WordPress is the fastest way to create a website, but before you start working with its templates and plugins, you need to choose the right host for your website. There are hundreds of companies offering services that may all seem similar at first glance. But their features are not the same and there are key factors to consider when deciding which WordPress hosting is best for your website.
In this article, we’ll show you how to choose the service that’s best for your website, and we’ll also review their best features.
Checklist for hosting services
When looking for the best hosting service for your website, there are a few things you should prioritize (listed below). Because if any web hosting company has these features, it means that it will be a good choice.
PHP version 7 and above
- MySQL version 6.5 and above
- HTTPS support
- Pre-installed WordPress or one-click installation
- Internal cache memory
- Guaranteed to keep the site up
- Support by email, chat or phone
The first three items on the list may seem a bit unfamiliar to you unless you are a developer or have already purchased hosting. Hosting companies use servers (which are like supercomputers) to provide their hosting services. These servers should be running the latest version of WordPress without issue, which according to WordPress.org is currently at least PHP 7.2 and MySQL 5.6.
WordPress also recommends HTTPS, and we consider that as well. A good hosting company will either sell SSL certificates or let you use a free third-party service like Let’s Encrypt to ensure that users can access your website securely.
We highly recommend choosing a host that is either fully managed (meaning WordPress is already installed and maintained for you) or offers easy one-click installation. Although you can also manually install WordPress on the host, we only recommend this if you are an experienced developer.
Finally, good hosting companies should offer uptime guarantees and strong support. It means to assure you that your website will be up and running 99.9% of the time and updates will be done in a fraction of the time. Support is also really necessary, because if you encounter a problem, there is someone who can guide you in the moment. Good hosting companies have several easy ways to get you in touch with a support technician.
Types of WordPress hosting
Companies usually offer many plans with different names for hosting services, but here is a summary of the most common types of services.
This type of hosting is the most common and cost-effective option that combines multiple accounts on one server. This means that you share resources such as bandwidth and memory with other users. Such a service is great for newbie bloggers, as they won’t need a lot of resources when starting out and can upgrade the hosting later.
Cloud hosting offers users individual virtual servers that are hosted on the Cloud (this includes a network of servers around the world). The advantage of cloud hosting (in theory) is that your website never goes down, as servers in different parts of the world are up and running at any moment. Cloud hosting is also known for its high scalability, as it is very easy to add more resources when needed.
We recommend this option for techies who want to manage their server settings themselves. However, there are companies that offer managed cloud hosting, which makes it a good option for newbie bloggers. Since it’s also scalable, it can be a great option for social networking, image sharing, or content creation websites with high fluctuating traffic.
VPS stands for Virtual Private Server. That is, the hosting company uses software to digitally partition a physical server into several private virtual servers. It is a more cost-effective alternative to having a dedicated server, although it requires advanced technical skills to operate as you control the virtual server settings yourself.
For blogs or medium-sized businesses, VPS is a great option. Just remember that you have to manually install WordPress on your server and manage all the settings yourself. For this reason, we recommend that you take the time to learn these things or hire an expert.
Host with Dedicated server
These types of hosting provide you with an independent server that you can rent from a hosting company. In this way, they maintain the physical server for you, but you are responsible for managing all the settings and software. Although it costs more, but in return you will have full control and you can use 100% of server resources. This feature makes it the best choice for large businesses.
As with VPS, we recommend that you hire a professional to manage your server or spend time learning the various settings, software, and programming languages to keep your server running properly. For this reason, it is not a suitable option for beginners.
Managed WordPress hosting is the easiest (and in our opinion, the best) way to host a WordPress website. Because with managed hosting, the hosting company fully optimizes the server for WordPress and manages all updates and settings.
Most managed hosting is based on a shared or cloud platform, which makes it suitable for bloggers, small businesses, product presentations and online portfolios. Also, good hosting companies offer fully managed dedicated features for large websites and companies.
Which Host to choose?
First, determine the purpose of your website. For example, a blog has very different needs compared to an e-commerce store. Blogs, personal portfolios or small professional websites are usually lightweight and have less need for large hosts. On the other hand, e-commerce and social networks require a lot of resources and therefore require a larger and more expensive hosting service.
