Finding the Best WordPress Hosting of 2019: An Honest Guide

best wordpress hosting an honest guide

Want to know who’s the best WordPress hosting in 2019? Let’s get straight to it:

Ranking the Major WordPress Hosts in 2019

HostUser Review AveragesPriced FromNotes
1SiteGround
siteground | best wordpress host

#2 CodeInWP (4.6)

#5 Review Signal (72%)

#2 WebHostingGeeks (4.6)

$6

Shared Hosting: 

Best WordPress hosting for most small sites.
Buy It »
2Flywheelflywheel | best managed wordpress host

#2 CodeInWP (4.6)

#2 Review Signal (82%)

WebHostingGeeks

$15

Managed Hosting: 

Best-reviewed managed WordPress host.
Buy It »
3Kinstakinsta | best managed wordpress host

#1 CodeInWP (4.8)

Review Signal

WebHostingGeeks

$30

Managed Hosting: 

Highly rated. No phone support.
Buy It »
4Cloudwayscloudways | best cloud wordpress host

#4 CodeInWP (4.5)

#4 Review Signal (73%)

#4 WebHostingGeeks (3.8)

$10

Cloud Hosting: 

Unique cloud model.
Buy It »
5WP Enginewpengine | best managed wordpress host

#5 CodeInWP (4.4)

#3 Review Signal (78%)

WebHostingGeeks

$35

Managed Hosting

Buy It »
6Pantheonpantheon | best managed wordpress host

CodeInWP

#1 Review Signal (85%)

WebHostingGeeks

$41

Managed Hosting: 

Unique offering, best for agencies.
Buy It »
7InMotioninmotion | best managed wordpress host

#6 CodeInWP (4.2)

#8 Review Signal (44%)

#3 WebHostingGeeks (4.5)

$7

Shared Hosting

Buy It »
8DreamHostdreamhost | shared wordpress host

#7 CodeInWP (4.1)

#6 Review Signal (56%)

#5 WebHostingGeeks (3.7)

$3

Shared Hosting

Buy It »
9A2a2 | shared wordpress host

#8 CodeInWP (3.8)

#11 Review Signal (37%)

#1 WebHostingGeeks (4.7)

$4

Shared Hosting

Buy It »
10HostGatorhostgator | worst shared wordpress host

#9 CodeInWP (3.7)

#9 Review Signal (43%)

#7 WebHostingGeeks (1.9)

$3

Shared Hosting: 

Low-quality, EIG-owned. Avoid.
11GoDaddygodaddy | worst shared wordpress host

#10 CodeInWP (3.5)

#7 Review Signal (49%)

#8 WebHostingGeeks (1.7)

$3

Shared Hosting: 

Low-quality. Avoid.
12Bluehostbluehost | worst shared wordpress host

#11 CodeInWP (3.3)

#10 Review Signal (41%)

#6 WebHostingGeeks (2.4)

$4

Shared Hosting: 

Low-quality, EIG-owned. Avoid.

Read on to learn how we compiled the WordPress hosting ranking above, and why you can trust us to point you to the best WordPress hosting.

Our WordPress hosting review is in sections:

  1. More detail on the hosts above, to round out the table itself.
  2. Don’t be fooled: Why and how most other WordPress hosting comparisons are lying to you, and how to tell truth from fiction.
  3. Our methodology: What we did to produce our recommendations, and why you can trust them.

Best WordPress Hosting in 2019: Our Rankings in Detail

WordPress has good hosts and bad hosts. To find the best WordPress host for you, find the good host that best matches your situation.

Our WordPress hosting comparison ranks twelve of the most prominent WordPress hosts using thousands of real, honest customer reviews.

The truth is that there is no single best web host for WordPress under all circumstances. To find the best WordPress hosting for your project, look through the good, well-reviewed hosts (the first six to eight names in the WordPress hosting ranking below), and find the one that best matches your personal situation: budget, site traffic, technical skill, and preference for small upstarts or large established companies.

1. SiteGround (shared host)

siteground | wpshout

SiteGround is the most widely loved host in WordPress. It performed at or near the top in CodeInWP’s, Review Signal’s, and WebHostingGeeks’s survey data, and its shared hosting (which is what we recommend it for) performed great in Review Signal’s hosting benchmarks.

The highly rated managed WordPress hosts immediately below SiteGround in this list are a great choice, too, but SiteGround claims our #1 spot for the simple fact that shared hosting is often the right default choice for simple WordPress projects. If you want a great, established shared hosting company that’s been crushing it for years, SiteGround is your best choice.

SiteGround has been our host on WPShout for the past five years, and we’ve written about our experience with them in-depth. Check out our full SiteGround review if you’d like to know more.

2. Flywheel (managed WordPress host)

flywheel managed wordpress hosting

Flywheel is a managed WordPress host that topped out both CodeInWP’s and Review Signal’s satisfaction data (albeit based on significantly fewer reviews than larger, more established hosts like SiteGround and WP Engine.)

