Choosing the right hosting provider is a critical business decision, and a wrong move can be very costly. Nowadays, static websites are becoming extremely popular and several new static hosting service providers have joined the cult.
We tested more than 15 static hosting service providers for seowings.org website and ranked them as per their speed, security features, costs, ease of use, scalability, and third-party integration.
This ranking and test results should help you to make better and well-informed decisions about choosing the best static hosting service provider for your next project.
Top 5 Benefits of Using Static Web Hosting
Static Web hosting is as simple as placing a folder at an online web server, as there is no processing or database query required to fetch and process the data. Static websites have been gaining popularity for the last several years, especially due to the modernization of JAMStack.
Historically, these servers were quite simple and data was simply hosted using FTP or sFTP. With the advent of modern web architectures, more sophisticated static hosting solutions have evolved, while bringing the following benefits to the content providers.
Using a static website hosting service is very beneficial. Here are some advantages:
As a static website does not employ a database, the material is delivered to the user immediately via static files. Also, the entire page has to be cached to reduces the loading time of the website. Static websites used with Content Delivery Networks (CDNs) provide extra performance boost.
As users use fewer software elements and servers, a simple architecture means lower cost.
The data/content is collected at the time of website creation. This process is not public, which make a static website safe from cyber-attacks.
If you have been on the Internet for a while, you have probably encountered problems like “Unable to connect”. This error occurs when you are working with a database and the website loads information from that database.
As long as you have uploaded your content correctly, you won’t see this type of error with static websites.
Static sites have performance boost with lightning fast speed. Also, in general, static sites are full of content pages and hence ideal for ranking against multiple and large amount of keywords.
SEO Performance can be boosted by providing search engines with what they are looking for i.e. speed, content, and responsiveness. These are the common traits of static websites, and hence they get a better SEO boost than their dynamic counterparts.
How to evaluate Static Web Hostings?
A Static Web hosting can be evaluated against their features, packages, price and uptime. Following are some of the points which one should evaluate before choosing a static web hosting.
- Cost (free vs paid) and Scalability
- Version Control System (Git Integration)
- Branch deployments (if deplyoed via git)
- Performance and uptime
- Programming Languages Supported
- Continuous integration
- Individual and Teams accounts?
- Build minutes for static site generators
- Split or A/B Testing
- Lambda functions support
- Customer Service
Static Hosting Service Providers
Here is a list of static hosting services (Free or with freemium Version). All Pros and Cons are evaluated using free tier. This list is still being updated.
Server less functionality and continuous testing are used by Netlify to offer websites up to ten times faster deployment than conventional configurations.
We have hosted this website as a static WordPress website on Netlify using the method provided in our wordpress on netlify tutorial.
What we like
- Out of the box forms support both for paid and free tiers (up to 100 submissions/month).
- One click domain mapping with integrated Domain Management tools.
- Identity services to manage signups, logins, password recovery, and more.
- Once click rollback to any historical deployment.
- Netlify offers Web Hooks, script injections, environment variables and many handy tools.
What we did not like
- Free tier offers only 95% uptime, so your site might not be available in critical situations.
- 300 free build minutes are good, but some static site generators (e.g. Gatsby) can consume them quickly
- Bandwidth in free tier is metered compare to other service providers.
- For vertical scaling, Netlify is comparatively expensive.
- Access logs and basic analytics are available in paid version.
Cloudflare is a CDN and site security service provider. They have begun offering static website hosting as part of its services, dubbed Cloudflare Pages.
The biggest benefit is that you gain access to their extensive content delivery network, which includes over (200 edge sites) throughout the world. Cloudflare Pages comes with all the functionality you’d assume from a static site hosting service.
It integrates with GitLab and GitHub, as well as provides built-in analytics, image compression, HTTP/3, and other features.
Digital Ocean is a relatively new entrant to static hosting provides. They offer functions such has deployment of static websites, adding functions to static websites, web apps, automatic and free HTTPs with global CDN.
Like other providers e.g., Netlify or Cloudflare pages, Digital Ocean offers 3 basic packages i.e., Starter or free tier ($0/month), Basic ($5/month) and Professional ($12/month). Digital Ocean is ideal for both horizontal and vertical scaling, i.e., you can choose a package as per your website/web app growth.
