Choosing the best hosting for a WordPress website is definitely one of the most critical decisions that a website owner has to make.
Even though hosting isn’t directly visible to the visitors, it may have a huge impact on the success of a website in a long run.
Sometimes hosting can be a limiting factor of growth for some websites. Even worse, some websites get completely destroyed because of bad hosting.
That being said, it is important to educate yourself so that you can make a wise decision on different hosting options that are available on the market today and choose the one that works the best for you.
Figuring out what is the best hosting service for your website as early as possible can make a huge difference when it comes to a success of your website.
It can give you a significant advantage over your competitors right at the start which compounds over time into much bigger benefits.
In order to get an overview of how good hosting can help your new website stand out, here are some positive impacts of good hosting:
- It can save you a lot of time and money.
- It can boost your rankings in Google.
- It can help you stand out from the competition.
- It can increase conversion rates of your WooCommerce shop.
- It can increase your email opt-in rate.
- And many more…
At the end of this article, you will be able to determine what is the best WordPress hosting service for your website in terms of performance, speed, security, cost, and more.
Keep reading for all secret tips and tricks or skip to the end for comparison, pros, and cons of each hosting option.
- Good hosting saves time and makes money
- Do you really get what you pay for?
- What is WordPress hosting?
- The Best hosting services for WordPress sites
- Is there a free WordPress hosting service?
- What is a shared WordPress hosting?
- What is a VPS WordPress hosting?
- What is a managed WordPress hosting?
- 10 metrics to help you choose ideal hosting for YOUR WordPress site
- How to find a perfect hosting plan?
- When to choose Shared WordPress Hosting?
- When to choose VPS WordPress hosting?
- When to choose managed WordPress hosting?
- WordPress hosting timeline: When to change hosting service?
Good hosting saves time and makes money
Yep, it’s true! Hosting that perfectly fits your website needs can actually make you money.
Are you just starting out?
Even if you aren’t a beginner, you’re probably overwhelmed with many things that need to be done in order to keep the constant growth of your website, content creation, SEO, website performance, conversion rates, monetization, analytics, email marketing…
You might be overwhelmed.
But, folks who already successfully started many websites may confirm that even more questions and problems will arise soon.
In order to minimize potential problems with your WordPress website, it is crucial to choose a hosting provider that perfectly fits your website needs. (All information needed to choose best hosting for your website are provided in this article.)
Choosing a right WordPress hosting for your website will save your valuable time so that you can keep working on the website instead of fixing the website.
Also, it will keep your precious money in the pocket, but not make you pay big bucks for expensive hosting packages that come with a bunch of irrelevant services that you won’t use.
Even better, good hosting won’t just save you money, if picked wisely, it can make you more money.
Good hosting won’t just save you time and money, its high performance will ensure you get a small boost over the competitors who didn’t choose their hosting service wisely.
Do you really get what you pay for?
You may read on the web that performance of a hosting depends on how much money you pay for it on a monthly basis.
Today, it’s still true. But there are a couple of tips and tricks that no one will tell you which can save you a tremendous amount of money in the long run.
And still, provide huge performance that’s much better than some of those expensive hosting packages you maybe even use at the moment.
Keep reading because there are some better hosting options for you to choose from.
What is WordPress hosting?
When you search for something, in order to find a perfect option or a solution, you must know exactly what you are looking for.
Before choosing the type of hosting that works the best for you and your website, it’s important to know the basics.
WordPress hosting is a service provided by a company known as hosting service provider. Hosting provider literally gives you space on their servers (a computer connected to the Internet) where you can store your website files and data.
When it’s set up correctly, visitors can request access your website anytime from anywhere in the world and server should return a response as soon as possible to ensure high visitor satisfaction through a high level of performance.
How is WordPress hosting charged?
Hosting service is usually charged on a monthly basis. Some shared and managed WordPress hosting providers approve discounts on yearly plans.
When choosing WordPress hosting provider, you should search for the one that offers cheapest hosting service which will ensure a maximum possible level of performance and security for your website.
Most of the time you don’t want to go with the cheapest possible service since it won’t provide enough level of performance and security.
The Best hosting services for WordPress sites
There are many hosting options available today for you to choose from.
But if you want to build ultra-fast, secure and successful WordPress website, you should consider one of following three:
- Shared WordPress hosting
- Managed WordPress hosting
- VPS WordPress hosting.
Each one has its own pros and cons which will be explained in details in next few paragraphs.
By knowing each option in details you will be able to choose the one that will give you maximum performance and security for your money.
Is there a free WordPress hosting service?
Yes, there are a couple of free ways to host your WordPress website.
