Of energy-intensive things, you’d be surprised to know web hosting is near the top. The hundreds of thousands of powerful computers in data centers generate an almost immeasurable amount of heat. Usually, the provider needs extremely high-capacity cooling systems, which consume vast amounts of energy. This review gives you the details on three top providers with equally impressive server speeds: Greengeeks, A2 Hosting, and HostGator, special mention of Greengeeks WordPress hosting. Hopefully, this information will make your choice easier. This is our top 3 fastest green hosting providers.
What are “Green Hosting” Providers?
Most green hosting providers share a few typical features, including specific practices to reduce their carbon footprint, buy renewable energy certificates, and support environmentally friendly initiatives. They buy more efficient hardware and software, encourage working from home, and have a solid recycling process in place. They purchase green energy credits to minimize their carbon footprint by making solar, wind, and other “green” energy available.
Best Overall: Greengeeks
The company, founded in California 12 years ago, is fully committed to environmental causes. They invest three times the grid energy they consume in the form of renewable energy. Effectively, this renders their hosting service a carbon-reducing one.
They have one compelling plan for shared hosting that includes a free domain, unlimited bandwidth, emails, websites, webspace, databases, and shared SSL. It also features phone, chat, email support, Cloudflare CDN integration, a website builder, a one-click app installer, and nightly backups. You get everything for under $3 a month if you pay for three years in advance. Upon renewal, the price is $9.95. You can also test the service without risk if you choose the 30-day money-back guarantee option.
Another advantage includes moving your site to Greengeeks for free, which their experts offer to do for you. All of the hosting plans include a free domain name for the first year. You can have unlimited websites if you get a Premium or a Plus plan. The cheapest plan, which is Lite, comes with one website. There is free migration for one site regardless of which plan you choose.
Impressive Security Features
You don’t compromise on security by going green. All shared hosting plans include advanced security and a free SSL certificate to ensure your site stays as safe as possible. The drag-and-drop site builder is very user-friendly. You can switch between plans easily. If you need to, you can add extra disk space and RAM.
The provider carries out data backups daily. They also offer reseller hosting, managed WordPress hosting plans, support for Python, Perl, other programming languages, and VPS hosting. They optimize their platform continuously to ensure 99.9% uptime. The company takes care to ensure that their tools, features, servers, and support team is committed to an excellent WordPress hosting experience.
Some users appear disappointed about the hosting plans being quite “average,” although they have all the necessities like app hosting, dedicated hosting, shared products, and more. Greengeeks report their staff numbers and infrastructure to the Bonneville Energy Foundation, whom they pay for wind power, as mentioned earlier.
All in all, it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that anyone would win the support of ecologically minded customers for using a provider like Greengeeks. This green hosting provider is a decent and ethical choice. While its pricing isn’t the most affordable, its plans have the features, capabilities, and scalability anyone needs to host a popular and growing website. Greengeeks have a good reputation in the hosting industry thanks to their services’ impressive features.
Most Advanced Features: A2 Hosting
A2 Hosting has been carbon neutral since the distant 2007 with advanced service and product features. However, this provider is truly unique because they aren’t quick to “flaunt” their green credentials. You’d never learn about their environmentally friendly aspects if you didn’t read about them in a review or look at their About page. There’s no mention of those anywhere else.
We wonder why that is because A2 Hosting has more to be proud of than most other green hosting providers. They allow employees to telecommute whenever possible. They do not use disposable cups, opting for coffee mugs instead. Most importantly, they have been carbon-neutral for 13 years and counted thanks to their energy offset scheme with carbonfund.org. This scheme involves reforestation, buying energy from wind farms, and promoting energy efficiency in general.
The Plans: High Value and Feature-Rich
The provider’s plans have tons of appeal, as well. As A2 Hosting focuses on delivering functionality and power above all else, their starting prices are higher than those for the sector. The plans come with regular virus scans, Let’s Encrypt SSL, AnyCast DNS to boost performance, and Cloudflare CDN integration.
You also get optimized performance settings going above and beyond one-click installs for PrestaShop and WordPress. A2 Hosting has data centers in the US, Asia, and the European Union.
Their plans are a bit pricey, but A2 does aim to offer more than the bare minimum. For example, they offer free site migration even for the most basic shared account.
Most Affordable: HostGator
HostGator’s plans are rich in features and low cost. They have been offsetting carbon emissions for more than ten years. The provider is part of a major international hosting company called EIG (Endurance International Group), which has data centers worldwide. Carbon offsetting is among the main principles HostGator has retained since its days as an independent provider.
The company started buying RECs (Renewable Energy Credits) 12 years ago to counterweigh the carbon emissions its cooling systems and servers produced. They use the RECs to buy renewable energy and restore it in the grid.
HostGator has set a goal to counterweigh 130% of its electric power consumption through 3Degrees Inc. One REC bought by the green hosting provider through 3Degrees equals a megawatt-hour (MWh) of energy consumed.
Why Choose HostGator?
When you sign up for a year or longer, you get a free domain name from HostGator’s shared hosting. Your data will be encrypted and your site – safe and secure because all of the provider’s plans come with a free SSL certificate. This makes them a good choice for e-commerce sites. With a Business or a Baby plan, the number of sites you can create is unlimited. With Hatchling, you get one site. All three plans come with unlimited bandwidth and storage.
All of the provider’s shared hosting plans have a free website builder and a one-click WordPress installer. Clients who want to try Google Ads or Bing Ads out get advertising credits from HostGator.
The VPS hosting and WordPress hosting options give users many opportunities to scale their websites. This is possible through dedicated servers as well.
Like our first and second choices, HostGator boasts proven green credentials. This solid, environmentally conscious host has a good reputation with very well-priced packages. Some small steps are in order, such as taking a stand on carpooling and recycling, to augment the company’s impressive track record.
What to Look for in a Green Hosting Provider
When choosing a green hosting provider, you need to look at pricing and quality, workplace initiatives, and green initiatives apart from server speed. If the host’s services are more expensive than others, check if the features are worth the extra cost. Some providers encourage employees to work from home to reduce emissions. Others offset to make up for the use of fossil fuel. Still, others power their data centers with green energy.
Not everything that looks green is, so if you really want to be sure, check whether the EPA or another such organization has validated the company’s green energy certificates. Their renewable energy policy should be crystal clear rather than vague. For maximum efficiency, they should be using Energy Star-rated servers.
While all of these providers are 100% green and offer excellent services, we’d have to declare Greengeeks WordPress hosting the winner, in part due to their WordPress hosting. WordPress websites load much faster than expected because Greengeeks’ platform comes with an LS cache plugin and uses LiteSpeed WebServer.