Thinking of starting up an eCommerce site but can’t quite settle on which web host would be right for you? This is certainly not an uncommon issue and many beginners often find this phase of the process challenging in itself. After all, there are numerous web hosts available—with varying offers and pricing that it can be easy to get overwhelmed by it all.
To avoid having to settle for a random choice and to make sure that your website gets the right foundation, we’ve collected all the things you’re going to need to make an informed decision. Inmotion, alone, has plenty of plans that can help out any eCommerce beginner. However, to fully take advantage of the features and benefits they have to offer, a proper understanding of one’s needs and options is necessary.
So, before you use that Inmotion hosting coupon on a plan that you hope works out— take the information below into consideration.
Different Types of Web Hosting:
Inmotion currently offers 5 different types of hosting.
- WordPress Hosting
- VPS Hosting
- Dedicated Servers
- Website Creator
- Business Hosting
Each one differs in price and in features. Whilst they may have similarities, your priorities should lie on what your website actually needs. For eCommerce websites, the best choices would be: VPS, Dedicated, and Business. Let’s take a closer look at each one.
- VPS Hosting
VPS is an acronym for Virtual Private Server. Among the different types of web hosting, it is considered to be the most balanced. With it, your website is contained in a shared environment, but the set up for it differs greatly from your average shared web host.
For example, while all VPS websites do share one physical server, it houses a number of different, individual virtual machines. This is the most significant difference between the two. Think of a virtual private server as a middle ground between having a dedicated server and shared hosting.
- When it comes to stability and reliability, this is certainly a step above shared hosting. The thing with VPS sharing a server with other websites is that there’s a limit—only around 10 to 20 websites per server. This helps minimize the demands on the server and helps with spreading resources around equally.
Basically, each website is assigned a certain amount of resource depending on how much you pay. Once you hit that limit, your site might begin to slow down or even experience down times without affecting the others on the same server. This is achieved through the use of virtual machines which help create separations within one server. It’s a simple feature, but is very efficient when it comes to reducing the effects of having “bad server neighbors”.
- Another benefit that comes with using VPS servers is that they are more flexible when it comes to customization. Shared hosts make this impossible since anything that you change on it would also affect everyone else sharing the server with you. With VPS and through the containment provided by the virtual machine, you can easily make changes without worry. For beginners, this may not be that big of a deal yet since you’re still learning the ropes. As you progress, however, you’ll see the benefit of customizing how your server is setup.
- VPS is scalable. Through the virtual machine, increasing or decreasing the resources available to you can be done conveniently and without disrupting any other site on the same server. For eCommerce website owners, this is certainly beneficial as they would be able to easily adjust their resources according to the growth of their business.
- If there’s one significant downside to this particular type of hosting, that would be the cost. Looking at it from the perspective of a beginner, someone new to eCommerce, their budget might be a little tight. VPS hosting does cost more than low-tier plans such as shared hosting.
That said, there are ways of reducing the overall cost of a starter VPS plan if you opt for an Inmotion hosting discount. There are regular offers and price cuts on the website so it pays to check often for any changes in rates. You can easily scale up once you’re making ample money to cover the costs.
- The other downside would be dependent on the user. With the ability to configure and tweak the setup according to one’s preferences, this also heightens the possibility of accidental deletions. For a beginner, this might be tricky yet enticing as well. So, to avoid issues later on, do make sure you learn the ropes before making any changes.
Conclusion: If you have the money to invest in it, a VPS hosting is a great start for any eCommerce business. It will provide you the resources you require in order to really push your website and enable you to scale up whenever needed.
- Dedicated Server
As its name suggests, this type of web host means that you’ll be getting an entire server to yourself. We’ve touched upon it previously and you might feel as if it’s specifically designed for bigger businesses, but even smaller start-ups could benefit from it too.
- One of the most significant advantages that dedicated web hosts have over other types would be its ability to eliminate all the issues related to having “neighbors” within your server. Think about it; in shared hosting, your website is open to a number of different vulnerabilities. The foremost would be security issues—if a website on the same server experiences issues with malware or viruses then yours becomes at risk as well.
Aside from that, dedicated servers help ensure that no other website would be able to steal your resources. This can become a big issue, especially if the other website leads your own to experience downtimes. For businesses, of course, this could mean a loss of revenue as well as taint your trustworthiness. If you’re looking to establish your business properly, professionalism and earning the trust of your clientele is key.
