Building your online store on a solid foundation is vital. You want your website to be lightning fast, responsive, secure and above all, stable. So choosing the right host is extremely important. The hosting provider isn’t visible to your customers, but it is far from irrelevant. If you choose a poor hosting provider, your site will suffer. And with it, your reputation will suffer too. In a dog eat dog world of eCommerce, if you fail to deliver, you’re done. Your potential customer will just switch to another site that actually works. You need to make sure that never happens.
Fortunately, we are here to help. We designed this article to make your choice easier. Firstly, we will present you the key features that every good hosting provider needs to have; features which are especially important for hosting an online store. And after that, we will present you five of the best hosting providers that have all these features.
By the end of this article you will have a much clearer picture, and you will have all the information needed to make a good decision about your future hosting provider. So read on!
One thing is clear- you need something bigger than a shared plan. Shared plans are good for blogs, and small websites. But eCommerce attracts traffic, so shared hosting is not enough. On the other hand, dedicated servers are far too expensive for most stores. This is why we recommend VPS hosting plans – these provide more speed, stability and better features than shared plans, and are far cheaper than dedicated servers. Here is what to look for:
For your online store you want a fast, reliable and secure eCommerce hosting service. You also want a provider with good support and strong uptimes. And of course, you don’t want to overpay it. VPS plans can provide you with all these at fraction of the price.
If you want a host that has a strong reputation for security, good support and superior technology, InMotion is for you.
This company took the right approach to hosting. One look at their data center will tell you everything; it is state of the art. InMotion invests millions of dollars every year into its technology. This gives them a clear advantage, as websites hosted on InMotion run up to 40% faster than the competition. Also, InMotion’s uptime is among the industry’s leaders. 300,000 domains hosted on InMotion prove that many people trust it, and for a good reason.
Besides its shared and dedicated plans, InMotion has 3 great VPS plans, ranging from $24.99 to $59.99 per month. Every plan includes unlimited domains, websites, email accounts. All have free SSD storage, so your store will run really fast. And they give you SSH access, so your customers will feel extra safe. The difference between plans is primarily hardware; more expensive plans have more RAM, SSD space, bandwidth and IP addresses. But we think that even their cheapest VPS plan is strong enough to host a successful and growing store. It has 4GB RAM, 75 GB storage, 4TB of bandwidth, and 3 IP addresses.
If you are not sure that you can setup and run everything yourself, and think that you will need help often, don’t worry. InMotion is one of the industry’s leaders when it comes to customer support. Their Premier Support™ team is known to respond within 2 minutes. They are highly trained and professional, and they will answer all your questions. They will also provide free site migration to their servers, with zero downtime.
InMotion has one more ace up its sleeve; free backup policy. Many other hosting companies charge heavily for this option, but not InMotion. They will do it automatically, up to 10 GB in size. Also, if you like doing this yourself, they will provide you with some easy to use tools.
InMotion is really one of a kind. All their plans are rich, and their prices are fair. You should definitely try InMotion as they have a huge 90 day money back guarantee.
iPage has been around for a while. Their data centers have more than one million websites hosted on them. So if you are looking for a big and well-known hosting provider for your precious store, choose iPage, because it’s exactly that. It is also one of the cheapest web hosting companies out there.
iPage takes its users’ security seriously. This should be especially important to you too, since you want maximum security for your eCommerce customers. All iPage plans have the SiteLock security suite, which stands between your website and malware. SiteLock regularly scans iPage servers for malware issues. Depending on your plan, they also include removing those infections for you. They also have a firewall, for that extra layer of protection. And, iPage runs daily backups, so if something malicious breaches their system, you can always roll back to a prior version, and get everything running again.
iPage offers 3 VPS plans: Basic, Business and Optimum, ranging from $19.99/mo to $79.99/mo. Since you run an eCommerce business, their Business plan should be good enough for you. It gives you dual-core CPU, 4GB RAM, 90 GB storage, 3TB bandwidth, 2 IP addresses and a free domain. Every iPage plan gives you free marketing credits to boost your store’s visibility. You can also personalize your email address to make it look more professional.
iPage has a decent support team, available to you 24/7 via phone, email, or online chat. They will provide reliable and expert advice, and will answer any questions.
iPage has an honest approach. They have no hidden clauses and expensive buyout fees. iPage has the same price for short or long-term plans. Many other hosts give you their lower prices only if you decide to sign for 3 years or more, but not iPage. On top of this, they offer a fair 30-day money back guarantee.
If iPage is not big enough for you, and if you think bigger is better, choose HostGator. With more than 9 million domains hosted on it, HostGator is one of the biggest hosting companies in the world. If so many people host their websites and businesses on HostGator, it must be good.
