What chance does a small hosting company like Web Hosting Hub have against Bluehost, an industry giant?
Well, I actually took the time to research and test both Bluehost and Web Hosting Hub. I looked at pricing, features, performance, support, and security, and I have to say, the results were rather disappointing. Web Hosting Hub came out slightly ahead in most categories, but neither host really managed to impress me.
Although a bit pricier than Bluehost, Web Hosting Hub gives you more resources, more features, and an excellent free website builder. On some plans, you can choose between two data centers, while Bluehost doesn’t even disclose the exact location of its data centers.
Still, I’d choose a host that offers more. Hostinger, for example, has an excellent set of features and , but costs significantly less. Click here to see Hostinger’s latest deals, or read on to see if one of these two hosts might be right for you after all.
1. Plans and Pricing
Bluehost Is Cheaper, but You Get More Value with Web Hosting Hub
Bluehost has a wide range of services, including shared hosting, VPS, cloud hosting, and dedicated servers. But since Web Hosting Hub only offers shared hosting, I decided to focus on that to keep the comparison fair. At first glance, Bluehost appeared to have won this round thanks to its overall lower prices.
That said, the plan details paint a different picture. For example, Bluehost’s entry-level Basic plan is cheaper than Web Hosting Hub’s Spark, but it has fewer resources and features.
You only get 1 website, 50GB of storage, and 5 email addresses with Bluehost’s Basic, whereas Web Hosting Hub’s Spark gives you 2 websites, unlimited storage, and as many email addresses as you want. To get similar resources with Bluehost, you have to go for the Plus plan, which costs just about as much as Spark for the initial term and is actually more expensive after renewal.
Bluehost Web Hosting
Web Hosting Hub Web Hosting
Then there’s the fact that neither host’s entry-level plan includes automated backups, which means you have to purchase this essential service separately if you want the peace of mind that comes with it.
With Web Hosting Hub, you can add daily automated backups for a small monthly fee. With Bluehost, on the other hand, you have to buy the CodeGuard Basic add-on, which is three times more expensive. This alone doubles the price of Bluehost’s Basic plan.
One other thing to consider: with both of these hosts, the lowest advertised prices are only available if you opt for a three-year plan. Shorter billing cycles mean higher costs – and if you want to pay on a monthly basis, you’re out of luck, as neither company gives you this option.
If you ask me, I’d say you’re better off with Hostinger, which offers more flexible plans, and is cheaper all around.
Hostinger Web Hosting
Both Hosts Have Mediocre Support, but Bluehost Is More Knowledgeable
Both Bluehost and Web Hosting Hub offer 24/7 customer support through live chat and phone. Web Hosting Hub also gives you the option to get in touch by email, tickets, and even Skype.
To check the actual quality of the support for each provider, I tested both of their live chat services. Unfortunately, I can’t say I was impressed with either. In both cases, the support agents were very sales-oriented, and didn’t seem interested in my needs.
With Bluehost, for example, the support agent recommended the entry-level plan for a simple landing page site, but also encouraged me to buy the SEO Tools add-on which I didn’t need.
When I asked about my WordPress installation, the agent offered to walk me through it, which was a nice touch. However, the issue of whether I wanted to buy the plan “now” came up several times, so I couldn’t help but feel like I was being prodded towards a purchase.
Overall, I was satisfied with the information I got, but I still felt like I was being pressured to make a purchase.
With Web Hosting Hub, I had a similar experience. The support agent was polite and helpful, but was so keen on making a sale that I almost didn’t get to ask all of my questions. Before I had the chance to finish typing each sentence, the agent would make another pitch.
I also didn’t appreciate the fact that the agent pitched web design services before recommending a hosting plan. As I see it, the very point of these low-cost, shared hosting providers is to get me online quickly and affordably. Since a premium drag-and-drop website builder is included in all plans, I was unlikely to pay $99 for someone else to create a simple landing page for me.
Even after I had ended the conversation, the support agent continued to copy-paste discounted offers in an attempt to make a sale. This came across as desperate and unprofessional.
Both Bluehost and Web Hosting Hub have extensive knowledge bases with guides and tutorials in case you’d rather avoid talking to support.
