Through our work with helping small businesses enhance their online presence, we know the importance of finding a web hosting option that offers reliability and a great value. We found that the best web hosting service for most small businesses is Bluehost. It fulfills the basics, while remaining extremely easy to use. It’s affordable, and comes with a drag-and-drop website builder that simplifies things for beginners and non-technical users.
The Best Web Hosting for Most Small Businesses
Bluehost comes in at an attractive price point, which is ideal for small businesses launching a site for the first time. Even with such a low price, it will never feel like you’re sacrificing quality. Bluehost delivers excellent service for small businesses, making the process of creating and hosting your website a piece of cake. The drag-and-drop site builder makes it easy to design, build, and launch your site with ease.
Aside from being so affordable, Bluehost provides an amazing value with its web hosting packages. Small businesses will benefit from a free domain for one year, a free SSL certificate, a free CDN, and more. Plans start at just $2.95 per month, and they’re backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.
The Best Web Hosting for Small Businesses Options to Consider
- Bluehost – Best for most small businesses
- HostGator – Best for growing small businesses
- Web.com – Best for simple business websites
- Hostinger – Best if you need a lot of storage
- SiteGround – Best for those who need reliable uptime
- DreamHost – Best for month-to-month billing options
- A2 Hosting – Best for businesses with international customers
When It Makes Sense to Invest in Web Hosting for Small Businesses
A small business needs a website to survive and compete in today’s market. Customers who don’t see a website for your company—and a high-quality website at that—are not going to trust you.
Having a reliable, feature-rich web hosting service is going to make your business run smoother. Customers will be able to find the information they need and they will gain a feel for the way your business operates.
If you currently only use social media to promote your business, or if you are using a free web hosting service, now may be the best time to invest in a subscription web hosting service for greater reliability and presence. You also should have plenty of options for the design of your website with a paid web hosting service.
Although it may seem like web hosting providers should all offer the same basic feature set, this is not the case. Each of the web hosting services on our list delivers specific features that may fit perfectly with your exact business needs.
#1 – Bluehost – Best for Most Small Businesses
Bluehost is our top pick for most small businesses because you can get up and running quickly without any technical expertise. Thanks to Bluehost’s drag-and-drop website builder, you’re getting a simple site creation tool on top of a high-quality hosting solution.
You’re also getting tons of additional value and savings when you sign up for Bluehost, like a free domain for one year, free CDN, free SSL certificate, and custom WordPress themes—just to name a few.
Bluehost’s hosting is very affordable. Prices for shared hosting in the Basic tier start at just $2.95 per month for a one-year contract. Just keep in mind that this is a promotional rate that will expire after your first contract (which is standard practice across the board in the web hosting industry).
That being said, it’s not expensive by any measure, either. And even the renewal rate options is worth it for the ease with which you can build new websites and pages for your online store.
Bluehost does have some time-consuming steps when you are signing up for the service at first. However, once you are ready to begin building your web pages and site, this is one of the best services for novices. Bluehost even helps you construct your website design based on the type of business you are operating.
#2 – HostGator – Best for Growing Small Businesses
HostGator offers multiple pricing tiers for small business web hosting, spread across shared, VPS, and dedicated server options. With so many options, HostGator customers can select a package to start with before moving up to a higher level of service when needed. This is ideal for a business that is growing and needs its web hosting service to allow this growth to occur smoothly.
HostGator also has add-on services that allow you to tap into the features you need from higher-octane plans without having to pay for elements you don’t need or that are overkill.
No matter which plan you start with, HostGator guarantees 99.9% uptime, even if your store experiences sudden traffic spikes, say, during a sale or the holiday season. And you also get unique freebies, like $100 in Microsoft advertising credit, $500 Google Ads spend match, and a generous 45-day money-back guarantee.
HostGator plans start as low as $2.75 per month for their entry-level shared hosting, the Hatchling Plan, when you commit to a three-year contract. Need more powerful hosting infrastructure? VPS hosting starts at a reasonable $23.95 per month.
#3 – Web.com – Best for Simple Business Websites
Web.com is an ideal choice for businesses that want to quickly launch a new website without any frills, bells, and whistles. You can sign up for hosting and launch your site on the same day without sacrificing its quality or performance.
