VPS hosting is one of the most effective ways to host a website. Join us as we review the nine best providers.
When starting a website, many people turn to a basic shared web hosting service – but as your website grows, so will its needs.
That’s when it’s time to start looking at using a virtual private server (VPS).
A VPS is a step up from shared hosting. You still share a server (the computer that makes your site available to visitors online) with other websites, but there are far fewer websites using that server.
VPS providers usually make more system resources available to subscribers, which means your website should be faster and more responsive. On top of that, if you experience traffic spikes – maybe during a sales event, or after a major news story breaks about your site – VPS resources can expand to meet your site’s new demands.
The thing is, there are tons of VPS providers out there, and choosing the best VPS hosting provider is a tough call. Luckily, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve done the research for you to figure out which VPS services are the best.
We took a look at a wide range of VPS hosting providers, the services they offered, and what set them apart from the rest. What kind of hosting plans do they offer? What’s their performance like? And do they provide good help and support?
Our 8 Best VPS Hosting Providers Are:
The best VPS hosting providers are the ones that meet your needs. That may sound silly, but it’s true. Finding the best VPS plan means looking at lots of factors, like price, features, support.
All of our top 9 providers have their own unique selling point. VPS hosting isn’t a one-size-fits all solution, so let’s take a closer look at each provider and see if its service sounds like what you’re looking for.
If your site has a lot of web pages or high-quality content, providers with lots of storage space should be a priority. Likewise, if you’re on a budget or need lots of help, providers with cheap pricing and good support should be prioritized.
A2 Hosting serves up its VPS plans with a friendly smile and invaluable advice. It’s perfect for hosting newbies, with an intuitive help and support service and a generous anytime money-back guarantee.
If you haven’t built your website yet, Bluehost is the only VPS hosting provider that gives you a free domain, permanently. Its real selling point is the quality of its features, however, which includes up to 8GB of RAM and 4 CPU cores, and unlimited email accounts.
iPage has pretty good customer service, offering 24/7 live chat and phone support, an in-depth knowledge center and support tickets. Its features are also pretty good, with an SSL certificate included and free site backups.
HostPapa doesn’t come cheap, but no other provider can rival its capacity. HostPapa’s top-tiered pricing plan offers enough RAM (Random Access Memory) and storage space to handle even the biggest websites.
GoDaddy dips its toes into everything web related. On top of being the world’s largest domain registrar, it also has an excellent website builder and high quality hosting packages. If you’re in need of a one-stop shop, GoDaddy can help.
DreamHost also offers unlimited bandwidth across all its plans. Its other features are pretty neat too, although it’s not the best if you need a helping hand once in a while. Unlike its competitors, Dreamhost fails to offer phone support and live chat.
Picking apart the features that each VPS host offers can be tough. No one wants to spend their weekends or evenings flicking through a load of sites, looking for the best deal. So, we’ve put all the key info in one place for you.
Here you can see the maximum feature amount each provider gives you, whether you get root access or not, each provider’s uptime performance, and our research score from testing.
It’s important to note that the prices shown below are the cheapest you can get VPS hosting for with that provider – not the price you’d pay to receive the maximum capacity of everything.
|Hosting Provider||Max RAM||Max CPUs||Max Bandwidth||Root Access||Max Storage Space||Uptime||Cheapest Price||WBE Rating|
As shown, HostPapa is a clear winner in terms of RAM, CPUs and Bandwidth. It’s worth pointing out, though, that to get these limits, you’ll have to pay $299.99/month – the highest fee of any plan by any provider.
With everything taken into account, InMotion was the clear winner for us. If you have specific requirements, however, our table is a great way of finding the right provider for your needs.
Still scratching your head at what each column means? Don’t worry, we’ll explain:
- RAM (Random Access Memory) – what fuels your site and allows it to work.
- CPU (Computer Processing Units) – cores within the server that process information.
- Bandwidth – the amount of data that can flow between the server, the internet, and your site.
- Root Access – the ability to customize your server by installing extra software.
- Storage – the amount of space you have for things on your site (content, media, web pages etc.)
- Uptime – how consistently your site is working online.
For a lot of sites, the amounts shown in this table will be excessive and unnecessary. More often than not, the most important things to consider are uptime and cost.
Sure, it’s nice to have huge storage space or bandwidth limits – but none of that matters if your site goes down regularly, or you can’t afford the monthly bill!
