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There’s a lot to like about Easyspace, and it’s one of the fastest UK hosts that I’ve tested. It’s not all great news, though, since there were uptime issues and the support was… well, not very supportive.
Fast Hosting with Lots of Features – But Its Support is Lacking
I’ve been on a six-month mission to find the best UK-based hosts available, and rather than take the hosts’ claims at face value, I’ve been doing some pretty rigorous testing. I was actually impressed by what Easyspace has to offer – especially with its managed WordPress hosting plan – but there are definitely some things you need to know before you commit.
Easyspace has the largest number of data centres out of all the UK hosts I tested. They are located in London, Glasgow, Maidenhead, Leicester, Nottingham, and Manchester. This level of coverage ensures fast page loading speeds no matter where in the UK your visitors are located.
There are various types of hosting to choose from, too. These include basic shared hosting, premium hosting, WordPress hosting, VPS and cloud hosting, and dedicated servers. Easyspace also has the option for an Instant WordPress website.
I signed up for the WordPress hosting plan, which is specifically optimised for WordPress websites. Over the course of several months, I tested out Easyspace’s features, evaluated page loading speeds, monitored uptime, and contacted the support team – all so that I can give you the full lowdown on what it’s really like to host with Easyspace.
Easyspace offers all the features that I look for in a good web host. These include unlimited SSD storage, unlimited bandwidth, a free domain name, and all the essential security features necessary. The WordPress plan is fully managed, with automatic updates and support from WordPress experts.
You can host multiple websites on the WordPress and Premium web hosting plans (only one on the Standard plan). Easyspace also offers a choice of operating system on its Standard and Premium hosting plans so you have the option to use a Windows-based server rather than the usual Linux. Unless you need Windows hosting (for example, if you need a server that supports Microsoft SQL), I’d stick with Linux!
Instant WordPress Website
If you’re short on time and just want a simple website for your business, then the Instant WordPress feature from Easyspace could be perfect for you. All you have to do is input the essential information for your website (title, header title, telephone number, and address) and Easyspace will build it for you.
This is a bit like Wix ADI (a speedy website creation wizard that Wix offers), but it uses WordPress instead. You can also use the advanced fields section of the setup screen to add header text, your company name, and “about us” text. Easyspace also lets you preview your website before you buy. If you decide you like it, you can simply log in to WordPress later to make changes and add more content.
Daily Backups and Easy Restore
The daily backup and restore feature is only included on the Premium and WordPress hosting plans, but you can purchase it as an add-on for the Entry and Standard plans as well. Having daily backups is not a must (weekly backups are usually okay), but they do provide some extra peace of mind, especially if you frequently make changes to your website.With the restore function, it’s easy to roll your website back a day or two if something goes wrong.
Free SSL (on Some Plans)
Every website should have an SSL certificate – especially since browsers show a “not secure” warning for websites without SSL. It really surprises me how many web hosting companies don’t include free SSL certificates with their plans.
It was nice to see that a free SSL certificate is included with Easyspace’s Premium and WordPress web hosting plans, but it should be included with all plans in my opinion.Also, note that the SSL is only for the first year.
Premium NGINX Optimized Servers
Easyspace has put a lot of effort into its data centres, with servers running on the latest technology – and that shows in the page loading speeds. It uses NGINX web servers to provide the best performance for WordPress websites. Unlike some hosts that claim to have optimized servers while delivering mediocre performance, Easyspace genuinely does have optimized servers that result in faster page loading speeds.
Easyspace lives up to its name, providing a straightforward setup experience that doesn’t require any technical skills at all. If you’re a beginner, you’ll really appreciate the managed WordPress hosting, as all you really need to focus on is the content of your website. Easyspace takes care of everything else, including backups, security monitoring, and updates.
The setup process is one of the easiest I’ve encountered, and I really like the fact that Easyspace doesn’t use a 1-click installer for apps like WordPress, instead offering professional installation by its technical support team.
Managing Your Account
One thing that I really like about Easyspace’s dashboard/account control panel is that it’s so easy to navigate. The pages you’re most likely to need to access are displayed as coloured tiles – and all the other options are easily accessible via the sidebar menu (or pop-out menu if you’re viewing the control panel on a smartphone or tablet).
