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Best WordPress hosting 2021: Top picks for companies

If you are utilizing a content material administration system (CMS) to handle your web site, there’s an excellent probability you are utilizing WordPress. According to W3Techs, 64.6% (up from 63.6% in 2020) of all web sites utilizing content material administration are utilizing WordPress. W3Techs supplies one other key statistic: 40.8% (up from 38.5% in 2020) of all web sites on the planet run WordPress.

So, WordPress is large. And if you are going to run WordPress in your web site, you are going to want a server to run it on. That’s what we’re taking a look at right here. We selected a baker’s dozen of the perfect WordPress suppliers on the market. 

Let’s be clear: Nearly each hosting supplier affords WordPress as an possibility. All it takes is a comparatively fashionable tech stack and a fast set up, so there’s little or no barrier of entry for a hosting supplier to offer WordPress assist. 

But simply because so many hosting suppliers provide WordPress assist, that does not imply they’re the perfect at providing WordPress assist. There is, nevertheless, a category of hosting suppliers that focuses on WordPress, and people are the suppliers we’re protecting on this article.

Understanding the WordPress ecosystem

WordPress hosting can enchantment to many classes of customers. Joshua Strebel, CEO and co-founder of Pagely (the primary of the suppliers on our record), supplies this chart to assist perceive WordPress market segmentation. In our record under, we use a modified model of this segmentation, however Joshua’s chart offers us an excellent overview of the entire enterprise.

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Joshua Strebel

This subsequent bit goes to get complicated, so take a deep breath and let it out slowly. Now you are prepared. There’s WordPress… after which there’s WordPress. Here’s a fast breakdown:

  • WordPress (software): This is an open-source content material administration system written primarily in PHP. You can set up WordPress by yourself server, or contract with a hosting supplier to run it for you.
  • WordPress Foundation: This is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that protects the GPL licensing of WordPress, the WordPress trademark, and supplies academic sources for the WordPress open supply neighborhood.
  • WordPress.org: This is the central repository of WordPress info, the placement the place you’ll be able to obtain the WordPress open supply software program, and a web based distribution supply for the hundreds of themes and plugins that work with WordPress.
  • Automattic: This is the business firm based by one among WordPress’ unique builders, Matt Mullenweg. Automattic additionally owns the favored running a blog platform Tumblr.
  • WordPress.com: Owned by Automattic, this is among the largest hosting suppliers for WordPress web sites. It affords free, considerably restricted WordPress hosting in addition to extra superior plans.
  • WordPress VIP: This is the top-tier enterprise-level hosting service supplied by Automattic for massive organizations.

When speaking about WordPress, it is usually doable to deduce which one by the context of the dialog. But if unsure, ask the seller.

And with that, let’s dive into our record, beginning with the enterprise suppliers first.

Enterprise-level WordPress hosting

If you are a top-tier internet presence operating on high of WordPress, you are going to want a supplier who can deal with the distinctive necessities of large site visitors, demanding technical assist, extremely versatile scalability, and speedy responsiveness. Two of the three suppliers under, Pagely and WordPress VIP, match this class completely. 

Pantheon is a little bit of a special beast. It, too, boasts high-end clients, nevertheless it supplies hosting administration for in-house use. For instance, if you wish to construct a web site at UC Berkeley, the Berkeley Web Platform permits college students and college to self-host on high of the Pantheon framework. Disclosure: I’m an advisor to UC Berkeley.


Blue chip managed WordPress hosting


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Pagely

I’m kicking off this record with Pagely, which holds its top-of-list place as a consequence of its blue-chip clients together with Disney, Time, Inc., Comcast, and VISA. I’m additionally itemizing it on the high as a result of it hosts my three essential websites, and I’ve used it for the previous 5 years or so. I initially selected Pagely after I was having all types of compatibility points getting my on-line procuring cart working at different hosts and eventually requested the cart vendor who did their hosting. When they talked about Pagely, that is the place I landed.

Let’s get the dangerous information out of the best way. Since I began with it, the corporate has eradicated among the lower-tier plans. It is now relatively costly. If you could have mission-critical hosting you want, that expense will not matter. But in the event you’re anticipating to spend just some bucks a month, assume once more. 

Now the excellent news: Pagely is superior. My websites are funky, operating a variety of WordPress plugins, a few of that are very obscure, and even some I’ve written myself. Every time I’ve had a assist subject, Pagely has jumped in and gone above and past. I’ve by no means needed to ask to have my assist ticket escalated to somebody with a clue as a result of all of the techs I’ve ever encountered have senior-level data. 