Bluehost Covers the Basics, but Web Hosting Hub Gives You a Premium Website Builder
Remember how I said that Web Hosting Hub’s entry-level Spark plan is more expensive than Bluehost’s Basic? Here’s why: both hosts offer basic features like a free domain for one year and the cPanel control panel, but Web Hosting Hub throws in extra goodies that may justify the difference in price.
For example, if you already have a website, you’ll have to pay a premium fee to get Bluehost to transfer it to their servers. With Web Hosting Hub, on the other hand, the transfer of up to three sites is included in all plans for free.
If this is your first time building a website and you want to use WordPress for the job, you’ll appreciate the fact that both Bluehost and Web Hosting Hub offer WordPress preinstalled. With Bluehost, however, that’s about as much help as you’re going to get.
Web Hosting Hub gives you access to a premium WordPress website builder, BoldGrid, for free. You can choose one of several themes to begin with, and you can easily customize your pages using the drag-and-drop editor. The result is a fully personalized, responsive website that looks good on all platforms.
To promote your site, both Bluehost and Web Hosting Hub offer advertising credits for networks like Bing Ads, even on their entry-level plans.
It’s also worth noting that while Bluehost has a fairly standard 30-day money-back guarantee, Web Hosting Hub gives you a generous 90 days to change your mind.
To help you compare Bluehost and Web Hosting Hub side-by-side, I’ve included their most important features in the table below:
|Bluehost||Web Hosting Hub|
|Hosting Type||Shared, managed WordPress, VPS, dedicated servers, reseller||Shared, WordPress|
|Free Domain||Yes, for one year||Yes, for one year|
|Free SSL Certificates||Yes||Yes|
|Disk Space||50GB on the Basic plan, unlimited on more expensive plans||Unlimited|
|Automatic Backups||Available for an extra fee (through CodeGuard)||Available for a small monthly fee|
|Email Accounts||5 accounts on the Basic plan, unlimited on more expensive plans||Unlimited|
|Free CDN||Yes||Yes, but you have to install it yourself|
|Free Site Migration||No||Yes|
|Money-Back Guarantee||30 Days||90 Days|
Web Hosting Hub Lets You Choose Your Data Center
Against all common practice in the industry, Bluehost continues to keep the location of its data center a secret. This means you don’t know where your site is actually hosted. Bluehost’s support agent confirmed the data center is somewhere in the US, but that’s all they were willing to share.
On the other hand, Web Hosting Hub has two US-based data centers, one on the East Coast (in Washington) and one on the West Coast (in Los Angeles). The top two plans allow you to choose where your website is hosted to improve loading speeds for your target audience.
If you’re likely to have visitors from around the world, then you’ll also want to use a CDN (content delivery network). When activated, the CDN creates cached versions of your website and stores them in servers across the globe. As a result, visitors can load your site faster because they connect to the server that is nearest to them.
With Bluehost, the free version of Cloudflare CDN is integrated into your dashboard so you can activate it with just a few clicks. This is not the case with Web Hosting Hub, but the provider does have a thorough guide to how you can install Cloudflare yourself.
Both Bluehost and Web Hosting Hub have SSD storage on all plans. This is great news because solid state drives are more reliable and up to 20 times faster than traditional HDDs.
As for service availability, both hosts promise 99.9% uptime, but neither backs this up in a proper SLA (service-level agreement). In other words, there are no guarantees that you won’t experience excessive downtime and, if you do, you won’t get any compensation for it.
Bluehost scored quite poorly during our performance tests. To find out what went wrong, read our in-depth Bluehost review.
We haven’t run the same tests on Web Hosting Hub, but you can read more about its performance features in our expert Web Hosting Hub review.
Neither Bluehost nor Web Hosting Hub Will Do Much to Keep Your Website Safe
Most competitive hosting providers include a minimal, yet decent kit of security tools in all of their plans. This is not the case with either Bluehost or Web Hosting Hub.
With Bluehost, if you want professional security tools, you have to buy SiteLock Essential. The latter can double the cost of Bluehost’s Basic plan, but it includes malware detection and removal, a web application firewall, or any form of protection against attacks.
Without this add-on, Bluehost’s Basic plan has virtually no security tools. You don’t even get spam protection unless you upgrade to a more expensive plan.
Web Hosting Hub doesn’t do much better in this category. It gives you spam protection for your email on all plans, but that’s about it. What’s worse, there’s no add-on or extra feature that you can tick at checkout for better protection. You’d have to use third-party website security services.
