Site5 is a medium-sized web hosting company that was founded in 1999 by Matt Lightner and Rod Armstrong in Austin, Texas. The two were former gaming site specialists with an enthusiasm for hosting which was prime at the time. During the naming of the company, they avoided using the word hosting just to be unique and diverse in future. In 2011, Matt Lightner passed away and Rod decided to sell Site5 to Ben Welch Bolen and Joel Brown who became CEO and President of the company respectively. Ever since its establishment, this firm has been on the forefront to fight global warming. It has participated in different green energy initiatives including planting of trees and active research on renewable energy.
Most of Site5’s infrastructure is engineered to mainly serve designers and developers. As such, it boasts very flexible and diverse pricing plans that cut across various levels of consumers. It boasts an in-house support department that operates 24/7 via live chat feature and call system that’s reachable during business hours. Unlike its competitors, it markets its packages without excessive technical jargon so anyone can easily tell what each plan has in it for them. Interestingly, it handles all server administration functions which is great for users with limited technical knowledge. Root permissions can be obtained while using their virtual private servers but general maintenance is the company’s obligation.
Site5 has its datacenter in Austin, the same location that its offices reside. As for its hosting packages, they’re are mostly billed on a monthly basis but still subscriptions can be made annually and biannually. It’s worth noting that the prices advertised on their homepage are monthly rates for subscriptions paid biannually. If you prefer monthly charges, they’re slightly costlier but nevertheless perfect for short-term hosting.
Another amazing feature is the free migration for existing sites and web projects from other hosting providers. The only limitation to this free service is the number of web projects to be per migrated per account. The terms of service state allow for a single site transfer but does not specify the size limitation.
If for whatever reason Site5’s hosting services are not impressive, you can cancel the contract before the expiry of your subscription. For customers using shared web and reseller packages, the money-back guarantee period is 45 days while VPS clients it’s 15.
Site5 offers three hosting packages namely Shared Web Hosting, Fully-managed VPS, and Reseller Hosting. Each package offers a decent number of plans with various web management features to satiate the needs of each client. Any web project residing on its servers automatically gets a United States IP address mostly because of its single-location datacenter. Account management is via Backstage, WHM and cPanel. In other packages, billing of the two latter control panels is done separately from the hosting fee.
In case it’s your first time using this web hosting provider, it helps to first contact their sales engineer for an in-depth information about their packages. Some of web features they advertise are unclear and not covered sufficiently in the support articles and frequently asked questions sections. In our Site5 review, we’ll analyze the entails of each hosting package later and how much you have to pay to enjoy your preferred plan.
Essentially, this entails hosting a web project or a site on a server whose hardware resources are shared. On creating an account, Site5 allots you a web space where you place your site files so that they can be accessed online by your target audience. Now, the interesting thing is that Site5 doesn’t limit site size and amount of data that’s transferred from its servers by your visitors. Put otherwise, all plans on the shared web hosting package feature unlimited disk space and bandwidth. What does this mean for you? You’ll not have to worry about exceeding the disk space or bandwidth when your site grows and its files get bigger.
Another feature enjoyed by users of this package is easy account management. They offer free Backstage Account Manager whose purpose is to give quick access to all account info. It allows you to edit settings and review configurations without jumping from one webpage to another. Some of the information viewable here includes domain registration history, account subscription status, and billing activity. Additionally, you can bookmark important info to ensure it’s reachable on demand.
From your account’s control panel, you can install popular third party scripts in a single click using Softaculous. Site5 offers this tool for free allowing anyone to install ad management add-ons, calendars, portals/CMS, Database tools, ecommerce apps, libraries, guest books, image galleries, and social networking shortcuts. Moreover, you can view site statistics using AWStats irrespective of the shared hosting plan that you pick. It allows you to access logs, errors logs, subdomain stats, visitor info, etc.
Site5 offers domains and subdomains which provide a pathway to your website. Depending on the plan your account is on, you can host one or multiple domains and point them to specific locations of your website. Additionally, Site5 provides email and web statistics functionality for the domain and its sub.
As for the hardware, shared web servers are powered by 64GB RAM, RAID-10 hard disk, and dual E5-2630 Sandy Bridge processors with 8 cores each.
Charging $6.95 per month on a biannual subscription, hostBasic provides unmetered disk space, unlimited bandwidth, and web space capable of hosting a single website. Other perks include free migration, free backups, and 99% uptime guarantee. Annual subscription costs an average of $8.95 per month.
