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A host is a computer that stores your website files and serves them out to the internet. In theory you could do this with your own computer, but no one except for geeks or internet giants do that anymore because of hardware, bandwidth, and technical issues. Not to mention the thousands of dollars and hours involved in managing it all. Instead what you do is pay for a hosting company to do it for you. This costs as little as $6/month and can alleviate the majority of technical issues of getting a website into the world.
There are lots of good hosts to choose from, but I’m just going to suggest two. One is for professional websites used for business and the second is a cheaper option for starving students. As a side note, one of the aims of this guide is to simplify the process of an architect building a website, so i haven’t listed 20 hosts and instead just listed the two I think are the best. I’ll be adding more content to Websites for Architects soon explaining why I choose these two. Stay tuned.
WPengine charge more, but are worth every penny. They are a new generation of host who specialise in just WordPress and make everything run super fast and make it super easy. Think enterprise scale website, but you don’t need to pay for any of the equipment or the staff to manage it. They take care of security, backups, virus scanning, website optimisation, caching and they make your site run very, very fast.
If you don’t have enough money for WPengine then Bluehost is my recommendation. It’s not that they are a bad host, but compared to the new generation of host who specialise in one platform (eg, WordPress) they are starting to look like a budget option rather than a smart option.