Wix, Weebly, and SquareSpace — The easiest way to build a free web presence is actually to avoid traditional web hosts altogether and use a site builder. These are services that not only provide web hosting, but also help you build beautiful, robust websites in minutes. All three of the top site builders — Wix, Weebly, and Squarespace — offer free and paid options. They’re not perfect, but if you’re feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of managing your own web space, they’re a good entry-level option.
If you're finally fed up with your current web hosting company and looking for a better web host, then look no further. By making our website migrations free for cPanel accounts up to 5GB or for up to 3 websites/databases, we make it easy for you to move from your current web hosting company. And our zero downtime transfer takes the worry out of moving.
InMotion provides fast, reliable and affordable web hosting. All plans include fast SSD disk drives, cPanel for easy server management, a free domain, and a 1-click installer for 400+ applications. Unlike most other companies, the InMotion support team is based in the US, which means much higher quality than you may be used to from your current hosting provider.
All of our top picks include most add-ons for free, like daily backups and basic SSL encryption. But it’s worth paying the extra $10 a year for private domain registration. This keeps your personal information out of the internet’s required registration database, WHOIS. Instead of listing your phone and address, your server will list a proxy, so you won’t have to contend with spam calls to your real phone number. (One tester from our original review on web hosting, published in 2016, has only just recently stopped receiving daily telemarketing calls — almost two years later.)
InMotion is the only one of our picks without any international servers: this means if you know your site will be getting traffic from around the world, it might be a better idea to go with another provider. InMotion’s servers are based in Los Angeles, CA and Ashburn, VA, so if your intended audience is based in the US, these two servers on each coast should cover your bases.
Cons: Because it’s so centralized in this trusted cloud, if there’s an issue with the cloud, you’re pretty much left helpless. Again, due to the cloud storage component, you can only have access to your files through the internet. If you can’t connect, you can’t get access. The rubber band-like flexibility it offers can also come with a “rubber-band-flexible” bill each month.
Uptime measures a company’s track record for keeping websites online all of the time. In a perfect world, your website would be available to readers 100 percent of the time. But companies typically only guarantee 99.9 percent uptime, since occasional technical difficulties are inevitable. We used a third-party monitoring service to verify uptime claims and spot top performers: companies that kept their websites up at least 99.95 percent of the time. Less than 1% of difference in uptime may seem trivial, but each .01% of downtime equals 52 minutes of a broken website in real time.
BigCommerce is a bit different from our other hosting plans in that it's a SaaS (software-as-a-service) provider instead of an IaaS (infrastructure-as-a-service) provider. In other words, rather than renting space on a virtual machine where you setup and configure your own site, BigCommerce provides you with an app you login to that creates and online store.
The key differences are, the Basic only lets you host one website whereas the other two give you unlimited site hosting. You're also capped at just 50 gigs of web space with the Basic plan, but with all three packages, the web space is unmetered. The amount of traffic you bring in is unlimited with BlueHost, but you get $200 in marketing offers if you sign up for Plus or Prime to spend on Google or Bing services.
Shared hosting is web hosting in which the provider houses multiple sites on a single server. For example, Site A shares the same server with Site B, Site C, Site D, and Site E. The upside is that the multiple sites share the server cost, so shared web hosting is generally very inexpensive. In fact, you can find an option for less than $10 per month.