In Australia everything is overpriced, and website hosting prices is not an exception. I have provided a detailed comparison list of the best local and US webhosting companies below.
I compare some Aussie hosts against US webhosting so that you can make an informed decision. (Updated 10 February 2020)
If for you looking for a hosting provider that gets the job done is sufficient for you, then you will find much better deals and prices offered by US Website hosting companies. You can get hosting from as low as $2 to $3 a month.
I have multiple websites/ blogs that I run, so I have used most of the website hosting providers recommended below in the comparison chart at some part of time. I currently have four hosting companies for my different websites, which are also included in the list below. These websites I have, all use different types of web-hosting.
Below is a detailed listing of prices and features of the top web server providers for Australia and short host reviews given below.
The Top 10 Web Hosting List for Australia
$21.00 – $ 500.00
$3.95- $12.95 AUD
Most of the web servers and 2018 and 2019 website plans in our table above are suitable for beginners, small business websites or people looking to start a online blog as we feature mainly shared plans, which make them affordable for people starting out. The VPS and Dedicated server plans that these hosts also provide are a bit pricier and suitable for more advanced options or as a premium upgrade if you grow rapidly or want better speeds.
Given below I have reviews and comparison on this list of top rated companies with the different plans and pricing available . They among others offer competitive server prices with free domain registration and SSD/SAS hard drives (some plans). Some of them may have their own data center’s and are official domain registrars for specific country extension like .com.au.
Most of the hosting plans featured here provide enough bandwidth, disk space and speed for multiple websites. The cheaper plans are divided between one website plans and multiple website shared hosting plans. The pricier plans generally include inbuilt caching or CDN’s and customised or optimised infrastructure for faster loading of the website.
This list is updated often (last update 1 January 2019) and give’s you a unbiased & impartial information about best web hosting in Australia (including reviews/comments from users/customers sourced online).
Essentials for Building a Blog/Website.
To get a website or blog started, you realise that acquiring a hosting account is essential and a self-hosted website is recommended over a free service if your serious about your project. There are a few basic essentials that you will need to build your website the easy and quick way.
- A domain name (url)
- Web hosting account
- Design template for website
The other point or unofficial 4th point that is not on the list is creating awesome content and SEO (search engine optimisation) for your site, that will also become essential if you want to find success. SEO helps your website/blog get noticed and bring eyeballs to it.
We recommend mostly the popular hosting content management system wordpress, which most of the above mentioned hosts provide and the bonus is – there are heaps of free design templates available straight from the admin panel, once wordpress is auto-installed. The hosting companies that are listed – all, provide – a quick wordpress install feature that makes creating your website process a quick (10 to 20 minutes) and easy process.
While these hosts featured here are good for websites/blogs and even wordpress online shops – If you specifically want to start a ecommerce online shop to sell stuff online then we would >> recommend these webhosts here who are much easier and more adapted to manage and build a online store.
What webhosting should I choose?
It does not matter if you are starting a blog or website when it comes to choosing a hosting server. However, while a blog can get away with slower speeds, a business website or eCommerce website should have slightly faster loading speeds. The shared server hosting plans are the most budget friendly priced plans for people starting a business website or a blog, with prices starting as low as $1 a month to a budget price of $3.95 a month.
Some webhosting plans even come with free domain name if you’re lucky to snag this deal. If you want to host multiple website with multiple domain names the plans start from $5.95 a month for the cheaper shared plans.
The higher priced dedicated servers and VPS plans are better because of lesser customers using that servers and so speed is a bit better than shared servers. Let’s look at the different types of server plans you can choose from below.
As the name suggests, the servers and bandwidth are shared among multiple users on these plans and so the price is usually more affordable on these plans. These plans are quite okay for starter websites and blogs as they would not start with high traffic. Once you start getting over 3,000 hits a day on your website – I would suggest for you to upgrade your plan or get a CDN to maintain good speeds. IT will take you a while to get to 3,000 hits a day if you’re a beginner. You can measure your hits or viewers on your website by registering with statcounter.com who provide free website hits measuring tools.
Virtual Private Servers (VPS)
These VPS (virtual private server) plans are on a separate yet same server however, they are virtually separated as their own individual server system separates them as part of this virtual system. Each customer gets their own co-location of space for which they have paid and so this is a bit more exclusive than a shared plan.
