Small businesses may have lower turnover or volume but their digital presence still represents their brand. Performance helps increase sales while reliability helps bolster image. Although InMotion Hosting takes top place for small business hosting, our other contenders offer opportunities that are just as versatile and powerful.
The following are seven hosting companies we recommend to small and medium business owners.
1. InMotion Hosting
Who InMotion Hosting is for
InMotion offers a very wide range of products and services that will fit any size of business. This excellence in scalability means not just a plan that fits but also room to grow – excellent for business hosting. We recommend InMotion Hosting for small to medium businesses, business blogs, localized businesses in the US or Canada, and agencies.
Why We Like InMotion Hosting for Business
The service has been shown to be reliable and offers robust performance that is great for business hosting. For small business sites, there are many freebies available such as site migration services, free domain name with all plans, free SSL certificate, choice of various website builders, and you even get free advertising credits.
The one factor which might be a small limitation is that all their servers are based in the US. Small businesses which are targeting localized traffic in other countries won’t have the option to choose a data center that’s close to their target market.
Other Notable Features
90-day money back guarantee, Free website migration services, Free domain name with all plans, $150 worth of free advertising credits, Free AutoSSL, Safe application rollback.
InMotion Hosting Ratings & Performance
InMotion Hosting Shared Hosting Response Time
Discover more from our detailed InMotion Hosting review.
Who SiteGround Hosting is for
Thanks to the excellent quality of product, we have no hesitation recommending SiteGround Hosting for small to medium businesses, agencies, and web developers.
Why We Like SiteGround Business Hosting
SiteGround is one of the most recognized names in the web hosting sphere. It has proven itself to offer products and services that are excellent in terms of both performance and reliability. There are a broad range of plans available here and they also offer free site migration if you’re moving an existing website.
Their reputation is added to through working with top names in other fields. This includes Sucuri, which powers some of their security solutions and Weebly Website Builder, one of the top names among website building tools. All of this comes together in a final solution that gets internally monitored for uptime and automated backup and restore facilities.
SiteGround also offers some tools for web developers but their global data center presence over five locations is a major plus. Do keep in mind though that web hosting plan renewal fees can get a tiny bit pricey here.
Other Notable Features
Choice of five server locations, Excellent customer support via live chat, Automated backups with self-restore, Free site migration for new customers, HTTP/2 enabled in all plans, Free SiteBuilder.
SiteGround Ratings & Performance
SiteGround Hosting Shared Hosting Response Time
Get detailed insights about the web host from our SiteGround review.
Who GreenGeeks is for
GreenGeeks is highly recommended for small to medium businesses who want to run an eco-friendly website and reduce their carbon footprint.
Why We Like GreenGeeks for Business Hosting
In a world that’s driven by commerce and industrialization, GreenGeeks is like a force of nature on the landscape. Their entire premise was to build a business that gives back to the environment as much as it takes. The trend is increasing among many businesses to look towards eco-friendly hosting and working with GreenGeeks is one way to do just that.
All web hosting here is backed by them returning three times the amount of energy used by their servers in the form of renewable energy credits. Of course, they also have great features which include free domain names, SSD storage, HTTP/2 enabled servers, automated backups, and even free site migration. One of the most notable features though, is that the free SSL certificate they provide is a Wildcard SSL.
GreenGeeks is also very developer-centric and can be a good option for development houses or businesses who have their own tech guy and want to build a special site for themselves. A slight blemish is present in their slight lackluster customer support.
Other Notable Features
Free Wildcard SSL, Choice of five server locations, Free white glove site migration, Complete SSD solution and HTTP/2 enabled, Free drag and drop website builder, Automated daily backups, Account isolation and Secure vFS, Premium plans have one dedicated IP.
GreenGeeks Ratings & Performance
GreenGeeks Shared Hosting Response Time
You can find more about other features from our comprehensive GreenGeeks review.
4. Digital Ocean
Who Digital Ocean is for
Because of the level of control that Digital Ocean offers, configuration can be a challenge. For that reason we only recommended this option for experienced web developers or businesses with specialized server requirements.
Why We Like Digital Ocean for Business Hosting
Like the nature of Kinsta in the sense that it’s quite specialized, Digital Ocean offers ultra-reliable cloud-based web hosting services. It is well known for offering extremely developer-centric environments and an extremely modular way of doing things.
Everything about Digital Ocean simply screams ‘configurable’ and you can choose to set up any account with them to your exact liking. This is all controlled from a centralized dashboard that gives you excellent control over however many projects you split your account into.
Of course, the downside of all this is that it can get quite expensive depending on your needs. You will also have to be quite skilled technically to even consider setting up an account with them, not to mention even working in the environment on a long-term basis.
Other Notable Features
Upwards and downwards scalable, Billing is calculated hourly, Pricing is modular, Choice of 12 data centers, Highly professional documentation system, Real-time dashboards allow close monitoring, Alert system for resource thresholds or critical issues.
Digital Ocean Ratings & Performance
Digital Ocean VPS Hosting Response Time
More about the performance of Digital Ocean, proceed to the comprehensive review.
Who HostPapa Hosting is for
Thanks to its clustered server location, HostPapa is suitable for US and Canada-based businesses. If you can get over that then their wide product range means they’re pretty good for anything though.
