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2016 KnownHost review: Everything you need to know

Overview: KnownHost specializes almost exclusively in VPS hosting options.

Pricing:

VPS 1: $23.75/mo for VPS hosting.

VPS 2: $33.33/mo for VPS hosting.

VPS 3: $42.50/mo for VPS hosting.

Ideal Customer: KnownHost is great for those looking specifically for Linux managed VPS and managed dedicated hosting.

Trends:

Unique Features:

VPS Specialists: Virtual private servers are a great way to protect your files, your company, and your business. That’s why KnownHost specialized in VPS hosting plans. If you want to have a plain shared hosting plan, you will have to find them elsewhere, because they aren’t offered by this provider. There are seven different plans that fit a range of budgets and resource needs. If you plan to have a ecommerce site that needs the security that a VPN offers, you’ll be excited to see the security options that are provided by KnownHost. It’s also a great idea for a business that will have a lot of secure files for your employees or customers. If you have a large traffic site or blog, you can easily scale your plan, or even upgrade to a dedicated server. The two main reasons for wanting a VPS are security and resources. You may not need as much bandwidth or disk space that’s offered by a VPS, but may need more security for your data than a traditional shared plan can give you. Likewise, if you’re looking for more resources, but don’t want to jump to a dedicated server, a VPS may be the best option for your website.

A la Carte Data: Developers and webmasters don’t always know how many resources they’ll need from month to month and this can cause a problem if your hosting plan isn’t big enough. Although, having a plan that’s too big for your needs may mean unnecessary expenses. The ever-changing needs of site owners have led KnownHost to provide add-on resources that you can apply to your hosting account as you need them with no contract. There are several options including resource upgrades like RAM, HDD, IP addresses, and bandwidth. By adding the resources you need from month to month you can pay for them when they are needed and save the money when they aren’t You can also add software upgrades like unlimited cPanel, Blesta, WHMCS, and Softaculous. Having these options means that you’re only paying for hosting and the options you need to succeed. If you don’t need billing software, you don’t have to pay for it. This flexibility keeps your costs lower and your site fast and secure with only what you need to make it work.

KnownHost Blog: Having a host is a lot like having a silent partner for your website. Without them, your files aren’t accessible to the world. Although, you still want to know that they are alive and well to keep your partnership going. One of the signs of life provided by KnownHost is their regularly updated blog. Not only do they regularly talk about their company goals, but it’s a great place to find tips and tricks to get the most out of your site. Posts on the blog cover a variety of topics in eight different categories. There are hosting and VPS categories to help you with your hosting. You’ll also find small business and blogging categories to help you polish up your ability to woo visitors into customers. WordPress users can take a look at the category that is set up just for them to help utilize the CMS better. Finally, there are hardware, internet and news sections that will keep you up to date on important information about the latest products or get in the loop on recent internet related news.

Reviews:

We looked over several online review sites to find honest opinions about KnownHost. We found these users are pleased with the speed of email response times.

One customer pleased with response time states: “They have email only support, and they are very responsive. Once you send them a question they typically take a matter of minutes to respond.”

Another reviewer agrees saying: “I’ve had a couple of instances where I couldn’t figure something out, and it turns out it was my own ignorance. But, their support responded within minutes and helped me out to resolve my issue.”

Not all reviews were positive, however. We found some KnownHost users upset with tech support and downtime.

One frustrated reviewer went without email for a week due to a tech error but: “The support manager reviewed the ticket and said that their tech support couldn’t be responsible for changes they made on a maintained server.”

Another customer also disappointed with tech support states: “They are very fast with email responses but none of them know anything and the service is down at least once a day.”

We also checked Twitter to see what customers were saying about KnownHost. This user is happy with his migration with the help of the support team:

Another user is frustrated with support response time:

Pros:

  • Good Knowledgebase: KnownHost provides a very thorough knowledgebase for their customers as well as a download library full of useful manuals and software.
  • VIP Reseller Program: Customers who purchase multiple VPS and SSD VPS packages can receive guaranteed discounts with higher discounts the more you purchase.
  • Money Back Guarantee: There is a 30 day money back guarantee for dedicated hosting, but only for new customers.
  • Uptime Guarantee: KnownHost provides a detailed SLA which outlines their 99.9% uptime guarantee and under what circumstances in which you can expect a credit.
  • Specialized Options: There are seven different VSP options , five SSD VPS options, and four dedicated options so you can be sure to find exactly what you need.

Cons:

  • Limited Support: KnownHost does not provide telephone or chat support. All customers must either use email or their ticketing system.
  • No Freebies: KnownHost does not offer any marketing ad credits and other features that may be included on other host providers are paid extras here.
  • No Domain Services: KnownHost does not offer domain registration or transfer services, you need to already own a domain before purchasing hosting.

Summary:

If your site has outgrown its shared hosting plan and needs a boost in resources or the security, you’ll enjoy the VPS plans that have been created by KnownHost.

If you want a host that has multiple types of hosting plans to try out and choose, there are other options that are closer to what you desire.

Takeaway: KnownHost is a great place to transfer your site when it’s ready, or to start a site with the security options that VPS offers.

2016 Codero review: Everything you need to know

Overview: Codero caters specifically to businesses and corporations looking for dedicated, cloud or managed hosting.

Pricing:

Basic: $60.00/mo for dedicated hosting.

Core i3 Dual Core: $104.00/mo for dedicated hosting.

Select Managed: $110.00/mo for dedicated hosting.

Ideal Customer: Great for businesses or ecommerce sites that need powerful hosting options.

Trends:

Unique Features:

Hybrid Hosting: When you’re a developer, finding the resources you need to host your files is a very large part of your overall strategy. Making sure you have the space you need to help with traffic spikes and other issues is very important when choosing a hosting company for your projects. Codero has created a one of a kind solution for developers, Hybrid Hosting. Imagine if you could have both the power of a dedicated server and the scalability of cloud hosting together in a seamless integration for speed and power. That’s exactly what you’ll get with this option from Codero. Both the dedicated and cloud communicate as if they were connected at the same switch and provide incredible flexibility for your projects. Your data will automatically be upgraded during spikes to ensure files are always available without a lot of extra cost. To harness the power you simply select your dedicated or cloud server and add the Hybrid Networking. You’ll need to choose the speed of your network. There are four options, 10Mbps, 100Mbps, 250Mbps, and 500Mbps.

