Founded in 1995, SwissCenter is a veteran of the web hosting industry. They’re part of the OpenBusiness Group and as such they have a significant amount of experience working with large organizations in customizing and managing their IT infrastructure. They host over 10,000 domains worldwide and their services are available in English and French.
SwissCenter offers a range of packages including shared web hosting, reseller hosting, virtual private servers, and dedicated servers. To give you an example of their excellent feature set, their shared hosting plans include the following as standard:
- Automatic daily backups retained for seven days
- Domain registration available at an extra cost
- From five to unlimited add-on domains, dependent on package
- Unlimited subdomains
- Free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificates
- Unlimited traffic on all plans
While SwissCenter’s website is clean and easy-to-use for beginners and experts alike, their packages are slightly limited on features specifically designed for beginners. For example, they don’t have a website builder, though they do feature the Installatron app installer. They are much more geared towards expert-level features. All of their plans include FTP access, SSH access, and even console access for certain packages. They also support a range of PHP versions including 5.6, 7.0, 7.1 and 7.2, the latter two being far faster than the outdated PHP 5 that many companies support. On top of that, they support advanced scripting languages such as Ruby on Rails and Node.js.
SwissCenter owns and operates their own data center, which quite notably is located in the well-equipped World Trade Center of Lausanne. It’s a real bonus when a company owns their own data center, as it means faster response times to technical issues and faster loading speeds. That said, it’s a little odd that they don’t advertise their average or guaranteed uptime, as by their data center specifications, it’s clear they’re using a top-quality network in a truly secure location.
Pricing and Support
SwissCenter’s prices are in line with the rest of the local hosting market. However, when compared to international companies, their rates are very expensive. Then again, Switzerland is well-known for being an expensive country, so for their residents the costs are likely not an issue. Also, for international customers looking for a premium service and Swiss data centers, the prices are acceptable.
There’s a small consideration to keep in mind though: domain registration is an added cost (at a heavily discounted rate, fortunately), while basic SSL certificates are included free with all plans.
They only offer annual billing, though the rates listed are per month. There’s also no discount for purchasing longer terms paid upfront. Surprisingly, they offer the option to pay by invoice after submitting an order, which is a little unusual and not super user-friendly. They do not offer a free trial or a money back guarantee, sadly.
While I was impressed by their overall standard of service, I was slightly let down by their customer support. They have telephone, email, fax, remote, and ticket support, which does mean plenty of options. However, to my disbelief, while sales calls are free, technical support calls are charged per minute. Their business hours are from 8 a.m to 5.30 p.m daily, which is acceptable but not outstanding. Despite the limited office hours though, they respond to email inquiries quickly, politely, and positively.