Best web hosting for eCommerce: 7 providers to trust your business with
In this article, I've shortlisted the 7 best eCommerce hosting solutions. Additionally, I'll guide you through the features you should be looking for and show how these eCommerce web hosts perform in those areas.
With eCommerce sales growing each year, it’s an interesting topic to cover – after all, monetary success is at stake. Yet, your online store's audience’s size and location are not the only factors to consider. Performance and security are something to consider too.
If your provider is slow, so is your online store. If your provider is down, so is your online store. these translates to a bad user experience and potential loss of profits.
Performance alongside many other reasons like ease of use, security prove why picking the best hosting provider for eCommerce is important. And that's what I'll explore in this article.
So, what are the top options to trust your online store with?
Best eCommerce web hosting: ranked
- SiteGround – best eCommerce hosting overall
- Hostinger – cheapest eCommerce hosting
- Liquid Web – mission-critical hosting for eCommerce
- A2 Hosting – speed-focused web store hosting
- DreamHost – reliable online store hosting
- Bluehost – best beginner-friendly host for WordPress stores
- InterServer – best affordable online store hosting
Not sure which one is best for you? I have a list of things to consider when picking the right eCommerce hosting option for you. At the same time, if you wish to build a site yourself, check out our best eCommerce website builders for the job. Some of the frontrunners include big names like Shopify, Wix, and more.
1. SiteGround – best eCommerce hosting overall
|Features||Free SSL, staging, backups, caching|
|Best for||Premium-class online store hosting|
SiteGround ticks all the boxes when it comes to online store hosting. Fast – check, powerful – check, reliable – check. Easy to use, functional, scalable – check, check, check. Focused on WordPress hosting, SiteGround is not the cheapest eCommerce hosting provider on the list, but you do get the best service possible.
All sounds nice, but what are exactly the key eCommerce features that put SiteGround on this list?
- All the business essentials are covered. Email accounts are there for marketing, and you also have SSL enabled automatically for protecting sensitive data that’s being exchanged.
- The eCommerce hosting plans include additional features for your website to help your online store grow. That includes free shopping carts with installation, free eShop transfer, multiple physical server locations across three continents, and unmetered bandwidth.
- The entire platform is focused on speed and security. For starters, SiteGround develops its own tools for making WordPress sites the fastest possible. That’s custom PHP setup, 3-level caching, Nginx web server, and on-site optimizations. Security does not let down either – constant monitoring, Web-Application firewalls (WAF), daily backups, SSL certificates are there for 360° security.
- The functionality of the control panel is outstanding. Most importantly, you get an easy-to-use staging area for testing out and developing in private. You can also add multiple members of your team to collaborate, set up security, speed, and other configurations all in one place.
- Additionally, SiteGround has impressive customer support. Help is available 24/7 through various channels such as live chat, phone, and ticketing. As for the agents, they are helpful, fast, and skilled.
To put it briefly, SiteGround covers the essentials and includes some extra bling that will make your online store faster and more secure. Not to mention the functionalities for easy management.
SiteGround prices start at $3.99/month and go all the way up to $10.69/month for shared hosting. Alternatively, very large online stores can choose Cloud hosting starting at $100/month.
No matter what you pick, all plans include: free SSL, daily backups, custom caching, and strong security. But not all plans are cut the same.
- StartUp at $3.99/month comes with 10GB storage for 10 000 monthly visits. It also lacks site staging and Ultrafast PHP setup. For me personally, that’s not an option for an online store.
- GrowBig starts at $6.69/month with 20GB storage for 100 000 monthly visits. You can create multiple sites, use staging, Ultrafast PHP, and collaborators features. That’s the best plan for starting an eCommerce business.
- GoGeek for $10.69/month includes 40GB storage for around 400 000 monthly visits with all the perks. Additionally, you get a white-label panel option if you are hosting sites for others. That’s an option for established online stores or big up-and-coming projects.
- Cloud hosting is pricey, starting at $100/month. But it’s the overall best option for the biggest of eCommerce projects. Starting with 40GB storage and 5TB bandwidth on 4 CPUs and 8GB RAM server, you can host stores with 10s of thousands of products that get huge levels of traffic daily.
