For many new webmasters, one of the most difficult tasks faced when starting a new blog or website is the process of selecting web hosting for their site. In my 10+ years of experience working online I would quickly recommend you do not use free web hosting if the website is going to be something you really care about and plan to spend lots of time working on. Free web hosting providers have significant limitations and issues which will lead to lots of headaches and hassles when all is said and done. If you’re a new blogger just getting started with the process of choosing a web hosting provider then I highly recommend you go with a reliable, reputable and affordable shared hosting package.
Why Use Shared Hosting
In technical terms web hosting can be divided into three different categories: Shared, VPS, Dedicated, and Cloud. When you’re starting out for the first time you will find that shared hosting (preferably Linux for most websites) is the best choice. You will save lots of money going this route and there are unlimited resources for hosting which can meet your basic requirements. Moreover, virtual private servers (VPS) and dedicated servers are costly, may require some administration knowledge, and would basically represent overkill for any new website. When the time comes and you eventually need more server space, bandwidth, resource usage..etc. you can then look into something like cloud hosting or a dedicated server.
One vital aspect of web hosting is bandwidth. If you choose to go the shared hosting route, you should know how much bandwidth you are allocated and how much your website will use on average. One tip I would give is to try and focus on getting as much bandwidth as possible! Many popular shared hosting companies (such as SiteGroud & BlueHost) offer both unlimited bandwidth and storage in their shared web hosting packages.
Don’t forget to consider security too! Security is a very important aspect of any website, large or small. Considering 33% of websites in the world are powered by WordPress (with many likely being hosted on shared servers), you can’t take security as a joke. It is in your best interest to choose a reliable hosting provider with an extraordinary reputation for security to host your website. In the shared hosting space, I have found both SiteGround & BlueHost to be doing some excellent work to enhance the security. One thing that you should know is, with shared hosting for WordPress; the security options are limited. They are good, but their security is not the top notch. At this day in age, any provider has the potential of being hacked. This is also why you should take regular backups of your website. Thankfully, backups can be done with just a few clicks inside the cPanel control panel. For those who don’t know, cPanel is one of the most popular control panels out there and it’s also one of the most common among shared hosting providers. Both SiteGround and BlueHost use cPanel and it’s something else you should check on before purchasing from a specific provider. One reason I recommend going with a provider that uses cPanel is because it’s extremely popular, and that means if you ever come up with any questions or issues regarding cPanel, finding the answer online someone is usually a very simple task!