Bluehost – is a proven veteran in the niche of hosting services. Launched in 1996, it has grown into the #1 web hosting recommended by WordPress.org. It means that all CMS-based website owners can benefit from amazing perks such as 1-Click installation, tons of plugging, scripts, and more. On the other hand, Bluehost being a WordPress fav is not the only thing that makes this company so special.
The platform powers more than 5 million websites worldwide. It delivers a whole bunch of amazing features in addition to affordable entry price, solid customer support, advanced applications for eCommerce projects and add-ons for enterprises eager to establish strong online representation. This time we will dive deep into all possible hits and misses performed by one of the most recognizable and trusted hosting providers.
1. Pros and Cons
The company does its best to deliver high-quality services. It introduces a pool of dedicated professionals featuring 750 employees working 24/7. For this reason, the hosting provider seems to be a great choice although website owners should still consider some slight downsides. Let’s have a look at Bluehost pros and cons:
| ✔ Perfect Uptime – our tests have shown a 100% uptime rate. Although it did not involve heavy traffic, we are still Bluehost delivers one of the best server solutions for website smooth operation despite the traffic spikes.|
✔ Great Performance – great response time and page loading speed ensure website smooth operation. With data centers in different locations, you may count on fast response regardless of your users’ country.
✔ WP-recommended hosting – the platform offers WordPress-optimized server solutions with instant CMS integration, ready-to-use plugins, website themes, WooCommerce support, etc.
✔ Low Prices – the company offers some of the lowest entry prices with a bunch of integrated features.
✔ Free Services – with every plan, you get a free 1-year domain, Free SSL. Free website migration opportunities, free access to the Bluehost marketplace, and more.
✔ 24/7 Support – the platform promises round-the-clock support despite the subscription or plan you have.
✔ 30-Day Refund Guarantees – if you are not satisfied with the services provided by the company, you are free to cancel your subscription and claim a refund.
| ✘ No Free Trial – The hosting does not actually have a free trial although it still offers a 30-day money-back period. It will hardly be a problem taking into account low plan prices.|
✘ Tricky Entry Price – The company’s basic plan will cost you $2.95 per month. You might be surprised to see the $9.99 monthly fee after 36 days of using the host.
2. Hosting Management
Bluehost was designed to make it easy for newbies to host and manage their websites. You will not need to have special skills or technical knowledge even if you are new to the platform. The system offers two major paths to follow right away.
The first one is to start from the blank with a new domain and a new website built using integrated tools. The second one is to connect an already existing domain.
Users, who already have WordPress projects or sites powered by some other CMS, will benefit from a free site migration. Bluehost specialists will handle the process. However, you will still need to pick a plan and sign up to get access to the hosting dashboard as well as all available asset management tools.
Let’s say, we decided to start from the ground. At this stage, you will need to think of a new domain name. It will be available at zero cost throughout the first year. Then, you will need to pay for renewal. Simply type in the name in the space provided and let the system automatically check, if it is free to use.
The next stage is to indicate your personal and billing info. Users may sign up with their valid Google accounts. However, some of the points will require manual editing. The system requires indicating a real physical address as well as telephone number, ZIP code, and other details.
At this stage, you have the last chance to manage your subscription. The platform offers extra packages on default. So, it may be a bit surprising to see the final sum of more than $189. All you need is to disable the added features you are not planning to use. The last thing is to indicate your card number details, agree with all the terms and conditions, and submit.
You will find yourself inside the dashboard where you will be able to choose to either create a new website or manage the existing one.
Bluehost comes with a very simple and intuitive website building tool. Unlike other platforms with creepy interfaces and complex logic, this one offers an easy onboarding even for those who have never dealt with the website building process before. To create a new project, users will need to complete several simple steps.
At first, you will need to answer several questions in order to specify the type of project you are building. You will need to indicate the website type and as well as who you create it for. Just a set of standard questions that hardly influence the developing process.
The second stage involves additional project data to understand its key mission. The system will ask to specify if it is going to be a simple blog, a digital store, or a small business site with extra to promote the company/brands/services.
The last step is to give your website a name, type in the tagline, and evaluate the building process to provide feedback to Bluehost developers.
Once you are done, the system will let you choose a theme for your website. They include a list of standard WordPress templates divided into categories by fields and types. Users will be able to switch from free to paid templates and select from a bit more unique and exclusive website layouts.
The key benefit for users is the ability to instantly integrate the website with WordPress. No manual configurations are necessary. You may access the CMS right from the dashboard to connect new plugins, select themes, manually update the system if needed, and so on. Another way to manage assets is to use the hosting dashboard.
In the control panel, you may have a quick website overview. Users may also check already installed themes or plugins, manage all available domains, or enter the Bluehost marketplace with third-party integrations, add-ons, or widgets. They may range from security features and analytics to scripts, forms, G Suite for business, eCommerce, and others.
3. Performance Tests
Bluehost is one of the most reliable hosting providers out there. It promises fast page load speed and response time in addition to a close-to-perfect uptime rate. We have conducted several tests in order to check if it is true.
Website Speed Test
The website used a default theme with a bit of standard content. It included default texts and several images to increase the overall page size.
The results appeared to be pretty good. The site loaded faster than 85% of other projects ever tested using the tool. Besides, all pages opened in less than 2 seconds. It should be noted that the tests were conducted without actually involving real traffic.
Server response time is another crucial metric you need to take into account when choosing a hosting solution. It is also very important for international projects that target audiences from different countries. The server must ensure quick response no matter where a user tries to access a particular page.
The results showed that Bluehost was close to perfect in the United States. The performance here was under a fraction of a second. To ensure a faster response in other parts of the world, you might need to change the server location in the hosting settings.
