Hostinger is a great web host for beginners! Their outstanding support team will guide you if you have any problems with your site, they’ve got excellent features, and their introductory prices are the lowest in the market. Great value for money! Learn more.
Hostinger Review – The 9 Pros & 2 Cons (Server Speed & Uptime Tested, 3 Sites!)
February 16, 2020
We just finished speed testing and messing about with our Hostinger test sites, and brother, we CANNOT wait to share our findings with you *spoiler alert – our lust for speed is sated*!
But first, let’s delve a little bit into how Hostinger came about as a web host.
A long time ago in the faraway city of Kaunas, Lithuania, a small company by the name of “Hosting Media” was formed, with dreams of making waves in the web hosting industry. 6 years and 1 million users later, that dream was realized and the company formally changed their name to Hostinger.
Since then, Hostinger hasn’t stopped growing. They’ve set up shop in 39 countries, established 6 data centers all around the globe (with one more being built in their home country of Lithuania), have accumulated over 29 million users as of 2017, and they show no signs whatsoever of slowing down.
They aim to help their users learn, create, and grow, and they might have done just that with their level of services and crazy affordable prices.
Why Speed is Important To Us
If you’ve been following our blogs and reviews, you’d know that we like our web hosting like we like our cars: Fast & flashy! Well, maybe not flashy but we sure like ‘em fast!
We place so much importance in web hosting speed because the lack of speed is without a doubt, the number 1 cause of death for many small businesses. Unlike corporate giants, every single sale counts for small entrepreneurs, and we simply can’t afford to lose customers due to avoidable problems like slow web hosting.
These days, your customers expect your site to load in less than one second! Anything above that increases the bounce rate by a staggering 32%, and everything just starts falling apart if there’s a wait time of more than 5 seconds.
To keep our audiences happy, we’ve developed the habit of treating them like impatient 2-year-olds; we find ways to give them whatever they want, as soon as they want it, or they’ll start wailing. In our case, we deliver data to our audiences in under a second because we don’t want them to abandon our site and carts, which is why we’re drawn to web hosting that responds exceptionally fast.
In this article, we review our 3 Hostinger Premium Shared Hosting plans (one in Singapore, another in the US and one more in Europe) just so we could see how fast they respond and if they would be the right fit for you, our dear readers.
To ensure that we’ve accumulated sufficient data to write this review, we’ve created 3 test sites. The data centers for our test sites are located across 3 continents (Asheville NC, Amsterdam, and Singapore) so you’ll be able to judge how they perform in locations closest to your customers.
So enough of our rambling, let’s get on to why you’re reading this article in the first place:
9 Reasons Why Hostinger Is The Right Host For You!
1. Hostinger is REALLY fast
We put our Hostinger US test site through a speed stress test using our proprietary server speed checker (still the best and only server speed checker in the world #shamelessplug), benchmarking it against Google’s recommendation of 200 ms, and here are the results.
US Datacenter Average Speed: 143.1 ms
Ladies and gentlemen, the speed test results of our Hostinger US test site came back with a worldwide average of a blazing fast 143 ms, which ranks them as one of our A+ top tier hosts!
Next, we tested our Hostinger Singapore site to see how it responds to pings from all over the world
Singapore Datacenter Average Speed: 175.8 ms
If you intend to cater to audiences in Asia (and Australia / New Zealand), you’ll be happy to know that Hostinger returned a stupid fast response of 5 ms from Singapore, with an average speed of 176 ms around the world. Hostinger Singapore gets an A+ ranking from us.
Last but not least, we’ve got our Hostinger EU site to evaluate.
Netherlands Datacenter Average Speed: 165 ms
For those of you targeting European markets, Hostinger would be one of the fastest web hosts for you. 54 ms from London, those are really impressive speeds! Hostinger Europe is equally speedy like their Singapore and American counterparts, and they returned decent worldwide average speeds of 165 ms, which means that they’re ranked a solid A+!
If you study our test results, you might be a little concerned that locations far away from their designated data centers aren’t that great. That’s actually quite normal as the data has to travel further to get to their target destination.
