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So who is the best company to host your WordPress Site?
As a web developer and digital marketer, I’ve had the pleasure (or in some cases misfortune) to work with a wide variety of web hosting companies. Companies that I have worked with include the following hosts: Godaddy, Blue Host, SiteGround, Hostgator, A2 Hosting, InMotion, and WP Engine. There have been more, but those are the biggies that tend to come up time and time again.
I can tell you that after installing and maintaining sites on such a wide variety of hosting companies, I’ve certainly developed a few favorites and a few least favorites. One of these favorite companies consistently impresses me and stands out from all the rest as the best in the areas that matter the most: site speed, performance, site security, support, user experience, and value. That company is Siteground, whom I recommend hands down, as the best hosting company for WordPress bloggers, niche affiliates and other small businesses.
Siteground is, hands down, the best Web Hosting company for bloggers, basic niche sites, smaller company sites and those just starting out.
I’m not the only one who loves working with SiteGround. Most of my developer and marketer friends will tell you they are a great company to work with. In fact, in a recent survey, SiteGround won best overall hosting company. So you don’t have to take my word for it. But since you are here, I’ll let you know my reasons behind recommending SiteGround.
Now, lots of the companies I mentioned above offer similar products and similar price points to the Siteground shared hosting plan, so what’s the big difference?
Let’s dive right in and find out what makes SiteGround the best overall hosting company for blogs and WordPress Sites.
Speed is very important when it comes to web development. Slow site speed can cause your site to rank poorly, while faster speeds are favored by both Google and users alike. Landing on a slow site can cause your visitors to leave before the site even loads. No one wants to wait these days.
According to a recent study that tested load web page loading times, Siteground outperforms the industry average by quite a lot.
- Industry average loading time for a web page: 4.7 sec
- Siteground’s average loading time without cache: 1.7 sec
- Siteground’s average loading time with cache: 1.3 sec
This study used Pingdom to test the loading time of identical WordPress websites hosted on 12 different hosting companies. The faster loading result for SiteGround was achieved with Sitegrounds built-in cache system called SuperCacher switched on for the website.
My personal experience with Siteground sites is that they are fast and if you take advantage of the SuperCacher they work even faster. Of course, it matters what you put on those web pages (videos and large photos tend to render slower) and there are a few more tricks that you can use to speed up your site after you build it. I’ve never had difficulty with obtaining lightning fast speeds on Siteground.
The same study also looked at how many hits can be successfully handled in two minutes by each of the hosts using the same exact test WordPress website. The test was done with the help of the Siege testing and benchmark utility. The higher number of handled hits by SiteGround was achieved with the SuperCacher switched on for the website
- Industry average hits handled: 2852
- Without cache Siteground handles 3 times more: 8276
- With cache Siteground can handle: over 230 000
Personally I have never had an issue with a site going down due to traffic. I find it’s best to stay on top of your traffic using Google search Console or Analytics, and if you are nearing your limits with your plan, you can always upgrade to a higher traffic plan premptively. Siteground offers many tiers.
By their very nature, WordPress sites can be susceptible to vulnerabilities. These vulnerabilities are often exposed and publicly announced. You’ll notice that WordPress updates are pretty frequent in trying to Patch these. But sometimes the core is not updated quickly enough. Having protection at the server level is important. In a test on WordPress and Joomla related vulnerabilities that were announced publicly more than 1 month before the test all of the other 12 hosting companies were still exploitable with no problem. At SiteGround both vulnerabilities were patched on the server level within 48 hours after their public announcement: WPTouch vulnerability patch and Virtuemart Vulnerability patch
It doesn’t matter if you don’t know what any of this means, but suffice it to say that having your host add an extra layer of protection is important. I’ve seen sites hacked easily on Bluehost as well as Hostgator, but never personally seen one hacked while hosted on Siteground. That’s enough proof for me.
While all the technical stuff is important, when it comes down to actually using the hosting platform, my biggest reason for using Siteground is because of their stellar support service. They offer chat, phone, and email support. I’ve spent hours online chatting with some of the other big name companies with no resolution to the issues at hand. I’ve been extremely frustrated at times with many of them. Often, the issues are results of things I may or may not have control over with the access provided by the host. Siteground offers full access to cPanel and numerous tools to help the installation process and solid documentation with instructional videos. When you can’t find the answers there, you can rest assured that a quick chat will get your troubles resolved. Over and over again I’ve been impressed with the speed and helpfulness of the SiteGround support staff. They’ve often gone above and beyond and will troubleshoot issues for me most of the time, whereas some of the other companies don’t even have developers on their support staff, but rather, employ salespeople who don’t know the ins and outs of it all. This can lead to costly and timely efforts to fix things when they want to charge you to hire one of their on-staff developers. I really like the SiteGround team’s knowledge and have had nothing but great experience on chats with them. Usually, the issues are resolved within minutes. On the other hand, you may wait days for a response on some of the cheaper platforms.
Pricewise, Siteground may be a tad more expensive than some of the cheaper companies out there. But at $3.95/ month for 1 website (a special introductory rate offered to new customers) you really can’t complain. That price goes up to $11.95/ month after your initial sale period ends (you can sign up for one year). With this price comes a host (pun intended) of other goodies that are going to worth the slightly higher price point in the end. Some of these include the following for one website and 10,000 daily hits:
- Free Website Builder
- Free SSL and HTTPS
- Free Email Accounts
- Free Cloudflare CDN
- Free Daily Backup
- 24/7 Support
- 30 Days Money Back
- Unmetered Traffic
- Unlimited MySQL
- Cpanel and SSH
Notice the free SSL (a requirement these days and something that can cost quite a bit at other hosting companies) and also the free email accounts. These things can be easily installed for free, by you at SiteGround, whereas some other companies (GoDaddy for instance) will charge you for every email account and SSL cert.
U/X (User Experience)
The final thing I love is the actual User dashboard. It’s intuitive. It’s nicely laid out. You can actually find what you are looking for in CPanel. Some of the hosting companies offer a modified CPanel that looks like a 3rd grader designed it. I’m not even kidding about that. Sitegrounds user dashboard and user panel are beautiful and simple to use. You get access to all your files and databases, something you’ll not have if you choose Managed WordPress from one of these other companies. Managed WordPress sounds great but in reality, it’s very limiting. I would not recommend it. Even the shared hosting plans can have limited access on some of these user dashboards. SiteGrounds really is the best for UX.
What plan should you get?
Now that you know why to choose SiteGround, all you need to do is choose your plan. I recommend SiteGround’s shared hosting plan as mentioned above for the introductory rate of $3.95/ month. If you need a higher plan, you can always upgrade to something that handles more traffic or storage. SiteGround also offers a variety of plans for those with more volume at higher price points. But the average person starting out can find a great value in this shared plan while building their site content and traffic.
To visit Siteground, check out their plans and to purchase web hosting for your website click the link below. Don’t worry if you already have hosting with another company. They will transfer your site for free for first time customers. So, there’s no reason not to switch to SiteGround today. Trust me, you’ll save yourself plenty of time and aggravation in the long run by getting started with the right hosting company. GOOD LUCK!