Apart from the StartUp, all plans offer great value for different eCommerce sites. GrowBig is great if you’re just getting started, while GoGeek will affordably fit in bigger stores. Meanwhile, Cloud hosting is the option for the biggest of projects. By the way, there might be a discount going on, so hurry to get even better prices.
All SiteGround performance metrics are top of the class – it is reliable, stable, and able to load websites very fast.
2 months and counting, SiteGround remained up 99.99% of the time. That’s just 7 minutes of downtime in total.
Response time fluctuated between 267ms and 175ms, ultimately averaging at 217ms. That’s a very stable result.
But that’s just the server itself. For online stores, the second most important metric after uptime is how fast pages are loaded.
SiteGround loads a fully built website with WooCommerce set up in 1.1 seconds.
Considering that 3 seconds is the maximum you should aim to not reach, that’s an excellent result. And that's without all the possible speed optimizations on.
Meanwhile, Largest Contentful Paint is 872ms. It’s one of the metrics that search engines use for ranking purposes. Keeping it under 2.5 seconds is a strong recommendation.
Nevertheless, SiteGround fits into all of the benchmarks with very reliable and speedy performance.
By the way, speed depends a lot on where your site is hosted. The closer it is to the visitor, the more optimal the performance will be. SiteGround lets you choose from the US, Europe, Asia, and Australia datacenter locations.
Altogether, there are really few options for eCommerce sites that can compete with the well-rounded service of SiteGround. It’s one of the fastest and most functional providers available in the market right now.
- Very fast site loading speeds
- Staging environment for WordPress
- Server location choice
- Strong security features
- Rates are on the higher end
- Domain is not included
2. Hostinger – cheapest eCommerce hosting
|Features||Free domain, SSL, fast LiteSpeed servers, weekly backups|
|Best for||Cheapest eCommerce hosting services|
Hostinger is the most budget-friendly option that’s suited for eCommerce. Cheap price or not, you won’t need to sacrifice the quality. While the platform is simplistic in functionality, you can expect some of the fastest page load times, as well as the highest reliability.
Hostinger might be simplistic on the features, but it sure has some strong eCommerce essentials:
- Hostinger has 1-click installations for a variety of content management systems. While WordPress with WooCommerce remains the most popular choice for online stores, you can also choose Magento, PrestaShop, or Joomla.
- To ensure the best security for your online business, you get SSL and weekly backups together with firewalls and server monitoring.
- Performance is the primary focus of the provider. All websites are hosted on servers that are equipped with LiteSpeed web servers. During the tests, this setup proved to be the fastest you can get. Plus, it comes with its own caching that’s easy to configure.
- Hostinger has 7 data centers worldwide – the US, UK, Netherlands, Lithuania, Indonesia, Brazil, and Singapore. You can get your website hosted close to the target audience. If your website is close to the visitors, it can reach optimal speed – thanks for not needing to travel huge distances.
- For any problems that might appear in your way, Hostinger’s customer support is available 24/7 via live chat.
Altogether, Hostinger is the best eCommerce hosting provider if your budget is tight, but performance is among the top priorities.
Hostinger’s pricing starts at $2.59/month for shared plans. Meanwhile, Cloud hosting that starts at $9.99/month is excellent for bigger online stores.
All Hostinger packages come with weekly or daily website backup, SSL certificates, email accounts, and a server location choice.
At the same time, I cannot recommend all plans for eCommerce sites as equals:
- Premium ($2.59/month) comes with 100GB storage and can support up to 25 000 monthly visitors. It also adds a free domain for a year. This plan is great if you have lots of products, but the traffic is still very moderate. Best plan to start selling online, in my opinion.
- Business ($4.99/month) with 200GB storage and 100 000 visits/mo support also adds a free domain, CDN, and daily backups. Great plan for a popular niche online store.
- Cloud hosting starts at $9.99/month and includes daily backups, CDN, and best of all – dedicated resources. This means better performance and security. Starting at 200GB storage on 3GB RAM and 2CPUs server, it’s a great option for big and popular online stores.
Hostinger is the cheapest eCommerce hosting provider, yet still, be mindful about the plan that you choose. Shared hosting will be best for smaller sites, while Cloud plans are excellent powerhouses for the big and popular.
I tested Hostinger performance on shared hosting plans, and it did impress. Very much flawless uptime and fast page loading are what I got.
Over 2 months, Hostinger’s server was up and online 100% of the time. Sure, not the lengthiest monitoring period so far, but a very good first impression nonetheless.
