11 Common Mistakes You Should Avoid While Choosing Any Web Hosting Plan

By Rachel Premack
Last updated: October 15, 2018


Web hosting works easier today than ever before. Nevertheless, customers keep making mistakes that cause their website to malfunction or become unusable.

What typical mistakes Webhosting customers make over and over again and how to avoid them, I'll show you below.


Typical mistakes of web hosting customers

I have been running my own websites for more than 20 years and have had a lot of experience with hosting providers during this time. Of course, I made some mistakes at the beginning and even today I still see beginners who make certain mistakes in web hosting.

To make sure that this does not work and your website runs smoothly, I have collected 11 mistakes and explain how to avoid them.


1. Just look at the price

Especially when planning your first website, you try to keep costs as low as possible. That is understandable, but you should not save in the wrong place.

A good and appropriate hosting is the basis for a successful website, which is why you should instead look at a good price/performance ratio.

In general, I would advise against free hosting, which has far too many disadvantages and risks, than that it would be a good idea in the long term.


2. To choose the bad fare

Of course, this error is often related to the previous one. But even offside, many are not clear about what they actually need exactly for a hosting.

Therefore, you should look carefully, which factors are important in your own website and also generally look at the main selection criteria.

This applies, for example, required scripting languages, the necessary performance for the selected CMS, but also possibly expensive additional offers, such as additional domains or the possibility for SSL certificates.


3. Do not read the fine print

It's not fun, but you should always read the small print on the hosting offerings. There are traps that you do not want to step into.

For example, the guaranteed bandwidth of many shared hosting offers or the question of whether it is actually a real traffic flat rate.

Likewise, one should look at the information on notice periods and prohibited applications.


4. Use too big pictures

With this point, I come already to the practical use and which mistakes are made there again and again. Many simply load the photos of their digital camera onto their own web space just as they come out of the camera.

This is bad because they have a much too high resolution and therefore load forever, especially on smartphones.

Therefore, you should either downsize photos with an image editor to the right size or leave this to eg the used CMS. WordPress automatically creates miniaturized versions of the uploaded photos.


5. Hosting videos yourself

It's a bad idea to host videos on your own web space.

Of course, videos are becoming increasingly popular, but you should always use a specialized provider to host these large files, such as YouTube or Vimeo.

Otherwise, the data transfer is very fast very high and your hosting provider is causing you problems.


6. Do not perform load time optimization

Just because you spend more money on hosting does not mean you should forego optimization.

In particular, while loading time brings better hosting already visible benefits, but the loading time optimization of the CMS and other aspects is still important.


7. Do not make your own backups

Although German hosting providers are now required to make backups for customers, you should not rely on. Most of these are rather sporadic and do not last long.

Should there ever be a loss of data by the hosting provider due to technical or other problems, you should have your own, preferably daily backups available.

To ensure this, there are various backup options.


8. Do not test hosting provider before

If you have already gained experience or got a really reliable recommendation, you can choose a hosting provider without a test. Otherwise, you should make use of the test options.

Many hosting providers offer test accounts that allow you to test the performance and service for free for a certain amount of time.


9. Make changes without sufficient know-how

Again and again, I see big problems with the hosting, which are caused by wrong settings. For example, at the last niche site challenge, where a niche website was not available for a while because something was wrong in one place.

Of course, one should try to "befriend" the settings of your own hosting. That is the only way to learn. But rather on a test account, if you are not sure what to do.

In case of doubt, you should ask the support for certain changes, which is not a problem with Managed Hosting plans.


10. Disregard data protection

Data protection in the EU is becoming ever stricter and it is already risky to use hosting providers outside the EU. Finally, the hosting provider himself collects a lot of data, including IP addresses.

Therefore, I can only strongly advise you to rely on a German or European hosting provider.


11. Do not be prepared for the future

Ideally, the number of visitors and thus the load on the server will increase. You should be prepared for that.

Therefore, you should make sure when choosing the hosting provider that a later hassle-free upgrade to a higher tariff or even on its own server is possible.


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