Understanding the Need for Offshore Web Hosting

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When you get your website hosted to some far off place from your place of origin for one of the various reasons, it is called 'offshore web hosting'. The reasons may vary from person to person. Some of the common reasons can be low price, enhanced features or overall improvement in services that attract users to go for offshore web hosting.

Who Opts for Offshore Hosting?

Normally, we see many developed countries outsourcing their hosting needs to developing nations, but it also happens the other way round. People in developed nations go for lesser developed nations to get low-cost hosting, while the users in developing nations opt for more developed countries to get better features and advanced confidentiality and security of their data. A few people even opt for offshore hosting to promote things that are either illegitimate or banned in their own countries.

For instance, Poker and casino are banned in many of the Asian countries, and to host an online poker site, an Asian customer is bound to seek offshore website hosting from the US. Normally banned products, forbidden content and other similar information are also outsourced to web hosting providers outside the country. There also are bookmakers partner programs or pharmacy affiliate programs, which are normally hosted by very few countries. Speeding up websites with the help of CDN can be another reason for users opting for offshore hosting.

Providing Offshore Hosting Services to Global Customers

Having seen the various aspects that usually compel the folks to look at offshore hosting, you must understand the nitty-gritty, and deliver just what the doctor ordered. Even the slightest mistake can turn out to be disastrous for your customer(s), and that would, in turn, force them to abandon your hosting services right away.

For example, most of the people who go for offshore hosting, have a very important reason in mind that is to not get reflected in the WHOIS database. They normally want to hide their identity or the fact that they own a particular site being hosted.

Important Considerations

There are certain things that you need to keep in mind before you opt for offshore web hosting services. The first and foremost thing is that you need to make sure that you get exactly what you want and that the service provider is not unnecessarily stuffing services, that you don't need, in the package.

You also need to have a very clear idea of the difference in the time zone of both the countries and you should also understand the working environment of the host country. If you have some idea of the local language where you wish to host your site, it can be a great add-on advantage. All these are important to make sure that issues like technical glitches, lack of communication and unwanted documentation stay at bay.

As an offshore hosting provider, you must make sure that your customers don't suffer from such issues, and try to have some translators that may be able to interact with customers in specific countries whenever the need arises. Of course, it's not possible to keep translators for all languages, but depending upon your clientèle you may want to focus on 1 to 2 international markets – say France, China, Spain, or Russia!

It is also strongly advisable to go for a known host than one that has not been talked about before or is not listed anywhere as there are great chances of losing your website if your host suddenly disappears into the blue. There have been countless reports citing how an offshore host has eloped unnoticed and how the customers don't have a clue about what to do next!

As a host, it's imperative to showcase how reliable your services are, otherwise, your potential customers may not be interested in your offerings, irrespective of how good the quality of service really is.

Be Prepared for a Disaster Recovery

It's good to have a smooth business operation, but in reality, things don't run always smoothly. Phishing and malware attacks have become extremely common, and there could be a number of reasons that may force you to perform a complete backup recovery. It's quite crucial that you must be able to provide a comprehensive backup solution for disaster recovery and scan the entire web server for malware and spyware, whenever the need arises.

Popular Offshore Hosting Nations

Some of the countries widely known for reliable offshore web hosting include Cyprus, Panama and Netherlands, India, China, Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Singapore. However, some of the folks don't like to look at China as an option in the first place, because of the Chinese traffic is detected as spam by worldwide servers.

Depending on the websites/web apps that you wish to run, and your specific requirements, you need to decide whether or not it makes sense to look at offshore web hosting because it is not meant for all kinds of projects, so you must crystallize your thoughts before making a decision.