Founded in 2003, Accu Web Hosting is an experienced US provider with a huge range of web hosting products and services.
There are shared, VPS and dedicated plans, for instance. WordPress and application hosting. Cloud hosting, reseller plans, load balancers, backup schemes, domain registration, SSL certificates and more.
You’re not restricted to Linux products. Just about everything in the range is also available in a Windows flavor, though for a small price premium.
Shared plans can be hosted in US, Europe, South Africa, India and Australia, and VPS and dedicated plans add more options (Canada, Singapore, new locations in the US and Europe.)
Most products are highly configurable. Looking for a VPS, maybe? There are 36 operating systems to choose from. A US dedicated server? As we write, there are 14 base servers available, each of which can be further customized to suit your needs.
Accu Web Hosting plans all have explicit (but high) limits on bandwidth and storage, which could be a problem for some. But in reality, all providers have limits: they just hide them behind vague ‘fair usage’ clauses in the small print, ensuring no-one knows what they are.
Headline prices aren’t the lowest, but they’re very reasonable (shared hosting from $2.99 a month, VPS from $10), and they often get better when you drill into the details (VPS plans are fully managed, for instance.)
(When you’re comparing prices, keep in mind that Accu Web doesn’t do introductory discounts. That’s bad if you’re hoping to save a pile on money by getting cheap hosting over three or four years. But it’s good over shorter plans, as it means your costs aren’t going to double or more on renewal.)
24/7 support is available via email, live chat and telephone (US) if you run into trouble, and you’re protected by a 30-day money-back guarantee (7-day for VPS plans.)
Accu Web’s shared hosting begins with its Personal Web Hosting plan. This imposes various limits, but there’s nothing that will affect the average small site: 10GB storage, 150 email accounts and ‘only’ 500GB traffic is going to be enough for many users. (Even with a bulky web page size of 5MB, that’s 100,000 page views a month.)
Unusually, even this starter plan enables hosting as many websites as you need, within the storage limit (most providers limit you to hosting one site on their starter plan.)
Elsewhere, the plan includes all the features you’d expect: free SSL, cPanel site management, a free domain, a bundled website builder.
Prices range from $3.25 a month on the six-month plan (there’s no monthly billing, unfortunately) to $3.09 a month over three years. That’s good value, and as we mentioned above, keep in mind that this is the standard price, not some special introductory deal. It’s not going to leap on renewal.
There are two further shared hosting plans, but they essentially just give you more storage, emails and bandwidth, although the Enterprise plan (from $9.99 a month) also throws in a dedicated IP.
Shared cloud hosting offers a more scalable product, particularly useful for handling websites which have regular large spikes in traffic. Specs are similar to the regular shared plans, and prices start at a reasonable $4.79 a month.
Some providers have more appealing deals, at least at first glance. HostGator’s Baby plan, for instance, gives you unmetered storage and bandwidth from $2.75 a month.
Check out the details, though, and it’s a different story. HostGator’s ‘unmetered’ doesn’t mean ‘unlimited’, for instance; the Baby plan only enables hosting one site, while Accu Web plans have no fixed limits; and although the Baby plan looks cheap at $2.75, you must sign up for three years to get that deal, and it renews at $6.75, more than twice Accu Web’s price.
Accu Web’s WordPress hosting plans have a capable set of features, including some welcome pluses. All plans support hosting unlimited websites; the company will import one existing WordPress site for free; SEO and a performance-boosting Hyper Cache plugin come preinstalled, and daily backups are thrown in.
Advanced features include GIT-based version control and WP-CLI to manage WordPress via the command line, while staging enables editing your WordPress project without affecting the production site.
Pricing is barely any different to Accu Web’s regular shared hosting, starting at $3.49 a month over three years for 10GB storage and 500GB traffic.
There are more capable managed WordPress plans about. Bluehost and IONOS WordPress Pro plans both support auto-updating of plugins, as well as WordPress itself, for instance.
But these more high-end products can also cost 2, 3 or more times as much as Accu Web’s offering. If you’re getting started with WordPress and not creating some business-critical site, it makes sense to start with a budget product and upgrade later, if you find you need the extra features.
Accu Web Hosting’s VPS range aims to boost website performance by giving you dedicated RAM and CPU resources.
Starter prices are low at only $7.99 a month billed annually ($10.99 billed monthly), but that’s because the base plan is relatively underpowered: 1GB RAM, 20GB storage and only 150GB traffic (most starter plans have at least 500GB.)
Its VPS Saturn plan, gets you 4GB RAM, two CPU cores, 50GB storage and 450GB bandwidth, all for $31.99 a month on the annual plan.
Bluehost’s Enhanced VPS includes a similar 4GB RAM, two CPU cores and 60GB storage and a chunky 2TB bandwidth. Its introductory price is fractionally lower at $29.99 for all plan lengths, but doubles on renewal to $59.99.
