A2 Hosting Reviews 2019

If you take no other impression away regarding a2 Hosting after seeing its homepage (pictured above), it will be that it’s fast. And while the performance of website hosts depends on several factors, a2 does provide a number of features (as you’ll see below) to ensure you’re happy with your website’s performance.

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But speed aside, a2 is also a very capable and versatile web hosting provider. Whether you’re just starting out and just want a WordPress site to blog on, or you’re a tried-and-true website admin, a2 has the options you need regardless of the type of site(s) you have.

We tested the web hosting platform, so keep reading to see how to fared.

Other Available Levels of Service: From Basic to Advanced

Shared Hosting from A2 is available at the following levels:

  • Lite: The entry-level Lite service is available for use with a single website, although it does include unlimited storage and bandwidth. You won’t be able to add any of a2’s speed-related features (more on these in a bit) to this service level either, and the service only allocates a single processor core and 512 MB of RAM to your account.
  • Swift: The next step up, Swift, adds unlimited websites and domains, although you still can’t add any of the proprietary performance options. It does up the resources however to two processor cores and 1 GB of RAM.
  • Turbo: Finally, the Turbo tier, the one we tested, provides two processor cores, doubles the RAM to 2GB, and makes all of a2’s proprietary performance features available. Some of these are included gratis, and others will come with an upcharge.

Platform: Linux and Windows

Most other web hosting companies offer services based on Linux. And a2’s default Shared Hosting services are on Linux as well, CloudLinux to be precise. This distribution is based on CentOS, which is in turn based on Red Hat Enterprise Linux. So, the basis of a2’s environment is very solid. But CloudLinux has been tuned for use by hosts and resellers, meaning it has additional security and performance enhancements. At the same time, it remains compatible with a large number of applications already packaged up for Red Hat-based distributions.

In addition, a2 Hosting also offers Shared Hosting on Windows servers. This allows users (most likely companies) to host sites or applications built on Microsoft technologies like ASP, .NET, or even Silverlight. These accounts also have access to open-source software as well, so users can run applications such as WordPress using the MySQL database engine and PHP programming language, for example. Best of all, users can add both types of Shared Hosting to their accounts for less than $20 month ($7.99/month for Linux hosting at the Lite tier, plus $9.99 for Windows hosting at the same level).

In addition, a2 Hosting also offers Shared Hosting on Windows servers. This allows users (most likely companies) to host sites or applications built on Microsoft technologies like ASP, .NET, or even Silverlight.

Storage: All the Storage You Can Use

As we mentioned before, there is no limit on storage at a2 Hosting. Even the bottom-tier services can use as much disk space as required or go crazy installing lots of different sites or applications. This is particularly attractive given the large number of one-click app installers a2 makes available (more on this in a later section).

Bandwidth: No Need to Keep Tabs on Traffic

Likewise, a2 Hosting doesn’t meter traffic to your sites. So feel free to put up those high-res images or that HD video gallery. With unlimited storage and bandwidth, you don’t need to worry about overages for media-heavy sites or applications.

Registration Process: Quick and Easy

a2 Hosting

 

Getting registered on a2 Hosting is straight forward. The registration process steps you through a small number of screens, although unlike some competing providers there’s no navigation to let you know precisely where you are in the process. You’ll start by clicking on the Get Started! links for whatever level of service you’re currently reviewing.

a2 web hosting

The next step is for you to indicate the domain name you’d like. You can also elect to transfer your domain name or use an existing domain host at this stage.

Next, you’ll select some options to your new hosting account. These include your billing cycle, the data center you’d like to use (likely the one closest to you), as well as add-ons such as a dedicated IP address or performance enhancements. You can also have an application, such as a content management system, installed automatically for you.

a2 Hosting

Finally, you’ll reach the checkout page. Here you enter your contact and payment information. Set your account’s password (you’ll use your email as a username), and you’re off to the races.

