In this day and age, most people turn to the internet for all kinds of information, including bits about the latest products and services. The internet’s absolute power makes it the ideal platform for any individual or organization to make their presence known.
Most business entities already perceive having an online presence as an absolute necessity, a crucial factor for growth and survival. And for that, they turn to web hosting services to help them build their brand. In this article, we’ll walk you through some of the best web hosting services offering all the tools you may need to build your dream website.
What Are Web Hosting Services?
Web hosting services are pre-packaged services that offer everything an individual or company needs to present information through a dedicated website on the internet. As is the case with most creative or technical projects, creating a website requires a lot of expertise and procedures. The whole process makes use of separate software to get the job done. And with a web hosting service, you won’t need to be a computer geek or a programmer to be able to build your own site.
What Can You Get From a Web Hosting Service?
Web hosting services prioritize providing a safe space for your data on the server. But they can do so much more than just babysitting your data. Web hosting services are supposed to handle all processes related to website management. That includes everything from creating a domain to migrating your data. Most are also highly integrated with third-party tools that you might need along the way. This integration usually encompasses domain-based email hubs, and content management and design tools. It also includes tools to configure interactive functions within the website. There’s just an endless number of features to work with. Let’s take a look at some of those features in more detail.
The majority of web hosting providers require individuals or organizations to have their own domain names. A domain name is a unique name to your website and email affiliates. It helps internet users to distinguish your website from the rest of the websites on the internet. This can also be the basis for creating your own domain-based email account.
This is normally done either through the help of a built-in or external mail hosting service. Most web hosting services can help you create a unique domain name by automatically cross-referencing your choices of an existing database of domain names. Select web hosting services also carry native support for email hosting. This essentially provides a space for you to create, receive and manage emails with the chosen domain tail (e.g., email@example.com)
File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a program that handles the transfer of files from one computer to another. An FTP allows users to upload documents from any local computer onto the internet server. The upload process allows your content to have its own space online and makes it visible over the internet. In order to connect to an FTP server, you’ll need a username and password to be provided by the web hosting service. The FTP server will also require you to select a mode of transfer for each file.
There are two modes of FTP transfer: plain text (ASCII) and binary. Binary files like images, programs, and music files require a binary mode of transfer. Meanwhile, standard text files require an ASCII mode of transfer. Most FTP servers are sensitive about data type settings. This means users must exercise extra vigilance when it comes to filling in the appropriate mode of transfer for files.
Website Building Tools
Most web hosting services offer managed integration with WordPress. WordPress is an open-sourced content management software used to publish all types of content on the internet. Millions of users around the world rely on WordPress to weave all types of online content for their individual blogs or company websites. WordPress runs over 25% of websites on the internet. Its widespread popularity is due in part to the fact that users don’t need special knowledge on web-based editing to run it. It also offers an excellent set of tools for editing and managing content.
One of the core functions of a web hosting service is to provide a safe space to store your data while it’s online. In exchange for a monthly fee, web hosting services provide you with a safe space to store your data. That storage space may cover everything from content that you’ve already posted online to data that you’re saving for some other purpose. The web hosting service also helps you monitor data traffic. Data traffic lets you know how many people have visited your website within any given period. They also employ security protocols. These are designed to help your website dodge potential attempts at hacking or other forms of cyber-attacks.
The majority of web hosting solutions nowadays employ HTTPs encryption protocols for all websites. HTTPS is an advanced security protocol that ensures data is protected as it travels through the network. It’s often used to protect sensitive transactions such as product purchases or the exchange of sensitive personal information.
Most web hosting services also offer the option to migrate your data from other web hosting services onto a new one. This procedure is called account transfer. Account transfers can be done either manually by the website owner or automatically upon request of the owner to the web hosting service. And since data storage is such a crucial part of business regardless of your business type, you might want to check out this piece on the very best storage providers for your business.
Best Web Hosting Providers to Help You Create Stunning Websites
Web hosting services are becoming increasingly popular over time, and there is currently a wide selection of services available to meet all of your web hosting needs. All provide different levels of features, performance, ease of use, and price ranges. But how do you determine what’s right for you? In this review, we’ll examine some of the most popular and reputable web hosting services available, so you can invest in the right web hosting package.
DreamHost may not be as prominent as GoDaddy or Bluehost, but it is nevertheless a trusted brand in the web publishing community. The web hosting service has been active for more than 25 years, and it has hosted approximately 1.5 million websites during that period. Like with other web hosting services, you can create your own domain names with the help of the program. DreamHost also offers exceptional speed and availability, the two key measures for performance in web hosting services.
