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A2 Hosting Review (2021) – Are They The Fastest Web Host?

A2 Hosting is an impartial hosting firm based in 2003. They are based mostly in Ann Arbor Michigan however serve internet hosting markets globally. A2 Hosting positions itself as a high-performance, speed-focused internet hosting firm with wonderful assist.

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What’s A2 Hosting?

A2 Hosting is an impartial web site internet hosting supplier along with complimentary web site merchandise resembling domains, web site builders, net design, and e-mail companies.

Is A2 Hosting Legit?

A2 Hosting positions itself as a rising, steady internet hosting supplier that’s not owned by one of many 3 massive net companies holding firms (ie, GoDaddy, Endurance, and Web.com) that additionally has the breadth, assets, and experience to serve web sites for companies, organizations, and long-term tasks.

A2 Hosting began in 2003 and has seen speedy development up to now few years.

Like most internet hosting firms, A2 Hosting additionally supplies e-mail, a web site builder, and varied complementary companies with a 24-hour assist group and a 30-day money-back assure.

A2 Hosting is legit. They aren’t a fly-by-night internet hosting firm.

What Is A2 Hosting Used for?

A2 Hosting is used to host web sites and net functions resembling WordPress. They have a selected advertising concentrate on companies, organizations, and quickly rising web sites. They provide a full suite of web site merchandise starting from domains to shared internet hosting plans to managed VPS internet hosting to even net design.

Nonetheless, like I’ve said in all my internet hosting evaluations, discovering a very good internet hosting firm is about discovering the appropriate match based mostly in your objectives & assets. Listed below are my professionals & cons and an summary of A2 Hosting’s options as an A2 buyer.

Right here’s my A2 Hosting assessment – structured with professionals & cons based mostly on my expertise as a buyer.

A2 Hosting Pricing

A2 Hosting presents hosting companies starting from shared to VPS to devoted together with customized merchandise resembling WordPress and Reseller internet hosting.

Web Hosting Plans

Web (i.e., Shared) internet hosting is the bread and butter of the web site internet hosting world. A shared internet hosting plan consists of particular person accounts on a Linux server. They can run WordPress or any software on a LAMP Stack . It’s an economical and dependable strategy to run most web sites. Study extra about Shared Hosting on this information. A2 Hosting has three principal shared internet hosting plans.

PlanStartupDriveTurbo EnhanceTurbo Max
Price (USD)$2.99/mo.$4.99/mo.$6.99/mo.$12.99/mo.
Web sites1limitlesslimitlesslimitless
Storage100 GBlimitlesslimitlesslimitless
Bandwidth/monthunmeteredunmeteredunmeteredunmetered
Free Area Identify
Free SSLsuresuresuresure
CDN
Devoted IP
Each day Backupssuresuresure
Web ServerApacheApacheLiteSpeedLiteSpeed
Pricing requires a 36-month time period

WordPress Hosting Plans

Although WordPress can run on shared internet hosting, many internet hosting firms have WordPress internet hosting plans resulting from buyer demand and the {hardware} calls for of WordPress. Many internet hosting firms provide “WordPress internet hosting” that’s *precisely* the identical as their shared internet hosting plans.

A2 Hosting is like this to a level. Their WordPress plans are simply Web internet hosting plans with WordPress auto-installed. Nonetheless, they’re additionally the identical pricing as their Web internet hosting plans. No hurt, no foul – and a good deal. Moreover, they do have a Managed WordPress Hosting plan buried of their menu. These WordPress plans are costlier however have extra distinctive options particularly for WordPress web sites.

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VPS Hosting Plans

VPS internet hosting is a good way to get a selected allocation of server assets, with out having to lease a whole server. Although your web site lives on the identical server as different websites, you may have complete management over a set quantity of assets. Study extra about VPS internet hosting on this information. A2 Hosting has a number of very competitively priced VPS internet hosting plans that supply managed VPS and unmanaged VPS choices.

Reseller Hosting

Reseller internet hosting is mainly a shared, VPS, or devoted server plan with third social gathering billing and administration enabled. Reseller internet hosting permits anybody to mainly begin their very own internet hosting firm with out really beginning a internet hosting firm. Learn extra about Reseller internet hosting on this information. It’s a good way for businesses to get recurring income and supply further worth for purchasers. A2 has a variety of reseller internet hosting merchandise.

