About 7 years ago when I bought my very first domain, I had no clue how to host a website. I wondered, “how in the world do I get something online so that others can see it”? I was such a novice, that I didn't know what a nameserver or hosting account really was.
Now, if you fast forward to today, I've built hundreds of websites and tried out nearly a dozen different hosting companies. The process of buying a domain, pointing the nameservers to my hosting account, and getting a site up and running are now second nature.
My Experience with Hosting Services
In the process of building so many sites and trying several different hosting companies, I've learned which services are easier to work with than others. In fact, here is a list of the some of the hosting companies that I either currently use or have tried in the past:
For a long time, I have recommended Bluehost as the best company to go with; but after some recent research I'm throwing another recommendation into the mix. Let me be clear first: THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH BLUEHOST! I still use the company and they are excellent! I have nothing bad to say, and they are the best hosting company I've used as far as ease of use and features.
If they are so great, then why would I recommend anything different? Price.
When it comes down to it, hosting is almost a commodity nowadays. You can get essentially the same package with cPanel, WordPress 1-click install, 99.9%+ uptime, etc almost anywhere now. The 2 aspects that hosting companies can really differentiate themselves on now is price and customer service.
(As a heads up, this post contains affiliate links based on my recommendations. If you decide to purchase through my link, I will be compensated. I will also be thankful that you've given some weight to the time and effort I've put into the review here!)
Bluehost is usually priced around $6.95/mth. And you can only get this price if you pay a year or 2 at a time. If you pay month to month, the price will be more than $6.95/mth. Sometimes you can get a discount on the price below this with a special offer, but $6.95 is normal.
So, if you pay 2 years up front – you are looking at $166.80. And this is often only the first cycle – so after the first couple of years, you will renew at the higher/normal rate.
One of my Bluehost accounts just renewed (I have several), and it renewed at a charge of $251.76. (This includes taxes, fees, etc.)
On the other hand WebHostingPad, can be purchased for as little as $1.99/mth right now. The price will be more if you don't pay for 2 years up front, but it would never be $6.95/mth.
I recently signed up for a WebHostingPad account, and got in for a full year of hosting (after taxes, fees, etc) at a total charge of: $47.88.
In a nutshell, Bluehost is cheap, but WebHostingPad is much cheaper still. I like that.
Here's the deal: both Bluehost and WebHostingPad essentially offer the exact same features. They are both shared hosting accounts that offer unlimited Addon Domains, unlimited email accounts, unlimited ftp accounts, and more. They both offer 1-click install of WordPress as well (Bluehost uses Simple Scripts and WebHostingPad uses Softalicious).
To compare features I took a screenshot from the cPanel of both of my personal accounts. This should give you the details you need:
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The Choice is Yours
Overall, I think both Bluehost and WebHostingPad are great options for shared hosting. I've been with Bluehost since 2005 and haven't ever had any major issues. Any issues I've had was resolved quickly by their excellent customer support staff.
On the other hand, I've been with WebHostingPad for a couple of months, but so far I'm impressed. I've had no issues, and for the much lower price, its a great option. I did email their customer support with a question and they got back to me very quickly; so they also appear to be backed with great support.
I really think that either hosting company is a great option for most people. So, the choice is yours based on some of the things I've mentioned, pricing, features, and customer service.
Have anything you would like to add? Let me know below.