7 Best Web Hosting For UK Websites 2020 – GDPR Compliant and FAST!

Danielle Willatt
By        •   November 24, 2020      Advertising Disclosure

 

best host uk

The best web hosting in the UK has fast speeds both locally and globally. Pair that with GDPR compliance, excellent features, and great support, you’re set to build your website for any region at a value price!

 

The best web host for the UK is the one and only SiteGround! Read on to find out why.

 

Since 2014, we have been recording performance data from over 30 web hosting brands we bought and tested. The 7 brands shortlisted here are all great for UK websites: GDPR compliant, features aplenty, and all of them with response times of less than 191 ms in London – you can’t go wrong with any of them!

 

Best Web Hosting UK

 

  1. SiteGround UK – Best all-purpose, premium host
  2. Hostinger UK – Best value with fantastic speeds
  3. Kinsta – Best managed WordPress hosting
  4. A2 Hosting UK – Best unlimited web host
  5. ScalaHosting – Best cPanel alternative hosting
  6. GreenGeeks – Best fast green hosting provider
  7. Bluehost – Excellent value for bloggers

 

best web hosting UK

 

Note

  1. All prices shown are based on 12-month plan introductory rate.
  2. We use an exchange rate of 1 GBP to 1.25 USD.

 

1. SiteGround UK

https://www.siteground.co.uk
SiteGround

World Speed Score

A+

Speed In London

4 ms

Price (GBP)

£7.99/mo

Key Features

  • Google Cloud
  • 20GB SSD
  • 25,000 visits /mo
  • SuperCacher
  • 24/7 techn. support

"Well-rounded host with data centers across Europe on the celebrated Google Cloud Platform!"

 

We’re kicking this list off with our all-around favourite: SiteGround.

 

This renowned brand delivers quality offerings, making it Bitcatcha’s top pick. They’ve been our host since 2015 and we couldn’t be happier with the speed and service!

 

SiteGround has been expanding around the world since its inception in 2004. Today, they have data centers in 6 locations across 4 regions, including London.

 

But how fast is it really? We hosted a test site on their GrowBig plan to get some official numbers.

 

US (W) US (E) London Singapore Sao Paulo
138 ms 86 ms 4 ms 179 ms 212 ms
Bangalore Sydney Japan Canada Germany
292 ms 250 ms 223 ms 87 ms 16 ms
Average Speed: 148.7 ms – See full result

 

Our test site data scored a VERY solid A+.

 

With an average response time of 148.7 ms, SiteGround is officially the fastest host on this list.

 

But best of all – it pinged a super fast 4 ms from London! So if your audience is based in the UK, you can rest easy.

 

Perhaps it’s unsurprising, given SiteGround runs on speed-enhancing SSD. All plans also come with free Cloudflare CDN integration to serve audiences from the closest location, plus premium SuperCacher which claims to boost load times up to 4x.

 

The icing on the cake is that SiteGround has recently made the move to the Google Cloud platform. This is huge news, providing users with Google’s state-of-the-art security, reliability, and mind-blowing speeds!

 

Aside from that, SiteGround is fantastically reliable. Their 99.9% uptime guarantee is bolstered by a state-of-the-art security suite that should protect you from malware and those dreaded data breaches that are a GDPR nightmare.

 

They use an AI solution to fight off millions of brute-force attacks every day and you’ll also receive free SSL certification. When they became fully GDPR compliant in 2018, they adapted their Privacy Policy and listed out their Data Processing Agreement (DPA), which regulates their responsibilities as a host, and helps clients run their own GDPR compliant sites.

 

SiteGround also owns data centers in other European countries, including two in Amsterdam! If you do decide you need to relocate data center location later down the line, you’ll only be charged a one-time $30 fee and the process only takes a couple of hours.

 

Their ‘recommended’ GrowBig plan starts at £7.99/mo. Though this sounds reasonable, bear in mind this will jump up significantly to £15.99/mo upon renewal.

 

SiteGround isn’t the cheapest option, but it does deliver real quality on all fronts. Expect a solid set of features, peace of mind and excellent speeds whether your audience is based in the UK, or beyond.

 

What we didn’t like about SiteGround

 

SiteGround’s price almost triples upon renewal, so be sure to maximize your subscription period to take advantage of their 53% – 63% introductory discount!

 

Learn more about SiteGround

 

 

 

World Speed Score

A+

Speed In London

54 ms

Price (GBP)

£4.49/mo

Key Features

  • Free domain name
  • 20GB SSD
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • hPanel
  • Localised support

"As cheap as it gets and offers excellent uptime and security, plus multiple servers in Europe."

 

Hostinger is another international company, spread across 6 regions, that include the UK and the Netherlands. So again, you’ve got the option between the two.

 

There’s one thing about Hostinger that secures it a spot in most of our top-hosts lists…

 

It’s so dang cheap!