DreamHost excels at cloud hosting, a hosting service where the system resources (e.g., RAM and CPU) come from multiple servers. This acts as a buffer for the website to help ensure it keeps running regardless of external factors that may affect the servers. DreamHost also offers unique WordPress packages designed especially for their shared or VPS hosting packages. If you want to make the most out of WordPress, the Managed WordPress account comes highly recommended. This includes everything you need to work with WordPress, not to mention automatic updates to ensure your software is up to date. There’s also a built-in content management software for those who don’t want the paid WordPress package.
The web hosting service offers two shared plans: a Shared Starter and a Shared Unlimited plan. Shared plans insert your website data into a server containing other website data in order to share system resources with them. It’s a lot like a room-sharing agreement between a bunch of people who don’t know each other. The Starter plan is intended for a single website and comes with a total of six databases and 50 GB of storage. The Unlimited plan, on the other hand, offers the complete package with email accounts, unlimited storage, and unlimited databases. Both packages include eight backups and 24-hour chat and email support.
2. Liquid Web
Organizations need durable web hosting services to preserve their online presence, and LiquidWeb is one that many brand names count on. The company offers enterprise-class servers for larger-scale businesses. One of the service’s key features and its major selling point has to do with managed hosting.
With managed hosting, the organization doesn’t host its servers onsite; they are instead kept at the web hosting service’s data center. That may sound like something that every web server does, but Liquid Web goes further than simply providing remote storage for company servers. The service handles all of the website’s administrative tasks regardless of how complex or mundane those tasks might be. And as you can probably guess, this type of solution is designed mainly with big businesses in mind.
Liquid Web does not offer shared hosting, but it does offer a wide variety of other hosting types. That includes a virtual private server (VPN), dedicated, reseller, cloud, and WordPress server packages. If you want a server with significant power at an affordable price, you can look into VPS hosting. VPS hosting a form of shared hosting that makes use of more powerful system resources.
However, if you’re aiming to build a crash-proof website, then a dedicated web server package comes recommended. With dedicated hosting, your website will receive the full support and resources of a server that is dedicated solely to the website. Another option would be the WordPress managed web hosting service, which is integrated with the Nexcess brand. This service offers one-click installs, automated updates, and WordPress plugins. Another option would be cloud hosting, which taps into multiple servers’ resources as a safety net in case anything happens.
3. AccuWeb Hosting
AccuWeb is another one of the standouts among the web hosting community. It offers many robust pricing plans that offer plenty of flexibility. Unlike Liquid Web that specializes in dedicated servers, AccuWeb offers shared hosting services with a wide variety of shared Linux and Windows hosting plans. Sharing system resources with other websites on the same server helps to lower overall costs resulting in cheaper web hosting plans.
There are 12 different hosting plans to choose from, six each for Linux and Windows options. You can go for the lower-end Linux solid-state web servers or the higher-end Windows-based Enterprise package. One downside to this program is that it doesn’t offer single-month shared options, which are favored by people who have really short-term projects or limited budgets for data storage.
The web hosting service also offers virtual private server (VPS) hosting, which uses dedicated system resources to handle an upsurge in data traffic. Much like the shared server option, you will also be renting a portion of a server, except that your website will be extra isolated from other server companions.
There’s a variety of VPS server plans available, but the most popular ones are Linux VPS Mercury and Windows VPS Emerald. However, if you want a very serious and professional option, you can go for dedicated hosting servers. There are two plans available for dedicated servers: a basic plan and an advanced plan. Naturally, the basic plan offers less storage than the advanced plan, but both plans let you create unlimited email accounts. They also offer special plans for websites with extra needs in the form of archiving and production.
HostWinds is a powerful and flexible web hosting service offering a generous array of web hosting options. The program offers every type of server that you can think of, from the low-cost shared servers to more expensive dedicated servers and reseller hosting packages. If you’re running a simple website that doesn’t gobble up system resources, you can try the lower-cost shared server package.
When it comes to shared servers, HostWinds has three offerings: Basic, Advanced, and Ultimate. The basic package can run a single domain and arrives with unlimited monthly data transfers and unlimited storage. Meanwhile, the advanced and ultimate options can run six domains and an unlimited number of domains, respectively. Unfortunately, HostWinds lacks Windows-based plans, but they nevertheless have so much to offer for Linux-based plans.
If you’re running a website with a steady stream of large traffic, a dedicated server might be the appropriate solution. You can choose between the prefabricated and customized shared server hosting plans. The base price for both services is USD 75, but this can go much higher depending on the extent of customization. The dedicated servers are configurable, which means you can have the hard drive storage, SSD storage, and RAM upgraded as you see fit.
