So you've decided to start blogging or you want to set up a website for your business. And you've decided to build your website with WordPress, which is already used on 27% of all the websites on Internet (and that number is growing all the time).
But before you even can start setting up your WordPress website, you need to choose a hosting provider (“host”). This company will then host your website on their servers, making it available to your visitors. On your host's administration panel (usually cPanel) you can then install WordPress on your website, set up emails or install a shopping cart solution for your business among other things.
But as there are hundreds of thousands of hosting providers out there, choosing the right one can seem difficult or even overwhelming. I've gone through countless hosts and host reviews and have chosen two hosts that I recommend for you.
Choosing your domain name.
But before we go into that, we have to take a look at domain names. When choosing a domain name for your website it's best to keep it short and simple. The old KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) method applies here too ;). Do the radio check for your domain name: say it to someone who isn't familiar with it, and if that person understands and knows how to write the domain name in Google search or in the browser address bar, you've chosen a winner. If on the other hand, that person struggles to understand your domain name or even asks you to spell it, then you know you have to rethink your domain name.
Avoid using hyphens in your domain name, that makes it harder for people to remember and write in the browser address bar.
If your setting up a website for your business, the obvious choice is the name of your business. Try to keep that also short, if your business name includes words like “Enterprises”, “Business Solutions”, “Consulting Services” or anything like that, you might want to drop those off from your domain name. If you have a business name which matching domain name is already taken, try to add something unique to it.
When you've found the perfect domain name for your business, buy at least the .com version. I suggest you also buy the .net and .org versions, especially if it is for your business.
Some hosting providers offer you a free domain name when you buy a hosting package from them, just keep these tips in mind when choosing your domain name.
And now we begin to look at those crucial features your chosen hosting provider should absolutely have. There are five features to look for, everyone equally important. The host you're going to choose should definitely have all these in the best possible shape. These are the features that separate the hosting providers into the good, the bad and the ugly.
My Recommended Hosting Providers:
SiteGround provides affordable shared hosting for WordPress websites (not solely for WordPress though). And when your website starts to get more attention and visitors, they offer cloud and dedicated hosting solutions. Speed, security, and amazing support make this hosting provider one of the good ones.
Recommended by WordPress.org
Flywheel offers managed WordPress hosting and they ONLY host WordPress websites. All clients are on VPS servers and they manage all the caching, performance, security and software updates for you.
And they offer free migrations, SSL, demo sites and malware cleanup.
WP Engine specializes in managed, WordPress hosting solutions. They truly are the experts in WordPress hosting with fast, secure and scalable technology. With WP Engine you'll get all the features I listed above supported by a team of leading WordPress experts.
Whatever hosting provider you choose, keep these requirements in mind.
Uptime: Minimum 99,99% (maximum downtime five minutes per month).
Scalability: Easy upgrade options once your website grows.
Speed: Only a fast loading website gets you good rankings in search results, and keeps visitors on your website and coming back too.
Security: The best security measures are absolutely necessary for anyone serious about their online business.
Support: The best hosts have this covered. Make sure you have too.