CHOOSING UNLIMITED WEB HOSTING: GOOD OR BAD IDEA?

Have you ever heard of Unlimited Web Hosting offers (or at least, advertised as unlimited), but you are suspicious?

Too good to be true ?

Have you already been a customer of this type of so-called “unlimited” Hosting, but you were disappointed and you are looking for the best alternative: not too expensive, but of good quality…?

In this article, we’ll lift the lid on what you can really expect from Unlimited Web Hosting. We will make many more or less technical revelations in good faith, while trying to remain as objective as possible on the qualities and defects of these “unlimited” solutions . Not all Unlimited Hosts are created equal. There are good ones and bad ones. Some respond to a real need, others… less so. Our intention with this article is to allow everyone to make an informed choice.

Who are Unlimited Hosts for?

What types of projects can be hosted on this type of Web Hosting solution? How long can a project last on Cheap Hosting? What are the pitfalls to avoid ? This is what we are going to see right now…

As Albert Einstein said:

Only two things are infinite: the Universe and Human Stupidity.

Einstein never talked about Web Hosting and for good reason, it is technically impossible to offer unlimited Hosting spaces, both in terms of storage and server resources: processor computing power, etc.

Without having to argue more than that, the majority of our readers are already aware that the “promise” of unlimited is impossible to keep.

Embarking on this type of offer to host a large volume of data could be compared to the game of cat and mouse , between the Client and the Web Host .

Why are Unlimited Hosting offers springing up like mushrooms?

This is the story of a market where all shots are allowed…

Web Hosting is a very competitive sector where players often seek to attract new customers, with offers all the more attractive than the others and ever lower prices… sometimes even going so far as to offer Free Hosting solutions! 😮

Of course, there is something that bothers you…

Who pays for these free hosting servers?

It’s pretty easy to understand…

Very attractive offers are often designed to convince you to take the first step toward Web Hosting. In marketing, this is called The Principle of Commitment or Consistency .

This principle demonstrates that:

When a customer has shown the first Commitment to a supplier, his mind will seek to be Coherent with this choice and will want to stay with this supplier, even if the latter pushes his customers to gradually Upgrade to higher / more expensive plans .

Hosts are at the forefront.

It often happens like this…

As soon as your websites begin to attract significant traffic, your web hosting limits are reached . You then experience errors and you choose to switch to a superior and more expensive technology: Free Hosting → Low-end Hosting → Virtual Server (VPS Cloud) → Dedicated Server (physical) → Outsourcing, Load balancing, etc.

The Host, therefore, makes more profits 😁💰

Such strategies are widely used by the biggest players in Web Hosting in the United States, with hosting plans expertly designed to push you to Upgrade, as soon as your Business reaches certain strategic levels. And as often, when formulas prove to be profitable in the USA, they begin to arrive in France!

Of course, we are NOT telling you that Unlimited Hosting is bad!

Unlimited Hosts meet certain needs (more or less well depending on the Host chosen). But above all, they respond to huge demand and market, made up of many customers looking to do good business.

Conversely, Unlimited Hosting solutions are NOT suitable for ALL scenarios and ALL ambitions …

It is on this subject that we wish to make you aware today, by highlighting 12 potential weak points that are sometimes / often (not always) found with unlimited Web Hosts.

Thanks to these 12 points, you will be able to choose your Web Host (unlimited or not), with full knowledge of the facts and therefore, avoid embarking on a hosting formula that would not suit your project and would slow you down in the pursuit of your Goals.

 

1. An unlimited web host does not offer all Free Migrations. For example: without SSH access…

Site migration: migrating a website consists of transferring it from one location to another (change of Web Host, change of Web Server, etc.).

Properly transferring a website and mailboxes from point A to point B is not always easy, especially when you do not have appropriate technical training.

These days, most young modern web hosts offer Free Website Migration , to accommodate new customers.

The strategy is clear: reduce as much as possible the rough edges that could prevent you from changing Hosts.

The problem is that an unlimited Host (or a low cost Host ) can hardly mobilize a technician for several hours, to try to transfer your website and welcome you to a Web Hosting offer that pays less than 5 €/month profit.

