Some web hosting providers have hosting plans specially tailored for WordPress sites. Before choosing a plan, you’ll have to know first what to look for in a good WordPress hosting and how to choose the best one for your site.
In this article, we’ll explain the factors that influence WordPress performance and how to choose the best-performing WordPress hosting that suits your needs.
Factors that influence WordPress performance
There are several factors that can affect the performance of your WordPress site.
Plugins play a role in your site’s performance. Some plugins are poorly coded and can use up all of your server resources. To prevent this, be sure to check and regularly remove plugins you no longer use.
Themes can also slow down your site. Check how optimized the theme you choose is by comparing it to the original theme from WordPress and see if it loads significantly slower.
Updating your themes and plugins to their latest version will also improve your WordPress site’s performance. Updates fix the issues and bugs that are present in older versions.
Another factor that impacts your site’s performance is content. High definition images may look nice at first glance, but the bigger an image file size is, the longer it’ll take for your site to load. You should compress images to make them as lightweight as possible. For this, you can use a plugin like Smush.
The software you use should also be optimized to improve your site performance. Get the latest operating system version, web server, database, and PHP. Keep your PHP up-to-date, ideally to version 7.4 according to WordPress’s recommendation.
There are several other factors that also affect the performance of your WordPress website, like server speed, database query, using a content delivery network, and many more. WordPress has listed most of these factors and the things you can do to optimize them.
How to choose the best performing WordPress hosting for the money
There are numerous factors you should pay attention to when optimizing your WordPress site’s performance, from plugins and themes to software versions.
That’s why it’s important to choose a hosting that takes care of all that for you. Now, we’re going to go into more detail about what you should look for in a WordPress hosting plan.
1. Choose WordPress hosting over shared hosting
Hosting providers who offer dedicated WordPress hosting will also have regular hosting plans, like shared hosting.
You may be interested in choosing shared hosting instead. After all, shared hosting is the most affordable option compared to the others.
However, WordPress hosting is the best choice for your WordPress site. While it may be priced more than shared hosting, this hosting is tailored specifically for WordPress sites. See it more as an investment for a well-maintained website.
2. Server speed and uptime
Server speed is shown through server response time, which is the amount of time it takes for a server to respond when a user accesses a web page. A longer time to load can negatively impact your website in various ways, from user experience to its rank on search engines.
You’ll also want to look for a WordPress hosting provider that can guarantee you at least 99.9% of uptime. Uptime is the amount of time your web server is online and running in a given time, presented in a percentage.
It’s crucial to choose a provider that offers reliable customer support during downtime. For better speed, you may also want to compare different options by testing sites that are hosted by each provider.
3. Managed WordPress maintenance and updates
WordPress is known for its numerous updates. It can be a hassle to keep up with them, but it’s necessary.
An outdated version of WordPress will have issues that may impact your site’s performance. Your site may also be more vulnerable to attacks.
According to Sucuri’s 2019 hacked website report, 56% of hacked sites were running an outdated version of its CMS when they got infected.
For optimal performance and security, make sure that your hosting plan includes automatic maintenance and updates.
4. WordPress-specific optimization
As you’ve seen in the previous section, there are a lot of factors that come into play behind a smoothly running WordPress site. For those without a technical background, it can be difficult to keep up with all of them.
Many providers include these WordPress-specific optimizations in their hosting plans.
They offer plugins and server configurations that take care of issues that can possibly slow down your site, for example by caching, cleaning up your database, and compressing files.
5. Built-in security features and malware protection
As these hosting plans are configured specifically for WordPress, most of them include an extra layer of security.
Choose a provider that offers security features and malware protection. This includes firewalls designed for WordPress, malware detection, malware removal, and protection from hacking attempts. Some providers also offer guarantees to clean up your site in case it gets hacked.
6. Included SSL certificates
Another essential component that will help secure your website is SSL. SSL encrypts all data that passes between a browser and your server. This prevents anyone from stealing information from your site.
There are ways you can obtain an SSL certificate for your website on your own, but ideally, it should be done by someone who has technical knowledge. Many WordPress hosting plans include SSL certificates, so be sure to look for it.
7. Included auto-backups
There’s always a possibility that your database experience issues or get corrupted, and without backup, you can lose all the content on your website.
While there may be plugins that can help you back up your files, it’s still recommended that you have additional methods. The more backups you have, the easier it’ll be to restore your site.
Some WordPress hosting providers include software or services in their plan specifically for backing up your site.