 

Their single web hosting plan starts from an unbelievable £0.80/mo. Fancy going large? Even their ‘premium’ plan starts from only £2.15.

 

Does a low price mean a dodgy deal? Not at all!

 

We ran it through Bitcatcha’s server speed checker and the numbers spoke for themselves.

 

US (W) US (E) London Singapore Sao Paulo
142 ms 100 ms 54 ms 236 ms 209 ms
Bangalore Sydney Japan Canada Germany
314 ms 265 ms 235 ms 84 ms 11 ms
Average Speed: 165 ms – See full result

 

Our test site is actually already hosted from their Netherlands server, however the numbers still blew us away!

 

The London response time was 54 ms.

 

That’s 50 ms slower than SiteGround, but still very respectable! Bear in mind this would likely be even quicker if you chose to host from the UK. However, we’re pretty happy knowing that this host offers the option to switch between Amsterdam and the UK, should Brexit cause any issue later down the road.

 

It scored another A+ rating with an average speed of 165 ms.

 

Great speed and low prices aren’t the only things that qualify Hostinger as true value-for-money host.

 

They’re a very experienced company that knows the industry well. They’ve helped serve over 29 million clients to date!

 

What’s more? Hostinger users are protected by a 99.9% uptime guarantee, a Bitninja security suite, and you’ll manage everything from their custom, user-friendly hPanel interface. You’ll also get a free SSL cert on their business hosting plan.

 

Sure, there are some functions missing, like CDN and daily backups. But Hostinger definitely gives you great value for what you’re getting, and is a great option for anyone on a budget getting started.

 

What we didn’t like about Hostinger

 

Hostinger’s introductory prices are really affordable BUT there’s a catch to it; you’ll be tied down to a contract of 48 months. A lot can happen in 4 years, and we’re not sure if we’re willing to be tied down for so long.

 

Learn more about Hostinger

 

 

 

World Speed Score

A+

Speed In London

10 ms

Price (GBP)

£20/mo

Key Features

  • Google Cloud
  • 20,000 visits /mo
  • Daily backups
  • WP expert as support
  • Hack fix guarantee

"Built on Google Cloud architecture, Kinsta is lightning-fast & GDPR-conscious, but pricier."

 

Fact: Kinsta is a managed WordPress host.

 

What’s more important to know? Kinsta’s services are powered by Google Cloud’s premium network.

 

That means users have access to the highest levels of performance, speed and security of Google – who is already one of the leaders in the cloud networking industry.

 

We’ll get into how this directly benefits you in a sec.

 

We whipped up a test site using their Starter shared hosting plan. The results?

 

US (W) US (E) London Singapore Sao Paulo
130 ms 95 ms 10 ms 287 ms 203 ms
Bangalore Sydney Japan Canada Germany
487 ms 266 ms 221 ms 83 ms 13 ms
Average Speed: 179.5 ms – See full result

 

Yes, another solid A+! With an average speed of 179.5 ms.

 

Best of all – they have a London datacenter that pinged an amazing 10 ms. That means UK audiences should definitely enjoy top speeds.

 

Since it leverages off 20 Google Cloud server locations (yes, 20!), there’s unsurprisingly one right in London. You’ve got another 5 options in Europe: Zurich, Belgium, Frankfurt, the Netherlands, and Hamina. Shifting between them is just a matter of opening up a support ticket. It’s definitely the most flexible host in this aspect.

 

Can their speed be improved on? Well, Kinsta also offers a free CDN service through a partnership with the reputable brand KeyCDN. It’s more premium than the CDN options typically offered by hosts and should help slash load times further.

 

What about GDPR? Well.

 

Encryption isn’t mandatory to GDPR, however comes strongly recommended. Thanks to Google Cloud Platform, all data is encrypted at rest. Kinsta has even built their own WordPress cookie consent plugin that lets users choose which types of cookies to opt in on, which helps websites guarantee legal compliance.

 

So out of all the hosts on this list, Kinsta seems to be the one that goes above and beyond for GDPR compliance.

 

Kinsta users will also enjoy other benefits from its cloud architecture that many typical shared or VPS hosts can’t offer.

 

For example, you’ll get great protection against traffic surges. In the event of a spike, your website’s container simply scales to as many CPUs as you need.

 

Similarly, if your site starts to outgrow your current bandwidth allowances, there’s no need to migrate to another server type or host. Just pay the next tier up!

 

However! As a premium solution, Kinsta comes at a premium price, starting at £20/mo. It’s a higher price point than most competitors and goes up considerably by tier.

 

Sure, Kinsta also offers slick management tools and a support team of WordPress experts. However, you’ll have to ask yourself if YOU yourself are looking for this degree of support, and resources.

 

If the answer is yes, well then Kinsta might be perfect. It’s a great fit to owners serious about growing traffic, and wanting a fully-managed solution that’s fully GDPR compliant. Otherwise, it may be overkill for smaller sites.

