“I have been consistently impressed with the overall performance that Bluehost is able to provide. While it is often categorized as an affordable hosting company, it makes sure that the sites on its servers perform really well.” – Michael Levanduski, Digital.com Hosting Expert
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Bluehost is one of the most popular web hosting companies. In business since 2003, the web host has quickly grown into a leader in the industry. Out of thousands of hosting companies, Bluehost is now one of the world’s largest,providing extremely reliable and cheap web hosting solutions to customers.
Bluehost’s value-priced hosting packages come with unmetered bandwidth, free global content delivery network (CDN), and Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificates. There are also free daily, weekly, and monthly backups on a powerful and proven platform that is built to scale and optimized for speed and security. Its cheapest hosting plan is $2.95 per month.
Powering over 2 million websites worldwide, Bluehost is a recognized brand name in bargain web hosting. By doing a large volume of business, Bluehost is able to offer steep price discounts.
In addition to a full range of web hosting services, Bluehost provides:
- Marketing training
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO) services
- Social media marketing
- Content creation
- Graphic design services
- Domain names
- Local business listings to grow traffic
|Bluehost Standout Features|
|Performance||Fast and reliable hosting|
|Average Load Time||Approximately .65 seconds|
|Average Response Time||Approximately 23ms|
|Free Domain||Yes. 1 free domain for the first year|
|SSL||Free SSL certificate from LetsEncrypt.org|
|1-click WordPress||Yes, included with all hosting packages|
|Support||24/7 support via phone, email, or live chat|
What Makes Bluehost Stand Out?
There are plenty of bargain hosts. So what’s the big picture of Bluehost’s offerings?
Bluehost is More Than Shared Hosting
The “managed” part means it handles the technical details, like keeping those pesky WordPress plugins and the core updated for you, handling security, and optimizing performance.
Bluehost is a One-Stop-Shop for Small Businesses
Digital marketing services can easily cost five figures per project, and the numerous solicitations small business owners receive can result in frustration and a lack of progress.
The good news is that some critical digital marketing services can be commoditized and delivered at bargain costs. That’s a core part of Bluehost’s strategy.
Some of its services:
- Websites: Use its easy DIY site builder to create your own or get its design pros to build a site for you.
- SEO, advertising, social media marketing, and local business visibility: Bluehost provides professional marketing services, including creating content for your site. You can get monthly consultations with a marketing professional. And it measures progress so you can see your ROI.
- Domains, email, and helpful tutorials: Including how-tos on website management, hosting, and marketing topics.
What Are the Pros and Cons of Bluehost?
Bluehost is popular for its plethora of hosting options and features that are perfect for most types of websites, but there are some drawbacks with billing, tech support, and more. Consider the following advantages and disadvantages of choosing Bluehost as your website’s hosting solution.
- Hugely popular: Bluehost has over 2 million sites under its care.
- Lots of hosting options: Bluehost offers various options including shared hosting, VPS hosting, cloud hosting, and dedicated servers.
- Simple upgrades: We loved how easy it is to upgrade from one Bluehost hosting package to another – just open a support ticket and the team will migrate your site to a new server with zero downtime.
- Free anti-spam solutions: Anti-spam tools keep your site safer. We found these features easy to configure in cPanel.
- Integrated Cloudflare support: Cloudflare can speed up your site’s loading times by using regional facilities to house and load key files for websites.
- Digital security features included: All accounts at Bluehost come with digital security tools including SSL, SiteLock Protection, and options for unique IPs.
- A 30-day money-back guarantee: If you are unhappy with the services that Bluehost offers, you can get a full refund with no questions asked.
- 99% uptime guarantee: According to our testing, its systems are up and running smoothly 99% of the time, but having this guarantee in place should give you comfort.
- No automatic daily backup: The biggest downside we have found is that it does not run automatic daily backups.
- No monthly billing on shared hosting: While the prices for its shared hosting services are very affordable (starting at just $2.95/month), you have to pay at least a year at a time.
- Longer wait times for tech support: Users have reported experiencing longer than normal wait times for tech support, especially during peak hours.
- Fee for migrating from another host: If you already have your website at another hosting company, you can DIY or Bluehost will charge you to migrate it to its servers for you.
- No Windows hosting: Bluehost only offers Linux-based hosting solutions, so if you prefer Windows, you will need to work with another company.
Bluehost may be the best web host for: Everyone. Whether you’re a beginning blogger, a large e-commerce website, or even an established WordPress user, you can find value in Bluehost.
