Hosting over 1.5 million websites worldwide, DreamHost is a market leader in the world of shared hosting. Launched in 1996, they have more than half a million customers and are responsible for millions of domain names.
DreamHost has a commitment to open source technologies. They host hundreds of free open-source apps that support their platforms. The company also has a strong emphasis on WordPress hosting and support.
What Makes DreamHost Unique?
There are many things that make DreamHost unique, more so than most other hosts that I review.
DreamHost offers a special WordPress platform called DreamPress. It was designed specifically with novice WordPress users in mind and has been deployed across fully optimized WordPress servers.
DreamHost has also developed a cloud computing system called DreamCompute, which gives users access to advanced open-source applications. Each individual customer can scale the entire DreamCompute system to suit their needs. In other words, you won't pay for resources that you don't use.
In addition to all of this, DreamHost offers DreamObjects, a cloud storage system designed to support shared and WordPress hosting. DreamObjects allows users to store images, files and media on cloud servers. They'll be available on demand for your website's visitors. The cloud hosting is what enables them to give you “elastic” bandwidth, explained below. You'll use just as much as you need, but always have enough to account for fluctuations in traffic – all for one price!
If you recall from my Hostgator years, I ended up paying a huge amount of money for hosting as they increase my price due to increased traffic.
The DreamHost Online Reputation
DreamHost has a solid online reputation. Independent review sites give the company an average of 4-stars. WhoIsHostingThis.com gives them a rating of 3.7 stars; over 50% of the site's reviews give them the highest possible score of 5 stars.
The only area where DreamHost consistently gets lower marks is their features. Customer support, pricing and uptime all get 5-star scores regularly.
HostingAdvice.com gives DreamHost 9 out of 10 stars. PC Mag gives them 4.5 out of 5 stars, citing an outstanding set of features as a major plus point. After analyzing some of the conflicting reviews and doing my own research, I believe that DreamHost is definitely worthy of consideration.
DreamHost offers Shared Hosting and dedicated WordPress Hosting packages designed for those with little experience hosting websites. Their DreamPress platform gives them a particular advantage regarding WordPress hosting. Shared Hosting comes with a drag-and-drop website builder, which can give you a fully functioning website in under one hour.
Shared Hosting (From $11.95/mo)
Unlike their competitors, DreamHost only has one Shared Hosting plan. Instead of increasing the amount you pay each month to meet your demands, DreamHost automatically scans your usage and increases or decreases your fee accordingly. This is a very cool feature, and I haven't seen another host that manages their shared hosting like this.
If you're only using 1GB of bandwidth and suddenly jump to 10GB, you won't experience any disruption. You won't get a request to increase your hosting and monthly expenditure either: DreamHost automatically allocates the resources you need at no extra cost.
DreamHost's Shared Hosting plan comes with WordPress pre-installed and ready to go. This is a distinct plus, considering that DreamHost also offers dedicated WordPress Hosting. You'll receive virtually unlimited e-mail accounts across your website too.
DreamHost's shared servers use fast, reliable SD technology. Your security issues are all managed in-house, which ensures that your website stays safe and secure.
If you're on a tight budget, DreamHost's pricing and payment structure will be particularly attractive. You have the option of paying monthly, annually or in advance for 3 years.
- Monthly: $11.95/mo
- Annual: $9.95/mo
- 3 Years: $7.95/mo
WordPress Hosting (from $7.95/mo)
DreamHost's specialized WordPress Hosting plans are ideal for those new to WordPress and website hosting. They have a number of solutions developed specifically to make creating and hosting a WordPress website more straightforward.
All WordPress Hosting plans come with:
- Unlimited Websites
- Unlimited, Scalable Bandwidth
- Pre-installed WordPress
- Free SSL Security Certificate
- Unlimited Email
- SSD Hosting (200 times faster than standard HDD servers)
- US-based 24/7 Support
DreamHost currently offers 3 payment options for their WordPress plans:
- $10.95/mo (Billed Monthly)
- $9.95/mo (Billed Annually)
- $7.95/mo (Billed Every 3 Years)
DreamHost offers a managed hosting plan specifically for WordPress called DreamPress. Officially recommended by WordPress (source), this is one of the best managed WordPress hosting plans available anywhere.
