Back then, selling online courses was, for the lack of a better word, intimidating. Not only will you have to learn how to use various tools and processes like authoring, you will also have to figure out support for your end-users, amongst several other technical matters.
Thankfully for you, things have changed greatly since the mid-2010s as there are tons of platforms readily available right now that can host your online courses and attract a lot of students for you. Now, the question is which of these platforms are ideal for you. What the ideal online course is for you will be different for another but there are several important matters that you should look into when picking the best possible option for your site.
Although how much the online course platform will set you back is an important factor, it is not actually the topmost priority. In most cases, you will get what you pay for with the more expensive platforms offering you more options in creating your courses. However, just because you paid for an extremely pricey platform does not mean that you will get the best possible hosting in site. At best, you need to identify what your course needs and find the package that can address them properly.
As much as possible, you must make sure that those who would visit your site will have no problems accessing it in the first place. A good hosting provider will ensure minimal loading times on your site regardless of a visitor’s local internet speed. As a matter of fact, ensuring a 99% uptime is the minimum for web hosts today. If one service cannot provide it, chances are that their other services and features are not worth your money.
This is basically the amount of bytes transferred from your site to visitors as they browse through your courses. In this regard, you should understand that there is no such thing as an “unlimited bandwidth” amongst web hosts. If a certain hosts markets such as one of their features, you best ignore their offer as it is most likely not true.
You have to remember that it will be the hosts that pays for the bandwidth of your site. If you and your students use much of it, they will make the site owner pay for the remaining difference. Since online courses take up a lot of bandwidth, you can expect to pay more for the services of an unreliable host. If you can, look for a host with a package that offers a sizeable, but not too good to be true, bandwidth size.
A standard site with no videos, music, and animations will not require more than 20 MB of space in any computer. However, since you will be publishing a multimedia product with videos, animations, and other interactive tools, you need to look for a web hosting package that offers enough disk space for it.
As with bandwidth, avoid hosting services that offer unlimited disk space because no such thing technically exists. At best, what you can get is a sizeable disk space which allows you to accommodate for the size of an entire online course and have enough room for improvements and expansions.
Once your site goes up, it will stay in the Internet 24/7 all year round. With that in mind, you need the help of a host that can make sure that your courses are responsive for equally the same measure of time. You have to understand that things can go wrong at any second your site is up and many of these problems are beyond your ability to fix. A good web host, on the other hand, will have enough time to address your site’s problems as soon as they pop up. Aside from the speed of their response, you will also have to make sure that the technical support team of the site host is competent as well.
The Control Panel
Online host platforms allow you control over the way your site is managed. The best web hosts keep their control panels simple, minimal, yet effective. They should offer at least the basic controls like password management and email management but also sport a layout that even the uninitiated site administrator can easily understand and manipulate. In most cases, the best that you should look for is a panel that is not a hassle to use, let alone access.
Lastly, you need to look for a web host that offers more than what other hosts can offer. Extra features like mail forwarder and autoresponders might seem to be ineffectual but they will actually assist you in several ways the more courses you add in the future.
Extra services are not exactly a requirement when looking for the best hosting for online courses but they do tell you that your offerings can be enhanced and your operations improved in more ways than one if provided by the host.