Dedicated Server Plans
This is even more exclusive, and a higher priced plan for hosting as each server you purchase is exclusively owned by you, and has its own operating system. You can usually install your own software and run programs on your own purchased server as you like. You have full access to run custom programs. It is like owning your own little computer, but on the cloud.
Managed/Optimised and Cloud Hosting Plans
These types of plans are fairly new to the hosting market. Managed or optimised servers are custom servers enhanced for speed and caching and so work better with the WordPress CMS or most auto script software. Some of them have inbuilt CDN.
Cloud hosting is similar to virtual hosting, though they have a benefit of being instantly scalable according to your changing online needs. Cloud hosting can be good for websites that have huge spikes in traffic occasionally or frequently and still need to stay up.
Reseller hosting is nothing more but you having the ability to make money by reselling hosting packages to your audience. There is a difference between being an affiliate and a reseller.
If you become a reseller, you can create your own brand of hosting and sell the providers web-hosting plans to make money. It’s like your own online shop for web-hosting, but less work as everything is provided by the reseller account you have signed up for and all you have to do is generate sales for your online web-hosting shop.
Hosting List's Overview
Below I have given a brief overview of the webhosts which features affordable plans from top rated companies in each category. Basic pricing, website URLs and add-ons are mentioned among other details like FREE domain name registration offers and SSD/SAS hard drives.
Some of them may have their own local data centre services and are ICANN or official domain registrars for specific country extension like .com.au.
Price: $3.95 (USD)
Disk space: Unlimited
Add On’s: Free Domain Name
Bluehost.com is well known for its deals promoting blog hosting, but they do provide a wide range of hosting offers for small business websites and enterprise plans to cater to the top end of the market. They have in 2018 and 2019 integrated a wide range of support services like SEO and Marketing to help their customers reach their goal quicker.
In addition to their lower priced entry level plans starting from $2.95 a month they also offer a wide range of solutions bound to meet your requirements ranging from Shared, Reseller, VPS, Dedicated and everything in between including Managed WordPress. They offer hosting based on Linux Web Hosting as well as Windows Web Hosting servers.
CEO James Grierson used his strong background and experience as a network systems to launch these add-ons to the Bluehost arsenal and it is rumoured to add even more services in 2019.
At Bluehost.com.au, your site is hosted on its its servers in-house in a 50,000 square feet (4,600 m2) facility in Provo, Utah USA. As of November 2018, Bluehost hosts 1,248,507 websites on its shared servers.
Price: $35 (USD)
Disk space: 10GB
Add On’s: CDN,Free https (SSL), Staging
WPengine is one of the popular premium hosts that has been around for quite some time specifically catering to the managed hosting niche, and that is the reason they are well-known for their speed and infrastructure optimised hosting for wordpress CMS.
Their startup plan doesn’t come cheap starting at $35 for a month however, currently you are getting a promo plan that gives you four months free with their special discount coupon offer. WPengine allows you to run multiple WordPress sites from a single install for $20.00 / month, which can enable you to create a network of subsites that share the same WordPress themes and plugins.
WPengine has just taken over the premium wordpress themes developer “Studiopress themes”, and this enables them to give you the 35 StudioPress Themes + Genesis Framework for free. I had signed up with Studiopress and WPengine Well before this takeover, so I didn’t gain much – However that’s approximately $2,000 in bonus value when you sign up for a WP Engine plan considering each theme was priced at roughly $60 to $120 before the merger.
If you want both good hosting and good SEO optimised wordpress themes in one package, then you don’t want to miss this deal.
Price: $21 (USD)
Disk space: 5GB
Add On’s: Free https (SSL), Free Migration, Ninukis
I have used many hosts as part of my website projects that I do, and presidium is also one of them. Pressidium offers high performance managed WordPress hosting. I initially signed up for presidium as one of my competitors had a very good site that was performing very well in the Google search engine and earning a bucketful of money. As I was in the same niche as my competitor, I decided to give them a go.
Their plans are a bit pricey, but they have excellent customer service, and they also offer free SSL which is so important right now for ranking on the top of search engines. If you are changing from another host, they offer to transfer your whole website onto their servers for free.
While they advertise their personal plan – which is more suitable as it has 30,000 monthly site visits rather than 10,000 visits limit that the 21 dollar micro plan has. If you go annual, you can enjoy two months free, or then you can try them out with a 60-day money back guaranteed monthly plan.
