Updated: August 1, 2018
Does choosing a hosting company give you nightmares?
Choosing the right hosting service is a nerve-wracking experience because hosting can make or break your website. You have to spend hours upon hours doing research, trying to understand what sounds like gibberish and then comparing all these companies. And biased reviews more intent on selling you something than being honest don’t make things much easier.
It’s not something you can avoid, though, because poor hosting can have your traffic dwindling to nothing – that’s if you manage to get any traffic in the first place. So, you have to put in the effort or watch your website crash and burn.
You have another option that will require less time and won’t be nearly as aggravating. I’ve done all the legwork for you and you’ll find a comprehensive SiteGround vs Bluehost hosting comparison below, along with many other hosting reviews and comparisons, including HostGator vs Bluehost and HostGator vs SiteGround.
Bluehost was founded in 2003, whereas SiteGround made its entry into hosting in 2004.
SiteGround Vs Bluehost tests
- BlueHost Vs SiteGround – SecurityTest
- BlueHost Vs SiteGround – Uptime Test
- SiteGround vs Bluehost Server Response Time
- Bluehost vs SiteGround – Website Speed Test
- SiteGround Vs Bluehost: Customer Support
If you are too busy to read this entire review, here's an infographic that covers the main points.
Bluehost vs SiteGround – Performance, Reliability, Speed test and Security
While SiteGround web hosting developed some highly innovative approaches and ideas such as their own SuperCacher, free CDN by Cloudfare, NGINX web server technology and SSD Drives(Bluehost uses HDD drives) to beat the competition and provide maximum performance to its users, Bluehost has flagged behind everything for the last 2-3 years.
SSD drives are more expensive, but haven proven to be faster and more reliable than HDD drives. Only a few hosting companies can boast that their servers use SSD drives and SiteGround is one of them.
SiteGround has already released PHP 7.2 RC, thereby fulfilling their promise to offer their customers the latest technology in a timely fashion. The new release will bring a number of improvements to speed, efficiency and security.
A few other new features SiteGround has recently introduced include:
- The SiteGround Migrator plugin that helps customers migrate their WordPress site quickly and easily
- An upgrade to the SG Optimizer plugin to include multisite support.
Conversely, Bluehost has not yet provided their customers with access to PHP 7.2 and are still running PHP 7.0. They’re also much slower across the board in terms of updates and new features, which sets them pretty far behind SiteGround on the cutting-edge technology front.
The most recent survey sitground conducted among its customers shows a satisfaction score of 97% in 2017.
This score has steadily increased over the past three years, proving that SiteGround constantly strives to improve the quality of the services they offer.
Look at this video to understand how SiteGround is able to secure our websites from all hackers and other security threats.
SiteGround vs Bluehost – Security
SiteGround has recently developed an anti-bot AI that protects their customers from brute-force attacks.
The new bot prevention system has delivered amazing results as it blocks as many as 2 million attacks across their servers. Not only does the AI system protect customer websites, but it also frees up server resources that can now be used by customers.
The AI system monitors all SiteGround’s servers simultaneously and analyzes the data. Based on the results, it takes automatic action to stop malicious bots. Some of the flags the AI watches include:
- Failed logins
- How many simultaneous connects are present to different URLs
- DDoS weaknesses that are already known in different apps
- Various request types associated DDoS attacks
- A constantly updating list of blacklisted user agents
When the AI determines that an IP is malicious, it blocks it and issues a challenge via a Captcha page. If the “puzzle” is solved, meaning that it’s actually a human and not a malicious bot, the address is whitelisted. And the AI learns from these situations so that it can reduce the level of false positives that occur.
Thus, SiteGround’s new security system is much more efficient at protecting customer websites.
Bluehost relies on Cloudflare to protect its customers from DDoS attacks. They also offer other security features, such as spam protection, password-protected directories, and an option to blacklist certain IPs.
Winner: SiteGround wins by a long-shot because they’ve developed their own AI to thwart brute-force attacks and aren’t relying on a third party to protect their customers.
BlueHost Vs SiteGround – Uptime Test
Both Bluehost and SiteGround offer 99.99% uptime guarantees.However, practice shows that Bluehost has significant and consistent issues with downtime, leading to an average uptime of less than 98% per month.
I haven’t seen anything that shows a major downtime for SiteGround. Moreover, they were up more than 99.99% during the last year. They have pretty much the most in the entire web hosting industry.
SiteGround, on the other hand, does not exhibit any major problems with downtime. In fact, over the past year, their average uptime exceeded 99.99%. This proves that their servers are highly reliable and some of the best in the industry.
We used Host Tracker to monitor approximately 150 Bluehost and SiteGround websites to determine a more accurate figure for their uptime.
