Welcome to the CNET 2020 directory of web hosting services. In this directory, we'll look at a few of the best web hosting providers like Bluehost, A2Hosting, Hostinger, DreamHost, HostGator, InMotion Hosting and more. In this evaluation of the best web hosting providers, we're featuring commercial web hosting companies that offer WordPress, VPS, shared hosting and many more web hosting services, along with a variety of annual and monthly plans.     
Simply put, self-managed hosting is essentially just hosting — you’re responsible for managing your server. On the flip side, fully-managed hosting providers may take care of everything except your code and your content. Somewhere in the middle, semi-managed services involve your web host helping you out with some — but not all — that goes into monitoring your server infrastructure.

Well ultimately it comes down to how comfortable you are with managing a website. But even if you’ve handled the install process for a WordPress site before, and you know how to update everything on a regular basis, we make managing WordPress easy. Don’t stress about doing all the heavy lifting and let us do it for you. When it comes down to it, WordPress Hosting just makes your life easier. And isn’t that worth the cost?
We’re big WordPress fans, which means all our products are designed with optimum WordPress performance in mind. Technically speaking, our server and database software is built to be compatible with WordPress, ensuring seamless and fluid integration — a made-for-each-other match-up. With automatic WordPress updates, easy one-click installs, and all the right configurations out of the box, your site is guaranteed to run at peak performance.
Simply put, self-managed hosting is essentially just hosting — you’re responsible for managing your server. On the flip side, fully-managed hosting providers may take care of everything except your code and your content. Somewhere in the middle, semi-managed services involve your web host helping you out with some — but not all — that goes into monitoring your server infrastructure.
Due to the large number of users using WordPress, several web hosting providers have chosen to offer managed WordPress hosting. An account with one of these providers only allows you to host WordPress based sites and nothing else. The benefit of managed WordPress hosting is that you do not have to worry about ANYTHING. They optimize your site for performance, make sure that your site is secure, and keep regular backups. On top of that they advise you if a specific plugin is having a negative impact.
Shared hosting for WordPress is also a popular site solution and has its own benefits. If your website is brand new, Shared WordPress Hosting may be a good starting place. While it usually offers fewer features than managed hosting — like limited server space, performance, software, and support options — you can build your site and grow an audience before you need to upgrade — and at more affordable pricing.
Above all else, we strive to deliver outstanding customer experiences. When you buy a domain name from Namecheap, we guarantee it will be handed over to you with superior standards of service and support. Our primary goal is to build a customer-focused atmosphere filled with the happiest customers in the galaxy. The Namecheap guarantee is our mark of excellence.
You get 24/7/365 basic customer support for all the plans. If you need a team of server-admin experts to support you, we offer a fully-managed support plan for an additional charge. We also provide ala carte service offerings to solve specific issues through our hosting premium support. Of course, we also offer a rich library of detailed help articles. You can learn more about the support services in our Statement of Support.
Beyond that, DreamHost is a top website hosting company for many reasons. It operate its own control panel, which is convenient and easy to understand. While phone customer support isn't available 24/7, it is responsive to live chat and tickets. The company uses super-fast SSDs for all its storage, has a free SSL certificate (for more secured web browsing) and provides SSH access for those plans that are intended for more technical users.
Lagging load times are a drag for your visitors. With SSDs, your website, caching, and database queries are faster — 200 percent faster than old school HDDs (no spinning rust here, as we like to say). Electronic storage at lightning-fast speeds means neither you or your visitors get caught up in the waiting game. Beneath the tech jargon is this: we keep things running fast. Like an Olympic-runner-crossed-with-a- cheetah fast.
Moving to another website consists of transferring the website’s files and databases, configuring your site with the new host, and directing your domain’s DNS to the new host. Once you pick a new site host, they can usually help you out with this process. The cost will depend on the host you’re switching to, but it can range anywhere from $150-$400.
The web hosting provider got bonus points for its policy of performing regular daily backups, even on the lowest-priced shared hosting accounts. Be aware, though, that the promotional price on the low-cost shared hosting does go up after the promotional period. That said, Bluehost offers 24/7 phone support, a 30-day money-back guarantee and SSH access for certain plan options.
Hey Caroline, WordPress.com is a bit of a different animal because you don’t run a self-hosted WordPress site on there. That means, you can’t install all the plugins you might want to (especially on lower plans, where you can’t install plugins at all) and overall have less control over your site than with a self-hosted site. That’s why we didn’t include it in this list. For more information, I recommend this article: https://websitesetup.org/wordpress-com-vs-wordpress-org/
Believe it or not, the physical location of the server influences the load times of your website. The closer the server is geographically to the users trying to access your website, the more quickly they’ll be able to use it. However, if the closest server to you or the users you expect to be trying to access your website is a significantly underpowered one, it’s best to find the closest one to you that has a reasonable amount of resources and reliability.
Alexandra Leslie’s interest in website administration was sparked in her teens, priming her for a fast-paced career in managing, building, and contributing to online brands, including HostingAdvice, Forbes, and the blogs of prominent hosting providers. She brings to the table firsthand experience in reviewing web hosts, perfecting website design, optimizing content, and walking site owners through the steps that add up to a successful online presence. Today, she combines her extensive writing experience with technical understanding to unpack some of the most complex topics that daunt novice website owners, as well as the subjects that excite veteran technologists within the HostingAdvice readership.
Disclaimer: Great efforts are made to maintain reliable data on all offers presented. However, this data is provided without warranty. Users should always check the offer provider’s official website for current terms and details. Our site receives compensation from many of the offers listed on the site. Along with key review factors, this compensation may impact how and where products appear across the site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). Our site does not include the entire universe of available offers. Editorial opinions expressed on the site are strictly our own and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by advertisers.
What we don’t like about their billing process, is that although they offer 30-day money-back, your hosting will automatically renew up to fifteen (15) days before the end of your current term. Furthermore, there are lots of upsells you might want to consider, such as upgrading your plan, as they have concerning bandwidth and storage policy (see Support transcript).
Bluehost, our top-rated web host offers a free domain name with your hosting account for the first year. If you're just getting started with a new website and in need of a hosting account, you can't go wrong with that option. If you don't get your domain name included with your hosting plan, then you'll need to get a separate hosting account from a separate company.
It’s important for your website to be accessible to your users at all hours of the day and night – that’s what you’re paying for, after all. To accomplish that, web providers strive to offer the best uptime statistics possible. We started tracking both overall uptime, and response times for the major hosting providers on our website host status page. Look up some customer testimonials for the provider you’re considering to find the real experience that others have gotten from their services considering uptime.