A reason that free WordPress hosting service wasn’t listed as an option above is due to the fact that it comes with many limitations which can slow down your website growth and sometimes even kill it.
Most common limitations of free WordPress hosting are:
- Limited disk space and bandwidth
- 3rd party advertisements
- No customer support
- No primary domain name
- Variable uptime
- Security issues
- Bad performance
- and many more…
Even though it’s free, there is always something you have to give in exchange. In this case, it’s not a money, it’s one or more limitations listed above.
When it comes to building your WordPress website, you don’t want to be limited in any way. You want to be boss of your own website. You want to control your success.
That being said, if you are about to build any serious website that isn’t intended for testing or training purposes, run away from “free” hosting services. Because of too many limiting factors, it’s just not worth it.
Keep reading to find out which hosting services is a perfect fit for you and your website.
What is a shared WordPress hosting?
Shared hosting is definitely a most popular option when it comes to WordPress hosting services.
It’s recommended to beginners due to its low entry price and simplicity in use.
If you host your WordPress website with a shared hosting option, your website will be hosted on a server together with many other websites.
A number of websites hosted on the same server depend solely on hosting provider. Sometimes there are even hundreds of website hosted on one single server.
Since websites are hosted on the same physical server, they share same resources with each other.
This means that if one website on the server is overwhelmed with too many requests, performance issues which will arise will impact all other websites too.
Needless to say that if one website is hacked, security of all other websites on the hosting server is endangered. Your website data may be stolen or even lost forever.
Even though resources are shared, and that can hurt website performance, to overcome this issue, most hosting service providers developed various custom caching solutions.
But still, you will never be able to achieve ultra-fast website speeds as if your website is hosted on VPS, dedicated or managed WordPress hosting.
Shared hosting providers are getting better and better at securing their servers occupied by shared hosting plans.
Even if something bad happens on the server, usually there are multiple copies of whole servers stored somewhere on their network (also known as backups) which may be restored at any time if necessary. Restoring takes time during which your website may be offline.
If you are a beginner, there are many valuable benefits you get if starting with shared hosting:
- Free 1-year domain name + privacy
- Free new WordPress installation or website transfer
- Easy and fast out of the box setup
- Website/hosting control panel
- Free mailing server and email setup
- Website backups
- 24/7 support.
Biggest drawbacks of shared WordPress hosting are definitely bad website performance in terms of speed and questionable server security due to the fact that many unknown websites are hosted on the same server.
Limited performance and security are sacrificed for cheap hosting price, but you get everything that is needed to launch your WordPress website as soon as possible.
Check this video to get more details on how shared hosting is explained in correlation to renting a hotel room:
What is a VPS WordPress hosting?
VPS stands for Virtual Private Server.
In VPS hosting environment, one physical server is divided into multiple virtual instances (due to virtualization technology). Each instance is one independent VPS with its own operating system, a defined amount of memory (RAM), processing power (CPU) and disk space (SSD) (privacy and resources guaranteed).
Even though multiple WordPress websites are still on the same physical server, they aren’t connected in any way. Each website is hosted on its own VPS with guaranteed privacy and dedicated resources.
Here are some benefits that come with VPS WordPress hosting:
- Dedicated server resources (disk, memory and processing power).
- Performance and security.
- Full control over configuration.
There is one and critical drawback of VPS which is limiting many websites from using it despite amazing performance.
When starting with VPS, you literally get a blank installation of OS installed on it. In order to run WordPress website on VPS hosting, first, it has to be configured.
VPS configuration may be a tricky part for someone who is just starting with WordPress. Advanced system administration knowledge is needed to make the most of VPS environment.
If server configuration isn’t done correctly, your WordPress website may experience even worse performance and security than if it’s hosted in a shared hosting environment.
VPS hosting is popular among developers who know how to squeeze each and every bit of performance out of it.
As you may guess, WP Goblin is also hosted on VPS utilizing all benefits that it provides.
VPS is a little bit more expensive than shared hosting, but it’s definitely worth it. Some websites, go with VPS as even a cheaper option than shared hosting by abusing its ability on manual configuration of multiple layers of caching.
Want to use all benefits of VPS on your website, but still not sure how to set it up? It’s your lucky day! We created an ultimate step-by-step guide on how to set up VPS hosting for WordPress.
Dedicated WordPress hosting
Dedicated WordPress hosting is enhanced version of VPS hosting.
In a dedicated hosting environment, a 100% of physical server resources are reserved for only one user. If your website is hosted on a dedicated hosting machine, there is you and only you.
Physical server machines may be equipped with a substantial amount of memory, processing power, and disk space what makes them super powerful.