Response time averaged at 511ms, which is better than the industry average of 600ms. Although nothing too groundbreaking.
What was groundbreaking is the speed at which Hostinger loaded a fully built website with eCommerce functionality.
That was 936ms. Let me clarify that – less than a second.
Largest Contentful Paint is even less – 849ms. This means, Hostinger fits into all of the benchmarks and is overall one of the speediest providers.
So both speed and reliability considered, Hostinger has little to no competition.
In short, if you’re looking to start an eCommerce business, Hostinger is the best option on a budget. At the same time, it delivers A+ performance and a good user experience.
- Cheapest prices for the value and quality
- Platform designed with focus on speed
- Servers in 7 locations worldwide
- Higher fees for short-term subscriptions
- Cheapest plan does not include a free domain
3. Liquid Web – mission-critical hosting for eCommerce
|Features||Managed VPS, professional control panel, server-level firewall|
|Best for||eCommerce stores that need mission-critical reliability|
If every second of your eCommerce business means $$$, Liquid Web is the one for you. It’s a powerful managed VPS option with a 100% uptime agreement backed by SLA (service level agreement). That’s a guarantee of reliability and speed.
For mission-critical businesses, these are the key features Liquid Web has in its pockets:
- Liquid Web offers a fast entrance into the market via a smooth one-click install process with the most popular CMS – WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla.
- You get managed VPS hosting that’s launched for you with the chosen software configurations. This means that the otherwise complex VPS technicalities are dealt with without you needing to do anything yourself.
- You get a professional control panel for both essential and advanced configurations. From domain names and file manager to custom firewall options – all are available.
- Servers are fully secured by the provider, and you do get SSL certificates to protect your website. Other features include custom firewalls, off-site backups, and 24/7 server monitoring.
- Customer support is top-notch – Liquid Web commits to answering all live chat messages in 59 seconds..
So really, Liquid Web's the service is designed for the biggest and the most important eCommerce projects with full support ready 24/7.
Liquid Web pricing
Surprisingly, Liquid Web is not a bank-account-ripping provider, thanks to a huge introductory discount. The cheapest plan costs just $25.00/month with a 2-year subscription.
All plans come with 10 TB bandwidth, InterWorx control panel, SSL certificates, and backups. The main difference between the plans is the size of the SSD disk space, RAM, and number of CPUs.
- The cheapest plan for $25.00/month includes 2GB RAM, 2CPUs, and 40GB SSD.
- The most expensive option can be scaled to 16GB RAM, 8CPUs, and 200GB SSD for $105.00/month.
Note that Liquid Web offers a big introductory discount, so it pays off to get the longest billing period possible. After that, the price will increase.
Liquid Web pricing
Just as expected, Liquid Web does deliver on its guarantees – it’s fast and reliable.
We monitored Liquid Web for around 17 days, during which it had 0 outages. That’s a 100% uptime result.
Response time averaged at 521ms, which is a good result. However, keep in mind that what you get is basically a bare server, and further optimizations can be implemented by you.
But even a bare server is fast. Liquid Web loads a WordPress site with eCommerce functionality in 1.2 seconds.
Furthermore, the Largest Contentful Paint is 1 second. This leaves more than enough room till the max recommended 2.5 seconds.
If you’d like to improve this speed, even more, it’s very much possible. All you might need to do is implement caching, for example.
Altogether, Liquid Web is fast and reliable by default, which makes a good foundation for any eCommerce site.
To conclude this all, if you have (or plan on having) a big and popular eCommerce store, Liquid Web is among the best options for it. The reliability and security are guaranteed.
- Premium managed VPS platform
- Great introductory discount
- 100% written uptime agreement
- Higher fees after the introductory period
- More advanced platform
4. A2 Hosting – speed-focused web store hosting
|Features||Free SSL, cPanel, software optimization|
|Best for||Speed-focused hosting for online stores|
A2 Hosting has both affordable plans and more premium options that are all generously packed with advanced features. At the same time, its Turbo-labeled plans are essentially designed for eCommerce projects thanks to the top-tier hardware and software combo implemented on them.
Let’s just throw out the cheaper options altogether. If you need the best web hosting for eCommerce, Turbo is the way to go. And this is what you get with them:
- Top-of-the-class hardware. All the websites are hosted on AMD Epyc servers with NVMe disks. That’s one of the fastest and most reliable combos available on shared plan right now.
