Web Hosting Reviews Driven by Data, Not Dollars

I'm disgusted with fake webhosting "reviews." Since 2014, I've been tracking the results of real-life performance tests for downtime, speed & support at the world's most popular web hosting companies. You'll be shocked by the results...

Bluehost Review and Stats

Bluehost claims to have unbeatable technology, optimized hosting for wordpress, and genuine support. They have been around since 2003 and hosts over 2 million websites worldwide. Their data centers are located in Provo, Utah.

I have purchased a hosting plan on Bluehost and set up a typical web site. I use that example website to run these tests. Learn more about how I test.

Here's the plan information I chose:

Plan NameBasic Shared
Cost$9.99/month
Disk Space50 GB
BandwidthUnlimited
Uptime GuaranteeNone
Money-Back Guarantee30 days
NotesSite was ready within minutes after I purchased. Although when I signed up I was under the impression it was a monthly plan, but it was billed annually (at $83.40). They have called and left me several messages to 'verify' my account, but when I call back I'm placed on hold (so I hang up). I'm assuming they're just trying to upsell me, or my account will forever be in 'unverified' status.

On this page: Uptime | Speed | Support | Alternatives

Uptime Test

This test is performed by measuring the % uptime of a host. Higher is better.

I use Pingdom to report website uptime. Pingdom is configured to make an HTTP request to the host every minute, and report if it is unreachable. It'll also report an error if the host takes longer than 30 seconds to respond (Yes, that's not actually down, but if your site takes that long to respond it is unusable in my opinion). Pingdom performs this test from at least 3 servers worldwide, and reports a problem if 2/3 servers do no respond.

This test is important if you are concerned about the reliability of your web host (this is important!)

Measuring uptime with Pingdom

Bluehost Uptime Test Results

Bluehost performs okay in the Uptime test, with an average result of 99.94 percent. Its best run was 100.00 %, but has been as bad as 84.93 %. Bluehost's most recent result on May 22 was 100.00 percent. Bluehost had a terrible day back in August that's bringing their average uptime way down. Other than that they're usually pretty reliable.

Let's see if Bluehost is consistent in its uptime stats:

Recent Raw Results for Bluehost

Date Uptime Downtime Outages Avg Response Time
2018-05-22100.000 %0 mins0482 ms
2018-05-21100.000 %0 mins0497 ms
2018-05-20100.000 %0 mins0458 ms
2018-05-19100.000 %0 mins0459 ms
2018-05-18100.000 %0 mins0460 ms
2018-05-17100.000 %0 mins0458 ms
2018-05-16100.000 %0 mins0437 ms
2018-05-15100.000 %0 mins0439 ms
2018-05-14100.000 %0 mins0423 ms
2018-05-13100.000 %0 mins0409 ms
2018-05-12100.000 %0 mins0427 ms
2018-05-11100.000 %0 mins0421 ms
2018-05-10100.000 %0 mins0428 ms
2018-05-09100.000 %0 mins0430 ms
2018-05-08100.000 %0 mins0451 ms
2018-05-07100.000 %0 mins0489 ms
2018-05-06100.000 %0 mins0502 ms
2018-05-05100.000 %0 mins0510 ms
2018-05-04100.000 %0 mins0507 ms
2018-05-03100.000 %0 mins0496 ms
2018-05-02100.000 %0 mins0480 ms
2018-05-01100.000 %0 mins0447 ms
2018-04-30100.000 %0 mins0429 ms
2018-04-29100.000 %0 mins0434 ms
2018-04-28100.000 %0 mins0457 ms
2018-04-27100.000 %0 mins0447 ms
2018-04-26100.000 %0 mins0423 ms
2018-04-25100.000 %0 mins0430 ms
2018-04-24100.000 %0 mins0437 ms
2018-04-23100.000 %0 mins0411 ms
2018-04-22100.000 %0 mins0407 ms
2018-04-21100.000 %0 mins0437 ms
2018-04-20100.000 %0 mins0439 ms
2018-04-19100.000 %0 mins0480 ms
2018-04-18100.000 %0 mins0534 ms
2018-04-17100.000 %0 mins0541 ms
2018-04-16100.000 %0 mins0473 ms
2018-04-15100.000 %0 mins0457 ms
2018-04-14100.000 %0 mins0453 ms
2018-04-13100.000 %0 mins0463 ms
2018-04-12100.000 %0 mins0463 ms
2018-04-11100.000 %0 mins0444 ms
2018-04-10100.000 %0 mins0420 ms
2018-04-09100.000 %0 mins0414 ms
2018-04-08100.000 %0 mins0406 ms
2018-04-07100.000 %0 mins0429 ms
2018-04-06100.000 %0 mins0466 ms
2018-04-05100.000 %0 mins0499 ms
2018-04-04100.000 %0 mins0512 ms
2018-04-03100.000 %0 mins0514 ms
2018-04-02100.000 %0 mins0458 ms
2018-04-01100.000 %0 mins0466 ms
2018-03-31100.000 %0 mins0524 ms
2018-03-30100.000 %0 mins0526 ms
2018-03-29100.000 %0 mins0445 ms
2018-03-28100.000 %0 mins0438 ms
2018-03-27100.000 %0 mins0481 ms
2018-03-26100.000 %0 mins0472 ms
2018-03-25100.000 %0 mins0478 ms
2018-03-24100.000 %0 mins0500 ms

