The best WordPress hosting for 2020 revealed! We rate the top managed, VPS, shared, & cloud web host providers on speed, security, support, & scalability.
Selecting the Best Hosting Matters
No matter how much effort you put into creating your WordPress site, its success will always largely depend on the hosting provider you choose. The problem is that there are literally hundreds of WordPress hosting options out there, so choosing the right hosting for your WordPress website is far from easy.
From shared hosting to VPS hosting to dedicated hosting to cloud hosting — each WordPress hosting provider offers different web hosting technologies, features, performance, security, customer support, and scalability. This article is here to help you make sense of them so you can make the right decision.
We start with the 30 best WordPress hosting companies for 2020, ranked in order based on their speed, security, support, and scalability. From there, we categorize the results into our top picks for shared, VPS, cloud, and managed WordPress hosting categories. You can start with the top 30 WordPress hosting providers as listed below, or use the page menu to jump down to a specific category of hosting that is most relevant to you and your website needs.
Top 30 Best WordPress Hosting Providers Ranked
Relying on our extensive experience with WordPress hosting, as well as the experience of countless other WordPress users, we’ve ranked the top 30 best WordPress hosting providers from best to worst. This comprehensive comparison of the top WordPress hosting services will allow you to make an informed and educated decision as to which web host is worth your money, and which should be avoided.
Bluehost makes WordPress easy, and it’s the perfect option for beginners or small sites. Its huge popularity has a lot to do with its intuitive system, which offers features like 1-click WordPress installation, a powerful domain manager, solid email service, auto-backups, and a proprietary “enhanced cPanel” that makes your website management a breeze.
Bluehost offers fast, easy, and secure WordPress hosting starting at just $2.95/month for the first term and a 30-day money-back guarantee, making it one of the most affordable WordPress hosting services out there. WordPress users can choose from three different WordPress hosting plans: Basic, Plus, and Choice Plus.
The Basic plan is for those who want to host just 1 website, and it includes a free SSL certificate, 50 GB of SSD storage, free domain name for 1 year, up to 5 parked domains, and 25 subdomains. The regular price of the basic plan is $7.99. The Plus plan is far more interesting than the Basic plan because it includes unlimited websites and unmetered SSD storage, as well as several other perks, for $10.99. Finally, the Choice Plus plan adds CodeGuard, which is a service that provides an automatic website backup solution.
SiteGround offers the best in the budget shared WordPress hosting category, including a simple 1-click WordPress installer and free website migrations—all on a fast and reliable platform. Its managed system offers automatic updates for WordPress and easy command line management with WP-CLI. What’s more, all users receive free SSL certificates allowing them to give their visitors the security they deserve without any additional expenses.
Founded in 2004, SiteGround has since then become one of the most respected WordPress hosting companies in the world, employing over 500 people and servicing more than 2 million domains. With data centers in the United States, the Netherlands, UK, and Singapore, SiteGround is able to offer reliable performance in all regions, making it a fantastic choice for hosting websites with a global reach.
SiteGround’s managed WordPress hosting services are officially recommended by WordPress.org because they blend affordability with premium features, including daily backups, staging tool, dev toolkit, and free CDN. The most affordable managed WordPress hosting plan from SiteGround—StartUp—costs $11.95 a month, with a special price of just $3.95 a month. Two other plans are available to customers who would like to host more than 1 website: GrowBig ($19.95 a month) and GoGeek ($34.95 a month).
WPEngine offers stunning speed, powerful security, and best-in-class customer service. It’s hands down the fastest, fully managed WordPress hosting company you will ever come across. Their platform is blazingly fast, simple, and secure. Couple that with world-class Texas-based support, and they’re worth every penny of their premium shared hosting prices.
The most affordable WPEngine plan starts at $35 a month, and it includes 25,000 monthly visits, 10 GB of storage space, 50 GB of monthly bandwidth, 1 website, 24/7 chat support, global CDN, and several other perks. If you would like to host up to 5 sites, you can upgrade to the Growth plan for $115 a month, and there’s also the Scale plan, which costs $290 a month and allows you to host up to 15 sites. Custom plans are also available for large businesses and mission-critical sites.
WPEngine justifies its steep prices by going well beyond the typical managed WordPress experience and offering a proven, reliable architecture that delivers unparalleled speed, scalability, and security. The architecture is designed around four pillars—agility, performance, intelligence, and integrations—and it’s largely the reason why WP Engine scored highest in the area of cloud capabilities in Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Content Management Systems 2018.
What started in 1996 as a project of several undergraduate students is now one of the largest web hosting providers and domain name registrars in the world. It’s estimated that DreamHost hosts several million domains and has close to 400,000 customers. What attracts many to DreamHost are its affordable prices, but that’s not everything this venerable web hosting provider has to offer.
DreamHost received 4 PCMag’s “Editors’ Choice” awards in a row because it makes web hosting simple and because it includes everything WordPress users need to be successful, including award-winning US-based 24/7 expert customer support and custom control panel that removes many headaches commonly associated with hosting management.
It doesn’t matter which type of WordPress hosting you’re interested in—DreamHost has it all. If you want to save as much money as possible, you can pay just $2.59 a month for shared WordPress hosting, with a free domain included. When you outgrow shared hosting, you can upgrade to either managed WordPress hosting or VPS WordPress hosting for $16.95 and $27.50 a month respectively.
Kinsta is a premium WordPress hosting provider that strives to deliver the best WordPress hosting platform in the world. So far, it’s been doing a marvelous job because its popularity has only been increasing since it was founded in 2013. Kinsta’s defining characteristic is its embrace of modern technology to take care of all web hosting needs.
Kinsta has reimagined site management with the MyKinsta control center, displaying a broad range of analytics from website resources right alongside activity logs, DNS settings, billing, and other components of site management. Kinsta’s hosting infrastructure is powered by Google Cloud Platform, and it runs Nginx, PHP 7, LXD software containers, MariaDB and other state-of-the-art technology to deliver content in the blink of an eye.
Since the very beginning, Kinsta has been refusing to participate in hosting price wars, arguing that all it needs to convince customers to choose it is the premium WordPress hosting experience it provides. As you can imagine, providing a premium WordPress hosting experience isn’t exactly cheap, which is why Kinsta’s plan starts at $30 a month.
Flywheel is geared toward designers and creatives. Its WordPress hosting offering is fully managed, and it includes a free migration service to Flywheel’s premium platform. One-click staging, built-in server-level caching, malware monitoring, auto-updates, and auto-backups make Flywheel a standout in the premium shared market. Just like Kinsta, Flywheel is powered by Google Cloud Platform, which is where a good chunk of its scalability and resilience comes from.
Flywheel’s managed WordPress hosting platform makes it incredibly easy to build professional WordPress websites from scratch with its slick set of development tools. Common themes and plugins and bundled together in neat packages called Blueprints, which you can customize based on your needs and preferences to save a lot of time when working on future projects. Thanks to Flywheel’s well-thought-out staging tool, you can go easily test new ideas in a sandbox environment and push them to production with a simple click.
Despite the plethora of attractive features, Flywheel is priced slightly lower than its competitors, starting at $14 a month when billed for the entire year. The only problem with Flywheel’s pricing is the fact that the cheapest multi-site plan costs $92 a month—and that’s with annual billing. Without it, the price jumps up to $100.
HostGator offers a compelling shared WordPress hosting service with the latest cPanel control panel, unmetered disk space and bandwidth, unlimited subdomains, and unlimited MySQL databases with phpMyAdmin access, among other things. HostGator claims to load WordPress sites up to 2.5x faster thanks to its cloud architecture, low-density servers, CDN, and multiple caching layers
It also does a lot to protect sites against hackers and downtime, including automatic full or snapshot backups with one-click restores and one-click scalability to handle traffic spikes and increased capacity requirements. Included with all WordPress hosting plans is a cloud-based security tool called SiteLock, which scans websites looking for malware and vulnerabilities.
