15 Essential Features of Great Web Hosting

essential features of great web hosting

Choosing the right web hosting company in Singapore can be a challenge. More so, it is crucial that you choose a company that will offer you a package that is right for your business. Your site’s performance, security, and reliability depend on the type of web hosting plan you choose. This is why you need to consider this list of the essential features of great web hosting.

Other than the basic package, you also need a company that offers you additional perks such as sufficient disk space for storage, managed services, email accounts, subdomains, and more. If you choose blindly, particularly based on price, you will be in for a rough ride.

The Essential Features of Great Web Hosting in Singapore

In this article, we have compiled a list of the 15 features that you should consider when choosing a web hosting company. Read on to the end and find out what you should expect from a reputable web hosting company in Singapore.

Guaranteed Uptime and Availability

A website that regularly goes offline gives a bad impression to your suite visitors. More so, it will also affect your conversions and search engine rankings. This typically happens to websites on a shared server where the server is affected by other users. It might happen if the servers are old and lack maintenance.

As a new business with limited resources, it is always advisable to go for a shared server hosting, but ensure that the web host can guarantee you at least 99.95% uptime and website availability.

essential features of great web hosting

However, for an established business that requires slightly more complex websites and systems, they need dedicated server hosting or cloud hosting. These hosting options should guarantee you better availability.

The web host should give a guarantee that your website will remain online for 99.995 of the time. If you opt for enterprise cloud hosting, then you could get 100% uptime and availability.

Back Up Services

While the modern business landscape is centred on the internet, hackers pose a very huge threat. They will send malware to your website and systems, with some having the ability to lock you out your site. One of the features a web host should offer you is a backup service.

Think about what would happen if you lost all your data that includes customer data, emails, inventory records, web content, financial details, and more? The worst thing that could happen is that you will lose your customers’ trust.

If you are in the e-commerce business, you need a web host that provides continuous backups to avoid losing any recent sales. With that said, you must ensure that the web host is backing up their servers as well.

While it is not a common thing, servers sometimes go down, or they develop a problem. A web host that offers back up services ensures that your website does not suffer long periods of downtime.

Round the Clock Customer Support

The beauty of the online business sphere is that customers can reach you 24/7, and this calls for you to have your website and other critical apps running continuously. This means that you need a web host that will offer technical support no matter the time of day.

Speaking of technical support, we do not mean a customer care representative whose job is to talk you down. We mean an expert who will provide the necessary solutions to your problem on the spot.

Every second that you are offline is a customer and revenue lost. Customer support will become essential as you scale your business.  Businesses that run complex systems will require technical support 24/7.

Capacity for Long Term Growth

When done right, your business is bound to grow and your web host ought to have the necessary tools to help you build your brand on the internet. You may have a small website on a shared server hosting platform, but a few years down the line you will need a hybrid solution involving a dedicated server as well as private and public cloud hosting.

You preferred web hosting company ought to have a wide variety of hosting plans that will be suitable at every stage of your business. Not only should they have a wide array of services, but you also need a company that will make it easy to upgrade.

Robust Security Features

Cybercrime has evolved so much, and hackers now are using sophisticated hacking software to infiltrate the existing security systems. These systems allow hackers to scan millions of websites looking for vulnerabilities. This makes robust security protocol one of the greatest features of great web hosting.

According to a Forbes post by James Lyne, there are at least 30,000 websites hacked every day. While it is your responsibility to ensure the security of your site, a web host ought to add to your security protocols.

essential features of great web hosting

These include things such as intrusion prevention, strong firewalls, spam removal, email scanning, SSL encryption and so much more. No matter the content on your site, if a hacker finds vulnerabilities, be assured that they will exploit it.

In a worst case scenario, your site could be used to spread viruses and other malware. There are stiff penalties and fines associated with such acts, so you should ensure that you get robust security features from your web hosting company.

Multiple Add-On Domains

Domains in Singapore are affordable, and many businesses are taking on more than one. However, to accommodate the extra domains, you will need additional disk space, and this is why you need a web host that allows for multiple add-on domains.

Some website hosting companies will allow you up to 50 website sub domains, but it will be a bit expensive. The most cost-friendly web hosting companies in Singapore allow for at least 25 add-on domains for one account.

The trick is to ensure that the web host will allow you to have the extra domains under one account. Before you sign the contract, ensure that you discuss it with the company’s representative,

Free Trial Period and Refund Policy

There are some basic questions that you need to get answers for from the web host company. They include

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  • Are there any cancelation charges or extra fees other than the signup and renewal fees?
  • What is the web host’s refund policy after the expiry of the free trial period?
  • If you were to cancel your hosting package, would you get a full refund?

