Choosing the right website host intimidated the crap out of me when I first started building websites in the late 90’s. I used services like geocities, angelfire and any other platform that offered free (hopefully ad-free) hosting, but that was really hard to find.
Choosing the right website host isn't a one size fits all
Fast forward to today and the entire internet has changed dramatically and so have my needs. I used to design websites for fun, but today I am lucky enough to work with amazing clients. I get to help shape their digital presence and create an experience that showcases their brand in a unique way.
Finding the right website host was a try it and see for the first few years. This was an intentional move because it allowed me to test a few different hosts with my own money before I used them for any client projects.
Some clients have their own hosting plan and some don’t even have a live website. It’s been critical for me to learn the pros and cons of the hosting options available so I can create a foundation that will serve each website well for the long term.
All web hosts are not created equal
When looking for a host I could grow with, I originally decided on HostGator. The main reason was that HostGator had solid customer support. They also had really good pricing as I got started.
If I build a site and decide to use a cheap shared hosting plan for a site that will get a few thousand visitors a week, the experience will suffer. I am more concerned with stability, customer support and flexibility.
Your criteria for the perfect host may vary depending on your price range and the specifics of your project, but two things can never be overlooked. The first is customer service and the second is reliability.
The list below will give you a starting point and a reference for hosting services and their strong points.
Best Value — eHost.com
Best Host To Grow With — A2 Hosting
Best 24/7 Support — SiteGround.com
Best Usability — BlueHost.com
Best for WordPress — Flywheel
Picking the right host isn't always easy. The scope of you project will heavily impact the cost and needed features of your website host.
Which website host do you use for your website?