Have you ever thought about the hardware that your web host uses? Do they frequently upgrade their hardware to keep up with the modern demands in the web hosting industry? Do they keep their customers informed about planned upgrades and why they are doing them? No? Maybe it's time to find a new host! Why is this important? Even if your website works to a satisfactory level, you should still be concerned with what hardware your web host uses and how often they upgrade it. Here are a few reasons why.
More processes require more power.
The most obvious reason why regular hardware upgrades are vital is that web technology is moving forward all the time, and as the processing requirements of websites increases, CPUs are working much harder to support these processes. If they're not upgraded eventually, they will be noticeably slower at performing simple tasks, which can lead to slow website generation times. This, in turn, can affect your SEO rankings and will certainly annoy your visitors.
Everybody wants to be green these days. “Carbon neutral” can include your hosting, too. Web hosting companies who claim to be carbon neutral as their selling point do this by beginning with the hardware. Newer hardware uses less power than old hardware, it's that simple! If your host always uses the latest technology then they're greener than those who use older kits.
The stability of a provider.
Besides the fact that performance increases can be gained with hardware upgrades, a company that regularly improves their equipment is probably a more stable company with the resources to reinvest and improve their services. Obviously this is very a very important factor in a web hosting company; you don't want them to be going out of business 6 months down the line. Quick note of danger on this point: if a web host is constantly changing their hardware (especially after problems), then this might be a sign that they do not know what they're doing and they're still trying to find a stable set-up.
I personally believe that web hosting companies should not only keep their hardware up-to-date but they should also inform their customers of the changes they make why they make them. I've always said a honest web host who keeps its customers informed regardless of the situation (good and bad) deserve credit, one example I came across the other day was the web hosting company HostPresto, who posted to their blog about moving from a central SAN to SSD storage for their shared hosting, a perfect example of keeping their customers informed of what's happening behind the scenes.
Maybe next time you're looking for a new web host do not be afraid to ask some more detailed questions in the pre-sales stage, especially about the hardware they use and when it was last upgraded. You have nothing to lose and you may just find yourself a better quality web host in the process.