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Are you looking for web hosting for your website? So, which is better, Wix or Bluehost?
What are the key differences between Wix and Bluehost?
How do you decide which one suits your needs best?
Are there any other better alternatives?
In this detailed review, I am going to share with you everything you need to know to make an informed decision.
How To Choose The Right Web Hosting
To choose the right web hosting, you first need to know what you need for your website.
Here are a few questions to help you find out what your needs are:
- What kind of website are you planning to create? Is it a simple personal website, a small business website or an online store?
- How much content are you going to upload to your website? ( This will tell you how much storage space you need)
- Do you intend to use a drag-and-drop website builder to create the website yourself or you want to have more options when it comes to website design? (e.g. hire a web designer or purchase a theme)
- How much is your budget?
Next, what do you need to look out for while deciding on your web hosting?
First of all, how fast is their web hosting?
For all websites, speed is important because nobody likes a slow website.
If your website takes too long to load, it will not only cost you a lot of website visitors but also potential customers.
Secondly, is there an uptime guarantee?
Uptime refers to the amount of time when your website is up and running.
Good web hosting generally offers a 99.9% uptime guarantee.
Thirdly, how good is their customer support?
When you choose web hosting, you want to make sure that you can get the help you need whenever you need it from your web hosting provider.
Lastly, how are their reviews?
Are their reviews mostly positive?
Before I make any buying decision, I always check the reviews to have an idea about what I am getting.
Now, let’s take a closer look at both Wix and Bluehost for a detailed comparison.
Wix was founded in 2006 as a platform to help people build websites and create an online presence easier and faster.
Let’s see exactly how Wix can help you.
First of all, you can buy a custom domain name through Wix or buy from third-party domain name registrar and then connect your existing domain name to Wix.
When it comes to web hosting, you will get free web hosting from Wix, so there is no need to purchase separate web hosting.
Also, your website will be SSL Certified which ensures that any data transmitted through your website remains secure and safe.
What really makes Wix different from Bluehost is its website builder.
You can either start from scratch or choose from over 500 designer-made templates.
With its drag-and-drop website builder, you can design any website you want.
Your website will be fully responsive, which means your website can adapt to different screen sizes, no matter what device your visitors are using.
There is also Wix Chat which allows you to offer live chat support to your customers.
Apart from this, Wix also makes it simple for you to run your business online by offering the following features:
- Wix Online Store (i.e. it allows you to list and sell products and get paid online)
- Wix Booking (i.e. it allows you to offer appointments, classes, courses and workshops)
- Wix Events (i.e. it allows you to sell your events)
- Wix Video
- Wix Photography
- Wix Music
- Wix Restaurants (i.e. it allows you to take online reservations and take delivery and pick-up orders)
While it all sounds great, one of the BIGGEST drawbacks of using Wix to create your website is that your website speed would likely be slow.
With Wix, coding is automatically generated to create the kind of website design you created using its drag-and-drop website builder.
While the drag-and-drop interface is great at the front end appearance, it lacks the ability to generate clean and efficient coding for your website.
And inefficient coding leads to slow page speed.
Moreover, you have no control over the codes, so you cannot modify and improve it.
Lastly, when your website is slow, your Google ranking will be affected as well.
Below are the results of tests on several website hosting platforms to compare the website speed on both mobile and desktop:
As you can see from the above, the speed is much slower on mobile for Wix websites
If you are planning to do SEO for your website to get organic Google search traffic, Wix might not be a good option.
Now, how much is Wix?
Wix offers quite a few pricing options.
Its free plan costs nothing, but you will have Wix Brand ads displayed on your website, and your domain name will be a subdomain of Wix.com in the format of yourdomainname.wix.com.
Its basic plan ($4.50/month) lets you to connect your custom domain, but you will have Wix Brand ads on your website as well.
On top of that, you will only have 1GB bandwidth and 500MB storage.
How much bandwidth do you need for your website?
To find out this, you need to have an estimate of the following:
- Average number of visitors per month
- Average number of pages per visitor
- Average page size of your website
To give you an idea, you will need about 10GB bandwidth for an average of 10,000 visitors per month with 2 pages per visitor and average page size of 0.5 MB.
Now, how much storage do you need for your website?
Let’s say a single web page taking up around 1 MB. (the smaller the page size, the faster it loads)
If you are planning to have 200 pages, then you would need at least 200MB storage.
Unless you are building a massive website or a website with lots of large-sized images, audio, or video files, you should be fine with 10GB storage.
Below is the pricing table for Wix.
The cheapest plan without any Wix ads costs about $8.5/ month with limited bandwidth and storage, while a good web hosting costs you only $3.95/month with unlimited bandwidth and storage with fast 24/7 customer support.
Visitor analytics app that you get for free from Wix, you can actually get it for free by using Google analytics which is definitely more powerful and accurate.
So, if you are looking for value for money web hosting, Wix is not the best choice.
But, if you just want an easy and quick way to set up your website, Wix can help you with that with its website builder.
The issue with website builder websites, you will likely end up with a slow website with long page loading time.