Costing $10.95 per month on a biannual contract, this plan gives unmetered disk space, bandwidth, and space to host an unlimited number of websites. If using a monthly contract, it will cost you $12.95 per month while annual contracts $11.95 per month.
- HostPro + Turbo
This plan is closely similar to HostPro in features (unlimited sites, bandwidth, and disk space). However, it comes with a Turbo add-on that accelerates site loading speeds. It costs $13.99 per month on a biannual contract, $14.95 per month on an annual subscription, and $19.95 on a monthly basis.
Reseller services involve purchasing web hosting accounts in bulk and distributing them to third parties at a commission. Site5 allows for complete anonymity meaning your clients will never find out you are a Site5’s reseller. To facilitate this, all reseller servers have custom domain names that are completely anonymous and in no way pointing back to the company’s registered title. The same concept applies to DNS services which do not mention Site5 anywhere in the public WHOIS record. Put simply, the company provides the best hosting platform for your reselling services but never takes the credit even when your brand grows.
Reseller accounts arrive with free billing software whose purpose is to take care of payment services by your clients. Site5 offers WHM control panel and its license which gives full permission to use the all-in-one management tool. With it, you can manage your clients number, provide support services, and monitor payment. It also allows you to integrate secure socket layer into the network to make websites exchange info with browsers securely. Your clients will share a single SSL certificate but you can apply for a dedicated cert from Wildcard if the free one is insufficient.
An amazing and unique gesture by Site5 is the free reseller hosting book that’s written by Abrahim Ikasud. The book equips resellers with web hosting skills and knowledge on expectations and challenges of the field. Also, it helps in directing resellers on where to get clients, retaining them, and being competitive in the field. It is a manual for both experts and novices in the web hosting and reselling niches.
With the server location being in US, this plan costs $25.95 per month while on an annual subscription. It is ideal for anyone starting up a reselling firm or has less than 20 clients. It offers a disk space of 50GB, 500GB bandwidth, WHM control panel, and unmetered resold accounts. The money back guarantee period is 45 days.
Costing $36.95 on an annual subscription, this plan is perfect for medium-sized web host reselling companies with around 50 clients. The account features 80GB of disk space, 700GB bandwidth, unmetered resold accounts, domain reseller portal, and custom DNS settings. If looking for short term contract, you can pay for the plan on a monthly basis.
Costing $54.95 per month, premier plan is great for large and medium-scale resellers with over 100 clients. It offers 120GB hard disk space, 1000GB bandwidth, free billing software, free backups, WHM control panel, free migration services when coming from another hosting provider.
Virtual Private Servers offer dedicated hosting by splitting a single server into multiple independent system units. Site5 provides this service using KVM VPS technology and runs the files of the units using solid state drives. It eliminates the bad neighbor effect where one user in a shared resource environment exceeds normal allocation. The company isolates each VPS account into a fully independent unit which gives you more control over resources. This way, the web experience is ameliorated and downtime completely lessened.
Did you also know that you can use the VPS to resell web spaces? Well, Site5 allows you to purchase a server with powerful system resources and using WHM and cPanel resell the hosting space for a profit. The service is different from the standard reseller shared web hosting package in that the resources are 100% dedicated. Therefore, you can oversell without affecting other users on the same server hardware.
As the name of the package suggests, VPS hosting here is completely managed. It is Site5’s role to keep the hosting platform working optimally instead of the user. It does this by handling server updates, rolling out security fixes, and proactively monitoring VPS performance. Additionally, the company updates the control panels as soon as new stable versions are released. With this, you can easily manage your account without worrying about technical functions that you’d find in unmanaged environments.
When it comes to hardware, Site5 brings on board the latest technologies in memory management, processing power, and storage. The servers use RAID 10 storage technology which enhances a smooth usage experience when using a bigger storage drive. Since 2016, they’ve replaced traditional SATA disks with SSDs which are more reliable and faster. On processors, they use dual Intel E5-2630V4 processors which are mostly found on high-end gaming systems. For memory, the server nodes have up to 256GB RAM which can comfortably be split to more than 100 virtual machines.
Other features supported by Site5’s VPS include shell access which is disabled by default, Cron Jobs, FTP & SFTP, MySQL database, one-click script installer, site analytics tools, ecommerce CMS, mailing servers, and multiple programming languages such as Perl, Ruby, Python, and Server Side Includes (SSI).
VPS2 costs $62 per month for a system with 2 CPU cores, 2GB memory, 50GB disk space, and 1TB bandwidth. You can include in the plan cPanel or WHM for an additional $10 per month. You’ll also have 2 dedicated IP addresses pointing to the private server.
