The market for free or cheap hosting will never completely disappear, we understand that. We do however, need to address why these options are never a good idea, even if you’re a small business or start up.
Setting off on the right foot
That isn’t to say that you’re immediately going to be looking for the absolute ultimate in cloud hosting providers when you’re setting up your business, but there’s a great deal to consider. The first year of business is often a year of rapid growth. Free hosting can be gated by this, and you’ll have limited bandwidth and storage. If you need to grow rapidly, then it presents a challenge to move to a paid solution. This can be quick and easy, but providers that are focused on price rather than quality will still look to provide a limitation on the resources available. If growth is a big aim in your first year of trading then it’s always good to start with a solution that will scale with you, rather than something that will present a challenge further down the line.
Where’s my security?
Cheap cloud hosting will often be a shared cloud and with this there can be considerable downsides. Sharing resources could slow your systems down at peak times, while sharing an IP address with businesses that are irrelevant to yours can also be problematic - if one business has content that is shut down or hacked, every site from that server is shut down and hacked too. There’s also the added worry of DDOS attacks. While an attack may not be aimed at you, if your solution came with price as the primary driver, how much of your money is being used to ensure your data security? This should be one of the primary decision factors when looking at cloud hosting. Security is central to any successful hosting solution.
Cloud hosting allows for a significant advantage with data storage as there can be data stored in two different locations, keeping in line with new guidelines for eCommerce websites that are transactional. Free or cheap hosting is highly unlikely to provide this, meaning that already you’re on the back foot when looking to change your website into something where users are able to buy from you online.
Often free or cheap cloud hosting is done through a white label provision service (the hosting is bought on a larger scale cheaply, and then sectioned off for greater profit) which means that in most cases you’re not actually working with the provider of the hosting. If you’re unsure of who/where your hosting truly comes from, there could be holes in the security protocols and this is often in the form of on-site security breaches. When choosing a cloud hosting provider, a good indication of their credentials is how they approach on-site security.
Keeping the lights on
When looking for cloud hosting, free or cheap almost never means 100% uptime. If keeping your business online all the time is important, corners will have been cut when it comes to ensuring the lights stay on 24/7. In the event of a power cut or server issues, how will your provider ensure you don’t lose money? Hosting providers like Teledata use 2(N+N) resilience, costing millions of pounds to implement. Cheap cloud hosting is not likely to have this provision for your business.
To find out more about how Teledata can possibly help you with cloud hosting, please do get in touch on 0161 498 1200.