HostGator is slightly more complicated than other hosting providers of its kind, namely Bluehost, but that’s only because it offers a bit more power and flexibility under the hood, for a comparable price. The most popular HostGator WordPress cloud hosting plan, the Standard plan, costs $7.95 a month and it includes 2 websites and up to 200,000 monthly visits.
If the quality of customer support you receive matters to you more than anything else, InMotion Hosting may just be the right hosting service for you. Unlike most other hosting companies mentioned in this article, InMotion Hosting offers all customer support channels you could ever dream of, including phone, Skype, and chat. In 2018, InMotion Hosting’s customer support team received more than 25,500 customer compliments because it always treats customers with the respect they deserve.
The good news is that high-quality customer support isn’t the only thing InMotion Hosting has to offer. Because InMotion Hosting invests a lot of money in technology, all of its data centers are Category A, PCI compliant and protected by advanced DDoS mitigation solutions. Customers can either take advantage of free website migration, or they can easily get started on a new website with WordPress pre-installed. With SSD storage and the latest hosting technologies, such as PHP7 and Nginx, included in all plans InMotion Hosting can reliably deliver the speed WordPress sites need to rank high in search engines and serve thousands and thousands of monthly visitors.
The most affordable InMotion Hosting plan is called WP-1000S, and it’s great for small blogs because it includes 1 website, 20,000 monthly visits, 40 GB of SSD storage, WordPress optimized stack, unlimited email accounts, and themes and plugins by BoldGrid for just $7.26 a month for the first term (the regular price is $8.99 a month). On the other end is the WP-6000S plan, which offers the ultimate WordPress performance for $119.28 a month.
Many WordPress users have never heard of A2 Hosting, which is a shame because it promises up to 20x faster web hosting than conventional web hosting companies. A2 Hosting is very dependable because it offers 99.9% uptime commitment, and it backs it up with an anytime money-back guarantee. Hassle-free site migration is available to all A2 Hosting customers, so you can migrate your existing WordPress site in no time and without any issues.
A2 Hosting has two different sets of WordPress hosting plans: shared and managed. The shared plans start at $3.92 a month ($7.99 after the first term), but the two most affordable shared plans don’t include A2 Hosting’s Turbo servers, which are responsible for up to 20x faster page loads compared to standard hosting. Turbo servers are included only in the Turbo plan, which starts at $9.31 a month and costs $18.99 after the first term. The good news is that all managed WordPress hosting plans do include Turbo servers, with the cheapest managed plan (starting at $11.99 a month) not being an exception.
Overall, A2 Hosting is one of those web hosting companies that deserve a lot more attention than they get. The only thing that keeps it from ranking higher is the fact that it’s relatively expensive, especially if you want to take advantage of A2 Hosting’s Turbo servers.
iPage was originally founded in 1998, and it now hosts over 1 million websites and has two independent data centers. Despite what its name might suggest, iPage has nothing to do with Apple. Instead, it’s an Endurance International Group (EIG) brand, which is the same web hosting company that owns Bluehost, HostGator, and 80 other hosting businesses.
What makes iPage different from other hosting businesses owned by EIG is its focus on small business. iPage strives to make it simple for individuals and small businesses to create a professional online presence, offering a wide range of affordable hosting services with premium features, including WordPress hosting, which starts at $3.75 a month and renews at $7.49 a month. The most affordable WordPress hosting plan from iPage comes with a free domain name, unlimited storage, unlimited bandwidth, and several pre-installed themes and plugins.
The biggest problem with iPage is the fact that it has for some reason decided to go with a lesser-known cPanel alternative called vDeck. While vDeck dost provide all the tools you need to manage your website, including tools for domain management, FTP management, email management, and site back up and restore, it’s not nearly as user-friendly as cPanel, and learning its ins and outs doesn’t feel all that rewarding because most other web hosting companies use cPanel.
Some websites are more important than others—that’s how it always was, and that’s how it always will be. If you have a mission-critical WordPress site and are looking for reliable, secure, and hassle-free hosting, Liquid Web has you covered. By marrying exceptional customer support with a broad technology portfolio, this progressive web hosting company with 30,000 customers in over 130 countries and 500 on-site hosting professionals delivers a complete solution for your WordPress websites.
Liquid Web doesn’t believe in overage fees, traffic limits, and metered pageviews, which means that you get to enjoy its performance-obsessed platform without any worries. Liquid Web also doesn’t believe in aggressive upselling of products its customers may or may not need. What Liquid Web does believe in, however, is the use of modern technologies, including PHP 7, SSL, and Nginx, to improve WordPress performance.
If you have just one site to host, all you need is the Personal plan, which costs $29 a month. With annual pre-pay, you can get 2 months for free, so it definitely pays off to pay upfront. Custom enterprise plans for organizations that want to host more than 50 sites start at $289 per month, and there’s really no ceiling that would limit the number of sites an organization can host on Liquid Web’s servers.
GreenGeeks is an eco-friendly provider of WordPress hosting with data centers in Phoenix, Chicago, Toronto, Montreal, and Amsterdam. Whereas many other hosting companies claim to be eco-friendly without having much to show for it, GreenGeeks’s hosting platform has actually been designed to be as energy efficient as it possibly can be. For every amperage GreenGeeks pulls from the grid, the company invests 3x that much in the form of renewable energy, so you can actually reduce your carbon footprint by choosing GreenGeeks as your WordPress hosting provider. We ran an analysis on the best green web hosting companies and GreenGeek’s took our recommended #1 spot.
If you think that it’s not possible for a web hosting company to be both eco-friendly and competitive, think again. With GreenGeeks you get to enjoy the latest speed technology for blazing fast page loads, such as solid-state drives in a RAID-10 storage array, free CDN powered by CloudFlare, in-house caching technology, PHP 7, HTTP/2, MariaDB, and more. All hosting accounts are fully isolated for maximum security and reliability, and pro-active server monitoring allows GreenGeeks to maintain 99.9% uptime.
WordPress hosting starts at just $2.95 a month for the first term, and even the most affordable plan includes unlimited storage space, bandwidth, email accounts, and domains hosted. Just keep in mind that the prices of all GreenGeeks plans increase substantially after the first term, to $9.95 a month in the case of the most affordable plan.
With approximately 18.5 million customers and over 9,000 employees worldwide, GoDaddy is without a doubt one of the largest web hosting companies in the world. It’s also one of the oldest web hosting companies because it was founded in 1997 as Jomax Technologies.
It goes without saying that there’s a lot of merit behind the record-breaking success of GoDaddy. For starters, GoDaddy claims that it can get anyone online for under an hour thanks to its GoCentral website builder. WordPress users can take advantage of 4 different WordPress plans—Basic, Deluxe, Ultimate, and Pro 5+, the cheapest of which starts at $4.99 a month and includes 1 website, 10 GB of storage, up to 25,000 monthly visits, free daily backups with one-click restore, malware scan and prevention powered by Sucuri, built-in signup forms powered by Gravity Forms, and free domain with annual billing.
Unfortunately, the cheapest plan doesn’t include a CDN, and you also don’t get a free SSL certificate, which is a huge bummer in the era of Let’s Encrypt. Another big no-no is GoDaddy’s shady money-back guarantee because it doesn’t really guarantee anything at all. The terms of service clearly state that your purchase becomes non-refundable if a hosting service has already been performed. In other words, once you start using GoDaddy for its intended purpose, you lose your right to request a refund.
Cloudways is revolutionizing how cloud hosting is managed by allowing their users to simply choose a cloud provider, then select a core app (such as WordPress), and launch everything with a few clicks, all from their seamless interface. Targeting agencies, individual developers and small businesses, Cloudways is the perfect entry point into the big league of cloud hosting.
Some of the more noteworthy features of Cloudways hosting are PHP 7, 24/7 expert customer support, managed backups and security, CloudwaysCDN, and advanced caching. CloudWays offers an enterprise-grade WordPress hosting powered by Google Cloud Platform for stability and high performance, but regular customers have to get by with standard managed hosting plans. As long as you’re comfortable deciding how much cloud resources you need to run your WordPress site, you should be able to get started with CloudWays in a relatively short time and always pay only for what you really need.