 

What we didn’t like about Kinsta

 

Among all the featured brands on this list, Kinsta is the most expensive. We would actually be okay with their prices, until we learned that they’ve got no phone support.

 

At that price point, you’d think that Kinsta would be able to at least provide weekday phone support for their clients.

 

Learn more about Kinsta

 

 

 

4. A2 Hosting UK

https://www.a2hosting.co.uk/
A2 Hosting

World Speed Score

A+

Speed In London

19 ms

Price (GBP)

£8.52/mo

Key Features

  • Unlimited SSD NVMe
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • A2 Site Accelerator
  • Free site migration
  • Anytime money back

"A feature-rich solution with unlimited perks, plus offering an excellent turbo option."

 

A2 is another global company with servers across Europe, Asia and the USA. They offer a huge range of hosting options, from VPS to shared to dedicated, and more.

 

After a lot of reading, we found ourselves most drawn to their Turbo plan, which is primed and polished for speed.

 

So we set up a test site to check it out.

 

Here’s what came back:

 

US (W) US (E) London Singapore Sao Paulo
148 ms 99 ms 19 ms 243 ms 207 ms
Bangalore Sydney Japan Canada Germany
291 ms 306 ms 282 ms 91 ms 9 ms
Average Speed: 169.5 ms – See full result

 

As can be seen, A2 also scored itself a proud A+. Even though its datacenter closest to the UK was in Amsterdam, London pinged in at a very speedy 19 ms. That’s super quick!

 

Not to mention, all shared hosting plans come with speed-enhancing SSD storage, Cloudflare CDN, Hackscan protection, and optimised apps. They also offer an easy option to request a Data Protection Agreement (DPA), which is necessary to fulfil your own GDPR compliance.

 

However, what’s also really great about A2, is this: it knows how to throw in a LOT of value.

 

Their Swift (£4.46/mo) plan and anything above will unlock an attractive list of ‘unlimiteds’.

 

This includes unlimited websites, email addresses, total databases, storage, transfers and more! You won’t even need to pay for SSL, which is another win for GDPR.

 

If you have the cash to splurge – consider their most popular Turbo plan, like we did. At a steeper £8.52/mo you’ll run on Turbo web hosting servers (said to load sites up to 20x quicker) and enjoy three different levels of caching.

 

All this, at a reasonable price, makes A2 a very feature-rich solution that’s great for sites whether your audience is in the UK or beyond.

 

What we didn’t like about A2 Hosting

 

Approach the claims of ‘Unlimited’ with a grain of salt – websites that breach their allocated resource share do run the chance of having their resources restricted by the host.

 

We also read quite a few complaints about slow support that wasn’t immediately available.

 

Learn more about A2 Hosting

 

 

 

World Speed Score

A+

Speed In London

43 ms

Price (GBP)

£6.40/mo

Key Features

  • Unlimited websites
  • Unlimited storage
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Free domain & SSL
  • SPanel

"Superior performance and feature-packed. SPanel is powerful, and is one of the best things about ScalaHosting."

 

ScalaHosting is one of the more experienced web hosting companies on this list, and it shows. Having been around for more than a decade, they’ve been quietly innovating and improving, earning them loyal customers that see value in their services.

 

They’ve only got 2 data centers (one in Dallas, USA, while the other is in Bulgaria, Europe). Although the servers aren’t exactly located here in the UK, they still performed pretty well considering the distance.

 

US (W) US (E) London Singapore Sao Paulo
178 ms 119 ms 43 ms 183 ms 228 ms
Bangalore Sydney Japan Canada Germany
147 ms 286 ms 250 ms 116 ms 37 ms
Average Speed: 158.7 ms – See full result

 

With 43 ms response time pinged from London, the A+ ranked web hosting provider is not one to be trifled with.

 

They’ve brought out the big guns in terms of features, which is great at making the customer feel like they’re getting more than they’ve paid for.

 

We could spend days talking about their features. Free migration, free domains, free SSL, 7-day automatic backup, free CDN… ScalaHosting offers all these and more, but we can get these features easily from other providers too.

 

What stood out for us while using ScalaHosting is their SPanel. It’s only available on their managed VPN plan, and quite honestly, we feel that this alone is worth the price.

 

Wholly owned and developed by Scala, SPanel is a solid alternative to cPanel, with all of the perks (plus a little extra) and none of the drawbacks.

 

Aside from being able to do everything that cPanel can, SPanel comes with SShield (able to halt 99.998% of all cyber attacks) and SWordPress Manager (which allows you to control almost anything WordPress admin related directly from the SPanel control panel).

 

It’s also fully compatible with cPanel, so issues with site migrations are now…non-issues.

 

With prices starting from a measly £6.40 a month, ScalaHosting provides users with reliable web hosting, fast speeds, and perks aplenty.

