Finding a good web hosting can take a lot of time and money.
To date, we’ve signed up, tested and reviewed over 30 different web hosting companies.
This also means that we have performance data.
Uptime and load time are two of the most important factors when choosing a web host (next to their cost).
1. Bluehost – Best Uptime Hosting ($2.75/mo)
+ Best Uptime (99.99%)
+ Fast Load Time (0.41ms)
+ Cheap “Intro” Cost ($2.75/mo)
+ Easy to Use and Signup
+ Fast Support (Live Chat and Phone)
+ 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
– No Free Site Migrations
Bluehost is our top-rated web hosting company because their last 16-month uptime and speed is very strong – 99.99% and 0.41ms respectively.
Their 3-year introductory price is $2.75/mo and that comes with features like free domain name, website builder and one-click install for WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal. So for starters (someone without a website), this is probably the best option. They also have a 30-day money-back guarantee.
They use their built-in admin panel (along with cPanel) that makes setting up and managing websites very simple and straightforward.
While their bandwidth is unmetered, the maximum storage varies from 50GB to unlimited – depending on which plan you choose. We recommend getting the prime plan for the most value.
SSL certificate (HTTPS://) is included for free on all plans as well as email accounts. You can let Bluehost transfer your existing website to their hosting environment, but this will cost $149 per website.
2. HostGator Cloud – Most Unlimited Hosting ($2.99/mo)
HostGator Cloud Pros:
+ Good Uptime (99.98%)
+ Fast Load Time (0.43ms)
+ FREE Site Migration (1)
+ No Bandwidth/Storage Limit
+ Unlimited Email Accounts
+ Free SSL Included
HostGator Cloud Cons:
– Higher Renewal Cost
HostGator cloud hosting offers its users unlimited bandwidth, storage space, and email accounts.
On top of that, they have free site migration if you decide to transfer your website from another host without the hassle. Their last 16-month performance stats aren’t bad either, 432ms load time and 99.98% uptime.
They’re one of the fastest hosts we’ve reviewed, their servers are perfect for WordPress websites. Most of their data centers are based in the US, but the host does well to serve European clients too.
Before you sign up, be sure with the higher renewal prices that start right after your billing period ends. For example, the $2.99 is for the first 1-6 months, then the price jumps to $9.95 – $14.95/mo.
They do have fast and efficient live chat, SSL certificate is included as well as daily backups.
If you need a scalable hosting, HostGator Cloud is probably your best option.
3. Hostinger – Cheapest Web Hosting ($0.80/mo)
+ Fast Load Time (0.37ms)
+ Cheapest Plan ($0.80/mo)
+ Datacenters in 7 Regions
+ FREE Domain Name (1 year)
+ Uptime Guarantee
+ 30 Days Money Back
– SSL Not Included
Hostinger is one of the cheapest hosting providers that costs only $0.80/mo when choosing their longest (48 months) subscription.
They have data centers and servers across the world in seven different regions.
While being one of the cheapest, they still manage to achieve a just “okay” uptime of 99.91%. If we were to count only the last 15-months instead of 16-months, then their uptime would be a solid 99.97%. Their average page load time is very fast though, only 0.37ms.
Bandwidth and databases are unlimited unless you choose the “Single Web Hosting” plan. With the latter you’ll be limited to 10GB of disk space, 100GB of bandwidth, one MySQL database, and one email account.
Unfortunately, not everything is cheap. The important add-ons which aren’t included in the basic plans are priority support and SSL certificate which will set you back some more money.
Similarly to Bluehost, they too offer a 30-day money-back guarantee on all the hosting plans.
4. SiteGround – Best WordPress Support ($3.95/mo)
+ Very Good Uptime (99.99%)
+ Fast and Knowledgeable Support
+ High-Performance WordPress Hosting
+ Free Site Migration
+ Easy to Use, includes cPanel
– ‘Setup Fee’ for Monthly Billing
– Limited Storage Space
With an introductory rate of $3.95/month (for a minimum of 12-months) and a renewal rate of $11.95/month, SiteGround is not the cheapest web host on our list.
