When you’re building your website, one of the big decisions you face is which web hosting plan to choose. As you research your different options, you’ll find that there are a lot of different types of web hosting plans out there. It can be a little confusing figuring out what’s what.
Along with navigating the details of how a shared plan differs from a VPS, there’s also a whole category of application web hosting plans to consider.
One of these is Joomla hosting.
What is Joomla Hosting?
Joomla hosting is a web hosting plan that provides compatibility with the content management system Joomla. For businesses and individuals that decide to build their website using Joomla, a Joomla hosting plan is a logical choice to ensure that your web hosting plan works well with the main system you use to run and maintain your website.
What is Joomla?
The reasons to consider a Joomla hosting plan probably won’t make much sense to you if you’re not already familiar with Joomla. Joomla is one of the most popular content management systems available. Over 2 million websites are powered by Joomla, and it falls only behind WordPress in popularity.
If you’re still not sure what all that means, you should start by learning what a content management system is.
What is a Content Management System?
A content management system, regularly shortened to CMS in casual usage, is a type of software that allows people to create, edit, organize, and publish content online using an intuitive interface.
For the many people who want to build and run a website, but don’t know the proper coding languages to build something from scratch, a CMS is a much easier option for creating a new website and making updates to it over time. In addition to providing ease of use, a CMS also provides the website owner control over the amount of access to allow different contributors to have.
For businesses or media sites where a number of different people are involved in making updates and changes to the site, a CMS lets you decide what changes you’re comfortable allowing each person to make, and set a limitation on what they can do accordingly. That can save you from a contributor making big changes to your website without permission, or accidentally doing something that breaks an important page on the site.
For any website that will publish a large amount of content—blogs, media sites, or businesses doing content marketing, for instance—a CMS platform is a valuable tool for managing all the content you’ve created. Because you can provide access to multiple people, it enables collaboration between the content creators, editors, designers, and anyone else who will be involved in a particular piece of content. You can use your CMS to keep track of which pieces of content are in draft form, scheduled for a future date, and already published. The functionality a CMS provides also helps you stay organized and on top of your content calendar.
How Does Joomla Measure Up to Other Content Management Systems?
If that all sounds like something you want when creating your website and updating it over time, then you should know Joomla is just one of several options. Joomla is one of the three main content management systems that dominate the CMS market; the other two are WordPress and Drupal. Before you can choose a CMS, you must know the differences between WordPress vs. Joomla vs. Drupal to see which one is the best option for you and your website.
WordPress is the most popular CMS and widely regarded as being the easiest to use, particularly for beginners. WordPress hosting solutions are also available. Drupal is the third most popular and known for having a steep learning curve that makes it better for skilled developers than for beginners. But the added difficulty of Drupal comes with the potential for more power and customization options for those who know what they’re doing.
Joomla falls directly between the two in popularity, ease of use, and functionality. It’s still an accessible option for beginners, although will take a little more time and work to learn than WordPress. By using the thousands of Joomla extensions available, you can add a wide range of features and functionality to your website, making it a flexible option that allows for extensive customization.
Notably, all three options are available for free, but with plugins, Joomla extensions, or themes that sometimes come at a cost. And all three have a solid community of users who provide support and resources about how to use the CMS.
They’re all good options, but for businesses that want a little more functionality than WordPress and are prepared to spend a little more time learning, but don’t have the level of skill required for Drupal, Joomla is the best choice.
5 Benefits of the Joomla Hosting Platform
If you decide Joomla is the right CMS for you, you still need to decide on your web hosting plan. Joomla provides the structure for building and updating your website, but doesn’t offer hosting services. While most web hosting plans you consider will work for a Joomla site, seeking out a application web hosting plan rather than a typical web hosting plan can provide some unique benefits.
Choosing Joomla vs. Drupal or WordPress hosting solutions will mean you can count on a few main things over the other CMS platforms.
1. Installation will be easy.
Adding Joomla to a Joomla hosting account will typically mean one-click installation. You don’t have to worry about a lengthy process of connecting your Joomla account to your web hosting one. Within a couple of minutes, everything will be in place for you use and you’ll be ready to publish your Joomla-built website to the web.
2. Adding Joomla to your account will be free.
While web hosting plans come at a cost, when you use Joomla hosting you can be confident that using Joomla with your web hosting plan won’t add any additional cost or fees to your subscription. Your web hosting cost will remain the amount you agreed to for the plan, even after you connect your accounts.
3. You can count on compatibility.
The last thing you want is to figure out the web hosting plan you choose has compatibility issues with the CMS you built your entire website on. When you choose Joomla hosting for a website built with Joomla, you know right from the start that the two accounts will work well together. Your web hosting plan will have no problem accommodating your Joomla site, and your work in Joomla won’t cause any problems with your web hosting.
