HostRocket Review

Even though HostRocket doesn’t have the same reputation as BlueHost, DreamHost, and HostGator, it was established in 1999. The headquarters and data centers of HostRocket are in Clifton Park, New York.
Usually, when you enter a website of a web host for the first time, their homepage will show you a lot of boasts about their speed, customer support, and uptime.
But that is not the case with HostRocket, instead, they begin with: “SSD shared hosting.
Quite interesting, right?
So to review their service, we purchased a WordPress website on HostRocket’s’ shared plan and set it up in June 2015.
During past years we have been monitoring their performance statistics including uptime & speed to present you an unbiased review. Stay with us.

 

Advantages of HostRocket Hosting

The main plus points of HostRocket are consistent, decent customer support, and the availability of many apps which we can choose. Let’s look at them in a detailed way.

1. Impressive Support

They only offer customer support via a ticketing system and telephone. (Not via live chat or email)
In the beginning, we were not happy. Because we knew that, ticketing often takes years to respond. But we were wrong actually. They were able to send us an answer within around 11 minutes. And the reply was very helpful and informative.
Our background check also left a reasonably good experience. The problems and complaints from the customers were about other things, not about their support.

2. You can select between two server locations

If you are in a country and planning to cater to customers in another country this will be a good option. Because HostRocket allows you to choose the datacenter you prefer.
But they have only two data centers in Chicago and New York (both are in the United States). And they are only a two-hour plane ride away.
That will be a good perk in theory, but not that good in reality.

3. More than 250 app integrations

HostRocket has good integrations with more than 250 famous applications such as WordPress, Drupal, Magento, Zen Cart, Open Cart, and much more. Those will help you to get started a little earlier.


Disadvantages of HostRocket Hosting

Unfortunately, HostRocket earned more minus points than plus points. You can see a detailed account below.

1. Slow Page Loading Time

The average page loading time during the last two years was only 863ms.
But HostRocket began to show better speed results from January 2019 and in November 2019, which was 569ms showing some improvement. But now, their page loading time remains in the disadvantages section.

Average page load times during last year:

2. Uptime of 99.83%

The current standard industry uptime is 99.93%. That indicates the downtime will be around 26 minutes per month and that won’t affect your sales or customer support much.

To see how uptime affects your website, you can use this uptime calculator.

However, the HostRocket’s average uptime is 99.93%, below the industry standards. Furthermore, the overall performance of HostRocket in uptime is a mix. Some months they had it 100% and in other months showing very bad results.
They also have a solution for that in their Terms of Service page,

“If you feel that your site was not up the guaranteed 99.5% during a given month, please submit a trouble ticket stating your situation and we will review this with you, and credit your account accordingly.”

Average uptimes during last 12 months:

  • January 2020 average uptime: 98.07%
  • December 2019 average uptime: 99.96%
  • November 2019 average uptime: 99.57%
  • October 2019 average uptime: 99.98%
  • September 2019 average uptime: 99.91%
  • August 2019 average uptime: 100%
  • July 2019 average uptime: 99.45%
  • June 2019 average uptime: 99.96%
  • May 2019 average uptime: 99.96%
  • April 2019 average uptime: 99.92%
  • March 2019 average uptime: 99.97%
  • February 2019 average uptime: 99.86%

3. Relatively expensive pricing

Their least expensive plan starts from $5.99 per month. That is expensive!
The pricing will get more expensive if you have to sign up for two years and prepay.
Though they claim you get what you pay for, we don’t believe them.

4. A Setup Fee of $29.99!

The majority of the web hosting companies won’t charge you for getting your site up and running. They even offer free site migration and a free domain name for a year.
But sadly, HostRocket is still charging a setup fee of $29.99 if you are deciding to pay monthly or semi-annually.

5. The domain name registration fee is $20!

In the beginning, HostRocket offers you a free domain name.
But if you are planning to get an additional name the cost will be $20 per year. In other sites, the cost will be less than half of that.