Bluehost Shared Hosting Packages
|Price:||$2.75 – 36/mo term||$4.95 – 36/mo term||$5.45 – 36/mo term||$13.95 – 36/mo term|
|Best for:||Small local businesses, personal sites, entrepreneurs||Small regional businesses, any site that requires multiple email addresses||Smaller e-commerce sites, small online businesses||Mid-sized businesses, companies that need multiple websites, anyone who wants the SEO (and other) benefits of a dedicated IP address|
|Disk space:||50 GB||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Email storage:||100 MB / account||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited|
Who should use shared hosting? The various shared hosting packages can meet the needs of a wide range of people including small businesses, entrepreneurs, e-commerce sites, and more. While all of the shared hosting packages are good, we generally think the best options are either the basic plan or the pro plan. The main reason you will want to choose a higher-end option over the basic level is if you are getting more traffic and need a higher level of service.
Bluehost WordPress Hosting Package Options
|Best for:||Personal websites, small local businesses||Small regional businesses, sites that require multiple email addresses||Smaller e-commerce sites, small online businesses||Mid-sized businesses, companies that need multiple websites, anyone who wants the SEO (and other) benefits of a dedicated IP address|
Who should use WordPress hosting? If you are using WordPress for your hosting, choosing one of these plans is going to be your best bet. Bluehost optimizes these servers specifically for the WordPress platform so you will get the best possible results.
Bluehost VPS Hosting Package Options
|Price:||$18.99 – 36/mo term||$29.99 – 36/mo term||$59.99 – 36/mo term|
|Best for:||Mid-sized businesses, e-commerce sites||Sites that get constant traffic, larger local and regional businesses||Regional businesses and established e-commerce sites|
|Storage:||30 GB SSD||60 GB SSD||120 GB SSD|
|RAM:||2 GB||4 GB||8 GB|
|Bandwidth:||1 TB||2 TB||3 TB|
Who should use VPS hosting? If your website gets plenty of traffic, or you will be hosting videos, lots of images, or other intensive items, you can opt for one of the VPS options from Bluehost. All three options will provide you with a great hosting environment on which to run your site.
Bluehost Dedicated Server Hosting Package Options
|Price:||$79.99 – 36/mo term||$99.99 – 36/mo term||$119.99 – 36/mo term|
|Best for:||Larger e-commerce sites, companies with a national audience||Larger businesses with lots of pages, businesses with resource intensive websites||Companies that get visitors from around the globe, large e-commerce sites|
3 MB Cache
8 MB Cache
8 MB Cache
|RAM:||4 GB||8 GB||16 GB|
|RAID Level 1 Storage:||2 x 500 GB||2 x 1000 GB||2 x 1000 GB|
|Network Bandwidth:||5 TB||10 TB||15 TB|
Who should use dedicated hosting? The dedicated hosting servers at Bluehost are quite impressive. However, they are only really needed for large sites that get thousands of visitors at a time. Very few small businesses, entrepreneurs, bloggers, or other similar people will ever need this type of hosting.
Hosting Features from Bluehost
No matter which hosting plan from Bluehost you choose, you will get great features including automatic WordPress installation and a free domain name for one year. The cheapest shared hosting plan for a single domain costs only a few dollars a month. For a little bit more money, you can add unlimited domains and subdomains.
Here are the top Bluehost features:
- Easy-to-use, customized cPanel
- Dozens of site tool add-ons
- Free site builders
- Free domain-specific email addresses
- 99.99% uptime
- Technology to support fast page load times
- Free Cloudflare integration (speeds your site loading)
- Free SSL certificate
- Advanced security features
Easy to Use, Customized cPanel
All shared packages come with the Bluehost Control Panel, a customized and enhanced version of the popular and easy-to-use cPanel. The redesign of cPanel makes it even more intuitive to use.
Easy to Manage Your Services
This means you get a unified login (one username and password combination will get you access to all your Bluehost accounts), as well as integration with and hotlinks to Bluehost’s help features and technical support resources. You also receive full-featured domain and email management features, and easy upgrades and scalability so that you can make changes to the hosting that backs your website.
Bluehost provides 24/7/365 customer support, including assisting with WordPress website launches.
Grow Your Business With Dozens of Site Tools and Add-Ons Included
With Bluehost, you’ll have an easy and smooth time building, customizing, and managing your website whether you’re a newbie who needs a bit of hand-holding or an experienced individual who knows your way around website creation and management.
Bluehost puts multiple site tools at your disposal.
Different Ways to Create a Website
When creating a website, you have the option of using the WordPress content management platform, the Weebly website builder, the goMobi Mobile Web Builder, or uploading files using FTP or File Manager.
Do More With Your Website
Through your control panel, you can get one-click access to thousands of add-ons or “apps” in something called the MOJO Marketplace. These apps include themes (to change the design of your website) and other website builders.
