Powering 2+ million sites across the globe, Bluehost is an industry leader in the web hosting space. This provider has been recommended by WordPress for over 15 years, making them a top consideration for most websites.
Bluehost is a great option for anyone building a new website from scratch. When you sign up for hosting, you get a free domain name for a year and WordPress is a one-click install.
Instead of having to go and register a domain and download WordPress, you can get everything done in a single step.
Plus, it’s really affordable.
WordPress hosting from Bluehost starts at just $2.95/month. You’ll have to sign a 3-year contract to get the best deal. If you are always going to need hosting, I say lock in the best discount for as long as possible.
Trust me when I say you don’t need any special skills to start blogging right away.
Navigating around your new WordPress dashboard is fairly straight-forward, but you can reach out to Bluehost support if you have questions. Representatives are available any time of day by phone or live chat.
Lots of the best parts are baked right into the service—a free CDN to boost performance and security and a free SSL certificate is always enabled. You don’t have to configure any of it in order to benefit from the faster speeds and safer traffic.
It’s easy enough to take advantage of free WordPress themes and find a layout you like. Plus, there are tons of incredible options via the Bluehost WordPress marketplace if you are willing to spend a couple bucks.
Other noteworthy highlights from Bluehost include:
Automatic WordPress updates
50 GB storage
$200 in free marketing credits (Google Ads and Microsoft Advertising)
Securely configure your WordPress login credentials
All of this comes with Bluehost Basic WordPress web hosting. For an entry-level plan, 50 GB of storage is a lot. More than twice as much as you get with other plans.
There are no arbitrary limits about traffic, but if your site starts to impact other sites on the server, they may ask you to upgrade to a higher tier plan:
The Plus and Choice Plus plans let you build as many sites as you want, whereas Basic limits you to just one.
You will also get unlimited storage (within acceptable use limits, of course) and greater server resources with the higher tier plans.
Bluehost has introduced a managed WordPress hosting plan called WP Pro, which starts at $14.99/month with a three-year contract. The introductory rate is very attractive compared to other managed plans, but I think WP Pro has some room to grow.
If you want managed WordPress hosting, I really recommend WP Engine. It costs about the same as Bluehost’s WP Pro (after the introductory pricing runs out) and delivers a lot more.
But if this is your first site, you shouldn’t even be worried about managed hosting. You’ll be fine with shared WordPress hosting. Bluehost will get you set up with everything you need at an affordable price.
#2 – WP Engine — The Best for Managed WordPress Hosting
WP Engine is the original managed WordPress hosting provider and still leads the pack in terms of providing concierge service and expert support. The company has also developed a platform full of exclusive tools designed to help you take your WordPress site to the next level.
If you are just getting a small site or blog online, WP Engine is overkill. This is a good option for people with online stores, a bunch of sites, and other complex WordPress hosting needs.
WP Engine allows you to get high-performance sites without having to hire a developer or stress about maintenance.
You’ll unlock blazing fast speed, incredible uptime, and best-in-class security without any work on your part.
In addition to optimizing the IT environment, WP Engine will keep the WordPress Core and PHP up to date. The company is constantly monitoring and blockingthreats, keeping your sites fast and safe.
WP Engine has a legendary customer service record. The company does not host anything besides WordPress. You are always going to get a rep who knows the platform inside and out and handles relevant issues all day, every day.
With so much taken care of with WP Engine, you have more time to focus on building a great site. 36 premium StudioPress themes are included with every hosting plan.
Normally, that would cost hundreds of dollars, but you are free to experiment and customize these powerful themes as you like.
Some of the other highlights include:
Automatic WordPress updates
Free SSL Certificate
Free automated WordPress migrations
Development, staging, and production environments
No other managed WordPress host offers separate dev/staging environments. This is a boon to WordPress developers, as it solves some of the pesky problems associated with one-click staging environments.
Managed WordPress hosting starts at $25/month with a one-year contract. You can also sign up for one month at a time—which some hosting providers don’t allow—and it’s only $30/month.
Although WP Engine isn’t cheap, there are no skyrocketing rates or hidden charges.