With its power also comes a big price. That’s why dedicated hosting services are only used by big established websites (businesses) with huge amounts of concurrent traffic and big monthly earnings.
Only big guys can afford to pay for this powerful hosting monsters. Of course, if they really need it.
Don’t spend money on something you don’t need just for the sake of “additional performance” or “prestige”.
Most WordPress websites will never have a need to use dedicated hosting since VPS or managed hosting can handle even thousands of concurrent requests.
Before you go to the next chapter where we talk about managed WordPress hosting, check this video which explains the difference between shared, VPS and dedicated hosting:
What is a managed WordPress hosting?
Managed WordPress hosting is hosting solution that combines all the best features of both, VPS and shared hosting.
In nutshell, it’s highly optimized WordPress oriented VPS hosting managed by hosting service provider.
Managed WordPress hosting comes with ultimate performance and security that comes from the point that it’s VPS server optimized specifically for WordPress.
To ensure a maximum possible level of performance and security for your WordPress site, managed hosting provider deals with all hardware and software updates and all other things that need to be done to keep your website running full power mode.
For example, when a new security update or version of PHP is released, your hosting provider will ensure that it is installed on your server as soon as possible so that you can take advantage of all benefits that come with it.
Or even better, let’s say you’re in the middle of a new product launch. You promote it like hell, on all social networks, your partners promote it, you push it via push notifications and through your email list and if you’re lucky, it may go viral.
As you know, when a request towards your website is made, a small portion of resources is used by a server to return a response.
If hundreds of requests come at the same time, your server may go out of resources what will make your website slow, or even worse, it may crash in the middle of product launch.
This will not be the case if you host a website with managed hosting service. As soon as there is a need for more processing power or memory, hosting service provider will scale your resources automatically to keep your website up and running.
It’s very easy to start with managed hosting since everything is set up for you upfront by hosting service provider and even if you’re stuck somewhere in the process, there is usually a step by step guide or even experienced 24/7 customer service at your disposal.
Most shared hosting solutions rely on cPanel as their main hosting management platform while managed hosting comes with a user-oriented custom-made hosting management dashboard solution which incorporates many other tools that will help you run your website with ease.
Additional tools that you get with managed hosting are tools for managing backups, scalability, staging environments, caching and more.
99% of tools that you might need to manage your website are there for you to use it. If you run a small to medium website, most of the tools you won’t need, but still, they are here in case you ever need them.
Why would you ever consider something else, if managed WordPress hosting is perfect since it comes with all the best features of shared and VPS hosting?
Its price tag is something that prevents beginners and many others from using it. It’s really pricey, so if your website isn’t earning any money, you probably won’t go for a managed hosting solution.
Check out this video on how managed WordPress hosting compares to shared and VPS hosting:
10 metrics to help you choose ideal hosting for YOUR WordPress site
Now when you know the differences between each hosting service, maybe you’re on track to find what type of hosting is right for you and your website. But still, there are a couple of important things you have to keep in mind before making a final decision.
In order to reduce hosting expenses and push your website performance to the next level, some of the following stuff can even make you change your initial decision.
Don’t worry, it’s ok!
There are two crucial questions that you should answer before picking an ideal hosting for your website:
- What type of hosting is a good fit for my website?
- What type of hosting is a good fit for me as an owner?
Most beginners usually forget about the second question what makes them waste a lot of time dealing with hosting administration rather than working on their site.
Next few sections will help you to determine best hosting service that perfectly fits both, you as an owner and your website.
Don’t make beginners mistake, keep reading.
Installation and migration
If you are just starting out with WordPress and you aren’t a developer, setting up your first WordPress website from scratch may be a little bit overwhelming.
Performing a website transfer or fresh installation can be tricky even for established WordPress administrators since it requires more than basic WordPress knowledge.
Actually, you don’t even need to know this stuff. You’re covered with a couple of options.
Shared and managed WordPress hosting services come with pre-installed WordPress on the server.
On the other hand, if you already have your blog hosted somewhere else, and want to replace current hosting service or hosting provider with a better option, with both hosting services often comes free of charge website transfer.
If you’re not satisfied with a performance of shared hosting don’t want to pay some more money to host your website with managed hosting, there is still VPS hosting option.
Yes, in order to set up WordPress website to run on VPS it’s good to have at least some knowledge of server administration.
Even if you don’t have server administration knowledge, no worries. You can still rip off all the benefits of VPS.
You can try to set up VPS by yourself by following our step by step VPS WordPress speed up guide. Every step is covered in details so that even someone who’s just starting out can set up its WordPress site with VPS.
If you don’t want to waste your time, we can set it up for you.
