7 Benefits of Managed Hosting that Will Save You Big Time
Have you had your website go down, a web page display a weird error message you didn't understand, or lose customers due to the performance of your web server? If so, signing up for Managed Hosting may be the right choice for you.
Managed Hosting is a service that allows businesses to operate their websites, apps, and Intranets knowing that they have access to experts who can assist them to take preventative measures to ensure server-related issues do not occur and assist them when those issues do arise.
Now generally if your hosting has been setup correctly, you shouldn’t see too many issues occur; however when an issue does arise there’s nothing more frustrating to management when the person charged with fixing an issue of this nature internally lacks the skills to do so and the issue persists longer than it should.
To avoid this scenario occurring in your business, we're going to walk you through the benefits of Managed Hosting. From the cost effectiveness of supporting your mission-critical services with experts in the field of hosting, to bullet-proofing your business when something does go wrong, you’ll soon see why Managed Hosting is an excellent option for businesses of all shapes and sizes.
#1. Rapid diagnose of hosting failures
In the event of catastrophic failure when your website goes completely offline, you generally won’t be able to access your site or your site will continue to ping the web server trying to load but will ultimately fail.
There are a number of reasons why this may be happening, ranging from overheated servers, to Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, to poorly written code, to improperly installed software on your server; however, when it’s your turn to go through this painstaking process you’re going to want to have an expert by your side to help out.
If you’ve ever purchased cheap hosting online, you may be aware that your site is likely sitting on a server with hundreds of other sites. This means that when you try to ring for support, chances are you’re going to have to wait on the phone for a lengthy period of time without any constructive feedback coming your way.
By purchasing Managed Hosting, all this goes away because you’ll have direct email, support console, and phone support access to people who know your site, your setup, and the server it’s built on resulting in a much more personalised, speedy recovery of your site.
#2. Improved performance of your web server
Depending on how your web server is setup, the sorts of traffic you receive, where your traffic is coming from, and at what times of day; you can see a vast array of performance scenarios across your web server.
For example, if you’re running an eCommerce store and are going to be offering some big discounts on Black Friday or leading up to Christmas, chances are word will get out online and you’ll see a nice traffic bump across your site, but is your server setup to handle this?
In times when your server is only experiencing moderate levels of traffic you’ll likely see negligible changes in the performance outputted by your web server, but what happens when your traffic increases 10-fold in a single day? If you’re not prepared your site may actually go down all together or be so slow your customers will leave your site and go elsewhere. This is why Managed Hosting is so important for online marketers who depend on their site being able to properly service their customers.
For those of you who may be thinking, “I don’t need to scale my website performance”. Fair enough, but remember Managed Hosting is also includes the process of improving the responsiveness of your site over time. It’s a well-known fact Google rewards fast-loading sites, so this too is another great reason to invest in proper management of your web/app architecture.
#3. Access to experts who can show you how to grow your business efficiently
Everybody these days is talking about "the cloud". This mysterious business tool that seems to be able to solve all of the world’s problems. But how many people are actually using the cloud effectively to save them time, money and scale their business operations? This is where a Managed Hosting expert can really change your way of thinking.
Managed Hosting experts can assist you to change the way your business functions on a daily basis. From removing costly desktop-based software expenses, to opening up remote working opportunities, even showing you how to store your data in an easy to access and cost-effective manner, the cloud truly is your friend if you know what you’re doing.
However, it’s surprising how many of our customers come to us under the duress of completely inefficient operational strategies only to find out they can save thousands of dollars each year in both time and expenditure by implementing only a few simple changes in their business. Seriously, if you haven’t audited the way your business uses information and interacts with the cloud, you’re likely missing out on a number of quick wins you can definitely be taking advantage of.
#4. The ability to temporarily turn off your hosting
If you’ve ever been required to maintain a Production and a Development server for one of your applications, you’ll know how quickly this can impact your bank balance.
However, with innovations such as Hummingbird 24/7 for AWS, you can turn off Development servers temporarily, incurring zero ongoing cost until you need to turn them back on again whilst maintaining all your settings and files. Pretty cool huh?
Innovations such as this are what you can expect to gain access to when you’re dealing with professional system architects who know how to save you time, energy and most importantly money.
For those of you who have multiple servers, applications, or don’t want to spend time managing servers as part of their daily routine; Managed Hosting can be a very attractive operation that can prove extremely cost-effective, especially if your core expertise lies outside this realm.
#5. Protection of lost income
Regardless of the size of your operation, down-time for retailers of any kind can cost you you big-time, both financially and long-term via negative online chatter. However, with the assistance of a managed hosting partner, this can become much less of a concern.
Take the extreme example of Facebook’s 19-minute outage back in 2014. This outage allegedly cost the world’s largest social media network $426,607, that’s $1,347,222 per hour, or $32,333,333 if the outage had lasted all day. Now these statistics were based on a Facebook with second quarter revenues of $2.1 billion, far less than the $9.32 billion Facebook just posted in Q2 2017. I rest my case.
Now your revenues may not be anywhere near that of Facebook’s, but if you rely on your site being available 24/7 for your customer-base, then you should definitely consider a managed hosting partner.
#6. Mitigation of security issues
Unbeknown to most website owners, their sites are more than likely going to be subject to some form online of online attack. Whether your information is compromised, shared, or monitored by a third-party are all common types of intervention from hackers; yet the motives for doing so vary greatly.
If your site contains personally identifiable data such as credit card details, passwords, addresses, or user profile information, security should be of the upmost concern for you. To ensure this data is not leaked in any way shape or form, a managed hosting specialist will perform routine server upgrades which include the following:
- Software updates and patches
- DDoS attack simulation
- SQL injection testing
- Routine testing your firewall against outside intruders, and
- Assurance that your SSL certificate is properly installed
If you’re scratching you head as to what some of these items are, that’s probably a good indication that you need to talk to a Managed Hosting expert. All in all, these services are designed to protect you against the common issues experienced by website and app owners, and is something you should take seriously if you’re looking to maintain your service and reputation long-term.
#7. Up-time guarantees and round the clock-support
Depending upon the service level agreement (SLA) you have in place with your managed hosting partner, you can negotiate a number of fantastic types of support of your unique hosting environment.
For example, you may choose to purchase:
- Business Hours support only (i.e. 8am to 6pm)
- 24/7 support
- 99.99% up-time guarantees
- Reimbursement of your monthly support package if your site does go down
- Pre-paid support hours
- Service upgrades on an as-need basis, or
- All of the above
In the Managed Hosting space there’s really no limit to the sort of support you can seek out, and the sort of service guarantees you can place upon your online architecture; however a lot of this will depend on your budget.
For example, if you’re running a small to medium sized website with a limited profile, a handful of monthly support hours you can use during business hours will likely be enough for your requirements. Contrast this with a high profile and high traffic online retailer who likely receives numerous online threats each day, then it’s 24/7 support and up-time guarantees which are going to be most suitable.
As you can see there a number of benefits to partnering with a managed hosting expert, however the key is to find a service-point within your budget and a partner you feel comfortable working with to achieve your goals in this space.
Managed hosting is all about peace of mind, because at the end of the day if something does go wrong, it can be a race against the clock to reinstate your service that can cost you big time if you don’t know what you’re doing.
If you’re looking to support your website, app, eCommerce site or online architecture, get in touch with the team at OSE. We support a diverse range of clients who are looking to ensure their sites stay up, run fast, and are as protected as they can be against cyber security attacks and would be happy to have a confidential discussion with you to assess your needs.