Because Cloudways is based in Malta, you may encounter some minor communication issues when dealing with its customer support staff. CloudWays has a strong social media presence, and it provides customer support via email and phone.
Formerly Traffic Planet Hosting, WPX Hosting is based in Sofia, Bulgaria. It offers a wide range of WordPress hosting options for small websites and blogs, professional tech users, and advanced power users. WPX Hosting maintains an excellent rating both on Trustpilot and G2, which are popular consumer review websites where real users post unbiased reviews.
All WPX Hosting WordPress plans include free high-speed custom CDN, unlimited site migrations, unlimited SSL certificates, 24/7 customer support , staging tool, email, manual and automatic backups, DDoS protection, malware scanning and removal, PHP 7, HTTPS/2, 99.95% uptime guarantee, 1-clock WordPress installations, and multiple hosting locations for great global availability.
WPX Hosting is unfortunately quite expensive. When paid monthly, the prices of WordPress plans start at $24.99 a month and end at $99.00 a month. Annual pre-pay brings the price of the least expensive WordPress plan down to $20.83, which is still a lot, especially considering that the plan includes only 10 GB of storage and 100 GB of monthly bandwidth. Does it mean that WPX Hosting plans are overpriced? Not really because even the cheapest plan includes 5 websites, but it would be nice to see a truly budget plan for a single website.
Geared toward freelancers, agencies, and enterprise customers, Pressable is a high-quality managed WordPress hosting service that was founded in 2010 by a group of friends from San Antonio, Texas. Their goal was to empower site owners to focus on building their sites instead of dealing with technical issues. Today, Pressable can proudly say that it has achieved its original goal by providing world-class managed WordPress hosting.
Pressable’s managed WordPress hosting includes personalized onboarding, automated migration, server intrusion prevention technology, caching, staging, collaborator access, proactive maintenance, free SSL certificates, CDN, and even WordPress training, among other things. What’s perhaps impressive the most is the fact that Pressable allows new customers to try everything it has to offer for 90 days, 3x as long as most other web hosting companies.
Because Pressable is geared toward freelancers, agencies, and enterprise customers, even the least expensive plan allows you to host up to 10 sites, but this ability comes at a price: $45 a month to be exact. We also don’t like that phone support is included only in the most expensive plan, which costs $225 a month. Those who don’t like the idea of paying so much money for WordPress hosting have to get by with ticket support.
Some WordPress hosting providers do what they can to satisfy the needs of as many WordPress users as possible. The problem with hosting providers that cater to everyone’s needs is the fact that they’re often unable to satisfy the needs of any particular customer perfectly. That’s why Pagely focuses solely on enterprise customers, helping clients such as Disney, eBay, and Visa serve customers around the world.
Pagely’s managed WordPress hosting is built upon Amazon Web Services and managed by seasoned WordPress professionals that know how to apply technology to solve even the most difficult problems. Because of its resilient architecture that takes advantage of load-balanced clusters, Pagely is able to sustain massive traffic spikes without sacrificing performance. VPS and Enterprise WordPress customers get to choose from 13 different Amazon data centers so they can be as close to their customers as possible.
Since you already know that Pagely targets predominantly enterprise customers, it probably won’t surprise you to learn that its plans are very expensive. The cheapest plan you can get is called VBURST-1, and it’s a $200 VPS hosted plan for up to 5 sites. Enterprise plans start at $2,500 a month, but they come with all the bells and whistles a large organization could ever ask for.
Pressidium is a provider of managed WordPress hosting with data centers in North America, Europe, Oceania and Asia Pacific, and 22 strategic edge locations spanning the entire globe. Thanks to its global reach, Pressidium has become the WordPress hosting solution of choice for many Fortune 500 companies, all of which appreciate its load balanced enterprise architecture with high availability.
If you believe that there must be something better than cPanel, you may be right because the Pressidium Portal is one of the most polished user dashboards out there. Its clean and well-organized user interface simplifies traditionally complex and technically demanding web management tasks and lets you take advantage of advanced automation features and built-in intelligence.
It’s somewhat unfortunate that Pressidium doesn’t have a truly budget plan since even the Personal plan, which is the least expensive plan the hosting company offers, allows for up to 3 WordPress installations and costs $42 a month. What’s missing is a $20 plan that includes just 1 WordPress installation and serves as a relatively affordable starting point for small businesses and demanding WordPress users.
Fast Comet is an underappreciated web hosting company with data centers in the United States, Europe, and Asia. There’s a lot to like about Fast Comet, which is why it has received several industry awards in the past and why the number of its loyal customers continues to grow at a rapid rate.
For starters, Fast Comet strives to be as honest with its customers as possible. There are no hidden fees and no additional charges for any service, and all plans renew at the same prices you signed up for. If you’re not happy with Fast Comet, you can request a full refund within 45 days from purchase, and you can cancel your account at any time without being charged an early termination fee. Security is not something you need to worry about with Fast Comet since all sites are protected by a highly optimized web application firewall.
The reason why Fast Comet doesn’t rank higher is simple: the speed it claims to offer somehow doesn’t show in long-term performance benchmarks. On average, Fast Comet isn’t much faster than best shared WordPress hosting services, such as HostGator and Bluehost. But with WordPress hosting starting at just $2.95, it’s very hard to complain.
Hostinger is based in Lithuania, and it was founded in 2004 as Hosting Media. Since then, it has managed to greatly expand its product line and reach nearly 30 million customers around the world. Perhaps the most refreshing thing about Hostinger is the complete absence of the typical empty marketing phrases that you can see on so many other websites of various web hosting companies.
While Hostinger doesn’t include WordPress hosting as a separate product, anyone can easily use it to host a WordPress site in a shared, cloud, or VPS hosting environment. Regardless of which hosting environment you choose, you always get to enjoy complete data redundancy, high availability, multi-tier cache, excellent scalability, and bullet-proof disaster recovery with full and incremental backups for all accounts.
If you pay upfront for 48 months of Hostinger’s most affordable shared hosting plan, you get to enjoy a month of WordPress hosting for just $0.80, which almost sounds too good to be true. Well, it’s sort of is because you don’t get an SSL certificate, daily backups, or Cloudflare protection, which are all sold as paid extracts. It then makes more sense to purchase Hostinger’s most popular hosting plan, which starts at $2.15 a month.
One web hosting company that you won’t find in this article is Namecheap, and that’s because it’s primarily a registrar that provides services on domain name registration. Well, EasyWP is a WordPress hosting service that’s powered by Namecheap’s mature infrastructure and allows its customers to easily use Namecheap domain names. It makes sense to choose a hosting service whose entire product line revolves around WordPress because you’re then more likely to enjoy a hassle-free WordPress experience.
With EasyWP, creating and managing WordPress sites is truly effortless, and you shouldn’t have much trouble getting a brand-new site up and running in a matter of minutes. One-click backups and restores can be performed from a straightforward, easy to use interface, and EasyWP even gives its customers free WhoisGuard privacy protection to keep spammers at bay.
The EasyWP Starter plan costs $3.88 a month, and it’s virtually identical to WPEngine’s budget plan, which would set you back $35 a month. Of course, EasyWP doesn’t exactly offer the same service as WPEngine, but it’s important to realize that WPEngine is overkill for most WordPress users, and you may be one of them.
Pantheon is a high-performance web hosting service that offers the hosting platform and tools businesses need for speed and agility. It hosts nearly 300,000 websites and serves over 10 billion pages every month. Pantheon further claims that its hosting platform has been adopted by 2,500 web agencies, who use it to reduce operational costs, increase developer productivity, and deliver amazing digital experiences.
Thanks to its lightning-fast content delivery network and extensive use of modern web hosting technologies, Pantheon beats both GoDaddy and WPEngine when it comes to the responsiveness of WordPress sites, reliably delivering sub-second page loads from 40+ locations across the globe. Since it’s widely known that 40% of visitors leave websites that take more than 3 seconds to load, choosing a fast WordPress hosting service can be a massive advantage.