Speed and performance
Together with security, hosting speed and performance are probably most important factors that you should keep in mind when choosing a hosting service for your WordPress website.
Keep your ears wide open! This is critical stuff.
Shared hosting service will provide just enough speed and performance for you to lift brand new website off the ground.
Cheap shared hosting will be OK until your website gets some traction. The critical point is somewhere around couple thousands of visitors per month.
It may come sooner if you run none-cached eCommerce shop or a little bit later with a highly cached static blog.
That’s the point when you should definitely consider upgrading to some better hosting option.
It shouldn’t be a problem since up to this point your website should be generating some monthly cash flow. 😉
When there are thousands of sites on the same server operating at the same time, it just hurt’s the performance. No hard feelings, this is an inevitable outcome.
Bad performance is very noticeable especially when multiple requests are reaching the server at the same time. Sometimes when a server is running out of resources, a dozen requests can drastically slow down the site or even crash it.
Up to this point at least you can learn WordPress basics, set up your site and generate some content to get some traction from Google.
When it comes to WordPress speed and performance, VPS and managed hosting are coming from the totally different world.
Both options provide ultimate website performance since allocated resources are dedicated only to your website.
Excess of server resources waiting to serve only requests that are coming to your website can boost speed through the roof.
If set up correctly, small $5 VPS server can handle even thousands of simultaneous requests reaching your server. But, you have to do it by yourself.
With managed hosting, you get top performance for your WordPress site out of the box. It’s done for you.
You basically connect your domain to a managed hosting through DNS and you’re done. Easy no-brainer.
Server uptime is a number that shows how long your server was fully up and running in relation to total time passed. [Server uptime = Total server running time/Total time passed]
If 10 hours passed and in that period your website was up and running for 9 hours due to 1 hour of server downtime, given that, your server uptime is 90.00%.
Today, server uptime of 90% is considered really bad, but there is still no hosting company that can guarantee 100% server uptime.
Providing a consistent server uptime isn’t an easy task. There are many elements that can go wrong.
Shared hosting service providers like Siteground guarantee 99.996% server uptime.
Keeping hundreds of websites fully operative on the same server is a difficult task.
VPS service hosting provider Linode will guarantee server uptime of 99.99%.
Since you control the VPS, there are many uptime monitoring software packages that can be installed on the server which may alert you if something goes wrong.
Managed WordPress hosting service provider Kinsta will ensure server uptime of 99.99%.
Most of the time, managed hosting providers have systems in place which will check server uptime on a regular basis (i.e. every 5 minutes). If there is a problem, system administrators will be notified in a timely manner to get your website up and running as soon as possible.
By looking at server uptime percentages provided by the hosting providers, you may find that most of the websites will never experience any downtime.
There are some small differences between services, but in the end, server uptime isn’t something that should bother you too much when choosing a WordPress hosting.
All hosting service providers will ensure that your website is operative almost 24/7. No worries.
Website owners usually aren’t concerned about WordPress security until something bad happens. When a site is hacked, it’s too late to think about security.
You probably think, why would someone hack a small website with a couple thousand visitors which still isn’t earning big bucks. There’s no point, right?
Wrong! Small websites are easier to hack since their owners are occupied with some other “more important” stuff rather than security.
Hackers target big websites to steal customer data (usernames, passwords, emails…), while small websites are targeted due to their server resources.
Today, hackers steal website resources by installing mining software on the server to mine cryptocurrency. Even weeks can pass until you spot it.
This can drastically slow down a website to a point when it becomes unresponsive or it can even crash the whole server.
Thinking about security when damage is already done is too late. And, fixing the damage to recover from the hack takes a lot of time.
In the worst scenario, you may lose everything on the server together with website files, data, and media.
Restoring a backup takes up to 24 hours. But, if a backup is missing, you will have to set up everything from scratch which may take few weeks or even months to do.
During that time your website is not making any money and you’re screwed.
A better approach is to take website security seriously from the beginning.
I would rather invest few bucks every month for better hosting which offers backup and enhanced security rather than recovering broken site after a hacker attack.
Shared hosting is known as a less secure website hosting because hundreds of sites are hosted on the same server. And, if one is hacked, it can potentially impact other sites located on the same server.
This is true, but most of the time it isn’t the case because shared hosting providers are getting better and better in isolating each website to prevent any interaction among them (but resources are shared all the time).
I think that bad security is related to shared hosting because mainly beginners are using it. Majority of beginners don’t bother about security and there is a higher chance that hackers will do the mess.
Siteground claims that security is one of their top priorities.