Plugins or apps can be used to extend the functionality of your site.
- Add image galleries
- Create customer forums
- Add a calendar
- Integrate your site with a CRM
- Allow customers to pay by SMS (text message)
- Hotel booking plugin
- Event registration and ticketing
- A pricing table display
- An app to create and sell online courses.
All Bluehost hosting plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
You can also purchase professional services such as:
- Graphic design of flyers, posters, brands, and more
- Website technical work like PayPal integration, blog setup, adding Google Analytics or a map to your site.
Note: Even if you choose another host that doesn’t offer a one-click connection to the MOJO Marketplace, you can still go directly to the MOJO website.
Free Site Builders
Bluehost offers its own custom site builder tools that let you create very attractive websites without having to know any programming. Simply drag and drop various site features where you want them, and the site will look just the way you want it. You can also choose from lots of great templates to give your site a nice look and feel.
Free Domain-Specific Email Addresses
Bluehost integration with Microsoft 365 gives you a professional email address that stems from your domain name and a seamless way to collaborate with your team.
The key features of this email integration include:
- Microsoft Outlook Web Access – Manage your email from anywhere, at any time on any device via the cloud.
- Automatic Microsoft Updates – Worrying about software or application updates is no longer necessary as it’s done automatically.
- Intuitive Management Dashboard – Your account is managed from a single, user-friendly dashboard, and no multiple logins.
99.99% Uptime Guarantee
All of the hosting packages at Bluehost come with a 99.99% uptime guarantee. Your hosting servers will be available to serve traffic at least 99.99% of the time, which is above the industry standard of 99.9%.
Technology to Support Fast Page Load Times
Bluehost offers a variety of great technologies to boost the speed at which your site will load. Many hosting packages, for example, are equipped with solid state drives with much faster response times than traditional spinning disk drives. Included with your hosting is a CDN service that helps speed up the loading of images, videos, and other large files.
Free Cloudflare Integration to Speed Up Your Site
Your sites will be automatically configured to use the Cloudflare system, designed to take key files from your website and distribute them across various data centers. When someone tries to load your site, they will pull the largest files from a geographically-close server, so it will load more quickly.
Free SSL Certificate
All hosting packages at Bluehost come with a free shared SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt SSL that will provide your site with significant security. It also ensures your site is following best practices regarding security, which Google confirms is important for proper SEO.
Advanced Security Options
Bluehost offers all the standard hosting security features found at all good hosting providers. This includes things like powerful firewalls to prevent unauthorized traffic to your site, monitored internet connectivity, and more. In addition to ensuring the security of your website, Bluehost allows you to take any needed security measures.
For example, you can create:
- IP address blacklists
- Password-protected directories
- Manage private keys and digital certificates
- Create filters for email accounts and users
The only possible downside to Bluehost’s security is that the company does backups at its own discretion, so you must do daily backups for full security.
Alternatively, you can pay for one of its premium (and automated) backup services like CodeGuard or JetPack Premium.
Uptime and Reliability
According to our tests, Bluehost servers had an average uptime of 99.854% over the past 30 days, which is quite impressive. Its all-time uptime is over 99.94%.
To put it simply, if you host your site on Bluehost, count on it being up and running virtually all the time.
Site Response Times
The speed at which a site loads has more to do with how the site is made than the actual servers. Bluehost’s servers definitely offer great response times though. It also does not oversell its shared hosting servers, a cost-savings strategy that some low-quality hosting companies engage in.
In addition to great servers, Bluehost offers CloudFlair services with many of its hosting packages, further speeding things up.
Our testing shows that Bluehost has an average response time of 1884 ms, which means your site will load very quickly. This is just the speed at which Bluehost’s servers will reply to a web request. Your specific site’s load times will also depend significantly on how you make your site.
Optimized WordPress Tools
Bluehost also helps its customers by providing a variety of WordPress site-building tools. Customers using these tools can be confident their sites are properly made and configured to be up,stable, and load quickly at all times.
We have briefly mentioned above that even shared hosting packages come with a free SSL certificate. What is this and why is it important? Do you, as a small business owner, need one for your website?
SSL is an encryption protocol. It’s the series of instructions your server and a user’s web browser must follow when sending and receiving information to make sure that the data being transferred is not intercepted by and read by unauthorized parties.
Protecting Your Data
If you opt for its dedicated servers, you’ll get what’s known as “RAID Level 1” support, meaning your data is mirrored to multiple disks. This increases the reliability and security of your data. (RAID stands for Redundant Array of Independent Disks.)