The Startup plan works for one site and comes with 10 GB storage and 50 GB bandwidth, which can handle about 25,000 visitors each month. Upgrading to Growth or Scale plans will let you build more sites and host more traffic.
This is the pricing for the standard WP Engine managed WordPress hosting, but there are two other groups of plans available that follow the Startup, Growth, and Scale format. These are:
Managed Hosting Plus: starting at $28.33/month
Secure Hosting: starting at $44.17/month
Managed Hosting Plus includes automated plugin updates and testing. You get fine-grained control over which plugins are updated and the ability to roll back changes if need be.
Secure Hosting comes with everything included with Plus, as well as an advanced web application firewall and additional protection from hackers. This plan makes sense for large online stores and other sites where visitors are sharing sensitive information.
For most people, the standard WP Engine plan is everything they need and more. This is my top recommendation for managed WordPress hosting, and I am hardly alone in that opinion.
#3 – SiteGround — The Best Support for Affordable WordPress Hosting
To get the best possible white-glove, rose-petals-on-your-pillow customer service, you have to get a managed WordPress hosting plan. It’s an order of magnitude more expensive than shared plans, but you get a level of support that outclasses everything else.
For people that want high quality support, but aren’t ready to commit to an expensive managed plan, I suggest checking out SiteGround.
What the company offers is called managed WordPress hosting, but in truth it straddles the gray area between shared and managed WordPress hosting plans. Essentially, you can get a lot of the benefits of managed WordPress hosting at a price that is similar to shared.
All of their WordPress hosting solutions come with platform-specific support. From assisting with migrations to troubleshooting plugins, SiteGround is ready to help. Customer service is always available via phone, live chat, and tickets.
In addition to solid support, SiteGround takes care of updates, security, and caching configuration that keeps your site fast.
Some of the other features include:
Automated WordPress installation and powerful WordPress starter kit
Free website builder
Free WordPress migrations
Managed security and updates at the server and application level
Performance optimized for WordPress sites
Free SSL certificates
Unlimited free email accounts
SiteGround offers a low introductory rate for all plans, which jumps considerably upon renewal:
At the discounted price, you aren’t going to find a more feature-rich WordPress hosting option with as much support as SiteGround’s StartUp plan. Once the discount is over, the price is still competitive, and many people stay to keep the customer service they trust.
The GrowBig and GoGeek plans can hold their own with other managed WordPress hosting plans. You’ll get a staging area, on-demand backups, improved caching, and lots more resources to power your site.
During the discount period, the higher-tier plans are an absolute steal. Once the discount is over, however, I’d give WP Engine the clear edge overall.
So if you aren’t ready to pull the trigger on a premium managed WordPress hosting plan, but you still want your provider to handle a good amount of the backend legwork, SiteGround StartUp is a good fit.
#4 – DreamHost — The Lowest Day One Spend for WordPress Hosting
DreamHost, along with SiteGround and Bluehost, is one of the few hosting providers that’s officially recommended by WordPress. Unlike the other two providers, DreamHost offers extremely competitive month-to-month rates.
This is really attractive for people who aren’t looking to sign onto a long contract in order to get a good price. DreamHost does offer discounts with longer contracts, but you can still access the WordPress Starter plan for $4.99 a month. No contract or long-term commitment.
Another reason DreamHost keeps your day one spend down is that a free domain name is included for the first year. That saves another $10 to $15 right there.
DreamHost also includes domain privacy, which keeps your personal information off the public record. That may cost as much as $15 each year with other hosts.
Bluehost will give you the domain for free, but you don’t get as many tools to help you build your site. DreamHost gives you a full website builder.
Get set up quick with more than 200 starter sites built for restaurants, real-estate, fashion, web design, and more. Use the simple drag-and-drop builder to add your content and finishing touches.
DreamHost handles all of the WordPress and security updates and includes automatic daily backups. This is unusual for shared WordPress hosting and saves you the expense of buying a plugin like JetPack to backup your site.
You also get:
50 GB storage
Free SSL certificate
24/7 ticket support
Live chat support
Free automated WordPress migrations
DreamHost offers a wide range of plans to choose from. In addition to the affordable shared WordPress hosting, the company offers DreamPress, a managed solution, and WordPress hosting on a virtual private server (VPS):
The DreamPress managed hosting solution is a cost-effective no-contract option for people wary of putting down a few hundred dollars to sign up for a traditional plan.
