If you’d ask, “So, where should I buy a domain from?”, we’d happily recommend Namecheap. It’s perhaps the best domain registrar, providing domains at an affordable rate without selling your information.
But that’s about it. The same thing doesn’t translate to Namecheap hosting. The reason? There are many more moving parts in hosting (speed, support, uptime, response time, etc.) compared to registering a domain, and Namecheap hasn’t been able to handle all.
We won’t recommend Namecheap in general, as you can read in our full review. And if it’s going to go head-to-head against our top recommended web hosting, Bluehost - frankly, we’d laugh at it. Namecheap has no chance of winning that battle.
Still, we compared Namecheap and Bluehost for its features, ease of use, performance, customer support, and overall value for money. You already know the results, but let us share all the findings, in-depth.
How do these compare?
Ease of use
Value for money
Namecheap vs. Bluehost: Features
Namecheap and Bluehost are two of the well-known hosting brands, with millions of users using its services. So, it won’t come as a surprise that both provide all the required features. However, there must be something that will give one an upper hand, and that’s what we’ll find out here.
Some people just adore Namecheap. However, their reasons include only one factor- pricing! Among the two, Namecheap is undoubtedly cheaper, especially its Black Friday offers sell like hotcakes.
Anyway, let’s discuss what this section is about. Its features. On its Stellar plan (the cheapest), Namecheap includes the following features:
- Plenty of storage (20 GB)
- Unmetered bandwidth
- One-click WordPress install (via Softaculous installer)
- Up to three websites
- Free website builder
- Free email accounts
- Free website migration
- 100% uptime guarantee
Overall, these are some fantastic features, especially considering its lower price tag. Let’s see how Bluehost fares against it.
Bluehost is perhaps the best value for money hosting in the business. And it surely reflects in its features. It has some fantastic shared plans, managed WordPress plans, and even high-performance packages, including cloud, VPS, and dedicated servers. To keep it simple, let’s just mention the features included in the cheapest plan of all, i.e., the Basic shared plan.
- Free domain name
- Free SSL certificate
- Free site builder
- Free professional email accounts
- Plenty storage (50 GB SSD for the base shared plan)
- Unlimited bandwidth
- Good security features
- Cloudflare integration
- Dozens of add-ons
- WordPress-specific functionalities like one-click installs, staging, & automatic backups.
- Easy-to-use control panel
For all these features alone, Bluehost’s base plan is some incredible value. Plus, it’s one of the three hosting providers recommended by WordPress. Meaning, if WordPress is your go-to CMS, you can click here and purchase it without giving it a second thought.
Honestly, both Namecheap and Bluehost provide all the fundamental features and more for the price. If compared, Namecheap has free site migration and up to three websites in extra. Bluehost, on the other hand, gives more storage, WordPress staging, direct WordPress installation, and free domain name.
In our opinion, Bluehost’s extra features are more valuable than Namecheap’s. So:
Namecheap vs Bluehost: Ease of use
Both Bluehost and Namecheap are commercial hosting providers. And if there’s one thing a commercial product must-have, it is the ‘ease of use’ element. The target audience here is anyone and everyone — techie or non-techie.
Therefore, everything needs to be straightforward — right from signing up and logging in to adding domains and accessing databases.
To sign up, visit namecheap.com (Affiliate link?) and click on sign up. Fill the needed details- username, password, first name, last name, and email address. Voila! Your account is ready. Now, just pick a plan, and you’re ready to go.
On logging in, you are greeted with a dashboard where you can see all your products, including domains, hosting, and SSL certificates. Moreover, you can click on ‘Manage’ to make change the product’s settings, if needed. E.g., changing Nameservers.
As for the control panel, Namecheap uses traditional cPanel. You’ll be able to access/manage everything there, including:
Namecheap-specific features like its SSL, Site builder, PHP version, etc.
Files: File manager, Disk usage, Backup wizard, etc.
Databases: phpMyAdmin, MySQL, and more
Domains: Addon Domains, Subdomains, Redirects, etc.
Email: Accounts, forwarders, Autoresponders, etc.
Others: Security, Metrics, Softaculous app installer, and more.
To keep it short, Namecheap’s system is easy to grasp and beginner-friendly.
Signing up with Bluehost is a bit more complicated than with Namecheap. Firstly, because they offer a free domain, you have to enter one while signing up. Plus, on the “create your account” page, there are some upsells pre-checked — you need to remove them if you don’t want the product/service.