Devoted Hosting

Devoted internet hosting is mainly simply leasing a whole server with administration and assist bundled. It’s an inexpensive strategy to get reliable pricing for a really massive web site. See their plans right here.

A2 Hosting Execs / Advantages

There are a number of A2 Hosting evaluations on-line – normally with user-generated evaluations based mostly on anecdotes and private expertise. That’s nice however I take a distinct strategy. Like I point out in all my internet hosting evaluations, there isn’t any such factor as a “greatest” net host. It’s all about the appropriate match in your mission based mostly in your objectives, finances, expertise & experience. Listed below are the professionals (benefits) for contemplating A2 Hosting.

Assist Entry & Choices

Like I’ve talked about in different internet hosting evaluations, reviewing buyer assist is difficult. Identical to your native restaurant on Yelp, probably the most constructive and most unfavorable evaluations are typically nugatory.

You by no means know when points are customer-caused or when somebody merely encountered that one superb/horrible worker.

I’ve had a very good expertise with A2 Hosting. However that’s very anecdotal. So, I additionally like to have a look at “proxies ” for buyer assist. In different phrases, issues that point out one thing concerning the tradition & processes of buyer assist.

First – A2 Hosting supplies a number of totally different channels for buyer assist.

A2 Customer Support Channels

They have a cellphone quantity entrance and middle. They have an in depth data base, stay chat, and even Skype entry. They do effectively triaging requests by way of social media.

Second, A2 Hosting’s reps are very “hands-on” – they provide customized installs and loads of options the place your rep will go in and repair the problem somewhat than speaking you thru the method. Whereas some prospects could or could not like that choice, it does sign that they see buyer assist as an funding somewhat than a value. That’s the kind of common conclusion that I search for – and the one which I feel issues within the long-term over a one-off expertise.

Like their impartial rivals in InMotion, HostPapa, GreenGeeks, and SiteGround, A2 Hosting’s buyer assist is a serious professional to picking them over an enormous model internet hosting firm (like GoDaddy) which will or could not prioritize assist in the identical manner. This level segues into one other large benefit for A2 Hosting.

Transparency & Independence

First off, I don’t assume that an organization is “good” or “dangerous” merely resulting from its measurement. It’s all about tradeoffs.

There are a number of main benefits to utilizing an enormous firm. They normally have the assets to supply large complete options. They normally have decrease unit prices that may be handed to the shopper. They are additionally normally extra steady than small, upstart firms.

That stated small firms are normally in a position to be extra agile, nearer & extra aware of the shopper, and fewer prone to view prospects solely by the lens of a Net Promoter Score .

On the earth of internet hosting – it actually depends upon your objectives & preferences. There is no such thing as a proper reply.

That stated, it’s an enormous benefit that A2 Hosting is a founder-owned, impartial firm – just because that’s so uncommon in 2017. Most internet hosting firms are manufacturers of Endurance Worldwide, GoDaddy or the Web.com group.

And never solely is A2 Hosting impartial, they’re steady and rising and actually use their independence to advertise transparency and accessibility {that a} large model merely can’t match.

A2 Hosting CEO

If you’re somebody searching for a internet hosting firm somewhat than a internet hosting model – A2 Hosting will tick that field. If not, you may ignore this part and hold focusing in your priorities.

World Information Facilities

On a associated however totally different observe than velocity & efficiency, A2 Hosting scores effectively as a globally centered host that may effectively serve web sites all over the world.

Whereas there are many components in web site velocity (like TTFB), the bodily location of your server issues rather a lot. Requests for info journey over bodily wires to a bodily server. Even on the velocity of sunshine, distance issues, particularly in the event you personal/keep a web site or in case your guests must load up many various information.

In case you and your viewers are on one facet of the globe, it’s good to host your information close to each you and your viewers.

*Word – in case you are in a single nation, however your viewers is unfold out, most websites remedy this drawback with a CDN.

Till lately, most cutting-edge internet hosting firms had been based mostly & centered on the US market. In case you had been in Asia or Europe -then you may be caught with lackluster native internet hosting and/or gradual connection occasions.