What migrations are offered by Unlimited Web Hosts?

To our knowledge, the majority of unlimited Web Hosts will be able to offer you a free migration service, provided that you are currently hosted with a quality Host, having either:

  • a good management interface (for example cPanel with the Full Account Backup option activated),
  • a File Manager with archive compression/decompression option
  • (or at least) easy access to an SSH Shell (Terminal), with commands zipwgetand/or rsyncenabled

Unfortunately, in the majority of cases, if you want to change Host, it is because your current shared Host (often cheap ) does not offer this type of professional tools.

Currently, you may have, at most, FTP access (protocol dating from the ’70s) and a WordPress dashboard strangled by server resource limits (therefore, exporting the WordPress site impossible via a plugin like Duplicator ).

This type of constraint can therefore make your Migration Complex! 😕

Without cPanel Backups or access to command lines via an SSH Shell, a migration can take up to 4 hours of work for a technician, who will often have to use advanced techniques to be able to recover data from a website. .

As you can understand, it is not always profitable for an unlimited web host to offer you this type of long and very technical service.

In our experience, most cheap hosts will refuse to migrate your site for free if they think the transfer will take more than 45 minutes for a technician. You will then be redirected to a freelance service provider who will generally charge you between 30 and 60€ per hour to perform this service.

Of course, this allows us to grow our customer base. But that’s not all! We also appreciate the idea of ​​providing services that cannot be found elsewhere, a bit like a Public Utility Service, or “the Last Chance Host”  😁 The result for us: satisfied customers and pride to have made themselves useful.

And internal migrations in all this?

We deplore the fact that some hosts are very reactive when it comes to recovering your data from a competing host, but do not want to offer internal migration services, that is to say, transfer a site locally, in staying with the same host.

For example, imagine that you want to change the brand and therefore the domain name of your WordPress site: FranceTelecom.fr becomes Orange.fr.

This operation is not possible in 2 clicks.

If the Host offers free migrations to its New Customers, why not offer migration to Old Customers who already exist…?

Well no!

In most cases, you will have to take care of this domain name change yourself, or call on a specialized service provider! Whereas at EasyHoster, this is the type of service we are happy to offer our customers, for free! 🙂 We are much more than a host and we are constantly looking to make life easier for our valued customers.

2. An unlimited host does not always provide a simplified  Management Interface with as many features as cPanel.

cPanel is a Premium Hosting management interface that is as rich as it is easy to use.

As an entrepreneur, each of us wants to increase our productivity. In addition, when maintaining an online business , it is very common to have to intervene on its website, to carry out small Updates or Maintenance work. It is therefore interesting to have easy and fast tools to carry out daily tasks. In any case, it is vital to avoid tools that are too complex or not very ergonomic, which transform each task into a real hell!

There is nothing worse than embarking on a task that was supposed to take 30 minutes, and which ends up costing us the whole day because of a faulty or not very ergonomic tool!

It’s indisputable… for managing your Web Hosting, cPanel is the best control panel. Moreover, its help goes far beyond the simple management of a Hosting, since it makes life easier for its users for many tasks relating to their online activity: Webmail, Code editor, WordPress Manager, etc. .

Follow this link to get more information about  → cPanel!

The problem is that, as often, quality has a price!

The company that publishes, maintains and develops cPanel is far from voluntary. The price of this software interface is currently subject to an annual review!

At the time of writing this article, the price has continued to increase considerably each year, since 2019.

cPanel price evolution — Source: cPanel price increase 2021

As this table shows, for EasyHoster this represents an increase of approximately 200%.

The price has doubled, but we have in no way passed on this increase to the price of our accommodation, quite the contrary!

Since 2019, our prices have decreased overall and we have never stopped looking for ways to offer more advantages to our hosts: more storage, better prices for long billing cycles, always more free features/services, etc.

On the side of the Unlimited Web Hosts who realize a very low-Profit Margin on each Hosting account, this price increase seems to be a blow, because some Unlimited Hosts have chosen to leave cPanel and have developed their own hosting management interface. .

However, this does not seem to please all their customers.

