Although WordPress is one of the most ubiquitous platforms that is available for blogging and other Internet functions, it is not universally compatible with all web hosts. They are not all created equal! Here are a few of the biggest mistakes that webmasters make when choosing a WordPress host for a blog.
1. First, you must understand your own needs when it comes to hosting.
Different kinds of WordPress blog websites require different types of hosting solutions. What kind of blog are you building? Do you need to incorporate third party applications into your site in order to make it work? Most importantly, what do you expect the size of your audience to be now and in the future?
Answering these questions will allow you to understand the resource allocation that you will need. In turn, this will determine the kind of web host that you take on.
2. Choosing a hosting platform based on price is a huge mistake.
Many people will pick the wrong type of website based solely on the price of the service. If your budget is your bottleneck, then you need to hold back your selection of a web host until you have enough money to afford any package. Your main concern should be a customer acquisition strategy and research and development for your product.
If you pick a plan that does not have the resource allocation that you need, you will obviously lose customers. These customers will never come back. When a server gets overloaded, a host will find a way to bottleneck your information flow. Because people come to the Internet for information primarily, they will simply go somewhere else. You will lose the respect of your audience. This does not take long to do if your potential customers see a 404 screen when they come to your page.
3. WordPress does not have proper internal security; do not rely on it.
Many people believe that the WordPress platform itself is somehow protected from outside malicious threats. This is not true. Most of the protection that you receive will come from the web host that you choose. There are some basic things that you should know about different web hosting packages and the security that they offer.
The shared server is usually the least expensive of any web hosting solution. It also has the least amount of security. A shared server does just that – it shares space. You will be sharing resources with other websites that you do not know. These sites will be on the same physical server as you. Many of their problems can quickly become yours if you are not careful.
The shared server has very little barrier between the data streams of different websites. If a malicious third party attacks another website, they might get into your stream of data as well. This is extremely problematic if you are conducting commerce with other people’s information. You can be held legally liable if you lose the information of these people.
The virtual private server, also known as a VPS system, is a good mix between security and price. The VPS is usually priced in the middle of the web hosting spectrum. Although you will share the same physical server with other web data streams, there is a virtual barrier that creates the image of a dedicated server for each data stream. This means that a hacker who is creating problems for another website will not easily be able to get to yours. However, you still face a possible dearth of resources if your site expands more quickly than the server capacity can handle.
The dedicated server is a web hosting solution that is dedicated specifically to you. You will have no problem dealing with the data streams of other websites. You will pay the most money for this kind of web hosting solution; however, the security is the best of any of the three mentioned solutions. There are solutions with more power than this; however, they are usually meant for large corporations.
Make sure that you choose the correct solution based on the security that you need instead of the price that you must pay in the short term.
If you choose a less expensive shared hosting solution, then the host may impose advertising on your content. This can become confusing for an audience and should be avoided if possible. However, if you are testing a site for functionality, purpose or engagement, this may be a perfect short-term solution. However, under very few circumstances is advertising from an outside source ever going to work out in your favor. You are basically giving away your audience to your host for free.
5. You need FTP access.
You may see a hosting solution with a much lower price than the competition. If it does not have FTP access, then you are losing out on too much to choose that option. Again, the price of your hosting solution should be near the bottom of your priority list. If you lose FTP access, then you will give up virtually all of your customization options. This is only a viable option for the simplest of websites.
You must find out how reliable your WordPress web hosting company is before you commit to it. Even if you have a low priced solution, a web host that is not reliable is no good to you. You only have one chance to impress a customer, and if that customer finds a 404 screen after they click through to your site, they will likely never return.
7. Upgrade Options
Many web hosting companies will attempt to draw you in with a low initial price. They know that your site will not remain at that size for a long time. Once you hit the ceiling of your resource allocation, they will hit you with a huge increase in price to upgrade their service to you. Do not fall for the initial pricing upgrade trap an underhanded WordPress web hosting company might pull.
If you follow the tips above, you will avoid many of the mistakes that novice webmasters make when they choose a host for their WordPress blog. Getting this decision right from the beginning can save you thousands of dollars and plenty of man hours down the road, so take your time to make the right decision about the web hosting platform that you use.