As the internet and the technology it relies on have evolved, the needs of websites have changed. However, many shared hosting solutions on the market have failed to keep pace with progress. If you are looking to find a web host to migrate to or build a site with, here are some of the features of modern shared hosting plans that you should look to find.
- Powerful technology
Simply hosting a website online is no longer enough for achieving success. To rank well on Google and keep visitors engaged, a website must load quickly, function smoothly, and remain online consistently. Using an outdated server that can’t keep up with modern demands and requires frequent maintenance is no longer an option. The most recent shared hosting options feature servers that utilise Intel Xeon based clusters, speedy SSD hard drives and automated caching.
- Uptime guarantee
Ensuring your website stays online is crucial for its success, as frequent downtime can harm your reputation and result in lost sales. While occasional maintenance and updates may require brief periods of offline time, your web host should provide a reliable uptime guarantee for the rest of the time. Look for a hosting plan with no less than a 99.9% uptime guarantee to ensure your website stays online for the majority of the accounting period. If you require 100% uptime, you may need to consider a different hosting option, such as cloud hosting.
- Robust security
All website owners need to take security seriously and choosing the right web host can pay dividends when it comes to protecting your site. Modern shared hosting plans come with firewalls that detect and eliminate malware and hacking, they offer you free SSL installation to encrypt network data, and they enable you to restrict access and password-protect your directories.
A good host will also offer an array of helpful security tools as well, such as SpamExperts and Imunify360.
- User-friendly control panels
Most businesses utilising shared hosting accounts lack in-house IT staff, and the task of managing hosting and website falls on the business owners or administrative staff who are not necessarily IT experts. This can pose a technical challenge. To simplify this task, it is essential to select shared hosting that includes a well-designed control panel. The industry leader in this area is cPanel, which is widely used by businesses of all sizes due to its user-friendly interface, intuitive layout and its array of management tools. Even those with minimal technical expertise find it easy to perform complex tasks, such as setting up new websites, adding email accounts and managing files. Today’s top shared hosting plans include cPanel as standard.
- Reliable technical support
While a control panel can simplify website management, technical support is an essential aspect of any hosting solution, particularly for customers with minimal IT knowledge. Hiring a consultant for technical support can be costly, making it a wise decision to choose a web host that includes technical support as part of its package. However, not all technical support is equal. Seek out a host that provides 24/7 support accessible through multiple channels, such as online chat, telephone, ticketing and email. This ensures that an expert will be available to help you troubleshoot any issues whenever needed.
- Free daily backups
Losing years of content and having to rebuild a website can be detrimental to any business, with 60% failing within six months of a significant data loss. Therefore, backing up your website is critical to ensure a quick and efficient recovery if the worst happens. Although backups are essential, you may find that your host’s backup solution is almost as expensive as the shared hosting itself. Nowadays, some web hosts view this as a crucial element of their service and offer daily backups for free.
- Unmetered bandwidth
Some hosting plans come with a set bandwidth limit, which is the amount of data your website can send and receive each month. Although this may seem like a substantial amount of data, if your website receives a lot of visitors in any given month and reaches that limit, it will disappear from the internet until the next accounting month unless you upgrade to a larger hosting package. This is highly unfair to websites because it essentially punishes them for doing well. Nowadays, most high-quality plans include unmetered bandwidth as a feature. In other words, as long as you adhere to the host’s fair use policy, you’ll have all the bandwidth you require, without the risk of being taken offline.
- Email included in the plan
Email hosting can sometimes be a hidden extra that doubles the cost of your hosting, given how cheap shared hosting is. However, if you’re a business with a professional domain name (e.g., mybusiness.co.uk), you’ll want to have a professional email address (e.g., [email protected]) as well, so make sure you choose a plan that includes this in the price. Today’s best shared hosting email solutions are highly advanced, allowing you to access email over the internet using webmail and send and receive emails from within apps like Outlook. Furthermore, they provide calendars, contacts, tasks, forwarding, autoresponders, and all the other features you’d expect from a professional email service, such as virus, malware and spam filtering.
While many shared hosting solutions have remained unchanged, some web hosting company are revamping their plans to cater for the needs of modern websites. They provide the necessary technology to ensure fast website performance and uptime, along with user-friendly control panels, tools and support services for those with limited IT expertise. Additionally, they offer a range of essential features, such as email hosting and daily backups, demonstrating their commitment to their customers’ needs.
Looking for modern shared hosting that includes all the above features and more? Check out our Linux Hosting page.