Similarly, the VPS for WordPress plan will work well for people who need more resources and control over their server than a shared plan allows.
The price is competitive across all DreamHost plans, but there’s nothing to be anxious about. The company has a 100% uptime guarantee. DreamHost will actually pay you for your troubles if your site goes down unexpectedly.
Plus they offer an unbelievable 97-day money back guarantee. No other host will give you as much time to try their service risk-free.
DreamHost is confident about the quality of service it provides. You can be too.
#5 – Nexcess — The Best for Budget-Friendly Managed WordPress Hosting
Nexcess has a unique pricing and plan structure that puts managed hosting within reach for businesses which can’t justify the spend necessary to get WP Engine.
Plans start as low as $19/month with no contract or $12.67/month if you sign up for a year.
Nexcess is truly managed WordPress hosting. One of my favorite aspects of the service is that every feature they offer comes with every plan.
With SiteGround, another affordable managed hosting solution, you have to upgrade to get site staging and on-demand backups. With Nexcess, on the other hand, you can move up from plan to plan to get more hosting resources, but you never have to upgrade to access capabilities.
Nexcess takes care of a ton of the tedious maintenance through plugin updates and 30-day backups. Just to note, you only get plugin updates with WP Engine’s Managed Hosting Plus plan, whereas Nexcess includes it standard.
Some of the other benefits you get with Nexcess managed WordPress hosting are:
Free SSL certificate
Unlimited email accounts
IThemes Security Pro
Visual regression testing
24/7/365 phone, live chat, and email support
I also want to draw attention to the generous hosting resources. The 15 GB of storage that comes with the Nexcess entry-level plan, Spark, is great for the price and the 2 TB of bandwidth is beyond belief. That’s four to five times the bandwidth that comes with other WordPress hosting plans that are more expensive.
And if your site consumes more resources than your plan allows, Nexcess will auto-scale it for 24 hours free of charge. That’s time to get in front of a positive trend or weather a random traffic spike without an issue.
As I mentioned, Nexcess has a really flexible pricing structure that accommodates small businesses looking for top performance and enterprise businesses that need excellence every minute.
Let’s take a quick look at the most affordable options first:
Since every plan has every feature, you really only need to consider the number of sites you want and hosting resources you need.
Spark completely outfits one site and comes with everything I’ve mentioned so far. The Maker plan is good for five sites, increases bandwidth to 3 TB and 40 GB storage. The next plan up, Designer, works for more sites and gives you more storage and greater bandwidth.
In total, there are seven different plans. Whether you have one site or hundreds, Nexcess has a managed WordPress hosting solution to fit your needs.
If you want managed WordPress hosting at a low price, Nexcess Spark is your choice. And, you will be able to stick with the company as you grow.
You won’t get all the WordPress tools that come with WP Engine, but you get serious hosting resources and a platform that’s been optimized for WordPress. Don’t worry about speed, security, or uptime with Nexcess.
#6 – Hostinger — The Best for Cheap WordPress Hosting
Hostinger offers optimized WordPress hosting for as low as $1.59/month. Even at that rock-bottom pricing, it has the essential package of features and resources necessary to get a WordPress site off the ground and looking sharp.
Everything is easy to set up, even if it is your first time getting hosting or using WordPress.
A four-year contract is required to get the best price. So, there is a little bit of a commitment, but the total price tag of four years at those low rates is still well below a single year with other options.
You also save with the free email account, domain name, CDN, and a free SSL certificate that’s super easy to enable. Your site will be faster and more secure with hardly any effort on your part.
Hostinger’s entry-level plan is not aimed at developers and the like who need to put a big strain on their site. You get 10 GB of storage, two databases, and weekly backups.
The lack of daily backups might not work for some users, but if you don’t need to update your site all the time, a weekly backup is a comforting insurance plan.
At the low price, there’s obviously no white-glove customer service, but it is still available 24/7/365. Customers tend to review Hostinger’s support very well, even if the response time is slower than you get with a managed plan.
