Choosing a reliable web host can be daunting when there is so much choice on the market. However, it is a choice that needs to be considered carefully when you realise the impact it could have on your online presence from search rankings and user experiences to website conversions. Continue reading as we discuss the importance of a good web host and the effect this has on your marketing efforts.
Poor Performance = Slow Websites
Customers have become accustomed to websites loading on-demand and not accommodating for this request could lead them to become frustrated or abandoned the site all together, with nearly 80 percent of users who have experienced poor performance avoid the pages permanently and never return. This is not the reaction you want your brand to be associated with and is especially not the first impression you want to show to customers and prospects.
Poor performing websites will result in fewer website engagements and increased bounce rates, especially if page load times surpass 3 seconds where the average bounce rate is a staggering 38%, according to Pingdom. This means they are unlikely to complete your ideal website journey that results in conversions to drive sales growth.
Choosing a host that offers features such as solid-state drives, PHP 7, custom server caching and the latest technologies for firewall systems or load-balancing will all help to avoid poor performance and achieve faster loading times.
Avoiding Unplanned Downtime
Unplanned downtime can not only have a negative impact on your online presence, but it could also have a damaging effect on your brand. Poor website hosts that do not have the infrastructure or employees to deal with constant security threats and other technical faults will inevitably fail and take your site with it.
A 500-server error is not what you want your customers and prospects to see as their first impression of your business. No access to a business website will cause customers to lose confidence in your brand and in turn, it’s product/solution offerings, resulting in lost opportunities and a damaged reputation.
Search rankings can also be significantly affected if your site experiences downtime often. Especially if this downtime occurs when search engines, like Google and Bing, are visiting your site to analyse or index it. Google will not recommend a site that is not reliable to its users and will, therefore, favour competitor sites over your own. As organic traffic is the best way for website traffic sustainability, this is not a repercussion you want to experience.
With your website being your main sales tools and the foundations for your marketing, it will come as no surprise that a website offline will have an impact on your marketing activities. A good host should offer frequent website backups, so if anything were to go wrong, you can simply roll back to an earlier version when it did work. This can help minimise downtime so you can resume those marketing campaigns!
Improving Security for Customer Peace of Mind
Security is a commonly known factor that Google considers when producing a website’s ranking score. Good hosting options should not only offer secure IP addresses but these all lead to being able to offer SSL certificates on your site. Last year, Google began flagging all websites not using HTTPS as ‘Not Secure’, which as you can imagine is not an alert that would put your users at ease on your site – it could even make them avoid entering personal data like their email and telephone for you to reach out to and begin the next stage of the sales process. Security has been at the forefront of technology news the past few years and is widely covered whenever there are breaches, so if your customers are aware of it then it is vital that you do everything you can to protect them and your site.
A good website host should also alert the account admin of when content management systems, such as WordPress become out of date or new releases have launched so that you can fix the vulnerabilities before others try to expose them.
It is clear a good web host is extremely important when it comes to avoiding the above scenarios. You don’t want your customer to be at the point of reaching out or purchasing and be presented with a dreaded website error. Better websites contribute to an enhanced online presence and more business opportunities.
We recently managed and executed a website server move for our customer, who had been experiencing constant downtime, security issues and slow loading web pages through their previous host. Moving hosts was important for their business, they recognised the value their website has as their most powerful sales tool and wanted to ensure it would always be available when the next prospect comes searching. Need help with your website? Contact the team or view our website services here.