Best overall VPS hosting provider
|InMotion Pros||InMotion Cons|
|Unlimited CPU cores, domains and email accounts||Fairly expensive top tier VPS hosting plans|
|Free domain with 6-12 month plans||Other providers can better its 99.97% uptime|
InMotion sets the bar high when it comes to VPS hosting. Its features alone scored 95% in our research testing, and it’s easy to see why. All plans come with free backups, root access, and unlimited CPU cores and email accounts.
InMotion is perfect for any up-and-coming businesses or large personal site. It offers three different plans that range from $39.99 to $144.99/month. With help available 24/7 via phone, live chat, and a ticketing system, plus a 30 day, money-back guarantee, InMotion is the perfect provider for 99% of readers.
Best value for money
|A2 Hosting Pros||A2 Hosting Cons|
|Best value for money||No free domain|
|Anytime money-back guarantee||Only 99.95% uptime|
If you’re either unsure or unconfident about VPS hosting, A2 Hosting can help. Its friendly, customer-centric approach makes you feel valued immediately, and staff are always on hand to help. Plus, if you’re unhappy with the service, you can get a refund anytime, no questions asked.
Features-wise, you can choose between Linux or Windows server hosting, while A2 also offers free backups, root access, and unlimited email accounts. It’s a little more expensive than InMotion, with plans ranging from $49.99 to $99.99/month, but you’ll be getting a very reliable service that puts you first.
|Bluehost Pros||Bluehost Cons|
|99.98% uptime||Fairly expensive top tier VPS hosting plans|
|Free domain||One dedicated IP address|
Bluehost is better known for its WordPress hosting, but it still has everything you need from a VPS service. And if you’re yet to purchase a domain name, Bluehost is the only provider we’ve tested that gives you one free of charge, forever.
The usual features are all on offer, and Bluehost boasts a brilliant uptime of 99.98%. Entry-level VPS hosting pricing is very reasonable too, starting at $18.99/month for new customers (renewal rate at $29.99), all the way through to $59.99/month. Oh, and don’t forget the 24/7 customer support.
New customers can get VPS hosting from just $18.99/month with Bluehost (normally $29.99)
So what do you get for $18.99/month?
- Free website domain
- Free SSL certificate
- One-click WordPress installation
- 1TB of bandwidth & 30GB of storage
- 24/7 support via phone & live chat
All of Bluehost’s VPS hosting plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so if you’re not completely happy with the service you receive, you’ll get a full refund.
Best for customer service
|iPage Pros||iPage Cons|
|1 year free domain||Poor 99.94% uptime|
|Multiple help and support resources||Only 1TB of bandwidth|
iPage may not have the cheapest pricing, particularly brilliant features, or the biggest capacity, but it does have a little bit of everything. From RAM to root access, free backups to SSL security, you’ll have access to everything you need.
The uptime isn’t great in comparison to its competitors, but you can take comfort in cheap plans – starting from $24.99/month – and 24/7 support. We’d see iPage as a host for those who need a solid service at a reasonable price – its customer service offers all the help you could need.
Best for reliability
|HostGator Pros||HostGator Cons|
|120GB of storage||Expensive pricing plans|
|99.99% uptime||No free domain|
HostGator ate the competition for breakfast when it came to overall hosting services, and its VPS service specifically is also very strong. What lets HostGator down is its value for money – while competing reasonably well with the likes of InMotion for features, a starting cost of $89.95/month is enough to put off those on a tight budget.
That said, HostGator has a great promotional deal where you can pay just $29.95/month for the first three years, if you commit to HostGator in the long-term. It also has a brand new website builder that’s perfect for creating simple sites if you’re yet to make your own.
Best RAM and storage
|HostGator Pros||HostGator Cons|
|Incredible capacity with the Extreme plan||Expensive plans|
|Unlimited domains and email accounts||No free backups|
Much like its pizzeria namesake, HostPapa doesn’t serve up things by halves. If you need to host a massive website, bursting with big file sizes, high-resolution content, and more web pages than you can shake a stick at, then HostPapa is for you.
Be careful, though – there are some common traps many people fall into. Firstly, the promotional prices are only on offer for a month, after which you’re paying between $49.99 and $299.99/month on any of its five plans. Secondly, the 30 day, money-back guarantee is only valid for those who subscribe for a year or longer. Everyone else only has 48 hours to claim a refund.
Best for extra features
|GoDaddy Pros||GoDaddy Cons|
|Unlimited bandwidth||No 24/7 live chat or ticket support|
|Both Linux and Windows servers||No money-back guarantee|
GoDaddy is one of the most famous website brands. Whether you know it as the world’s largest domain registrar, a classy website builder, or indeed for its web hosting service, GoDaddy is a provider that offers everything.
