Bluehost Review: Don’t Let Affiliates Trick You Into Using Them (They’re Slow, Lack Features, And Owned By Newfold Digital)

Bluehost review

In case you didn’t know to stay away from Bluehost, here’s your warning.

Most people recommending them are affiliates who make a big deal about how they’re “officially” recommended by WordPress. Maybe you didn’t know this, but Bluehost pays WordPress and their affiliates to recommend them, so this is about as unofficial as it gets.

Here’s the classic Bluehost story. Some “how to start a blog” YouTuber recommends Bluehost, so you sign up and get locked into a 1-3 year agreement. You pay it, setup your website, and all is good. Until a few weeks/months go by, then you wonder why your site is slow and goes down all the time. Their support doesn’t help, so you go to a Facebook group and ask the community:

Bluehost is horrible 1

By reading that story, hopefully I just saved you a couple hundred dollars and years of headaches. Because that happens to way too many people (usually people new to hosting).

Now let’s dive into why Bluehost isn’t good.


1. Poor Specs

TLDR: use ChemiCloud instead.

Bluehost Choice Plus Plan Hostinger Business WP Plan SiteGround GrowBig Plan Scala Entry WP Cloud Plan ChemiCloud WordPress Turbo Plan
Type Shared Shared Shared Shared/cloud Shared
Server Apache + Nginx LiteSpeed Apache + Nginx LiteSpeed LiteSpeed
Cache plugin x LiteSpeed Cache SG Optimizer LiteSpeed Cache LiteSpeed Cache
CDN Cloudflare free ($.02-.08/GB) ($.02-.08/GB) ($.02-.08/GB) ($.02-.08/GB)
Full page caching x
Cores/RAM Not listed 2 cores/1.5GB Not listed No limit 3 cores/3GB – scalable to 6/6
Storage 40GB SATA 200GB SATA 20GB SATA 50GB NVMe 40GB NVMe – 10/11 locations
Database MySQL MariaDB MySQL MariaDB MariaDB
Object cache x Memcached Memcached Redis Redis
Data centers 6 8 10 2 11
Control panel cPanel hPanel Site Tools sPanel cPanel
Inodes 200,000 600,000 400,000 Unlimited 500,000
Major incidents Downtimes Downtimes, fake reviews, scams, bad poll TTFB, DNS, CPU issues, controls FB groups None None
Migrations Free on qualified accounts only Unlimited (but screws it up) $30/site 1 free 200 cPanel + 10 non-cPanel
Support D D C B A
TrustPilot rating 4.2/5 4.6/5 (fake) 4.8/5 5/5 5/5
Monthly price $5.45 (1 year) $3.99 (1-4 years) $9.98 (3 years) $14.95 (3 years) $5.99 (3 years)
Renewals $19.99/mo $8.99-$14.99 $19.95/mo $24.95/mo $19.95/mo
Price for 3 years $304.08 $299.40 $659.64 $538.20 $215.64

Unlike Bluehost, they use faster LiteSpeed servers, NVMe SSDs, and Redis object cache. When using LiteSpeed, you’ll use the free LiteSpeed Cache plugin which does an great job with core web vitals, then use my tutorial to configure the settings. You’re less likely to have to upgrade because LiteSpeed is efficient with CPU usage (a common probably with Apache servers). And even if you do, you can add cores/RAM with their Turbo Boost add-on… not pay for a new plan. ChemiCloud also has a 5/5 star TrustPilot rating with several people who moved from Bluehost.

Litespeed vs nginx vs apache
LiteSpeed (what ChemiCloud uses) is faster than Apache (what Bluehost uses)
Litespeed apache cpu usage test
LiteSpeed is also more efficient with CPU usage than Apache, which means less chance of forced upgrades
Chemicloud gtmetrix reportWhich web server do you use recommendLitespeed cache litespeed serverLitespeed litespeed cache quic. CloudLitespeed pagespeed scores 
Chemicloud vs sitegroundChemicloud pro feedbackChemicloud speed ui supportSiteground vs chemicloud comparisonWhich web server do you useLitespeed on litespeed serverLitespeed cache vs. Wp rocketDivi litespeed 


2. Too Many Bluehost Affiliates

People will say anything to make a buck.

