Cloud hosting providers offer businesses reliable website file storage on a network of internet-connected servers that users can access anywhere. We evaluated 20 cloud hosting providers and narrowed them down to the best six for small businesses—including the best overall—based on price, memory, additional features, customer support, and more.
Top 6 Small Business Cloud Hosting Providers 2019
|Cloud Hosting Providers||Best For|
|HostGator||(Best Overall) Businesses needing affordable, fully-featured cloud hosting|
|Liquid Web||Growing businesses needing hosting with a 100% uptime guarantee|
|InMotion||Businesses needing reliable cloud hosting for heavy-traffic websites|
|SiteGround||Companies wanting a la carte pricing for more control of their cloud hosting features|
|CloudWays||Businesses with limited budgets needing pay-by-the-hour plans|
|1&1 IONOS||Budget-strapped entrepreneurs who are looking for the first month free|
How We Evaluated the Best Cloud Hosting Providers
For many small businesses, traffic peaks due to promotions or seasonal demands can slow their websites. This keeps them from delivering smooth, fast, secure, and reliable experiences that customers expect. These businesses, therefore, look to cloud hosting for more flexibility and reliability at an affordable price. To help, we evaluated cloud hosting providers based on price, amount of memory and storage, security features, customer support, and ease of use.
The criteria we used to evaluate the best cloud hosting providers include:
- Price – Our preferred cloud hosting providers offer plans for less than $30 a month, a price we believe many small businesses can afford.
- Domain Names – Cloud hosting plans that offer registration of at least one free domain name give small businesses more of the essential tools needed to build a successful small business website at an affordable price.
- Plans – It’s important that cloud hosting providers offer tiered plans small businesses can use to meet growing demands as their businesses expand.
- RAM – The Random Access Memory (RAM) on hosting servers is key to load times for websites. Good small business cloud hosting plans should provide enough RAM—at least 2GB—to create a fast website experience.
- Storage – Cloud hosting providers should offer plenty of space on their servers to store all small business website files. That’s why we preferred cloud hosting plans with at least 5GB of storage.
- Operating System – We looked for providers that use Linux or Windows operating systems—software most small businesses owners are likely to use. These allow for easy website setup and integration with popular third-party tools, like the collaboration software SharePoint and the popular content management system (CMS), WordPress.
- Central Tool Management – The best small business cloud hosting providers offer tools to build an online presence in one central place, including domain setup tools, email, and one-click installations of content management systems like WordPress.
- Security – To ensure the protection of small businesses’ sensitive customer data, cloud hosting providers should offer Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificates.
- Customer Service – Without a ton of technical knowledge, small businesses need 24/7 customer service so they always have support at their fingertips to offer the best website experiences possible.
- Ease of Use – We looked for cloud hosting plans that offer small businesses help with technical maintenance. We also favored providers that have control panels with easy-to-access setup tools, analytics, and troubleshooting information.
Based on the criteria above, we believe HostGator offers the best full-featured cloud hosting plan for the most affordable price, including plenty of storage and bandwidth, domain registration, and add-ons like an SSL certificate, domain privacy to prevent spam, and business email. Plus, they offer several plans small businesses can use to grow.
Best Overall Cloud Hosting Provider for Small Businesses: HostGator
HostGator, a cloud hosting provider with plans that start at $4.95 per month, offers an affordable but robust set of features that meet most small business needs. Due to its sizable storage and unmetered bandwidth, near-100% uptime, unlimited subdomains, email, and security, it’s best for businesses that need a good, all-in-one cloud hosting solution.
HostGator’s cloud hosting plans start at $4.95 per month, making it one of the most affordable providers available. You must sign up for a 36-month contract to obtain this price, however. After the initial three-year period, your plan will increase to $8.95 per month; this is still very affordable compared to other providers like InMotion.
HostGator Tiered Features
*Unmetered means the hosting provider does not monitor how much storage or bandwidth you use. There are, however, limitations based on how you use these resources; check your terms of service for details.
**HostGator offers a one-month credit if your uptime dips below 99.9% in a month.
Starting at $4.95 per month, the Hatchling Cloud plan offers 2GB of RAM, unmetered bandwidth and storage, a hosted domain (but no free registration), unlimited subdomains, an SSL certificate, and domain privacy. You also get business email that is accessible through your HostGator account. For an additional fee, site backup and restore is available at checkout to protect website data from being deleted by hackers.
