Web hosting - who to choose?
Our web hosting service is not the cheapest, it is not encumbered with bells nor is it infested with whistles.
It is simply a reliable, practical service trusted by our clients for more than a decade. To be perfectly frank, most of our clients care less about the technical specifications: they simply want practical web hosting that works.
For the record though, and since this may be our first introduction, here is a summary of our service:
Hosting features at a glance
Unconditional lifetime guarantee
If you are not satisfied with our service - you don't pay. Simple.
For the technically minded, here is our feature list...
How to choose where to host your website
It is not like web hosting companies build their own computers, write their own operating systems or send people to dig up pavements to lay cables. We all use micro processors, Microsoft or Unix based operating systems, hard disks from a handful of manufacturers and so on.
Computing power and network capacity is cheap and it is getting cheaper all the time. Your cell phone has more internet bandwidth and computing power than the first moon mission. Two years from now your fridge will probably be able to have a conversation or even an argument with you. Tomorrow you could probably host your website on your smart phone.
RAID storage devices, redundant routes, firewalls, load management, etc, etc. Do you really care what kind of oscillating crystal is in your wrist watch, or do you simply care that it will keep time accurately? Most of our clients care less about what or how we we keep their sites online.
You choose a service provider precisely so that you do not have to worry about the technical details, right?
Most people choose Cozahost because a trusted colleague or friend offered them the good advice, so it is about people, relationships and trust more than it is about technology.
Not jargon, just real reasons
So, instead of trying to bamboozle you with technical jargon, here are the reasons we believe inform a sound decision:
- A partnership: When your website (and email) becomes a real contributor to your business, you need the assurance that your web hosting company will be around at least as long as your own business. They should be able to help you with guidance, advice and practical tips on how to improve the efficiency of your internet presence too.
- Capable hands: The same people who host your website will also handle your email for you - in other words, to send your email out to other internet users and to receive your email until you are ready to download it. You want your email protected against spam and virus attacks. You also want control over what email you choose to receive and the power to dump junk before it clutters your inbox and you want to access your email from anywhere and even using your cell phone.
- Fire proof: As a computer user you know that things go wrong. Your ideal web host should know when something is wrong (and be working to fix it) long before you do. They should have a gps tracking ankle bracelet welded onto Mr Murphy. And his wife.
- Stalwart propeller heads: People you that know enough about technology and business to give you real, practical and objective advice and answers on questions in a language humans can understand.
- Real people: Cheap is cheap. It is not a good deal. It is simply cheap. Value for money, solid reliability and top notch service - THAT is a good deal. A company of real people with a sustainable, common sense approach to their own business and to yours - THAT is a good deal.
Common sense advice
There is a considerable amount of competition in the industry, and this keeps prices down.
Technology changes so rapidly, today service provider A will have the shiniest mouse trap and tomorrow service provider B will invent perpetual motion. Then company C will proclaim from the roof tops that all that is old nonsense and the "cloud" is now THE thing. Just after that company D will pay YOU for the privilege of hosting your website.
So, if your criteria are the best technology at the cheapest price, then you might be in for interesting times.
Our advice is not to pick the cheapest hairdresser with the shiniest scissors.
Pick a partner you can grown with and trust.
Why an internet site is important to South African business
As South Africans we might be tempted to think that internet sites are more effective in the first world than here in "dark" Africa. In 1998 this might have been a pretty accurate way of looking at the internet, but a lot has changed:
- 9 million people in South Africa will have internet access by 2014
- The number of African internet users grew by 879.8% during the 2000 - 2007 period
- 70% of South African internet users say they will shop online in the future
Although we are still far behind the developed world where up to 70% of the population in first world countries have internet access, a large percentage of the economically active people in South Africa do have internet access: a sizable and very important market.
Perhaps even more significant is that these internet users can (and do) influence the purchase decisions of their unconnected friends and contacts - because they are often asked to "research" companies / goods using the web.
Internet marketing is vital to grow your business
As a "brick-and-mortar" business (ie not purely internet based), a website still plays a vital role because:
- Potential customers do company and product research on the internet.
When asked to decide between two competing companies with roughly the same product and price, the customer will most likely pick Company A where lots of quality information is available on their website - above Company B where he has to wait till Monday to get detail and quality information, or where the sales person is not knowledgeable or persuasive enough.
- Your customers expect you to be on the internet
Internet users use search engines to find products, services and companies several million times per day. Most of these people are in search of a solution to a problem. Not having a website is the equivalent of hiding. Not a good strategy for a business.
- Quality information sells
It is either impractical or very expensive (or both) to provide your potential customers with the product (or service) information they want when you use traditional mass media like print, radio or TV. With a website you can identify what your customer's interests are and lead him directly to the right page with heaps of quality information. Educate your potential customer on why your product or service is the best.
