5 Best Cheap Hosting Providers This Year

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You’re ready to set up your website for your business, but you aren’t sure which web hosting provider to use. You know you want to keep this expenditure as low as you reasonably can, but can you balance your budget with the features you want? And what features do you want, anyway?

We’ve got you covered! In this article, we’ll go over the ins and outs of five of the best cheap hosting providers, what we like about them, what we don’t, pricing, and other info you need to know.

Best Cheap Hosting Providers

  1. Hostinger Best for Scalability: 2 months free, then $2.49/mo (48-month plan)
  2. DreamHost For Cheap Month-to-Month Plans: from $2.59/mo (36-month plan)
  3. HostGator For Lots of Features: from $2.75/mo (36-month plan)
  4. Bluehost For WordPress Newbies: from $2.95/mo (12-month plan)
  5. IONOS For Good Performance: from $5/mo (12-month plan)

Note, the prices above are the cheapest prices available for each web host. The plan lengths for each host varies, some require annual, three or even four year plans to access these prices, which we’ll specify below.

If you’re ready to jump in and learn the basics before choosing a web hosting provider, let’s get started.

1 - Hostinger: Best for Scalability

4 out of 5 stars

Value for money rating: 3.7/5

Cheapest price: $2.49/month + 2 months free (requires 48-month subscription)

Annual subscription: $2.99/month

Hostinger's three shared plans
Hostinger starts at just $2.49/month when you choose its longest 48-month subscription plan

Hostinger, founded in 2004, has become a popular choice among startups and established businesses. It’s known not only for affordable plans but also robust features like unlimited bandwidth, free backups, and an onboarding process that’s perfect for first-timers.

✔️ What We Like

Some of our favorite features include:

  • A low price tag starting at just $2.49/month
  • Free SSL certificates
  • A user-friendly control panel
  • Included WHOIS Protection
  • Daily website backups on Business plan
  • Up to 100+ websites per account

❌ What We Don’t Like

  • Resource limits on the least expensive plans
  • Limited dedicated server options
  • Mediocre site speed and uptime, especially on less expensive plans
Recommended For
Not Recommended For
Budget-conscious business owners
Heavily visited websites
Those who need multiple sites
Those who may need a dedicated server

Quick Tip: An SSL certificate is an electronic document used to keep data secure and prevent attackers from creating a fake site that looks like yours. It also verifies your ownership and helps users trust your website.

Plans and Pricing

Hostinger plan subscription lengths and prices
The amount you pay for each Hostinger plan depends on the length of subscription you choose. Here are the options for the cheapest shared plan.

There are three plans to choose from when going with Hostinger.

The first is Premium, which costs $2.49/month as an introductory price. This is applicable when you sign up for a 48 month plan. At this time, you also get two months free, so you’ll actually get 50 months of hosting for $119.52. When it renews, the price will be $7.99/month.

The second is Business. The introductory price (again, for 48 months plus two months free) is $3.69/month, giving you 50 months of service for $177.12. You’ll get faster performance, basic WooCommerce, and some WordPress tools. When it renews, the price will be $8.99/month.

Finally, you can splurge on the Cloud Startup plan, which offers optimized performance, up to 300 websites, standard WooCommerce, a dedicated IP address, and priority support. This plan is $8.99/month when you buy four years’ worth and you still get the two months free. The final cost on that would be $431.52 for 50 months. When this plan renews, the price will be $19.99/month.

You can also purchase these plans for shorter time periods at a higher cost per month. For example the cheapest plan costs $2.99 per month on an annual subscription, and renews at $9.99 per month.

Read our Hostinger Pricing Review for more information on its pricing plans.

Performance and Scalability

If you’re purchasing the Premium or Business plans, you’ll be using shared hosting. This means the site speed and uptime can be slow at times. We’ve found it to be average overall.

You have unlimited bandwidth and a large number of websites available per account, so that helps with scalability. Also, you can always upgrade to the Business or Cloud Startup plans if you find that you need more WordPress tools, a better ecommerce site, or more support.

Compatibility and Support

With Hostinger, you get a 30-day money-back guarantee as well as a 99.9% uptime guarantee. The customer support is available 24/7. Priority support goes to the Cloud Startup customers.