This should be a non issue though, because Hostinger has a grand total of 6 datacenters across the globe, namely in the USA, EU, Brazil, Netherlands, Singapore & Indonesia (there’s 1 more being built in their home country of Lithuania). Just pick data center closest to your users and they’ll get to enjoy your site’s breakneck loading speeds in all its glory!
2. 99.9% uptime guarantee!
Few people out there take uptime guarantee seriously, but to us it can make or break our opinions on a web host. Small business sites need to be up as much as possible, as any sort of downtime means loss of potential sales.
Extended downtimes can lead to our sites losing rank on Google, which is bad news for the business.
While some web hosting companies provide uptime guarantee, some of them can be rather sketchy, sliding in terms like “release of payment is up to our due discretion” which means that they can choose not to reimburse whatever they guaranteed.
We combed through Hostinger’s TOS and found no traces of such nonsense.
If your site’s downtime dips below 99.9% due to Hostinger’s faults, just contact them to get 5% of your monthly fee back.
So far, we’ve been happy with Hostinger’s uptime!
Uptime since March 2019
Hostinger Asheville NC's Uptime
Uptime since March 2019
Hostinger Netherlands Uptime
Uptime since March 2019
Hostinger Singapore's Uptime
The counters above are updating constantly. The uptime is monitored with UptimeRobot every 5 minutes.
3. Faster loading with cache manager
We’re just so happy that Hostinger has come up with so many ways of improving loading speeds. One of them is their very own Cache Manager. Enabling it allows for quicker load times and improved speeds!
Here’s what you need to do to turn it on.
Enter hPanel and hit “Manage” on the site you want to turn it on. Scroll down to “Advanced”. You’ll see “Cache Manager” listed as one of the options. Click on “Cache Manager”
Once you’re inside, all you have to do is click on “Change” and you should see the “Automatic Cache” button turn green, indicating that it’s On. Click on “Purge All”, and you’re good to go!
We ran some tests on our Hostinger test site using webpagetest.org, to see how it performs with Cache Manager on here are the results:
Our test sites are stock installs, super light with no optimizations so there’s not much that Cache Manager can do. However, Cache Manager’s effect will be amplified once the site has more content and images.
4. Awesome benefits that increase SPEED!
Our Hostinger Premium Shared account came with an entire list of benefits, all of which improves speed one way or another. Here are some of our favourites!
- 1-Click Installer
This feature made installing our favourite apps so much more convenient. Gone were the days where we had to manually do everything. With this feature, 1 click is all you need to get your favourite apps installed.
- PHP7 Support
If you’re a developer, you’ll be pleased to know that Hostinger has PHP7 support! PHP7 is one of the biggest PHP releases in the over 10 years and it is MUCH FASTER than its predecessor, PHP5. In benchmarks tests run with Drupal and WordPress, PHP7 is easily twice as fast as PHP5.6.
- Git Support
Git is a very powerful tool that everyone’s heard about but not a lot of people know what it actually does. So, long story short, git is an open source version control system, created so that developers can work together on their projects in a fast and efficient manner, no matter how large or small.
Git is so popular that it is used by many large corporations, like Google, Microsoft, Facebook, and even Netflix!
It may not matter much to you, but If you’re gonna hire developers to build something for your small business, they’ll be very glad that your web host supports Git. It just makes the problem-solving process so much smoother!
- Optimized for WordPress
Hostinger’s shared hosting plans come with the latest versions of WordPress, and is custom-optimized to deliver some of the fastest loading speeds in the industry. Just FYI, there’s a reason that WordPress powers 30% of the internet (they’re just that damn good!) so we highly recommend it for your small business!
- Cutting Edge NGINX Caching
Another reason why you should be using WordPress with Hostinger is their NGINX caching. It significantly boosts WordPress performance by turbocharging the loading speed of static content via the streamlining of data.
Or in other words, HTTP 2.0. It’s the spiritual successor to HTTP1, and is much faster, secure, and easier to use.
HTTP/2 works by delivering data via binary code. This reduces data size and improves speed, and your users will feel a significant improvement in your site load performance!
5. Excellent Custom Dashboard
Hostinger is one of the very few web hosting companies with cajones big enough to mess with the UI of cPanel. Better yet, they managed to get everything done right.
