Bluehost Review 2018: Price Comparison, and Features

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Ah, Bluehost – the giants in the hosting world along with others like Hostgator, GoDaddy and SiteGround! It powers over 2 million websites. That’s a lot! Being a big company means they have to necessarily let go of certain other aspects like personalization and quirky messages. Here, you won’t find blogs written in a personal tone by server admins, or even a forum for customers. This Bluehost review will focus on prices and discounts, features that stand out, and ownership.

On the other hand, their hosting services are perfectly viable. I myself used them for a long time before switching to SiteGround (for unrelated reasons). Let’s take a look at what makes Bluehost tick, and why – or why not – you should go with them.

Bluehost Review 2018 – Pricing and Coupon Codes

Unlike its cousin Hostgator, Bluehost doesn’t really any specific coupons for its deals and discounts. Instead, they opt to have regular price reductions through their website and affiliates. Here’s a complete list of Bluehost deals that for all plans that are updated regularly. If you like coupon code hunting and getting that extra special price, then you’ll be better served by one of the Hostgator coupon codes instead.

Here’s a complete pricing chart with all the Bluehost discounts available (updated regularly):

Basic Plan
(Yearly Renewal)
Advanced Plan
(Yearly Renewal)
Premium Plan
(Yearly Renewal)
Super Premium
(Yearly Renewal)
Bluehost Logo
Shared Hosting
$4.95/month
$8.99
Discount: 45% off
$7.45/month
$12.99
Discount: 43% off
$7.45/month
$16.99
Discount: 56% off
$18.95/month
$25.99
Discount: 27% off
Bluehost Logo
Cloud Hosting
$10.95/month $15.95/month $20.95/month
Bluehost Logo
Managed WordPress
Hosting
$29.99/month
$39.99
Discount: 25% off
$49.99/month
$59.99
Discount: 17% off
$59.99/month
$89.99
Discount: 33% off
$69.99/month
$129.99
Discount: 46% off
Bluehost Logo
WooCommerce
+ WordPress
$14.95/month
$13.99
(Very weird)
Discount: -7% off
$16.95/month
$17.99
Discount: 6% off
$20.95/month
$31.99
Discount: 35% off
Bluehost Logo
VPS Hosting
$23.99/month
$29.99
Discount: 20% off
$41.99/month
$59.99
Discount: 30% off
$83.99/month
$119.99
Discount: 30% off
Bluehost Logo
Dedicated Hosting
$99.99/month
$119.99
Discount: 17% off
$119.99/month
$159.99
Discount: 25% off
$139.99/month
$209.99
Discount: 33% off

Every now and then Bluehost releases a special $2.95/month hosting which runs for a limited time. This discount is exclusively available through the Bluehost shared hosting page. There are no coupons, and even most affiliates don’t have access to it. Sure, it’s not the cheapest deal you’re going to get – that privilege goes to GoDaddy – but it’s pretty decent web hosting for a small business if you’re just getting started.

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Also remember that any discount you get only applies to the first billing cycle of your hosting plan. So if you purchase hosting for one year, you’ll get the discounted rate for the first year. Then when it renews, you’ll be paying the full price. Ideally, this would mean that you get the maximum savings if you choose the longest billing cycle. But of course, you might not want to lock yourself into a hosting provider for that long, and it costs a lot more upfront as well.

Bluehost also has a 30-day refund if you’re not satisfied with their hosting. So use that time to test out whether it’s a good fit for you or not!

Now with Free SSL Too!

For a long time, Bluehost charged its users for SSL. But that changed recently, and now all shared hosting services get free Let’s Encrypt certificates! It’s a great move that finally brings Bluehost into the club of hosting providers like SiteGround who have supported Let’s Encrypt since the beginning.

Bluehost Hosting – Do they Throttle?

Short answer – yes. Bluehost throttles your CPU if it thinks you’re taking up much more space than others on your shared hosting plan. When I first started hosting my personal blog years ago, Bluehost was my provider of choice. Then the throttling started as my site began to grow. I experienced slowdowns, and no matter how much I optimized my database requests and CPU usage, the graph showed enormous throttling.

Any Bluehost review would be incomplete if we didn’t talk about how their “Unlimited” promises are misleading. Unlimited disk space, and unlimited bandwidth. They really should tell us clearly how much visitors a day a particular plan can handle. That way, users will have a clear indication that they have to upgrade.

Luckily, Bluehost has a little known “pro” hosting plan that doesn’t show up on their regular charts. This pro plan has a lot more CPU power and my site’s problems were taken care of almost instantly. Upgrade was smooth as well. So smooth, that I wasn’t sure anything had actually changed! But the difference in my site speed was immediate and obvious.

Bluehost WordPress Hosting – the Behemoth

Bluehost is a major WordPress provider. By “major”, I mean that they’re on the list of three officially recommended hosting providers on the WordPress website, along with SiteGround and DreamHost. That’s a major endorsement, and it shows. Their WordPress hosting is not only the most expensive you’ll find anywhere, it also delivers the most. It has a huge quota of daily visitors for even their most basic plan.

In short, if you have heavy WordPress demands and if your website’s life revolves around WordPress, premium themes, plugins, caching and support, then you simply can’t go wrong with Bluehost.

Who Owns Bluehost?

In 2010, Bluehost was acquired by EIG. I know – this corporate group has a terrible reputation. And they certainly don’t give off the small “mom and pop” friendly vibe that many smaller hosting providers exude. But despite what you might have heard, there’s nothing horrifying under the surface. The customer service is 24×7 with live chat and phone support – something that many smaller providers don’t offer. While you might expect a Bluehost review to talk negatively about its integration with EIG, I don’t think it’s all bad.

Though I must point out that their e-mail address is rather hard to find. That might not be important to you as a customer since there are lots of other ways to get in touch – but it’s worth noting.

I was surprised to learn that Bluehost was started only 2003 by Matt Heaton and Danny Ashworth. For such a recent company, it’s mightily impressive to have grown so fast. Their origins in Utah still have an impact today, since that’s the location of their US datacenters. Speaking of which:

Bluehost Datacenter Information

Unlike other companies, Bluehost doesn’t easily provide details of where its datacenters are located. We have information that both the US based ones are located in Utah – and of course, they have servers located in other parts of the world as their subsidiaries like in India and China.

So while I’d love to provide more information about Bluehost’s datacenters like their hardware etc, that info is simply not made public.

Bluehost Cloud Hosting

This actually provides them with a solid competitive advantage – especially when it comes to their cloud hosting offerings. If you’re on a cloud plan, Bluehost will take advantage of its distributed infrastructure to serve content from the part of the world that’s closest to your customer. That’s a massive advantage – and it’s not something that all cloud hosting companies provide by default.

Bluehost claims its cloud offerings are faster than the competition. They even provide a chart comparing it to GoDaddy and MediaTemple. But that page has got to be outdated since GoDaddy wound up its cloud services a long time ago.

The cloud servers also allow your data to remain safe, and guarantees a solid uptime for your site. Your site data is distributed amongst three locations with a Varnish cache – so fast and safe.

About Bhagwad Park

I've been writing about web hosting and WordPress tutorials since 2008. I also create tutorials on Linux server administration, and have a ton of experience with web hosting products. Contact me via e-mail!