With a starter plan at $15—half the standard $30 introductory pricing for managed hosting—Flywheel’s a great managed host to try out. We haven’t used Flywheel ourselves, but would honestly try it over WP Engine the next time we need managed WordPress hosting, to see what all the excitement’s about.

3. Kinsta (managed WordPress host)

Kinsta is a managed WordPress host that scored at the top in CodeInWP’s survey data (but again, not with a lot of results) and very well in Review Signal’s hosting benchmarks, but doesn’t appear in Review Signal’s or WebHostingGeeks’s survey data.

I’ve worked with Kinsta on a few client projects, and the hosting is outstanding overall: fast, easy-to-use, feature-packed. One big thing to keep in mind is that Kinsta has chosen not to offer phone-based technical support of any kind. Its chat-based support is excellent and I’ve able to resolve the issues I’ve had using chat alone, but be aware that phone support isn’t an option if you get stuck.

4. Cloudways (cloud host)

cloudways wordpress hosting

We’ve never tried Cloudways, but we’re very curious to do so. Cloudways is rising up very quickly in WordPress, and is one of the most popular non-managed hosts this year. It was at or near the top of both CodeInWP’s and Review Signal’s survey data.

The only user satisfaction caveat to this recommendation is a mediocre average score in WebHostingGeeks, mostly weighed down by negative reviews from several years ago. The silver lining to this is that Cloudways appears to have really upped its quality recently.

You should also know that Cloudways is not shared hosting: instead, it offers you small amounts of space on a dedicated server, pre-configured to work with WordPress, and for prices that are competitive with shared hosting. The point is that Cloudways is more technically demanding to manage than standard shared hosting, so be aware of that going in.

Overall, we believe Cloudways is a good possible alternative to SiteGround right now, and is very much the “rising star” in WordPress hosting that SiteGround was maybe five years ago.

5. WP Engine (managed WordPress host)

wp engine | wpshout

One of the first managed WordPress hosts, and still the largest, WP Engine dominates its hosting category. It scored highly in both CodeInWP’s and Review Signal’s survey data, although it was absent from both Review Signal’s hosting benchmarks and WebHostingGeeks’s survey data. However, newer upstarts in managed hosting (specifically Flywheel and Kinsta) directly compete with WP Engine and are getting higher user satisfaction scores, so you may want to check those out first.

Overall, WP Engine is a good “default” choice for managed WordPress hosting. If you go with them, it’s very likely that won’t be sorry you did.

6. Pantheon (managed WordPress host)

Pantheon performed beautifully in Review Signal’s data—both its user reviews and its performance benchmarking.

They also had 7 reviews in CodeInWP’s data, all perfect 5s. That’s not a very big sample, but it does reinforce Pantheon being worth a look.

Pantheon feels like a very high-quality host that is still breaking fully into WordPress. I personally know that their system is quite different from most hosts’, so if you’re down to learn a new way of approaching hosting, there’s a great chance you’ll love them.

7. InMotion (shared host)

InMotion hosting logo

InMotion scored in the middle for Review Signal and CodeInWP, and toward the top for WebHostingGeeks. It could be worth having a look at InMotion for shared WordPress hosting, but our top shared host, SiteGround, has higher user satisfaction scores across every reliable piece of data.

8. DreamHost (shared host)

dreamhost wordpress hosting

DreamHost has been around a very long time, and it always seems to score around the middle of the pack—which is exactly how it did in all three user surveys we examined.

If you have a client already on DreamHost, you might not need to switch them off, but there are probably better options if you’re just purchasing posting.

9. A2 Hosting (shared host)

A2 hosting WordPress giveaway

A2 hosting is confusing: WebHostingGeeks thinks they’re the best host in the world, Review Signal thinks they’re the worst host in the world, and CodeInWP thinks they’re kind of in the middle.

Strange result, but there’s probably not a great reason to buy A2 hosting given other options that don’t have a split personality.


Below this line are officially bad WordPress hosts. You should never buy hosting from these hosts, for any reason. Their customers hate hosting with them, and there are so many choices (see everything above) that are clearly better.

10. GoDaddy (shared host)

godaddy wordpress hosting

CodeInWP, Review Signal, WebHostingGeeks, and all other reliable sources agree: GoDaddy is bad hosting. People who use it are among the least satisfied of all hosting customers.

The only reasons to recommend GoDaddy are if you don’t know what you’re talking about, or (much more commonly) if you stand to make money from doing so. Do not buy GoDaddy hosting.

11. Bluehost (shared host)

bluehost wordpress hosting

CodeInWP, Review Signal, WebHostingGeeks, and all other reliable sources agree: Bluehost is bad hosting. People who use it are among the least satisfied of all hosting customers.

