You’ve done your research, and you’re ready to switch from a basic shared hosting plan to a virtual private server/VPS hosting plan. But what if your current web host doesn’t offer it? It can seem like a big chore to switch web hosts, but it shouldn’t be. If you know exactly what you’re looking for and are armed with a “must-have” checklist, this is a task you can take care of very quickly. Don’t stick with a web host who doesn’t have what you want just because it seems easier. You, your business and your website visitors deserve better.
The good news is that many web hosts are adding VPS hosting to their menu, including both managed and unmanaged options. However, not everyone has caught up yet. You want a web host that offers scalability no matter what, and having VPS hosting available is one of the easiest ways to let web hosting clients scale up or down depending on their needs. If your web host doesn’t offer VPS hosting, what else are they holding back on?
Your Shopping List
There’s a good chance you didn’t have a solid comparison shopping strategy when you picked your current web host. That’s normal, but it’s not an excuse. Many website owners simply go with the host that’s readily available when they buy their domain. This usually isn’t the best host for you (instead, it’s just the host who’s cozied up with the domain registration company and/or has paid to be the default host). Now’s the time to make up for past mistakes.
Make a list of what you want from a web host. Here are a few common must-haves:
- Over 99 percent uptime: The closer to 100 percent uptime you can get, the better. Every fraction of a percentage counts. There’s a big difference between 99.1 percent uptime and 98.7 percent uptime. You should also have, in writing, how you’ll be compensated if the host doesn’t deliver their uptime promise.
- 2. Easy out clauses: You should be able to scale or cancel your contract at any time. Watch out for hidden fees or hurdles with changing your plan. This means asking questions and reading the fine print. If a web host has exorbitant fees or wants to lock you into a contract, there’s a good chance they’re running a shady operation.
- Scalability: Much like those easy out clauses, you want to be able to scale up or down your business as you wish. You never really know when your business could boom or bomb. Your web host needs keep pace with your needs without any extra fees or challenges.
- Managed/unmanaged options: Do you want your web host to manage your VPS hosting, or would you rather do it yourself? Know where you stand first, and then make sure your potential web host offers that packaging. Managed hosting is rarer, and you might have to dig a little further to find it.
Right now is the best time to upgrade to VPS hosting, since it’s on par with pricing for basic shared packages. What are you waiting for?