On signing in, it gets very user-friendly. You have a dashboard, wherein you can check your sites, domains, and more. You can also install your WordPress from right there. With Namecheap, it takes couple more steps (visit cPanel, click on Softaculous installer, install WordPress, and a few sub-options), i.e., it’s more complicated with Namecheap.
Moreover, you can access your WordPress site directly from Bluehost instead of the whole “wp-admin” thing.
As for the control panel, it has a customized version of cPanel. The UI of Bluehost’s panel is much better than traditional cPanel. Moreover, the UX is also well thought out — elements are easily recognizable and well prioritized.
Overall, the user experience with Bluehost is incredible.
Namecheap’s way of representing things is normal — most hosting companies use it. However, because of it’s customized UI & WordPress-easiness, we prefer BlueHost.
Namecheap vs Bluehost: Performance
Server response time
Knowing how the host performs is super-crucial. It directly or indirectly affects your site’s bounce rate, user experience, search engine rankings, and overall bottom line. We measure three key metrics to know how well the host performs. Those are
Server response time
Web page loading speed
Let’s see how they compare.
Namecheap’s average response time stood at 160 ms, which is well under Google’s recommended 200 ms.
Sadly, though, when measured on a simple text-based page, the page speed was 920 ms. That’s mediocre in our experience.
As for uptime, Namecheap guarantees a 100% uptime. Our test results showed quite a few outages, though. The final number was 99.90%.
Bluehost’s average server response time is 155 ms. Its page speed measured in the 400 ms range on testing with the same text-based web page.
The uptime stood at an extraordinary 99.99%, even though it doesn’t have any uptime guarantee at all.
The winner of this round is pretty clear. Bluehost’s response time is slightly better than Namecheap’s. The page loading speed of Bluehost is significantly better, and so is its uptime.
Namecheap vs Bluehost: Customer support
24/7 live chat, emails, and phone support
24/7 live chat & emails
Quality of response
In our examination, we rank customer support as an essential element to look at. It’s the only place for tech-illiterate people to solve any technical or non-technical queries.
We test a host’s support based on agents’ availability, the number of ways to connect with them or solve the queries, and how expert the support agents are.
Namecheap has a good knowledge base with answers to most common queries. Apart from that, there’s a 24/7 live chat and email support. There’s no phone support whatsoever.
For the experiment, we tried chatting on the 24/7 live chat option. It took them a couple of agent switches to get the right assistance, which is tedious. Once we were connected with a proper agent, they solved our queries.
Bluehost has all the customer support options. From an excellent knowledge base, 247/7 live chat, & email support to phone support & social media support, it has got it all.
The quality of support is also excellent. Prompt response, knowledgeable support agents, and professional communication make Bluehost’s support among the best.
Namecheap lacks phone support. Also, live chat agents are slower in solving queries. Compared to that, Bluehost has all communication options and blazing fast & accurate responses. Hence:
Namecheap vs Bluehost: Pricing
Introductory pricing (of base plan)
Introductory pricing (of base plan)
It can be the greatest hosting plan of all time, but it won’t be suitable if it’s not in your budget. We already mentioned Namecheap is cheaper, but how much? What’s the margin? Is it worth the price? Let’s find out:
Namecheap’s cheapest shared plan costs $1.24 per month. The package includes a decent set of features, below average server resources, and everything we discussed in this article.
Other than the shared plans, VPS starts at $11.88/month, reseller at $18.88/month, and dedicated at $44.88/month.
Bluehost’s basic shared plan costs $2.75/month. This includes all the features (like a free domain name), comparatively more server resources, and almost everything needed to handle a small or mid-sized website.
Other types of hosting include VPS starting at $19.99/month and dedicated server plans starting at $79.99/month.
There’s no clear verdict here. Indeed, Bluehost costs more, but it also gives more features and resources at the same time. On a value for money scale, Bluehost is undoubtedly a better host.
If low-cost is your top priority, Namecheap wins. However, we would recommend Hostinger- the best cheap web hosting, if that’s the case.
Winner: Bluehost (Based on Value for Money)
Namecheap vs Bluehost: Which one is better?
The Winner Is - BlueHost
As you saw throughout the comparison, Bluehost won all the rounds — sometimes with a huge margin, sometimes with little. It has better features, superior performance, a slightly finer user experience, and significantly fast customer support.
Everything included, Bluehost is better than Namecheap. Period.
Total Score: 10/10
• Uptime 99.99%
• Free SSL certificate
• WordPress official recommendations