As an Australian-based website design and development company, it might seem odd that we’re here to suggest to the fine folks in India that they choose a Singaporean hosting company. What’s the deal with all this globe-hopping rigamarole? Well, honestly, the best internet service in Australia comes from Singapore-based datacenters. We’ve been testing for years and have consistently arrived at the conclusion that the flat-out speediest web experience is usually delivered from that part of the world.
If it was as simple as just picking a Singapore web host – any web host – this would be a real short article, but that’s not how life usually goes. When it comes to Singaporean web hosting companies, there are bad ones, good ones, and better ones. We’re going to do all we can over the next few minutes of reading time to help you avoid the first choice, learn about the second choice, and do business with the third.
- 1 We’re Not Just a Bunch of Bleating Yahoos
- 2 Without Further Ado – Four You Can Rely On
- 3 Our Process to Rank the Best Web Hosts
- 4 And Then We Rolled Up Our Sleeves – the Testing Process
- 5 Drum Roll Please – The Final Four Best Web Hosts
- 6 Final Analysis
We’re Not Just a Bunch of Bleating Yahoos
Here’s a question to ponder. When it comes to such a critical decision as who hosts your website, would you rather listen to the manufactured opinion of one of those review sites that seem to exist solely to compliment every web host and cash as many commission checks as possible or an established industry voice that has completed actual testing over many years and hundreds of clients? We hope you went with the second choice.
There’s nothing wrong with an affiliate-style business arrangement. It’s been a legitimate way of earning money online for a long time. The issue we have is that somewhere along the way a few too many of these reviewers got confused and started to lose sight that the point was to provide honest, useful views, not to just write whatever was needed to get the click.
We started out years ago – 15 to be exact – as a full-service web design company without a whole lot of knowledge of the ins and outs of web hosting. What we didn’t plan for was that so many clients wanted us to host their site after it was designed. After some initial hemming and hawing, we realized it was a natural extension of our original business. These days we are responsible for hosting more than 400 client websites.
In our search for the best hosts, we have amassed years worth of data based on hundreds of hours of monitoring speed and uptime. We’re not guessing when we make the host recommendations below. We’ve measured their performance under real world conditions on existing websites. Choosing a great host has never been so easy for you. Keep reading and all will be revealed.
Without Further Ado – Four You Can Rely On
Sure, you could read the next four lines and run with one of those choices, but what about all the hard work we put into the rest of this article? Okay, we’re only kind of serious about that attempt at guilt. But surely you want to know why we chose them, right? Here they are in order from best to almost best:
- A2 Hosting
How did we arrive at these four? The selections were a direct result of our years in the trenches of finding the best web hosts for our clients. It doesn’t get much more real than that. Experience, and lots of it, made it exceedingly easy to pick four off the top of our heads, and then we dug into the data.
Our Process to Rank the Best Web Hosts
If you’re serious about your online presence, resist the temptation to to go with the absolute slam-bang cheapest dollar amount you can find. The problem with the truly deep discounters (we’re talking less than a dollar a month for service) is that they will likely cost you real money down the road. This is where the sketchy spam businesses hang out and, trust us, Google notices and will assume you’re part of that crowd. Unfortunately, you’ll be penalized with a 97th page search result listing. That’s just an estimate – it could be worse.
To make a comparison to the rent you’d pay for a brick-and-mortar business, the $5 to $20 (or more – we’re talking about you Vodien) a month paid for reliable web hosting is a small price indeed. Here are the factors we believe contribute to good hosting service.
Speed: We don’t think it’s too much of an exaggeration to say, without this, nothing else matters. We tested server speed and applied an A+ to D score to each host.
Useful Speed: It makes sense to have the best speed where your audience is. For example, a website targeting an Indian audience won’t care much if it’s speedburner fast in Italy.
Uptime: Another biggie. This is the actual percentage of time a hypothetical visitor can successfully navigate to your website without running into gremlins or other page-loading errors. There’s no reason a host should fall below 99.5%. Ever.
Security: Another non-negotiable area. Sometimes it seems the hackers are winning, but they won’t if your web host takes data security seriously.
Support: Good web hosts offer excellent customer service and technical support. Unless you live in Perfectville, your website and/or their server are going to get fouled up from time to time (VERY infrequently if you stick to our four hosts). When you reach out, someone better be there to answer.
Backing Up: See point #5. Things go wrong sometimes. That’s a promise from life. When they do, a host that performs regular, automatic backups will be your best friend.
Bandwidth and Storage: Obviously, you want as much of both of these as you can hold in your grubby, little hands. For websites with big files – images, audio, video, massive monthly traffic – this is even more important. Remember those super cheap hosts we mentioned earlier? They are legendarily skimpy in this area.
Price: You’re probably tired of hearing our diatribe against the REALLY cheap hosts, but just store it somewhere in your brain that they have to cut corners somewhere. We look for value and the ability to only pay for what you need through a good selection of tiered service plans.
