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InMotion Hosting VPS Review: Are Pricier Plans Worth It? [2024]

Caitlin Greyling Caitlin GreylingWeb Hosting Expert March 27, 2024
March 27, 2024

A Versatile Host With Plenty To Offer Almost Anyone

InMotion Hosting VPS hosting features
Resource management, e-commerce optimizations, and DDos protection: InMotion Hosting has a lot going for it
InMotion Hosting offers a variety of hosting products, including shared, reseller, VPS, WordPress, WooCommerce, cloud VPS, and dedicated hosting. While some of its offerings are very affordable (shared hosting and WordPress plans, mainly), others are pricier. That said, InMotion Hosting’s VPS and cloud VPS plans are still competitively priced when compared to many other hosts.

The fact that these plans include useful tools that make management easy (even for complete beginners), as well as very helpful 24/7/365 US-based support and value-for-money features and extras like dedicated IP addresses, just makes them that much more appealing.

For this review, I tested InMotion Hosting’s VPS services. I also installed the cPanel Admin panel, which isn’t included in the VPS plan but was recommended as a useful addition to my plan.

Should you go with this host? Well, that depends entirely on you. I advise that you read my full InMotion Hosting VPS hosting analysis to make an informed decision.

Features

A Solid Range of Features – Whether You Have a Managed VPS Plan or Not

InMotion Hosting’s VPS plans tick off all the necessities with a solid range of features  – with some caveats. For example, backups and a domain name aren’t included for free so you’ll have to purchase them separately. Fortunately, you can do so directly from InMotion Hosting during the sign-up process.

For this review, I tested InMotion Hosting’s standard VPS 4GB RAM hosting plan. InMotion Hosting’s WordPress and WooCommerce VPS plans and Cloud VPS plans may offer slightly different features.

The Softaculous Installer

Softaculous installer via the InMotion Hosting AMP control panel
The Softaculous Installer allows you to install numerous web apps and CMSs in one click
Provided you select a control panel for your VPS plan, you can get access to the Softaculous Installer. With this tool, you can install numerous (okay, more like hundreds) popular and niche plugins, scripts, web apps, and CMSs in one click – no coding or technical knowledge required. That said, you’ll still be able to configure some settings during the installation process or after setup.

Softaculous is a useful feature for sure, making InMotion Hosting’s VPS about as beginner-friendly and accessible as any of its shared or WordPress plans. In fact, I could hardly tell the setup of my site on InMotion Hosting’s shared plan and its VPS plan apart. The process was pretty much identical.

2-10 Free Dedicated IPs

Depending on the InMotion Hosting VPS plan you choose, you’ll get 2 to 10 dedicated IPs included for free. Most hosts offer this at an additional cost, so you’ll automatically receive network and server security, account isolation, and improved website performance. These plans also come with a free AutoSSL certificate.

Launch Assist and 2 Hours of Managed Hosting Support

InMotion Hosting Launch Assist offer with 2 hours of Managed Hosting support
Aside from server pre-configurations and 1-click installs, InMotion Hosting’s support team will also assist you in setting up your server for free
When paired with a paid control panel (cPanel or Control Web Panel, which was formerly CentOS), InMotion Hosting’s VPS plans include Launch Assist, a special offer designed to assist new customers in setting up their server. Included in the service are two free hours of Managed Hosting Support (the equivalent of a 1-month Pro Managed Service subscription worth almost $100).

You can use this time to transfer your website, install software, optimize your site, conduct security hardening, or even set up routine server tasks.

Note that instead of offering managed plans, InMotion Hosting lets you add the aforementioned managed services to any of its plans as needed. Though quite costly, the flexibility and quality of this support may well be worth it when compared to the managed services of some competitor VPS plans. It’s nice that you get to try these managed services for free before paying full price as well.

Free Site Migration

As part of your Launch Assist offer, you’ll also get free white glove site migration if you need it. InMotion Hosting’s support team will assist with moving your site professionally and even guarantees no downtime during the process.

Note, again, that, just like Launch Assist, this feature is also only available with a choice of a VPS package and a paid control panel (cPanel or Control Web Panel).