That’s because Web.com comes with a simple and intuitive drag-and-drop website builder and professionally designed templates to get you started.
The hosting plans come with everything your small business needs to succeed.
Web.com offers a free domain for one year, business email, and unmetered bandwidth. They also promise a 99.9% uptime guarantee, meaning you won’t have to worry about frequent outages or downtime.
Plans start at just $2.75 per month with a three-year contract for the Basic tier. But we recommend the mid-tier Plus package, which starts at $3.95 per month. For a little more than a dollar extra each month, you’ll get double the storage and the ability to accommodate up to 50,000 monthly visitors—which should be more than enough to get you through your first three years.
As a managed WordPress hosting provider, you’ll also benefit from automatic WordPress installation, automatic WordPress updates, and expert support.
#4 – Hostinger – Best If You Need a Lot of Storage
When you are seeking the best combination of value and performance for your business website, Hostinger is going to give you outstanding results.
Hostinger’s primary claim to fame may be its low price. In fact, Hostinger’s business web hosting is so cheap that some people may dismiss it as being too good to be true. Trust us, it’s real and it still delivers a level of performance that will meet the needs of most small businesses.
Hostinger’s lowest-priced hosting plan is $1.99 per month when you agree to a four-year contract upfront. If you need the Business hosting tier for more storage and features, you’ll pay only $3.99 per month for the four-year contract.
That Business plan comes with a whopping 200 GB of NVMe storage. Even the entry-level hosting plan for $1.99 gives you 50 GB of SSD storage. To put that into perspective, other providers charge more for entry-level plans that only come with 10 GB of SSD storage—and Hostinger gives you five times that amount for less.
Beyond its storage capacities, Hostinger is incredibly easy to use, both in terms of building your website or managing the backend. This is great for a busy small business owner who does not have a lot of time to spend on page creation and admin.
Hostinger doesn’t have a large number of advanced features, which may disappoint some people looking for a host that also boosts their web store’s capability. But its combination of low price and ease of use makes it a top choice already, plus you get free backups and LiteSpeed Cache for WordPress on any plan.
#4 – SiteGround – Best for Those Who Need Reliable Uptime
With SiteGround, you never really have to worry about your business website having costly, unplanned downtime. We tested SiteGround’s uptime ourselves and found that it only had two seconds of downtime over our 30-day testing period, which is an incredibly impressive level of reliability.
SiteGround makes the process of being up and running with your hosting service extremely easy, too. Their strong customer service will help you set things up right or quickly fix any issues you may run into.
SiteGround’s prices are about average for web hosting services. Its lowest-priced tier costs $2.99 per month for a one-year contract, while the more robust GoGeek pricing plan costs $7.99 per month for one year.
No matter the plan you choose, if you value your web store’s constant availability to online shoppers over anything else, go with SiteGround.
#5 – DreamHost – Best for Month-to-Month Billing Options
Best for Month-to-Month Billing Options
When building a website for your business, you may want the freedom of selecting a web hosting service that doesn’t require an annual or multi-year contract. DreamHost is the best service for those who want to pay month to month with no commitment.
The majority of small businesses want to select a web hosting service that they can use for many years into the future. However, some web stores would prefer month-to-month billing instead of agreeing to an annual contract, like selling registrations and merchandise for a one-time event. DreamHost offers one of the strongest monthly prices for those who want no contract.
DreamHost isn’t quite as easy to use as some of the others on our list, but it makes up for this minor issue with a strong customer service team. And they have a full array of hosting options, from basic shared hosting to ecommerce-focused plans, that allow you to pay for the quality you need but never longer than you’ll need it.
When paying on a no-commitment, month-to-month basis, DreamHost’s Starter Shared hosting costs $4.95 per month and $19.95 per month for the DreamPress tier. Of course, you can lower those rates by agreeing to an annual contract, where you’ll pay $2.95 per month and $16.95 per month, respectively, for these tiers for the first year. However, we think there are better performing options for that price point and commitment.
