Many businesses both large and small can rack up big savings by running their Microsoft Exchange E-mail services on a dedicated host. Hosting an Exchange server in-house means you have to deal with both software and hardware concerns that can become a major drag on the productivity of the IT department. That’s why outsourcing E-mail server upkeep makes sense for all types of companies. Finding the right hosting provider isn’t always easy, however. If you want to get the most out of hosted Exchange services, you need to spend some time taking a hard look at the available options to find the perfect host.
When you’re looking for an Exchange hosting provider, the most important consideration is rarely price. It’s worth shelling out a few extra bucks per month to get a solution that’s reliable and resilient. Nearly every host on the web promises 99.9% uptime, but in reality that’s rarely the case. Avoid cut-rate providers like Hostgator or Bluehost. While budget hosts are fine for a blog or even a website with moderate traffic, it’s not the best choice for E-mail hosting. You need a provider that’s rock-solid when it comes to uptime. Furthermore, you need a hosting provider that can recover quickly in the event of a hardware failure. Cloud-based hosts like Rackspace and Pay Per Cloud are usually far better when it comes to disaster management and recovery.
As Exchange is a Microsoft product, you’ll be running your E-mail services on top of the Microsoft platform. Select a host with a Gold Certification from Microsoft and Gold Hosting Competency. If you’re migrating your Exchange services from one host to another rather than starting from scratch, look into how they handle the migration process and whether or not they offer support for said migration. Ensure that the hosting providers that you’re looking at can handle the volume of E-mail that you expect to be generating and receiving on a daily basis. Most businesses above the “mom and pop” level should opt for a cloud-based solution, as they’re easier to scale up to accommodate increased demand.
There are a number of hosting providers available that will fit the bill based on these criteria. Ultimately, the best way to go about choosing a hosting provider is by talking to similar businesses to see how they’ve fared with specific hosts. If you’re like most people, you look at the user-contributed reviews when you shop online at Amazon to get an idea of the general experience that the average consumer has had with a specific product. The same rules apply when you’re shopping for hosting. Spend a little extra time researching the available Exchange hosting companies on the market, and your efforts will pay off handsomely in the long run.