If you’re selling online, you need a fast WordPress Host, and I am grateful to Matthew Woodward for this guest article
Matthew Woodward started his blog in 2012 as a passion project to share case studies and tutorials on everything SEO and internet marketing related. Since then he has won multiple awards and even more importantly, he has been able to help thousands of online business owners not only build, but grow their websites. You can learn more about Matthew here.
Here are Matthew Woodward's thoughts on why you need a fast WordPress Host.
A fast hosting solution ensures fast website loading times which not only affects search engine rankings, but it also provides a better user experience, boosting:
- Conversion rates
Just look at this example here.
According to ThinkWithGoogle, if Matthew improved his site speed by just a second, he could actually earn $28,464 extra per year.
Here’s the thing.
I’m sure you’re aware that site speed is important, but finding the fastest WordPress Host can be extremely challenging.
That’s why, to make things easier, I compared the 12 Fastest WordPress Hosts to find the best solution available. Below, I’ll show you the winners of these challenges.
Let’s get started!
Choosing the Right WordPress Hosting
With so many WordPress Hosting solutions available, it can be exhausting shopping for the right one. Everyone claims to be the fastest, most-reliable provider with self-proclaimed WordPress experts.
So how do you choose the best option?
When you’re comparing WordPress hosting providers, I recommend you have a look at these key features:
- Price per month
- Sites allowed
- SSL Certificates
- Customer Support
- Daily Backups
- Email Hosting
- Staging Environment
- Trustpilot rating
Although you can find more information about these features online, site speed and support is something you generally need to test yourself…
…Unless there’s a reliable case study available!
Luckily for you, I’ve already tested the 12 fastest WordPress Hosting Providers.
I built 12 identical blogs that had:
- 11 high-res photos
- 1,000 dummy words
- The Astra Theme
- The Elementor Plugin
Then I ran them through 5 different tests.
- GTMetrix Website Speed (From 7 global server locations)
- Pingdom Tools Website Speed (From 7 global server locations)
- Load Impact Stress Test (500 simultaneous visitors)
- WP Performance Tester (A plugin that tests raw server management configuration performance)
- Support Quality (Installed a false flag virus on each site)
The first four tests were focussed on isolated site speed testing, stress testing, and testing the speed of the actual server for each WordPress site. The final test assessed the quality & speed of the support of each WordPress hosting account.
Before we go into the winners of each test, let me introduce you to the contestants.
Introducing The Contestants
For each contestant, I’ll outline the plan I tested and their key features.
A2Hosting’s 1-Site Turbo Plan costs $32.95/month for one website. You get a staging area, free SSL Certificate, free daily backups, and free email hosting. As for migrations, the first site is free and anything after is paid. A2Hosting has a 4-star TrustPilot rating.
BlueHost’s Pro Build Plan costs $27.95/month for unlimited websites. You get a staging area, free SSL certificate, free daily backups. They don’t offer email hosting and site migrations require a fee. BlueHost has a 1.5-star Trustpilot rating.
Cloudways’ Digital Ocean Plan costs $22/month for unlimited website hosting. You get a staging area, free SSL certificate, free daily backups, and free migrations. They don’t offer email hosting. Cloudways has a 4.5-star Trustpilot rating.
Dreamhost’s DreamPress Plus Plan costs $29.95/month for one website. You get a staging area, free SSL certificate, free daily migrations, paid migrations, and email hosting. Dreamhost has a 4.5-star Trustpilot rating.
GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress Basic Plan costs $14.99/month for one website. You get free daily migrations, paid SSL Certificates, paid migrations, and email hosting. They don’t provide staging areas. GoDaddy has a 4-star Trustpilot score.
GreenGeeks Eco site Premium plan costs $24.95/month for unlimited websites. You get free daily backups, a free migration for the first site (any after requires payment), paid SSL Certificates, and email hosting. They don’t have a staging area. GreenGeeks has a 4.5-star Trustpilot rating.
Kinsta’s Starter C2 Plan costs $30/month for one website. You get free daily backups, free SSL Certificates, and offer a staging area. They don’t have an email hosting option and you’ll need to migrate your site via the free Migrate Guru Plugin. Kinsta has a perfect 5-star Trustpilot score.
LiquidWeb’s Personal Plan costs $29/month for one website. You get free migrations, free daily backups, free SSL Certificates, and a staging area. They don’t offer email hosting. LiquidWeb has a 3.5-star Trustpilot rating.
Pantheon’s Basic Plan costs $50/month for 5 websites. You get a staging area, free SSL Certificates, and free daily backups. While Pantheon doesn’t have any Trustpilot Reviews, they have a 4.5-star G2 Crowd Rating.
SiteGround’s Startup Plan costs $11.95/month for one website. You get free SSL Certificates, free daily backups, paid migrations, and email hosting. They don’t have a staging area available. SiteGround has a 5-star Trustpilot rating.
WP Engine/WP Engine C2
WP Engine’s Startup Plan costs $35/month for one website. The New C2 Platform costs $600 for one website. For both options, you get free daily backups, free SSL certificates, and a staging area. You’ll need to migrate via a plugin. They also don’t provide email hosting. WP Engine has a 4-star Trustpilot rating.
WPX Hosting’s Business Plan costs $24.99/month for 5 websites. You get free migrations, free daily backups, free SSL certificates, a staging area, and email hosting. WPX Hosting has a 4.5-star Trustpilot rating.
The WordPress Hosting Winners
For the overall winner, I looked at the winner of each challenge alongside the other features mentioned above.
The winner goes to WPX Hosting. Not only did they come first in both the GTMetrix Loading Challenge and Pingdom Loading Speed Test, they also had a solid performance in the Load Impact Stress Test, and WordPress Performance Test. They were also the only host able to resolve all my requests for free.
While site speed is crucial, it’s important you find a provider with great customer support. You’re going to run into problems when setting up and maintaining your site. When your site is down, the last thing you want is a slow, unreliable, and knowledgeable support team.
The first runner-up goes to Kinsta. Kinsta topped the WordPress Performance Test and performed well in the speed, stress, and support tests.
Pantheon comes in third place. While Pantheon dominated the load impact test and came in second in both the speed tests, they, unfortunately, performed terribly in the site performance benchmark and failed to help me with any of my support requests.
Wrapping It Up
I hope you understand the importance of choosing a fast WordPress Hosting provider.
A slow host can hurt your website because it can seriously slow it down. This can result in:
- Low search engine rankings
- High bounce rates
- Low page views
- Low conversion rates
…and low profits.
Take your time and invest in the right hosting solution today.