WordPress is the best way to build your website, but before you can even get started with themes and plugins you need to find the best WordPress hosting for your website. This can be tough. There are hundreds of companies offing plans that at a glance all look pretty darn similar. But not all hosting is same, and there are some key factors you’ll want to consider when deciding which is the best WordPress hosting for your website in particular.
In this post we’ll show you how to pick the plan that’s best suited for your website and share the best WordPress hosting plans we’ve had a chance to personally test. Let’s get started!
Good Hosting Checklist
When looking for the best WordPress hosting for your website there are a few boxes you want to be able to check off. Getting straight to the point, any web hosting company worth their salt will have the following:
- PHP version 7+
- MySQL version 5.6+
- HTTPS support
- WordPress 1-click installation or preinstalled (if managed)
- Built-in caching*
- Uptime guarantee
- Email, chat or phone support
The first three on the list may sound a bit foreign to you unless you’re a developer or if you’ve purchased hosting before. To keep it simple, hosting companies use servers (which are like mega computers) to provide their hosting plans. These servers should be able to install the latest version of WordPress without a problem, which according to WordPress.org is currently up to PHP 7.2 and MySQL 5.6.
WordPress also recommend HTTPS and we do as well. A good hosting company will either sell premium SSL certificates or allow you to use a free third party service like Let’s Encrypt to ensure blog readers can securely access your website.
We highly recommend selecting a host that is either fully managed (where WordPress is pre-installed and maintained for you) or that offers easy 1-click installation. While you can certainly install WordPress manually on a hosting plan, we really only recommend it if you are experienced developer.
Lastly, good hosting companies will offer uptime guarantees and top of the line support. Uptime guarantees generally assure you that 99.9% or more of the time your website will be up and running, leaving a fraction of time of server updates. And support really is key. If you ever have a hosting issue you want to be able to get a hold of someone. Good hosting companies will have a couple easy ways for you to get in touch with a support tech.
Types of WordPress Hosting
When it comes to hosting there is no shortage of options. There are plan’s with all different names from all kinds of companies, but here is a quick roundup of the most common types of WordPress hosting you might want to consider when trying to find the best WordPress hosting for your website.
Shared WordPress Hosting
The most common and typically the most affordable, shared hosting combines multiple user accounts on one server. This means you’re “sharing” resources like bandwidth and memory with other users. Shared hosting is perfect for new bloggers since you likely won’t need a ton of resources when first getting started, and you can always scale up to a bigger plan or add resources later.
When it comes to running WordPress shared hosting is often more than capable of providing the power you need. Installing WordPress is also typically fairly easy as most shared hosting providers offer a “1-click” installation process. Just select WordPress when you signup for you plan and you’ll be ready to start blogging almost immediately.
Cloud WordPress Hosting
Cloud hosting offers users individual virtual servers hosted on “the cloud,” which in this case is a network of servers around the globe. The advantage to cloud hosting is that (in theory) your website will never go down since at any given point in time servers should be up and running somewhere in the world. Cloud hosting is also famous for its scalability since it’s very easy to add more resources on demand as you need them.
We would recommend cloud hosting for tech savvy folks who want to manage their own server settings, however there are companies offering managed cloud hosting making it a viable option for new bloggers as well. Because it is scalable it’s a great option for social network, image sharing or viral content type websites that may have fluctuating traffic or large/sporadic bursts.
VPS Hosting for WordPress
VPS stands for virtual private server and is when a hosting company uses software to digitally partition a physical server into multiple, individual virtual servers. This is a more affordable option to have your own server, though it does require advanced technical skills to operate as you are in control of your virtual server settings.
For medium sized blogs or businesses VPS is a great option. Just remember that you will need to install WordPress manually on your server and manager all of your server settings. For this reasons we’d recommend spending time learning about servers or hiring a specialist.