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Your space on the World Wide Web - part III (Tips)

Tips before you register with a hosting provider
  • Check out the response time of the web hosting provider - before enrolling for their service send them some emails with queries and see how long they take to reply back (once you begin researching into hosting providers you'll start having a few questions to which you can't find concrete answers on the websites; so shoot an email and ask them about it). The faster their response time the better.

  •  Check out reviews about the web hosting company - "how to do this" you ask? Just Gooooooooogle the company name along with the keyword "review" in the search box and see if anything useful pops up. You might get some interesting information from reviews.

  • Don't take anything for granted unless it is explicitly stated by the webhosting provider. Do read the terms and conditions (which are always in really fine print) - you will feel comfortable by zooming the font so that you don't increase your eye power in the process!

  • Have some webpages ready before you pay the money and register your domain space so that as soon as the formalities are completed you can immediately put up your website on the net from day 1. It is good if you have the first version of your website ready for deployment before you register the domain name or pay for the space.

Tips after you register with a hosting provider
  • Test your website on your own PC before you go online - every webpage you develop should be checked on your PC before uploading (FTPing) it into the web hosting server. Ensure things work on your own PC before you put it up for the entire world to see. Remember: If a user comes to your page and finds errors (page cannot be found, scripting errors etc.) you are going to lose out on that user.

  • Server on your PC for testing: To test your website on your own PC you would need to have a server (preferrably the same one used by your web hosting provider) - but in case  that is not possible then get a server which you can afford (for example if your hosting provider uses IIS and if you use Windows XP professional then you'll already have IIS on your system; otherwise you might have to settle for PWS or something like that).

  • If you don't have any server on your own PC then you will be forced to use the web hosting server itself for testing whatever changes you make.

  • There are custom applications provided by web hosting providers - like traffic analyzers, blogging applications, ecommerce apps etc. Go through what is available and make the best use of them in your website.

  • Most people tend to use Internet Explorer as their browser while some use Firefox. Firefox is open source (free for non commercial use) and it is good to check how your website appears in IE as well as in Firefox (Firefox is kind of faster than IE and many people are switching over to this browser).