There are going to be upsells in the platform, but there’s no catch. It’s a really great value because Hostinger hasn’t cut costs where it counts.
You get a 99.9 percent uptime guarantee and site speed is great for up to 10,000 visitors each month. If you are just getting started, this is more than enough not to worry.
And the Hostinger really has optimized the WordPress experience. The LightSpeed cache accelerates your site and works well with most popular plugins.
It’s not just increased performance—Hostinger provides a helpful suite of tools to get your site looking professional.
One-click WordPress installation, a site setup wizard, and lots of helpful tutorials. You’ll be able to take advantage of free WordPress plugins and themes to improve your site at no cost.
Hostinger has ultra-competitive introductory pricing for all of the WordPress hosting plans they offer:
You’ll notice the renewal rate is considerably higher than the introductory rate, but that has a lot to do with just how deep of a discount they offer. Don’t be thrown by the jump in pricing, the full rate is comparable to other shared WordPress hosting.
At the end of the day, if you are looking for a low-cost hosting plan that’s optimized for WordPress, Hostinger is a very good option. It’s a no-frills plan that covers all your bases and delivers great performance.
#7 – A2 Hosting — The Best for Moving an Existing Site to Better Hosting
Lots of providers offer “free migrations” to help you move your WordPress site over from your old hosting situation. What this means in reality is that you can use a plugin that automates a lot of the process.
It’s not too bad, but A2 Hosting has an actual team of humans dedicated to making the switch.
The result is a stress-free and problem-free transfer. Your site is in a better place now with incredibly fast servers, a top-rated customer support staff, and phenomenal pricing.
A2 is going to work whether you want shared hosting optimized for WordPress or a managed plan that’s more hands-off. The account migration is free either way, but you can pick from a lot of different options.
Looking at the shared WordPress hosting plans, it’s remarkable how much is included:
100 GB storage
Free SSL certificates
Virus scanning and hack defense,
Cloudflare free CDN compatibility
Unlimited email accounts
24/7/365 email, live chat, phone, and ticket support
Yes, I’m talking about the Basic shared WordPress hosting plan from A2. The 100 GB storage is way more than you get with other plans. And unlimited free email? Usually you don’t get more than a couple free accounts, if any, with shared hosting plans.
So if you are looking to move your site to a more feature and resource-rich platform, but you don’t want to commit to managed hosting, A2 is a very attractive option.
The Basic plan is good for a single site. Upgrading to get additional sites and resources remains cost-effective higher-tier A2 plans:
One of the benefits of upgrading to Turbo Boost or Turbo Max hosting plans is the increased performance. You’ll be able to handle up to nine times as much traffic with A2 Turbo Servers, and your site speed will be up to 20 times faster.
A2 managed WordPress hosting starts at $10.99/month with a three year contract. It’s got a lot to recommend to it, but the renewal price puts it well over solutions like WP Engine.
At the end of the day, A2’s managed WordPress hosting just isn’t as convenient out-of-the-box as plans with WP Engine or Nexcess. With A2, you’ll have to use plugins like Jetpack to accomplish a lot of maintenance that is just handled for you by the other vendors.
You also don’t get a free domain name, but if you are trying to move your site, you’ve already crossed that bridge. There is no reason whatsoever to stay with subpar hosting. A2 will make the transition completely stress free for as low as $2.49/month.
What I Looked at to Find the Best WordPress Web Hosting
Before you can find the best WordPress hosting plan for your site, you must know what to look for as you’re shopping around.
Since I’ve been using WordPress blogs as a major part of my business for many years, I’ve had to use and evaluate multiple web hosting options.
Now you can launch a WordPress site with any web host, but in this post I’ve focused on providers that offer WordPress web hosting. Unlike general hosting, which can support any type of site, the plans I am looking at only work for WordPress sites.
The upside is that servers for these hosting plans are configured perfectly for WordPress. Everything about the backend IT environment has been optimized for WordPress in ways that wouldn’t work if there were other types of software. This boosts performance and minimizes crashes.
If you want a hosting solution that works for WordPress and other types of sites, I recommend checking out the overall best web hosting services.
If you know that you just want hosting for WordPress, keep reading. I’ll walk you through the major criteria you should evaluate in order to find the option that suits you best.
