Best 5 Web Hosting for Small Business Websites
Update: Hosting prices and features checked for new year changes.
Launching a new business website is no small feat – there are a lot of moving parts that go into it.
One of the big business decisions you need to make is choosing a right web host to host your website. With so many hosting services available online, it can be hard to pick one.
That is why we’ve compiled a list of 10 hosting providers that we think are best for small to medium-sized businesses.
We'll also look into other details, such as what makes a web host good for small businesses and users' options in the market, in the latter part of this page.
Types of Business Web Hosting
Before you go about choosing a hosting provider for your website, you need to know the different types of hosting services available and how they work.
Generally, there are four kinds of hosting services that you can go for: shared hosting, dedicated hosting, cloud, and bundled hosting. All four have their own advantages and disadvantages, and choosing which one is best depends on the size and nature of your business.
|Affordable and easy to maintain; the most popular hosting solutions in today's market.||Highly secured and powerful hosting solution.||A hybrid that stands between shared and dedicated hosting – highly scalable, pay for resources you need.||All-in-one website solution, usually powered by cloud servers.|
|Main disadvantages – Restrictions on server resources and limited site security features.||Expensive; require advanced technical skills to setup and manage.||Require advanced technical skills to setup and manage.||Expensive; difficult to move away from.|
|Starting price $0.99/mo – $10/mo||$80 – $600/mo||$20 – $300/mo||$10 – $90/mo|
|Ideal for beginners, individual bloggers, and small businesses.||Ideal for entreprises and websites that require a lot of server customization.||Growing websites that need resources to scale up.||Small to medium businesses, online store, eCommerce websites.|
1- Shared Hosting for Businesses
A shared hosting plan will host many websites on the same server. These often have restrictions on your server such as storage space, bandwidth, domains, and other elements of a website. Those who have a limited budget should go with shared hosting as it’s the cheapest and most popular option among the three.
- Advantages: Affordable, easy to maintain, newbie-friendly.
- Disadvantages: Limited server resources, limitations in site security.
2- Dedicated Hosting for Businesses
Dedicated hosting gives you your own separate computing hardware to host your website. This will ensure that your server resources will not be shared by others. Those who expect a huge amount of traffic should go for a dedicated hosting plan as a lower-end hosting arrangement are usually incapable of handling huge loads of traffic. The only downside is that it can be costly to use dedicated hosting plans.
- Advantages: Highly secured (you are the only user of the server), the capability to handle huge traffic.
- Disadvantages: Expensive, requires more time and technical knowledge to manage.
3- Cloud Hosting for Businesses
A fairly recent technology, cloud hosting is a hybrid that stands between shared and dedicated hosting. By distributing the physical load for multiple websites across a number of physical computers, your website will still have its own server resources without needing dedicated hardware. While it doesn’t provide site-specific hosting hardware, it does give you the ability to scale up via the cloud to a certain extent.
- Advantages: Scale as you need – only pay for the resources you use.
- Disadvantages: Require more time and technical knowledge to manage.
4 – Bundled Hosting for Businesses
Website Builders have been gaining in popularity over the past few years and companies like Wix and Shopify today have a massive customer base. Wix alone now has over 100 million users, many of them in the small business segment. Their all-in-one packages which require customers have little to no technical skills have fundamentally changed the web hosting game and opened it to an entirely new customer segment.
- Advantages: All-in-one website solution requiring little to no technical skills even for eCommerce use
- Disadvantages: Can get expensive and are often proprietary and difficult to move away from
Top Business Hosting Services to Consider in 2020
1. InMotion Hosting
One of the most popular hosting company around, InMotion Hosting has been providing quality web hosting for the last 15 years. You can expect strong server performance and solid customer service from them, along with a myriad of hosting services such as shared, VPS, dedicated, and reseller hosting.
Why is InMotion our #1 business hosting pick?
It’s hard to pick the perfect web host as different websites have different needs. That said, however, if we were to pick the best web hosting company for businesses, InMotion Hosting is definitely our top recommendation.
The web host checks all the boxes for a business website: excellent server uptime and speed, business-friendly environment (such as auto-installed SSL and daily backup), free website transfer for first-time customers, plus a choice of server locations in US East and West Coast.
