A2 Hosting Features and Pricing
Irrespective of whether you have or have not ever tried creating and hosting a website, you might have surely heard about hosting providers like HostGator and BlueHost.
These companies spend a lot of money on marketing and you can find their advertisements just about everywhere on the internet.
But have you ever heard the name A2 Hosting? Probably not unless you’re a fairly experienced website owner or developer and focus on the hosting performance rather than how good a company markets itself.
While popular hosting providers like HostGator and BlueHost offer great services too, a large number of customers agree that A2 Hosting is by far the best.
The company claims to offer server speeds that are 20x faster than any standard non-SSD servers, uptime of 99.99%, and 24x7x365 “Guru Crew Support”.
However, it is pretty common for hosting providers to make such tall claims on their websites. Can A2 Hosting actually back these claims with performance? Let us find out in this detailed A2 Hosting review.
What is A2 Hosting?
A2 Hosting is a Michigan, US-based independent hosting provider that was founded in 2001 by Bryan Muthig as “Iniquinet”.
The company went through a makeover in 2003 and came up with an all-new name and website.
Over the years, the company has grown by leaps and bounds and is now one of the few independent companies to compete with big names like BlueHost, HostGator, iPage, etc. which are owned by Endurance International Group.
A2 Hosting currently has 4 data centers in Michigan (USA), Arizona (USA), Amsterdam (Europe), and Singapore (Asia).
The data centers have state-of-the-art facilities and security to offer the best to the customers.
The company markets itself as a “high-powered” hosting provider and offers a number of hosting services like Shared Hosting, WordPress Hosting, Reseller Hosting, Dedicated Hosting, and VPS Hosting.
All these services are available across multiple plans to help customers select one as per their requirements and budget.
Be it a new WordPress-powered website, a small e-commerce store, or a business website that is high on traffic, A2 Hosting has a plan for everyone. Recently, the company has also started offering domain names.
With a major focus on speed and reliability, the company uses something known as “Turbo Servers” which offer page load speeds of up to 20x faster than standard non-SSD servers.
And while you might expect the Turbo Servers to be only reserved for high-end expensive plans, even the Shared Hosting (least expensive) service of A2 Hosting includes these servers.
The company has been able to consistently deliver high performance and has also won several awards for its services.
It promises an uptime of 99.99% on all the servers and award-winning support round the clock to handle your queries and problems.
Features of A2 Hosting
A2 offers a host of unique and powerful features which allows it to stand out as compared to many other top hosting providers. Let us have a look at some of them-
Speed and Performance
A2 Hosting is not your typical hosting provider that advertises something on their website and offers something else once you buy a plan.
As a website owner, one of your biggest concerns when selecting a hosting provider is the speed it offers.
In other words, how much time it takes for the hosting server to serve your website when a user wants to access it.
A2 Hosting’s claim of high-speed performance is backed by results. TTFB (Time To First Byte) is one of the vital factors for determining the speed of a website.
A simple test on WebPage Speedtest website shows that the TTFB of A2 Hosting is less than 350ms which is faster than a number of hosting providers like GoDaddy or BlueHost.
Moreover, the speed remains mostly consistent throughout the day across different locations.
What is more interesting is the fact that the industry average TTFB is currently around 850ms. This makes A2 Hosting more than 50% faster than the industry average.
But how is A2 Hosting able to offer such impressive speeds? They do it by combining the world-class infrastructure with some specialized server optimization.
For instance, right from the Lite Shared Hosting Plan, you get full SSD storage, 2.1GHz CPU cores, and 0.5GB RAM. Moreover, it also comes with CloudFlare Basic for faster load times on mobile phones.
In 2014, A2 Hosting launched a new feature known as A2 Optimized.
It is a plugin with the help of which you can adjust the 3rd party functions and custom host settings to further improve the speed and security of your website.
This feature is also available right from the cheapest Shared Hosting plan.
There are two other paid features, Performance Plus and Railgun Optimizer, which you can purchase to further improve the speed and performance of your website.
Last but not the least are Turbo Servers which can offer speeds of up to 20 times faster than standard non-SSD servers.
Across all the different hosting services offered by A2 Hosting, the Turbo Servers are generally available with the most expensive plan.
Excellent Server Uptime and Customer Support
You’d not want your website visitors to see the “Website not available” error when they try to access your website. Here again, A2 Hosting delivers what it promises.
With all of their hosting plans, you can expect an average uptime of 99.99%. There are several A2 Hosting reviews on the internet to back this claim.
When it comes to hosting, you’ll also need your hosting provider to have easily accessible support round the clock.
As mentioned above, A2 Hosting offers something known as “Guru Crew Support” which is available 24×7 throughout the year.
The support team of the company is known to be highly knowledgeable and friendly. Moreover, you can reach them through call, email as well as live chat.
However, a few users have mentioned that the live chat is not always available.