In terms of customization, companies that provide dedicated servers will allow its owners to tweak its set up extensively. Among the customizations that can be done include: choosing the type of memory, choosing the OS to be used, as well as other hardware elements. Needless to say, in terms of flexibility, you get plenty.
- The cost is one of the biggest drawbacks when it comes to this type of hosting. Fact is, dedicated servers certainly don’t come cheap. Prices can range anywhere from $60 a month to over $350 a month, depending on the amount and kind of resources that you require.
Another thing to keep in mind is that this type of host also requires a fair amount of know-how when it comes to computers and server technology. Whilst there are managed dedicated hosting options currently available where a lot of the work falls on the shoulders of your provider, there are still things that you would need to do on your own.
What is Managed Dedicated Hosting?
Simply put, this is a hosting plan wherein the provider would lease a server to a single user and would also handle the management of the software, the servers, and networks necessary to keep things up and running. They will also take care of the maintenance and troubleshooting for both the websites and applications you’re hosting on the server.
With this, even if you’re not a tech person, you would still be able to host your website on a dedicated server without much worry. Given that you’re provider handles everything, this enables you to focus your efforts on developing content for your website—another very important aspect of eCommerce.
Another benefit that comes with using managed dedicated hosting is that it’s similar to having your own team—even if you’re the only person handling the business. Many, if not all, providers would have an expert team always on standby if you have questions or if certain issues arise. You may not be personally employing them, but their expertise is available to you through your hosting plan.
If this is something you might be interested in, Inmotion does provide managed hosting options for their clients. This can also be available at a lower price through an Inmotion hosting promo code.
- Business Hosting
If you’re starting an eCommerce website, opting for a business-specific host is certainly an enticing concept. After all, businesses require a hosting solution that is powerful but also very easy to learn and use. Most beginners would often opt for a shared hosting plan—it certainly fits the “easy to use” requirement. The resources aren’t half-bad either, especially for a website that’s still in the budding stage of its life.
That said, there are also business owners who want to go big and want a solid start for their business. Of course, this would cost more money but in exchange for that, they do get significantly better resources. The tech support is usually a bit more extensive as well, which is a plus for busy business owners. Every minute that their website isn’t functioning properly, they could be losing revenue.
So what makes business hosting special?
Think of it as a middle ground between the basic shared hosts and the higher level plans. It places emphasis on the essentials needed for an eCommerce website, which would be a user-friendly environment that is high performing, and also offers special tools that would help make running your business a lot easier.
Inmotion’s shared business hosting plans offer the following:
- It is recommended for database-driven content management systems, custom applications, and static websites
- Provide better speeds through SSH and develop better with MySQL, PHP, Perl, Ruby, and Pyton
- Simplicity and convenience when it comes to building responsive websites through their drag and drop website builder feature
- Plans come pre-installed with Joomla, WordPress or PrestaShop. This would be installed for you during checkout
- Domain name included for free
So what options are there?
|Launch $6.39 per month||Power $8.49 per month||PRO $14.71 per month|
|Free Domain||Free Domain||Free Domain|
|2 Websites||6 Websites||Unlimited Websites|
|Unlimited Disk Space||Unlimited Disk Space||Unlimited Disk Space|
|Unlimited Bandwidth||Unlimited Bandwidth||Unlimited Bandwidth|
|Unlimited Email||Unlimited Email||Unlimited Email|
|Marketing Tools||2x Performance||4x Performance|
|Security Suite||Marketing Tools||Marketing Tools|
|Free SSL||Security Suite||Security Suite|
|Free SSL||Free SSL|
All of Inmotion’s hosting solutions come with the following features:
- Free SSDD Drives.
- Free Domain.
- 90-Day Guarantee. A plus for beginners who are still trying to figure things out. This should provide them with ample opportunities to test the features and assess if this particular plan is well-suited for their needs.
- Free Data Backups. Other providers will ask for a fee when it comes to this service, but Inmotion is providing it for free. Again, something that beginners will benefit from. After all, creating backups often becomes an afterthought given the number of things any eCommerce website owner needs to focus on. With this feature, they’ll have one less thing to worry about.
- Free 1-Click Installer. This can be used for 400 different applications.
- The ability to code in different languages.
- Secure IMAP Email, which can be accessed from any device.
- Max Speed Zone. With this feature, users would be able to choose their own data center. Keep in mind that the closer it is to your main market’s physical location, the faster your webpages will load.
- SSH Access.
- Google Apps Integration.
If you already have hosting, but want to make the switch—don’t fret. The company also provides no-downtime website transfers so that you can move everything without missing a beat. This includes everything from your databases, your domains, your site files, and even your emails.
