My Journey Towards Finding The Best Web Hosting of 2019 — Cheap Web Hosting
(How I found the best yet cheap web hosting service for my site. Rated #1 best web hosting company In multiple Facebook groups and cheap web hosting forums), Helped Me Get 575ms Load Time With 99% Performance Scores In PageSpeed/GTmetrix/Pingdom and 91% Yslow score)
I know how frustrating it can be to find the best web hosting services for your website. I’ve been there where you are now, suffered like you but in the end found the best web hosting for my Wordpress site and was able to reduce server response time. Continue reading if you want to find out how to improve speed of your Wordpress site.
My Frustrating Story
I have been with a few popular web hosting companies including Bluehost, Hawkhost, Siteground, Knownhost and a few other web hosting services. In this post I am going to share my experience during my stay with some of the famous web hosting sites.
Why did I share my experience here?
People in forums, ‘question and answer’ sites and in Facebook kept asking me ‘which one is the best Wordpress hosting’, ‘which cheap web hosting should I go with’, ‘Should I go with a dedicated server hosting’, ‘Which one is the best web hosting’, ‘which web hosting services should best fit my site’?
I had to answer on different sites the same question every day. I thought I would be better off creating an all in one web resource so anyone who’s looking for the best cheap web hosting can benefit from my experience.
Note: I will be updating this article on a regular basis so check back later for updated information. I didn’t keep any screenshot of my previous hosts as I never thought I would share them with anyone.
My experience with Hostgator:
I have signed up with Hostgator as I thought they are the best. I was wrong in so many ways, I don’t even know where to begin! I was hosting a few Wordpress sites with their shared and dedicated servers and it has been disaster after disaster since then. Issues after issues like: one day my site wasn’t loading because of their PHP downtime, the other day the site was loading real slow, contacted customer support only to have them reply me: ‘you need to disable some of your plugins’! My site only has 9 plugins, none of them are CPU/Ram hungry. I don’t understand how running basic plugins like Yoast SEO, WP Statistics, Word fence, Buddypress, W3 Total Cache can max out CPU, Ram or PHP limits!
Figured I wasn’t the only one! Here’s a screenshot from another customer complaining,
I was done with them then and there!
Moved to Bluehost:
Moved from Hostgator to Bluehost. My sites were loading anywhere from 4.5 seconds to 7.8 seconds within the US. Ranking fell from 1st page to 3rd! Tried so many optimization techniques and plugins but no use!
Figured Bluehost and Hostgator are run by the same ‘EIG’ company! They are sister concerns!
So my search for a new host begun once again. Heard good stuffs about Knownhost and decided to move all my sites there.
Moved to Knownhost:
Knownhost had given me some peace of mind for the time being. Started with their SSD vps package, everything looked good until the first downtime. Support told me my site was reaching the PHP connection limits and needed an upgraded package! I was so determined to make Knownhost work for me that I have bumped up the ram/cpu limits only to find out the site went down again because of exceeding ram usage!
I had to keep upgrading RAM/CPU and once I ran out of allocated ram for that package I had to bump up the package to a higher one. I was paying $70 a month and then the dreaded CPU/memory limit exceeded message happened again for a simple site that had 50–70 visitors a day with no complicated plugins or scripts running whatsoever!
I was out researching for the best, cheap web host again for my sites. After almost a week of research and going through the user experiences on different forums, I came to decide in between Siteground and Cloudways.
Siteground looked good. Some of their users are happy with them. Customer support is good, answered all my questions fast. I have almost signed up with Siteground but, what set me off was their CPU limits. I have a bad history of CPU limits so I didn’t want to go that route again.
There were some real scary reviews as well. Check this Yelp page for example: https://www.yelp.com/biz/siteground-com-alexandria
So since I was only left with Cloudways, I had spent a day learning everything about Cloudways. Since I have suffered a lot already, didn’t want to make any more mistakes. No one likes to spend a day moving the sites from one host to another only to find out you need to move to another host again.
I was desperately in need of some peace of mind.
Running with Cloudways
So I signed up a free trial account. I was confused between DigitalOcean and Linode VPS servers and wanted to try out before settling down with either one. Since my idol site is running with Linode, I figured what the hell?
Choose Linode 1GB cloud VPS server. they had the server up and running within a few hours. Spent some time transferring my site from the old host to Cloudways. Transfer was easy, installed Wordpress in the server from their control panel which took only a few clicks. Installed Cloudways Wordpress migration plugin in my site and migrated the files to the new installation in Cloudways server.