 

What we didn’t like about ScalaHosting

 

SSD storage is pretty much a must in every web hosting provider these days, but ScalaHosting only provides it fully in their VPS plans. If you intend to use their shared hosting plan, your audience won’t get to enjoy the performance benefits usually associated with SSD.

 

They also don’t come with a website builder – if they did, they’ll probably be higher on this list!

 

Learn more about ScalaHosting

 

 

 

World Speed Score

A+

Speed In London

191 ms

Price (GBP)

£3.96/mo

Key Features

  • 300% green host
  • Linux & cPanel
  • RAID-10 SSD
  • HTTP/3 & PHP7
  • PowerCacher

"Environmentally-friendly hosting that delivers fantastic speed and security."

 

GreenGeeks is an independently owned company, with 5 datacenters worldwide. We already had a host site running from their Canada data center, however you’ll be pleased to know they also offer one in the UK itself.

 

Even from Canada, it still performs pretty snappy. It pinged 191 ms from London (still within benchmark) and a speedy 9 ms from Canada node, so you can get some idea of the difference it makes when a datacenter is outside the UK/Europe!

 

US (W) US (E) London Singapore Sao Paulo
66 ms 19 ms 191 ms 455 ms 191 ms
Bangalore Sydney Japan Canada Germany
324 ms 262 ms 214 ms 9 ms 95 ms
Average Speed: 178.6 ms – See full result

 

Honestly, the more we read up on GreenGeeks, the more we liked them.

 

Out of the hosts on this list, GreenGeeks has the biggest commitment to the environment. Hosting with GreenGeeks means you will not be simply carbon-neutral, but actually “carbon-reducing”.

 

Whatever energy they consume, they invest 3 times that in the form of renewable energy via the Bonneville Environmental Foundation.

 

And they’re still a fantastic host!

 

On top of decent speed, even their lowest shared plan gets you unlimited SSD web space & data transfer. Top that off with a strong security suite and proactive server monitoring. This includes ‘advanced clustered thread analysis’ – which basically means their team identify potential attacks happening across their network, in order to develop security rules before problems occur.

 

So GreenGeeks has a feel-good factor that’s pretty unique. You’ll be helping to make a difference, whilst reaping the benefits of an excellent & secure hosting provider.

 

What we didn’t like about GreenGeeks

 

Greengeeks doesn’t have 24/7 phone support. This is gonna suck during issues/emergencies which require their immediate attention.

 

Learn more about GreenGeeks

 

 

 

World Speed Score

A+

Speed In London

183 ms

Price (GBP)

£4.08/mo

Key Features

  • Linux & cPanel
  • 50GB SSD
  • Automatic backup
  • Resource protection
  • Free SSL Certificate

"WordPress-endorsed hosting that offers great speed, and an even better support team of WP experts."

 

Whilst it also didn’t make our top five, we figured Bluehost still deserved a mention.

 

Why? Because Bluehost is the official recommendation of WordPress. They claim that ‘No one powers WordPress better or understands it more than we do.’

 

With a full-time WordPress CORE development engineers in their team, it’s not a stretch to believe.

 

Based in North America, they scored a very decent A+ rating on our server speed checker.

 

US (W) US (E) London Singapore Sao Paulo
23 ms 78 ms 183 ms 193 ms 164 ms
Bangalore Sydney Japan Canada Germany
330 ms 168 ms 125 ms 92 ms 174 ms
Average Speed: 153 ms – See full result

 

It pinged from London at a slightly laggier 183 ms. Not the fastest of this list, but still within benchmark.

 

Key features include:

 

  • Free SSL
  • 50GB SSD storage
  • Versatile pricing plans
  • SEO services to help sites build a SEO plan
  • A highly technical WordPress support team
  • Where required, support can help fulfilling any GDPR-related data subject requests

 

Their Basic plan starts from £2.43 (36-mo contract) and includes 50 GB SSD Storage, unmetered bandwidth and free SSL.

 

What we didn’t like about Bluehost

 

It’s too bad that Bluehost has only 1 data center (in the US). Although they’ve got fast servers, they could be so much faster if only they built more data centers worldwide, covering a wider range of locations.

 

Bluehost also decided that uptime guarantees aren’t a thing with their services. Some might be okay with this, but to us, that’s pretty sketchy.

 

Learn more about Bluehost

 

 

 

Why Using A Good Web Host Is Key In The UK?

 

With a staggering 94.8% of the population now with access to the internet, and the region’s ecommerce industry booming, it’s an exciting time to be kicking off your own UK website.

 

Last year, ecommerce made up a whopping 20% of all retail sales in the UK. Yup, ecommerce is set to grow by 5.7% annually until 2023.

 

This sort of growth means BIG opportunity. Question is – are you able to catch it?

 

And… How so?