 

HostRocket Pricing, Hosting Plans and Quick Facts

You can see an instant preview of their shared hosting plans below.

  • Basic Shared Hosting
    Starting from $5.99/month
    Unlimited disk space, email accounts, and bandwidth
    Supports unlimited websites
  • SSD Premium Plan
    Starting from $9.98/month
    5 GB SSD RAID storage
    200 GB bandwidth
  • SSD Professional Plan
    Starting from $13.98/month
    20 GB SSD RAID storage
    300 GB bandwidth
  • SSD Executive Plan
    Starting from $18.98 per month
    40 GB SSD RAID storage
    400 GB bandwidth

Important: Above is the pricing for their two-year plans.

  • Free Domain
    Yes
  • Ease of signup
    A bit lengthy checkout process
  • Payment methods
    Credit Card
  • Hidden Fees and Clauses
    Shared hosting accounts are not able to use more than 15% total bandwidth, 10% RAM, 10% of the total number of active connections, and 15% total disk space of a server.
  • Upsells
    A few
  • Account Activation
    Instant
  • Control Panel and Dashboard experience
    cPanel
  • Installation of Apps and CMSs (WordPress, Joomla, etc)
    Offer ‘Easy Installs’

What is our recommendation?

We don’t recommend HostRocket.
Their support, speed, and uptime are not bad, but not that good either. And the overall performance is below average when compared to its cost and additional fees.

HostMetro Review

being a new company that is established in 2012 HostMetro only provides shared hosting. And they are among the web hosts with a guaranteed price lock. So that your pricing won’t double when it is time to renew.
Moreover, they claim about having 99.9% uptime also. Which of them is actually true?
Let’s find out.
So, in order to find the truth we set up a basic WordPress test website on the HostMetro ‘Mega Max Plan’ in June 2015. From there we have been monitoring and analyzing their performance. Mainly the important details like uptime and speed to give you an unbiased review.
Keep reading!

 

Advantages of HostMetro Hosting

The most attractive plus point was their ‘Price Lock Guarantee’. Let’s see what else they have.

1. Inconsistently decent Customer Support

The beginning of the HostMetro Customer Support was very good. Their agents connected quickly and answered all our questions efficiently.
However, our background checks revealed mixed reviews regarding the availability of their customer support department.

  • “We are unable to log in to our c-panel and email is not working. We have tried contacting your online support and no one is picking up. Will anyone of you explain to me what’s happening?”
  • “Your customer service is terrible! I am definitely looking for a new host. I was told you would get my site reactivated so I could fix things re the plugins. It hasn’t been done. This has happened sooo many times and I am done.”
  • “Hello guys, this is almost days now our websites are down and we are getting no help, taking 24hrs to reply for a ticket? I want help soonest, I can’t even reach you on call.”
  • “What seems to be the problem with your support? I can’t get hold of anyone over the phone and its almost two hours wait. I can’t even connect with your chat support. And your email support is very slow. We are having an issue with our emails and I want somebody to fix it for me.”

 

2. Price Lock Guarantee

As you already know most web hosts will offer you a surprisingly low rate when you are signing up. And doubles or even triple the price when it’s time to renew your plan.
But HostMetro guarantees your initial registration rate won’t change, even in future renewals. So that will be a great deal if you are planning to stay with HostMetro for the long term.

3. Free website transfer (+limitations)

HostMetro offers free site migration of your existing website to their servers. But your website should not exceed 3GB and you must request site transfer within 30 days of creating an account.
That way you will be able to get your money back if you are not satisfied with their service.

4. 99.9% Uptime guarantee

The uptime guarantee policy is mentioned in HostMetro’s Terms.
If their annual uptime falls below 99%, they are ready to give you a free month of hosting. Even though the cut off value is lower than the average uptime, this policy indicates their confidence in the service.
For your information, there are some exceptions also. If the downtime is due to a natural disaster or a big hack that will not be calculated into the uptime average.

