Basically every company, no matter its size, needs to do business on the web in order to be successful. In fact, smaller businesses can often benefit from Internet services to an even greater degree than large businesses, since there are many web solutions that lower overhead costs and allow distance collaboration in addition to hosting a company website. Here’s what to look for when choosing hosting services that can offer your small company the greatest possible benefits:
- Storage and Bandwidth Levels
The most basic requirement of hosting services is that they provide you with enough space to store your data and enough bandwidth that your visitors can actually view it. Be cautious: While many companies offer “unlimited” storage and bandwidth, there will be fine print setting the parameters of “normal site usage.” It probably won’t be a problem unless you’re running a very popular site or have many workers using an internal system that relies on the host, but it’s still best to be clear about exactly what you’re getting.
- Dedicated Managed Hosting
Many people or companies just getting started online opt for shared hosting, in which a server is shared with numerous other users through the hosting company. But dedicated server hosting is a must for any serious business, especially if security is a concern. By taking this route, your company protects its data, gains access to additional hosting services and has greater flexibility in how the server is managed. It’s possible to find an affordable dedicated server that offers all these as well as significant customer support to help you get your server space set up.
- Complete Cloud Solutions
The best cloud hosting doesn’t just support the website your customers see; it also allows you to manage your entire company with greater efficiency, have dedicated company email addresses and even have employees collaborate from afar. Complete cloud solution providers can help you with everything from new task management software and document sharing to Internet-based phone systems.
- Mobile Accessibility
Just a few years ago, this might have been considered a nice perk, but today mobile accessibility is a must. This will allow your team to access the system at any point in time via smartphones and tablets, which in turn enables faster response times and better overall efficiency.
- Technical Support
Very few small businesses can afford an in-house IT team, so it’s important to make sure your host will provide the help you’re sure to need — after all, all technology breaks down occasionally. Pay attention to how you’ll be able to contact the host’s support system (chat, service tickets, forums, phone, etc.) and what hours representatives will be available. If problems are handled through support tickets, take a look at how long you’ll be expected to wait for responses.
Do you have any other tips for picking the best hosing services for small businesses? Share your ideas in the comments.