- Software configurations that are speed-oriented. You get fast LiteSpeed web servers with 3-level caching for both static and dynamic elements of your site. Besides being among the fastest web server technologies, LiteSpeed takes it even further by adding its own caching engine.
- A2 Optimized for automatically reducing image size as well as optimizing the code. With such an option, the technicalities of manually going through resource-hogging files are eliminated.
- You can choose a server location between three continents with the exact locations being in Michigan, Arizona, Amsterdam, and Singapore.
- A2 Hosting offers plenty of customer support options, including a ticketing system, phone support, and live chat.
If speed is your biggest aim for your eCommerce business, A2 Hosting really has it nailed down to a tee.
A2 Hosting pricing
The prices for A2 Hosting start quite affordably at $2.99/month, but the true value is with the Turbo plans, that start at $6.99/month.
All of the plans will get you free SSLs, email accounts, and strong server security. Also, all plans include unlimited storage except for Starter that has a 100GB limit.
While storage is generous, I’d skip on the 2 cheapest plans, Startup ($2.99/month) and Drive ($5.99/month). They don’t have all the perks that make A2 Hosting worth it.
Turbo Boost ($6.99/mo) and Turbo Max ($12.99/mo) both come with the same powerful features: the LiteSpeed webserver, unlimited bandwidth, storage, domains, automatic backups, and SSLs.
Turbo Max is more expensive as it will be hosted on a server that has fewer users on it. So while you still have to share the resources with others, you’ll get more of them.
Overall, I’d say Turbo plans are what make A2 Hosting one of the best eCommerce hosting options. Choose Tubro Boost to start with and scale as needed. Also, check if there’s a discount available – we are always trying to get the best deals for our readers.
A2 Hosting performance
A2 Hosting delivers reliable but quite average-speed server results yet compensates with a very fast page load time.
In over 2 months, A2 Hosting was down for 7 minutes in total. That’s a very good 99.99% uptime.
Meanwhile, the response times were quite bumpy and settled at 597ms. That’s a very average result in the market.
All that is compensated by fast page loading times. A2 fully loaded a WordPress website in 1.4 seconds. Very speedy if we are targeting 3 seconds max.
Largest Contentful Paint was a bit lower, 1.3 seconds. This leaves a lot of wiggle room for occasional slowdowns that are known with shared hosting.
Hyped a lot, A2 Hosting delivers a worthy performance. At the same time, it’s not miles ahead of the competition.
To put it briefly, A2 Hosting is a reliable, fast, and well-equipped provider that focuses on speed and security. It’s a classic option for good eCommerce hosting.
- Fast and reliable performance
- Premium hardware
- Server location choice
- Premium-level prices
- Does not meet the overblown promises
5. DreamHost – reliable online store hosting
|Features||Free SSL, domain, domain privacy, BoldGrid builder, backups|
|Best for||Cheap and reliable hosting for starting an eCommerce business|
DreamHost is a leading eCommerce hosting provider with a focus on WordPress sites, strong security, and ease of use. It comes with generous resources, and you’ll have your store running in the shortest amount of time possible, thanks to a well-designed user interface.
So, what key eCommerce features exactly make DreamHost fit for such an important task?
- User interface and tools are designed with beginners in mind. WordPress installation is literally one click, while there’s also a premium website builder for WordPress that you can use to kickstart the development process.
- If you want to use DreamHost for a WooCommerce store, you’re in luck – this provider has specialized WooCommerce plans that have pre-configured WooCommerce.
- Security and privacy are top-notch. You get SSLs, automatic backups, domain privacy, and a web application firewall to protect your site on all fronts.
- You can choose between multiple customer support channels, such as live chat (5:30 AM - 9:30 PM PT), phone support, and 24/7 email tickets
DreamHost is among my favorite providers. While not as popular as others, it delivers constantly reliable service that’s as smooth to use as it gets.
When it comes to shared plans, DreamHost has 2 affordable options starting at $2.59/month. Alternatively, you can pick DreamPress managed packages that start at $12.00/month for bigger sites.
No matter what you pick, bandwidth is unlimited, and you get all those strong security and privacy measures – automatic backups, firewall, domain privacy, and so on. Free domain is included too.