Smart Servers: Codero prides themselves on both cloud and dedicated server technology and understand the ever changing needs of the development landscape. Smart Servers are yet another way they cater to designers and developers to make your life just a little bit easier. With this server package, you’ll receive several benefits including free backups for life and on demand snap shots to know your data is safe, one click upgrades and scalability to ensure you have the resources you need, and one click instant reboots in the event of any problems on either end. You’ll also receive the flexibility of the cloud, while also having fully dedicated hardware at your disposal. With remote VNC you’ll be able to access your Smart Server remotely causing greater flexibility. The security of having your own server that will never be shared along with the flexibility of the cloud will ensure a smooth and fast programming environment and steady performance for users.

Proactive Managed: Managed hosting is an option that many different providers offer, but it’s typically only basic server maintenance and possibly a backup of data here and there. Codero has created a two tiered managed hosting program, Essential and Proactive. The essential plan includes all basic network upkeep and should you experience any issues a support team is available every day all day. The proactive plan is more in depth and includes backups, network usage, strategies for your data to help make sure you have the proper resource allocation and much more. The proactive part comes in with advanced monitoring to identify any server performance problems, and help creating custom instructions and rules for your environments to help the development process. There are also tests and other scans to ensure that your data is looking and performing at it’s best. This is a great feature if you want a hands-off hardware experience.

Reviews:

We have looked over several reviews to give you an idea of what people are saying about Codero. We found several people with positive things to say about their customer support.

One satisfied customer states: “Codero has the best sales and support team, and that’s the main reason we use them. We feel completely supported in everything we do.”

Another happy reviewer writes: “We signed up for our servers, and have been nothing but pleased with the services and support provided. I have only had to contact support once in almost 1 year, and they were on top of things and quick to reply.”

We also found negative reviews for Codero as well. Here customers are having problems with reliability and the sales team.

One frustrated reviewer writes: “For me the server intermittently crashes every 5 or 8 days. Sometimes it even crashes twice in 2 days. We have used two Codero Windows Servers and we had to agree that you get what you pay for.”

Another customer warns: “They tell you one thing and do another. I should have learned from the day I was dealing with the sales rep. He told me one thing, put another in the quote and then told the techs something completely different.”

We also looked at Twitter to see what customers were saying about Codero. This user is expressing his gratitude for the level of support:

Another user is upset because his server got suspended:

Pros:

  • Support Centered: Codero prides itself on exceptional service. They list a less than 35 second chat response time, a less than 20 minute response time from the help desk, and 24/7 phone support.
  • Uptime Guarantee: Codero offers the rare 100% uptime guarantee for their dedicated customers and a credit on your next bill under certain conditions.
  • Price Match Guarantee: If you find a publicly advertised price from a competitor for identical products and services they will match it.
  • Customer Loyalty Rewards: A points for dollars reward program that allows you to save any points you earn and then spend them to upgrade your hosting.
  • Green Host: Codero data centers have been updated to reduce energy consumption by 25-30%, employees are engaged in sustainable practices, and also plant trees to offset carbon and produce oxygen.

Cons:

  • No Shared Hosting: Codero doesn’t offer any shared hosting options but focuses on dedicated and cloud.
  • No Free Backups: Codero only offers paid backup services. These two services cost $10-$20 a month respectively.
  • Overwhelming Options: The dedicated hosting alone accounts for 35 different different options for you to choose from.

Summary:

Definitely not the cheapest option, but it may be the best in terms of service and quality. Codero focuses on giving the best service and hosting possible and that comes with a reasonable, but higher price tag.

If you’re looking for an entry level or mid price range service, you’ll want to search a few other options.

Takeaway: If quality is worth it and options are important, you’ll appreciate what Codero has to offer.

2016 Domain.com review: Everything you need to know

Overview: Domain.com is a registrar that offers inexpensive hosting options.

Pricing:

Basic Linux: $3.75/mo for shared hosting.

Basid Windows: $4.75/mo for shared hosting.

Deluxe Linux: $6.75/mo for shared hosting.

Ideal Customer: Anyone looking for a well-established company to purchase domains and hosting with a good variety of options.

Trends:

Unique Features:

Domain Focused: With a name like Domain.com it’s obvious that this hosting company specializes in providing excellent domain registrar services to it’s customers. While they do offer an impressive line up of hosting solutions, their first service is to provide you with a great new name for your new website. Domain.com’s tagline even states, “It all starts with a great domain!” There is a large amount of services provided that are domain specific like bulk registration which allows you to snag hundreds of names at one time and domain transfer to park your domains in bulk. You will also find all of the new TLD’s in an easy to sort out list to find the one that best suits your venture. Domain.com has all of the hottest TLD’s (almost 400) at some of the most reasonable prices to be found online. If you are looking to purchase domains for future use or for resale, this may just be the hosting option for you.

Business on Tapp: If you own or start a business, you need all the help you can get. Advice, insights and tactics aren’t easy to come by and can be costly when you do. In an effort to draw business owners and entrepreneurs to their platform, Domain.com has created a free app called “business on tapp”. A content focused app that allows you to read about game changing tactics, get advice from leadership in a variety of industries, and how-to style articles on all sorts of subjects. The site for the app promises to feed your inner entrepreneur will giving you answers and helping you make connections. There are a lot of entertaining articles as well as great guides. If you’re new or just starting there is an entire section called “101” meant to help beginners answer questions about applying for a business loan and basic SEO tips. The app as a whole can be a refreshing way to learn about business or even take a break from the everyday grind and relax for a minute.

Fully Custom Designs: There are several hosting companies online that offer to design your website, but almost all of them use a version of a drag and drop site builder that just about anyone can use. Very few offer custom design services that create a one of a kind website without a starting from a simple template. Domain.com offers a pro-level design service for businesses who want a custom option. The service starts at $49/mo and includes a dedicated designer for your project that works with you until your site is published and available online. You’ll also get professionally written content so your site sounds as good as it looks. The words will be crafted to fit your business model and industry, and will compel people to take action. All the monthly maintenance and updates your site needs will be taken care of so you can concentrate on your business. All the designs are also search friendly to make sure that you’ll pick up search engine visitors down the road. All in all, this is a great option for anyone who wants a hands off website for their new business.

