Hello, I have recently started my own small business and need to find a web host (something I know very little about). The forums on this site seem very helpful and encouraging, so I figured I'd give it a shot.
I don't think I need much from my host. I will have a fairly basic, brochure-ware website with a fair amount of pictures. But no shopping cart, or online transactions.
However, my business is fairly email intensive. We only have 3-6 employees, but we all need a good amount of storage space (approximately 2GB or more each). More importantly, we all travel a lot and need a very good webmail site to check our emails from random computers. My previous host had a horrible webmail site (VERY slow and not user-friendly). I understand it may be difficult to get an interface like Gmail or Yahoo, but I am hoping there are others that are fairly close and just as fast.
And obviously, being a small business, I would like to keep my costs down as much as possible. Any advice here would be great.
Any help that can be provided would be GREATLY appreciated. Thanks.
My current host was Interland which turned into Web.com. I had 1.5 GB of storage and 100GB of bandwith transfer. But again, the webmail site was horrible. I really just need a host that is stable, has a very fast user-friendly webmail site, and can handle large email files.
Well I would say for your space requirements is fairly "affordable" in many cases. You can get away with a 1GB diskspace plan for close to $5-10 per month. However these plans will not include that much bandwidth (typically) that is overselling IMHO. Also I would suggest not being quick to pick a host based on pricing. You have a business that needs to send and receive email and you seek reliablity. That tends to cost a bit more when requiring a decent sized bandwidth offering package. Take a peek around the offers section and see what you come up with.
Would you be sending out a lot of mails? Because most hosts put restrictions on how many mails can be sent out per day or per hour on shared hosting accounts.
VPS/dedicated accounts are different, but then again, you will not be needing anything like that as far as I understand.
I think an average shared hosting account should be fine for you. "Horde" for example is a great email client, which comes with cPanel. So if you can find a host which supplies cPanel then I think you're well on the way.
Make sure that you make some investigations about a host before you sign up with them, to make sure that you'll get quality for what you pay.
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You may get something like hostgator or lunarpages. They do provide enough space and bandwidth fpr most of the cases.
With every host you may get standard webmail interfaces like horde or squirrelmail. They should be good enough even though not as good as a gmail. You may select cpanel based hosts to make sure that you get a decent webmail.
You also have the option to use forwarding to gmail or pop3access via Gmail. Thatway you can get the best of both worlds!
vvaswani, one of my sites is hosted at Netfirms (uploadfx.com for the mods). I think they have a very good Webmail interface. The one problem I've run into, however, is that their email (at least on the server I'm on) doesn't always seem to be reliable. It takes a good while (sometimes about 30 minutes) from the time someone sends an email to the time I receive it. And once, I was having problems getting email, period. However, they have the best Webmail interface I've ever seen, so it may be worth giving them a shot.
Daniel B., CEO - Bezoka.com and Ungigs.com Hosting Solutions Optimized for: WordPress • Joomla • OpenCart • Moodle Data Centers in: Chicago (US), London (UK), Sydney (AU), Sofia (BG), Pori (FI) Email Daniel directly: ceo [at] bezoka.com