Best Hosting Sites – WordPress Based
Being someone who is active within many online groups for bloggers I see time and time again that people are very confused about Hosting. Even some seasoned bloggers have not understood that where they host their blogs makes a huge difference. So here I am going to give you the run down on the difference between the hosting companies and what you should be looking for when choosing your host.
You won’t be getting any technical jargon here. If you want all of the technical specifications there are plenty of other sites who will give you that unnecessary stuff.
What is Hosting?
Hosting is where your blog or website is run from. It is like your own personal technical back office and you want to make sure they are up to the job.
You want your website available at all times. You want it to load quickly and effectively. You want to know that if there is a problem, that the support team will be on to it straight away and keep you updated until the issue is resolved. For most of us what we need is a good shared hosting company.
Shared Hosting is just a Company that many people use. If you are really good at what you do, one day you may want/need a dedicated server but let’s not get ahead of ourselves just yet.
The difference between Free Hosting and Self Hosting.
Well the obvious difference is that you pay for self hosting and you pay nothing for free hosting. Many new bloggers will go for free hosting but it does come at a cost. Number one you do not own your website, the free hosting Company does. They make the rules. Many don’t even allow you to have affiliate links. The scariest part is that they can take it away from you at any point. All your hard work, gone in the blink of an eye.
There is one confusing aspect that I see people asking about all the time. WordPress. WordPress.com is a free hosting service which uses their wordpress product to allow you to build your site for free. But they own it.
However, their wordpress product is used by many other hosting sites who don’t own your website. You own it and pay them for their services. If you have your blog on a free site right now, please think about going for a paid host. It doesn’t have to be costly. Self hosting does not mean you are on your own but you will own the website and its name and you can choose who to pay to host it for you.
What you need from your host.
Ability to host more than one domain ( We all end up with more than one website!)
Ability to purchase a Domain name. Owning a Domain name should be around $13.
No hefty price increases on renewal.( This catches a lot of people out ) Read their terms of service.
SSL certificate option or better still included in monthly cost.
Ability to move if you so wish. Avoid long term contracts until you are happy. Long term contracts are obviously cheaper per month.
Easy set up process.
Daily back up of your website
Which are the Best Hosting companies?
Bluehost gets the best reviews of all of the hosting companies. It offers a range of price plans starting at an introductory rate of $2.95 a month which returns to $7.95 at the monthly renewal. I suggest that realistically you need the Prime plan which is $5.45 and then $14.99. It uses wordpress, has a free SSL certificate and 24/7 support. It also has a 30 day money back guarantee.
Dreamhost has a free trial and two different price plans to choose from, both of which are reasonable. If you want to pay for a long term contract they start at $4.95 a month but I suggest to pay $7.95 a month to start with, until you are sure. In fact, you really need the All access plan which will be $10.95 a month until you are ready to commit and then it works out at $7.95. They use a website builder called remixer which is very easy to use and can create a very professional looking website.
Hostgator also gets great reviews and probably because it has one of the quickest loading times in the market. You can choose between 3 plans, hatchling, baby and business. It clearly gives you room to grow but for me you are better off going straight into the business option as it gives you all of the capabilities you will need. It also has great e-commerce options, so if you are going to be selling physical products this is definitely worth a try.
Siteground uses two website building programs, wordpress and Joomla. You get a choice depending on the plan you choose, however for me, WordPress is the way to go as it gives you so much scope for building your site. Siteground also has several plans starting from £2.95 a month. (I am U.K based so it gives me a £ Price.. a total novelty for me as everything else I do online is priced in $ )
Obviously not all things are included at this price but Siteground does give you room to grow. It gets rave reviews from its customers and also has an impressive speed time. While they start prices quite low they can double on renewal but that is still not a lot to pay for what you get.
Now this is not a hosting company that you will see advertised as such because in reality it is much more than just a hosting company so doesn’t market itself in the same way as the others. Many people will host their websites elsewhere and then discover Wealthy Affiliate as a training program. They may then transfer their websites or not. Most do in time. They will allow you to take 20 lessons for free which will ensure you have your website up and ready to go ( it doesn’t have to be hosted there) and you can join in with the million strong community, who between them have all the expertise you will ever need. Some people stay free forever but most will join the community to gain access to all of the training, which is constantly updated.
You can host up to 50 websites, have email services, SSL certificates, site speed and great Spam filters. They use wordpress as the website platform and includes the All in One SEO Plugin as standard. Now while you get a free trial and introductory offer the full plan is $49 a month. In comparison this will seem pricey but you do not get the training platform and helpful community with the others. They also have other tools like the Jaaxy Keyword tool, site content tool and site comments among others.
I have no qualms about promoting any of the above Hosting companies for you to build your Website or Blog on. I am a big fan of wordpress and wordpress themselves recommend, Dreamhost, Siteground and Bluehost. I personally use Wealthy Affiliate for my hosting as I like all the added extras but realise $49 may seem too much when you are first starting out. I do urge you to give it a free trial though. You can Join for free now or take a look at my review to give you more information.
Obviously there are others and one particular famous one that I have left out, Go Daddy. Go Daddy has been excluded because for me it promises so much and delivers so little unless you want to keep getting your credit card out. Their add ons are what others include as standard and you need them so what is promised as free ends up being very costly.
I hope this has been helpful in deciding what you want and need from a website or blog host. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask in the section below and I will get back to you via email.
Or leave me a comment if you have any other recommendations for my readers.
With Grace and Gratitude
This post contains affiliate links. If you click on any link and then make a purchase I may make a small commission but it won’t cost you any more.
Hi Karen; much useful information here eh? I am a WordPress user. And I fully believed in their capability. I had concerns about self hosting, of which I sought for clarity and never get it until I read your post. Now I understand what is self hosting I am even more comfortable with WordPress. Are you saying that Wealthy. Affiliate is more than just hosting? DorcasW
Hi Dorcas and thanks for reading.
In answer to your question, yes Wealthy Affiliate is very different to other Hosting companies and that is why they do not promote themselves as Such because that is only one part of their offering. I would say their main focus is online business training but they go the extra mile and provide us with all the tools needed to succeed online, including hosting.
I hope that answers your question.
With Grace and Gratitude
Great information on some of the best website hosting sites that are wordpress based.
I have heard Bluehost is a fairly new hosting site. How would it compare to Wealthy Affiliate?
I find Wealthy Affilaite really good for leanning how to build a website and also learn affiliate marketing.
Any feedback would be much appreciated.
Hi Chris and thanks for reading,
Bluehost is an entirely different company and offering to Wealthy Affiliate. Bluehost offers a comprehensive hosting platform for your wordpress website and I would definitely recommend using it as their support is excellent. Wealthy Affiliate is not just a hosting company. It doesn’t really promote itself as such as hosting is only one of their offerings. I would say it’s main focus is online training but they offer fantastic hosting too.
Hope this is helpful.
With Grace and Gratitude