Reviews:

We looked over different online review sites to find customer opinions of Domain.com. Many users are happy with their easy site set up and user friendly features.

This customer pleased with the ease of use writes: “They give you great features that anybody can learn to use quickly and easily. The CPanel is very user friendly and is great overall.”

Another reviewer also content with the straightforward features states: “We have been very pleased with the uptime, with how smoothly the site runs, with all the aspects of how easy it was for us to create our website and to do updates to it.”

We found negative reviews as well. Some Domain.com users are upset with lack of customer service and long resolution times.

One frustrated customer warns: “Run away as fast as you can from this company, or you’ll be stuck in a never ending loop of impossible changes and hours of wait times with the worst customer service reps known to man.”

Another disappointed reviewer writes: “Worst support ever. Things takes ages to fix, and most of the times they break something while fixing things. Support doesn’t know what they are doing and it’s completely not worth the money paid.”

We also checked Twitter to see what customers were saying about Domain.com. This long-time user happy with his service writes:

Another user is angry at a billing issue:

Pros:

  • Green Hosting: Eco-friendly hosting features such as their energy being 150% offset by wind energy, wind powered hosting badges, and high efficiency servers.
  • Affiliate Program: Domain.com has a generous affiliate program that offers you $100 for each person that signs up for hosting and 30% of the cost of domains for each customer who buys.
  • Website Design: Domain offers custom website design that includes publishing your site, professionally written content, and monthly maintenance.
  • Free Phone Number: When you purchase any hosting option Domain will provide you a free local or toll free number for your business.
  • Fully Loaded Basic: The basic hosting plan offer all of the features, applications, and marketing tools of the more expensive plans, so it’s perfect if you don’t mind being limited to only one domain.

Cons:

  • No Uptime Guarantee: Domain.com does not have an uptime guarantee or a tracker posted on their site but they do claim their datacenter exceeds industry standards.
  • No Backups for Shared Hosting: Backups are available for VSP but shared hosting users are on their own to backup their files.
  • No Phone Support: Tech support is maintained through live chat and a ticket system. There is also a knowledgebase and user guide for customers.
  • No Money Back Guarantees: Domain does not list any money back guarantees or refund policies on their site so if you want to cancel it might be hard getting your money back.

Summary:

Domain.com wants individuals, hobbyists, and small businesses to find the perfect domain name and then host your new website with them.

However, their options may not impress larger sites and developers.

Takeaway: Domain.com is a great place to start your new site, pick up the newest TLD’s, and get a great value for shared hosting.

2016 NameCheap review: Everything you need to know

Overview: NameCheap is a domain registrar that provides inexpensive TLD’s and hosting.

Pricing:

Value: $3.98/mo for shared hosting.

Professional: $6.48/mo for shared hosting.

Ultimate: $10.98/mo for shared hosting.

Ideal Customer: Those looking to streamline their purchases by buying their hosting and domain from the same well-established company will enjoy NameCheap.

Trends:

Unique Features:

SSL Options: Having a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate for your site let’s your customers know that any transactions or data they give you is safe. That’s why companies like Google actually rank your site better if you have one. NameCheap doesn’t just offer SSL certifications they offer 10 different types of SSL’s to choose which one best suits your business. You’ll be able to choose from dozens of plans to prevent fraud from happening on your website or ecommerce shop while not overpaying for something you don’t need. There are also several validation steps that you can put your files through to ensure that you are safe and ready to hold transactional data. You’ll have access to a site seal to let your visitors know they are safe, top tier support, a high level of encryption of all data, and NameCheap’s SSL’s are recognized by all of the top web browsers.

SiteBooster: When it comes to launching a site, you’ll need a few things to succeed. A professional looking design, excellent content, products (if you’re selling), and a way for people to get in contact with you just to name a few. Although, if you have these things set up correctly, it doesn’t guarantee that you’ll have people visiting your site. To do that you may need some help and that’s exactly why NameCheap offers SiteBooster. This is an app available with their hosting service that helps you spread the message of your business online. You can list your site on the major search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing as well as other business friendly services like Yelp, Foursquare, and Twitter. SiteBooster offers one interface to control how all of the data in your listing goes out to these search engines. This simple way to manage your image online, is only $4.99/mo and is a great option to help you get the word out the right way when launching your new business websites.

BriefMetrics: There are several things to keep track of in regards to website maintenance. You’ll want to track malware, updates, and other things to make sure your site is functioning well. Although, an important set of data to keep track of is how people are interacting with your website. Things like traffic, conversions, bounce rate and others can help you configure your site for better sales, and gain even higher traffic. Briefmetrics is an app from NameCheap that provides detailed reports to webmasters to help you keep an eye on how people go through your site. There are other services that keep track of data, but Briefmetrics will send you a summary report of your analytics to help you decipher what the data means for you. The app is $80/year and will help you cite potential problems and improve the overall condition of your user experience.

Reviews:

We looked over different online sources to find out what users were saying about Namecheap. We found customers were happy with their pricing and features.

One customer happy with support writes: “We’ve never had a problem accessing support even at odd hours on on weekends, when we’ve needed them. Very fair pricing and speedy response time.”

Another reviewer pleased with the overall value states: “The prices are extremely low compared to the rest of the market (as much as 50-75% off) But the reason I signed up is the plethora of features.”

Not all reviews were positive however. We also found some Namecheap users frustrated with the reseller and cloudflare hosting.

One disappointed customer states: “Namecheap is pretty good for Shared Hosting, but not as good for reseller hosting. Their servers are too slow when it comes down to reseller hosting.”

Another reviewer complains about a specific hosting service saying: “I would recommend to steer away from cloudflare. Their https makes everything slow.”

