IdeaHost is a relatively new website host that has quickly burst onto the scene as a tremendous option for young entrepreneurs and bloggers to build a strong web presence and grow their brand. They offer all of the typical features that you see from experienced hosts and have also managed to put their own twists and turns on things to offer a truly great service.
As always, any review of a website host should start by asking whether that host is reliable or not.
While, due to the youth of IdeaHost, it is difficult to give an exact yes or no answer to the reliability of their use as a host, the current conclusion is that yes, they’re reliable. The data center that they utilize is based in Houston, TX and is as good as any that you will find. They also have independent backups in two different locations and each location is heavily guarded for security assurance.
With reliability out of the way, let’s take a look at some of the features that make IdeaHost one of the more exciting web hosts on the market right now:
IdeaHost has all of typical features that come with just about any popular website host. These include things like a free domain, unlimited email addresses, extras from Google Adwords and Yahoo Bing, etc. One of the things that immediately separate them from the pack, however, is their marketing tools.
The marketing tools that IdeaHost offers with their services are one of their more intriguing features. They utilize Google webmaster tools that allow you to check over different analytics and gain an understanding about how to better spread your content with SEO. It is also a great tool for businesses that are looking to improve conversion rates and continually build their subscription list.
Drag & Drop Website Builder
While most website hosts offer a drag and drop website builder with their services, very few of them offer one that is as easy to use as the one IdeaHost provides. They allow you to choose from one of their thousands of pre-made templates and make it a breeze for even the beginning web builder to create something that is both professional and visually appealing.
One of the issues with other website hosts is that they have little flexibility to offer to advanced web host users. With IdeaHost being new to the industry, they wanted to offer an opportunity for increased flexibility so they could cater to both the advanced and beginner users. To do that, they made it simple to install your own favorite CMS, whether that is Joopla, WordPress, or Drupal.
The email features are fairly typical as well. They have your normal spam filters, virus checking software, autoresponders, etc. When combining the marketing tools and website builder, the email features can actually serve as a great way to start and grow an email list. Creating an email marketing campaign shouldn’t be too difficult with their many features as well.
Quality of Apps
A claim to fame of IdeaHost is that they have some of the best apps on the web for creating anything from a full scale business to a niche based forum. Based on what hundreds of users are saying and the experience that we have had with it, this is undoubtedly true.
Easy and simple are two words that are sprinkled heavily throughout this review. The reason for that is because you will be hard pressed to find a more easy-to-use website host than what IdeaHost offers. Everything about it is simplicity personified and the incredible customer support makes your experience with them even more enjoyable.
Top notch customer support is generally a priority of every website host. IdeaHost, however, seems to be at the top of the list as far as being available for around the clock assistance to their users. Their call support team is native speaking American agents and their call back times average in the 2-5 minute range.
Another major customer support perk that they offer is their walk-through tutorials that include videos of exactly how to get yourself started with building and growing your site. With these tutorials and their state of the art website builder, it isn’t farfetched to say that you can build a professional looking website in the matter of a couple of hours.
On top of the tutorials and top notch phone support, they also provide the option for email support and live chat. For the live chat, you will usually be speaking to someone about your issue within five minutes while the average email ticket time is within 10-12 hours. Overall, it will be difficult to find a more helpful customer support team.
Great Option for Entrepreneurs
IdeaHost is probably one of the best hosting platforms for beginning entrepreneurs that are looking for an affordable platform to get their idea off the ground. One of the biggest challenges for entrepreneurs that are just starting out is getting the word out about what they have to offer. The free marketing tools and Google Analytics help tremendously with this issue as they make it easy for even a novice marketer to spread the word about your business.
Another reason that IdeaHost is a great option for entrepreneurs and small businesses is due to the simplicity of their e-commerce features. Creating an online store is super simple and they utilize cPanel, which makes it easy to make upgrades as you go grow your business. Other perks of their online store are that you can easily integrate with PayPal and you get to choose your own shopping cart.
Plans and Pricing
Overall, the pricing that IdeaHost offers is as good as it gets. They regularly advertise their monthly pricing options at $2.99/month, which is absurdly low for a website host that offers all of the business based benefits that they do. While IdeaHost is rather new and may be selling at a low price to continue to build their reputation, the value that you can currently get from their services is outrageous.
It should be understood, however, that the monthly pricing will vary based on how long you sign up for. After renewing your account from the initial $2.99/month price, the price then moves to $5.98/month for 3-year agreements, $7.98/month for 2-year agreements, and $9.98/month for 1-year agreements. As you can see these prices are still very reasonable.
While you may be a little put-off by the fact that there is no trial period, they do offer a 45 day money back guarantee to all customers. They claim to give you back your money regardless of the reason and we haven’t found any users that have had issues with this in the past.
The only real gripe about IdeaHost is that they are fairly new to the industry and there are still a lot of unknowns about their reliability and security. So far, however, they have proven to be one of the best values of any host on the web and make it super simple to do everything from building and marketing a scalable online store to creating a niche blog.
While they’re new, one of the interesting things that you will find out about them as that they’re very transparent about their company. Not that you should expect anything different, but the fact that they readily tell you that they are a young and growing company that is committed to improvement and don’t give you a bunch of jargon about their ‘extensive experience’ is something that is somewhat comforting to hear.
The Final Word
Overall, IdeaHost has quickly planted itself as one of the top website hosts on the web. Their many easy-to-use features and the ability to create a professional looking e-commerce site in the matter of hours make them perfect for any beginning entrepreneur or blogger. The walk-through videos make setting everything up an absolute breeze and the customer support that they offer is as good as any in the industry.
For the value provided, IdeaHost is a wise choice.