- Build a relationship with your market
Your website allows you to build a trust relationship with your customers - if you supply good quality (honest) information on your product or industry. You can do this by using discussion forums on your website, email newsletters, how-to-guides, evaluation guides, surveys, ratings, etc. As an honest provider of quality information (of direct help to your potential customer) you automatically build customer loyalty - which supports the long term growth of your business.
- The most cost effective way to reach your market. Full stop.
Compared to the miniscule investment in running a website, all other forms of marketing is over priced and ineffective. Not paper flyers, radio or TV ads, classified ads in the paper - nothing - is as cost effective as an efficient website to drive sales and retain customers. A business can only survive if it markets effectively - and for this a well designed site just cannot be beat. That is a fact.
(More on what you should know about web site design here...)
So why do you need a site?
Most entrepreneurs and businesses have the same knee-jerk reaction when sales drop: They either reduce prices and or they tinker with their product: "Surely prettier or cheaper mouse traps will catch more mice?", they think.
Few realize that even if you can build a car that runs on water and sell it for dirt - your business may still fail. You have to SELL your product to survive in business. No matter how good your product is: you must SELL IT.
We obsess about making our products better and cheaper - as if that drives sales. The sad news is that it doesn't. Look around you and you will see hundreds of products and companies selling junk - and making a profit at it!
Effective marketing is what stands between the entrepreneur and a failed business. A well designed site is a very, very effective marketing tool.
How does web sites generate business?
A well designed website draws potential customers:
- by using targeted information, you can present each one of your potential customers with exactly the information they are looking for
your "sales pitch" can be perfect every time.
- If you have quality original information on your site, search engines will send you prospects
- You can buy prospects for a few Rands a day and introduce them to your business - automatically. 24 x 7.
You can use:
- Tools to identify other internet sites are willing to send customers to you
- Tools to ensure customers looking for your solution will find you on search engines
- Special information guides to tailor your site to a razor-sharp selling machine
- Email tools to directly and personally contact existing and new customers to close the sale and follow up on hot leads.
- Easy to use yet sophisticated software to build and maintain your site quickly
You won't get a top performing website for "free" - because you have to do the work and spend the time (or hire a website designer do it). You are smart enough to know that there is no such thing as a free lunch and we certainly will not insult your intelligence by telling you that there is. We can however help to get you into the game. You have to buy a ticket to win the lotto, right?
Full control over your website
Sometimes you need things done NOW. Not 30 minutes from now, not 5 minutes from now, but RIGHT NOW.
There is no ISP in the world that can help you immediately every time. The delay may be only a few minutes, but the point is that there will always be a delay.
This is why we enable our clients with full control over all their servers. They can do exactly what we can with an easy to use web based control panel. Set up a new email address, create a new FTP account, add a new domain name, delete a file on the server, change passwords, etc. etc. Instant self-service.
You don't have to wait for even one minute to create that new email account for a new staff member. Or to delete that large attachment you are struggling to download via email. Or remove FTP access for the guy you just fired.
In a way we place the TV remote control in the hands of our clients. If you live in a busy household, you know how powerful an instrument the remote is. It is the seat of household government.
If you are thinking that it sounds to complicated, then you have not seen how easy the control panel is to use, and, besides, just the fact that you have access to the control panel does not mean that you are on your own. We will come change the channel for you as many times as you need - for as long as you need us to. But at least now you have the choice. :-)
There are no hidden costs and no contracts to tie you down.
Everything is backed by an unconditional life time guarantee.
|Trusting your website to Cozahost guarantees you professional service and personal attention.
We quote the subscription fees excluding VAT(for South African residents) as registered companies can re-claim the tax from SARS. In fact, your entire spend may be tax deductible.
Once-off setup fee = R 175.00, which includes:
Monthly rental = R 165.00 (per debit order or automatic credit card debit)
No contracts required.
Free MySQL or MSSQL database access.
All the technology and features you need to succeed.
30% VIP discount on all subsequent sites you host with us.
Additional disk space, bandwidth and email accounts are available as your website grows.
|Free fax to email:
Your hosting account also includes a free fax to email account. Use the 086 telephone number we provide to receive faxes, convert them to email attachments and deliver them anywhere in the world to your email account. Automatically and instantly. More...
Free content management system:
Free hosting of more domain names:
Outsource your website:
Our optional web designer and management service is like insurance, armed response and a maintenance service plan for your site - all in one. We worry about technical details so that you don't have to. More...
Our philosophy is that we would like to have you as a life-time client, so our services are designed to grow with your business.
(More about our guarantee and our clients)