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13 Top Notch Web Hosting Companies

By Char

Essential Keystrokes RecommendsAs a web designer, I get asked daily for web hosting recommendations. While there are literally thousands of web hosting companies that provide excellent service, great uptime and have knowledgeable tech support, I have compiled a list of 13 hosting companies that either I use personally, have clients using or trusted associates recommend. These are companies I recommend if you are looking for hosting for your blog, small to medium size business site, online store or community.

Most of these sites feature two things – cPanel and Fantastico – both of which are requirements for ease of use in my book. cPanel is easy to navigate and loaded with features allowing you to easily check stats, set up email, create database, password protect directories, and more. Fantastico offers the fastest and most straight forward installs for more than 20 of our favorite Open Source programs and scripts like WordPress, phpBB, ZenCart, Galleries, and other utilities. For the average website owner or blogger, these features cut down on a lot of tech support/webmaster support time.

In alphabetical order the web hosting companies I recommend are:

Over 9 Million Customers!
1 & 1 Web Hosting is a very well known web hosting option for many bloggers. A lot of associates use it and while they don’t have cPanel they have a reasonable substitute. For a limited time you can get the first 6 months of Business Hosting Package FREE!

A Small OrangeBased out of Atlanta, GA, A Small Orange provides both shared hosting and virtual private servers. They advertise no limit hosting, cPanel, multiple stats packages, Fantastico and advanced email options.

GoDaddyGoDaddy is my personal choice for domain name purchasing/registration but I do have clients who love GoDaddy’s web hosting, too. They don’t have Fantastico, but do have their own version of it called Hosting Connection which gives site owners access to a variety of one click script installations. They provide shared hosting, virtual dedicated servers and dedicated server plans.

HostGator HostGator is my personal choice for web hosting. They have been doing a great job of hosting 30+ web sites for myself and my clients for the past two years. HostGator is very affordable, offers cPanel and Fantastico, and has had amazing uptime! HostGator has tech support that is second to none! Anytime I have had issues with my sites they have been able to help me identify the problem and resolve it immediately. You can read a review of them here.

HostMonsterHostMonster is another popular choice for affordable web hosting. They allow you to host unlimited domains on one account which is great for owners of multiple web sites. Fantastico and cPanel are included, and you can get $50 of PPC credit for both Yahoo and Google with your account.

HostRocket HostRocket offers unlimited bandwidth, 1,000+ GB of RAID protected storage space, cPanel and Fantastico, 10 websites per account plus add a new site every month, and $50 Yahoo search credit.

JumplineI have been a customer of Jumpline since their first year in business – 1997 to be exact – and currently have about 15 client websites hosted with them (some of them have been hosted there since 1997). Jumpline’s uptime has been close to FLAWLESS, the tech support is knowledgeable and helpful, and they have been very stable. They do offer ValueApps – their own library of scripts – but it is not as intuitive as Fantastico. offers enterprise level redundancy and security in their Tier 4 data centers with a dedicated staff of over 120 support professionals.

Media TempleDo you have a high-traffic site that needs scalable, high end web hosting solutions? If so, MediaTemple is my first choice! Powerful grid service replaces shared hosting and the dedicated physical virtual servers in their Nitro program run on quad core processors.

MossoMosso is another service for sites that need instant scalability like a popular blog (that regularly gets Digg front page traffic), a large e-commerce site or 20 medium sites under one account. Mosso uses cloud technology which is basically instant, easy access to large scale computing. is probably what I would consider to be the most credible and most likely to be around forever web hosting company there is. I registered my very first domain name with them in 1997 and have never once questioned the quality of their services. They have a more options and plans than most providers – in other words, you will be able to find a solution to fit your needs.

Site5Site5, a great solution for eCommerce, Blogs or Ruby on Rails sites, is co-located with The Planet. Site5 uses extremely high-end servers and doesn’t crowd them. Additionally, they handle their own tech support and offer a 60-day money back guarantee.

I hope this is a helpful resource.   Finding a good web host is not easy, because many hosts offer sub-par support.  I’ve tried my best to list only the best web hosts there are. Or you may find you need to sign up for dedicated hosting services from a trusted provider.



There are some horror stories out there with GoDaddy on sites that get a lot of traffic ( as well as quite a few victims of GoDaddy’s terms of service where they basically state they can take your domain name for any reason. My choice in hosting is Jumpline. They are an alternative to the low cost hosts that tend to chew you up and spit you out the first time you have a problem.




You don’t have Top Hosting Center on your list… which is a big surprise, considering that they offer a hosting package which is more competitive than any of the ones you mention, it is more affordable, takes social media traffic with no problems and even includes a dedicated IP –


Very useful list

Another one worth considering is HostMySite – there customer service is excellent


Great round up of some good hosting companies, Char.

I’ve been a fan of A Small Orange since I first needed to find my own server space. My experience with their customer service is top notch. That’s a critical factor in my book.


