HostMonster is one of the oldest web hosting companies, it has been around since 1996 and growing steadily over the years. In 2015 HostMonster was acquired by the EIG group, the company which also owns Bluehost and HostGator.
On their website, HostMonster vaunts a cheap price of $4.95 per month along with a free domain, free site builders, high reliability and security. Most web hosting companies now days make claims of providing excellent services but only a few live up to their claims.
In this article, we look at the pros and cons of using HostMonster. We will consider the most critical factors you need to take into account when choosing a web hosting provider.
The most critical factor to consider when selecting a web hosting provider is the speed of their servers. A slow website can have detrimental effect on your website’s search engine rankings and your website’s user experience.
From our test results, we can see that the website hosted on HostMonster loads in an average of 1 second. The website being tested is well optimized and has caching set up. When a copy of the website was hosted on several other web-hosting providers, it loaded in 300ms.
This shows that HostMonster can improve and optimize their servers. It doesn’t necessarily mean HostMonster is slow, as the average load time of 1 second is still quite good. However, it’s not as fast as some of the other industry leaders.
One of the biggest issues HostMonster customers have is their pricing and how the plans are advertised. The prices advertised on the website are for new customers. Renewal prices are much higher. This means using HostMonster for an extended period is going to cost you a lot more.
The other downside of HostMonster is, there is no month-to-month plan. The plans available are for 1 year, 2 years and 3 years only. Often hosting providers will offer monthly plans as well, which gives you the flexibility of no high upfront costs.
Choosing a longer hosting term will mean lower prices. This is synonymous with almost any hosting provider nowadays. However, HostMonster has done a good job of confusing customers with their pricing. HostMonster gives you discounted rates when you sign up. This easily shows you, your savings for the promotional period. The prices are displayed as “monthly” costs. In addition to that, the advertised regular price is for the 3-year contract. This makes the pricing structure unreasonably complex.
The pricing information is all on their website. Though you have to sit down and work out what you are actually going to pay. It may take some digging on their website. Advertising monthly prices and not giving you the opportunity to pay monthly is a bit deceiving.
With the already complicated pricing, HostMonster goes on to charge extra for services that are usually offered for free. For example, you must pay for security features such as Site Lock, backups and other regular add-ons are also paid.
Site migration is also usually offered for free by most hosting providers. HostMonster charges $149.99 for migration of up to 5 websites. That is a hefty fee to pay if you are looking to migrate your website. In addition to paying such a hefty fee, if anything goes wrong during the migration, HostMonster takes no responsibility. That means $149.99 wasted.
You can do migrations on your own through FTP, but this can be risky sometimes. That is why companies offer free migration services.
When it comes to uptime HostMonster is doing well. Their uptime is above the 99.3% industry average. HostMonster doesn’t provide an uptime guarantee, but historically they have been quite reliable. This is a great advantage over other hosting providers, HostMonster is doing great at keeping their servers up and running.
Downtime can mean lost traffic and business. Unless you have a loyal set of visitors you might find it difficult to grow your website if you experience frequent downtime. Downtime can also lead to damaged brand reputation.
Stellar support is crucial to having a good hosting experience. Often hosting providers tend to overlook this area. With HostMonster however, they do a good job in helping customers when they are in need. There is still room for improvement, but support is easily reachable.
If you are in the United States, you can easily get through to their support department using a toll-free number. There is also a dedicated line for international callers.
Phone support is not available 24/7 but they have a status indicator on their website that lets you know when they are available.
Email and live chat support are available 24/7.
When it comes to the quality of tech support there is mixed feedback from users. This shows the tech support you get can be rather inconsistent.
On the plus side, they have an extensive knowledge base that will help you with common tasks and problems. They also have video guides for specific tasks.
HOSTMONSTER REVIEW - CONCLUSION
One would assume that for the length of time HostMonster has been around, they would be an industry leader. However, in our opinion they are only a shadow of the brand they used to be. The speed, pricing, and support can all be improved upon. Other brands like BlueHost offer better value for money and performance.
I hope you found this HostMonster review informational. If you have questions or comments, please reply below