Hosting Performance Contest – April 2018 Roundup (15 Hosts Tested: Better Cheaper Speed)

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hosting performance contest April 2018

Here’s the 27th Monthly Hosting Performance Contest Roundup for April 2018!
I’ve been testing 15 hosts in a non-stop manner the whole month and I’ll show you the results below. In general, this contest’s result can be featured as “Cheaper hosts in general show better speed”.

By the way, you can find the latest roundups here and the performance tables and charts here.

All monitored hosts are presented in the pricing categories according to the most affordable plan they have. Also, I bought the most affordable plans available at each hosting company to test hosting performance.

Let’s see how the hosts hosts performed in April 2018!


Common Information


As you may already know, I’ve been monitoring the performance of some of the best hosting providers I know as well as some other well-known hosts.

In short, since 2013 I’ve been picking out great hosts judging by real users reviews, professional hosting community opinion, long honorable business experience and other factors which make a great hosting.

And I buy anonymously hosting accounts with different hosts in order to closely monitor their performance (basically, uptime checked every minute and full page load time checked every 20 minutes) using a professional monitoring service monitis.com. I buy the most basic and the cheapest plan of each hosting. You can read about my monitoring methodology here.

And I’m happy to share these statistics with you so that you could see how these hosts perform and who is the best from the best!

You can find some real-time performance charts on my recommended hosts page for the hosting which I’ve been recommending and monitoring.

Also, you can see real-time monitoring charts for all hosts that I am monitoring on this page. In addition, the page contains monthly historical data on hosting performance (speed, uptime, satisfactory apdex) – very interesting and useful.

Besides, you may read more information about this Hosting Performance Contest on this page. I will be adding monthly and yearly Contest results on the page too.

And other monthly Hosting Performance Contest roundups are available from here.

By the way, here’s a disclosure: There are some affiliate links on this page. In other words, I get paid if you click on the links and make a purchase. All such links open in new window/tab; no software/program will be installed to your computer. (This is a standard notice required by hosting companies.)
Please note that although all hosts mentioned in this post are well-established and considered to be very good, I highly recommend not all of them. My recommended hosts are here.

 

April 2018 Hosting Performance Contest – Results

Here are the fifteen hosts that you can compare this month. I’ve broken down them in three groups: very affordable (below $4/mo), middle class (upto $8/mo) and more expensive ($8+/mo).

You’ll see a breakdown of hosting performance by prices in the sections below.

Let’s start from an overview of the hosting performance in the order of how the hosts performed in general regardless of how affordable or expensive the hosts are.

winner cup - hosting performance contest Roundup April 2018The winner of this month’s contest is HawkHost!. By the way, it’s one of the most affordable hosts among the shared hosts I present in this Contest.
In the Top-3 also go GeekStorage and SiteGround.

What’s interesting about the leaders is that all of them are again from different pricing categories.

Average full page load time of HawkHost (the winner) was 0.85 seconds (it’s blazing fast). Its Uptime was very high 99.93%. My site hosted with this host was available all the time during the whole month apart from 30.2 minutes. And the host’s Satisfactory Apdex was very good 99.72% (i.e. 99.72% of all the time during this month the full page load time was less than 2.5 seconds). Very impressive performance for such an affordable host! All these parameters are much above the benchmarks specified for the greatest hosting performance. And since this hosting was the fastest host among the hosts which exceeded all the benchmarks determined for the greatest hosts HawkHost wins the gold medal.

HawkHost is one of the most affordable hosts in this contest, and it’s noticeable that it outperformed more expensive hosts! Very good job!

The silver medalist is GeekStorage.

In April 2018 GeekStorage was on average as fast as 1.04 seconds that is 0.19 seconds slower than the leader. GeekStorage‘s uptime was brilliant – 99.95%. My site hosted with this host was available all the time during this month apart from 21.6 minutes. And its Satisfactory Apdex was simply great – 99.81% (i.e. 99.81% of all the time full page load time of my website hosted with this host was less than 2.5 seconds). Outstanding results!

