You have begun to ponder if cloud hosting is right for your business. Congratulations! You’re joining a pioneering and trailblazing group of businesses that expect cloud computing to be the next biggest wave of the 21st century. But how do you choose the right cloud hosting company for your website?
Benefits of Cloud Hosting
First, you should consider whether the benefits of cloud hosting are right for you. There are many benefits to cloud hosting, and here are just a few:
1. Cost Savings – Cloud hosting models allow you to pay for the services and equipment you use. Save money by paying only for the resources you need, rather than paying for unused bandwidth through the shared, VPS, or colocation hosting.
2. Scalability – When you need more resources, you can instantly add them with cloud hosting plans.
3. Speed – Cloud computing uses load balancers and redundant routers so that website requests are fulfilled faster.
4. Disaster Recovery – With redundant server configurations, you rarely have to worry about outages or lost data.
If cloud hosting still looks right for your business, here are a few things to consider when you are researching potential cloud hosting companies.
The cloud hosting industry is still developing. Thus, there are still many different pricing models out there from cloud hosting companies. Some will charge a flat monthly fee for their cloud hosting plan, while others will offer flexible pay-as-you-go plans.
Be sure you consider your web hosting budget and know what your limits are. Check with your potential cloud host and find out if a flexible pricing structure will work for your website needs.
Cloud hosting allows clients to be very flexible in the operating systems or platforms they choose to run their website software. Be sure you know exactly what you need. Do you run Microsoft applications requiring a Windows platform? Can your website run efficiently on a Linux platform? Or do you require a specific OS, and does the cloud host support it?
What does your potential cloud host consider ‘acceptable’ downtime? Uptime guarantees are the norm for the web hosting industry. Make sure your cloud host provides you with a guarantee of at least 99.9% uptime, and compensation should that threshold not be met.
Cloud server technology and configuration has proven to be more reliable than shared-server hosting. However, sometimes servers go down or you encounter a technical issue with your website account. Check with your cloud host to be sure they have 24 hour technical support available.
If you require more than just an infrequent support call, check whether your cloud host offers a service level agreement (SLA). Not all cloud hosts do. But should you require on-call assistance a SLA may be necessary.
How Long In Business?
Many veteran hosting companies are beginning to offer cloud hosting options. However, newer cloud hosts are springing up. Check to see how much experience your cloud host has in the industry, and whether they have experience operating their own data center.
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