Weave through the world of web hosting with our reviews of the top fourteen hosting providers for small businesses.
Hosting is the place where your site lives on the Internet. You wouldn’t move house without checking that the property was affordable, large enough for the needs of your family, and structurally stable – right?
Finding a hosting provider for your small business should not be different.
If you run a small business, it is very important to get the best web hosting service. Choose a second-rate provider, and that will affect everything from the speed of your site, to your income.
Your hosting for small businesses should be reliable: time is money, and you lose dollars for every minute when your site is down (by choosing a bad hosting provider). It should also be reasonably priced and include the security certificates necessary to ensure the security of your users’ when they visit on your site.
If you run a small business and are looking for a hosting provider, you have come to the right place. In this guide, we will introduce you to the fourteen best small business web hosting providers.
Our Evaluation Approach:
- Firstly, we sign up to the most popular shared hosting plans.
- We install a basic WordPress site
- Then we start monitoring the uptime and speed in real time.
- We also send support tickets to check customer support time.
- Finally, we rank hosts based on our experience, real-time data, and user reviews.
If you are in a hurry, you can compare the main features of our top best web hosting companies using the comparison chart below.
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The main factors for any web hosting provider – shared, VPS, managed dedicated – are three:
These three factors are the cornerstone of any meaningful web hosting comparison. It cannot be otherwise since a site that loads quickly and always online is worth the rest. In the end, the reason for buying a web hosting service is that your site is always available.
Technical support factors in heavily because a well-trained and responsive team not only quickly solves problems but also prevents them from happening. Of course, we consider the financial aspect of hosting and take into account the initial and renewal fees for hosting packages. Very often, these are completely different things.
The best hosting companies offer an incredible variety of tools for new and experienced users. We also consider the scalability, whether it is justifiable to upgrade to a larger scale and whether large packages are suitable for sites with higher requirements for space, bandwidth and programming tools.
14 Best Web Hosting Companies for Small Business?
1. Hostinger – Best value web hosting and extremely affordable
2. Namecheap – Very quick and extremely affordable host with excellent support
3. InterServer – Lightning fast servers
4. HostGator – Hosting for designers and newbies
5. DreamHost – Impeccable uptime (100%)
6. InMotion Hosting – Fast and scalable hosting
7. Bluehost – Very fast under moderate loads
8. A2Hosting– Simple and reliable hosting
9. SiteGround – Excellent support and numerous features
10. WPEngine – Handles traffic perfectly
11. Kinsta – Feature-rich plans
12. FatCow – Optimized for WordPress and Joomla
13. JustHost – Innovative and reliable hosting
14. FastComet – Free domain registration for life
1. Hostinger – Extremely Affordable
Hostinger, a hosting provider from Lithuania, is boasts it signs up a new client every five seconds. With 29 million customers in 178 countries and subsidiaries in the USA, Indonesia and Brazil, the company has been operating since 2004.
Hostinger has a good selection of plans, each of which can be optimized for WordPress. We especially liked that even the cheapest plans offered some level of SSH access for those who needed it. The company earned points for offering SSD performance, and for regularly backing up on some plans.
What distinguishes the company is their cost for the first year of hosting is less than a dollar a month. The company’s least expensive plan is a staggering-low 80 cents a month. This is the cheapest hosting program we have seen, although the price has been rising after the first year. In fact, most of the company’s plans begin to grow after the expiration of their promotional price.
Hostinger offers a 30-day money back guarantee with the wording that wish more providers would use: “If for any reason you decide not to continue with Hostinger, we will offer a full refund for your purchase without asking questions.” If you have any questions, the company has round-the-clock 24/7 chat available support.
2. Namecheap – Excellent Support
As a leading domain registrar accredited by ICANN, Namecheap has gained a significant market share since its founding in 2000. Namecheap has provided customers with over 4 million domain names worldwide. Although Namecheap’s core business is domain registry services, it provides additional services, including web hosting, email hosting, security, and cloud services. We recommend you to go with the yearly cheapest Namecheap hosting plan which is $15.44/year.
