There are a huge number of webhosts to choose from. Prices vary widely, which isn’t too surprising because quality does too.
Don’t just assume the cheaper web service is right for you. Here’s a guide to some of the players:
There’s not much more to say about Hostgator really; it’s very competitively priced, and does what it says on the tin.
GoDaddy aren’t so much in the hosting business, as they are in the spamming business. Having an account with them isn’t too different from paying someone to send you constant emails that you don’t want.
If you want more information see my case study on how to tell at a glance that Godaddy doesn’t prioritise existing customers.
They have some unusual clauses in their contract that gives them the right to cancel any account they deem inappropriate. And being owned by a strict Mormon family, they’ve been known to block sex-education websites used by schools simply for having the word “sex” in them. That seems to be a fairly isolated incident, but funny enough to mention.
Their after sales support isn’t great, and they tend to put a lot of users on each server which can impact the performance of your site. Basically they’re an exercise in “you get what you pay for”. And as I say, they’re very cheap.
Most web hosts keep costs down by protecting their server processing overheads, and turn off a bunch of features that can really improve the speed and reliability of your site. I turn them all on.
It’s a small, personal service that treats you as a real person with real dreams for your business, rather than just a line in a database somewhere.
There is an option to do the latter, called Cloud Sites, and starts at £13 a month but quickly starts to rack up to £40.
Their support is excellent, which is helpful because the slightly confusing nature of their interface means you’ll be using it quite a bit at the start.
Hey Peter, what about some British hosting companies? I use Krystal Hosting. Just been with their Ruby (their highest costing shared) hosting a few months but they seem to be shaping up well. My other British host is Studyhost but they only have one grade of shared hosting. Is your boutique hosting a standard shared – ie would your sever average response speed be comparable with Krystal’s Ruby hosting?
Thanks for a great site, by the way!
I do include VPS.NET who offer Uk based data centres, but you’re right, the only UK owned and operated one there is my own. Sadly I just don’t have enough data on other UK based firms to offer meaningful recommendations.
That being said, I could actually get some (I’ve a good relationship with lots of people in the hosting sector, including folks at UK2, etc.) so might update this post soon.
My own host, Webtique, offers shared hosting as standard, but with very few accounts on each server. I can also offer custom servers etc on request.