Affordable web hosting is a staple now in the hosting industry. It is absolutely possible to get great web hosting from a reputable and reliable company for just a few dollars a month. However, there are other web hosts out to get your dollars and fail to deliver on quality. Here are a few things to look out for:
Web hosting is a for-profit business. That is a given. However, many unscrupulous web hosting companies will try to lure you to buy a “cheap” web hosting account, then try to upsell you for something you don’t need.
Say for instance you look at a hosting plan advertised at $3.50 per month. It comes with 500GB of disk storage and 100GB of monthly data transfer. If your business only uses an average of 50GB of bandwidth and only a few GB of disk space, you are likely not needing an upgrade to an unlimited plan for $14.99 per month. But you can bet that an unethical web host will try to bait and switch you for the extra charge.
This is the second most-common of tricks by some web hosting companies. You may find a perfect plan for your small business for a great price. But as soon as you buy your account and pay two years in advance, you suddenly realize after your first month the hosting company charges you extra for exceeded bandwidth, or that you don’t have access to scripts you plan to use on your website (but are available at a ‘nominal’ charge), etc.
Affordable and “cheap” web hosting is made available through the sharing of web server space. That means you and possibly hundreds of other web accounts share the available resources of a single server. The practice is based on averages. They expect that most of the shared-server clients will use a minimum of resources.
In many unscrupulous practices, hosting companies will “stuff” as many clients onto one server as possible, thus overselling the available resources. In many of these cases you could be sharing a server with one or more website owners who overuse their allotted resources and crash the server. You suffer the consequences.
A positive review from a customer is a great testimony about the service. It is customary for web hosts to post a few of their best testimonies on their website as an example of happy and satisfied customers.
However, there are web companies who will post false testimonies and even false reviews about the service to try and make themselves appear more legitimate than they actually are.
Exaggerated 24 Hour Support
Many web hosting companies advertise that they provide 24/7 support. However, those companies without scruples will try and trick you to believe that they have 24 hour telephone support, when in actuality it is only via online ticket support during off hours.
And worse yet, some completely unethical web hosts will publish a “24 hour live support” toll free number that is absolutely false. If you tried calling the number at 2am, there won’t be a soul to answer your call.
Your online business is too important to trust with an unethical and unscrupulous web hosting company. The best thing you can do is always verify and double check every detail about that potential hosting plan you want to buy.