The Namecheap service certainly have a lot in common, given that it is probably your best bet off getting cheap, high-quality domain names. For example, .org domains are only available for $9.99 and are purchased with the click of a button, whether you choose your brand name or transfer your current name to company professionals.
Prices are equally affordable for customers with high-performance shared hosting and those who are interested in managed WordPress hosting (with or without a site on the popular CMS platform) and object to both monthly and annual subscriptions. All of them gets a hands-on kit of creation material, from site builders to site analytics.
3. InterServer – Lightning Fast Servers
InterServer, founded by Michael Lavrik and John Quaglieri, a New Jersey based company that has been involved in the game since 1999. Initially, launching as an virtual hosting account re-seller, the hosting provider has grown over the past 17 years and now operates two data centers in New Jersey and is in the process of expanding to additional locations, including Los Angeles. The datacenter is equipped with features such as UPS power, fire suppression, biometric locks, raised floors, overhead air conditioning and HVAC.
InterServer is one of the most ideal web hosting for WordPress sites. Its plans are so affordable that you can use an unlimited number storage, transfer, email and free SSL certificates and maintain up to 20 websites. You can also use the one-click installation for more than 100 scripts for WordPress, Prestashop, Cubecart, Magenta and osCommerce, as well as many others.
InterServer is the best choice for sites with moderate traffic, as its servers are fast, but they struggle when many concurrent users swarm them. The price lock feature is another fine touch, as it ensures that your hosting fee remains forever.
The service uses only the most modern equipment on its servers, including high-performance SSD hard drives with capacities from 30 to 240 GB. These disks are 20 times faster than regular SATA drives. It also supports multiple languages and uses the latest versions of MySQL, Python, Perl, PHP, and Ruby to name a few. These servers are configured according to Linux applications, server solutions, or OS components.
InterServer offers a 100% uptime guarantee for collocation and a 99.9% uptime guarantee for its VPS plans.
4. HostGator – Hosting for Designers and Newbies
HostGator is an extremely reliable hosting company, with a good knowledge base, an excellent user interface and a wide selection of hosting solutions. Customer team is knowledgeable, although on some occasion it is a bit slow. In terms of speed, HostGator Cloud could be faster, but it is still in the top ten if traffic is not excessive. Their latest 16-month performance statistics are also pretty good, with 432ms boot time and 99.98% uptime.
HostGator is a full-service hosting company, with plans for almost any need. If you are just starting out and you need a very simple shared site, or you need to operate your own machine dedicated solely for your company, HostGator offers a service that can help you.
HostGator earned points for regular uptime monitoring and backups, along with free cPanel or Plesk. We liked that SSH is available for more inclined site operators and that it is possible to purchase dedicated IP addresses. We did take points off because it’s hard to say what price after promotion plans go their own way. However, with a generous 45-day money-back guarantee, HostGator offers a solution for almost everyone.
5. DreamHost – Impeccable Uptime (100%)
DreamHost is another award-winning WordPress web hosting provider where you can get the brand new .xyz, .life, .online, .tech. or .store extension domain. Their most popular feature is Remixer, an intuitive website builder that takes literally minutes of your time and allows you to attach a fully functional website on the web without resorting to any third-party service.
However, designers should not be discouraged with the all-in-one offer – Remixer is probably one of the most flexible and customizable ready-to-configure builders and will provide them with a unique and optimized theme that can only facilitate this process.
Managed WordPress hosting for an existing site is also an acceptable option, therefore sharing email with fast SSD storage, virtual private servers with ultra-fast SSDs and flexibility with HTTP/2, Ubuntu, IPv6, NGINX and Node.js and dedicated hosting with 100% uptime guarantee.
There are two other factors that led to an almost perfect Dreamhost rating. Firstly, the prices of the company are quite transparent. There are no hidden gotchas in prices. Plus – and this is the best we have seen with all our hosting providers – Dreamhost provides a 97-day money-back guarantee. There is zero risks when you try them.
6. InMotion Hosting – Fast and Scalable Hosting
InMotion Hosting has earned a good reputation since its first conception in 2001. Today, it powers around 300,000 websites with customers around the world. Their hosting options include Shared, VPS, Reseller, WordPress and dedicated servers.