InMotion Hosting VPS Features at a Glance

Free domain name?  (shared hosting plans only)
Free SSL?
Money-back guarantee 30-90 days (depending on your term length)
Uptime guarantee  (shared Business Pro plans only)
Data centers 2 in the US (Los Angeles and Washington, DC), and 1 in the Netherlands (Amsterdam)
FEATURES SCORE: 4.5 out of 5

Ease of Use

One of the Easiest VPS Services To Use – Once Your Server is Set Up

InMotion Hosting really makes it easy to host a website or project on any of its VPS plans. However, waiting for the VPS server setup took much longer than I anticipated.

After paying, I waited just under 24 hours for my server to be ready despite promises it would “only take a few moments” – yes, this occurred with both my shared and VPS hosting tests. Since you can’t set up your website until the server is ready, this prolongs the process considerably.

Creating a New VPS Account with InMotion Hosting

The process of setting up a site on an InMotion Hosting VPS plan is much the same as it is with shared hosting. Simply select a package, choose your server location, add-ons, and domain name, and then pay. Accepted payment methods include credit/debit cards (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover), PayPal, checks, and money orders (mail only).

During the process, you can link your own third-party domain, buy a new one from InMotion Hosting, or opt to set this up later. If you defer, InMotion Hosting will assign you a temporary domain to use. Sadly, VPS plans don’t include a free domain.

But you do get a $100 Microsoft ad credit and $50 worth of Amazon ad clicks for free. I received no upsells at the time of purchase or via email afterward – maybe because my domain, backups, domain privacy, and cPanel already cost extra (and a lot at that!).

InMotion Hosting server setup message
Both times I’ve tested InMotion Hosting, it took around 18 hours for my server to be set up – not “a few moments”
After signing up, you just need to wait until InMotion Hosting sets up your server, which may be the only downside to this process because of the wait. All in all, expect an easy sign-up process but don’t expect to have a site up and running on the same day.

Connecting a Domain and Installing WordPress

If you select or buy a domain name, it will automatically become your main domain for your InMotion Hosting account and website. There’s no need to point it to new DNS servers or configure it (which is not always the case).

InMotion Hosting’s VPS plans don’t come with pre-installed WordPress. However, if you choose a plan with a control panel, you do have access to the Softaculous Installer. Using Softaculous, the process of installing a CMS is as easy as it’s going to get without it already being pre-installed.

The nice thing is that you don’t necessarily need to opt for WordPress as your CMS as there are hundreds of other web apps and script options to choose from. General VPS plans aren’t locked into using any particular one, either.

One-Click VPS Server Configuration

InMotion Hosting offers 4 server configurations: WordPress, Magento, PHP, and Standard. Each configuration is completely scalable, offers NVMe SSD storage, and NGINX as the proxy cache server on top of Apache for optimized performance.

It’s important to note that server configuration isn’t the same as website configuration, however. Though I chose the WordPress server configuration, I still needed to install the WordPress CMS using Softaculous.

The BoldGrid Website Builder

InMotion Hosting's BoldGrid WordPress Website Builder
InMotion Hosting offers its proprietary website builder to all hosting customers for free
Between all the popular CMS platforms – such as WordPress, WooCommerce, and Drupal – you can also opt to build a website using InMotion Hosting’s free site builder, BoldGrid. This drag-and-drop site builder allows you to easily build an attractive custom site from scratch with no coding experience necessary.

The only pitfall is that BoldGrid is only meant for designing WordPress sites. You’d need to outsource the design or use another platform to create a custom site outside of WordPress.

Multiple Control Panel Options

I chose to add cPanel to my plan. It’s the priciest option but happens to be the Admin plan and around 30% cheaper than cPanel’s direct pricing. Control Web Panel is the cheaper option but has its limitations, including fewer security features and built-in integrations with third-party apps. Choosing neither gives you command line access only.

InMotion Hosting paid extras for VPS hosting
It’s important to note that you need to pay extra for your control panel and backups
Regardless of your choice, you also get access to InMotion Hosting’s proprietary Account Management Panel (AMP). Despite having two control panels to navigate plus an app installer (AMP, cPanel, and Softaculous), the set up and maintenance process was actually quite straightforward. What’s more, you can switch from one platform to another without leaving your admin area.

