking at has SLAs in place for deploying new resources, particularly once you are an established client. Ask yourself how important that is to your business. After all, when a business wants to scale, it needs to scale fast!

As an example, Codero’s SLA features:

  • 20 Minute SLA for deploying its Dedicated Smart Servers
  • 1Hr SLA for deploying traditional Dedicated Servers
  • 4Hrs for deploying fully custom Configuration of Dedicated Servers
  • SLAs for deploying Cloud instances in seconds

2. Monthly or hourly billing. No contracts. – Don’t get locked into a long-term contract before you even get a chance to test the waters. A hosting provider that bills you month to month is a much better choice while you’re shopping around. If they can bill by the hour for Cloud instances so that you can scale when needed, and only pay for what you use? That’s even better.

3. Exceptional customer support – Every provider has some form of support. The question is “How responsive, proactive and available is that support?” Are experts available 24x7x365?  Most businesses actually see their traffic spike before or during a holiday.  You don’t want your hosting provider to be on holiday as well.

4. High speed connectivity – Make sure your web host has the capacity and ability to tie your front end servers to data base servers in your own private network.  Oftentimes, the connection between the “web heads” (front-end servers) and the database server is the bottleneck. That pipe needs to big enough, and scalable enough to accommodate your growth; ask your provider how they do that, and how fast it would be.

5. Uptime, all the time – Make sure they have good uptime by checking NetCraft or other similar services. Also look for a 100% uptime guarantee.

6. Gear check – Make sure they use enterprise-grade, reliable gear for servers, storage, network, etc. Using old gear is just asking for trouble.

7. Balancing Act – Make sure they have good experience in offering load balancing and other availability technologies.

Making the right choice

You have many choices out there, and with these guidelines on your side, you’ll be able to navigate them with ease. Codero is one of those choices of course, and although we’re very proud of our offering and consider ourselves the best solution out there, it’s ultimately up to you.

So do your research, read reviews, read customer testimonials, ask honest questions and ask friends and colleagues who they recommend.  If you have any questions for us, you can always chat now with one of our experts.


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