Because so many people trust it, HostGator has a reputation to keep, and they do exactly that. They take extremely good care of their huge data-center. It is monitored 24/7 and has the latest technology in power backup and fire detection. Their servers are also built from the latest components and they guarantee 99.9% uptime. HostGator has a RSS feed where you can see server status at any time.
HostGator offers 3 VPS plans, from $19.95/mo to $39.95/mo. Even their cheapest plan, called Snappy 2000 can run a successful store effortlessly. It has 2 cores, 2 GB RAM, 120 GB SSD space, and 1.5 TB bandwidth, so there’s enough muscle behind it. Even if you are not sure, you can go with Snappy anyway, because you can upgrade it later at any time. All their plans are run on powerful Intel/AMD hardware, have unlimited number of domains and subdomains and unlimited emails. Backups are done every week, and this combined with their data-center security makes your online store super-safe. And if you like to have more control over your website, HostGator gives full root access. This puts everything into your hands, so you can customize your store exactly the way you want it.
HostGator’s award winning support team can be reached by phone, online chat, ticket system or by a knowledge base. Also, since it has so many users, HostGator has great and lively forums. So if you like searching for information yourself and interacting with other users, you will enjoy.
This hosting giant also offers a 45 day money back guarantee, so feel free to test HostGator yourself, you will not be disappointed.
If you want to trust your eCommerce website to a reliable and widely recommended hosting provider, BlueHost is the right option. It hosts more than 2 million websites, and it is the official partner of WordPress.
BlueHost has some great, user-friendly features, which is important for those who are not tech-geeks. It offers one-click installation, and with its QuickInstall tools you will set your store up quickly. And their cPanel interface is also popular among users. Also, with their Instant Provisioning there will be no downtime while waiting for the payment to process.
BlueHost shines in the safety department, if that is your main concern. Your store will be safe from spam, DDOS attacks, or any other Internet threat. Since all stores involve money, and customers’ personal information, safety must come first. If your customers don’t feel safe on your website, they will shop elsewhere. BlueHost will not let you down.
BlueHost offers four different, Linux-based VPS plans that fit any budget. Plans range from $19.99 a month to $59.99 a month. The Standard plan, cheapest one, gives you access to 2 cores, 2 GB RAM, 30 GB of SSD storage and unlimited bandwidth. This should be enough for most stores, but if you find it insufficient, you can upgrade it anytime. You don’t have to worry about doing server maintenance and management since BlueHost does this for all their VPS plans.
If things don’t go as planned, you can contact the BlueHost support team 24/7. Also BlueHost has a great website, filled with tutorials and how-to videos and a useful server-status check option.
If strong recommendations, security and good uptime are not enough to convince you, and you feel like you need to see it yourself, feel free to do just that as BlueHost offers a 30 day money-back guarantee.
Not that confident in your technical skills and feel like you will need help frequently? Is support quality crucial when choosing your host? Pick InterServer, we doubt that you will find a hosting provider with a better and more professional support team.
InterServer support is 24/7/365 at your disposal. Their high-skilled engineer team will respond immediately and resolve all your issues. InterServer offers free site migration, and Instant Provisioning, so you can expect your site to be fully functional in no time at all.
InterServer made sure problems never happen, by building a modern data-center. As they only use the latest branded technology, you will not find any desktop- level components in their servers, only high-end parts are considered. This allows them to promise 99.99% uptime, with money-back guarantee. In order to keep everything running at all times, InterServer has a daily-signup limit. This makes sure that servers never overload. They make sure that their customer’s satisfaction comes before making a profit; kudos to InterServer for this.
In its VPS section, InterServer offers variety. You get to choose between as much as 16 Windows and 16 Linux-based VPS plans. Linux plans go from $6/mo to $96/mo, while Windows are from $10/mo to $160/mo. This makes InterServer both most affordable and most customizable when it comes to choosing the right plan. No matter how deep or how shallow your pocket is InterServer has the plan for you.
If you feel like this level of customization is a bit too much for your taste, they also have a list of more than 20 pre-built servers to choose from. No hosting provider gives as much freedom of choice to its customers as InterServer does.
InterServer has an honest policy. There are no unfair long contracts, hidden text and expensive exit fees; with them you will simply get what you pay for. And if you are not satisfied, they will offer a 30 day money-back guarantee.
InterServer, BlueHost, HostGator, InMotion, iPage – all five of these VPS hosting providers are leaders in the industry. They have differences among themselves, but they have things in common too; reputation, security, speed, reliability, great support are some of these things. You will easily find the right VPS plan for your eCommerce website.
If you decide to choose one of them, you will not go wrong. Feature rich, secure, and all with money-back guarantee, rest assured that they will not disappoint. You will be very satisfied knowing that you have chosen a strong foundation for your online store and your customers will be satisfied too.