Namecheap Review: Robust, Low-Cost Web Hosting for Bloggers
Namecheap Hosting is one of the most popular hosting and domain name providers in the world. It’s incredibly affordable, you can’t go wrong with its uptime guarantee, and the company has made a habit of providing good customer support.
But, are they the right choice for hosting your site? Keep reading to learn more.
What Kind of Hosting Does Namecheap Offer?
Namecheap offers most types of hosting. To begin, Namecheap has some of the most affordable shared hosting on the internet. But the other forms of hosting they offer are affordable, too.
If you’re interested in more control over your server, Namecheap has VPS hosting to gain root access. The dedicated servers are top tier, and they’re are most often used by large companies. In addition, Namecheap sells domain names, apps, and private email hosting. You can migrate to Namecheap for free and get a free domain name SSL option.
It’s pretty much a one-stop shop with great pricing. In fact, you can get shared hosting for less than a domain name for the first year. They also offer WhoIsGuard and Premium DNS services, but those are completely optional when signing up for whichever hosting plan you need.
Features and Affordability
The main hosting solution from Namecheap comes in the form of shared hosting. We like shared hosting for smaller websites with lower traffic since you shouldn’t have to worry about performance in a shared environment. What’s cool about Namecheap is that you can scale up as your site grows. So, if you think you’d like better performance, control, or security, you can opt for a VPS or dedicated server.
What’s cool about Namecheap is that you can scale up as your site grows. So, if you think you’d like better performance, control, or security, you can opt for a VPS or dedicated server.
With the shared hosting from Namecheap, you can decide to go with a WordPress-specific plan, too. The WordPress hosting has one standard price, while the regular shared hosting has a few plans. The WordPress plan includes assistance and tools for launching with the WordPress CMS, specifically.
As for general shared hosting, Namecheap offers four plans. The plans are only sold as yearly packages, and they are extremely cheap compared to their competition. In fact, the first year of Namecheap shared hosting might even be cheaper than the average domain name.
After the first year, you can expect the yearly pricing to go up, but it’s still a pretty good deal compared to other options on the market.
The company also gives you the opportunity to choose where you’d like to host your website. Namecheap has datacenters in the US and the UK, so make your decision based on that. You don’t have to live in one of those countries, but it’s best to select the one closest to you and your site visitors.
As for the features that come along with the shared hosting plans, you have plenty to take advantage of including at least 20 GB of accelerated SSD disk space, unlimited bandwidth for all plans, support for at least three websites, cPanel, a 100% uptime guarantee, support for subdomains, unlimited parked domains for all plans, and at least 50 FTP users. Other features include:
Other features include:
- One-click installations for programs like WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal
- Twice a week backups for all packages
- Over 100 free apps
- Support for several email accounts and webmail
- At least 50 MySQL databases
- A virus and malware scanner
- Dashboard stats for your websites
The 14-day money back guarantee isn’t as long as competitor’s, but it should still be enough time to test out Namecheap and see how it works for your company.
Overall, the main benefit of going with Namecheap is the pricing. You can’t beat it with even the most discounted hosting provider out there. Namecheap does a good job of maintaining a stable and user-friendly infrastructure, too.
Upsells and Other Services
You do have the option to get a free .website domain, but the basic domains come at a yearly price. Namecheap lets you transfer a domain you currently own, or you can purchase one directly after selecting your hosting plan. You can buy domains for multiple years, so select the number of years you want it for.
Here are some other upsells you might want to consider:
- WhoIsGuard: this protects your personal information from spammers. Your email and name are connected to your website so anyone can technically see it. This results in lots of spam, so you have the option to hide it completely. Shared hosting plans provide this for the first year at no cost.
- PremiumDNS: this gives you DDoS protection and a 100% uptime guarantee for as long as you have the DNS. It’s mainly recommended for very important domains and business websites.
- PositiveSSL: pay for the encryption of all transactional data, and get a seal to let your customer know that your site is secure. You typically only need this for an e-commerce site.
After that, you confirm your order and make a Namecheap account. Then you can move onto using the one-click installation options for various CMSs.
The next step up from shared hosting is a VPS. This sits right in the middle of shared and dedicated hosting, providing affordable plans with plenty of control over the server. You still typically share the server with a few websites, but the number of websites on the server is often decreased to improve performance.
Namecheap offers self-managed and managed plans so you can decide whether or not you’d like to run the server yourself. VPS also provides full root access (similar to a dedicated server, yet none of the four plans are going to break the bank).
With the VPS hosting you get:
- At least 15 GB of RAID protected disk space
- At least one CPU
- At least 512 MB of RAM
- At least 100 GB of RAM
- 20 GB of managed backup storage for some of the plans
- Root level access
- Free dedicated IPs
A VPS helps out quite a bit once your website starts getting more visitors. Some companies have someone on hand who can manage the server, but if you’d rather focus on your day-to-day operations, Namecheap has managed options as well.
