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Website Hosting in Australia

Do I need to have my website hosted in Australia?

Is it better to host my website in Australia?

Who is the best web hosting provider in Australia?

These are probably what you just Googled or planned on doing. 

So, let’s break down these common questions and give them a concrete answer.

Do I need to have my website hosted in Australia?

Short answer: No, you don’t have to. Should you though? Yes.

Australian businesses have traditionally used Australian web hosting companies as their providers, however, in recent years the number of overseas providers have lured many Australian business customers as well as Australian hosting providers to join them. 

These overseas companies usually entice businesses with significant savings in hosting fees, but this bargain is not all that it seems to be and can actually result in some significant damages to your business.

Many hosting providers that advertise their service as Australian may actually be hosting their servers overseas. 

When you first review a website, it would not be obvious as these multinational hosting companies will usually use a .com.au domain name and provide customers with a local phone number to contact sales and support. 

Overseas hosting companies marketing their services to Australia will adopt these practices to appeal to the local market and give the impression that their service is Australian based.

Another scenario that has become more prevalent is locally based hosting providers housing their servers in overseas data centres which can provide the hosting company with cost savings, however, may not be the best option for customers looking for Australian based hosting for a number of reasons. 

Australian companies that primarily do business with Australian companies and consumers can benefit from local hosting providers, and here are just a few of the reasons why:

Benefit from faster service speed 

Websites that are hosted overseas can suffer from significantly slower site load times. 

What many people don’t realise is that information uploaded by a computer in Australia must travel to the overseas hosting location first. 

This can take some time for the initial information to become available. Then the same information must travel back from the overseas host to the Australians who are accessing the website. 

This process creates an unnecessary middleman, the overseas hosting location when all the information could have been stored locally in Australia. 

Not only does this chain of events affect the processing of the website, but it also slows downloadable materials, including images and sales resources which can negatively impact the user experience.

Because information moves so quickly on the Internet, this may not seem like a large disadvantage, but the repeated lag times could affect the success of the business. 

Website users do not like to visit slow sites, so if two websites offer the same information, but one is significantly slower, the visitor will most likely choose the faster site. 

This could cost a business profit and significantly impact a visitor’s experience, particularly if you’re running an online store or content management system.

You become susceptible to exchange rates 

Sometimes, choosing to buy products and services in another currency can initially have a positive outcome. 

This generally occurs when the currency of an overseas company offers you more for your money at a low price during the time you are looking to sign up. 

The problem with choosing an overseas web host based on this premise is that currency inevitably fluctuates and what is a cheap plan for you now could potentially double in price in the near future when exchange rates fall. 

Because of this, hosting packages purchased in your own currency can provide stability for you and your website regardless of the economic environment.

Service failure means money lost 

Many overseas hosting providers are perfectly reliable and choosing to use one of these hosts does not necessarily guarantee poor service. 

However, by connecting a site to an overseas provider, there are an increased number of possible points of failure. 

When more exchanges and connections are set up in the chain of hosting, more breakdowns could possibly occur in the chain. 

Utilising an Australian web host will eliminate the prospect of these breakdowns by keeping all the exchanges contained on the same landform.

Time zone differences can affect your website

Web servers are configured to the time zone where the host is physically located.

This means that a website hosted in an overseas location will display the clock of the time zone where the overseas host is physically located rather than the Australian time of the business. 

Of course, the website can be re-configured to adjust for the time difference, but a few minor lapses in timing could affect any e-commerce conducted from the site and could make the timing of visitors’ activities and comments confusing.

In addition to altering the server clock and more importantly, the time zone also affects the host’s maintenance schedule. Most web hosts designate specific times to perform backups on the server and to update the hosting platform. 

These maintenance windows are usually scheduled to occur during the overnight hours when web traffic is at its lowest, and the least number of people are likely to visit the sites so a website’s potential customers are not affected. 

However, when a website is hosted overseas, the overnight hours could actually be during the middle of the day in Australia. 

This could severely impact the traffic of the website by slowing down the load times or by taking the site offline entirely. Websites that are hosted in Australia do not encounter this discrepancy in timing, giving these hosting companies a great advantage.

Google may penalise you in search results

When a website is created, it is assigned an Internet Protocol (IP) address. The IP address frequently relates to the geographical location of the website, which aids search engines such as google.com.au during search engine optimisation. 

The search engines make every attempt to connect Internet users with websites that are the most relevant to their physical location. For example, Google would try to match an Australian visitor with an Australian website. 

When the website’s IP address is located overseas, even if the business is Australian, the search engines see the site as overseas. 

This discrepancy could prevent potential Australian clients and customers from viewing an Australian business. Using a local web hosting company could prevent any of this confusion.

Why you need 24/7 support in Australia 

Business websites cannot afford to lose income due to website errors or other technical issues. Time is money, and both can be wasted when dealing with overseas web hosts as time zone differences between Australia and an overseas location can cause headaches when it comes to troubleshooting website issues. 

A problem that occurs in the middle of the day in Australia could be happening in the middle of the night where the hosting provider is located. 

This could potentially be devastating to the productivity of the website when no (or limited) technical support is available to help solve problems at the hosting location overseas in the middle of the night.

When searching for a new web host, a good way to tell if their servers are located in Australia is to use the following tool www.check-host.net

As an Australian business looking for the best way to market a website online to an Australian audience, it is wise to consider the above points when choosing a web host. 

When weighing up all of the advantages, it is difficult to imagine choosing anything other than an Australian based provider for the benefit of your business.

Website Hosting in Australia 1

Who is the best web hosting provider in Australia? 

Obviously, it is a little biased for us to put forward a ranking of best hosts, but what we can do is to tell you what you need to look for.

Price 

Web hosting can fluctuate from high-end pricing that will leave your bank account screaming to pricing that would rival a two-dollar store. 

What you want to be trying to find is a balance between the two. The cheaper costs may be really enticing; however, it can be at the expense of the required features for your website that you really do need. This will leave you having to purchase them separately. 

Speed 

What you want to know is how the servers are configured. As we spoke about previously, how close are the data centres to you? Do they have an integrated CDN? 

These are all factors that will impact the speed of your site.

Why is this important?

People’s patience levels in the age of instant communication and data are very minimal. Slow load times will cause people to leave your site very quickly. Ultimately, this will lose you money.

Support 

This is a massive problem within the industry. Having a really poor support system in place can leave you vulnerable to crashes and shutdowns with no way of bringing your site back online.

What you want to look for is a provider that has a support system based in your country and is 24/7. 

Why?

Well, if your support is based in your home country, they will have an understanding that you are coming into a long weekend and that means that this is a time when your business needs to be up and running immediately.

It can be hard to translate this urgency across regions and time zones.

Where can I find a web hosting provider in Australia?

Find a plan here that works best for you and if you need any help, reach out to our Australia based team for anything you need help with!

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