The only reasons to recommend Bluehost are if you don’t know what you’re talking about, or (much more commonly) if you stand to make money from doing so. Do not buy Bluehost hosting.

12. HostGator (shared host)

hostgator wordpress hosting

CodeInWP, Review Signal, WebHostingGeeks, and all other reliable sources agree: HostGator is bad hosting. People who use it are among the least satisfied of all hosting customers.

The only reasons to recommend HostGator are if you don’t know what you’re talking about, or (much more commonly) if you stand to make money from doing so. Do not buy HostGator hosting.

Don’t Be Fooled: Why and How People Lie to You About WordPress Hosting

Almost all hosting advice on the internet is a lie.

Almost all hosting advice on the internet is a lie. I mean that literally. If you’re skeptical, read this full article, and you’ll be able to see why the following screenshot is accurate:

Click to enlarge

Why People Lie in Hosting Reviews

That’s simple: for money. Hosting companies pay huge affiliate commissions for every trackable customer sale you send their way. Getting people to buy hosting through trackable online affiliate links is quite literally many people’s only job.

That’s fine in itself, but the issue is that you can make lots more money by advertising the biggest, highest-budget hosts in the world—who are also among the worst hosts in the world. This problem is a general one, but for WordPress hosting 90% of it boils down to three brands:

  1. GoDaddy.
  2. Bluehost (owned by EIG).
  3. HostGator (also owned by EIG.)

If someone recommends any of these hosts to you, two things are possible:

  1. They do not know what they’re talking about.
  2. They’re lying. (This is quite a bit more likely if you’re reading or watching it online.)

How People Lie in Hosting Reviews

Okay, so how do people lie about hosting for money? That’s a bit more intricate. We’ll explore three major trends in dishonest hosting recommendations here.

Most of the things you’ll find in a quick Google search actually combine all these attributes. In other words:

  1. They’re “best WordPress hosting, ranked” listicles, that are
  2. Backed up by bogus “performance and uptime” data, and
  3. Further backed up by “reviews” that amount to one guy’s opinion.

1. With “Best Hosting Ranked” Listicles

We’re hoping that this article will eventually show up in a Google search for “best WordPress hosting.” The reason why is simple: a huge number of people use those searches to make their hosting decisions, and almost all results you’ll find on the first two results pages are, very literally, a total lie.

As you read this article, you’ll see clearly that the top-recommended hosts in almost every one of those Google-friendly “Best WordPress Web Hosting, Compared” articles are actually the opposite of the real hosts WordPress users put forward as ones they enjoy working with. In other words, these “ranking” articles consistently recommend the hosts that actual users hate the most.

Just look at PC Mag’s review of its “Top Recommended” host: HostGator. In other words, according to PC Mag, HostGator is supposed to be the best hosting company in the world.

But that review also has a comments section featuring actual people, which is scathing about the actual quality of HostGator hosting. This is not a fluke: in reality, HostGator is terrible hosting, as you’ll see from the real, non-false data sources in the rest of this article.

So who’s right: thousands of WordPress users about their own experience, or a single company that stands to make massive affiliate revenues by recommending the worst hosts with the best payouts?

And if the reviews in these listicles are not a lie, then where’s the data? Which brings us to the next point:

2. With Recommendations Based Only on Supposedly Objective Metrics (“Performance and Uptime”)

The next problem with the listicles above, or with seemingly reliable hosting review sites like hostingfacts.com or seemingly reliable articles like this one, is that they don’t test how happy people are with the hosting. Instead, they test supposedly objective metrics (usually “performance and uptime”) and use that to rank hosting companies.

What’s wrong with this? Well, the tests are usually lies. It’s very easy to arrange these tests in favor of any host you have an ulterior motive for favoring.

For “uptime,” all you need is to have a site not crash for 6 months—or, like, two weeks!—and you can write a review that starts with “99.999% uptime best host!”

And then you can do all different kinds of load balancing tests until you find something that makes your host look good: “blazing-fast WordPress performance average load time 424ms!”

No need to publish which priced plan you were on, what kinds of caching layers you had enabled, what it is that you were actually loading (a WooCommerce site with hundreds of products? Or a dead-simple blog with one post and no pages?). It doesn’t matter: you’ve got the “facts” you need to move forward with your glowing review.

The bottom line is that, in most places they appear, these metrics are meaningless. They exist only to give an objective, “official” feel to recommendations that are, in fact, purely a consequence of affiliate revenue logic.

And if you do want to see real WordPress hosting performance results, look at Review Signal’s rigorous, apples-to-apples performance benchmarks, which we describe below.

3. With Hosting “Reviews” that Amount to One Guy’s Paid Opinion

In-depth hosting reviews can be great, if they get deep into the actual experience of working with the host in question over weeks and months. Where survey data culled from hundreds of real users is “broad but shallow,” good reviews are “narrow but deep”: although they’re limited to one person’s experience, they’re able to be very in-depth and detailed.