As is the case with most business-oriented WordPress hosting services, the record-breaking speed Pantheon promises on its website does come with a steep price tag. If you want to enjoy Pantheon the way it was meant to be enjoyed, you better get ready to pay at least $114 a month, and that’s with annual pre-pay. Yes, there’s a fairly inexpensive starter plan, but it doesn’t even come with an uptime guarantee and page speed optimization.
A subsidiary of the Exabytes Group of Companies, WPWebHost began its journey in 2007, and it now provides web hosting solutions to meet the growing needs of businesses and individuals alike. WPWebHost’s employees proudly call themselves “WordPress Geeks” to express their strong affinity for the popular content management system.
WPWebHost has put together a purpose-built environment with pre-installed WordPress, enabling its customers to set up a WordPress site in less than a minute. The long list of WPWebHost’s features includes Ngnix, HTTP/2, latest PHP7.x, built-in Memcached support, as well as CDN. All websites are protected by free SSL certificates, and professional customer support with nearly 100% customer satisfaction is available around the clock.
With servers located only in Denver and Singapore, WPWebHost doesn’t exactly have the best global coverage, and it shows in web page performance tests. When you test from Singapore, you can expect the first byte to arrive in around 150 ms, but if you test from Europe, the delay will be much longer. Another thing to keep in mind is the high price of WPWebHost’s multi-site hosting plans, which start at $27 a month. The single-site plans, on the other hand, are pleasantly affordable, so at least there’s that.
Every time you stumble upon a provider of web hosting services that has been around for 2 decades, you should pay as much attention to the services it offers as you can because there’s a good chance that the provider is doing something right. One such provider of web hosting services, co-founded in 1999 by two highly ambitious and talented high-school students, is InterServer.
InterServer has been around since 1999, and it now operates two data centers located in New Jersey and one in California. Since the very beginning, InterServer has been committed to providing superior service to everyone from individual freelancers to Fortune 500 companies. Today, the web hosting company boasts a broad range of hosting services, including shared web hosting with one-click WordPress installation and highly optimized WordPress VPS hosting that takes just 20 minutes to set up from the ground up.
What’s surprising is that InterServer doesn’t let its customers choose from several different plans when it comes to its shared hosting. Instead, there’s just one plan, which costs $5 a month when billed on a monthly basis, $4.50 a month when billed annually, and $4 a month when billed every three years.
If you live in the United Kingdom or serve the people who live there, TSOHost is an excellent choice for all your WordPress hosting needs. This UK-based company was founded in 2003 by the Paragon Internet Group, and it now has over 250,000 customers and more than 3,000 raving reviews on Trustpilot.
TSOHost’s WordPress hosting is fully managed, and it starts at just £2.92 a month. The most affordable WordPress hosting plan on offer includes 3 sites, free domain names, 100,000 monthly page views, 15 GB of storage space, unlimited bandwidth, up to 100 mailboxes with 200 MB of email storage space, Let’s Encrypt SSL support, and 1 basic migration. If you’re willing to pay £6.59 a month for the Business plan, you can also get a free SSL certificate.
A UK-based web hosting company like TSOHost can be a boon to individuals and companies with websites intended predominantly for the UK market. But if your site is intended for the US or international market, you will probably experience slower speeds and potentially also more issues with availability.
It might surprise you to learn that 1&1 IONOS is the largest web hosting company in Europe, managing in excess of 8 million customer contracts and hosting over 12 million domains. The company actually dates back to 1988, which is a millennium ago in internet years. It now has 40,000 servers in Kansas alone, which should help you understand just how large it really is.
The main problem with large web hosting companies is that they often try to please too many customers at the same time. 1&1 IONOS has this problem as well, and its landing page alone mentions web hosting, domains, online store builder, website builder, email, WordPress hosting, IONOS cloud, enterprise cloud, cloud hosting, dedicated hosting, dedicated server, and vServer. The good news is that once you zero in on WordPress hosting, things become much clearer.
WordPress hosting from 1&1 IONOS makes it possible for anyone to start a website or blog quickly and benefit from a platform that has been optimized to meet the needs of small and medium-sized businesses. All three plans—Essential, Business, and Pro—seemingly cost just $1 a month, but don’t let this questionably marketing tactic fool you—they actually renew at $9 a month, $11 a month, and $15 a month respectively.
Hostwinds was founded in 2010, promising to treat each and every one of its customers as if they were family. Because its seasoned team has been able to keep the promise Hostwinds has been awarded by Inc, PCMag, FindMyHost.com, and many other publications for its excellence. It maintains a flawless rating on SiteJabber, YellowPages, and WHTop, just to give a few examples.
Hostwinds offers everything from shared hosting to cloud hosting to VPS hosting and dedicated hosting, and it presents many compelling reasons why WordPress users should choose it over a more mainstream web hosting provider. To start with, Hostwinds gives its customers a fantastic 60-day money-back guarantee. If you find out that it doesn’t live up to your expectations, you can simply ask for a full refund, and Hostwinds will happily oblige. You also get a 99.999% uptime guarantee, which is unheard of at the price point of Hostwinds.
The most affordable WordPress hosting option from Hostwinds is shared hosting, which starts at just $3.29 a month. A Linux VPS will set you back $4.49 a month, and a dedicated server can be yours from $67.50 a month. It’s a shame that Hostwinds doesn’t make its services more accessible to beginners because there’s a lot they can offer.
Media Temple is owned by GoDaddy, but it operates as an independent website hosting and cloud hosting provider. Why? Because it has always been in the business of selling premium web hosting and cloud services, which now power more than 1.5 million websites in 100 different countries.
Media Temple has U.S.-based support teams that are available 24/7/365 by chat, Twitter, phone, or support request. Its hosting solutions span everything from shared hosting to dedicated hosting, and there’s also a cloud hosting option powered by AWS.
Because Media Temple is in the business of providing premium hosting services, its prices are much higher than the prices of its parent company, GoDaddy. For example, the basic shared web hosting plan, called Personal, costs $20 a month. However, it includes 100 websites, 20 GB of SSD storage space, 100 databases, and 1 TB of monthly bandwidth.
The web hosting landscape evolves at a rapid pace, with new technologies replacing old ones and customers expecting only the best. Some web hosting companies have the resources and ability to keep up with the relentless pace of technological progress, while others don’t. Unfortunately, FatCow is in the latter category.
FatCow was established in 1998, providing web hosting services for small to medium-sized businesses. It’s now owned and operated by EIG, which also owns iPage, BlueHost, JustHost, Hostgator, and more than 80 other web hosting companies, many of which are far more successful than FatCow can ever hope to be at this point.
The biggest problem we have with FatCow is that it’s extremely slow. Page load times of more than 1,000 ms are common, which is especially bad news in the mobile era. FatCow also doesn’t have exactly great uptime, so recommending to businesses that depend on their online presence isn’t really an option. You should also get ready to encounter a whole host of upsells, which come across as off-putting.
If it wasn’t for its fantastic free website builder, this Dutch-based web hosting company probably wouldn’t make it on our list because it clearly focuses on Dutch customers and is not even completely translated into English. But because the SoHosted website builder makes it so easy to create a professional website from scratch using nearly 200 free templates, we’ve decided to include it anyway.
To our surprise, SoHosted turned out to be a remarkably great WordPress hosting option, offering one-click WordPress installation, optimal server configuration, excellent customer service, and Plesk, a user-friendly control panel that has been designed with WordPress in mind. All this and much more is available from just €3.95 a month. Managed WordPress VPS hosting by SoHosted starts at €64.95 a month, which is a lot more than what we’re used to.
All in all, SoHosted is an easy choice for Dutch-based WordPress users and those who would like to use its fantastic website builder to put together a full-fledged website in a very short time. Just be ready to encounter a lot of Dutch when using it or dealing with its customer support staff.
Primary WordPress Web Host Ranking Factors
Many experts say that choosing a web hosting service boils down to the 3 Ss: speed, security, and support. What they sometimes forget is the fact that scalability is critically important as well.