You could think of the sites that share your server as your roommates; there's really not that much separating you from them. Sure, you can close the bedroom door, but they can still cause nightmares for you in the kitchen and the bathroom. In web hosting terms, all the sites share a single server's resources, so huge traffic spike on Site A may impact the neighboring sites' performances. It's even possible that another site could take down the shared server altogether, if it crashed hard enough.
While WordPress makes it easy for anyone to build a website without knowing how to code, there’s always a chance of running into an issue that you don’t know how to fix. That’s where we come in! DreamHost’s friendly, pro-level customer support representatives are the best in the biz, skillfully striving to always make sure your hosting needs are met.
You could think of the sites that share your server as your roommates; there's really not that much separating you from them. Sure, you can close the bedroom door, but they can still cause nightmares for you in the kitchen and the bathroom. In web hosting terms, all the sites share a single server's resources, so huge traffic spike on Site A may impact the neighboring sites' performances. It's even possible that another site could take down the shared server altogether, if it crashed hard enough.
A Virtual Private Server (VPS) is an independent, virtual partition on a physical server. Think of a server with different "containers" within it. When you sign up for HostPapa VPS hosting, you get one of these containers to manage as you wish⁠—install applications or scripts, and arrange your web files the way you want. It's private, secure, and flexible.
While WordPress makes it easy for anyone to build a website without knowing how to code, there’s always a chance of running into an issue that you don’t know how to fix. That’s where we come in! DreamHost’s friendly, pro-level customer support representatives are the best in the biz, skillfully striving to always make sure your hosting needs are met.