This plan costs $89 per month for a system with 2 CPU cores, 3GB memory, 1.5TB bandwidth, and 75GB disk space. 2 IP addresses are included as well as a separately-billed use of WHM and cPanel control panels.
The starting price for this plan is $117 per month for a VPs system with 4 CPU cores, 2TB bandwidth, 100GB disk space, and 4GB RAM. The billing cycle is annual.
VPS5 costs $166 per month for a virtual system with 4 CPU cores, 5GB RAM, 2.5TB bandwidth, and 125GB disk space.
This plan’s asking price is $188 per month for a system with 150 GB storage space, 6GB memory, 6 CPU cores, and 3TB bandwidth.
Its costs $276 per month to purchase this plan. Site5 provides a system with 4TB bandwidth, 8GB memory, 8 CPU cores, and 200GB disk space.
- VPS8This plan offers the best VPS for a starting price of $359 per month. The system resources allotted include 8 CPU cores, 10GB memory, 5TB bandwidth, and 250GB disk space.
|Plan Name||Disk Space||Bandwidth||Currency||Admin panel||OS||Websites||Scripting||Email-Transport||Database||SSH||Databackups||Free Domain||1-Click Installer||Websites Builder||Location||Price|
|Plan Name||Disk Space||Bandwidth||Admin panel||OS||Accounts||Scripting||Database||Guarantee||Location||Price|
|Premier||120GB||1000GB||WHM,cPanel||Unlimited||Perl,Python,Ruby on Rails,PHP||MySQL||$ 54.95|
|Standard||80GB||700GB||WHM,cPanel||Unlimited||Perl,Python,Ruby on Rails,PHP||MySQL||$ 36.95|
|Starter||50GB||500GB||WHM,cPanel||Unlimited||Perl,Python,Ruby on Rails,PHP||MySQL||$ 25.95|
|Plan Name||Disk Space||Bandwidth||Admin panel||OS||Cores||RAM||Core Speed||CPU||Backups||Managed||Location||Price|
|VPS8||250GB||5000GB||WHM,cPanel||8||10GB||-||8 Cores||$ 332.10|
|VPS7||200GB||4000GB||WHM,cPanel||8||8GB||-||8 Cores||$ 257.40|
|VPS6||150GB||3000GB||WHM,cPanel||6||6GB||-||6 Cores||$ 178.20|
|VPS5||125GB||2500GB||WHM,cPanel||5||5GB||-||5 Cores||$ 158.40|
|VPS4||100GB||2000GB||WHM,cPanel||4||4GB||-||4 Cores||$ 114.30|
|VPS3||75GB||1500GB||WHM,cPanel||2||3GB||-||2 Cores||$ 89.10|
|VPS2||50GB||1000GB||WHM,cPanel||2||2GB||-||2 Cores||$ 64.80|
Site5’s long stay in the hosting industry has grown its resources to support latest, state-of-the-art technologies. It has a decent number of features on security, control, performance, speed, customer support, and refunds. On this section, we’ll explore these features in detail.
These two features have been Site5’s power fronts as it has dedicated so much resources to advancing them over the years. In fact, it repeatedly won BB awards for its servers’ reliability stats proving just how much prowess it had over its competitors. So, how exactly does it enhance performance and speed for its hosting services?
- SSD storage
In 2016, Site5 officially migrated all web projects hosted on its servers to newer solid state drives. These devices are popular for their high-speed data transfer rates and hardiness to failure. As such, content is transferred to and from the web space much quicker especially on a high bandwidth infrastructure.
- Unlimited support for MySQL databases
MySQL is an open source database that’s popular for its data storage speeds and security. It is up to 5 times faster than databases that use text files to store data. Site5 allows creation of unlimited number of MySQL databases which can be allotted to multiple users with varying permissions. Edit and control of existing databases is via phpMyAdmin which provides an online intuitive interface for the function.
We’ve mentioned this tool previously. Essentially, it allows users to access performance statistics of projects hosted on Site5. In real time, you can view info on latest visitors, error logs, and subdomain usage. It offers a simple way to develop reports by providing server-side site statistics features.
- RAID 10 technology
Besides increasing smoothness in using bigger storage drives, it enhances mirroring of data to offsite storages. All the SSDs available in Site5’s servers support this technology by default.
- Unmetered resources
This applies to shared web hosting environments where disk space are bandwidth are “unlimited”. Unmetered does not mean infinite but rather resources that are ordinarily sufficient for normal operation of a website. It is rare to find accounts exceeding this quota since Site5 frequently regulates the number of user accounts per server.