- Starter ($2.59/month) comes with 50GB storage and 1 website limit. It also doesn’t include email accounts. This makes the plan not exactly perfect for online stores, but if you have just a couple of products to sell “on the side”, it’s a cheap option to make it work.
- Unlimited ($3.95/month) is perfect for small-to-medium eCommerce sites. Unlimited websites, storage, and emails combined with the security features are just excellent.
- DreamPress plans that start at $12.00/month additionally have 1-click staging and are based on a more powerful Cloud infrastructure. For bigger projects, it’s definitely an option worth considering.
DreamHost is affordable in itself, but it also is one of the cheapest options if you’re looking for a yearly or monthly subscription. This makes it a good option to try out without committing for long.
Adding to the affordable prices and nice features, DreamHost's performance is also good. Server performance is almost flawless, while page load times are speedy.
In around 2 months, DreamHost had just a 1-minute outage. That’s >99.99% uptime and the second-best result on this list.
Response time was also very speedy, averaging at 231ms. Slightly bumpy, but a very good result nonetheless.
Page load times were good, but nothing too remarkable if we compare it to other providers here. It fully loaded a WordPress site in 1.6 seconds.
Largest Contentful Paint was 1.4 seconds. This fully fits into all of the benchmarks. At the same time, there are faster providers on the list.
So when it comes to performance, DreamHost has very powerful servers, yet page speed is just good.
There's one limitation of DreamHost though – it's only fit for those eCommerce stores that have their main audience in the US. That's where all of provider's servers are located.
DreamHost still remains one of the best hosting providers for eCommerce, thanks to its straightforward approach, excellent features, and steady performance.
- Affordable and flexible pricing
- High level of privacy and security
- Reliable and very speedy performance
- Servers in the US only
- Limited customer support
6. Bluehost – best beginner-friendly host for WordPress stores
|Features||Free SSL, domain, staging, cPanel|
|Best for||Beginner-friendly hosting|
Bluehost is one of the most popular shared hosting providers, focusing mainly on WordPress. It has a solid reputation, and even WordPress recommends it for its significant contribution to the CMS. The main attraction, however, is how easy to use and functional Bluehost is.
So which key eCommerce features make Bluehost special?
- To kickstart your online store, your WordPress website can be set up automatically upon your first login to the account.
- You get a stunning dashboard that has the most important features. You can use it to manage domain names, emails, and WordPress, security, and performance.
- Not only does it come with seamless WordPress integration, but the installation also comes with staging functionality. This allows you to create a copy of your eCommerce site and test out changes privately.
- Bluehost gives you a customized cPanel too. That’s great for free email accounts and more advanced management tasks.
- When it comes to customer support, Bluehost offers you plenty of options to choose from – go ahead and pick between live chat, phone calls, ticketing, and email.
To put it shortly, Bluehost really has all the resources you need to build an eCommerce store easily.
Bluehost prices are in the mid-range of shared hosting, starting at $2.95/month. You can also pick Managed WordPress, which starts at $9.95/month for bigger stores.
All plans have the essentials to start a website – free domain for a year, SSL certificate, and email accounts.
- Basic ($2.95/month) has 1 website and a 50GB storage limit. Enough for a small online store.
- Plus ($5.45/month) removes the website and storage limits. That’s the best plan for stores with many products yet average levels of traffic.
- Choice Plus ($5.45/month) additionally includes domain privacy and automatic backups for a year that are good security measures.
- Pro ($13.95/month) comes with dedicated IP, domain privacy, and automatic backups for the whole term.
- Managed WordPress starts at $9.95/month with all the additional security features.
Overall, smaller stores might not need anything above Plus. However, Managed WordPress also looks really good for bigger projects that need added security.
Bluehost services are focused on user experience rather than speed. That means it delivers steady performance results but does not compete with other hosts here.
Over 2 months, Bluehost had 6 outages that put uptime at 99.99%. A very good result, if that even needs commenting.
Response time was also speedy, averaging at 361ms. There was a big bump, after which performance improved significantly.
Now, the page loading speed wasn’t as impressive. Bluehost loaded a WordPress site in 1.8 seconds.
The Largest Contentful Paint was also 1.8 seconds. This means Bluehost fits into all of the benchmarks. Nonetheless, that’s one of the slower results on the list, if you can even call it like that.