Why We Like HostPapa for Business Hosting
HostPapa is a Canada-based web hosting business and offers a very good range of plans for businesses of almost any size. It has been around for some time now and has proven to have a solid track record both in terms of reputation. Like GreenGeeks they are also eco-friendly and offset power consumption with green energy sources.
Plans here come with free domain names, SSL certificates, and site migration. You will also be able to use any web applications you might need thanks to a convenient one-click script installer. Business that don’t already have an existing site can work with their drag and drop interface website builder that comes with many free, ready-to-use templates.
Their wide range of services means an easy upgrade path of sites that scale up. A slight concern is their inconsistent uptime on occasion, and they do renew at fees that are relatively high.
Other Notable Features
Comprehensive knowledge base, Website builder with free templates, Cheapest green hosting around, Free white glove site migration.
HostPapa Ratings & Performance
HostPapa Shared Hosting Response Time
Get additional information about the performance of the service from our HostPapa review.
Who AltusHost Business Hosting is for
AlthusHost is suitable for a wide range of business but we especially recommend it for those that target traffic from the EU region.
Why We Like AlthusHost Business Hosting
In terms of being a relative niche, AltusHost is also quite unique since it strongly serves a very centralized area – Europe. It has been a strong presence in high infrastructure EU countries such as the Netherlands and Switzerland.
One thing to note is that they have varying money-back guarantee period that reduce as you go up the product scale. For example, shared hosting accounts get a 45-day money back guarantee, which drops to 14 days for VPS and none for dedicated hosting.
Other Notable Features
45 days risk-free trial for shared plans, 14 days risk-free trial for VPS plans, Easy Let’s Encrypt SSL implementation, Daily backups.
AltusHost Ratings & Performance
AltusHost Shared Hosting Response Time
Find out more about AltusHost from our comprehensive AltusHost review.
Why Does Good Business Hosting Matter?
Business websites often tend to have slightly different requirements when it comes to web hosting. Although inexperienced business owners may view web hosting to be similar, the very nature of businesses increase requirements for hosting.
This is true even when it comes to running very simple, static websites. As a business your brand and reputation are on the line. Your choice of web host can affect the reliability of the site, which is essentially your digital presence.
From another aspect, the performance of your web host can also affect your website performance, brand and even more importantly, your potential to convert web traffic into paying customers. Slow websites have been shown to lower customer conversion and affect sales.
There are other factors at play as well but the general rule here is that web hosting for business need to be of a higher caliber. This doesn’t always mean paying a premium though as there are often good fits depending on your exact requirements.
What Makes A Good Business Web Hosting?
When we talk about business web hosting in this article there is an emphasis or corporate style websites rather than for retail businesses. Retail businesses have their own unique needs that are addressed separately in our article on Best Hosting for Online Stores.
Even omitting online stores, there are still a wide range of business types and sizes. Most larger businesses will have their own technical support teams to manage websites and hosting for them, so this guide will focus on the small to medium segment.
Features to look for in a business hosting include:
1. Range of Hosting Types – From Shared to Dedicated Servers
There is often a greater onus on businesses to maintain the reliability of their websites even if it doesn’t support a mission critical function. For businesses, websites represent their digital brand and the performance and stability of the website reflects upon them.
For this reason, some businesses may opt for more expensive but better-quality plans such a Cloud/VPS hosting or even perhaps their own dedicated server. Ideally, look for a web host that can offer a broad range of option for you to choose from.
Communications are one of the core aspects of a business having an online presence and email is an absolute necessity.
It allows easy communications with customers and even internally. Ideally, find a web host that includes email services with your hosting or at the very least can handle email hosting.
3. Easy DIY Web Design Tool
For businesses which may be looking to restrict investment in their web presence, finding a web host which comes with rapid web design features can be invaluable. Some may include basic website building tools, but others offer access to top-notch website builders such as Weebly.
Another option would be to go for a host that is built around a dedicated website building tool such as Shopify and Wix. These offer businesses the capability to quickly build and launch fantastic looking sites.
4. Server Location
Even though the Internet is essentially border-less, some businesses may still need to target local customers. For example, if you were a locksmith serving only a specific geographic area due to travel constraints, you might opt for a business web host with a data center relatively near your area.
Businesses who are looking to target international traffic would be better off looking for a host that has a data center in a more centralized geographic area.
5. Reputation of Host
Although not technically a feature, business will want to host their site with a reputable service provider. Remember that you are relying on your host to keep your website and customer information safe. Opt for a host that’s been in the business for some time and has a well-known reputation.
This will save you from potential issues which might crop up with fly-by-night companies. If your host disappears or goes out of business, all you files are likely to go with them as well!
Wide Range of Options for Business Hosting
The business web hosting landscape is a highly competitive playing field which means only good things for customers. Web hosts who are in this market must be at the top of their game in order to catch any part of the market share.
For customers this means that no matter your needs, it is very likely that you will find a business web hosting provider that fits your exact needs, be it extreme performance, high scalability, or even help you target a very specific market location.
The seven hosts on this list are the cream of the crop and can handle almost anything you need. All you have to do is fit your needs with what they have and you can jump on board fairly quickly.