Many moons ago we started out using GoDaddy as our website host when we switched our site over to WordPress from a custom built ASP.NET based website. Over time the performance of the website suffered, as GoDaddy grew in popularity.
We then switched over to BlueHost. BlueHost was, and still is, recommended on WordPress.org, so we figured if WordPress.org recommended them let’s give them a try. They were actually pretty good…for awhile. Like GoDaddy, BlueHost’s performance unfortunately declined over time. It wasn’t uncommon to have 2-3+ second page load times.
For some, 2-3 seconds may seen acceptable for an average business brochure website, and it was for us, until we got the Linux bug and wanted to try our hand at a Virtual Private Server (VPS). We purchased a VPS from DigitalOcean, read up on Linux, and moved our website over. Oh my word! We never knew what performance was until that day. Just by moving our website from BlueHost to our out-of-the-box, no tuning whatsoever, VPS we were attaining 300-400ms page load times. That’s under a 1/2 second!
You may think this story would end there, but sadly it doesn’t. DigitalOcean was and is absolutely FANTASTIC. We swear by them for hosting VPS’s, but unfortunately we’re not in the Linux system administration business. The effort to tune the servers, patch them with operating system, PHP and MySQL updates, and apply security measures was a fun learning experience… at first. But it got old quickly. We were spending more time tweaking the servers then we did on our websites.
Enter SiteGround. We’ve known about SiteGround for some time, back when we were primarily in the Joomla website design business. They were, and still are, very well known. Besides Joomla, they also offer managed WordPress hosting. We decided to give them a try and moved one of our sites over to them. 600-800ms page load times. Still under 1 second!
We’ve since moved most of our sites over to SiteGround, including this one, and we’re very happy with the results. So much so that we’ve become an affiliate with them and recommend them to new clients who are looking for a hosting company.
(Disclaimer: the above image link is an affiliate link. If you click through and order a hosting package we’ll get a small commission. Not enough to put our kids through college, but it will at least buy us a round of beers. We thank you!)