When I built my affiliate business I came across a unique problem. It was in 2012 and I was starting to build out affiliate sites in my native language German. I started off with hosting all my sites on Hostgator, since I had a cheap shared hosting account I just added all my sites to. However, I soon realized to get serious about the German market I had to find a host with servers in Germany.
The main reason was to be closer to my visitors. It is in general better to have your server in the location you are targeting,. This is also rumored to be an SEO advantage, however I have no clear evidence of this and have been able to rank German sites hosted on US servers just as well. Additional .de domains have specific DNS requirements that German hosts naturally fulfill, since they host a lot of .de domains. Many hosts outside of Germany don’t have this setup out of the box, so you will require a server admin to help you. This is especially important if you are just starting out and don’t have the budget to hire a server admin.
All in all German web hosting is not a requirement for your German affiliate sites, but I would still advice it, since it can only help if you are targeting Germany with your SEO. If you have German clients this is also a good idea, especially if the client needs to contact the host and the host is located in the same time zone and speaks the same language.
When I started out I researched hosts that have web servers in Germany and found a few to test. These were all hosts and initially everything seems to go well. However once I had more sites and sites went down I realized how important good hosting support is. Two issues I noticed with many hosts was that their support was slow and inefficient and they had a lot of restrictions on hosting capacity, so my sites would go down a lot when they hot certain limits. This is especially problematic for WordPress sites. Which leads me to my favorite German shared hosting provider.
Best German Shared Hoisting provider
My recommendationm: Maxterhost.com
From all the German shared hosts Maxterhost.com is the one one I stuck with for long term that provides great support. This is a great option if you start out and need reliable German web hosting for your affiliate sites with a great customer support. They have plans starting at 9 Euro per month and you can upgrade anytime. The best deal is their Plus+ plan that allows you to host 20 sites. To be honest once you have 20 sites you should make enough money from your sites that the cost of 34 Euro per month won’t be a big deal. Also you won’t need any help with the server since it is using cpanel to manage everything and cpanel is a very easy and customer friendly server software.
It shouldn’t take you long to watch a few videos online and learn how to setup a WordPress site on cpanel and how to mange server settings. Once you know how to do this it’s just easy afterwards., Trust me tat you don’t want to outsource this. When you start out learn about cpanel and how to setup WordPress yourself, so you don’t have to rely on someone else for small issues. Once you understand how to work with cpanel go ahead and outsource this if you like, but at least get the basic understanding on how to mange your own shared hosting and WordPress with cpanel.
In my experience it is better to invest in a good host and avoid issues down the line. Issues I have encountered with cheap hosts are:
- a lot of downtime
- sites being turned off when they hit certain limits
- sites being hacked
- long downtimes due to bad support
Maxterhost has been extremely reliable for me and additional when I had issues a few times their support was fast and resolved issues in a short time. I still have some sites hosted with them. Most of them run on WordPress without issues. Believe me that hosting can be a big headache in your affiliate business, so you do want to find a reliable solution that you don’t have to worry about.
You can look at their plans here: https://www.maxterhost.com/web-hosting-in-germany/
But what happens when you have more than 20 sites and your traffic builds up? That’s what happened to me after a while and I realized shared hosting had reached its limits for me. I had over 100 websites and needed something more customizable and the same time cost effective for running so many websites. This is where VPS hosting comes into play.
Best German VPS/Dedicated Server Hosting provider
At the point when your affiliate business hits the growing pains of a lot of traffic and too many websites to handle you will need to switch to a more custom solution. When I get to this point shared hosting didn’t work for me anymore, since it was too expensive to host so many websites on shared hosts as well as the trouble of keeping track of hosting accounts and technical issues.
At that point I decided to hire a part time server admin on Upwork to help me. This was the best decision I made when it comes to hosting. My admin took all the technical issues of my plate and helped me to come up with a plan for my sites. We decided to go with a VPS server and a dedicated server that was managed by my admin and setup for a large amount of sites. We were able to assign more resources to sites with more traffic and I automate downtime reporting using StatusCake.com. This way me and my admin received notifications about issues right in our Slack channel, so things could be addressed immediately.
Switching to a VPS/Dedicated Server was a lot more cost efficient for me and took away all the headaches, since we were able to automate backups and reduce downtime. My server admin also helps me to keep my WordPress sites updated every month, which helped a lot with site stability and less sites being hacked. So long story short we had tested many German VPS/Dedicated Server hosting services over the years and have now 2 that we keep all our sites at. These hosting providers have been proven to be very reliable and stable and their support has been helpful as well every time there have been issues with the server.
1. German VPS Host: Leaseweb.com
Leaseweb is a great German hosting provider. They are very reliable and support is always responsive. We only had one main issue over the years when our server had a hardware issue. However this was quickly resolved and we moved to a new server without any data loss in a few days. Apart from that this host has been very reliable and well worth the money for the dedicated server we are using.
You can check out their VPS plans here: https://www.leaseweb.com/cloud/virtual-server
2. German Dedicated Server Host: Hetzner.com
Hetzner is our second German server. This one is just as good as Leaseweb and we haven’t encountered many issues with them. The only reason why they are number 2 is because we had slightly more issues with downtime than Leaseweb, but to be honest nothing that was significate or affected the business. This provider also has a very solid German infrastructure and as long as you have your own server admin you can setup your server any way you want.
You can check out their dedicated server plans here: https://www.hetzner.com/dedicated-rootserver
So there you have it. Those are my 3 recommendations for German hosting for your affiliate sites. You cant go wrong with these and scale up your business from your first website to over 400 sites (which is where I was at at some point in time). Of course there are endless amounts of hosting providers out there, so I’m sure there are many more great ones, but these are the ones that work for me and I have had the best experiences with for my own business.