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With various hosting services available, it can be a tough decision to pick the right company with each offering different features and competitive prices. In such circumstances, it is best to pick a pick a hosting service that offers a free SSL certificate. You might be wondering why an SSL certificate could be an important feature, so let’s get down to the basics.
The HTTP protocol, which is the basis of sharing information over the Internet, is not encrypted and so it can be easily hacked. Therefore, the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) which is a collection of protocols is used to encrypt this sharing of information when used with a HTTP protocol resulting in the HTTPS protocol. This HTTPS protocol, with an additional ‘S’ indicates that the website is secure and the information between your website and the user’s browser is encrypted.
Sites that have SSL certificate installed have the green padlock before the URL. Not only does SSL certificates ensure the website is secure, it also informs people that the site is encrypted and their information is protected. With a SSL certificate, customers will be able to carry out transactions completely worry free. Moreover, SSL is known to be a Google ranking factor. Therefore, because of the above-mentioned reasons, it is best to acquire a SSL certificate. As these certificates can cost between $50-$100 a year, why not get one for free. Some of the best hosting companies that provide free SSL certificates are listed below:
How much do SSL certificates generally cost?
We have provided some hosting companies that offer free SSL certificates with their hosting. This is how it should be! Some companies like Godaddy have just seen SSL as a money making scheme – Do not pay for an SSL certificate.
Is it easy to set up an SSL certificate on my WordPress website?
Yes, just follow the hosting companies guide its only a few clicks in your cpanel. Head over to Siteground to view their SSL guide for WordPress.
Siteground, a hosting company based in Bulgaria prioritizes three important aspects- outstanding customer support, high speed and strong security. Which is why, Siteground has been recommended by WordPress.org as one of the best and brightest WordPress hosting provider. SiteGround offers 3 shared hosting plans – StartUp, GrowBig and GoGeek.
Siteground is much loved by the internet marketing community for their speed and reliability, they also offer free website transfers!
-StartUp: At $3.95 per month, it offers beginners 1 website, 10GB web space and 10,000 visitors per month. With an increase in business, they can switch to a higher hosing plan.
-GrowBig: At $7.95 per month, the plan is best for new businesses or corporates that require multiple websites, 20GB Web space and gets 25,000 monthly visits. This plan and the next also come with premium WordPress features.
-GoGeek Plan: At $14.95 per month, the plan is perfect for established businesses that require multiple websites, 30GB Web space as well as 100,000 visitors monthly. Besides the premium features, it comes with geeky features.
• Free Daily Backup
• Free CloudFlare CDN
• cPanel Interface
• 99.9% Uptime
• 5 servers in London, Chicago, Amsterdam, Milan and Singapore.
• 24/7 customer support
• Protected with custom WAF rules
• WP-CLI Enabled
• SuperCacher on GoGeek and GoBig for fast loading speed
• WordPress Staging and Git Pre-Installed on GoBig and hgher
• Unmetered Data Transfer and traffic
• Free Email Accounts
• Unlimited MySQL DB
• Unlimited Sub and Parked Domains
• cPanel & Softaculous
• 30 Days Money Back
• WordPress Free Install, Transfer, Autoupdate
• WordPress Advanced Security and related support
• Limited Web space
• Pricy renewal, especially for StartUp plan
• No bonuses with the plans such as Google Adwords credits
Bluehost is a very renowned web hosting company which hosts over 2 million domains making it one of the largest web hosting companies. As a WordPress recommended host, it is WordPress friendly, affordable, reliable and secure thus it remains the top choice for beginners and professionals.
Bluehost offers four WordPress hosting plans – Basic, Plus and Prime. Each plan comes with a free domain, unmetered bandwidth, SiteLock WAF and SiteLock Security. The prices of the plans are only available if one commits to 36 months of hosting. With the one year or two year plans, the prices increase subsequently.
It also offers four optimized WordPress hosting plans starting from $19.99 per month to $49.99 per month which is pricier compared to other hosting companies since it built on VPS technology. A free domain, 30-day money-back guarantee, SiteLock CDN/WAF Pro and aSiteLock Pro is available with each of the plans. They offer various customer service through live chat, phone or ticketing system.