Domain & Site Management: The Right Tools Are Here

a2 Hosting

When you first log into your a2 Hosting account, you’ll land on a dashboard. There are tiles with information, or enabling functionality, as follows:

  • The topmost contains a summary of the services you currently have as well as domains, any support tickets, and a link to invoices.
  • The next item down lists all your domains, and contains quick links to each one’s 1) cPanel admin screen, and 2) connection and payment details.
  • Blocks below these two main bars let you open support tickets, register a new domain, view the company’s Tweets and news, or make referrals for credit towards service.

The site’s menu also contains links to important services:

  • Services: You can use the entries here to view your current services, order new ones, or browse add-ons to the services you have.
  • Domains: The Domains menu includes tools to order new domains, renew your existing domains, transfer domains from other hosts to a2 Hosting, or perform a Whois lookup to see who owns a domain you might want.
  • Billing: In this menu, you can change your payment information (including credit card or PayPal), and view invoices. If you’ve requested services from a2 Hosting and received a quote, you’ll also have access to it here.
  • Support: The Support menu contains links to sources of information such as a2’s blog and knowledge base as well as links to request assistance, for example with host migrations.
  • Open Ticket: This item will take you to a screen where you can open a support ticket.
  • Account: Lastly, the Account menu lets you edit details such as your contact information, change your password, grant others (such as web developers) access to your account, or log out.

Advanced Options: cPanel in All Its Glory

a2 Hosting

Within each domain, your admin options are within cPanel, which you can reach by clicking the above-mentioned quick link. That said, you can still use all the power that the cPanel interface provides by going to the Advanced menu. The right side of the screen provides some statistical information on your account, such as your server’s address, how much storage you’ve used, and how many databases you have.

The sections in the center of the screen contain collections of tools as follows:

  • Files: This section contains a link to the web-based file manager, tools to track disk usage, and backup features.
  • Scriptaculous Apps Installers: You can install any of hundreds of available applications with a single click. There are multiple options in categories including Blogs, Wikis, Social Networking, e-commerce, and enterprise resource planning (ERP) in addition to the obvious content management systems.
  • Staging: A “staging” area is a web development term for a copy of your “live” website where you can test out new features. a2 Hosting provides the ability to copy your such an area with a click.
  • Billing & Support: Use the tools in this section to managing billing information, request or upgrade services, open a help ticket, and manage domains.
  • Databases: You can administer databases here using either the MySQL or PostgreSQL database servers, and access web-based management tools such as phpMyAdmin (for MySQL) and phpPgAdmin (for Postgres).
  • SEO & Marketing Tools: This section aids in optimizing the SEO and/or social media links for your site(s). You can also access a free site builder application from here or set up email marketing campaigns.
  • Domains: There are additional links to domain tools here, including registration. You can also set up subdomains or aliases/redirects (automatically sending visitors to one domain when they visit another).
  • E-mail: Create your e-mail addresses, set up mailing lists, adjust spam filters, and configure autoresponders using the tools in this section. There’s a module for calendars and contacts as well, and a tool to enable encryption for your mail.
  • Metrics: You can obtain stats on basics like visitors and bandwidth or use more advanced tools such as Awstats or Webalizer to visualize your site’s performance.
  • Security: a2 Hosting provides SSH shell access to verified users, which you can set up here. You can also manage your SSL certificates (you do get a free Let’s Encrypt cert when you register), or block access by specific IP addresses.
  • Software: While this may seem to overlap with the one-click installers mentioned above, this section is really about your software environments. This includes setting versions of programming languages like PHP or setting up frameworks like the popular Node.js.
  • Advanced: The Advanced section is a collection of miscellaneous tools. These include some configuration for the Apache web server, setting up Cron jobs, error pages (like the dreaded 404 Error page), and how to handle MIME types. a2’s own optimization tools are also located in this section.
  • Preferences: Finally, this section lets you change the language shown in cPanel, manage your users, set your password, or change your contact info.

Administration: Straightforward, No Matter Where You Find It

All the primary administration options are available in at least either 1) the main site menu, or 2) cPanel. The tools themselves straightforward, with easy-to-use-forms that let you change your payment method, for example.

One useful feature is the ability to create “Sub-Accounts.” If you’re a small web developer using a2 Hosting to service your own clients, you can set each one up with a Sub-Account that allows them to not only access their files but upgrade their own services or pay invoices.