Branded hPanel, Hostinger’s custom dashboard is clean, a breeze to use and very intuitive. All the features are sorted by categories, and their well designed minimalistic icons give an almost Muji like feel to the dashboard. You get the feeling that there’s a place for everything and everything is in its place. It’s so intuitive that i think someone with no experience will be able to use hPanel quite effectively.
Kudos to Hostinger’s UI & UX team for their excellent custom dashboard!
6. Responsive support (they’re fun too!)
Sometimes, communicating with a web hosting company’s support team can make one want to physically reach through the phone and strangle the useless donkey on the other line. Other times, it can pleasant, productive, and even downright awesome. We are pleased to say that from our experience with Hostinger’s support team, they belong to the latter category.
We didn’t get a chance to submit a ticket (our installs went off without a hitch) so we just contacted their live chat to see how they responded to some basic issues, and we were impressed!
Not only did the support team respond to us almost immediately (we had to wait a few seconds, but that’s pretty amazing considering we had to wait close to 30 mins with some other web hosting), they were knowledgeable, patient, and get this – they were FUN. They will also hold your hand and soothe your troubled soul as they assist you in fixing your problems step by step.
If Hostinger got one thing right, it’s their support interface:
We get to communicate with gifs and emojis (which some may say is a gimmick, but we can see how this can lessen the frustration when dealing with complicated matters), and we can send attachments! This is great for the times when a picture is better than a thousand words.
We’re not the only ones that share the same level of enthusiasm about Hostinger’s support. Here are some actual examples of what other customers had to say about their experience with Hostinger’s support team:
The support team actually practices a “zero-tier support system” (unofficial name, don’t quote us on this) whereby each of their team members are trained to answer every single query without forwarding to upper tier support. This results in extremely fast problem solving, as they don’t have to waste time connecting you to upper tier support to solve your issues.
The Lithuanian support team hard at work
Another great thing about their support is that they’re very localised! The support team serves 20 countries from their 4 support centers in their native language so locals have an easier time communicating with the team, and they’re planning to include more localised languages! The GIF below accurately mirrors my response when I first found out.
7. Free Domain!
If you folks didn’t already know, to start your website, you need to buy a domain name from a domain registrar on top of paying for web hosting. Little expenses like these can add up and snowball, and it can really hurt small business owners especially when they’re just starting out.
Getting a free domain name from your web hosting can really help, and Hostinger is truly making a difference by supporting new entrepreneurs by giving a domain for free!
The only thing is that with domains, you’ll also want to get WHOIS protection which protects your online identity. Some domain registrars like Namecheap provides WHOIS protection for free, but this isn’t the case with all registrars. More often than not, you’ll have to pay for it, and unfortunately, this is the case with Hostinger.
But look on the bright side – you’ll be getting a FREE DOMAIN! Paying $5 a year for WHOIS protection really is peanuts compared to that. It’s a worthy investment!
8. Unlimited Features!
As if everything else on this list isn’t impressive enough already, Hostinger’s Premium Plan continues to impress with their entire list of unlimited features. Let’s have a look at some of them.
- Unlimited Websites
With just 1 account, Hostinger allows you to build as many websites as you could possibly want!
- Unlimited SSD Storage
What’s the use of being able to host unlimited websites if storage is limited, right? Hostinger recognizes this and offers us unlimited SSD storage, so we can actually make use of our unlimited websites with the advantage of SSD speeds!
- Unlimited Bandwidth
You don’t have to worry about site downtime down due to unusually high traffic with Hostinger Premium. You’re given unlimited bandwidth so you can cater to as many users as you want!
- Unlimited Email
I mentioned previously that the costs of running a small online business can easily snowball. Email service is one of those costs. Fortunately, with their Premium Plan, we get to create unlimited email addresses to suit our needs, all hosted with our unlimited SSD Storage!
Gone are the days where you have to plan your CronJobs carefully because you’re limited to a certain amount of Cronjobs. Hostinger’s Premium Plan allows unlimited Cronjobs so you can go to town with your scripts!
9. Great Introductory Price
Last but not least, Hostinger’s introductory prices are really what sets this web hosting company apart from the competition.