EASE OF USE SCORE: 4.7 out of 5

Performance

Above Average Performance – But Not the Absolute Best Around

In my VPS tests, InMotion Hosting performed quite well, offering both satisfactory and consistent loading speeds and uptime. The host has data centers located in the US and Europe, which improves global performance.

Your site data is also replicated across multiple locations to ensure maximum redundancy, availability, and uptime. That said, global performance outside of the US and EU could be better. But this is easily fixed with a CDN, which I didn’t activate for this round of testing.

Provided you bought a cPanel license, you can even test and monitor your own site for free using the Site Quality Monitoring tool powered by Koality. It measures metrics such as uptime, loading speeds, site security, content quality, SEO, and more. Since both Koality and cPanel operate separately from InMotion Hosting, the results are accurate and objective.

Typically, my InMotion Hosting test site loaded in around 1 second. Uptime was also stable throughout testing, measuring 100% availability with no downtime.

GTmetrix

InMotion Hosting VPS test results from GTmetrix, Chicago server
InMotion Hosting’s US VPS performance is quite consistent, but it did struggle on Sunday
I chose InMotion Hosting’s Washington, D.C. server for my hosting plan. First things first, I decided to monitor my site performance using the nearest GTmetrix test server located in Chicago, Illinois. What I noted during testing was how consistent my test site loading speeds were, generally only deviating by a second.

However, I couldn’t help but notice my site’s struggles over the weekend. Overall, around 0.5 to 2 seconds for a fully loaded site is still a satisfactory loading speed, though.

InMotion Hosting VPS hosting test results from GTmetrix
My InMotion Hosting site typically loaded in around 0.5 to 2 seconds
As for global loading speeds, those outside of InMotion Hosting’s operational regions may suffer slower loading speeds. With servers in both Los Angeles and Washington, D.C., as well as Amsterdam, it’s no surprise that InMotion Hosting’s VPS performs best in areas nearby. Further afield, particularly in Asia, Oceania, and Africa, performance drops considerably.

InMotion Hosting VPS global performance test results from GTmetrix
Outside of the US, America and Europe, my website’s grade dropped

UptimeRobot

nMotion Hosting VPS uptime test results from UptimeRobot
My test site was up 100% of the time with zero incidents during the entire testing process
While InMotion Hosting has no SLA or uptime guarantee in place, you can still expect stable performance thanks to triple storage redundancy: InMotion Hosting stores your site data in three separate locations, which is why this host achieves such high uptime scores.

According to UptimeRobot, my test site achieved 100% uptime. While you can expect some good results, just don’t anticipate a refund if things go awry. Curiously, only InMotion Hosting’s Pro web hosting plan has an SLA in place.

PERFORMANCE SCORE: 4.5 out of 5

Support

Extremely Efficient Support Available via Numerous Channels

InMotion Hosting offers 24/7/365 US-based support. And if that weren’t enough, sales, technical, and billing/accounts support channels include:
  • Contact form
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Live chat
  • Skype
For non-customers, sales support is only available via live chat and phone.

The specialized Managed Hosting support team is only available from Monday to Friday, 9:00 AM – 9:00 PM EST.

When I tried to contact InMotion Hosting support via live chat late on Sunday afternoon, response time was an ETA of 45-60 minutes. Despite this, I was connected to an agent within a couple of minutes. The agent was very engaged, professional, knowledgeable, and helpful – which is rare coming from someone who’s written dozens of reviews. Most support agents tick a few of these boxes, but not all.

If you’re logged in, your account and verification code are automatically connected to the chat, further speeding up the process while keeping my information secure.

InMotion Hosting live chat interaction
InMotion Hosting’s support was one of the best aspects of testing its service
I also sent an email to the managed support team. The team is only available to those with Launch Assist included (paid cPanel and Control Web Panel accounts) or an active Managed Hosting plan. The team has experienced system administrators able to handle site migration, complex server optimizations, software installations, and more.

Due to their limited working hours, I assumed someone would reply on Monday. As expected, I received an email reply at midday the following day. As usual, the agent was professional, polite, and helpful.

InMotion Hosting Managed Hosting support interaction
InMotion Hosting’s managed hosting team is US-based but only available during limited business hours
The InMotion Hosting Support Center also features a ton of self-help content, including 5000+ articles and guides, helpful resources, and tools. For visual learners, InMotion Hosting offers an extensive YouTube page with video tutorials. I like that some of its help articles also feature snapshots to guide you through various processes.

