The last time my host went into a deep sleep was nearly a year ago, and yes, it did not return since then. I got a big blow in the form of loss of credibility, clients and also some big bucks.So, while choosing your host - never get into hurry, never commit conclusion jumping - simple advice is 'Look before you leap'.I'll tell you how to check the credibility of your web host and what information you must have about your web host.
I presume you do not have much confusion about the basic space and bandwidth issue relating to your web hosting and if you have any confusion regarding these basics - there are lots of articles suggesting your needs. So, you just read on to know the art of cross-checking your host.
The first thing you must look at your host is the year of their service in hosting industries. It carries a lot. A host coming into business just for few months must not be trusted more than the one with years of experience and existence in web hosting Industries. To know more about how long a company is in the hosting business, simply make a Whois lookup! - You will get all the relevant information like Contact Name, Address, Contact Email and Domain Name Registration/Renewal details. If Whois records suggest some virtually unrealistic data - you should not trust your host. Once you are convinced with Whois data - go for the next level of check up.
Read reviews of web host.There are lots of websites offering reviews on Web hosting - so you can spend some time looking for the reviews of your tentative host. But while reading reviews, you must keep it in your mind that not all the web site offer unbiased reviews as the reviews published in the web site might have been influenced by Affiliate Commission. So, you need to apply your brain to judge the merit of a review. While reading reviews - you may see few negative reviews of a web host as well - and you can ignore it, if there are lots of positive reviews. Simply remember - no business has ever got 100% satisfied customers. Regarding positive reviews you need to be careful as well before trusting them. If there are too many of them within a short span of time - you will do better looking for another host. Instead of trusting one review site, always look for a number of sites to learn more about your web hosts from different angles. While reading reviews you should note the uptime factor, customer supports and features above anything else.
Monitor web hosts uptime - You can request your host to let you know few sites hosted by them and try and monitor the uptime records for those sites. You can also check the past uptime records of that host.
I'll never advice you to pay for one full year in advance to get some gross rebate. Pay for one or two months, judge their service and take action accordingly. A fifteen or thirty days of unconditional money back guarantee is also a good offer, which you may try.
Before choosing a web host Test the Customer Support Staff.Simply send one or two mails asking few simple questions regarding hosting plans, or server configuration, or anything else you may want to know. Watch out for the response time. If the response is within your allowed time - this must be going to be a positive vote in favor of the respective host, otherwise, look for another company who will respond to your queries earlier. It is always better to have a host with 24 Hours live support - but just keep it in your mind, not that all hosting company can afford to provide such supports, also there are reputed hosts who do not offer it presently for spamming.
The best way to avoid bitter hosting experience is to take part in different hosting communities where you can share your thoughts with others, discuss about web hosting with like minded and knowledgeable persons or get suggestions from the Industry experts. Taking part in such a community provides you to judge the quality and commitment of a hosting company based on your own long term relationship.
search for your new host well in advance, do not make hasty decision even if your site is down due to server outrage, otherwise, you may have to initiate another host hunt within a very short span.