BlueHost Review 2018 – Read Our Honest Review Before Buying BlueHost
If you are in the market for WordPress hosting for your website, chances are you may have considered BlueHost at some point.
BlueHost is the #1 most popular choice for WordPress users. They are a huge name is the web hosting world, so it’s likely you’ve heard of them. But being popular doesn’t necessarily make you the best, does it?
Read our expert BlueHost review for 2018 to decide if BlueHost is the best WordPress hosting provider for your website. Do NOT buy before reading our honest unbiased review based on actual testing and hands-on experience.
We’re going to talk about some of BlueHost’s key features, plans, speed, reliability, and more.
Before we begin, here are a few handy resource links to some related content:
- Link to BlueHost’s website.
- Web hosting comparison guide – WP Engine vs SiteGround vs BlueHost vs HostGator.
- Our FREE WordPress setup service.
- Dead simple DIY WordPress installation guide.
Onwards to our 2018 BlueHost review:
Considering the importance of having a reliable host, and the rise of some key competitors, is BlueHost still a viable choice for WordPress hosting in 2018?
BlueHost is a solid choice if you want an affordable plan with reliable servers that you can count on.
They offer 24/7 customer support, and completely managed WordPress with 1-click install, automatic updated, secure backups, and more.
BlueHost is a great and reputable company, but it’s hosting services may not be for everyone. I’m going to be totally honest with you: While BlueHost servers are super secure and reliable, they do NOT always deliver the best speed.
If you have a need for speed you may want to consider WP Engine, it’s by far the best premium WordPress hosting provider we’ve tested. However, WP Engine comes at a premium price starting at $35 a month. It’s totally worth it if you can afford it.
Read our full WP Engine review.
If you’re a speed demon on a budget, I’d recommend checking out SiteGround. We use SiteGround for our own website, WP Rocket. SiteGround is no doubt the fastest WordPress hosting with many other amazing features and plans start at only $3.95 per month.
Read our in-depth SiteGround review.
With that being said, do not underestimate BlueHost as they do offer some great deals and unique features of their own.
After all, becoming the most popular web host means you gotta be doing something right. Right?!
BlueHost was one of the original web hosts. Founded in 1996, BlueHost has become the #1 biggest brand name in the WordPress hosting market.
They are an official WordPress recommended hosting provider. BlueHost is a reputable brand with a very reliable network of web servers.
You won’t ever have to worry about server uptime and your website being down even when traffic picks up.
BlueHost also offers 24/7 support and their WordPress experts are always there to help if anything goes wrong. They can be reached by phone, email, or live chat.
BlueHost has received high ratings as a web host from small businesses and bloggers around the world. Millions of websites run on BlueHost every day.
In addition to that, BlueHost offers unmetered bandwidth, which is great for high traffic websites and growing your business.
Continue reading to learn more about pricing, performance, security, support, and more!
Plans & Pricing
BlueHost offers a flexible variety of web hosting plans for all budgets and needs. This includes shared, VPS, dedicated, cloud, WooCommerce, and specialized WordPress hosting.
Let’s take a closer look at some of BlueHost’s most popular hosting plans and features:
- Shared hosting: Perfect for new startup websites with low traffic volume. Shared hosting servers basically share resourced with other websites.
- VPS (Virtual Private Server) hosting: A slight upgrade to shared hosting, it allows you virtual dedicated resources within a shared environment.
- Dedicated server hosting: This is an option to have a dedicated server for your website, meaning all the server resources are dedicated to your website.
- Cloud hosting: This allows you to utilize multiple cloud servers, your website is automatically switched to a different server in case of hardware failure or high traffic volume. Automagically!
- WordPress hosting: A specialized hosting package specifically geared towards WordPress websites. It’s optimized for WordPress.
- WooCommerce hosting: For e-commerce type businesses to easily start an online store with WordPress. WooCommerce hosting provides all the key features required to an online store.
Note: All BlueHost plans come equipped with a super simple 1-click WordPress install tool.
In addition, all plans come standard with an easy to use hosting cPanel to manage your hosting account’s back-end.
Breakdown of BlueHosts Shared Hosting Plans
Bluehost offers a shared hosting package suitable for starter websites. Their shared plan is available in three different levels.
Let’s take a look at what’s included in each plan:
1. Basic: The Basic plan allows you to host one site. It hosts one domain and comes with 50GB storage, and up to 5 email accounts.
2. Plus: The Plus plan lets you host unlimited websites with unlimited storage space and bandwidth. You’ll also gain access to unlimited email accounts. That’s a pretty sweet deal!
3. Prime: The Prime plan includes all the features we mentioned from the Plus plan. In addition, you will also get domain privacy and SiteBackup Pro.
If you’re just starting out, you can select any of the shared plans. Then you can easily upgrade as your website grows.
The most critical server performance metric that you should measure for is speed. It not only affects real-time user experience on your website, but it also is a direct ranking factor for WordPress SEO rankings on Google, Bing, etc.
