Archive for July, 2014
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Look For 1 Hour Support Guarantee While Choosing Your Web Hosting Company

There are many of us who choose web hosting services for their website based on a number of factors like price, web space provided, server uptime etc. Honestly any web hosting package which provides about 5 GB of web space under US $20 per month is fine to me. And of course most web hosting companies will tell you that they provide 99.9% uptime which honestly is not lived up to by 90% of the companies out there. Any technical person can tell you that there are large numbers of issues that creep up while running a web hosting service which makes it very difficult to actually provide 99% uptime.

For me, the single most important aspect of a web hosting service is its support and what kind of guarantee they give on their technical and customer support. Things can go wrong in any service, but how fast you rectify it is the most important thing. And not just that, website owners have different technical levels. Some might need help for the most basic features while some would require more complex support for the databases, scripts etc.

A good web hosting company would always provide 1 hour support guarantee to you for your queries. Even if a query is complex and the support staff needs to consult their administrators, programmers etc, it is always nice for a customer to be updated of what is going on and whether they can solve it immediately or after consultation with various people working in the web hosting company.

It can be very irritating for you if have opened a support ticket and next thing you know its been hours or even days before anyone has bothered to respond to you and all you have got is an automated response. Obviously once you open a support ticket, you do get an automated response saying your query has been received but I always look out for in how much time do I receive the second automated response telling me a member of the support staff has checked your query and replied to it. That shows the competence level of the web hosting company and how much they actually care about their customers.

In conclusion, whether you are looking for a web hosting service for your new website or are looking to transfer web hosts, make sure you check whether the service offers a 1 hour support guarantee on their website. Don’t be fooled with offers of web space, email accounts or even uptime guarantees. It’s the support that will make the big difference in your web hosting experience.

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Hosting Considerations For Online Video

Many webmasters (you may be one of them) have probably considered using video on their web site for promotional purposes. Video is an excellent way to command attention from your viewing audience.

However, the two largest concerns with video are file size and bandwidth.

File Size

Video is the largest of all currently deployed files on the web due to the fact it has audio and moving video. If you plan to host video on your own web site, it is important to know how much free space is available for your web hosting account due to the fact you can run out of space very quickly with video.

A general rule of thumb is that a medium-quality video will consume one megabyte per one minute of video. For example, a five-minute video would be 5MB in size on average.

Bandwidth

Because video has a very large file size, it also consumes a lot of bandwidth. Every time someone downloads or streams a video from your web site, an excessive amount of bandwidth is used. Again, you should check your web hosting account to see how much bandwidth you have available.

For example, let’s say you have a web hosting account that allows five gigabytes (5GB) of data transfer per month. You have one five-minute video available for download on your web site that is 5MB in size. Without anyone downloading anything else, your video could be downloaded 1,000 times. However, in combination with your web pages and images, that number will decrease significantly. Also, if you have additional videos for download, the number is even less.

Alternatives to Hosting Video on Your Web Site 

If hosting your own video consumes too much space and bandwidth, an alternative is to use a video hosting service. There are both free and paid hosting services available. Free services are YouTube and Google Video. For pay services, do a web search for video hosting and plenty of options will present themselves.

The advantage to paid hosting is that you can host files yourself without any “branding” that does not belong to you on your video. For free services, branding does exist which may drive traffic away from your web site.

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5 Common Web Hosting Mistakes

Mistakes aren’t necessarily a bad thing, but if you can learn from other people’s mistakes it can save you from having to deal with them yourself. When it comes to web hosting, there are basically two kinds of mistakes – technical and general business.

Technical mistakes usually come up because of a misunderstanding of the internet and how it actually works. The first mistake many people make when creating a website is to cram as much information, photographs, images, etc. on each page as possible.

This makes the site take longer to download, leading to many visitors just moving on and never actually looking at the site. It also makes it more difficult to find what they’re looking for if the page is unorganized.

Another common error is creating a web site that isn’t search engine friendly. If the search engines can’t determine what your site is about, they aren’t going to be able to send you people who are searching for what you offer.

A mistake that many people make when starting out is to choose a host solely based on price. This is obviously an important factor, especially in the beginning, but if you choose the cheapest host you may be limited in your scalability as the website grows in popularity and traffic.

On the business side of things, the most common mistake is trying to be everything to everyone. You should have a plan for your website – a purpose for its existence – and build according to that plan.

Choose your target market and stick with it. Advertise in places they would see. Market in ways that would be of interest to them. Resist the urge to branch out into other areas just because something catches your eye. A site that tries to do everything usually ends up achieving nothing.

Another common business mistake is following the competition’s lead. You’ll obviously want to keep an eye on them to see what they’re up to, but if you copy everything they do you’ll always be one step behind.

Use your creativity and come up with unique ways to stand out from the rest of the websites in your market.

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