Are Fasthosts right for you? Find out with our review below
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Fastshosts are one of the founding fathers of UK hosting, founded as far back as 1999. Fasthosts were one of the early pioneers of simplifying web hosting and making it easier for people to build a website.
❓ The question is, have they stayed ahead of the curve offering the latest in technology along with features that set them apart from the competition?
Fasthosts currently manage over 1.2 million domain names with 320,000 websites hosted on their platforms.
Fastshosts offer a wide range of hosting-related products and services, including:
Fasthosts is owned by United Internet, the German parent company of Ionos (formerly 1&1), Sedo and Strato Hosting although the two companies are run as separate business unit – and in fact, compete with each other
Fasthosts offer three basic shared hosting packages; Ignite, Momentum and Ultimate. Like most hosting services, the major differences are storage space, the number of websites you can host, and how many email accounts and databases you have.
Fasthosts have firmly put their unlimited bandwidth front and centre of their sales pitch. However, that’s pretty common among shared hosting and not much of a killer USP. The load balancing and SSD storage suggests a fairly recent investment in their hosting platform technology.
Each hosting plan comes with a free .uk domain name. Fasthosts have some of the least special, special offers in hosting with small print you’ll want to read.
For example, the 50% offer in the screenshot above is for the first 6 months only of a 12 month contract, which is really 25% off for the year!?!
Unusually for a modern web hosting service, Fasthosts does not make any claims or promises about its server uptime, and it does not publish any uptime statistics.
The likes of Ionos (formerly 1&1) offer basic SSL certificates for free. Fasthosts only provide the top two plans with a free SSL for the first year.
Fastshost’s WordPress hosting starts at £6.24 per month (as part of a 12 month contract) when you ignore their 50% off for 6 months price promotion.
Each WordPress site comes with 10GB smart SSD storage, 1 x 1GB database, 5 x 2GB mailboxes, free SSL certificate for 1 year and a free domain name for 1 year.
One unique feature is the ability to add multiple WordPress installs, starting from £2.49 per month.
Most other hosts dictate the number of sites you can add regardless of whether you need them or not, so that level of flexibility is refreshing.
Another useful feature is the pre-installation of the key WordPress plugins you’ll probably add manually any way.
These include WooCommerce for ecommerce, WordPress Importer to migrate your existing site, Yoast for SEO, JetPack and more.
Fasthosts also provide automatic WordPress updates, there’s no need to worry about the latest security patches.
Fasthosts have teamed up with ePgaes to offer customers a template driven, WYSIWYG website builder.
Setting the product apart of the majority of Fasthosts’ product is the money back guarantee. Here you get up to three months free, and if you’re not satisfied in the first 30 days you can cancel your contract without paying a penny.
Other features of the top website builder plan (£9.99 per month excl. VAT) include:
Fasthosts’ Linux VPS cost between £5 and £40 per month depending on which plan you choose.
For their price, the specs are better than the likes of Heart Internet and 123-reg and are comparable to GoDaddy’s offering.
Fasthosts’ VPS are as flexible as you’d expect from a modern VPS product, and you can customise your VPS to suit your changing needs. Once you’ve chosen your base server, you have the ability to increase the storage and memory as and when you need it.
It is worth noting that those prices are for the VPS only, and do no include Plesk control panel or additional backup storage.
Fasthosts offer a wide range of different domain name extensions, comparable to 123 Reg. The domain search function is slightly slower though.
The ‘suggested domains’ all makes sense and are attractive purchases. Fastshosts run a lot of price promotions of the first year of multi-year registrations which is always useful.
Whilst Fasthosts offer 24×7 UK-based support, they weirdly don’t offer live chat support. Many customers (myself included) prefer live chat support, especially for very technical issues that need explaining in detail.
What they do have is a selection of resources, all varying in quality, including a knowledge base, user guides, and a training center with number of webinars.
A 30-day money-back guarantee is valid for their basic hosting plans (shared, WordPress, website builder and eShop), but that doesn’t cover VPS or dedicated servers.
Closing an account is oddly difficult in this era and feels quite old-fashioned with how restrictive it is. It can only be done by calling the cancellations team and they’re only available Monday to Friday, between 8:30am to 5:30pm (UK time).
A simple search for “Fasthosts downtime” will show Fasthosts has a well reported history of technical glitches and issues, which can have quite a dramatic impact on their customers’ websites. Some of these are down to old technology and some down to human error.