We also checked Twitter looking for opinions about Namecheap. This user is pleased with chat support:

Another user is frustrated with customer support not solving a long-term issue:

Pros:

  • Money Back Guarantee: NameCheap offers a 14 day money back guarantee however sales of dedicated servers and add-on products are final and non-refundable.
  • Uptime: There is an 99.9% uptime guarantee. NameCheap uptime monitoring is available in an app for free from their marketplace for your site.
  • Large Datacenter and Network: Multiple datacenters are located across the US with each having fully redundant key systems, including network, power, climate control and security.
  • Whoisguard: Free for the first year and after for a small fee, it is designed for domain owners to keep your confidential information private.
  • FreeDNS: NameCheap offers a free DNS servers that is compatible with supports A/AAAA/CNAME/NS/MX/TXT/SRV DNS record types.

Cons:

  • Renewal Prices: Renewal Price are much more expensive than the initial sign up price. However, unlike other hosts, NameCheap does clearly state these increases.
  • Limited Support: NameCheap does not offer phone support, only online chat and through a ticket system can you get help.
  • No Extras: None of the hosting plans offer bonus marketing credits such as Google Adwords, Facebook credits, or Yahoo credits.

Summary:

Namecheap is a great option for anyone who wants the simplicity of getting a good deal on their domain name and hosting from the same place. The plans are a great value and the domains are inexpensive. The hosting plans aren’t the most intricate, but are decent enough for smaller sites.

Although, if you’re looking to have a host that is focused on keeping your files online more than selling .com/.net/.orgs you may want to look around a little more.

Takeaway: Small business and individual site owners will find decent priced hosting to go along with their new domain name. If you have a domain name, it’s a decent stand alone host as well.

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2016 Netfirms review: Everything you need to know

Overview: Netfirms caters specifically to small businesses that are looking for a basic site with low to mid-levels of traffic.

Pricing:

Plus: $4.95/mo for shared hosting.

Advantage: $9.99/mo for shared hosting.

Business: $14.99/mo for shared hosting.

Ideal Customer: Small business owners and small blogs will love the options they’ll find with Netfirms.

Trends:

Unique Features:

Ready-to-go Websites: Hosting companies that market to beginners and the less technically savvy, typically use site building programs to help their users build websites on their own. Netfirms takes this concept further with their Ready-to-go Websites service. Unlike a site that you have to build out from scratch (with the help of a template), these sites already have everything set up, including content that may be similar to what you want to have on your site. The words and pictures on the page are there to get your mind moving in the right direction, helping you avoid writer’s block while constructing your content. The ready to go sites are optimized for performance and SEO purposes to help search engines (like Google) rank them faster. This is a great option for someone who wants an easy solution to get online quickly.

Shopsite: Setting up a digital store online means having different needs than just normal hosting. Netfirms has catered to ecommerce store owners in a variety of ways in their Shopsite program. Starting at $12.99/mo you’ll get business hosting and Shopsite together which is everything you need to start selling over the internet. The whole software is easy to setup and prepopulates store information to help you get an idea of how to start, including demo products, to see how your products will look after you get it all setup. There are several customer status modes to only show prices to who you want (unrestricted, must register to see, etc.). Shopsite has unlimited category depth and you can have both physical and digital products available for sale. Your items will be easily viewable in a variety of ways that you choose for better customer navigation. There are also several customer retention tools like newsletters, gift certificates, and order status emails to keep buyers happy.

Netfirms Marketing: Marketing your website is necessary for any business owner. Ranking organically in search engines can take months if your not experienced and you’ll need traffic faster than that. Netfirms Marketing has several features to help you get traffic. First, there are several services you can add to your hosting plan that will help you get on Google’s radar fast to get natural organic traffic flowing to your site. Some of the services include SubmitNet (which helps you by submitting your site to search engines and other places), SEO help from marketing professionals who can help your site be more search friendly, and PPC credits to help you get some traffic to your site. Credits you receive for joining Netfirms total $100 along with a free listing in YP.com (yellow pages).

Reviews:

We searched through several online review sites looking for honest opinions about Netfirms. We found that its customers were pleased with their affordability and small business specialization.

One happy customer wrote: “I would highly recommend Netfirms to anyone that is looking for a Hosting Company that is inexpensive and has the tools a small to medium business needs to ensure a relevant presence on the internet.”

Another reviewer delighted with the host said: “The few times I called on their support I was actually surprised at how conscientious their response was– they really do seem to be focused on serving small business as their niche.”

Not all reviews were positive however. We found that some Netfirms customers had issues with WordPress hosting and security policies.

This frustrated user warns: “Since moving to a WordPress site and upgrading to their version of WordPress hosting, I have had nothing but problems, crashes and a website that has been more offline than online.”

Another reviewer complains about having to pay to have their site reinstated: “I find it egregious that Netfirms launches a partnership with a security provider and then forces you to subscribe to it.”

We also checked Twitter to see what Netfirms customers were saying about them. This user is delighted at the support team:

Another user however is frustrated with the lack of ticket response:

Pros:

  • Money Back Guarantee: NetFirms offers a 30 day money back guarantee, however it is only available if you paid by credit card. No other payment methods will be refunded.
  • Multiple Support Options: NetFirms offers 24/7 customer support through email, chat, and by phone. For their Business level customers they offer “Premium” support.
  • Green Hosting: All energy used at their offices and data centers are offset 100% by wind energy and they offer “green” badges to certify your site as eco-friendly.
  • Easy Options: With only three options you won’t get overwhelmed. They are laid out in a nice comparison chart on their website so it’s easy to see the differences.
  • Fast Start: NetFirms helps you to get going fast with Ready-to-Go websites, one click applications and their drag and drop builder.

Cons:

  • Subdomains Extra: While all plans do offer at least one free domain, on all options subdomains cost extra and are little pricey.
  • Dedicated SSL: A certificate is only available on their Business plan, which is also their most expensive hosting plan.
  • Confusing Adwords Credit: On their website each plan offers a $100 Google adwords bonus. However when you click on it you see that you have to spend $25 to get the $100 bonus credit.
  • Renewal Prices: Netfirms does not extend any discounted hosting or domain pricing to renewals so once your initial period is up expect to pay double what you paid initially.

Summary:

Netfirms wants to work with small businesses. Their hosting plans are perfect to keep your corporate site up and running at very reasonable prices. The options are business friendly and crafted for business owners who don’t understand much about hosting.