But which hosting reviews can you trust? Hosting “reviews” that exist only to bulk out and reinforce fake recommendations are extremely common.

Let’s pick on PC Mag again. (They can take it.) From their glowing HostGator review:

Website uptime is one of the most important aspects of a hosting service. If your site is down, clients or customers will be unable to find you or access your products or services.

I used a website-monitoring tool to track our HostGator-hosted test site’s uptime over a 14-day period. Every 15 minutes, the tool pings my website and sends me an email if it is unable to contact the site for at least 1 minute. The testing data reveals that HostGator is remarkably stable; in fact, it didn’t go down once in the two-week testing period. You shouldn’t have to worry about your HostGator site going down for extended periods of time.

Did you catch that? It was:

  1. Fluff informing the reader that users can’t, in fact, access downed sites.
  2. High-tech-sounding fluff about the guy’s downtime tracker.
  3. Great news! “HostGator is remarkably stable; in fact, it didn’t go down once in the two-week testing period.” You heard it here, folks: HostGator’s servers didn’t crash, during a period of two weeks, in the experience of one user.

And that leads our reviewer to the lucky-for-me-I-still-get-to-make-money conclusion that “You shouldn’t have to worry about your HostGator site going down for extended periods of time.” After all, if you’re not convinced after hearing one guy’s experience over two weeks, what evidence would convince you?

It’s not that good in-depth reviews can’t tell you a ton about what using a host is actually like in practice. It’s simply that you should follow two rules of thumb:

  1. Never trust a “review” from an already unreliable source.
  2. Never trust only a review, with no reliable data to back it up.

So that’s the general shape of the hosting review landscape. If you’d like more detail, here’s an article and video we’ve created on the topic:

Most Hosting Recommendations for WordPress Suck. Here’s Why.

Now: If most hosting reviews are bad, what did we do differently, and why is it better?

Our Data Sources: How We Collected Our Hosting Data

It’s not easy to find reliable data on WordPress hosting, but it is out there—a little bit of it. For our WordPress hosting comparison, we found three trustworthy data sources, each of which has something in common: they’ve each found a different way to collect real information from hundreds of non-fake, non-compromised, non-compensated users.

100% of the data we’re drawing on comes from thousands of real hosting users.

This means that the data we’re drawing on is 100% from thousands of real hosting users—and 0% from blog owners writing affiliate-happy listicles.

Below we explain each data source—what it does, its strengths, and its weaknesses—and present its findings.

Our Affiliate Disclosure

Are we standing to make affiliate money from this article? Yes, we are, but this article is still 100% honest and trustworthy. Let’s explain.

Currently the hosts in this article that we’re affiliates for are SiteGround, WP Engine, FlywheelKinsta, and Cloudways. If you click one of those links and go on to buy the hosting, we’ll earn a commission.

We’re affiliates for these companies because we support them, not the other way around. In fact, we created affiliate accounts for GoDaddy, Bluehost, etc., way back when, but we’re not bothering to paste in those links in this article because we really, really don’t want you buying their hosting.

More broadly, our methodology in this article is to summarize real, unbiased results from thousands of people, and then to simply present those summaries—not to put forward all kinds of bogus paid opinions from us personally. If you’ve read this far, it should be clear that our methods couldn’t be more different from the standard “affiliate listicle” in terms of the truth and reliability of the results they generate.

Data Source 1: CodeInWP

Our first data source is CodeInWP, a WordPress blog that, in 2016, started doing an annual hosting survey.

CodeInWP: What They Do

CodeInWP’s annual hosting survey is extremely similar in style and content to the WordPress hosting surveys we did annually up through 2017. To their credit, CodeInWP got lots more respondents than we were able to: they got a total of 830 responses for the 2018 survey. Survey article hereraw data here.

CodeInWP: Strengths of Their Hosting Advice

CodeInWP’s annual WordPress hosting review is the best place to learn what real WordPress professionals think about web hosting. The 830 responses they got this year give them quite good coverage of the WordPress hosting landscape, in the real, unbiased words and ratings of the people who know it best.

CodeInWP: Weaknesses of Their Hosting Advice

CodeInWP’s results tables often misrepresent their own hosting results because of affiliate revenue considerations.

CodeInWP has a truly frustrating tendency to not rank “Best” hosts by which one is actually best. In other words, they often misrepresent their own hosting results when affiliate revenue considerations intrude.

So that I don’t have to dig too much into this problem, I’ll just give the most serious examples. CodeInWP has two articles reporting on the same information: the actual results article, and a “Best WordPress hosting compared” article that is optimized for search.

So how does CodeInWP rank its “best WordPress hosting” results in the results article? Take a look:

best wordpress hosts compared

Graph via CodeInWP. Click for full size.