To see different estimates for uptime percentage, you can change the variables inthe following interactive graph
The above graph provides you with a snapshot of how much better SiteGround performs in terms of uptime compared to Bluehost.
Bluehost Vs SiteGround – Uptime of test website
We also paid for separate accounts with SiteGround and Bluehost to collect even more independent data on uptimes. Below, you can see the results of our two test websites.
Bluehost Vs SiteGround – Website Speed Test
Thanks to their highly efficient servers, and static caching, speed is one feature that works great at SiteGround. The combination of features from Varnish caching, Memcache, SuperCacher and CloudFare Railgun, help improve the speed of your website significantly.
TTFB or Time to First Byte refers to how quickly the host’s server sends the first byte of data when responding to a request. This is an important metric because it allows us to test the speed and quality of the servers independent of front-end issues.
The speed with which the server delivers the first byte of data won’t be affected by the type of the website, it’s size or other similar factors. So, it’s an excellent way to figure out the quality of the hosting company’s servers.
SiteGround had a TTFB of 308 ms, while Bluehost’s was 401 ms.
Based on these figures, it’s clear that SiteGround is the winner. They have great servers but the fact that they have 5 major data centers across the world also helps. The physical distance the data has to travel also affects TTFB.
SiteGround’s servers are located in Chicago, London, Amsterdam, Milan, and Singapore.
Bluehost doesn’t reveal the location of all their data centers, though some believe they have one in Mumbai, another in Shanghai, and, of course, their US locations in Provo and Orem, Utah.
Clearly, SiteGround is the winner by a significant margin in terms of TTFB. Their excellent servers are the main reason, but it might also have something to do with the number of data centers they have and their locations.
Here are the results of a speed test from different location around the world.
Speed of sites hosted on SiteGround
SiteGround showed great performance in Europe and the US, whereas it loaded a bit slower in Melbourne.
|Testing Location||Test 1||Test 2||Test 3|
Speed of sites hosted on Bluehost
Bluehost performed exceptionally well in the US and Melbourne, but failed to put its mark on Europe.
|Testing Location||Test 1||Test 2||Test 3|
Bluehost Vs SiteGround – Server Quality Test
To test how the servers of each host react to a large number of concurrent visitors, we used the Load Impact App. This test will determine the performance of each host server when there are 100’s of visitors coming to your site at the same time.
Here are some of the steps taken to ensure that all tests were as fair as possible.
- Each site has a WordPress 4 installation running on it, and features the same theme, the same number of images, page size, content and requests.
- All the plugins and catching systems were disabled
- The test was conducted several times and the best results are displayed here.
- The host servers we tested are located in Chicago, IL, and Provo, UT, while the servers we used were located in Dallas, TX, and Ashburn, VA, respectively.
The green Line indicates the number of visitors and the blue line represents the adjacent response time as the traffic increases.
SiteGround Server Response Time
My Server Location: Dallas, TX
Hosting Server Location: Chicago, IL
Max Response Time: 1.6 seconds
Minimum Response Time: 669.9 milliseconds
SiteGround’s performance was rock solid, especially considering the $3.95 price tag for their most basic hosting plans. Their average response time was 650ms all the way to 50 concurrent users with no real hiccups.
Bluehost Server Response Time
My Server Location: Ashburn, VA
Hosting Server Location: Provo, UT
Max Response Time: 10.61 seconds
Minimum Response Time: 915.53 milliseconds
Bluehost’s performance was lackluster. Response time increased as the traffic increased. Even at lower levels of traffic (10 users), the response time variedbetween 1,000ms and 3,500ms. As concurrent traffic increased to 20, the response time touched a high of 10.61s. Their performance was highly inconsistent with a significant variance from one second to another.
We conducted another test for a week on a smaller website with little traffic and in a different location. As expected, the result was similar.
Based on the results of these tests, the conclusion is that SiteGround’s servers are twice as fast in terms of response time as Bluehost’s.
SiteGround and Bluehost – Live Reviews from Current Users
The best way to determine the quality of a company’s services is by reading what their existing customers are saying about them. Below you will find live comments from current users of SiteGround and Bluehost.
These tweets are via a live Twitter feed. This live Twitter feed updates every second. Based on the tweets, it’s obvious that SiteGround users are satisfied, while Bluehost customers aren’t nearly as happy.
BlueHost Vs SiteGround – Cloud Hosting
Cloud hosting is based on innovative technology that makes use of multiple servers to accommodate your website files and software. It means that your website will be up and running even if one or more servers experience unexpected problems.
Read more: What Cloud Hosting really is ?
Skip this part if you run a small business or if your website isn’t meant earn a profit.
Why cloud hosting is better than shared hosting or VPS hosting ?
Unlike the old VPS solution, the Cloud doesn’t need server restarts when more power is added to them or when a single major patch is applied.
So there is no downtime during such events which guarantees better uptime and a lot more power at one’s disposal.
Do you really need Cloud Hosting ?
This is difficult to answer as it depends on a wide range of variableslike the volume of traffic, the scripts on the site, and its optimisation. However, the Cloud option is generally better because the machines are incredibly powerful and scaleable.
For example, if more CPU power is ever needed as a result of a sudden jump in traffic, more CPU cores can be added right away. Cloud Hosting is ideal for very popular sites with high levels of traffic.
Which Hosting Company Offers Better Cloud Hosting? SiteGround or Bluehost?
SiteGround’s Cloud hosting plan starts at a high price of $80/mo. They use next generation LXC technology built on bare metal, meaning that you get your own machines with resources dedicated tosolely to your project and on the most reliable technology. SiteGround servers can be scaled up to 16 CPU cores and 16 GB of RAM, which is quite a lot of power and is on par with dedicated plans. Moreover, Cloud comes with the HHVM, a revolutionary tool from the Facebook team for faster PHP execution.
Meanwhile, Bluehost Cloud Hosting starts at a price of $8.95, as the price tag clearly shows ( they have same prices for shared accounts). However, it barely differs from a shared solution as it uses a shared network of VPS resources. So, it’s not really the same dedicated power.Therefore, SiteGround’s cloud hosting is more suitable for highly popular sites because they offer much more power.
Bluehost vs SiteGround Cloud – Uptime
Bluehost Cloud Uptime
Test website name: bh-inlinehosting.com
Testing website’s name server and hosting details are provided below.
Uptime statistics for Bluehost Cloud
SiteGround Cloud Uptime
Test website name: sg-inlinehosting.com
Testing website’s name server and hosting details are provided below.
Uptime statistics for SiteGround Cloud
- Both Bluehost cloud and SiteGround cloud recorded an uptime of 100%.
SiteGround vs Bluehost Cloud – Speed
- The Same website used in the above test was used for this test as well.
- We used the Load Impactapp to send upto 100 concurrent visitors to a website hosted on both companies’ cloud hosting plans. This test can be used to estimate how much time a user would have to wait for your web page to load when your site is accessed by a certain number of concurrent users. It can, therefore, determine how many visitors your website can be handle at same time when it’s hosted on these servers.
- In most situations, a flat or falling graph indicates that your hosting can handle the load comfortably.
- If the site’s response time slowed down significantly, then it will show steadily increasing values as the load level increased.
SiteGround Cloud speed test result
- There were just a few initial spikes, but then the graph was flat until it reached 100 concurrent users, with an average response time of 515ms.
- SiteGround servers were able to handle this traffic without too many hiccups or slowdowns.
Bluehost Cloud speed test result
- As you can see from the above results, once the concurrent traffic exceeded 40, the response time started jumping higher and higher. The highest response time was recorded at 16s and then the server stopped responding.
- Bluehost’s cloud servers were not able to handle concurrent traffic above 40 users.
Prices, Plans and Features
SiteGround comes with a basic startup plan for beginners, which features a single domain and 10 GB disk space. The fee is $3.95 per month, even if your initial period is one year.
Bluehost’s entry plan allows unlimited domains and is advertised at $4.95 per month, but the price applies only if you start on a three-year cycle. If you choose one year as your initial sign-up period, the price will be $6.95 per month.
|Features||SiteGround Startup||SiteGround GrowBig||Bluehost Shared||Bluehost Plus|
|Disk Space||10||20 GB||50 GB||Unmetered|
|Traffic Allowed||10000 Visits||25000||Unmetered||Unmetered|
|3 Year Term||$3.95||$5.95||$2.95||$5.45|
SiteGround offers all it’s customers a free Let’s Encrypt Wildcard SSL. This means that websites with subdomains can be encrypted using one certificate, making them easier to set up and maintain.
SSL certificates not only make browsing more secure, but they can improve your rankings too. Google is ranking HTTP sites lower than HTTPS ones, and they’ve also started putting up warnings that non-HTTPS sites aren’t safe.
A Wildcard SSL is even more important because it allows sites with subdomains to secure the whole packages. Sites with forums, online stores, chats and so on can now easily secure everything with a single certificate.
Bluehost only provides its customers with regular SSL certificates, making life a little more complicated for their clients.★ Winner Bluehost or SiteGround ( You decide) .
SiteGround Vs Bluehost: Customer Support
Customer support is very important in dealing with day-to-day problems associated with websites including issues associated with downtime, server connectivity, or security.
A reliable and fast customer support team is what you should be looking for to solve these problems quickly, without affecting your website.
