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How to Make Your eBusiness Totally Green

Updated on December 21, 2012

ThinkHost

you have all seen the adverts online. Become a webhoster and start peddling domains. Shared hosting is all pretty much the same, right?

Well not any more ThinkHost is a little different to most companies. Oh it offers top quality hosting with a huge range of features. The diference is ThinkHost is a progressive principles based company with services powered by 100% renewable energy! So it features generous bandwidth and disk space allowances, unlimited domains, databases and mailboxes, plus a money back guarantee, 100% uptime guarantee and a bonus pack valued at over $400; and its totlly eco-friendly. The servers at ThinkHost are powered by generators running on recycled vegetable oil and wind-power. How cool is that.

$20 discount

Get a further $20 discount on their already heavily discounted 24 month plan; powered by 100% renewable energy! Shorter term plans also available. Here's the coupon code you'll need: THINKHOST20 .

The web hosting industry has become increasingly competitive and there are a myriad of companies out there battling for your business - but some won't definitely have you or your business interests in mind. Cheap web site hosting definitely doesn't mean the best hosting and neither does signing up with the most expensive companies guarantee you the best service - it's a confusing world of solutions, smoke and mirrors.

Competition's a great thing, but the frenzied levels of promotion has also forced a number of hosts to use questionable marketing tactics and a heavy load of activity-restricting fine print in their contracts. Many web-hosting companies don't make profits by establishing a solid customer base, but rather by having a high turnover. The more customers they can have signing up and then dropping off, the more dollars they make.

Of course, not all hosting services take this attitude and there are some solid companies that respect and encourage their clients.

Green choices make more and more sense

Here are some of the Basic Pitfalls to watch out for

"Unlimited" bandwidth offers:

This is probably one of the more popular strategies that some companies use in order to attract your business. It's worked on this principle - the vast majority of web site hosting clients will not be big bandwidth users, therefore lowering the average bandwidth usage across the entire client base.

This situation allows hosting companies some room to move and if a few clients use well above the average, it's no real problem - unless your site is using as much as hundreds, or perhaps even just dozens of the host's other clients.

Something else to bear in mind is that if you are using a ton of bandwidth, that usually means your site will be creating a fairly hefty load on the server as well which may breach the host's terms of service. The bottom line is, if you have a big bandwidth site, you're better off looking for a dedicated server - after all, why risk such a golden goose for the sake of what is really just a few extra dollars a day to have your own managed dedicated server?

So, what would qualify as being a big bandwidth site? It greatly depends on how your site is structured, but anything over 10,000 unique visitors a day is probably going to test the limits of most shared hosting accounts.

Unlimited disk space:

All disk space must be paid for by the company and if you greatly exceed their user average, you may find your account being pulled. Check the host's terms of service for stipulations on how the disk space quota can be used.

Daily transfer limits:

Like any business, some days are busier than others. Unfortunately, some hosts don't recognize this and limit the amount of bandwidth able to be used in any one day. If you have a web site that is date/day active e.g., the weekends, this may have a serious effect on your site's viability.

Bandwidth "throttling" and load balancing:

It is important to ascertain whether your host will decrease the availability of your bandwidth based on server activity. This isn't a decrease in your quota itself, but a "slowing" down of how fast this bandwidth can be used. Bandwidth throttling can result in your entire web site being slow to load. Excess throttling can mean that some of your visitors may not be able to access the site.

Database limits:

So many applications these days are powered by databases and you may find that one or two databases aren't enough - and then suddenly the cheap account you had becomes quite expensive through additional fees.

Domain limits

You may only want to host a single site now, but what about in the future? As with databases, some hosts only offer 1 or 2 domains included in their prices - and you may have to pay top dollar for additional domains. Also, a good web hosting service offers true multi-domain support, i.e. you can host a number of sites with their own domain names under the same account and they will also have their own @extradomain.com emails addresses.

Money Back Guarantees:

Sounds great doesn't it - "If you aren't satisfied with the service within 30 days we'll refund your money!". Some companies are genuine in their offer, others aren't - check the fine print.

Uptime guarantee:

As with money back guarantees, it's wise to check the fine print. Some uptime guarantees exclude just about every event that could lead to serious downtime and are totally useless. When comparing uptime figures between hosts, bear in mind that many companies may claim "99.99% uptime", but they will actually be referring to their servers being powered on and connected to the Internet; however, in most instances they won't subtract the downtime from a single service such as email not functioning.

Saving the Rainforest with Clicks

The Rainforests are the lungs of the planet.
The Rainforests are the lungs of the planet.

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