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Nginx is a high-performance reverse proxy, load balancing web server generally reserved for VPS or dedicated server hosting. It’s only available from a limited number of hosts.
The Best Nginx Hosting of 2023
We’ve named SiteGround the best Nginx hosting because Nginx is built into its shared and cloud hosting plans which start at $2.99 per month. You can also visit Liquid Web or Digital Ocean to explore their Nginx hosting services and custom pricing for your small business needs.
Digital.com dives deep into every topic it covers to offer trusted and reliable recommendations for the best business tools. See how we review Nginx hosting services.
The Best Nginx Hosting of 2023
#1 Top Pick for 2023
Why it’s best: Nginx is built into SiteGround’s shared and cloud hosting plans
$2.99 per month
Free Site Transfer
Reasons to choose SiteGround
- Free CDN, Domain and SSL
- Daily back-ups
- Recommended by WordPress
Reasons to avoid
- No Dedicated or VPS options
- Higher monthly pricing
If I had to recommend a single host for Nginx hosting a general site, I would pick SiteGround. Nginx is built into all their shared hosting and cloud plans. It’s not included in the dedicated server packages by default, but you can opt to purchase performance boosters that will enable Nginx on your server.
SiteGround is well known for their SuperCacher, a custom-built cacher for WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal. The cacher is based on Nginx reverse proxy and lets you cache static content, and also dynamic content.
SiteGround speeds up your site in a few different important ways. If you’re interested in Nginx hosting, you’ll also like being able to choose from hosting your site on any of the multiple servers that SiteGround has around the world.
With SiteGround, you’ll find reasonable pricing and the latest hosting technology. As an added bonus, all plans, even the shared hosting plans, come with a free SSL certificate (or more) through Let’s Encrypt.
The Bottom LineCustomers are happy to get access to solid state drives, CDNs, and other excellent technologies that help in optimzing the speed of their website.
- Users with little technical skills can still easily set up their Nginx hosting
- Fast and high-performance
- Auto updates
Free Site Migration
Reasons to choose Liquid Web
- Multiple choices for control panels
- Softaculous installer
- Email hosting included
Reasons to avoid
- Short money-back guarantee
Liquid Web is a great Nginx host in specific conditions. There are two main ways you can use Nginx when you’re hosting on Liquid Web. The first requires no extra technical skills. Nginx is included on Liquid Web’s managed WordPress plans.
These plans are very high performance, meaning they can support a ton of traffic without any page speed issues. Because it’s a managed plan, Liquid Web will take care of server maintenance, the Nginx install, and Nginx config settings. Additionally, they’ll automatically take care of updates and other security threats, and they have an amazing support team if you run into issues.
The other option requires more technical knowledge. You can purchase one of Liquid Web’s plans that include root access, which is just about every other plan. Then, using that root access, you can install and configure an Nginx server. The catch here is that Nginx is not officially supported by Liquid Web.
The Bottom LineCustomers are aware that there are less expensive solutions on the market, but they think Liquid Web’s commendable hosting solution is well worth the cost. They have excellent support that provides prompt service.
- Built for use by DIY-ers or developers
- Full root access to your cloud server
- Great self-help guides from Digital Ocean
Free Site Migration
Reasons to choose DigitalOcean
- Flexible and scalable hosting plans
- Developer-friendly features
- Intuitive and easy to navigate cloud console
Reasons to avoid
- Limited customer support
- Lack of CDN
If you are a web developer or aspire to be one, Digital Ocean could be a great Nginx host for you. Digital Ocean is built for developers, so don’t expect the same level of hand-holding regarding support. You are expected to figure out things for yourself.
In exchange, you get full root access to your cloud server, and great pricing that you can scale up or down depending on your resource requirements. The full root access allows you to install either Apache or Nginx; it’s up to you.
You’ll have to transfer your site’s files onto your Digital Ocean droplet (server), install Nginx, and customize your Nginx configuration file to work correctly. The other big strength of Digital Ocean is that while there’s not much direct support like live chat, their documentation guides and community are unmatched.
