We are about to jump into the 2018 and it is the time to share my experience about Bluehost shared hosting services with you guys. You might have read many reviews about Bluehost web hosting in the past but this Bluehost Review is one of the most detailed & honest reviews available on the internet because it based on my personal experience with them. I have been a Bluehost customer for past more than 4 years and I have outlined everything I liked and disliked about their shared hosting services.
In past couple of months, I’ve been getting several requests from my readers and followers asking my opinion on Bluehost Hosting. Many of them even want me to write an honest review about Bluehost Hosting.
I’ve also noticed that Bluehost is in the news since past couple of months, especially since they have launched their Premium WordPress Hosting Services & Cloud Sites (A Cloud Hosting Solution). I’ve also seen them participating in spreading Cancer awareness past month. In the month of October, they put a pink homepage the entire month to spread awareness about the disease, which was indeed a remarkable initiative by a web hosting company. This kind of activities shows that the company believes in “Taking Care of People”.
Recently they’ve also managed to bag several awards for their web hosting services. Today I’ll write an in-depth Review about them, which will help you unfold many things which you may not know about them till now and it will help you to take a decision, whether Bluehost is the right web hosting company for your next online venture.
I’m a web hosting expert and has worked with several web hosting companies so far. I’m also a Web Hosting critic and write my reviews about web hosting companies based on my experience with them. Bluehost has always been one of the preferred choices of my clients and since I have a good experience with their services.
Side Note: If you’re in a hurry and just wanted to check Bluehost Features or Pricing, You may check them here Or otherwise keep reading my review for an in-depth understanding about their services.
Before I write how do I like their services, let’s start with a quick overview about Bluehost.
Bluehost is one of the oldest web hosting company which was set up in the year 2003. But if we believe in the information available on World’s largest open encyclopedia i.e Wikipedia, the company was started in 1996. Matt Heaton is the man behind this awesome web hosting company. The company has its headquarters located in Provo, Utah, the USA with 700+ employees. The company was started with only one goal i.e to make a better web hosting company and I think they’re doing good in their domain.
It comes under the list of 20 largest web hosting companies in World. The company was recently acquired by Endurance International Group (EIG), which is one of the largest group of web hosting companies in the world (Know more about EIG Hosting here).
Collectively the hosting company with its sister concerns are hosting close to 2 million domain names which are a really big milestone for any of the web hosting company.
The Internet most popular Content Management System i.e WordPress recommends them to host WordPress powered websites.
In-Depth Bluehost Review with 9 Pros & 6 Cons
Let’s starts with the Pros. We’ll also discuss the Cons later in this review.
Pros Of Bluehost Hosting
If you’re reading this article after reading so many reviews over the internet, you may have found many positive as well as negative reviews about them. You may agree with me on the saying that “Nobody is Perfect” and this saying is also applicable on Bluehost. It all depends on your goals and preferences. Keeping the same saying in mind I’m listing some Pros and Cons I found in their Hosting services.
Customer Support considered being the backbone of web hosting services. Without a good customer support, no web hosting company can run. Most of us who own a website are non-technical guys and the reason we require someone to help us in bad times when our website go down for any of the reason Or when I upload our website for the first time.
In web hosting industry the customer support considered to be GOOD when it comes will all means of contacting the right technical support representative in lesser time. The ideal time to be connected with a technical support representative is 5 minutes. Bluehost provides you many ways you can connect with the right person who will help you solve your problem. You may get your problem resolved in the below-mentioned ways.
- Over The Phone
- Chat with a Sales/Support Guy
- Generate A Trouble Ticket
- Use social networks like Twitter to reach them
- Help yourself reading the knowledge bank
- Join Their Community
Above are the 6 ways which you can use to get your query resolved. The response time of support team is really good. I myself tried reaching them over the chat and I got surprised to see that the waiting time was just 1 minute during the peak hours. See the screenshot attached which I took at 10:45 EST in the morning.
I tried the above practice twice and both of the time I got connected with a support guy in less than 1 minute. The response from the support guy was reasonably fast. Although sometimes I felt that the guy was on chat with multiple customers at a time, as sometimes responses were late and we were kept waiting for a response.
I got all the answers that I asked the support guy and I was satisfied. I ended my chat giving 9 out of 10 to the support guy.
I also go to their knowledge bank. It is pretty good. I find the topic listed for all of the common problems that a person could face right from using FTP to managing a website through a control panel, all information was available there.
