It’s a simple fact that many web hosts don’t live up to their customers’ expectations. However, it’s not easy to decide when it’s finally time to start looking for a new host. All too often, business owners will sign up for a web host because they seem to be getting an amazing deal, and they don’t read the fine print describing exactly what they will be getting in the long run.
It’s also important to take into account how your hosting requirements will change over time. While it’s certainly a better idea to pick the right host to begin with, and no one wants to have to pay the high fees involved in canceling a hosting contract early, it can be better for you to transfer your website than to continue wasting money on a host that isn’t meeting your needs or is causing you serious problems. The guide below discusses why you might want to transfer your website and how to go about doing it.
While the following largely discusses reasons why you should switch, there is one good reason why you shouldn’t. If you’re simply unhappy with continuing to pay the cost for your current web hosting plan, but find that the support, reliability and services provided are acceptable, then it could be that you’re transferring to a different host for the wrong reason or at the wrong time.
If you’ve already committed to a contract with your current host, switching to a new one would force you to pay for two hosts. On top of this, you’ll have the usual problems and headaches involved in any server migration. In this case, it might be better to wait until your current contract runs out.
But there are many possible reasons why you should switch, with the most common one being that your business needs room to grow and your current hosting company just can’t provide that. Other reasons you might want to switch include:
If you’re at the end of your current plan contract and can freely switch without incurring penalties, then one good reason to switch would be if you can find a web host with comparable capabilities and services that offers lower cost hosting. While you will still have to go to the trouble of migrating to another server, the long-term savings could make it worth the effort.
Whenever you choose a host, you also have to pick a particular plan which promises you certain resources and features for a monthly fee. Unfortunately, many hosts just don’t fulfill these promises to the extent you would like them to.
Even worse, many simply lie about the “unlimited” nature of their hosting and the quality of the services they offer. If you’re experiencing problems with your host and aren’t getting the features and resources you were guaranteed when you signed up, it might be the right time to change to a different host.
One of the worst problems you can experience with a website host is for it to go down regularly. Every second your site is down you’re losing visitors. Worse, there’s a good chance that visitors who can’t access your site aren’t going to bother trying again. Many hosts will guarantee they will be up and running all the time, but in fact it is only a few of the very best web hosts that can actually provide this level of reliability.
If you’re having these kinds of problems, you have a couple of options. You can ask for a discount from your current web host to compensate for the downtime. Unfortunately, this won’t help you get back the visitors you lost. The alternative is to find another web host provider that will actually give you the service you’re paying for.
Most web hosts are going to place limitations on your plan, and present you with additional charges if you go over these limits. Although this is a common practice and acceptable if you clearly understand what you’re signing up for, it can come as a bit of a shock if your web host hasn’t made these additional charges clear in the original contract. This is particularly important when it comes to bandwidth, since it is very easy to quickly go over any plan’s bandwidth limitations.
If you notice that you are exceeding your plan limitations on a regular basis and the charges are really starting to pile up, it might be a good time to look around for a different host that offers a plan better suited to your site’s needs and usage patterns. In fact, when choosing your new host try to take into account your future website needs and choose a plan that accommodates any anticipated growth. That way you can avoid going through this whole process again in a year or two.
One of the primary reasons that most people have for changing their website to a new host is that their current host provides poor support. Certainly, if your website goes down and you’re losing customers, you want fast and effective help. Does your current host provide you with a number of options for contacting them, such as live chat, email and a 24-hour phone number?
If they don’t and you’re feeling frustration because you simply can’t get the help you need with a hosting problem, it’s probably time to look for a new host. Quality hosts will respond quickly to your support questions, answering you in minutes rather than hours or days.
Having the right host for your website can make all the difference in whether it’s a success or failure. The above guide lays out clear reasons why you might want to switch to a new host, but it’s up to you to carefully research your options and choose the one that best suits your needs.