Is your blog hosted on a shared server such as BlueHost, Dreamhost, or whatever? Then you might be in for some surprises later down the road if you ever get more than 500 visitors per day. You can check how many websites are hosted on your shared server by entering your domain name at myIPneighbors.com.
I bet you though if you are on a hosted server, you will most likely find at least 10 other websites. Yes, this is bad.
When I first started blogging, I also started on a cheap $100/year hosting from bluehost.com. No shared hosting will ever be as good as a dedicated server so if you are serious about making money blogging or handling massive traffic, you should get a dedicated server.
I remember Zedomax got digged, bluehost went down like that! and never came back up until I transferred everything to a dedicated server.
But then, amazing thing happened after switching to a dedicated server. Since your website runs faster and doesn’t ever go down (unless you got digged AND stumbled again at the same time…), Google indexes your site faster and you get more search results on Google. It’s common sense that if your site has uptime of 99.9%, Google-bots and other search engine bots will crawl the site more faster.
Sometimes, I find that search engine robots are the ones gobbling up most of your bandwidth. You can always edit your robots.txt file and not let them crawl, but then you lose SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and eventually get no traffic from major search engines.
Here’s a summary of Zedomax traffic ever since its beginning in August 14th, 2006:
As you can see, well, as you can’t see also, I’ve upgraded my server numerous times due to diggs, stumbles, DOS (Denial of Service) hacker attacks, and whenever I made a new site.
You should really pay attention to how much traffic will be coming to your blog everyday to make sure your web hosting service can handle it.
Believe me, I tried these following shared hosts and they were all terrible when it came to traffic more than 500 per day:
BlueHost – The most reliable of the shared hosting I’ve tried.
DreamHost – They give you SSH2 access which is good but again, they host WAY too many websites on their servers. Result? I paid $100 for a year of hosting that I never used because my site kept going down. DreamHost is worst because they lock your site automatically when you exceed the maximum allowed bandwidth. Bluehost is much nicer in my opinion as they don’t have that system. Don’t fall into their “green” marketing scheme, when it comes to your website, you want it done right.
Lunarpages – Similar to BlueHost
I’ve tried many other ones for my previous job at Comfile, but I won’t list them all here, they all really suck in my opinion.
So, what is the best dedicated hosting?
Well, I’ve only tried 2 so far.
Aplus.net – These guys are pretty reliable until one day they had some type of packet-loss problem and ALL my 20 or so websites were down for more than 5 days!!! The funny thing was, Aplus.net itself was fine, it’s just all their customer’s servers were down. They put themselves in front of their customers. That was the end of doing business with them.
That’s when I moved everything to Cari.Net, which I already had couple sites running on. The most annoying thing is that Aplus.net seems to have customer service centers overseas. Not that I have anything against saving Aplus.net’s money, but when you are in America, you want to talk to someone in America, and want to get things done fast. Another thing about Aplus.net is that they are way too big a company now that they don’t care about little guys. All they are about is making money and who pays them more. This is an honest review of my experience with them and I am not being bitter about it, it’s the truth.
Cari.net – Right now, I am running all sites on Cari.net due to their reliability through my actual experience. I will probably try other hosting later down the road or even run my own servers but Cari.net is also priced much better than most hosting companies out there.
In my opinion, you should stick with a small to medium sized dedicated hosting company that cares about you. You want a simple host that you can call anytime anywhere without knowing your stupid registration number or get man-handled by stupid receptionists who redirect you 3 times before you get the dedicated support team.
Another thing you should think about is that the hosting company should only provide “dedicated hosting”. If they provide both, you are probably going to run into bunch of bs such as the company not providing enough support for dedicated server customers.
In all, I did learn a lot about Linux, servers, scripts, and everything you need to know about running a website through various server upgrades. If I didn’t do that, I’d probably have to pay a lot of money right now just to make new websites.
So, if you are going to make more than 1 website, get 1 dedicated server and bunch of dedicated IP addresses.