BlueHost is recommended by WordPress.org and a popular hosting choice since early 2000. We think BlueHost may be the right call for the small businesses and individual bloggers who want a budget hosting solution..
I am sure you have seen dozens, if not more, of BlueHost reviews on the Internet. Many of these reviews talk about the same stuffs – BlueHost’s unlimited hosting features, free domain offer, and the 30-day money-back guarantee.
This is not one of those reviews.
I have been using BlueHost shared hosting service since 2005 (very old BlueHost plan – BlueHost Platinum Pak, server Box508.Bluehost.com). That was before the company were sold to Endurance International Group (EIG), before the company redesigned their website, and way before the company added VPS and dedicated plans into their hosting services.
In this review, you’ll get the inside scoop from a 10+ years BlueHost customers.
Ready? Let’s dive in.
About BlueHost Hosting
Headquarter: Burlington, Massachusetts, U.S.
Established: 2003, by Matt Heaton and Danny Ashworth
Services: Shared, VPS, dedicated, and cloud hosting
No coupon or promotion code is needed. Just purchase via our promo link (see below) and you'll get up to 63% discount from your first BlueHost bill.
BlueHost Discounted Price vs Non-discounted Price
Not all BlueHost prices are the same. As BlueHost's exclusive partner, we are able to give you the best BlueHost deal. This special discount is applicable to all shared hosting plans – Basic, Plus, Choice Plus and Pro.
For easy reference, here's the before- and after-discount prices (36-month subscription) in comparison.
1- Excellent server performance: Average hosting uptime above 99.95%
Besides the two major network outages (reported in August 2013 and December 2013) due to router issues in the EIG-owned data center located at Provo, Utah, BlueHost server has been stable and rarely went down for more than 10 minutes.
On average, our test site hosted at BlueHost is scoring above 99.98% uptime in 2018. Please refer to images below for BlueHost uptime result samples.
* Click image to enlarge.
Mar 2017: 99.99%
Jul 2016: 100%
Mar 2016: 100%
Sept, 2015: 100%
Apr 2015: 100%
Jan 2015: 99.97%
Aug 2014: 99.98%
2- Server speed (TTFB below 500ms) meets expectation
When it comes to server speed, BlueHost performance meets my expectations. With an average Time-To-First-Byte (TTFB) of below 500ms on Webpage Test, BlueHost has enough speed for current web standard.
WebpageTest.org Speed Test
As for Bitcatcha, BlueHost managed to score an overall B rating with U.S. servers achieving 23ms and 64ms response for West Coast and East Coast servers respectively.
Bitcatcha Speed Test
3- Well recognized brands in hosting industry
With over 20 years under their belt, BlueHost has an established track record in the hosting industry and is quite well-known among experienced bloggers and website owners. This is further cemented by the fact that WordPress.org officially recommends them as one of the preferred web hosts for their platform.
For a first-time blogger, I would recommend BlueHost.
Although this hosting company gets a few mixed reviews, they come recommended by WordPress, which is one of the most popular blogging platforms. The hosting company also offers a WordPress auto-install, which makes getting set up quick and easy for someone without a lot of webdesign experience. Unlimited disk space and bandwidth transfer are also a nice addition. Rates start at $4.95/month (if you pay in advance), so it is also reasonably priced for someone trying things out.
I also like the fact that newbies can get support 24/7 in a variety of ways (online, via telephone or via e-mail).
I've used 5 or 6 web hosting service providers over the last 7 years, including many of the popular shared hosting providers.
The one I keep coming back to is BlueHost, where I currently host more than ten domains. It's a great host for sites with low to medium traffic and everything you want is easy to set up. I've been impressed with their uptime and their tech support department is extremely responsive and helpful if there's ever an issue.
I have rated Bluehost 4 out of 5. Bluehost is an all-round and good web host for beginners and WordPress users. Your site on BlueHost will benefit from the latest security and performance features.
[…] BlueHost is cheap (really cheap), have a solid uptime track-record and is very easy to get started with(especially for beginners and for WordPress sites).
5- Comprehensive self-help documents and video tutorials
Since there are a lot of tutorials and self-documents available online, this makes BlueHost a lot easier to learn and use if you’re a beginner.
I was able to solve several simple issues by just reading their articles or watching the video tutorials in the past.
