As an Australian, I’ve rounded up some of the best WordPress hosting services available in Australia. By choosing WordPress, you’ll be joining the largest website platform in the world. In fact, 34% of all websites on the internet (including this one) use WordPress as their platform of choice. Let’s dive in!
WordPress.org Vs WordPress.com, What’s The Difference?
WordPress.com is a free blogging platform similar to Tumblr, Blogger, or Medium. It allows users to create a personal blog with no upfront cost. However, this may be a limiting choice for users. Firstly, it gives users a subdomain like joesblog.wordpress.com instead of joesblog.com which may be seen as unprofessional, particularly for small businesses. Secondly, WordPress.com doesn’t offer a large library of themes, plugins, tools, or SEO advantages, nor does it offer ad overlays.
In contrast, WordPress.org allows users to host their own website and access 10,000’s of free themes, plugins and more. This makes it a far superior choice.
Did you know that WordPress.org recommends three preferred web hosts for those making a WordPress website? This is good news, as it takes a lot of the guesswork out of the picture. Instead of doing hours of research, we can get the information straight from the horse’s mouth. These providers have been vetted and tested by WordPress.org themselves. That’s why I’ve used them as my top 3 picks!
- High Uptime and Fast Loading Speed
- Reliable Security
- Seamless WordPress Integration
- Unmetered Bandwidth
Top 7 Best WordPress Hosting Services in Australia 2023
1. BlueHost: (#1 WordPress Recommended Pick)
BlueHost comes in at number one on my list, and is also the top recommendation by WordPress.org, a position it has held for the past 14 years. BlueHost meets all of WordPress’s requirements, which include the latest PHP version, MySQL 5.6 or greater, and HTTPS support.
In addition to being WP recommended, BlueHost has a 99.99% uptime, 600ms load times (from Sydney), 50GB SSD storage, unmetered bandwidth, charges in AUD, 1-click WordPress install, and 24/7/365 support.
Although BlueHost doesn’t have any Australian based servers, it still delivers fast speeds in all major Australian cities. To make up for this, BlueHost includes a free domain name (for 1 year) and a free SSL certificate for life. These are just some of the reasons why I and 2,500,000 others use BlueHost.
All of this is available for the price of $5.57AUD/mo. It’s highly recommended!
2. DreamHost: (#2 WordPress Recommended Pick)
Moving onto my next recommendation for WordPress compatible web hosts, we have DreamHost. This provider is rated as WordPress’s second recommendation for web hosting, just after BlueHost. DreamHost has been a top pick by WordPress since 2004, and it meets all of WordPress’s hosting requirements.
DreamHost offers an unlimited amount of disk space, 99.99% uptimes, free domain, 1-click WordPress install, free SSL, and unmetered bandwidth. However, in my experience, the speed of DreamHost’s servers can be a bit slower, particularly for Australian-based websites. Despite this, DreamHost’s servers are still pretty good.
As for pricing, their beginner plan is only $3.82AUD/mo! Unfortunately, they don’t offer billing in AUD.
3. SiteGround: (#3 WordPress Recommended Pick)
SiteGround is the third recommendation on WordPress’s list of web hosts, and has been a preferred provider for WordPress users since 2016. Although SiteGround may not be as well-known as some of the larger players, they have some fantastic offerings for users of any CMS.
SiteGround’s WordPress shared hosting plan includes 99.99% uptime, 10GB SSD storage, free SSL certificate, and 24/7/365 phone support. What really sets SiteGround apart, however, is their extremely fast load times (around the 300ms range in Australia). This is due to SiteGround’s server locations in Singapore, which provide less latency to Australian-based websites.
Two downsides to SiteGround, however, are that they don’t offer a free .com.au or .com domain for new users and their renewal price can be quite expensive (starting at $4.95AUD/mo). Nevertheless, it is still a great web host.
More Top WordPress Compatible Web Hosts
Although WordPress recommends only three providers on their recommendation page, there are plenty of other excellent web hosts that work seamlessly with WordPress.
Below are some other notable providers that I think you’ll love. After all, who doesn’t appreciate a little variety?
4. A2 Hosting
While A2Hosting isn’t officially recommended by WordPress, it works seamlessly with WordPress and can be considered as a great web host. With their 1-click WordPress installs, users can get a website online in just a few minutes. Additionally, with their data centers located in Singapore, they are able to provide blazing fast speeds to Australian websites.
A2Hosting does not have any data limits for their beginner plan; new users get unlimited SSD (super-fast) storage and unlimited bandwidth. However, A2Hosting does not provide free domain names. Nonetheless, they do offer a free SSL certificate for all new websites.