Support: It’s All About Opening Tickets

a2 Hosting

One downside to a2 Hosting is that the main method of support appears to be support tickets. There isn’t any real-time options such as phone or even chat. If you have an issue, you’ll need to submit a ticket and wait until a helpdesk staff member gets back to you.

Key Features: Performance Enhancements

a2 Hosting

a2’s Hosting’s “claim to fame,” though, is the enhancements it does to ensure your site is working as fast as it possibly can. The main method they use to do this is the Turbo account add-on. This assigns more server resources to you as a user, and also limits the number of other users that will be on your server. These together minimize the chance of a bottleneck that will slow your site to a crawl.

On top of this, Turbo accounts also use a replacement to the generally-available Apache web server that is tuned for performance. Finally, there are a number of options you can activate such as caching you can turn on for top speed.

a2’s Hosting’s “claim to fame,” though, is the enhancements it does to ensure your site is working as fast as it possibly can.

Price: Great Performance, But A Little Expensive

Compared to some other hosting providers, the $18.99/month for a2 Hosting’s Shared Turbo service is a little high. If you can live without all the performance enhancements (and unless you’re serving a lot of media or running e-Commerce, you probably can), one of the lower tiers will probably serve you just fine. But if you want the very best-performing site you can get on a budget, the Turbo service gives you dollar-for-dollar the best deal without upgrading to a private hosting service of some kind.

Competition: a2 Hosting vs. GoDaddy

The most direct competitor for a2 Hosting as a “generalist” hosting provider is GoDaddy. Both offer tools catering to users ranging from newbies to tech gurus. Both provide both Linux and Windows options, and both position themselves as a host for any type of site.

The main difference between them is at the high end of their Shared Hosting plans. a2 Hosting’s plan provides the performance enhancements mentioned throughout this review, where GoDaddy provides the same raw processing power, yet none of these special enhancements. At the same time, a2’s service is significantly cheaper than GoDaddy’s ($19.99/month vs. $29.99/month). GoDaddy does throw in a free domain for a year, but once that’s over (if not before), a2 clearly provides the better value.

Final Verdict

Worth it for power users, but newbies may be overpaying.

a2 Hosting provides a solid service that can handle any type of site, from basic to complex, with little difficulty. And the company makes all the right tools available for those who know how to use them. If you’re just getting started with building websites, you might be able to use another service that costs less and still has great value. But if you’re a veteran, want the full suite of tools and features, as well as a speedy website, a2 can make that happen easily.

Specs

  • Product NameShared Hosting Turbo
  • Product BrandA2 Hosting
  • Price$18.99
  • Available Levels of ServiceLite, Swift
  • StorageUnlimited
  • BandwidthUnlimited
  • PlatformLinux (CloudLinux), Windows
  • Registration ProcessMulti-step “shopping cart”-style registration
  • Domain & Site ManagementDashboard plus simplified tools in main menu
  • Advanced OptionscPanel provides a wealth of configuration options
  • AdministrationMain menu contains basic tools for contact and payment info management
  • SupportOpening a ticket is the only available support method
  • File AccessFTP, SFTP
  • Shell AccessSSH
  • Version ControlGit, Subversion
  • Payment optionsCredit Card, PayPal
  • Price$18.99/month

 

WPX Hosting Review: Features, Performance & Pricing

In this WPX Hosting Review, I am going to share some valuable information about WPX Hosting and the reason I chose WPX Hosting is that it is one of the increasingly popular companies over the past couple of years. I spent several hours testing the various aspects of the WPX Hosting and reached some interesting conclusion as well.

Image result for wpx hosting

 

Although there’s no denying the fact that there are a lot of amazing companies available in the market, finding a reliable hosting is still a difficult job. This is why I thought of coming up with this post to make things a little simple for you.

Through our individual testing, I’ve ranked WPX as the Cheapest Managed WP Hosting to get started in 2019.

WPX Hosting Review – What’s Interesting?

WPX Hosting has started some years ago with a view to making things way too simple and stable for the users. The Company has carefully analyzed many of the obstacles that were coming in the way of the website users for years such as lack of knowledgeable support, slow server performance, lack of flexibility and features, and more.