Huh? It “ranks” hosts by their own websites’ popularity in Alexa. Why on earth would anyone care about that? Maybe because ranking hosts that way gets big affiliate payers GoDaddy, Bluehost, and HostGator to the top of a table titled “Best rated WordPress hosting companies”—despite all three having dismal user satisfaction scores in CodeInWP’s own data.

And here’s how that same information is presented in the “Best WordPress hosting compared” article:

Graph via CodeInWP. Click for full size.

Despite supposedly being “The Overall Rankings,” this table sorts by price—not user satisfaction—and includes hosts that real users hate (Bluehost, HostGator, GoDaddy) while excluding hosts that real users love (Cloudways, Flywheel).

The issue isn’t with CodeInWP’s data, it’s with how they present that data.

So the issue isn’t with CodeInWP’s data, it’s with how they present their data to dupe people into buying the same old crap hosting—hosting that their own data proves is crap year after year.

CodeInWP: Their Results

CodeInWP’s treatment of their data aside, the data itself is a gold mine. Below is a corrected version of their data that does three things:

  1. Sorts hosts by user rating.
  2. Corrects the for-no-reason removal of InMotion hosting from most of CodeInWP’s tables.
  3. Titles the table accurately.

Popular WordPress hosts, ranked by user satisfaction (CodeInWP survey)

Hosting CompanyRating / 5
Kinsta4.8
Flywheel4.6
SiteGround4.6
Cloudways4.5
WPEngine4.4
InMotion4.2
DreamHost4.1
A2 Hosting3.8
HostGator3.7
GoDaddy3.5
Bluehost3.3

Incidentally, we like this list of “popular” hosts, so we’re using it throughout the review. There’s no clear cutoff for what hosts to include and exclude in a resource like this, but these are, basically, the major names in WordPress hosting. That doesn’t mean that another host out there might not be the best WordPress web host for you—but if you’re looking for a WordPress host, these are the names to know.

Data Source 2: Review Signal

Our second trusted data source is Review Signal.

Review Signal: What They Do

Review Signal’s main ranking system looks at each host’s social media mentions, and uses an algorithm to decide whether each review is “Positive” or “Negative.”

Review Signal also does a very data-heavy annual hosting performance comparison called the Review Signal Hosting Benchmarks.

Review Signal: Strengths of Their Hosting Advice

Review Signal’s ranking system is a very creative and smart approach. It’s completely unbiased, and has the advantage of naturally including thousands of people’s reviews.

And Review Signal’s Hosting Benchmarks are, honestly, the only hosting benchmarking comparisons I trust online. Everything else I’ve found is either lazily done, or clearly biased by affiliate revenue considerations.

And Review Signal’s founder, Kevin Ohashi, is basically the hero hosting needs but doesn’t deserve. Read his accurately titled article, Dirty, Slimy, Shady Secrets of the Web Hosting Review (Under)World, if you think I’m painting too cynical a portrait of the hosting landscape.

Review Signal: Weaknesses of Their Hosting Advice

Review Signal’s “Positive or Negative” algorithm is error-prone. Fully half of the reviews marked “Positive” for one host I checked were actually negative reviews, such as “.@HostPapa suggest people do not use this host service if you want reliable and decent support.” The algorithm obviously picked up on the positive adjectives “reliable” and “decent,” but not the broader message of the review.

You might argue that these irregularities average out over Review Signal’s large amounts of data. (In aggregate, HostPapa is still toward the bottom of the rankings, and SiteGround is still at the top.) But it’s also possible they don’t, if some hosts are experiencing different kinds of skewed results than others in Review Signal’s algorithm.

Also, for most of its hosting categories, such as “shared,” reviews are from all customers, not just WordPress customers.

Review Signal: What They Found

We’ll first look at Review Signal’s user satisfaction data, then at their hosting benchmarks.

User Satisfaction Data

Review Signal’s satisfaction rankings are consistent with the other two data sources: Pantheon, Flywheel, WP Engine, Cloudways, SiteGround at the top; GoDaddy, HostGator, Bluehost at the bottom. Below is a summary table.

Popular WordPress hosts, ranked by user satisfaction (Review Signal data)

Hosting Company% PositiveHosting Type
Pantheon85%Managed WordPress
Flywheel82%Managed WordPress
WPEngine78%Managed WordPress
Cloudways73%Managed WordPress
SiteGround72%Shared
DreamHost56%Shared
GoDaddy49%Shared
InMotion44%Shared
HostGator43%Shared
Bluehost41%Shared
A2 Hosting37%Shared
Kinsta[N/A][N/A]

WordPress Hosting Benchmarks

In the under $25 per month category:

  • “Incendia Web Works, LightningBase, Pressable and SiteGround all earned Top Tier status this year for going through all the tests without any issues.”
  • A2 Hosting, Green Geeks and Nexcess earned honorable mention status.”
  • Companies that agreed to participate and underperformed included Bluehost and 1&1.
  • Most hosting companies that would’ve been in this tier (GoDaddy, A Small Orange, HostGator, etc.) simply didn’t participate.