Among the most frequent complaints, we noted on Twitter and Trustpilot, the following reasons…

  • less complete interface
  • more complex for beginners
  • some sections have bugs
  • we no longer find the features we appreciate in cPanel such as…
    • Webmails
    • softaculous
    • WordPress Toolkit
    • cPanel’s File Manager & Code Editor …

cPanel is, in our opinion, the most reliable solution on the market.

For these cheap Hosts who would like to keep cPanel, there is the solution to increase their prices. However, this would probably not be in line with The cheapest strategy! That is to say, the strategy that seems the most effective in the short term, to quickly attract a maximum of customers and therefore, the most widely used strategy in Web Hosting.

As you have understood, on our side, at EasyHoster, we have chosen to adopt another, longer approach to customer acquisition, based on word-of-mouth and, we hope, beneficial for the success of our most ambitious clients.

3. An Unlimited Host Probably Doesn’t Offer Advanced WordPress Support, Technical Support for Website Building or SEO…

WordPress Hosting , is support included? In fact, many hosts position themselves under the terms “WordPress Hosting” but do not always offer advanced assistance to their users, beyond technical questions relating to their Web Hosting: FTP, DNS, PHP, etc.

Some Unlimited Web Hosts go to great lengths to offer very responsive Technical Support . They respond to many issues related to Web Hosting. On the other hand, you can imagine that if you represent, on your own, only ~ 20€ of annual profit margin for the hosting company, it is difficult for their team to help you individually to:

  • create your website
  • optimize and secure WordPress
  • troubleshoot your 500 errors
  • advise you on your SEO, etc.

If you very regularly ask questions to the technical support of an Unlimited Host, chances are that your first questions will be answered quickly. But if you pull too much on the rope , with some Unlimited Hosts, you risk discovering the limits of your technical support (cf.  Support Scope Coverage ).

In the worst case, if you have a lot of questions every month, you might even fall into Excess Usage . That is, excessive media usage. Quota whose judgment is subject to the sole discretion of the host. This could lead you to have to pay Paid Support (therefore, charged extra).

Above, the English terms have voluntarily been placed to help you, if you wish, to do your own research on the question, also, among Anglo-Saxon hosts.

On the side of EasyHoster, since we do not sell off the prices of our accommodations, we can afford to display a high level of assistance to our users, and even more to our best customers (Priority and VIP Support).

Under conditions, we can even offer our customers the installation and configuration of a WordPress Theme , chosen from the list of the 25 most used themes in the world.

Moreover, we also offer pre-designed ShowcaseeCommerce Store or Sales Funnel packages, which you just have to customize.

For example, thanks to our turnkey online store package , every month, we allow several merchants to embark on the eCommerce adventure at a lower cost…

And we are proud of it!

 

4. An unlimited host does not always guarantee Availability ( Uptime ) greater than 99.99%, with public monitoring of its Web servers.

EasyHoster
Uptime: publicly, EasyHoster displays its availability rate (monitored by a third party company, Uptime Robot) via a link available in all its customer accounts.

Expressed in percentages, at a Web Host, the Uptime is the availability rate of a Web server. It allows you to quickly see what was the downtime of the server (therefore, the Downtime time ) for a given period. It is therefore not comparable to a Time out error that you might experience on your website. These are indeed breakdowns or maintenance interruptions (more or less long) impacting the entire server and therefore all the customers hosted on the same machine as you.

As you have understood, for reasons of profitability, it is common for unlimited Hosts to be more or less “forced” to host a maximum of users on each of their servers.

The Unlimited Host may therefore find itself in a situation where it would have assumed its strengths, or in any case, assumed the strengths of one of its servers. In other words, an Unlimited Host may have the unpleasant surprise of learning that he has placed too many clients on a Web server. The resources consumed by these users are greater than what the server can “serve” .

This case can happen if some hosted sites consume more resources than the average of other customers.

For the Host, the consequences are severe:

  • CPU overload
  • RAM full (RAM swapping)

Translation: the server is DOWN, completely crashed, and in the best case, will require a physical restart of the machine (Reboot).

This kind of event can generate several minutes, or several hours of unavailability for the server and therefore, for the hosted client.