Page Speed Test

This test measures the total time it takes to load a standard web page. Lower is better.

This test is performed by submitting a typical web page served on the host to WebPageTest and recording how long it takes to load. This test web page is 56 KB of HTML, 287 KB of JavaScript, 51 KB of CSS, and 1,128 KB of images (these are typical according to the HTTP Archive). WebPageTest (a 3rd-party, vendor-neutral organization) uses servers located in Virgina and California to measure the page load waterfall in the latest version of Chrome, on a very fast internet connection. The test is ran 5 times each, and the middle (median) result is what is counted from each location. Then the east coast and west coast times are averaged, which should eliminate any bias due to server location. We're interested in first page load, not the repeat/cached view.

If you're really interested, I use the 'Load Time' measurement that's returned from WebPageTest for ranking page speed. I still collect other metrics such as TTFB (time to first byte), fully loaded time, and the speed index, in addition to server setting scores which are translated to grades. You can see these detailed values in the "Raw Results."

This test is important if your site resembles a typical website and you're concerned about speed (which you should be!)

Measuring page speed with WebPageTest.org


In September 2014 I updated this test to be more accurate, and you'll notice page speeds were a bit higher before then. The test used to be run only 3 times from one location using a simulated cable internet connection on Internet Explorer 11. The new method provides much more consistent results.

Bluehost Page Speed Test Results

Bluehost performs great in the Page Speed test, with an average result of 3.05 seconds. Its best run was 0.30 s, but has been as bad as 9.17 s. Bluehost's most recent result on Mar 23 was 2.38 seconds. Bluehost is usually pretty inconsistent with its page speeds - sometimes quicker than other hosts, sometimes slower. Its slowest times are usually when accessed from the east coast. While they do optimize connections and compress images, they fail to set caching properly for repeat views.

Let's see if Bluehost is consistent in its page speed stats:

Recent Raw Results for Bluehost

Date Location Load time TTFB Fully loaded Speed index Keep-alive Score Compress Score Caching Score
2018-05-23Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-05-22Dulles, VA2.3s0.3s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-05-21Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.4s0.7sAAF
2018-05-20Dulles, VA2.7s0.5s2.8s1.0sAAF
2018-05-19Dulles, VA2.8s0.2s2.9s1.2sAAF
2018-05-18Dulles, VA2.5s0.3s2.6s0.8sAAF
2018-05-17Dulles, VA2.7s0.5s2.8s1.0sAAF
2018-05-16Dulles, VA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.9sAAF
2018-05-15Dulles, VA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-05-14Dulles, VA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.9sAAF
2018-05-13Dulles, VA2.5s0.3s2.6s1.0sAAF
2018-05-12Dulles, VA2.5s0.3s2.6s1.0sAAF
2018-05-11Dulles, VA3.6s1.1s3.8s1.9sAAF
2018-05-10Dulles, VA3.2s0.8s3.3s1.4sAAF
2018-05-09Dulles, VA2.3s0.3s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-05-08Dulles, VA2.6s0.5s2.7s0.9sAAF
2018-05-07Dulles, VA2.4s0.2s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-05-06Dulles, VA3.2s0.3s3.3s0.9sAAF
2018-05-05Dulles, VA2.6s0.5s2.7s0.9sAAF
2018-05-04Dulles, VA2.5s0.5s2.6s1.0sAAF
2018-05-03Dulles, VA2.5s0.4s2.6s1.0sAAF
2018-05-02Dulles, VA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-05-01Dulles, VA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-04-30Dulles, VA3.0s0.3s3.0s0.9sAAF
2018-04-29Dulles, VA2.9s0.8s3.0s1.3sAAF
2018-04-28Dulles, VA2.4s0.2s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-04-26Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-04-25Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-04-24Dulles, VA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-04-23Dulles, VA2.4s0.2s2.5s0.9sAAF
2018-04-22Dulles, VA3.8s0.6s3.9s1.1sAAF
2018-04-21Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-04-20Dulles, VA2.6s0.4s2.7s1.0sAAF
2018-04-19Dulles, VA3.0s0.9s3.1s1.4sAAF
2018-04-18Dulles, VA2.5s0.3s2.6s0.9sAAF
2018-04-17Dulles, VA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-04-16Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-04-15Dulles, VA2.5s0.3s2.6s0.9sAAF
2018-04-14Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-04-13Dulles, VA2.5s0.3s2.6s0.9sAAF
2018-04-12Dulles, VA3.3s0.4s3.4s0.9sAAF
2018-04-11Dulles, VA2.5s0.4s2.6s0.9sAAF
2018-04-10Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-04-09Dulles, VA3.0s0.5s3.1s0.9sAAF
2018-04-08Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.5s0.9sAAF
2018-04-07Dulles, VA2.6s0.3s2.7s1.0sAAF
2018-04-06Dulles, VA2.5s0.3s2.6s0.9sAAF
2018-04-05Dulles, VA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-04-05San Jose, CA2.3s0.3s2.4s0.7sAAF
2018-04-04Dulles, VA2.6s0.4s2.7s1.0sAAF
2018-04-04San Jose, CA2.5s0.3s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-04-03Dulles, VA2.4s0.2s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-04-03San Jose, CA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.7sAAF
2018-04-02Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.4s0.9sAAF
2018-04-02San Jose, CA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.7sAAF
2018-04-01Dulles, VA3.2s0.3s3.3s0.8sAAF
2018-04-01San Jose, CA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-03-31Dulles, VA2.3s0.2s2.4s0.8sAAF
2018-03-31San Jose, CA2.4s0.3s2.5s0.8sAAF
2018-03-30Dulles, VA2.7s0.6s2.1s1.1sAAF

Does Bluehost Suck?

Some people may think Bluehost sucks. Here are some real benchmarks to show you Bluehost's speed, reliability, and support - so you can see if they really do suck.

Is Bluehost slow?

This test measures the total time it takes to load a standard web page. Lower is better. Learn more about the Page Speed Test.

Bluehost performs stellar in the Page Speed test, with an average result of 3.05 seconds. Its best run was 0.30 s, but has been as bad as 9.17 s. Bluehost's most recent result on Mar 23 was 2.38 seconds. Bluehost is usually pretty inconsistent with its page speeds - sometimes quicker than other hosts, sometimes slower. Its slowest times are usually when accessed from the east coast. While they do optimize connections and compress images, they fail to set caching properly for repeat views.

Let's take a look at some of the times that Bluehost had some poor page speed performance:

Date Location Load time TTFB Fully loaded Speed index Keep-alive Score Compress Score Caching Score
None found!

Is Bluehost unreliable?

This test is performed by measuring the % uptime of a host. Higher is better. Learn more about the Uptime Test.

Bluehost performs mediocre in the Uptime test, with an average result of 99.94 percent. Its best run was 100.00 %, but has been as bad as 84.93 %. Bluehost's most recent result on May 22 was 100.00 percent. Bluehost had a terrible day back in August that's bringing their average uptime way down. Other than that they're usually pretty reliable.

Let's take a look at some of the times that Bluehost had some poor uptime performance:

Date Uptime Downtime Outages Avg Response Time
None found!