Also, it paid the right attention in making every aspect work at its best for the users with the help of the industry’s best technologies.

As a matter of fact, the company has a tremendous growth over the years with its plans extensively user all over the globe. One of the reasons for it being such a well organized with the perfect balance of everything is certainly the years of experience of its CEO, Terry Kyle and of course, his innovative approach toward making things unimaginably easy and effective for the users.

Starting a website or a blog has got increasingly popular among the people these days. Unlike websites in the past wherein they used to be only a mere source of information, the concept has drastically changed over the years.

Websites and blogs are more of income generating platforms nowadays. They are the essential source of earning for many entrepreneurs. Another striking trend is the fact that almost every business nowadays has a website. Also, a lot of entrepreneurs are actually running online stores these days and earning brilliant profits. If you want to be one like them, you certainly can.

WPX Hosting Features

  • Speed is always a crucial factor for a successful as this makes a site more SEO friendly. When I tested my site hosted on WPX Hosting, I found it to be entirely true and offers one of the fastest Web Hosting in 2019.

  • WPX Hosting offers free site migration wherein you can migrate your existing site easily to WPX Hosting. Besides, you also have the full support of the WPX Hosting team.

  • Needless to say, WPX Hosting offers an unimaginably fast Support with the most knowledgeable staffs to attend to your queries and issues. I had an amazing experience contacting the WPX Hosting a couple of times.

  • SSL Certificate holds a lot of importance nowadays for sure and WPX Hosting offers you free SSL Certificate with every plan to show the trustworthiness of your site. Users tend to rely less on the non-SSL website when it comes to making online transactions.

  • The WPX Hosting Review & free Malware Removal service can be used in addition to the security plugins and can be pretty effective in ensuring High security and safety of your website against harmful Malware.

  • WPX Hosting further offers a highly Secure with free DDoS Protection and this can certainly help you take off a lot of burden of worries off your shoulders.

  • A poor unstable uptime can largely bring down your sales and drive away a lot of local traffic. However, this isn’t true for WPX Hosting and as I personally tested the uptime of one of my demo sites hosted on WPX Hosting, I found the uptime to be pretty stable. I found it to be 99.9% just as guaranteed.

  • Also, WPX Hosting offers 30 Day Money Back Guarantee wherein you can cancel your account and get your money refunded back within 30 days from the date of its purchase just in case you aren’t happy with it for any reason.

 

WPX Hosting Review & Pricing

Pricing is another very important factor and what we really need to check is if the service offered by certain Company is really worth buying at their given price. WPX Hosting is available in three different plans; the Business plan for $20.83/mo, the Professional plan for $41.58/mo and the Elite plan for $83.25/mo. However, to avail these prices, one must opt for annual billing.

Even though a lot of you might find it a bit expensive but considering the advanced features it offers, buying it is certainly worth it. Also, it offers a lot of useful features. Hence, one should not have any problem with the pricing as it is providing users with the right value in return for their money.

Conclusion

WPX Hosting is certainly a reliable Company and I can say it confidently as I tested the different aspects and found them to be really up to the mark. I have spent several hours testing the uptime, speed, security and of course, support. In this WPX Hosting review, the pricing might be a bit expensive, it is loaded with advanced features and it’s going to be even better in time to come.

Most importantly, it is highly reliable in terms of uptime, speed, and security. Also, I was pretty fascinated by its Customer Support and as per my experience, the Support team is pretty friendly and also, very knowledgeable.

I hope that this post will make things a lot simple for many of you. However, I will still suggest that you read each and every feature carefully. Also, you can try it for a risk-free period of 30 days and in case you don’t like it, you can always money refunded with 30 days from the date of purchase.

Siteground Web Hosting Review – Is it Reliable?

Image result for Siteground

There are many variables to consider when you’re selecting a web hosting service. For example, there are features that appeal to a general customer base (such as pricing and storage), as well as features that are more business focused (such as e-commerce and server location). SiteGround addresses all of these issues, and does so well. It offers many hosting types, lots of performance-enhancing tools, and excellent customer service at a reasonable price. Although SiteGround skimps a bit when it comes to storage, virtual private server, and Windows servers, it’s a quality web hosting service for both individuals and small businesses.