Bluehost pays up to $150+/sale for affiliate commissions. Do the math: if you sign up for a $5.45/mo plan for 3 years, it costs about $196. Minus $150 in affiliate commissions leaves $46 which is the “real value” of their hosting. Do you think you’ll get great hosting with $46? Hell no.

Classic affiliate marketer pros cons 1

Don’t trust any blog that recommends Bluehost.

How to start a blog bluehost affiliates

Bluehost how to start a blog affiliate links


3. They Pay To Be Recommended By WordPress

Bluehost and their affiliates brag how they’re recommended by WordPress.

Did you read the fine print?

Bluehost “donates” some of the fee back to WordPress (this is an undisclosed amount, but one can only imagine). Everything in the hosting industry is influenced by money now, so take this “recommendation” with a grain of salt. Same goes for SiteGround who I also don’t recommend.

Bluehost wordpress hosting affiliate disclaimer


4. Bluehost Is Slow

Between Bluehost’s slow servers and no full page caching on Cloudflare’s free plan, you don’t want to start your site with a slow TTFB, especially when there are hosts that average <100ms.

You can measure TTFB (time to first byte) in multiple locations using KeyCDN.

TTFB is part of core web vitals and is also 40% of your LCP score. With hosting/CDN being 2 main TTFB factors, Bluehost’s slow servers and “free Cloudflare” aren’t ideal. In fact, when I setup a website on Bluehost’s Plus Plan, Bluehost’s TTFB was usually around 1 second. This isn’t good considering PageSpeed Insights flags your TTFB if it’s over 600ms – which they did.

Bluehost hosting review


5. CPU Throttling + 200k Inode Limit

Instead of clearly listing how many resources you get on each plan (like CPU cores, RAM, and inodes), their hosting page only shows basic information like number of websites and storage. You can find more details which they bury on this page, but it still doesn’t list some basic specs.

This is usually a red flag.

Because in their resource policy and inode limits, you’ll see they have set limits on inodes, database tables, and most importantly, “excessive use of server CPU and memory resources.”

Which means if your site uses too much CPU/memory (whether it’s from more traffic, plugins that use memory, or even bots hitting your site), Bluehost will throttle resources which makes your website slower and can cause 5xx errors. Hosts that don’t list basic specs like cores/RAM usually have very low limits, otherwise they would clearly list them in their comparison chart.

With Bluehost’s lack of resources, I don’t recommend running WooCommerce, Elementor, Divi, and high-usage plugins on most shared hosting (especially Bluehost’s).

Bluehost cpu throttling
Source: Bluehost’s Wikipedia page

In their resource policy, Bluehost only allows 200,000 inodes on shared accounts. Many other shared hosts allow 400,000 – 600,000. Which means if you want to use Bluehost for email, those emails take up a lot of inodes (files) on your account, and you may end up exceeding your limit. VPS plans have a much higher 1M inode limit, but I still wouldn’t recommend Bluehost for that.

Inodes 200,000
Database tables 5,000
Database size 10GB
Single database 5GB


6. Only 6 Data Centers With No Full Page Caching

Bluehost only has a few data centers and doesn’t let you select the location at checkout.

Provo, Utah (US) Mumbai (IND) Hong Kong (CN)
Orem, Utah (US) London, UK (EU) Shanghai, Mainland (CN)

Plus, their Cloudflare integration doesn’t support full page caching which improves TTFB in tools like KeyCDN. The closer the data center is to the testing location (and your visitors), the faster your TTFB will be. With limited data centers and no full page caching, TTFB is very slow.

Bluehost slow ttfb keycdn


7. Frequent Downtimes With No Guarantee Or Status Page

Search the word “down” in Bluehost’s 1-3 star TrustPilot reviews.

Without getting too technical, all those “99% uptimes tests” usually don’t mean anything especially because “scheduled maintenance” doesn’t count. That’s why I like to check how many bad reviews mention “down.” Bluehost has a lot, and instead of an uptime guarantee, they only have a brief network service uptime agreement with a blocked network status page.

Bluehost downtimes

Bluehost server down

Bluehost outages downdetector
Bluehost’s Downdetector profile


8. Malware/Sitelock Scams

You can read a detailed review of this.

Bluehost, HostGator, and other Newfold Digital brands have an ongoing scam where they say you have malware, take down your website(s), then refer you to Sitelock (their partner) who quotes you hundreds of dollars each month to remove it and a monthly fee to protect your site.

Bluehost hostgator sitelock scam

Don’t fall for it.