And sure, you can probably justify this hefty price tag by pointing to their free SSL certificates, site migration, CDN, email accounts, and daily backups.
Or the impressive WordPress features, intuitive cPanel and highly knowledgeable support team…
… But when you consider that your site will be limited to only 10GB of storage space, 10,000 monthly visits, and a ‘fast-but-not-fast-enough’ speed of 713ms, it starts to become a harder sell.
However, on the good side, they have data centers across US, Europe and Asia, a strong reputation in the marketplace, and plenty to offer new customers. But you can get more bang for your buck by using one of our top three hosts like Bluehost or HostGator.
5. GoDaddy – Most Popular Web Host ($3.66/mo)
+ Good Uptime (99.97%)
+ Fast Load Time (0.52ms)
+ Many Great Features
+ Well Known Brand
– Unreliable Support
– Emails, Backups, and SSL Cost Extra
GoDaddy’s brand is easily one of the most well-known domain registrars and hosting provider on the market.
But is their reputation well deserved when it comes to performance and delivering fast page speed?
While their page loading speed is relatively fast, just above 500ms, their uptime isn’t ideal – 99.97%.
A glance at what they offer – a 99.99% uptime guarantee, 100GB of website storage (a lot), unmetered bandwidth and free trial for their website builder, seems like a too good deal.
But when you look at the sheer number of highly pried upsells and sneaky marketing tricks (like charging for site backups, SSL certificates, email accounts, and more), it becomes harder and harder to give credence to the brand’s reputation.
In addition to the many shameless money grabs the present inside of GoDaddy’s pricing structure, the inefficacy of their customer support team and lack of compelling freebies (like the industry-standard SSL certificate and unlimited email accounts) makes us hard-pressed to recommend them above any of the aforementioned hosts.
6. WebHostingBuzz – Small, But Reliable Web Host ($4.99/mo)
+ Good Load Time (0.47ms)
+ Excellent Support
+ 45-Day Money Back Guarantee
+ Free Migrations & Domain Name
+ Solid Uptime (99.98%)
– Payment Terms
Founded in 2002, WebHostingBuzz is specialized in the UK web hosting market.
With more than 250+ server locations worldwide, site load times of only 474ms, and a 99.98% average uptime (which is almost as good as what they advertise) this “under the radar behemoth” brings a lot of value to the table.
Their customer support is some of the best we’ve ever experienced–we had all of our (very technical) questions answered in a matter of minutes–and, when you consider that they offer a 45-day money-back guarantee, unlimited bandwidth, 20GB disk space, free site migrations, and a free domain at only $4.99/month… they appear like one of the best hosts on our list.
However, with a 12-month minimum payment term and a 48-month minimum for the advertised price of $4.99, you can get a lot more for your money with another provider.
A2 Hosting Pros:
+ Fastest Load Time (0.34ms)
+ Quick and Efficient Support
+ Free Site Migration
+ Compatible With Common CMS’s
A2 Hosting Cons:
– Uptime could be better (99.92%)
– Restrictions on Cheapest Plan
US-based A2 Hosting is the fastest shared web hosting we’ve tested to date.
Hands down, they’ve managed to achieve 336ms average load time over a period of 16-months. All of their plans offer unlimited bandwidth and storage, responsive customer support (phone and live chat), free SSL certificate, site migration, and domain name…
It’s easy to see why A2 Hosting was almost our favorite host on this list.
However, they were held back from a top-three spot due to two big problems.
First and foremost, their uptimes. With an average uptime of 99.92%, the unreliability of A2’s hosting simply won’t meet the needs of most webmasters.