Another standout shared hosting provider is Inmotion. Much like SiteGround, Inmotion gets overshadowed by the bigger players, but they can’t be ignored.
Inmotion offers an unlimited amount of storage/bandwidth, free .com.au/.com domain, free SSL, 1-click WordPress install, 99.94% uptime, and speeds of around 800ms to Australian websites. Unfortunately, Inmotion does not have any Australian or Asian-based servers. However, users can opt for a Cloudflare CDN for lightning-fast speeds.
If you plan on scaling your website in the future, Inmotion also offers VPS, Cloud, and dedicated hosting options too!
No list of the best WordPress web hosts in Australia would be complete without mentioning some of the top Australian-based providers. One such provider is Panthur web hosting, which has been offering Australian-based WordPress hosting services since 2009. However, it’s worth noting that Panthur was recently acquired by US-based Hostopia.
When it comes to their plans, Panthur offers a basic WordPress plan at a very affordable $5AUD per month, which is perfect for smaller websites. This plan includes 2GB of storage, 10GB of bandwidth, unlimited email accounts, and unlimited SQL databases. Although their offering may be somewhat limited, the fast speeds that Panthur delivers are hard to ignore.
Last but not least on our list of the best WordPress web hosts in Australia is another top-notch Australian-based provider, DigitalOcean. For those who require more data and bandwidth, DigitalOcean provides 10GB of SSD storage and unlimited bandwidth. Additionally, they have servers based in Sydney, which are also carbon-neutral.
Thanks to their locally-based servers, DigitalOcean is capable of delivering lightning-fast speeds to Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, and even Perth, with an average response time of around 400ms.
As for pricing, their monthly plan starts at $7.42AUD per month when based on a 1-year plan, which is very reasonable for an Australian-based provider.
What We Looked For In Each Provider
To help you make an informed decision when choosing the best WordPress web host in Australia for your needs, we wanted to provide some additional insights into what we looked for when researching each provider.
Best WordPress Web Hosting Australia Picks 2019
In addition to looking for WordPress-recommended web hosts, we also considered other standout benefits such as fast speeds, server locations, and ample storage space, among other factors.
As we mentioned above, we prioritized WordPress-recommended web hosts at the top of our list, as it takes a lot of guesswork out of the equation. After all, who better to take a recommendation from than WordPress.org themselves? Their recommendations carry a lot of weight, as these providers are currently being used by millions of website owners around the world.
Moreover, as WordPress is the most widely-used CMS, they are able to conduct rigorous A/B testing on various metrics such as speeds, uptime, and more to determine objectively which provider is best suited for their platform.
1-Click WordPress Installation
Another key consideration for us was the ability to install WordPress with just one click. This feature is essential for new website owners, as it allows them to get their website up and running in just a few minutes. Once signed up, simply select your domain name, and then proceed to install WordPress on your website.
Again, we found that WordPress-recommended hosts were more likely to offer this functionality as a standard feature. To see just how easy it is to make a website with these hosts, check out our guide, which is tailored specifically for Australians and small business owners.
WordPress Trained Customer Support for Reliable Web Hosting
When searching for a web host, it is crucial to find one that has a customer service team with a comprehensive understanding of WordPress. While many web hosts have a customer service department, not all of them have staff that has been adequately trained in WordPress. Without this training, customer service representatives may not be able to provide the necessary support to resolve issues specific to WordPress, which can lead to frustration and result in customers looking elsewhere.
To help you avoid this problem, I have handpicked web hosts that are well-known for their WordPress expertise, ranging from the old versions to the latest Gutenberg update. From personal experience, I have found that WordPress-trained staff have an exceptional ability to identify incompatible plugins, bloated CSS themes that slow down websites, and caching optimization options.
Reliable Uptimes for Web Hosting
When it comes to hosting a website, one of the most critical factors to consider is consistent and reliable uptime. Uptime is the amount of time that a website runs successfully online without server outages or maintenance. As a general rule, users should find a host that guarantees a minimum uptime of 99.80% for their servers. This means that your website will only experience a few hours of downtime throughout the year, rather than days or even weeks.
Some web hosting providers, such as SiteGround, provide live tracking tools that keep them accountable for their uptimes, and users can see a live feed. This feature ensures that your website remains online, accessible and available to users, even during peak traffic periods.