It doesn’t matter if you’re a solo entrepreneur or an ambitious startup, the chances are that your main goal is to grow and become wildly successful. Naturally, your web hosting needs won’t be the same at the beginning of your journey and at its peak. As such, you should always choose a web hosting service that allows you to grow without any limits because that’s the only way how you can maintain the agility required to stay ahead of your competition.
When it comes to WordPress hosting in particular, it’s always a good idea to choose a web hosting service that has been built from the ground up with WordPress in mind. Since WordPress runs over 30% of the entire internet, all best hosting providers now offer WordPress-specific plans, which often include free premium themes and plugins, effortless WordPress site migration, and many other useful perks and bonuses.
The speed of your web host is essential in today’s fast paced, web-driven world. Selecting the fastest web hosting provider is critical to the success of your website, as speed is the gold standard in everything from search engine rankings to visitor retention and conversion metrics. Having a fast website matters!
In addition to the four main web host ranking factors we’ve mentioned so far—speed, security, support, and scalability—you should also pay attention to the price of web hosting. However, we don’t include price as a ranking factor because cheaper isn’t always better. As with so many other things in life, you really get what you pay for when it comes to WordPress hosting. Expecting good WordPress hosting while doing everything possible to pay as little money as you can is a recipe for disaster.
It may sound counterintuitive, but you can often save more money in the long run by paying extra for one of the best WordPress hosting services. If you spend just a few more dollars each month, you typically get premium customer support, automatic daily backups, first-class web security, and many other perks and bonuses that can go a very long way in keeping your WordPress website running smoothly.
Here are some interesting statistics to consider when selecting a WordPress hosting company:
- Speed: 47% of consumers expect a web page to load in 2 seconds or less.
- Security: Successful cyber-attacks are up 144% over the past four years period.
- Support: 24/7 support is essential because issues don’t just happen from 9-5.
- Scalability: There are 191.1 million online buyers in the United States alone.
These four metrics are essential to the success of your website, therefore becoming the primary ranking factors as we analyze who is the best WordPress hosting provider.
Best WordPress Shared Hosting
In a shared hosting environment, multiple websites utilize a single server and share its resources. Even though the websites live on the same server, they are actually not aware of one another. In fact, shared hosting servers sometimes host hundreds of websites, with each website having access to its own databases, disk space, monthly traffic, email accounts, and so on.
When multiple websites share the resources of a single server, the web hosting provider can keep the costs very low, but there are also certain downsides of shared hosting that you should keep in mind. First and foremost, shared web servers get hacked more frequently than dedicated servers because one vulnerable website may compromise the entire server.
Performance is sometimes also an issue since each and every website in a shared hosting environment utilizes the same limited resources. Of course, the providers of shared hosting services do what they can to ensure that each website gets a fair percentage of everything—from RAM to CPU—but the fact remains that shared web servers sometimes get overwhelmed by requests, which is when problems with availability may creep in.
One last downside of shared hosting that you should be aware of has to do with its flexibility. In a shared hosting environment, users seldom have permission to install any software they wish and change the configuration of the server to fit their needs. If you can find a shared WordPress hosting service fits your needs perfectly, the chances are that you won’t even miss the ability to install software and play with the configuration of the server, but the question is: for how long?
Even though shared hosting has certain disadvantages, the advantages still manage to outnumber them by a large margin. We’ve already mentioned that shared hosting allows web hosting providers to keep the costs low, but we have yet to say just how low. You can get good WordPress shared hosting for anywhere between $1 and $10 a month, which is really as good as it gets.
What you may also like about shared hosting is its hassle-free nature. With the web hosting provider taking care of all server management and administration tasks, you can focus entirely on accomplishing your goals, instead of wasting hours every week on server management and administration.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (4.5/5)
- Website: bluehost.com
Bluehost is the king of shared WordPress hosting because it offers a fantastic value at an irresistible price. The company was founded in 2003, and it now hosts more than 2 million domains and operates a gigantic 50,000 sq. ft. facility in Utah.
The most affordable shared WordPress hosting plan Bluehost has on offer, called Basic, starts at $2.95 a renews at $7.99 a month. The Basic plan includes one website, 50 GB of storage space, unmetered bandwidth, free SSL certificate, and free email with up to 5 individual email accounts. We also like Bluehost’s most expensive shared WordPress hosting plan, called Choice Plus, because it includes CodeGuard Basic Backup, a service that monitors your site and keeps you informed of any changes while offering a number of backups and restore options.
Thanks to its mature infrastructure, Bluehost is able to guarantee fast page load times, rarely exceeding 500 ms. The situation was quite different just a few years ago, but Bluehost listened to its customers, and it’s now one of the fastest providers of shared WordPress hosting out there.
Like all large web hosting companies, Bluehost is often the target of hackers, which is why it can’t afford to neglect its cybersecurity defenses. All new customers receive a free SSL certificate, and those who purchase the Choice Plus shared WordPress hosting plan can rest assured knowing their data is securely backed up at all times.
There are many WordPress users who religiously avoid large web hosting companies because they are convinced that such companies never provide satisfactory customer support. Well, we’re more than happy to say that’s not the case with Bluehost—at all. You can reach the company by phone, chat, or email, and the customer support staff is always friendly and helpful.
Just because you start your online journey with a shared WordPress hosting plan from Bluehost doesn’t mean that you have to stick with it forever. Apart from shared hosting, Bluehost also offers VPS hosting and dedicated hosting plans. One could argue that it’s better to choose a web hosting company that specializes in VPS or dedicated hosting instead of one that focuses mainly on shared hosting, but that’s something only you can decide.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (4.5/5)
- Website: siteground.com
SiteGround is a great example of a tech success story: the company began in a dorm room and now, just over a decade later, is one of the best shared hosting providers out there, hosting more than 500,000 domains worldwide and growing at a rapid pace.
From reliable web hosting to managed WordPress hosting to high-performance WooCommerce hosting, SiteGround has everything WordPress users could ask for and more. You can get started for just $3.95 a month and move up the hosting ladder only when necessary.
While not as fast as Bluehost, SiteGround is still decidedly above-average when it comes to load times, and it’s also very consistent, with speeds rarely dropping to unacceptable levels. All SiteGround servers use SSDs, Nginx web server technology, and PHP7. With an average uptime of 99.99%, reliability isn’t an issue with SiteGround.
SiteGround does a lot to protect its customers, including running Apache in a chrooted environment with suExec and implementing sophisticated IDS/IPS systems which block malicious bots and attackers. All shared servers have ModSecurity installed on them, and SiteGroud administrators update their security rules on a weekly basis.
While they are based out of Bulgaria, don’t let the offshore headquarters turn you away because SiteGround’s customer support is amazingly responsible, accurate, and friendly. Their staff is always eager to help and has never let me down in the times I’ve needed to call on them. They pride themselves on their support stats—managing over 3,000 chats, 1,500 tickets, and 1,000 phone calls per day with their savvy team of 400 employees.
If you aspire to establish a truly global online presence, you will be pleased to know that SiteGround offers an ultra-scalable cloud hosting platform, allowing you to customize your own plan to fit your unique needs. Just keep in mind that SiteGround’s cloud hosting isn’t exactly cheap.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (3/5)
- Scalability: (4/5)
- Website: dreamhost.com
The chances are that you’ve already heard of this Los Angeles-based web hosting provider and domain name registrar. After all, it has been in business since 1996 and has close to 400,000 customers around the world.
While some choose DreamHost because it offers an excellent website builder, WordPress users choose it because it’s officially recommended by WordPress. DreamHost’s shared WordPress hosting plan features a mind-blowing 97-day money-back guarantee, and it starts at $2.59 a month while including fast SSD storage, free SSL certificate, free domain name, and unlimited traffic, among other things.
With its all-SSD servers, DreamHost is able to process website, caching, and database queries much faster than it ever could with traditional hard drives, and it shows in how breeze all websites hosted on its servers all.
