Picking a web host, gzip compression, expires and headers

Picking a web host, gzip compression, expires and headers

Web Hosting Podcast: Episode 1

What is it you are going to be hosting?  A Blog, eCommerce website, funny cat pictures or something that is mission critical and requires 100% uptime?  Depending on the answer there could be millions of different options….. Current google search for “Web Hosting” results in 115 Million results.  How do you sort out the good options from the bad options?

  • Top eight (8) things to watch for when choosing a web host
      1. Know your hosting needs.
      2. Investigate on host reliability and uptime guarantees.
      3. Study web host upgrading options.
      4. Check all hosting features (such as number of addon domains allowed) based on your needs.
      5. Check prices on both sign up and renewal.
      6. Check hosting control panel.
      7. Read hosting company’s ToS to find out more about account suspension and server usage policy.
      8. Other supporting features (ie. site backup, environmental friendliness, etc)
  • Gotchas to avoid – don’t fall for the “buffet” or “unlimited” plans.
  • Check their knowledge base or documentation
  • Do they have shared values with you or your business i.e. B corporation

Final tips and info:
Price – do not go for the cheapest option.  You get what you pay for!!
Do they provide one click installers for popular programs?
Do they provide a site builder application free of charge? If you use their site builder can you move your site to another host?
Do they offer the services you need for future proofing?
Links:
http://www.webhostingsecretrevealed.net/choose-the-right-web-hosting/

https://www.aawebmasters.com/choose-web-host/

Expires and Headers:

Setting headers on images and other file types to prevent re download.

  • Speeds site up. Typically users leave a site if it is slow to load after 2 seconds.
  • Will save bandwidth and save you $$, just like gzip compression.
  • Will increase your page ranking by having a faster site load time.
  • The Longer you set the expire time the longer the file will stay in the browsers cache.
  • Issue: may change your workflow. Elements need to have new names if replacing the same element.

Add the following lines to your .htaccess file to enable Header Cache-Control.  Add your own file types in the FilesMatch area.

[cc]
# 3 Months

Header set Cache-Control “max-age=7257600”

# 1 Week

Header set Cache-Control “max-age=604800”

[/cc]

Links:

http://www.inmotionhosting.com/support/website/htaccess/apache-module-mod-expires
http://magentoexpertforum.com/showthread.php/10324-Speed-up-your-site-with-htaccess-caching-mod_expires-and-mod_headers

Gzip compression:

What is it!?
Gzip is a method of compressing files (making them smaller) for faster network transfers. It is also a file format. Compression allows your web server to provide smaller file sizes which load faster for your website users. Enabling gzip compression is a standard practice.

Why would you want to enable it?

  • Saves your bandwidth.
  • Can make your site load quicker.

How to enable it in cPanel, the great missing menu.

  • Optimize Website inside of your cPanel account.

Verify it is working a the following links.
https://checkgzipcompression.com
http://www.gziptest.com

Mime Types:
https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/HTTP/Basics_of_HTTP/MIME_types

If you have show topic suggestions, recommendations or want to be on the show follow this link

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