 

Perhaps an affiliate blog? Or online store? Depending on what you’re going for, your site will come with its own specific needs that your host provider will have a chance to address.

 

Maybe you need extra bandwidth for your growing inventory. Or, compatibility with a preferred e-comm platform like Shopify.

 

End of the day, a good host isn’t just a tech platform – it’s a tech partner. The ‘right’ one should support your business’s growth long into the future.

 

That means being flexible and resourceful enough to help you cash into the promising future of UK ecommerce.

 

How might Brexit & GDPR affect web hosting?

 

London as a major hub for now

 

Part of your host decision-making is considering where in the world to host from. Since you want your site to load quickly for your audience, it’s usually best to pick the datacenter closest to them.

 

Good news if your audience is local – London is currently Europe’s largest data center market, and the third-largest in the world! It’s home to local hosts, but it’s a hotspot for big international hosts to set up servers. In fact, it currently ranks #2 amongst the top financial centers in the world.

 

That said… the uncertainty of Brexit is raising lots of questions about its future. Some reports suggest that Brexit is a real threat to London’s role as a major global datacenter hub.

 

Sure, London is highly developed and well-connected. But if, due to passporting and legal complications, the UK isn’t able to sustain EU’s financial services, there could be a big migration of data and services out of London.

 

Then, there’s the question of data residency…

 

For that, you need to understand the VERY important concept of GDPR.

 

What on earth is GDPR?

 

In short, it stands for General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

 

It’s a set of standards that applies to all members of the EU, including Britain for now… including you!

 

It exists to give regular people power over the use of their personal data, and holds businesses more accountable.

 

And – it’s VERY important that your website is fully compliant with it! Non-compliance can land you a very ugly fine.

 

Thing is, Brexit complicates things. When Britain exits the EU, it’ll be considered a ‘third country’ not technically under GDPR. EU organisations will need to take extra-strict measures to make sure all their data transfers to the UK are lawful.

 

“So… I’d need to move my site to a London server??”

 

Well – hope is not lost. The UK’s best bet is to hope for ‘adequacy status’.

 

This basically means the European Commission will assess the UK’s regulations to check that they’re up to scratch. If adequacy is granted, the UK will be able to transfer data much more freely. Unfortunately, this process can only begin after the UK leaves, so all of this is speculation for now.

 

Many predict that the main direction of data movement will be OUT of London and back into the EU, to avoid these cross-border complications. Some large European companies have already started shifting some of their data requirements back home.

 

However, the reverse is also likely – with some British data likely to return home.

 

What else might Brexit affect?

 

  • New hefty import duties and additional VAT means UK products may get more expensive for those outside the UK.
  • Some ccTLD domain names, like .eu, are only available to businesses in the EU. What’ll happen to the 300k+ .eu domains already registered to UK businesses is unknown!

 

You may read up the specifics of GDPR compliance here, we don’t want to bore you.

 

To host inside, or outside the UK?

 

Is your audience mostly in UK?

 

  • GDPR compliance necessary now, very likely still important in the future.
  • Consider hosting from London (should also be faster)
  • Note, if UK is eventually granted ‘adequacy’, it shouldn’t matter where you’re hosting from.

 

Is your audience mostly in EU?

 

  • GDPR compliance necessary.
  • Consider hosting from the EU, outside London (should also be faster)
  • Note: GDPR applies to anyone processing the personal data of individuals in the EU – regardless of where in the world they’re based.

 

For both cases, and if your audience is a mix of UK & EU citizens – you might want to consider a host that has datacenters in both London & elsewhere in Europe. This will give you the flexibility to migrate between them with minimal hassle.

 

The UK has already implemented GDPR into domestic law, so it does look like they’ll still be upholding GDPR, post-Brexit.

 

And so, wherever your audience is, your best bet is to make your site fully GDPR compliant (we’ll explain how in a bit).

 

How does one factor GDPR into choosing a web host?

 

Under GDPR you’re expected to keep data secure, and explain to users how you’re using their data. It’s enforced with hefty fines for any organisations who fail to comply, or suffer serious data breaches.

 

So, a good host will help provide a secure line of defense, they offer:

 

  • Enhanced server security through firewalls and brute-force defense systems.
  • SSL certificates to ensure any data submitted into a web form is encrypted. SSL isn’t required under GDPR, but come highly recommended.
  • Proactive monitoring software or system to track and detect any attempts to hack your website, with a system in place to react quickly in the event of a breach. According to GDPR, any serious data breach needs to be reported to the ICO within 72 hours.

 

Not only are you protecting customers, you’re also protecting yourself and making sure you’re ready to transact with your customers, wherever they’re based.

 

Still, at the end of the day – we can only guess at the implications of Brexit (we aren’t lawyers, only host enthusiasts).For sure, it’s a climate of both potential and uncertainty.