#6 – A2 Hosting – Best for Businesses with International Customers
Best for Businesses with International Customers
When your business needs to draw customers from across the globe, A2 Hosting delivers website services with a high level of performance. It has data centers in Europe and Asia that provide great service outside the United States.
Small businesses trying to operate internationally need a web hosting service that ensures all site visitors receive a high level of performance, regardless from where they originate. A2 Hosting is the best service for small businesses in this situation, thanks to its use of data centers in multiple countries across the world.
A2 Hosting’s ability to deliver excellent uptime for your website and fast web page loading speeds for your visitors from anywhere in the world is impressive. With server farms in Singapore and the Netherlands, you can guarantee European and Asian shoppers will get the same great experience as their U.S. counterparts.
Signing up for A2 Hosting and making use of its features can be a bit challenging, so it may not be the best option for novices.
For their basic shared web hosting, you’ll pay $2.99 per month for a three-year contract. The least expensive Business tier hosting option is $11.99 per month for a three-year contract, but most Business tiers cost significantly more.
Methodology for Choosing the Best Web Hosting for Small Businesses
Through our research, we put together the three most important features that the majority of small businesses should consider when seeking the right web hosting service.
Level of Help Required
As a small business owner, you probably have a certain area of expertise that you understand better than anyone else. As a CPA, you wouldn’t seek out someone else to do your taxes, for example.
When you are performing tasks outside of your area of expertise, however, you may hire someone to help you. Fixing the air conditioning at your office building probably isn’t something you would try to do yourself as a CPA.
When it comes to website building, unless this is your area of expertise, you probably are going to want some help creating and designing your website.
The majority of web hosting services aimed at small businesses will give you advice and help in getting your website up and running. These services know that you don’t want to spend a lot of time on this process, so they try to keep things as simple and efficient as possible.
You may only want a little bit of guidance and want to go DIY in tweaking your site design with the occasional outside assist. Or you may want a step-by-step guide for creating your website with the option of accessing live help from the web hosting service when you hit a snag. Judge what level of help you’d prefer and look for that in your potential host of choice.
Level of Site Traffic
Trying to predict the amount of traffic you will have on your new website can be a significant challenge.
An extremely busy website will require a highly reliable web hosting service that can guarantee you are up and running at least 99.9% of the time and loading pages in under three seconds. You may want to consider a VPS or dedicated server from your hosting provider to get the best level of reliability and speed for your site visitors no matter what.
If you expect your site to have a small number of visitors at first, you can make use of shared hosting, which will save you quite a bit of money. These shared servers aren’t quite as responsive to visitor requests as VPS or dedicated servers. But, with a limited amount of traffic for your website, visitors likely won’t notice any slowdowns.
Some web hosting services place a cap on the number of visitors you can have per month, depending on the subscription tier you select. If you simply aren’t sure how your site’s traffic will stack up at first, look for a hosting service that allows you to upgrade your plan easily and quickly as needed.
Understanding the Actual Costs
When you are researching website hosting services for small businesses, you will see some impressively low prices. Don’t just assume that the price offered at one provider is using the same parameters as the pricing at another, though.
Some of the ways that prices for web hosts differ include:
- First-year pricing discount
- Discount for agreeing to a multi-year contract
- Discount for paying annually versus monthly
- Free first year of a domain name
- Free first year of a business email account
- Multiple websites for one price
- Free data backup services
When you are comparing web hosting providers and seeking the best value, you need to make sure you are judging each site on the same criteria. If you have a low price for your initial contract, be sure to check out the renewal price after the first contract ends. It could be significantly higher. This is one of the reasons we like Bluehost so much, because it gives you up to three years at a low price as part of your first contract.
As an added benefit, some services offer a 30-day money-back guarantee.
The Top Web Hosting for Small Businesses in Summary
Although you almost certainly will want to save money on the web hosting service you pick for your small business, you don’t want to just pick the cheapest service and accept a lesser level of performance.
We think Bluehost is a great option for a lot of small businesses because it strikes that perfect balance. It delivers excellent performance at one of the best prices on the market.
But you need to make sure that the web hosting service you choose has the features you need. Even though Bluehost is our top pick for most people, other services on our list may deliver a better value through specific features that fit the needs of your business more precisely.