I’ve written this Siteground review because hosting is such a critical part of running a successful website, but before I dive into this, I want you to see whether or not you’re making the classic mistakes that most website owners make before deciding which hosting provider to use…
People often complain about WordPress, saying it’s unstable, crashes or loads slowly, and they and their site visitors are frustrated with the whole experience.
Everyone has high expectations of a website and forget it’s not just about the WordPress platform or any other CMS solution for that matter, but the infrastructure as well, i.e., the hosting…
A lot of time and money goes into developing a website. All the meetings and discussions about what to include, how it should function, the user experience, and of course, the overall design.
But here’s the thing…
When it comes to hosting, a strange thing happens, people, for some reason, start to cut corners and opt for cheap hosting solutions. I mean cheap. Now if it’s for a personal blog and it’s more of an online diary then fair enough, but not when you’re setting up a website for business, it makes no sense.
You’ve all seen the ads: $1.99 a month or $6.99 and unlimited bandwidth, storage, etc. and it’s easy to get sucked in, but if you do it won’t be long before reality strikes!
A few weeks or months will pass, and as you start to get more visitors and add more content, the troubles begin! The website begins acting up, becomes more unstable, you witness slow page loads and generally a pretty poor experience. Obviously, WordPress is blamed and the finger pointing starts.
People have very short memories and forget all about the infrastructure, the bargain web hosting solution they bought. The fact is we are all open to “a good bargain” and don’t see this as being the most likely cause of the issue.
Why is it an issue? The reason is that many websites are hosted on servers with limited memory and/or processing power and a single server is often expected to run numerous other websites to meet the low costs they are selling the service for.
It should be no surprise that your website is starting to buckle under the load.
Imagine buying a Ferrari and putting in a Mini engine to cut costs, it may look great, but it definitely won’t produce the same performance when you press the accelerator pedal to the floor. You’ll be left feeling disappointed and cheated when the pickup truck leaves you standing…
The solution is obvious, a better hosting plan, but there are so many providers out there that it is easy to get lost in all the sales hype, different packages, different platforms, and terminology.
What hosting should you start with?
It depends on your goals and needs, but for the majority of people starting out a basic shared hosting package should meet your needs.
This is not the case if you have a large marketing budget and expect high volumes of visitors from day one. In that case, you would need to look at using a dedicated server, possibly a VPS or even a cloud-based platform.
Siteground offer various packages to cater for larger websites, so if you fall into this group look at those options instead.
Going back to the shared hosting option, we’ve used various hosting services, and I can honestly say Siteground has surpassed them all. We use them for our own sites and encourage as many clients as possible to do the same and here’s why…
‘Their support isn’t good, it’s outstanding’
I’ll start with their support, as no matter how fast or stable a web server is things can and do go wrong, it’s just a fact of dealing with IT.
Let’s start with their signup process, it is superb, with even a phone call from their support team to make sure everything was in order and whether we needed any help.
What makes this unusual is that usually this is where the customer support stops let alone begins.
Not with Siteground, anytime I’ve been on chat with them, they have been more than willing to go the extra mile to get the issue resolved and get you back in business as fast as possible…
If or when a problem arises with the web server or a hosting account and it will, then you’ll soon learn to appreciate this, believe me when I say these guys are a breath of fresh air when you’re stressed trying to sort an issue out.
Multiple datacenters to help web hosting speed
Server centers are strategically placed around the world to deliver web pages as fast as possible, so if your web visitors are predominantly coming from Europe, you would opt for the European data center to give a faster and better user experience.
Siteground’s own caching technology
There are many ways to speed up a website, and without diving in too deep, caching your web pages is a very effective way to deliver a faster user experience. With numerous caching plugins available, it can be hard to know where to start. Some will need specialist knowledge, along with a lot of testing and tweaking to obtain the best results.
With this in mind, Siteground built their own caching technology, which is simple to set up and requires no specialist knowledge to start seeing the benefits of faster page loading times. I highly recommend starting with this even if you decide to explore more complex solutions going forward as your needs change.
Free CDN integration with Cloudflare
This enables caching of larger files such as image files on a separate global network, allowing faster load times for site visitors from anywhere in the world…
You can still opt for a free account directly with Cloudflare that gives you more options, or if you need too, you can sign up for a paid plan with even more business benefits.
Through our own experience, I do not recall a time when the website was down due to Siteground. They claim 99.999% uptime, and our findings easily support that, as shown below, through one of our monitoring accounts…
Web hosting space
I’ve heard a few reviewers complaining that there isn’t unlimited space. There are two issues here, and the first is that most providers don’t offer unlimited space, even if they say they do.
They offer what’s called Inodes, and they are set to a maximum number of files you can host rather than the actual size of them, which is a little misleading.
Siteground clearly states what the space you’re getting on each package, for example on the ‘Go Geek Package’ you have 30 GB. Now if you have bloated, unoptimized webpages, at say 2MB each that’s still a lot of web pages!
If you find your site getting to the 30 GB size limit, then one of two things is happening.
Either, as mentioned, you haven’t optimized the website, or you have been creating lots of fresh content and outgrown your hosting plan. If the latter is the case, it’s probably time to upgrade and if it’s the former then start optimizing the site and save yourself some cash.
Remember your hosting provider isn’t a backup provider for files and extra content. Videos shouldn’t be hosted on the hosting server, it’s just too much overhead, and there are better solutions available…
Website security is an absolute must, and your hosting provider plays a big part in that, and Siteground is no exception. They have many layers of extra security on the server side, remember you can never have too much protection to help with securing your website.
Here are a couple of Siteground’s industry-leading ones…
Shared servers are ‘ring-fenced’ – Effectively if you’ve opted for one of the shared hosting options and another site is hacked or compromised on the same server your website will not be affected!
This is huge…
Server level fixes for new vulnerabilities – If a new threat is detected, their in-house security team will create a patch for the server to help protect all the websites that are being hosted, no matter what plan they are on.
Many people forget the physical security of the web servers, which is as important as virtual security. The data centers have state of the art security, 24/7 human guards, man traps and even bulletproof lobbies, to name a few…
Having a great website is only half of the solution. I hope you can see that having a good hosting provider is critical to providing a great user experience for your website visitors. Cutting corners with your choice of a host will ultimately cost you opportunities, lost leads, and even your reputation, if not immediately, certainly in the long run.
Siteground offers industry-leading solutions for speed, security, and reliability, even on their shared hosting accounts.
Whether you’re just starting out or looking to switch providers, there are various packages to suit all budgets, and I highly recommend checking them out, we haven’t been disappointed so far.
When you visit their website, have a look at the testimonial page to see hundreds of glowing reviews.
For full transparency, the link below is an affiliate link, and we will be compensated, at no extra cost to you, if you choose to purchase a hosting solution from Siteground through our link.