Best Blog Hosting For Food Bloggers. Every day you see a food blogger asking who they should use to host their food blog. After years of experience in blogging and bad experiences with Blog Hosting, I am here today to share with you the best and the worst hosting for food bloggers.
Hosting For Food Bloggers
It is so hard to find reliable hosting for your food blog. Everyone is trying to sell you Blue Host because the people selling you it makes $75 a sale and want to make money out of you. Then you try a hosting programme that has been recommended by your fellow bloggers and it is beyond terrible.
I wanted to share with you, the good, the bad and the ugly of hosting for food bloggers, that way you can make the best decision and hopefully will not have a nightmare story to share.
Our First Ever Blog Host = Hostgator
I remember when we started out in the blogging universe and who hosted our site. It was Hostgator. We loved their ease of use and how simple it was to start a food blog.
What soon followed was us producing a guide showing people how to start their first blog and to get Hostgator to host it for you. They were the most famous blog host at the time and for the price it cost it was money well spent.
I would call Hostgator the beginner host. Cheap and cheerful, not too much downtime and when your site is at the point of not having a huge amount of traffic it can easily handle what you throw at it.
At the time we had an internet marketing blog, a food blog, a diet blog and a few other small blogs for clients running on our Hostgator account. We probably had about 1000 page views a day at the time and it did what it said on the tin, so to speak.
That was back in 2011 when people were only just getting excited over the prospect of being a blogger.
A year later we left Hostgator.
The reason we left is because we exceeded their plan, they didn’t tell us this and they took our site down. At the time we were on holiday at Disney World and I was recovering from surgery. Not a good time to have that kind of stress and to say we were mad was an understatement. We left quicker than you could say Hostgator and never returned.
Similar horror stories are the norm for BlueHost too. But if you are a brand new blog with less than 50,000 page views a month, they are a good starting point.
- Hostgator Monthly Cost = $5.95
- Recommend To = Newbies
- Sign Up Here
Our Longest Ever Host = Knownhost
We left Hostgator and went with Knownhost on a VPS. What I didn’t like about it from the start is that you didn’t have a traditional live chat if you had a problem. Instead everything was done by email.
Everything worked perfectly, and we were with them for a long time. For both the start of RecipeThis.com and our old diet site.
Then one day I woke up and my worst nightmare happened.
Our emails had been hacked and more than 30,000 spam emails had been sent out via our business email address. Because we were on a different time zone, we couldn’t stop the first few thousand going out, but Knownhost stopped the rest of them that we currently stacked up in our outbox.
But the damage had already been done. Our email address had been associated with spam and from this moment on, sending out emails has been a nightmare. Emails that you think have been sent, don’t arrive at the other end and this looks totally unprofessional to the person waiting on an email.
We later found out that:
Lots of Knownhost accounts had been attacked and they had known about it and not done anything about it. But what made it worse was that they didn’t tell us our emails had probably been blocked and we had the problem of thinking emails were good again when they were not.
We did get the restrictions taken off, but it was too late and now we don’t know if an email has been sent or not.
- Knownhost Monthly Cost = $3.47 Per Month For Shared Hosting
- Recommend To = Those that don’t care about security
- Sign Up Here
After Knownhost = Liquid Web
We left Knownhost in late summer of 2017 and decided to swap it for Liquid Web. We had seen Liquid Web mentioned frequently and they seemed like the best option for a new VPS service. They also recommended Cloud Flare which we were not too happy about but decided to give it a go.
It was okay for a while and then one Sunday we had shock horror to see just 100 people on our site at once. This is unheard of on our busiest day of the week and we just knew something was wrong.
We contacted Liquid Web to check to see if there was an issue to which we were told that it was low hanging fruit, not to worry and that everything was fine. We went through 4 different support staff between the Wednesday and the Sunday, getting different responses from different people.
- One told us we had a problem and that it had been fixed
- Another said that there was problem and he had changed the server settings
- Another said to chill
- Another said they had fixed it
It seemed to get worse as the week went on and finally went down by the Sunday.
In the end we lost a lot of income and we have figured out ourselves that they were only giving us a bit of the VPS we were paying for, relying on Cloud Flare to take the biggest part of the site.
This meant that as we had left Cloudflare that their hosting simply couldn’t handle it.
Either way you look at it, the hosting and the customer service was terrible and we were out as quick as possible.
- Liquid Web Monthly Cost = $58.65 Per Month For VPS
- Recommend To = Nobody
After Liquid Web = Studiopress
We had to pay $243 to an agency to get us moved over to Studio Press as fast as physically possible. This is a big deal when your blog averages a monthly income of $5000 a month and is your families only income.
The monthly cost on Studio Press was not a lot and worked out at $47 a month, what appealed to us is that the hosting had been created with bloggers in mind. We also love the Studio press Themes and it seemed like the perfect partnership.
