I've updated the site today to reflect that LiquidWeb and HostDime no longer provide shared hosting.
It leaves quite a large gap between SiteGround (72%) and pretty much everyone else still in the shared hosting space (<60%).
I do wonder if this is a bellwether for shared hosting becoming a thing of the past. There are still millions of people on it and in all likelihood will continue to be. But we've seen the rise of all sorts of specialty hosting which is likely eating up a lot of the market. The rise of developer oriented providers like Amazon, Azure, Digital Ocean have opened up the floodgates for building services on top of them. We've seen numerous companies built on top of these companies and targeting niches, especially WordPress like FlyWheel, Pagely. We've even seen configurable providers like CloudWays which lets you select the cloud provider of your choice and install and manage your websites on them.
These new hosting providers are charging more and giving different experiences to users. Developers have flocked to them and are building the next generation of web hosting services. High quality companies seem to be moving up market, charging more and providing more where I'm guessing the margins are substantially better than in the shared hosting space unless you're trying to upsell everything.
It will be interesting to to follow, will we continue to see more consolidation ala EIG and GoDaddy? Is there room for another great shared hosting provider that grows very large? Or will shared hosting slowly fade away as superior technologies (VPS) and specialized companies eat away at it providing the specific services people really want. We've also seen non-webhosts like SquareSpace, Wix and Weebly gain large market shares. On the BuiltWith estimates ranging from 880,000-1.6m websites for each of them.
The one trend I am not a fan of is that there are fewer and fewer really good choices in the shared hosting space that are of significant scale.
There are a handful of very good offers for students. The very best package for student developers is easily the GitHub Student Pack. It includes offers from Amazon, Digital Ocean and Microsoft Azure along with a number of other free tools and services.
There are also a handful of companies that offer discounts and credits for students which may be better suited for non developers. Some of them (e.g. BlueHost) offer cheaper pricing publicly than their student offering regularly during sales and promotions. The student deals may not be as good as they seem.
If you're a student aged 13+ and enrolled in a degree or diploma granting course of study, the GitHub Student Developer Pack is for you. All you need is a school-issued email address, valid student identification card, or other official proof of enrollment
I am happy to announce we've added Windows Azure hosting platform to Review Signal today. Azure is definitely a big player in the cloud server market. It was also one a very notable absence in our listings. Now that we've added Azure and Amazon AWS in the past few months, our cloud listings for IaaS providers looks a lot more complete.
Windows Azure comes in with a 70% overall rating which is quite respectable and puts it right next to RackSpace on the rankings. Although the support scores seem to be a lot lower at an underwhelming 56%.
Want to see the full cloud provider rankings? Visit our complete rankings and click on the Cloud tab.