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Choosing the right hosting company may seem like mission impossible, considering the abundance of choices. In the sea of web host providers, some will try to win you over with their features and some will boast low prices. It’s a rare occurrence to run into a hosting company that tries to do both.
eHost is one of those rare companies and claims to offer “everything you will ever need to host and manage your site”. Their main selling point is a single, low-cost plan with a plethora of features. If you’re just getting started with your website and want a straightforward plan that you don’t want to fiddle with too much, eHost may be a good fit.
- Company Overview
- Plans and Pricing
- Site Builders and One-Click Installs
- Programming Features
- Infrastructure and Backups
- Extra Features
- Customer Service
- Billing and Uptime Guarantee
- What’s Awesome About eHost?
- What Are Some Drawbacks of eHost?
- Is eHost Right For You?
eHost is a US company that has been providing hosting services since 1996. It was purchased by EIG in 2010 and it’s now one of their primary hosting providers geared for small businesses and startups looking to get an online presence. eHost is based out of Houston, Texas where their data center is located as well.
Plans and Pricing
eHost offers shared hosting using Linux servers with a single plan. Their plan includes unmetered storage and bandwidth, which means there are no set limits on the storage space or bandwidth provided. However, you are expected to comply with their Terms of Service and not use your hosting account for storing or sharing files which can lead to going over the normal usage limits of the provided resources.
Every eHost customer will get a free domain name for the first year, and you can host an unlimited number of websites, set up unlimited email addresses, as well as take advantage of free advertising credits for Bing and Yahoo! ads.
The introductory price for their hosting plan is valid if you sign up for a three-year period. The plan renews at a regular rate for another three-year period. If you’re not ready to commit to a three-year plan, you can sign up for a two-year, one-year, or monthly plan but keep in mind that the price will be higher the shorter the term you select.
View all eHost plans
Site Builders and One-Click Installs
Small businesses and startups often have a limited budget but they still need a web presence. Whether you want to build a simple brochure website, need blogging features, or want to launch an online store, there is no shortage of options with eHost.
For starters, they offer a free site builder with thousands of templates to choose from that will help you get your site up and running quickly. This is a perfect solution for small businesses who need a simple website to share information about their services or products with potential clients and customers.
Thanks to SiteBuilder, you will be able to create a website using a drag-and-drop editor so you don’t need any programming knowledge to launch your site. What’s more, the SiteBuilder comes with built-in code and tools that will ensure your website looks great on both desktop computers and mobile devices.
However, SiteBuilder is not the only choice. If you need to build a more robust site that offers blogging features, you can choose from WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal; all of which are available through a one-click installer in cPanel.
Businesses that want to start selling their products online can choose between one-click installations of Magento, PrestaShop, ZenCart, and other e-commerce platforms. On top of that, eHost offers their in-house eCommerce platform along with complete PayPal integration so you can start accepting payments online immediately.
Finally, if you want to launch your own learning platform, add a forum to your site, or create a company wiki, there are various modules available in cPanel that will help you bring your educational vision to life.
When it comes to programming features, eHost doesn’t differ from other hosting companies that offer Linux shared hosting plans. Programming and tech-savvy users will be pleased to know that eHost supports Apache, PHP, Python, Perl, and Ruby on Rails.
Standard FTP access is included with the plan, allowing you to easily manage your website’s files and you can also update the files and log onto the server using SSH access.
It’s also worth mentioning that cURL and wGET options are enabled by default for each hosting account.
Browse eHost features
Infrastructure and Backups
When it comes to their infrastructure, the company offers limited information. They use High-Performance Load Balanced Servers which ensure that all the websites hosted on their servers run with maximum uptime and minimal performance issues.
As far as security concerns go, all the customer information is processed and collected using SSL security and stored on secure servers that are monitored 24/7. They also provide DDoS protection and extensive custom firewall rules to protect their servers from a variety of attacks.
Their security features also include virus checking and customizable spam filters for all your email accounts created in cPanel.
The company takes regular weekly backups of all accounts, however, those are intended for accounts that are under 20 GB. All customers are advised to keep their own backup for extra protection.
There is a limitation on backups. If your site is larger than 20 GB, eHost will not be able to create a backup for you nor will you be able to create one manually. Manual backups are available for sites up to 10 GB in size.
In the event something happens to your site, you can use their complimentary backup for an additional fee to restore your site.
We’ve mentioned before that eHost offers a lot of additional benefits included for free with each hosting account. Those benefits are geared toward marketing and promoting your site and are tailored to help you get more traffic.
For starters, each customer receives $100 worth of advertising credits to submit their site to search engines such as Bing and Yahoo!. Another perk is the ability to monitor and maintain your site’s search engine optimization using Google Webmaster Tools.
If that’s not enough, you will also find plenty of additional SEO and marketing guides, tools, and tips.
Customer service is an important factor to consider for any hosting company. In that aspect, eHost several support methods and puts customer satisfaction as their top priority. Their support channels include phone, email, and LiveChat; all of which are available 24/7.
