Choosing the suitable web hosting provider for your WordPress site is one of the most crucial decisions that you have to make. After all, the service and performance of your web host can affect how your site performs. The same thing goes for your business’s online presence and sales.
Since it is not easy changing web hosting providers, it is essential that you make the right decision the first time around.
But with hundreds of WordPress hosting providers in the market, choosing the best one can be cumbersome. So, we have listed nine tips that can help you:
1. Understand your specific needs
Choosing the best web host is not as simple as you initially thought it to be. After all, everyone’s idea of “best” largely depends on their unique needs.
For example, you are running an online store using WordPress. You need to choose a host that can accommodate the e-commerce software that you are using.
Also, ask yourself the following questions:
- What type of site do you want to create? Are you building a static HTML site, or will you work with WordPress?
- Will you make more than one site? Some hosts let you build several sites from the same account.
- How much daily traffic do you expect to receive each month? If you plan to boost your web traffic over time, you need to choose a host that offers scalability.
- What features would you like to add to your website? Coding languages like CSS and HTML do not need special requirements. But if you are working with PHP, you need to find a host that caters to that language.
- Will you be using other features like an SSL certificate and email hosting? Ensure that the host you choose caters to your needs.
- What is your monthly budget? Knowing this right off the bat will help you narrow down your choices.
2. Consider the price
You get what you pay for. The cheaper the package you choose, chances are, the service will be lousy as well.
If you expect good service, then you have to pay a hefty amount.
But the question is, how much are you expected to pay?
If you choose a shared or managed hosting service (for a single site), you are expected to pay around $5- $10 monthly. Many hosting providers also offer long-term plans, giving you the option to pay upfront the entire year and get a decent discount.
3. Pick the ideal server location
When choosing a web host, you have the chance to pick the location of your server. But why is this important?
For one, the distance of your server from a site visitor can impact your website’s page load speed.
Thus, you have to consider the majority of the audience that you would like to attract. If you own a digital magazine that caters mainly to a US audience, it will make sense to choose a US server.
Nonetheless, server location does not mean that visitors from Europe and Asia will not be able to access your website. It might just take longer for your website to load.
Thus, this is where speed optimization and other SEO practices can come in handy. Doing so ensures that your audience outside of the United States will not feel left out.
4. Look for the uptime guarantee
Ideally, the uptime of your website should be close to 100%. While no hosting provider will give you a full 100% uptime, that’s alright. After all, achieving a 100% uptime is a near impossibility.
Many hosting providers stick to their promise of having a 99.9% uptime, while others do not.
Excellent hosting providers will back their claims by having a reimbursement policy. And you can find it on their service level agreement or SLA. For instance, they will be willing to refund you for the downtimes your site has encountered.
Moreover, several hosting providers have a status page on their site. This page informs you whether a particular network is down and under maintenance. Its other purpose is to showcase the health of your server.
5. Check their security features
Here’s the thing: Cyber attacks do not discriminate. In fact, being on WordPress is prone to hacking, as it is one of the most popular content management systems.
That said, WPhost, an NZ web hosting provider, highly suggests that you should check what security measures a web host service can provide.
Do they provide Transport Layer Security or Secure Sockets Layer? Do they have DDoS and malware protection? Do they make it easy for you to install firewalls?
If a web host can provide these features and more, you can rest assured that they are doing their part to protect their clients’ websites.
On the other hand, you should also opt for dedicated server hosting if possible. This means that you are not sharing your server with other websites. Doing so reduces the risk of getting hacked just because another website on your server was attacked.
6. Inquire about the upgrades option
If this is your first time to own a website or you do not have a significant budget, it is recommended that you purchase a shared hosting plan. That will help you save up money as you grow your site or blog.
A shared hosting account is estimated to support a highly optimized WordPress site with 35,000 – 50,000 unique visitors.
But if you are expecting to grow your site within the next two to three years, you should consider a web host that offers upgrade options. You must inquire about these upgrade options before setting up a web host account.
The industry standard is 99.9% uptime, and you shouldn’t settle for anything less. You should also be wary of accepting significantly more than that. A hosting provider claiming they have 100% uptime can be a red flag.
7. Look for an excellent customer support
When choosing a web hosting provider, excellent customer support can mean all the difference.
In the research phase, see what kind of support channels are offered, such as phone support, email, or live chat.
Also, take into consideration your host’s support hours. Do they offer customer support 24/7 or only during business hours? The latter could mean that they could be difficult to contact if you want to immediately get a hold of them.
Do not rely on client testimonials alone. Read website hosting reviews on other websites. That will give you a feel of the quality of support that they offer to their customers.
Check whether their customer service representatives are adept at issues common in web hosting. Are they patient? Can they explain technical matters in layman’s terms?
Since you are using WordPress, you wanted to support the team of your WordPress host to be well-versed and know their way in WordPress.
8. Read customer reviews
Part of the problem with looking for excellent WordPress hosting is knowing who to trust in the first place. There is a bevy of shady service providers out there who are trying to get money from people.
Since you couldn’t test out many things without signing on to a hosting service, you can research your options before committing to any of them.
You must do this because this is how you’ll know more about the hosting provider’s reputation.
See to it that you check the reviews first. Take your time and read as many reviews as you can. Look at the red flags, such as the website being flaky on the weekend. This indicates that they cannot handle too much website traffic.
Make sure that you learn from other people’s mistakes so that you won’t commit to one of those sketchy hosting providers. That’s why doing your research will set you off on the right foot and provide you more freedom to scale your hosting plan in the future
9. Make sure that it’s scalable
Over time, as your site grows and manages to attract more people, you will need more resources. While you might not see this coming for a while, you should still prepare for it. Otherwise, you might have to think of switching to another host.
Switching from one host to another can be challenging. As such, look for a service provider that makes it easy for you to upgrade or downgrade your plan.
That way, you can expand your bandwidth without hassle as your online brand grows.
Over to You
Hopefully, the tips listed in this post will help you choose the right WordPress web hosting provider. And by “right WordPress web hosting provider,” we mean a plan that suits your needs.
Remember that finding the right web host can be challenging unless you know what you are looking for. And often, they are not necessarily the popular service provider in the market.
What’s important is that they are secured, have excellent customer support, and make hosting your WordPress website so much easier.
Picking the right hosting provider is the first step when it comes to achieving online success. So do your research, get in touch with web hosting providers, and do not hesitate to ask questions.