9. Renewals Are Up To 338% Intro Prices

You only get 1 year of the intro price or 3 years for a somewhat discounted price. Then depending on which plan you use, it can renew up to 338% more (see their monthly pricing).

The main problem with this is that as your website changes and you add more plugins or get more traffic, your website will require more server resources to accommodate it. But since you signed up for 3 years upfront, your plan may not have enough resources and you will need to upgrade anyway. Not to mention once you learn how bad Bluehost is, you’ll want to leave but can’t since you’ve already paid upfront. And at that point, the money is considered a sunk cost.

Don’t fall for 3 year price traps especially with Bluehost.

Bluehost prices

Renewal Rates:

Plan Basic Plus Choice Plus Pro
12 Month Term 10.99/mo 14.99/mo 19.99/mo 28.99/mo
24 Month Term 9.99/mo 13.99/mo 18.99/mo 27.99/mo
36 Month Term 9.99/mo 13.99/mo 18.99/mo 26.99/mo

Never pay for more than 1 year of hosting


10. No Automatic Backups On Lower Plans

Again, if you check this comparison table, don’t get automatic backups on most plans.

Bluehost shared hosting limits


11. Poor Support, Long Wait Times

You’re not going to get great support with cheap hosting, period.

You can expect long wait times (i.e. 30+ minutes) and they will most likely refer you to articles. I always look at TrustPilot reviews even though they’re solicited by most host’s support team. Bluehost used to have a horrible 1.5/5 star rating but it seems to have improved since it’s 3.8/5.

Bluehost support review


12. Slow Dashboard

Navigating Bluehost’s dashboard is a pain. It can sometimes take 5-10s for pages in the dashboard to load. It’s not a huge deal but can be frustrating if you’re used to working quickly.

Bluehost slow dashboard

It’s nice they use cPanel even after cPanel increased prices, so that’s a plus:

Bluehost cpanel 1

Their general dashboard isn’t bad either which includes server caching.

Bluehost dashboard


13. Stay Away From Newfold Digital

Bluehost is owned by Newfold Digital (formerly EIG).

They have a long history of buying hosting companies and running them into the ground like they did with HostGator. They’re known for cutting costs and “streaming” their services. But probably the worst part is a lack of innovation. As LiteSpeed, cache plugins, and other features continue to improve WordPress speed, Bluehost / Newfold Digital do little to progress forward.

Newfold digital hosting companies


14. What People Say About Bluehost In Facebook Groups

How many times do you have to hear it?

Join the WP Speed Matters Facebook Groups to get less biased feedback. Many groups are run by affiliates, and SiteGround’s community manager/affiliates are also admins for several groups (that’s the only reason you see SiteGround promoted everywhere). Don’t fall for either of them.

Bluehost is dogshit

Run from bluehost

Migrate from bluehost

Stay away from bluehost

Ditch bluehost eig

Eig bluehost hostgator bad review

Bluehost is terrible

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Bluehost choice plus vs cloudways vultr


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  1. I am trying to find a place where I can write some real nasty review about them and I cant find any places. You are absolutely correct, this is THE WORST EVER hosting company on this planet.
    Needless to say their staff is TOTALLY INCOMPETENT!!! An ABSOLUTE ZERO!!!

    So if you have a place to post my review about them – please do or share a link with me where I can do it and I will flood them with 0 reviews. They are a nightmare.

    • I would start by writing a review on TrustPilot and engaging in Reddit/Quora forums. And on your blog if you have one.

      I’m also doing my best to tell people to avoid them. I’m sure quite a few people will read these comments too… most of them are also nightmare stories.

  2. So true. Decided to transfer to a new host several weeks ago since loading times for my image-heavy sites were getting slower and slower and renewal costs for the pro shared hosting plan were high and included new limitations. Fortunately I finished moving the content from the two sites I care about last week. I decided to move the others over yesterday and discovered that they were all down. Bluehost has been running large ads for Sitelock all week, and after spending some 30 minutes on chat before receiving a response, I was told that my sites were blocked due to Malware and that I needed a consultation with Sitelock. So glad to be leaving this host.

  3. Thank you for telling the truth!

    Never trust your business (website, blog, anything) with Bluehost, because their unstable, amateur service will ruin you. The constant downtimes will negate all your hard work, like SEO. Please, learn from others’ mistakes.


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