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4 Signs It’s Time to Find a New Web Host

Is your web host performing? Here are key indicators that it’s not up to snuff.

Katie Caron
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(Photo: Unsplash user Clément H)

With the rise of e-commerce and the need for businesses to have a strong online presence, it’s now more important than ever to have a website that functions smoothly. A key factor in your website’s overall function is your web host, or the service provider that stores your site on a server and keeps it operating.

Having a poor web host can impact everything from the usability to the security of your site, which can ultimately lead to your reputation and sales taking a hit. Is your web host up to par? Here are four signs it may be time to find a new one.

1. Too much downtime

If your website’s server experiences a glitch, this can result in downtime, rendering your site inaccessible. When this happens, you’re at the mercy of your web host to resolve the issue and get your site up and operating again. Downtime is a fairly common issue: Consulting firm IDC says 80 percent of small businesses have experienced it at some point.

So how much downtime is too much? Research from Carbonite shows that server downtime can cost small businesses up to $427 a minute. In addition to whatever downtime ends up costing you, you also run the risk of turning away interested customers who may never come back to your site after a poor experience. While 100 percent uptime is near impossible, your site shouldn’t experience downtime for more than one percent of the time. If it’s more than that, you may want to find a better web host.

2.  Poor security strategy

While nobody is immune to security issues and system attacks, investing in a strong web host with the right security features can make you less vulnerable. If you’re sure you’ve done what you need to on your end, including making sure your WiFi is secure and your software is solid and updated, then any frequent security events could be a result of a poor host.

3. Slow page loading times

Research from Akamai and Gomez found that 79 percent of consumers said they would not return to a site with poor performance, and 47 percent of consumers expect a site to load in two seconds or less. Consumers have high standards for page speed, and it’s important to check in on your loading times (with tools like Google PageSpeed Insights) to make sure everything is loading quickly.

Slow page speed can stem from a variety of issues including an unoptimized site with large images or poor design, but if you’re confident everything is fine on your end, the culprit could be your web host. If your web host is hosting too many sites on one server, the high traffic could be killing your page speed. If you find you have slow page speeds and eliminate the other possibilities, it might be time to find a higher quality host.

4. Poor technical support

If your web host company is hard to reach, often can’t fix your problems or is slow to respond to inquiries, it’s probably time to move on. Remember, you’re paying them and they’re the experts, so they should be available 24/7 when issues arise and fix them as quickly as possible.

What has your experience been with your web host? Let us know in the comments!


Photo: Unsplash user Clément H

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