They take care of their server security:
- by providing latest versions of PHP as soon as the stable version is available
- by using ModSecurity with custom rules as their primary server protection
- by using sophisticated IDS/IPS systems which block malicious bots and attackers
- by taking care that requests received on the server get to correct website, using suExec Apache server extension
- and more.
If you’re just starting out, shared hosting provider will ensure a decent level of security to keep your WordPress website up and running for your visitors.
VPS hosting service is a totally different story.
When using VPS as a hosting for your WordPress website, security is in your hands. You have to set up everything by yourself according to your needs.
This can be bad and good. It depends on your priorities and website requirements.
It can be bad in a way that you have to know how to do it, or you have to pay someone to do it for you. There is no other way.
But, this is amazing since you have full control over the security on your server. You can set up everything according to your website requirements.
If there is no need for high level of security, you can leave security software to run on default settings. If because of any reason, there is a need for higher security standard, you can pull the handle to increase security levels.
If you host your site with managed hosting service, you are fully covered.
Managed WordPress hosting service provider Kinsta claims that their infrastructure is designed with security in mind. They say that server-level compromises are extremely unlikely.
But even if it happens, they will be at your disposal at any time. They will clean your website files to help you recover from the hack. But, also help you take additional steps on increasing your security level to prevent your website from being hacked in the future.
Kinsta guarantees security on their servers with:
- An inspection of the site and deep scan of the site files to identify potential malware.
- Repair of the WordPress core by installing a clean copy of the core files.
- Identification and removal of infected plugins and themes.
Managed hosting service can be related to all-inclusive 5 star hotel. Great stuff.
In general, WordPress hosting providers will take care of the security of their servers and infrastructure. On the other side, they won’t deal with security of your WordPress website, theme, plugins, etc. This part is on you.
Providers can help you manage your WordPress installation in various ways like providing automatic updates, security tips and tricks through articles on their blog, but you are the person in charge when it comes to your site security.
Choosing good WordPress hosting is the elementary step in keeping website security at a high level. But security isn’t something that you should “set and forget” because every day new hacks are revealed.
There is no 100% secure website.
In order to keep your website secure, you shouldn’t only rely on hosting provider.
Instead, you should take it seriously from day one and manage your site according to latest security standards.
Amazing hosting support is crucial when starting out with WordPress.
If you’re a beginner, you want good support to back you up if problems arise during the process of setting up your website.
Even if something that you’re stuck with isn’t in their scope, good support at least will help you as much as they can and point you in the right direction so that you can solve the problem as soon as possible.
VPS support agent points you to their blog posts and you have to do it by yourself (you are in charge of your server environment) but there is a lot of resources for almost anything on the web.
Shared hosting support will help you with anything related to the server environment, DNS, email (and even do it for you).
Big shared hosting providers like Siteground have support agents that are specialized only for WordPress and will help you to do anything with WordPress but most of the time won’t do it for you because they don0t want to be responsible if something happens with your site while they are working on it.
A managed hosting service provider will, same as a shared hosting provider, usually help you with anything related to using their service, spotting performance and security issues, reading through logs and discovering errors and similar stuff.
Their first priority is to keep your site up and running, full speed, and security.
Same as any other hosting service support, they won’t deal with things like SEO optimization, performance improvements, or any other work on your site.
These tasks aren’t in the scope of their service. When contacting support keep in mind that they provide hosting service and support for it. For anything other than that, you will need a developer regardless of a hosting service that you choose.
If you need professional WordPress support there are usually paid services at your disposal which can manage your site for you.
They will take care of your site as it is their own. They will fix performance issues, will work on a development of your theme and plugins or anything else that you need, updating your plugins and theme and much more.
At first, until you get used to one hosting provider and their services, you may talk to support more often. As time goes by, you will know how to do most of the things by yourself without the need for any support.
I think that it’s always better to invest some time to learn everything that you need rather than depending on someone else and giving money out on a monthly basis.
You will probably work hard on your website, especially at the beginning.
You have to structure your site, install required plugins and theme, customize the design and push high-quality content to the public to attract visitors and potential customers. All of that takes a little bit of time to finish.
To assure that your hard work is secure and precious time isn’t wasted, you should do regular backups of your files, database and server configuration.
Backup simply means to copy your WordPress website and data from a live server that is serving visitor requests to a third party server which isn’t open to the public.
In case something bad happens to your live server and if data is corrupted or deleted, with regular backups, you can restore a snapshot of your website from the point in time when the website was fully functional.
Backups are also one of really important stuff that most of the time beginners (and all those who didn’t have their site hacked YET) forget about when setting up a new site.
You probably won’t need to deal with backups until you push enough quality content for a site to attract at least couple thousand of visitors per month.