Connecting a Domain and Installing WordPress
When you sign up for a years’ hosting, you get a free domain name, which will be connected to your account immediately. If you choose WordPress hosting, this will be installed automatically for you, and the login details can be found in the WordPress tab of the Web Hosting section of your dashboard.
If you choose any other plan, you simply need to use the applications tab to request that WordPress be installed by the technical support team. This is an unusual approach that I’ve not encountered before, but I actually really like it. It makes Easyspace the most beginner-friendly host out of all that I’ve tested!
Blazing-Fast Page Loading Speeds – But Disappointing Uptime
Performance is one of the top things I look for in a web host – because, let’s face it, it doesn’t matter how great the features are and how easy it is to use if your visitors are put off by slow-loading pages or not being able to access your website at all.
I’ll be going into detail about the kinds of tests I performed and how Easyspace scored in each one, but before I get to that, here’s a quick summary of Easyspace’s performance. In terms of page loading speed, Easyspace is actually the fastest host out of all the UK hosts I’ve tested.
Its average page loading speed is a fantastic 0.6 seconds (bearing in mind that Google recommends a page loading speed of under three seconds). Unfortunately, Easyspace disappoints with an uptime score of 99.88%, just below the 99.9% that all hosts should provide.
To test Easyspace’s performance, I bought the WordPress hosting plan and had the platform installed for me by the technical support team. I test all hosts using the same one-page website theme, a customized version of the SimpleShift theme. You’ll find some review sites that test performance using just the basic WordPress installation with no content, but I don’t believe that approach gives accurate results – who cares how well a blank website performs?
The theme I use has text, buttons, banners, and non-optimized HD images – much like you’d find on a landing page for an online store. I use non-optimized images as part of the testing process to see what (if anything) technical support would recommend in the way of optimizations! For the full details of how we test web hosts at Website Planet, you can check out this article.
The website was online for several months while I performed my tests, but we take all our test websites down after around three months, to avoid the possibility of hosts making changes behind the scenes to skew the performance results in their favour. The website was available at autonomous-shoes-uk-p.co.uk.
The GTmetrix tests revealed a consistently fast page loading speed for Easyspace, with an average of 0.6 seconds. As the screenshot above shows, the best speed was a little under half a second – which is very impressive. I always run the tests multiple times at different times of the day, and even at peak times the page was fully loaded in under a second.
The PageSpeed and YSlow Scores in the screenshot are measures of how well optimized and user-friendly the website is – and this is without performing any kind of optimizations myself or using any third-party plugins. Easyspace scores a B grade for both, with a score of 89% for PageSpeed (the tool that Google offers) and 80% for YSlow. To put these scores into context, the average PageSpeed score is 75% and most of the UK hosts I’ve tested have struggled to achieve a PageSpeed score of more than 70%.
Sucuri Load Time Tester
The results from the Sucuri Load Time Tester were equally impressive, with the best page loading time being just a fraction of a second. What’s great about the Sucuri Load Time Tester is that it displays page loading times using different test servers located all around the world.
The results show that Easyspace delivers (mostly) fast page loading speeds in North America as well as Europe, which makes it a good choice if your target audience is international, not just located in the UK.
The final test I performed was to monitor the uptime of the test website over a period of several months. At the very minimum, I would expect any host to be delivering the standard 99.9% uptime that most hosts will guarantee. Unfortunately, this is where Easyspace fails to impress.
Uptime for the test website over the monitoring period was just 99.883% – and while that’s not as bad as one UK host I’ve tested, it’s still below the bare minimum uptime of 99.9%.
The uptime Easyspace delivered equates to around 50 minutes of downtime per month (compared to 43 minutes for the 99.9% minimum). The 7-minute difference isn’t a deal-breaker, but it’s definitely something you should consider if you’re wanting to use your website for an online business.
Easyspace does have an uptime guarantee, but you have to report downtime within five days in order to be reimbursed for the service disruption. As I didn’t report the downtime my test website experienced, I can’t comment on how easy it is to get credits as part of the service level agreement (SLA) guarantee, unfortunately.
I appreciate it when hosts offer 24/7 support via live chat as well as email, as a surprising number of UK hosts only have live chat available during the typical working week (Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm). Easyspace claims to have agents available around the clock (on live chat and email) – but I ended up having so many problems with live chat that I gave up!
