As methodical and challenging the phrase ‘Choosing a WordPress Host’ sounds, it is very important that we make the right and informed choice about WordPress Hosting as well.
Before moving into the intricacies of the choice and how to make that choice, let us first look at some simple facts about WordPress itself.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is a free and open-source content management system (CMS) based on PHP and MySQL (Wikipedia). It was released on 27th May 2003, by Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little.
In simple words, WordPress is a platform that many websites use for their content to be published on the Internet in the most appropriate way so as to increase their profits.
Matt Mullenweg believes that WordPress will soon find a place in social media and mobile phones and start functioning as an application platform.
To operate, WordPress has to be installed on a network server, which might be either a part of an Internet hosting service like WordPress.com or a system running the software package WordPress.org. Generally, a local computer serves for single-user purposes.
Now that you’ve already prepared yourself to go with WordPress for your website (a smart choice, indeed!), the next important choice you need to make for your site is WordPress Hosting.
Amidst millions and millions of such technical concepts, like IP, VPN, Tor, you’ve stumbled upon this entity called WordPress Hosting.
What is WordPress hosting?
As self-explanatory as it sounds, is basically the task of hosting the WordPress. It is not just an ordinary task, but one which has been augmented to meet WordPress’ performance and security requirements in a much better and fruitful way. Due to the popularity of WordPress, hosting usually includes,
- One-click WordPress Installs which makes it all the more relaxed and enticing to get started with WordPress.
- Auto-update the WordPress software as necessary, roughly for all WordPress hosts.
It is no surprise to learn the fact that WordPress is a very light-weight application, and is well-suited with almost all the popular web hosting providers. This is due to the fact that it only requires PHP version 7 (or greater) and MySQL version 5.6 (or greater). In simpler words, every hosting company is technically proficient to handle WordPress.
Have a look at some of the most popular websites that are hosted in WordPress. You’d be surprised to know how many of your favorites use this effective tool.
- The Walt Disney Company: Now you’d be caveman if you haven’t heard of this entertainment giant. Guess what is incorporates to publicize itself on the internet. Well, you guessed it right. Their slick and vibrant website is hosted on WordPress.
- Katy Perry: This popular musician/singer proudly displays and posts her upcoming tracks on a site that is built on the foundations of WordPress.
- Harvard University Graduate School of Design: Even this academic excellence encourages its students to embark on their web projects using WordPress.
Is WordPress Hosting Compulsory to Run Wordpress?
The answer to this question would be a straight NO. As already discussed WordPress’ basic necessities are fairly trivial.
But that doesn’t have to necessarily mean that all the host providers are providing the same features and benefits when it comes to hosting WordPress.
Statistics show that website owners who run their sites with WordPress-attuned hosts receive better overall fulfillment with their host considering a number of parameters.
So what we actually learn here is, if you want to not just host a WordPress site but go beyond that (and maybe set an example) an eminent WordPress hosting service provider can help you run WordPress even better.
Choosing the Right Host
Selecting the right hosting service provider for your WordPress website is very crucial. Your website’s well-being and shape will depend upon the hosting provider you pick. The service of your hosting provider company will have a straight impact on your sales, search engine optimizations, the performance of the website. And since it’s not that simple to change your hosting provider company every now and then, you might as well take your time to choose the best possible hosting service provider.
But how will you know who is the best WordPress hosting provider?
While making this decision, one has to keep in mind the 3 most vital factors of WordPress hosting services:
- Speed or (load time)
- Uptime or (upload time)
- Customer Support(important)
Some of the leading WordPress hosting companies include BlueHost, HostGator, SiteGround, InMotion.
Types of WordPress Hosting
There are several types of WordPress hosting services available such as Free, Shared, VPS, Dedicated, Managed.
All of these primarily have similar mechanisms and requirements with subtle differences. And they can be broadly classified into two types of WordPress hosting.
- Shared WordPress hosting
- Managed WordPress hosting
Shared WordPress Hosting
In shared WP hosting, your website will share a network server with other websites. Your server will still have performance optimization for WordPress. The only catch is that you just won’t have it all to yourself.
Besides performance squeezes, you’ll also have access to a one-click WordPress installer. To be very frank, this isn’t a huge win for the shared hosting websites. This is because, cPanel, which is available on many hosting services already includes a one-click WordPress installer.
Also, some WordPress hosts will automatically upgrade your plugins and themes along with the software. This is considered a critical security measure.
You may or may not find some other specialized shared WP hosting providers that offer some more WordPress-optimized features. The above features are pretty much standard.
The advantage of Shared WP hosting is that it essentially offers generous discounts for your first cycle. But soon after that, prices come back to normal rates (doesn’t seem like much of a merit to me).
Managed WordPress Hosting
If shared WordPress hosting is an esteemed Ford or Bentley, then managed WordPress hosting is a Cadillac or a Porsche.
Besides everything that shared hosting service providers offer, Managed WordPress Hosting providers essentially offer:
- Better speeds: offers better hardware specifications, which implies a prompter and quicker WordPress website.
- Server-side caching: caching is one of the things that can boost up the speed of almost any machine. While you may ponder, you need a plug-in software to handle the caching, managed WP hosting provides this feature with you to do nothing at your end.
- Improved security. You’ll be provided WordPress-specialized firewalls, regular virus scans and intrusion recognition which mean a considerably more protected WordPress website.
- Staging websites. Also known as testing platforms, many managed hosting providers provide staging sites. This allows owners or developers to effortlessly test changes on the website before they go live.
The standard buzzword or phenomenon states that newbies should choose cheap and shared WP hosting providers. Whereas, established and successful websites having much more user traffic should choose managed WP hosting providers.
This may be the ideal solution for some. However, this doesn’t change the fact that you will have to spend extra time banging your head, trying to figure out how exactly you can increase the performance of your website or how you can manage to cache. Therefore, it is better to start with the costlier hosting service providers.
True. You will be paying extra money. But you won’t be trying to configure caching or trying to stay on top of updates. With Managed WordPress hosting you don’t have to worry about any of that.
Moreover, with shared hosting providers, you will be spending extra time and my dear tech-arcs Time is Money.