Security and Reliability

Security is good; every account includes a free SSL certificate to protect each website. More security features are included with the free CDN, but that’s only available with the Business and Cloud Startup plans.

Read our full Hostinger review.

2 - DreamHost: Best for Inexpensive Month-to-Month Plans

4.5 out of 5 stars

Value for money rating: 4.4/5

Cheapest price: $2.59/month (requires three-year subscription)

Annual subscription: $2.95/month

DreamHost shared plans
DreamHost starts at $2.59/month when you choose a 36-month subscription plan.

DreamHost offers a variety of plans and options. One of the features that makes it stand out is low cost month-to-month hosting of just $4.95 per month, compared with, say, Hostinger’s high monthly price of $11.99. DreamHost’s affordable monthly cost is ideal if you’re just starting out and unsure about whether you want to make a 12-month commitment.

✔️ What We Like

  • Straightforward pricing plans
  • Fast, responsive websites
  • 100% uptime guarantee
  • Committed to sustainability
  • Lots of features, some are advanced
  • Good security features

❌ What We Don’t Like

  • Shared hosting plans can be slow
  • Can be less intuitive for new users
  • No phone support
Recommended For
Not Recommended For
Small businesses and startups
Complete beginners
Those who prefer phone support
Tech-savvy users

Plans and Pricing

DreamHost monthly plan cost with introductory price disclaimer
While DreamHost has an affordable month-by-month plan, you need to know that this price only lasts for three months. After that the plan renews at a higher rate.

There are a few pricing options here, and you’ll likely be able to find something within your budget that meets your needs. Note that all prices listed are the introductory prices; they will renew at higher rates.

Shared Starter hosting, which is the most basic and includes one website, starts at $2.59/month for a three-year plan. You can also elect to pay $2.95/month for a yearly plan or $4.95/month for a month-to-month plan.

It’s worth noting that the $4.95 month-by-month price will last for three months and then renew at the regular rate, which is $7.99 per month at time of writing. This is detailed at the bottom of the checkout page, so always be sure to read the small print to avoid surprises!

Shared Unlimited hosting offers unlimited websites and also unlimited email. It starts at $3.95/month for a three-year plan; other options are a yearly plan for $2.95/month or a monthly plan at $8.95/month.

Read our DreamHost Pricing Review for a deeper dive into each of its plans.

Performance and Scalability

Performance with DreamHost is good. Thanks to high-speed storage, your website will load quickly. DreamHost also offers good scalability, since you can migrate to different types of hosting as your website grows and attracts more visitors.

Compatibility and Support

If you need support, you’ll be able to use the knowledge base to troubleshoot on your own. There is also the support team, but that’s not available 24 hours per day. You can reach an agent during certain hours; other than that, you can put in a ticket or email. If 24/7 support is important to you, this might not be the best hosting provider.

Security and Reliability

You’ll have access to robust security features, such as free SSL certificates, automatic backups, and DDoS protection. There are also optional add-ons. As far as reliability goes, DreamHost has a 100% uptime guarantee, so your site will be available at all times.

Read our full DreamHost review.

3 - HostGator: Best for Those Who Want Lots of Features

4 out of 5 stars

Value for money rating: 3.6/5

Cheapest price: $2.75/month (requires three-year subscription)

Annual subscription: $3.95/month

HostGator shared hosting plans
HostGator's cheapest shared hosting plan, Hatchling, costs $2.52/month if you sign up for 36 months

If you’re looking for lots of features and you also need an easy-to-use platform designed with novices in mind, HostGator might be your top pick. It offers useful ecommerce tools and excellent customer service.

✔️ What We Like

  • Hosting options for both Linux and Windows servers
  • Good for beginners
  • Feature-rich plans at various price points
  • Good site-building software
  • Hosting options including shared, VPS, dedicated, and cloud

❌ What We Don’t Like

  • No phone support on the least expensive plan
  • Shared hosting can be slow
  • No phone support
Recommended For
Not Recommended For
Larger companies
Small websites
Those who prefer phone support
Budget-conscious business owners

Plans and Pricing

HostGator shared plan checkout page
When you go through the checkout page for HostGator's cheapest shared plan, you can select your free domain and choose your subscription length, which affects your total price.