So performance considered, Bluehost delivers pretty strong and steady results. Especially considering the reliability. At the same time, it comes with a limitation – servers are only in the US. Good news if you're targeting North American audiences, and a no-no if you have your visitors elsewhere.
All in all, if Bluehost is the best option for beginners. It’s an all-inclusive option that helps you out every step of the way towards creating and managing a website.
- Exceptional user interface and functionality
- Reliable uptime
- Free domain, SSL, and email accounts
- Does not focus on speed
- Servers in the US only
7. InterServer – best affordable online store hosting
|Features||Free SSL, unlimited websites, backups, disaster recovery|
|Best for||Affordable no-fuss hosting|
InterServer is an affordable, fully configurable option for your eCommerce hosting needs. It has enough resources to have a small eCommerce site running efficiently. Plus, the billing is very attractive for low budgets.
So, what are the main features that make InterServer worthy of this list?
- With this hosting provider, your site can go live in just a couple of minutes. Additionally, it also supports multiple payment gateways and makes it easy to both have a full-fledged eCommerce site or to sell only the selected products on your site.
- Unlike other popular platforms, InterServer limits the number of users. It uses only 50% of its server capacity. This ensures that there are enough resources to offer the best eCommerce hosting for small business without experiencing any issues.
- You get a standard and easy-to-use interface for hosting management. InterServer is among the providers that still use cPanel.
- Security is very strong. InterServer takes care of all essentials such as SSL, backups, firewalls, malware scanning, and even disaster recovery.
- InterServer offers plenty of customer support options, such as 24/7 live chat, phone, email, and Messenger
To put it briefly, InterServer is a no-fuss option that takes care of everything for smooth eCommerce hosting.
With a discount, you can get InterServer for as low as $2.50/month with monthly, 6-month, and yearly plans. Other than that, it has 3 shared hosting options as well as VPS to scale.
InterServer’s shared hosting is very straightforward. Each plan includes the same features, yet the server resources with each are bigger. With all plans, you get: free SSL, automatic backups, security features, unlimited websites, storage, and emails.
- Standard ($2.50/month) is the most universal option for small to medium online shops.
- Boost 2 ($9.95/month) allocates more server RAM and CPU to handle more traffic.
- Boost 4 ($19.95/month) gives out even more server resources. At the same time, it’s too pricey, in my opinion. You better off with VPS if you consider this plan.
It’s best to grab the Standard plan and scale as needed. With the discount, you get 1-year worth of hosting for just $30. Keep in mind that renewal is $7, but you can pay monthly.
InterServer delivers steady performance results, although it is not the most powerful provider out there.
In 3 months, InterServer was down for a total of 10 minutes. That’s an almost flawless 99.99% uptime.
The average response time was 662ms which is above the market’s average. It was also quite bumpy, peaking up to 961ms.
That’s among the reasons while page load speeds are nothing to shout from the roof about. InterServer loaded WordPress website in 2.3 seconds.
Largest Contentful paint was also 2.3 seconds. Both measures fit into the benchmarks, yet there’s not much wiggle room left.
So while InterServer is very reliable, speed is nothing impressive.
Altogether, InterServer is a no-fuss option when you need simple and reliable provider. It’s great for businesses that consider selling online as a side-project.
- Flexible billing at affordable rates
- Classic cPanel interface
- Strong security features
- Slower server performance
- Customer support is not the greatest
Best eCommerce hosting: final recommendations
Plenty of web hosting providers claim to offer the best eCommerce hosting. Few of them are actually capable of delivering hosting that’s good enough to trust your business with. My team picked and tested the top options.
Here’s a recap of the strengths of each:
- SiteGround is a premium web hosting option oriented towards WordPress sites. It’s a powerful platform with many tools fit to help eCommerce sites.
- Hostinger is a cheap option yet delivers some of the best performance you can get. It’s also suited if you have a specific audience to target thanks to broad server location choice,
- Liquid Web is a managed VPS platform with a 100% uptime guarantee for mission-critical sites. The hosting might be powerful and advanced, but it’s easy enough to manage.
- A2 Hosting is a performance-focused host with cPanel management interface. It’s a classic option for those that need steady performance and no-fuss management.
- DreamHost offers flexible and affordable billing as well as strong security features. Combine it with a simple control panel, focus on WordPress, and a premium website builder plugin for the best beginner option.