DreamHost has built an in-house malware remover tool that helps it discover and fix malware found on customer websites. All customers can easily get free and open SSL/TLS certificates from Let’s Encrypt, and DreamHost enables domain privacy by default to protect the privacy of its customers.
DreamHost’s customer support is knowledgeable and helpful, but there’s no way how to reach it by phone. That said, you will probably be able to solve most problems yourself because DreamHost has an excellent knowledge base that makes it very easy to fix common issues associated with WordPress hosting.
Called, DreamCompute, DreamHost has its own cloud hosting platform engineered around OpenStack and Ceph. DreamCompute provides excellent speeds, and it gives WordPress users full control of their server, allowing them to accomplish all administrative tasks via command line tools and common programming libraries. DreamHost doesn’t make cloud hosting as accessible as some of the other web hosting companies mentioned in this article, but the service itself is great.
Top VPS for WordPress Hosting
VPS stands for a virtual private server, which is a virtual machine sold as a service by a hosting provider. What is a virtual machine? A virtual machine is an emulation of a computer system. In other words, a virtual machine provides the same functionality as a physical computer, but it involves the use of specialized software that provides an efficient, isolated duplicate of a real computer machine.
VPS hosting provides a nice middle-ground between shared hosting and dedicated hosting. Just like with shared hosting, several VPS hosting users share the resources of a single server. The difference is that virtualization makes it possible to give each VPS hosting user their own dedicated resources and operating system. Even when 10 VPS hosting users on the same server use up all of their resources, the user number 11 won’t be affected in any way.
Because each VPS hosting user has its own isolated virtual machine with a full-fledged operating system, extensive server customization is easily possible, along with the ability to log in as administrator and use scripts. Should something go wrong, there’s nothing easier than to roll back the virtual private server to an earlier configuration or wipe it completely and start from scratch.
As such, VPS WordPress hosting is able to provide a much more reliable, stable, and customizable hosting environment, making it perfect for those who require better availability than shared WordPress hosting can offer at a fraction of the cost of dedicated WordPress hosting.
Are there any downsides to VPS WordPress hosting? A few, but none of them is critically important. We’ve already said that VPS hosting providers occupy the middle-ground between shared hosting and dedicated hosting. This is clearly reflected in their prices. While not nearly as expensive as dedicated hosting, VPS hosting does cost considerably more than shared hosting, which is why it’s so important to carefully decide whether shared hosting isn’t enough.
Compared with shared hosting, it definitely takes more technical skills to manage a virtual private server, but it’s nothing any moderately skilled web administrator wouldn’t be able to deal with. Most good VPS hosting providers offer extensive technical support and are able to take care of many issues for free.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (5/5)
- Website: liquidweb.com/vps
For over 20 years now, LiquidWeb has been serving customers around the world, earning their trust and loyalty with its products, services and support designed specifically for mission-critical sites, stores, and applications. Its main audience are SMBs that need the same speed, security, support, and scalability as large enterprises but without paying enterprise prices
LiquidWeb’s managed VPS hosting fits the bill perfectly, offering gigabit transfer speeds, unlimited sites, dedicated IP addresses, CloudFlare CDN, advanced security, local backups, DDoS protection, root access, and uptime SLAs. A virtual private server with 2 CPUs, 2 GB of RAM, 40 GB of SSD storage space, and 10 TB of monthly bandwidth can be yours for just $59 a month, and it takes just a few clicks to get more resources.
Because LiquidWeb has partnered with CloudFlare CDN, a popular provider of fast, reliable, and highly available global CDN services, it’s able to deliver fast page load speeds, reduce bandwidth usage, and reduce CPU usage on the server. As a result, you can expect even better performance than you would get with AWS, Rackspace, and Digital Ocean.
Included with every LiquidWeb virtual private server is ServerSecure, whose unique architecture allows for fast and efficient security automation. Unwanted access is blocked right at the onset, so you can rest assured knowing that the bad guys won’t be able to access your private data.
LiquidWeb also offers HIPAA compliant hosting from their privately owned highly secure data centers, with the latest Cisco firewalls and managed by their HIPAA certified team. Learn more about LiquidWeb and other top HIPAA compliant hosting solutions here.
No professional web hosting service is complete without professional customer support, and LuquidWeb could be used as an example of how excellent customer support should look like. A live chat pop-up window is available from every page, and it takes just one click to reveal LuquidWeb’s customer support number.
LiquidWeb has made it easy for its customers to scale resources up or down based on their current needs, which means that you never have to pay for more resources than you really need.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (3/5)
- Website: inmotionhosting.com/vps-hosting
InMotion Hosting is known largely for its shared WordPress hosting, but its VPS hosting definitely deserves your attention as well because it starts at just $19.99 for the first term. In addition to the attractive price, you also get a 90-day money-back guarantee, and InMotion Hosting never asks its customers any questions before issuing a full refund.
Relying on high-performance servers and the latest web hosting technologies, InMotion Hosting offers fully managed VPS servers as well as cloud VPS, with the latter being less expensive. Because both options are based on the same infrastructure, they also perform very similarly—which is to say great.
Security is extremely important for InMotion Hosting—just like it is for its customers—and there are a lot of things going on behind the scenes to prevent security incidents, including a custom advanced policy firewall and DDoS protection.
Before InMotion Hosting lets its customer support hires answer customer support questions and phone calls, the hires must complete at least 160 hours of internal training and demonstrate mastery of LAMP stack, email clients, CentOS, and other web-hosting related subjects. Needless to say that it’s always a pleasure to deal with InMotion Hosting’s customer support staff.
InMotion Hosting isn’t the most scalable WordPress VPS hosting service we’ve ever come across, offering just three VPS hosting plans. While it’s possible to purchase additional resources beyond what’s included in the most expensive plan, InMotion Hosting doesn’t exactly make this obvious.
- Speed: (3/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (3/5)
- Website: hostgator.com/vps-hosting
Over the years, HostGator has become a leading provider of shared web hosting, and it’s now starting to be recognized as a capable provider of VPS hosting as well. You may already know that HostGator is owned by EIG, the internet hosting services company behind FatCow, Bluehost, SpeedHost, MyDomain, iPage, and many other web hosting services.
HostGator’s VPS hosting begins at $29.95 a month. The most affordable plan, called Snappy 2000, includes 2 GB of RAM, 2 CPU cores, 120 GB of storage space, and 1.5 TB of monthly bandwidth. There are two other plans available—Snappy 4000 and Snappy 8000—come with 4 and 8 GB of RAM respectively.
Truth be told, HostGator’s VPS hosting isn’t as fast as we would like it to be. It’s fine for the price, but there are other providers of WordPress VPS hosting that outperform it by a considerable margin.
HostGator is protected against DDoS attacks, and it uses a security solution called SiteLock to scan hosted websites and find things that shouldn’t be on them, such as malware and other harmful code. SSL certificates are provided to encrypt the communication between the server and visitors.
The real highlight of HostGator is its customer support, because it’s available non-stop via phone and live chat to assist with any questions. To be honest, our expectations were quite low, but every interaction with HostGator’s customer support staff proved that we had no reason to worry.
Just like InMotion Hosting, HostGator offers only 3 WordPress VPS hosting plans, and even the most expensive plan isn’t exactly beefy. We would like to see more plans being added, including a custom plan.
Best Cloud Host for WordPress
It may seem that all services have moved to the cloud in recent years, and WordPress hosting is no exception. Cloud WordPress hosting services rely on computing resources provided by extensive underlying networks of physical web servers to flexibly deliver resources on an on-demand basis.
With cloud hosting, it’s impossible to point to any particular server and say, “That’s where my website is hosted.” That’s because the underlying network of physical web servers acts as a single large server with virtualized servers running on top, making it possible for cloud hosting users to easily scale the available processing power and storage space based on their needs.
In addition to virtually infinite scalability, cloud WordPress hosting offers fantastic performance because it’s not limited by the resources on any single server. The underlying networks of physical web servers can even be spread across multiple continents, which means that all visitors get to enjoy the same blazing-fast page load times.
