*We may receive compensation for some of the links in this article. However, we only recommend the best WordPress products and services.
You work hard to create great websites and maintain them, so you should ensure your website is hosted on the best platform – that doesn’t ruin your budget. Selecting a hosting plan can be daunting especially if you’re not familiar with website hosting terminology.
Here is our checklist to know if you need to switch WordPress hosts.
Reason# 1: The monthly hosting charge is less than a quarter pounder with cheese from McDonalds
Don’t get me wrong here, I’m not suggesting that you overpay for hosting, but what comes to mind is the phrase “You get what you pay for.”
Here is the breakdown:
You get one of those hosting specials that cost a dollar a month – which equals $12/year. That isn’t even enough for them to pay their technicians for 1 hour of support time. Therefore it’s in their best interest to NOT provide robust support.
Secondly, they will probably only charge this for a year or so and then hit you the second year with an outrageous bill ( many times it is more than $200)- ouch!!
Additionally, they have to cram your site onto a server (computer), with as many other sites as possible in order to become profitable.
I heard in one particular podcast that they cram as many as 1,000 websites onto one server. Why is that bad? Think about the computer (or tablet, or phone) that you’re reading this on right now. What happens when too many programs,(or apps) are loaded onto your computer? That’s right – it does one or more of the following:
- Slows down
- Shows unpredictable performance
- Shuts itself down
A webserver is no different. Of course, good hosts do offer more than the average computer, but you get the idea.
Solution – pay for quality hosting – especially if you’re running a business through your site. If your business is making money you can afford to invest in a quality managed host.
Reason #2: They Charge Extra for Everything!!!!
This is a function of them undercharging upfront, they charge you for things that actually should be included in a hosting plan. Examples are:
These things should be included for free with hosting, but when your site gets hacked you have to pay them $12.95 (or more) to get a backup of your site restored.
Now that’s not an astronomical fee or anything, but why should you pay to get backups?
You think it would be in their best interest to restore your site so that they don’t have a hacked site on their system.
Reason #3: When you’re hacked, you’re down big time!!
When I first started with WordPress, I was on a cheap $1/month host. One day I typed in my site and realize that it was offline. A little investigation and I found out that my site was hacked- I didn’t follow the best security practices as I do now.
Additionally, I couldn’t get to my site back up on their server unless I cleaned the hacked site. This put me in a weird situation.
How can I clean my site if I can’t access it? FTP was an option, but it would take much longer.
You guessed it, buy our whiz-bang hacked site service so you can get running again.
After getting hacked 3 times, (which had to do more with their hosting than my practices), I left for greener pastures at a managed WordPress host.
Reason #4: They don’t officially support WordPress
I must admit that this one has gotten better over the years because WordPress powers
over 30% of the web. At that percentage, a Webhost better know something about WordPress.
There are, however, still hosts that will not help you with anything more complex than installing WordPress, other than that you’re on your own.
That means if you get the “white screen of death” or the plugin that you installed isn’t activating, you have to troll through forums until you find an answer.
A good WordPress host trains its staff on WordPress and the platform it runs on. The host that we recommend at the end of this post actually trains their staff for about 6 weeks BEFORE they let them answer trouble tickets.
So that .htaccess problem that you’re having while trying to setup multisite? They’re all over it. They understand the WordPress database structure and will go the extra mile with you in troubleshooting because they actually understand how WordPress works.
As someone who always works with WordPress and tries new things, this is invaluable.
Reason #5: They don’t have the latest technology
WordPress runs on other underlying software. That software has different versions and generally it is best to run WordPress on the latest version of that software as possible.
A big one is PHP ( One of WP’s key code components),. The latest version of php is 7.0.xxx – (xxx represents minor version numbers). There are some web hosts that haven’t invested in version 7 yet. That means you’ll lose some of WordPress’ performance because you aren’t’ on the best available underlying hardware and software.
Ok Smart Guys, who do you recommend?
We generally ask two questions when this question is asked of us.
- Are you running a business site (more than just a 5 page site with contact us) ?
- What is your budget?
A 5 page “brochure” site with just contact us form and a few pages can actually get away with non-managed hosting.
However, when you’re doing serious businesses on you site you need a rock solid host.
We recommend WP Engine.
- Their staff is extremely knowledgeable and they go above and beyond consistently.
- 30 days of backups are included
- They have the latest and fastest hardware to run your website on.
- They offer a secure environment.
- They will help you migrate your site to their platform if needed
- They offer a staging site so that you or your developer can make changes there before you make the live for the world to see.
- They recently reduced their costs to be more affordable for even entry-level folks.
- You can get a free speed test here
They are truly best in class, and they are always innovating. They’ve been nothing short of fantastic. They deliver exceptional service.
I hope this guide offered you some great insight on selecting quality hosting for your website. Need more help and advice? Feel free to contact us at WP Tutoring, and we’ll be happy to assist you.
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