What should the key factors be when finding a new web hosting provider for your business? As a WordPress Virtual Assistant, I’ve managed many websites over the past several years and they’ve been hosted by several companies. At some point, while providing my services, I’ve had the need to contact my clients’ hosting provider for some reason. In this post, I discuss what I think you should consider when finding a new web hosting provider.

What You Should Look For When Finding A New Web Hosting Provider

Excellent Customer Service

I can tell you from experience, the first and most important feature to look for when finding a new web hosting provider is great customer service. Let’s face it when you need help, you want someone to pick up the phone, chat, or respond to support tickets quickly. When you do reach out to them, you or your virtual assistant is trying to get something accomplished or trying to resolve an issue. It’s important that you can reach someone quickly and that person be professional, helpful, understanding, and easy to understand.

Here are some reasons why customer support is important when looking for a web hosting company:

  • Problems can happen at any time. Even the best web hosting companies experience outages and other problems from time to time. If you have a problem with your website, you need to be able to get help quickly and easily. A good customer support team can help you resolve problems quickly and get your website back up and running.
  • You need someone to answer your questions. When you’re first starting out with web hosting, you’re likely to have a lot of questions. A good customer support team can answer your questions and help you get started with web hosting.
  • You need someone to help you troubleshoot problems. If you run into a problem with your website, you need to be able to get help troubleshooting the problem. A good customer support team can help you identify the problem and find a solution.

The best way to gauge whether a company has great customer service is to look for reviews. In the reviews look for red flags that reappear. They probably won’t have a perfect 5.0 rating but you definitely want a company with a good rating. Another way to get reviews is to ask people who have first-hand experience with the service.

Must-Have Free Features

These days you want to make sure that the web hosting company you’re considering has the following features:

  • Free SSL – So many companies offer a free SSL service that you should not have to pay for this unless there is a very specific reason to purchase else. Long ago when SSLs were new, these were a paid feature but these days it’s pretty much a requirement if you want people to visit your website.
  • Free Caching – Caching is what helps your website to load faster. There are also paid options for more robust caching but there should be some basic level offered for free.
  • Free Email – Almost all hosting companies will allow you to add as many email addresses on your domain as you need. The only exception to this is if you use Office 365 or Google Workspace for your email.

Reasonable Prices

Price should not be the top priority here but it should be a consideration. We don’t necessarily want the cheapest or the most expensive. We’re looking for a reasonable price that we can afford and will provide us with value for the money.

What You Should Stay Away From When Finding A New Web Hosting Provider

Nasty Phone Trees

There is nothing worse than needing help and having to go through long and annoying phone trees. There is one big and popular hosting company that has the most annoying system for taking support calls.

Add-on Services

There are services that most hosting companies provide for free and then there are companies that want to charge you for everything. You shouldn’t have to pay for emails unless you want Office 365 or Google Workspace email. You shouldn’t have to pay for an SSL unless you have a specific reason for purchasing one. You shouldn’t have to pay for installing WordPress or migrating your website from one host to another.

My Recommendation For Finding A New Web Hosting Provider

I recommend SiteGround for hosting services. They weren’t the first hosting company I went with years ago. I think they are the third company I’ve used and the one I’ve used the longest. They have raised their prices over the past several years but they continue to add additional valuable services which are great. The best part is when I need help, I get great support and I don’t have to jump through hoops to get it. They give me the option to either chat or call and they tell me which is faster.

After purchasing, using, and referring their services for quite a while I decided to join their affiliate program. Now I’m able to refer them and get a small stipend. For anyone looking to start a new website or transfer a website, I recommend SiteGround.

Do you want help finding a new web hosting provider? Contact me for a no-obligation and free consultation.

This blog post was written with the help of Bard AI.