We have a lot of clients inquire about where to get web hosting for their site and we refer them to the company we personally use instead of one that pays more for us to promote them that we have no experience with. We refer them to the company we personally use because we’ve had good experience with said company. In fact I can’t really think of anything offhand that I would rate them less than 5 stars on. Most of the “Web Hosting Reviews” websites are just trying to get an affiliate commission for steering you to the companies they’re promoting but often not using to host their own sites.
You Get What You Pay For
Hosting is not something you want to be ultra cheap about. There are numerous web hosts out there and some of them offer some incredible prices but all too often after you sign up you usually find out that things aren’t so incredible. With web hosting you usually get what you pay for or worse. You can spend thousands of dollars having your site built, optimized, and promoted and ruin it all with inferior web hosting. There are numerous reasons why they’re able to offer such low prices and those reasons usually aren’t in your favor.
Watch Out For Little Hosts
Many smaller hosts are just running a reseller account like I use with one of the bigger companies. They usually don’t have much more control over the server than you do. Most provide some support (which can range from awesome to awful,) but are basically the middleman between you and one of the bigger companies. We use a reseller type account like this for our websites but we don’t resell hosting, I use the extra features to manage my own sites better and to host sites for a couple friends and clients.
Avoid Big Companies Not Known For Web Hosting
A couple of the most well known internet brand names sell the junkiest web hosting around as side income generators to their main business. Take GoDaddy for instance, they’re great for domain registrar and I use them to register my own domains (I recommend doing a search for GoDaddy coupons before registering or renewing a new domain btw,) but I’d rather shoot myself in the face than host a website there. I’ve had to turn down jobs after the client reveals that they have GoDaddy hosting and are locked into long term plans with them. I once tried to set up a simple WordPress site there for a client and discovered the biggest nightmare I’ve ever witnessed in Web Hosting… GoDaddy Hosting. The whole set up was totally screwy and I ended up giving the client free hosting just so I wouldn’t have to deal with GoDaddy hosting… During this nightmare I discovered that you can do a few searches about their web hosting and find pages and pages full of complaints, like this one for instance… http://wordpress.org/support/topic/wordpress-on-godaddy-unbearably-slow Not only that when I tried to install WordPress there you had to use their own GoDaddy modified version of WordPress if I remember correctly… no thanks!
Another big company that sells web hosting to avoid is Yahoo. Now Yahoo is great if you want to do a search or go read the mainstream news and make a few comments here and there which is what I use it for, but they’re awful at web hosting. Last I heard (about 6-7 months ago) they were still running php4.1.XX long after the updates to php5.x have been out for quite some time now. WordPress won’t even run on the old php4. Unless you’re happy with a cheesy “site builder” type of website and static .html pages I’d avoid these two companies like the plague when it comes to hosting your web site.
Where To Get Good Hosting And What To Get?
We use and recommend Amerinoc.com but I’ve also heard mostly good things about Hostgator.com and Dreamhost.com. Most new sites are fine starting out with one of the cheaper plans but if you wish to manage a network of websites throwing them all on a $4.95 account anywhere probably isn’t going to work out very well. The plan I’m using to host this website and several others is Amerinoc’s cheapest managed VPS plan or Virtual Private Server. This gives me six unique IP addresses to host my sites on. On a few IP’s I have numerous domains but not nearly as many as many web hosts put on them and I use the other IP’s for a few sites that I consider important like this one.
If you’re building what you consider an important website I recommend making sure that you’re getting a unique IP address before purchasing your web hosting. Many of the bottom rate accounts at any host will crowd numerous websites onto the same IP address on the same server. It’s common practice in the hosting biz. To me and I imagine to sites like Google as well, having a unique IP address for your website shows that it’s an important enough website to you that you opted to put it on its own unique unshared IP#. I’ve seen it said that Google no longer considers a unique IP a ranking factor but did at one time. I’ve always had better results using a unique IP myself.
Also if you ever want to install an ssl certificate, which I also recommend splurging for, you’ll need a unique IP# for the site. Don’t pay $100 a year or whatever a lot of hosting companies are charging for an SSL cert. I recommend buying them from a site like cheapssls.com. You’ll probably have to install it yourself but your host should help you out if you encounter any problems, or you could pay a company like ours to set it up for you, if you aren’t up for tackling it yourself.
One site I recommend looking up any potential web host on is the Web Hosting Talk forums. Decent web hosting can mean a world of difference for you, your business, your developer, and your search engine rankings since page speed and loading times are an important factor.