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Bluehost.com Review

Our Rating:
*9.8/10
User Rating:

Bluehost makes the website hosting process so easy that every webmaster (even first timers) will feel anything but blue. With a single package that offers a competitive range of features, reasonable pricing and an interface that was obviously designed with the user in mind, building a website with Bluehost may turn out to be a surprisingly enjoyable experience.

Plans and Pricing

Bluehost offers very reasonable pricing as compared with the other leading hosting providers.

12 Month Plan 24 Month Plan 36 Month Plan
$4.95/mo $3.95/mo $2.95/mo

You should also be aware that Bluehost's Whois privacy feature is automatically checked off on the checkout page, to help you add a greater sense of protection for your domain's information for only $9.95.

Upon registration, each user has the option to upgrade his or her hosting plan to a pro package which costs $19.95/month and includes a dedicated IP address, SSL certificate, 3 free domain names, and 10 free Postini email filters (which are powered by Google).

Bluehost also offers premium site building software which is available for purchase within the control panel. Options include Soholaunch which costs around $20/month for a single site and Trendy Site Builder, a Flash-based web builder that costs $4.92/month. Concrete5 and liveSite, reputable free website builders, are also available.

Bluehost accepts Visa, Mastercard, Discover and American Express cards for any payments.

Money Back Guarantee

Bluehost offers a 30-day full money back guarantee with no penalties or administrative fees. All contracts cancelled within the first 30 days will receive a full refund, and orders cancelled after the first 30 days will receive a refund pro-rated for the time remaining in the contract.

Features

Bluehost offers technical features and add-ons that are comparable to those offered by other top shared web hosting companies. Although some features such as FrontPage extensions and Google integrations aren't listed on the features page, I found that most things I searched for were actually available and could be achieved with a bit of help from the knowledgebase or customer service.

Hosting Features:

  • Unmetered disk space
  • Unlimited domain hosting
  • Free domain name registration
  • Unlimited site transfer
  • Unlimited parked domains
  • Unlimited subdomains

Site Building Tools:

  • cPanel control panel
  • CGI-BIN
  • CGI Library

Programming Tools:

  • PHP 5
  • Perl 5
  • Ruby on Rails
  • Python
  • Javascript

Integrated Applications:

  • WordPress
  • Joomla
  • Drupal
  • b2evolution
  • Tikiwiki
  • Moodle
  • Coppermine image galleries
  • SSL servers
  • OS Commerce shopping cart
  • Zen shopping cart
  • Message form
  • Streaming video and audio support

Online Marketing Credits:

  • $100 Google AdWords credit

Ease of Use

One of the advantages that Bluehost touts directly on its home page is free instant setup. Not only was this claim accurate, but it was surprisingly refreshing as compared with some other web hosts. Another significant advantage of Bluehost is a free demo version of its control panel which enables users and prospective users to see how the control panel works before beginning.

Registering for a Bluehost account was extremely straightforward, primarily because the company offers a singlar plan and pricing structure which eliminates the need to debate between different plans or to calculate which pricing structure truly offers the best deal. Once registered, you're directed to a quick tutorial which can help answer any pressing questions you may have. While I didn't find this tutorial necessary, it was comforting to know that it was there for first time web designers.

Bluehost's cPanel control panel is extremely well-organized, making it possible for even new webmasters to find what they need with relative ease. A help button on the top right corner of the cPanel ensures that assistance is never far away.

For my first sample task, I attempted to install a WordPress blog on my newly-created domain. Installing a WordPress blog is supposed to be easy, but Bluehost's intuitive control panel makes it practically effortless. What I found specifically intriguing about Bluehost's offering is that it offered the option not only to create a new WordPress blog but to import an existing blog extremely easily.

I chose to install a new version of WordPress, and was impressed to see that with two clicks the installation was complete - and the blog was immediately visible.

Bluehost's Control Panel
Bluehost's Control Panel
Choose a New Existing Blog
Choose a New Existing Blog

For my second test, I chose to set up an email account linked to my new domain. Just like the WordPress installation, the email setup was extremely intuitive. I only needed to input my requested email name, create a password and click 'create account.'

Email Creation Form
Email Creation Form
Horde Email Inbox
Horde Email Inbox

To access the email, I followed the prompts and was directed to three standard mail retrieval options - horde, SquirrelMail and roundcube. I chose horde, and once again followed the prompts to access my email. I was satisfied to see that my test email was waiting for me immediately after I'd sent it.

Customer Support

Bluehost's phone support is just as impressive as its comfortable control panel. Technical support is available 24/7, and was just as capable as the phone support offered by the other top web hosting providers. Billing support is available by phone from 6am - 10pm MST on Monday through Saturday, and 8am-10pm MST on Sundays. I called Bluehost's phone support center three times throughout the day and was never on hold for more than two minutes.