This package is best for small businesses that have already registered a domain and need to build a website without a lot of dynamic features like pop-ups or auto-play videos. It best serves bloggers that have begun to experience a growing reader base or startups just beginning to scale. With unmetered bandwidth and storage, this plan provides stability regardless of occasional traffic spikes.
The Baby Cloud Plan starts at $6.57 per month and includes 4GB of RAM, unmetered bandwidth and storage, Windows and Linux operating systems, unlimited domains hosted (but not registered), and unlimited subdomains. Email is also includes in this package, as well as an SSL certificate and domain privacy to prevent spam.
This plan is best for mid-sized businesses experiencing regular traffic spikes due to ongoing promotions or seasonal demand. Businesses should choose this plan if they want to upgrade their hosting to a higher-RAM plan to accommodate the use of dynamic page elements that require more memory, like pop-ups. A regional car dealership with regular promotions or a mid-sized travel booking site would do well with this plan.
The Business Plan starts at $9.95 per month with 6GB of RAM, unlimited domains hosted (not registered), unlimited subdomains, email, an SSL certificate, and domain privacy. The difference between this plan and the Baby Cloud plan is 2GB of additional RAM so you can handle more fluctuations in traffic and more complex website elements.
This plan is a good purchase for websites with more than 200,000 monthly website visitors and dynamic features that require lots of specialized coding. This may include, for example, a small or mid-sized software company that offers onsite demos or a marketing firm that utilizes a lot of surveys and quizzes on their site.
Ease of Use
HostGator offers a standard cPanel, which is a dashboard that can be used to manage all of your plan’s features. The cPanel is renowned for its intuitive interface. In cPanel, with just a few clicks and by filling out a few form fields, you can add domains, create subdomains, view website statistics like the visitor demographic information, install CMS platforms like WordPress or Drupal, and manage your email settings.
You can contact HostGator 24/7 via live chat, email, and phone. However, many users report slow responses; live chat sometimes takes up to 45 minutes just to start a chat session. Once customers do connect, they report less-than-thorough responses. For better customer service, consider Liquid Web.
What HostGator Is Missing
HostGator does not offer free domain registration like InMotion, meaning you have to purchase your domain separately for a yearly fee. Users also report that the customer support is lacking in response times and expertise.
What Users Think About HostGator
Users like HostGator’s competitive pricing and intuitive control panel. They also like all the features their plans offer. However, they don’t like that the customer service is often inexperienced and so isn’t able to help users resolve issues. In addition, they say websites experience downtime when HostGator is performing service maintenance. Read more on our review page for HostGator.
Where to Find HostGator
To learn more about HostGator’s cloud hosting packages, click on their “Cloud Hosting” header menu tab from their home page. From there, click on “Compare All Plans” under the brief plan overview table to learn more about each plan. To get started with HostGator Cloud hosting, click here.
Best Cloud Hosting Provider for 100% Uptime: Liquid Web
Liquid Web is a cloud hosting provider that stands out for its reliability. Their 100% uptime guarantee ensures your website is always working. When coupled with 2GB of RAM, this uptime guarantee means business is never hampered by slow site loading times or crashes. For this reason, it is best for businesses like ecommerce stores that rely solely on their website to sell products or services as their digital storefront.
Liquid Web Pricing
Liquid Web’s $19.99 per month 2GB RAM cloud hosting plan offers 30GB of storage. Their $29.99 per month 4GB RAM plan has 75GB of storage and their $39.99 per month 8GB RAM plan offers 100GB of storage. Each plan has unlimited hosted websites, domains, and subdomains; Linux Operating system (OS); and a free SSL certificate.
Liquid Web Tiered Features
* According to Liquid Web, if you do not receive 100% uptime, you will receive a credit for 10 times the actual amount of time you were affected.
Liquid Web’s 2GB RAM plan offers unlimited hosted websites, domains, and subdomains, 30GB of storage, a free SSL certificate, a 100%-uptime guarantee, and is hosted on a Linux operating system. Unlike InMotion, you must register a domain separately and purchase email and domain privacy as add-on features.
Without email, domain privacy, and a domain, many startups would struggle to create an ecommerce store on this plan, though it does have the storage, security, and RAM to accommodate a small one. Generally, however, this plan is best for bloggers who don’t post a ton of videos or use interactive content on their sites.