- Bluehost is an all-inclusive and user-oriented platform. It doesn’t focus on speed but compensates with generous management features and other tools for WordPress sites.
- InterServer offers cheap no-fuss plans that you can pay for monthly. It’s a good option for tighter budgets as well as users that need some extra security.
How to choose the best eCommerce hosting?
Without a hosting provider, your website won’t be online. Without a good hosting provider, it won’t do your business any justice. Hosting lays the foundation for a fast, reliable, and smooth shopping experience – some of the cornerstones of eCommerce success.
There are a couple of things you can consider that will make choosing a good hosting for your online store easy.
Step 1: Estimate website needs
Before making an online store, you consider the most important aspects of your website in advance of choosing a hosting provider. These are the three things that you should really look into:
- The number of products – the more you have, the more pressure you’ll put on the server.
- How many visuals will you have – if each product comes with 10s of high-quality photos, the server needs to have a big storage limit as well as more powerful CPUs.
- Traffic – is it a popular store with 1000s of daily visitors, or is it a niche boutique that serves a very specific audience? The more popular you are, the more pressure on the server, the bigger it needs to be in terms of resources.
eCommerce websites are generally heavy. They’re full of images that showcase products and have plenty of pages for different product categories. If you end up choosing WordPress and WooCommerce for your online store, know that all WooCommerce sites are loaded with product images and banners.
Additionally, you’ll need some extra plugins or integrations for your website for it to be fully complete. You might think that WooCommerce is all you need, but to truly get the most out of your website, not only do you need to consider SEO plugins to bring in organic traffic to your website, but also additional design integrations that make your website pleasing to the eye. All of these not only take up your storage space but also slow down your bandwidth.
Bandwidth is very significant for determining how fast a web page loads on a browser – you don’t want to leave people waiting as they want to shop, now do you? You have to know how much bandwidth your website needs to support all of your product files, pages, and integrations. To make things easier for you, here’s the formula to calculate exactly that:
Estimated bandwidth calculation formula: Estimated number of visitors per month x Average size a page (GB) x Average number of pages visited per visitor x 30
Step 2: Choose a hosting type and plan
After knowing your website’s needs, you need to choose the hosting type and plan.
The most popular hosting types for eCommerce websites are:
- Shared – the cheapest option out of the bunch. It’s suitable for businesses that are just starting out. This type of hosting usually doesn’t have a lot of storage space and the bandwidth is a little limited, but it is possible to sell a couple of merch items.
- Cloud – this type of hosting offers scalability and ease of use, making it very suitable for websites of basically any size. Combined with the ease of use and quite a low price, it is the best for small to medium businesses and business owners with not much web developing skills.
- VPS – the most advanced option when compared to both cloud and shared hosting. This type of hosting is scalable for any size, but a bit more difficult to manage – it is best if you have some in-house developers.
Additionally, there are other hosting types, such as dedicated hosting, but they'll only be needed if you scale globally. For example, such giants as Amazon have dozens of data centers and private servers worldwide by now.
After you pick your hosting type, you can start looking into plans. Here are the features you should focus on the most:
- Storage – the amount of data you can have on your hosting account. Important to choose a plan with plenty of storage space so you could freely add all of your products to your online store and not worry about the limitations.
- Bandwidth – the maximum amount of data that can be transferred between the site, its users, and the servers. It’s important to have quite a lot of bandwidth to ensure the best user experience possible.
- Security – the most important part – you need to make sure that you have all of the latest security features to protect the privacy, details, and files of you and your site’s clients.
- Management features – the ease of use of a hosting provider can definitely make it or break it. Some providers offer the industry-standard cPanel control panel, which is easy to use even for complete newbies. Others have custom control panels. Additionally, staging is a good feature to have on an online store – if you want to make any changes to your site, you can test it out in the staging area without having to worry about stopping people from being able to access your store.
Step 3: Put security first
Your customers will be sharing personal financial details on your site, such as credit card numbers. Among them are sensitive personal details. Assure clients that you have a reliable security system to guarantee a strong layer of protection. Important security features include:
- Sticking to PCI rules
- Installing an SSL certificate
- Preventing distributed-denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks
- Avoiding spam and malware
- Backing up your website
Whether you are selling one or hundreds of products, PCI (payment card industry) compliance is a must. It has established rules on accepting, processing, storing, and transmitting any payment card information known as DSS (data security standards). After all, no customer would want to risk exposing their financial details to cybercriminals.