But, again, operationally it's quite strong. 24/7/365 customer support is available not only by live chat and email, but by phone. It offers free site migrations with some dedicated attention paid to making a transfer as smooth as possible. And, if you're willing to go for one of the higher-end plans, the company has put some serious attention into performance and caching.
Support is provided in various ways such as through a Support Portal, Video Tutorials, Telephone, Live Chat, and Ticket Submission. All of these support options are available 24/7. Reviews regarding HostGator’s support system were mixed. A lot of people were pleased with their support staff. Although, some people were also pissed as representatives were stated to be incompetent with the company’s products and services.
What we don’t like about their billing process, is that although they offer 30-day money-back, your hosting will automatically renew up to fifteen (15) days before the end of your current term. Furthermore, there are lots of upsells you might want to consider, such as upgrading your plan, as they have concerning bandwidth and storage policy (see Support transcript).
* Comparison made on November 4, 2019 with GoDaddy's Enhance Plan and the VPS L package from IONOS using monthly list prices and features included with plans/packages for both products. Comparison is provided for information purposes only. The GoDaddy name is property of GoDaddy Inc. and is being used only for the express purposes of this comparison. The IONOS mark is a trademark of 1&1 IONOS SE. All rights reserved.
Disclaimer: Great efforts are made to maintain reliable data on all offers presented. However, this data is provided without warranty. Users should always check the offer provider’s official website for current terms and details. Our site receives compensation from many of the offers listed on the site. Along with key review factors, this compensation may impact how and where products appear across the site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). Our site does not include the entire universe of available offers. Editorial opinions expressed on the site are strictly our own and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by advertisers.

Disclaimer: Great efforts are made to maintain reliable data on all offers presented. However, this data is provided without warranty. Users should always check the offer provider’s official website for current terms and details. Our site receives compensation from many of the offers listed on the site. Along with key review factors, this compensation may impact how and where products appear across the site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). Our site does not include the entire universe of available offers. Editorial opinions expressed on the site are strictly our own and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by advertisers.


Due to the large number of users using WordPress, several web hosting providers have chosen to offer managed WordPress hosting. An account with one of these providers only allows you to host WordPress based sites and nothing else. The benefit of managed WordPress hosting is that you do not have to worry about ANYTHING. They optimize your site for performance, make sure that your site is secure, and keep regular backups. On top of that they advise you if a specific plugin is having a negative impact.
Our top WordPress hosting reviews reveal that the best host for WordPress includes the software pre-installed, a free domain name, your choice of datacenter locations, and the ability to host an unlimited number of WordPress sites on a single account. Transferring your site to InMotion Hosting is done for you for free, and the company’s team will regularly back up your data, as well.
Finally, we were quite happy with their money-back guarantee. They offer a full 90-day guarantee (except for domain names you buy) and a pro-rated refund for the rest of your time. So if you want to cancel after 18 months and have six months left in your term, you'll get back the cost of the six remaining months. It's clear, it's understandable, and it's the straightforward way we'd like to see most providers use as a model.

For our fully managed VPS server we include an easy to use custom cPanel Control Panel that offers many administrative tools but basic knowledge of file transfer and application management are beneficial. Our semi-managed offering does not include the control panel and will require a more in depth technical expertise to keep your website running smoothly.
Factors that impact overall performance and speed are the allocated CPU resources and memory each account gets, how many websites a host allows per server, how their server stack looks with regards to PHP (PHP 7+ is a must these days), server-side caching, and more (have a look at our SiteGround vs HostGator comparison for an example of how much loading times can differ when you have a proper server config). The terminology might be a bit too technical, but the main things to look for would be CPU and memory resource allocation + allowed domains per server.
Your web hosting account is where your website files are stored. So it’s very important that you secure it. The best way to secure your WordPress hosting account is to use a strong password and avoid logging in from public locations (unless you’re using a VPN). We also recommend that you follow our ultimate WordPress security guide to protect your site.
I want to ask I’m a student and we will have an assignment in our school for next half year it’s my last year and this is project will decide my mark (grade). I want to make a blog and I don’t need any top-noch hosting for this. The site is potential going to be shut down after this project. So my question is do you recommend any of the hostings above.
Established back in 1998, HostPapa operates three state-of-the-art data centers. Equipped with multiple GigE fiber connections to the internet backbone, the company built out seismically braced racks and cabinets, fully redundant Liebert HVAC cooling systems, a diesel generator that can run for weeks and a preaction dry pipe fire suppression system.
In addition to looking up a domain by IP, Whois lookup can also help you validate your website code with one of several Domain and SEO tools including CSE HTML validator, W3C HTML validator and the CSS Validator. Each WhoIs tool identifies errors in your source code so that you can fix things like missing closing tags, errors in character encoding and more. No matter what DNS information you are looking for, WhoIs can help you identify anything related to domain names quickly and easily.