If you are looking for versatile options for developers and agencies there may be better options.

Takeaway: Netfirms is almost exclusively targeting small business owners. If that’s you this is a great option.

2016 ServInt review: Everything you need to know

Overview: ServInt specializes in providing high-end solutions for businesses with demanding requirements.

Pricing:

Essential VPS: $49.00/mo for VPS hosting.

Essential+ VPS: $59.00/mo for VPS hosting.

Signature VPS: $89.00/mo for VPS hosting.

Ideal Customer: This hosting provider is perfect for companies and large corporate sites that want high quality service.

Trends:

Unique Features:

Jelastic PaaS: Platform as a service options aren’t offered by all hosting companies and can be a huge selling point for many developers. Jelastic is a cloud platform that has been specifically designed for software developers and ISVS. Unlike other PaaS this is a truly scalable option and doesn’t require custom coding to an API. You’ll be able to allocate resources in real time as the data for project(s) grows, and once you aren’t using as much the price goes down. The pricing is based on usage and is flexible to fit your ever changing needs as a developer. Jelastic supports both GIT and SVN, making it easy to deploy changes in your code. Enterprise customers will be happy to know that containers are isolated and any failures in one doesn’t affect other environments. Managing the entire process is also easy with this ServInt tool, and includes an intuitive drag and drop dashboard that allows you to configure application environments to you and your teams liking. There is also a remote app that allows you to do some remote work. This is a great tool for any agency or independent developer.

Hosting Solutions by Industry: Almost all hosting companies on the market offer the same services to all of their customers (typically shared, VPS and dedicated plans). You can also find some that specialize in a certain industry or hosting type. ServInt offers specific hosting solutions to a variety of industries to ensure you have the resources you need to keep your website or application running smoothly. They offer some typical hosting plans that are catered to small businesses and bloggers(including WordPress). They also have larger solutions for app and web development, agencies, resellers, and enterprise customers that allow for better scalability than many other hosts. ServInt also serves the education and government sectors due to their experience and incredible security. With so many specific options, you’ll know that your site has been given the resources and care it needs to succeed.

Extensive Blogs: Communication from a hosting company is typically done through tutorials, or in the event of an issue, through technical support. Some offer blogs and other news outlets, but ServInt makes staying connected with their customers a priority. They not only have a blog, but 8 regularly updated blogs to keep you informed about your hosting account as well as a range of other relevant content. For the tech savvy there is the tech blog that includes how-to’s on topics like SEO, software, and hosting theory. There is also a “hosting for non-techies” blog that goes over all of the basics you’ll need to get the most from your site. If you want to keep up to date with your host, you can visit the ServInt Fundamentals blog where they talk about all things company and community related. There is also the knowledge center to help you troubleshoot problems and the executive corner to hear from the leadership team. Along with all of these great options, you’ll also find blogs about industry trends, products and offers, and one pertaining to all issues related to internet governance.

Reviews:

We checked several internet review sites to find out what customers are saying about ServInt. We found several customers happy with their uptime and features.

One customer writes: “I’ve been with Servint for many years, and have always been really happy with their uptime, the quality of their support, and the support response time.”

Another reviewer states: “They give you daily offsite backups which most like liquidweb charge extra for, and their support almost always gets on tickets in under 20 minutes.”

Not all reviews were positive. We found customers were upset with a non-intuitive control panel and with the level of technical help available.

One frustrated user writes: “Their control panel is overwhelming, slow, and nightmare to try and get through. Documentation is really lacking, and there is no way to search it.”

Another reviewer disappointed with support warns: “Most of these guys resolve every problem by simply resetting apache every time you call in with a slow server, and getting someone to call you back is an absolute nightmare.”

We also checked Twitter to find what customers were saying about ServInt. This long-term user is happy with the consistent level of service:

Another user is frustrated with repeated downtime:

Pros:

  • ServInt’s Site Performance Guarantee: Their guarantee says this: “If your site slows down because your server doesn’t deliver 100% of the CPU, RAM, disk and IOPS you were promised, for more than five minutes… you get your entire month of hosting absolutely free.”
  • Powerpartners Program: Earn discounts, cash or hosting credits for referring customers, anywhere from $49-$799 dollars per referral.
  • Jelastic: a PaaS solution with no custom coding to an API. A cloud platform specifically designed for software developers and ISVS.
  • Live Updates: ServInt has a dedicated twitter account for live network updates. They also give real time server analytics and core network updates.
  • Green Initiative: ServInt aims to reduce its carbon footprint in every aspect of the business by a re-forestation project to balance the emissions for its VPS infrastructure.

Cons:

  • Not for beginners: ServInt has positioned itself to help businesses, non-profits, and even government entities.
  • Overwhelming options: ServInt’s website does a good job explaining all their different options but unless you are a master web developer with specific needs you’ll be lost in all the data.
  • No free migration: ServInt does offer Managed Migration but the website does not list the cost. You have to contact a support representative to request a quote.

Summary:

Only offering VPS and dedicated servers, ServInt has positioned itself as a high-end host for customers who want a higher level of service and hosting. This is a great option for anyone who wants excellent speed and uptime and are looking to pay a steep, but reasonable price for it.

If you are looking for inexpensive or shared hosting, there will be better options for your needs.

Takeaway: ServInt is one of the highest quality hosting companies online and are trusted by multiple large sites and corporate customers.

2016 Pair Networks review: Everything you need to know

Overview: pair Networks promises to be the power behind your brand by keeping it up and running fast.

Pricing:

Package 1: $5.95/mo for shared hosting.

Package 2: $9.95/mo for shared hosting.

Package 3: $17.95/mo for shared hosting.

Ideal Customer: A great host for any medium size and mid-traffic business sites to develop and grow.

