WordPress, a content management system that exploded in popularity during the early 2000s blogging era, is built on simplicity along with an incredible library of themes and plug-ins that expand a site's functionality. In fact, WordPress is so beloved that it powers more than 40 percent of all sites on the web, ranging from thousands of personal blogs to large media outlets, such as
*The New Yorker*, * PlayStation Blog*, and *Rolling Stone*. If you don't know aof code, WordPress is one of the best ways to spin up a website

Most web hosts offer some form of WordPress-specific service, typically in an optimized environment. With a server optimized for WordPress, the CMS comes preinstalled, so you don't have to download and set up a WordPress installation as you do when using a traditional web hosting environment. You should contact a web host's customer support team to learn the specifics of its WordPress hosting offering

Note that we're speaking here of the WordPress.org CMS that acts as the foundation for your website, not WordPress.com. The latter CMS has more in common with website builders than traditional website hosting. In effect, WordPress.com is a turnkey (and more limited) WordPress solution, whereas the services in this roundup offer a vastly more flexible (and labor-intensive) DIY approach

With that in mind, use this guide to select a web hosting platform that offers the WordPress CMS and best suits your needs. Start with our top picks, followed by everything you need to consider when choosing a WordPress web hosting service

## HostGator Web Hosting
 Best for Unlimited Email
 Why We Picked It
You can install WordPress’ CMS onto any of HostGator’s servers, but the Editors' Choice award-winning web host also has several WordPress-specific packages. With HostGator, you get managed WordPress hosting, which eliminates management and maintenance stress. All of the company's WordPress plans include unlimited email accounts, an uncommon feature among web hosts

 Who It’s For
Choose HostGator if you want an excellent web hosting service that offers numerous email accounts. After all, businesses with many employees benefit from having unlimited email accounts. Likewise, businesses with many internal branches can make great use of this feature; you can have one email account foranother for returns, and one for support and questions

 PROS
- Numerous, feature-rich hosting plans
- Excellent shared hosting offerings
- Good for novice webmasters
- Useful site-building software and e-commerce tools
- Helpful, 24/7 customer service
- Outstanding uptime
 CONS
- Not all plans have a Windows Server option
## Bluehost Web Hosting
 Best for Simple Site Creation
 Why We Picked It
Whether it's a blog or an online store, Bluehost is a fantastic destination for WordPress hosting. Bluehost features managed and self-managed server options, with both tiers offering preinstalled WordPress, a free domain, free SSL certificate, and access to Bluehost's marketplace where you can browse and purchase hundreds of WordPress themes, plug-ins, and add-ons

 Who It’s For
Administrators seeking convenience will appreciate Bluehost’s preinstalled WordPress CMS, a trove of useful plan features, and most importantly, the Bluehost Marketplace. In fact, Bluehost has some of the simplest and most accessible site-creation tools of any WordPress-focused host we've tested. You don’t need to venture far to get great hosting and produce a great-looking business site

 PROS
- Dependable uptime in testing
- Excellent WordPress hosting plans
- Useful WordPress site-building software
- Terrific customer service
- Easy-to-use interface
- Free site migration
 CONS
- Lacks cloud hosting
- No monthly shared hosting plans
- Lack Windows-based servers
## DreamHost Web Hosting
 Best for VPS-Based WordPress Hosting
 Why We Picked It
You get three WordPress-specific hosting tiers with Dreamhost. Most impressively, one of these is a VPS WordPress hosting tier, which features several packages that deliver much more power and resources for your website than a traditional shared hosting plan. Of course, Dreamhost also offers basic, self-managed plans, as well as managed tier plans, which eliminates the need for maintenance and server management. All of its plans come with unlimited monthly data transfers, as well as unlimited websites

 Who It’s For
WordPress users who want rock-solid uptime should consider Dreamhost’s offerings. WordPress VPS is not particularly common among hosting providers; Dreamhost is the only company that has this tier of the many hosts we've tested. Even better, its plans include excellent, competitive features and rates

