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Dotster review: Everything you need to know

dotsterDotster specializes in domain registration and inexpensive shared hosting plans.

With tools for local promotion and SEO, Dotster is a popular hosting solution for small businesses looking to develop an online presence quickly.

Click here to see the #1 rated web hosting

Dotster isn’t nearly as popular now as it was back in the day.

Here is how they’ve trended over the years:

Features

Dotster offers a number of features that small and local businesses might find particularly useful.

Here are some of them:

1) Business Solutions: When you start a business, you need a website regardless of whether it’s how you earn revenue or not. More and more people search for a business online before they make a purchasing decision. It’s now crucial for brick and mortar companies to have an online presence, which is why Dotster has created special Business Solutions. This host offers specialized hosting options for small businesses like a virtual private server that promises to give you the performance of dedicated hosting for a fraction of the price.

This is a fast and secure option for your business site that is less than $30/mo. You’ll also be given an opportunity to use Dotster’s email marketing platform that will allow you to grow your revenue and keep in touch with people who want to hear from you. Having a list of emails that belong to loyal customers can help you send offers, sales, and coupons which will help your bottom line. These are just a couple of the options that Dotster has available for small businesses.

2) Local Promotion: If you are a local company, then you probably know how powerful online promotion can be for your business. While any hosting company will keep your website online, Dotster wants you to be successful and has created a local site promotion service specifically for small businesses targeting a certain area. They promise to have your site at the top of search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing so that what you offer will be seen by thousands of people who need your products and services.

You’ll be able to target specific geographical areas so you’ll know that it’s being seen by the right people. It’s also perfect for startups and companies with limited budgets. With Dotster’s program, you only pay for clicks not impressions, meaning you’ll only pay for the people who are looking at your offer, not who see your link. The team will help you create online specific offers that will help you lure people in and hopefully become long standing new clients and customers.

3) SEO Marketing: Getting to the top of search engines, like Google, is a goal that many businesses and website owners strive to accomplish. If you can rank for relevant high traffic terms, you’ll generate naturally targeted leads without the expense of traditional marketing. Typically, when you host a website, you’re left to your own search engine optimization, but not with Dotster. They have a specific service to help you improve your rankings.

If you choose to enroll, you’ll be contacted by a marketing consultant who will give your site a detailed look to see how ready you are for traffic. You’ll also receive in-depth keyword research to help you tailor content for your new site. The service even includes submission to the major search engines and help with content to make sure you get the best results. If you don’t understand much about SEO don’t worry. Dotster handles all of the writing that will be put on your site, all of the linking that will help your site rank, and all of the reporting to the SERPS so you don’t have to learn anything.

Customer Support

If you want the premium support offered at Dotster, you gotta pay for it.

While paid support is getting increasingly popular in the hosting industry, many customers aren’t thrilled with the concept. If you are looking for a hosting company with a quality tech support team available 24/7 to handle your requests, consider one like Globat, Arvixe, or WebHostingPad.

Reviews

We have looked over several online reviews to find out what people are saying about Dotster. Most positive reviews from customers are for its features and ease of use.

One customer writes: “For beginners, it’s a very efficient, fast, and easy to use host. With its integrated domain registration and lots of disk space, it’s great for small to large scale businesses.”

Another reviewer states: “Good features and tools which makes it easy to use. I didn’t face any server down problem even with 500+ on real time. Dotster deluxe hosting is worth the money.”

Not all reviews were positive however. We found several negative reviews dealing with their billing department.

One frustrated customer states: “They have overbilled me 3 times in the last 4 years. I left them last year, and a few months back they decided to charge me for another year of billing.”

Another reviewer with a similar problem writes: “One of the all time worst companies I have ever dealt with. They continue to bill my credit card for services cancelled years ago and it take several emails to resolve.”

Pros

1) Domain Focused: Dotster specializes in being a domain registar and focuses on the new TLD’s.

2) Money Back Guarantee: There is a 30 day guarantee policy on all hosting fees (domains and other addons are non-refundable).

3) Eco Friendly: Dotster purchases enough renewable energy credits to counter 150% of their energy use.

4) Secure Servers: All of the servers are in a cooled, secure location with redundant power systems in case of a power outage.

5) Website in Minutes: With the Dotster website builder you can have a new site up in just a couple of minutes.

6) Windows hosting: Dotster offers both Linux and Windows servers for customers to host their files on.

Cons

1) No Uptime Guarantee: Dotster doesn’t offer guaranteed uptime or server tracking on their website.

2) Paid Premium Support: Getting access to more knowledgeable tech staff costs an extra fee in addition to your hosting.

3) 100 Emails Only: The basic shared hosting plan only allows for 100 email accounts which is fewer than most providers.

Summary

Dotster is a great domain registrar that offers several hosting options. It’s a really good choice for beginners who are looking for the perfect name for their new website along with a reliable and affordable hosting plan.

If you want a host that offers top-notch support that is included with your account, you’ll find that other hosts do offer free phone assistance with experts.

Click here to see the #1 rated web hosting

About the author: “JP Smooth” is a tech entrepreneur and owner of too many websites lol. He created HostAuthority with 3 other entrepreneurs to prove that web hosting doesn’t have to be complicated.

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