The hosting company you choose for your website will have a major impact on how your website functions and even how it’s ranked by search engines. Visitors notice when websites load slowly or have frequent connection issues, and so do indexing crawlers that scour the web for search engines. You can avoid any negative experiences or poor search indexing by choosing a host that has fast, reliable connections and servers that are SEO-friendly. Read on to learn what to avoid when choosing a website hosting company and how to ensure you’re hosting company is up to par. 

Slow Connection Speeds 

There are several ways to know if a host is going to be able to load your site quickly when visitors call for it. The first thing to check is the connection speed advertised by the host. Look for web hosts with speed-enhancing software and protocols to give you an extra edge in load time metrics. You should also look at the bandwidth you’ll be allotted, since some hosts slow down traffic when bandwidth limitations are met. The easy way to avoid these issues is to find a host with unlimited bandwidth plans. 

Bandwidth limitations aren’t the only thing that could stop visitors from getting your site to load quickly. Avoid using hosts that don’t use modern hard drives and network equipment, as the web is highly competitive and hosts with modern SSD hard drives have a clear advantage in load time. 

Another piece of hardware you should concern yourself with if you’re looking for fast loading times is the CPU. Central Processing Units act as the core to all servers and vary greatly in specifications and capabilities. If your site requires a lot of server-side rendering of code or media then you should consider using a hosting plan with dual or even quad-core CPUs. 

Excessive Limitations 

Even some of the more reputable hosts have been known to place strict limitations on users. These limitations include bandwidth, storage space, email accounts, and domain names. Avoid hosts that don’t allow you to use your server for more than one domain name or website. 

You should also make sure the storage space you’re being offered is adequate to host not only your site’s current files, but any additional files you may need as your website grows over the next year. You can save yourself the trouble of transferring a website later on if you get a roomier hosting plan from the beginning. 

Plan ahead for how many email accounts you could need for your website and make sure your next host is accommodating. Many hosts limit webmail accounts to under a dozen, while growing websites can easily outgrow this limit within a few months as customer service, administrator, newsletter and more addresses become required. 

So-Called “Free” Website Hosting 

If you’re brand new to web hosting and building your first site then you may have been tempted at some point with an offer of free hosting. As with most forms of business, there’s no truly-free lunch when it comes to hosting your website. Free hosting offers restrain your capabilities with strict limitations, slow load times, poor connections, and often unwanted ads placed over your content. 

The good news is that quality web hosting can cost very little if you’re starting out with a small to medium-sized website. You can purchase shared, cloud, or VPS web hosting plans for less than $10 per month at many leading web hosts. 

Another way in which companies are now offering “free” website hosting is through introductory “site-builder” offers where you don’t actually have administrator access to a server, but are rather invited to generate a website instantly by entering an email address and title. These types of hosting plans don’t allow you to install your own Content Management System and aren’t known for working well with SEO efforts

Hosts That Overcharge 

If you’ve investigated website hosting companies at all then you’ve surely come across a few popular companies that, while reputable, tend to overcharge and upsell customers. It’s better to have too many resources than not enough but there’s no sense in paying more for hosting than it’s worth or buying more hosting resources than you’ll need in the next year or two. 

You can know if you’re getting a good deal by doing a little comparison shopping and looking at the hosting plan’s specifications and resource allotment. For comparison, many hosts offer unlimited plans for $10 to $20 per month, often at a discounted rate if you purchase an annual plan. 

One way to know you’re getting the best deal for your money is to find a host that’s optimized for your specific website. That is to say, a host that offers WordPress, Joomla, or Drupal-centric plans that have been trimmed of any software bloat, and tailor-made to help your site run in the best way possible. CM-optimized hosting plans are often priced at $10 per month, give or take a few dollars, and are efficient in terms of value and features. 

By knowing what to avoid in potential web hosts, you can ensure your hosting money is well spent and that your website will run efficiently. Avoid hosts that limit your potential with minimal bandwidth and outdated hardware. Lookout for overpricing and hosts that don’t have plans tailored for your website’s CMS platform. By all means, avoid free hosting offers and hosts that don’t allow you to access your server through a cPanel or other administrative tool.