Bluehost showed perfect results in terms of the uptime rate. However, we need to note once again, the tests did not involve high traffic.
Security is certainly the field Bluehost does its best. Each website owner will benefit from three-layer anti-spam protection. It consists of three major means including:
- Spam Expert.
- Spam Hammer.
- Apache Spam Assassin.
Security means also covering users’ inbox, site access blockage, IP blacklist, SSH access, and more. You can customize your security features by changing the filters and settings. Integrate your website with Cloudflare with just a click to protect yourself from the slightest hint of DDOS attacks.
5. Hosting Features
Bluehost is much more than a simple website hosting. It comes with an extended list of features and services, hundreds of apps, an array of hosting options and features for geeks who seek an opportunity to access SSH or FTP files. Have a look at the core features Bluehost offers:
- Intuitive Control Panel – If you prefer a clean and user-friendly design, Bluehost will definitely meet your expectations. The cPanel is easy to navigate with all the main functions in one place. You will not be forced to surf through tons of tables or sections. Finding a necessary tool is fast and easy.
- Enormous Bluehost Marketplace – Once you have logged in, you will access literally thousands of different apps, add-ons, and scripts to customize your website. Form endless WordPress themes and image galleries to marketing tools, shopping carts. live chat services and more.
- Localized SEO and Content Marketing – Whether you need to increase your website’s search rank or promote some particular pages, Bluehost offers its localized SEO strategies while a pool of experts constantly produces SEO-friendly content for your project.
- eCommerce Features – Bluehost makes it very easy to set up a solid digital store. You can opt for a Plus plan to benefit from unlimited storage and add as many products as you need. The system will provide you with an SSL certificate in addition to a variety of shopping carts such as Zen, OS Commerce, Agora, and others.
- App for Business Websites – The mobile app ensures fingertip access to get in touch with millions of successful startuppers and entrepreneurs worldwide. You will get access to tons of how-to guides, analytics, seasoned advice, and more.
- Free Site Migration – if you already have a running WordPress website on another hosting, you may have it seamlessly transferred to Bluehost at zero cost. Local specialists will handle all needed settings while you will have a chance to save all the assets and traffic.
- Free 1-Year Domain – if you subscribe to any plan, you will get a free domain for 1 year. It will be included in the plan price. However, the next renewal will be paid. Keep this fact in mind.
- Free SSL – each plan already activated a free SSL certificate as a part of the Bluehost security package.
The platform delivers everything you might need not only to host your website but also to launch a solid mobile-friendly online project from scratch. All you need is to opt for free consultations available to each and every Bluehost customer.
6. Customer Support
Customer service is very fast. Bluehost experts are very friendly and ready to help round the clock. The company claims to resolve any issue within 15 minutes. The team gas a special alert system that informs customers about possible downtimes in advance to let them get ready. You are free to get in touch via any of the following methods:
- Live Chat Option.
The company has separate WordPress support assistants to resolve issues related to CMS. All customers have full access to the platform’s knowledgebase highlighting tons of how-to guides, articles, and tutorials.
7. Plans & Pricing
Bluehost has expanded its plan selection. Users will currently be able to select from four different packages depending on their needs. They mainly include four plans for shared server solutions. Dedicated and VPS hosting options come with separate offers.
So, the four baseline shared server options include:
- Basic – starts at $2.95 per month with free SSL, CDN, and 50 GB of storage for a single website.
- Plus – starts at $5.45 per month with unlimited SSD storage for an unlimited number of websites.
- Choice Plus – starts at $5.45 per month with automated backups and free domain privacy.
- Pro – starts at $13.95 per month with optimized CPU resources, free dedicated IP address, and some other perks.
For the dedicated and VPS hosting, Bluehost offers three different plans that include Standard, Enhanced, and Premium. If you require more resources in the face of a dedicated server solution with enormous bandwidth and multiple IP addresses, you will have to pay from $79.99 to $119.99 per month depending on the plan.
With the next-get VPS hosting, users may also count on expanded resourcefulness. The three baseline offers cost $18.99/month, $29.99/month, and $59.99/month respectively.
There is a special offer for online merchants and digital store owners. If you plan to sell products online, you should opt for the Bluehost WooCommerce hosting offer. It comes with seamless plugin integration and setup. All you need is to add products and go live with a new online shop, while the system will take care of connecting utilized plugins, customizing features, and online store settings. The WooCommerce package is available in two different plans:
- Standard – costs $15.95 per month with an already-integrated online store and unlimited products to sell.
- Premium – costs $24.95 with storefront themes installed, round-the-clock support, promo and discount codes, tax management, etc.
Please, note that the indicated price is for a 36-month subscription. What’s more, the renewal price will be different from those you see during the sign-up procedure. With each plan, there will be a link to regular plan prices. They highlight fees you will have to pay when the special offer trial (36 months) is over.
8. Refund Policy
The platform comes with a 30-day refund guarantee. It means that every user may claim his or her money back in case of any issue. However, the feature does not apply to a domain fee or other paid services such as themes, plugins, third-party widgets, and so on.
9. Bluehost Competitors
We have reviewed different hosting providers and compared them to Bluehost. So we may conclude, that Bluehost is the most featured in terms of every paragraph we have discovered here. Read them and make sure of:
Bluehost is one of the most trusted and reputable hosting providers. It offers a set of great features that will suit any project despite the mission. The system offers a selection of server solutions to bloggers, online merchants, small business owners, as well as those who crave maximum resourcefulness. Although the price may look a bit tricky, it seems affordable enough to fit any budget. Besides, you may always switch to a cheaper plan with a click.
The key benefits include great website performance and speed, advanced security means, seamless integration with CMS, easy-to-use dashboard, integrated website building tools, and other great features to manage and promote your website.