* NTT America endeavors to make the domain name availability search process reliable; however, NTT America does not guarantee availability of domain names or the accuracy or security of the WHOIS system. There are several factors that could cause a WHOIS.NET query to incorrectly display that a currently registered domain is available. Regardless, if a domain name is already registered, WHOIS.NET will not be able to register the domain or gain possession of the registration from the current registrar without the permission of the current owner. The registration process is not complete until the domain name requested by you has been registered in your name with the appropriate registry. Because there are delays in the actual registration of a domain name with the appropriate registry, NTT America is not responsible if domain names requested by you are actually registered to third parties. Registration of the domain name through NTT America is not complete until you receive the final confirmation e-mail from NTT America. All registrations through NTT America are subject to NTT America's Global Terms and Conditions.


VPS hosting sits in the intersection of shared hosting and dedicated servers. Unlike shared hosting, VPS is an isolated environment with dedicated resources, which means you have more processing power and your site loads faster. VPS is best suited for applications that have seasonal traffic spikes or RAM-heavy/CPU-intensive applications. If you are developing a new application that has a complex database and you’re not sure how many visits you’ll get, VPS hosting is the affordable option to start with before you upgrade to a dedicated server.
Due to the large number of users using WordPress, several web hosting providers have chosen to offer managed WordPress hosting. An account with one of these providers only allows you to host WordPress based sites and nothing else. The benefit of managed WordPress hosting is that you do not have to worry about ANYTHING. They optimize your site for performance, make sure that your site is secure, and keep regular backups. On top of that they advise you if a specific plugin is having a negative impact.
Believe it or not, the physical location of the server influences the load times of your website. The closer the server is geographically to the users trying to access your website, the more quickly they’ll be able to use it. However, if the closest server to you or the users you expect to be trying to access your website is a significantly underpowered one, it’s best to find the closest one to you that has a reasonable amount of resources and reliability.
Disclaimer: Great efforts are made to maintain reliable data on all offers presented. However, this data is provided without warranty. Users should always check the offer provider’s official website for current terms and details. Our site receives compensation from many of the offers listed on the site. Along with key review factors, this compensation may impact how and where products appear across the site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). Our site does not include the entire universe of available offers. Editorial opinions expressed on the site are strictly our own and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by advertisers.
In this day and age, you don’t have to be a 5-star designer or experienced developer to have a website. That’s why man invented website builders — the time-saving, headache-free, web-design-for-dummies alternative to complex coding. You can point and click to add elements like photos or videos, type content into a visual editor, click one more button, and watch as it all magically appears live on the Internet. Seriously, these tools are brilliant, and it gets better:
A Virtual Private Server (VPS) is an independent, virtual partition on a physical server. Think of a server with different "containers" within it. When you sign up for HostPapa VPS hosting, you get one of these containers to manage as you wish⁠—install applications or scripts, and arrange your web files the way you want. It's private, secure, and flexible.
Managed VPS hosting means that we will handle just about anything to do with your server: nuts, bolts, wires, drives, connectivity, racking, storage, security, and so on. All you have to manage is your own container, which you can do using the provided control panel software or through root access. You can install, manage, and operate software / scripts of your choice. Customers who acquire either managed or fully managed service for VPS hosting will receive cPanel/WHM licenses. Installation of non-cPanel supported applications will not be supported by our customer service.