Step 4: Don't forget the speed
Speed is vital for an eCommerce site. Customers expect your website to load in less than 3 seconds. If you’re slow, it’s easier to simply switch shops. After all, they don’t need to walk big distances around the mall to do that.
Here are a couple of benchmarks to live by:
- Server response time – markets average is 600ms. If you’re under, that’s good.
- Fully loaded time – keeping it up to 3 seconds reduces bounce chances.
- Largest Conteful Paint – it should stay under 2.5 seconds as this measure is benchmarked by Google.
Speed is important both for customers and for search engines if you're planning to get visitors by ranking high on search queries. Overall, it's one of the most important metrics to consider.
eCommerce Hosting vs Platforms vs Web Builders
eCommerce hosting, eCommerce platforms, and website builders vary on the tech knowledge needed, the tools provided, and overall cost.
The combination between a CMS and hosting provides the most control over your website. You can design it beautifully, optimize it for search engines, and tweak it periodically to keep your marketing fresh.
- Pick a content management system dedicated to eCommerce. Magento is a good open-source CMS that is simple to manage. Check out our list of best Magento web hosting providers to see great options for the job.
- Install an eCommerce plugin, like WooCommerce, onto your WordPress website. Here are some of the best web hosting providers for WooCommerce hosting.
- Make sure that the hosting provider is PCI compliant. Online stores require online payments, most often, credit card payments specifically. Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI) is a set of guidelines established by credit card companies to protect cardholders’ information when used online. When picking the host for your online store, make sure that it's a PCI compliant provider.
If you want a site that’s truly yours, the combination of an eCommerce hosting plan and a CMS is the best way to go. It will require some technical knowledge, but it’s the best option for your site.
Website builders are an all-in-one thing. You get hosting, design, and the tools like payment getaways, abandoned cart recovery, and many more to launch and manage fully-rounded online stores. This comes at an extra cost and sacrifice of some independence.
Website builders are costlier because they provide everything you need to have a fully functional online store in no time at all. Go for it if you do not have the time to use a CMS. Some of the best builders for an eCommerce site are Shopify and Wix.
An eCommerce platform is essentially a website builder with tools for eCommerce sites specifically. That’s the most expensive option on the list as they usually have advanced and custom-made billing, marketing, and shipping features. They are easy to use but more expensive and less flexible than CMS.
|Platform||eCommerce hosting||Website builder||eCommerce platform|
|Price||From $2.59/mo||From $2.61/mo||From $3.99/mo|
|Ease of use||Can be very easy or more complicated depending on the provider||Can be very easy or more complicated depending on the website builder||Depends on the platform|
|Speed||Tends to be fast||Tends to be slower||Depends on the platform|
|SEO||Average SEO tools||Above average SEO tools||Depends on the platform|
|Security||Tends to have more security features||Tends to have fewer security features||Depends on the platform|
|Best for||Beginners and small business owners||Creatives and more advanced users||Users looking to run an eCommerce site only|
Best eCommerce hosting FAQs
Which hosting site is best for eCommerce?
The best hosting site for eCommerce on our list is SiteGround. It offers both great performance and prices, not to mention, it also has incredible security features. However, if you wish to determine the best eCommerce hosting for yourself, check out our criteria for picking the best one.
Which type of hosting is best for online store?
The best hosting type for an online store has got to be VPS hosting. It’s the most reliable option, however, it is quite expensive. If you have a smaller budget, I highly recommend looking into cloud hosting.
Is shared hosting good for an eCommerce store?
Shared hosting is good for smaller eCommerce stores, yet bigger sites should better look at managed services or VPS with dedicated resources. Because you share the resources with shared hosting plans, other websites might limit the possibility for your site to grow.
Is WordPress good for an eCommerce store?
WordPress is very good for eCommerce stores. It has the flexibility and tools to customize your shop as much as needed, something that other platforms might lack. Sure, it’s more complex to start with, but many beginners learn it easily.
How much does an online store hosting cost?
There is no standard online store hosting cost. The price of a plan will depend on the resources it provides. The more resources you get, the more money you pay. A valuable hosting provider, however, should give a money-back guarantee. If the plan does not meet your standards, you can reclaim your money.