Fast Speeds for Web Hosting
In today’s digital age, slow websites can significantly impact conversions, causing lost website traffic, leads, exposure, and revenue. Visitors expect instant load times for videos, content and web pages, and if a website is slow, users are unlikely to stick around. To combat this, it’s vital to select a web host that provides fast load times.
All web hosts on my list offer shared web hosting, yet still, provide excellent speed performance, even in Australia. Furthermore, I have also checked for any caching optimization, server architecture, and CDN implementation, which are crucial for fast and efficient web hosting.
Sufficient Storage & Bandwidth for Web Hosting
When selecting a web host, it’s crucial to consider storage and bandwidth allocation as the utilities of web hosting. Server storage is the amount of allocated space provided to store digital files online, such as content, products, videos, photos, and PDFs. Bandwidth is the amount of data that transfers the content across the internet.
Web hosts may offer “unmetered” or “unlimited” amounts of bandwidth, which is generally enough for a website that receives around 10,000 visitors per month. In my list, I have selected web hosts that offer adequate storage space to host a WordPress install plus a large number of files and sufficient bandwidth to run a small business website efficiently.
One important consideration is the location of the server. If you are based in Australia, it is highly recommended to choose a provider that has servers located in the country. This will enhance the speed of your website and improve its SEO relevance, as there will be less latency. However, some of the larger providers on the market may not have servers located in Australia, but rather in nearby countries such as Singapore. To work around this issue, you can use a Content Delivery Network (CDN) which allows you to host your files in multiple locations across Australia, such as Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.
Backups & Security Features
Another essential consideration when choosing a web host is the availability of backups for your data. If you plan to run an online store or blog, it is crucial to have regular backups of your website. Most hosting providers offer daily, weekly or monthly backups depending on your package, so be sure to check what is included in your plan. In addition to backups, it is important to ensure that your hosting provider has robust security features such as multiple redundancies, fail-safe power supply, 24/7 manned data centres and built-in anti-spam and firewall processes.
Pricing in AUD
While not a crucial factor, it is worth checking whether the web host charges in Australian dollars. Some providers may charge in US dollars, which can result in unexpected price increases when the bill arrives. To avoid any surprises, try to pick a provider that charges in AUD and includes GST figures.
Email Platform/ Forwarders
Another consideration is the availability of email dashboards and email forwarders. While email dashboards can be clunky and old-fashioned, email forwarding is a useful alternative. With email forwarding, you can set up a custom email address and forward all emails to your Gmail, Outlook or Yahoo inbox. This is a great way to give the perception of a professional email while still using a free email platform. Many web hosts will also allow you to create an unlimited number of email addresses within your account.
Subdomain/ Add-on Domain Functionality
If you plan to host multiple website domains or subdomains, be sure to check whether your web host offers this functionality. While some providers may require you to upgrade to a more expensive plan to host multiple domains, most will allow you to host multiple subdomains such as blog.joesplumbing.com.au. While this is more of an advanced feature, it can be useful if you plan to scale or grow your website or business in the future.
Beginner Friendly Interface
Finally, it is important to choose a provider with an easy-to-use interface. For those who are new to website building and coding, having an intuitive and user-friendly dashboard can make all the difference. Look for providers with a cPanel that is easy to navigate and use, to ensure a seamless experience for beginners.
How to Increase the Speed of Your WordPress Website
After building numerous WordPress websites, I have refined the process of creating a website that loads quickly.
While selecting a web host is undoubtedly a crucial decision, there are several other factors to consider that can elevate your website’s performance when done correctly.
Below are the optimisations that I apply to every WordPress website that I create.
Compress and Resize Images
I have emphasised the importance of this step on my blog on multiple occasions. Website builders must always serve compressed or appropriately sized images.
This is crucial because a 5Mb image looks identical to a 300kb image on a mobile device or desktop computer.
If your homepage or blog post contains several large images, the user will have to load these hefty files, which can significantly slow down the website’s performance.
To resolve this issue, you can utilise free online tools like png2jpeg, compressjpeg, and imageresizer. There are also WordPress plugins that can compress already uploaded photos on your website.
Limit the Number of Plugins
I confess that I was guilty of downloading numerous plugins to solve minor issues for an extended period.
While plugins do address the problem, the plugin code adds to the theme, which can dramatically reduce the speed of a WordPress website.
So, when starting, think carefully about the plugins you install and whether or not you truly require them.
Most of the time, I have discovered that I do not require the image slider or table plugin since most of these features are already incorporated into WordPress.
Invest in a Premium Theme
Do you know what slows down a website the most? It is not the web host, plugins, or images; it is the theme you choose.
