The cost of website design & development can range from hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on a client’s needs. Hence, we understand why some would opt to save on other factors particularly web hosting. While there’s nothing wrong with finding ways to save on costs, we suggest doing your research before availing a very low-cost web hosting service.
The Disadvantages of Very Low-Cost Web Hosting
A web host or web hosting service provider houses all of your website’s files on special computers called servers. Think of it as your site’s home. Once someone types in your domain or web address in their browser, their computer will connect to your server. Afterwards, your server delivers your website to them via their browser.
Knowing the responsibility of a web host, you need to get a reliable one. While a cheap offer means shelling out only a few dollars a month, it may come with some serious cons which can lead to headaches & higher costs later on.
Limited space & resources
Usually, businesses put numerous websites into one server so they can offer cheap web hosting services. This means you are sharing the space & resources with others. Think of it as if renting an apartment with someone. You don’t have the entire place to yourself. You are limited. If you need more space, you need to move out & get your own apartment. The same goes for your website.
Poor page performance
Given that you’re sharing the server with others, it can affect your website’s performance particularly load speed. Moreover, even though a provider promises you unlimited bandwidth, the fact that you’re on shared hosting affects your server’s performance.
Server downtime issues
All providers can experience server downtime or outage. This results in your website being down as well. So, a web host must have a redundancy plan in place for such times. Redundancy pertains to the provider’s backup plans when a server goes down. These include having other servers ready to take over immediately during an outage. Similarly, if something happens to a provider’s primary data centre, there should be a second one.
Cheap web hosting usually lacks these plans because it leads to additional costs for the provider. As a result, your website will remain down until their server is up again. Just imagine your business’s loss of sales in the process.
Inadequate backup or lack thereof
In connection to server downtime issues, another serious concern is the lack of backup. Most very low-cost web hosts don’t provide backup services. They expect you to do that. It’s one way for them to save on operational costs & keep their offers cheap.
Then even if they do provide it, it’s usually on an automatic & monthly basis. So, if their server goes down way before the scheduled backup & you’ve made changes to your website, you risk losing all your data. This includes page content, orders, and customer lists if you don’t have them stored elsewhere or you haven’t taken a backup of your website. The same goes for corrupted automatic backups. In both situations, you’re left with no data & the problem of having to rebuild.
Negative impact on SEO
Based on findings, websites with lower time-to-first-byte (TTFB) have higher rankings. To clarify, TTFB measures the time it takes for a browser to receive the first byte from your server. So, heavily-loaded servers (those hosting numerous websites) may contribute to higher TTFB & lower search engine rankings.
Higher risk of data leak & other security concerns
Given that providing maximum website security entails costs, providers tend to allot a few security features for cheap hosting offers. Thus, this creates a greater vulnerability to security risks like data leaks.
Another security concern is the “other occupants”. Unfortunately, people behind questionable websites tend to avail cheap web hosting services because—well, it’s cheap. These people include scammers. If you have the same IP address with such & authorities discover these questionable sites, they may take down all websites sharing the same IP address including yours.
Poor customer service
Cheap web hosting usually lacks quality customer service. Enquiries or concerns can take up days to get a response via email or chat, if any. The same goes for phone support. Having a single or only a handful of agents answering calls create very long queues. Yes, providers have a knowledge base or FAQs page but these prove insufficient at times.
Web hosting tips
With all things said, it’s best to pay a higher cost if it means better security & performance for your website. On that, we also advise getting a compatible web hosting service. This means both the server and your website platform runs on the same system. For example, WordPress is Linux-based. Hence, it runs best on Linux-based servers. Yes, you can host it in Windows-based servers but this can result in slow loading times & inefficient functions.
In summary, great consideration must be taken before availing very low-cost web hosting services due to its lack of features. Still, this doesn’t mean paying for the highest offer out there. Rather, it means reviewing all the features included in each offer then availing the one that meets your needs.
If this process seems overwhelming for you, you can always seek the advice of professionals. With Human Pixel’s expertise in website development, we can provide you with sound advice & in-depth information about web hosting. Moreover, as a website development company, we only use fast business-grade servers that provide optimum security & performance for our clients’ websites.
That said, if you need to switch web hosts or create a website hosted in fast business-grade servers, we’ve got you. Human Pixel can help you make it happen!