HostWinds servers are also able to support WordPress content management, should that be your preferred content manager. There’s also a cloud hosting option for conservative website owners. The cloud hosting option disperses system resources across multiple servers. This should help keep it running even when the main server goes down. Finally, there’s a reseller hosting option that allows you to lease the existing server space to another individual or company.
HostGator is another web hosting service that covers all web hosting types. But out of all the available web server hosting options, its most notable service would be its shared hosting package. HostGator offers several plans for Linux and Windows systems. The basic option, also called the Hatchling plan, caters to a single domain. This plan should give you an unlimited amount of everything, including disk space, email addresses, and monthly data transfers.
The services are also readily-compatible with a wide variety of external content management software and e-commerce software. Next to the Hatchling plan is the Baby plan, which can accommodate an unlimited number of domains. Meanwhile, those with special concerns regarding website performance might benefit from the Business plan model. This plan has plenty of perks, including toll-free numbers for your business plus a secure socket layer (SSL) for your website.
HostGator offers virtual private server (VPS) hosting. With VPS hosting, multiple sites still exist on the server, but there’s less of them on a VPS server compared to the standard shared server. There are VPS options for both Linux and Windows-based systems, although Linux-based systems appear to dominate. They also offer dedicated server hosting packages for websites that experience heavy traffic. Their dedicated servers are highly efficient and fully customizable when it comes to the amount of SSD storage, RAM, and monthly data transfers.
There’s also a cloud storage package for Linux-based systems and a reseller hosting option for those who want to delve into the web hosting world without the hassle of maintaining physical equipment. Finally, WordPress is also easy to set up on the servers. There are three tiers available for managed WordPress hosting.
6. WP Engine
WP Engine is a managed hosting service for WordPress websites. The company’s business model focuses exclusively on managed hosting of WordPress sites—and nothing else. WP Engine doesn’t offer any shared hosting, dedicated hosting, VPS, or cloud hosting packages. As such, you’ll find a wide selection of useful tools across the board for security, migrations, site optimization, performance, and so much more. They also offer e-commerce tools, email marketing tools, Studio Press themes, and a comprehensive collection of the best WordPress plug-ins.
These are powerful tools with a high learning curve, which hints at the fact that the service is intended for people with some technical expertise. And of course, with such great value comes a steep price, and the pricing starts at USD 31 per month or USD 372 per year for a basic plan. But we dare say, it’s worth the investment considering the value you get in return.
WP Engine offers exceptional service on multiple fronts. They use a combination of custom technologies to ensure that your web pages will load quickly and consistently. When it comes to server performance, WP Engine gives customers a 99.95% server uptime guarantee. This means that for each website. the maximum downtime is only ideally at less than a day. WordPress promises hosting credits for customers who experience more than a day of downtime.
WP Engine also employs data traffic analysis to let you know the volume of visitors you have for any given period. Additionally, the system scans for and blocks potential threats and patches up vulnerabilities. They also offer 24/7 phone and live chat support run by a well-trained support team. On top of everything, they have a dedicated team of developers tasked with innovation, which means customers can only expect their services to get better over the years.
IONOS is another web hosting service provider offering reasonably-priced hosting packages. The web hosting service has a complete list of offerings that you could need: VPS, shared, dedicated, cloud, and WordPress hosting. But the one service that stands out the most is the cloud hosting plans. IONOS offers three separate tiers for shared hosting. The offers begin with an essential entry-level package that only costs USD 4 per month for the first year, then USD 6 the year thereafter.
The amount of storage, RAM, and system resources increases as you go up the different tiers. Naturally, the higher tiers would cost more per month than the basic package. Businesses with highly popular or in-demand websites might want to opt for the Expert plan. This plan can do a lot of heavy lifting with a provision of 100 email accounts, enhanced malware protection, and the capacity to handle 500 visitors per minute.
Those wanting a more powerful hosting solution can go for the cloud-powered VPS. There are four plans to choose from, and the starting plan for the basic package only costs an average of USD 2 per month. The different tiers offer increasing amounts of storage, RAM, and CPU allowances. They also offer managed and unmanaged cloud hosting, as well as customizable plans for cloud hosting. The basic plan for cloud hosting starts off at just USD 5 per month. They also offer several dedicated hosting services with four SSD and HDD packages. Users can choose from a variety of RAM sizes which begins with 16 GB and ends with 192 GB. All subscribers to the dedicated hosting plans get an SSL certificate for their websites plus 24/7 customer service support. On top of everything, they also offer several tiers of WordPress hosting for hassle-free website management and specialized support.