Basic: At $2.75 per month, it includes 1 website, 50GB web space, 5 parked domains, 25 subdomains, 5 email accounts with 100MB per account along with unlimited bandwidth- which is a great deal!
Plus: At $4.95 per month, besides 1 domain, all its features are unlimited and also includes $200 worth of marketing offer.
Prime: At $5.45 per month,it is the recommended plan which has the same benefits as the Plus plan but with additional features.
• Easy to use integrated features
• Straightforward onboarding process
• Automatic backups
• Built-in CDN
• Instant upgrade to add more CPU, RAM, and SAN storage
• Several data centers located around the world
• Very slow loading speeds
• Unavilable Windows hosting
• Unsatisfactory customer service
• No free site migration
• Exceeding 3GB space can result in account getting deleted
• Expensive than other hosting companies
A2 Hosting is a US based independent hosting company which claims to have blazing fast loading speeds, high performance as well as around the clock guru crew customer support. Depending on your requirements, you can choose from four different plans such as Lite, Swift, Turbo and Managed with Turbo and Managed plans offering up to 20X faster loading speeds and A2 Site Accelerator. The free SSL certificates available are from Let’s Encrypt while premium certificates are also offered for single site SSL, wildcard SSL, and advanced SSL. Any questions regarding the purchase can be answered through live chat, call or ticket system. The features available in all plans are mentioned in the pros section below.
• Lite: This plan starts from $3.92 per month and 25 email accounts, 5 databases, free SSL & SSD, unlimited transfer, unlimited storage, cPanel control panel and anytime money back guarantee
• Swift: This plan starts from $4.90 per month with features the same as the Lite plan except everything is unlimited.
• Turbo: This plan starts from $9.31 per month and is the same as the Lite plan but comes with A2 Site Accelerator and Turbo server providing 20X Faster speed.
• Managed: Managed WordPress hosting consists of three plans for 1, 3 and unlimited sites with prices starting from $12.97 to $37.97 per month with Plesk Control Panel, Site Staging, Full WordPress Management and Free Jetpack Personal License.
• Unlimited Storage
• Unlimited Transfer
• cPanel Control Panel
• Free SSL & SSD
• Anytime Money Back Guarantee
• Global data centers
• Auto WordPress setup
• A2 optimized
• Free account migration
• 99.9% Uptime Commitment
• Guru crew support
• Pricier than competitor web hosting companies
• Confusing onboarding process
InMotion hosting is another popular independent hosting company with great performance, affordable pricing and excellent customer support. Their reliable hosting service combined with their super-fast speeds and consistent TTFB less than 450ms makes it one of the top hosting companies used commonly by start-ups, corporates as well as small and large businesses.
Support can be received through various channels such as live chat, phone, email, tickets and Skype where highly trained and helpful customer reps will provide you answers to all your questions. Free domain, unlimited bandwidth and unlimited email accounts are available with each plan while the number of websites and SSD storage increase with each plan from 1-20 websites and 40GB-240GB respectively. Premium custom themes and templates, various plugins along with scheduled backups are available from WP-2000S and higher wheras free dedicated IP is available from WP-4000S and higher.
• WP-1000S: At $4.99 per month, it is ideal for small blogs which provides 1 website, 40GB SSD storage and 20,000 monthly visitors.
• WP-2000S: At $8.99 per month, it is the best value and the first choice for small businesses and blogging with 2 websites, 80GB SSD storage and 50,000 monthly views.
• WP-3000s: At $11.99 per month, this is perfect for developers and growing businesses available with 3 websites, 120GB SSD storage and 125,000 monthly views.
• WP-4000S: At $29.99 per month offering 6 websites, 160GB SSD storage, 300,000 monthly views, this plan is great for flexible WordPress hosting at an affordable price.
• WP-5000S: At $59.99 per month for 10 websites, 200GB SSD storage, 600,000 monthly views, you can get a lot for robust WordPress hosting.
• WP-6000S: At $114.99 per month, you can get the ultimate WordPress performance with 20 websites, 240GB SSD storage and 1,200,000 monthly views.