The company claims to answer any call within two minutes and you can also access their knowledge base, which offers plenty of articles and guides. Even though their support center is very extensive, navigating around it can be a little difficult. Clicking the Support link will open up a new page with only three featured articles and a search box. There are no categories immediately visible, which may seem confusing at first.
However, their search feature works rather well and searches for various terms will list a number of articles and sorted to display the most relevant articles at the top.
Billing and Uptime Guarantee
Perhaps the biggest appeal about eHost is the fact that they offer just one single plan. This avoids a lot of the confusion that can happen when beginners are faced with having to choose between different shared (or other) hosting plans. You can pay for the plan with any credit or debit card with a MasterCard, Visa, Discover Network, American Express, Diners Club International, or JCB logo. eHost also accepts PayPal.
Each account is entitled to a full refund during the first 30 days with a no-questions-asked policy. The refunds apply only to the hosting plans, not the domains registered during the signup process. If you register a free domain with eHost and choose to cancel your account, you will be charged the regular domain renewal fee if you’d like to keep your domain.
When it comes to uptime guarantee, eHost offers a 99.9% assurance. If your website experiences less than the promised uptime, you may receive one month of credit, which can be requested by opening up a support ticket with their billing department.
What’s Awesome About eHost?
There is no doubt this hosting provider offers a lot of bang for your buck. For a small business, the amount of features you get for a low monthly price is impressive. Here are some of the biggest pros of why you should consider eHost:
Single Unlimited Plan
The biggest advantage of eHost is the fact they offer a single plan. The company does a great job of eliminating guesswork from having to decide between different shared hosting plans that are offered by similar low-entry hosting providers. It doesn’t matter if you know whether you’ll be hosting more than one site or not, eHost’s plan allows for unlimited domains and databases, which gives you room to host additional websites further down the road.
Even though they only offer a single plan, it does live up to its name and includes everything you would need to create a website. Not only do you have access to their SiteBuilder, you can also choose between various applications that span from content management systems and e-commerce platforms to forums, wikis, and e-learning applications.
Furthermore, if you are new to search engine optimization and website marketing, the company offers plenty of tools and guides to help you get started.
Considering all the ways you can get help with eHost, you’d be hard-pressed not to be satisfied with their service.
Having the ability to talk to a support agent via LiveChat, phone, or email is reassuring for many beginners who are a bit nervous about diving into this whole web development thing.
This is further backed by their uptime guarantee and 30-day refund policy, just in case you change your mind.
What Are Some Drawbacks of eHost?
As attractive as their plan seems, there are some cons you should keep in mind before signing up:
No Upgrade Options
The company’s focus on small business websites and startups is commendable but it can also be limiting. They are a great option if your website will receive a small and steady stream of visitors. But, if you plan on growing your site or creating a robust e-commerce store with a large inventory, eHost is probably not for you. Once your site needs to handle a large influx of traffic, you will probably need to look into another provider that offers VPS or dedicated plans that are better suited for sites with a lot of traffic and content.
Limiting Backup Policy
Most shared hosting providers take regular backups for their internal purposes and usually those backups aren’t available to their customers. This is where eHost differs as they do allow you to use their backup, albeit for an extra fee. You are still encouraged to take your own backup, however, their backup policy feels rather limiting.
If your site is larger than 10 GB, you can’t back it up manually and if it’s larger than 20 GB, the company will not be able to make a backup at all. Of course, the size of your website will depend on the size of the files and any media you include such as images, audio, and video content. It’s safe to assume that most websites using eHost won’t run into any issues when it comes to creating backups. This again goes to prove that eHost is best suited for small-scale websites that are focused on serving a small number of visitors.
However, if you plan to grow, host more than one website, and upload a large amount of content to your site, you may run into problems sooner than expected.
Lack of Organization in Support Center
eHost does offer a lot of helpful guides and articles. But finding those articles is not as easy. As mentioned before, the main support page is rather barebones and doesn’t provide access to different categories which are visible only after you click on a particular search result.
Although the search function works well, it seems better suited for people who know what they are looking for. The results are much more relevant when you search for an individual term rather than a complete phrase.
In this case, eHost could benefit greatly from organizing their support center and offering an easy way for beginners to navigate that portion of their website.
We pointed out earlier that eHost offers a competitive price for their shared hosting plans. However, do keep in mind that the low price is only available if you sign up for a three-year plan.
The two-year plan and a one-year plan are slightly more expensive but if you choose to pay month-to-month, the price jumps considerably.
Is eHost Right For You?
As a hosting company, eHost caters to small business owners and startups who are just getting started with creating their websites. The company offers plenty of tools that will help you get your site online with no programming knowledge needed and it also throws in additional features to boot.
For most small business owners who don’t need a website with a lot of bells and whistles, eHost is a great choice. But for anyone who plans to start small and grow at some point in the future, eHost doesn’t have the capacity to grow with you. As such, for businesses who plan on adding features down the line, it would be recommended to research alternative options and hosting companies that offer more flexible plans.