4. Making updates will be intuitive.
One of the big benefits of using Joomla is that it makes all the ongoing updates you’ll need to make to your website—big and small—easy to do yourself, without having to call on a web development professional to help. With the right Joomla hosting plan, you can ensure that all the updates you make to your website are still easy with Joomla, and any updates you need to make to your hosting plan will be simple and intuitive as well.
5. You have two sources for helpful support.
If you’re not an expert on building and running a website—and maybe even if you are—you’ll hit up against issues working on your website where you need help. When you use Joomla to build your website, you gain access to a large community of Joomla users who provide help and support in the Joomla forum, in Joomla user groups that meet around the world, and at a number of events and conferences that are all about Joomla. And that’s in addition to the educational materials like courses and tutorials that are readily available online.
With a good Joomla hosting provider, you also gain access to a committed customer support team who can help you out with many additional aspects of keeping your website working the way you want. This is especially valuable if you go with a web hosting provider that offers 24/7 customer support or provides additional skilled services to help out with things like SEO, PPC, or web design.
Even with an intuitive web hosting plan and CMS like Joomla, many aspects of running a website can be difficult, so having multiple sources you can turn to for help is a valuable benefit.
5 Things to Look for in a Joomla Hosting Plan
If you’ve decided that you want to use Joomla and invest in a Joomla hosting plan for your website, there are a few main features to consider in your search.
When choosing a Joomla hosting provider, you have to think about what you need today, but you’ll make a better long-term choice if you also consider what you could need in the future. Determine whether the web hosting company you go with provides room to grow. Will it be easy to upgrade your plan down the line if your website starts getting a lot more traffic, or if you decide to expand your website to include features that require a higher level of bandwidth?
Figure out what type of plan best meets your needs today, but also look at some of the other plan options your provider offers. Do they look like a good fit for where you want your Joomla website to be in five years? Ten?
2. 24/7 Support
A good web hosting provider will make a lot of what you need to do through your web hosting account simple and intuitive. But nonetheless, you may well have times where you need a little help figuring out how to do something or fixing a problem that’s not working right. When that happens, you want to get ahold of someone that knows how to help and can provide the information you need fast.
Any web hosting provider you choose (as long as they offer paid plans), should provide customer support. But also check to see if the support they provide is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
And check some hosting reviews to see if their customer support team has a reputation for having a good track record. The quality and accessibility of the customer support you receive can make a big difference in how satisfied you are with a Joomla hosting provider.
3. 99% Uptime
Uptime is the term used in the web hosting industry to describe the amount of time your website is accessible to visitors on the web. Because web hosting servers occasionally have to go offline for maintenance, no company can promise 100% uptime. And web servers can go offline for a number of additional reasons, such as hackers, improper maintenance, parts breaking, or web servers being affected physically by extreme weather conditions like flooding.
Part of what you pay a Joomla web hosting provider for is to keep their web servers well maintained and working consistently. The most reliable companies put a lot of work into delivering on that. Look for a web hosting company that offers at least 99% uptime, but ideally promises closer to 99.9%
Website security is an issue every website owner has to prioritize today. Data breaches and hacked websites are an all too common reality, and often websites built using a CMS are a particular target since hackers know how to find vulnerabilities in the CMS code. While there are a number of steps you can take to make your website more secure from hackers, including keeping your Joomla version up to date, one of the best ways to ensure website security is choosing the right web hosting provider,
Check that your Joomla hosting provider has a reputation for using strong firewalls to keep their web servers protected, and that they offer key security features like an SSL certificate and security software.
Web hosting is a necessary expense if you want to have a website, but it doesn’t have to be a large one. A good Joomla hosting plan can start at less than $3 a month for shared web hosting, which is usually a good choice for new websites.
When you’re considering your options, you have to think about what you can afford. In some cases, paying a little more can be worth it for what you get for the extra money—such as choosing a web hosting plan that includes features you need like an SSL certificate or a website builder. So consider carefully what you’re getting for the cost, and make sure it fits in your website budget.
Find Joomla Hosting Today
HostGator offers Joomla hosting plans that check all the boxes on this list. We also offer easy setup, full compatibility with Joomla, 24/7 support, and 99.9% uptime with a money-back guarantee. If you’re ready to invest in a Joomla hosting plan, get started today.Whether you are looking for cloud hosting, dedicated server hosting, or Joomla hosting, HostGator offers all the best web hosting plans. Talk to one of our representatives today to learn more about the pros and cons of each option.
Kristen Hicks is an Austin-based freelance content writer and lifelong learner with an ongoing curiosity to learn new things. She uses that curiosity, combined with her experience as a freelance business owner, to write about subjects valuable to small business owners on the HostGator blog. You can find her on Twitter at @atxcopywriter.