 PROS
- Strong security features
- Extensive domain-management tools
- Excellent cloud hosting offerings
- Unlimited data transfers per month
- Generous shared hosting money-back guarantee
- Useful WordPress staging feature
 CONS
- No email with Shared Starter plan
- Lacks Windows-based servers
- No telephone support
## InMotion Web Hosting
 Best for Unlimited Monthly Data Transfers
 Why We Picked it
With InMotion, you can tap into a terrific selection of WordPress-specific features. The CMS comes preinstalled, and InMotion provides more than 200 free themes. You also get access to the BoldGrid website builder, which is an extremely convenient drag-and-drop development tool. All of InMotion’s WordPress plans come with unlimited monthly data transfers

 Who It’s For
InMotion is a good choice for websites that need unlimited monthly data paired with accessible WordPress functionality. Services with limited data transfers can potentially throttle your traffic if you go over the allotted threshold. "Unlimited" monthly data isn’t truly unlimited, but it gives you considerably more breathing room if, for example, you add a hot new item to your online store or your blog goes viral thanks to social media

 PROS
- Excellent uptime
- Many hosting types
- All plans offer unlimited email
- Unlimited data transfers with all Shared and WordPress plans
- Lengthy, money-back guarantee
- Easy-to-use website-building software
 CONS
- Lacks Windows servers
- Not all plans have month-to-month payment options
## A2 Web Hosting
 Best for Site Migration
 Why We Picked It
While speed is A2’s claim to fame, its WordPress offerings are highly secure and well-optimized. It has three shared hosing plans tailored toward WordPress users, as well as four managed options. These plans offer speedy loading, and the higher-tier packages come with unlimited storage and unlimited monthly data transfers. A2 makes transferring particularly easy, with its free and simple site migration

 Who It’s For
Site migration is a potential headache that affects anyone hoping to jump to a different web hosting service. If you're a WordPress user looking for a more established provider to host your website, look no further than A2. The company offers free, easy site migration when youto any of its plans

 PROS
- Robust hosting packages, particularly WordPress
- Excellent customer service
- Terrific uptime
- Good money-back refund plan
 CONS
- No Windows server options
- Relatively expensive
## Hostwinds Web Hosting
 Best for Unlimited Storage
 Why We Picked It
You can install WordPress on any of Hostwinds’ shared servers, but you can also opt for one of the company’s WordPress-optimized, managed solutions. These dedicated WordPress servers include the Weebly website builder for your site-crafting convenience, free SSL certificates, and most impressively, unlimited storage, so you can create as large a website as you can imagine

 Who It’s For
If you intend to upload large, hi-resolution files to your website, you want a hosting plan with unlimited storage. Hostwinds offers exactly that. Unlimited storage means you can store an unlimited number of files on your website’s server, within reason, of course. This is particularly useful for websites that showcase photography, feature sizable amounts of audio or video, or are simply large sites

 PROS
- Terrific uptime in testing
- Excellent reseller and VPS hosting plans
- Good customer service
- Minecraft server hosting
 CONS
- Not every plan has a Windows server option
- Short money-back guarantee window
## AccuWeb Hosting
 Best for Building Unlimited Websites
 Why We Picked It
WordPress users enjoytreatment when choosing AccuWeb for hosting. AccuWeb's WordPress plans come with the CMS preinstalled, feature multilayered DDoS protection, and offer free daily backups, Google Apps integration, and automatic updates. These plans also let you create an unlimited number of domains

 Who It's For
The ability to create unlimited websites is particularly useful for larger businesses that are expanding their online operations. If you need to create a sizable number of websites to establish a WordPress-powered network, AccuWeb gives you the means to do just that