Since cloud hosting is all about flexibility, you never have to pay for more resources than you actually need without severely compromising your ability to handle traffic spikes. Not having to pay for unused capacity typically translates into substantial cost-savings.
Because of how it works, it’s impossible for cloud hosting to offer the same degree of control as dedicated hosting. In most cases, this shouldn’t be a problem, but it’s something to keep in mind. What’s arguably a lot more important is the fact that cloud hosting services are seen as juicy targets by cybercriminals. There have been several high-profile Amazon Web Services (AWS)—a popular provider of on-demand cloud computing platforms to individuals, companies, and governments—in the past, and it’s very likely that there will be more in the future.
In summary, cloud WordPress hosting is perfect for all businesses, organizations, and individuals that desire as much agility and scalability as they can possibly get while benefiting from the economies of scale that go with cloud computing in general.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (5/5)
- Website: bluehost.com
It’s surprising how many WordPress users who are otherwise familiar with Bluehost and its services don’t know that the company also offers cloud hosting. That means you can start with Bluehost’s shared WordPress hosting and effortlessly migrate your website to the cloud when you discover that shared hosting is no longer doing it for you.
Three different cloud hosting plans are available: Starter, Performance, and Business. The Starter plan includes 2 CPU cores and 2 GB of RAM for as little as $9.99 a month; the Performance plan includes 4 CPU cores and 4 GB of RAM for $13.99 a month; the Business plan includes 6 CPU cores and 6 GB of RAM for $25.99 a month.
All cloud WordPress hosting plans offered by Bluehost benefit from the high availability of its cloud infrastructure, offering better speeds right out of the gate. More CPU resources and RAM can be added on the fly with a few simple clicks—no reboot required.
Bluehost performs automatic updates to keep all key components of your cloud servers secure, and it has implemented automatic failover to automatically switch its customers to a different server in the case of a hardware failure.
The customers who choose Bluehost’s cloud WordPress hosting get to enjoy the same high-quality customer support as all other customers.
It’s important to see Bluehost’s cloud hosting as a part of much broader continuum of web hosting services, starting with its popular shared web hosting. The fact that Bluehost offers so many services under one roof makes it very easy for WordPress users to get started and scale up or down based on their current needs.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (4/5)
- Website: siteground.com
SiteGround was born from the mind of Tenko Nikolov in 2004, and it now has 400 employees, who process more than 1,500 tickets, 1,000 phone calls, and 3,000 chat requests every day. Over the years, SiteGround has gradually expanded its service portfolio to include cloud hosting, which has become especially popular among WordPress users looking for something better and more scalable than shared or managed web hosting.
Four SiteGround cloud hosting plans are available, ranging from $80 a month to $240 a month. All plans make WordPress users feel like first-class citizens, offering 1-click installer, auto-updates, staging, GIT integration, and SuperCacher, among other things.
SiteGround relies exclusively on lightweight Linux containers with SSDs to deliver the best performance possible. Customers can choose between 4 datacenters, and a free content delivery network is available for better availability.
All customer data is automatically backed up offsite, where it’s kept for 7 consecutive days to guarantee successful recovery. But thanks to SiteGround’s advanced security and automatic updates, it’s very unlikely that you would every need to recover from a backup after being hacked.
SiteGround prides itself in its ability to fill customer support requests in less than 10 minutes, which is something that wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for the fact that it employs some of the most knowledgeable web hosting and WordPress experts around.
We like that SiteGround has 4 pre-made cloud hosting plans available on its website, and we also appreciate that it’s easy to create a custom plan from scratch. What we don’t like, however, is that prices start at $80 a month, and there’s no way how to scale down to pay less than that.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (3/5)
- Website: hostgator.com
At the first sight, you might be led to believe that HostGator has somehow managed to offer cloud WordPress hosting at the price of shared WordPress hosting because its prices start at just $4.95 a month. In reality, things are not so rosy, but that doesn’t mean that HostGator isn’t an excellent provider of cloud WordPress hosting anyway.
What’s really going on is something that has been happening on in the hosting industry for decades: HostGator’s cloud plans renew at higher prices. The most affordable cloud plan, called Cloud Hatchling, costs $4.95 a month for the first term with a 36-month pre-pay, but it renews at $8.95 a month, which is nearly twice as much. The same goes for all other cloud plans, so keep it in mind before finalizing your order.
HostGator is particularly fast in the US region, but it doesn’t do bad regardless of your location thanks to its low-density servers, premium hardware, and multiple caching layers. HostGator claims that its cloud hosting can make websites twice as fast, and we wouldn’t doubt its claim.
Begin a large web hosting company, HostGator invests a lot of money in cybersecurity defenses, and it also does a lot to protect the data of its customers, including automatically switching to another server when hardware issues arise.
Customer support is available 24/7/365 via phone and live chat, and there’s also a comprehensive knowledge base that explains everything from account management to cPanel to cloud hosting and other related topics.
With only three cloud hosting plans to choose from, HostGator doesn’t win any awards when it comes to scalability, but that’s only because the company knows that most of its customers won’t ever need more resources than what’s included in its most expensive cloud hosting plan.
Top Managed WordPress Hosting
You can think of managed hosting as an extension of dedicated hosting, which is when a customer leases an entire server or a group of servers from a provider of dedicated hosting services. With managed hosting, you can have a server all to yourself without actually having to manage it. Instead, you pay a service provider to manage it on your behalf while you reap the numerous benefits associated with managed hosting.
It’s impossible to talk about managed hosting without highlighting the fact that it provides the greatest degree of control of all types of WordPress hosting. As a managed WordPress hosting user, you get to enjoy total control over hardware, software, and security.
Since managed WordPress hosting allows you to get an entire server just for yourself, you can optimize it for your specific performance requirements and adjust them on the fly if needed. Without other users using the same limited pool of resources as you, slowdowns and other performance-related issues that are so common when it comes to shared web hosting are eliminated.
While managed WordPress hosting is definitely the most expensive hosting option described in this article, it beats operating an in-house data center by a large margin. Those who choose managed WordPress hosting can utilize their IT resources much more efficiently and maintain a sharp focus on their core business.
The best managed WordPress hosting services come with a whole host of extra features, including backups and disaster recovery, support for fixing technical issues, server monitoring, physical security, proactive vulnerability assessments, load balancing, and others.
Apart from its higher cost, the only other noteworthy downside of managed WordPress hosting is the lack of flexibility. When you lease an entire server or a group of servers, your flexibility to scale available resources up or down is somewhat limited, especially compared with cloud WordPress hosting. It’s not that managed WordPress hosting is not flexible at all, but it takes some extra work to adapt to changing demands.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (5/5)
- Website: wpengine.com
With over 30,000 customers in 120 countries, WPEngine is quickly emerging as the go-to managed WordPress hosting provider. WPEngine is specifically tailor-made for WordPress websites and apps. Their philosophy is simple: they exclusively host WordPress websites, so they can fully commit their resources and create the best WordPress hosting platform on the market.
Founded in 2010, WPEngine is a privately held WordPress web hosting company, headquartered in Austin, Texas. Their primary datacenters are located in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Japan. The basic plan offered by WPEngine costs $35 a month, and it includes everything you might need for starting a small website or blog.
Being an AWS Advanced Technology Partner and operating servers across the United States, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and in the Asia-Pacific region, WPEngine is able to meet the needs of customers seeking high-performance and flawless availability. On average, WPEngine customers report 27% faster load times.
All sites hosted on WPEngine’s servers benefit from a fully-managed content delivery network and proactive, multi-layered security measures, which include threat detection and blocking, disaster recovery, and a dedicated security engineering team.
WPEngine provides customer support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Live chat, phone number, and email address are all readily available, so you can choose whichever customer support channel you prefer and always get your questions answered by experienced WordPress professionals.
WPEngine’s platform has been created with scalability in mind, and it’s suitable even for large businesses and mission-critical sites. You can call 1-512-273-3906 and get in touch with WPEngine’s sales specialists, who can help you put together a hosting plat that perfectly meets your needs—no matter how exotic they may be.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (4/5)
- Website: kinsta.com
It’s safe to say that Kinsta doesn’t spread itself thin, focusing solely on managed WordPress hosting. Even though the company serves some very prominent clients—such as Ubisoft, GE, Ricoh, and Intuit—its hosting services are accessible to everyone, small or large.