And Then We Rolled Up Our Sleeves – the Testing Process
There are plenty of easy ways to complete the evaluation process. One is to just pretend like you did it and pull some numbers and rankings out of your hat. A second method would be to read other reviews and change a few words to make it seem original. Yet a third method – the one we prefer – is to buy actual hosting plans and build test websites. We’re not pretending to be customers. We ARE customers.
For our money, the last method is the only real way to conduct a legitimate review.
For each of the four recommended hosts, we put them through tests of server speed and uptime, and even made up reasons to call customer service, even if there was nothing wrong. For the server speed, we pinged from eight diverse geographic locations around the world to come up with an average. The standard set by Google is 200 ms. In this case, a lower number is good. Any host that came in below got an automatic A in that category.
Drum Roll Please – The Final Four Best Web Hosts
We hope the preceding discussion about our method of testing was worthwhile and established our credibility as web host reviewers. But let’s get to the red meat. Here are our favorite web hosts in order.
- 20 GB SSD storage
- 24/7 technical support
- Premium backup included
- 25,000 monthly visits
- SuperCasher included
If reputation counts for anything, and it does, Siteground would come out on top. No surprise – those fine folks lead our list. Our customer service experience was especially notable. These weren’t just schlubs off the street reading responses from a tech manual. They actually knew what they were talking about.
This web host blew away the Google server response time standard, scoring a 148.38 ms average. That’s so fast it’s like the link loads before you even click it. Telepathic internet anyone?
Quality, loads of features, and blinding speed. That’s going to cost a fortune, right? How does $8 a month strike you? You’ve got that much in your car drink holder.
Pros: Every bit of good karma this company has sown in the world comes right back to them. This is a web hosting experience you won’t regret.
Cons: Expect to find some storage/bandwidth limits with the cheapest plan. Don’t worry. You can upgrade.
#2. A2 Hosting
- Unlimited bandwidth and SSD storage
- Optimized for WordPress
- FREE website migration
- Any time money-back guarantee
Our #1 recommendation sets a high bar for other web hosts to compete against, but A2 Hosting proves it’s not impossible. Great features, speed, customer service, blah blah blah. Wait a second. Back up. We assume customer service is where it should be by reputation alone. Our installation and website build was so easy we couldn’t even make up a credible reason to call.
The only real difference between A2 and Siteground is the server speed test. A2 clocked in at a 176.13 ms average. Still lower than the Google standard but a little higher than Siteground. The difference between the two numbers is so infinitesimal that normal human eyes won’t notice.
Pros: For CMS junkies who like WordPress or Joomla, A2 Hosting is focused on you.
Cons: Really, truly, unlimited everything! It might be too much for your heart to handle.
- 99.9% guaranteed uptime
- 45 day refund period
- Unlimited bandwidth
- Great reseller tools
Hostgator might be right up there with GoDaddy (absent from this list) as one of the most recognized web hosts. While they could have spent two more seconds conceptualizing that silly mascot, their actual web hosting services are top notch. Reliable, fast, and they toss in a wheelbarrow full of features that some other hosts like to upsell to you one at a time.
The other thing we like about Hostgator is their vast offering of highly flexible plans covering every possible permutation of website a customer might need. Whether you’re a certified Techno Nerd Deluxe who runs to the mailbox every day for the latest issue of Dedicated Server magazine or can barely turn on a computer, it truly doesn’t matter. What you can’t do for yourself, their responsive tech support will take care of you the right way.
Pros: Create and host as many WordPress sites as you want on a single plan.
Cons: Did we mention the mascot is a blue alligator?
- 20 GB SSD storage
- Up to 10 websites
- 99.9% uptime guaranteed
- SpamGuard Basic included
Customer service is a big deal and, sadly, Vodien crashed and burned with us in this area. While it might not be reflective of the company in general, you can’t let a single customer fall through the cracks. We waited 12 hours for a response to our technical question! Entire wars have been fought in less time. Don’t believe us? Check out the Anglo-Zanzibar War in 1896.
As far as features, Vodien stacks up well against all the other hosts on this list. So, what’s the problem? How about a little thing called price. To enjoy all the perks included in Siteground’s $8/month plan would cost you $50/month. While the server test came back at a lightning quick average of 156.25 ms, a score second only to Siteground, it hardly seems like it’s worth an extra $42 each and every month. Once again, the two scores are so close no human will notice the difference.
Pros: SSD storage options with premium plans.
Cons: Maybe their customer service is okay and we just hit them on a bad day. But then again, maybe not.
As might be clear to you already, not much separates the contestants for our best web host recommendations. Each has an area(s) of specialty that gives them a bump up in the review but, statistically, there’s not much difference. Any of these four should deliver excellent results.
As already mentioned, prices – except for Vodien – fall within a tight range for entry level plans. If you twisted our ear, we’d give Siteground the top spot. They seem to have a powerful combination of price, speed, and support.
One thing is for sure, all these web hosts put the Google speed standard to shame.