I also tested the wait time of their email support. The average wait time of an email support was 5 hours. The phone was getting connected in less than 10 seconds which is totally awesome. You may see the below-mentioned screenshot which I’ve taken from their website for the average wait time for various support.
Based on my experience with their support team, I’ll give them 4.5 stars.
Customer support is a good reason behind you pick a web host but the main job of a web host is not to give you customer support. The main job a web host is to provide you reliable, secure and fast web hosting service which can make your website run smooth and become available even at the times when your website gets lots of traffic. It should give a great experience to every of your website visitor whenever they visit your website.
There are lots of tools available in the market that you can integrate into your website to measure the uptime you receive from your host. There are websites available that tell you about the uptime of any host. To give you an insight about Bluehost’s up time, I researched a bit on the internet and read some reviews. We also got feedback from people who are using their hosting services and I found that they are doing really a good job in terms of providing industry standard uptime of 99.99%.
Some of their users told us that in past they have faced some down-times but they’re still sticking with them because of the good customer support and fast server speed.
When you search for a web host the only thing you can check in advance before using the services is the SPEED. Up-time you can only check after using the services. To check the speed I run a small test. The quickest method to check how fast a server is performing is to check Time to First Byte or TTFB or how long does it take the server to respond after it receives a request from a visitor. The results I received from the test was impressive. I received the first byte in just 0.184 seconds and the connect time was just 0.079 seconds which was pretty fast.
You can check the result of the complete test below. I’ve hidden the domain name that I tested for the privacy reasons.
URL tested: XXXXXXXXXXXXX (I made the domain hidden)
Test performed from: New York, NY
Test performed at: 2014-11-11 16:30:34 (GMT +00:00)
Resolved As: 188.8.131.52
Response Time: 0.686 sec
DNS: 0.183 sec
Connect: 0.079 sec
Redirect: 0.000 sec
First byte: 0.184 sec
Last byte: 0.240 sec
Size: 39701 bytes
These results may differ when I next time run the test as in shared hosting Server Speed may suffer because of a load of other websites on the server, but still, I would say that Bluehost has some of the fastest servers for shared hosting services.
To make your website even faster, CloudFlare is built directly into every hosting account. CloudFlare automatically increases the performance of a website and you can activate it from your control panel free of charges.
The Backend: Control Panel
The control panel is the area where you manage your website. Bluehost provides cPanel to manage your web hosting services, which is an industry standard. cPanel is world’s most comprehensive control panel which offers an easy and straightforward GUI to manage websites. Recently when they revamp itself, it added some new features to its control panel and make it easier to use.
Using the control panel you can easily install your favorite software into your hosting account such as WordPress, Joomla, Drupal etc. You can create and manage databases, can also take backups. You can even create email IDs on your domain names and much more.
Every customer who purchases web hosting package gets the control panel. A screenshot of their control panel is mentioned below.
Their improved cPanel indeed looks beautiful compared to the Vanilla version of cPanel. The control panel has lots of new apps and it is easier compared to the stock version.
Initially, when you start a website, it may run fine on a shared hosting platform as it will be getting less number of visitors, but when your website gets old and visitors on your website increases, you will be required higher resources to run your website. During that time, you may be asked by your host to move your website to a private server. There is two kind of private servers are available in the market i.e Virtual Private Server also known as VPS & Dedicated Server.
Bluehost offers both of these solutions. So when your website will start getting lots of hits, you may easily transfer it to the recommended hosting platform with the help of their customer support team. This makes them a one-stop shop for web hosting requirements.
To make your website run flawlessly, it should be hosted on a server which has a good hardware configuration. Most of the host don’t disclose the server configuration but I found Bluehost has mentioned about it on their website.
Below is an insight view of technology used by Bluehost to offer you world class web hosting solutions. This will give you an idea how they are different from other web hosting providers.
You can buy Bluehost Hosting with confident. They offer anytime money back Guarantee on its web hosting services, which is remarkable. There is a very few host which sells their services with this much of confidence. Here They win the race over other popular web hosting providers as others offer a Guarantee for up to maximum 90 days.
If you’re not satisfied with their services, you can ask for a full refund within 30 days time and they will refund you all the money without asking you a question. You can also get a prorated refund anytime after the 30 days full refund period is over. All the accounts are non-contractual and can be canceled anytime.
I must say that there is no harm trying their web hosting. You can try them with confidence for at least 30 days before you make a final decision as your money is 100% secure. If you’re satisfied with their services you can continue with them and if you’re not, ask for a refund. Even after 30 days, anytime you feel like not satisfied, simply cancel your account and move your services to a new host.