In the $25-$50 per month category:

  • Cloudways, Vultr, Kinsta, LightningBase and Pantheon all earned Top Tier status this year for going through all the tests without any significant issues.”
  • SiteGround’s GoGeek tier struggled in this category, “because” (according to SiteGround themselves) “during performance testing an automatic limitation system temporarily kicked in, in a way that prevented the uptime test to be properly executed. SiteGround confirmed that this particular limitation system should not have been active on the tested accounts and is currently not active on any of their production servers.”
  • Notably absent was WP Engine, whose basic tier is in this price range.

Data Source 3: Web Hosting Geeks

Web Hosting Geeks is a long-running website that collects authentic hosting reviews.

Web Hosting Geeks: What They Do

Real hosting reviews by real users. Their motto is: “Delivering transparency to web hosting since 2004.” As they note, “Unlike other sites, we don’t fake hosting reviews, forge ratings or hide anything.” A variety of other “review” sites are full of clearly fake reviews, but these are all clearly written by human beings with real opinions.

Web Hosting Geeks: Strengths of Their Hosting Advice

It’s real hosting reviews by real users: a huge number of real responses tracking people’s satisfaction with their hosts.

Web Hosting Geeks: Weaknesses of Their Hosting Advice

They don’t review managed WordPress hosting for some reason, meaning that a lot of the most attractive choices in WordPress—WP Engine, Pagely, Pantheon—don’t show up in their data. Some other popular WordPress hosts (Flywheel, Kinsta) are listed with few or no reviews. (Relatedly, reviews are from all customers, not just WordPress customers.)

Reviews are averaged over the lifetime of the company, so the data you see now could be biased (up or down) by how it performed years ago. Cloudways’s average rating, in particular, suffers from this.

Web Hosting Geeks: Their Results

Popular WordPress hosts, ranked by user satisfaction (WebHostingGeeks data)

Hosting CompanyRating / 5
A2 Hosting4.7
SiteGround4.6
InMotion4.5
Cloudways3.8
DreamHost3.7
Bluehost2.4
HostGator1.9
GoDaddy1.7
WP Engine[N/A]
Kinsta[N/A]
Flywheel[N/A]

Wrapping Up

We intend this WordPress hosting comparison to be a resource to help you find the best WordPress hosting in 2019 and beyond. We’ll update it regularly as new data sources come out.

If you have any questions—about WordPress hosting or anything else—we’re always happy to chat. Find us by email or in our Facebook group. Happy hosting!


24 Responses

Comments

  • How about a thorough evaluation of Liquid Web hosting? Chris Lema had a hand in their startup. They also offer special Woocommerce hosting packages.

  • I have heard SiteGround is good, but have also heard they can get pricey for what you get, especially after the regular price kicks in after ‘introductory’ price.

    Inmotion hosting has been around forever and are much cheaper in the long run. I found their customer service to be absolutely great! Which is very important when things go wrong, or you need help dealing with things. Not only do they have a well priced mid-tier plan, but they also have WordPress managed plans that are much cheaper than SiteGround.

    I have also started using Flywheel for client sites. They are also cheaper than SiteGround when you compare apples to apples. They have really streamlined the workflow and billing for building client sites. I really like using “local by Flywheel” for developing client sites, or testing stuff. One of the things that kind of bothers me, is their lowest tier plan doesn’t include a “staging” site… And they don’t have their own email client, you need to use a third party for website emails.

  • Wally says:

    Great review! But as for managed WordPress hosting, what are your personal thoughts on hosts like Pressidium or WPX Hosting? Thanks.

  • While I would agree that Hostgator shared hosting leaves a lot to be desired, I’ve been on their Cloud platform for a couple of years. Speed could be a little better, but reliability has been great. I’m still likely to change hosting when my current contract expires, but there has been nothing to make me want to jump ship early.

  • Mike S. says:

    Appreciate what you guys are doing here with this article, although I will say it would have more “pull” with me if you didn’t participate in ANY affiliate linkage, good or bad. It’s hard to take you at your word when you’re still getting paid for recommendations.

    Like many others, I started out with HostGator before I knew what I was doing. Had a bad experience with their customer service, moved to BlueHost. Had another bad experience with their customer service, moved to InMotion. Their customer service was much better, but the hosting was not great – had downtime. Unfortunately, their tech support could not explain the downtime. Automatic deal breaker for me. One thing I really appreciated about InMotion were their really great tech support articles. Their knowledge base is excellent – for everything.

    I then looked for another host, wanted something non-EIG (Inmotion is not EIG but when you leave them and start looking for another host, it feels like everything else is). I found a smaller outfit called KnownHost, they were better than EIG but their tech support is not instant, it’s email-only. Unfortunately I had more downtime issues even with them on VPS, and their tech support was kind of rude and unhelpful. Left a bad taste.