This plan offers 4GB of RAM and 75GB of storage. Like the 2GB RAM plan, it also comes with unlimited hosted websites, domains, and subdomains, a 100%-uptime guarantee, an SSL certificate, and Linux OS. Here, too, you must buy domain privacy, domain registration, and email separately. InMotion offers the same amount of RAM and storage, plus domain privacy, domain registration, and email, for less than this plan, but this plan’s uptime is slightly better.
This plan is best for websites that lean more on visual elements, including video, pop-ups, and photo-driven product portfolios. With plenty of storage and a decent amount of RAM, it best suits businesses that offer a streamlined online buying experience with static images, such as restaurants offering delivery or flower shops. It also works well for bloggers who are introducing more visual elements to their content, such as video or podcast files.
Liquid Web’s 8GB RAM plan offers 100GB of storage—25GB more than the 4GB of RAM plan. Like the 4GB plan, this plan also offers unlimited websites, domains, and subdomains, an SSL certificate, a 100%-uptime guarantee, and uses Linux OS. If you want domain registration, domain privacy, or email, you must purchase them for an additional fee. This is a really good deal compared SiteGround’s 8GB plan, which offers 20GB of storage for four times the price.
This is best for existing businesses needing faster and more stable website experiences. With 8GB of RAM and 100%-uptime guarantee, it handles complex websites with both static content-like images and dynamic content like streaming video. This, along with its secure payment processing, make it ideal for businesses that publish streaming content—like business coaches, marketing agencies, and media personalities who host webinars and shows.
Ease of Use
Liquid Web offers a server control panel, called The Internal Dashboard, that allows you to manage your websites, email, users, domains, and more in one place with just a few clicks. This dashboard also allows you to monitor your plan usage to understand if you need to upgrade or downgrade to accommodate your website changes; you can see real-time changes of the memory, storage, or bandwidth your site is using.
Liquid Web offer 24/7/365 customer support via phone, chat, ticket, and help desk. For phone, chat, and help desk support, you can expect a response in under a minute. Customers say they receive a response within minutes of submitting a ticket. They have security and network teams monitoring servers 24/7 to ensure they’re running smoothly and are secure.
What Liquid Web Is Missing
Liquid Web’s cloud hosting plans don’t offer free email or a free domain registration like InMotion’s cloud hosting plans do. They also don’t offer free domain privacy like HostGator does.
What Users Think About Liquid Web
Customers like that Liquid Web’s customer support is friendly, responsive, and helpful. They also appreciate never having to deal with server downtime. While it is difficult to find negative reviews from Liquid Web customers, a couple said they had to cancel their plans multiple times before they were actually deactivated.
Where to Find Liquid Web
To learn more about Liquid Web’s cloud hosting plans, visit their website and click “Products” from the side menu, then “VPS Cloud.” If you have questions about their plans, click on the “Chat with a Human” button on the bottom right-hand corner. To get started with Liquid Web, click here.
Best Cloud Hosting Provider for Heavy Traffic: InMotion
InMotion is a cloud hosting provider that offers a minimum of 4GB of RAM, websites, storage, email, and security in each of its plans. This level of RAM and storage makes its plans best for businesses with lots of website traffic that need to efficiently process online payments, including wholesale distributors, travel booking sites, and hotels.
InMotion’s VPS Cloud Hosting plans start at $29.19 per month and go as high as $69.34. Packages include between 4GB and 8GB of RAM, unlimited websites hosted, storage, the Linux operating system, one domain, unlimited subdomains, and email. They offer a 90-day money back guarantee if you aren’t satisfied.
InMotion Tiered Features
The InMotion VPS-1000HA-S plan starts at $29.10 per month and offers everything a small business needs to start and maintain a secure website, including unlimited hosted websites, 4GB of RAM, 75GB of storage, registration of one free domain, unlimited subdomains and email, a Linux operating system, and an SSL certificate for secure transactions. The only thing it lacks that some providers like HostGator offer in this tier is free domain privacy to reduce spam.
This plan is good for businesses that are looking for hosting plans that can grow as traffic grows and peaks. Startup tech, nonprofit, financial, and marketing companies are usually focused on growing their online contributor base or sales, so they need hosting plans like this one that focus on handling sensitive information securely.
