The Best
Web Hosting Comparison Chart
for 2022
🏅 Compare Web Hosts and Website Builders 🏅

Get a quick overview of the best and worst web hosting builders and services for small business sites & WordPress blogs.

Best Web Hosting Comparison Charts for 2022

by type of service

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Comparing Web Hosts: What are the Different Types of Web Hosting?

The type of hosting that you need is usually determined by the stage your business is at in it’s online journey. As your website traffic and site complexity increases, you will need to upgrade to better hosting plans and services in order to support your website appropriately.

Here is a quick comparison of the major types of web hosting:

Shared Hosting

Shared hosting is essentially just that, a host that puts many different websites all on the same server to share. All of the websites share resources including things like RAM, bandwidth, storage, etc on a “first come, first served basis”. Because of this method of shared resources, shared hosting is like a double edged sword with both positive features, and negatives. It is the most basic form of hosting and is a great option for beginners.

Pros:

Because all of the resources are shared among many websites, the cost of a shared host is usually very cheap with startup plans often costing less than $5 per month. These plans often come with advertising bonuses, free SSL certificates, free website builders, and many other bonuses to get you to sign up. If you are a beginner, or have a small website with little traffic, shared hosting is an excellent choice to start out with.

Cons:

Because all of the websites on a shared server have access to all the resources, if one website uses more than usual, it can cause the other sites sharing with it to slow down and have difficulty serving their visitors. This why many so called “unlimited” shared hosting plans, aren’t actually unlimited in practice. When an individual site starts using more resources than usual, most hosts will require the website to be moved to a more expensive plan in order to protect the other websites on that shared server.

Who is Shared Hosting Best For?

Beginners, bloggers, small to medium business owners, non-profits, and low to medium traffic sites.

Not Recommended For:

High traffic websites, large websites with many files, websites that require greater security, sites with a large number of resource intensive files such as mp3s or videos files that are frequently viewed by users, or large e-commerce sites. If your site needs high security measures, avoid shared hosting.

VPS Hosting

VPS hosting is the next level up from shared hosting in terms of website hosting. A VPS plan, otherwise known as a “virtual private server” is somewhat similar to shared hosting in that it too puts many different websites on a single server. The difference is that the servers resources are divided up amongst the websites by putting up partitions between each one.

Pros:

Because each site is partitioned off from any others, it has the full use of its own available resources, and will never be slowed down because someone else’s site is using up too much bandwidth or RAM. You’ll also have more options for customization of your account, more privacy, and better security for your site.

Cons:

These plans are usually a bit more expensive, and your site resources are limited to a specific amount. If you need more space, or any other resource, you’ll usually have to upgrade to a more expensive plan.

Who is VPS Hosting Best For?

A VPS plan is best for medium sites that have outgrown shared hosting, but don’t yet need a Dedicated Server for their business. Businesses concerned about site security, but not highly sensitive sites might also consider VPS.

Not Recommended For: Very large websites, or websites with a lot lot of visitors. Also not for high security websites.

Dedicated Server Hosting

Dedicated servers can be provided for those who want a high level of control over their website. A dedicated server is an entire server which is rented and used only by you. A dedicated server is usually the final step after a VPS host for large sites with lots of web traffic. These servers are generally expensive, and require technical know how to set up properly, and may require a system administrator. Because your site or sites are isolated from anybody else’s, security can be more easily maintained.

Pros:

You can a high level of control over your site with exclusive use of server resources. Great for large, high traffic sites. Security is much higher than shared or VPS hosting.

Cons:

Expensive to rent, and they require high technical skills to set up.

Dedicated servers can be quite expensive, and

Who is VPS Hosting Best For?

Large sites with lots of traffic, sites with high security needs, and website owners or programmers who want a high level of control over their host server.

Not Recommended For: Beginners, low traffic sites, or small websites. Also, not good for those on a tight budget.

Cloud Hosting

Cloud hosting, otherwise known as a Content Delivery Network or CDN, is the newest kid on the block and has become quite popular with website owners of all types.

A CDN is a network of servers that all contain data from all of the websites hosted on it. Uptime, speed, the ability to handle huge spike in website traffic, and dedicated IP addresses are all benefits of using cloud hosting. Because there are many servers located in many locations, the speed and reliability of your host is improved greatly. If any one server goes down there will be other servers to take up the slack. Also, servers that are located nearer to your websites servers can be served your website more quickly.

There are two ways to really take advantage of cloud hosting. You can host directly through a cloud host, where they usually use a pay as you go model. It tends to be more expensive this way, however, since its dedicated cloud services will usually be optimized for the cloud and contain many more premium features.