Without proper security measures in place, web projects are at a risk of damage, unauthorized access, and theft. Site5 employs various measures and provides a number of tools to enhance this feature. These include:
- SSL certificates
Site5 offers free shared SSL certificates for all accounts. Secure Socket Layer protocol facilitates encryption of web data so that when the web server and the browser are communicating, theft of plain text sensitive data is impossible. You can upgrade to paid Wildcard SSL certificates that dedicate use to a single user.
- Virtualized machines
This is Site5’s unique way of storing websites. Principally, it involves storing web data on virtualized machines with redundant systems so that in case of hardware failure, accounts can be moved to a new server readily.
- Free Backups
Site5 keeps a snapshot of your site files every day for a week. You can download this backup files and store them in an offsite location just in case you need to use them elsewhere. Each account has tools and services that allow you to manage the backups including restoration of the site to a previous state.
- Malware Protection
Site5 partnered with Succuri, a web security firm, to fight off malwares that exploit websites and online services. All web projects in your account are secure from hidden iFrames, cross site scripts, phishing attempts, and drive-by-downloads. Malware scans are conducted every 12 hours with a cleanup process deployed instantly in case threats are present. What’s more, the company opens a ticket to notify account owners of steps they’ve taken to clear the threat in case the problem recurs.
- PCI compliance
PCI stands for Payment Card Industry, a standard that dictates security levels of the credit cards and other payment methods. Site5 is fully PCI compliant meaning sites hosted on it can carry monetary transactions without the risk of theft of sensitive personal info.
- PHP Ban Script
This script blocks services or tools that snoop or sniff data on PHP-coded sites. The rules that govern the ban criteria can be edited on htaccess file on your public_html folder.
Out of the box, Site5 supports cPanel, WHM, and Backstage control panels. Backstage is the default account management tool for users who’ve not purchased WHM and cPanel. It gives you access to account info in a single web interface page. Using it, you can analyze the billing activity of your account, subscription status, domain registration history, etc. Furthermore, you can engage the support team via live chat or jump to help pages in Site5 subdomains.
For $10 per month, you can add cPanel to your plan and enjoy the rich features which it ships to hosting accounts. WHM license is free to resellers but you can always upgrade to paid versions if the features of the basic version are insufficient.
Any control panel you choose supports Softaculous script package that allows you to install third party apps. It is ideal for novices and developers who prefer batch installations of apps and services. You can use it to install forum apps, frameworks, file management systems, ad management tools, polls & survey tools, RSS Feeds, and Wikis.
Like many hosting providers, Site5 provides a platform to communicate with consumers of its products. It answers to everything from billing terms, account setup, upgrades, to transfers. The main communication channels are live chat, ticketing system, and direct calls. Additionally, it offers a wiki database that you can use to find answers to commonly asked questions and support issues.
Interestingly, consumers can interact with each other via community forums which are great places to share personal experiences with the provider. It is also where maintenance notifications are placed as well as outage announcements. Lastly, the company sends monthly uptime reports which are great for evaluating stability of the server hosting your web projects.
Not sure about hosting your website with Site5? Well, the first 45 days after subscribing to their services guarantee 100% refund if you’re unsatisfied. Nevertheless, your account must comply to terms of service outlined here to qualify for the reimbursement. Also, they give a service credit in case your server’s online presence is lower than 99%.
- Site Migration
Having an existing site hosted elsewhere? Site5 helps with migrating the web files, emails, databases, and other data from your previous hosting provider for free. The process takes at most 48 hours and is available from Monday to Friday between 11am and 8pm.
- Programming Languages
These affect how your site appears and how it reacts to visitor commands. Site5 formally supports five programming languages namely Ruby on Rails, PHP, Perl, Python, and Server Side Includes (SSI). Whenever a new version of the programming environment is present, the company will ask you update your code for enhanced compatibility and uptight security.
- Cron Jobs
Site5 offers a free Cron Job Editor that allows you to schedule tasks that the server executes. You can set the tool to automatically email you the output for future reference or reporting purposes.
Depending on your plan, Site5 supports creation of as many email accounts as you need. It then channels the emails via POP and IMAP which are inarguably stable protocols. The three officially supported webmail systems are Horde, Squirrelmail, and Roundcube.
Before we point out the strengths and drawbacks of Site5, it’s important to mention that the company is efficient. Over the years, it has proved beyond reasonable doubt that it’s competitive and delivers the web hosting function exactly as it promises. Even though it has shortcomings, definitely they are outweighed by the fortes.