The InMotion VPS-2000HA-S plan starts at $47.39 per month and includes unlimited websites, registration of one domain name, unlimited subdomains, 6GB of RAM (2GB more than the entry-level plan), 150GB of storage, a Linux operating system, a free SSL certificate, and unlimited email accounts. The only feature this plan lacks is domain privacy, which must be purchased separately for $11.99 per year.
With above-average RAM, high security, and plenty of storage for handling dynamic website content, this plan is best for ecommerce stores and companies that enjoy moderate traffic on a regular basis, but occasionally see high traffic due to seasonal promotions or product launches.
This plan starts at $69.34 per month and includes a free domain registration and unlimited subdomains, unlimited websites and email, 8GB of RAM, 260GB of storage, a Linux operating system, and a free SSL certificate. Again, this tier lacks the domain privacy other hosting providers like HostGator offer. It is quite pricey, but with the same RAM as SiteGround’s more expensive third-tier plan—plus more features—it is comparatively a good deal.
Given the high amount of RAM and free SSL certificate, this plan is good for brands with website visitors who engage with the site to change elements in real-time. For example, a popular delivery pizza parlor that allows website visitors to build their own pizza online would do well with this plan. Other businesses that would benefit include “try it on before you buy” clothing or jewelry stores that use 3D body renderings to show how products will look when worn.
Ease of Use
This plan also allows you to manage domains, subdomains, email accounts, files, and more from one central cPanel—the industry standard for hosting dashboards. Each plan also comes with automatic updates every 24 to 36 hours, so you don’t have to manage changes to operating systems or CMS platforms like WordPress. Also, you can install ecommerce applications like WooCommerce, PrestaShop, and Magento with one click.
You can contact InMotion’s customer support 24/7/365 via phone, email, chat, or Skype support. Simply visit their “Contact Us” page on their website and use the contact information under the “Support” subtitle. You can also click on “Support Center” under the “Support” menu item to access product guides, frequently asked questions, and tutorials.
What InMotion Is Missing
Unlike HostGator, InMotion does not offer domain privacy with its packages; you have to purchase it separately for $11.99 per year. It also doesn’t offer plans that would be super affordable for startup businesses or solopreneurs. For more affordable plans, consider HostGator or 1&1 IONOS.
What Users Think About InMotion
Customers love the cPanel interface on InMotion. They also love that InMotion’s hosting packages offer reliable uptime, though not as reliable as Liquid Web’s. Users have mixed experiences with customer support, with some getting excellent guidance and fast responses, and others experiencing frustration with issues not being resolved. They also wish the company offered the option of a Windows operating system. Read more on our InMotion review page.
Where to Find InMotion
To learn more about InMotion’s VPS cloud hosting, visit their home page and click on the “Learn More” button on the VPS Hosting tile. From there, click “View Plans” on the “Managed VPS Hosting” tile. If you have questions that aren’t addressed here, click on the “Sales Chat” button on the top of any InMotion website page to ask questions. Remember, each plan comes with a no-questions-asked, 90-day money back guarantee. To get started with InMotion, click here.
Best for a la Carte Hosting Features: SiteGround
SiteGround is a cloud hosting provider that stands out for its a la carte hosting features, making its plans tailorable to each client’s needs. It is best for websites that need custom hosting services, as well as business owners with technical knowledge who want more control over the features of their hosting package. SiteGround also offers packages for businesses that simply want a turnkey solution to website hosting.
SiteGround’s cloud hosting plans range from $80 per month to $160 per month based on the amount of storage and RAM you select. In addition, you can create your own custom plan by clicking on “Create Your Own Plan” from their “Cloud Hosting” page, then adjusting the plan’s resources, like memory and storage.
SiteGround Tiered Features
Create Your Own
SiteGround’s Create Your Own plan offers users the ability to select the amount of Central Processing Unit (CPU) capacity (which affects site speed), RAM, and storage they want, and to add on additional features like domain privacy. Included in this plan are unlimited subdomains and SSL—plus 99.9% uptime. These adjustable plans start at $80 per month, but go as high as $1,000 per month.