Now, let’s look at Bluehost.
Bluehost has been in the web hosting business for decades.
Till today, it has powered more than 2 million websites all over the world.
It’s also officially recommended by WordPress.org.
Bluehost is specialized in web hosting solutions.
Also, you can purchase your domain name through it if you don’t already have one.
Below is a wide range of web hosting solutions it provides:
- Shared Hosting
- WordPress Hosting
- VPS Hosting
- Dedicated Hosting
Now, let’s look at the features of Bluehost web hosting.
Apart from the cheapest web hosting plan, Bluehost offers unlimited SSD storage (i.e. SSD a type of mass storage device similar to a hard disk drive (HDD), and SSD is faster and more reliable than HDD) and unmetered bandwidth on all other paid plans.
Also, Bluehost offers free SSL Certificates for all its web hosting plans, so you don’t have to pay extra to make sure your website connection is secure.
With Bluehost, it offers 5 free email addresses for its cheapest plan.
You will get more free email addresses if you go with its more expensive plans.
Does Bluehost offer uptime guarantee?
Bluehost does not offer an uptime guarantee, but it performed pretty well in the uptime test.
Below is the uptime tests done by Down.Com on all the popular web hosting providers.
You can see that Bluehost maintains an uptime that is close to 100% together with HostGator, GoDaddy & Namecheap.
Based on my personal experience with Bluehost, my website is seldom down and I am pretty satisfied with it.
Next, how fast is Bluehost?
Bluehost only has one data center located in US, but its speed test results for both US and other countries are pretty impressive.
Below are the speed test results on Bluehost done by Bitcatcha:
Google recommends 200ms for server response time, and Bluehost performed much better in all countries except Bangalore.
Below is the server response time and uptime test results for Wix, done by WebsiteToolTester.
As you can see from the above, Wix’s average server response time is much longer than Bluehost.
What this means is that Wix websites will likely be slower.
When it comes to uptime guarantee, Wix doesn’t offer any uptime guarantee, but its uptime records are just as good as Bluehost.
Now, what about Bluehost’s customer service?
Bluehost has a huge customer support team with over 750 customer service agents who are there for you 24/7.
So, you can be sure that it is easy and quick to get help from Bluehost customer service agents.
Now, how much does Bluehost hosting cost?
Bluehost offers several hosting plans with the cheapest being the Shared Hosting’s basic plan.
The Shared Hosting basic plan is priced at 5.95/month for 1 year( or 3.95/month for 3 years) with a FREE domain and allows you to host only 1 website with 50GB storage and unlimited bandwidth.
There are other more expensive plans under Shared Hosting which basically allow you to host more websites and unlimited storage.
Also, if you have the budget and want more control and privacy and guaranteed server resources, you can go with VPS Hosting or even Dedicated Hosting at $149.9/month (or $79.9/month for 3 years).
But if you are just starting out with a tight budget, then Bluehost’s shared hosting basic plan is quite good enough for you.
In fact, I used Bluehost web hosting to set up my own website when I was just starting out.
I had been using Bluehost ever since to host my website without any issues.
So, who should choose Bluehost?
If you want to have a faster website with more storage, Bluehost is definitely a good option.
As Bluehost does not offer any kind of website builder, what you can do is to simply purchase any nice and affordable website theme for your website and install it with just a few clicks.
I am not tech-savvy, but I can still manage to set up everything myself quite easily.
That’s what I did for my website because I don’t want to go through the trouble of hiring a website designer to design my website from scratch.
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Wix Vs Bluehost
So which is better for you, Wix or Bluehost?
For both Wix and Bluehost, you can get a domain name and web hosting through them.
Also, both don’t give uptime guarantee, but both have a very good 99% uptime based on uptime tests.
Let’s look at the key differences between Wix and Bluehost.
In terms of website builder, Bluehost does not offer any website builder, but you can easily buy ready-made website themes and install them for your website.
On the other hand, Wix allows you to design your own website using its drag-and-drop website builder or just choose any of its 500 website templates.
So, you don’t have to worry about your website design and setup.
But it comes with a few disadvantages.
First of all, you can only choose one template on Wix and it does NOT allow you to change your template.
Secondly, you can only host one single website under your Wix premium plan.
Thirdly, your website speed can be quite slow if you use a website builder.
Lastly, you cannot transfer your website over to another web-hosting provider if you decide to change later on.
In terms of pricing, Bluehost offers a much cheaper hosting plan at only 3.95/month with a free domain name and 50GB storage and unlimited bandwidth.
If you want unlimited storage, you just need to upgrade to its next pricing plan which is also pretty affordable at 5.95/month.
On the other hand, Wix does not offer unlimited storage.
If you want more storage, Wix’s VIP plan gives you 20GB for $24.5/month.
So, you are paying so much more for just a website builder which will likely give you a slow website when you can easily purchase a high performing yet affordable website theme and install it.
For example, you can get a very nice website theme that is good for SEO and website speed for under $50.
So, if you want value for money and more importantly have more control over your website, Bluehost is definitely a much better choice.
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