  • Michigan – USA
  • Arizona – USA
  • Amsterdam – Europe
  • Singapore – Asia

You to pick out your knowledge middle among the many two they function within the US, Europe, or Asia. If you’re ex-US or are attempting to serve an viewers solely there – A2 Hosting’s knowledge middle choices are a compelling benefit.

Hosting Customizations & Options

The final main benefit of A2 Hosting that I wish to name out is their concentrate on internet hosting options and customizations. They will not be solely a full-spectrum internet hosting firm with merchandise tailor-made for almost each want, additionally they have a concentrate on the precise options that you simply get along with your plans.

They have hosting resolution from Home windows internet hosting to shared Linux to WordPress to VPS to Cloud internet hosting. All their plans include updated variations of software program (ie, PHP7, new cPanel, and so on).

A2 Hosting supplies a free SSL certificates for every area along with limitless storage and limitless web sites on mid-tier internet hosting plans.

Now – I feel a few of their “options” are deceptive marketing-speak. However, like their velocity claims, they do come by with offering the internet hosting that your mission will want.

A2 Hosting Complaints / Cons

Like every net host, A2 Hosting has disadvantages. There are many A2 Hosting complaints on-line. However bear in mind, that like the professionals, these are all within the context of your objectives & priorities. With that stated, listed here are the cons that I discovered whereas utilizing A2’s internet hosting service.

Pace, Efficiency & Uptime

A internet hosting account could be a number of issues to your small business, however the core perform of a internet hosting server is to serve your web site information each time somebody requests them. However – the implied adverb there’s to serve these information shortly.

In an age of world audiences and multi-device connections, velocity issues greater than ever. Whereas there are a number of variables in play with web site velocity, it’s primarily your internet hosting server’s job to ship the requested information to the customer’s browser as shortly and as effectively as potential.

A2 Hosting makes a number of claims about their velocity.

A2 Hosting Turbo Servers

A few of these claims are deceptive hyperbole. A few of these velocity claims are upsells.

However total, A2 Hosting does nice but additionally doesn’t stay as much as the hype.

One of many principal components of web site velocity is Time To First Byte (TTFB) – ie, how shortly the server sends the primary byte of the primary file in response to a request. Right here’s how an A2 Hosting web site examined with zero velocity enhancements.

A2 Hosting Speed Test

General, A2 Hosting does nice sufficient with velocity in an effort to have a quick web site with some enhancements.

They do provide options like SSD Storage, Turbo Server, free Cloudflare CDN that may each assist along with your TTFB and velocity. Nonetheless, they’re nonetheless ranging from a spot barely behind their direct competitors.

The similar goes with uptime. A2 Hosting has not had downtime incidents exterior of industry-standard expectations. Nonetheless, additionally they don’t make industry-standard guarantees on uptime both. So in the event that they do have downtime, you received’t essentially get compensated.

Renewal Value Level

Like I’ve talked about in different internet hosting evaluations, evaluating pricing throughout internet hosting firms could be maddening. It’s very troublesome to check apples to oranges as a result of plans typically include varied caps.

That stated, I attempt to have a look at evaluate pricing based mostly on the three “D’s” of core internet hosting options –

  • Domains – what number of web sites you may run in your account
  • Databases – what number of software program installs you may run
  • Disk House – what number of information you may add to your account

After taking a look at “core” internet hosting options, I wish to issue all of the potential “bonus” options. Bonus options are options that you must solely think about in the event that they pertain to your objectives.  For instance, in the event you plan on working Google Adverts, then a credit score there may be worthwhile, but when not, then it’s one thing to disregard utterly.

Both manner, A2 Hosting has 4 principal tiers for shared Linux internet hosting – the Startup ($8.99/mo at renewal), Drive ($11.99/mo at renewal), Turbo Enhance ($19.99/mo at renewal), and Turbo Max ($24.99/mo at renewal).

A2-Hosting-Plans-Pricing

With heavy discounting, their plans will not be too dangerous in comparison with each rivals and low cost manufacturers.

That stated – they’re undoubtedly pricier than most internet hosting firms that I’ve checked out for a number of causes.

First, their renewal pricing is simply legitimate for 2-year plans. In case you solely wish to pay yearly – their renewal pricing is a bit greater.

Second, their Startup plan is fairly closely capped. It’s actually appropriate for actually one web site with no extra use circumstances.

