Cheapest hosting Ever : Ipage Review
Something about me : I am a freelancer and in the past few months, I have been lucky enough to have found some steady jobs maintaining servers for clients. While doing so, I have had the pleasure of working with many web hosting companies. (read: *spent hours with support chat crews*.) Some of these experiences have been good but some have actually been horrible. Fortunately, Ipage wasn’t one of them. I’ve had a pretty good experience with them, good up-times, satisfactory speeds and a decent support crew.
Now, for those of you tl;dr people, kindly jump to the last paragraph, I even have an info-graphic that you may like; although I would suggest you read it through as I’ve made this review very detailed. You’ll be spending a considerable amount on your hosting. I truly believe that the time spent reading reviews will be worth it. Believe me, as I said I’ve spent countless hours with support crews of Bluehost, Ipage, Hostgator, Tunkey Internet etc. You don’t want to get stuck with the wrong people.
Ipage has two types of Hosting Plans.
- Shared Hosting
- WordPress Hosting (Which is just shared hosting pre-configured for WordPress) [Reviewed here]
Why choose Ipage ?
This is something that I don’t need to debate. Ipage is the cheapest (and one of the few respectable) hosting network out there. Their starter plan starts from just $1.99 and that’s pretty cheap as compared to most other hosting networks. Below are two infographics that show the comparison of Ipage with other hosting networks. You may notice that some of them are not starter plans that’s because we have compared them based on the services provided.
Most web hosting networks use comparative pricing in order to gain more customers. Some hosts such as Bluehost (where I’m currently hosting my website) have plans where you only realize how much you’re paying once you reach the payment page. Just as an example, on Bluehost, their Worpress hosting is priced at $19.99. But once you reach the payment page, you realize that it’s only valid on a 3-year plan. For a 1-year plan it turns out to be $29.99 and a whooping $39.99 per month!!
Ipage is similar, yet different in their own way. Their plans are priced at $1.99 for their Essential plan and $3.75, $6.95 for their two WordPress hostings. These plans change by a meager $1 on changing to a 1-year contract. So, basically for a one-year contract, Ipage’s Essential plan will cost you $2.99/month (not the $1.99 that they claim). Personally speaking : After being made a fool of by many hosting networks, this is the maximum amount of honesty that anyone could achieve.
This is something that no other host provides for free. Sitelock makes sure that your website is always protected and while it may look like a very menial and dull thing right now, it is very important once your website starts getting a considerable amount of hits. Because, along with a large number of hits come unscrupulous individuals gunning for your databases and other website data. That is exactly when sitelock is most needed. Anyways, for most people beginning a new blog/online store/personal website or even a landing page, it is always good that there is someone protecting your website.
NOTE : If you are on a WP Essential hosting, Sitelock will not only protect your website, but it’ll also remove any malware if it manages to somehow cross their firewall (Which rarely happens). But as I said earlier, it’s always better to play it safe than regret at a later stage.
Good (not great) Uptime
Maybe not the best in the industry, maybe not even in the top 10, yet Ipage has a decent uptime. Ipage promises a 99.99% uptime and it delivers an approx 99.97%. It varied for me from 99.95% (April 2016) – 100% (March, September,November 2016). This uptime was pretty decent for most of my clients as a few seconds or maybe 1 minute of downtime didn’t hurt much. If you’re beginning a new website, this probably shouldn’t bother you either.
NOTE : This uptime was in respect to the Essential hosting plan, the uptime may vary for others.
Excellent response times
You need to realize that this is the cheapest hosting on the internet. Before testing the response times, I expected a modest 100ms of ping time and a modest ~2s of load time but that’s where Ipage finally made a mark. At such a cheap price, I was able to get a ~1s load time [This was done with proper caching and using the 2016 theme of WordPress].
A competent Support Staff
I had the fortune to contact Ipage support staff multiple times and there were usually waiting times of 2-3 minutes. Although I did once have to wait for 14+ minutes but that was an isolated incident which although was frustrating but I managed. Although, if you’re in serious problem, you may really regret going with them just because of these 14 minutes. So, this is one reason that you may want to look the other way.
What does Ipage offer?
Before ending my review, here is the info-graphic that I promised. It has basically been picked up from Ipage’s website but I’ll help you decipher what it means.
- Ok, so the first thing is Unlimited Disk Space which means everything except unlimited. It is just a gimmick used by most hosting providers to enhance their customer base. That being said, you’ll almost never cross that *unlimited* (read: Limited) disk space unless you use it to store your complete hard disk.
- Scalable Bandwidth again is the same thing. They haven’t given you a number but this will limit the number of pageviews per month. Whenever some random stranger opens your website from the other side of the globe, your server sends the html, css, js, php etc. which averages anywhere from 500kb to 1.5MB per page if you have everything optimized on your blog. Now, Ipage will notify you when they feel that you’re using too much of their resources for the amount you are paying. Again, this is very unlikely to happen.
UNLIMITED MySQL DATABASES :
Now here is where the magic happens. Every other hosting below $3 per month has a limit on the number of domains you can host, if not that, they limit the number of MySQL databases that you can host. That way, they may allow you to point 5-6 different domains to the same server but you’ll only be able to set up one website as you’ll only have one MySQL database.
The next two tabs named : “Design and Building Tools” and “Hosting Utilities and Settings” are pretty basic. Same as every other competitor; Ipage has nothing new here to show us.
Another cool thing is $100 Google Adwords and $100 Bing Search credits. Won’t help if you don’t have any advertising budget, but for someone with a mediocre budget, the $100 really help.
What happens if my website goes down? What happens if I don’t realize that my website is down for hours? Maybe even days? Don’t worry that’ll never happen because Ipage has 24×7 network monitoring, so whenever your server is down, they’ll notify you with an email and start working to get it back up.
The only drawback of Ipage
NO CPANEL…. Incase you didn’t know yet, CPanel is the industry standard panel for most hosting providers and it has got that credibility for a reason. CPanel has a very user-friendly and intuitive interface which makes it great even for those who don’t have the technical know-hows. Ipage has the second best alternative which is VDesk. After using CPanel, using VDesk wasn’t as fun. I had gotten used to CPanel but all in all, VDesk isn’t that bad. After using it for a bit, it was all cool.
Here’s the official Youtube video of them explaining the interface of VDesk on Ipage.
So, should you go with Ipage?
See, if you have a website that you already have running and is getting some good amount of hits, I’ll suggest you to not go with Ipage. BUT, if you’re a new blogger/website owner or you have a landing page for your business that you know won’t cross 25,000 pageviews/month. This is the hosting for you, period. (Plus, it’s damn cheap, I spend more at McDonald’s in a month than I’ll spend at this 1-year bill).
I’ve done a fair amount of Freelance work where some of my clients have asked me to suggest them hosting services and whenever one of them was a new blogger who was on a small budget, this is exactly where I’ve pointed them at. The reason being that Ipage is the most perfect hosting for newbies and even intermediately scaled websites.
I highly recommend Ipage for all those who are on a budget. Ipage’s service is pretty cheap and you can save some money here. This money can be better spent at other places. If you have a higher budget, I’d recommend you to go with Kinsta. Kinsta is the best hosting provider in the high-budget market.
P.S : Buy hosting from Ipage <<—– BIG scary affiliate link! Yes, that’s an affiliate link which means you buying a plan using this and other links will help me buy a box of cookies 🙂
P.P.S : I love Cookies (and cake) [and all other sweet things 😛 ]