Studies show that as little as a 1 second drop in page loading speed can increase your user bounce rates and decrease conversions. A 3 second delay can cost you by average 50% of your traffic.
Let’s take a look at how fast your website will load on BlueHost servers.
BlueHost Speed Test Results
You will need to choose your web hosting provider wisely if you want a fast loading website. With that in mind, we created a test site to see how fast BlueHost actually performs.
For the sake of our BlueHost review, our test site was created to simulate a real, actual website. We used WordPress with Divi by Elegant Themes. We plugged in some sample content including various text and images. We even threw in a few videos just out of curiosity.
Once our test site was up and running, it was time for testing. We decided to go with the trusty Pingdom tool to test our website speed on BlueHost servers.
Our test site, which was roughly 750MB in size loaded up in under two seconds consistently. Pingdom informed us that’s faster than 85% of all tested sites.
Considering the fact that our website wasn’t even set up with any caching, CDN, or further speed optimizations, the results were great (especially for the price.
Note: We were currently under BlueHost’s Basic Shared Plan at the time of this review.
We took it a step further:
In order for us to accurately test how BlueHost responds to sudden spikes of increased traffic, we used a Load Impact testing tool to simulate users visiting our site.
We set it to as high as 150 unique virtual visitors to see how the server would handle increased requests from multiple connections at once.
BlueHost Load Impact Test Results
We are pleased to report: BlueHost’s server load remained stable and cool through out the entire test even at it’s highest peak traffic.
This means if you are looking for a host that can handle high traffic without slowing, BlueHost may be a great option for you.
It’s also worth noting we didn’t experience any server downtime during our testing. Their servers proved to be reliable yet again. This is great news since the last thing you want is your website to go offline during a peak!
Server Response Time
We used another website testing tool called Bitcatcha. Which basically allows us to test server response times.
BlueHost’s servers responded quickly to this test and passed with flying color. Loading in under a fraction of a second from the United States. In other locations around the world, response was a bit higher but still under less than a second.
We conclude server response time to be pretty good overall, especially if you expect your audience to mainly be from the United States.
BlueHost Customer Service & Support
I want to stress the importance of choosing a web hosting provider that offers help and technical support when you need it.
BlueHost provides a free resource packed with helpful articles, step by step guides, and tutorials. They have an extensive library of self-help documentation.
This is a big help for WordPress beginners to find solutions to most common issues that can be quickly resolved by doing a simple search.
And when you need to speak to an individual, BlueHost’s expert support staff is there to help. They do offer 24/7 support systems so you can talk to a live representative using chat or phone.
One thing I should note: Overall BlueHost has remarkably positive reviews, but we have witnessed a few negative reviews coming out lately in regards to customer support related issues. This is likely due to BlueHost’s massive growth keeping up with quality of service.
From our own experiences, we found their support staff to be quite helpful and friendly from our past interactions over the phone.
Unfortunately, BlueHost also decided to get rid of it’s ticket based support system and some people miss it. They ditched it for a more personal live chat and call support. That didn’t necessarily bother us but I can see how it may affect certain customers.
For what it’s worth, all things considered we were happy with BlueHost’s performance and support.
Pros & Cons
Naturally, all web hosting companies each have some pros and cons. Some you can accept, and some you can’t.
Here are a few pros and cons we picked up from our BlueHost review:
- Free domain: You get a free domain name registration for 1 year as an incentive when you signup for BlueHost.
- Pricing: BlueHost’s plans are well affordable for most WordPress users, particularly if you’re just starting out.
- Reliability: BlueHost did prove itself to be very reliable. They’re able to power millions of websites and handle high traffic volume with next to no significant downtime.
- BlueHost’s sheer server speeds are not as fast as we would like, lagging behind competitors such as WP Engine and SiteGround.
- Higher average domain renewal price. Once their free domain offer expires, the domain renewal price is a little higher than average. Not by much, but thought it was worth mentioning nonetheless.
The BlueHost Satisfaction Guarantee
As you can see, BlueHost offers some great hosting services and has proven itself to be a reputable brand, one of the leaders in the world of web hosting.
They are confident you will be satisfied with their digital products and services and offer a 30 day 100% money back guarantee in case you change your mind. It’s completely risk-free!
Feel free to try BlueHost and if you decide their services are not for you, cancel your plan within the first 30 days and get a full refund, with zero hassle and no questions asked.
The Bottom Line
You’re getting a great deal with a free domain, unlimited bandwidth, high web storage space, and decent speeds. Best of all, BlueHost servers are highly stable and reliable.
Also be sure to check out our battle for best WordPress hosting providers between WP Engine vs SiteGround vs BlueHost vs HostGator.
Thanks for reading our BlueHost review for 2018. We hope you gained some value from it. What are your thoughts on BlueHost? Let us know if you have any questions about BlueHost or hosting in general.
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