You spent a lot of time and money on your website and marketing it but Google doesn’t seem to like your site and your visitors aren’t converting into customers, maybe the problem is that two dollar a month cheap web hosting account you have your site on.
I’ve suffered through poor and crappy web hosting like millions of other internet users have on their websites, slow first byte time, slow download speeds. These typical hosting issues make for a poor user experience, low sales and low search engine rankings.
The priority at most hosting companies is to make money, most do this by crowding as many sites on each server and IP as possible, all sharing the same memory, CPU and in the case of IP#’s web addresses. Often this is fine as long as the sites on the server don’t get a sudden rush of traffic, without the overhead to handle the increase in visitors every site on the server will start encountering problems, slow download speeds, errors, and possibly crash.
WordPress Sites Need Excellent Hosting
WordPress sites can be resource hogs, OK hosting isn’t going to cut it, you need excellent hosting for most modern WordPress sites. If you have a busy WooCommerce store, a site that has a lot of features and functionality etc. you’re going to almost need specialized hosting. Sure the site will work on lesser quality hosts but not without issues such as a slow site or crashing when it gets a small rush of traffic.
WordPress sites can use a lot of RAM memory and can be CPU intensive, for awhile I setup a small news site that required a 2GB server just to run and from 4-8GB if it was getting a rush of traffic. This site also had a lot of stuff going on in the backend such as importing new articles from several places, posting new posts to Facebook and Twitter, etc. If a WordPress site runs out of resources it will often through the nasty “Error Establishing Connection To Database” error, not exactly the page you’re hoping your visitors to arrive at.
Don’t skimp on hosting for your website, it can be one of the most important things that can make or break your site. Slow sites make for a bad user experience, put a dent in your sales and can negatively effect your search engine rankings.
Bad Hosting Can Affect Your Search Rankings
Google’s Matt Cutt’s says:
If your website is down just for a day, such as your host being down or a server transfer, there shouldn’t be any negative impact to your search rankings. However, if the downtime is extended, such as for two weeks, it could have impact on your search rankings because Google doesn’t necessarily want to send the user to a website that they know has been down, because it provides the user with a poor user experience.
If everytime Google tries to crawl your site you’re experiencing hosting problems such as your site being down or very slow, it will affect your Google rankings eventually.
Slow Hosting Affects Online Sales
Studies by companies like Amazon and others have shown that conversions decrease by approximately 1% per extra 100ms of page loading time. That means that every extra second it takes for your website to load your conversion rates are dropping 10% If your site is taking an extra 4 seconds to load that means you’re probably losing 40% of your sales to poor user experience. So not only are your search engine rankings dropping if you have a bad webhost, so are your sales off your dwindling traffic.
Locked Into The Slow Lane
It’s common for web hosting companies to charge for a year of hosting up front. This is a bad situation to be locked into if the host turns out to be terrible, but sometimes you have to cut your losses and move on. Riding out that 1 year contract could put a huge dent in your online sales assuming you already had sales coming in.
Awesome Hosting For WordPress Sites
Siteground – I don’t have any personal experience with Siteground yet but they have great reviews and seem to be a viable alternative to the other cheaper hosts out there. For budget hosting I would definitely recommend going with the $14.95 a month plan if you’re even a little bit serious about your website. I also noticed that if you’re locked into a contract with a bad host you’ve paid a year for, Siteground will give you up to 6 months off your plan to migrate to their hosting.
WPengine – Premium WordPress hosting, for high intensity sites. A couple years ago I did some work for a celebrity’s ecommerce site. Every time he would tweet his store on twitter he would get around 50,000 new visitors in a few hours and his WooCommerce site would crash. They ended up moving the site to WPengine and have been happy ever since. If you’re not technically inclined you’ll probably need a tech to help with your initial setup and to help manage updates, call me.
Digital Ocean – Digital Ocean rents droplets (VPS servers) by the minute, you can spin up a new instance with WordPress already installed on a 512mb server for $5 a month. Not recommended though unless you’re comfortable with SSH and terminal linux commands, know how to setup email and harden a server.
I discovered DO a couple years ago while I was having web hosting tribulations myself and have been much happier ever since. This site is hosted on a 2GB droplet ($20 a month) which I’ve also installed Cpanel/WHM on which I license for an extra $14.95 a month from a 3rd party. With a few linux commands, Cpanel does most of the hard work in setting up your server correctly for you.
On my 2GB DigitalOcean/Cpanel server I have numerous instances of WordPress running, development sites, this site, several sites of my own and client sites. It’s barely using 25% of the resources most of the time.
Another alternative to Digital Ocean is their main competitor Linode.com which I’m not personally familiar with but have heard only good things about. One thing that makes Linode more appealing to me is that they offer multiple IP addresses per server which DO doesn’t.
Don’t Settle For Substandard Web Hosting
Bad hosting can literally kill your online business with poor search engine rankings, poor conversions and a bad user experience. Don’t stay with a bad host thinking they’re going to get better because it’s likely they won’t.
If you found this post helpful please give it a like or a share below, also check out my other post in this series:
Why Does Google Hate Your Site Part 1 – Page Speed and Technical SEO