Do you want your law firm site to take 39 seconds to load? I’m guessing not.
Maybe you don’t mind. If it’s only going to happen once in awhile, and the cost of hosting is super-cheap. Aren’t you forgetting something, though?
Like: how will you know how often your site is horribly unresponsive? And how many potential clients will click away from it, and hire another lawyer?
How can you prevent this?
Most lawyers don’t know much about web stuff, especially things like where they should host their site.
First, here’s a no brainer: don’t host your law firm site on your brother-in-law’s account. Only put your law firm site on a reputable host with an account set up in your name.
There are lots of places you can opt to use. In fact, the number of choices for web hosting are dizzying (see below).
A lot of people I know recommend Bluehost, which is the one listed near the top. Up until 2013, I used Bluehost for my WordPress blogs, which I thought was great because it only cost $5/month (for as many sites as you let them host). But, then I learned that, even in the Internet, the old saw “penny wise, pound foolish” applies.
So, let me tell you why you don’t want to use Bluehost for your law firm site. Yes, they’re usually reliable, and certainly inexpensive. But, guess what? The page load times can fluctuate drastically throughout the day. And not in a good way.
You know that graphic I showed at the beginning of this post? The one that showed a page taking 39 seconds to load?
That was a Bluehost site.
When I started measuring the page load times on my sites I noticed that kind of performance on Bluehost quite often. Is this a deal-killer? Maybe not for some folks.
Like, for example, if you just want a website that’s like an online resume. In other words, you don’t really need a website to attract potential clients. Then paying $5/month for a semi-reliable web host is fine.
But if you’re serious about using your site to get clients, then you should pay for a serious hosting service. Specifically, you should pay $27/month for hosting service like Synthesis, which will provide you with fast load times. And, it goes without saying that they also don’t go down very often.
However, unlike pretty much any other web-hosting service, the folks at Synthesis will also provide you with a free site-monitor, which lets you know if your site goes down. Kind of nice to know if you’re running a business website, right? The fact that Synthesis gives you this feature for free means they are serious about keeping websites up, and keeping customers properly informed.
Do you already have a website?
Well, then you should test the page-load performance by entering the site’s URL on Pingdom. You might be surprised at what you find out.