A Small Orange (ASO) founded in Atlanta more than a decade ago in 2003.
Somehow the company was then co-owned and lead by Douglas Hanna (I did an interview with Douglas in 2009 back when the time Douglaswas with Hostgator) a few years later. And in 2012, A Small Orange was quietly acquired by Endurance International Group, which also owns dozen of popular hosting brands including iPage, Hostgator, and BlueHost.
Today, the company is headquartered in Austin, Texas, and has a dynamic 80-person team and host more than 45,000 websites.
In order to provide the best possible service, ASO maintains two different U.S.-based servers in Dallas, Texas, and Dearborn, Michigan. Both data centers boast high-performance, carrier neutral networks. ASO is committed to keeping your data secure, and its data centers include a range of security features, including 24/7/365 on-site support technicians; physical ID checks, biometric access, and keycard access; and full CCTV surveillance that is backed by digital recording on file.
Compare A Small Orange with Other Hosts
For your reference, here’s what you’ll get at less than $5/mo with other budget hosting services.
|Features / Web Host||ASO||BlueHost||One.com||A2 Hosting||Face|
|Plan in review||Small||Plus||Spark||Swift||Extra|
|Data transfer||50 GB||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Storage||5 GB||50 GB||15 GB||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Free daily backup||No||No||No||Yes||Yes|
|Full refund trial||90 days||30 days||30 days||30 days||30 days|
*Note: Not a typo. One.com is charging $0.25/mo for their Starter Hosting Package.
A Small Orange Hosting Plans
ASO shared hosting plans come in five different sizes: Tiny Plan (500 MB storage, 5 GB bandwidth, 1 domain), Small Plan (5 GB storage, 50 GB bandwidth, unlimited domains), Medium Plan (15 GB storage, 150 GB bandwidth, unlimited domains), and the Large Plan (30 GB storage, 500 GB bandwidth, unlimited domain). Prices range from $35 per year to $240 per year*.
All shared hosting plans include SSD hard drives, 24/7/365 service and support, POP3, IMAP, and webmail access with spam and virus filtering, full FTP and SFTP access, and database management via phpMyAdmin. Customers are also able to install and configure a variety of different scripts with the Softaculous automatic script installation, which is included free with every hosting account.
ASO business hosting plans can meet the needs of small businesses and large corporations alike. Business plans are available in three different sizes: the Startup Plan (40 GB storage and 600 GB bandwidth), the Small Business Plan (50 GB storage and 800 GB bandwidth), and the Enterprise Plan (60 GB storage and 1,000 GB bandwidth). Prices range from $20 per month to $60 per month* depending on the plan. All business hosting plans include a free SSL certificate, webmail access with spam and virus filtering, full FTP and SFTP access, database management via phpMyAdmin, Webalizer and AWStats site statistics, and 24/7 Email + Live Chat Support. All business plans are fully PCI compliant. These hosting plans are ideal for e-commerce sites or high traffic sites.
ASO offers three hosting plans for those who want to resell hosting services: the Small Plan (20 GB storage, 250 GB bandwidth, 30 hosted websites), the Medium Plan (25 GB storage, 500 GB bandwidth, 50 hosted websites), and the Large Plan (50 GB storage, 1,500 GB bandwidth, 100 hosted websites). All ASO reseller hosting plans are fully scalable and environmentally friendly. Prices range from $15 per month to $35 per month*. All come with 24/7/365 expert technical support, webmail access with spam and virus filtering, full FTP and SFTP access, and Webalizer and AWStats site statistics.
ASO offers cloud VPS hosting with 2 cores, 2,048 MB of RAM, 30 GB of storage, and 1,000 GB of bandwidth at $30 per month*. Plans include integrated automatic failover, Kernel Virtual Machine (KVM) virtualization technology, and free backups.
My Experience with A Small Orange
I started testing ASO shared hosting service in March 2015 and I like it very much.
- Very Reliable – The test site score 99.99% uptime on the first month (check uptime review below).
- Room to expand – Basically you don’t have to worry about outgrowing your web host at ASO.
- 90 days full money back trial period – 90-days full money back guarantee is the longest trial period you can get (the other two hosting brands that offer the same are InMotion Hosting and WebHostingHub). It’s easy to pull the plug if you are unhappy with ASO services.