One thing that troubled me from the start with Studio press is that there is no control of the site from your end. This means that you have no access to a file manager area and instead you just have an FTP file upload software programme instead which is very old school.
They say this is for security reasons.
Overall, we were happy with the service, but to wake up one day and find out that they have been bought out by WP Engine who charge crazy amounts for hosting, is your worst nightmare.
We worked out that to stay with them as part of WP Engine would change our $47 a month fee to $400 a month.
We decided to move on, as did many of our other bloggers that we spoke to at the time.
- Studiopress Monthly Cost = $47 Per Month For WordPress Hosting Without Cpanel Access
- Recommend To = No Longer Available
After Studiopress = WPX Hosting
We joined WPX Hosting as we had seen them recommended online and liked what they did. We looked at their top package for WordPress Hosting which was $99 a month and seemed a fair rate.
What was not explained to us, was that their top package had a limit of 2 trillion bytes and we were hitting 1 trillion at our lowest traffic time of the year. This was in June. Our traffic in December through until March will easily triple this and we realised that even though they could handle our low traffic, they couldn’t handle our high.
We decided to move now, rather than risk downtime later.
- WPX Hosting Monthly Cost = $99 Per Month For WP Hosting
- Recommend To = Those with traffic under 250,000 page views a month
- Sign Up Here
After WPX Hosting = Fast Comet
We joined Fast Comet thinking that what we truly needed was a managed dedicated server. We have only had shared hosting or a VPS in the past and this seemed like a good step up. Especially with the traffic that we now achieve.
Everything looked good and then it happened…..we went down for hours with no explanation why. They said it was not the servers, even though we knew it was.
We were paying for them to manage the server, but they were not actually managing it. This made us rather angry and yet we were there again looking to switch hosts.
- Fast Comet Monthly Cost = $139 Per Month For Dedicated Server
- Recommend To = Nobody
After Fast Comet = In Motion Hosting
We switched from Fast Comet to In Motion Hosting. Everything started off okay and then we went to our Google Webmaster Tools. It turns out that we were getting lots of 500 server errors while we were sleeping.
We contacted In Motion Hosting and they informed us that they could only fix the issue if we contacted them when the 500 server errors were happening. This meant that we would have to be awake 24 hours a day and have a time machine. As we all know Google Webmaster Tools is 2 days behind with stats.
This was also creating a damaging effect on our search engine optimisation.
- In Motion Hosting Monthly Cost = $90 Per Month For WP Hosting
- Recommend To = Nobody
After In Motion Hosting = WPOPT Hosting
Yeah! I can finally report that this is our current food blogger hosting here at recipethis.com. This was one of 2 choices that we saw mentioned on a lot of food blogging communities and we decided to give it a go.
We signed up with them 10 weeks ago and so far so good. We just want to have a hosting company that we can stick with in the long term and one that wont let us down. It just always feels like there is a problem and we don’t feel settled.
Their customer service and server have been fantastic and we are loving WPOPT Hosting.
- WPOPT Hosting Monthly Cost = $115 Per Month For WP Hosting
- Recommend To = Everyone
- Sign Up Here
BlueHost Vs WPOPT
I will let you in on a little secret. We nearly went to BlueHost instead of moving to WPOPT Hosting. This is because BlueHost was offering BlueHost WordPress Hosting. Their top package was $149 a month for unlimited traffic and seemed like a good idea at the time.
We didn’t go ahead, because they wanted to add IVA to the price which would add another 23% a month to the cost. A fee that as a business owner I should be able to add my tax code and the fee be taken off. It wasn’t and they said they would keep this months tax, but we can have further months taking off. Seemed a big dodgy and you didn’t know if this would be added to future months or not.
Best Hosting For Food Bloggers:
To sum it all up I would recommend the following food blogging hosting:
Blue Host or Hostgator if you are just starting out and want cheap shared hosting. I would recommend starting with the shared hosting and then finding something more long term once you hit 50,000 page views a month. Hostgator and BlueHost also both offer VPS hosting too.
Or go straight in with WPX Hosting and aim to be with them until you are hitting 250,000 page views a month. Though it could handle your site up to 600,000 monthly page views. Just be cautious as you never know when you’re going to go viral!
For the best hosting for food bloggers, I must recommend WPOPT Hosting. They are the current hosts at RecipeThis.com and offer excellent value for money, while providing us with WordPress Hosting.
It feels like throughout 2018 especially, it has been a rollercoaster of poor quality hosting for our food blog and it feels like a real relief for things to feel like normal again.
As well as this we spent the summer of 2018 travelling and having to change hosts while you are going days without internet is a nightmare.
We wish you the best of luck with your hosting for your blog.