Testimonials from existing customers
See if the host has testimonials and check the validity of these testimonials. Many times, the testimonials are from old customers that have already left the host. To find out if that is the case, try visiting the website that accompanies the testimonial and sees if it is working. If there is no website, the testimonial is invalid. Find these using the search engines from external sites as those are usually unbiased.
Remember this – bandwidth and disk space have a limit, no matter how much it seems a web host may have. If you take this fact into account that the host can actually run out of either of these, consider what will happen if another person on the same server abuses this abundance of the two most valuable assets of a web hosting plan. They may do things that get your server blacklisted by the search engines, or cause problems with website loading speeds.
Will the web host be able to survive long enough for you to eventually build bonds with them as a loyal customer? When your business has to grow and move forward, will they be able to accommodate the growth of your company? To gauge, use testimonials to see if they have clients with successful websites that have been with them for more then 2 years.
Expensive web hosting usually ensures that you get a substantial part of the hardware to your website, meaning you are always ensured a certain level of speed for a certain amount of visitors. This will prevent anyone sharing the same server as you from causing your website any loading problems.
Cheap web hosting, on the other hand, does not control this factor and it usually ends up slow for everyone just because a few people are using most of the server’s resources. If your website does not have anything on the line that would require a fast response rate all the time, it is usually sufficient as you will get enough most of the time for your website serving needs.
When you sign up for expensive web hosting, you are often paying for the services of a professional support team which can ensure that your server is never down for more than a few hours. Whenever there are problems, you will get direct assistance and get the solutions solved within a short amount of time. This is especially important for online businesses because it’s basically all it has and there would be no business without a website.
If you have a personal non-profit website that can survive with a day or two of downtime every once in awhile, cheap web hosting will suffice. You will not need such comprehensive technical support and of course, won’t need to pay for expertise that you will not be using.