Shared Web Hosting

If you’re interested in low-cost web hosting, shared hosting is the tier you want to investigate. With shared hosting, several websites bunk together on a single server, thus lowering the overall cost. That said, the multiple sites literally share the server’s computing power, which means your site’s performance could be negatively impacted if another bunk-mate has a huge traffic surge from a Reddit hit (and vice versa).

SiteGround doesn’t offer month-to-month shared hosting options, but it has a one-month trial available so you can try before you buy. After that expires, you sign up for one-, two-, or three-year contracts, and there are discounts available during the sign-up period. If you want more time to play with features, but don’t want to commit to a full year, HostGator$2.64 at HostGator – Shared month-to-month options are a better choice. SiteGround’s non-shared hosting tiers offer month-to-month plans. We prefer to see month-to-month options in the shared hosting realm, as this is where sites with the tightest budgets tend to gravitate.

SiteGround, like a few other web hosts, lets you choose which data center you want to host your website: United States (Chicago), Europe (Amsterdam, Milan), Asia-Pacific (Singapore), and United Kingdom (London). If you are concerned about data privacy or retention laws, you can choose a European data center. If many of your users are based in Asia, you can choose to use an Asia-Pacific data center. Or you can just default to a US server. I can’t imagine a lot of businesses will need this feature, but it’s a surprisingly advanced option for such a newbie-focused provider.

 

Siteground shared hosting plans

The StartUp plan (starting at $11.95 per month) includes one website, 10GB of storage, network traffic suitable for roughly 10,000 visitors a month, unlimited emails, and support for web performance and security service CloudFlare (more on this later).

The GrowBig plan (starting at $19.95 per month) is intended for slightly larger sites, with support for multiple websites, 20GB of storage, network traffic suitable for approximately 25,000 visits a month, unlimited emails, CloudFlare support, a one-year free Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificate, and the ability to keep up to 30 backups.

The GoGeek plan (starting at an expensive $34.95 per month) plan is intended for still-larger sites, with support for multiple websites, 30GB of storage, network traffic “suitable” for approximately 100,000 visits a month, unlimited emails, CloudFlare support, a free SSL certificate for one year, the ability to keep up to 30 backups, and a Git repository. SiteGround also offers GoGeek customers accounts on better hardware with fewer accounts (meaning you are sharing better-performing hardware with fewer other sites), as well as a PCI assessment to make sure your site is compliant.

Note that SiteGround says it can handle more visitors than the stated limits, but only as one-time occurrences (such as when your blog lands a Reddit hit) per month. I give props to SiteGround for its limitation transparency; most web hosts, even the ones that boast “unlimited” visitors and/or data, have some traffic restrictions buried in their terms of service.

SiteGround has solid shared hosting plans, but they aren’t as robust as HostGators’ offerings. The Editors’ Choice for shared web services matches SiteGround’s specs, plus has the option for users to select a Windows-based server (SiteGround only offers Linux-based shared servers). Companies that are deeply invested in Microsoft’s web ecosystem will find HostGator’s Windows servers attractive.

SiteGround Web Hosting

Cloud Web Hosting

SiteGround no longer has VPS hosting, but now boasts cloud hosting. The new Linux-based platform, which draws resources from multiple servers, is designed to auto-scale with traffic surges, so that your site won’t go down due to a lack of power.

The four Cloud Hosting plans start at $80 per month for 4GB of RAM, 40GB of storage, and 5TB of monthly data transfers, and max out at $240 per month for 10GB of RAM, 120GB of storage, and 5TB of monthly data transfers. There’s lots of room for growth. You can also customize your Cloud Hosting plan should you need more power. They also include a free, one-year SSL certificate.

Still, DreamHost remains our co-Editors’ choice for cloud hosting service, along with the enterprise-friendly 1&1 Ionos. DreamHost’s Linux-or-Windows-based packages start at $4.50 per month (for 512MB of RAM, 100GB of storage, and unlimited monthly data transfers) and top out at $48 per month (for four CPU cores, 8GB of RAM, 100GB of storage, and unlimited monthly data transfers). Ionos, on the other hand, has prorated plans, custom hosting packages, and big specs for big businesses.