Since WordPress has a plethora of free themes to choose from, many new website creators avoid investing in a theme. However, I have discovered that this is a major blunder.
Although free themes are fantastic, they are free, implying that they usually do not get regular updates, lack support, are not coded effectively, and are HTML-heavy.
Premium themes, on the other hand, are usually very lightweight, visually appealing, optimised for speed/SEO, and come with excellent support. Although an investment of $50 -$100 may seem substantial, it will save you hours of frustration.
Choose a WordPress-Recommended Web Host
Choosing a WordPress-approved and recommended web host implies that you are receiving the finest possible hosting for your website.
Furthermore, as they are WordPress-recommended, their staff are typically knowledgeable about the software and can assist you with nearly any issue you may encounter.
Installing a Caching Plugin/ CDN
To enhance the performance of your WordPress website, consider installing a caching plugin. This will ensure that a pre-rendered version of your website is delivered to visitors, thus speeding up the website.
Moreover, when visitors return to your website, the data will already be cached in their browser, resulting in great speeds regardless of their location in the UK.
Limiting Tables & Videos
Limiting the number of videos and tables on your website can significantly improve its loading speed. While tables and videos are great for engaging your audience, having too many can slow down your website, causing visitors to leave.
To ensure that you optimize the use of tables, TablePress is a great starting point, along with the WordPress GutenBerg built-in table.
What Is WordPress?
If you’re considering using WordPress, it’s essential to know what it is and how it works.
WordPress is a free website platform software, also known as a CMS, that was founded in 2001. It allows users to publish posts, pages, videos, and other content with the help of third-party themes and plugins that improve website functionality.
Think of WordPress as the website builder of Wikipedia – it is an open-source platform monitored and managed by thousands of professional developers worldwide. To learn more about the best website builders for Australian users, check out our guide!
WordPress uses a PHP and MySQL infrastructure that makes it lightweight and easy to edit. Its popularity has made it the leading website builder globally, with even larger websites like the BBC, TechCrunch, and the White House using the platform.
Managed WordPress Hosting vs. WordPress Hosting
When it comes to choosing between managed WordPress hosting and regular shared web hosting, many clients and friends often wonder which is better.
Managed WordPress hosting is an excellent option for those who want a hands-off experience, as it allows the web host to take care of all the responsibilities, such as updating WordPress to the latest PHP version and updating plugins and maintaining the website’s performance.
However, these plans usually use the same shared servers as traditional hosting packages, which means that users can expect similar customer support, speeds, and uptime.
With regular WordPress hosting, users have more control over their website, which means they will have to update their own plugins, themes, databases, and WordPress updates. While it may seem complex, it only takes a few clicks to perform all of the upgrades, and it can save you a considerable amount of money in the long run.
Shared Web Hosting: Is it a Good Choice for Your Website?
If you’re considering web hosting providers, you may be wondering if shared web hosting is the right option for your website. In this article, we’ll explore the benefits and drawbacks of shared web hosting, so you can make an informed decision.
In general, shared web hosting can be an excellent choice for new website creators. It allows you to access large data centres with state-of-the-art hardware and server architecture, without the high cost of VPS or dedicated hosting. By using the economy of scale principle, providers can offer affordable pricing, making it a cost-effective option for small businesses, blogs, or online stores.
For example, this very website is hosted on a shared web hosting plan with BlueHost, and it provides excellent speed, uptime, customer support, and backups at a fraction of the cost of other hosting options.
However, as with any hosting solution, there are downsides to consider. As you’re sharing a server with other website owners, you’re susceptible to their actions. If another website on the same server uses a lot of the RAM and CPU, it can slow down the performance of other websites, as they’re not getting the server resources they need.
Additionally, shared servers are more vulnerable to security breaches. If one website gets affected, it could potentially spread across the entire server. Although this is rare, it’s essential to be aware of this risk when opting for shared web hosting.
Despite these downsides, shared hosting can still be a reliable and effective option for many website creators. As someone who has used shared hosting for seven years with multiple providers, I can confidently say that I haven’t encountered any significant issues that would make me want to upgrade to a VPS or dedicated option.
In conclusion, shared web hosting can be an excellent starting point for your website. Although there are risks to consider, the cost savings and accessibility of high-quality infrastructure can make it an attractive choice. Hopefully, this guide has provided some valuable insights into shared web hosting, and you can make a well-informed decision for your website’s needs. If you have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to leave a comment below, and I’ll be happy to assist you. Also, if you’re launching a new WordPress website, feel free to share the link, and I can provide tips on how to improve its speed or design.