GoDaddy’s VPS hosting is fairly modest, but there’s enough about it to satisfy most people. If you’re yet to get going and need a one-stop shop to build and host your website, we can’t recommend GoDaddy highly enough.
|DreamHost Pros||DreamHost Cons|
|Unlimited email accounts and domains||No live chat support|
|Unlimited bandwidth||Only 30GB of storage on Basic plan|
Okay, okay, so DreamHost isn’t outright the best at anything. But unlimited bandwidth is still something to be very proud of – it’s only offered by two other providers! It’s also the second cheapest VPS host behind 1&1 IONOS, with a starting price of only $15/month.
Annoyingly, DreamHost is the only provider on this list not to grant you root access, and the only one with an inflexible amount of CPU cores. There’s also no phone or live chat support, and an average uptime of 99.95%. DreamHost is a classic case of getting what you pay for – but then again, 1&1 IONOS is cheaper and better!
There are a number of factors to consider when looking for a VPS hosting provider. A lot of it hinges on the needs of both you and your website.
Everything considered, there are some standard factors that everyone should look into when choosing a host. These are:
- Uptime – This is critical for any site. No provider can guarantee 100% uptime, but the closer you can get to your site never going down, the better.
- Root Access – If you’re more technically able, having greater flexibility and customization over your server is brilliant. You can install additional software that meets your site’s needs, and beef up its security.
- Bandwidth – Similar to uptime, bandwidth is something all sites rely on. Nearly half of internet users expect a web page to load within two seconds, so it’s vital your site has ample bandwidth.
You should now have a really clear idea of not only who the best VPS hosting providers are, but what each one is particularly good at. To recap, here’s that list again:
The 8 best VPS hosting providers: The roundup
- InMotion – Best overall VPS hosting provider.
- A2 Hosting – Best value for money.
- Bluehost – Best features.
- iPage – Best for customer service.
- HostGator – Best for reliability.
- HostPapa – Best RAM and storage space.
- GoDaddy – Best for extra features.
- DreamHost – Best bandwidth.
InMotion was the clear winner for us when taking features, support, uptime and value into account. It offers the best VPS hosting service across the board, and should be the go to provider for most readers.
A2 Hosting is especially good for non-technical folk due to its outstanding help and support, while HostGator’s uptime simply can’t be matched. GoDaddy too is a great option if you’re yet to build a website and want to do everything in one place.
The only way you’re ever going to know for sure, though, is by testing them out. Every provider (bar GoDaddy and DreamHost) has a money-back guarantee, so it’s worth trialling one for a month or so to see what you think.
What’s the difference between a VPS and shared hosting?
Both a VPS and shared web hosting mean sharing dedicated hardware with multiple customers. The big difference is that with a VPS, fewer accounts are making demands on the hardware resources. You also get guarantees of better performance with a VPS compared to shared hosting.
What’s the difference between a VPS and a dedicated server?
A VPS is a virtual environment running on dedicated hardware, and has to share this hardware with a number of other customers. A dedicated server, meanwhile, provides sole access to the hardware. Dedicated hosting is only necessary for huge websites, as the cost is significantly more than shared hosting or virtual private servers.
What is a virtual server?
A virtual server is essentially a pretend computer running inside a physical computer. Since servers are so powerful, and the demands on them are different than a desktop PC, it works out quite well to run multiple virtual servers on a single piece of hardware.
What can you use a VPS for?
The most obvious and popular reason for a VPS is to run a single website, or multiple websites. However, you can use them for pretty much anything that requires access to the internet – such as a web application like Nextcloud to run your own Dropbox alternative – or to create your own virtual private network to better secure the internet connection of your PCs and mobile devices.
Which VPS hosting provider is the best value for money?
The cheapest VPS hosting provider is 1&1 IONOS, with its VPS S plan costing a mere $2 per month. We’d argue, however, that InMotion gives you the best value for money – it has the best features, offers a 90 day, money-back guarantee, and starts from just $29.19/month on promotion.
Which VPS hosting provider is best for small business?
This really depends on what your business’ website is for. Most will find InMotion the best, because put simply, it has the best features. It also gives you unlimited email accounts – a great bonus for employees – and lets you host multiple websites, should your company have more than one.
Website Builder Expert aims to provide you with honest data. That’s why we conduct our own research and obtain direct, personal insight. Analyses and graphics in this article are based on authentic sources cross-validated by our in-house experts.
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