Also consider your content. A one-page site works well on small, shared hosts. But a business website with hundreds of pages and a network for private employees will probably do best with a dedicated server.
Additionally, traffic plays an important role in your hosting needs. A new website takes some time to attract an audience and increase traffic. Unless you already have a large social media presence, in which case you can safely start your service at the lowest level and scale it up as your website grows.
Comparison of the top WordPress hosting companies
Although most hosting companies offer similar features, no two companies are exactly alike. Each host has its own service and all of the companies we recommend are great for WordPress. Stay with us to get to know the best options for choosing a WordPress host and know which one is right for your needs.
Bluehost: Affordable shared hosting
Bluehost is one of the biggest hosting providers that offers affordable plans with plenty of resources, good support and some other extra perks. Features like free domain name, free SSL, free email accounts and bonus marketing offers.
Cloudways: Easy-to-use cloud hosting
Cloud hosting is a flexible way to host your website, but for some users, manually installing WordPress on AWS, Digital Ocean, or Azure is beyond their technical capabilities. This is where Cloudways comes into play. The service supports AWS, Google Cloud, Digital Ocean, Linode and Vultr cloud hosting platforms. Just choose the one that suits you, put the CMS settings on WordPress and let Cloudways handle the configuration process for you.
The best advantage of Cloudways is its ease of use. Building and maintaining your own cloud server can be time-consuming, but with the Cloudways interface you’ll have dedicated resources (CPU, RAM, IP, storage) at your disposal. Its features include one-click WordPress installation, site simulation, backup, scalability (RAM and storage), multiple databases, and thousands of great plugins (email, console, monitoring, etc.).
Media Temple: Shared and managed hosting with VPS
Media Temple is a well-known hosting company that offers a wide range of hosting services and is sure to meet the needs of any website.
Services like shared hosting for bloggers, managed WordPress hosting for content creators, VPS for professionals, and even dedicated services for businesses that need additional resources. All Media Temple apps are optimized and work great with WordPress. In addition, they have additional features such as SSD storage, scalable resources, malware scanning, email addresses, high-quality hardware, and most importantly, 24-hour support.
Kinsta: Managed cloud hosting
Kinsta is not just your average hosting company. They offer fully managed and optimized Google cloud services, so you as a customer enjoy all the benefits of the cloud (fast and secure hosting, virtually no downtime) configured to fully support WordPress.
Kinsta also has experts ready to help you with any issues related to running WordPress on cloud servers. Questions about using the Kinsta Dashboard? Need advice on scaling your hosting plan? Don’t know how to increase your memory limit? Just ask them. Other features include free SSL, free CDN, daily backups, and even free service switching.
WP Engine: Excellent managed hosting
When it comes to choosing the best WordPress hosting, WP Engine comes highly recommended. They only offer managed hosting services and are great at what they do. So that their entire hosting platform is based on Line Tech, that is, they have created an optimized environment for WordPress that is customized by design and coding rules.
In this way, their servers can evaluate browser requests, balance the server load, and integrate cache memory to scale the requested resources. Basically all this means is that your website can run at peak performance without having to manage anything server related. WP Engine also offers 24/7 professional support with WordPress experts. So even if you need help during the holidays, they are available. Other features include free SSL, multi-site WordPress support, PHP7 support, and even a built-in CDN (for professional plans).
Frequently Asked Questions
When researching hosting, there are many questions that may be asked. Here are some very common ones. We hope this helps you make the right decision when choosing the best WordPress hosting for your website.
Does WordPress itself have a host?
WordPress offers its own VIP hosting but it is very expensive and we only recommend it to businesses that need a custom option (for example if you want to have an online blogging platform, a WordPress based social network or a photo sharing site ).
How to host your WordPress blog?
To host your blog, you need a monthly or yearly service from a reputable hosting company. There are hundreds of them, but in most cases they offer similar services such as shared, cloud, VPS, dedicated or managed hosting.
Is there free hosting for WordPress?
There are websites that claim to offer free hosting, but they usually have few resources, do not guarantee support and maintenance, and cannot be trusted to share personal information.