In addition, since the profit margin of Unlimited Web Hosts is lower than that of a Premium Web Host, it may be more difficult for him to provide himself with the best protection services against Denial of Service Attacks (DDoS attacks) . Also, to ensure good server stability, it is also useful to have several layers of Firewall , which will act as a filter that only lets legitimate visitors pass (therefore, which directly blocks all types of attacks ).

Of course, all these protective devices have a cost and the effectiveness of these tools is often proportional to their price.

At EasyHoster, we have the best anti-DDoS protection on the European market, based in particular on a large excess of bandwidth, which allows automatic mitigation of attacks. In addition, we offer all our customers (at our expense), a benchmark premium firewall: Imunify360 . This is installed at the heart of our servers and finely configured to avoid false positives . It can be compared to the independent Firewall offered by Sucuri at the price of $19.98 per month, per site!

At EasyHoster, these advanced protections are included, at no extra cost, in all our hosting plans.

Your sites are not DOWN every 3 weeks, each time Russian or Chinese robots attack the server. In addition, your visitors are not forced to read a message in English asking them to wait while their browser is checked: Are you a robot?

Unlimited Hosting Firewall?
Example of a waiting message imposed by the firewall of a Web Host: each additional second of waiting for the loading of a page causes the loss of potential customers. 40% of customers won’t wait more than 3 seconds for your site to load. Source of the study: Forrester Consulting .

 

At EasyHoster, the availability rate of all our servers is publicly displayed , from a link accessible from all our customer accounts. Currently, it’s 99.997% , which means our servers are up and running 24/7.

To calculate our availability rate, we use Uptime Robot , a company totally independent of EasyHoster.

To our knowledge, it is quite rare for an unlimited web host to provide its customers with a monitoring service managed by a third-party company.

If you are currently a client of an Unlimited Host, do you know exactly what the Uptime of your hosting is? Do you have a monitoring service offered by your host, or do you have your own monitoring system?

Remember to check 😉

5. An unlimited host could more often experience slow loading of Web pages, due to high resource pooling .

Overloaded Shared Hosting? If too many hosting accounts have been placed on a single web server, the server will experience peak load times.

Of course, Unlimited Hosts do their best to offer the best performance, but in life, if a subway car is overloaded (to be able to offer discounted prices), users breathe less comfortably. When a highway is too busy, drivers are victims of traffic jams…

For web servers, it’s the same.

CPUs can only serve a limited number of requests each second. So, if we can firmly say anything, it’s that the unlimited does not exist . Otherwise, a single web server could host the whole planet?

As you can imagine, one of the first reflexes of the customer in the process of looking for a Host, is necessarily to compare prices, prices, prices again!

It is curious to see that many people are ready to pay 6 euros every day for a large Starbucks coffee , while they are reluctant to pay more than 0.50€/day for something as sensitive as Web Hosting .

However, quality often rhymes with price .

What is certain is that many Web Hosting wholesalers have understood the desire of this type of customer: many will simply choose “the cheapest” thinking that all the offers are equivalent, for lack of technical training on the subject. .

However, as the length of this article proves to you, there are things to be said!

All Hosting formulas are not equivalent, however, almost all hosts announce on their site, better performances than those of the neighbor… EasyHoster included 🙂

Where we try to stand out is by providing high performance, even for our smallest formulas (Light, Perso, etc). The more classic strategy consists of pushing the customer to upgrade their hosting plan as it evolves. On our side, even if nowadays this is not always appreciated by all prospects (those who want unlimited disk space), our limits are, “old style”, more particularly based on our costs, in terms of of storage space.

These high performances allow us to avoid the problem of server overload which could negatively impact the response time (TTFB)  and the loading time of the pages of the hosted sites. Google has become very demanding on the speed criterion since May 2020 , when the Core Web Vitals (Google PageSpeed) became a positioning criterion on Google. Google indexing issues, among other things, have become commonplace on poorly optimized sites. It is, therefore, more essential than ever to choose a hosting plan adapted to your ambitions.

Med
My name is Med, 30 years old guy from Morocco with 12 years of experience in Domaining, Affiliate Marketing, and Web Hosting.

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