Anatomy of my web site: WordPress web site 101: Free and low-cost instruments to construct a robust internet presence

I additionally like that Pagely hosts on high of the AWS infrastructure, so I by no means fear about upkeep and server reliability points. To be blunt: If I had one hosting supplier to advocate and you may deal with their pricing, I’d unreservedly advocate Pagely. And no, it isn’t paying me to say that. I pay them each month.


Uber-managed WordPress by the WordPress folks


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Automattic

The of us at Automattic, the corporate that operates WordPress.com, have a top-tier resolution aimed toward enterprise clients. WordPress VIP is that service.

VIP supplies infrastructure, operations, and safety at scale, releasing content material producers as much as produce content material. Think of it as concierge service with a ton of horsepower. WordPress VIP supplies hosting providers for Quartz, CNN, Variety, CapitalOne, TED, Spotify, Dow Jones, USA Today, and even WordPress-based properties operated by Microsoft and Facebook.

Pricing is… nicely, if you might want to ask, you most likely cannot afford it.


Instead of DevOps, think WebOps


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Pantheon

Pantheon has taken the DevOps idea of built-in growth and deployment and utilized it to web site administration. Essentially, the concept is that the online builders incorporate operations into their growth methods, and operations groups incorporate the wants of internet growth into their methods. To do that, the hosting supplier implements staging websites, model management, and built-in backup into its packages. It additionally companions with many massive colleges and establishments to roll out web sites to inner clients with managed operations.

Key to the corporate’s choices is each continuous deployment in addition to the power to discipline completely different variations to completely different constituencies. For instance, purchasers would possibly need to see a change earlier than it is pushed dwell, however not in uncooked growth kind. Pantheon affords automation instruments to make this doable. Many customers we have talked to love the push/pull course of that gives some workflow construction on transferring from growth to deployment, together with the mandatory database motion required for that course of.

The firm supplies assist for WordPress and the Drupal CMS.

Hosting for medium-sized websites

In Joshua’s diagram above, he describes mid-market as hosting not solely for medium-sized clients but additionally for companies and builders. Large internet companies that want a platform for all their clients will usually be snug selecting from the next distributors.


SMB hosting that understands the client/agency relationship


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WP Engine

Moving from enterprise-level options, we begin to encounter managed hosting suppliers for small and medium-sized companies. Key amongst these WordPress hosting suppliers is WP Engine.

WP Engine affords two options that stand out. The first is scalability. You can begin with a comparatively cheap plan and improve and improve and improve. If you want a high-performance enterprise-grade plan after a significant development spurt, WP Engine is not going to high out. It’s no WordPress VIP, however it is going to get you there.

Second is what the corporate calls “transferable installs.” While it’s doable to maneuver a WordPress set up from nearly any hosting supplier to nearly some other hosting supplier, it may be a time-consuming ache fraught with the potential of error. There are migration tools to make the method extra dependable.

That mentioned, WP Engine builds transferable installs into its DNA. The thought is that an internet growth company can construct a full web site for a shopper, after which switch that full web site to the shopper’s account, with none breakage or fuss. We like this as a result of it permits every celebration to concentrate on their strengths with out having to leap over hoops to get to the following step.

In 2019, WP Engine acquired the Flywheel hosting service, one other well-respected managed hosting supplier. Most notably, readers of this column can be conversant in the Local on-machine hosting environment for builders, which I cited as one among my favourite coding instruments. 


Managed WordPress hosting with full access


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Liquid Web

Liquid Web supplies managed hosting, whether or not you are operating WordPress or not. That mentioned, it does have some deep experience in WordPress, having just lately acquired renowned WordPress theme and plugin developer iThemes.

What we like about Liquid Web is it efficiently melded the concept of managed hosting (the place the supplier manages infrastructure) with devoted IaaS providers (permitting you to tinker along with your server settings). The firm affords cellphone and ticket-based assist and boasts an underneath 60-second response timeframe.

While Liquid Web will not be the corporate you’d go to in the event you’re operating an enormous web site, it does present a snug seat between the prosumer and midmarket, permitting you to begin with an providing that may stick with you for fairly a while. The firm additionally has a particular concentrate on WooCommerce hosting, so in the event you’re planning on operating a procuring cart on Woo, Liquid Web can be an excellent match.


Modern, cloud-centric Linux containers for every website


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Kinsta

Kinsta was one of many providers beneficial by the WordPress gurus I spoke with. We notably like that Kinsta is constructed on the Linux Containers venture and is fully operated on the Google Cloud. That fully eliminates any questions on {hardware} infrastructure administration. Each WordPress will get its personal remoted container and there’s no shared hosting.

While different suppliers provide WooCommerce options, Kinsta particularly calls out optimizations for WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads, the 2 WordPress procuring carts most customers are conversant in. Overall, we like the trendy cloud-centric strategy Kinsta affords.


