I asked Google how many web hosting providers are in the world:
Yes, over 300,000 web hosting providers. All of them provide web hosting service, but not all of these 300,00 web hosting providers deliver the same quality and features.
As with us humans, not all web hosting providers are made the same.
Whether you’re out to replace your current web host, or are looking for one that will give you a better web hosting plan complete with freebies like site migration, you’re definitely reading through the right article.
Below is a list of the top web hosting providers this year, and right after that is a list of what to look for in a web host before you subscribe.
This shared hosting provider boasts of a consistent 99.99% uptime and customer support that is as reliable.
Since 2004, SiteGround has offered various web hosting solutions. You’ll find them in most web hosting provider lists because they have built a solid reputation on being reliable and fast.
Some of their features include daily backups, website builders, free email, free SSL and CDN.
Uptime: 99% for the last 12 months
Speed: averages 700ms load time and average response time of 130ms
Site Migration: Yes. You can use the built-in WordPress Automatic Migrator Tool, or get a SiteGround professional to do it for you. They even created a site migration plugin for users to install on their WordPress sites , the SiteGround Migrator.
Support: 24/7 phone and live chat support. Yes, you can call in and speak with a SiteGround support representative. They also have a knowledge base if you prefer to figure it out on your own.
Pricing: US$4.99/month. On the right is what you will get for this monthly fee.
Go or No?
SiteGround’s customer support is highly-rated, and for a beginner, this is something you would want to have: a steady hand to guide you as you learn the ins and outs of hosting your own website.
You’d be wanting to sign up with them for their reliability and speed though. It’s one of the best among current web hosting providers. Not to forget that they offer unmetered bandwidth, daily backup and that site migrator can really come in handy if you are in-between web hosting providers.
Pricing is within range of its competitors so you’re not paying more for the freebies and service you’re getting. But you aren’t paying less either.
Storage is fixed but it’s more than enough if you’re still on the early stages of your website.
It’s best to get the annual billing if you can. The longer you lock yourself in with them (by getting an annual fee), the higher the discount they’ll give you.
SiteGround also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee but this is strictly on the hosting plans. This doesn’t apply on renewal fees either so this money-back guarantee is only for new members.
Here’s a few more reviews to help you:
A2 Hosting provides fast and reliable hosting alongside unlimited bandwidth and email accounts.
About A2 Hosting
A2 Hosting has been around since the early 2000s but they are far from being old and slow. Then and now, A2 Hosting has been consistent in providing one of the fastest server speeds. Coupled with a stable uptime, A2 Hosting is as fast and reliable as its more popular competitors.
Speed: 285ms load times
Site Migration: Free. The number of sites you can migrate free of charge varies depending on your A2 Hosting plan. Shared hosting gets you 1 free site migration and US$10 for each additional website. You get up to 25 site migrations for free if you have the Reseller, Dedicated or Managed VPS hosting plans.
You can start the migration process by filling out their migration form.
Support: 24/7 support through phone, chat or email. A2 Hosting also has a huge knowledge base with easy-to-follow guides.
Pricing: US$1.99 a month is pretty low, but keep in mind that this is for a 3-year subscription to their service.
The same US$1.99 per month renews at US$10.99 a month. If you’re thinking of cancelling, then you need to make up your mind before the renewal period starts. You have to send a cancellation request 15 days before your plan is due for renewal.
Otherwise, your plan is automatically renewed.
Go or No?
A2 Hosting has one of the best uptime and page loading speeds. They have 24/7 server monitoring, malware scanning, and a suite of developer-friendly tools.
Their 24/7 customer support is as quick and reliable as their web hosting service. They have Migration Specialists who can help you complete site migrations within 24 hours of receiving your request.
The site migration is free, including unlimited email accounts and bandwidth.
No free domain names though, and their US$1.99 starting plan only gives you 100GB of SSD storage with no automatic backups or server rewind. The higher tiers give you unlimited sites, SSD storage and free automatic backups on top of other helpful resources.
US$1.99 a month is, arguably, one of the lowest starting prices for shared hosting. The renewal fee and that 15-day window is going to make you think twice. The best way to go about that is to take a good look at A2 Hosting’s key features and decide if they are a web hosting provider that you want to have a long-term relationship with.
A couple more resources to help you decide:
Possibly the most popular and easily recognizable of all the web hosting providers in this list, HostGator offers quick and stable web hosting with a few extras thrown in.
Widely-known as a web host and domain registrar, HostGator has been providing web hosting services since 2002.