Does Bluehost's have poor customer service?

This test measures how quickly the host's support team responds to your request. Lower is better. Learn more about the Support Response Test.

Bluehost performs pretty poorly in the Support Response test, with an average result of 34.7 hours. Its best run was 0.1 h, but has been as bad as 168.0 h. Bluehost's most recent result on Mar 2016 was 168.0 hours. Bluehost is pretty inconsistent in its response times. I've seen instances where they get back to you in minutes, and other times I've had to wait days.

Let's take a look at some of the times that Bluehost had some poor support response performance:

Date Support Ticket Submitted Support Ticket Resolved Response Time
2016-03-22Mar 10, 4:18pmOver 7 days168.0 hours
2014-11-28Nov 28, 4:31pmDec 1, 1:02pm68.4 hours
2014-10-26Oct 26, 10:53amOct 28, 12:41pm49.0 hours
2014-08-09Aug 9, 2:41pmAug 10, 8:20am17.7 hours

Still think Bluehost sucks?

I've presented you with lots of data that will show you whether or not Bluehost sucks. So, what do you think? Are they reliable, fast, and helpful? If not, consider these Bluehost alternatives.

Support Response Test

This test measures how quickly the host's support team responds to your request. Lower is better.

I personally contact each host's support department with a new question/concern and measure how long it takes for them to get back to me.

This test is important for every host - it's imperative your web host is able to quickly address your concerns in a timely manner, even if you're an expert webmaster. Who wants to deal with a host that has poor customer service? Tech is hard, and tech support is critical!

Measuring a host's support response speed

Bluehost Support Response Test Results

Bluehost performs under par in the Support Response test, with an average result of 34.7 hours. Its best run was 0.1 h, but has been as bad as 168.0 h. Bluehost's most recent result on Mar 2016 was 168.0 hours. Bluehost is pretty inconsistent in its response times. I've seen instances where they get back to you in minutes, and other times I've had to wait days.

Let's see if Bluehost is consistent in its support response stats:

Recent Raw Results for Bluehost

Date Support Ticket Submitted Support Ticket Resolved Response Time
2016-03-22Mar 10, 4:18pmOver 7 days168.0 hours
2015-02-24Feb 24, 3:25amFeb 24, 3:38am0.2 hours
2015-01-27Jan 27, 5:49amJan 27, 11:42am5.9 hours
2014-12-20Dec 20, 2:48pmDec 20, 2:57pm0.2 hours
2014-11-28Nov 28, 4:31pmDec 1, 1:02pm68.4 hours
2014-10-26Oct 26, 10:53amOct 28, 12:41pm49.0 hours
2014-09-06Sept 6, 6:44pmSept 6, 6:46pm0.1 hours
2014-08-09Aug 9, 2:41pmAug 10, 8:20am17.7 hours
2014-07-12July 13, 2:01pmJuly 13, 4:30pm2.5 hours

Bluehost Alternatives: Better speed, reliability, and support

Are you having problems with Bluehost? It's not uncommon to want to change to a better host if your current host has issues with being slow, down, or unsupportive.

Let's see if we can find a Bluehost competitor that has better uptime, faster load times, and speedier support.

Hosts faster than Bluehost

This test measures the total time it takes to load a standard web page. Lower is better. Learn more about the Page Speed Test.

If Bluehost is having page speed problems, consider these alternative hosts that score better:

Hosts more reliable than Bluehost

This test is performed by measuring the % uptime of a host. Higher is better. Learn more about the Uptime Test.

If Bluehost is having uptime problems, consider these alternative hosts that score better:

Hosts more helpful than Bluehost

This test measures how quickly the host's support team responds to your request. Lower is better. Learn more about the Support Response Test.

If Bluehost is having support response problems, consider these alternative hosts that score better:

Bluehost Versus Other Hosts

If you're trying to decide between Bluehost and another host, here's are some specific comparisons that will show you the differences in detail:

FTC Disclaimer

Yes, I do use affiliate links on this site to help cover the cost of testing and $1000+ per year in server charges. Results are 100% unbiased and never skewed to favor a higher commission. Thanks for understanding :)

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