The fact that you’re actually asking yourself the question “What’s the best hosting for my business?” is a good sign.
Why? Simply because it shows that you understand that web hosting is not a commodity.
One of the conversations I have over and over again with people is how important professional business web hosting is. And it’s important for a number of reasons which I’ll explain for you now and which will help you to make an informed decision.
First up is infrastructure. You need to be 100% sure that your website is hosted in a purpose built datacentre, ideally a TIER 3 or TIER 4 one.
That means that it was built from the bottom up with resilience, security and connectivity in mind.
The types of thing that you need to look out for are redundancy in key components of the datacentre. Redundancy just means having automatic back up systems that kick in if the primary system fails.
That could be for example having dual power and data feeds into the datacentre which enter at physically different points as well as from different suppliers so that if one supplier or feed is interrupted the others will continue providing the service.
Also a datacentre houses thousands of servers. They need to be kept in an optimal operating environment. That means temperature and humidity controls with backup systems in place as well as fire prevention systems to immediately address any serious incidents.
Or it could be related to physical infrastructure such as electricity feeds or power generators which have sufficient fuel to keep running in an extended period of electrical outage.
Therefore if you want to be sure that your website is hosted in a safe environment the datacentre is the starting point.
Powerful And Resilient Servers
So we’ve looked at the datacentre and we’ve seen that this is a multi-million pound investment. But that’s no use if the server that you’re hosted on is of poor quality or it is working over capacity.
At Pickaweb we only use Enterprise grade servers and components. That may not always be the case with lower cost hosting companies.
We also have invested in the setup of the server so that hardware issues do not impact the operation of the server. For example, we use 10K SAS Hard Drives configured in a RAID10 configuration. We also use hot swap hard drives and redundant hot swap power supplies too.
We also constantly back up our servers too.
Now this might seem like gobbledygook technical jargon, but here’s what it means to you:
- 10K SAS Hard Drives – Fast, reliable Enterprise Grade, Datacentre ready hard drives – not to be confused with slower SATA hard drives
- RAID 10 – A way of storing your data over 4 hard drives so that there is no single point of failure so that if one hard drive fails your data is safely stored on the other disks
- Hot Swap Hard Drives – If a hard drive fails we can remove it and replace with a new hard drive with zero downtime – the RAID array just recognises the new hard disk and formats it automatically and adds it to the array
- Hot Swap Power Supply – The Power Supply Unit (PSU) is a critical component in the server. If the PSU fails then the server stops working. That’s why we have two PSUs in each server and they are hot swap like the hard drives so they can be replaced with zero downtime
- Constant Backup – We perform regular backups of our servers to make sure that your data is always safe
High Levels Of Security
One area that you must be confident about is security. If you are hosted on an insecure server where malware is being uploaded and phishing emails are being sent then your website will suffer.
Why? Simply by association. If the server you are hosted on is being constantly exploited and used for sending spam or phishing emails then it will get blacklisted by Internet Service Providers.
That’s bad news because when a server gets blacklisted that means that you could have issues sending or receiving emails due to the poor reputation of the server. Or you could take a hit in the rankings as Google sees that you are hosted in a bad neighbourhood.
That’s why we’re always monitoring this type of thing and we invest in the tools, the technology and the people to make sure this doesn’t happen.
For example, we use a tool called SpamExperts to monitor all outgoing emails and it is over 99% accurate at spotting and stopping fraudulent, spam and other malicious emails like phishing email (we can also stop incoming spam too).
That means we stop it at source and identify the offending account and work with the website owner to address it immediately and work out a plan to prevent it happening again.
We are also constantly monitoring blacklists to make sure our servers are not listed and in the unlikely event that they do appear we work quickly to get them removed.
The net result is that we minimise the possibility of these issues occurring which is good for us and it’s good for our clients.
One thing that we hear over and over again from our customers is that they love the high level of instant support they get, especially the Live Chat support. Check our TrustPilot reviews to see for yourself.
This is an area where you really need to check before you choose your web host. Ask the following questions of them:
- Do they offer 24 hour support?
- Do they offer 24×7 support via Live Chat?
- Do they offer 24×7 support via Freephone?
- Do they offer 24×7 support via Email?
- Are there 3rd Party review sites so you can check what their customers say?
Here at Pickaweb we’re really focused on high levels of support. We know how frustrating it can be when you’re trying to get something to work and it won’t do what you want it to. Our team are hosting experts and they can handle anything that’s thrown at them.
But it’s not just fixing issues, we’re also here to help you grow your business. That’s why we’ve written a book to help our clients – you can get a free instant copy of our book here.
Choosing the right host for your business hosting is an important decision. You need a hosting company that has at least a TIER 3 Datacentre to ensure that it meets the highest standards of security, resilience and connectivity.
Then in terms of the server itself you need to besure that it is high quality and resilient. Check that as a minimum it has Enterprise grade hard drives (minimum 10K SAS), RAID 10 and hot swap hard disks and power supplies. Also check that the servers are regularly backed up.
When it comes to security you need to be sure that your hosting company is on top of this to make sure your server doesn’t get blacklisted.
Finally check that they offer 24 x 7 support by live chat, phone and email.