Choosing a web hosting provider can be a potential banana skin when you are setting up a new website. If you agree a contract in haste then you could come to have big regrets when you find that it doesn’t live up to your expectations. That is why it is so important to get as much information up front before you eventually opt for a hosting solution.

If you don’t have a huge amount of time to do your own research then luckily we can point you in the right direction. Checking out web hosting reviews will give you a really good indication of how well a host performs and how it is regarded in the technology industry. You just need to make sure that the reviews are coming from an unbiased source rather than a company that is trying to promote a particular host because they are affiliated to it.

So reviews are a really good place to start off but you will also need to understand some of the key things that are being described and rated in the reviews. For example, monthly data transfers, uptime, bandwidth and operating system compatibility. These are just a few of the features and details that are important to consider when you are signing up with a web host for the first time.

In regards to monthly data transfers, you need to think about how much data you are going to be uploading and whether visitors will be downloading from your site. If you are going to have a simple, one page website without many content uploads then this isn’t going to be as important to you. However, if you expect to be doing a high amount of data transfer each month then you probably need a package that allows unlimited data transfers.

Uptime refers to the amount of time that a host is online. Some hosts are notorious for being offline for scheduled maintenance or have issues that cause them to go offline. Obviously this won’t look very good if your visitors are trying to get onto your site and see an offline error message. To avoid this problem, look for a host that offers guaranteed uptime. You will find that all of the top hosts offer at least 99% uptime and guarantee a refund of your monthly fee if they fail to deliver it.

If your website is to host applications and databases, it is important to check that your host is compatible with your operating system. Windows and Linux are compatible with most top web hosting solutions

Another important thing to remember is that you may at some point need some help, either at set up or further along the line if you have a technical issue. For people that don’t have a strong background in setting up websites, it is recommended that you find a host that offers a high level of customer service.

If you launch a website and send out your marketing campaigns to drive people to your site you could encounter a problem. Imagine if your hosting package isn’t able to cope with the volume of visitors or you accidentally delete some valuable website content and you can’t resolve it on your own. Knowing that you have a reliable customer support team available at any time of day will give you good peace of mind. It could end up saving you from a complete disaster. So always take a look at the typical response times, opening hours and different channels that are offered in terms of customer support.