2016 Aplus review: Everything you need to know
Overview: Aplus provides shared hosting options and easy tools to create websites quickly.
Basic: $7.99/mo for shared hosting.
Business: $15.99/mo for shared hosting.
Professional: $23.99/mo for shared hosting.
Ideal Customer: This is a great option for anyone who wants to create a website(s) quickly, without technical knowledge.
Website Creator Pro: Aplus seems to want to attract do it yourself business owners and webmasters with their easy to use Website Creator Pro. You don’t have to know HTML or any other programming language. The software is entirely drag and drop and lets you place images, content, logos and even videos where ever you want them. You’ll start with one of the hundreds of available templates that will give your site shape quickly. Even though it is a site builder, you can accomplish more complicated options like web forms, maps, and can even add a member’s only area. The new site you design will be mobile friendly so those looking at it from a smart device will still see everything you have to offer. The builder also allows for you to create an eCommerce store just as quickly as a regular web page, and Creator Pro promises to be search engine friendly to get your site found by potential customers. If you want to create a site on your own, this site builder is one of the easiest to manage.
Domain Guard: Aplus is also a prime domain registrar and has provided several services to ensure your new domain(s) are protected from a hostile internet. Domain Guard is a feature that helps you protect valuable information pertaining to your brand. Each time a domain name is registered that is similar to yours, you will be notified. This helps you protect trademark and copyright data from anyone who is attempting to trade off of your brand. Domain Guard is a great service for businesses and is only $4.95/year. You can also purchase domain privacy to keep personal or private information from getting into the wrong hands. So much information is readily available, but you can limit what is seen with this service for $9.95/year. Finally, Aplus offers Domain Monitor. This service can help you keep tabs on that valuable domain name you want to purchase, but is already taken. The monitoring is $4.95/year and will let you know when the domain you want becomes available.
Design Services: Some hosts only provide hosting and maybe a few related services, like web design. Aplus has attempted to add a complete line of design services to attract start-ups and new businesses to their company. You’ll not only find the typical web design services, but also an offer to design a new logo, business cards and a unique feature called “instant logo”. Depending on the logo design package you purchase it could include letterhead, envelopes, business cards and you can even get 1000 business cards printed and shipped to your door. The prices for a logo start at $245 and go up from there, and you can see dozens of recent designs. The instant logo feature allows you to choose between many different options that are either exclusive (meaning you’ll be the only one), non-exclusive (which have been sold to others), and retire non-exclusive (which may have been sold to others, but you’re the last one).
We have looked at reviews from across the internet to find what customers are saying about Aplus. We found that customers are positive about their uptime and hosting resources.
This long-term customer has never had a bad experience with the host: “I have been using Aplus for well over 6 years and I have never had any major problems or complaints about their service or support. I have multiple websites hosted with them and have not experienced any down time with any of them.”
Another reviewer recommends Aplus based on their price and features: “They do offer very generous resources for the money and I’m basically using their hosting service for the disk space. They also give you multiple website/domain option, which is nice. If you need LOTS of disk space and bandwidth for low price, APlus might be a good choice.”
We also found several negative reviews for Aplus. Customers seem most dissatisfied with their technical support.
One frustrated reviewer writes: “Their support is beyond appalling. Their dashboards are hideously broken. Nothing works right. 72 hours to fix basic problems. Support tickets don’t show up in the support ticket portal.”
Another irritated customer warns: “As for tech support – they are fine as long they can answer a question easily. If not, they just blame you. And if you try to explain in words of one syllable why this is an aplus issue, they become deaf, unhelpful and rude.”
We also looked at Twitter to see how customers rated Aplus. Here one customer is recommending them to another user:
— Deluxe Corporation (@deluxecorp) February 29, 2012
This customer is dealing with a down site and can’t get any help:
@Aplus_net what's going on with your service? My wife's web site/email down for days. Your own site down for days. Out of business?
— Nate (@nkhstudio) July 13, 2015
- Support Options: Aplus offers phone, live chat and email support 24/7, but they do prefer you to submit tickets on the website.
- Large FAQ: There is a large FAQ section that is available that has answers to questions posed by customers.
- Free Domains: Aplus offers two or three free domains depending on the hosting plan you purchase.
- Email Marketing: You can get help with your email marketing and sending emails to up to 1000 contacts is free of charge.
- Local Marketing: There are marketing services to help you list your business in several local publications.
- Complicated Guarantees: While Aplus has an uptime and money back guarantee they are complicated.
- No Wiki/Forum: There doesn’t seem to be a forum, knowledge base or wiki informational system anywhere on the site.
- No cPanel: Aplus offers a custom control panel and not the traditional cPanel or Plesk.
Aplus has created an environment that is tailored to business owners and webmasters who want a site that they have built themselves. It’s a great place to find a new domain, build a nice looking site that is mobile friendly and get a new logo for the venture all in one place.
This isn’t the host for someone who wants more versatile hosting options, like dedicated or cloud servers.
Takeaway: Aplus is the do it yourselfer’s hosting company. They have the tools for you to get started with little or no experience, the services to help you when you want help, and the support for when you can’t figure it out.