So you want a website but aren’t sure which host to choose.
Here are some things to consider (our recommendations will come later):
Picking a Host
There are a TON of articles online on which host you should choose for your website.
Hosts are merely the company you use to “house” your website files on (servers).
Some hosts fit different needs. If you are just starting out, you have a lot of options that will work for you – as your site grows, you may want to consider switching to a more powerful host with more options and customization.
This site contains affiliate links, meaning Kit Blogs will earn a small commission if you click on some links and make a purchase. See the Disclaimer for more details.
Where to Purchase Your Domain
Your domain is the URL or permalink people will type in the search bar to access your website or blog.
You can either purchase this from your website host directly or elsewhere.
While many like to keep things under one roof (so to speak), we prefer to host our domains with NameCheap so if something goes wrong with the domain registrar or with the host only 1 is at risk.
Plus, NameCheap offers free Domain Privacy (something most companies charge for), meaning your private information isn’t made public knowledge.
Depending on where you are in your blogging journey (or your budget), the type of host you choose may differ. Here are the most common types of hosting:
This is the most common type that hosts provide and is almost always the cheapest option. Just like the name implies, you share a server (where your files are saved) with other websites.
Pros: Much less expensive and great for newer blogs just getting started.
Cons: The host creates limits on each account to ensure performance for everyone on the same server, but this can be limiting to your own site. Not great for sites with higher traffic.
This type applies to a few different things:
- VPS hosting: Virtual Private Server that you will technically still share but will have space dedicated to you without the same restrictive limits of Shared Hosting. You have more control over your server.
- Cloud hosting: hosting your site on the “Cloud” meaning it’s not on a specific physical server. This means your site can quickly adapt to a spike in traffic.
- Dedicated servers: just like it implies, you get your very own server so you don’t have to share resources, etc with another website/person.
Yup, there is some overlap because you can have a managed hosting plan but still share a server. It all depends on the host and the plan you select.
Pros: this means unmanaged hosts require you to configure and manage your own server. Managed hosting takes care of a lot of the technical aspects for you (usually including automatic backups, server-level caching and CDN without an added plugin on your site). Best for higher traffic sites.
Cons: the cost is higher than basic shared hosting and may not be the best fit financially for those just starting out.
Other Hosting Considerations
Choose a host that has great customer service and reply time. You will inevitably need their help at some point.
You can place plugins to protect your site directly, but you also need a host that will protect on their end.
Below is our currently list of recommended website hosts:
- NameHero (our current top pick for new bloggers and website owners!)
- LyricalHost (their servers are in the UK)
- WPEngine (managed hosting – some recommend this only after you reach 25K monthly visitors since they charge per visit)
- BigScoots (great for larger sites but may be way more than you need if you are just starting out)
- WPXHosting (managed hosting)
As a side note, you will see a LOT of people recommend Siteground. We have previously hosted with them but moved after a huge downfall in customer service and constant referrals (with referral link) to developers instead of helping directly (as they did for the first year of hosting with them). According to developers I’m in contact with, Siteground’s service has also drastically declined over the last couple of years leading to more down time and slowing down service (or deactivating) if limits are reached with Shared hosting (and charging to reactivate an account…which cost one of the developer’s clients who was shut down without warning 3 times in a year, costing her over $1K to re-activate). I cannot in good conscience recommend them anymore.
Another side note: you will also hear a lot of people recommend Bluehost or HostGator. Both of these are what you will see referred to as “EIG companies” (owned by the same company), and they have lowered their security and many experience issues with both of these hosts. Kristine (the Kit Blogs founder) has personally hosted with Bluehost (3 years) and had no issues. But we decided to remove them from the list above after our tech/developer and SEO contacts firmly advised against their use.