 PROS
- Stellar uptime in testing
- Excellent dedicated hosting plans
- Offers a choice of Linux or Windows servers
- Helpful customer service
 CONS
- Lacks unlimited email with Windows accounts
- No month-to-month shared hosting plans
## Liquid Web Hosting
 Best for Powerful, High-End Plans
 Why We Picked It
Liquid Web is well known within the web hosting industry for its impressive, enterprise-level server packages and feature-rich managed plans. This remains true with its WordPress server options, which the company provides via its Nexcess brand. These WordPress packages have fully managed privileges, free SSL certificates, and an excellent drag-and-drop page builder

 Who It’s For
Look to Liquid Web if you are have a fast-growing online business or website, and need to quickly scale up. The web host has the feature-packed services and powerful servers to deliver web hosting for enterprise-level businesses. Aside from custom plans offered by select hosts, few web hosting services scale as high as Liquid Web

 PROS
- Robust dedicated, VPS, cloud, and reseller packages
- Prorated VPS plans
- Powerful, high-end server specs
- Terrific customer service
- Excellent uptime in testing
 CONS
- Lacks shared hosting plans
- Expensive, with few refund options
## WP Engine Web Hosting
 Best for Custom Plans
 Why We Picked It
You get an excellent selection of managed WordPress hosting with WP Engine, each with fantastic features including free SSL certificates, automatic WordPress installation, and automated site backups. WP Engine is also unique due to its robust selection of plans, which include managed, security-enhanced, and ecommerce-optimized hosting. For even more options, you can opt for a custom WP Engine plan to suit your business needs

 Who It’s For
Curated plans are excellent for most hosting needs, but they aren't the end-all for every business or venture. Still, WP Engine is an excellent hosting choice for administrators who know the ins andof their online business and want a server plan tailored to their specific needs

 PROS
- Terrific uptime in testing
- Outstanding customer service
- Daily backups
- Real-time threat detection
- Useful staging area
- Choice of either Amazon Web Services or Google Cloud Platform cloud hosting
- Custom plans available
 CONS
- Email isn't included with hosting plans
- Doesn't sell domains
## GoDaddy Web Hosting
 Best for Business Plans
 Why We Picked It
With GoDaddy, you get all the bells and whistles you would expect from premier web hosting services, including managed servers, built-in security, free domain and SSL certificates, and automated updates. Its four core WordPress plans nail all the right points, delivering excellent tools for novice and advanced users. GoDaddy also offers a fourth, commerce-oriented plan, which is ideal for setting up an online business

 Who It’s For
GoDaddy is excellent for administrators who wish to establish an online business. Its Ecommerce plan is an impressive and highly convenient service for this task. The package lets you create a website with unlimited storage and monthly data transfers, and offers five Microsoft 365 mailboxes, an SEO optimizer, a payment transaction system, and access to premium WooCommerce extensions

 PROS
- Top-notch uptime
- Linux- and Windows-based servers
- Email tightly integrated into Microsoft apps
- Helpful, 24/7 customer support
- Useful website-builder software
 CONS
- Lacks cloud hosting
- Doesn't offer much default email
## FatCow Web Hosting
 Best for Smaller WordPress Projects
 Why We Picked It
Despite its curious name, FatCow is a great choice if you want simple, no-fuss web hosting. It offers two WordPress packages, one for starters, and a more advanced option with expert support and stronger hardware to power your server. These packages also come with select themes and preinstalled plug-ins to use right from the gate, which makes establishing your website a far more simple affair

 Who It’s For
This host is ideal for smaller projects, or novice administrators with small productions. After all, not everyone is in the market for enterprise-level hosting. FatCow keeps things nice and simple, with all the core essentials you could want to get started

 PROS
- A wide array of hosting types
- Strong uptime
- Excellent customer service
 CONS
- No Windows-based servers
## Is Managed WordPress Hosting Worth It?
While researching the WordPress hosting tier that best fits the vision for your site, you'll likely see an option to select either managed WordPress hosting or unmanaged (aka self-hosted) WordPress hosting. That choice is an important one, as the two options offer radically different server maintenance experiences