We also can't overlook the fact that InMotion has one of the longest full refund trial periods in the industry. If you are unhappy with InMotion during the first 90 days of your subscription, you can cancel your account and ask for a full refund.
Recommended for …
U.S.-based small / medium businesses, business owners with multiple websites.
Pros of InMotion Hosting
- Solid hosting performance: Uptime > 99.95%, TTFB < 450ms
- Topnotch live chat support; BBB A+ rating
- One-click shared SSL (Auto SSL)
- Daily automated site backup
- Choice of server locations in US East and West Coast
- Full SSD storage; SSH and SFTP access
- Options to upgrade – VPS and dedicated hosting
- 90 days money back guarantee (industry #1)
- Server located in United States only
- Hosting price increases after first term
InMotion Business Hosting Plans
- Lite –
$7.49 /mo$2.49 /mo*
- Launch –
$9.99 /mo$4.99 /mo*
- Power –
$13.99 /mo$7.99 /mo*
- Pro –
22.99 /mo$12.99 /mo*
Established in 2004 at Lithuania, Hostinger now powers more than 29 million websites from offices that spread out across 39 countries.
The company offers a number of comprehensive hosting services ranging from basic shared hosting plans to advanced VPS cloud infrastructure. The best part about Hostinger is their price – their shared hosting starts as low as $0.99/mo – perfect for business owners who are just starting out and looking for a cheap hosting.
For established businesses, Hostinger Business Plan includes a number of features designed for business website – including lifetime SSL certificate, free domain name, built-in Cloudflare protection, daily website backups, and a 24/7 dedicated support team.
Recommended for …
Small / medium businesses targeting worldwide visitors, business owners looking for a simple “flyer” website.
Key Features Hostinger Offers
- Excellent server uptime – 99.9% above
- Fast server load time < 440ms
- Offer weekly and daily backups
- Curl and Curl SSL available
- LiteSpeed Cache
- Free SSL certificate
- Free domain name
- Cheapest shared hosting starts at $0.99/mo
- Option to upgrade to Cloud and VPS hosting
- Some business features unavailable for Single Plan ($0.99/mo)
- Hosting price increases after first term
- Single shared hosting –
$9.99 /mo$0.99 /mo
- Premium shared hosting –
$10.99 /mo$2.89 /mo
- Business shared hosting –
$15.99 /mo$3.99 /mo
GreenGeeks has all the essential hosting features that you would need for a business. They provide excellent server speeds, a secured hosting environment, a website builder, and they offer free domain registrations and site migrations.
What makes GreenGeeks unique, however, is the fact that they are the leading experts in offering environmental-friendly hosting services or Green Web Hosting. If being eco-friendly is part of your brand, then GreenGeeks is definitely a suitable choice for your business.
Key Features That GreenGeeks Offers
- Excellent server speed < 300ms
- Offer nightly data backup
- Choice of server locations in US and EU
- Live chat and phone support available
- Green web hosting with the certificate issued by EPA and BEF
- Not for Asian / Oceanic websites – no server based in these regions.
- Hosting price increase after first term
- Lite –
$9.95 /mo$2.95 /mo
- Pro –
- Premium –
Canadian-headquartered Shopify markets itself as a complete eCommerce platform and has been in the business since 2004. It offers website hosting, quick site building tools as well as extensive eCommerce support to customers.
Among website builders, their pricing is a little on the high side and they also take a cut of any sales you make – whether you use their payment systems or not.
Learn more in our detail Shopify review.
Recommended for …
Mid-size businesses selling physical products online, large eCommerce business, drop-shipping business owners.
Key Features at Shopify
- Very simple to set up a website
- Strong eCommerce support tools
- Mobile responsive sites
- Multiple sales channel support
- Unlimited products even on lowest-tier plan
- Has its own POS system
- More expensive than most website builders
- Percentage cut from all sales for online payments
- Difficult to export websites
- Shopify Lite – $9 / mo
- Basic Shopify – $29 /mo
- Shopify – $79 /mo
- Advanced Shopify – $299 /mo
- Shopify Plus – For Enterprise Clients
Founded in 2004, Siteground has hosted more than 1,000,000 domains with 10 years of experience. While they offer solid hosting performances, SiteGounds excels in terms of innovative server features and their top-notch live chat support. Pricing is a bit on the high side but they offer a wide variety of hosting services such as shared, VPS, dedicated, and cloud hosting.