The bronze medal goes to SiteGround.

SiteGround performed in April 2018 as fast as 1.1 seconds which is super fast. It was slower than the leader by 0.25 seconds. Its uptime was almost perfect 99.99%. My site hosted with this host was not available for 4.3 minutes during the whole month. And the Satisfactory Apdex was very high – 99.9% (99.9% of all time the speed was faster than 2.5 seconds, and of course it’s much above the highest standards set for great hosting).

LunarPages goes to the 4th place. Its 1.2 seconds full page load time was great. Its uptime (99.98%) was also brilliant. My site was not available for 8.6 minutes this month. Also, this host had a perfect Satisfactory Apdex (100%) which of course was much above the benchmark (99%).

MDD Hosting took the 5th place. Its average speed (1.24 seconds) was impressive. And its Satisfactory Apdex (100%) was simply perfect and surely could meet the highest standards (99%). I.e. all the time in this month the speed of my test site was faster than 2.5 seconds. As regards its uptime (99.97%) it was also much above the highest standards (99.9%). My site was not available for 13 minutes this month.

VeeroTech took the 6th place. This host performed very well and satisfied both benchmarks set for great hosts. Its average speed was 1.3 seconds which is very fast. And its uptime (99.97%) was much above the benchmark (99.9%). My site hosted with this hosting was not available for just 13 minutes this month. The host’s Satisfactory Apdex (100%) was perfect and of course it was much above the highest standards (99%).

Other hosts could not meet at least one of the benchmarks set for the best hosting. However, the results of some hosts were very close to the benchmarks and pretty good in general.

GreenGeeks took the 7th place with 1.01 seconds speed, which is great. The host had a bit not satisfactory uptime (99.76%) which means that my site hosted with it was not available for 1.73 hours this month. This is below the highest standards. Meanwhile, it had a perfect Satisfactory Apdex100%. It means that all the time my testing site was faster than 2.5 seconds in this month. This is very well above the highest benchmark (99%) which is set for great hosts. If the host had uptime above the benchmark (99.9%) then the host would have got into the winners of the Contest.

InMotionHosting took the 8th place. Its average speed was generally very good (1.65 seconds full page load time). But its uptime was 99.83%) which is a little bit below the benchmark level (99.9%). My site was not available for 1.22 hours this month. And the host’s Satisfactory Apdex (99.44%) was well above the highest standards (99%). Very well in general.

HostWinds took the 9th place. The host had generally good speed (1.67 seconds on average). But it had not good enough uptime (98.89%). It means my site hosted with this hosting was almost 8 hours offline. This is quite below the uptime benchmark set for great hosts (99.9%). It’s Satisfactory Apdex (99.16%) was above the benchmark (99%) which is great.

Squidix has got the 10th place in this month. It performed as fast as 1.67 seconds which is generally good. But its uptime (99.42%) was a bit below the highest standards set for great host (99.9%). My site hosted with this host was not available for 4.18 hours during this month. And the Satisfactory Apdex was not very good – 91.87% (91.87% of all time the speed was faster than 2.5 seconds).

MochaHost took the 11th place.. Its speed was not bad (1.76 seconds). But its uptime (99.69%) was a bit below the benchmark (99.9%). My site was not available for 2.23 hours this month. And the host’s Satisfactory Apdex (99.25%) did pass the benchmark level (99%) which is great.

A2Hosting goes to the 12th place. Its 1.79 seconds full page load time was quite good. But its uptime (99.72%) was a bit below the highest standards (99.9%). By site hosted with this host was not available for 2.02 hours this month. And its Satisfactory Apdex (99.67%) was much above the benchmark (99%). Generally a solid performance!