Businesses that need highly-tailored offerings, or tech-savvy businesses that need full control over their hosting features, are good candidates for the Create Your Own plan. However, it’s up to the user to upgrade features to accommodate increases in traffic, website complexity, or website expansions. For businesses that don’t want to worry about this kind of monitoring, it’s best to choose a SiteGround package.
SiteGround’s Entry plan starts at $80 per month and includes unlimited websites hosted, 4GB of RAM, 40GB of storage, unlimited subdomains, an SSL certificate, and unlimited email. Unlike on HostGator, domains and domain privacy must be purchased separately. This is a much heftier-priced, first-tier plan than HostGator, too. While it offers mid-tier RAM (4GB), it is still quite expensive considering they don’t include a domain name or domain privacy.
Given the amount of RAM included—as well as the uptime—this plan is best for companies that rely solely on their websites for revenue, like early-stage retail companies with no brick-and-mortar storefront. VIP tech support and backups also make it ideal for companies that need to solve tech problems quickly before they affect site usability, such as breaking news sites or medical support sites.
SiteGround’s Business plan starts at $120 per month and has unlimited websites, 6GB of RAM, 60GB of storage, an SSL certificate, and unlimited emails. It doesn’t come with domain privacy or a domain name like InMotion’s mid-tier plans. It differs from the Entry plan with an additional 2GB of RAM and 20GB of storage. It comes with automatic updates and website backups so you don’t have to worry about content being compromised.
With plenty of RAM and security, this plan is great for businesses with significant website traffic peaks and the need for interactive or dynamic experiences, like price bidding/auction businesses or “build your own” products companies. For example, it would be good for popular antique auction sites where high-ticket items are being introduced and bid on daily.
SiteGround’s Business Plus plan starts at $160 per month and comes with unlimited websites, 8GB of RAM, 80GB of storage, an SSL certificate, and email. Domain privacy and domain registrations must be purchased separately, as with the other plans from SiteGround. However, the included 24/7 tech support and automated backups offer additional peace of mind for business owners.
This plan is best for growing mid-sized businesses that are expanding their online presence with multiple websites. With VIP tech support and robust site security, it also suits business-to-business distributors that regularly get large orders that require stability and security for efficient processing.
Ease of Use
SiteGround offers one-click installations of website-building platforms like Magento, Drupal, WordPress, and Joomla. Plans have a standard cPanel—the same cPanel many other hosting providers offer—for the most intuitive account management experience. You can view bandwidth usage reports, manage your domain’s activation statuses, add or delete features, and more.
SiteGround offers VIP customer support with a guaranteed no-hold time on chat and phone and less than a 10-minute wait time for ticket replies. They do an excellent job of managing all technical needs, including configuring and managing the infrastructure of server software and website updates. If you need faster customer support responses, however, consider Liquid Web.
What SiteGround Is Missing
Unlike 1&1 IONOS and HostGator, SiteGround does not offer plans that are affordable for most startup businesses. And unlike InMotion, they don’t offer free domain registration or domain privacy in any of their plans.
What Users Think About SiteGround
It was difficult to find negative reviews for SiteGround, primarily because of their excellent customer support. Users praise SiteGround’s support as knowledgeable, very responsive, and patient. Plus, they are reported to work well with both beginners and website hosting experts. This translates into exceptional website uptime and user experiences.
Where to Find SiteGround
To learn more about what SiteGround offers, visit their website home page and click on the “Cloud Hosting” tile. If you want to learn more about their customer support, you can click on “Help” from their home page header menu, then “Start a Sales Chat” to ask any questions. To get started with SiteGround cloud hosting, click here.
Best for Pay-by-the-Hour Plans: CloudWays
CloudWays is a cloud hosting provider that stands out by offering pay-by-the-hour plans so small businesses can adjust plan resources to accommodate traffic spikes. Though it doesn’t offer a lot of the amenities other providers like HostGator offer, you can keep expenses low by paying by the hour. It is best for small-budget businesses, like new marketing agencies or freelancers, that need to cover short bursts in traffic due to increased exposure or promotions.
CloudWays offers pay-as-you-go plans that are billed hourly. Their smallest plan has a $10 per month cap and costs $0.0139 per hour, while their third-tier plan has a $42 per month cap and is $0.00583 per hour. Their plans are missing amenities other plans, like HostGator, offer, including free domain registrations, domain privacy, and emails.
CloudWays Tiered Features
* For their 99.99% uptime guarantee, CloudWays offers refunds based on the number of hours of downtime.