People often think that a web host is the main cause of a slow website but, this is often not the case. When picking a provider, it's important for find a hosting provider that is close to your users and has a good amount of RAM and fast CPU power. Beyond that, it's often the way the website is set up that slows it down for users. To ensure that your website speed is optimal for users you need to make sure you pay attention to the following:
When it comes to server operating systems, Linux is typically the default option. Still, some services offer a choice of Linux or Windows hosting. If you have specific server-side applications that require Windows, such as SQL Server or a custom application written in .NET, then you need to make sure your web host has Windows hosting. But don't let the idea of a Linux host intimidate you. Nowadays, most web hosts offer a graphical interface or a control panel to simplify server administration and website management. Instead of typing at the command line, you'll click easily identifiable icons.
For our fully managed VPS server we include an easy to use custom cPanel Control Panel that offers many administrative tools but basic knowledge of file transfer and application management are beneficial. Our semi-managed offering does not include the control panel and will require a more in depth technical expertise to keep your website running smoothly. 

Cloud hosting has significantly gained in popularity in recent years because of its flexibility and versatility. Cloud hosting makes it easy for its users to scale up or down the capabilities of their website and the availability of the resources they are receiving. Because it is ideal for both large and small websites, and because it also is a much safer web hosting method as it relies on several machines rather than only one, cloud hosting offers many benefits to its users.
Their cheapest WordPress hosting plan starts from $0.80/month with a 48-month commitment and renews at $2.15/month. This plan includes 100GB bandwidth and 10GB storage which is optimal for a smaller WordPress website. Furthermore, 1 email account is included in all of their plans as well as a free SSL certificate. Additional CDN is not included. And if you’re not satisfied with their service, you can get a full refund until 30 days from the signup.
Almost all the services offer some sort of drag-and-drop website builder that makes it easy to drag and drop items to build your page. These are great for getting started, but they often lock you into the service. Most page builders are proprietary to the service, or don't create HTML that's portable enough to be easily moved to another service if you decide it's necessary.
Yes, you can type “free website hosting” into a search engine of your choice, and you will get results. Don’t do it. At best, you will be stuck with shoddy service, semi-reliable uptime, and ridiculously short-lived storage and bandwidth capacities. The free options out there will frustrate you, and putting yourself through that makes zero sense when you can have quality hosting for as little as $2 a month.

DreamHost stands out from the crowd. We're one of the last independently-owned and operated web hosts in the business. We've grown from dorm-room beginnings in 1997 to helping more than 400,000 customers in over 100 countries. We proudly host over 1.5 million websites, WordPress blogs, and applications for designers, developers, small businesses, and more from our data centers in Ashburn, Virginia, and Hillsboro, Oregon.
Don't get discouraged in your domain name search if what you're looking for is already taken. We have a couple of ways for dealing with such a situation. You can try our Domain Broker Service, where we negotiate acquiring the domain from its current owner. We also offer a Domain Backorder service, where you purchase a backorder credit to give you a chance to get the domain when it goes into auction.
Yes, you can type “free website hosting” into a search engine of your choice, and you will get results. Don’t do it. At best, you will be stuck with shoddy service, semi-reliable uptime, and ridiculously short-lived storage and bandwidth capacities. The free options out there will frustrate you, and putting yourself through that makes zero sense when you can have quality hosting for as little as $2 a month.
Domain name registrars are companies that are allowed to manage the reservation of internet domain names and assign IP addresses to those domain names. Registrars have to be accredited by a generic top-level domain (gTLD) registry or a country code top-level domain (ccTLD) registry. Registries are top-level companies that have to delegate the sales of domain registrations. Whenever a domain name is sold to a customer, the registrar has to notify the registry to reserve the domain (and a LOT of them are sold every single day, just check out the internet usage stats resource we created for some insane numbers).