Shared vs. Managed WordPress Hosting
If you want the most affordable option, go with shared WordPress hosting. It’s got all the benefits of WordPress-specific hosting at a very low price.
With shared WordPress hosting, you’ll still have to do the maintenance and updates in order to keep the site running great.
The good news is that the user interface for maintaining your WordPress is designed for just that. It’s going to be way easier than working with something meant for all-purpose hosting.
Your hosting provider will take care of the IT legwork that goes into making your site fast, secure, and easy to use, including:
Automated daily backups
Easy on-demand backups
WordPress Core Updates
Built-in staging area to test sites
Malware scanning and removal
Security updates and patches
Premium 24/7 support
Instead of fussing with plugins to accomplish all of this, your teams are free to spend more time creating killer content.
Understandably, managed WordPress hosting plans are more expensive. For some companies, there’s a lot of value in having someone else manage their WordPress. Spending a little more each month on hosting might mean not having to hire a developer.
Plus the customer service that comes with managed WordPress hosting is a cut above. The ability to connect with an expert 24/7 minimizes serious problems and eliminates the need for an in-house WordPress guru.
WP Engine, the original managed WordPress hosting provider, continues to satisfy their customers with prompt and comprehensive service. People are more than happy to pay a premium for the peace of mind and high-performance.
Here’s the thing. There used to be a clear dividing line between managed WordPress plans and everything else. Now there is more of a spectrum of services available.
In one sense, this means you need to be aware that “managed” doesn’t mean the same thing for every hosting provider.
If you see managed WordPress hosting for something like $10/month, double-check that you are getting everything you expect.
How do they define premium WordPress customer support? Also know that the price might be a low introductory rate that could jump on renewal.
The upside is that it’s not black or white. You can get less expensive managed WordPress plans. They might not be as full-bodied as WP Engine, but you can still get some of the essential maintenance off your plate.
How much traffic does your website get? For new sites, how much traffic are you expecting?
The answer to this question will definitely have an impact on the type of WordPress hosting solution that’s right for you.
A site that has 5,000 visitors per month should be on a different plan than sites with 50,000 visitors per month. Plans that can accommodate 100,000 visitors per month won’t necessarily be suitable for sites with millions of monthly visitors.
Some hosting providers give you approximate numbers for the amount of traffic each of their plans supports. SiteGround, for example, gives an approximate number for the suitable number of monthly visitors each plan can handle:
This is pretty straight forward, but what about the shared hosting options that offer “unlimited traffic” or “unmetered bandwidth”?
Shared WordPress hosting from Bluehost, Hostinger, Dreamhost, and A2 Hosting doesn’t set any hard and fast limits on traffic.
It’s not truly unlimited though, because there are the physical limits of the shared server. If your site gets too much traffic, it will strain resources like CPU and memory usage, which will cause problems for every site on the shared server.
Dreamhost Basic, for example, starts at less than $3/month and comes with “unlimited traffic.” You will never get an overage charge if you have too much traffic, but Dreamhost may ask you to upgrade or restrict your site out of courtesy to the other tenants on the shared server.
So shared WordPress hosting is good for small sites, but it may not be enough to power larger, high-traffic sites. If your Dreamhost Basic plan is not enough, you might want to look at one of Dreamhost’s other options:
You could opt for a DreamPress plan, which is managed WordPress hosting and more resources. There are three tiers of DreamPress plans, with the top tier built for approximately one million visitors per month.
Alternatively, you could upgrade to VPS for WordPress, which is hosted on a virtual private server. This isolates your site from others on the same server, which gives you more control and your own dedicated resources.
Unlike shared hosting, VPS hosting will not be impacted by traffic spikes on other sites.
VPS WordPress hosting can be a good option if you are extremely comfortable with managing your WordPress backend. If not, I would find a shared or managed plan that fits with your expected traffic.
Speed and Uptime
By getting WordPress specific hosting, you are already guaranteeing better performance than you are likely to get anywhere else.
So what separates the better from the incredible?
SiteGround, Dreamhost, and WP Engine have WordPress specific caching tools that boost site speed. Caching creates a static version of your site and serves it to visitors, which cuts down on the work your server has to do to respond to requests.