Digital Ocean $10
CloudWays’ Digital Ocean $10 plan caps out at $10 per month, but you pay for what you use at $0.0139 per hour. This bottom-tier plan comes with unlimited websites, 1GB of RAM, 2.5GB of storage, and an SSL certificate. Compared to other plans in this guide, like Liquid Web and HostGator, it is a bare-minimum starter tier with no domain registration, subdomains, domain privacy, or email included. It operates on the Linux operating system.
This plan is best for very small businesses with minimal website traffic, including solopreneur content writers and translators. It does offer the needed SSL certificate to accept credit cards securely, but probably wouldn’t handle anything more than a very basic website with static images, text, and basic forms. This plan is good for businesses needing a one- or two-page website to show biographic information, a contact form, and a portfolio.
Digital Ocean $22
CloudWays’ Digital Ocean $22 plan is comparable to many other service provider starter plans, like HostGator’s most basic plan; it includes a modest 2GB of RAM and 50GB of storage. However, it doesn’t offer any other features like a free domain name, domain privacy, or email. It does offer unlimited websites hosted and an SSL certificate for sensitive information transactions.
This plan is best for startup companies that want to pay a minimum price for cloud hosting services and build websites with several pages—like a blog, a contact form, and a product page, for example. Still, these sites would be basic and include a minimum amount of dynamic media, like video and audio, and experience a relatively small amount of traffic.
Digital Ocean $42
CloudWays’ Digital Ocean $42 plan caps out at $42 a month and offers 4GB of RAM, 80GB of storage, unlimited websites, and an SSL certificate. At a much heftier price tag, this tier is similar to HostGator’s mid-tier $6.57 plan, but with fewer amenities. It differs from the Digital Ocean mid-tier plan in that it offers twice the RAM and 30GB of additional storage.
This plan is good for growing small local businesses that sell online services or products, including restaurants that offer carryout and consulting firms looking to grow business by attracting leads through their website. While the RAM and security features are ideal for these businesses, the lack of email and free domain registration means they’ll have to pay even more for basic offerings.
Ease of Use
Via a real-time user cPanel (control panel) interface within CloudWays, you can monitor your website’s performance 24/7/365; this interface shows metrics like uptime, load speed, and more. You can also set site backups to automatically trigger on your schedule. Applications like WordPress and Magento can be installed with one click, though CloudWays does offer instructions on how to install and update these web platforms for those who are not tech-savvy.
You can contact CloudWays via live chat, submit a support request ticket online, or request a call via their “Support” page. Users report that they can contact technical support 24/7 and that they receive patient and knowledgeable service with quick resolutions to their problems.
What CloudWays Is Missing
CloudWays lacks the affordable, full-featured plans HostGator offers. Primarily, they don’t offer a free domain, email, or domain privacy in small business plans.
What Users Think About CloudWays
Users praise CloudWays’ customer support as knowledgeable, quick, and patient. Even if a problem isn’t caused by CloudWays, their support team helps clients fix it. Users don’t like, however, that the cPanel can require a learning curve to operate and sometimes experiences small glitches. For a more intuitive cPanel, consider HostGator or InMotion. Users also wish basic amenities like email were included in their plans.
Where to Find CloudWays
To learn more about CloudWays’ Digital Ocean cloud hosting plans, visit their home page and click on their “Pricing” tab. Then, under the “Managed Hosting Plans that Work for Everyone” header, click “Digital Ocean.” From there, you can try their services for free for three days without inputting credit card information; just click on “Start Free” under the plan you’re interested in. To get started with CloudWays, click here.
“We use CloudWays for all our sites. The main reason is the flexibility it provides when we launch a new product, such as a virtual summit. The spike in traffic to our summit website that comes from a launch—thanks to PR, social media, email, partner, advertising, and referrals—means we need to scale our servers temporarily to cope with the increase in demand.”
– Liam Austin, Co-Founder, Entrepreneurs HQ
Best Cloud Hosting Provider for Sign-Up Offers: 1&1 IONOS
1&1 IONOS offers affordable cloud hosting plans, ideal for small businesses on a very limited budget. They stand out by offering full-featured plans with a $100 first-month credit offer; this means small businesses get the first month free. This plan is best for businesses that need a fully-functional website with no first-month costs, including freelancers and solopreneurs with limited budgets who need to build brand awareness quickly in order to acquire clients.