WordPress.org references the open-source (free) software that can be downloaded and installed pretty easily, particularly if you have a web host that makes this process a breeze. Self-hosted WordPress allows you to capitalize on the robust offerings of the established content management system, plus the potential for more features, such as a free domain, unlimited email accounts, marketing credits, and expert support).
Our WhoIs lookup is designed to help you perform a variety of whois lookup functions. WhoIs lets you perform a domain whois search, whois IP lookup and search the whois database for relevant information on domain registration and availability. This can help provide insight into a domain's history and additional information. Use WhoIs lookup anytime you want to perform a search to see who owns a domain name, how many pages from a site are listed with Google or even search WhoIs address listings for a website's owner.
BigCommerce is a bit different from our other hosting plans in that it's a SaaS (software-as-a-service) provider instead of an IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service) provider. In other words, rather than renting space on a virtual machine where you setup and configure your own site, BigCommerce provides you with an app you login to that creates and online store. 
You can always count on GoDaddy to offer competitive pricing on domain names and all of our other services. We set the standard when it came to establishing rock-bottom prices for domain names and making it affordable for more people to get online. We STILL lead the industry when it comes to helping people build an online presence, and we will always strive to provide our customers with the best possible prices.
Before registering a domain, it is necessary to choose your desired name. That is the most crucial step. Once you have done so, you can use the domain check at the top of this page to help you find out, if your website address is available or if it is already in use. In case all your preferred names are already under management, you can choose a completely new one or try another extension.
BigCommerce is a bit different from our other hosting plans in that it's a SaaS (software-as-a-service) provider instead of an IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service) provider. In other words, rather than renting space on a virtual machine where you setup and configure your own site, BigCommerce provides you with an app you login to that creates and online store. 
It’s no secret that WordPress is one of the most well-known blogging platforms on the web. A huge chunk of WordPress hosting customers are interested in blogging features. Users love it for how easy the platform is to just start writing, how many theme options are available to match your blog’s personality, as well as the huge community behind the platform. 

While WordPress makes it easy for anyone to build a website without knowing how to code, there’s always a chance of running into an issue that you don’t know how to fix. That’s where we come in! DreamHost’s friendly, pro-level customer support representatives are the best in the biz, skillfully striving to always make sure your hosting needs are met.
A VPS runs its own copy of an operating system (OS), and customers may have superuser-level access to that operating system instance, so they can install almost any software that runs on that OS. For many purposes they are functionally equivalent to a dedicated physical server, and being software-defined, are able to be much more easily created and configured. They are priced much lower than an equivalent physical server. However, as they share the underlying physical hardware with other VPSes, performance may be lower, depending on the workload of any other executing virtual machines.[1]
I'v tested some other top VPS Providers/resellers (AWS, Digital Ocean, Vultr, etc.) and find that VPSServer.com offer highest performance/price ratio on market. One of the highest (top 3) IOPS, Unixbench and Network perfomance at lowest price from my research. Setting up server with operating systems is matter of few minutes. Managing is simple and clear.
Moving to another website consists of transferring the website’s files and databases, configuring your site with the new host, and directing your domain’s DNS to the new host. Once you pick a new site host, they can usually help you out with this process. The cost will depend on the host you’re switching to, but it can range anywhere from $150-$400. 

I'v tested some other top VPS Providers/resellers (AWS, Digital Ocean, Vultr, etc.) and find that VPSServer.com offer highest performance/price ratio on market. One of the highest (top 3) IOPS, Unixbench and Network perfomance at lowest price from my research. Setting up server with operating systems is matter of few minutes. Managing is simple and clear.
GlowHost earned our kudos for its 91-day money-back guarantee. It's six days short of DreamHost's 97-day guarantee, but with these numbers, who's quibbling over a few days? The company also offers 24/7/365 phone support option and free cPanel offering for most plans. The company operates 18 data centers worldwide. Finally, the company garnered extra kudos by driving all its hosting services with wind power.
WordPress® is a blog- and web-publishing platform that's not only easy to use, but recognized the world over as a standard in website creation. With its focus on aesthetics, web standards and usability, WordPress is an open-source platform that lets you manage everything from a small personal blog to a large commercial site with hundreds of pages. Hundreds of thousands of sites trust their online presence to WordPress — and with WordPress Hosting from GoDaddy, you can, too.
Although there isn’t any rule that your domain registrar and the host shouldn’t be the same, but you should get the best individually. If you can find a good host someplace and a great domain registrar someplace else, you should stick your guns with it. This also has a security advantage, as if someone gets access to your hosting account, your domain name will still be safe.
It’s important to note that there are two subgenres of WP hosting: WordPress.org and WordPress.com. The latter is a free, fully-hosted site that allows you to build and host basic website with the people who created the platform.  Although the WordPress hosting platform is on its way up, it’s not yet the ideal option for folks who are looking to run a business site or aspire to grow a substantial web presence. If you’re doing anything more than posting your resume or blogging your ideas, you want WordPress.org hosting.
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