Regarding the InMotion Hosting uptime guarantee, they strive to provide their customers with a 99.95% uptime guarantee. And yes, they can provide more or less that – they are reliable, that’s why they made this list.
InMotion Hosting has many options for customer support: from extensive documents (articles in the knowledge base) to e-mail (ticket system), real-time phone chat support to Skype communication.
It is also a good choice for a developing and growing business, as it is very scalable and makes the transition to another package seamless. It may be interesting that they work with PCI-compatible data servers and constantly invest in new technology, and have been featured by user forums and all professional and supportive.
7. Bluehost – Very Fast Under Moderate Loads
If you are a WordPress user, Bluehost is definitely a provider to consider. Although managed WordPress hosting costs a little more than basic shared hosting, the company has hosting plans for both WordPress and WooCommerce hosting (along with management support). It also offers a site migration service for an additional fee.
The company got bonus points for its policy of regular daily backups, even for shared low-cost hosting accounts. Bluehost also earned points for providing 24-7 phone support and SSH access for certain plans.
Upgraded infrastructure and attractive prices are promising. Technical support could be better, but it seems to be constantly improving, which adds value to the service.
BlueHost, which manages more than 2 million websites, has established itself over 13 years since its inception and has entered the top 20 largest web hosts. Their reputation seems well deserved. They have a wide range of offers that compete with any other excellent hosting service.
Your site hosted on Bluehost will benefit from all the latest security and performance features.
8. A2Hosting– Simple and Reliable Hosting
A2 Hosting has been exists since 2001. It may be low profile compared to some other big-name hosts, but it also provides some of the highest server speeds we’ve seen in the last 16 months.
Their customer support is effective, hosting plans are convenient for developer-friendly and have a unique “anytime” money back guarantee to get a refund on any unused portion of your plan. Most plans also include SSL and backup.
Uptime has declined over the past few months. And after the renewal rates jump pretty aggressively after your first purchase period ends.
It is worth noting that A2 Hosting is committed to clean energy practices. They partner with Carbonfund to offset and reduce their carbon footprint with FutureServe program. A2 Hosting is 100% carbon neutral since 2007.
If you are new to creating your first blog or an advanced developer, A2 hosting is worth adding to your consideration list.
9. SiteGround – Excellent Support
SiteGround is one of the most popular and highly rated hosting providers in the WordPress community. They provide unique in-house WordPress proprietary solutions for speed and security to make your site as fast and secure as possible.
It is head-quartered in Sofia, Bulgaria, with offices at 6 locations and data centers in three continents. Today, the company employs more than 400 employees and hosts more than 500,000 domains.
They are known for the industry’s best 24/7 support, making them the official ‘WordPress’ recommended hosting provider. SiteGround features include automatic updates, built-in WP caching, CDN, one-click staging and GIT version control.
They are also one of the few hosting companies with 3 data centers in the USA, Europe and Asia.
Overall, SiteGround is a leader among all web hosting companies with uptime (99.99%) and speeds (713 ms). Their customer support team is knowledgeable, fast and friendly. All plans come with a CDN, SSL certificate, and email accounts.
10. WPEngine – Handles Traffic Perfectly
WP Engine is a WordPress-specific web hosting service that offers managed plans that are fully optimized for the platform. Of course, compared to many other WordPress hosts, WP Engine plans are not entirely cheap. Therefore, you should know whether this hosting service is worth it before you make a purchase.
Founded in 2010, WP Engine is relatively new to the hosting world, but they’ve wasted no time to building a stellar reputation. Serial entrepreneur Jason Cohen started WP Engine when he saw the need for specialized WordPress hosting because of the growing popularity of WordPress.
WP Engine is head-quartered in Austin, Texas, and already employs more than 400 people. The company has received many awards for the Best Place to Work in Austin and is making a continuing contribution to the core and community of WordPress.
WP Engine plans come with great support. Get round-the-clock access to dedicated help, whether by phone, email or live chat. Access to support options is easy to access right from user portal, after registration.
If you look closely at the specifications of the WP Engine hosting plan, you may notice that they do offer virtual hosting.