Pressidium was founded in 2013 by John Andriopoulos, Andrew Georges, Giannis Zachariadis, and Filip Slavik. Pressidium’s parent company is TechIO Limited, and the headquarters is located in London, United Kingdom.
“When I switched from Hostmonster to Pressidium it was mainly for the speed improvement and free https that they had on offer. While the new higher price really didn’t justify the speed improvement I got changing from my old host, the Free SSL and Customer service I received certainly made up to have a happy move to pressidium.”
Price: $1 (USD)
Disk space: 100GB
Add On’s: Free Domain Plan, Unmetered
Godaddy.com is a US based web hosting company that is now also represented in Australia. They sell .com.au domains names and web hosting in addition to having a wide range of web related services like SSL Certificates, web name auctions, online shop/eCommerce plans, website builder software and website hosting re-seller plans.
As they have started their business as a domain name wholesaler, until today their no#1 business is domain names and they have more than 59 million domain names registered throughout the world by their customers. They have Free domain name with their hosting plans to their users in US and Australia.
Godaddy.com.au offers three types of shared web hosting, with an optional managed wordpress hosting. The packages for each type of hosting are straightforward and feature-packed. They do have a 30,000 visitor monthly limit on their basic plan which is a bit unusual for a shared plan.
Whether you want managed or un-managed Web hosting for your business, or you need robust cloud hosting for reselling or media-rich websites, Godaddy has a plan to fit your needs and your budget.
“I have been with them since 2008 when i started a basic site on a cheap plan. They met the needs for my online hobby journal and I have had very few problems over the years! They have a US based customer support which is easy to get hold off in case of a emergency. Its just the Australia/US time difference that you need to be mindful off.”
Price: $3.95 (USD)
Disk space: Unlimited
Add On’s: 1 click install, 24/7/365 support.
A Good web-host should tick the essential boxes of good customer support, reliable and well priced secure servers and easy to use control panel and Hostgator ticks all these boxes. Its the only web-host to have a animal in their logo(the gator) and they surely have a good bit of the webhosting market. As of December 2018, HostGator hosts 1,310,464 websites on its 6,579 shared IPs
Hostgator was founded 16 years ago in October 23, 2002 by Brent Oxley.The hosting plans start at USD 2.75/mo*(current deal) with the shared server plan and the fast WordPress hosting priced at $5.95/mo*. Your get super speeds and Free migrations with this plan.They have just recently upgraded to a faster more robust server technology to enhance performance across all web hosting and re-seller accounts
They also have a good affiliate program where you can refer and earn by recommending their service. If you promote their service on your website you can earn a commission ranging from $50 to $200 based on the price of the products you promote.
They boast a 99.9% uptime guarantee and have a 45-Day Money-Back Guarantee. If you’re not completely satisfied, you can cancel the hosting plan within 45 days for a complete refund.
Price: $4.95 (USD)
Disk space: Unlimited
Add On’s: Email,SSH Access,Hotlink Protection
Hostmonster offers a good starter package, but I have had the opportunity to also use one of their pro packages which i have found is of really good value at $14.95 introductory price and comparative to premium hosts like wp engine and presidium. I have been with hostmonster for years with one of my blogs at their $4.95 monthly shared plan price and they served me well without any issues and they served me well with their pro plan too.
The Pro Package has 80% less accounts per server which allows the use of more resources per account (more CPU usage, disk usage, bandwidth). It offers more speed, more power, with less users. More CPU, memory and resources for $27.99 / month (Saves you over $225 per year over the cost of buying these features separately!)
You get a free domain name and website builder on all plans. The domain name is expected, but the website builder is a nice addition. The special offers are limited-time promotional prices that are available to new customers and are valid for the Initial Term only, and not for successive or renewal periods.
HostMonster also gives you $100 in Google AdWords and Bing Ad credits which can get you started advertising through search engines like google and Microsoft bing
HostMonster has been providing hosting solutions to thousands of business and personal web sites since 1996.
Internet Hosting Services and Data Centres in Australia
With a population of over 24.6 million and growing, Australia is set to expand quickly with its proximity to Asia and increase in migration. Five main international cables connect Australia to cyberspace and global voice networks. They carry 99% of Australia’s total internet traffic and are located just off Perth and Sydney.