Uptime: 99.93% . They offer a unique uptime guarantee on their Terms of Service. Barring planned maintenance, members can get 1 month credit on their accounts if HostGator’s uptime falls below 99%.
Speed: 700ms average load time
Site Migration: Free, but only within 30 days of signing up for a HostGator plan. Otherwise, you can still request for migration help, but for a price.
Their migration service is for basic migration only. They can still help you move the site to a new domain but that is going to be an additional charge.
Support: On top of the usual knowledge base and FAQ page, members can reach out to support through phone, live chat or email.
HostGator support is 24/7, and overall, fairly good.
Pricing: US$2.75/month. Be aware of the asterisk on these prices, and make sure to read the fine print. The US$2.75/month price is a discounted introductory offer for the first 36 months that you pay in full at sign up.
Their terms are flexible as they come starting with 1 month, 3, 6 months then up to 36 months.
Go or No?
HostGator plans give you plenty of storage, unmetered bandwidth, and free site migration as long as you do it within the first month of signing up for their service.
They offer flexible billing terms with some unique guarantees thrown in: a 45-day money-back guarantee and an uptime guarantee. The former lets you try their shared hosting service for more than 30 days and still get a refund with the 45-day mark.
The uptime guarantee ensures that their service will remain reliable throughout.
You get site security features, decent customer support, and newbie-friendly tools to help beginners along.
Pricing may seem like it’s the same as everyone else, and it is: you start off with a US$2.75 a month fee, and by the time you get to check out, that amount would have ballooned to more than a US$150 dollars for a three-year hosting subscription.
Not bad if you intend to stay with them for that long.
But that amount gets bigger if you add a couple more features like SEO tools, site backups and SiteLock, their website security add-on.
So maybe it’s not that good of a deal.
Check out other web hosting providers on this list and see how HostGator compares before signing up.
Here are a few resources to help you out:
As their name implies, GreenGeeks are indeed “green”-minded geeks whose goal is to provide the best environmentally-friendly web hosting service.
All of us know the internet is not 100% safe for everyone. Not all of us are aware that it isn’t good for the environment either.
Web hosting providers eat up huge amounts of energy in order to keep their data centers cool and secure. There are web hosts that have taken steps to compensate for this massive use of energy by conserving where they can, cutting back on waste, and planting trees.
GreenGeeks goes beyond these measures by ensuring that their web hosting service is 300% eco-friendly. They have pledged to put back three times the energy they consume with wind power credits.
It’s all on their website, along with the numerous environmental accolades they have gotten over the years for their continued effort in keeping their eco-friendly promise.
Speed: 487 ms average load time
Site Migration: Free. They have a guide for you to follow on how to find and fill out their site migration request form.
Support: GreenGeeks has an expansive knowledge base, you can chat with a representative or call one, if you prefer.
Pricing: US$2.49/mo. With 50 email accounts, unmetered bandwidth and storage, it’s not a bad bargain. But as with all other web hosts, take a closer look at the monthly pricing versus how much you are paying at checkout.
Go or No?
Go Green? Definitely.
Go GreenGeeks? Well… consider a few things before signing up and you might realize that, worthy cause and all, they aren’t as high above the rest.
They do have a stable uptime and their load time is more than the acceptable figure. Customer support is good enough. Site migration is supported and free.
GreenGeeks web hosting plans come with Cloudflare CDN, eCommerce support and a big enough disk space. They also have a website builder and templates.
You’ll find these features with the other web host providers in this list. Pricing is also the same with the other web hosts we’ve covered so far. Their plan starts at US$2.49, but you’ll have to stay with them for three years to lock in on that fee.
You do get to help the environment if you go with GreenGeeks. They even give you a badge to put on your site to let your site visitors know that you’re helping the environment by hosting with an eco-friendly web host.
Here are a few more helpful resources:
Established in 2010, WP Engine is considered as one of the first to offer managed WordPress hosting.
About WP Engine
Appropriately named, WP Engine is the power behind some of the biggest brands in the web like Yelp, National Geographic, and Asana.
Unlike the previous web hosting providers in this list, WP Engine’s focus is managed WordPress hosting. They are considered in the industry as the pioneers behind this specialized hosting.
Speed: 337 ms average load time and 123 ms average response time
Site Migration: Free. WP Engine has a site migration plugin that makes moving your WordPress site to WP engine relatively easy. There are walkthroughs and video guides you can follow, even a Migration Checklist, to help you along.
