Choosing an affordable and reliable web hosting service for your website is important. Failing to do so means you have to deal with downtime when your website becomes inaccessible. This, in turn, leads to frustrated visitors, lost money, and, sometimes, poor SEO rankings. A poor service is also slow, has limited bandwidth and limited storage space.

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Besides choosing the right service for your business, you need to remain informed on the latest trends in this crucial area of business. Web hosting, like any other field in IT, is evolving at a rapid pace with improvements and changes being made every day. For that reason, here are web hosting trends to keep an eye on in 2017.

1. A Greater Focus on Cloud Hosting Security

The cloud is an important part of the internet today and almost every internet user is aware of it. It allows you to store and later access your documents from multiple devices. Businesses both big and small also use it to cut the cost of computing.

This wide adoption of cloud computing by both people and businesses has not been lost on hackers. They are busy seeking ways to exploit breaches in cloud security. One such way is by creating malware. In response, cloud hosting companies such as Smart Hosting are investing heavily in security and training their staff on the issue.

2. More Differentiation among Hosting Providers

During the cloud’s infancy, hosting providers more or less provided the same basic services. Today, however, there is a move towards providing more services on top of existing hosting plans and marketing the advantages to customers. This is all in a bid to differentiate a service from those of the competition in a crowded and cutthroat industry.

Behind this differentiation is a heavy reliance on automation. It allows providers to cut out human intervention, increase efficiency, diversify their portfolios, and raise their profit margins.

3. More Reselling and Partnerships

Because of the wide adoption of cloud computing, big players such as Amazon and Apple are entering the field. To survive this onslaught, small businesses are changing tactics. Knowing that they cannot compete with the big guys, they are forming stronger partnerships with each other and with resellers.

This affiliate-reseller strategy is working. One company bundles some of its services and sells them to the second one, which has lower infrastructure costs and, therefore, higher margins. The second company then sells the bundled services to online companies and small businesses. It targets a specific niche while providing competitive prices and excellent customer service. In the end, both small companies make handsome profit margins.

Web hosting plays a crucial role in the operation and success of a business. Because it is changing and evolving all the time, you need to keep abreast of any new trends. For 2017, the first trend to watch is the greater focus on security. As hackers try to exploit breaches in cloud hosting security, providers are hitting back with stronger security measures.

Also, watch out for increased differentiation among hosting providers. The hosting field is now more crowded and competitive than it has ever been. Carving out a niche is the only way to survive. Finally, expect to see more reselling and partnerships, especially among smaller players.