I have seen many hosts give you big discount offers so that you can buy a hosting pack for a longer duration. With Bluehost, even if you buy a hosting pack for a longer period, your money is saved. You won’t find yourself locked in, in case you’re not satisfied with the services, which is not the case with other hosts.
This is one another most important but highly overlooked factor of web hosting. People generally check everything in a web host except the data backup policy. I personally always look this factor when I buy a web hosting and recommend my readers to must check data backup policy with the host before they buy.
Fortunately, they automatically create daily, weekly, and monthly backups of your entire account. You can easily restore your entire data with few mouse click whenever required. They also offer a Pro-BackUp service that you can subscribe for advanced features and more security.
If you’re running a small website, Pro-BackUp service is not required but if your website is big, I would suggest you have a look at the PRO service as well.
Plans & Pricing
For shared hosting, They have 3 different plans to serve your different needs. They have included the Starter and PRO plan recently into its portfolio. Earlier they used to offer only a single plan which let customer host unlimited websites into a single hosting package. Earlier, people who just wanted to host a single website had no option but to buy the unlimited domain plan, but now they have a choice to choose a plan according to their preference which sounds more logical.
You can have a look at the different plans offered by them.
|Hosting Space||50 GB||150 GB||150 GB||Unlimited|
|Free Domain Privacy||No||No||No||Yes|
|Site Backup Pro||Basic||Basic||Basic||Pro|
|SpamExperts||No||No||1 Domain||2 Domains|
Everyone loves Freebies and when you get them with your web hosting services, it becomes more awesome. But personally I never buy a web hosting based on the freebies I’m getting along with my hosting plan and I also recommend the same to my blog readers. There are many hosts which highlight the freebies they’re offering with a hosting plan but I’ll suggest you to not go with them just because you’re getting attractive freebies.
They also offer advertising credits and free domain with their hosting services. Free advertising credits are really good to get some exposure for your website by advertising your website in Google, Bing etc.
Cons of Bluehost Hosting
Like I said earlier in this post, that no host is perfect so as Bluehost. Below are some cons of their hosting.
In short term the prices of their hosting are higher compared to other hosting providers like Godaddy. They also don’t offer an attractive discount for the new customer, whereas other companies like Godaddy offer a huge discount to a customer who first-time signup with them (Check Godaddy $1 per month offer for new customer). Although In longer run their pricing is quite affordable as they don’t increase their prices at the time of renewal which is very common with other hosting companies.
Now with 3 different plan options, you can easily choose the starter plan while buying hosting for your first website and can upgrade the package at the time when you want to add your second website into your hosting account.
Although If you’re looking to buy VPS or Dedicated server from them, you may get it at 50% discount using the following link.
Paid Site Transfer
While many of the hosts provide this service for free, they charge $99.99 to migrate up to 5 websites and 20 email accounts. If you’re not much technical but want to transfer your hosting account to them and want them to take care of this transaction, you’ve paid a fee to them for this transfer. Although you can do it by yourself by reading the knowledge bank using cPanel.
No Support for ASP.NET/Windows OS
Generally all big hosting companies like Godaddy, Hostgator etc give an option to their client to choose from Linux/Windows hosting, But unfortunately, Bluehost doesn’t offer Windows hosting services. So if you’ve some websites which are built on ASP.NET or any of Windows-based platform, you’ve to go to some other host to host them.
So this was my complete Bluehost Review 2017. Hope this must have cleared most of your doubt about their hosting. They’re really good and I can say that you can choose them with confidence, after all, you’re covered with 30 days full money back guarantees and anytime prorated money back guarantee.
In my personal opinion, they’re good if you want to host multiple websites on a single hosting account. The pricing is very competitive compared to other big hosts.
If you want to host a single website you may also consider Godaddy, as they are offering their ECONOMY PLAN with a Free domain name for just $12 for 1 year.
Bluehost doesn’t offer any coupon code, so don’t search for them on the internet as you may get mislead. The default coupon FREEDOMAIN is already included with every plan you buy from them.
If you still have any query about Bluehost shared web hosting, feel free to use the contact us form and I would love to address your queries. If you’re like this article, support me by sharing this on Facebook/Twitter/G+.
Update: Bluehost has developed a new script to enhance the security of the websites hosted on their platform. The new script designed to continually update WordPress websites and increase site security. They have already updated more than 2.5 million WordPress sites on its platform using the script. The recent development makes them even a better choice for anyone looking for a stable & reliable web hosting company.