Trends:

Unique Features:

Web Inspector: The internet is becoming increasingly hostile and requires constant monitoring to ensure your files are safe. Your visitors and customers entrust you to protect their data, and it’s important to protect your own files to stay in business. To help you keep all of your information safe, pair Networks offers the Web Inspector service. It’s a monitoring system that inspects your site for malware, detects vulnerabilities and even protects it from thousands of different known threats. Included in the service you also receive other benefits like PCI compliance scanning, daily malware checks, blacklist monitoring to make sure your site stays active, and a trust seal to display on your site. There are monitoring options for pages up to 1000 and costs as low as $99/year. If you want to make sure your site is safe on a daily basis, Web Inspector is a great way to do it.

pairCDN: Having a good content delivery network (CDN) is a great way to make sure your files get to those who are visiting your site quickly. The more complex your site is (images, style sheets, and other coding) the longer it takes to download and be seen. CDN’s help by spreading the data onto different servers in several geographical locations. When someone accesses your site, the server that is able to process the data fastest kicks in, delivering files as fast as possible. Pair Networks has created a network of servers called pairCDN which allows you to spread your files across the network, improving your site speed. This host also makes it affordable with fixed billing and no monthly contracts. You can try it to see if it’s making your site better and cancel anytime. You can request pairCDN from your control panel and a sales rep will contact you. Then, depending on your hosting plan, you’ll be billed in something they call buckets. If you have a shared hosting plan you’ll pay an extra $1 for each 10GB of data.

pairSIM: Choosing the best content management system and other software to enhance your website can come with a large learning curve to download and are a lot to maintain, but it’s a lot easier with pairSIM. SIM is short for software installation manager and it keeps track of everything you’ve downloaded (with one click) and let’s you know of any updates that are required via the control panel. You’ll get a prompt the next time you log in, alerting you of the need to update, and with the push of a button, it’ll be done. Pair Networks has an entire software team that makes sure that all of the options they offer are up to date and compatible with their system. The cost of the service is $2.49/mo and can be cancelled anytime. You can keep it to alert you of updates, or just install the scripts you want and cancel. If you decide you want it back at a later time you can sign up again like you never skipped a beat.

Reviews:

We have looked over several online sources to find out how pair Networks stacks up. Users here have had positive experiences with the host’s uptime.

One happy customer states: “They are the masters of uptime as my server has gone over a year of uptime without a reboot or crash.”

Another reviewer agrees saying: “Great uptime and excellent support with fast replies to requests. Their private self-hosted newsgroups are a goldmine of hints and tips.”

Not all reviews we found were positive. Some negative reviews for pair Networks revolve around support and server issues.

One former customer explains: “Been with Pair for 10 years, leaving shortly due to an AWOL account advisor and poor, inconsistent support.”

Another frustrated reviewer writes: “The servers have generally been pretty responsive, except for mysql. Pair seem to overload their db servers, as we’ve had trouble with mysql being responsive over the years.”

We also checked Twitter to see what customers were saying about pair Networks. This user is happy to receive a perk from his host:

Another user is worried about a wide spread outage:

Pros:

  • Personal Support: Pair states they never outsource and if you call you will talk to an expert in their facility.
  • Reliability: Their network is monitored and maintained 24/7/365. Server and network uptime is well in excess of 99.9%, and they back up your data daily to ensure full recovery in the event of a disaster.
  • Security: Their entire facility is protected by multi-stage security, FM-200 fire suppression systems, battery backup systems, and two redundant 1.5 megawatt Detroit Diesel generators that can run indefinitely.
  • 100 day money back guarantee: All virtual private server packages include a 100 Day Money Back Guarantee. If you’re dissatisfied with your hosting package for any reason, cancel and get a refund, however a few restriction apply.
  • Mobile Account Control Center: All of the ACC interfaces are available on the mobile ACC page, but with better layouts, sizing, and navigation for mobile devices.

Cons:

  • No Chat: Pair does offer email and phone support, but does not offer instant chat.
  • Overwhelming Options: Pair offers multiple hosting options with multiple pricing/level options for each which may be confusing to someone starting out.
  • Backups: Backing up data costs extra for paircloud servers and you only get one snapshot a month on the budget servers.

Summary:

Pair Networks has great options for webmasters of any level. Although, they seem to cater to medium and large size businesses by providing their more expensive plans with better support. Their inexpensive plans are a good value, but if great support at a low price is your goal you may want to look for another place for your site.

Takeaway: There is a plan for almost any site owner at pair Networks, but it is a perfect place for a mid sized site.

2016 WestHost review: Everything you need to know

Overview: WestHost caters specifically to small business owners who need a presence online.

Pricing:

Preferred: $11.00/mo for shared hosting.

Business: $15.00/mo for shared hosting.

Burst: $50.00/mo for cloud hosting.

Ideal Customer: Great for small business owners who want to understand exactly what you’re getting from your host.

Trends:

Unique Features:

Website SEO Guru: Traffic is the lifeblood of any website, and without enough of it you may not reach your goals. Ranking high enough in the search engines and knowing what content to put online is difficult without guidance. The need for this guidance can be found with WestHost’s Website SEO Guru service. The service is a simple 3 step process that starts with a detailed analysis of your current website. The report will include where you stand in the SERPs and how you’re performing in other metrics. Next, you will be given a detailed list of changes you can make to see better results and gain more traffic. Finally, you’ll have ongoing analysis to see how your rank is improving over time. Along with the 3 step setup you’ll receive periodic scans to see how things are going and constant tips and information to help you improve even more. The service is free for 30 days and you can download a free report to help you make the decision before purchasing.

Website Builder 7: While almost all hosting companies offer a site builder, WestHost has put together an incredibly easy and powerful software called Website Builder 7. Since this provider specializes in catering to business clients, the site builder is geared towards small to medium sized companies. Every site that is built using this powerful option looks great on full computer screens, tablets and smartphones to help you make the most of mobile traffic, even if you aren’t a programmer. There are over 100 beautifully designed, fully customizable templates that are all made with small businesses in mind. This intuitive site builder is drag and drop, so you’ll be able to put your content and images anywhere on the page. The annual website builder plan comes with a free domain and the assurance that your site will have blazing fast speed. With WestHost’s Website Builder 7, they promise that your site will look like it was built by a pro.