But if you forget to configure backups at the beginning, you can easily forget about it until you need them. But at the time you need backups, it’s usually too late.
As mentioned before, there is no 100% secure website. That’s why backups are crucial for every WordPress website. Hackers come up with new ideas every day and thousands of sites are hacked.
It happens a lot more than you think to both small and big websites.
It’s better to set up backups right at the beginning even immediately you won’t need them.
If you forget about it and your site is hacked, you’re screwed. Your data is gone forever. Essentially, your business is destroyed.
Protect your business by backing up your website regularly.
Today, backups are must have on every WordPress site and all hosting service providers recognize it by providing full server backup (data, files, configuration and/or emails).
Shared hosting service providers like Siteground provide backups through their custom backup and restore tools.
On shared backup is usually active on all websites out of the box. Your website files, database, and emails are backed up daily for up to 30 days in the past.
Except for full automatic backups, you there is one slot for manual backup.
Any backup can be restored with only 1-click through the dashboard of the backup tool. Easy and beginner friendly.
Managed hosting service providers like Kinsta implement backup service in a similar way as shared hosting service.
Backups are free and easy to perform through a powerful custom-built backup tool.
Server configuration, files, and data are stored for 14 days for low-cost plans while more expensive plans are powered with up to 30 days automatic backups.
Premium automatic hourly backups are also available but those are charged additionally. There are 5 manual backups at your disposal if you ever need it.
You can restore any backup with one click of a button on your live server or on the staging environment.
There is no way to restore only data from a database or only website files. Everything is packed together to be restored as a new site when needed.
Managed hosting backups are beginner friendly oriented same as with shared hosting but with much more options. This is obvious and expected since managed hosting is about 10 times more expensive than shared hosting.
VPS hosting service providers don’t offer backup service out of the box, but basic hosting service can be extended with weekly, daily or even custom server backups for few bucks per month.
Since VPS hosting is much cheaper than managed WordPress hosting, it usually isn’t a big problem to spend extra $2 – $5 a month for full server backup.
Each VPS server has 4 backup slots for you to use. There are one daily backup slot, current week slot, last week slot and one manual slot.
There are two ways to restore a backup snapshot of your server, in existing Linode (existing server), or in new Linode (as a new VPS instance).
Set up your backups right at the beginning, and you will thank yourself later.
I hope that you won’t need them but if that moment ever comes, you will save yourself a lot of time (and money).
Email and mailing server
Today, even if you run a small business or you’re a simple blogger, you want to send emails from your domain name rather than generic domain names like @hotmail.com, @google.com or @icloud.com.
There are many benefits that come from owning an email address with your website domain name. The most important one is that emails received from custom domain names are perceived more seriously than generic ones.
Shared hosting service providers usually offer mailing server out of the box within its hosting packages.
It may be good for beginners to have email set up from the start but there are some drawbacks that come with this setup:
- your emails may get flagged as spam if another site on the same server is spamming emails (because both websites send emails from the same IP)
- if server/website goes down, emails are unreachable too
- deliverability issue by not having SPF and DKIM DNS records set
- and more.
That’s why managed and VPS hosting service providers, Kinsta and Linode, don’t offer mailing server as part of their service.
You would rather like to have your email hosted separately from your website. If anything bad happens, your emails are safe and fully functional.
Also, it’s always better to use professional email service providers for a type of mailing work you need to do.
For example, if you need to send transactional emails like WooCommerce order emails and website registration emails, it’s better to use some professional mailing provider that does only that, like Sendgrid or mailgun.
On the other side, if you’re looking to send a newsletter, professional newsletter mailing service providers like Convertkit or MailerLite offer premium tools which are only related to a problem of sending a newsletter emails.
To start sending emails from your domain name, you would like to set up so-called basic email service provider first.
Since WPGoblin is hosted on VPS, as a basic email service provider we use Zoho mail which offers free of charge custom domain email addresses for up to 25 employee accounts with 5 GB of storage.
This is more than enough for most small WordPress blogs and WooCommerce web shops.
If you ever going to need more accounts or more storage you can upgrade to a premium business package at $3 per user per month. Pretty cheap.
Set up is done through DNS setting at your domain name control panel in just a few clicks.
You can find configuration tutorial in Zoho knowledge base, but soon we are about to go out with detailed step by step guide on how to offload your email service to some more premium email provider like Zoho.
Scaling a website is another thing that the ones who just start won’t think about until their website start to struggle with performance.
If you’re serious about a business that you run on the website, you should have a plan on how to pump more performance in your website if it is needed.