The only disadvantage of Digital ocean is that it is free for only 3 static websites, and after this limit Digital Ocean will change $3/month/site.
Individual developers could use GitHub freely to host static webpages and deploy via static site generators e.g. Hugo, Pelican, Static WordPress and others.
GitHub is a reliable resource for reviewing and hosting code, managing multiple works, and developing software for both individuals and large corporations.
It is the best programming platform which is being used by more than 35 million programmers. GitHub Pages, the business’s static hosting solution, takes code directly from a GitHub repository, processes the files through a static content generation process if needed, and generates a website.
Configuration is easy, and updates are also as simple as committing changes to git repository and uploading.
GitLab is a full-featured DevOps platform for developing and operating software in a single application. GitLab Pages looks similar to GitHub Pages (with Git as the back end), yet there are some differences between the two.
It has almost thirty million users. Users can use the system to post static sites from their sources and do other basic functions.
Bitbucket Cloud is similar to GitHub and GitLab, which uses git as a back end service. One can host a bunch of static HTML/CSS/JS files to display websites.
To build a site on Bitbucket Cloud, create a repository name that includes your workspace ID and the Bitbucket Cloud domain name.
Only one website can be hosted on Bitbucket Cloud per workspace. Everyone with the URL can browse and view the site which users create using this functionality.
Vercel is a cloud-based static website platform. It is a Server less service that easily integrates into your workflow.
Vercel is compatible with several JAMstack Frameworks and allows hosting websites using Jamstack and online services that regularly update the site.
Simple administrative capabilities in Amazon S3 allow users to organize and manage data. It is made to provide long-term endurance and data storage for a wide range of applications.
Including its compliance programs and S3 Block Public Access, Amazon S3 can produce object copies, has a good option of storage levels has audit capabilities, and ensures strong protection. This can be used to host static files as a Static Website Hosting.
This is quite popular choice between bloggers and content writer who want to scale up as their reader base grows. Amazon S3 offers free tier but as your users/visitors grow then you can pay for premium services.
Dropbox website hosting is not linked with any hosting company, and Dropbox does not require users to host websites on its cloud storage service. It is a simple cloud storage service. So, using a few smart techniques, users can host a website on Dropbox without spending a single penny. It’s as easy as sharing a website folder (with HTML pages, CSS, Images and JS files) with public view settings.
Google Drive is a difficult option to beat because it combines the most famous Google platform with a tremendous quantity of cloud storage.
The platform, which is ideal for people and small organizations, has some of the industry’s top productivity software and allows users to create, share, edit, and save across numerous devices and applications.
For regular Gmail users, the similar interface is a natural expansion, and upgrading to access extra resources is surprisingly reasonable.
Forge is built to host static webpages, so there’s no need for complex object storage systems or complicated controls and methods to have your project published.
It is a completely optimized platform to help websites load faster. The best aspect is that it offers a free sample and a free plan, so users can try out the service. The basic plan enables one site with a monthly bandwidth cap of (1 GB).
Render makes it simple to deploy the static site. Simply link the GitHub or GitLab repository and let it create and serve the website on a worldwide CDN. The best part is that static websites on Render are completely free.
For zero-downtime installations, it provides automatic and constant deployment, as well as proactive caching invalidation. Anyone can add an infinite number of collaborators and groups for free to help you manage the website.
Pull Request Page views are automatically provided by Render to allow you to test and view changes before they are published.
Get detailed bandwidth graphs for increased transparency, native HTTP/2 support for faster page loading, rewrites and redirection without writing code, and customized HTTP headers for better performance and security.
Static sites are stronger than ever to control the web and assist users’ businesses. Particularly at a time when cyberattacks are the main issue throughout the world.
Due to the commercial intent of our content and availability of free features, most of the users can work with netlify.com or cloudflare.com as all other static hosting service providers might put some constraints on services.
Cloudflare and Netlify are solid, specialized in static hosting, and trustworthy service providers.
Hi, I am Faisal. I am working in the field of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Data Sciences since 2002. I love to hack workflows to make life easy for people around me and myself. This blog contains my random thoughts and notes on Digital Marketing, Affiliate Marketing, Static WordPress Hosting with Netlify and CloudFlare Pages, Python, Data Science and open-source projects.