Figuring out how to choose the best web hosting for your website is a tough and often all too confusing process. It’s tough especially because there is no such thing as an absolute “best-shared web hosting”
There is only the web hosting that is right for you considering all the tradeoffs.
The considerations include, but are not limited to, your budget, your technical requirements, and what type of support you expect.
Based on my experience working with many web hosting companies, here are the 11 best shared hosting companies that are a fit for most needs.
For each, I’ll outline their key strengths, tradeoffs, and who they are the best fit for, and finish with an overview of what to think through with a web host.
Who Are The Best Hosting Companies?
The list of the WordPress providers is ordered in rating.
Who’s The Best Overall Hosting Company?
1. InMotion Hosting
InMotion Hosting is an independent hosting company founded in 2001. They offer a full spectrum of hosting services from web hosting, VPS, WordPress to even enterprise IAAS.
They also offer a wide range of complementary products such as domains, website builder, email hosting, etc. The company is based in Los Angeles and Virginia Beach with all US-based customer support.
They have had strong & steady growth since they were founded, and despite all the industry mergers and consolidation, they have remained independent and founder-run. They generally focus their products on small businesses and agencies.
InMotion Hosting Pricing
InMotion Hosting is best for a small business, non-profit, or agency that needs a really good overall hosting company that will be consistent over time.
InMotion Hosting has a few distinct strengths and positives. First, they have a focus on customer support that can actually solve problems. They have excellent documentation and a solid ticketing system. I’ve used them for this website for almost 10 years and have never had issues. They also get high marks from review aggregators.
Second, they have had consistent performance over a long period of time. On all key metrics, they provide excellent, sustainable infrastructure that they can maintain and improve over time.
Third, they provide a quality product lineup with actual value rather than just marketing hype. For example, their WordPress hosting product has actual value-adds instead of just dressed up web hosting. For their shared hosting plan, they have excellent product specs and an extended guarantee.
Every hosting company has tradeoffs, and InMotion Hosting is no different. Their main weakness is that they aren’t really the absolute best on any single metric, even though they are great overall. You can find other hosting companies with a more usable dashboard, or with marginally better performance, or with marginally better pricing, or with a cutting edge product line-up, or even with more hands-on support.
Instead, they tend to be like #2 or #3 across lots of metrics rather than #1 for one metric and #10 for another.
Bluehost is one of the largest and oldest brands in the web hosting space. Millions of website owners started their first website with Bluehost. They are currently owned by Newfold Digital, formerly Endurance International, and based in Provo, Utah.
They have been an official shared hosting provider with the WordPress Foundation since nearly the beginning. They offer a wide range of hosting products, but their bread and butter are on shared web hosting.
Bluehost is best for beginner or new customers looking for something affordable and accessible to build a self-hosted website on.
Bluehost has several key strengths as a shared host. First, they are a well-known, popular brand with a solid product. They have the size & scale to serve millions of customers effectively at an excellent price point. They are sort of like the Starbucks of the hosting world. Second, Bluehost does well with beginner or new website owners. Building a self-hosted store can be daunting at first, even if it’s a better long-term choice than a website builder. Bluehost does well getting their customers from sign-up to active.
Like any popular brand (ie, Starbucks), Bluehost has some weaknesses and negatives that make other hosting companies a better fit for other customers. First, their performance is fine but is usually not the best compared to direct competitors. Second, they put pretty low & strict limits on shared hosting usage. For most customers, the limits are fine, but can quickly be an issue for a large or fast-growing website.
HostGator is one of the largest hosting brands on the Internet and sister company to Bluehost. They are owned by Newfold Digital (previously called Endurance International). They specialize in shared hosting but have also expanded their offering to cloud hosting and even a hosted drag & drop website builder.
HostGator is great for anyone looking for good, cheap hosting on a budget or anyone looking to build a lot of small sites on a single account that allows unlimited websites.
HostGator’s main strength has always been its value pricing – i.e., the features that you get at a price point. Their Baby web hosting plan is still one of the best value hosting plans for a single website on the Internet. They provide a free SSL certificate and unmetered bandwidth and unlimited storage on almost every shared hosting plan. HostGator has solid performance and has been fairly consistent as a brand for years.
HostGator’s main weakness is the constant upsells and confusing backend navigation. Their backend navigation has improved a bit since their website redesign, but overall they are pretty cluttered with offers, cross-sells, and upsells. I guess it’s part of the territory when paying so little for a subscription, but it’s still annoying.
Namecheap is an independent (ie, not owned by a big holding corporation) ICANN-accredited web services company founded in 2000. They were founded as a domain registrar, but have expanded to offer a complementary spectrum of hosting services in addition to other services.
|Plan||Stellar||Stellar Plus||Stellar Business|
Namecheap is best for small website owners looking for ease of use and excellent pricing. Read my Namecheap review.
