This is the ultimate guide on the internet to help those looking for a web hosting provider to fulfil one’s requirements regardless of its complexity. There are plenty of web hosting services available for your website, with shared web hosting being the most common option for a single website. However, other options exist if you have multiple websites, such as reseller web hosting, which allows you to keep all your websites on the same hosting account.
While there are free web hosting providers available (and they’ve been – together with website builders) extremely popular during the current lockdown), generally if you have more than just a hobby website it’s best to pay for a reliable and accountable service. Web hosting doesn’t have to be expensive either, as there are always cheap web hosting deals about. This especially applies if you have a more demanding website that requires more resources, as there are also plenty of cheap VPS deals about.
It’s also possible to choose which operating system you have on your server, such as Windows hosting or Linux hosting, although unless you need specific Windows Exchange functions then you’re probably best opting for Linux with a control panel.
Here, then, are the best web hosting services for your website.
The best web hosting provider right now overall in 2020 is Bluehost – we love its wide and useful set of features (not to mention its affordable price points), and this provider really excels when it comes to WordPress hosting in particular. HostGator is another great all-rounder on the market, delivering seriously impressive value for money, and offering a very well-featured basic plan.
Best web hosting services 2020 at a glance:
Web hosting: our must-know tips before you get started
We’ve reviewed (and re-reviewed) more than 100 web hosting providers – free and paid-for – so we know what makes the best website hosting service. From our experience, we believe these are the five key things to consider when selecting yours:
a. You almost always get what you paid for
If your website is primarily a hobby on the side then this shouldn’t matter as much. However, as an essential business tool, it’s often a false economy to go for the cheapest deal (or a free one) on offer.
b. Beware of pricing tricks
The overwhelming majority of web hosting vendors offer low prices at the beginning of their contracts, but jack up the pricing after the introductory period ends, which can be 24, 36 or even 60 months after signing up. Always look for the total cost of ownership.
c. Just how trustworthy is the provider?
Just about anyone can pretend to be a real web host and just be reselling someone else’s products. So, look to see how long they’ve been around, if they have a contact address, who owns them, are they making realistic promises on the website and so on. Google is your friend here.
d. Know your limits
How comfortable are you with creating your own website? Do you need external help to understand the numerous ramifications (including legal and commercial ones) that publishing one entails?
e. Consider website builders
You don’t need web hosting to get online, and website builders offer an interesting and compelling alternative. However, you can’t migrate your content easily if you want to leave because of their proprietary nature.