Furthermore, there are some hefty restrictions placed on their basic web hosting package: like the one-website limit, five database limit, exclusion of addon domains, and WordPress cache limitations. If you want to avoid the limitations, you just need to choose a more flexible hosting plan.
Although they are still one of our favorite hosts, with a $3.92/month price tag renewed at $9.99/month, we can’t recommend them above providers like Hostinger.
8. iPage – Best for Small Websites ($1.99/mo)
+ Strong Uptime (99.97%)
+ Enhanced Security Options
+ Cheap Inexpensive Hosting ($1.99/mo)
+ Upfront Pricing
– Expensive Domain Names
– No cPanel
iPage hosting brings a lot to the table.
From 99.97% uptimes, upfront and affordable pricing – $1.99/mo for the first three years then $7.99/mo, free 24/7 live chat and over the phone support, unlimited bandwidth, storage, and domain names and a free SSL certificate and email address… iPage has a lot to offer.
But, as with A2 Hosting, there are a few things that stopped iPage from earning a higher ranking on our list.
Specifically, iPage charges $17/year per domain, $150 for every site transfer, and offers a below-average site speed of only 787ms (the slowest of our top ten hosts).
Furthermore, they don’t offer cPanel access and the purported “unlimited” bandwidth and storage aren’t quite what they appear to be.
If you need a fast, feature-rich, and fully equipped website to grow your online business, iPage simply doesn’t cut it. Yet, it might be a solid option for beginners with less money to spend on web hosting.
9. Dreamhost – Best for Web Developers ($2.59/mo)
+ Knowledgeable Support
+ 97-Day Money-Back Guarantee
+ Unlimited Bandwidth
+ They’re Carbon Neutral
– Possible Delayed Setup
– No cPanel
With more than 400,000 active customers and a hosting roster of more than 1.5 million websites, DreamHost is one of the biggest players in the web hosting game.
Founded in 1996 and offering pricing plans that start at only $2.59/mo (for the first 12-months), they’re also one of the oldest and cheapest.
However, there are a few key issues that prevent us from giving them a full endorsement.
Although they offer fast load times of 719ms, a 99.96% average uptimes, a 97-day money-back guarantee, and completely unlimited bandwidth, the complete lack of live chat support and a traditional cPanel (in all fairness they do offer their own unique cPanel… but as web professionals, we weren’t fans) makes Dreamhost a hard sell.
With so many amazing hosts out there, DreamHost simply doesn’t offer anything that you can’t get from another host at the same price.
10. GreenGeeks – Best Green Web Host ($2.95/mo)
+ Good Uptime (99.95%)
+ Fast Load Time (0.49ms)
+ Free Domain Name & Migration
– Higher Renewal Rates
– Questionable Refund Policy
With 99.95% uptimes and load speeds of 493ms, GreenGeeks offers fast and reliable hosting at an affordable rate of $2.95/month.
Add to this their feature-rich bonuses, high-quality customer support, and environmentally friendly practices and it’s easy to see how GreenGeeks are quickly carving out a name for themselves in a wildly oversaturated market.
If you decide to purchase their “Eco-site Starter”, your patronage will be rewarded with unlimited bandwidth, storage, and email accounts, a free SSL certificate, free domain (for the first year–then $13.95/year after), and free website migration.
Their customer service is responsive, helpful, and available through live chat, email, and over the phone.
Unfortunately, the $9.95/month renewal rate, limited data centers (located in the U.S. and Netherlands only) and questionable refund policy may dissuade some webmasters from choosing GreenGeeks over other hosting providers.
All 32 Web Hosts Reviewed…
|RANK||WEB HOST||COST||SUPPORT||UPTIME||LOAD TIME||OUR RATING|
|6||Web Hosting Buzz||$4.99/mo||10/10||99.98%||474ms||★★★★|
|11||A Small Orange||$5.92/mo||10/10||99.98%||682ms||★★★|
|23||Web Hosting Hub||$4.99/mo||7/10||99.96%||719ms||★★|