Note: If you’re in the hunt for traditional VPS hosting, check out Hostwinds$3.50 at Hostwinds – Shared, the category’s Editors’ Choice, which offers a fine virtual private server package.

Dedicated Web Hosting

As for SiteGround’s dedicated servers, you have a choice of a variety of CPU, RAM, RAID, and storage configurations. The plans range from $269 per month for an Entry Server to $729 per month for a high-end Super Power Server. You can configure a server with up to two 960GB solid-state drives, 64GB of RAM, and 10TB of monthly data transfers (most of the other web hosts I’ve reviewed offer up to 15TB of monthly data transfers). Siteground tosses in a free, one-year SSL certificate, too.

Siteground only offers Linux-based dedicated servers, which is disappointing. If you want a Windows option, I suggest taking a look at AccuWeb$3.36 at AccuWeb – Shared, PCMag’s Editors’ Choice for dedicated web hosting. It not only has a choice of Linux and Windows operating systems, but also tops out at 32GB of RAM, 1TB of storage, and unlimited monthly data transfers.

WordPress Web Hosting

Like several of its competitors, SiteGround offers WordPress hosting. In fact, SiteGround oversees your installation with optimized managed WordPress hosting, a service that grants your website enhanced security, automated daily backups, page caching, staging, and automatic content management system updates. It also offers one-click installation and a free account transfer. SiteGround no longer offers a free domain name, but it offers substantial discounts for registration. The plans are similar to the company’s shared hosting plans in regards to price. Your options are to sign up for one-, two-, or three-year contracts.

SiteGround’s base WordPress tier, StartUp ($9.95 per month), offers a skimpy 10GB of storage, a mere 10,000 monthly visitors, and the ability to host just one WordPress site. GrowBig ($14.95 per month) ups the storage to 20GB and monthly visitors to 25,000, while letting you host unlimited WordPress sites. The top-level plan, GoGeek ($29.95 per month), builds upon GrowBig with its 30GB of storage and 100,000 monthly visitors. All plans come with unlimited email and monthly data transfers. SiteGround also offers numerous free WordPress themes.

On the other hand, A2 $3.92 at A2 Hosting – Shared, the Linux-based PCMag Editors’ Choice for WordPress hosting, has no such visitor caps. Each of its plans, starting with the $7.99 per month Lite plan, includes unlimited storage and monthly data transfers. The top-tier Managed plan ($75.48 per month) adds site staging so you can experiment with site changes before they go live, unlimited websites, and unlimited databases.

That said, once you’re logged into SiteGround’s WordPress setup, you can create posts, pages, and galleries as you would with any other self-hosted WordPress site. If you want to set up a non-managed WordPress site, you can do that, too. I clicked on the WordPress icon in the advanced control panel to go to the WordPress page in Softaculous, SiteGround’s third-party application library. It launched a wizard that walked me through the installation. SiteGround also let me enable the Clef plug-in, which gives users the ability to log in to WordPress with their phones instead of a username and password. I am surprised and pleased to see these advanced features here.

siteground

Reseller Web Hosting

If you’re looking to get into the web hosting business, but you don’t want to deal with infrastructure matters, check out SiteGround’s reseller hosting packages. The plans, starting at $42 per year, offer sales and commission reports and credit card processing. The servers boast 10GB of storage, unmetered monthly data transfers, unlimited MySQL databases, and free backups and email. SiteGround lets you apply your own branding to the servers you rent, and it also supplies 24/7 tech support.

Hostwinds goes the extra mile with more generous specs in a variety of server categories. As a result, Hostwinds is the Editors’ Choice for reseller hosting.

Setting Up a Website

SiteGround leverages Weebly as its website builder of choice. It’s a good move, as Weebly let me make attractive web pages without sacrificing much of my time. Weebly made it simple to add text, images, and video to my test pages. For more information on this simple site builder, please read our Weebly review.

