August 23, 2019, South Sudan NEWS PORTAL
(JUBA) – We have chosen to review five indigenous web hosting and design companies, with a local presence in the country. They have been chosen because they have publicised their services on their own websites, and have local physical addresses and telephone numbers, which implies they are readily and easily accessible.
Owning and running a website is no longer a preserve of multinational corporations and relief agencies in the country.
Since independence in 2011, a growing number of South Sudanese enterprises are choosing to setup websites for their organizations.
Hotels, tour operators, non-governmental organizations, banks, insurance companies, schools, hospitals, consultancy firms, money transfer companies, forex bureaus, churches and even private individuals have set up websites to represent their business on the internet.
A website provides the ability to provide information to anyone in the world, as long as they are connected to the internet. In addition, communication and commercial transactions can be performed on more advanced websites.
To create a website, you will need three things;
A website address (also known as a domain name) which defines your business name on the internet. An example of a website name would be NilePet.com. All website addresses have an extension, the most common ones being .com .org .net .biz intended for use by commercial companies, organizations, internet and telecom companies and business centred enterprises respectively.
A Web hosting service provider i.e. a company you pay to publish your website files online for a specific period ranging from one to twelve months or more. A website hosting service provider provides the space to store your files online to be accessed when your website address is visited by an internet user.
Lastly, you will need to hire a professional website designer to create your company website using the specifications and content you provide. Depending on your agreement, the website updates and maintenance may be done by the website designer or by someone within your own organization.
There are millions of professional website experts all over the world, and probably some thousands in South Sudan. How do you select the best consultant to undertake your project?
We have chosen to review five indigenous web hosting and design companies, with a local presence in the country. They have been chosen because they have publicised their services on their own websites, and have local physical addresses and telephone numbers, which implies they are readily and easily accessible.
While searching for website hosting companies in the country, design firms from neighbouring countries like Uganda and Kenya infiltrate and dilute the results. We have sieved out such companies from our list.
Therefore, in no particular order, the following five web hosting companies appear to be very transparent in presenting their credentials as the top five leading website hosting and design companies in the country:
South Sudan Web (https://www.southsudanweb.com )
Information retrieved from the domain registry shows South Sudan Web was established on June 10 2019, meaning the company has been in the web hosting business for just over two months at the time of writing. It is possible that the owners of the firm operated without a website during their “more than 10 years of experience”.
The website services listed on South Sudan Web include domain names, web hosting and website design.
South Sudan Web displays prices in the local currency of the country, making it straight forward and easy to calculate costs of the three basic requirements for setting up your personal or corporate website, namely a domain name, a website hosting package and web design.
Domains name costs at South Sudan Web range anywhere from SSP 1,260 for a .com or .org domain extension to SSP 3,000 for a .co domain suffix. This price is applicable for one year of registration.
Website hosting at South Sudan Web starts at SSP 2,100 for a Linux shared hosting package, which should run most websites with a low visitor traffic. It is not clear whether this price is for a monthly or an annual purchase. We have sent an email for clarification from the company owners.
There is no phone number listed on the contact section of the website, which implies the only means of contact is by email support. No physical address is given either. Since the company name includes South Sudan in it, we’ll assume it is local company probably operating out of Juba.
Junubia Host (https://www.junubia.host )
By choosing a custom domain extension of “host” as its suffix, Junubia demonstrates its commitment to the web hosting niche in the country, which is why it is included on our list of the top five web hosting companies in South Sudan. Publicly available information shows the company website was registered back in March 2015. This lends credibility in the form of longer experience in the web hosting business than say, the previous entry at number one.
The main services at Junubia Host are Domain name registrations and web hosting. Web design is not mentioned anywhere on their site.
Junubia Host domain name prices are displayed in US Dollars, with the cheapest domain going for $12.99 (.com .net .org .info .biz) which is about SSP 1692. This price is applicable for one year’s registration.
Web hosting packages start anywhere from $3.99 (SSP 520) per month for a web hosting storage space of 10 GB to $19.9 (SSP 2,592) for cloud hosting. The former starter package at $3.99 would be sufficient for most companies in South Sudan as they receive low visitor traffic (less than 1,000 visits a day).
Inquiries and support are handled through email communication with the company owners. No physical address or phone number is provided on the company website.
IPTEC Limited (https://www.iptecltd.com )
First registered back in September 2011, IPTEC is one of the leading Internet Service Providers (ISP) and one-stop Information & Communication Technology (ICT) solution provider in South Sudan. According the company website, it offers Wireless Internet, Satellite Internet and intranet (data) services on hand in all the states of South Sudan, and has served big clients such as UN agencies, foreign embassies, international NGOs, oil & gas companies, banks, multi-national corporations, government institutions, hotels, small & medium enterprises (SME) companies throughout the country. The company appears to have its origins in Bangladesh.
We have included IPTec in our list of the top five indigenous website hosting companies in South Sudan because they offer website solutions in their service catalogue. Although no prices are given, as is the case with Junubia Host or South Sudan Web above, the company provides both physical address and a local telephone contact (two in fact) to contact them, in addition to their publicly displayed email address. In terms of transparency therefore, they are highly recommended.
IPTEC Limited offers these services;
- Website Design
- Shopping & E-Commerce Integration
- Web Application Design
- Social Media Strategy
- Search Optimization (SEO)
- Front and Backend Web Development
- Brand Positioning
- iOS (iPhone & iPad) Development
- Information Architecture
- Android Development
- Digital Strategy
- API Integrations
Presumably these services go with related solutions like domain name registration and web hosting, though no prices are displayed on their website. IPTEC is located on Juba Na Bari Road in Juba City.
Sudd Hosting (https://www.suddhosting.com )
Founded in December 2018, according to information publicly available at the domain registry , Sudd Hosting has been in the web hosting business in the country for approximately 8 months at the time of writing. The company website provides a local phone number to contact them, as well as an email address and chat box prominently displayed. However, there is no physical address listed anywhere.
At $22 per year for web hosting (SSP 2,865) Sudd Hosting is arguably the cheapest web hosting company in the country. Domain rates at Sudd Hosting are provided in the table reproduced below:
Website design prices are not listed, presumably because every website design project has specifications and factors that determine the rate charged by the web designer or developer.
Al Afdal Web Solutions (https://web.southsudan.biz )
Al Afdal Web Solutions is an indigenous web services firm operated by the creator of South Sudan NEWS PORTAL. First established in August 2017, the company provides domain name registrations, website hosting, website design and information system development (website applications).
SSP 1,953 is the standard annual rate for domain name registration for the .com .net .org .net .biz extensions.
The cheapest website hosting package goes for SSP 11,000 per year, while website design packages start at SSP 13,000 for simple company websites. A large portfolio of past website design projects is provided alongside a local phone number, physical address and email address.
Editor’s Note: Take advantage of the website design offer for first time customers of Al Afdal Web Solutions and get a full designed professional business website at a special introductory rate of SSP 6,500. This offer includes a domain and web hosting valid for one year.
South Sudan NEWS PORTAL is a Juba based hyper local media firm.