Namecheap’s two main strengths are its pricing & its usability. Namecheap has some of the absolute best pricing in the shared hosting industry. Additionally, they use cPanel that is directly integrated into their account dashboard, so it’s really straightforward to get started and manage a website.
Namecheap has two main weaknesses. First, they have low and strict plan limitations. Their storage space and other resource allocations are fairly low for large or growing websites. Second, they do not have phone support, which is important for a lot of customers.
SiteGround is a rapidly growing, independent hosting company that is increasingly popular in the WordPress community. They offer a full spectrum of hosting services, including a popular shared hosting product.
SiteGround was founded in 2004 and is based in Bulgaria with data centers & offices around the world.
SiteGround is an excellent host for a website owner looking for international data centers or looking for high-performance & has a bit more budget to work with. SiteGround is popular with freelancers, agencies, and white-label resellers.
SiteGround has several strengths as a hosting company. First, they are globally focused in ways that US-based hosting companies simply aren’t. They have data centers all around the globe, so they are very appealing for websites with owners & readers in Europe, Asia, Africa, or Australia.
Second, SiteGround has consistently maintained high-performance products, especially for managed WordPress hosting and shared hosting services. They also have solid technical support & resources.
SiteGround has a couple of weaknesses. First, while they have excellent intro pricing, their price points rapidly increase across their plans. And unfortunately, some key features get bundled in those top-tier plans. Second, they migrated their server dashboard away from industry-standard cPanel to a custom dashboard. On one hand, it is well-done and they say it improves their services. On the other hand, it seems too limiting and adds yet another learning curve for anyone migrating from another host.
DreamHost is one of the largest and most established hosting companies online. They have been operating since 1997 (positively ancient by digital standards) and have grown to serve more than 1.5 million websites and 400,000 customers across the globe. They are independent and employee-owned (ie, they aren’t another Newfold Digital or GoDaddy brand). They are also one of the longest supporters of open source and community-built software (ie, WordPress, etc).
|Plan||Shared Starter||Shared Unlimited|
DreamHost is great for anyone who wants a technically solid host with an independent streak.
DreamHost excels with its plan simplicity and onboarding. They also have an excellent feature set with all their shared hosting plans.
DreamHost’s weaknesses are that its pricing is not quite as competitive as it could be. They also have a custom backend that has a learning curve for anyone transferring from a cPanel host. They also do not have phone support.
GreenGeeks is an independent, rapidly growing hosting company based in California, but with data centers across the US and Europe. GreenGeeks positions itself as a more environmentally friendly host with a focus on customer support. GreenGeeks is a traditional web hosting company that provides a variety of hosting services, including Shared, VPS, and Reseller hosting, as well as additional services like domain registration, website builder, and WordPress hosting.
GreenGeeks was founded in 2008 by a veteran of the hosting industry with a then-novel promise of environmental friendliness in an increasingly dirty industry.
GreenGeeks is best for anyone looking for a straightforward, well-priced hosting company with a commitment to low-carbon sustainability.
GreenGeeks has several strengths as a hosting company. First, they are a growing, independent, founder-run company that has excellent customer support. Second, the sustainability mission of GreenGeeks is integrated into their business and corporate goals. In addition to conservation measures at data centers, GreenGeeks purchases 3x the electricity they consume in the form of Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) from the Bonneville Environmental Foundation.
GreenGeeks’ weaknesses revolve around their onboarding and product bundles. They are pretty old-school with their hosting onboarding. If you are trying to start your first website or migrate from a non-cPanel host, they can be pretty daunting. Additionally, they don’t have the product bundles and bonuses that a lot of direct competitors have. Their bundles include…shared hosting and that’s about it.
Hostinger is an independent, European web hosting company that has grown rapidly in just over a decade. They are also the parent company of the 000Webhost, Niagahoster, and Weblink brands. They have built a reputation with their aggressively low pricing.
Like most hosting companies, Hostinger also provides email, a website builder, and various complementary services with 24-hour support and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Hostinger is best for anyone ex-US who wants affordable pricing and solid hosting features.
Hostinger’s has two main strengths. First, they have aggressively low pricing, which gets discounted regularly during sales specials. You can run your website for *very* cheap with Hostinger. Second, they are a global company with a choice of data centers all over the globe so you can choose based on your target audience.
Hostinger’s weakness can be summed up with “limitations.” Their performance is limited and inconsistent. It’s generally fine, but not as consistent as other brands. They also put limits on resources allocations and have more limited support compared to other competitors.