Kinsta plans start at $30 a month, and the sky is really the limit when it comes to what you can get (and what you can expect to pay). But even the most affordable hosting plan comes with automatic daily backups, 24/7 customer support, staging area, PHP 7, free SSL certificates, and other bells and whistles that all WordPress users are guaranteed to appreciate.
Kinsta states that it’s obsessed with speed, which is why it uses only the latest and fastest web hosting technology, including Nginx, LXD containers, MariaDB, and PHP 7, which we’ve already mentioned. Independent tests confirm that Kinsta really does deliver superior speeds compared with most other managed WordPress hosting providers, and there’s no better way how to come to your own conclusion than to try the service yourself.
The modern treat landscape can be incredibly hard to navigate, which is why it pays off to select a managed WordPress provider that takes active and passive measures to stop attacks and malicious intent in its tracks. From DDoS detection and mitigation to uptime monitoring to hardware firewalls, your website is completely safe with Kinsta.
Unlike many other managed WordPress hosting services, Kinsta doesn’t outsource customer support to a third-world country, forcing its customers to deal with customer support staff that doesn’t even speak their language. All members of Kinsta’s customer support team are actual WordPress experts, and they are available around the clock to answer your questions, boasting a solve rate of 100%.
Kinsta is powered by Google Cloud Platform, and it also has 20 global data centers to avoid being dependent entirely on Google. As such, scalability is never an issue, and Kinsta can provide as much resources as you need to keep your WordPress website growing.
- Speed: (5/5)
- Security: (5/5)
- Support: (5/5)
- Scalability: (4/5)
- Website: getflywheel.com
The last in the trio of managed WordPress services is Flywheel, an impressive WordPress hosting built for busy creatives, freelancers, and agencies. The main goal of Flywheel is to remove as many obstacles from creating and managing WordPress sites as possible. To accomplish this goal, the company has created an incredible infrastructure in partnership with Google, and it has put together an equally incredible set of workflow tools.
Unlike WPEngine and Kinsta, Flywheel has a budget web hosting plan that costs just $14 a month and, as such, is the perfect starting point for freelancers who are just starting out. Of course, it also has plans for enterprises and everyone in between.
Flywheel is just as fast as all other WordPress hosting services that leverage Google’s massive server infrastructure to serve customers all around the world. Understanding that page load times are not everything, Flywheel has made it incredibly easy and fast to create a WordPress site from scratch with its slick development tools.
Flywheel recommends its users to avoid WordPress security plugins. Why? Because it takes care of WordPress security at the server level, using intelligent IP blocking, pro-active malware removal, and managed WordPress updates.
Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year through phone, email, and support tickets, Flywheel’s customer support leaves nothing to be desired. Even at odd hours, you can always reach a seasoned WordPress expert without having to wait ages for someone to help you.
We’ve already praised Flywheel for its excellent scalability, and this web hosting company really deserves all the praise receives. However, we feel the need to point out that there’s a steep jump in prices when you move from single-site plans to multi-site plans. To host 2 WordPress sites, be ready to spend $92 a month on the Freelance plan, billed at $1,100 a year.
History of WordPress
Born out of a desire for an elegant, well-architectured content management system (CMS) based on PHP & MySQL, WordPress was first released in 2003, and it has since then become the preferred CMS platform of modern web developers.
Not many people today know that WordPress actually started as a fork of a CMS called b2/cafelog, which was launched in 2001 by Michel Valdrighi. The original b2/cafelog and WordPress have very little in common today because WordPress has evolved considerably since its inception thanks to the effort of the WordPress project, which is led by the core leadership team: WordPress co-founder Matt Mullenweg, five lead developers, and a number of core developers.
Today, the main mission of WordPress is to democratize publishing by providing a simple yet powerful CMS for everyone, emphasizing accessibility, performance, security, and ease of use. It’s clear that the WordPress project is doing something right because WordPress has become the CMS of choice for over 33% of all sites across the web.
Each month, WordPress users make millions of new posts and publish countless new comments. It’s estimated that around 50,000 WordPress.com websites are being launched on a daily basis, and the number doesn’t include self-hosted WordPress installations.
There are many advantages of using WordPress instead of a different CMS, and they include the following:
- Cost: WordPress is a free and open-source content management system that doesn’t cost a single dollar to download and use—even for commercial purposes. Its development is largely funded by WordPress.com, which is a blogging platform that runs on a modified version of WordPress. WordPress.com offers several commercial plans, and it also makes money by displaying advertising on free sites.
- Ease of use: Even users who have never set up a WordPress site before should be able to do so in a matter of minutes—that’s how easy to use WordPress is. From basic website configuration to user management to creating, modifying, deleting, or otherwise managing web content, WordPress makes all aspects of web administration as easy as they can be, which is why so many beginners and experienced users alike have decided to use it as their CMS of choice.
- Updates: WordPress is in very active development, with new features being released on a regular basis and bugs getting patched in record time. The best WordPress hosting services offer automatic WordPress updates, so you can rest assured knowing that your website is always up-to-date even if you barely spend any time on it.
- SEO-readiness: Because all WordPress websites have more or less the same underlying structure, search engines like Google and Bing can easily index them, which is why it’s much easier for WordPress websites to rank high in search engines than it is for websites running custom content management systems. Each page can be additionally fine-tuned for even better SEO performance, and there are countless third-party WordPress SEO plugins readily available on the internet to help WordPress users with search engine optimization.
- Plugins: Speaking of WordPress plugins, there’s no doubt that WordPress has the most plugins of all content management systems. At the time of writing this article, there are well over 55,000 WordPress plugins, and they include everything from comments, e-commerce, analytics, anti-spam, and much more. Installing and managing WordPress plugins is just as easy as installing and managing WordPress itself.
- Themes: In addition to WordPress plugins, users can also choose from thousands and thousands of premium and free WordPress themes. With the right theme, anyone can create a professional, responsive website in a matter of hours and days—not weeks and months. What’s more, WordPress premium themes typically cost around $50, which is basically nothing compared with the cost of custom website design ($5,000 – $10,000+).
- Customizability: Just because WordPress themes make it extremely easy to set up professional websites doesn’t mean that there’s no room for custom web development—quite the opposite. WordPress is highly flexible and very easy to customize, which is why brands like TechCrunch, The New Yorker, BBC, Bloomberg, Variety, Sony, MTV, PlayStation, and others have decided to adopt and adapt it to fit their unique needs.
- Community: The open-source nature of WordPress has helped build a thriving community around it, and there are now many websites, discussion boards, and locally-organized groups where WordPress users and developers alike can get together and discuss their favorite content management system.
As you can see, the advantages of using WordPress are really plentiful, and it’s no wonder that the interest in this free and open-source CMS has been growing year after year. With the right WordPress hosting, anyone can set up a professional website in no time and establish a strong online presence.
The Winners: Best Hosting Solutions for WordPress
In this article, we’ve introduced and ranked 30 best WordPress hosting services, so all you need to do now to start your WordPress journey is pick the one you like the most. Speed, security, support, and scalability are always very important factors when choosing a WordPress hosting service, but you may have your own unique needs which you should never forget to consider as well. Our winners, by WordPress hosting category, are as follows:
- Best WordPress Shared Hosting = Bluehost
- Top VPS for WordPress Hosting = LiquidWeb
- Best Cloud Host for WordPress = Bluehost
- Top Managed WordPress Hosting = WPEngine
If you can afford it, it is highly recommended to select a WordPress hosting plan that exceeds your current requirements because they may change unexpectedly at any moment, and the last thing you want is to be held back by your hosting service.
Looking for more web hosting comparisons? See who tops the list for 2020 of the 30 Fastest Web Hosting Companies, and do something good for our planet by exploring these recommended Green Web Hosting Providers.