As a web developer with nearly 15 years experience, I can honestly say that WordPress is one of the best CMS (content management systems) available so anyone seeking to set up this kind of site is definitely on the right path. Fortunately, there are many options for getting your site online, so let’s do a WordPress hosting comparison to find the best solution.
The first option is to simply get a free account and hosting at WordPress.com. This is a way to test out some ideas, try out templates and see how people respond to your content. Once you’re ready to move to the next stage, it’s fairly easy (if you’re technically minded) to move your WordPress installation to a new server. Professional developers can also help you move the site in a few hours, so it’s not an expensive option if it’s too technical for you.
If you’re ready to jump into the big time, then you can do directly to finding your own host. Most web hosting companies have one-click installations of WordPress where they instantly install the software and set up the database for you. This is great if you’re working on your own (without a designer/developer to help out) because it skips a lot of technical steps that usually slow down newbies. (Note, some one-click installation processes can limit your access to the database, so if you run into problems later on you may need a professional to migrate it into a custom, by-hand installation, but this is rare.)
When doing a WordPress hosting comparison, the next thing to look for is unlimited everything. If the web hosting company you’re evaluating doesn’t offer free everything — storage, bandwidth, email addresses, then go somewhere else. As far as the US is concerned, most hosting companies are cheap, but some have unnecessary limitations which can be a big problem if you plan to use a lot of images, downloads or video in your site. Also, if you pre-pay one to two years in advance, you shouldn’t have to pay more than $4 to $5 per month.
Finally, make sure they offer multiple domains per account. Some hosts charge more for this feature and it’s a reason to find someone else if they don’t have it. You may think you’re only building one site now, but in the future that could change, so make sure to get a host with the option of adding multiple domains.
Best of luck with your project!