If you need more handholding, then you may reach out to their support staff.
Support: WP Engine’s knowledge base is filled with helpful guides, but if you prefer to speak with a representative, they offer 24/7 live chat.
Members of their higher plans have access to 24/7 phone support.
Pricing: US$25/month. Paying for a full year gives you a US$60 discount, so you only need to pay US$300 upfront.
Go or No?
There has been a long-standing debate on shared hosting versus managed WordPress hosting. It’s best to read up on those first before you circle back to deciding whether WP Engine is for you or not.
Pricing is definitely higher for these managed WordPress hosting providers, and it’s within reason. They are providing a set of add-ons specific to supporting WordPress sites, after all.
With WP Engine, you get free automated site migrations, free SSL and CDN, enterprise-grade security for your WordPress site, including development and staging environments for your website.
As with a few of the shared hosting providers on this list, you get daily backup and plugin updates. You get unlimited monthly data transfers as well.
It sounds all good, but again, you can only use WP Engine’s service for WordPress sites. There is a limit on traffic and storage.
They do offer a lengthy 60-day money-back guarantee; something you may want to take advantage of so you can try their service first.
A couple of reading materials to help you decide:
DreamHost has been hosting websites since 1997. Their 97-day money-back guarantee and monthly billing are no dream.
That DreamHost was founded way back in 1996 and still delivering quality web hosting service is a testament to this provider’s stability.
They are definitely one of the older web hosting providers, but instead of fading into insignificance, DreamHost has carved a solid reputation among designers and developers.
Speed: slow at 1320 average loading time
Site Migration: Free. They have an outline of the process. There are also walkthrough guides and videos to follow as well as a migration plugin.
They also have a migration team who can help you move your site. It’s US$99 per site though but you are assured that your site will have no downtime during the transfer.
Support: Aside from the usual knowledge base, DreamHost has a discussion forum where you can raise and discuss issues with the hosting.
Their support page mentions a “24/7 in-house support” but this likely means email support. There was no phone number listed on their website, and the live chat is not “live” 24/7.
Pricing: US$2.59/month. You get automated site migrations, free SSL, unlimited traffic and website builder.
DreamHost also offers managed WordPress hosting plans that start at US$16.95 a month. It includes a 30GB storage, unmetered bandwidth and unlimited email account.
Go or No?
The uptime is acceptable but DreamHost’s load times are on the slow side. This becomes more obvious when compared to the other web hosts in this list.
DreamHost plans are on the more affordable side though and they are the only ones to offer a 97-day money-back guarantee. There are hardly any upsells or upgrades, too.
Their introductory plans don’t have free email accounts but they do offer unlimited bandwidth and large storage along with free site migration.
All things considered, DreamHost isn’t all that bad but there’s definitely plenty of room for improvement. Still, they are a good web host to start with.
Check out these other reviews too:
From a free web hosting service in 2007, Hostinger has grown and expanded into one of the more popular and economical web hosting providers today.
Hostinger has steadily climbed up the web hosting industry. They started in 2004 as a personal company in Lithuania. Seventeen years later, they have grown into a global business with offices around the world and 29 million users.
Speed: 356 ms average loading time
Site Migration: Free. You can transfer your website over to Hostinger by filling out a migration request. Additional sites may cost extra.
Support: It’s the usual knowledge base, email and live chat. They offer multi-lingual support but waiting for a support representative takes several minutes.
Pricing: US$1.39 a month. That’s the lowest price you’ll see on this list, and it is also the longest term. You need to stay with Hostinger for 48 months or 4 years to lock in on this price.
Go or No?
Hostinger’s load time and uptime are fast and stable enough. They can definitely stand on their own among the other web hosts in this list.
Their features are equally competitive: large bandwidth and storage, website builder, a free email account, free site migration and SSL security among others.
Hostinger’s introductory plan is one of the lowest you can find. It’s also one of the longest lockdown periods, but that might not be a bad thing since Hostinger provides quality web hosting service.
The higher plans have more competitive pricing but you do get more so check them out before deciding to go with their service or not.
Feel free to browse through these reviews for additional information:
Hosting more than 2 million websites and counting, it’s nothing short of amazing that Bluehost is able to maintain and deliver high-quality speed and uptime.
Bluehost and HostGator are part of the same mega-company, Endurance International Group (EIG). Regardless, these two web host providers are often pitted against each other.
Bluehost is not ahead of the competition but they are offering quite a bit more with their marketing services.