The second way to take advantage of cloud hosting is by using a shared host that offers integration with Cloudflare or some other CDN as a free bonus or add-on. Both of our top rated shared hosts (A2 Hosting, and Green Geeks) offer the option for integration with a free CDN or cloud service.

Managed WordPress Hosting

There is much confusion as to what exactly “managed” WordPress hosting actually is and what it includes. This is perhaps because every “managed” host has different products and services that it includes. On a basic level, a managed WordPress host will be optimized by the host at least a little bit for WordPress websites. This can range anywhere from adding some simple plugins that optimize your website for speed and ease of use, to providing a suite of premium themes and plugins along with specialized managers or services who will help to keep your site running.

Needless to say, the price varies with the level of service that you expect or require.

Comparing Web Hosts: What to Look For in a Web Hosting Company

When considering how much you are willing to pay for hosting, you really need to consider what your needs are for your individual situation.

If you are a blogger who is just starting out, it’s unlikely that you’ll need a managed server with all the bells and whistles and a ton of space.

On the other hand if you are designing and managing websites for clients, you’re going to need those extras which can make the difference between happy clients and your bottom line.

So what in the world should you be looking for when you’re comparing web hosting services?  Well, like I said, for every person it’s going to be a little different, however certain things are going to be important for nearly everyone. 

Here are some things that you should consider when comparing web hosts if you are at all serious about having a successful website: 

Pricing & Renewal Costs

Don’t be fooled by the cheap introduction prices that many web hosts will advertise to get your business. In order to get those extremely low prices, there’s usually a catch, and I’ve not found a web host that didn’t have a catch somewhere in the fine print.

Here are some pricing traps to watch out for when you’re trying to decide on a host:

  • Renewal costs – Check the fine print. Often the original yearly price that you’ll pay will be increased greatly after your original purchased period runs out.
  • Multiple years vs yearly or monthly – The rate that is advertised on the main buy now page is often for a 2 or 3 year period. If you want to buy a shorter period of time, the monthly rate will probably increase.
  • Fees for needed services – A place that hosts can get extra money from you is from their add-on services and products that aren’t included in the hosting package. Things you should consider include an SSL certificate, privacy protection, email addresses, cloud services, and a domain name.
  • “Unilimited” is not really unlimited – Even though some web hosts claim unlimited services such as storage etc, these hosts won’t allow you to overburden their servers and slow other websites that share servers. If you poke about a bit, you’ll usually find that there are limits to other options such as “nodes” or other loopholes that can allow them to limit your services in other ways. This is not necessarily bad, it just means that if you suddenly gain in popularity, or you have a huge website, you’ll probably be asked to move to a more expensive subscription plan or to a more exclusive server. Not the end of the world, but definitely something to be aware of.
  • Be aware of Auto-Renewals – Unless otherwise stated on the hosts website, expect an auto renewal on your credit card after your initial purchased period is up. And if you didn’t want it to be done and you don’t catch it before their money back period is up, you will probably find that you won’t be able to get a refund. If you don’t want your hosting to renew automatically, make sure you cancel the auto-renewal in your account ASAP, before you forget.

Money Back Guarantee

A money back guarantee is really nice to have, especially if you’re not sure about the hosting company, or just aren’t sure if you’re cut out for a website.

To get the best deals, you need to lock in your price by paying for 1 to 3 years up front. This is a long commitment and if you change your mind halfway through, you might lose a considerable amount of money if the guarantee is short or non-existent.

Always be sure to cancel before the end of the specified period if that’s what you want because I have found most companies to be inflexible on refunds after the period expires.

Speed

Google has shown that the slower your website is to load, the more people are going to leave it without even seeing it. If your web host is slow, or you are on a shared account with websites who hog all the resources, your website will suffer and be slower than it ought. This will cost you in customers, fans and ultimately dollars. If you are making a website to be successful, try to find a host with a reputation for speed!

(We have found uptime and speed statistics for individual test sites that we share with you in our web hosting comparison charts above:)

Uptime

Uptime is really just as important as speed. Think of it this way, every minute that your website is down, is a minute where visitors and search engines can’t find you. A minute where a customers first impression is that you might be out of business. This is not a professional image to portray to your fans and visitors!

Look for web hosts that have at least a 99.9% guaranteed uptime which still allows for almost 9 hours of downtime every year! A web host that maintains 99.99% uptime will have less than an 1 hour downtime per year! Remember time is money, and every hour down could cost you a lot.

Another thing to remember is that a downtime guarantee might allow you to get a refund of all or part of your hosting fee in the event of your server going down for longer than the guaranteed timeframe, but that not make up for lost revenue. Do your homework and check out your preferred hosts uptime statistics before you sign up.

(We have found uptime and speed statistics for individual test sites that we share with you in our web hosting comparison charts above:)

Security

Reputation

Support & Customer Service

Ease of Use

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