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It all began back in 2008 when I was developer and earning my income from creating websites for small businesses. What a grind that was. I was a member of several professional business networking groups and spent so much time creating and nurturing new relationships to generate site development referrals. There was a gentleman named Nick that I had done some website edits for and he had a friend that needed to build and host a Joomla based website for the purpose of selling sunglasses online. Now at the time I was only helping and pitching WordPress development but how dare I say no to some money right. I had played with Joomla in the past but never actually did a full site build using the software. Anyways I was not worried and was confident I could figure it out and meet the deliverables presented to me by the client.
Now back in 2008 I was using Godaddy as the preferred hosting company for my development needs and the needs of my clients. With the Joomla build I decided to do some research to see if their was a hosting company that catered to hosting this type of software and had the support needed in case I hit a wall during setup. I did a few Google searches and also read many forums. I came across a company called SiteGround. They were marketing the fact that they specialized in CMS hosting for WordPress and Joomla platforms. This was a great find because at the time of discovery, they were offering a full year of hosting for only $10. I signed up and my first full Joomla development was a complete success with their support and guidance when needed.
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Towards the end of 2011, I began to use SiteGround for all of my new WordPress development clients. This was one of those business decisions you do not realize at the time that it will have massive long term benefits. I quickly started seeing that all the hosting environment issues I had at Godaddy did not exist with SiteGround. My favorite thing was the one click WordPress setup. With Godaddy I had to setup a WordPress install manually but SiteGround offered a 30-60 second setup area inside of their cPanel. TIME IS MONEY right!!!
In December of 2012 SiteGround released their proprietary Super Cacher system. I truly believe this was an actual holiday gift to their customers and that is why it was released in December…;) YUP, it was a game changer for speeding up slow WordPress sites. The amazing caching plugins off today either did not exist back then or were not super powerful in overall speed increase. SiteGround developed a caching system that was specific to their servers and worked hand in hand beautifully.
Progress and forward thinking is such a huge draw for me when selecting a company to use that can help perform the tasks I need to be successful. One thing that SiteGround has always done is stay ahead of the internet needs to make a website operate at its optimal level. But please do not take my word for it. Let me share 2 things below that they did to stay ahead of the demands of software and the world wide web.
- Always offer the choice to run the most recent version of PHP on your website.
Where this was the most powerful was when PHP version 7.0 came out. PHP version 7.0 was one of the requirements needed to take advantage of HTTP2 browser technology. Take a look at https://kinsta.com/learn/what-is-http2 for a detailed explanation of HTTP2 and how powerful it is to website speed.
- They offer FREE SSL certificates to their hosting customers.
This is sooooo important. A SSL certificate allows you to run your site using HTTPS in the browser address. This encrypts the data on your site. Google is also getting strict about websites being required to load in HTTPS instead of just HTTP. Learn more about this at https://www.wpfixit.com/why-you-should-have-ssl-on-your-wordpress-website
Now let us move ahead a few years. I started WP Fix It in 2009 but continued to operate my development business until 2015. Check out our full company history with a timeline at https://www.wpfixit.com/company-history. By August of 2015 I was happily hosting over 300 client sites with SiteGround. I can also say with great joy that none of these sites were ever infected which I must pat myself on the back for part of that fact being the security measures I put in place on all sites but the other large portion of these sites staying safe was the ROCK STAR hosting environment SiteGround provided. This is a big part of that TRUST MY KIDS WITH THEM statement.
Another SUPER SUPER IMPORTANT fact to make here is the support. I have worked with all the major web hosts and many of the small ones and what I see most often is when a customer needs to ask a host something, the wait time is out of control. SiteGround has 3 ways to contact them for support. They offer phone, live chat or ticket system. I personally in all 10 years I have used their services, have never used the phone or live chat option. I always create a support ticket so that way I can reference back any info within that ticket that helps to answer my question. The response time on these tickets is BLAZING FAST. I believe the longest I have ever had to wait for an initial reply was 5 minutes. If that is not reactive support then I have no idea what is. You really do not want to be a situation where your site is down and you need host intervention but it will take 30 or more minutes to simply work through the support Que.
I just wanted to share by SiteGround story with others and stress the fact that I have worked with the majority of hosting companies and would not recommend any other company for simple reason that I have found SiteGround to satisfy the needs that both myself and all of my past clients have had to make sure their site is functional and loading as it should all the time online.
Share some of your own SiteGround thoughts below in the comments…