best ecommerce hosting for small business
What should I look for in a web hosting solution provider?
4 types of hosting for your webshop | This is how to make the right choice
Having doubts when choosing the perfect e-commerce webhost? Here are some tips to help you decide.
E-commerce has not only changed the way we do business, but it has also changed the way we live our lives.
Internet and online sales have paved the way for many entrepreneurs to start a business.
About 22 years ago, when the legendary sitcom Friends just started to become popular and the world was significantly less connected than it is today, the idea of starting your own business was laughed at.
It was also then, in 1995, that Amazon came on the market and since then the landscape of global retail has never been the same.
Things changed so drastically that it’s hard to imagine a life without Amazon .
The promising potential and recurring success stories of companies in the e-commerce industry have led more entrepreneurs to try their luck in this growing market.
That’s why it’s now more important than ever to educate yourself about the important things you might accidentally overlook.
What we cover in this extensive post:
The best hosting for your online store
The best webhosting for your webshop depends on your wishes.
Here’s a list of my top choices that I advise all my customers when they start or want to switch.
My advice is not to save on your hosting. Your site needs to be fast, secure and well backed up. You don’t want to lose everything when setting up a plugin or modifying your site incorrectly. That’s why I also advise the party where we have our hosting. Take a look at the offer here:
Our choice is Managed Cloud Hosting from SoHosted:
But there are several good hosting providers for different budgets and needs. I will therefore explain in this post exactly everything you need to pay attention to and name a few more good options.
Where does web hosting fit in the interest of your webshop?
We have written articles about the right webhosting platform and about the right
Texts for your webshop in the field of SEO. You can also read about
advertise your webshop with Adwords.
But to start with, the first and most important task is to choose a suitable webhost for your online store.
This is something you do before you start your e-commerce business. It is an important decision and deserves a lot of consideration.
There are a lot of articles about building an e-commerce website, and it is something that companies invest a lot of time and money in.
You have to:
choose the domain name
Develop the site design
optimisation for keywords and search positions
write the web texts
design the logos
There is another crucial step that can easily be overshadowed if you don’t know what to look for: your e-commerce hosting plan.
It’s easy to fall into the trap of choosing the hosting plan that meets some key qualifications and seems most affordable, but this is not a decision you want to make in a hurry.
Instead, you need to carefully research and make sure that a particular plan meets all of your company’s e-commerce hosting needs, both now and later.
In this post, we will talk about why your e-commerce hosting plan is so important, what factors should be considered when choosing a web shop hosting plan and some hosts that meet the most common requirements that web shops may have.
The choice you make for your web hosting has a direct impact on how your website is delivered to visitors and what their user experience will be.
Why your e-commerce hosting plan matters
E-commerce hosting companies usually offer similar plans, from basic level plans to pro or enterprise plans.
While the most obvious difference between the plans and their businesses will be cost, there are many other smaller details that are easily overlooked.
Details that are actually very important.
What’s a few bucks a month, if your plan doesn’t have the necessary security features to protect your customers’ information or the speed at which they can load your site?
After all, all e-commerce hosting plans and hosting companies are not the same, so you want to dive into the small print to really judge what is best for you.
You can definitely change your e-commerce hosting plan and your hosting company at a later date, but it can be a huge hassle to migrate your site (for you and your clients) and you should try to avoid this.
I will take you through this article on how to make a good and informed decision.
Types of web hosting services for
Types of web hosting services for webshops
There are mainly three types of web hosting services available:
All hosting services have their advantages and disadvantages. At the end of this article you’ll get a better understanding and clarity about choosing a web host for your online store.
The best vsn Shared hosting is that it is economical compared to Dedicated and Cloud hosting. You can already be as low as for €3,- a month to start hosting.
But that is also the only positive thing you can expect from shared hosting.
The biggest disadvantage of shared hosting is exactly what the name suggests; you have to share the server with other websites.