HostGator offers a wide range of plans, starting at $2.52/month for a Hatchling Plan (shared hosting) and going all the way up to $141.99/month for the Enterprise Server Plan (dedicated hosting), with lots of options in between. Since this is an article about the best cheap hosting, though, we’re just going to focus on the shared hosting plans.

The Hatchling Plan is the cheapest and most basic with one website, 10GB SSD storage, and chat support. It begins at $2.52/month if you sign up for 36 months. A 12-month plan is $3.95/month, and a monthly plan is $11.95/month.

The Baby Plan offers two websites instead of one, 20GB SSD storage, includes phone support (instead of just chat), and has increased performance. This plan costs $3.05/month for 36 months, $5/month for a year, and $12.95 for one month.

Finally, the Business Plan offers three websites, 40GB SSD storage, daily website backup, and domain privacy. It starts at $4.67/month for 36 months, $7.25/month for 12 months, and $17.95/month for one month.

Keep in mind all of these prices are for the introductory period only and will go up at renewal.

Read out HostGator Pricing Review for help choosing your plan.

Performance and Scalability

The performance for shared hosting is fine for smaller sites. If you have a large site, you may consider upgrading because the performance may struggle to support your growth. You’ll be able to upgrade as you scale, and you can go quite far with it since dedicated hosting is available for larger, busier sites.

Compatibility and Support

In addition to a comprehensive knowledge base with articles and tutorials, you’ll have access to 24/7 customer support. With the lowest priced plans, you won’t have phone support, but you will be able to access chat and email support.

Security and Reliability

You’ll benefit from basic security measures such as firewalls and malware scanning. HostGator has a 99.9% uptime guarantee, so aside from occasional maintenance, you shouldn’t have to worry about your site not being available.

Read our full HostGator review.

Check out our DreamHost vs HostGator comparison for help deciding between these two options.

4 - Bluehost: Best for WordPress

3.5 out of 5 stars

Value for money rating: 3.1/5

Cheapest price: $2.95/month on annual subscription

Blueost shared hosting plans
Bluehost offers affordable shared and WordPress plans, with cheap annual prices starting from $2.95/month.

Bluehost is the best managed WordPress hosting provider we’ve tested, and even comes with an official recommendation from WordPress itself. This is because of its WordPress-tailored plans featuring tools such as WordPress auto-installation, automatic WordPress updates, and WordPress specific support. Not only is it one of the best web hosts for WordPress, it’s also one of the cheapest WordPress-specific hosts on the market.

✔️ What We Like

  • CDN included with all plans
  • Custom WordPress themes
  • Includes domain name for the first year
  • 24/7 support
  • User-friendly interface and design

❌ What We Don’t Like

  • No phone support for the lowest tier
  • Higher renewal costs
Recommended For
Not Recommended For
Small businesses and startups
Those who prefer phone support
Those who need to avoid higher renewal costs
Those who want to use WordPress

Plans and Pricing

Bluehost shared plan checkout page
Checking out the Bluehost Basic plan, you can select your subscription length and also select any add-ons you want. These can add up quickly, so check over this carefully before paying.

It’s worth mentioning straight away that Bluehost offers four plans for shared hosting and another set of identically priced plans for WordPress hosting. If you’re not using WordPress, choose the shared hosting plans, and if you are using WordPress, use the WordPress plans. The names and prices of both sets of plans are the same for each type.

In addition, Bluehost also offers dedicated and VPS hosting for those who have scaled to the point of needing more.

The cheapest Basic plan includes one website, 10GB SSD storage, and chat support. It begins at $2.95/month with a 12-month plan and $4.95/month with a 36-month plan. If you have a small, single website then this plan is a good starting point – according to Bluehost, this plan can handle around 15,000 visitors per month.

The Choice Plus plan, which includes three websites, 40GB SSD storage, and both chat and phone support, is $5.45/month for the 12-month plan and $7.45/month for the 36-month plan.

If you have an ecommerce site, we recommend the Online Store plan. This one has all of the ecommerce tools included, as well as up to three websites, 40GB SSD storage, and both chat and phone support. It costs $9.95 for the 12-month plan and $12.95/month for the 36-month plan.

Finally, the Pro plan is the top shared hosting plan. This one is good for sites with higher levels of traffic and advanced storage and security needs. It includes five websites, 100GB SSD storage, and both chat and phone support. The fee for 12 months is $13.95/month, and for 36 months, it’s $18.95/month.

