The title of this Blog sounds like the holy grail for us WordPress site owners doesn’t it? If you don’t think so, then thank your lucky stars because you have probably never experienced the problems I have been wrestling with over the past few months… and I hope you never will! 🙂
After much angst over the past few months, I was beginning to think that good affordable web site hosting for small WordPress web sites was a dream… or at least it was with my (then) current Hosting company but I came to change my mind and found two very good WordPress hosting solutions to meet my needs, one in Australia and one in the USA.
It all started when my small WordPress web sites started having problems. problems like ‘Server error 500’; long, long…. long load times; hitting resource limits just by logging onto the WordPress back end of my site and running some plugin updates, etc, etc, etc.
Up until then, I thought my sites had been performing adequately, for the amount of traffic I got and the small number of visitors and the small footprint they had in terms of media and other content they comprised.
To cut a long story short, it was my fault, or at least this is what my Hosting company tried to convince me of whenever I reported issues. It seems that it was my sites that were the problem, they simply wanted to consume too much resource simply by being on the server.
To a degree I could understand this, disk space sure, bandwidth uploading content sure, but (as I tried to point out to the tech support) these were not the resources that were being consumed and causing the issues. The issues were that the CPU was maxed out and so was memory and also other critical server resources. Many times it was the server experiencing the load and my cPanel monitors reported that my sites were not doing much. When my sites were doing something there seemed to be a fierce competition for server resources and I was losing most of the time.
So I tried some experiments with other Hosting providers and to my surprise the issues all but stopped. Apparently, on other Hosting providers my sites simply stopped being resource hungry 😉 A miracle!
To give my (then) current Hosting company the benefit of the doubt, I informed them of this miracle. My sites were not resource hungry beasts, at least not on other Hosting providers, and suggested they look into their own server’s usage and configuration. Alas, it still seemed to be my problem. I clearly needed my own VPS (virtual private server) at $x,000 /year, that would solve my problems. After all, the Hoster pointed out, they had world class infrastructure and their services were amongst the best in the industry. Clearly, it was my fault.
The good news is that in the process of checking out alternative arrangements, I found two very very good hosting solutions for my WordPress sites. Both of which I intend to use for my various sites.
The one in the US is DreamHost. I tried them because I have been following a Blog by Mika (実佳) Ariela Epstein (aka the Half-elf Rogue) and she works for DreamHost. What Mika does not know about WordPress would not fill a Blog and so one of my first thoughts was ‘ask an expert’. Mika kindly arranged for me to try out one of DreamHosts shared WordPress hosting options and I have to say it was great, fast and easy to use. Their DreamPress hosting features includes things like SSH, WP-CLI, Git support and also Let’s Encrypt TLS/SSL certificate (all of which I did not have with my then current Hosting provider).
I also discovered a local, Australian option which was even faster for my local traffic testing and my brother (who runs a web site development and hosting business UFO solutions) was also looking for a new Hosting provider and was testing it out.
I guess this is what ultimately convinced me to go with this option, as my brother will provide some ongoing support for some of the sites I have as I just don’t have the time any more and he does it for a living.
Both providers were so good though I plan to use both for different projects. DreamHost for some overseas projects I want to work on with friends and my brother’s hosting provider for local sites selling to local customers.