5. 30 Day Money Back Guarantee

As a new HostMetro customer if you are not happy with their service, you can ask for a full refund. But that should be during the first 30 days.
But the refund amount may vary according to the following.
Refunds only apply to host plans. Therefore another add ons (backup services, domain names) are not refundable.
You can take domain names to another host if you have paid for that particular domain name.
If the domain name is given free by HostMetro, they will subtract the cost from the refund amount.
The same applies to the free SSL certificate.

So please make sure to check your plan twice for these free extras, as they may come again and haunt you someday.

 

Disadvantages of HostMetro Hosting

Even though they offer a price lock guarantee is a plus point, minus points are more.
Let’s look into them.

1. Slow Page Speeds

The average page loading time of HostMetro was 1116ms during the last two years. That is four times slower than the fastest host. (That is A2 Hosting)
Considering that a one-second delay may result in 7% conversions, HostMetro will cost more than the service.
Almost every month they had below averages consistently.

Average Load times during past one year:

2. 99.81% Uptime

The uptime is the same. It was below average during the past two years.
Even though they offer a free month of hosting whenever their uptimes are below 99.9%, you have to be cautious. Because an hour of downtime per month may repel your visitors, conversions, and thereby money and sales.

Average uptimes of last year:

  • January 2020 average uptime: 99.98%
  • December 2019 average uptime: 99.69%
  • November 2019 average uptime: 99.59%
  • October 2019 average uptime: 98.91%
  • September 2019 average uptime: 99.94%
  • August 2019 average uptime: 99.97%
  • July 2019 average uptime: 99.90%
  • June 2019 average uptime: 99.57%
  • May 2019 average uptime: 99.97%
  • April 2019 average uptime: 99.83%
  • March 2019 average uptime: 99.94%
  • February 2019 average uptime: 99.84%

3. Costly “Free” backups

According to HostMetro’s Terms, they offer free backup services as a courtesy.
But there are some issues like,

  • Backup only runs once a month (ideally it should be daily or weekly)
  • They on1 GB size
  • You have to pay $39.95 to restore the backup.

Unfortunately, the backup isn’t actually free!

4. Only Shared Hosting

HostMetro only has two shared hosting plans. VPS, cloud or dedicated hosting options are unavailable.
That will hinder the expansion of your existing infrastructure.

5. Restrictive FREE domain offer

When signing up, you will get a free domain name only if you use their FREE DOMAIN coupon code.
And even the domain name renewal will cost you $14.49 ( more expensive than most of the domain name registrars).

6. ‘Setup Fee’ on Monthly Plans

Though HostMetro offers a true month-to-month hosting plan, the rate rises rapidly and the setup fee will be $14.49.

7. More expensive short term plans

As same to most web hosts HostMetro advertises a monthly price of,$2’95. But to get that you have to sign up for three years. And another important thing is that the shortest plan of HostMetro is one year and it will also, cost $4.95 per month.

 

HostMetro Pricing, Hosting Plans and Quick Facts

The following are some details about their one and only shared hosting plans.

  • Mega Max Plan
    Starts from $2.95/month
    Unlimited storage, bandwidth
    Supports unlimited websites
  • Super Max Plan
    Starts from $6.95/month
    Unlimited storage and bandwidth
    Supports unlimited websites
    A free SSL certificate
    Daily malware scan
    Advanced security

 

  • Ease of signup
    Quite difficult
  • Payment methods
    Credit Card, PayPal
  • Hidden Fees and Clauses
    Accounts are limited to 200,000 inodes, 10% CPU, and memory. If you exceed the limit your account might get suspended or you won’t be eligible for a refund.
  • Upsells
    A few
  • Account Activation
    Takes a long time
    You can make it fast by paying a fee of $5
  • Control Panel and Dashboard experience
    cPanel
  • Installation of Apps and CMSs (WordPress, Joomla, etc)
    One-click installation with Softaculous


Do we recommend HostMetro?

No, we don’t.
Because they are many minus points like slowest page loading speeds, bad uptime, lengthy downtimes likewise. The only plus point was their price lock guarantee.