The risks of shared hosting are:
the risk of downtime
slow loading time of pages
All of these factors can seriously harm the user experience, potentially pushing customers to never visit your website again.
In addition, if you want to scale up in the future, you will need to migrate your website to a dedicated / cloud server to ensure the continuous optimal performance of your website.
That’s why it’s wiser to start with a dedicated or cloud server right from the start. My suggestion: don’t go with shared hosting for your online store.
Savvii has very good hosting if you want to start with a shared server and still have a fast site. Check out the offer here:
Dedicated servers are the opposite of Shared hosting. If you have a dedicated server it means you don’t have to share it with other websites.
In other words, you don’t have to worry about slow page load time, downtime and security issues.
However, the disadvantage of dedicated servers is that they are extremely expensive and that a single server can easily exceed €100 if you opt for “better” features.
In addition, you may need to hire a specialized technician for Dedicated Hosting to take care of the technical details of the server.
With VPS you don’t have these problems. A party hosts your website on a part of a physical server that is divided into partitions.
VPS hosting means hosting with a Virtual Private Server. A VPS server is a physical server, but it is divided into smaller virtual servers. This way you have your own (virtual) server, but the maintenance and management of the physical server can be handled more easily and economically by one party.
Our favorite hosting party Savvii also has many choices for VPS hosting of a single or multiple sites:
Cloud Hosting is relatively newer compared to Shared and Dedicated Hosting. It is a cluster of hundreds of individual servers working together to make it look like a single giant server.
And as the business grows, hosting infrastructure providers such as AWS and DigitalOcean can easily add more hardware to create an even larger cloud.
The main advantages of Cloud Hosting is that it follows a Pay-As-You-Go method. You only pay for the resources you consume, in contrast to dedicated servers.
In the same way you don’t have to share your servers with other websites, in contrast to shared hosting. Cloud Hosting is progressing fast in the sector of web hosting and it gets new followers every day.
However, after summing up all the good aspects, there is one objection to Cloud Hosting: the deployment and management of a website on a cloud server.
It can be difficult, especially if you’re not familiar with the technical details.
The most sensible thing to do in that case is to hire the services of Managed Cloud Hosting Providers – a service that takes care of server-related technical details, while concentrating your energy on your company’s core business.
Our choice for a managed hosting package is
Besides the three main choices you have, I also wanted to add an alternative, and that is WordPress hosting.
If you know in advance that you are going to make your website with WordPress, then you can also opt for a specific WordPress hosting solution where the platform is optimized to show a WordPress Webshop as fast as possible and make it as efficient as possible.
We also have many customer sites
Here on the Xel platform, a cheap alternative because it is shared hosting, but with some specific tweaks to make the WordPress site load super fast.
It is the fastest WordPress hosting we have seen so far, and at a very affordable price. If you are going to work with Woocommerce for your webshop it is a very good option.
When setting up your web shop or considering a switch, it is a very good hosting party to switch to.
Functions you should pay attention to when choosing WebHosting
uptimevan a website is in fact the time it’s online. And it does not need to be further explained that all websites require high uptime of their web hosts, to essentially always be online.
Otherwise, your visitor will end up on a blank page.
As the owner of an online store, you need to make sure your website is operational 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
Downtime can not only affect the profitability of your website, but it can also affect the user experience of visitors.
A visitor who arrives on an empty page will skip your webshop next time!
In addition, if your online store has a business model that involves investors or other investors, a single downtime could lead to a lack of
In order to keep your website operational every minute of the year, you would like to hire services from a web host that offers 24/7 monitoring of your server’s operations.
There should be on-site technicians skilled enough to solve any problem at any time of the day, and provide routine
Here’s an example of what can go wrong if you don’t have 24/7 monitoring:
Imagine a website going down on a Friday night.
Since your host doesn’t offer 24/7 monitoring, you’ll have to wait until the next business day to get your website up and running.
