Join Morten Rand-Hendriksen for an in-depth discussion in this video Which hosting company should I use?, part of WordPress DIY: Setting Up WordPress.
- Like I said in the previous movie, a web host is, in many ways, like a hotel. You rent space for as long as you want, and while you pay for that space, you can use it for pretty much whatever you want, which, in our case, will be to host a WordPress site. When setting up a hosting account, or, renting space in a web hotel, you point your domain name, or address, to that space so people can find your site easily. This also means, if at some point you decide to move to a different host, all you have to do is point your domain name to the new host and everything will work as it always has for your visitors.
Finding a web host that fits your needs is also a lot like finding a hotel. Web hosts come in all varieties, from excellent to terrible, and you can pay anywhere from five dollars a month, to 500 dollars a month, depending on your requirements and what kind of service you expect to receive. To make the selection of a web host easier, consider these three questions. First, is your website for personal or business use? Second, does the host provide the services you need? Third, what type of support and customer service is available? Let me explain.
First, what type of website you'll be running will have an impact on what level of service you'll need. A personal blog, or a portfolio site for a small company will usually fare fine on a small, shared server from a reputable hosting provider. If, on the other hand, you are running a high-traffic site, or a company website with an e-commerce component, or other features that process personal data, you probably need to look at virtual private, or private hosting, or a company that offers managed hosting.
Next, you need to consider what services you'll require. Are you looking for a host that provides automated backup and restore services? Staging, security scans, email and newsletter functionality, caching, and so on. Make a list of what you'll need now and in the foreseeable future, and make sure the host you're considering meets your needs. Finally, take support and customer service for a spin before making the final decision. You want a hosting company that takes tech support and customer service seriously, and provides easy ways for you to reach them.
Call them up, or open a chat window and ask questions to see how knowledgeable they are, and how long it takes for them to get back to you. In the end, what you're really paying for is support, so make sure you get your money's worth. When something goes wrong, you want to know there are people on the other end, ready and able to help. Like hotels, there is no "one size fits all" solution for web hosting, and finding the right host means you have to find out what you need, do some research, and ask your peers and experts for their opinion.
The good news is, if your initial choice doesn't work out, you can always move to another host in the future. Now, I'm sure you're itching to ask what hosting provider I would recommend. The answer is, there are many reputable hosting providers out there that provide great support for WordPress sites specifically. Among them is SiteGround, which is the host we will be using for the WordPress DIY course series. We chose SiteGround because they have great WordPress support, and provide solid hosting services at reasonable prices.
The sites built in this course series are all hosted under one, single top-tier shared hosting account, and what you see in these courses will be the typical services and performance offered by this type of service.
Ready for the next stage? Find more courses in this series by searching for Wordpress DIY.