Doctors and dental offices are small businesses. As such, you are always on the lookout for ways to save money as it directly impacts your bottom line.
But there are areas where you can save money and there are areas where saving a few dollars could cost you dearly. Web hosting is one of them.
We offer web hosting at Advice Media. Here’s why we believe your practice website should be on one of our 90+ servers in North America and around the world.
Don’t get stuck in the cargo area
Low cost or even free website hosting is usually a way to get your site up to the server and into the monthly automatic billing system. The question is, how many other sites are there with you? And how does “free” pay for the server capacity needed to adequately host all of these sites? Perhaps adequate capacity was not included in the “free” offer.
Overloaded servers, like overworked workers, are slow. There are too many bytes of data trying to squeeze through overloaded circuits. Think about your home internet and how it can slow down in times of high demand. You don’t want this to happen to the server hosting your workout website.
But if your website takes a few more seconds to load, what’s the problem, right? Well, it’s okay if you don’t mind users instantly leaving your site. Think about it. How long are you ready to wait and watch the wheel spin while a website loads? Industry surveys have found that website visitors expect the websites they visit to load in two seconds or less. After three seconds – yes, only three seconds – if the page hasn’t loaded, the potential user abandons the site.
When you choose a low cost hosting service like GoDaddy, BlueHost, HostGator, etc., your site is placed on a server with thousands or even hundreds of thousands of other websites. Hopefully these other sites don’t get a lot of traffic because your site will be competing with them for server resources. An overloaded server means your site will load slowly.
Slow load times aren’t just annoying for the potential user. Google doesn’t like them very much either. Google’s search algorithms reward « quality » when ranking websites – quality content, quality background page descriptions, quality sitemaps, and quality page load times. One of the ranking factors of the algorithm is the page load time. Google considers slow-loading pages to be poorly constructed, making those pages a bad search experience and lowering your rankings.
By comparison, Advice Media only places hundreds of client websites on a comparable server. This means that your site is not competing for work resources, so it can load much faster. This means that visitors to your site can interact with your content on your site rather than struggling with slow load times, making them more likely to sign up for a treatment or procedure.
Unlimited or dedicated website resources
Many low-cost web hosts tout their « unlimited » options: unlimited bandwidth, unlimited disk space, unlimited email addresses, and more. While that sounds pretty impressive, this limitless world has to exist within a crowded server. Remember that you are sharing your server, so you are at the mercy of your website roommates. Let’s say someone decides to upload 10GB of photos to that same server. Which site do you think will slow down?
At Advice, we limit your use of resources. While this might sound limiting, it can actually help your site perform better. Because we limit usage, your site has its own channel to use for web traffic, much like a carpool lane on a crowded freeway just for you. These dedicated resources keep you from fighting with other sites on the same server, allowing your site to load quickly and efficiently.
Personalized customer support
Have you ever tried the technical support offered by a cheap web host? Call 800 number or open the chat window and hope for the best. More often than not, this support staff is not even in the United States. Think about the interactions you’ve had with a cable or satellite provider, and then make them even worse.
At Advice, you have a dedicated technical support team or one-stop personal contact person who will handle and resolve your issues quickly, efficiently and with minimal hassle.
Overcrowded servers are also fertile ground for hackers. There are a lot of targets in one place with a lot of data, and they are not well protected. Do you think your « free » service paid off for high quality security? Before you knew it, your website was hacked and redirected to a third-party domain. Now you have a problem.
We pride ourselves on our safety at Advice. Because our servers don’t host a myriad of sites, it’s easier for us to protect our servers and your site.
At the end of the line ? As with a lot of things, you get what you pay for when it comes to website hosting. On important issues like load time, resource allocation, customer support, and vulnerability, we might not be the cheapest website host, but we believe the service we provide at Advice is second to none. And since most potential patients are now entering an online practice for the first time, don’t you think it’s worth every penny?
If you have any questions about hosting our website at Advice Media, call your representative and ask. Or, if you’re not yet a customer, fill out the contact form or give us a call at (800) 260-9497, and let’s talk.