If you’re an Internet user, you’ve undoubtedly heard of the term “budget web hosting”. Over the years, a lot of web service providers have appeared, and their services, capabilities and storage space greatly vary from one another. Even though web hosting was pretty pricey in the Internet’s early days, nowadays you will find a lot of storage space for a fairly small fee.
If we’d want to define true budget web hosting, we’d go with a web hosting service that you can get for less than $10 per month. Therefore, there are web hosting companies that provide usable space on their servers that are well within your budget. Most of these companies will give you yearly plans, which you can then break up into smaller monthly payments, as you find them convenient.
You will find many web hosting companies, and choosing one that fits your bill can be pretty difficult. Where you might want to begin is by going through their brochures, and see which ones look like they’re professional, which one have clear contact details, a clear physical address, and even those who have a toll free line. A toll-free line means that they can clarify any doubts regarding their service and help their customers.
After you figure out whether the company you’ve picked is honest and reliable, you need to check the uptime and downtime guarantees. Uptime guarantee tells you the percentage of time for which the server is completely up and running, while downtime guarantee tells you the percentage of time for which the server might be down, for maintenance reasons. There is a huge difference between 99% uptime, and 99.9% uptime and this difference can be crucial, depending on what you will be using the website for.
Last but not least, you should see whether you get any extras along with the storage space. Some companies might give you marketing tools and even free scripts that will help you when you’re trying to develop and build up your business. What should become clear to you, is that even though these cheap hosting companies sound and look cheap, they usually offer quality and features that are completely on par with the expensive web hosting services, just as long as you choose the right hosting company.
What can you get with cheap website hosting?
Even though dedicated and VPS hosting options are very powerful, they are also pretty expensive, and with a cheap web hosting service you’ll have to pick a shared or managed WordPress hosting option. But, let’s clear as to what they are and what that means for you.
Where you have a shared hosting, you are basically sharing the server with other websites at the same time. However, the “shared” part doesn’t mean that you can look at the other websites’ files, just like nobody can look at yours. The benefit is that sharing the same server lowers the prices for everyone. But the downside, and potentially a big one, is that if one, or more, of the other sites, start to consume much of the resources, your website will run with reduced performance due to limited capabilities of the server, and it might even crash.
A managed WordPress hosting service will let you set up, and run, a WordPress blog with the least amount of fuss possible. If the website’s primary function is nothing more than a blog, do yourself, and your wallet, a favor, and don’t bother with other types of hosting such as shared hosting plans.
One important thing that you’ll need to keep an eye out in your search for the best cheap web hosting service is to read the fine print. This is especially important if you want to keep the prices to a minimum. Multiple services will give you several tiers, where the cheaper packages have introductory features, and the higher-priced plans come with advanced options. The big font that tells you the monthly fee shouldn’t fool you, and you should be very careful that you’ll actually get what you need.
Some of the hosts will even charge you extra for any tools that you might want to use for design. Others will ask for a three-year minimum contract in order for you to get the low price. Or, some offer introductory prices, which go higher after a month or two. It is a smart move not to invest in an annual plan until you’re sure what you need and how quickly your business will grow.
You don’t have to do everything yourself
If you have modest needs, and your primary goal is a cheap website hosting service, there is an alternative option, and that is a website builder. Such services can give you a good looking website, such as a brochure-ware site, without additional fuss regarding functionality. Weebly and DudaOne are good options, for example.
This kind of website builder can help you a lot, especially if having your own domain isn’t a very big concern, and you’re not into behind-the-scenes tweaking. You will get very attractive, yet functional websites, but they’re hosted under their domain. They are, however, dirt cheap, and some even offer free plans, even though that might mean that you get the service’s branding on your own website. However, if you want your own domain and no branding, generally what you need to do is pay a bit more. However, if you want complete control, you need web hosting.
Good, cheap web hosting options
As you will come to realize, not all web hosts are made equal. Some have storage and data transfer caps, and some offer hidden catches in that fine print mentioned earlier, that will eventually catch up to you and bite you. Other services might even limit what applications you can use and often ask for more money just to get a particular functionality or feature. Then, you have the bare-bones services, which give you nothing more than space, which is actually great if you’re an experienced coder. Choosing the host that works for you, depends completely on your budget and how you will use the site.
As you see above, if the price is a priority, and speed and uptime aren’t so important, get iPage. WebHostingPad is also close, but performance is in favor of iPage. However, if you’re willing to pay a bit extra, to get high performance, by all means, go for HostGator Cloud.
At the end of the day, even though the costs are kept low with such cheap website hosting solutions, the quality is often on par with what you would get if you paid extra for a more expensive service. All you need to do is make your pick.
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