If you start with a shared hosting service, as soon as your website gets a little bit of traction, you will have to scale. With a shared hosting plan, you can always upgrade to a better shared hosting plan or go with managed or VPS hosting service.
On the other side, if you’re already hosting your site on VPS or managed hosting, you should have a plan on how to scale.
VPS hosting service providers offer 1-click scaling by resizing your hosting package.
You simply pick a better package with more CPU, RAM or storage and confirm that with a click of a button.
In few minutes your website is up and running again with more resources to handle your high traffic.
When a spike in traffic is resolved and you don’t need performance boost anymore, in order to save money, you can revert your hosting package to the old one.
Managed WordPress hosting service providers, like Kinsta, offer autoscaling with all their hosting plans.
This means that if your website encounters sudden spike in traffic and the additional performance boost is needed, your hosting package will be scaled automatically.
Amazing stuff (that comes with a high price tag).
If automatic scaling keeps kicking in more often, this is a sign that you need to upgrade to a better hosting package.
Most of the time scaling is pumping your site with more performance, CPU, RAM or storage. That makes your hosting costs go up.
Before considering scaling your hosting, It’s always better to optimize your website as much as you can.
If you can’t get additional performance gains with additional optimizations, go for hosting upgrade.
If you do that, your website performance to cost ration will be high.
That’s the way to save money on your WordPress hosting.
Additional features and restrictions
Basic shared hosting plans offer only essential features to get you started as easy and as fast as possible.
With shared hosting service, you usually get WordPress hosting support, website builder, one-click WordPress installation, SSD storage, cPanel, email server, daily backups and CDN.
More expensive shared hosting plans may offer additional features like on-demand backups, free website migrations, a staging environment, GIT and more.
Basic plans are restricted in a way that only one website may be hosted on single hosting account while expensive plans allow installation of unlimited websites per account.
There are no restrictions on plugin installations like you may find on with managed WordPress hosting plans.
Managed WordPress hosting, out of the box, offers much more premium features even with their most basic packages.
Some features that are offered to all packages are WordPress hosting support, staging area, PHP7, free SSL, daily automatic and manual backups and CDN.
Though, managed hosting has much more restrictions than VPS and shared hosting.
Biggest restrictions that I found are monthly website visits, storage, website migrations, site cloning for staging environment and SSH access.
I think that most impact on your site might have visits restriction. Cheapest plan offers only 20,000 unique visits per month which isn’t a high number.
As soon as your website gets some traction, due to visits restriction, you will have to upgrade to next package which costs double the basic package.
Most features that are offered through managed WordPress hosting you probably won’t use at the beginning, but you’re still paying for them.
Kinsta offers some more premium features like Cloudflare Railgun, Redis caching, Elasticsearch, Nginx reverse proxy and extra backups which are charged additionally.
Most of those you can install for free if you run your website on VPS hosting.
Managed WordPress hosting providers may ban some plugins that drain a lot of server resources.
They do it because a similar, much optimized, functionality is already part of their service.
For example, some caching plugins are forbidden. Caching is done for you by Kinsta on the server level. You won’t need additional caching plugins on your site because they can do more harm than good in combination with another caching functionality active at the same time.
If your WordPress website is hosted on VPS, it’s up to you what packages, services, and plugin will run on the server.
You should install only services and packages that you really need since too many software packages on your server will require more resources.
Some packages that you aren’t actively using may take away resources from the web server which is in charge to serve requests to the site.
That being said, additional features may slow down your site instead of boosting your productivity and website performance.
When choosing ideal hosting for your WordPress site, most beginners do a fatal mistake by comparing hosting services only by price.
Price doesn’t matter if your hosting doesn’t offer all features that your website needs.
Instead, you should go for a cheapest hosting service plan that has all features that your website and you (as the one who will be operating it) really need.
Shared hosting price, at Siteground, goes from 3.95 €/month for Startup plan up to 11.95 €/month for most expensive Grow big plan.
When you’re getting your site up for the first time, you usually want to start with a cheapest shared hosting plan.
In the beginning, you want to save as much money as you can before your website starts cash flowing.
When your website gets some traction, it’s wise to boost its performance by making the transfer to one of VPS or Managed WordPress hosting service plans.
VPS pricing plans, at Linode, are pretty simple.
A cheapest Nanode plan is priced at $5 USD and comes with 1 GB o RAM, 1 CPU core and 25 GB of SSD storage.
Each next plan is powered with more RAM, CPU, and storage and according to that cost a little bit more.
Cheapest plan will be more than enough for most of the WordPress sites. If caching is configured properly, it can handle millions of requests per month.
If your website needs more performance, you can upgrade with a click of a mouse to next ($10 USD) plan to double your server resources.
