1and1 Hosting Reviews
What is 1&1 Ionos Hosting?
1&1 Ionos hosting is a rebranded version of 1and1 – a German web hosting company and domain registrar. Founded in 1988, they are among the oldest web hosting companies still in operations today.
With data centers across Europe and also in Lenexa, Kansas, USA, 1and1 is one of the world's largest hosting companies.
In late 2018, 1and1 rebranded to become 1&1 Ionos.
So it's got a new name – is it any good?
How Good is 1and1 Hosting?
1and1 is among the most widely known and longest running web hosting brands. They've been around since BEFORE Google existed – old.
I remember seeing their 6 pages of magazine ads plastered in business magazines – and I remember them looking so cheesy that I would never touch them.
They seem to have grown up, and may be worth a shot for 2019 and beyond.
But aside from that recognition, there isn't much to set them apart from the hundreds of other competitively priced and uniquely featured web hosts on the market today. While there are a handful of perks that come with signing up with 1and1, the user experience is frustrating and their reliability is nothing to boast about.
- Super cheap introductory pricing
- Unlimited disk space, websites, and bandwidth options
- Data recovery tool from the previous six days
- Manage 1and1 domain and hosting on one account
- No live chat support
- Confusing custom dashboard without cPanel
- No reseller options
- Uptime and speed performance are less than competitive
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Our Official 1and1 Hosting Review
That said, most of the good things about 1and1 hosting aren't anything to be blown away by. There is little that they offer that makes them unique or a leader in any category. And furthermore, we've found the user experience to be borderline maddening, on top of below average speeds and uptime performance. We recommend them if you already have a 1and1 domain, or if you highly prioritize extras like AdWords credits, or perhaps if you need to host a bunch of websites for very cheap. Otherwise, there are dozens of other companies that offer truly stellar services without as many frustrations.
Best Features of 1and1 Hosting
We may even go as far as to say that all of 1and1's best features are really just areas where they are just adequate. But a feature-by-feature breakdown of their most basic plan may actually point to them having the edge over other big brands like GoDaddy and HostGator.
Here are the industry standards that 1and1 meets without any problems:
1) Super Low Introductory Pricing
1and1 offers what is probably the best deal for first year customers on the web hosting market. While their most basic shared hosting plan costs a slightly-above-average $7.99 per month after the first year, your first year of hosting costs only $.99 per month. This even beats out ultra budget host WebHostingPad (at least for a year).
2) Unlimited Bandwidth, Websites, and Webspace
Especially when considered alongside the special introductory pricing, the promise of so many unlimited capabilities is incredibly tempting. One use case in which we'd absolutely recommend 1and1 would be if you needed to host a bunch of different websites for a short amount of time on a strict budget. In theory, you could do this with 1and1 Hosting for under a dollar a month. Neither GoDaddy or HostGator could do that for you.
Of course, the promise of unlimited bandwidth is only as good as the infrastructure backing it. And we'll have plenty more to say about 1and1's performance in the areas of speed and uptime a bit later. For another unlimited plan with a similar price point to 1and1's regular (non-introductory) pricing, check out DreamHost.
3) Domain Comes Free, Can be Managed under One Account
1and1 throws in a complimentary domain name with every web hosting package purchased. On top of that, 1and1 is one of the most commonly used domain registrars on the web. If you have ever purchased domain names from them before, you can seamlessly host those sites without creating an additional account or login.
4) Excellent Business Bonus Packages
Almost every hosting company offers some sort of business-oriented bonus package. The packages offered by 1and1 hosting compete with the best. Not only will you receive free credits for Google AdWords, Facebook, Bing, and Yahoo, but you'll also get an SSL certificate for free. 1and1 offers over a hundred popular site tools, like shopping carts, slideshows, and site builders, all of which take one click to install and are included in your plan. This is one very nice perk of getting in bed with a big corporation – they have connections and can afford to hand you lots of freebies.
5) 1and1 Participates in Green Hosting Efforts
These features don’t necessarily have anything to do with your experience with 1and1 hosting, but you can rest easy knowing that you’re working with the company that values its impact on the environment. Their data centers have been installed with a renewable energy source and practice completely paperless billing – a feature many people enjoy. They're no HostPapa, but we can appreciate their nod to greener business operations.
Downsides of 1and1 Hosting
But perks a great hosting service do not make! Here are some big issues that keep us from wholeheartedly recommending 1and1 hosting.