- SiteGround customer service offers a 24/7/365 day live chat, a ticketing system and a toll number for support. They have a wait time of less than 5 seconds for their live chat and less than 10 minutes for the ticketing system. In contrast, I have waited more than 5 minutes on some other leading hosting companies live chats. They have enabled a feature which allows users to study the bio of each support representative’s skills, work experience and user ratings. Moreover, they boast a wait time of less than 10 minute for their ticketing system.
- Bluehost offers the same features. They have friendly representatives and an attractive chat box. Their support team, however, isn’t quite as fast nor do they have the expertise to solve some high-end issues promptly. Moreover, they often transfer small issues from their live chat team to the ticketing system, which creates more wait time for users.
I tried reaching both SiteGround and Bluehost live chat teams for support one after the other and here are the results.
Bluehost took 5 minutes to connect whereas SiteGround managed to reply within a few seconds of connecting. This easily proves the superiority of SiteGround’s customer support.
Bluehost Live Chat Waiting time: 5 Minutes
SiteGround Live Chat Waiting time: 0 Minutes
Bluehost customer support team is pathetic most of the time..
The User Interface is what we call the control panel. Both these hosting companies come with cPanel. cPanel is the easiest and most common control panel across the blogosphere.
Their cPanel comes with more than 52 one-click installers for popular scripts such as WordPress, Joomla, Weebly, etc. This is a great advantage for newbies who might be unfamiliar with the coding aspects of a website.
SiteGround cPanel: Try Demo
Bluehost cPanel: Try Demo
SiteGround Staging Tool
SiteGround offers an amazing tool to help customers test changes and new features without breaking their live website.
The tool creates a development copy of WordPress and Joomla sites, which customers can experiment on to their heart’s content.
Using the SiteGround Staging environment means that any changes won’t affect the live website, enabling customers to determine before hand if what they’re doing will help or hurt their site.
It’s an outstanding tool that will make life so much easier because you can get a developmental copy of your site set up with just a few mouse clicks. Then you can go wild without worrying about your site going down and angering your audience.
SiteGround’s staging is not nearly as perfect as staging on other wordpress hosts. There are still problems and bugs relating to SSL certificate, DNS and Multisite features.★ WinnerTie.
Bluehost Vs SiteGround User Review
One of our technicians posted a question on a popular WordPress forum regarding the best choice between HostGator and Bluehost web hosting. Surprisingly 90% of people suggested we look at SiteGround even though we never mentioned SiteGround in the question. That’s how much people love SiteGround.
Here are some reactions from Twitter users regarding their experience using SiteGround and Bluehost.
SiteGround's Twitter user reviews and reactions... Bluehost's Twitter user reviews and reactions...
Bluehost's Twitter user reviews and reactions...
#Free migration for your website.
SiteGround offers free migration of your website to their servers. Their experts will transfer your website without a single minute of downtime within hours of a purchase.
I initiated a free transfer request with SiteGround for one of my test websites. They successfully transferred the site within 24 hours, even though it was a non-working day.
Bluehost charges $149.9 for the same service.
SiteGround Vs Bluehost Final Analysis
Their performance, reliability and excellent support systems make SiteGround a perfect choice. Bluehost previously led in Performance. However, that’s no longer the case as SiteGround has invested heavily in superior speed, security and customer service, which has helped them become our no.1 web hosting company. If you really want a great website, in the long run, I would suggest you use SiteGround.
Here’s what a new user with little knowledge of hosting a website had to say about Bluehost web hosting…
"I signed up with Bluehost one week back and 4 days of it I couldn’t access my account. So frustrating trying to get it resolved and they definitely don’t want to honour the money back guarantee. I’m new to the blogging world and I definitely wouldn’t recommend them to anyone starting new"
Which hosting is best for you ? SiteGround or Bluehost? Yes, it’s SiteGround and here’s why ..
- High uptime record of over 99.99% over the last five years.
- 30 day money back guarantee. You get your money back in full if you don’t like them.
- Their quality servers enable them to provide high-speed websites for our traffic.
- They conduct timely automated backups, and their security team is successful in protecting our site from attacks.
- They have an innovative and speedy customer support team.
- It comes with cPanel, the most accessible and used control panel in the world.
- Plans for all requirements at a decent rate.
- 60% discounted price for a limited time.
The EU recently passed a new law that helps to protect the privacy and personal information of people living in the European Union known as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Thus, any website that receives visitors from the EU must comply with the new law.
Both SiteGround and Bluehost are in full compliance with the GDPR.Set up your web hosting with SiteGround now.
SiteGround Coupon Code
SiteGround provide a limited time 60% discount coupon code.
Disclosure: This site is run by a group of like-minded webmasters, whose mission it is to provide the public with honest web hosting reviews to ensure they meet our expert criteria. We do receive compensation for all the products that we review, which in turn helps us finance our work and provide users with honest reviews. All the products mentioned on our site are tested and evaluated before any reviews are written.