Third, they don’t embody some key “bonus” options that their rivals do embody. I’ll contact on these later, however issues like backups, devoted IP addresses, “efficiency”, “precedence assist” and spam filtering all get bucketed as upsells somewhat than as pre-packaged options.

Fourth, I’m not fully clear on what justifies paying double the value for “Turbo Server” – there are even some options that transfer from Included to “Obtainable”. On the face of it, it seems that they promise to place you on a much less crowded server. However the factor is – that wouldn’t seem to be it could improve minute to minute efficiency on an absolute measure. It could, nevertheless, “enhance” speeds if in comparison with crowded servers underneath fixed load.

I’m not a community engineer and I’m actually not aware about how A2 Hosting has their community setup. It may be fabulous. However the factor is – after taking a look at & utilizing many internet hosting firms, it appears like merely a strategy to get extra money per thirty days with out offering instant worth month to month. It looks as if these old-school JCPenney “gross sales” that had been solely gross sales as a result of they reset the retail price cue each month.

Now – to be clear, that’s not a foul factor. Value just isn’t a very good metric. Each buyer ought to have a look at total worth for his or her wants. However both manner, A2 Hosting works at a better worth level than different hosts, and I’m unsure their uncooked options meet the value level….which segues into the subsequent part.

The one large caveat to pricing is their world fee choices. There will not be many internet hosting firms that work with totally different currencies – however A2 Hosting does.

A2 Hosting Currencies

If worldwide currencies are essential to you – then by all means mark that in A2 Hosting’s pricing benefit.

Technical Advertising and marketing Converse

I work in advertising. I adore it. I feel good advertising could make the world a greater place.

However advertising is a device. And I completely don’t prefer it when firms use “marketing-speak” to misrepresent services. It’s nice to simplify, however inform it prefer it really is. And it’s nice to re-frame or re-position, however not at the price of hiding different info.

A2 Hosting does this rather a lot. They have a smooth web site. They have good copy. However they constantly invent options that aren’t really options or they place info exterior of context so they appear nice…however actually don’t make any sense.

Right here’s an instance.

A2 Hosting Specifics

The chart appears to be like nice. It’s a kind of advertising belongings that makes you nod and transfer alongside to the purchase button. Everybody does it to an extent, however there are a pair issues right here that hassle me.

First, the Efficiency Plus pitch grossly simplifies what it takes to “keep your web site’s velocity throughout visitors spikes.” That each one depends upon your caching, the dimensions of your web site, the dimensions of your “visitors spike” (ie, is it a whole bunch, hundreds or tens of millions of requests?), and dozens of different variables. It performs on concern somewhat than a extra correct upside like “easily deal with a resource-intensive web site.

Second, the Cores, Bodily and Digital Reminiscence allocations are lacking any type of context. They are introduced to influence you to purchase a costlier plan – to not present any really helpful comparative info.

In equity to A2 Hosting, I do just like the specificity and I do know that offering concise, helpful info is a problem on a gross sales web page. That stated, mixed with the subsequent drawback, their marketing-speak serves as an obstacle for any buyer attempting to make an knowledgeable alternative of internet hosting firm.

Onboarding & Product Setup

Onboarding is the method of transferring a brand new buyer to an energetic, completely happy buyer. It’s a vital course of for any firm, however particularly for internet hosting firms who’re promoting an inherently technical product.

Whereas A2 Hosting has most of the widespread components for a very good onboarding (ie, e-mail confirmations, intuitive shopper space and commonplace cPanel) – all the things within the technique of organising my account was barely off. It was a bit irritating – sufficient to make it an obstacle.

They begin out their orders merely with an Order Affirmation.

A2 Hosting Confirmation

Their account space is pretty easy.

A2 Hosting Backend

Their welcome e-mail appears to be like complete…however it’s not. Most sign-up emails have vital account info in an effort to get began immediately (see examples in my Web site Setup Information).

However A2 Hosting’s emails don’t.

A2 Hosting Onboarding

It tells me to get my DNS info of their assist space.

However once I go to the assistance space…it tells me to return to the e-mail.

A2 Hosting DNS

However there’s no info within the e-mail.

A2 Hosting DNS

So again to Google/buyer assist.

Both manner – from their cPanel, they’ve custom-made it to emphasise their “A2 Personalized Installers” somewhat than the usual Softaculous installer.

