Bluehost Review 2024: A Beginner-Friendly WordPress Host - Brian Onuonga Deals
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Bluehost Review 2024: A Beginner-Friendly WordPress Host

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Choosing the right web hosting is crucial for any website’s success. Bluehost is a popular hosting provider, but does it live up to the hype? This in-depth article examines Bluehost from every angle, covering performance, features, pricing, and more.

What is Bluehost?

Bluehost is a well-established web hosting company. It was founded in 2003 and is based in Utah. Bluehost powers over 2 million websites worldwide. The company offers various hosting types, including shared hosting, VPS, dedicated servers, and managed WordPress hosting.

For shared hosting, Bluehost has four main plans – Basic, Plus, Choice Plus, and Pro. Prices start at $2.75/month for the Basic plan (renews at $8.99/month). This entry-level plan includes one website, 50GB SSD storage, unmetered bandwidth, a free SSL certificate, and one domain for the first year.

Higher tiers add more websites, email accounts, storage, and other extras. There are also optimized WooCommerce hosting plans for online stores.

How Fast and Reliable is Bluehost?

Website speed is crucial for user experience and SEO. Bluehost’s performance is generally good, powered by solid-state drives (SSDs) and a custom-built caching system. Load times depend on various factors like location, traffic spikes, and site complexity.

According to reviews that performed detailed performance tests, Bluehost averaged load times under one second. This places it firmly among the faster-shared hosting providers. The company invests heavily in cutting-edge hardware and technology.

However, some reviews noted periodic slowdowns, especially on lower-tier shared plans during peak traffic hours. Dedicated and VPS hosting tend to be more consistent.

Uptime is also a strength for Bluehost. The host guarantees 99.9% uptime on all plans. It has redundant cooling, power, and network connections across multiple data centers. Independent reviewers recorded uptimes of 99.99% and higher over 12-month periods.

Real-time monitoring, automatic failover systems, and proactive security measures minimize downtime. Bluehost performs well in terms of speed and uptime compared to market leaders.

Is Bluehost Easy to Use?

Creating an account and managing your hosting is straightforward with Bluehost’s intuitive custom control panel. Even beginners can get websites up and running quickly.

The control panel offers one-click installers for popular CMSs like WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal. Advanced tools like multi-site management, staging areas for testing changes, and git integration cater to developers.

Bluehost also simplifies site migration. The free automated migration plugin moves WordPress sites from other hosts with just a few clicks. For other CMSs and site types, there are paid migration services.

Management capabilities include easy SSL installation, CDN integration, and application monitoring. Bluehost’s utilities automate tasks like malware scanning, server-side caching configuration, and credential handling.

The overall Bluehost experience is very user-friendly compared to budget hosts. However, reviews suggest room for improvement in areas like the website builder, which lacks advanced features.

Bluehost isn’t the most beginner-friendly host, but it strikes a nice balance. The interface and tools accommodate different skill levels well.

Keeping Your Site Safe with Bluehost

Security is a major priority for Bluehost, with multiple safeguards in place to protect customer websites and data.

At the core, Bluehost utilizes hardened servers, firewalls, security monitoring, and encryption for all data transfers. Account isolation ensures neighboring accounts can’t access each other.

Free SSL from Let’s Encrypt or paid options from Comodo and Norton Symantec secure connections. Domain privacy protects site owners’ personal information.

For comprehensive website protection, Bluehost includes the SiteLock suite. It provides malware scanning and removal, firewalls, and other preventive measures.

Automated backups and easy restoration tools guard against data loss. Basic plans include daily backups of your entire account retained for 30 days. Higher tiers get real-time backups and longer retention periods.

BlueHost’s premium CodeGuard service takes automated backups further, monitoring for threats and file changes. It enables one-click restores at the file or database level.

Overall, Bluehost makes website security a top focus with a robust, multi-layered approach to protection.

Can You Count on Bluehost’s Support?

Fast, knowledgeable support is crucial when issues arise with your website. According to most reviews, Bluehost delivers reliable support through multiple channels.

For urgent concerns, Bluehost offers 24/7 support via live chat and phone. The company representatives are based in-house to ensure quality control over support.

Response times to chat and phone inquiries are generally very quick, at under five minutes based on testing. However, some reports indicate longer hold times during peak periods.

For less urgent issues, a ticketing system is available along with an extensive knowledge base. The knowledge base covers a wide range of hosting topics, tutorials, and troubleshooting steps.

Customers consistently rate Bluehost’s support team as friendly, knowledgeable, and able to resolve most standard issues promptly. However, some more technical or complex requests require escalation.

Overall, while not perfect, Bluehost’s support quality stands out among large hosting providers. You can count on timely assistance for most needs.

Is Bluehost Affordable? What You Get for Your Money

Bluehost keeps pricing very competitive, especially on the initial term. However, renewal costs increase substantially, which is typical of the hosting industry.

For example, the Basic shared hosting plan starts at just $2.75/month when you sign up for 36 months. This price point is hard to beat for a well-rounded hosting package from a reliable provider.