Docker-based WordPress hosting


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Convesio

Convesio is a service I wasn’t conversant in, nevertheless it got here extremely beneficial by Robert Jacobi, a well known strategist and resolution ambassador within the WordPress neighborhood. He says, “The greatest WordPress hosting companies present efficiency (velocity and scalability) and ease of use. You need to focus in your web site, not the infrastructure.”

That’s the premise supplied by Convesio, which payments itself as “first self-healing, autoscaling, platform-as-a-service for creating and managing WordPress web sites.” 

We’re notably within the autoscaling declare, as a result of many people have skilled the bittersweet feeling of getting site visitors skyrocket abruptly, solely to look at your server crash and burn underneath the sudden load. While many providers provide scalability, it usually requires intervention to implement the scaling — and doing so whereas the surge is occurring is like swapping out the hull of a ship whereas it is at sea in a hurricane.

We’ll be watching Convesio and as we be taught extra, we’ll share our observations with you.

Hosting for critical small companies and people

If you need to construct your personal WordPress web site, and you are a smaller group or particular person, these suppliers will do nicely for you. These are a step above the fundamental hosting suppliers we focus on in our “Best internet hosting: Find the suitable service for your web site” information, however do not usually present the assist or optimization of managed WordPress hosting suppliers.


Managed hosting with rapid website deployment


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Namecheap

Namecheap is a 20-year-old area registrar who has added managed WordPress hosting as a service. I used Namecheap just a few years again for an SSL certificates, which was a clean expertise. For this record, I had the chance to talk with Matt Russell, chief cloud officer for Namecheap. I’ll let him clarify why you would possibly need to contemplate its providers.

Namecheap took a special strategy to the incumbents in market in constructing a managed WordPress product, EasyWP, by itself cloud and with an experience-first strategy. We used our expertise of domains and hosting to engineer an expertise that lets customers construct and handle a WordPress web site in seconds as a substitute of minutes, that abstracts the everyday hosting difficulties/complications (overcrowded servers, downtime, safety, incapability to deal with site visitors surges) and in a method, makes the hosting invisible. 

We launched out of Beta in 2019. We already serve 80,000 subscribers on EasyWP alone, placing us within the high 5 Managed WordPress hosts

Our subsequent main focus is elevating the WordPress expertise by making it simpler to get began, selecting your theme, plugin and choices given simply how disparate the WordPress ecosystem is. We count on that by making this half simpler too, it permits site owners to maintain concentrate on constructing and rising their web site… and never waste numerous hours making an attempt to know if a plugin is nice/dangerous/nicely supported.

So, there you go. Give it a shot.


Everything, including the kitchen sink (and some very strategic acquisitions)


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GoDaddy

If studying Namecheap’s service description reminds of something, it is most likely GoDaddy. What can we are saying about GoDaddy? It’s all over the place and affords nearly each service and upsell you possibly can probably need. As I discussed upfront, we do not like suppliers that soar your value whenever you renew, and GoDaddy does that. However, their pricing soar is about 30%, not double or extra (which is the observe of a far-too-large share of hosting suppliers). And we actually could not do a listing of WordPress hosting suppliers with out together with GoDaddy.

The factor about GoDaddy and WordPress will not be the corporate’s hosting choices. It’s GoDaddy’s appreciable funding into high-quality WordPress properties. Here are among the properties GoDaddy has acquired:

  • ManageWP: A central dashboard for managing a bunch of websites. I used to be a ManageWP buyer earlier than GoDaddy and I depend on it each day.
  • Sucuri: Sucuri is a WordPress web site safety agency. When my web site was hacked some years again, I turned to Sucuri to repair the issue. Again, I used their providers (and nonetheless do) since earlier than GoDaddy acquired it.
  • WP Curve: A service for getting began shortly with new WordPress websites
  • ThemeBeans, CoBlocks, Block Gallery: Editor objects and theme enhancements for WordPress.
  • SkyVerge: a WooCommerce developer (WooCommerce is owned by Automattic, runs on WordPress, and is a market chief in on-line procuring carts).

On one hand, GoDaddy is GoDaddy. But, on the opposite, it is a soup-to-nuts supplier that is taking WordPress very severely. That wins it consideration on this record.


Bizarro-world WordPress hosting by the folks who make it


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Automattic

As a recap, recall that WordPress.com and WordPress.org are completely different beasts. WordPress.com is a hosting service run by Automattic, the corporate behind WordPress. And do not get me flawed. WordPress.com is massively fashionable, providing hundreds of thousands of websites and even free blogs, with a variety of tiers of service.

But here is the place issues get bizarre. If you are an lively WordPress web site operator utilizing the open-source WordPress, whenever you log into your web site on WordPress.com, it will be such as you’re on a special planet. Yes, WordPress is in there or underneath there someplace (you need to dig down till you discover the Manage menu), nevertheless it’s simply not the identical. Even although WordPress.com is operating real-live WordPress, the interface is so completely different, you would possibly as nicely be utilizing one other supplier.