    Finally ended up with Siteground. Been with them for a year now, so far no issues whatsoever and their tech support has been GREAT. I prepaid for a 3-year plan with them so the price hasn’t been an issue yet. Fingers crossed it doesn’t become an issue down the road either. So far they have been everything I’d want in a webhost, I wish I could point all my past webhosts to them and say “See? THAT’s how you do it.”

    I didn’t come here to slam a host or pimp another, mostly to confirm what you have found in your article. But also to post I don’t even know where to review webhosts with honest reviews because so much out there is bunk and there’s not a go-to site to post honest reviews.

    Keep up the good work guys. But really, if you’re going to write a come-to-Jesus article about webhosting, you really shouldn’t be participating in affiliate marketing with webhosting. Saying this as a friend, subscriber, and longtime reader of WPSHout. 🙂

    • Fred Meyer Fred Meyer says:

      Thanks, Mike! We’ve certainly talked over this internally in past years. Where we arrived at is that, at some point, you have to know that you’re giving good, honest, unbiased advice, and trust that that will come through to the reader. I think that’s been the case here. We’ve been transparent (in the “Affiliate Disclosure” subsection) about when and where affiliate links are in the article, and we’ve made it clear precisely why you can still trust our advice. We think that sets the best balance between sustainability for us and trustworthiness for the reader.

      Otherwise it sets up a weird dichotomy where the people giving bad advice are making huge amounts of money, and the people giving actually honest advice are doing so for free. There’s nothing wrong with that, but we’ve learned the hard way that if we don’t pay attention to sustainability we can’t continue to produce high-quality stuff.

      That’s a fair amount on our inner workings, but hope it’s helpful, or at least thought-provoking! 🙂

      • Mike S. says:

        Appreciate the response Fred. That’s fair… You guys were very clear in your disclosures and you do deserve to be paid for your work. At the end of the day you are far more trustworthy than those other articles. Cheers.

  • You guys are nice. It is another Informative article. First, I think Bluehost is nice in providing hosting, but their price isn’t so good. SiteGround Price is also high. Then I picked Shared Hosting from Godaddy 😉
    According to my experience, Our Site performance entirely depends upon the hosting. And as per me, Godaddy hosting is one of the best on the basis of their location. Please share your views on this topic also.

  • Hi Fred,

    Good one! Definitely the most honest and expensive reviews out there.

    I saw the 3 remarkable reviews (data sources) you collected your data from. But I also saw how you showcased the weaknesses of their source or methodologies.

    I honestly wanted to know how did you collect data from them? And how did you make sure that the info you extract from these “not-so-perfect” sites doesn’t fall into the premises of “flawed data”?

    Also why pass link juice to these sites when you (and we) know that these reviews are flawed and shouldn’t be ranking? Why not nofollow these? Especially the ones that lie?

    Fred, these are my genuine concerns (please do not take it otherwise) and if for any reason you do not want to answer it in the comments section, feel free to email me. (The only reason I am asking you both the above questions is because as a blogger I would also like to write such awesome articles and if I wrote them now I would have those two doubts without knowing how to solve them.

    Best,
    -Swadhin

    • Fred Meyer Fred Meyer says:

      Hi Swadhin, Great questions!

      Well, no data source is perfect. The three we chose are very good, but it’s worth knowing the strengths and weaknesses of each. What I hope is clear in the article is that any of those data sources, which are based on real customer feedback, is one million times better than what you’ll currently find at the top of a Google search, which are the actively fraudulent “recommendations” of online entrepreneurs interested only in maximizing their own affiliate payouts.

      As far as why to pass link juice to those articles: Good question! I’ve just gone through and “nofollow”ed the links to those bad sources. I don’t think that’ll bring justice to the universe just yet, but it’s a start. 🙂

  • Hi Fred,

    Thanks so much for replying. 🙂

    Yes, got your point and I agree real testimonials or feedback are 100% better than articles written solely for incentives and affiliate payouts.

    Thanks for “nofollow”ing the bad resources… it is definitely a good start!

    Wishing to see many more awesome articles like this on the blog.

    Best,
    -Swadhin

  • Diego Castilla says:

    I need to migrate my websites. I have read so many opinions and I do not know which one to choose. Siteground offers the Entry plan for $ 80 / month but it seems very expensive. InMotionHosting has a VPS managed VPS-1000HA-S for $ 25 a month with the same characteristics. which to choose?

    • Fred Meyer Fred Meyer says:

      Hi Diego, How much monthly traffic are you getting?

      • Diego Castilla says:

        I have approximately 200,000 unique visits

        • Fred Meyer Fred Meyer says:

          Gotcha. That probably is too high for shared hosting, and managed hosting will be quite pricey at that traffic level, so you do want to be looking at the VPS/Dedicated hosting tiers (as you already are). The data here mainly tracks shared and managed hosting.