The current internet hosting and data centre is scene is dominated by a select few like Melbourne IT and Macquarie telecom from the commercial perspective.However, there is a fragmented US based hosting companies also servicing the needs of the low-cost base bloggers and small business.
The internet hosting services industry in Australia generates $528.1 Million revenue in a year as per available online data.
Domain Name Management in Australia
AUDA (www.auda.org.au) is the domain management organisation in Australia who oversees the licensing and registration of the Australian domain space. It was formed in 1999 to manage the .au cc TLD with the endorsement of the Australian Government and the authority of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).
Data from google trends show people from Queensland followed by New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia are the highest searchers online for “website hosting australia” in 2019. A large number are also searching for related terms like Web development, small business and online shopping.
Our provided list of web-hosts is well suited for small business, entrepreneur’s or even bloggers looking for a low-cost option.
Recommended for websites
When you purchase your hosting it is good to check if your hosting provider provides :
- Free email account with your domain name
- Ability to host multiple domain names with your hosting account
- Offers free site builder or 1 click install
- Up time guarantee for servers.
Off course this also depends on what is important to you as not all hosts will offer all these services with hosting.
Apart from these hosting factors there are some recommended optional/essentials. The below mentioned add-on’s or WordPress plugins are recommended for any new or growing website but can also be considered optional.
https( or security certificate) ♥
Majority of the websites today have the http:// extension at the start of their URL , however google search has stated that this is not a secure option and so will give preference to websites that have HTTP in their URL. While merely having a https wont ensure top ranking, to ensure you have a better chance of showing in top results https is recommended
CDN or content delivery network is an add-on to make your current website load faster to users all over the world. They are a separate paid service however cloud flare also offers a free option. If you don’t want to spend extra money on this add-on a free caching plugin WP Super Cache or W3 total cache is available for free from WordPress free plugin library.
This WordPress plugin is also free and will free your website of spam comments. If your website is getting really popular and attracting a lot of comments, then this plugin can be of great help in blocking unwanted spam comments. You will need to register for a Akismet API key to get this free plugin working for your website.
WordPress themes or Design ♣
If you are starting out you can use any free theme from your website WordPress admin area. They are thousands of free WP themes available, however if your are serious about your website i would suggest you spend some money and get a paid theme which offers free ongoing support. On the higher end I would recommend a membership for Genesis Studiopress Themes and if your are on a budget I would suggest just purchasing a single theme from themeforest.net. Make sure your purchased theme is responsive as that helps your website rank faster in search and is made for viewing all devices
What is next after building your website or blog ?
Today with 1 click installs and wordpress that are featured above, building a website can be the easy part of setting everything up – but what you do later could lead to your success online. Many people do the mistake of just setting up their website and then wait for people to come to their website (this happened only in the earlier years after internet was born).
In today’s competitive world with millions of websites/blogs online competing against each other, you will need three basic things to improve the visibility of your website online and get traffic.
- SEO for your website
- Online marketing
SEO: These two factors come into play after you have built your website. I have written a detailed post on SEO for websites over here if you want to check it out. This post is regularly updated and it will give you an idea of what SEO is all about. If you don’t have time to do it yourself, get a agency or freelancer to do it for you.
Online marketing: Can be as simple as creating your website presence on multiple social websites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linked in and sharing your latest updates on these social platforms and interacting with your audience. A facebook business page is highly recommended due to the reach Facebook has directly to consumers that are online. Again if you don’t have the time to do this, you can hire someone to do this on an ongoing basis for this.
Advertising: Like brick and mortar businesses invest in advertising to get more business, the same applies online. You can get business and traffic to your online website by SEO and Online marketing, but if you want more business or go to the next level- then you will also need to spend some money on advertising.
The good part is that you can decide how much you want to spend on online on advertising, see results and increase your spending. Online advertising is done via advertisements you see when you visit or are browsing Facebook or the Google search engines. You can either learn to do this advertising yourself or then hire a agency to do this for you.
This 3 basic promotion factors has to be done on an ongoing basis so that you stay ahead of the competition and achieve success. Good luck in your new venture and let us know how it goes.
This above list of hosts also provide domain name registration and is not an extensive list of all the website hosts available for Australia, but I do hope you find one that is suitable to your budget and needs. If you have any good experience with any other good Australian or US web hosts not featured here, do drop us a message and we will check it out and add it in our future reviews.
Adele /from Unsplash