Figuring out how to choose the best shared 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.
Here’s a quiz that helps you balance all the usual tradeoffs to figure out what is the best shared web hosting for your website based on your preferences (or skip to the summary of choices).
Disclosure: I receive referral fees from companies mentioned on this site, including the ones mentioned in this quiz. My recommendations are based on my experiences as an independent paying customer or consultant to a paying customer.
Based on my experience working with many hosting companies, there are a few that are a good fit for most people. Here’s a summary of the companies included in the quiz.
|Name||Best if you want…||Features!|
|InMotion||…high-performance, independent w/ great support.||Explore!|
|HostGator||…overall value w/ good pricing & unmetered features.||Explore!|
|SiteGround||…global focus & advanced features w/ plans to grow.||Explore!|
|Bluehost||…name-brand hosting w/ good pricing & clean interface.||Explore!|
What to Look for in a Web Hosting Provider
First, remember that “shared” is by far and away what most website owners need. It means that you are “sharing” a part of a server. Usually these plans work well for websites serving ~15,000 visits per month. There’s plenty of variables in that number, but it’s a good ballpark.
Second, keep in mind that if you get shared web hosting, it’s incredibly flexible. You can run WordPress on really any hosting company offers Linux shared hosting. It can run email. It can runs listservs, 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 shared web hosting choices based on my experience both running websites and consulting with a range of clients (you can read about my specific experiences on my reviews page). So take the quiz and see who fits your needs the best!
Here’s 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 hosting pricing 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 iPage, FatCow, Web Hosting Hub, Hostinger, NameCheap Hosting or A2 Hosting. 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.
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?
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. Your choice can rule out some hosting choices.
Web Hosting, Explained – a short guide explaining the ins and outs of hosting.