Since long Google has mentioned that website speed is a crucial ranking factor for SEO. Since then, everyone has been asking “How fast is my server and my website?”
With Google making such an announcement it has become imperative to make sure that your website loads within 5s. This is why ALL serious bloggers, WordPress developers have started to move to better hosting.
What are the features that one should look at when they are shopping for a new hosting provider? We will cover some of the most essential aspects that is essential for server speed.
Going Beyond Minimum Requirements
Most of the bigger Hosting brand names and some extremely small Hosting resellers only cater to the minimum requirements.
Having a hosting account that will cater only to your bare minimum will not get you anywhere in terms of ranking or otherwise. With a small traffic your website will give up and it will not be available. Which means that you will start loosing your potential consumers / clients. Thereby having a deeper losses in your marketing spend.
Hosting is the most critical factor when it comes to performance of your website. We have seen that clients will optimized their WordPress, Magento, Joomla but they will always forget to look into how well their hosting performs. If your hosting doesn’t perform that will be the biggest bottleneck that you can have.
Some of the factors you want to consider before you choose a great quality host are:
- What is my daily traffic? For any business the higher the traffic more will be the conversion to sales. If you are having a website with few hundred clicks per day, it will not help you with ANY conversion. If you have a few thousand clicks per day or more you will need to get a hosting provider like us, who can scale your website as you grow. Most of the providers who give so-called “Unlimited” Hosting will give up on a few thousand clicks per day.
- How Many Images / Average Page Size. This is where factors like Port Speeds and technologies like HTTP/2 come in. If your page has got quite a lot of images, you will need a faster port speed and better delivery of images to slower internet connections. HTTP/2 can deliver images to even slower internet connections.
ALLour hosting plans are on HTTP/2 with 1 GBPS port speed. Which will make sure that your website can load fast.
- Size of your website. If you are a blogger or a company then how many blogs or pages will your website have? If you are an E-Commerce company how many products that you will be having. All CMS will use DB to save your pages/blogs/products. You will need to have a much faster retrieval of your data. If your website is going to be having a few hundred of blogs and a few thousands of products. This means your operations to DB will increase, thereby making sure that you will require an SSD Drive to ensure that data is retrieved faster. Faster
retrivalof data means faster it can be delivered.
Features that Hosting Companies Boast About
Typically, there are a set of features that hosting providers advertise to try to demonstrate how reliable they will be if you choose them to host your site.
Sometimes, there are caveats in their offers which can be unclear at first glance.
Below are the most common hosting features outlined in detail as well as why they’re necessary for site speed, different variations on those features, which ones are ideal for WordPress, and any caveats you should watch out for when shopping for hosting.
If any of the details below are unclear on the host’s website when you’re browsing, contact them for further details.
A web server (sometimes called an HTTP server or application server) is a program that serves content using the HTTP protocol. This content is frequently in the form of HTML documents, images, and other web resources, but can include any type of file.
Why it’s relevant for site speed:
Different types of Web Servers have their own pro’s & Cons. Some of them are faster than others and some have better features. Getting the configuration of the web server correct will directly affect your speed. There are novice hosting providers who will use
- Microsoft IIS
- …..and others.
What we have found ideal for WordPress is an optimized version of Apache + NginX for Caching (available on our Managed WordPress and Highly Optimized WordPress Hosting). As a hosting provider, we DO NOT throttle speed (unless there is abuse) or limit performance.
CPU is that component of the server that will process the data/request for them to be displayed on the browser. The CPU class is very important there are cheap dedicated servers that run on i3 or i5 even Atom CPU’s. They will be much slower than
Why it’s relevant for site speed:
The more CPUs you have, the more data can be processed simultaneously, and the faster your site loads.
- Intel i3 or i5
- Intel E3 & E5 Series
- AMD CPU’s
- Single Core
- Dual Core
- Quad Core
- ……..and so on.
For example, the more images, scripts, plugins, and videos you plan to load, the more CPUs you should consider. All modern WordPress sites have
RAM is short term memory. It’s the resource that stores data and execution instructions temporarily so they can be more quickly passed to the CPU. The amount of RAM your server has controls how many processes the CPU can handle at any given time. RAM is referred to as “working memory” for this reason. More RAM means more data and instructions that can be accessed directly by the CPU. If something isn’t stored in RAM, it first has to be located and transferred to RAM before the CPU can do anything with it. So lack of RAM can slow down the whole server.
All our servers have DDR4 RAM’s with min of 128GB on each server. Giving a lot of space to our clients to run the application that they need.
We are one of the few Hosting providers who pro-actively monitors CPU, RAM and IO operations ensuring that server resources never run out thus giving a very high server performance.
Storage & Speed of I/O
How much storage you need depends on the specific needs of your site now and in the future. How quickly that data can be read and how quickly new data can be written to disk is your main concern with performance and
If your site presents a lot of video and/or audio streaming it will require faster I/O speeds as it will need to transfer large files from storage. Dynamic sites also use a lot of I/O to move data to and from a database.
We use 100% SSD drives with RAID 10 configurations giving you a performance boost of 25%. SSD Drives are default configuration on ALL our plans. There are vendors who will advertise that they offer Hybrid (SSD + HDD). But as soon as you are on HDD the speed will drop. They only use SSD for system functions, whereas the client data will be on HDD. Which means that as a client you are on HDD. It will NOT help you with performance.
It is always a good idea to read the terms of service, the hosting provider will
Bandwidth is the capacity for website data to be transferred at a certain rate to the end user.
Why it’s relevant for site speed:
It’s not a measure of page load speed itself, but the more bandwidth that’s available means the more data that can be transferred, and the more times your site can be loaded for your visitors.
As the data transfer rate increases, the more capacity there is to load your site faster.
Even our basic Business Hosting comes with 1GBPS Bandwidth. Similar to storage, bandwidth can’t be unlimited, but many hosting plans offer unlimited bandwidth.
Be sure to check their terms of service or fine print to see their definition of “unlimited.” Likewise, we exactly tell you how much bandwidth along with the speed you will be assigned when you are choosing your plans.
For hosting, uptime refers to the time a server is up and running. Percentages are used to express uptime, and the higher it is, the more time the server has been operational.
Higher uptime is also indicative of a reliable server, and hosting. By buying into cheaper hosting solutions, there are good possibilities that you will NOT be getting 100% uptime. We have seen when our clients have migrated from Bigger Brands, they had an uptime of less than 90% too. There was an eCommerce client of ours who migrated to us during the outage over Christmas Season. It’s been over 4 years the client is still with us and with 100% uptime.
We achieve this uptime with Proactive monitoring (GCH Cloud Performance Monitor) and we DO NOT overload the server, giving all our clients enough space to grow.
Depending on what type of hosting package you purchase, you may or may not have any say in the specs of your server. When it comes to performance it is always better to ensure that you have got the best hosting that fits your budget. Needless to say, poor hosting will definitely result in a lower ranking of your website and also the loss of customers.
If you are not sure, please contact us, we will help you to decide what hosting is best for your needs.