With managed WordPress hosting, your site lives on a server that's tuned to work with WordPress. You'll enjoy WordPress-specific security, automatic site backups, malware scanning and removal, and other benefits without lifting a finger. Your web host's server team will do the work for you. The downside? Managed WordPress hosting typically limits some of the plug-ins that you can install to make sure your site operates in tip-top fashion

With unmanaged WordPress hosting, your site lives on a server that typically features just the Linux or Windows operating system. This hosting type requires you (or an IT person) to set up everything yourself, including the aforementioned features you get with managed WordPress hosting. You'd go this route if, say, there's specific, custom software that needs installation. Alternatively, you may just like getting your hands. You'll typically save a few bucks going the self-hosted route, too, because you're not paying a web host a server maintenance fee

## How Expensive Is WordPress Hosting?
WordPress hosting prices are all over the map. Entry-level plans cost roughly the same as shared web hosting, but higher-tier plans can scale upward to around $60 per month. The upside? Your WordPress installation should run more smoothly and setup should be easier in a WordPress environment than in a traditional hosting environment

Before you sign up for a WordPress web hosting service, you should look for these attractive—and possibly essential—features. Ideally, you'll want to invest in a WordPress host that provides unlimited monthly data transfers, email, storage, and 24/7 support. Many WordPress web hosts that place caps on those features, particularly on the managed side of things. WP Engine, for example, limits sites to 400,000 visitors and a relatively paltry 30GB of storage. If you expect lots of site growth, you'll want a host that can properly accommodate your website's future expansion

Additionally, you'll want a service that offers Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) if you plan to sell products. Ever see a green padlock in your browser's address bar while you're on your bank's website? That's the symbol that tells visitors that SSL is in place. It's a symbol of trustworthiness

An SSL connection encrypts the data that travels between your site and users' web browsers, thus safeguarding the transmission of purchasing information. All the WordPress hosting services in this roundup offer SSL certificates, but the prices vary from company to company. Some companies include a free SSL certificate when you sign up for a hosting plan, while others charge close to $100. Naturally, your web hosting needs will differ from the next person's, but keep these features in mind if you want a silky smooth WordPress experience

## Does Uptime Matter?
The aforementioned features are valuable to the web hosting experience, but none can match the importance of site uptime. If your site is down, clients or customers will be unable to find you or access your blog or your products or services. Potential new customers may miss your site altogether, and existing customers may go elsewhere out of frustration or confusion

We've added uptime monitoring to our review process, and the results show that most web hosts do an excellent job of keeping sites up and running. Web hosts with uptime issues cannot qualify for inclusion among the best services in the field, no matter how solid the rest of their offerings are

## Do You Need WordPress-Specific Hosting?
If you're planning to create a WordPress-powered site, there's no reason not to invest in WordPress-specific hosting. It's chock full of benefits. That said, a WordPress environment won't let you set up a non-WordPress site—that's something else to keep in mind, especially if you have a site in mind that will rely on specific frameworks, for example. In those instances, you'll want to go build your site on shared hosting, VPS hosting, or dedicated hosting services. And, if you want to start your own web hosting company, reseller hosting is the way to go

In addition, you must consider how long you'll need WordPress web hosting. If it's a short-term project—say, less than a month or two—you'll typically receive a refund should you cancel your hosting within 60 days. Some companies offer 30-day money-back guarantees, while others offer 90-day money-back guarantees. Once again, it's beneficial to do your homework

We've reviewed many WordPress hosting services aimed at individuals and small businesses, and included our favorites this guide. The chart below includes traditional web hosts that offer WordPress hosting and standalone WordPress services. It also gives you a quick overview of the major features you'll find with each service

Just getting started with web hosting? Make sure to check out our primers, How to Create a Website, How to Register a Domain Name for Your Website, How to Get a Free Domain for Your Website, and Linux vs. Windows: How to Pick the Best Server OS for Your Website

*Mike Williams contributed to this roundup.*