The Basics of a Service Level Agreement

When it comes to picking your new web host, one of the most important factors that you need to consider is the service-level agreement that they have. It should define a number of the responsibilities that your web host should provide to you as the client.

What is a SLA?

A service-level agreement defines what your web host is responsible for providing you with. This can include the level of service you have, how much bandwidth you’re allowed to use, how much storage space your host provides, a promised up-time rate and any extra services that your host should provide like routine file backups.

A SLA should therefore outline what is to be expected from your web host. This can help you quickly determine if the prospective web host has the quality of service that you need, and it can give you a route for recourse if the host fails to deliver upon their promises.

What a SLA is Not

The important thing to remember is that not all service-level agreements are legally binding, but it is the intention that they should be. Reputable web hosting companies will generally honor their service-level agreements with no questions asked.

Why is a SLA Something You Need to Pay Careful Attention to?

A service-level agreement should be a comprehensive definition of all the services that a host should provide to you. This includes how your host will deliver the service, plans for overcoming technical difficulties and even how much you should pay for the selected level of service.

This means that you have to pay attention to the service-level agreement of your hosting provider to ensure that you’re getting what you want. This includes ensuring that you have Unix or Windows-based hosting, secured hosting hardware, extra software like ASP.Net functionality and more.

Even when it comes to basic hosting, it’s important to manage your SLA to know what kind of hosting services you should be receiving. If your host is down too often or they begin to try to charge you extra for features included in your SLA, then it should give you a reason to terminate your agreement with that host and a way to protect yourself.