WordPress Web Hosting Options

Screen shot of a computer monitorNeed a web host for your WordPress site? Before you choose a web hosting service it is best to figure out what you want to do with WordPress, what the WordPress hosting requirements are and what you’re hoping to accomplish with your website. 

There are several kinds of web hosting services out there for you to choose from that suite your needs.

Things to Consider When Choosing a WordPress Web Host

As with choosing any web host, these are the things to consider.

  1. Does the server setup meet the needs of the company and its site?
  2. Does the hosting plan meet the requirements of WordPress?
  3. Does the hosting plan meet the company’s server storage and bandwidth needs?
  4. Does the hosting plan include features the company’s site needs such as ecommerce or one-click installation of WordPress?
  5. Is the hosting plan scalable, allowing the site to expand or contract as the company may require over its lifetime?
  6. Does the hosting plan include site management assistant and support that meets the needs of the site owner’s abilities?
  7. Do you trust this company with your website?

The latter is more important than you may think. Research the web hosting company for complains and evaluations of service and support. Sure, the negative comments are the ones most commonly found, but consider them fairly. Talk to other businesses in your industry and find out what they are using. Ask them if they trust the web host company to treat them fairly and professionally.

If you don’t have the answers to the above question, before you start looking, take time to write down the specific needs and requirements WordPress and the company or professional requires for their website. Under buying a web host is one of the most common problems with web hosting.

The following information will help you make your decision.

Different Types Of WordPress Web Hosting Options

There are four main WordPress web hosting options to decide from when publishing your blogs with WordPress.

  1. Free web hosting
  2. Shared web hosting
  3. Managed hosting
  4. Virtual Private Server/Cloud web hosting
  5. Dedicated server web hosting

Free WordPress.com Hosting

Free WordPress web hosting on WordPress.com is a great choice for those seeing a free to low cost site, and the the site meets the WordPress.com Terms of Service.

WordPress.com is free for personal, professional, and business sites. The hosting offers optional paid or premium services including domain names and domain mapping so your site can have the example.com address.

WordPress.com has become a popular choice for site hosting around the world. The service offers a wide range of free and premium upgrades, and support for over 50 languages. According to the ever changing WordPress.com stats counter:

Over 409 million people view more than 14.7 billion pages each month. Users produce about 44.5 million new posts and 56.7 million new comments each month. WordPress blogs written in over 120 languages.

WordPress.com is also the host for many enterprise companies with their WordPress.com VIP Enterprise WordPress Hosting, Support, and Services.

There are many myths about free hosting services like WordPress.com being slower and restrictive. While this may be true of other free hosting services, this is not true of WordPress.com. WordPress.com does nothing to slow or restrict any aspect of your site save for the limitations on access to WordPress Plugins and Themes.

WordPress.com is also the development site for all WordPress projects and services including the self-hosted version of WordPress. Most WordPress.com members see features for the next release before others as the features are tested on WordPress.com.

Shared Hosting

Shared hosting is where many websites are hosted on a large web server. The greatest benefit to this method is a lower cost because you and the other website owners split the cost to operate the server.

Still, you get what you pay for. Compared to managed, private, and dedicated servers, shared hosting tends to be slower as the site is on a shared server, allocating resources of the database and servers across multiple clients.

Shared hosting also scales, allowing you to upgrade your account for more services and space.

Shared hosting is ideal for the people who would like to self-publish or for those who have small business and experience a moderate level of website traffic.

Managed Web Hosting

Managed web hosting is fairly new in the web hosting industry. The idea is to help the site owner to literally manage their site and hosting needs.

WP Engine is one example. The service uses WordPress Multisite similar to shared hosting. Your domain site is one of many on a single installation of WordPress, but you have all the independent of a WordPress.com site plus the ability to access the server, install and customize WordPress Thems and Plugins.

The managed web host handles the upgrades to your WordPress site as well as security issues related to WordPress and the server. It offers a variety of services inclusive of the fee or an upgrade, giving you the flexibility you may need with your business site, but not the headache of constantly maintaining the underlying code of the site.

For a professional or business owner, this is an ideal hosting choice. It doesn’t come cheap, but it is offset by the lack of worry and the low learning curve for managing your WordPress site.

Virtual Private Server/Cloud Web Hosting

A virtual private server (VPS) is a server sold as a service by a web hosting company. That sounds a bit technical, but it is a physical server that may be divided into independent servers virtually, running as if they are each their own server.

Like shared and dedicated hosting, the site owner must manage their own site, installing WordPress, maintaining security, upgrades, and all of the requirements for maintaining a website.

There are a wide variety of hosting plans for VPS and Cloud hosts, depending upon the storage space, speeds, and traffic demands of the site. More affordable than a dedicated web host, these offer an excellent choice for a professional or business with moderate to high demands on their site, as well as the freedom to manage and maintain the site.

WordPress.com also offers their WordPress.com VIP Enterprise WordPress Hosting, Support, and Services, a popular web hosting choice for many companies including CNN, People, NBC Sports, Dow Jones, Time, Ted, TechCrunch, UPS, and more. Similiar in some aspects to managed hosting, the VIP service works with the company to support their web hosting needs with WordPress including access to WordPress development experts. For more information, see the case-studies on the

Dedicated Web Hosting

Dedicated web hosting is geared for a business website that generates a high level of internet traffic. While dedicated web hosting might be one of the most expensive of all the types of hosting it does offer you flexibility, stability, high performance, and control.

You lease a web server from the web host and it is yours to use in whatever way you wish, within the terms and conditions of the contract.

You install WordPress and all the other features, functions, and programming libraries you need to run your WordPress site. You must update the site and maintain it and the server, so all the responsibility is yours.

Why Not Just Choose GoDaddy?

GoDaddy has served as an Internet Domain name registrar and web host since 1997. It has grown in to one of the most popular companies for web hosting.

Originally, GoDaddy was the popular choice because of the low cost of initial registration of domain names, challenging Network Solutions, once the only service to register a domain name. In 2005, GoDaddy was considered the largest ICANN-accredited register, and their company acquisitions since 2012, including purchase of the once popular Media Temple web host provider, makes GoDaddy one of the largest web hosting companies as well.

With the use of entertainment celebrities in its television and online advertising, GoDaddy has also become a household name.

Yet, is GoDaddy the ideal web host for your WordPress site?

GoDaddy offers great sales and rates for initial domain registration and hosting, and one-click installation of WrodPress. They company has sponsored WordCamps and works to educate their support staff on WordPress installation and usage, as they do other web publishing platforms.

Google Search on GoDaddy.com reputationsAs with all large companies, there will be customer complaints, rumors, and allegations. As with everything, you get what you pay for, and holding expectations beyond the terms and conditions of the contract doesn’t mean the company is bad or the wrong choice for a WordPress site.

They have been under scrutiny for many years and every forum has different reviews from past and present clients. Go-Daddy Review features over 300 individuals voicing their opinions on the services provided, and the opinions are all over the map.

Should you or should you not choose GoDaddy for a WordPress site? Read all the fine print in the web hosting plans, consider all your options and what you really need to support your company’s site, then choose accordingly.

Remember, you can always switch domain and web hosting services.

Which WordPress Web Host Should You Choose?

With the option to choose from a free platform to paid services, there are many choices for WordPress hosting. You may stick with the WordPress.com or WP Engine options, or try another commercial web hosting company.

If you would like more in-depth information on the topics covered in the article, they are listed below.

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