In the Trenches: Reconsidering My Web Host

Though my business isn’t truly an Internet business, the web is a huge part of what we do. Most of our clients sign up for service on our website, and the largest referrer is my airline blog, The Cranky Flier. Where I host my sites has never been anything I’ve thought about until recently. I think it’s time to start looking for a new one.

Long ago when I started the blog, I signed up with a web hosting provider called Bluehost. I liked them for their pricing and the fact that they had a tech support phone line available 24 hours a day. When the Concierge business started, I just hosted with them as well because it’s what I knew. After all, that was the last thing I wanted to worry about. Other than a few frustrating times when my site went down, Bluehost had been fine. That’s no longer true.

The biggest current problem is with the blog. For some reason, my account is regularly being “throttled” because I’m using what Bluehost has deemed to be too much of the resources that are available. I asked how to fix that but my host said they didn’t help with development questions. So I went to a friend who knows this well. He said that everything looked fine from the database perspective. I was stuck. There might be a problem in there somewhere, but with a host unwilling to help (I assume it’s not generally something hosts do), the 24 hour phone service doesn’t really mean much.

It’s terrible when the website goes down, but having it crawl slower than molasses is just as bad. People are impatient and if the site doesn’t load quickly, potential clients will just walk away. I can’t have that.

So now my search for a new host begins, and it’s yet another daunting task. (This seems to be a common theme.) There are a ton of options out there and a million different reasons why one is theoretically better than the others. Let’s see if I can narrow it down.

About Brett Snyder

Brett is the Founder and President of Cranky Concierge air travel assistance. He also writes the consumer air travel blog, The Cranky Flier.
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2 comments
Xandrios
Xandrios

Brett, this looks like a problem simply caused by the fact that your blog and company have grown. More visitors means more resources used of the server that you share with hundreds of other Bluehost customers.The way to combat this problem is to buy a bigger piece of a server. If bluehost does not offer larger / faster hosting packages, I would look at another provider. There are plenty that will help you to move to a new host.It also depends a bit on your budget. An account on a server that is shared with other people typically runs in the $5 - $40 a month range. From $60 you can get your own server or VPS which will allow you to grow and use all the resources that the system has. This option is far more powerful and flexible, however I do advice to hire somebody to update the server and make sure it keeps running. Its like your PC - it needs patches and updates every now and then. These maintenance services cost about $25 to $50 a month.Feel free to contact me if I can be of any more help :)

BurntByHostsAlso
BurntByHostsAlso

I've been with many,many hosts for dozens of my clients for the past 15 years. Only one ever seems to get it right: Rackspace. They are expensive, but the are responsive, available, honest and take a genuine interest in helping you deal with your problems.

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