We mentioned that a drawback to Bluehost is its higher renewal prices. For example, the $2.95/month Basic plan renews at the regular rate of $11.99/month after 12 months. All plans are set to auto-renew so be aware of this to avoid any surprise charges after your first term.

Read our full Bluehost Pricing Review to compare plans, discounts, and renewal prices.

Quick Tip: While the one-year plans are less expensive for the first year, keep in mind that when they renew, they’ll be at a substantially higher rate, so the three-year plan will be less expensive overall.

Performance and Scalability

Bluehost offers high-speed SSD storage and has an advanced server infrastructure, so the reliability is high. Since there are quite a few hosting plans available with different types of hosting, it’s also going to be simple to scale as your business grows.

Compatibility and Support

There’s a knowledge base available to users who want to troubleshoot their own issues. There’s also 24/7 customer support through chat, phone, and email. Note that phone support isn’t available to the lowest-priced plan.

Exchnange between Bluehost live chat support and a query about shared plan traffic limits
When we tested Bluehost's live chat support, they got back to us with an answer within three minutes.

Security and Reliability

Bluehost offers free SSL certificates and automated backups for security. It also offers an uptime guarantee of 99.99%.

Read our full Bluehost review.

Need help choosing? Our Hostinger vs Bluehost comparison may help!

5 - IONOS: Best for Performance

4 out of 5 stars

Value for money rating: 4/5

Cheapest price: $5/month (on annual subscription)

IONOS shared plans range
IONOS' cheapest plan works out at $5 per month. IONOS can run great promotions though, so be sure to check the website before signing up!

IONOS is a cheap web hosting provider that appeals to people and businesses with small and medium-sized sites, and it’s easy for beginners to use. Its plans are known for being affordable, but at time of writing aren’t the cheapest on our list, starting at $5 per month for a 12-month subscription. It often runs deals so it’s worth checking the site regularly when you’re deciding.

It’s a good pick for performance, with its cheapest plan designed to handle 100 website visitors per minute. IONOS has also made the commitment to fight climate change, using renewable sources of energy when possible, which makes it a good option for those who have companies who are committed to sustainability.

✔️ What We Like

  • Very cheap to start
  • Free domain for one year
  • Free SSL certificate
  • SSD and caching for fast speeds
  • Daily backups and automatic updates
  • Offers extras for low fees

❌ What We Don’t Like

  • Renewal fees are substantially higher than the initial discount
  • Potentially confusing price structure
  • Limited storage and RAM on lower-priced plans
Recommended For
Not Recommended For
Small businesses and startups
Those who need steady costs
Eco-conscious users
Those with higher storage needs
Those who only require limited features

Plans and Pricing

IONOS shared plan checkout page
We found the checkout page confusing. The 6-month breakdown sounds like you pay $4 for the first 6 months, when in reality you simply pay the total $60 for the year upfront. We thought this could be clearer!

The prices are low with IONOS, but the structure can sometimes be confusing. For example, the cheapest $5 per month plan is detailed as costing $4 per month for the first six months, then $6 per month after that, but the plan is actually billed annually meaning you simply pay the total $60 upfront.

The Essential plan, which is good for a small website or a blog and includes one email address, is $5/month for a one-year term. This will renew at $72/year once your first year is over.

The Starter plan, which allows for 10 websites, and 100GB storage, averages out to $7/month for the first year, then it will renew at $96/year or $8/month. The Plus plan is actually cheaper with a promotional discount, at just $6.50/month on an annual subscription, meaning you get more features such as unlimited websites and unlimited storage, for less money.

Finally, the Ultimate plan, which is best for larger sites and offers maximum CPU resources, averages out to $13/month the first year. When it renews, that will be at $192/year or $16/month.

Performance and Scalability

IONOS uses a global network, so you’ll find good performance overall, even if you have website users in various parts of the world. There is flexibility in scaling; you can upgrade your plan as needed as your business grows.

Quick Tip: A global network ensures that people all over the world will be able to access your site thanks to multiple servers located in different regions.