That’s Monday! That’s two days of non-functionality of your website. Imagine all the profits you would have to give up.
100% uptime is actually not possible, but ideally a good hosting service should be able to deliver an uptime of
99.8% or better.
Or simply put, your website would only have a downtime of less than
90 minutes a month.
When making your selection, you should consider all types of downtime, including network downtime and scheduled maintenance for server software upgrades.
Support for your e-commerce and CMS software
Your site may look good, but how well does it work?
Believe it or not, while WordPress and Magento and other e-commerce software can all make your job easier, not every web hosting plan is compatible with all e-commerce and CMS software.
Therefore, if you want to use certain e-commerce software (such as WooCommerce or Zencart) or certain CMS systems (such as WordPress), you need to make sure they are compatible with the hosting plan in advance.
Certain hosting companies will specifically mention this or have a separate product for it.
Bluehost, my personal choice for web hosting, has a one-click WordPress installation and has WooCommerce in use automatically. iPage offers the same.
Besides choosing a hosting plan that is compatible with your desired software, you also need to make sure you have full control and flexibility over that software.
If you need to do some custom coding for your WordPress site, you’ll want to be able to do that.
Intuitive Administrator Interface
This factor does not affect your customers in any way, but it does have a direct impact on your experience in managing your site.
Speaking from experience, this is an important consideration you don’t want to overlook.
Several companies have customer panels that are easy to use.
Some will be intuitive, easy to learn and use, while others will be complex and will send you throughout the site to find a single piece of information.
Inside, you also want full administrative control. You should be able to view error and log files so you can keep track of everything that happens on your site, not just sales.
You don’t want to become a server administrator apprentice, so don’t choose hosting that you put in this role. Before you know it, you spend a lot of time managing your site.
Usually choosing a
Usually choosing a company that offers cPanel web hosting is a good way to go.
When running an e-commerce website, it is absolutely necessary to keep your customers’ data safe.
Especially now with the new AVG under GDPR.
Sensitive information, such as credit card details, must be encrypted before it is sent from a customer’s web browser to your web shop’s handling form.
This way, your customers won’t be at risk if someone tries to hack into the data. Installing a Secure Sockets Layer (
SSL) certificate on your site supports encryption and also verifies your corporate identity to your customers.
Many hosting parties have the service to install the certificate for you and assign a special IP address when exchanging a few extra euros.
So while you sign up with a web host for your ecommerce site, you need to make sure that your host provides you with an SSL certificate and a special IP.
There are some cloud hosting platforms such as Cloudways that offer an SSL certificate for free. So make sure you do your research properly.
The customer may not always be right, but the customer should always come first and a lack of strong security automatically goes against this.
This is a large area where you will notice that the hosting plans vary a lot. It is best to invest in a plan with strong security features.
Look for a subscription that automatically offers Secure Socket Layer (SSL) protection and choose HTTPS, which is more secure than conventional HTTP.
Together, these add-ons can fully protect the information your customers share on your site. This includes everything from their name to their credit card information.
Security features are most important for pages where users will submit information, so make sure landing pages, contact pages, and payment processing pages are all fully protected.
However, it is good practice to ensure that your entire site is protected from top to bottom, so there are no weak links in the chain.
Price is a tricky point. If you’re a startup, you want a web host that’s
affordable and inexpensive. That could prompt you to go for shared web hosting, which would clearly be a mistake.
If you want to
Trying out whether your web shop could work should give it a real chance, and that doesn’t mean skimping on hosting.
So while you’re looking at options, here’s a reality check: you get what you pay for!
It’s likely that a company that charges less than €2 per month will not have features like free SSL or 24×7 monitoring and non outsourced support.
Attractive features like that will cost you a little more.
So when you look at your hosting options, compare features instead of prices.
Discover the important features for your business and let go of those you can do without.
Once you’ve shortlisted the web hosting that meets your criteria, you’ll need to compare prices. That’s simply the order in which your price should be included in your decision.