Accu Web’s dedicated plans are so configurable that there’s no space to begin to cover them here, but essentially you’re able to select a data center, then choose from a large number of base servers, each of which supports adding a RAID card, control panel, SQL Server (Express, Web, Standard and Enterprise editions), mail server, CDP backup plan, firewall, IPv6 address and more.
Bandwidth allocations are high, with even the cheapest US server getting you 20TB, and prices start at a bargain $90.
Beware, though: specs and prices vary considerably, depending on the data center you choose (Singapore’s entry server costs from $218 a month.) Browse the Dedicated Server product pages carefully to see if they’re right for you.
The Accu Web Hosting website has some very in-depth comparison tables of its various plans, handy when you’re trying to choose whatever is best for you.
We selected the cheapest shared hosting plan, and were offered a small selection of optional extras: a premium SSL certificate for $49.99 a year, CDN support for a monthly $3.95, and SpamExperts-based spam filtering to protect up to 100 mailboxes for $5.85 quarterly ($1.95 a month.)
Creating an account is a little more secure than usual (or involves more hassle, depending on your point of view.) As well as requesting your name, physical and email address and mobile phone number, the company validates your identity by sending you a text with a one-time password.
Accu Web Hosting supports payment via card and PayPal. We paid via PayPal in the usual way, and while we did that, a text arrived with our password.
The verification process didn’t work as we expected. An email asked us to click to enter our one-time password, but when we did, told us we’d verified it already. A ‘verify your email address’ link didn’t work, either. Eventually a second ‘verify’ email appeared, though, so we clicked the link, and this time the website accepted it and displayed our hosting account plan.
Despite these initial hassles, Accu Web Hosting set up and activated our account at speed, and within 15 minutes a Welcome email arrived with logins, FTP credentials, nameservers and every other detail you might want to know.
Creating a site
Logging in to Accu Web Hosting took us to a familiar WHMCS-based account management dashboard, as used by the majority of smaller web hosts. This doesn’t have much visual appeal, but it includes all the account, product and support features you need, and if you’ve used a few other hosts you’ll probably recognize it right away.
A couple of clicks takes you to Accu Web’s full-featured cPanel setup, where you’ll find several tools to help create a site.
Softaculous is on hand for easy installation of WordPress, MediaWiki, PrestaShop and hundreds of other web apps.
RV sitebuilder is a simple drag-and-drop website builder. It doesn’t have many templates but there are plenty of widgets and editing options, and we’re glad it’s included in Accu Web’s plans.
The standard cPanel File Manager enables creating and organizing folders, uploading and editing files and generally getting your web space in order.
There are all the usual website management features, too, including tools to work with domains and subdomains, create databases, create and manage email accounts and, when you’re up and running, get in-depth stats on your website visitors.
All websites run into problems occasionally, whatever your host, but Accu Web Hosting has more ways to help than most: live chat, email, telephone, a web knowledgebase and some busy social media sites.
There’s a huge amount of content available on the knowledgebase alone: 25 articles on CDN use, 36 covering email client settings, even 51 Plesk tutorials. The articles help cover practical tasks (‘How to install a WordPress theme’) as well as installation and troubleshooting, making the support site a genuinely useful resource.
Web host speed matters, even when you’re buying the most basic of shared hosting. Your website visitors may not stick around if they’re regularly kept waiting by a sluggish server.
To get a feel for Accu Web Hosting’s performance, we signed up for a very simple shared hosting account and uploaded a very basic website.
Next, we used Uptime.com to check the availability and response time of our test site at five-minute intervals over a 7-day period (that’s more than 2,000 individual checks.)
The results showed our site had 100% uptime, with no outages detected. That’s what we expect for a short-term test, but some hosts don’t manage it.
Response times averaged 289ms. We’ve seen faster hosts – the best average 150-200ms – but it’s within the range we would expect for a basic shared hosting package. (And remember, that’s what we’re testing. These results tell us nothing about what you might see from Accu Web Hosting’s other products.)
Accu Web Hosting really scored for its consistency, though. Results ranged from 280-376ms, but that high reading was very much an outlier, and its overall response time chart is just about as flat as we’ve seen.
That’s an important result, maybe more so than the response time. A very spiky chart with wide variations in time suggests an overloaded server or network, with too many sites competing for too few resources. Accu Web Hosting’s stability indicates the opposite: even our very basic shared hosting plan seemed to have all the resources it needed, at all times of the day.
No marketing tricks, no misleading headline prices, no ‘unlimited’ accounts which really aren’t – Accu Web Hosting has a strong range of quality products, very configurable fairly priced, honestly described and with quality support. Go take a look.
Accu Web Hosting review – TechRadar India