New to building websites? This hosting plan has you covered as well. Aside from the free website builder and the convenient drag and drop editor, you’ll also be provided with: free themes, a robust platform, and a selection of free marketing photos and content (included for inspiration). Note that this comes with full support from their team as well, even if you opt to purchase plan through the use of an Inmotion hosting coupon.
Top Tips for Choosing eCommerce Hosting:
- Say no to “Free Domains”.
Anything that’s free is certainly appealing, but you should always be wary of the gimmicks behind them. In this particular case, it’s important to ask who owns the domain you’re being given for free. Most of the time, whilst it is given to you at no cost, the hosting provider does maintain ownership of it. This can either be good or bad—depending on how much you like the provider you’re currently with. The fact that they own the domain means you’ll be stuck with them for quite a long time unless you’re willing to buy the domain back from them.
Another thing to keep in mind—this free domain is usually only payment free for the first year. Come renewal time, you might be surprised at how much you need to pay. So, before signing up for any services, always ask them about domain ownership then make sure that their renewal rates are reasonable for you.
- Prioritize your website’s performance.
Fact is, eCommerce websites will require a hosting plan that can keep up with their predicted growth. If your current host isn’t capable of this, you might put your website at risk of losing clientele. The more traffic you get, the bigger the load is—and that’s where downtime issues come in.
For example, if you’re hosting promos and sales on your website, you are likely to receive a surge in your traffic. Now, imagine that huge number of people that you can potentially convert into paying customers suddenly leaving just because your website stopped working. Not only will that hurt your revenue, it will also taint their view of your business, and might even earn you a bad review or two.
So, even if you’re still a start-up always consider this when choosing a web host.
- SSL Encryption
Security is a must for eCommerce websites. If you can add layers of it, do so. This is because protecting your customer’s information and data is of utmost importance. Especially in today’s environment wherein hackers can easily take advantage of vulnerable websites, you wouldn’t want to fall victim to them. A single incident could spell the end of your business and might even put you at risk of debt.
The most effective way when it comes to securing information is through installing an SSL certificate on your website. This should encrypt any sensitive information such as banking and credit card details. Your client needs to see that you’re taking all the necessary steps to safeguard them; only then will anyone feel confident in giving you their business.
Inmotion’s hosting plans do come with a bundled SSL certificate so that’s one less thing you need to setup.
- Database Speed
Think of it as the core of your store. Your website will rely heavily on how fast its database is. Each time a client browses through your pages for different products, they are actually interacting with the database. Now, if you’re an online shopper yourself, you know just how frustrating it can be when photos and other details take a while to upload. You might even click away because of it.
You wouldn’t want that to happen to your business, right? So in choosing a web host, make sure that they’re offering you a decent database speed for the amount you’re paying. At the same time, you can also further optimize your store to improve customer experience. If possible, ask your web host provider to show both the speed and health of your database.
- Unlimited Storage
For this, make sure that you read through your web host provider’s terms of service. There you should find a section that breaks down their policies when it comes to CPU and server usage. Unlimited seems like an exaggeration and for some offers, it is. There’s no such thing as unlimited storage—but you will be given ample amounts of it, usually more than what you really need.
That said, keep in mind that in the event you exceed the amount allotted to you, you’re at risk of violating company policies. Know that this could lead to your eCommerce store getting terminated so you must be very careful. Always read up on policies and do your own research in order to gain a full understanding of your storage limitations.
- Tech Support
Sure, every web host provider will give their clients access to tech support. They are also typically available 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Great, right? However, not all support teams are created equal. Some will be more knowledgeable than others. You might overlook this, but if your website goes down and you’re not sure what exactly happened, these are the people you’ll be relying on. Needless to say, they have to be experts in their field.
There are mediocre support teams and even really bad ones that only know of the basics—nothing more. In choosing a web host, do include tech support team reviews when you’re researching. Find out what people have to say and how well they are rated online. This should provide you with enough of an idea when it comes to their efficiency, knowledge, and how much they really care about their clients.
Pricing will always be a tricky subject, especially for eCommerce websites. Not everyone will have the budget to invest in the best hosting available to them. However, this does not mean that you should settle for mediocre yet affordable services. Review all the points above and if they do not meet that criteria, you might want to invest in something pricier, but would not become a cause of headaches later.
Remember that you can take advantage of an Inmotion hosting discount code to help make your chosen web hos solution a bit easier on the pocket.