Normally, you’d have to install a caching plugin to do this, but most WordPress hosts build this functionality right in.
Another thing to look for is a content delivery network (CDN), which is included for free with some of the plans I’ve reviewed. A CDN stores images, pages, and other assets across a network of servers distributed around the globe.
Having a CDN will boost speed and make your site more resilient–a single point hardware failure won’t jeopardize your site because so much of the content is distributed.
Nexcess, SiteGround, Bluehost, and WP Engine include a CDN with every WordPress hosting plan they offer.
Caching is one of the best ways to optimize your WordPress because it delivers information
Spoiler: you don’t have to worry too much about uptime if you pick one of the options I reviewed. They all have phenomenal uptime.
Hostinger, for example, guarantees 99.9 percent uptime for their Single WordPress hosting plan, which starts at $1.59/month. A2 Hosting also provides a 99.9 percent uptime commitment for every plan.
One thing to be aware of, with regards to speed and uptime, is that your site’s performance hinges on how well your site is managed. Even with the best hosting environment and configuration, a faulty broken plugin can have a huge negative impact.
The question here is do you want to invest the time and resources to develop in-house WordPress experience, or pay more for a managed plan?
Like everything good on the internet, WordPress sites have their bad days. When something goes wrong, how quickly can you resolve the problem?
Getting timely and quality support is important, especially for users that aren’t jazzed about getting into the WordPress backend to fix issues.
One of the benefits of WordPress hosting is that customer service reps really understand plugins, themes, and other common site issues. With non-specific hosting, there is no guarantee the repr is going to knowledgable about WordPress.
You may notice that all of the options on my list include some version of 24/7 support.
But you want to pay attention to the quality and availability of support. Do you get to make support requests via live chat or waiting for email responses. How quick is that email response?
For the shared WordPress hosting plans, A2 Hosting and SiteGround had some of the best customer service reviews.
A2 offers chat, email, phone, and ticket support from hand-selected expert technicians. Any time you have a problem, you are going to get knowledgeable support quickly.
On top of that, A2 provides free site migrations, which is a huge time-saver if you already have a WordPress site and want better hosting.
SiteGround has a similar range of support as A2 and is able to address most issues in under five minutes. Lightning-fast resolution is going to save you a lot of frustration and money.
When it comes to managed plans, WP Engine is in a class of its own. WP Engine techs don’t handle anything other than WordPress, and they are true experts of their domain.
Plus, WP Engine knows that support is one of the major reasons its customers stay. You can always count on the company’s reps to go the extra mile to ensure everything is working perfectly.
If you’re running a WordPress website, you should definitely consider a hosting plan that’s optimized for WordPress.
Which plan is the best? It depends on what you’re looking for. The recommendations listed above will definitely be the best place for you to start your search. Here they are, just to recap:
Bluehost — The best WordPress hosting for new websites
WP Engine — The best for managed WordPress hosting
SiteGround — The best support for affordable WP hosting
DreamHost — The lowest day one spend for WP hosting
A2 Hosting — The best for moving an existing site to better WP hosting
For new sites, I recommend Bluehost. You get a free domain name included with your hosting, and the platform is very welcoming for first-timers.
If you aren’t looking to sign a long contract to get up and running, DreamHost offers your best month-to-month pricing. For a few bucks and no commitment, you can get set up on one of the fastest, most dependable WordPress hosting platforms.
Another good option for people on a budget is Hostinger. You’ll have to sign up for a long contract to get the best price, but there isn’t a lower-cost option I trust. I mean 99.9 percent uptime for 10,000 visitors at less than $2 a month? That’s phenomenal.
Looking at the managed WordPress hosting plans, WP Engine is the clear overall winner. No platform comes with more tools and customer support.
If the price of a managed plan like WP Engine is putting you off, take a look at Nexcess. The entry-level managed hosting plan, Spark, is very reasonable and includes more server resources than any other plan I looked at.
Another good “lite” managed hosting solution is SiteGround. The entry-level plan there, StartUp, is a good midway point between shared and managed WordPress hosting. You will get some of the essential features you expect with a managed plan, but at a price that’s comparable to shared hosting.