Last year, I signed up for Bluehost (owned by EIG) mainly because they had a nice Black Friday deal. I can’t remember what the exact offer was but it was around $40 for a whole year of hosting. At that time I needed a host for one of my new projects (a sports blog/info site), so I thought it was the perfect opportunity to try Bluehost!
First impressions were so-so. Speed wasn’t good, but it was tolerable back then so I went ahead and continued with my site setup. I managed the site for the first two months and I didn’t really have any problems except for the “just ok” speed (site loading time and FTP upload/download). Everything else went smooth and the site started getting regular traffic. Eventually, I had my friend take over to post updates and such because I figured I didn’t have much time to devote to that particular project.
Fast forward to a month after my friend’s takeover. Good news: the site had established a loyal following. Bad news: a lot of the regular visitors were complaining about how horrible the site’s loading speed was. They were emailing us and telling us that loading almost every other page results in a server timeout. I checked to see for myself. Guess what, the site which was running on WordPress took over 10 seconds to load! I thought it was caused by a temporary spike so I decided to try again the next day, during off-peak times. (And even then, a 10-second loading time for any site is unforgivable!) Unfortunately the sluggishness remained so I decided to contact Bluehost about this to ask what was wrong.
Bluehost Support = Bluehost Marketing Team
Waiting time was around 15 minutes and to be honest I don’t even want to talk much about the “support” I got. It was a very frustrating experience since the support rep didn’t seem to want to help me with the actual issue. Instead, he focused on pressuring me into getting a VPS which I knew I didn’t need. After all, the site was only getting 300-500 visits a day and it wasn’t using too much bandwidth.
Instead of upgrading to Bluehost’s VPS, I decided to move the site to another shared host and everything’s been peaceful since then.
December 2013 – Slower than a Turtle
Sec guys, I’m not yet done. This Bluehost review isn’t over yet, as I’ve yet to tell you more about my experience with them. One of my clients currently has his site on Bluehost. I’ve been having problems updating his WordPress site lately because, well, I couldn’t finish updating his site! Every time I hit the Update or Publish button, the page doesn’t load so I’m forced to hit the back button and try to save the changes again. It’s a game of chance, really. Sometimes I get to successfully save an article, most of the time I don’t.
Just a few days ago I told my client he had to switch to another host if he wanted me to continue working on his site because I wouldn’t be willing to if he stayed with Bluehost. The slowness is that maddening. To further illustrate my point, I’ve uploaded two identical sites on different hosts to test. I uploaded one to his Bluehost account and another to my MDDHosting account. Both servers are located in the US.
Site on Bluehost (Datacenter in Provo, Utah)
Site on MDDHosting (Datacenter in Denver, Colorado)
A 4-second difference is too much for the same exact site. It seems he immediately understood and he agreed to cancel his account and transfer elsewhere. The only problem now is it seems Bluehost doesn’t want my client to leave just yet. The billing department is being a pain; it’s been days and we have yet to hear from them. While waiting on the account cancellation and refund, I decided to get the backups ready for transfer. As of this very moment I’m downloading a whole cPanel backup of his account.
15kbps?! Did I travel back to the 90s? I mean, that’s just slow. And before you even mention it — I’m 100% sure it’s not my Internet connection.
Don’t waste your money on this EIG host. They overload, their servers are slow, their support team is in the decline. I feel like their support reps were specifically trained to sell upgrades and not to help with actual account issues. You may also want to take note that they only have annual payment terms (not monthly) so if you sign up with them and decide to cancel early on, you’ll have to go through the hassle of cancelling your account and getting a refund from them.