Pointed DNS to Cloudways and my site was up and running. SInce I’m not an Wordpress expert, I had contacted the chat support to do the optimization for me. That took a few more hours. Once everthing was up and running I did the first thing everyone else would do. Checked my stats with Pingdom, GTMetrix and Pagespeed.
Here are my results:
I saw immediate rank increase from position 33 to position 12 for my main keyword within a day without doing any SEO! Amazing!
All this without doing any optimization on my site, just with the help of server side optimization and W3total cache plugin. With proper optimization of my theme and some java script/image optimization I can score a perfect 100 but I don’t think I need to. These are very good scores. My site is already doing better than 95% of the sites worldwide. You can use Wordpress cache plugins like WPRocket, WP super cache, WP fastest cache to speed up Wordpress. I use Yoast SEO premium for SEO onpage optimization.
Besides, tons of the giant sites score far blow than this. Let’s check CNN.com for an example:
You don’t need worlds fastest loading site to rank high on google or make money online.
Update: Cloudways server statistics after two weeks of continuous use:
Here are the server stats, screenshots taken after two weeks of continuous server run time.
Note: no server downtime experienced meanwhile.
Cloudways web hosting Linode server CPU stats:
Cloudways hosting Linode server RAM usage:
Cloudways web host Linode server disk usage:
Update: October 14, 2018
Note: No server downtime experienced so far. My Linode server is performing the same super fast.
Cloudways Linode server CPU stats:
Cloudways Linode server RAM usage:
Cloudways Linode server disk usage:
And the speed stats
Page Speed Insights:
The downward spike is because of backups taken. I still have 14+ GB of disk space left!
Update: January 19, 2019
Note: No server downtime experienced so far. My Cloudways webhost Linode server is performing the same.
And the speed stats
Page Speed Insights: (Page speed had updated their interface).
Mobile score is a bit lower than the desktop score but I have seen no noticeable drop of rank and since my site scores and performs better than big sites, it’s fine. I may look into optimizing it better in future though.
What are you waiting for?
>> Check out Cloudways here <<
Cloudways user reviews:
User reviews collected from different Facebook groups.
User review screenshots taken from different sites and forums:
Here are the things I liked about Cloudways:
- Super fast loading time. My site loads blazing fast. Below 1 minute load time anywhere in the US, under 2 seconds of load time worldwide.
- Very easy and clean server interface.
- Freedom to choose from different server provider’s, the list includes DigitalOcean, Linode, Amazon Web Services, Vultr and Google Cloud. This is my most favourite feature of Cloudways.
- If you know how to manage a server you can purchase directly from the providers but most of us aren’t that tech savvy. Cloudways manages the server for me while I focus on managing my sites.
- No downtime in the middle of the night because you have no clue what went wrong!
- Support is good, although a bit slow sometimes but they are usually quick to respond and solves problems real quick.
- Low server resources needed than the competition. My sites get about 500 visitors a day and I am with the 1GB Linode server. My RAM usage are around 40 to 55%, I have 14 GB free out of 20 GB. And CPU usage does not go more than 60 %. Plenty of room for my sites to grow in their server.
- No excessive RAM usage or CPU limitations detected.
- One of my high performing servers with Cloudways only costs $12 a month.
- The peace I have in my mind being with Cloudways is priceless for me.
- Cloudways ways built in server backup (costs a few bucks per month)
Like everything, Cloudways have their drawbacks but the drawbacks are so small compared to the other providers and the speed improvement your site gets with Cloudways is priceless.
What I don’t like about Cloudways:
- No C panel. Previously it was a deal breaker for me but I thought I would give Cloudways a try since I wanted that Linode server so bad. I do not regret a second since I have taken the decision. I no longer Crave for C panel because, well I can do everything with Cloudways control panel.
- Backup costs extra, yeah that sucks and I was afraid like you at first, but the incremental backup fees are tiny, I don’t remember paying more than a dollar for my weekly backups.
- Hosting emails cost $0.89/email per month. But since I have a few emails, that’s no issue for me. Cloudways addon handles my emails just fine, no issue to be noted yet.
My experience with Cloudways is superb so far, no downtime issue. Cloudways is performing better than any other web host I’ve been with previously. I’ve moved all my sites to Cloudways. All the sites are performing superb, noticed rank increase already. There’s plenty of head room for my sites to grow.
I finally have my peace of mind I always looked for. Yay! :’D
Everything shared here are my experiences with the web hosts mentioned above and are absolutely true. The screenshots are at their original stats, no editing has been done except, I’ve obscured the url and the name of my site from the screenshots of Server stats, Pingdom, GTMetrix and Pagespeed insights. The links are designed to provide a means for the writer to earn advertising fees by linking to Cloudways. Thank you for reading, happy hosting!