- No overselling – ASO does not oversell – you get what you paid for.
- Outstanding customer support – I contacted ASO customer support twice and they passed my test with flying colors.
- Additional services for busy websites owners – In addition to its hosting services, ASO offers web design, server management, and SEO services, which I believe it’s a huge plus for busy business owners.
- Account suspension rules – If you exceed the allocated bandwidth, your ASO account might be suspended until further payment has been made (read TOS quoted below). Imagine your site got lucky, landed on Reddit’s front page, and you didn’t know about it – disaster.
A Small Orange TOS (11 – Bandwidth Usage)
11.2. Should your account pass the allocated amount, A Small Orange reserves the right to: a) suspend the account until the start of the next allocation, b) suspend the account until more bandwidth is purchased at an additional fee, c) suspend the account until you upgrade to a higher level of package, and/or d) charge you an additional fee for the overages.
A Small Orange Uptime Review
We setup a WordPress dummy site on ASO in March 2015 and the following is the uptime scores we recorded.
ASO Uptime Score for July 2016 – 99.83%
ASO Uptime Score for February 2016 – 99.87%
ASO Uptime Score for February 2016 – 99.79%
ASO Uptime Score for September 2015 – 100%
ASO Uptime Score (July 2015)
ASO Hosting Uptime Score (Mac – Apr 2015)
A Small Orange Server Speed Test (New!)
We check our test site’s response speed from 8 different locations and compare the results with 10 million other websites at Bit Catcha. The results are as follow –
User Feedback: Others’ Experience at A Small Orange
Note from Jerry: We did a number of surveys and worked with some website owners for their hosting review. For A Small Orange, we have Ryan Chang, owner of Nuke Blogger, as our guest to share his experience. His blog was previously hosted on A Small Orange and the following is his unedited ASO review. This opinion solely belongs to Ryan and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of mine or teamWHSR.
ASO Review by Ryan Chang
When starting my website Nukeblogger, I was looking for a web hosting plan that had premium features, had some scale, and offered great support. I stumbled upon ASO after some looking around. If you’re an industry expert, you may know that ASO is owned by Endurance International Group (EIG), a group owning many low quality and generally scammy hosts. I didn’t know about EIG when I signed up and was quite worried when I found out. Luckily, ASO was an exception to the EIG rule (so far). I signed up for the “small” shared hosting plan.
Plans and Specs
It’s quite clear that ASO isn’t overselling – their plans are not very expensive but have very little “value” – for example, while other hosts may offer 10gb or 50gb for $5/month, ASO offers 1GB. However, this 1GB is SSD space. Although my website wasn’t very fast, it almost never was slow or down. I never had any database issues or PHP problems like I would with many budget hosts. It also has all the standard functions like cPanel and Softaculous.
What I like the best – Customer Support
The most amazing part about A Small Orange is their support. Their support staff ALWAYS responded within 1 hour (in ticket support). Most of the staff are professional. In fact, their level 3 support was often better than the level 1 support that I enjoyed from many EIG hosts. As far as I remembered, the staff was quite helpful and the chat staff replied within 10 seconds to every message I sent them.
What I dislike – Lack of “Value”
I’ve discussed lots of positives about A Small Orange, but it’s not perfect – one of its pitfalls is its price. It’s not extremely expensive (the basic plan is only $35 per year), but it gives VERY little disk space and bandwidth for that price – only 500mb in fact. You definitely can’t host more than a site on that amount of space.
- Great Support
- Good Uptime
- Industry Standard Specs
- Bad Value
- Bought by EIG
Who should use A Small Orange?
To sum it up, I think A Small Orange is great for beginners to web hosting who need the extra support and optimization to help out their websites – it’s definitely not for people who value price a lot, and if you’re an advanced professional who’s looking for speedy hosting, there’s really not much need to pay for A Small Orange’s premium price in return for quality support that you won’t need. However, for beginners who need some hand-holding, it is a great host.
Bottom line – Is A Small Orange right for you?
The drawback I see in A Small Orange is their slightly-above-average price tag – which I think is fair due to their quality customer support and no overselling policy.