• US based so better customer care
• Free SSD storage starting from 40GB
• Free domain
• 10X faster WordPress hosting than other shared hostings
• Unlimited bandwidth
• Unlimited email accounts
• Free data backups
• Free website migration
• Excellent customer support
• cPanel interface
• Secure IMAP email
• 90-day money-back guarantee
• Limited diskspace
• Limited supported websites
Dreamhost, founded in 1996, boasts of its lightning fast speed, foolproof security and award winning 24/7 customer support. It currently hosts 1.5 million sites and has 400,000 active customers.DreamHost offers hosting services catered to WordPress and boasts of its 100% uptime and 97-day money back guarantee which is unusual compared to the competitor hosting companies. Another unusual attribute is that they are a carbon neutral company and they take great lengths to reduce carbon emissions from the way they power their computers all the way to the design of their offices to even the way employees work. Moreover, their team of customer reps are very knowledgeable and offer prompt around the clock support through live chat, email, even Twitter. The prices below are for a 3-year commitment period, anything below that results in an increase in the prices.
• Starter: At $7.95 per month, you get a shared hosting server, 1 or More Websites and a Free Domain.
• Basic: At $16.95 per month, you can get a fast cloud server, 1 WordPress website, 5GB SSD Storage, Jetpack free preinstalled, Daily Site Backups, WordPress service updates.
• Plus: At $24.95 per month, you get the same as the Basic plan with 10GB SSD Storage, Jetpack Professional – $299/year value, Daily & Offsite Site Backups,Video & background-image CDN, Malware Scanning & Repair, Premium Themes, Elasticsearch.
• Advanced: At $35.95 per month, you get the same as the Plus plan but 2 WordPress Websites, 1 WordPress Staging Site and 15GB SSD Storage
• 100% uptime
• Fast SSD Storage
• Unlimited Bandwidth
• Free days for downtime
• Knowledgeable 24/7 customer support
• carbon neutral company
• Automatic WordPress Updates
• SFTP Access
• SSH Access
• 1-Click installation of WordPress and other apps
• Unlimited emails
• WP-CLI Enabled
• Web Application Firewall (WAF) protection
• Email Hosting
• 97-Day Money-Back Guarantee for the Starter plan and 30 day for others
• 24×7 Customer Support
• DreamHost is more expensive than competitors
• No cPanel interface, making it a bit confusing
• Slow account activation
WP Engine, a successful hosting company, which was founded in 2010 claims to be a WordPress expert and is true to its word as they provide high performance, outstanding customer support. They have several high profile customers such as Reader’s Digest, SoundCloud, etc which ensures their reliability.
Although all four plans of WP Engine are expensive, the services are completely worth the money. Each plan offers daily backups, one-click restores, unlimited data transfers, and malware scanning and removal. You can create customize the hosting service suited to your needs.
Startup: At $35 per month, you start with 1 site, 3 environments/site, 25,000 visits per month, 50GB bandwidth, CDN & SSL included, free migrations, free Page Performance and Powerful tools.
Growth: At $115 per month, you get the same as the Startup and you get 5 sites, 3 environments/site, 100,000 visits per month and 200GB bandwidth.
Scale: At $290 per month, you will again get the same features as the Startup plan and you get 15 sites, 3 environments/site, 400,000 visits per month and 400GB bandwidth.
Custom: Dedicated environment, High performance and availability/redundancy with managed onboarding as well as fastest support response.
• 100% uptime
• Managed WordPress Hosting
• Expert WordPress Support Staff
• EverCache Technology for Faster Page Loading
• Hacked Sites Fixed at No Charge
• Dev, stage, and prod environments
• Site protection with updates plus threat detection and blocking
• Free Page Performance tool.
• Transferable Sites
• PHP 7 ready
• Global CDN
• Automated SSL certificates
• WordPress Updates Automatically Installed
• Free Data Backup
• Separate Staging Area for Testing Plugins and Themes
• Free 60 Day Trial
• No Long-Term Commitments Necessary
• Excellent Customer support
• Transferable Installs and Billing Transfer Features for WordPress Consultants and Developers
• More Expensive
You can choose the hosting service you like without worrying about wasting your money as all of them provide money back guarantees. So, go ahead and test the ones which suit your needs best.