DreamPress is hosted on cloud servers that give your websites lightning-fast speeds. It's one of the fastest dedicated WordPress hosting platform available. You'll also get access to a US-based team of WordPress experts. They can help you get the most from your hosting and your website.
DreamPress hosting comes with one of the finest security systems available. It includes advanced DDOS protection and multi-layer website backup.
DreamPress accounts come with WordPress already installed along with a large number of themes and essential plugins. You'll be able to save an enormous amount of time creating your website.
DreamHost has developed a custom control panel to help you navigate your account and WordPress functions easily. You don't have to worry about complicated security issues or plugin updates either: All WordPress and security updates are done for you.
DreamPress plans come with complete domain management, which allows you to host as many domains as you like. You also get unlimited subdomains and domain parking. All domain management is backed up by 24/7 support
DreamPress plans also include a free SSL security certificate, enabling you to create a safe environment for your site's visitors. You'll also get fast SSD storage and free website migration.
- 1 Website
- 10GB Storage
- 1 Website
- 30GB Storage
- 3 Websites
- 30GB Storage (Expandable to 80GB per website)
This type of package might be worth your money if you really don't want to learn how to work the inner parts of your online business. A managed hosting plan can certainly save you time and therefore money, not to mention headache. That being said, there are always issues that “managed” hosting doesn't cover. For example, if you install a plugin that gets hacked and don't have a backup of your site, they can't recreate your backup out of thin air.
So, it helps to learn the basics of how your WordPress website works, because then you can avoid mistakes later on down the road when they count more. That being said, $17 per month to erase my headaches as a beginner suddenly sounds attractive. I currently own about 10 websites though, so the price does add up if you want them to manage everything!
VPS Hosting (From $15.00/mo)
DreamHost offers managed VPS hosting, which covers the initial setup as well as all updates and security patches. Their VPS hosting is built on SSD private servers and was voted VPS hosting of the year in 2017.
All VPS hosting comes with uncapped bandwidth and the ability to expand RAM in seconds using your control panel. Plans also come with 24/7, US-based technical support.
- 1GB RAM
- 30GB SSD Storage
- 2GB RAM
- 60GB SSD Storage
- 4GB RAM
- 120GB SSD Storage
- 8GB RAM
- 240GB SSD Storage
Customer Service Review
DreamHost's customer support is a…wait for it…dream. You get 24/7 access to WordPress experts based in the USA. You can choose between telephone support or 24/7 live chat.
DreamHost's service reps handle inquiries with in a fast and professional manner. You get the feeling that you're dealing with a professional helpdesk. This is very rare in the world of hosting.
Most independent reviews give DreamHost support their highest possible scores. In my own opinion, DreamHost is light years ahead of most other hosting companies when it comes to support.
Who's the Ideal Customer for DreamHost?
If you're looking for reasonably priced shared WordPress hosting, I would highly recommend DreamHost. Next to LiquidHost, they're currently one of the best on the market for new WordPress users. I really like that they allow for elastic traffic on their shared hosting platform.
For those that simply don't want to deal with the hassle of running the tech side of their WordPress blog, DreamPress is a good deal as well.
DreamHost Final Verdict
DreamHost better than most other hosting companies. Their portfolio of services are perfect for newcomers to hosting and WordPress, and even those that have experience but want to move to a managed solution. Their reputation online speaks volumes about how they've maintained their hosting company over the years, unlike others that once enjoyed a good rep but have fallen behind with smaller companies starting to offer better services.
If you opt for DreamPress just don't get caught up in having them run 5 websites for you. Start by trying it with one website, and see how things go.