9. A2 Hosting
A2 Hosting is an independent web hosting company founded in 2003. They are based in Ann Arbor Michigan but serve hosting markets globally. A2 Hosting positions itself as a high-performance, speed-focused hosting solution with excellent support.
A2 Hosting Pricing
|Plan||Startup||Drive||Turbo Boost||Turbo Max|
A2 Hosting is best for small business owners & DIYers who want an independent hosting company with good support.
A2 Hosting has a few strengths. First, even though they are generally more expensive than some competitors, they do regular deep discounting. Second, they have a strong range of hosting features and solid customer support.
A2 Hosting’s main weaknesses are the repeated upsells, confusing signup process, and overstated marketing.
HostPapa is a web hosting company based in Toronto, Canada that is not owned by a large holding company.
They provide a range of hosting services, from shared hosting to virtual private servers, with a focus on small businesses (rather than bloggers or online-only operators). HostPapa started in 2006 and has seen rapid growth in the past few years.
HostPapa is best for small businesses & DIYers who want a reliable, straightforward shared hosting company.
HostPapa’s main strength is that they focus on providing a consistent, all-around product. They have good pricing, reliable support, and excellent performance. They aren’t the absolute best in any single category, but they do very well overall.
HostPapa’s main weakness is mainly their overstated marketing copy and their lack of bundles & bonuses in their products. I personally think that simply providing a really good hosting product at a great price is enough, but I think HostPapa stumbles a bit making it more than it actually is.
11. Web Hosting Hub
Web Hosting Hub is a web host founded in 2010 by InMotion Hosting – its older, more well-known parent company. Web Hosting Hub positions itself as a humble, focused, stable hosting provider that is not owned by one of the 3 large web services holding companies (ie, GoDaddy, Endurance, and Web.com) that also has good performance and good support for businesses that want a no-nonsense website.
Web Hosting Hub started in 2010 and has seen steady, organic growth in the past few years.
Web Hosting Hub Pricing
Web Hosting Hub is best for DIYers and small businesses looking for an affordable, straightforward web hosting service with good support.
Web Hosting Hub has a few main strengths. First, they offer very deep discounts on their shared hosting plans. Second, they have a solid range of features on all shared hosting plans and solid customer support.
Web Hosting Hub’s main weakness is that they stick strictly to shared hosting plans. If you have a large or fast-growing website, you’ll have to move to a different hosting company when you inevitably outgrow Web Hosting Hub.
What to Look for in a Web Hosting Provider?
There are two key points to understand what to look for in a web hosting provider:
- A web hosting plan is by far and away what most website owners need. Web hosting typically means that you are sharing a part of a dedicated server.
Usually these plans work well for websites serving ~20,000 visits per month. There’s plenty of variables in that number, but it’s a good ballpark.
- Web hosting is incredibly flexible. You can run WordPress on really any hosting company offers Linux shared hosting. It can run email. It can runs email services, scripts, wikis – really anything you want to run online as a website.
This shared web hosting quiz takes all the most common considerations and maps out the answers to the best web hosting choices based on my experience in both running websites and consulting with a range of clients.
You can read about my specific experiences on my web hosting reviews.
So take the quiz and see who fits your needs the best!
Here are the considerations included on the quiz:
Everyone wants a good deal. But defining your budget helps narrow down your choices. Think about when you go to buy a car – setting a price of $20,000 will rule out the Ferrari.
The other thing to consider with a hosting package is how long you are locked in for. Some hosts require that you prepay for a year (they’ll usually offer a discount though) and some allow you to pay monthly.
Side note – if this is *the* most important consideration, I’d also check out companies like:
There is some overlap, but I included some providers who place heavy caps (or limited support) for very cheap rates.
Everyone wants great customer service. But providing high-quality customer service across a range of support channels costs money. If you are comfortable Googling and figuring problems out for yourself, it might not be as important as pricing or performance. Do they offer a long money-back guarantee so that you can test out the product risk-free?
Some people want a clean, smooth, user-friendly backend. Some don’t care about the design – they just want everything to be there and to function. And still, others really don’t care about the backend – they want all technical options open for professionals (either a hired developer or customer support) to use as needed.
Even though everyone wants the best overall deal, when it comes down to it, there are usually tradeoffs. What’s the one thing that will really make your website experience awesome? Are you looking solely at performance & uptime? Are bonuses like a free domain or free SSLs a tipping point?
Number of Websites / Domains / Storage
How many websites do you want to run on your account? For some, it might just be the one. Others might want a test site, a hobby site, and maybe a personal site. Do you need a lot of disk space & storage for high-resolution images or do you plan on hosting lots of smaller sites? Your choice can rule out some hosting choices.
Here’s a quiz that helps you balance all the usual tradeoffs to figure out what is the best web hosting for your website based on your preferences.