          Review Signal’s benchmarks can be very helpful on the performance side, as can their “VPS” and “Dedicated” tabs on the customer satisfaction side.

          Anecdotally, when I’ve asked David about similarly scaled projects, he’s suggested Digital Ocean as being good, reliable hosting that’s easy to scale up and down as needed.

          Hope that’s helpful! Please let us know what you end up going with?

  • Based on my experience hosting 121 client sites with them, I hereby accuse WP Engine of resting on the laurels of the passionate, dedicated WordPress nerds who earned that reputation.

    The current leadership is racing the company to the bottom, including:
    – having eliminated active security scanning … yet still advertising it
    – hiring level one support techs who barely understand WordPress architecture
    – allowing poor performance caused by buddy beginners on overstuffed shared servers

    I noticed this terms starting in 2017 and blooming into full rotting terrible in 2018 including significant downtime, four individual security breaches, and atrocious support experiences.

    I have met with account managers, support leads, and even chatted with their CEO, in person, at their Austin headquarters. I was paid lip service as quality continued to plummet.

    I was an ardent evangelist for WPE from 2012 through 2016/17. Then I got quiet as I got nervous.

    On October 15, 2018 our largest e-commerce client experienced 4 hours of downtime. Support essentially shrugged and blamed a noisy neighbor. No estimated time for resolution. No suggested solutions except to wait. With site down.

    WP Engine had failed me for the last time.

    The week of October 22, 2018 I migrated 107 client sites to Kinsta. I have migrated all but 5 of the remainder since then. When the last five are done, I’ll sleep easier.

    My experience with Kinsta so far is what I remember from WPE’s heyday – fabulous knowledgeable support, no measurable downtime yet, and on average the sites run 30% faster.

    David, I so appreciate you and Fred cutting through the BS of affiliates, paid reviews, and ad domination.

    Yet it saddens me that WPE’s hard built reputation will allow them to screw over more developers and businesses before their reputation catches up to their fall from grace.

    • Wow. Thanks for sharing this Gordon. I’ve heard noise like this before, and am not shocked by it. Growth makes things like this more likely. But as a person who I know personally (for spectators, Gordon and I are both organizers on WordCamp Denver, among other things) I take it even more seriously. I do want to keep in mind that “anecdotes aren’t data,” but we’ll certainly have to keep this in mind.

  • Ionut says:

    Hey Fred,

    Thanks for the feedback on our approach, I am glad that you find the data useful. Having a definitive answer for best wp hosting thing isn’t an easy task, there is no absolute best, however, I guess we try to have an approach more oriented to people searching for the term and arriving on our site, where you guys write for an audience that you have for those types of post.

    Most of the people searching for best wp hosting aren’t looking for an expensive option, they also sometimes are looking for the best out of the most popular brands that they already know, again this is what we saw and tried to include the companies that make sense for them.

    I guess you saw that we are doing the surveys different every year, once in two years we do more professionals oriented one and then a one based on scale with a simpler approach, this year in 2019 is the year when we are asking everybody, based on more than 1,000 answers here is for example what our visitors are saying: https://www.dropbox.com/s/v5wb9xt6059rgo0/Screenshot%202019-01-19%2016.45.12.png?dl=0.

    A potential solution that I see is to have a few different tables based on the type of the user, like “major companies”, small boutique hosting and so on, so users can see those based on their preference instead of trying to figure out an absolute best top.

    • Fred Meyer Fred Meyer says:

      Hi Ionut,

      Thanks for the message. I appreciate what you guys are doing, and I also stand by my suggestions for making your messaging more honest and less deceptive. Specifically, rank your “best hosts” tables by which ones are actually best – not by Alexa rank or other methods of getting bad hosts to the top.

      Best,
      Fred

  • IS says:

    You should remove the links to the fake reviews and affiliate shills articles and add a screenshot or something instead. Don’t help them by linking to them. You’re helping them stay at the top of the SERPs. Even if it’s a nofollow… You’re giving them traffic at the least.

  • Sam Donovan says:

    That’s a really thorough article! Keep up the good work, Fred. I just wanted to mention something about the advantages of solid-state drives. I have been using a WordPress hosting plan with SSD storage for almost a year and I can say that there’s a huge difference between HDD and SSD storage. Since I’ve purchased an SSD web hosting plan by BGOcloud my website became really really fast. And the difference is significant. That’s why my recommendation is to always choose SSD over HDD plans. The speed is amazing, and the prices aren’t much higher.

  • Rose Alvina says:

    I am using https://www.siteground.com/go/sitewebhosting for a few years from now and so far it is going great. Specially if you are looking for a reliable WordPress hosting service. My sites load fast and also I get great customer service when needed.

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