The 2 things you should consider when Hosting your WordPress Website

A web host is like a parking lot – it’s where you park your websites assets (web pages, images, videos, etc.) that get served up to visitors device (PC, smartphone) when asked.

So if you have a website or are thinking about creating one, you either already have one or will need web hosting in one form or another.

Here at SiteMap Digital, we specialize in building WordPress websites. WordPress is a fantastic website building tool for building beautiful, performant, SEO friendly sites. Those great features do require some special care to run properly.

Each client I build a website for I also offer website hosting. However, my clients are now bound to me and can go anywhere they choose to host their site.

I always recommend to my clients to think about two main things when considering who to choose as their web hosting company.

  1. Site Backups
  2. Automatic WordPress Updates

And that’s it! If those two items are covered you are in good shape. Now, let’s go into detail on each one.

Site Backups

Imagine your site is running great, then one day a hacker or malware breaks into your site and does damage – breaks the site, deletes pages, defaces your content, or complete replaces your entire site with their own.

It does happen unfortunately!

You don’t want this. But what if it happens to you?

You want a webhost that is proactively taking backups of your site every day and storing those backups in a secure location so they can be easily accessed and restored to your site at a moment’s notice.

Automatic WordPress Updates

WordPress is an open source software which means people all over the word contribute and make feature and security updates.

As you might have guessed, there are a lot people who want to do bad things to your site. It’s just a reality.

A good WordPress web hosting company will proactively update your website’s code to the latest version.

They will also ensure the update doesn’t break your website – because sometimes updates can break existing sites. Ask your hosting company how they do this. The really good ones will tell you they take a picture of the site before and after the update; and if the pictures different in any way (if the pixels don’t match) the update is rolled back.

Additonal Considerations

There are of course other things to consider when choosing a WordPress Web hosting company. Such as…

  • Do they specialize in WordPress web hosting? If you have a WordPress website you may not want to use them if they don’t.
  • What is their support system like? I find that if their sales process is slow, like asking to chat or talk to someone takes a while, you can count on their customer support to be even slower!
  • How do they help your website respond quickly (fast page load times)? They should offer what’s called “caching” and also “CDN” technology should you need to use it. The former should be built into their system and the latter may cost you additional money to enable in case you have lots of traffic.
  • Free and easy SSL (TLS). SSL or TLS refers to securing your websites connecting with its visitors so the people visiting your website have confidence their connection is private and helps improve trust between your site and them. Your web hosting company should be able to set this up quickly and easily – it should NOT cost you any extra money to do this.
  • Similar to the point about fast page load times, if your site has higher traffic, tens of thousands of visitors each month or more, how does the hosting company help scale your website? A good host has ways of doing this (e.g. CDN technology, dedicated servers, etc.) and can explain it clearly and in plain English. It will cost you more to support higher traffic so they should be able to explain this in a way that makes sense to you.
  • A good WordPress hosting company will provide what is called a development, test and production environment for your website. Each environment acts like a copy of your website so that your web developer or agency that manages your website (or maybe that’s you!) can make updates in the development or test environments before making it live. This is convenient as you wouldn’t want to be making updates to your live website as sometimes updates don’t always go smooth. And your web hosting company should make it really easy to copy one environment to the other.

That’s a Wrap

Thanks for reading and I hope the above helps you understand WordPress website hosting a little better. We host many WordPress websites ourselves via WP Engine, our dedicated hosting partner, and if you have further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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