Fortunately, both Bluehost and Web Hosting Hub offer free SSL certificates on all plans, which you can activate from your account dashboard. This will not only help your website rank better in search engines, but also secure the payment information of your customers in case you run an online store.
Web Hosting Hub Wins This Comparison Just Barely, but There’s a Much Better Option
Web Hosting Hub beats Bluehost in a couple of categories, but only narrowly. Even though Web Hosting Hub is better value as it gives you more resources and features, the extra cost is not necessarily worth it.
In addition, Web Hosting Hub has a few noteworthy issues. For one, my experience with the support agent was disappointing, to say the least.
Web Hosting Hub’s uptime guarantee is not backed with an SLA and you can only choose between two data centers to host your website, both of which are in the US.
Most importantly, Web Hosting Hub doesn’t give your site a lot of room to grow. If you ever need to upgrade to VPS, cloud, or dedicated hosting, you have to switch to a different provider.
These are the main reasons why I don’t recommend that you choose one of these hosts. Hostinger offers amazingly low prices, more data centers around the world, and a solid uptime guarantee. It also offers a full range of hosting services, from shared to VPS and cloud hosting.
This is why Hostinger made it on our list of the best web hosting services, whereas Bluehost and Web Hosting Hub did not.
|Bluehost||Web Hosting Hub||Our Recommended Alternative: Hostinger|
|Plans and Pricing||Cheaper than Web Hosting Hub, but the Basic plan has fewer resources and features||More expensive than Bluehost, but renewal fees are slightly better and you get more value for your money overall||Super-low starting prices for web hosting, although to get the best deals you need to sign up for a long-term plan|
|Key Features||1 website, 50GB of storage, and 5 email accounts on the Basic plan; unlimited resources on higher-tier plans; free domain for one year||2 websites on the Spark plan, unlimited storage and emails on all plans, free domain for one year, free website transfer, premium WordPress website builder, 90-day money-back guarantee||1 website, 10GB of SSD storage, 100GB bandwidth and 1 email address on the Single plan; up to 100GB of SSD storage, unlimited websites and bandwidth, free domain name, and 100 email addresses on higher-tier plans|
|Performance||SSD storage, integrated Cloudflare CDN, US-based data center (but exact location is unknown), stated uptime guarantee with no SLA||SSD storage, two US-based data centers (Washington and Los Angeles), stated uptime guarantee with no SLA||SSD storage, LiteSpeed Cache and WordPress Acceleration, Cloudflare CDN, seven data centers (US, UK, Europe, Asia, and South America), 99.9% uptime guarantee|
|Security||Free SSL certificates, paid backups, SiteLock Essential add-on available for purchase||Free SSL certificates, daily automated backups can be added for a small fee, spam protection||Free SSL certificates, weekly backups (daily backups on highest-tier plan), BitNinja server security|
|Support||24/7 support via live chat and phone; extensive knowledge base, official YouTube channel||24/7 support via live chat, phone, tickets, email, and Skype; extensive knowledge base, onboarding call||24/7 support via live chat, email, and tickets, plus extensive knowledge base|
That said, Web Hosting Hub focuses exclusively on shared hosting, so you don’t have the option to upgrade to VPS, cloud, or dedicated hosting. Bluehost offers a wider range of web hosting services.
To be honest, I wouldn’t use either of these hosts for my own projects. They both have major issues like poor customer support and mediocre performance. If you want a good hosting service that you can really rely on, check out our list of the best web hosts in 2021.
A competitive managed WordPress hosting service should be based on an infrastructure that is optimized for WordPress. In addition, the host should take care of your WordPress updates, as well as website backup and security.
To get a better idea of what a good WordPress host should look like, check out our list of the best managed WordPress hosting services.
You’ll also have to buy CodeGuard Basic if you want automated backups on the two least expensive Bluehost plans, and this add-on is three times more expensive than Web Hosting Hub’s modest monthly fee for backups.
If you want cheap hosting with outstanding performance and decent features, go with Hostinger instead. Hostinger really impressed us when we tested it during our search for the best web hosting providers.
That said, if you expect your website to get a lot of traffic, you’ll need a VPS or cloud hosting solution, and Web Hosting Hub does not offer either. In that case, a host such as InterServer, which offers low-cost VPS hosting, or Kamatera, which is great for cloud hosting, are worth checking out.