 

Setting your website up with a reputable host that offers very strong security features, can only be a good place to start.

 

What Makes A Good Web Host for the UK?

 

Most people just want basic web hosting that works. However, there are huge differences in brands and it’s essential to pick a web host that suits your needs in order to have a successful online business.

 

There are a few things that a web host must have for us to consider them good – here are a few so you’ll know what to look out for.

 

1. Speed

 

If your web hosting is slow to respond, it could cost you thousands, maybe millions in lost potential sales. We want a fast web host that can at least meet the requirements of the Core Web Vitals!

 

core web vitals

 

It’s measured using 3 metrics: Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS), Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), and First Input Delay (FID). Out of these 3 metrics, the latter two are highly dependent on loading speed!

 

2. Speed where your target audience is

 

You need to get web hosting that responds to requests from your targeted audience FAST, so be sure to pick a web host with good response times in your audience’s region.

 

According to thinkwithgoogle, websites should be fully loaded in under 1 second, otherwise the bounce rate for your site goes up to a whopping 32%!

 

32% of users will bounce if page load time takes up to 3 seconds

 

This is why Bitcatcha’s unique server speed checker shows you response times taken from 10 countries around the globe!

 

3. Price

 

We want to strike a nice balance between low prices and good web hosting. Pick a host that can provide you with the features you need at a price you’re comfortable paying!

 

4. Customer service

 

Complications can occur when you’re dealing with websites, and it’s nice to have a team of experts dedicated to helping you solve your problems. Be sure to pick a web host that has a good track record in customer support.

 

5. Uptime guarantee

 

Your site will be useless to you and your audience if it constantly goes down. We want to look for a web host that can least provide us with a 99.8% uptime guarantee.

 

6. Security

 

If your web hosting has poor protection against malware and hacks, you’ll be leaving your website and data wide open for attacks. Pick a host that has a strong track record in security, malware and hacking protection.

 

7. Features

 

It’s always nice to get more than you paid for in terms of features. Some web hosting brands might provide more features but they might not be the fastest. Pick a web host that has a nice balance of essential features, speed, and price.

 

What Are The Types Of Web Hosting?

 

You’re this close to knowing everything you need to know about web hosting! All that’s left to do is to learn all about the differences and nuances of the types of hosting services available, and you’re practically a bona fide expert on the topic.

 

This might all sound mundane, technical and even boring, but believe me it’s highly important. If you select the wrong type of hosting service, you probably won’t realize it until much later when your site starts picking up traffic.

 

Then, you’ll realize that you’ll need different sorts of resources for your website, but it’s too late to back out and you’re stuck paying for a service that doesn’t quite do your business justice.

 

Take it from us, because we’ve made that mistake before.

 

Let’s jump in and have a look at the different types of web hosting services available, so you don’t make the same mistake we did.

 

1. Shared hosting

 

Shared web hosting is exactly what it sounds like. You’ll be sharing server space with a bunch of other users on the same server, with the resources split evenly among everyone.

 

This is by far our most recommended web hosting type, as it’s great for general purpose use, and actually performs surprisingly well if you go for a reliable brand that takes no nonsense from errant users.

 

It’s simple, uncomplicated, perfect for first timers thinking about dipping their feet in building a website. Most of them are really quite affordable too, which is always a plus in our books.

 

The only problem with shared web hosting is that rogue users might (intentionally or not) take up too much resources, causing slowdowns for everyone else sharing that same server.

 

However, as mentioned earlier, pick a reliable brand that takes no nonsense from their users (like SiteGround), and you’ll be fine!

 

2. Cloud hosting

 

While shared web hosting hosts multiple websites on a single server, with cloud web hosting, your website will exist across multiple servers – a cluster of servers, to be exact, in the cloud.

 

This means that the provider can literally choose other servers to load up your site from, if a particular one is under stress or is facing performance issues, which ensures stable, consistent, site load speeds!

 

Users usually upgrade from shared hosting to cloud hosting once they feel that their website has outgrown the resources that shared web hosting provides.

 

How would you know if it’s time to upgrade?

 

Well, when you’re allocated bandwidth is constantly being used up due to heavy traffic, or if your web hosting provider straight up complains and TELLS you to do it, then yeah it’s time to upgrade.

 

Aside from it’s obvious speed benefits, cloud web hosting provides users with a whole lot more features than shared hosting, such as balanced load, better security and easy scalability.

 

However, the downside is the price. Good things don’t come cheap, and cloud web hosting is unmistakably, good.

 

3. VPS hosting

 

VPS servers, otherwise known as Virtual Private Servers, are actually quite similar to the abovementioned cloud hosting.

 

The key difference between these two is that while cloud hosting utilizes several different machines on the cloud, VPS hosting uses one massive physical server which is then partitioned into several different servers.

 

Each one of these partitions act as a dedicated server on its own with its own resources, but at a much larger scale than what a shared hosting server would provide.