As the test results later on in this review reveal, this is not an entry-level shared hosting that you will receive in exchange for a few dollars a month where countless websites are crammed with the same server with a low-spec server. Instead, with WP Engine, you get access to the best premium WordPress hosting services out there.
WPEngine is like an army of WordPress experts to help. Brands such as HTC, FourSquare, SoundCloud, Balsamiq and many others use WPEngine for their WordPress hosting. If you are a business that does not want to deal with the technical side of blog, WPEngine is the solution for you.
Bonus: Now you get free all 36+ Premium StudioPress Themes and Genesis Framework with all WP Engine accounts.
11. Kinsta – Feature-Rich Plans
Kinsta is founded by Mark Gavalda, a WP dev guy and programmer by trade. They have offices in London, Los Angeles, Budapest, and they began offering hosting to the public in early 2014 (founded December 2013). They are no longer new to WordPress hosting and are already ahead of their competitors in terms of high performance. With advanced technology and the best services, Kinsta is believed to be providing serious support.
Kinsta is the first WordPress managed hosting company, working exclusively on the new powerful Google Cloud platform, which includes automatic scaling, LXD containers and, of course, one of the largest networks on the planet. Because they use container technology, each WordPress site is completely isolated and does not share resources. Each container has its own Nginx, PHP, MySQL, etc. This is how hosting should be done!
With Kinsta-managed WordPress hosting, you can expect faster website loading, as well as less downtime and fewer performance issues than generic shared web hosting.
In addition, Kinsta only offers WordPress website hosting, all of their employees are experienced in assisting WordPress users and are experts in troubleshooting software related issues. Some of the support teams even contribute to WordPress software.
When it comes to managing your account, Kinsta has created its own custom dashboard. The My Kinsta portal is very easy to navigate and allows you to perform tasks such as creating new WordPress websites, updating all plugins installed on your website, and managing backups.
12. FatCow – Optimized for WordPress and Joomla
Founded in 1998, FatCow has made a name for itself by providing web hosting services for small and medium-sized businesses.
FatCow is owned and operated by Endurance International Group (EIG), the company that also owns iPage, BlueHost, Hostgator, JustHost and dozens of popular hosting brands. *Because of this, FatCow does not just compete with itself. It’s also in competition with its partner companies.
You have four options if you want to get a hosting plan with FatCow. You can get (names of hosting plans): Original FatCow, WordPress Blog, VPS Service and Dedicated Servers.
Unlimited Hosting is Very Limited.
Like most unlimited hosting service providers, FatCow advertises “unlimited hosting”, but has many limitations. These restrictions often lead to account suspension. If you use too much storage, bandwidth, or processor time, your account may be locked out. So much for “unlimited”. It’s only unlimited until FatCow decides that you have used too much.
Unlike some other hosting providers, FatCow can only host their customer’s websites in the United States. This is not a disadvantage if your main audience is based in North America; but that would be a big problem if you would like your host to be on other continents such as Europe or Asia to reduce latency.
If you already have a website hosted elsewhere, FatCow helps you transfer it free of charge.
Free Web Icons
Need web icons to improve the overall design of your website? FatCow has you covered.
The company offers 3,926 professionally-designed fresh farm icons. The best part? All of them are absolutely free!
13. JustHost – Innovative and Reliable Hosting
JustHost includes many free add-ons that come with their single-size shared hosting service, making them a reliable and affordable option to enhance your online presence. The company’s website is easy to use, just like its accounts and site management tools. JustHost web administration panel, the industry-standard cPanel, is designed in the same spirit and ensures uninterrupted operation of the site compared to other hosts with more complex interfaces.
JustHost, founded in 2008, has recently entered the web hosting industry but has grown steadily since its inception. It was the creation of famous UK techtrepreneur Chris Phillips, and he developed JustHost, while working with the “Just Develop It” group of companies.
JustHost is now headquartered in the UK, USA and Australia, and the company’s data center is located in Illinois, USA.
Both beginners and advanced users will appreciate the ample storage space and unlimited bandwidth that JustHost allocates to users, as well as unlimited data transfer and email accounts. The included domain name is also a bonus that everyone may need.