The drawback with their custom-made installers is that it makes the put in software program manner more durable and cluttered than it must be.

A2 Hosting WordPress Install

If I had been a brand new, inexperienced person, I might be regretting my buy about now. It’s these conditions the place A2 Hosting wants a very good assist group as a result of their onboarding is creating issues that ought to not exist within the first place.

Upsells & Gives

Upsells will not be inherently a “dangerous” factor. If introduced effectively, they are often helpful. However upsells should be clear, helpful and introduced effectively. Whereas not as dangerous as some large model rivals, A2 Hosting doesn’t do upsells effectively.

Right here’s what you see on checkout – a wall of “configuarable choices” – aka, upsells.

A2 Hosting Choices

Whereas not garish or overwhelming, these configurable choices create a number of questions.

A2 Hosting Choice Confusion

Each single choice (aside from Server Location) both creates doubt or confusion within the thoughts of the shopper. Moreover, since they’re all introduced out of context – I don’t know what they’re or why they’re helpful or how they apply to my buy.

However the irritating presents/upsells don’t cease on the checkout display. They are built-in into A2 internet hosting’s “optimized software program” as proven earlier.

However they’re additionally marketed inside the server backend. As seen right here –

A2 Hosting Offers

On this case, it’s much less concerning the provide and extra with what the provide is. It’s a really horrible “web optimization” product. The form that makes me ashamed to work within the web optimization {industry}.

Yeah. I’m unsure how a lot cash Attracta pays A2 Hosting for that product placement, however wow does that negatively have an effect on A2 Hosting’s in any other case stable, clear model.

Not solely are there video gross sales letters – however A2 Hosting additionally robotically supplied my e-mail to Attracta for an e-mail automation setup that I didn’t join – pure spam.

A2 Hosting SEO Tools

However the frustrations with presents/upsells/messaging will get worse. A2 Hosting takes credit score for offering free, open-source merchandise from different firms without spending a dime. As a part of their “Optimization” improve, they supposedly set up a bunch of unique software program to assist your web site.

Within the case of the WordPress set up, it seems to be some commonplace, free plugins obtainable to anybody by way of the WordPress plugin repository.

A2 Hosting Claims

It’s one factor to supply an auto-install service – that’s nice. It’s one other to make use of another person’s work and use the worth from their work so as to add “unique” worth to your product.

Now – from a day after day use perspective – none of this issues. You’ll be able to ignore the upsells, ignore the presents and take away the bundled plugins. However so far as selecting an organization based mostly on belief & values, I see it as an obstacle to A2 Hosting.

Ensures, Backups & Bonuses

Ensures and backup companies are “bonus” options within the grand scheme of internet hosting. However for one thing as essential as your web site, they are often life (err pockets) savers.

A2 Hosting’s money-back assure is okay however just isn’t spectacular in comparison with direct rivals.

A2 Hosting Refund

They additionally solely present “server rewind backups” without spending a dime along with your commonplace plan. If you’d like true common backups, you’ll must subscribe to a third social gathering service.

A2 Hosting Backups

Once more, that’s nice, however it’s one thing to think about whereas evaluating worth & worth amongst rivals.

Lastly, their precise bonuses/freebies are fairly skinny on the bottom. In truth, 3 of their 4 freebies are advert placements to learn A2 Hosting. Nothing exterior the norm, however one thing to think about in the event you already know a few of the companies you’re searching for.

A2 Hosting Offer

General, A2 Hosting’s ensures, backups, and freebies are okay on their very own, however an obstacle in comparison with the remainder of the {industry}.

Is A2 Hosting Price It?

There’s a cause A2 Hosting is likely one of the fastest-growing impartial internet hosting firms. They have a stable product and an amazing assist.

If you’re searching for a full service internet hosting firm with stable assist, good efficiency, and world knowledge facilities / fee choices (and also you don’t thoughts a number of upsells), then – join an A2 Hosting plan.

A2 Hosting Review

If you’re searching for a internet hosting firm with all the advantages of A2 Hosting – however with higher pricing and ensures, I’d go together with InMotion Hosting. See InMotion’s plans & pricing right here.

If you’re nonetheless in analysis mode – then take my Web Hosting Quiz right here or use my web site setup information right here!

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