You want to build an Ecommerce store and you finally chose WordPress and WooCommerce as the software to run it. Now you need to find a web hosting company. Oh, while navigating on WooCommerce’s website you come across the official WooCommerce hosting. Should you use their trusted partners? In this article I’m going to review their packages and help you determine if this is a good option for you and your online store.
Official WooCommerce Hosting: Who Are They?
When you check out their website you see the following official WooCommerce Hosting parnters:
This is hosting for new stores. These companies offer plans for small stores that are inexpensive.
This is hosting for new stores that want managed hosting, or stores that are growing larger and need more support. These plans are more expensive than the ones in the previous plan. However, the higher costs could be worth the added features.
This hosting is for large Ecommerce stores that need high-performance hosting. These plans will be the most expensive.
- WordPress.com VIP
- WP Engine
Official WooCommerce Hosting: Getting Started Plans
Let’s review the Getting Started plans for the official WooCommerce hosting to see if these are a good option for new stores.
These web host companies are a great choice for slightly-tech savvy individuals. I say that because you don’t have to do much backend work to install WordPress or install the required WooCommerce plugins. These hosting companies will do that for you with a couple of clicks.
Looking at Bluehost’s WooCommerce package you have two options to choose from: Standard and Premium.
The first item you must watch out for is the price. The “low” price WooCommerce advertises on their website is if you choose the Standard plan for a 12-month agreement. By default Bluehost is going to choose the 36-month agreement which costs more. And you only get the “low” price for the first 12 months out of the 36 month agreement. After that you pay the regular rate. Finally, you have to pay for the entire hosting package price when you sign up.
Now looking at what their packages include it’s pretty regular for what these types of hosting companies offer, like specific plugins and website analytics. The benefits of the Premium plan over the Standard plan is plugins for appointments/schedules, subscriptions, product customization, tax management, and other features. If you want to open an online store that needs to set appointments or offer subscriptions then the Premium plan is the one you should choose.
My Review: Choose the 12-month agreement and then determine which plan is right for your needs. I think both plans are a little pricey per month but Bluehost does offer good customer support.
With SiteGround’s WooCommerce package you have three options to choose from: StartUp, GrowBig, GoGeek.
Just like with Bluehost, to get the “low” rates from SiteGround you have to sign up for an annual plan paid in advance. At least with SiteGround you aren’t pushed to agree to a 36-month term. They suggest doing 12 months.
Reviewing their package options, I like how the company provides free CDN, free email, a free SSL certificate, and will do daily backups. However, to get better features you have to pay.
The StartUp package offers very little disk space in my opinion. If you have many images and/or videos, you will fill up the 10GB space allotted to you quickly. The GrowBig package is better with 20GB of disk space and you get a Staging area so you can test out changes. Finally, the GoGeek plan offers the most disk space and more features.
My Review: Overall, I think SiteGround’s packages are a good deal. However, I suggest you spend the money and buy the GrowBig package so you will have enough space to grow. I think this company is a good choice for those new to the Ecommerce web hosting. SiteGround offers a happy medium between price and services offered.
With GoDaddy’s WooCommerce plan you have only one option that costs $20.99 a month.
What also makes GoDaddy different than the other official WooCommerce hosting partners is that their package is stuffed to the gills. You not only get them to do all the heavy-lifting for you (meaning GoDaddy will install WordPress and WooCommerce), but you get a CDN and premium WooCommerce extensions. Oh yes, you get to use non-free WooCommerce plugins like AutomateWoo for free!
Finally, you get a staging environment for testing, unlimited visitors and storage, daily backups, and 24/7 customer service.
My Review: For the price and the services offered, GoDaddy provides an decent package in my opinion. The only hesitation I have is that I’m not excited about the company as a whole. GoDaddy had some questionable customer service in the past and I always avoided them because of that.
Official WooCommerce Hosting: Growing Stores Plans
Let’s review the Growing Stores plans for the official WooCommerce hosting to see if these are a good option for new stores wanting Managed Hosting, or stores that need more room and features.
Again, these web host companies are a great choice for slightly-tech savvy individuals because the companies install WordPress, WooCommerce, and do all the backend work for you.
Frankly, the Ecommerce plan from wordpress.com is expensive at $45 a month, and that’s if you choose the Annual pricing. If you decide to pay monthly the price jumps up to $59 a month. However, if your store is bringing in a good revenue per month and needs the features of the plan then the cost isn’t that bad.
The features of the Ecommerce plan are pretty good. You will get Google Analytics, premium themes and design, access to over 50,000 plugins, automated backups, site restores with one-click, and integrations with top shipping providers to name a few.
My Review: This is a good option if you want to host your online store on wordpress.com. Although the plan is pricey, the features offered are worth the price.
This official WooCommerce hosting partner calls itself: “The Best WooCommerce Hosting Platform… PERIOD…” That’s a big claim so let’s see if that is true.
So this hosting company is different because they offer plans based on the number of WooCommerce installs or the number of visitors your site will get. The entry plan is called the Woo Entry Plan which costs $45 a month or $450.00 a year. Looking at what you get with this plan you get 30GB of storage, the ability to install three different online stores, JetPack Security, email, CDN, and several other features.
My Review: I think Pressable is a great option if you have multiple online stores and want to administer all from one plan. The features you get for the price are excellent so I think the return on investment would be worth it.
This partner offers Managed WooCommerce with several excellent features for growing stores, such as StoreBuilder.
Nexcess offers six plans: Starter, Creator, Merchant, Standard, Growth, Enterprise. Starter has the least amount of storage at 30GB and you can online install one store on the plan. Plus, you have to monitor bandwidth usage as you only get 3TB of bandwidth a month. Thus, if you go over your allotted bandwidth you will have to pay an overage fee. Per the website their Creator plan is the most popular and I can see why. It allows you to install three stores, comes with 60GB of storage, and 5TB of bandwidth.
As for pricing, the costs range for $95 a year for the Starter plan all the way up to $4,995 a year for the Enterprise plan. Again, you have to pay the yearly costs all upfront.
My Review: I like the types of plans offered from this company and it seems there’s a plan for every type of store. The prices are competitive, along with the features.
When looking at the Getting Started and Growing Stores hosting companies it appears there are great options for all types of Ecommerce stores. The choice isn’t going to be easy for you, the store owner. You will have to research the customer service provided by these companies, along with the features. Finally, you will have to determine is the prices are competitive with other web hosting companies and see if those companies provide better service and/or plan features.
This article originally appeared on my personal website: bcgates.com