When it’s time to renew, that Basic plan jumps to $8.99/month. While an increase, it’s still very affordable for the features included like free SSL, CDN, daily backups, and unmetered bandwidth.

The pricier tiers scale up resources like sites allowed, storage, and email accounts, and add premium elements like spam filtering and restored backups. The highest shared hosting tier runs $13.95/month after initial pricing.

For more robust hosting needs beyond shared plans, Bluehost’s VPS and dedicated servers range from $19.99 to $119.99/month on new terms. Pricing depends on the processing power, RAM, storage, and management levels.

Add-ons like SiteLock security, pro email, and automated backups incur extra monthly fees. Domain registrations cost $11.99 – $15.99/year typically.

Bluehost routinely offers deep discounts for new customers and loyalty perks for existing ones. Overall, it strikes a nice value balance at any budget.

Additional Features to Enhance Your Hosting

Beyond the core hosting services, Bluehost packs in an array of extra tools and resources to help websites grow and succeed.

For new sites, Bluehost offers a free domain for one year on most plans. After the first year, domain renewal runs $15.99/year – very competitive pricing. The intuitive domain manager facilitates smooth transfers too.

One standout offering is Bluehost’s WordPress hosting and tools. The proprietary plugin offers performance boosts like server-level caching and automatic WordPress updates. The services integrate seamlessly with popular marketing platforms like WPBeginner.

Bluehost also includes free website builders with both simple drag-and-drop and advanced HTML editing options. Templates cater to various needs like blogs, portfolios, online stores, and business sites.

Email hosting is robust as well. Each hosting plan includes several free email accounts based on the tier. ProEmail ($1.99/month) enhances email with larger mailboxes, spam protection, nine webmail clients, and premium mobile apps.

Paid add-ons span areas like advanced security (CodeGuard), performance boosts (Turbo), and SEO tools. Marketers get access to credits for free advertising on Google, Bing, and other platforms.

While not all extras are must-haves, Bluehost packages an impressive array of useful tools for creating successful websites.

Can You Earn with the Bluehost Affiliate Program?

If you run a website, blog, or e-commerce store in relevant niches, Bluehost’s affiliate program offers a lucrative way to monetize your traffic.

The program provides a $65 commission for each new customer sign-up through your affiliate link. For Bluehost’s higher commitment hosting plans, like dedicated servers, the commissions increase.

A generous 90-day cookie duration means you earn commissions even if customers don’t purchase immediately after clicking your link. This gives you more chances to earn.

The Bluehost affiliate team provides various tools to promote the hosting products effectively. These include banners, promotional emails, and content hooks to insert your affiliate links naturally.

While the commissions are competitive, Bluehost’s affiliate program stands out for its extensive training, marketing support, and account management assistance.

Affiliates have access to a suite of tutorials, guides, and personalized optimization tips. Many top affiliates highlight this partnership and support as key strengths.

For serious affiliates, especially in WordPress, site-building, and small business spheres, Bluehost is considered one of the best programs available.

Weighing the Pros and Cons of Bluehost

Pros:

  • Competitive pricing, especially on initial terms
  • Free domain, SSL certificate, and CDN included
  • Fast page load times and high uptime percentages
  • Custom control panel with many developer-friendly tools
  • Simple one-click installations of popular CMSs
  • Robust security with SiteLock, malware monitoring, and isolated accounts
  • Multiple layers of backup and restoration capabilities
  • Knowledgeable 24/7 support via chat, phone, and tickets
  • WordPress-specific hosting optimized for performance
  • Tons of extra tools – website builder, marketing credits, pro email
  • Lucrative, well-supported affiliate program

Cons:

  • Renewal prices increase substantially
  • Can experience slowdowns on lower shared tiers during peaks
  • Not the most beginner-friendly host in some areas
  • Website builder lacking advanced features
  • Some extra services like pro backups cost additional fees
  • Support can have delays during very high-traffic periods

For most individuals, small businesses, and WordPress site owners, the pros of using Bluehost likely outweigh the cons. It provides excellent overall value, performance, and tools to grow a successful online presence. Just be mindful of renewal pricing over the long term.

Conclusion

Bluehost has plenty to offer, but also some drawbacks. This review covers all aspects to help you decide if Bluehost’s feature set and pricing make it the ideal hosting solution for your needs.

In summary, Bluehost shines in key areas like performance, security, management tools, WordPress integration, and overall value – especially short-term. The initial discount pricing is tough to beat for such a well-rounded hosting platform.

However, renewal costs can add up substantially over time. There are some scattered weaknesses like occasional slowdowns, limited website builder capabilities, and potential support delays during peaks.

For most users prioritizing reliability, ease of use, one-stop resources for building an online presence, and affordable short-term pricing with the option to upgrade, Bluehost is an excellent web host choice.

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WordPress Website Designer, SEO Expert, Blog Content Writer, Digital Marketing Expert, Virtual Assistant, Data Entry Clerk, and Transcriber.

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