- Straightforward prices on plans
Site5 has no hidden fees and advertises the exact amount you will be charged for a particular plan. In case an additional fee is necessary, it gives you a prior notification to ensure you’re aware of the changes in the billing amount. In short, Site5 has no gimmicks.
- Unconditional refunds
In its terms of service on money-back guarantee, it is clear how claims can be made, when, and the amount to be refunded. There are no hidden conditions limiting cancellation of a hosting contract. Moreover, the 45-day trial period is long enough to evaluate satisfaction with the provider’s services.
- No overloaded servers
Besides using high-end servers, Site5 keeps the number of customers per server relatively low. It employs the expertise of tech gurus in analysis of the number of users per server. In the end, this enhances performance and increases reliability for various levels of use of their service.
- In-house engineers and certified developers
Site5 has over 60 competitive staff who innovate ultramodern features, provide helpful solutions, and come through when customers need them. In our live interactions, the support staff came out as fast, friendly, and very reliable.
- Multiple support resources
Site5 is one of those hosting providers that prioritizes customer experience. Besides providing multiple quick communication channels, it has a sea of support articles and resources on its subdomain. We found almost all features we’ve covered here explained in detail on the segment.
- Free services
Site5 has lots of tools, features, and services which are accessible for free and payable elsewhere. Backups, migrations, security plugins, and powerful installers are some of the features which you can enjoy for free.
- Active social media presence
Today, companies are trying their best to trade their wares over the internet. Social media is a great platform to reach out to the consumers, therefore, finding a company that fully embraces it like Site5 is motivating. Check out details about their social media handles and pages here.
- Diverse packages
Although site5 initially offered shared web hosting package, today it has a plethora of hosting solutions from VPS, reselling programs, etc.
- Above average load time
Over the last one year, Site5 had an average ping of 690ms which is slightly better than the standard 890ms.
- Great uptime stats
Since January 2018, its uptime has averaged 99.92% which is 0.02% higher than its promised uptime. Find a hosting provider that delivers as much as it guarantees is not an everyday encounter.
- Advanced features for basic plans
Site5 offers various advanced features even in the cheap plans which is an incredible offer for beginners. The remarkable features include automated backups & recovery, auto-scanning of malware, and unmetered disk space & bandwidth.
- Free control panel
This company provides each account a free Backstage Account Manager. This control panel is easy to use and gives so much administrative power to the user.
- Delays in tickets
Although the ticketing system works, Site5 support staff can sometimes take up to a week to respond. For urgent issues, this can be disastrous and demotivating to potential long-term clients.
- Unmetered resources are not truly unlimited
Although they advertise disk space and bandwidth to be unmetered, this is often not the case. There’s a fair usage policy which is not publicly stated during sign up.
Where is Site5 on the map?
Site5 is based in Austin in Texas in the United States. The datacenter holding its servers is at the same location.
Which hosting packages does Site5 offer?
Site5 offers shared web hosting, reseller services, and VPS plans as the primary hosting packages. You can upgrade or downgrade your account anytime to accommodate a plan that works optimally for your needs at any given time.
Which are the supported operating environments on Site5 servers?
Linux is the officially supported operating system on Site5 servers. As such, you can only use scripts and apps written in coding languages that Linux supports.
Which webmail systems are supported by Site5 infrastructure?
Horde, Roundcube, and Squirrelmail are three officially supported webmail systems by Site5. These use IMAP and POP protocols for email exchange.
Which customer satisfaction guarantees are available at Site5?
Uptime credit and money back guarantee. Uptime credits are issued upon facing an outage to compensate for loss incurred during the period. Money-back guarantee is for when a customer is completely dissatisfied with Site5’s services leading to cancellation of the contract. The period within which this must occur is 45 days.
Any discounts for Site5 web hosting plans?
At the moment, Site5’s annual and biannual plans are cheaper than their monthly term counterparts. However, account owners occasionally receive coupon codes which slash an amount off the outstanding fees.
Which programming languages can I use on a web project I want to host at Site5?
Perl, Ruby, PHP, and Python are some of the programming languages officially supported by Site5 and Linux OS. However, users of VPS can run virtual machines inside their operating environment and host web projects developed in other languages.
What’s the minimum contract term at Site5?
Site5’s minimum contract term is one month while the maximum is 2 years (24 months). Monthly contracts are slightly costlier than annual and biannual contracts.
Which payment systems does Site5 support?
Besides major credit cards, you can pay via PayPal on Site5.
Is automated backup supported?
Yes. Servers automatically backup data on their storage devices once every day and retain the backup images for at least 7 days. Custom backup frequencies can be set at an extra fee as well as downloading the backup images to offsite locations.