 

Faster and highly reliable compared to shared hosting servers, VPS hosting is typically very customizable, easily upgradable, and the partitions can be configured however you want to suit your needs.

 

Since each partition acts as a dedicated server, you’ll enjoy greater privacy and security – you won’t have to worry about resource hogging, traffic surges or privacy breaches from other users.

 

If you’re experiencing heavy traffic spikes on your ecommerce site, or if the website you’re running is particularly resource heavy, you should consider upgrading to a VPS account from your shared hosting server.

 

You’ll have to pay quite a bit more, but we personally feel that the damage to the wallet is actually worth the trade off in performance, stability, security and resources.

 

4. Dedicated hosting

 

For those of you looking for complete control over your servers, or if you just have deep pockets and a deep dislike for sharing, you might want to look into dedicated hosting plans.

 

With dedicated web hosting, you’ll practically be renting an entire server with ALL of its resources, dedicated just for you or your business. That’s the equivalent of booking out an entire restaurant or movie theatre, just for a date.

 

Better make damn sure that date is worth it!

 

Best suited for large enterprises or successful sites with consistently high daily traffic, dedicated web hosting users will have full access to the server, with the ability to configure it to support the exact amount of web traffic required to keep the site running.

 

Its uses include being able to install alternative operating systems for the webserver, or running performance-enhancing utilities like advanced page caching systems which require specific server hardware that only dedicated servers can provide.

 

With its superior speeds, reliability, resources, and most importantly, customizability, they are typically used to support extremely high levels of traffic for ecommerce, media, or publishing sites.

 

However, be prepared to get your kidney familiar with the black market to pay for its services. Dedicated Web Hosting does not come cheap and rightly so, considering you’re literally renting out an entire server for yourself.

 

It might even come with unexpected expenses too, such as licensing for software that are required to get the server running, i.e. Windows, or maybe even cPanel.

 

5. Managed WordPress hosting

 

Managed WordPress hosting is just the bees knees of… well, hosting WordPress sites.

 

If you’re running an enterprise site based on WordPress (and if your wallets are deep enough) we’d always recommend using managed WordPress hosting services.

 

It has all the benefits of WordPress Hosting, but MANAGED!

 

Okay, I realize that doesn’t say much. Let me elaborate.

 

First up, Managed WordPress Hosting isn’t all that much different from regular shared hosting, except that you’ll get to enjoy all of the perks and none of the drawbacks – always fast, backed up, and secured!

 

All you have to do is sort out the initial set up, and since it’s literally managed, you can just kick back and sip on a cocktail while the experts work on keeping your site well oiled and running smoothly.

 

You won’t need to worry about WordPress updates, because they’ll manage that for you. Security concerns are forgotten because, well, they’ll manage all your security updates. You won’t even need to lose sleep over optimizing your site because it’s… managed!

 

If something goes wrong, don’t panic – these services usually will have WordPress experts as support to sort everything out for you because… managed!

 

You get the idea by now.

 

The only note about managed WordPress hosting is that you might not be able to install the plugins you want, and it’s kinda damaging to the ol’ wallet.

 

Which Type Of Web Hosting Is Best For You?

 

So, we’ve covered how to determine a good web hosting service, the types of web hosting available, and the benefits of picking a provider with a data center in the UK.

 

Before you go bragging to all your friends about your newfound expertise in web hosting, let us do you the favour of stopping you right there, cause we’ve yet to talk about which type of web hosting is suitable for YOUR website.

 

First up, you’re going to need to know what kind of website you’re looking to build. By doing so, you’ll know what sort of features you’ll need, the amount of resources required, and all the little extras that are required to run your website.

 

Decide if the website you want is going to be a:

 

  • Professional blog
    Looks like you’re trying to build a name for yourself in a niche with a specialized blog. Maybe you’re looking to build an income from a blog through affiliate marketing. Perhaps all you want to do is start a blog to trash talk your most hated celebrity.
     
    Keep an eye out for web hosting providers with dedicated WordPress support, 1-click WordPress install, WordPress site optimization, and really anything and everything WordPress related.
     
    If you’re looking to go BIG with your blog, managed WordPress hosting would be great for you, like Kinsta; if you’re just looking to build a simple blog, a WordPress-endorsed shared hosting provider would do just fine, like SiteGround.
  • Online store
    Ecommerce is all the rage these days, and you’ve got the perfect product that will revolutionize life as we know it! Start an online store and before you know it, BAM, instant billionaire!
     
    You’ll want to consider reliable web hosting services with added security, payment integrations with services like PayPal, shopping cart software, the likes of that. Most importantly, your eCommerce website must be fast!
     
