What to Look for in a Web Hosting Service

On a lookout for the right hosting service? Here are some key points to keep in mind.

The initial stages of hosting a website can be a bit demanding. For one, you have to make several decisions that will determine how your site will look like eventually. Besides, you have to compromise with what’s available to suit your hosting needs.

Knowing how to host a website takes you the next step, i.e., choosing a web hosting service. With so many web hosting options available out there, finding the best web service to suit your needs can be challenging.

To help save your time and effort, here is a checklist you can use when going for hosting shopping.

1. Security

Security is one of the most important factors when choosing a web hosting service. This is because the threat of cybercriminals and hackers is only growing, and businesses have lost millions of dollars, faced legal charges, and lost reputation as a result of breaches.


A good hosting company should have security as a priority to help avoid data loss and illegal access to your site’s data. As a minimum, the company you choose should offer a powerful firewall, include SSL certificates as part of their plans, and also offer affordable security software or other add-ons to boost your web security. This is especially important if your website requires users to provide personal information or any sensitive data such as email and contact addresses.

Apart from that, also research the company’s reputation to know if your website will be in safe hands.

2. Support

If you experience a problem that you can’t fix on your own, you will need a person who knows what they are doing to help you get back up as soon as possible. Different web hosting services provide different levels of support, and some are more reputable in this area than others.


Before you choose a hosting service provider, check out the various contact options that they provide in case you need support. This may be a live chat, toll-free phone numbers, email, etc. Also, consider their availability hours and whether their support is in-house or outsourced.

3. Scalability

Web hosting needs usually change after a while. As such, the web hosting you pick to use today might not serve you well after a few years. This is why you need to choose a web hosting service that offers scalability.

A majority of beginners start with a shared hosting plan but upgrade to VPS or dedicated as soon as traffic increases.

To make your migration process simple, you need a web hosting service that offers different plans. This way, it will be more convenient to upgrade within the same company than having to switch hosting providers just because the first one doesn’t offer scalability and no longer meet your needs.

4. Storage

Web hosting services provide different levels of storage. Most of these hosts claim to offer ‘unlimited’ storage. Much as we all want unlimited storage, it is never always true – for most, at least.  The few that actually offer unlimited storage attach a limiting feature.


As a beginner, you may be tempted to go with that web hosting only to realize it is not what you expected. If your website doesn’t receive a large volume of traffic, the shared hosting plan easily suffices your storage needs.

5. Website builder

Not everyone looking for a web hosting service has the skills to design the website. If you lack the skills to create the site yourself and don’t want the services of a professional web designer, you need a host that provides a website builder.

Website builder

Website builders mostly do not require you to be tech-savvy to build your desired website. This way, you can eliminate the need for a professional web designer. You can also use the skills of the tech staff already available in the business, minimizing cost.

6. Add-Ons

Add-ons are useful when it comes to determining what makes one hosting company better than the other, outside the basic needs.

When choosing your web hosting service, check for any extra features offered. It could be multiple data centers, free back-up, or free domain privacy, amongst many others. Spend time reading hosting reviews like this Hostplus Review before making a decision about the best web hosts. All web hosts offer different features, even when they look very similar.

If you find one that offers an extra feature that you find essential, you may consider it.


Other additional factors include email features, mobile capability, and bandwidth. Withal, the checklist above should be good enough to get you started in the right direction.

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Published on March 2, 2020 by Peter Hughes; modified on February 16, 2023. Filed under: .

Peter Hughes is a digital marketing consultant and author. Peter has more than 10 years of experience in SEO and Internet marketing.

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