Managed hosting is more expensive than previous two options.
At Kinsta, managed WordPress hosting plans start at $30 USD and go all up to $900 USD.
Due to its unique monthly visitor-based pricing model, even not so popular websites may not be eligible for the cheapest plan.
A cheapest hosting plan is intended for websites with up to only 20,000 unique monthly visitors.
More expensive prices are justified by the fact that together with hosting service, your website is covered with professional managing service and hosting support.
How to find a perfect hosting plan?
To find optimal hosting service plan, first, write down all features that your website needs.
Let’s say that your website requirements are:
- good support (you need support)
- daily backups (a must for every website)
- email (you need to have an email address with your domain name)
- free website migration (you don’t know how to do the migration)…
Next, find all hosting service plans that cover all features from the requirements list.
When all hosting plans are listed, pick the cheapest one.
Want to know who are the best hosting providers and services on the web?
When to choose Shared WordPress Hosting?
Choose shared WordPress hosting if you’re just starting out with new WordPress website.
Shared hosting providers will give you everything that you need to start working on your website content as soon as possible.
Your website is probably not earning any money yet. Money saved on hosting can be better spent on content creation, logo or anything else you need.
You shouldn’t waste money and time on performance optimizations until you start to attract at least 100 daily visitors.
Increase in website speed won’t make any difference on websites with almost zero visitors. If there are no visitors, no one cares about the speed.
When your website starts generating money, start thinking about increasing speed and performance.
The easiest way to do this is by transferring your website to VPS or managed WordPress hosting.
Shared WordPress hosting PRO’s:
- Free beginner friendly support
- Free WordPress installation or migration
- Daily backups
- Mailing server (email with your domain)
- Low price
Shared WordPress hosting CON’s:
- Mediocre website and data security
- Bad performance and website speed
- No scalability
WP Goblin best shared WordPress hosting service provider is Siteground.
When to choose VPS WordPress hosting?
Choose VPS hosting for your website if you want ultimate performance and maximum website speed on a budget.
Superior performance and website speed of WP Goblin come from cheap $5 USD/month VPS server.
To set up a VPS server you would need to invest some of your time upfront or leverage someone else to set it up for you.
If set up correctly, VPS can boost your website performance and save you so much money in the long run which can be invested in something else, rather than expensive hosting plans.
On the other hand, if you don’t want to mess with server administration and money isn’t a problem, you should consider managed WordPress hosting.
VPS WordPress hosting PRO’s:
- Low price
- Ultimate performance and speed
- High level of security
- Server uptime
- Automatic server backups
- Manual scaling
- Any software package or service available for installation
VPS WordPress hosting CON’s:
- Paid support
- Server administration knowledge needed
- 3rd party mailing server needed
- No automatic transfer or WordPress installation
WP Goblin best VPS WordPress hosting service provider is Linode.
When to choose managed WordPress hosting?
Choose managed WordPress hosting when you want to focus your work on your website rather being distracted by server administration, hosting management and similar stuff that isn’t directly bringing money into the business.
Of course, since managed WordPress hosting isn’t cheap, your website needs to generate decent cash flow to cover all the costs that come with it.
That being said, it isn’t recommended for beginners, but for well-established websites that can take full advantage of it.
Managed WordPress hosting PRO’s:
- Free WordPress installation
- Professional WordPress hosting support
- Ultimate performance and speed
- High level of security
- Automatic scaling
- Automatic server backups
- Server uptime
Managed WordPress hosting CON’s:
- High price
- Restrictions (Visitors, plugins…)
- 3rd party mailing server needed
WP Goblin best managed WordPress hosting service provider is Kinsta.
WordPress hosting timeline: When to change hosting service?
As it was already mentioned few times through this article, it’s recommended for everyone to start with shared WordPress hosting.
In few months or even a year, later, when your website starts to get some more traction in terms of visitors and money, consider changing your hosting service.
When shared hosting is outgrown, we recommend businesses to continue to host their sites on VPS hosting.
If you lack server administration knowledge, you will need someone to set it up for you (or do it yourself). VPS has many benefits like performance, speed, security, freedom and the most important one is definitely a cheap price.
If VPS doesn’t work for you, there is also managed WordPress hosting. It has all benefits as VPS, but it comes with a high price since it is managed by a hosting company rather than yourself.
Later, if you notice that site starts to be slow or some other performance issues arise, it will be the time to scale up your server resources by upgrading to better/more expensive hosting plan.
Now it’s on you
Now, after reading this long article you should be able to determine ideal hosting service for your website.
Let us know in the comments below what hosting service did you choose and why?