I can advocate WordPress.com as a result of its infrastructure is rock-solid and Automattic positive does know what it is doing. But if in case you have open-source WordPress muscle reminiscence, you are going to really feel such as you’ve simply moved from the US to the UK and also you’re abruptly driving on the flawed aspect of the road.

Bare digital metallic suppliers

If you like naked metallic and know your method round a sudo command line, you is perhaps extra snug with these IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service) suppliers. We’re itemizing them in our WordPress hosting information as a result of each Digital Ocean and AWS Lightsail have easy point-and-click builds that provides you with a operating WordPress VM, which you’ll be able to then sudo into your VM and do just about something Linux will allow you to do — together with pulling out your hair.


Raw virtual hardware that scales to meet your needs on demand


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Digital Ocean

The best technique to describe Digital Ocean is as AWS for the remainder of us. Digital Ocean is an infrastructure-as-a-service supplier that means that you can spin up digital machines within the cloud. What I like about Digital Ocean is that it is about as far faraway from managed hosting as you may get, nevertheless it’s additionally not some hand-held cPanel based mostly hosting service.

If you recognize your method round a server, Digital Ocean helps you to construct what you need, the way you need it. You can create a VM that runs for years (I’ve one which’s been operating for three years) or ones that run for 20 minutes. As a developer, it is extremely useful to create a check machine, run no matter exams wanted in isolation from all different configurations, after which blow away that check machine, all in 20 minutes. I’ve constructed digital server farms with Digital Ocean that integrated 20 to 30 WordPress machines all crunching parts of a distributed AI plugin I wanted to check, allow them to run for underneath an hour, and paid a buck or so for the privilege.

While you are able to do all that with AWS, I’ve discovered Digital Ocean to be a lot simpler to know with so much fewer hoops to leap via with a view to get an answer fielded and operating.


Amazon’s answer to Digital Ocean


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Amazon

As the subhead says, AWS Lightsail is the Amazon Web Services reply to Digital Ocean, in that it hides numerous the traditional AWS complexity in just a few easy configuration screens. Pricing for Lightsail and Digital Ocean, at the very least on the decrease tiers, may be very related.

I’ve jumped between AWS Lightsail and Digital Ocean for numerous initiatives. Lightsail makes use of pre-built Bitnami WordPress stacks, or you can begin with a uncooked Linux machine and roll your personal. My recommendation is to take a look at each providers. But in the event you’re already entrenched in AWS, Lightsail is an apparent add-on for some fast web site deployments with out the fuss usually related to complicated cloud deployments.

Our course of

As typical, after I create lists like this, I begin with sources I’m conversant in and I’m proud to advocate. Then, I broaden the record by asking of us I respect to make their suggestions. I additionally take note of these providers which are thought of leaders. For all these providers, I look into what makes them tick, what makes them distinctive, strengths, and weaknesses, and the way they examine in type and providing content material.

In this case, I’ve been a years-long buyer of some of those providers, operating greater than 10 WordPress websites throughout them. In addition to reaching out to WordPress colleagues and asking the opinions of among the customers of my WordPress plugins, I additionally reached out to the WordPress professionals who’re members of Post Status, a useful resource and neighborhood for WordPress professionals. Many members have been form sufficient to share some insights with me.

Must learn: 

How to decide on

If you are trying on the WordPress hosting suppliers included on this information, you have already made one choice: To go together with suppliers skilled in hosting WordPress. But, subsequent, you might want to determine what number of websites you need to function, what sort of site visitors you are going to have, what degree of assist you want, how snug you’re with your personal web site administration, and, in fact, your price range.

If you are operating a top-tier web property, you then’re doubtless taking a look at transferring hosts. You’ll need to go straight to the enterprise-level choices we recognized and just about finish your search there. If you want wild customization and also you’re prepared to do the command-line gymnastics, then begin on the finish of the record with naked metallic VMs and construct up from there.

It’s the mid-range the place the alternatives are tougher. Here you might want to take a look at service limits and pricing, together with the sorts of assist and providers you want. The extra complicated your web site, the extra you may want hosting with stronger assist.

If a service affords a free trial interval, use that to check out porting your web site, getting assist, the dashboard interface, and total efficiency. All these suppliers have high quality choices, so that you’re actually going to wish to search out what suits your wants and your workflow the perfect.


You can observe my day-to-day venture updates on social media. Be positive to observe me on Twitter at @DavidGewirtz, on Facebook at Facebook.com/DavidGewirtz, on Instagram at Instagram.com/DavidGewirtz, and on YouTube at YouTube.com/DavidGewirtzTV.

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