Hostinger has almost all of the same features as a premium web host, but at a fraction of the price; our Premium Plan only costs $2.15/month, and their entry level Single plan is only $0.80/month, while our current favourite web host, SiteGround, charges $3.95 for their entry level account. We actually did some comparisons, but we’ll get into it later in this article.
In terms of value, we have to say that Hostinger provides one of the best bang for your buck in the industry, especially for those that are just starting out!
Things we were disappointed with Hostinger
So far, we really like Hostinger as a web host but it’s just not realistic if we say that they’ve got no flaws. Here are some of the things we weren’t too pleased about.
1. No daily backup
The lack of this feature broke my heart and made me cry a little inside. We were so accustomed to daily backups with other web hosting that the lack of it made us feel a little insecure.
Good thing is that this feature can be bought at $0.95/month. It sucks that it doesn’t come free with the account, but think of it this way – Hostinger’s introductory prices are already the lowest in the market. They deserve to make a little more money off certain features.
2.No free SSL
An SSL certificate is really important because it establishes a secure connection between your customer and your site. This creates trust, prompting them to feel more secure when making purchases from you. It’s also the thing that puts the “S” in “https” which helps instill confidence in your site (how likely are you to make any transactions when you don’t see “https”?).
Google will also display the text “this site is not secure” when loading any sites without SSL in the Chrome browser, which makes it less likely for people to buy things off your site.
SSL is also one of the easiest ways to boosts your site’s SEO rankings, hence the importance we place on the feature. It sucks that Hostinger doesn’t have it for free, but here’s a little tip – hop on over to Cloudflare and sign up for an account to get free SSL. Problem solved!
Hostinger’s Plans & Features
Hostinger has a variety of plans that are suitable for all sorts of users, from bloggers, small businesses to enterprise users.
No. of Site
* Hostinger’s CRAZY introductory price! It requires 48-mo subscriptions though.
Hostinger’s Cloud Hosting plans are as easy and simple to use as their shared hosting options, except that they come with features that are more powerful. It seems like they’ve combined the best features of VPS and Shared Hosting to create their excellent Cloud Hosting Plans.
You’ll get to enjoy free daily backup, free SSL for life, embedded Cloudflare protection dedicated IP…basically, the works. With their 24/7 dedicated fully managed support, you practically won’t have to worry about the backend at all, as Hostinger will take care of all that for you.
* All Hostinger Cloud plans are fully managed & comes with hPanel
However, since the admins will be the ones managing the backend, you won’t have access to your server or change your OS. Small price to pay for such a convenient feature.
Your resources are limited but dedicated (meaning you won’t have to share them with other users) and their inclusion of CDN makes for lightning fast site load speeds. If you feel the need to, you can upgrade from their shared hosting plan to a cloud hosting account seamlessly, without any downtime to your site, whatsoever.
We’re actually quite impressed with Hostinger’s Cloud Hosting, and we’d highly recommend it if you’re in the market for a cloud hosting account!
At this time of writing, Hostinger has a massive discount for their Cloud Hosting options starting from $7.45/month to $27.45/month (expect to pay more than 79% more during non-sale periods) so if you’re thinking about getting a Cloud Hosting account, now’s as good a time as ever!
Those of you looking for VPS Hosting will get to enjoy Hostinger’s outstanding VPS options. Touted to be up to 30% faster than most standard shared hosting options with no downtime whatsoever, we can see why Hostinger’s VPS hosting is attractive for enterprise users.
Hostinger’s VPS plans are actually quite similar to their Cloud Hosting Accounts, with the main difference being back end management. While Cloud Hosting users get to enjoy fully managed service, VPS customers will have root access which means more customizability. The trade off is that all updates and server maintenance has to be done by the user.
Their entry level option for VPS hosting only costs $3.95/month, and is perfect for those of you that are just getting your feet wet. When you feel that you’ve outgrown the services of their entry level plan, you’re free to upgrade to a plan that’ll better suit your needs.
How Does Hostinger Hold Up Against The Competition?
We can’t call this a comprehensive review without putting the star of the show up against a few of our favourite web hosts, can we? So we’ve taken the time to compare Hostinger with a few other web hosts to see which might be a better choice for you.