Chat and ticket support is only slightly less efficient. I contacted the company multiple times via chat and email and found it interesting that the chat window alerted me to the fact that the customer service team may respond slowly as they juggle several chats at once. Surprisingly, it only took about a minute for each chat inquiry to be received in the queue, which was surprisingly fast given the number of questions they must have had to answer.

My test of Bluehost's ticket submission system returned equally satisfactory service. A small note at the bottom of the ticket submission page indicates that the response can take from 24-48 hours. Bluehost then presents you with a confirmation number after you submit the ticket, for your own records. When I called to check on the status of my tickets, the phone representative, graciously, forwarded me the responses to confirm that my inquiries had been answered within 2 hours.

I was sufficiently impressed with the breadth of video tutorials available to accompany users through a range of tasks from using different FTP services to integrating your email with Gmail, iPhone and Blackberry applications. The load time was significantly faster than similar video tutorial systems I have used in the past.

Summary

  •   User-friendly cPanel control panel
  •   Excellent phone support
  •   Instant site setup
  •   Comprehensive list of features and add-ons

The Good

30-day full money-back guarantee

Unmetered disk space and transfer

The Bad

Billing support not available 24/7

The Ugly

Currently no website builder feature


User Reviews

Not all submitted reviews are posted but all submitted reviews are factored into our rating. Consumer-Rankings.com believes the posted reviews best reflect the overall opinions of all submitted reviews.

Submitted by Matthew Nelson

I am a great fan of Bluehost and our company has been with them since our inception in 2013. Type 2 Translate LLC (www.type2translate.com) is proud to work off of 100% Bluehost hosted services.

Submitted by Ken V

I have used Bluehost for numerous years and they have never let me down. Their setup was easy and all renewals go smoothly. I can't remember a time when the website was down either.

Submitted by april porter

bh is okay I wouldn't say the best

Submitted by Bonnie Burtraw

In learning about internet, website design, file transfer ... I've called Bluehost a dozen times, all times of the day and night and ALWAYS 100% of the time found a knowledgeable and helpful tech ready to patiently walk through my problem -- They've educated and helped me. Can't say enough good things about the Bluehost Customer Service

Submitted by Scott Carnahan

The one time we needed support due to our site being hacked they had the old site restored from backup and fully locked down in 45 minutes. The breach was on our end and they were nothing less that fast, professional, skilled and awesome on addressing all of our issues. I have been with them over 5 years and a lower cost per month will not lure me away. They have earned my respect, trust and future business. I send all my friends there.

Submitted by Frank Scales

I've migrated and hosted four sites with Bluehost am very pleased with the experience. I highly recommend.

Submitted by ALFREDO FERRARO

I have used BlueHost for my customers (IT Consultant) since 2002 and have to say. In all those years never had any down time and when I had to talk to a technician, their response was incredibly fast and helped in solving the question. If I could I would give them a 10....

Submitted by Quinton Jones

I've been a loyal consumer for more than 5 years. I have not found better customer care anywhere. Whenever I have experienced a problem, a customer service representative has been able to quickly and accurately identify the problem and fix it. They have always been patient and kind.

Submitted by Tom Molczynski

I host about 8 domains with them. Never any issues. Support is super quick. Can't beat it for $6 a month

Submitted by Harry Galdeira

Bluehost.com company & support staff are on point...second to no one in friendly, customer service

Submitted by Tim M

Been with BH for several years. Never had any problems with them. Wordpress, Dreamweaver, Perl, PHP, MySQL, etc. Have the same on Godaddy, and it is a night mare and I hate their hosting. Everything above literally takes 10 times the frusteration, time, pain and anger of doing it on most any other hosting site. Review on GD states new users may have a hard time with the Control Panel. What? It should be you would be able to find the control panel because it goes by a differnt name, with duplicate MY ACCOUNTS going to different places and different things, oh my gosh just give up and kill yourself now!I have NON of those problems with BlueHost. I have done 400x on BH what I have done on Godaddy and it was a breeze 99% of the time on BH and a nightmare 80% of the time on GD. Please don't do it.

Submitted by Shawn Mead

I have used Bluehost since 04. Up to 10 websites running off on server. Great performance, better customer service & a plethora of options for new & advanced users

Submitted by Mark Turner

No waiting, no hassles, no problem. I would recommend Blue Host to my best friend!

Submitted by Arich Ru

Excelent, reliable and cheap. Best bet, always recomend to client and friends!

Submitted by Jean McCormick

My first web host was BlueHost. I have been so satisfied that they now have 5 of my sites. I have recommended them to friends - who have recommended them to friends. They have great customer service and tech support - available 24/7 (in the USA!). A tech has stayed online with me many times, walking me through a question. Their costs are low and their service high!

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