JustHost is becoming one of the most affordable shared hosts, especially if you sign up for a two- or three-year plan. However, for beginners in hosting, this period can be intimidating and difficult to justify – fortunately, the company is one of the few that also offer a monthly option. JustHost also offers a relatively standard 30-day money-back guarantee and 24-hour customer support, positioning the brand among industry leaders.”
14. FastComet – Free Domain Registration for Life
FastComet, based in San Francisco, California, initially provides hosting and system administration exclusively for corporate clients.
Four years after its founding, in 2013, the company launched a cloud hosting solution that is open to private customers and small business owners.
Regarding the features offered by FastComet in terms of pricing, I would say that this roughly corresponds to the speed at this price level. In fact, in some areas, this offers real value for money.
For example, even with a hosting plan of the lowest level, they offer free migration for one website and a free domain for life. Some hosts charge a lot for for the migration service, and most do not provide you with a free domain at this price level!
The FastComet server has a daily and weekly data backup procedure. They do back up all client files, including databases and email, to independent storage mode. They guarantee that no data loss will occur even if they encounter the most serious damage to the storage device.
Does Fastcomet Really Provide a Free Domain for a Living?
Actually, the domain name will be for free as long as you are using FastComet web hosting service, and if you transfer your site to any other web hosting, you have to pay $13.95 per year for the domain. But not in all cases. For example, if a user uses his domain all the time, which is paid elsewhere, or if a customer has purchased a domain whose value is lower than this amount, he will have to pay for it later. The best part is that you can also transfer the domain to any other registrant without any hustle. The following domains are included for free registration: .com, .net, .org, .biz, .info, .in, .co.uk, .us. .eu, .ca, .es, .ru, .cn, .nl, .de.
How to Choose The Web Hosting Provider
If you do not know what hosting is and how it works, just read on. We explain some key elements in brief. If you have an idea but still do not know what to choose, check out this section.
Choosing a web hosting plan is easy if you have a concept in mind. Here are some strategic points to keep in mind:
Doing your bit of research is essential. Make a spreadsheet or take a notebook, whichever is more convenient for you, and write down all the important service points of each hosting provider on your radar, or you can simply check out our above hosting comparison table to find the best hosting provider according to your needs. They all offer similar services, but they are all packaged in different ways. The package will be vital in deciding which hosting to choose for your websites(s). It will also be essential to determine the quality of your site, depending on the disk space, bandwidth and email provided to you.
Pricing is another crucial factor when choosing. However, it should always be secondary and never primary. This is because quality always costs more, and a few extra dollars can do things differently. The key here is choosing the best hosting plan within your reach. And in no case do not select a free hosting for your business. A service for which you do not spend a dime will not give you a pennyworth of service. No one can do social services there.
Service and Support
Never choose a hosting provider that does not guarantee a 24-hour service and phone call, live chat helpline, ticket support. Everyone, including experts, sometimes requires support during a crash or similar event and therefore becomes even more necessary. Choose a provider that is reputed for customer service and support.
Many companies offer benefits such as a 30-day money back guarantee, in which your entire amount is returned if you are not satisfied with the quality of service. This is preferably a benefit without asking questions. Other benefits include 99.9% uptime and 100% backup power, which almost all companies promise.
Many companies provide additional services, such as a free domain name along with hosting, documentation and FAQs, free SSL, unlimited emails and much more. The more of these services, the better it is.
Understanding How Web Hosting Works
To better understand the types of hosting, it is first important to understand how hosting works in general. When you browse a website online, you see a bunch of code that translates your computer into something visual through your browser.
Now, all the code makes up a website is stored in many different files, and these files should be stored where people can access them. This is where hosting comes in.
Hosting, essentially, means that the files on the website are stored on a server that is connected to the Internet so that people can access, download, convert and read these files through their browser. A server is the same as a computer, but much more powerful, which allows lots and lots of people to access the same data simultaneously.
If we are going to be meticulous, a host is a company that gives you access to the server on which you store your website’s files. In addition to accessing the hardware, they often provide additional services such as server management, backups, website building, malware scanning, and much more.
What are The Types of Web Hosting?
There are various types of web hosting services to host your site. Before signing up for web hosting services, it is important to understand what services your website needs, what server you or your business need, what’s your budget and what services the web host offers.