A dedicated server is typically only for extremely high traffic sites. It offers full control over your server. Because of this control, you have full reign over the customization of the server. You can even choose certain features, such as hardware and operating systems.
Namecheap sets up your dedicated server in around four hours, making it a rather quick configuration process. You also get multiple Intel Cores for the ultimate performance.
Some of the dedicated hosting features include both single and multiple CPU plans, multiple Cores for all plans, at least 8 GM of RAM, at least 500 GB of hard drive, and at least 10 TB of bandwidth.
You’ll also get:
- A Tier IV datacenter located in Phoenix
- Supermicro Server Hardware
- An uptime guarantee of 100% for most plans (one of the plans has a 99.9% uptime guarantee)
The dedicated plans from Namecheap are some of the cheapest solutions you’ll find. Most of the time you’d pay hundreds of dollars per month for a dedicated host, but that’s not the case with Namecheap.
The reseller hosting program uses the Namecheap infrastructure for people to resell the hosting to their own clients. Essentially you create your own sales website, build up a client list, then utilize the Namecheap datacenter and servers for your own customers. The plans are rather affordable for making a decent profit, and you don’t have to spend any money on the hardware.
Honestly, you could potentially turn a profit with one or two clients, seeing as how the Namecheap reseller plans are so affordable.
You can prepay for the reseller plans as well. So if you’d like a two-year contract, that decreases the monthly rate to save you a little cash in the long run.
Let’s explore some of the offerings in the reseller program:
- A full reseller control panel for handling clients and offering customer support.
- Multi-site hosting.
- Great servers and support from the Namecheap team.
- Marketing tools.
- At least 25GB of disk space and at least 1000GB of bandwidth.
You also get a 99.9% uptime guarantee, unlimited hosted domains and subdomains, email accounts and webmail for your clients, a cPanel control panel for your clients, and pretty much everything else you would find in the shared hosting plans.
Apps and Domains
As we mentioned before, Namecheap provides a domain search tool to check if a domain name is available.
In addition, Namecheap has several apps that are both free and premium. Over 100 free apps come with all plans, so you can take advantage of tools like Symantec Swap, Canvas, and Public.
Some of the premium apps include the following:
- Namecheap Legal
- Ghost Machine
- GSuite by Google Apps
When you select one of the apps, you’ll be pleased to find there are one-click installations for all of them. Some of the apps have separate dashboards, but some let you manage your accounts through the Namecheap interface.
The History of Namecheap
Richard Kirkendall started the Namecheap company in 2000. It has been voted as one of the best domain name registrars in several polls over the years. One of the most interesting parts of Namecheap’s history is how in 2013 the company started accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment.
As an organization, Namecheap started as a way to provide extremely affordable domains and hosting options to users. Not only that, but the founder insisted on some of the best customer service in the industry.
The Namecheap company has followed through in both areas, offering pretty solid customer service over the years, along with very inexpensive domains and hosting offerings. You’ll also notice that Namecheap takes a strong stance against obnoxious upsells. Basically, Namecheap wants to put the customer first and make the interface as seamless as possible.
Overall, Namecheap boasts a customer base of over three million users. Furthermore, over seven million people own domain names through the Namecheap service.
Where Does Namecheap Excel?
There’s no doubt about it, the main reason users choose Namecheap is because of their low pricing. It’s hard to pass up the fact that you can get shared hosting for less than a domain name.
The pricing remains low throughout all of the types of hosting as well. You’d be hard-pressed to locate a VPS or dedicated server that’s cheaper than what’s offered here. Not only that, but you get some wonderful tools and freebies in each of the hosting plans. Some of the plans have free domain names, while others offer SSD support.
The twice-a-week backups offer peace of mind. And the free dedicated IPs on VPS plans really stand out. These are typically only used on VPS and e-commerce sites, so it’s nice that you don’t have to pay extra for them.
Namecheap Customer Support
The Namecheap customer support team has a mission of putting the customer first. Although Namecheap has become one of the biggest domain and hosting providers in the world, it has done so because of the customer support, not in spite of it.
Along with a social presence, a strong knowledge base, and a ticketing system, Namecheap provides a live chat area for you to check-in on your hosting and speak with someone without having to pick up the phone. You can also read the Namecheap blog for updates and tips.
We particularly like the Abuse page, which has a form for reporting abuses of the Namecheap platform. Finally, you can check status updates and search through the entire support center to see if your problem has been talked about in the past. The only downside of the Namecheap support team is that it doesn’t have a direct phone line for all plans.
This might not bother some people, but many users would rather speak to a rep on the phone.
Should You Choose Namecheap for Your Blog?
Many people find Namecheap to be a suitable hosting option. But is it right for you? You’ll definitely want to consider Namecheap if you need affordable shared or VPS hosting, you need an affordable dedicated server, or you anticipate contacting customer support frequently.
On the other hand, Namecheap might not appeal to you if you’d rather go with a smaller company with better managed hosting services.
While there are a couple drawbacks, it’s pretty clear Namecheap is an excellent hosting option for most sites.