When looking for web hosting, many WordPress users go straight for the most popular web hosts – while others do meticulous research and end up at smaller, yet more focused providers. However, there’s one host that seldom comes up in either of those two groups – so let’s make amends with our A2 Hosting review for WordPress!
Despite not being well-known, A2 Hosting has made a bit of a name for itself thanks to its rapid speed and great support. However, when it comes to web hosts and their claims, it’s usually best to take this type of information with a grain of salt, unless you’ve tested the solution for yourself.
With that in mind, we’ve rigorously tested A2 Hosting to see how it plays with WordPress, and whether its support and speeds are really all that. Let’s get started on our A2 Hosting review for WordPress!
A2 Hosting review for WordPress – specific features
As a WordPress user, any web host you’re considering should be held to a much higher standard. Given WordPress’ massive popularity, hosts should offer specific features geared towards its users – A2 Hosting doesn’t disappoint in this aspect:
- Optimized WordPress installations: A2 Hosting offers optimized WordPress installations to maximize speed and security. This enables you to focus on growing your site without worrying about performance.
- Fast loading sites: This provider’s main claim to fame lies in its speeds. Faster loading sites lower your bounce rates and keep users happy, so they’re definitely a good thing. We’ll discuss performance in-depth later on, so keep reading.
So far, we’re off to a decent start! Let’s move on to see how A2 Hosting fares with its customer support.
We’d heard good things about A2 Hosting’s customer support, so we were particularly excited about testing it first hand. Before diving in, we took a long look through their documentation. Their knowledge base includes over 40 WordPress-specific articles, including using Google Analytics and administering WordPress from the command line.
Moving on, we tested one of A2 Hosting’s support agents using the live chat function (although they can also take emails and phone calls). After clicking on the Live Chat button, we waited a mere 20 seconds before having an agent assigned to us. We then proceeded to pepper them with a few basic questions:
The conversation went smoothly, and our agent gave us a couple of decent suggestions for basic WordPress plugins – which is exactly what we were looking for to gauge their attention to detail.
Raw performance is one of the main criteria you need to consider when choosing a web host. Here are the main features that A2 Hosting offers to improve user performance:
- Solid State Drives (SDDs): All of their WordPress plans offer SSDs, which cuts down on loading speeds across the board.
- Turbo feature: Some of their (more expensive) plans offer an exclusive Turbo feature, which claims to cut down on loading times enormously.
Aside from these features, A2 Hosting offers data centers in three locations:
However, with the above in mind, every web host claims to offer bleeding-edge speeds and technology – so you shouldn’t take those claims at face value. Let’s do some testing of our own and see how A2 Hosting performs.
Page speed tests with Pingdom
For this test, we used a bare-bones WordPress website without any customizations after setup. Then, we tested how quickly our site loaded using three different Pingdom servers in multiple locations to get more accurate results:
- Melbourne: 2.24 seconds.
- New York: 480 milliseconds.
- Stockholm: 911 milliseconds.
We got off to a rough start with the Australian test, but recovered afterward. Overall, these are some decent results – so let’s see if our server can hold up under stress!
Page speed tests with Load Impact
Load Impact enables us to test how any given site would perform under moderate amounts of stress. To do this, we configured it to simulate 25 concurrent users, added one by one over a five minute period. Here are the results:
- Load generator: Ashburn, US.
- Test server: Chicago, US.
- Minimum response time: 230.83 milliseconds.
- Maximum response time: 289.49 milliseconds.
We were hopeful after seeing the New York results for the past test, but we’ve got to admit – these response times were a shock! Loading a website in under 0.3 seconds is quite a feat, even more so for a website under load. It’s fair to say that A2 Hosting delivers when it comes to speeds.
A2 Hosting offers three shared hosting plans tailored towards WordPress users:
- Lite (starting at $3.92 per month): This plan supports a single website and up to five databases, but offers both unlimited storage and bandwidth. It’s perfect for users that don’t require support for multiple sites.
- Swift (starting at $4.90 per month): Supports unlimited sites and databases. This one also comes with unlimited storage and transfer caps. It’s the perfect solution for power users with multiple websites.
- Turbo (starting at $9.31 per month): The Turbo plan shares all the bells and whistles of its Swift counterpart, but also offers A2 Hosting’s Turbo technology. It’s meant for users that need to shave off every single millisecond of page loading speeds.
As you may remember from the previous section, A2 Hosting’s websites load plenty fast – and that’s without having access to their Turbo settings. We didn’t get to test that feature personally, so at this moment, we would recommend sticking to either the Lite or Swift plans – depending on how many sites you need to host, of course.
Overall pros and cons
It’s almost time for this A2 Hosting review for WordPress to come to an end, so let’s take a minute to recap the good and the bad we’ve discovered so far.
- Ridiculously fast speeds. This is one of the fastest web hosts we’ve seen, period.
- A thorough knowledge base for WordPress users.
- A friendly and fast-acting support team, who know their stuff when it comes to WordPress.
- Free migration services.
- Their prices are bit higher than some other entry-level shared hosting plans. Then again, you can get some good deals if you pay for longer periods in advance.
A2 Hosting review for WordPress: Conclusion
It’s difficult to overstate how important picking the right web host is. After all, the wrong one could easily sink your site due to a lack of proper support and shoddy services. That being said, our A2 Hosting review for WordPress found none of these red flags here. In fact, their reasonable prices and high speeds make them an excellent choice for WordPress users!
Regardless of our review, it’s always a good idea to compare and contrast hosts based on your own requirements. With that in mind, you may want to check out some of our past hosting reviews in case you want to shop around a bit before settling down:
- How to Choose a WordPress Hosting Company (4 Key Factors Explained).
- SiteGround Review for WordPress
- HostGator WordPress Hosting Review
Do you concur with the results of our A2 Hosting review for WordPress? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below!