Clean Hosting: It’s no secret that the adult entertainment industry is a large part of the internet landscape. While many people enjoy it, many don’t want to associate with it themselves or with any other company that does. WestHost does not provide hosting or domain registration to the adult industry. You can rest assured that no sites with this mature material are anywhere on their servers. That being said a new TLD has recently been provided (almost) specifically to the adult industry. Instead of .com, adult sites can use .xxx. This has many brands upset that their name could end up a mature website, but WestHost allows you to register the domain as a NON-RESOLVING TLD, meaning that you can have your name with the .xxx so no one else will without having to provide content you view as unsavory. This is a great option for a business or non-profit that wants to protect their brand.

Reviews:

We have looked over different online sources for honest opinions about WestHost. We found users here happy with chat support and plan allowances.

One happy customer writes: “I use the chat feature for support and have never had an issue getting through quickly. The support staff are all knowledgeable and follow up when needed.

Another reviewer pleased with their service states: “The hosting plan I am using is so generous with storage, unlimited databases and huge bandwidth allocation, that I have yet to use even 5% of this allocation.”

We also found negative reviews for WestHost. Some users here are upset with customer service and downtime.

One frustrated reviewer writes: “My site has been down for more than 24 hours on more than 3 occasions in the last 6 months. Their customer service is the worst!! Very rude and condescending.”

Another disappointed customer explains: “My email service has been down 3 times in the last week and 10 times in the last month. Wait time to speak with anyone is usually 20 to 30 minutes.”

We also checked Twitter to see what customers are saying about WestHost. This user is very happy with their tech support experience:

Another user is frustrated at support wait times:

Pros:

  • Wide Variety of Hosting Options: Personal, Preferred, and Business hosting options. WordPress hosting available in Primary or Pro. As well as reseller, managed, and cloud hosting.
  • U.S. Based Support: Westhost promises quick and informative answers from their support staff 24/7
  • Dedicated Benefits: Dedicated customers receive credits in the event of a network outage, also they promise that your server WILL be up 99.9% of the time.
  • Free Domain: Customers on the Preferred and Business plans receive a free domain name for as long as you host with them.
  • 30-day money-back guarantee: For personal, preferred, and business hosting, it will give you plenty of time to try them out.

Cons:

  • Poor Knowledgebase: Not as sleek and intuitive as other sites.
  • Backups Cost Extra: Nightly backups are a chargeable extra on dedicated servers and are widely ranged from $20 to $150 a month and VPS and Cloud customers’ accounts are only backed up weekly and monthly.
  • No Shared Hosting: While they have inexpensive WordPress hosting, there aren’t options for a basic shared plan for any other CMS or coding platform.

Summary:

With WordPress, cloud, and dedicated hosting plans, WestHost provides a lot of options for businesses and individual site owners. Their vast amount of information that explains the hosting process makes them a favorite of non-technical customers who want to know what is happening with their website.

However, if you are looking for basic shared hosting you won’t find it here. There are also less expensive options for many comparable plans from other hosting providers.

Takeaway: Business owners and individual webmasters who want to understand the process and have their site taken care of by a reputable hosting company will enjoy WestHost.

2016 Dot5 Hosting review: Everything you need to know

Overview: Dot5 offers simple hosting options in an industry that can very complicated.

Pricing:

Dot5 Hosting: $6.95/mo for shared hosting.

Ideal Customer: Dot5 is perfect for beginners and anyone who just wants to run a simple website for their business or blog.

Trends:

Unique Features:

Professional Services: Dot5 wants to make great websites and hosting available to people who aren’t technically knowledgeable. They make it easy by only offering one shared hosting plan that does it all. They continue that simplicity by offering a range of professional services to go along with your new hosting account. If you want to sell products from your physical store online, they can set up an online shop right on your website. Dot5 will also handle sending out your email newsletter, and set up a blog so you can post to to it regularly. If you need images or logos, their designers will help. Anything you need to get going they offer it. You can also rely on this host to perform regular maintenance like updates, like upgrading WordPress. The professional services offered by Dot5 are great for someone who needs helping getting and staying online.

Marketing Services: Now that your website is up and running you can start to push targeted traffic to your pages, and (if it’s your goal) begin to make money. Getting ranked in search engines, like Google, is difficult and marketing your new site can be expensive if you don’t know what you’re doing. That’s why Dot5 offers marketing services to show your site to the right people and help you start earning fast. These services can include suggesting enhancements to your current site for better conversions, local advertising for small businesses to attract people close to you, and search engine optimization help to make Google start sharing your website with the rest of the world.

Easy Google Integration: Google offers some of the best tools to stay organized and work online. They have products that range from word processors and spreadsheets in Google Drive, their popular web browser, Chrome, and social options (YouTube, Google+, and Hangouts). Using these tools benefits a lot of webmasters with relaying information, creating content, and engaging visitors. Dot5 has realized the benefits of the suite of Google products and has made it easy to integrate them with your hosting service. By having these trusted tools accessible right from your control panel, you’ll be able to fluidly save documents and use the highly intuitive Gmail email platform. Setting up calendars and collaborating with colleagues on your site will be incredibly simple with this integration. It’s $5/mo, which is a reasonable price if you’re already heavily using Google’s tools.

Reviews:

We looked over different online review sites to find honest opinions about Dot5. Users here have good things to say about the host’s affordable pricing.

One long-time customer writes: “Been using dot5 for several years. Very user friendly, good prices, and great tech support. Very happy with dot5.”

Another reviewer writes: “Their affordable packages, cheap domains are one of the reasons that Dot 5 Hosting has become one of the most popular web hosting packages.”

We also found negative reviews for Dot5. Some users here are upset with billing issues and resolution wait times.

One frustrated reviewer warns: “After repeated requests to cancel services with the company, they continued to charge my credit card. For some reason it was impossible for them to reimburse the full amount that was charged.”

Another disappointed customer writes: “I’ve had to wait on the phone now for over 3 hours and they have only made the situation worse. This use to be an inexpensive way to get your web page up, but now they have extra charges for everything.”

We also checked Twitter to see what customers are saying about Dot5. The support team is not very active on this account but we found this user sharing their experience.