6- Full account daily backup and restoration
BlueHost offers daily backup and full restorations on their hosting plans, which is great as having a backup of your website on a daily basis is absolutely important.
If your website goes down or if you need to revert to an older state, you can easily restore it by requesting it via their live chats.
7- Newbies-friendly – easy to use control center
The overall onboarding experience at BlueHost was smooth.
And I like how BlueHost custom-designed dashboard works.
8- Plenty of room to grow
If your site becomes bigger, BlueHost gives its users plenty of room to grow with the ability to upgrade to different hosting plans at a reasonable price. You get to upgrade your shared hosting plans to VPS and dedicated hosting.
See plan details in the following table.
Shared – Choice Plus
VPS – Enhanced
Dedicated – Enhanced
1 TB (Mirrored)
Cons of BlueHost Hosting
1- Price increases during renewal
BlueHost charges a high price when it comes to renewing your plans.
The basic plan alone jumps up from $2.95/mo to $7.99/mo when you renew, which is a 170%(!) increase in price.
2- Unlimited hosting is limited by various usage policies
Reading up on their policies, you’ll realize that there are certain caveats to their unlimited hosting, such as the fact they do not provide unlimited space for online storage. All this ends up making their “unlimited hosting” quite limited.
BlueHost unlimited hosting are limited by server processing time, memory, and inodes.
Limitations in BlueHost database usage.
3- Most server upgrades and additional features are costly
BlueHost supplies every user with all the basic functionalities that they need to host their website on all of their hosting plans. However, if you want to have server upgrades or add more features to your website, it's going to cost you.
While BlueHost does offer great overall hosting plans, the fact that upgrading servers and adding features can be quite costly, is a huge downside for the hosting company.
Pricing: How Much is BlueHost Hosting?
BlueHost Shared Hosting Prices
BlueHost shared hosting comes in four flavor: Basic, Plus, Choice Plus and Pro. The key features and prices of each plan are shown in the table below.
Note that BlueHost Plus and Choice Plus have the same signup price ($5.45/mo) but they renew at a very different rate ($10.99/mo vs $14.99/mo). If you are unsure, start with a lower plan (Plus) and upgrade later if necessary.
Free Auto SSL
Promo Price (36-month term)
Renewal Rate (36-month term)
* Official ToS indicates that in most cases actions will not be taken until Basic and Plus users exceed 200,000 inodes.
BlueHost VPS plans cost $18.99/mo, $29.99/mo, and $59.99/mo. Overall features and pricing of BlueHost VPS hosting are up to market standards. Their prices are not cheap compared to other similar VPS hosting providers, but they are not expensive either.
In their basic offerings, BlueHost and HostGator offer some very similar profiles. Both are also big-name service providers and offer similar levels of performance when it comes to more basic sites and are owned by EIG.
With neck and neck pricing, Bluehost gives InMotion a run for its money where their entry level pans are concerned. However, the latter comes with better features and an extended money-back guarantee of up to 90 days.
Given the fact that you are only paying ~$5/mo on signup, BlueHost shared hosting services are considered okay.
The web host scored 52 in our 80-point rating system and rated as a 4-star host.
For that, I think BlueHost is an excellent choice for small businesses and website owners who are looking for a budget hosting solution.
It's worth noting that BlueHost offers tons of latest security and performance features – NGINX architecture, custom server cache, HTTP/2, SSD storage, etc. However, these features are only available for those who are willing to pay extra. GoPro, BlueHost's highest performance shared hosting plan, costs $13.95/mo on signup ($23.99/mo on renewal). WordPress Hosting (which is officially recommended by WordPress.org), now with a new dashboard and integrated marketplace, costs $19.99/mo (and $39.99/mo on renewal).
Here's the quick recap on the pros and cons of BlueHost:
(P/S: The links above are affiliate links – if you purchase via this link, it will credit me as your referrer. This is how I keep this site alive for 9 years and add more free hosting reviews based on real test account – your support is highly appreciated. Buying via my link doesn’t cost you more – in fact, I can guarantee that you’ll get the lowest possible price for BlueHost hosting. )
About Jerry Low
Founder of WebHostingSecretRevealed.net (WHSR) - a hosting review trusted and used by 100,000's users. More than 15 years experience in web hosting, affiliate marketing, and SEO. Contributor to ProBlogger.net, Business.com, SocialMediaToday.com, and more.
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