    Depending on the traffic you’re expecting, a good shared web hosting provider like SiteGround should be able to cover all your needs – in fact, SiteGround is our #1 choice for best eCommerce web hosting!
  • Digital portfolio
    So you produce amazing work. So what? Everybody knows that you’re not a true professional in your craft unless you have a digital portfolio for your business, whether it be in photography, music, woodworking, or even miming.
     
    Think about stuff like whether the provider has enough space for you to host all of your work. If we’re talking about something like videography, you know it’s gonna be resource heavy, especially in regards to storage and bandwidth.
     
    A shared web hosting service like A2 Hosting with unlimited storage AND bandwidth should just be right up your alley!
  • Personal website
    Some people just want to build personal sites to keep friends entertained, or to journal their precious memories without depending on a certain social media platform that eats your privacy for breakfast.
     
    If that’s you, that’s totally cool. You’ll want a provider that has easy setup, inexpensive, yet still provides you with all the resources and support you need.
     
    Look no further than shared hosting offered by Hostinger. They’ve also got a kickass site builder that’s really easy to use!
  • Public or private forum
    Looking to gather like-minded people to discuss everything under the sun regarding your favourite passion? Reddit not doing enough for you?
     
    Build a forum! You’ll get to invite friends and get them to drag their friends to discuss topics about motorcycling, gardening, DIY projects, or anything that enters that ol’ noggin of yours.
     
    Look out for a hosting provider that allows you to easily upgrade your plan or purchase resources separately in the future. Forums can start out small, but they can grow really fast if they pick up traction, so best find a web hosting service that can cater to those demands and keep your forum up and running at all times!
     
    You can start off with shared web hosting, but might want an option to upgrade to cloud/VPS hosting in the future – SiteGround would be a good choice here.

 

So, which type of web hosting is best for you?

 

Quite frankly, we don’t have the answer to that. Each one of these services serve a different purpose, and there really is no “best” web hosting service, only the one that works better for your business or website.

 

For those that are just starting out or are looking for an affordable option to host your website, you just can’t go wrong with a shared web hosting plan. Just make sure that the service comes with good features, knowledgeable support, and is able to handle the traffic you’re expecting for your site.

 

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Verdict: Which Web Hosting Is Best For The UK?

 

Here is a recap for the very best host for UK websites:

 

WORLDWIDE
SPEED

SPEED
IN UK

PRICE
(GBP/MO)

SiteGround

A+

4 ms

£7.99

Hostinger

A+

54 ms

£4.49

Kinsta

A+

10 ms

£20

 

There will never be an absolute right answer, but you’ll want to be sure your chosen host meets the following criteria:

 

  • Secure
    Effectively helps defend your site from hackers and malware, and aids you in GDPR compliance.
  • Excellent speed
    Earns at least an A+ or A rating on our Bitcatcha speed test.
  • Support
    Provides 24/7, effective support.
  • Reliability
    An uptime guarantee of 99%.
  • Value for money
    Balances the features you need with a fair price.

 

Whether you’re searching for the web hosting to stretch your penny, the best services to suit your needs, or maybe something that lies somewhere right in the middle, you can be sure to find something that caters to your business from these excellent brands.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

1. Which is the best web hosting for the UK?

 

SiteGround would be the best web hosting provider for the UK. They’ve got a London data center, GDPR compliant, premium features, and services great for all types of websites – all at a fair price.

 

2. Which is the best web hosting for small business?

 

All web hosting brands featured in this article are great for small business websites. If your site experiences fast growth with an immense increase in traffic, you’ll need more resources and reliability to keep your business up and running. Consider upgrading to cloud hosting from SiteGround for their speed and reliability, or ScalaHosting VPS plans for scalability.

 

3. Can I host a website for free?

 

Yes. There are plenty of free web hosting services around that you can utilize for your website. However, they come with performance restrictions and ads displayed on your website (which you have no control over). If you’re looking to actually build traffic and generate revenue through your site, we would strongly advise against going for these free services.

 

4. How much does web hosting cost?

 

Expect to pay an average of £36 to £540 per year for shared web hosting services – excluding domain and SSL. Domains would typically cost you £2.99 – £100 a year, while SSL can cost anything from as little as £15 up to £250 per annum. These can build up to cost quite a bit, so we would highly recommend a web hosting service that offers both domain AND SSL for free, like SiteGround or Hostinger.

 

5. What is the cheapest and best web hosting service?

 

Hostinger is the best web hosting you can get at a budget. At only £2.89 a month (with their 48 month plan), you’ll enjoy a free domain and SSL, unlimited bandwidth, 20GB SSD – more than enough for small or personal websites.

 

6. Which is better, Bluehost or GoDaddy?

 

If you’re building a WordPress site targeting the US, Bluehost would be the preferred web hosting choice. If it’s a non-WordPress site with a global audience, it’s better to pick GoDaddy. Note that SiteGround would be the best choice for both of these purposes – they’re recommended by WordPress and have 6 data centers worldwide.