Since you host an e-commerce website, I recommend that you keep RAM, CPU power and storage space in mind.
In addition, you’ll need additional features such as backup, automatic scaling, one-click cloning, and a collection area.
So make sure your choice of web host has all the relevant technical specifications.
It should be noted that inexpensive hosting plans cannot be expected to have the RAM, processing power and disk space to meet all of these needs.
In addition, you are more likely to work on reducing the downtime of your store and dealing with the load issues.
If you have a question or a confusion, don’t hesitate to call your preferred webhost providers.
Share your vision for the site with them. Tell them what you think the needs of your online store would be.
Try not to assume that your web host takes your online store as seriously as you do. It’s your site, you decide what you need for it.
The hosting needs to be able to handle your amount of traffic
Your hosting plan should be able to keep track of your site, traffic and order intake, both now and as your site grows.
Site speed is a big one. If your site crashes when four customers view it, or if it crashes when the
takes more than two seconds to load, you lose huge amounts of conversions.
Pro tip: some plans offer quick add-ons. Feel free to pay for these features, they’re worth every penny.
Likewise, if your site isn’t able to handle high order volumes, you’ll stagnate with no potential for growth and get a bunch
This is what you have to look for if you want to guarantee high traffic and order performance:
A plan that offers isolated environments for orders with specific resources, specifically for order processing
High processing capabilities and fast loading speeds of the site
Special memory storage
The hosting ddatabase must be able to handle the size of your site
You may not think of your online store as one that requires strong database performance, but make no mistake!
Chances are that users won’t just browse through your products but that many of them will instead use your search bar to look up something specific.
Your database stores all your product pages and product information so your customers can find what they’re looking for more easily.
You can’t afford to skip this.
Ideally, you should know how many product files you have and the size of those files before you choose your hosting plan.
Also, always keep a low profile in terms of volume. However, sometimes companies scale faster than expected and hopefully yours as well.
Try to choose a plan you can grow into and choose a hosting company that offers higher plans when you need them.
Plans that offer “scalable bandwidth” are usually good to explore further.
Look for a hosting plan with high computing power and choose one that is suitable for the files you plan to store.
This is perhaps the most important feature you should look for in your webhost. If your website fails, can you get all the relevant help from your webhost?
Customer support is the real acid test that distinguishes a good webhost from mediocre ones.
Your web host must have a dedicated customer support staff and if things are going wrong, customer support should put you in touch with a real, live person on the phone who can find out what you’ve done wrong and how to fix it.
Before you make a decision, gather as much information as possible about customer support.
Try to find different ways to get in touch at the time of an emergency – email, free phone, chat, and so on.
See if they’re staffed 24/7 and if they might outsource support.
When you’re done researching, you’ll find that hosts aren’t equal when it comes to price and technical specifications.
Web hosting companies offer many features that distinguish them from each other. The trick is to find the one that suits you best.
User experience is perhaps the most essential ingredient that leads to user experience and profitability of your online store.
If the user experience of your e-commerce website is shaky, you may miss out on sales. That’s why you should choose a web host that provides the necessary features to support the user experience you’ve provided for your customers.
At the end of the day, you should realize that you can only reach for the moon if your first step is right; or in this case, if you have the perfect web host.
If you want to thrive in the competitive marketplace, you need to choose the most suitable web hosting provider, otherwise you’re behind from the start.
If your strategy will be to also
To be found organically in the search engines, you will need to choose a good hosting as a foundation.
The e-commerce hosting plan you choose is to save more than a few euros. It has a direct impact on the security of your site, the performance capabilities of your site and the amount of time you spend managing it.
Don’t forget to choose a plan that not only meets your needs, but will continue to do so as your business scales up over time.
Since business owners of e-commerce spend a lot of time online and most customer interactions take place on your site, you can’t afford to miss out on the perfect e-commerce hosting plan.
Take a look at the hosting that we also use for our projects: