DreamHost review for 2024: Pros,cons and more

Apr 18, 2024 - 15:55
May 29, 2024 - 17:22
DreamHost review for 2024: Pros,cons and more

Our Verdict

Our Verdict

DreamHost is a well-established and highly regarded web hosting provider in the field, recognized for its cost-effective pricing, dependable performance, and exceptional customer service. DreamHost provides a diverse array of hosting options, such as shared hosting, WordPress hosting, VPS hosting, and dedicated servers.

like Pros

  • DreamHost offers cost-effective hosting plans
  • DreamHost assures a 100% uptime guarantee
  • All plans come with complimentary SSL certificates

dislike Cons

  • Data centers are limited to the United States
  • Basic shared hosting plans do not include free email services
  • No complimentary telephone assistance is provided
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Our ratings take into account a product's cost, features, ease of use, customer service and other category-specific attributes. All ratings are determined solely by our editorial team.

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Based on our extensive exploration of various plans and features, DreamHost emerges as a standout hosting service, offering stellar performance and security while ensuring simplicity in web hosting. Both novices and seasoned users will appreciate its user-friendly setup and management, equipped with intuitive website-building tools and a user-friendly control panel.

Throughout our evaluation, we encountered no performance or security issues with any of its plans, and DreamHost's diverse hosting options left a positive impression.

While it would be beneficial to see its robust malware protection integrated into standard security plans rather than offered as a separate paid add-on, DreamHost remains one of the most budget-friendly web hosting providers available. Moreover, its 97-day money-back guarantee allows users to trial DreamHost risk-free.

In the realm of web hosting, opting for a reputable provider renowned for its open-source technologies and budget-friendly plans is essential. Meet DreamHost, celebrated for its stellar industry reputation and diverse hosting options tailored for both individuals and businesses.

Our comprehensive DreamHost review aims to assist you in evaluating whether it stands as the ideal hosting solution for your website requirements, particularly when compared to other best website hosting services.

DreamHost hosting packages and costs

Our examination of DreamHost commences with a critical aspect of any hosting service – its pricing model. We were pleased to discover a variety of plans catering to businesses of all scales.

Priced at a mere $2.59 per month for its most economical shared hosting package (ideal for beginners), DreamHost stands out as one of the most budget-friendly services we've encountered in 2024.

Plans Price Number of websites Free domain Free SSL Storage Bandwidth Free email accounts
Shared starter 36 months $2.59/m 1 50GB SSD Unlimited No
VPS basic 36 months $10/m Unlimited 30GB SSD Unlimited Unlimited
DreamPress 12 months $11.99/m 1 Exclusive to annual subscriptions 30GB SSD Unlimited Unlimited
Dedicated server hosting 12 months $149/m 1 1TB HDD Unlimited Unlimited
Cloud hosting $4.50/m 1 80GB SSD Unlimited Unlimited

Shared hosting is widely favored for its versatility, making it an ideal choice for most websites. Let's delve deeper into the shared hosting plans.

Shared Starter – Starting at $2.59 per month with a 36-month subscription

DreamHost's Shared Starter plan is an excellent starting point for beginners venturing into website creation. It comes equipped with essential features, including:

  • Support for one website
  • Complimentary domain for the first year
  • Website builder
  • Unlimited traffic
  • Free SSL certificate
  • High-speed SSD storage
  • Free automated WordPress migrations

While this plan offers a comprehensive set of features, it's worth noting its limitations – email hosting isn't included for free, and it supports only one website. However, you have the option to add email hosting for an additional $1.67 per month.

Shared Unlimited – Starting at $2.95 per month with a 12-month subscription

For more expansive needs, you can opt for Shared Unlimited at $2.95 per month. With Shared Unlimited, you gain access to:

  • Hosting for unlimited websites
  • Unlimited high-speed SSD storage
  • Unlimited email accounts under your domain
  • Unlimited subdomains and MySQL databases

What types of hosting does DreamHost provide?

Before making a commitment to a DreamHost subscription, it's essential to understand the capabilities and suitable applications of each hosting type available. Here's a brief overview of what each hosting type offers:

DreamHost Shared Hosting – Starting at $2.59 per month with a 36-month plan

Ideal for individuals and small businesses, DreamHost's shared hosting plans provide essential features at an affordable price point. Ranging from hosting for a single website to unlimited websites, and featuring fast SSD storage, the Shared Starter and Shared Unlimited plans offer a budget-friendly entry point.

DreamHost VPS Hosting – Starting at $10 per month with a 36-month plan

  • VPS Basic – 30GB SSD storage, 1GB RAM, $10 per month
  • VPS Business – 60GB SSD storage, 2GB RAM, $20 per month
  • VPS Professional – 120GB SSD storage, 4GB RAM, $40 per month
  • VPS Enterprise – 240GB SSD storage, 8GB RAM, $80 per month

VPS hosting is tailored for users with technical expertise who require a customizable and flexible hosting solution. All VPS plans are Linux-based and integrate seamlessly with DreamHost's custom-built control panel. Renowned for their quality, DreamHost's VPS plans offer:

  • Unlimited email accounts under your domain
  • MySQL databases
  • Free SSL certificates
  • A user-friendly, custom control panel

DreamHost's exceptional VPS hosting service is well-suited for dynamic websites of growing businesses, as well as e-commerce stores.

DreamHost WordPress Managed Hosting (DreamPress) – Starting at $11.99 per month with a 12-month plan

While both shared and VPS hosting options from DreamHost can be used to create WordPress websites, DreamPress offers a tailored, managed WordPress solution. Key features include:

  • Automated WordPress installation and updates
  • 30GB SSD storage
  • Complimentary SSL certificate
  • On-demand backups

With DreamPress, users benefit from automatic updates, high performance using Nginx, and round-the-clock expert support with its premium plan.

These plans cater to bloggers and businesses of all sizes, accommodating up to 100,000 monthly visitors. Users can scale up to 300,000 visitors with DreamPress Plus ($17.39 per month) or up to 1 million with DreamPress Pro ($44.99 per month), making it an ideal solution for growing enterprises.

DreamHost Dedicated Server Hosting – Starting at $149 per month with a 12-month plan

With dedicated server hosting, users have exclusive access to server resources, making it suitable for high-traffic sites and large businesses. DreamHost's dedicated server hosting offers robust performance for companies that cannot afford downtime or performance issues.

Users can customize resources, choosing from 1TB HDD storage to 2TB SSD storage, varying CPU cores, and up to 64GB RAM. Exclusive use of Linux-based dedicated servers requires the custom-built control panel.

Although the most expensive option, dedicated server hosting ensures exceptional performance, even with resource-intensive applications and high-traffic websites.

DreamHost Cloud Hosting – Starting at $4.50 per month

  • 512MB RAM Server – Maximum $4.50 per month
  • 2GB RAM Server – Maximum $12 per month
  • 8GB RAM Server – Maximum $48 per month

Cloud hosting offers flexibility and supports various programming languages and frameworks, with extensive customization options. Each Cloud plan includes an 80GB SSD disk and 100GB block storage for website-related data and files.

The user-friendly interface caters to both novice and experienced users, making DreamHost cloud hosting suitable for a wide range of projects, from website launches to database hosting. DreamHost also ranks among the best cloud hosting providers.

DreamHost features

In our DreamHost hosting review, we highlighted some standout features. With offerings such as budget-friendly domain registration, a WordPress website builder, and email hosting, a few features truly shine in the competitive market.

It's worth noting that users can explore these features before making a commitment, as DreamHost offers a 97-day money-back guarantee, significantly longer than most competitors.

Clear domain registration process

DreamHost provides a straightforward and cost-effective domain registration service, essential for website owners seeking clarity. With .com domains priced at a flat rate of $8.99 per year and no hidden charges, DreamHost enables users to secure a unique online presence with transparent pricing.

Free privacy protection

Included in its service, DreamHost provides free privacy protection for users, ensuring the anonymization of personal details during registration. This feature serves as a safeguard against unwanted solicitation, identity exposure, and phishing attempts.

WordPress website builder

DreamHost offers a remarkably user-friendly WordPress website builder, available at no additional cost with every plan. This feature positions DreamHost as one of the premier providers of WordPress hosting services. With a wide array of responsive templates and built-in SEO recommendations, users can swiftly create a WordPress website while optimizing their content to enhance audience engagement. Consequently, DreamHost stands out among leading SEO web hosting providers.

What we find particularly appealing is that you don’t require any coding skills. Whether you’re a novice in website development, DreamHost simplifies the process through its creation wizard, guiding users in selecting themes, functionalities, and content for their website. The intuitive drag-and-drop editing tools are especially beneficial for newcomers.

DreamHost email hosting

With seamless synchronization of emails across devices and comprehensive organizational features, DreamHost’s email hosting stands out as one of the top services in this category. While most plans include unlimited email hosting for both you and your team, the basic Shared Starter plan requires an additional $1.67 per month per address.

DreamHost control panel experience

DreamHost distinguishes itself from competitors with its custom-designed control panel. Despite initial apprehensions, we found its layout to be intuitive and free of clutter. Within the main dashboards, users can effortlessly:

  • Efficiently manage domains
  • Access billing information
  • Configure hosting settings

For users utilizing DreamHost's email hosting, the control panel provides extensive email management options. Users can:

  • Access their business inbox
  • Set up filters
  • Create an autoresponder

In the Billing and Account section, you can:

  • View your next payment due date
  • Update personal information
  • Enhance account security
  • Create backups

Additionally, there's a Support section that provides access to the DreamHost customer service team.

Furthermore, you'll find a variety of add-ons and extra services, such as integrating your Google Workspace account with the DreamHost panel or adding a cloud server to your network in just 30 seconds. Overall, this custom-built control panel offers all the features one would expect, with a user-friendly interface to facilitate navigation.

DreamHost website migration

Website migration can be a daunting task when switching to a new hosting platform. We were pleased to discover two automated migration options offered by DreamHost – migrating between two DreamHost accounts or from a third-party hosting provider.

Here's how DreamHost prices migration services for WordPress websites:

  • Migrating from a third-party hosting service – $99
  • Migrating from a DreamHost account – $25
  • Migrating to any DreamPress plan – Free

For non-WordPress websites, the service incurs a flat rate of $99. We found comfort in the guarantee of a full refund if DreamHost cannot successfully complete the migration, although this scenario is unlikely in most cases.

DreamHost performance

While no service is immune to outages, DreamHost's 100% uptime guarantee ensures compensation for any downtime attributable to them. In contrast, GoDaddy and HostGator offer a 99.99% uptime guarantee, and Bluehost lacks any uptime guarantee altogether.

Throughout our ten-day testing period, our test website remained online without any interruptions. Additionally, the service exhibited outstanding performance during bandwidth testing, maintaining consistent loading times even under rigorous stress tests, thanks to DreamHost's inclusion of SSD storage with nearly every plan.

How secure is DreamHost?

Renowned for its security prowess, DreamHost provides the bulk of its extensive safety features without additional charges. Its hosting packages come equipped with a wide array of security measures, including:

  • SSL certificates – These complimentary certificates encrypt your website’s traffic, ensuring the safety of visitor data.
  • Automated backups – DreamHost provides routine backups to safeguard your data against accidental loss or malicious activities.
  • DDoS protection – Protects your website from DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks.
  • Anti-spam protection – DreamHost identifies malicious emails as ‘Spam’, shielding you from phishing attempts and suspicious links.

While these standard security features are commendable, DreamHost offers its DreamShield Malware Remover services for an additional $3 per month. DreamShield conducts continuous scans of your website for malicious code and notifies you via email or the DreamHost Panel if potential threats are detected.

Customer reviews play a crucial role in assessing DreamHost's performance and suitability for different types of businesses or individual users. By examining third-party DreamHost reviews, we gain valuable insights into various aspects of the service, including customer support quality, pricing changes, hidden fees, and more.

On Trustpilot, DreamHost boasts an overwhelmingly positive rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars, based on more than 5,000 reviews. Notably, 86% of these reviews are 5-star ratings.

Customers particularly highlighted the following aspects:

  • Migration – Users reported that DreamHost's website migration services are straightforward and user-friendly.
  • Value for money – Many reviews on Trustpilot emphasized the affordability of DreamHost's Shared Unlimited plan, underscoring its excellent value proposition.

What are the strengths of DreamHost?

DreamHost stands out as one of the top choices for website hosting services catering to small businesses, individuals, and startups. Apart from its competitive pricing and user-friendly interface, DreamHost also excels as one of the leading WordPress hosting providers we've assessed this year.

Few services can match the offerings of DreamPress plans, particularly DreamPress Pro, which comes with priority customer support, staff monitoring, and additional features.

With convenient one-click WordPress installation and integrated Jetpack features providing protection against brute force attacks and downtime monitoring, the DreamPress plans offer unparalleled advantages for WordPress hosting.

DreamHost vs Best competitors

To provide a comprehensive overview in our DreamHost review, we compared it directly with its top competitors. Surprisingly, they closely rival each other in terms of both quality and pricing.

DreamHost vs GoDaddy

While both providers offer robust security features and fast SSD storage, GoDaddy might be a preferable choice for users seeking VPS hosting. Unlike DreamHost, which stops at 8GB RAM and offers Linux-only servers, GoDaddy provides a 16GB RAM server plan compatible with both Linux and Windows.

Additionally, GoDaddy boasts four strategically located data centers in India, Singapore, the Netherlands, and the US, offering extensive global coverage. In contrast, DreamHost only operates data centers in the US.

Nevertheless, DreamHost stands out with its more affordable plans and exceptional WordPress and shared hosting services, making it a superior option for small and medium-sized businesses, particularly those based in the US.

DreamHost vs Bluehost

DreamHost and Bluehost both provide a range of hosting services including WordPress hosting, VPS hosting, shared hosting, email hosting, and more. However, DreamHost’s WordPress hosting stands out with perks like a lifetime free SSL certificate and outstanding website building tools.

Yet, it’s worth noting that Bluehost has an exclusive partnership with WordPress, although DreamHost boasts a 100% uptime guarantee, positioning it as a top choice for enterprise-level WordPress hosting, unlike Bluehost, which lacks such guarantees.

On the flip side, Bluehost offers a more scalable shared hosting approach, offering four plans compared to DreamHost’s two. This flexibility allows growing businesses to tailor their hosting plans according to their needs. Additionally, Bluehost provides more responsive customer support, including phone support, a feature absent in DreamHost's services.

DreamHost vs HostGator

Unlike HostGator, DreamHost offers several advantages worth noting. For instance, DreamHost provides domain owner privacy protection at no extra cost, whereas HostGator charges $14.95 per year for the same service. Additionally, DreamHost offers daily backups for free, whereas HostGator only provides weekly backups without additional charges.

However, HostGator's extensive network of data centers spanning across ten countries makes it a preferable option for websites catering to global audiences, particularly e-commerce platforms. Moreover, HostGator offers two plans specifically tailored for online stores, featuring benefits such as gift card management, bookings and appointments, wishlists, and more.

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