1) Customer Service is Quick, but Not Very Helpful
1and1 does offer 24/7 support over phone and email, and for the most part they are very quick to respond. The trouble is that their reps don't have a ton technical knowledge, and this really shows when you get them on the phone. If you have the wherewithal to walk them through and adequately describe your issue, you'll save a lot of back and forth time. But the reality is that most customers don't know the ins and outs of web hosting or exactly what issue is keeping their website down, they just know that something is broken and needs to be fixed.
The 1and1 customer service department also lacks a live chat support feature. It's a bit strange that such a large company with so many resources would be missing such a convenient and widely-used method for support.
Since 1and1 has been around for so long and serves so many customers, the web is littered with terrible reviews about them. The vast majority of these negative reviews point, unsurprisingly, to the customer service department. 1and1's reputation really proceeds them, and the reviews haven't improved over the years. This leads us to believe that customer service is something of an afterthought for them.
2) No cPanel, and their Dashboard is Confusing
1and1 chooses to forgo the industry standard for backend dashboards, cPanel. This isn't necessarily a con in and of itself. Plenty of highly recommendable hosts like Flywheel and Dreamhost use a custom dashboard. Afterall, cPanel isn't the most polished application around and it could be a bit easier to navigate. The issue is that 1and1's custom dashboard actually manages to be less attractive and much more confusing than cPanel. Firstly, the most prominent area of the dashboard itself is a menu of upsells. Secondly, none of the basic, most commonly used functions (like the File Directory, or WordPress Installs) are in clear view. At least with cPanel, it's so commonly used that there are plenty of resources online that can help you figure out what to do. This isn't really the case with 1and1, and calling customer service to sort out a simple issue like, “How do I add another domain to my account?” makes for a huge waste of time with lots of opportunity to be frustrated further.
3) Unimpressive Uptime & Speed
All issues with customer service and a confusing dashboard may be forgiven if 1and1 proved to be incredibly reliable and speedy. But the reality is that they're just average, perhaps even a bit below average lots of the time. 1and1's page loading times sit in the 700-800ms range, which puts them on the slow side of the bell curve. And while they stay true to their 99.9% uptime guarantee, they're nowhere near the ranks of ultra reliable hosts like Siteground or A2 Hosting.
It's hard to say no to unlimited websites and bandwidth for less than a dollar a month, but 1and1 gives plenty of other reasons to say no. You can get a lot of bang for your buck if you already own plenty of domains with them, but the frustrations related to their speed, user experience, and customer service will still persist.
1&1 Ionos Hosting Pricing & Plans
What are your options for 1&1 Ionos hosting?
It's confusing because every web host presents it differently. An your needs will differ based on what type of site you're building.
What we love about 1&1 Ionos is they lay out the plans pretty clearly actually. They're simple and to the point.
Here's a quick breakdown of the options:
|Websites||1||Up to 5||Up to 50|
|Storage||10 GB||100 GB||500 GB|
|Databases||10 (1 GB SSD)||25 (1 GB SSD)||50 (1 GB SSD)|
|Initial Performance Lvl||Basic||Lvl 1||Lvl 3|
|SiteLock Malware Protection||-||-||Yes|
|Content Delivery Network (CDN)||-||-||Yes|
|Best for||Starter sties||Large web projects||Multiple large web projects|
Our expert opinion? The plans are decent, but if you're on a specific platform like WordPress, these hosting plans are pretty basic and may not have all the features you want.
But if you want basic hosting, go for these!
And wow do they go into details if you really want it, here's us scrolling through the page:
1&1 Hosting Q&A's
1&1 is a hosting site that loves to work with individuals and businesses alike. If you own a small business or blog, you may have researched some different hosting sites available. This takes some of the most asked questions regarding 1&1, giving you more information to decide about a hosting site.
Where does 1&1 have offices?
What Windows hosting does 1&1 offer?
Is there an uptime guarantee?
Is it possible to hold multiple sites and domains on an account?
What are the support options?
Is there a money-back guarantee?
Are there one-click installers available?
Will 1&1 migrate an existing website?
What is the minimum contract for using 1&1?
What is the control panel that comes with the plan?
Would 1&1 be suitable for an ecommerce website?
Is 1&1 good for image hosting and galleries?
Can I get a CDN through 1&1?
What packages are the best for 1&1 basic web hosting?
Will 1&1 provide development support, once hosting start?
Does 1&1 provide a free web hosting plan?
What security measures are put in place?
What options are available for expansion?
What are the web hosting support system 1&1 offers?
How can I get into contact with 1&1 for help?
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