This site you are reading is hosted on SiteGround, read our review here.
Key Business Hosting Features at SiteGround
- Extremely reliable server performance with 100% uptime most of the times
- Hand-to-hand customer support – rated topnotch by many existing users.
- Choices of server locations in three continents: United States, Europe (3 countries), and Asia.
- Free auto daily backups
- Free SSL encryption (Let's Encrypt and Wild Card Let's Encrypt SSL)
- Server locations in three continents – North America, Asia, and Europe.
- Well-tuned for popular CMS such as WordPress and Joomla (Built-in Cacher, NGINX, HTTP/2, SSD storage, etc)
- Expensive in long run – Big price jump after first term
SiteGround Hosting Pricing
- StartUp –
$14.99 /mo$6.99 /mo
- GrowBig –
$24.99 /mo$ $9.99 /mo
- GoGeek –
$39.99 /mo$14.99 /mo
How to Choose a Good Business Web Hosting?
Knowing the different types of web hosting should give you a better idea of your website’s hosting needs. However, choosing the right web host for your business requires more consideration.
Here are the important factors to consider.
Server Performance: Hosting Reliability & Speed
A basic fundamental for a web host is to have good server reliability. It’s important that your business website consistently has a fast and stable server and network.
If your website goes down even for a minute, you might lose out on a lot of customers and potential sales for your business.
There are certain qualities that you need to check when looking at server performance. The two major ones are the Time-To-First-Byte (TTFB) and speed. A fast server is needed if you want to provide the best user experience to your visitors and improve your overall ranking in search engines.
Another major quality to check is their uptime. Uptime rates are a good indication of how reliable a server is in keeping your website online. Generally, a 99.95% uptime rate is considered the minimum nowadays and it's recommended to avoid any web hosts that provide less than that.
Running a website is hard work and odds are you’re going to face some troubles down the road. When that happens, you’re going to have to revert to customer support to help you out.
A web hosting company with great customer support should have fast response times when it comes to handling customer inquiries. They should also have a number of technical experts on hand to handle any problems or situations that a customer might face.
Having multiple support channel is also a good sign of a comprehensive customer support. Be sure to check if the web host offers contact via live chat, Skype, email, and phone call.
Security should be a top concern for most businesses, especially those that are running an eCommerce website. Most reputable website hosts are PCI/DSS compliant, have sFTP access and protection against DDoS attacks.
Other security features that are great to have include: Auto malware scanning, built-in network monitoring tools, firewalls, and in-house security expert support.
Option to upgrade
Businesses grow – so should your business website hosting.
When you first start your website, using a shared hosting plan – the most popular hosting option – is usually more than enough. Once your website traffic grows, the limitations such as database connection, inodes / unique visitors, etc. will definitely keep your website from growing.
That’s why it’s important to choose a hosting company that offers an option to upgrade your server as necessary. A good web host will let give you the flexibility to upgrade from a shared hosting plan to a VPS or even dedicated hosting plan when needed.
Also read – Best website builders for small businesses
Offering Multiple Data Centers Locations
A hosting company with multiple data centers will give you the ability to choose a server location that’s closer to your target audience/clients.
Why is choosing the right data center important?
Because the closer your servers are to your audience/clients, the faster your website loads as the distance between the server and the website is physically closer. That’s why a web host with multiple data centers set up across the globe is a better choice.
Backups are a necessity for any business website. If your website crashes or loses important data due to bad coding or worse, gets attacked by hackers, you're out of luck if you don’t have a backup to revert to!
Site backups are important if you want to revert your website back to its last good state in case anything goes wrong. It goes without saying that a web host that offers some of form of site backup service is definitely a good choice.
Essential Server Features for Businesses
Last but not least, a good web host should offer a number of essential server features that are useful (and necessary) for a business website.
Features such as easy-to-setup SSL, easy-to-use website builders, ability to access .htaccess and other important files, SSD storage, and having your own email address (i.e. [email protected]) are features that are useful when starting a business website.
