This is unfortunate because, these days, owning a website is becoming a crucial part of running a successful business, and more and more folks are establishing a web presence for their personal brand as well. You can use hosting to sell online, store and share your portfolio, or even publish your freelance writing samples and resumé. Yet, even the basics — What is web hosting? — can be lost on the average web user.
Promotional pricing: Another common tactic web hosting companies use is providing promotional pricing on their website. They often depict the current prices as slashed amounts – sometimes at rates up to 50 percent off. Usually this promotional pricing comes with some conditions. Some companies will only give you the rate if you commit to a long-term contract of three years, for example. Others will provide you with the promotional pricing for the first year only.
In result, your personal info, such as  physical address, emails, telephone number, etc is hide from the public. Domain privacy is important because your domain record (ie. the WhoIs data) may also be used in ways that aren’t legitimate or desirable. Since anyone can look up a WhoIs record, spammers, hackers, identity thieves and stalkers may access your personal information!
For those users who are seeking to register a country-specific domain name option (like “.us” or “.co.uk”), a good portion of the registration process will be dedicated to determining whether or not the customer is a resident of that country and therefore legally permitted to purchase one of its country-specific top level domains (will talk about this later). And that should hammer home a secondary point to users.
We took these four companies and took an even deeper look into their services. We interacted with each company's sales team via live chat and email. This gave us a deeper look into their service offering and allowed us to test the company's customer service offering. These four companies withstood each round of our research and stood out as the best companies we reviewed. They all had impeccable customer service, and a web hosting offering that's ideal for small businesses looking for services in the defined use case.
For more experienced web designers, we required current software: MySQL version 5.6+ and PHP version 5.6+. We also required FTP access, which most web hosts have, and SSH access. It’s a more secure file transfer protocol that is particularly useful for advanced technicians (if you’re a beginner and see this option, we recommend asking your web host for advice on how to use it).
If your website needs a larger amount of resources than most, you may be better served with more advanced hosting, like Business Hosting or a Virtual Private Server. Furthermore, if you are running a large e-commerce platform or online store, you may want the extra horsepower that a VPS or dedicated server provides. But for the vast majority of businesses, GoDaddy shared web hosting will be more than enough for your website or blog.
HostMetro promises to "take your web hosting to the max." They're certainly speaking the right language when they mention their "price lock guarantee." Their intro rates closely match their regular rates, and they reward their loyal customers. Their plans come with "maximum" disk space and bandwidth. They allow for unlimited domains and email accounts. They also include access to their website builder and script installer for free.
The Support Suite includes eHost's top-level customer service. They answer most support calls in under 2 minutes. They are available 24/7 via phone, email, and web chat. They also include online tutorials to help you learn how to use the hosting platform if you aren't familiar already. These are a lot of extras that you don't always find with a shared hosting service.
Dedicated servers are used to power complex applications and high-traffic websites. You might also opt for one if you serve a large quantity of media, such as high-resolution images, audio files, and streaming video clips, or you see very high levels of traffic (or perhaps both are applicable). Dedicated hosting also provides the highest level of security and server customization possible. Also see: Colocation.
Pricing will range widely based on what company you're looking to partner with. Shared hosting plans can range from just a few dollars a month to around $30 per month. Our research told us that the web hosting industry provides "get what you pay for" services – if you're a small blog or site, the cheap plans may be your best option. If you're looking for a hosting company that can support higher volumes, storage and has more features, you're going to have to pay a higher monthly rate. VPS hosting and dedicated servers will be significantly more expensive than shared, WordPress or (in some cases) cloud hosting.
The Hive Five is based on reader nominations. As with most Hive Five posts, if your favorite was left out, it’s not because we hate it—it’s because it didn’t get the nominations required in the call for contenders post to make the top five. We understand it’s a bit of a popularity contest, but if you have a favorite, we want to hear about it. Have a suggestion for the Hive Five? Send us an email at tips+hivefive@lifehacker.com!
Please note that each account on a shared server does not feature root access. Users looking for administrative level access to their server should certainly consider our VPS Hosting or Dedicated Server plans. Additionally, customers who have eCommerce sites or existing websites that receive a large amount of visitors each month may want to consider VPS Hosting as well. Otherwise, you'll discover that A2 Hosting's shared hosting is an excellent solution for your website.
You also want a web host with 24/7 customer support—if not by phone, then at least by chat. Forums, knowledge bases, and help tickets are all well and good, but sometimes you just need to communicate with another human to get things ironed out as quickly as possible. That said, not all 24/7 customer support teams are equal. Companies like GoDaddy and Liquid Web boast incredibly knowledgeable and helpful customer support squads—a fact that we confirmed in our in-depth reviews of those web hosting services.
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