Each time I clicked on the live chat button, I’d fill in the necessary information and wait to be connected. The chatbot informed me that I was number one in the queue, so I expected to be chatting with someone from the support team pretty quickly. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case. I remained number one in the queue for 20 minutes, and when an agent connected, the chat immediately ended. That wasn’t a one-off, either. I had the same experience on several other occasions.
Ticket response times are also pretty slow – especially if you submit a ticket in the evening. I submitted a question at 7pm one evening and got a response around 12 hours later – making me wonder if Easyspace’s support really is 24/7.
Response times during the day are better – a follow-up query the next day was responded to within three hours. My next query, about optimization, was submitted at 4:28pm –and I didn’t get a response until 7:36am the following morning. The support agent did little more than suggest I review the optimization suggestions offered by GTmetrix, so I wasn’t particularly impressed by the level of helpfulness, either.
Not Cheap – But Do Its Features Justify the Cost?
While Easyspace’s WordPress plan is not expensive compared to the likes of WP Engine and Kinsta (dedicated WordPress hosting providers), it’s not the most budget-friendly plan, either. Bear in mind that the advertised price is only applicable to plans of one year or more, and although you can pay monthly, you do have to commit to a minimum of a three-month term.
You get the biggest discounts if you pay upfront for five years. Even with the 40% discount you get on the five-year plan, you’re still looking at paying double what some UK hosts are charging. Prices on the Easyspace website don’t include VAT, so you’ll need to budget for that extra 20% no matter what length of plan you sign up for.
Another thing that Easyspace puts into fine print is the fact that your domain name and SSL are only free for the first year – so if you sign up for five years, you’ll have to pay fees for the domain name and SSL each year for the remaining four years of your plan. That’s usually the same with all hosts, though, so it’s not a deal-breaker.
Cancelling Your Account
To cancel your Easyspace account, you don’t need to contact the support team, thankfully. There’s a cancellation button under each service in the account management dashboard and the process only takes a few minutes. You are asked to provide feedback about what you think about Easyspace and why you want to cancel, but the feedback takes seconds to complete.
Your hosting plan will be cancelled at the end of the current billing period – so if you signed up for twelve months and cancel in month eight, your web hosting will remain active for the remainder of the twelve months (and you’re not eligible for a refund, either). Easyspace doesn’t have a money-back guarantee period (unlike most hosts), so even if you cancel in the first month, you won’t get any money back.
There’s a lot to like about Easyspace. Its page loading speeds are great and you get all the essential features you need for your website. If not for the poor uptime my test website experienced, I’d be recommending Easyspace as my top choice for some users – but long periods of downtime are difficult to overlook.
Additionally, my experience with the support team means that even without the uptime issue, I wouldn’t recommend Easyspace if you’re just starting out, as you could be waiting a long time to get the support you need if you encounter problems.
There are definitely better hosts out there, like Hostinger, which delivered the fastest speeds of any shared host we’ve tested, and Liquid Web, which offers premium hosting solutions.
Which web hosting service is the cheapest?If you’re looking for inexpensive web hosting, you don’t want to miss Hostinger’s shared hosting plans. The prices start at $1.39. But Hostinger isn’t just cheap – it also scored incredibly well on our global performance tests, meaning you get excellent value for your money.It’s always a good idea to visit our web hosting coupon page to make sure you’re getting the best deal possible.Which type of hosting is best?There is a wide range of hosting services available, from budget-friendly shared hosting to fancy dedicated servers. The best hosting for your website will depend on your specific needs. If shared hosting isn’t enough for you, there are several cheap and reliable VPS hosting services available.How do I choose a hosting plan?Try to estimate the size of your website, and how many visitors you think you’ll be getting each month. Since most web hosting providers will let you easily scale up your plan, it’s always the most cost-effective to start small and upgrade later.If you’re not sure what you need, you might want to go with InterServer, which has only one shared hosting plan that conveniently comes with unlimited resources.
Ari is passionate about web hosting and design and has been building websites with WordPress for over ten years. When he’s not testing web hosts, you’re likely to find him trying (in vain) to train his three beagles (who are better at training him than he is them!)