Hostinger Premium VS SiteGround GrowBig
We tested these two test sites for speed with our proprietary server speed checker to see how they would perform against each other, and the results are actually quite interesting.
Check it out:
Before we break down the results, we’ve got to say that both web hosts performed very well, both of them scoring worldwide averages of below 200 ms which ranks them as our top A+ web hosts for speed!
Speed wise, I think we can all agree that both web hosts are at the top of the game with Hostinger giving us a worldwide average of 176 ms vs SiteGround’s 160 ms. They performed exceptionally well in Asian countries, both scoring below 100 ms in Japan, Bangalore and Singapore.
They didn’t perform quite as well in London, US East, US west and Sao Paulo due to the data center location (which is in Singapore) but the speeds are still very respectable.
Personally, I feel that these two web hosting companies are unbelievably responsive and quick, but we can’t really count them as equals because speed isn’t the only thing that makes both companies such great web hosts.
SiteGround is a premium, all inclusive web host with excellent features, perfect for small-large business websites. Thing is, excellence doesn’t come for free and subscribers will have to pay quite a bit for SiteGround’s renewals.
Hostinger on the other hand, is an easy to use basic web hosting, best for beginners, small businesses, and entrepreneurs. Good thing about Hostinger is that it allows users to upgrade to get premium features, hence their super low introductory price.
They’re both fantastic web hosting companies, super fast with crazy good benefits, targeted at different demographics.
Hostinger vs HostGator (Cloud Hosting)
Hostgator has a custom dashboard which is known for being aesthetically pleasing and easy to use. The problem with their custom dashboard is that there are limitations to it, which drove us to prefer hPanel with Hostinger instead.
Hostinger’s custom hPanel dashboard very pleasing to the eye, and neater compared to HostGator. Everything is nicely categorized, and most importantly, we didn’t feel like we lost any function whatsoever.
Custom dashboard aside, Hostinger and Hostgator’s Cloud options are actually quite similar in terms of speed and features. Hostinger Cloud is slightly more expensive (Hostinger cloud starts from $7.45 while Hostgator Cloud starts from $4.95), but if you compare what you get from Hostinger and Hostgator, you’ll see that the benefits do reflect the price, dollar for dollar.
HostGator Cloud plans & pricing
Hostinger Cloud plans & pricing
The biggest difference would be dedicated IP. While HostGator only offers free dedicated IP with their their top tier plan, you get free dedicated IP with all of Hostinger Cloud’s plans.
As with our SiteGround comparison earlier, we have to say that although Hostinger Cloud and HostGator Cloud are very similar, they target different kinds of demographics.
If you ask us about preference though, we’d have to say that we very much prefer Hostinger Cloud. Aside from being an easier to use fully managed service, we had a much better experience with their hPanel dashboard. Also, we’ve got nothing but good things to say about Hostinger’s support team, while Hostgator’s support team can be questionable sometimes.
Verdict: Is Hostinger the right Web Host for you?
After messing about with our test sites, playing with the features and getting an overall feel of Hostinger’s web hosting services, we’ve gotta say that Hostinger truly is a very solid host!
Their user interface is easy to use, they’ve got convenient 1-click set ups for WordPress (and other popular apps) and their server response times can hold its own against some of our top tier A+ ranked web hosts.
We found their service to be incredibly beginner friendly, thanks to their outstanding support team! Trained with their “zero-tier support” system, they’ll gladly guide you step-by-step in solving any issues you encounter.
Compared to our favourite web hosting company, SiteGround, we found that Hostinger’s speed is on par with SiteGround leading by a little bit. It’s important to note that these two companies serve very different markets.
If you’re just starting out or thinking about getting your feet wet in the blogging business, you won’t have to worry about a thing when going with Hostinger. Their excellent services combined with their insanely low price points makes them the host with the best value for money. If you find that you’re not getting enough down the road, you’ll always have the option to upgrade to premium features!
- ✓ Unlimited storage
- ✓ Unlimited bandwidth
- ✓ hPanel
- ✓ Free domain
- ✓ Great support
- ✓ Git, PHP7, 1-Click Installer
- • Beginners
- • Joomla, Drupal, WordPress
- • Small-medium businesses
- • Professional/personal Blog
- • Affiliate marketers