When it comes to web hosting, the best type of customer support is available 24/7 and covers all support avenues including live chat, support tickets, telephone, and email. This is exactly what Bluehost offers, with the addition of a help desk and trained in-house experts handling all customer support avenues.
Another great thing about Bluehost’s support: they aren’t there just when something is wrong. They also offer some excellent training and informational resources to help you to become an expert in hosting your site. If you have some extra time in your day, we recommend spending it learning more about how to optimize your hosting with Bluehost.
While overall Bluehost’s support seems good, several reports say its live chat does not get quick enough responses. Once the technical support representative does respond, however, they can solve most problems very quickly.
One nice thing about the Bluehost live chat is that it is available even if you aren’t yet a customer. You can go through a quick test drive to see if you like the level of support offered.
The following are just some of the recent product improvements rolled out by Bluehost:
- Partnering with Yoast – Bluehost’s parent company, Newfold Digital, has acquired Yoast, a leading SEO WordPress plugin. It will be easier than ever for Bluehost customers to take advantage of the powerful SEO features offered by Yoast.
- New Website Design Tools – Bluehost has recently launched its own website builder suite to help customers create unique pages that look and function well. This WordPress-focused tool can be used to make almost any type of site.
- New WordPress Migration Plugin – Migrate your WordPress site from one hosting company to Bluehost quickly and for free thanks to the new plugin.
- Maestro to Manage Multiple Sites – It can be difficult to keep multiple sites updated and working properly, so Bluehost recently added a tool called Maestro, allowing you to more easily manage multiple WordPress websites.
- Premium Themes Marketplace – Bluehost released its own premium theme marketplace for WordPress sites. You can choose from hundreds of different WordPress themes to give your site a premium look at an affordable price.
Bluehost is always working on improving the services on offer. Whether you are already a customer or you are thinking about signing up, you will be happy to see it is working hard to ensure its services are always the best.
Compare Bluehost Alternatives
Bluehost is pretty close to being the perfect web host, but alternatives like SiteGround, GreenGeeks, and HostGator may be a better fit for your needs. We looked closely at each company, spent time using their services, and researched each one for hours. Our research provides objective information about each company so you can find the best one for you.
See how Bluehost compares to other top-tier hosting companies the team here at Digital.com recommends:
|Web Host||Pricing||Hosting Packages||Basic Plan Features||Compare|
Overall rating: (5.0)
|$2.75 to $119.99/month|
Overall rating: (4.0)
|$3.99 to $400/month|
Overall rating: (4.5)
|$1.99 to $279/month|
Overall rating: (4.5)
|$2.95 to $109.95/month|
Overall rating: (4.5)
|$2.99 to $539.99/month|
Overall rating: (4.5)
|$2.75 to $139.89/month|
Overall rating: (4.0)
|$5.99 to $399.99/month|
Frequently Asked Questions About Bluehost
Who Owns Bluehost?
What are the Bluehost Nameservers?
What Kind of Support Does Bluehost Offer?
Where are the Bluehost Servers Located?
What are the Best Alternatives to Bluehost?
What is Bluehost’s Cheapest Hosting Plan?
Can You Register Domain Names with Bluehost?
You can buy domains from Bluehost through your account dashboard. Domain Whois privacy is also available for a small yearly cost. Also, you can get one free domain name registration for one year with all of its hosting plans. Note: if you cancel your hosting, you will be charged for it.
Can You Automatically Install WordPress with Bluehost?
Which Bluehost Plan is Best for WordPress?
Bluehost offers three different WordPress plans. The cheapest is the regular WordPress shared hosting plan; it works fine for most people. It also provides WP Pro, managed WordPress hosting for demanding users. And for e-commerce stores, it offers WooCommerce plans.
Bluehost is an official host recommended by WordPress.org. It hosts over 1.5 million WordPress websites, support full-time WordPress Core developers on staff, and sponsor WordPress WordCamps worldwide.
If you use Bluehost for your WordPress site, you will have access to a huge number of premium themes to give your site the looks and performance you need. We believe that you will love how easy it is to find a WordPress theme that will make your site really stand out.
How We Rated Bluehost
Our rating system takes a comprehensive approach to the services that are provided. We look at all the different services offered and determine how well Bluehost does compared to other services. This was done both with direct testing as well as running tests through third-party services to ensure we got the most accurate results possible.
While we evaluated every aspect of the hosting services from Bluehost, we did weigh certain things heavier than others. The most important factors include the speed and response times of the hosting, the reliability of the services, the quality of customer service, and the diversity of hosting options offered.
Looking at the hosting offered by Bluehost as a whole, it was easy to give this company a full 5/5. It has been providing exceptional hosting services at affordable prices for many years, and we are quite confident it will continue to be a top-tier hosting company long into the future.