E-Commerce and SSL

Instead of using Weebly, I could have also set up my site from the get-go with e-commerce software, such as PrestaShop, CS-Cart, or Magento. The control panel has the icons for these platforms under AutoInstallers, making them easy to find. You can also go to Softaculous and pick one of the 30 available options, including Zen Cart, ShoWare, OpenCart, and Axis, to name a few.

I used Magento to create an attractive store using its drag-and-drop store builder. If you only need a shopping cart, that’s no problem, or if you want to focus only on invoicing and billing, there is an app for that, too.

If you plan to sell products online, you’ll want a secure socket-layer (SSL) certificate. The web host includes them for free in all plans above the shared StartUp tier. Siteground also offers Wildcard, a premium SSL certificate that secures your top-level domain, as well as an unlimited number of subdomains. Wildcard is bundled as a free, one-year bonus feature when you sign up for the GrowBig or GoGeek packages. Otherwise, it’s $60 per year.

Security Features

SiteGround offers several security options, including the SG Site Scanner to let you know if your site is under attack, antispam tools SpamAssassin and SpamExperts, hotlink protection, and IP address blocklists. It scans all the links on your homepage to make sure that they’re clean.

SiteGround also offers an interesting feature called Leech Protect, which lets administrators prevent users from giving out or publicly posting their passwords to portions of the site. I also like the fact SiteGround integrates with the CloudFlare content delivery network (CDN) service for better performance and security. While any site owner can easily sign up with CloudFlare, the integration (available for free!) means more people who had no idea this was an option are now able to benefit.

Another helpful tool is SiteCheck. This automatic software scanning tool checks your website to see if there is any malware in the code or on the site. Running it periodically is a good idea, since the last thing you want to see in your email inbox are messages from irate users saying that visiting your website infected their computers.

SiteGround also has free daily backups to safeguard your data.

SiteGround Web Hosting

Solid Uptime

Website uptime is one of the most important aspects of a hosting service. If your site is down, clients or customers will be unable to find you or access your products or services.

For this testing, I use a website monitoring tool to track my test sites’ uptime over a two-week period. Every 15 minutes, the tool pings my website and sends me an alert if it is unable to contact the site for at least one minute. The data revealed that SiteGround is stable; our test site went down once for a few minutes during the two-week observation period. Though we obviously prefer sites to not go down at all during our tests, SiteGround’s downtime wasn’t too atrocious.

Customer Service

SiteGround says its main focus is on customer service, and it shows in the service’s many wizards, knowledgebase articles, and tutorials. Customer support is available through a ticket-based system, live chat, and 24/7 telephone support.

I tested SiteGround’s online chat and am amazed at how quickly someone came to my aid. I was connected to a chat representative in a few seconds. I asked about the differences between SiteGround’s cloud hosting and dedicated hosting, and received a prompt and clear response.

I also called the phone number on a weekday morning to ask a representative about how to import my WordPress.com setup into SiteGround. The representative patiently and successfully walked me through the process.

SiteGround lets users cancel within 30 days of when their credit card was charged.

For Beginners, Businesses, and Beginner Businesses

SiteGround is clearly positioning itself as a hosting provider for newbies, and especially small business newbies. SiteGround’s services—from its limited features to support resources—are designed for the mom-and-pop stores, sole proprietors, and independent businesses that don’t have a lot of design time or advanced web skills. Furthermore, if you aren’t expecting a flood of users to your site each day, you don’t really care about unlimited storage or unlimited monthly data transfers, so SiteGround’s limitations in those regards might not bother you.

Additionally, SiteGround’s surprising number of security features also indicates that it has small businesses in mind. Small businesses are highly vulnerable to website attacks, and chances are they are not going to invest in a site scanner to look for malware or a cloud provider to protect them from a denial-of-service attack. The fact that SiteGround does it for them makes it a solid friend for small businesses just starting out. Still, if you need greater storage and bandwidth allotments, consider moving to Editors’ Choices Dreamhost, HostGator, Hostwinds, or Liquid Web for more advanced features and beefed-up storage.

For more on getting started online, read our tips on how to create a website. You might also want to check out our story on how to register a domain name for your website.