Compatibility and Support

There’s chat support available. You can also reach customer service agents via email or telephone. We reached out for support to explain the pricing structure and received an immediate answer as well as an offer for the customer service agent to call and explain further. There are also tutorials and articles available if you’d rather try to do your own troubleshooting.

Security and Reliability

You’ll enjoy robust security features, including firewalls, SSL certificates, and DDoS protection. With a guaranteed 99.9% uptime, there shouldn’t be any issues with reliability. There are many data centers to keep your website available and running quickly.

Read our full IONOS review.

How To Choose a Cheap Hosting Provider

Hopefully, the information on each of the cheap hosting providers above will have helped you to narrow down your choices. Of course, it can still be difficult to choose a web host! Here are a few pointers on how to choose the best cheap domain hosting provider for your website:

  1. Figure out what your needs are. What type of website are you building? How much traffic do you expect? Are there any specific features or applications you need? If you’re switching providers, what features in your current plan do you not want to give up? Compare your needs to the hosting providers you’re considering.
  2. Evaluate the pricing plans. The different options can include various requirements in terms of how long you’ll have your plan. Think about how much you want to invest in your site and whether the features you need are included in the plan you’re considering.
  3. Consider performance and uptime guarantees. Uptime refers to the percentage of time your site will be available, and you want that as close to 100% as possible. High-speed storage and robust, widespread infrastructure can keep the performance levels high.
  4. Think about security. You’ll want a hosting provider that uses essential features like firewalls, regular backups, and malware scans.
  5. Read reviews. Finally, don’t rely on just one source. We have a lot of experience and can review hosting providers accurately, but you’ll want to also look at what other people are saying. Does the interface seem user-friendly? How well does customer support really address issues? People who have been using these services for some time will have good insight on the pain points they’re experiencing.

How We Test Hosting Providers

At Website Builder Expert, we know that you’re depending on us to give you our best, most accurate recommendations. We have over a decade of experience in researching, analyzing, and sharing data about hosting providers.

We identify the top performance areas, which are:

  • Price
  • Performance
  • Features
  • Support
  • Market analysis

Then, we weigh all of the information with our carefully honed scoring algorithm before sharing our results with you.

The end result is fair and unbiased information that you can trust to help you make important decisions for your company. You can read more about how we conduct our hosting research.


Depending on your needs, any of the hosting companies listed above could be the right choice for you. Overall, the cheapest option is Hostinger when you choose its 48-month subscription at $2.49/month plus two months free.

Keep in mind, however, that the cheapest hosting company might not be the perfect fit for your needs; take a look at the features we’ve examined and make your decision from there. You should also consider checking out some of our other reviews:

  • If you’re already using a web host and want to switch to one of the cheaper options in our list, check out our guide on How To Transfer Website Hosting.
  • If you’re worried about extra costs, our article explaining How Much Does It Cost To Host a Website can help set budget expectations overall.
  • Our article focuses on shared hosting, because it’s the cheapest plans available. If you’re unsure whether shared hosting is right for your site, our guide on the Types of Web Hosting will help you make a decision.


Depending on the services you need, you might expect to pay a few dollars per month or up to a few hundred per month. Keep in mind that shared hosting will be less expensive than dedicated web hosting, and that some slightly more expensive plans may include features that you’d otherwise have to pay for if you went with a cheaper plan.
For most people, self-hosting is unreasonable. It’s not something a beginner would be able to do, and you’d need expensive infrastructure. You’d also be responsible for your own maintenance. Unless you have a big corporation with a department to manage self-hosting, it’s not going to be a feasible option for most companies.
Yes, there are some free hosting options available. Most of these will include ads and won’t have a lot of features, but you can look for free web hosting options and try them out. If they don’t suit your needs, you can always switch to the premium version or move your domain to a different hosting provider.
Written by:
Researched by:
I love to understand human behavior and the cognitive biases that drive us to do what we do. For over nine years I have worked as a mixed method researcher – research using a mix of numerical data and personal experiences – across a range of sectors, from insurance and policy development to finally arriving at Website Builder Expert five years ago. Fascinated by consumer decision-making, I meticulously built our leading ranking methodology to explore where providers like Wix sit within a competitive industry and what value they truly bring to our audience.
As a member of the Market Research Society, I’m an advocate for high ethical, commercial, and methodological best practices. All of this combines to give you the most ethical recommendations based on real data.


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