Quality WordPress Hosting From People Who Know Your Name

Quality WordPress Hosting From People Who Know Your Name

It's Friday, so it's time for us to give Props to vendors we love. In our 20+ years of business, we have used or used at least ten different hosting companies for our sites and clients' sites. Without naming every one of them, we have used Bluehost, Modwest, FatCow, MDD Hosting, GoDaddy, Hawkhost, Innohosting, Sharkspace, Crucial Paradigm, Hostnine, Hostgator, HTTPME, and Siteground. Some of these providers we still use. Some may no longer be in business. Some were awful, and some just didn't fit our needs. By far, our favorite and most trusted website host is Lightningbase.

We came across Lightningbase on website hosting forums where you can get sucked down a rabbit hole of good advice and paid endorsements. I stumbled upon a blog reviewing some of the premier WordPress specialty website hosts. Lightningbase wasn't listed in the top 5, but upon reading some comments, I saw a recommendation and thought it was worth further exploration.

I started researching them through reviews and other forums. We asked around, seeking opinions from other web developers. It was time to send an exploratory pre-sales email to see what kind of response we would get. I recommend doing this with any new product or venture you might consider. It indicates what type of service you might get as a customer. Not always, but it's usually an insight. In no time, we heard back from the owner of Lightningbase. 

He was thoughtful and very articulate in his replies. He was confident of their services but not pushing the sale — unusual for web hosts.

We discussed everything I could think of, including bulk rates for multiple sites, future upgrades, and overages. There was nothing left out of his replies.

So, we sat on it for a while. Eventually, being fed up with another reseller’s slow performance and even slower support, it was time to try Lightningbase. We're still using them for six years and counting for many of our websites. Most small businesses don't have time to try new products and services. Most of us are loyal to reliable, trustworthy, and responsive providers. Lightningbase is all of that and more. They know your name. 

Speed, security, and performance from a web host are paramount for an effective website.

Lightningbase is fast. They specialize in WordPress hosting. That's something we'll blog about another time. From all indications, further reviews, and people more knowledgeable than me, security at Lightningbase is top-tier. We have never experienced downtime or those annoying "500" or "WordPress error establishing a database connection" error. Their cache-ing is phenomenal. On a rare occasion when we have seen a downtime instance, it's because of an upstream outage. It can happen even with redundancy.

If you're going to be with any provider for some time, support will become an equally important part of that relationship. This is truly my favorite part of using Lightningbase as a web host. Tickets are responded to usually within 15-20 minutes, sometimes sooner and occasionally longer. While we all want instant replies, I've found that a thoughtful and helpful 30-minute answer is better than an immediate one: "we don't know what's going on; we'll look into it." Sometimes, we've waited a day or more for a resolution. Not with Lightningbase. Many times, the owner replies to tickets. I don't know how many customers they have, but they know my name and my company's name and are familiar with all our clients' sites. 

Lightningbase doesn't offer phone or chat support.

That bothers some web designers and developers. One provider we've used had phone support that they bragged about. After waiting about 5-10 minutes one time, someone finally picked up. It was so noisy in the background I couldn't tell what my tech was advising me. We've experienced equally lackluster support from some chat support of larger web hosts. Not Lightningbase. Their ticket system works perfectly, and the support team's quality of replies, suggestions, and fixes has answered all our needs. 

They're small. To my knowledge, they operate solely in the United States. With some of the larger web hosts, you can get more resources, support options, and plan options for your hosting. Lightningbase offers four basic plans. They're reasonably priced, though not nearly as inexpensive as some of the monster web hosts. You get what you pay for. 

If you want the comfort of a company managing servers around the globe with thousands of staff, look elsewhere. If you're going to pay $3 a month for website hosting from a “reseller," you should look elsewhere. Lightningbase provides top-quality, trustworthy, managed WordPress hosting.

The adage "time is money" is valid in all aspects of business. The allure of shiny web hosts with all the glitter often ended up wasting time and money. One of the worst things any web design or web development company has to report to a client is that the server has crashed, the host is trying to fix it, or we don't know what the problem is. 

I've saved the more egregious emails from my previous hosts, and maybe I'll write a book about it. With Lightningbase, I haven't had to do that.

As a managed WordPress host, they know their plugins.

They've bailed us out many times with plugins that don't play nice. They know how their system integrates well or poorly with specific plugins. They know LMS, Gravity Forms, Contact Forms, Ninja Forms, Paid Memberships Pro, and Beaver Builder. They know e-commerce and gateway providers. They know all things WordPress. The coolest thing about Lightningbase is that on top of all that, they know us, and that is good enough!

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