Multiple detailed step-by-step guides walk you through installing and configuring an Nginx web server. If you’re new to developing, expect to spend a lot of time in the Nginx error log and to restart Nginx often. It’ll be frustrating at first, but with a little persistence and great guides, you should find success on Digital Ocean.
The Bottom LineDigitalOcean has a very clear, intuitive UI. Accordingly, DigitalOcean’s public forums are incredibly helpful, despite the limited customer support.
Compare Nginx Web Hosts
SiteGround is our top choice because Nginx is built into its shared and cloud hosting plans.
What You Need to Know
What is Nginx?
Nginx is pronounced “engine X.” It is an open-source web server that performs a variety of functions. It is best known for its ability to act as a reverse proxy that is used to serve dynamic website content and control server load. It can handle extremely high amounts of traffic. Nginx is bundled with OpenBSD and distributed under a simple 2-clause license.
Who makes Nginx?
The founder was Igor Sysoev, a Russian developer who later took on the title of Chief Architect. The company behind Nginx, Nginx Inc, was not founded until nine years after development began in 2002. It now has offices in Moscow, Russia and San Francisco, USA. Many high-profile companies have invested in the Nginx project, from Automattic (the company behind WordPress) to MaxCDN.
What does Nginx do?
Nginx is a web server. It performs many functions, with its most significant being that it is a reverse proxy server. It balances the load on the server by distributing requests and caching certain types of content.
Features include the caching of HTTP requests, rewriting URIs using regex, geolocating users, providing fault tolerance, supporting TLS/SSL, FastCGI, and similar.
Nginx lets users stream FLV and MP4, offers gzip compression, provides a mail proxy, supports IPv6, and supports virtual servers.
What is Nginx hosting?
Nginx is a web server that can perform a variety of services, including act as a reverse proxy, mail proxy, and a HTTP cache. It’s used to serve dynamic website content and control server load to make the best use of web server resources.
It is open source and currently holds the title of the second most used web server, mainly because it can handle extremely high amounts of traffic.
Nginx is pronounced “engine X.”
Can I use Nginx on a shared hosting account?
It’s not normally offered with shared hosting because users need to interact with Nginx directly for it to work. On a shared server, this would be a serious security risk.
Why should I use Nginx?
Nginx handles very high server loads and traffic spikes. It uses few system resources, so it’s stable. There are examples of Nginx successfully handling tens of millions of requests every day, and it can handle more than 10,000 simultaneous requests without consuming large amounts of server RAM.
Can I create .htaccess files with Nginx?
No. Nginx does not support .htaccess.
What should I expect from an Nginx host?
Most hosts will let you install Nginx yourself on a VPS or dedicated server. If you would rather they handled this for you, buy a managed hosting package.
What are the Nginx server requirements?
Nginx runs on OS X and various other operating systems. However, you’ll rarely see it offered on a shared hosting plan because users need to interact with Nginx directly for it to work. On a shared server, this would mean granting access to everyone, which would be a security risk. Some of the best hosts use Apache as a web server and then Nginx as a proxy server, in order to maximize overall server performance.
Is there support for NGINX?
Assuming you find a host that offers Nginx, your next step is to find out if it’s offered from day one. The majority of hosts will leave you to install it on your dedicated server by yourself.
How We Review The Best Nginx Web Hosts
We analyzed hundreds of web hosts offering Nginx and chose those with platforms engineered for optimal performance. Then we short-listed those with excellent customer support, ease of use, and overall value.
Next, we consulted our large database of thousands of user reviews, factoring in consumer insights.
Consider these factors as you choose an Nginx web hosting service:
- Updates: Check whether the host you are considering has a good track record when it comes to software updates.
- Add-ons: Check the availability of add-ons you may need now or in the future.
- Control panels: Check for access to easy-to-use popular control panels like Plesk or cPanel.
- Hardware requirements: Ensure you gather your requirements before vetting a host. Check and make sure their tech matches the requirements. Ensure your hosting provider can scale its solutions and keep up with demand.
- Quality of tech support: Good tech support is key. Find a company with a good reputation for helping customers solve their problems.
Learn more about our review methodology.