Speed: load speed of 688 ms
Support: They offer 24/7 support through chat, email and phone. They have a huge and organized knowledge base if you prefer to look for answers on your own.
Pricing: US$2.75/month. This is for a three-year term.
They also offer manager WordPress hosting at US$9.95 per month for a 3-year lock-in period.
Go or No?
Bluehost remains a stable, consistent web host provider. With 2 million websites under their belt, they are clearly able to deliver above-average hosting service.
Their prices are competitive and within range of the other web host providers on this list. The introductory plan though is limited in terms of storage and security features. Site transfer is free for 1 website but there are strict qualifications that make you feel like you need to jump over hoops to get it.
They are a great start for beginners though. Support is responsive and available 24/7.
If you’re interested, you can give Bluehost a try, and if it does not suit, request for a refund. Make sure it is within their 30-day money-back guarantee, and that you are only trying out the hosting service. Domains and other add-ons are not included in the refund.
Additional reading materials:
Flywheel is not as popular or established as the other web hosting providers here, but they are gaining ground in managed WordPress hosting.
If you click on Flywheel’s About link at the footer of their website, you’ll be taken to WP Engine’s About page. This is because WP Engine bought Flywheel.
You’ll find plenty of similarities in their offers that you can’t help but do a side-by-side comparison. WP Engine may win over some of the criteria, but Flywheels will be flying right
Speed: 524 ms average loading time
Site Migration: Free. Flywheel’s migration guide is straightforward and has laid out all the details.
Support: 24/7 support through phone, email and live chat. There is the ever-dependable knowledge base, too.
Pricing: US$12/month. This is for a one year contract with Flywheel.
Go or No?
Flywheel’s introductory plan of US$12 a month is one of the lowest prices for this type of hosting. The storage and bandwidth you get is meager at best. You might think you’d be better off with the higher-level plans, and in the long run, you are.
But if you’re just starting out, then Flywheel’s Tiny plan is all you’ll need.
With that plan you get free site migration, SSL certificate, demo site, staging site, and nightly backups. You can easily scale and move to a higher level when the need presents itself so you don’t have to pay extra unless you absolutely need to.
They offer a 30-day money-back guarantee for customers who purchase their annual plans. Customers who opted for monthly billing can request for a refund within 72 hours of paying for their plan.
There are a few plugins that are not allowed or supported in Flywheel servers. 30 days should be long enough for you to try the hosting service and check if your preferred plugins are supported.
A couple more reviews to help you decide:
Kinsta is only 8-years old but they’ve taken great strides and have become a brand to reckon with in the managed WordPress hosting sphere.
With main offices in London and Los Angeles, Kinsta delivers scalable and high-quality managed WordPress hosting.
They charge quite a steep fee, but you do get what you pay for in terms of performance, features and service.
Speed: 1.6s is the slowest load time which means they are the fastest among the webhosts on this list, and beyond.
Site Migration: Free. All of their plans include free site migration. They have knowledge base articles that walk you through migrating your website on your own or request Kinsta support to do it for you.
Support: 24/7 live chat and phone support. Like with other web hosts, there is a knowledge base to go to if you would rather figure things out on your own.
Pricing: US$30./month. You get 2 months free if you pay annually.
Go or No?
That US$30 monthly bill is going to make you stop and think twice, maybe a couple of times more, if you really should sign up.
This is a classic case of getting what you pay for. You pay a premium to get the best speed and guaranteed uptime in the web hosting industry. Your website gets uptime checks every 2 minutes and daily backups from the get go and not as an add-on.
Kinsta has a list of banned plugins so you may want to check first if they have banned any that you are using on your website.
You can try their service anytime, and while they do not have a money-back guarantee, you are free to opt out of their service at any time.
Check out these other reviews before saying Yes… or No
How Do You Choose the Right Web Host?
The above list is just 10 of the popular and most-recommended web hosts today, but narrowing it down to “The One” is going to take some serious thought and quite a lot of reading.
We do have a nifty guide in what to look for in a web host provider. In this list of recommended web hosting providers, we focused on the following though:
- Site Migration
These are by no means the only factors to consider when picking out a web host, but you shouldn’t leave these out either.
It’s understandable that you would want to pick a web host right away so you can get your site going, but don’t be in such a mad rush that you just sign up with any web host that sounds good. That might cost you a lot more in the long run.
The above list should narrow your search; select one or two likely candidates, and read up on their reviews.
All the best in your search!
Pick a web host recently? What helped you make the final decision? We’d love to know how you chose “the right one.”