Pros:

  • Simple Pricing Structure: Dot5 only offers one hosting plan. You can get this plan for slightly less if you sign up for 2 years instead of just one.
  • Generous Site Promotions: Because Dot5 only offers one hosting plan you know you are getting everything they have to offer. This includes $100 Google adwords credit, $100 Yahoo search credit, best of the web, and Constant Content email marketing.
  • QuickStart Wizard: This tool is designed to help you get started fast by walking you through selecting a domain, setting up your email account, and then creating your site. Link for the quickstart wizard demo is available on their homepage.
  • Advanced Hosting Technology: The network infrastructure is comprised of a pooled server environment for faster load times. They are also sporting load balancers, redundant routers, and mirrored storage backups to protect your site.
  • Fully Loaded Features: With features like unlimited disk storage, unlimited domain hosting on one account, a free domain name, google webmaster tools, DIY tutorials and professional web templates you know you’ll have everything you need to get started.

Cons:

  • Limited options: Dot5 only offers linux based hosting and they only offer one hosting plan.
  • No Uptime Guarantee: Their website doesn’t mention an uptime guarantee or have server tracking.
  • vDeck: Dot5’s control panel is vDeck which is less aesthetically pleasing and not as good as cPanel or Plesk according to some users.
  • Limited Ecommerce: Dot5’s ShopSite online store is limited to only 15 products. No other options are available if your store grows.

Summary:

If you need to host a website, but don’t want to deal with complicated options or overpriced plans then Dot5 may be one of the best options for you. Their simple, but effective and affordable plans and other features make this a perfect host for beginners and business owners who just need a site.

Due to the lack of features, anyone looking for more versatile options or specialty hosting will probably want to look elsewhere.

Takeaway: This is a great place to start a small busines or personal site with no technical knowledge and for those who just want simple straightforward hosting plans that are easy to understand.

2016 WP Engine review: Everything you need to know

Overview: WP Engine is one of the most popular WordPress only hosts on the internet.

Pricing:

Personal: $14.50/mo for WP hosting.

Professional: $49.50/mo for WP hosting.

Business: $124.50/mo for WP hosting.

Ideal Customer: This is the perfect host if you want to host a wordpress site with a company that only offers WP hosting and are experts with the platform.

Trends:

Unique Features:

Engine Labs Project: A common problem in the world of web hosting companies is the failure to innovate. Putting websites and other files online has remained the same with very little advancement (beside hardware upgrades). WP Engine has worked diligently to not only host your sites with great speed, they have created a project incubation lab that works on advancing internet and hosting software tech. This lab works entirely within WP Engine and solely works on cutting edge projects to improve the customer experience with their hosting platform. Everything they produce is also open source for further development. One of the projects they’re working on is WP Search Engine, which is a powerful way to add search navigation to your WordPress site. Other plug-ins don’t seem incredibly intuitive, but when this one is released it promises to improve search capabilities from your website.

Expect Everything: This slogan is on the WP Engine homepage and is meant to let you know that you’ll get all of the services they offer standard with every hosting plan. There are several plans available, but they are only based on the amount of resources you’ll use to host your websites. With their smallest to the largest account you’ll have access to all the software they’ve developed. Some of these items include daily backups of all your files and a 1 click restore process, should you need to use one of those backups. You’ll also get multiple firewalls and malware scans to keep your files safe from hackers and viruses. For speed, you will be able to access their caching system as well as their state of the art CDN to spread files and improve site speed as much as possible. This mentality transfers into their company culture where you’ll receive amazing support from some very qualified experts.

WordPress Only: WP Engine is one of the best known hosting companies that only offers to host the popular content management system, WordPress. Not only are they experts when it comes to the platform, they offer the best equipment and servers that are tuned specifically to make WP sites blazing fast. Their software development team is constantly creating tools and aids to help make your site better, and they are free to all users. Their tech support staff are some of the most knowledgeable people when it comes to WordPress and claim to log over 800 support hours each and every day. If you want to put up a site using WP, this may be the best option for you. It’s trusted by some huge names in the corporate and internet marketing space due to it’s speed and service.

Reviews:

We looked over several online sources to find honest reviews for WP engine. We found users were happy with its ease of use and uptime.

One happy customer writes: “This is the perfect host if you want to host a wordpress site. This site makes it easy for you to install wordpress, It’s just a simple 1 click install. It may be a bit expensive but it’s worth it.”

Another reviewer raves: “I was impressed. Their uptime is great and support is out of this world. Everything was a breeze, fast and easy.”

We also found negative reviews however. Users here are upset at lack of customer support and poor response times.

One frustrated reviewer warns: “Migration assistance was non-existent. I guess that’s why they tell you it’s free. You better be a developer with back end experience if you want to have any hope for migration in less than 48 hours.”

Another disappointed customer states: “They were unreachable, it took 72 hours to get a response from support – and they were unable to fix the problem. This might be acceptable for a real cheap hosting service… but this is a PREMIUM hosting.”

We checked Twitter to see what customer had to say about WP engine. One user is very happy with customer service:

Another user is frustrated at lack of support with an install:

Pros:

  • WordPress Experts: WPengine is solely focused on hosting and supporting wordpress sites.
  • Secure Backups: Backups are stored in a heavily redundant, geographically separate location, to ensure you have everything you’d need to get up and running again if your primary data were destroyed.
  • Hack Protection: In the unlikely event that your site is compromised, WPengine will fix it at no extra cost to you.
  • 60 Day Money-Back Guarantee: Cancel and request a refund within the first 60 days to get your subscription fee back, excluding enterprise plans.
  • Evercache: This proprietary caching technology is made specifically for extremely high traffic levels and is available on their enterprise level plans.

Cons:

  • No Uptime Tracking: No server data is available on their website and no plans specifically state an uptime guarantee.
  • Support Limitations: Chat is only available during certain hours and phone support is not available on their Personal plan.
  • Higher Cost: With their cheapest plan starting at $29/month WPengine is more expensive than other hosting providers.

Summary:

WP Engine knows how to host WordPress sites and is one of the best options available to make your new blog as fast as it can be. With the versatility of the CMS, you can have any type of webpage using WP, and WP Engine can keep it running perfectly. Serious WP fans will enjoy everything this host has to offer.

If you are a developer, currently have a site (not on WordPress), or simply don’t want to use the software then WP Engine isn’t for you.

Takeaway: When your WordPress site needs more resources to keep up with data and traffic, you’ll appreciate the plans and service that you can get from WP Engine.