Jamie’s Recommendations on Web Hosting
Special note- this is a repost of an article originally posted on brilliantbluedesigns.com. I am reposting this here, as I am and have always been the primary author. That, of course, makes these my recommendations. Please note, these links then, are affiliate links. If you purchase using these links, we both benefit. I’d love for you to use these links if you decide to follow my recommendations. You are of course free to chose not to – but again, we both benefit.
I am often asked about web hosting- and although I am weighing up options on becoming a hosting reseller, I simply am not ready to step into those services yet (I love my customers for asking though!). However, through the years, I have dealt with a variety of hosting services in the simple process of working with customers and doing daily business. These are simply the best of the best that I have come across- and what needs they best serve. Please note that I will use affiliate links when I have them- so I will earn a commission if you end up purchasing any of the web hosting services listed on this site through my referral links. This helps me with everyday operating expenses. Thank you in advance for your support.
Hosting is integral to overall site health. It’s the foundation your site is built upon. Anyone who has worked with me knows that a hosting service that is easy to work with makes my job easier as well. The four main factors that I will make sure to discuss with each hosting company are the following:
- Speed – also known as “load time”
- Reported Uptime – I will be using stats from hostingfacts.com
- Customer Support – they should help you with WordPress related questions.
- Ability to host more than one site – many of my customers have multiple sites. I will note whether a company has plans that accomodate this.
From a personal standpoint, SiteGround has to be mentioned on this list. I have been happily using their service for years now with no complaints. Customer service is easy to contact, clear, and quick to respond. Speed has recently been upgraded for all customers. I easily host multiple sites. But other than these personal reports, here are the real stats:
Hosting Facts ranks them in the top 3 in strong website hosting.
They note a high uptime of 99.99% which exceeds industry standard,
Fast Page Loading:
Above Average Load time (714ms) with no spikes or slow loading times.
The official client survey results released by SiteGround each year show that their client satisfaction rate is constantly scored over 96% (2014, 2015, 2016) and 98% for 2018.
Their promotional pricing is valid for the amount of time you choose at checkout- so if you choose to prepay or contract for a longer or shorter period of time, you lock in that same promotional pricing (this is different than some other plans). The GrowBig and GoGeek plans include one free site transfer a free domain.
Click on the picture above or use the below button to get hooked up with SiteGround today!
A2 Hosting Review
UPDATE: A2 hosting had a serious security incident on April 22, 2019 that resulted in significant customer downtime and loss of data. This ransomware attack changes my ability to include them on this list without reservation. For more information about this incident and their response, HERE is their response.
My hope is that they will recover quickly and get back to the quick, dependable service they have been known to deliver with improved security and data retention. Until then, I am offering up another recommendation in A2’s place.
Rated #1 in 2019 by Hostingreviews.com , Bluehost is the definition of a solid hosting choice. Bluehost is currently responsible for hosting more than 2 million websites all over the world and is one of the most popular and least expensive shared hosting services available. Founded in 1996 by Matt Heaton and Danny Ashworth in Provo, Utah, they have a staff of 750 employees working around the clock to ensure the highest quality of service possible.
Hosting Reviews reported the #1 uptime for Bluehost at >99.99%. During the time of their review, Bluehost logged 9 minutes of downtime out of the 7296 hours. That’s 9 minutes! So to say they are rock solid, is putting it mildly. They’ve got uptime on a lock. Although their uptimes took a serious hit in August of 2017, Bluehost claims that the problems were due to various DDoS attacks directed at their servers and the numbers have been trending ever since. (I was actually a customer around that time, it’s great to see these improvements!).
Fast Page Loading
424ms (5th Fastest) – Some people (Like me, I’ll admit it) may remember Bluehost from 2016 or earlier when their load speeds were…less than stellar. Since Summer of 2017, Bluehost has improved their load speeds enough to land in Hosting Review’s top 5!
Their customer service is fast, but could perhaps, be more knowledgeable on the most technical of questions. Luckily, their interface is simple and easy to use, so the chances of running into those questions isn’t as likely as when you are on a less user friendly hosting platforms (some of you may know which services I am hinting at).
Any other issues? Yes- Site migrations aren’t free, promotional pricing are for 36 month deals only- but to offset this, they do have a 30 day money back guarantee. They are hostingreview.com’s #1 choice for a reason. In addition, the WordPress official site (WordPress.org) recently re-made their hosting page and listed their 3 favorite hosting providers. Among those are SiteGround (oh hey, I think we already mentioned them!), Dreamhost and – you guessed it – Bluehost.
DreamHost Web Hosting
As mentioned above, DreamHost is the third entry into hostingreview.com’s top three providers. Why is that?
DreamHost is incredibly serious about their uptime. They will credit you a day’s service for every hour of interrupted service.
According to DreamHost’s Terms of Service, you’ll only be eligible for free days if:
- The DreamObjects service is unresponsive
- DreamObjects gives a server error response to valid user requests for more than a minute of consecutive requests.
Scheduled maintenance is excluded.
Knowledgeable, friendly customer service staff. Connected within 5 minutes during tests. Online support only, no phone support.
Page Loading Speed:
DreamHost’s page loading times clock in at 709ms over the eight-month testing period. That’s 23% faster than the average of 890ms seen on the other tested hosting providers.
DreamHost offers the longest money back guarantee in the industry – 97 days for shared hosting plans.
DreamHost has been a carbon neutral company since 2007 and is overall committed to energy efficiency.
If you have additional questions, I am happy to go into more detail. I’m fairly familiar with these three services and how they rank up – and a few others that didn’t quite make the cut for one reason or another if there is a specific need you are looking to fill. (I did not specifically review services aimed at resellers, for example).
Feel free to contact me to discuss further.