Different Types of Hosting:
- Website Builders
- Shared Hosting
- VPS Hosting
- Dedicated Hosting
- Collocated Hosting
- Cloud Hosting
- Reseller Hosting
- Managed Hosting
- Self Service Web Hosting
- Managed WordPress Hosting
Website builder services is a type of hosting service that is intended for beginners who need to host a website but lack the technical skills and knowledge to create it. Website builder services usually provide you with an online browser-based interface for building your website, and also host the website for you without any additional setup.
In a shared hosting environment, yours and other website owners have a shared one server. This includes sharing the physical server and software applications on the server. Shared hosting services are affordable, as the cost of the server is shared between you and these other owners. However, there are a number of disadvantages, such as being slower.
VPS hosting or Virtual Private Server hosting is the next step from shared hosting. This is a fairly popular option for website owners who are looking for an upgrade from traditional shared hosting, as it is fairly balanced on all sides, including costs. The VPS server copies a dedicated server inside a shared hosting environment. Technically, it’s both dedicated hosting and shared hosting.
The VPS hosting environment mimics a dedicated server within a shared hosting environment. The VPS server still requires you to share space with other users on the same physical server, but the way this is achieved is completely different from traditional shared hosting.
In a dedicated hosting environment, you have the entire web server for yourself. This provides better performance, since you have all the resources on the server in full without sharing with other website owners. However, this means that you will bear the full cost of the server. This is a good choice for websites that require a lot of system resources or require a higher level of security and large amount of traffic.
With this type of hosting you will buy your own server and have it housed at a web host’s facilities. You will be responsible for the server itself. The advantage of this type of hosting is that you have full control over the web server. You can install any necessary scripts or applications you need.
Cloud Hosting is the current buzzword in the hosting industry. It’s just a marketing term, and “Cloud” can mean different things in different contexts. With hosting, this means that many computers working together, running applications that use combined computing resources. It is a hosting solution that runs on a network, such as the Internet, and allows companies to use computing resources as a utility, such as gas or electricity.
Use as much as they need, without the need to create and maintain their own computer infrastructure in-house. The resources required for maintaining your website are shared among several web servers, which reduces the likelihood of interruption due to server failure.
Cloud hosting is scalable, which means that your site can grow over time, using as many resources as you need and paying only for what you need.
Reseller hosting packages are basically a shared hosting account with additional tools to help you resell hosting space.
Reseller packages comes with greater technical controls (often through the Web Host Manager (WHM) control panel), invoicing software to help customers bill, and other additional benefits.
If you plan to sell web hosting as a business, then reseller hosting is ideal for you. Otherwise, just stick with a shared hosting plan if you are just starting out.
Most hosting packages that you are likely to find on the Internet will be managed. Hosting companies provide technical services, such as installation and configuration of equipment and software, support, equipment replacement, technical support, patching, updating and monitoring. Unlike standard specialized hosting, the hosting provider takes care of the daily management of equipment, operating systems and standardized applications.
A popular sub-category is WordPress managed hosting. For many businesses, the beauty of WordPress lies in its simplicity. Its advantages are obvious, easy to configure and manage. However, choosing a hosting provider for a WordPress site can be more difficult, especially for those who do not have experience or experience of the market. Many web hosts currently specialize exclusively in providing managed WordPress services.
Self Service Web Hosting
The ultimate hosting plan – you do it yourself! You buy servers, install and configure software, make sure that there are sufficient cooling and power in your machine room, and double up everything for redundancy.
Some things you need to take care of:
- data center space
- power supply (with backup power)
- server hardware
- systems administrator
- data integrity and backup
- … and the list goes on
Similar to collocation web hosting, this probably goes beyond the scope of what you would like to do as an online business owner.
Managed WordPress Hosting
With the growing popularity of WordPress as a web building platform, many web hosting servers offer the so-called “managed WordPress hosting.”
In short, managed hosting WordPress is a service in which your web provider will keep your WordPress installation up-to-datee, which can help protect your site from security threats that would allow hackers to come into your site.
Although not as cheap as shared web hosting, it is a great option for start-up businesses and large companies that use the WordPress platform.