Some Other features of A2 Hosting
- Transparent Pricing
- Several Hosting Services and Plans Available
- Free Account Migration
- Money-Back Guarantee
- Free SSL and SSD
- Committed to Green Energy Practices (100% Carbon Neutral )
- Thousands of Positive Customer Reviews
A2 Hosting Hosting Services and Plans
A2 Hosting offers many different types of hosting services that are available in multiple plans. Some of the top offerings are-
If you’re just starting with a website or have a small website and are looking for affordable hosting, Shared Hosting from A2 Hosting can be a great choice.
The service is divided into three plans- Lite ($3.30/m), Swift ($3.96/m) and Turbo ($7.26/m) and is available for Windows and Linux.
The Lite Plan can be used with a single website and comes with 5 databases, unlimited storage, unlimited transfer, cPanel control panel, and free SSL and SSD.
The Swift Plan can be used for an unlimited number of websites and comes with unlimited databases.
Apart from this, it includes everything available in the Lite Plan. The most expensive, Turbo plan, offers everything included in the Swift Plan along with A2 Site Accelerator and Turbo servers.
All the plans come with an anytime money-back guarantee.
If you have a WordPress website, a hosting service tuned for the platform like the WordPress Hosting from A2 Hosting would be an ideal choice. The service is available across four plans- Lite ($1.98/m), Swift ($3.30/m) and Turbo ($6.27/m) and Managed ($8.47/m). The Lite, Swift, and Turbo plans are similar to what is offered under Shared Hosting.
The Managed Plan is the most expensive as it eliminates the need for you to handle the basic administrative tasks of WordPress.
This plan is available for 1, 3 or an unlimited number of websites and comes with unlimited databases, unlimited transfer, free SSL and SSD, A2 Site Accelerator, Turbo servers and storage space starting from 10GB.
VPS Hosting is generally used by website owners or developers with some hosting experience.
A2 Hosting offers Managed VPS Hosting with root access, Managed VPS Hosting without root access and Unmanaged VPS hosting.
With the help of root access to the server, you can easily control the server environment with the help of a management panel.
All the three VP hosting services are further divided into three different plans each to help customers easily select the one that best suits their requirements.
If you need better speed and resource flexibility, Dedicated Hosting from A2 Hosting is the way to go.
The company offers Managed Dedicated Hosting with root access, Managed Dedicated Hosting without root access and Unmanaged Dedicated Hosting.
As compared to all the other types of hosting services, Dedicated Hosting is the most expensive as it provides you access to a dedicated server which will only be used by you.
All the three Dedicated Hosting services are available in three different plans- Sprint, Exceed and Mach. The plans vary on the basis of the processor, cores, storage, and RAM.
A2 Hosting also offers Reseller Hosting which you can buy for renting out the bandwidth and disk space to your customers. The service divided into four different plans- Bronze ($13.19/m), Silver ($17.99/m), Gold ($23.39/m) and Platinum ($38.39/m).
While the plans vary on the basis of the storage, transfer, and number of accounts, all the plans come with a free eNom reseller account, Plesk control panel, free SSL and SSD.
Are There Any Cons of A2 Hosting?
A2 Hosting is definitely one of the best hosting providers if you’re looking for a reliable and super fast hosting. However, there are a few disadvantages as well. Some of the most important ones are-
There is no denying that A2 Hosting is faster than most hosting providers on the internet. But this speed and reliability comes at a slightly higher price point.
As compared to other top hosting providers, the hosting plans of A2 Hosting are a little expensive.
For instance, the Lite Shared Hosting Plan which is the cheapest plan offered by A2 Hosting is available at $3.30/month.
Whereas the cheapest Shared Hosting plan from BlueHost is available at $2.65/month.
But by paying a little more, you do get a host of additional features and amazing speed.
Cheapest Plans are Highly Restricted
If you’re looking for Turbo server and other flashy features offered by the company, you’d have to go with a more expensive plan as the cheapest plans across all the different hosting services are highly restricted.
However, if you’re just starting with a website or are looking to save money, the cheap plans are still great, especially as they offer better speed than most other hosting providers.
Is A2 Hosting the Right Choice for You?
Now that you’ve gone through the entire review, can A2 Hosting be the right choice for your website? Definitely yes if you’re looking for a reliable hosting provider that promises and delivers blazing fast speeds, world-class security, 24×7 support, and money-back guarantee.
With one of the fastest TTFB and Turbo servers, your website visitors are sure to enjoy their experience on your website.
While the plans are a little expensive as compared to many of the top hosting provider, in return you do get a host of additional features and benefits.
Moreover, if you’re concerned about the pricing, A2 Hosting also offers amazing deals and discounts regularly. Discounts of up to 30%-40% are very common at their website, especially when you go for a 1-year or 2-year plan.
Irrespective of whether you’re planning to start a new website, are a website developer or web designing agency, or just want to switch to a better hosting provider, A2 Hosting is definitely a great choice.
Just understand what type of hosting service will best suit your requirements to start browsing through the various plans offered by the company.