Douglas – I have definitely heard mixed reactions for GoDaddy but I buy all my domains there.

Shook – I haven’t heard much about BlueHost – what is your experience with them?

Mig – thanks for reminding me about TopHostingCenter – they should have been included in the list.

BW – I am not familiar with HostMySite – I will check them out.

Chris – I remember you singing A Small Orange’s praises, which is why they made the list – you are a trusted associate!


I used to be a huge Site5 fan. Not anymore. Not since the 60+ hour downtime that was one of multiple major downtimes I had with them over a few months.

I will admit that it was all server hardware issues, but enough got to be enough. Pity, since they were marvelous in the two years before that. I’m with Host Gator now.


Decent list Char. Ultimately there could be hundreds of web hosts on a list and you would have fans and haters in equal levels. The hosting business is a fickle one as even the comments above show … love your host for years, but one bad episode and “See you later”.

The hosting industry is a crazy one with all the “Unlimited” space/bandwidth/pop accounts hosts are moving to, that 99.9% of sites never use, but somehow feel that it is a great feature/benefit. When there are thousands of these super hosts, what will differentiate them? Marketing? Service? Free Gifts?

Oh … and then consider what happens when Google rolls out Google Host with unlimited everything and $50 free in PPC a month. :)

Where is web hosting headed?


Great list! :)

I’m with MediaTemple for all my sites (and many of my clients are on MT too) and honestly I love it! Ok there are a lot of scheduled maintenances lately, but apart from that the service and support is great.

I’ve heard very good things about MidPhase and Bluehost too


Hey, I’ve had similar experiences with the research I undertook about web hosting. Nice details list. Thanks for sharing.

Nick :-)


Good list! Thanks for sharing.I registered my domain name through GoDaddy.One web host that could be on the list is Host4Profit.I was with them for over 2 years without any problems ever.They also pay $10 per month for every account you refer them.


Ditto what Chris Cree said about A Small Orange. Their customer service is awesome!

I also had really good experiences with Electric Kitten several years ago, but haven’t dealt with them since around 2004. Unless things have changed, I’d also recommend giving that company a look.


I’m with @Shook, BlueHost is an excellent host for bloggers. I ‘m also wary of GoDaddy, their reputation is not something you’d get comfortable with. This is a superb list by someone who knows and uses these hosts. Thanks, Char.


I have personally used MT on a site that was getting slammed with traffic spikes and they handled it really well, even with 21 large images on the page that was getting hit.


I have yet to understand the GoDaddy crowd.. The times where I have had to deal with them, or their back end, simply make me want to blow my brains out. Sure, they’re cheap for domains, yet their back end administration is painful (the reseller admin is even worse yet!). I personally use SiteGround for all my hosting, and they have stepped up when required – and have even stepped up before I knew anything was wrong (which pretty much secured my loyalty).

The way I see it is that as long as you have amazing tech support, lots of storage, impressive bandwidth (spikes happen!), and at least a few databases available – pay whatever it costs to get it. If you can find it for $5-$6/mo great – wouldn’t spend more than $12-$15 for it tho…


I personally do like Go Daddy. Ifind that they have excelent uptime. The price is lower than many other hosting companies. They have some very easy building tools with pragrams like Website Tonight.
I had MidPhase hosting for a very short time, and I found my site went down a about 3 times in one month, their pricing was very high, their customer service was terrible. I also thought their cpanel was way to complicated for an average user. I am not an expert web designer, but I do know html, and I couldn’t even set up my Email. For really tech savvy people i’m sure it’s great.
Another affordable and easy to use host is Network Solutions.


Go Daddy also has dedicated servers and great phone support…


I didn’t hear nodaddy, that’s frightening since I use godaddy for my registrar. I like for my hosting. 8$ for unlimited reseller :)


You forgot E-Starr.Com. They’re REALLY good.


I use a UK based company for my VPS. I get decent technical support from them and it is provided 24/7 so i know that if i need support i can get it. Had a few difficulties with the company for instance during march of this year my VPS crashed almost every day and the who thing had to be reinstalled as the hard drives were staring to fail. Dont know why this was happening but it was a mega disruption to my services as a website designer because when i am designing a website i am always using live web space to test the sites. The website hosting company are called web hosting uk and their servers are based in maidenhead. I give them about 85 out of 100 for their services but i am sure if i was to pick another website hosting company i would do a little more research.


I love HostGator as well, and I recommend them to all my clients. I like Mosso as well for a client needing more space or bandwidth.

My website has been on hostgator and has been able to handle significant unexpected traffic peaks with no problems.


Can’t believe HostICan is not on your list? They are very top notch. I have been with them for a while…really gotten to know them…they are a great bunch. The phone support is incredible…very friendly, timely, knowledgeable…all the important stuff. I have found that they are a very strong company. I am on a VPS…but they have shared, VPS and dedicated options though. Very easy to use…and if you are new…you always know that they have 24/7 support (phone, live chat and tickets) I just love them…I recommend you look into them.

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