If you’re selling directly from your website, you might want to consider a web host that offers eCommerce specific features such as payment gateways, built-in checkout systems, ability to add product galleries, and so forth. Alternatively, you might want to check out online store platforms like Shopify.
Also read – 12 “easy-to-start” online business ideas
What About Free Hosting Solution – Are They Good for Businesses?
We know that running a successful website tends to costly, which might tempt you to go for cheaper alternatives such as using a free web hosting.
Here’s the thing, free web hosting is NEVER a good idea.
While the biggest advantage of using free hosting is that it’s free, there are too many major pitfalls that come with it. And we don’t recommend you taking that risk if you want your website to run smoothly.
Disadvantages of Free Web Host
Some of the major drawbacks and major pitfalls for using a free hosting includes:
- No guarantee in terms of server performance.
- No control over your site – you can’t improve your site or optimize it.
- Your site could disappear at any time and you’ll risk losing all your data.
- You’ll have an unprofessional domain address
- They have very poor security and are susceptible to malware and attacks.
A website is an investment and you need to be using the best service that you can afford for it. You might think that using a free web host will save you some money but in the long run, it’s going to cost you your website’s performance.
Web Hosting FAQ
InMotion Hosting is our pick as best hosting for small businesses as it combines excellent performance with many business-oriented features.
GoDaddy may hold the largest market share but it might not be ideal for business hosting. Based on our research, there are other companies with faster and more reliable web hosting available, such as GreenGeeks, InMotion Hosting or Hostinger.
Cheapest and best will not often cross paths in many scenarios, especially in web hosting. This equipment and infrastructure-heavy industry require significant capital to build and operate. As such, it is difficult to offer quality, reliable hosting at rock bottom prices.
GreenGeeks is a good choice for businesses that wish to be more eco-friendly. In fact, some businesses have mandates on carbon footprint, and these can be satisfied by hosting with GreenGeeks.
Yes, you can. Transferring a website to another web host is an easy process and you can do it by yourself without much downtime. Here's a step-by-step DIY guide for those who wish to learn.
Also, note that many hosting companies offer free website migration service to their new customers. Companies (mentioned in this article) that provide free migration service include: A2 Hosting, GreenGeeks, Interserver, and InMotion Hosting.
Web hosting is used for hosting websites (storage) and distributing web content (texts, images, videos, etc). To own a functioning website, you need at least a web host and a domain name.
The term “web hosting” usually refers to companies that rent out server, as well as other needed infrastructure and services (network switch, backup power generators, server maintenance service, etc), for users who want to host a website.
Generally, there are four kinds of hosting services: shared, dedicated hosting, VPS/ cloud, and bundled hosting. All four types have their own advantages and disadvantages, which we covered in the earlier part of this article.
Technically, most business websites are not much different from standard websites, but may require more reliable web hosting to avoid downtime doing reputational damage. Ideally, host with a reputable service provider such as SiteGround or use a popular website builder like SquareSpace.
Web hosting refers to companies that rent out their server to users to host their websites. Web publishing commonly refers to publishing content, in the form of texts, graphics and videos, on the Internet. Web publishing can be done on your own website (which then requires you to host a website) or on a third party platforms like Medium and Typepad.
Yes, 000WebHost and AwardSpace offer free hosting services without adverts. 000WebHost free plan comes with 1GB storage and 10GB monthly data transfer. AwardSpace offers 1GB of free storage and 5GB monthly data transfer.
Bear in mind that free hosting comes with various risks that you can avoid by subscribing to a budget web host (less than $5.mo).
A2 Hosting and Interserver are the only two hosting providers that support special development environment (Django, NodeJS, Python, etc) in their shared platform. Also – based on our research, they are extremely reliable and reasonable priced. We highly recommend web developers to check them out.
No. Everything you need to run a functioning website – from hosting to domain registration and shared SSL, are included in Wix package. You can learn more about Wix in our Wix review and this Wix tutorial.
Jimdo, Volusion, Webnode, About.me, BigCommerce – these are some “bundled hosting services” that work like Weebly or Squarespace. These platforms allow you to create a website using a simple drag-and-drop web editor and host a website with zero technical knowledge.
Most web hosting companies offer reseller plans. Make use of these and combine it with other business elements such as invoicing and your own branding to create a web hosting reseller business.