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Eight Red Flags That Tell You It's Time to Switch to Another Virtual Hosting Service

 

There may come a time when you want or have to pack up and leave your current web host. Whether small or large, if your website begins to grow and your host can't keep up with your virtual demands, the best choice will be to move.

You could become frustrated with your hosting plan, or it could be that the services you're receiving aren't living up to your expectations. Whatever the case, you should migrate.

The process of transferring your website and the software you use is quite complicated and isn't as easy as a regular domain name transfer. Also, you'll want to keep your site running and keep any downtime to a minimum. This is why you have to make sure migrating your host is in fact the best thing to do. On the other hand, you should be careful when choosing the next virtual hosting service provider, so you don't fall into a deeper hole than before.

Now, let's gather the reasons that could likely push you toward a new host, and consider if you're actually making the right choice.

Top Reasons for Switching Hosts

When you chose your current host, it was likely your first website and you perhaps weren't totally knowledgeable about everything related to virtualization and web host performance. Now that you're more conversant, there are common red flags that could make you frustrated with your hosting company. Here are just some of those:

1. Poor website load speed

A slow website is never good for business. You could be losing bottom lines and counting revenue losses as a result. Although elements in web design can also cause reduced website speed, web hosts tend to be the main reason in most situations.

For instance, web hosts that don't offer dedicated servers tend to provide slow speeds for websites. Shared hosting plans may be ideal when you're starting out, but that doesn't strike out the possibility of your site's evolution, growth and its eventual need for improved services. Other causes for slow speeds include sluggish servers and lack of solid state drives.

2. Excessive downtimes

This is the hardest blow that can hit any website. Once or twice is bad enough, but multiple times is clearly unacceptable. On its own, excessive downtime is evidence that a web host is mediocre. This is grounds enough to part company with the host. An unavailable website doesn't speak well for any business and users tend to steer clear, which leads to reduced traffic.

If a virtual host's servers are not powerful enough and your site begins to grow in traffic, there's the risk of overload that might overwhelm the servers and cause your site to be unavailable. Also, too many downtimes can be a result of server abuse from numerous users on a shared server.

3. Lack of 24/7 customer support

Lack of constant support should be a red flag when you're dealing with a hosting company. According to experts, lack of 24/7 customer service on multiple channels is the lowest point for any web hosting company, because website owners could have a problem at 3am and need to find out what's happening with their site. They believe that "toll-free lines, email, and live chat" support should also be made available in order to see to it that issues are satisfactorily resolved.

4. Poor Security

If your host doesn't have the necessary security measures in place to keep out spam and malwares, imagine how vulnerable your website will be when cyber attacks occur in the future. With your site hosted on a poorly secured server, there's so much to lose; downtimes can be on the high side due to attacks, your site is prone to be taken over by cyber criminals, you get to lose important files, and your customers' data could be stolen - especially if you run an e-commerce site or one that incorporates user logins.

5. Costly renewals

Most hosting companies win you over with cheap sign-up plans, but you later come to realise the renewal fees are nothing short of outrageous. If you have a web host like this, research the pricing policies of other hosting companies to compare which fit better.

Although it doesn't mean hosting plans can't scale-up financially, you should at least be getting a service that mirrors what you're paying for. You shouldn't be spending money on a shared hosting plan that you could spend elsewhere on a dedicated or premium plan. Most VPS servers also come at a relatively higher price, but that doesn't mean you should pay more than necessary.

6. Lack of features

Technology is evolving every day and more and more trends are springing up. To be totally abreast of current internet trends and stay competitive, your website requires certain features. However, this can't be possible if your web host doesn't support said features, in which case, your decision to move will be justified.

Some of the features you may require include the possibility to implement PHP scripts, B2evolution technology, Media wiki, or Joomla into your website. Also, you should be able to run Wordpress, Bulletin, and Frugal features on your website.

Your host should at least give you access to install these features yourself. If they don't, then it will probably be best to look elsewhere.

Here are some reasons that might not necessarily annoy you:

7. Server Location

The servers of your hosting service provider are physically housed in a particular location. If your business or website is targeting users in a specific region or country, then it would be ideal to choose a hosting company with servers close to that location.

For example, if you're based in the UK and are majorly targeting New Zealand customers, users will find it harder to access your website if it's hosted on servers in the UK. Instead, you should use a hosting company in New Zealand to make sure things are fast enough for your prospects. You are more likely to access a "www.freeparking.co.nz/domain-names/nz/" easily, than a "www.freeparking.co.uk/domain-names/uk/" from that location. So, this is to say that if your current hosting provider is based far outside the region in which your targeted users are located, then migrating would be a great move.

However, if you have a worldwide audience or consumer base, this shouldn't be much of a factor.

8. Cloud Hosting capabilities

The internet has witnessed tremendous changes and increased possibilities since the introduction of cloud computing. The benefits of cloud hosting are numerous, and many businesses have opted for it as a result.

Presently, most web hosting companies integrate Cloud hosting into their services, but unfortunately, some do not. One of the perks of choosing a web host that also provides Cloud options is that the company can set up a dedicated server within minutes of your order. So, there's a possibility to easily migrate from a natural web hosting or cloud hosting plan.

Conclusion

A high performance website depends largely on the type of hosting plan it's on, and the kind of virtual hosting service provider offering the said plan. Opting for a cheap or shoddy host puts you at a disadvantage. If your host exhibits any of these traits, cancel your subscription and instead choose a host that ticks all the boxes.

Published Wednesday, June 20, 2018 7:32 AM by David Marshall
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