SUPPORT SCORE: 4.7 out of 5

Pricing

Deals Galore… but No Discounts for Selecting Longer VPS Hosting Terms

The majority of InMotion Hosting’s hosting plans are competitively priced, but its VPS offering is definitely one of its pricier products. And if you add managed services, you’re looking at a hefty bill.

Unlike shared hosting, signing up for a longer-term InMotion Hosting VPS plan gives you zero savings. The monthly VPS price remains the same regardless of your hosting term. Instead, you’ll just pay up-front for the entirety of the term you choose.

That said, you can sign up for a VPS plan on a monthly basis. This is a key difference compared to shared hosting, which only offers monthly payments for the priciest Pro plan. Overall, InMotion Hosting’s VPS plans are good value, include many useful features, and perform well.

If InMotion’s VPS plans run too high, consider InMotion Hosting’s Managed WordPress and WooCommerce Platform i VPS plans. They offer ramped-up UltraStack performance at a fraction of the price, which includes NGINX caching, CDN integration, PHP-FPM optimizations, and more.

Inmotion Hosting logo alt

InMotion Hosting now has a 90 - day money-back guarantee!

Get a discounted annual plan without taking any risks.

51 users used this coupon!
The only two other ways to save on InMotion Hosting’s VPS are to choose a lower-range package or sign up when there’s a special offer. Oh, and you can refer friends as well for a discount.

PRICING SCORE: 4.5 out of 5

Bottom Line

InMotion Hosting offers competitively priced VPS plans with plenty of features and quality support. However, it’s important to note that you need to pay for a lot of additional services on top of your hosting, though. If you want backups, managed support, a control panel, and domain name and protection, be ready to pay more.

That said, purchasing a control panel with your InMotion Hosting VPS plan is worth it as you get access to Softaculous and a few hours of managed support. Both make setting up your VPS server easy – though you’ll typically have to wait about a day to have your VPS fully set up.

Overall, InMotion Hosting’s VPS offering is definitely faster than its shared hosting, consistently clocking 0.5 seconds less on page loading times for the same website. Are InMotion Hosting’s plans worth upgrading to or favoring over a competitor’s plans? That depends on your project, but I’d recommend this host if you’re ready to upgrade from a basic hosting plan and value great customer support.

OVERALL SCORE: 4.6 out of 5

FAQ

What’s the difference between InMotion Hosting’s virtual private servers (VPS) and shared hosting?

For shared hosting, you’ll have to share your resources between multiple users. A virtual private server (VPS) will allocate dedicated resources (RAM, CPU, bandwidth, etc.) to its users, much like a dedicated server. However, VPS hosting is cheaper, faster, and easier to deploy and manage. InMotion Hosting’s VPS plans are much more powerful than its shared hosting while still being more affordable than other competitor VPS plans.

Does InMotion Hosting offer managed VPS hosting?

Yes, InMotion Hosting offers managed services with all its hosting plans. Instead of offering separate managed hosting plans, you’ll need to add Managed Services to your hosting plan as an add-on. However, you can conveniently downgrade, upgrade, or cancel this service at any time. InMotion Hosting also offers Managed WordPress and WooCommerce Platform i VPS plans.

Do InMotion Hosting VPS plans come with a control panel?

InMotion Hosting offers its proprietary Account Management Panel (AMP) dashboard plus a choice of two paid control panels: cPanel Admin (5 accounts) and Control Web Panel (CWP). CWP is more affordable but compared to cPanel, it’s limited. Buying a cPanel license directly from InMotion Hosting will cost you around 30% less than buying it directly from cPanel. You can also choose not to have a control panel, but you won’t get access to Softaculous.

Do I need VPS hosting?

If you want dedicated resources and increased security without paying a fortune, then VPS hosting from InMotion Hosting may be for you. While VPS is often more expensive and complex to manage than shared hosting, InMotion Hosting offers custom and affordable VPS plans with great performance overall. VPS strikes a good balance between shared and dedicated hosting, making it ideal for growing and resource-heavy/high-traffic sites with limited budgets.

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