Another important feature to consider in your choice of web host is a control panel. A control panel is the platform from which you will manage all aspects of your website. This feature comes free with every web host and one that does not provide it to its customers must be a bad host.
The control panel will make the administration of your website a breeze. Usually, it has a graphical user interface that especially helps novices to run their websites without asking for too much help from the helpdesk. It also enables them to save time on many jobs that would have required hours or days of exquisite programming from expert software programmers.
The control panel allows the website owner to do many routine tasks including adding of websites, removing old pages, creating new email addresses and updating content. In the absence of a control panel, these tasks would be quite laborious and sometimes almost impossible to undertake accurately.
The web host must offer a control panel as part of its hosting service. The features of the control panel, together with the platform on which it runs must be clearly explained in the services page of the web host. It must be able to explain in detail what each feature of the control panel can do so the customer can see if it falls within their requirements and need.
Every web host must offer a control panel. You will need this feature to administer your website, and at the same time, run essential services for your website. If a web host does not offer this feature, you would have to find another one that does. The reason is quite simple – the control panel ensures that you are able to manage your site and do edits on them in a fraction of time. Many laborious tasks such as assigning emails and installing third party programs such as WordPress are facilitated with a control panel. No site owner can effectively run his website without a control panel. You definitely need a versatile control panel in order to make a successful website.
There are many types of control panels out there, but your choice must reflect the level of sophistication of your website. If you are a beginner, or simply want ease of management, then Cpanel will be an obvious choice. Cpanel enables customers to view their web statistics in a graphic format, installs scripts such as WordPress, oscommerce and bulletin boards, creates new web pages using a graphical html builder and many more easy to do tasks. It is the most widely used control panel on the web and every web host catering to beginners must offer one for free. Another control panel that you may want to consider is PLESK, which is a little more sophiscated and dynamic than Cpanel. Plesk will appeal to advanced users.
Figure 3 below shows a Cpanel, the console from which site owners are able to manage their websites without loading any software onto their desktops.
• Figure 3. cPanel site management interface
You may notice from the icons and text that Cpanel offers much flexibility and speed when it comes to website management.