iPage Hosting Review: Shared Hosting

iPage is the beginner version of web hosting for the Endurance Group International. They’re a niche hosting site targeting beginner website owners (small businesses and individuals) whose primary objective is to get online, fast. Fully wind powered for the past four years, they offer a streamlined and stripped back hosting service, taking out all the complicated factors for novices. They make getting online easier than ever.

Shared hosting

As part of their effort to make hosting less confusing, iPage has stripped back their shared hosting to just one plan – the Essential Plan.

The Essential Plan starts at $6.99 per month on a 36 month contract, up to $8.99 per month on a 12 month contract. There’s a first month discount so you only pay $1.99 at the start. As part of their effort to streamline their services to make it even easier, they’ve made all their core features unlimited. This includes:

  • Storage space
  • Bandwidth
  • Domains
  • MySQL databases
  • POP3/IMAP email addresses and accounts

Naturally, unlimited doesn’t actually mean ‘unlimited’. It means that for 99.95% of users, the limit is so high that there’s never going to be a problem. But, should you reach said limit (it’s not clear what it is) then iPage will first warn you and then slow down (throttle) your server. Basically, it’s their way to ensure that people don’t abuse their shared plans and start reseller hosting or using them as cloud storage. But if you’re just hosting a website like the plan is designed for, there shouldn’t be any problems.

Their Essentials Plan also includes a whole bunch of website-starter tools and add-ons, like:

  • 1 year domain registration
  • Drag and drop website builder (Weebly and CM4all)
  • FTP manager, URL redirects, and customer error pages
  • CMSs (Joomla, Drupal, Mambo, and e107)
  • Blogs (WordPress, PixelPost, and b2evolution)
  • Photo galleries ((Gallery2, Coppermine, ZenPhoto)
  • Forums (Gbook, phpBB, SMF)
  • Shopping cart options (ShopSite Shopping Cart , osCommerce Shopping Cart, and AgoraCart Shopping Cart)
  • Shared SSL
  • vDeck control panel
  • Online marketing tools, like guides, $200 in ad credits, and being listed on some directory websites

The goal of the Essentials Plan is clear – make it really easy to get people online and hosting, fast.

iPage also offers a WordPress optimization package, which starts at $8.49 per month for 24 months, increasing to $10.49 per month for a month to month contract. Your first month is discounted to $3.75.

Basically, for your extra cash you get the Essentials plans plus a better control panel, lots of pre-installed themes and plugins, SiteLocker security, and most importantly less accounts per server (so more CPU resources).

There’s also an enhanced WordPress plan called (confusingly) the WordPress Essentials plan. It starts at $10.49 per month for 36 months with a one off first month discount of $3.54 (so you pay $6.95). In addition to everything in the WordPress starter package, you also get SSD storage, better security, and personalized support.

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