This is a follow up to my post last year about recommendations for WordPress hosting. Unfortunately, most small, reliable hosting companies are getting swallowed up by the big guys. These boutique companies start out with great service and tiny monthly fees. Then they get bought out, enter into greedy price wars, and things start to fall apart.

A colleague called to tell me that a client of hers lost their entire WordPress site when A Small Orange Hosting went down and the website couldn’t be restored. The idea of losing months worth of work gave me a stomachache and is still gnawing away at me.

I guess the bottom line is this: Forget about cheap hosting unless you can afford to lose your website and don’t mind starting over from scratch. People roll their eyes at me when I suggest WPengine at $30 per month. Yet it starts to sound like a very good deal when you realize they backup their client’s sites every 24 hours so, whether their servers are struck by tornados or vicious hackers, you can easily restore when bad things happen.

So, based upon discussions with local experts, these are my recommendations:

While Cruzio costs a bit more, if you want to support local, why not use their services? You can walk right in and talk with someone, too. Always nice. Use Cruzio or I can host for you at $15 per month.

Do you mean business with your site? wpEngine costs a bit more but worth the expense with superb customer support, built for WordPress clients. Get 2 months free hosting with WP Engine on any shared annual plan The $29 personal plan should be fine for most clients.

This firm is independently owned, based in San Francisco and I’m told is a good bet. At only $4-$8 bucks a month, you won’t find much cheaper than that. View more info here.