It is necessary that you get all the information on how the company y handles refunds to avoid you losing out should there be anything amiss with the hosting plan. Be warned that some companies charge excessively high cancellation fees especially during the trial period.

On the other hand, some companies offer a full money-back guarantee should anything go wrong. With such companies, you can always ask for a pro-rated refund for when the trial period is over.

Managed Services

Running a business in the modern digital is already stressful enough to take on the tasks of managing the server where your website is hoisted. However, there are some web hosting companies that will take care of server management.

By managing the server, they will ensure that the servers OS is up to date. They will also be responsible for making updates and patching. Given the kind of service you require, it is possible to get bespoke managed services.

This service will be outlined in the terms and conditions, so you need to read and understand it before you sign the contract.

One-Click Installer

There are various one-click installers, and they make your work easier. Examples of one-click installers include Simple Script and Softalucous among others. In other words, they are installation wizards and help in the installation of things such as Joomla, WordPress, Drupal, and other web-based applications.

The only thing that you have to do is to specify a directory, fill in a few names, and you are all set. Instead of going to look for them yourself; the web hosting company ought to provide them as part of the hosting package.

Scalability

While a web hosting company could have allowed for room for growth, there are times when your website will receive a spike in traffic. This will require that you can get short term resources on demand from your web host.

Without additional resources on demand, your website could go offline. The thing about scalable resources is that you pay for them as you go. This makes them affordable, and you do not have to upgrade to a premium package to handle the growth.

If you are in the e-commerce business, then you could require your web host to make available the scalable resources during the holiday season. A case in point is Cambridge University; their system went offline when they released the Stephen Hawking Ph. D for the first time on their website.

SSL Certificates

These are a must for e-commerce websites since they are responsible for securing your customer’s transactions and personal data. The SSL certificate will encrypt the data and the web host ought to provide you with at least one.

essential features of great web hosting

Websites that lack the SSL certificate are marked as ‘not secure’ by Google and other search engines, and payment gateways may restrict you from using their systems to sell on your website. In such a case, you will have to direct your customers to site with an SSL certificate to make the payment which is too big of a hassle.

More so, antivirus companies are advising their users to use sites with SSL certificates which are denoted by an “https” prefix. This is due to the flaw found in Wi-Fi known as KRACK. This makes it vital that you get a web host that will provide you with SSL certificates.

Easy To Use Control Panels

Many webmasters find it a challenge to administer the back-end of their server or website mainly because they do not have a user-friendly interface. There are different operating systems for servers, and they will determine the type of control panel that you will get.

If you have a Linux-based server, then you should use the cPanel. For Windows-based servers, then you need to use the Plesk control panel. Both of these control panes has an easy to use dashboard interface, and this makes navigation easy.

Besides this, they have well-organised features that make it easy to manage updates, change settings, and install software in a few slicks.

Migration Services

Most websites would rather stick with their original web hosting company, but due to unavoidable circumstances, they are forced to migrate. Most reputable web hosting companies offer free migration services, and they will ensure that everything is working as expected.

If you have a web host that does not offer the migration service, then the chances are that they do not have the expertise or the human resource to take on the job. This could cause huge problems in the future.

 Good Email Accounts

Many web hosts will provide email accounts in all their packages, but you need more than the ability to send and receive emails. A great web host will ensure to provide email scanning while searching for malware and spam emails. They ought to also check that your email server is not blacklisted.

The web hosting company ought to provide integration services, adequate storage, web and mobile mail access, file sharing and more. The emails should also have features that are essential to the modern business environment such as tasks, and calendars.

Support for WordPress

WordPress is the most popular content management system in the world today, and it powers over 25% of the top 10 million websites. Despite being so popular, not all hosts offer the in-house technical experience to support its unique requirements.

If you are using WordPress, then you should ensure that your website host provides technical support for WordPress. However, it would be better if they offered a dedicated WordPress hosting.

Conclusion

The above is only a snippet of the essential features of a great web hosting. However, this list will ensure that you choose the right web hosting company in Singapore.  With that said, most people have the habit of skimming through the terms and conditions.Ensure that you read and understand the terms and conditions before you sign them. 

If you are looking for a web host in Singapore, get in touch with us today. Our personnel will help you select the right package for your website and work on it until the expected results are achieved. 

Author Bio

Tom Koh is widely recognised as a leading SEO consultant in Asia who has worked to transform the online visibility of the leading organisations such as SingTel, Capitaland, Maybank, P&G, WWF, etc. Recently he was instrumental in consulting for a New York-based US$30B fund in an US$4Bn acquisition. Tom is a Computational Science graduate of the National University of Singapore. In his free time he performs pro-bono community work and traveling.
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