CloudWays is a cloud-based web hosting solution offering a comprehensive approach to your cloud hosting needs. As can be gleaned from the name, this service is focused almost entirely yon cloud hosting. Cloud hosting is essentially a managed service that taps into multiple servers’ system resources to run a single website. The reliance on multiple servers helps ensure that the website keeps running even when a server or multiple servers stop working. The cloud-based infrastructure lends itself well to websites with a growing online presence.
The service also marks the importance of web hosting management. The “managed” part of the service essentially offloads all technical tasks to the web host provider for a hassle-free experience on the part of the user. CloudWays also offers plenty of security features, including free SSL certificates, SSH-enabled file transfers, HTTP/2 encrypted servers, dedicated firewalls, security patches, and more.
CloudWays doesn’t offer much in the way of options for alternative hosting types, but they do offer options for the data centers where you want your data to be hosted. The options available are Digital Ocean, Linode, Vultr, Google Cloud, and Amazon Web Services. Digital Ocean, Linode, and Vultr offer what is known as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). In contrast, Google Cloud and Amazon Web Services offer what is known as Platforms as a Service (PaaS).
The former offers plenty of options for customization, whereas the latter mainly focuses on managed solutions. Another consideration would be the fact that IaaS is more suited for smaller startups, whereas PaaS is for larger businesses with substantial traffic. The web hosting plans start at USD 10 for a basic package, and the cost can scale further upwards to USD 1,035 for the most comprehensive packages.
GoDaddy is exceptionally popular in the hosting space, and it’s known for being the go-to service for absolute beginners. The service offers an easy and inexpensive way for users to create a domain name and sign up for web hosting to start establishing their online presence. GoDaddy may have become popular for their domain name services, but they also offer web hosting services of different types. The only thing they don’t offer is cloud hosting, which is widely available in other services.
There are three tiers for shared hosting: Economy, Deluxe, and Ultimate. The Economy package is intended for a single website and will already get you 100 GB of storage, plus unlimited data transfers. The Deluxe package improves upon the basics with unlimited storage and domains. Meanwhile, the Ultimate package comes with everything that the Deluxe package has to offer, plus a one-year SSL certificate.
GoDaddy is also home to other hosting options, including VPS hosting for Linux and Windows-based servers. The most you can get from a VPS plan is 8 GB of RAM, 240 GB of storage, and a free SSL for one year. This amount of storage and RAM is already more than enough to run a single website.
GoDaddy offers discounts for long-term subscriptions, which can cut your total monthly costs to more than half. They also offer dedicated hosting packaged into four tiers. The most you can get with dedicated hosting is 256 GB of RAM and 16 TB of storage. WordPress comes pre-installed onto the program, but you’ll have to get a managed WordPress plan to get storage space and staging areas. They also offer a two-tiered reseller option for people who want to lease their server space to other users.
Wix is an easy-to-use web hosting service that radically simplifies the website creation process. The service offers a variety of reasonably-priced packages for managing website content. The starting price for the packages is USD 14 per month. A basic subscription will get you 3 GB of storage and 2 GB of monthly data transfers to the full. Going up the tiers would mean higher storage and monthly transfer allocations.
They also offer business and e-commerce plans for websites that need extra tools to manage the sale of products. These plans cost anywhere between USD 23 and USD 49 per month. Meanwhile, they also offer Enterprise-level plans for bigger brands with busier websites, and pricing starts at USD 500 per month. You can also create a website without paying anything, but you’ll have to wade through a series of advertisements.
The service offers heavy customization, a feature that makes it stand out from the competition. There’s a wide selection of design templates plus a chockful of editing tools. The wide selection of editing tools lets you conduct in-depth editing of your website content. That includes everything from text, media, social media widgets, buttons, shapes, and so much more. For every other software you need to integrate with your website but isn’t natively available, you can turn to the App Market. The program also makes it possible to embed HTML or incorporate SoundCloud or Spotify playlists into your website.
Wix recently introduced an alternative website builder called the Editor X too. The builder offers various sophisticated design templates and a wide selection of editing tools for in-depth and very detailed editing. The program also allows integration with Web-Stat apps or Google Analytics to perform site-traffic analysis and reporting.
Final Thoughts on the Best Web Hosting Services
When picking the very best web hosting, there are hundreds of providers to compare. And all supply different degrees of essential features, efficiency, ease of use, security, and pricing structures—not to mention different payment schedules and warranty policies. Before you jump into any of these services, make sure to research the different web hosting types and the different features that come with them.
Web hosting has a steep learning curve, which can be challenging for people without formal training on internet technology. It would help to have estimates on the specifications your website will need, such as an estimate of the traffic volume. These factors play a crucial role in your decision-making and will help you find the right deal without lacking or wasting resources. If you would like additional information on available resources, check out this article about the best website builders for e-commerce and blogs.