How do you know if an evaluation is trustworthy? There are many web hosting companies competing for business. They run television and radio commercials, take out ads at sporting events and even rent billboards in major cities. With all of the ads floating around, it can be difficult to figure out which company might be right for your hosting needs. If you want to find a web host, you need to start looking at web hosting reviews. Unfortunately, not all of these reviews are trustworthy. Some only exist to sell you on a service, while others stir up controversy for page views. If you want to find a good site, you need to figure out how to trust the reviews that you read. Who Wrote It? One of the best ways to tell if web hosting reviews are trustworthy is to figure out who wrote the evaluation. Is the review hosted on the host’s own site? If so, it is probably biased. Likewise, biased reviews can easily be placed online by affiliates of the web host in an attempt to sell more contracts. Make sure that you can trace any relationship between the person who writes the review and the company that is being promoted. If you find a relationship, you might want to look elsewhere for unbiased information. Stick to independent reviews if you can. Where is It? A corollary to the first point, the location of the web hosting reviews are also important. Check out the reputation of a given a site before you trust its reviews. Is it known to be paid by a host? If so, the reviews are biased. Is the site known only for its negative reviews? Likewise, a bias exists. You want to look for reviews that have no stake in whether an individual works with a particular host. The more unbiased the site, the better your chance to get the information that you actually need. Positives and Negatives Does the text of the review sound like ad copy? Is everything in that review positive? If so, it’s not useful to you as a consumer. Even if the review is sponsored by a host, it’s important that it mentions both the positive and negative aspects of the hosting company. Good reviews will certainly celebrate any successes of the host, but they will also be careful to note the failures of the service. There’s no such thing as a perfect host, so make it your job to find out everything that you can about the service’s failings before you sign up. Real Data Good reviews will always list real, relevant data. The inclusion of independent third-party data is generally indicative of an unbiased review. You don’t want to know that a given host is inexpensive — you want to know how much it costs per month. You don’t want to know that customer service is good — you want to know when it is available and what it costs for support. Your goal isn’t just to understand the qualities of the host, but to have the information necessary to make informed choices about your potential online future. If a review has real data, it is more useful for a potential buyer. Finding good web hosting reviews doesn’t have to be hard. Make sure to look for real data, positive and negative information, and to make sure that you can trust both the website on which the review is posted as well as the review’s author. If you can trust the company’s website and find the necessary information, it shouldn’t be terribly difficult for you to find a host that will fit your needs.