1&1 IONOS Pricing
1&1 IONOS offers cloud hosting plans for small businesses starting at $15 per month, going up to $65 per month for mid-sized business plans. Plans include features like domain names, subdomains, email, domain privacy, and SSL certificates. You can also get one month free by using the $100 first-month credit advertised on their cloud hosting page.
1&1 IONOS Tiered Features
* If your uptime falls below the 99.9% guaranteed uptime, you can request a credit for the amount of time your site was down.
1&1 IONOS Cloud M
The 1&1 IONOS Cloud M cloud hosting plan is $15 per month and comes with four websites, a free domain name with domain privacy, 10,000 subdomains, 1GB of RAM, 50GB of storage, a free SSL certificate, Linux operating system, and free email. This plan is a bit pricey compared to first-tier cloud hosting plans like HostGator (and HostGator offers more RAM and the option of using Windows OS).
With only 1GB of RAM and a free first month, this plan is best for businesses that are testing websites to learn more about a new market or product. For example, a restaurant may want to expand into a new state and test market interest, or a clothing store might want to gauge interest in a new clothing line.
1&1 IONOS Cloud L
The 1&1 IONOS Cloud L plan is $25 per month and includes 2GB of RAM, 80GB of storage, a free domain name with up to 10,000 subdomains, domain privacy, a free SSL certificate, unlimited email accounts, and up to eight websites. This plan falls short of HostGator’s second tier plan, which starts at under $7 per month and includes 4GB of RAM.
With plenty of websites and storage, this plan is best for solopreneurs needing to offer a full portfolio of work, broken down into different categories. They can dedicate a different subdomain to each category, and even target different customers. With secure hosting, they can also process online purchases.
1&1 IONOS Cloud XL
The 1&1 IONOS Cloud XL costs $35 per month and includes 4GB of RAM, 120GB of storage, 16 websites, a free domain name with unlimited subdomains, domain privacy, an SSL certificate, Linux OS, and unlimited email. It is pricey, however; HostGator offers a cheaper third-tier plan with more RAM.
With lots of storage and plenty of websites, this is best for businesses offering a large variety of products via one or more ecommerce stores. The SSL certificate allows for secure payment processing while unlimited email enables businesses to offer customer support from a number of different staff members.
Ease of Use
1&1 IONOS offers easy installations of CMS platforms like WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla. You can launch these apps from their Cloud Panel—a dashboard for managing your plan features. Here, you can also instantly scale resources like RAM. The cloud platform is also managed, meaning they maintain your cloud hosting infrastructure, operating system, and software updates.
1&1 IONOS offers customer support via phone, chat, and email. Each customer gets a personal consultant assigned to them who can help resolve issues, as well as provide help with billing, invoices, website performance, technical jargon explanations, general maintenance, and business goals.
What 1&1 IONOS Is Missing
1&1 IONOS cloud hosting plans generally include less RAM than most plans on the market. It also doesn’t offer the stable uptimes that providers like Liquid Web, SiteGround, and HostGator offer.
What Users Think About 1&1 IONOS
Users feel that the customer support and uptime could be much better. If this is important to you, consider Liquid Web. They do, however, like that initial plan rates are affordable. They also like that the control panel is intuitive and easy to use, and that packages come with a free domain name. Read more on our 1&1 review page.
Where to Find 1&1 IONOS
To learn more about 1&1 IONOS’ cloud hosting plans, visit their home page and click on the “Products” tab in the header menu, then on “Cloud Hosting” from the drop-down menu. If you’d like to try their services, you can sign up for any plan and take advantage of their $100 first-month credit. Click here to get started with 1&1 IONOS.
Cloud hosting providers give businesses access to reliable, quick storage for their websites, plus the storage and memory (RAM) to accommodate changes in traffic and website expansions. The best small business cloud hosting services also offer domain privacy, email, and SSL certificates.
If you are a beginner, you may want to first check out our article about web hosting!
Based on our research, we have found HostGator to be the best cloud hosting service for small businesses. Starting at a small business-affordable price of $4.99 per month, they offer 4GB of RAM, unmetered bandwidth and storage, domain privacy, an SSL certificate, and business email accounts. Click here to get started with HostGator.