StableHost this month took the 13th place. The hosting performed generally well, but not as great as most other hosts. It did not satisfy one of the benchmarks which are set for great hosting performance. The average speed was 1.94 seconds which is not bad. Its uptime (99.98%) was brilliant satisfied the benchmark test (99.9%). My site hosted with this hosting was not available for just 8.6 minutes this month. But the host’s Satisfactory Apdex (94.42%) did not exceed the highest standards (99%), that’s why the host got low in the rankings.

Eleven2 got the 14th place. Its average speed (1.96 secs) was not bad generally. Its uptime was 99.96%, which is above the benchmark (99.9%) which is superb. My site was not available for just 17.3 minutes this month. The host’s Satisfactory Apdex (93.45%) could not get above the highest standards (99%).

GlowHost went to the last 15th place again this month. This host could not get higher because of its relatively slow speed. Its uptime (99.96%) was great and much above the benchmark (99.9%) which is set to determine the best hosts. My site was not available for 17.3 minutes this month. But the host’s speed was slow (3.37 seconds). And as expected, its Satisfactory Apdex (0%) was the lowest among other monitored hosts; and it was far from reaching the benchmark level (99%). The loading time of my test website was lower than 2.5 seconds during the whole month.

Generally, the competition of the monitored hosts this month was pretty tight as usual especially between the leaders. And what was noticeable is that the cheaper hosts in this Contest showed comparatively superb performance and got quite high positions in the rankings!

By the way, keep in mind, that for this Contest I pick out the hosts which are considered to be good, great and superb. These hosts are established businesses for many years and some of them are widely recommended in the Internet. So, the idea of this Contest is to determine the best performing hosts from a technical point of view, giving you objective information for making your own decision regarding hosts.

Let’s see now the results in tables and charts for more convenience, more information and more insight.

Here’s a table view to compare the Hosting Performance Contest results in April 2018:


Table column notes:
Place: The place a hosting has won in this Contest (the less the better).
Load Time: Average Full Page Load Time (the less the better). Checked every 20 minutes.
Uptime: Uptime (the more the better). Checked every minute.
Superb Uptime: If Uptime Benchmark (99.9%) passed (YES is very good).
Apdex-S: Satisfactory Apdex, i.e. how often a test website on a tested hosting was loading faster than 2.5 sec (the more the Apdex-S the better). Checked every 20 minutes.
Superb Apdex-S: If Satisfactory Apdex benchmark (99%) passed (YES is very good).
Color areas: Green is superb and above the highest standards. The greener, the better. Yellow is good, but below the highest standards. Orange is not very good; worse than yellow. Red is comparatively the worst.

Here’s a table with hosting prices:

 
1 year: Regular prices (after the first invoice) for 1-year plan.
2 years: Regular prices (after the first invoice) for 2-year plan.
3 years: Regular prices (after the first invoice) for 3-year plan.
Min Price: The minimum price officially available for the first invoice (can be for 1-year, 2-year or 3-year plan).
*StableHost discount code is given in my review.
Limited-time offers with more discounts are not included in these prices. Check out if there are special offers currently available by visiting the hosting websites.
Worthy: This column contains my recommended hosts. (Under review label means that the host performs well or/and has a good potential in winning prizes in the Contest, but I want to have more proved records of its technical and support performance.)

Here’s a table with places within pricing categories:

 
Since it’s not always correct to compare hosts from different price categories together, I’ve broken down the monitored hosts into three categories to compete within as you can see above in the table.

The prices presented in this table are regular prices (i.e. applied after the first invoice). Note that prices for the first invoice (1-,2- or 3-year plan) are usually less (see them in the previous table). And special promo prices are not included (check them out on the hosting websites).

And here are the charts with the Hosting Performance Contest results in April 2018:

1. The golden medalist: HawkHost (it’s in my list of the recommended hosts; see my review).
2. The silver medalist: GeekStorage (it’s in my list of the recommended hosts; see my review).
3. The bronze medalist: SiteGround (it’s in my list of the recommended hosts; see my review).
 

 

 

April 2018 Hosting Performance Contest Results – Notes


I use monitis.com services for uptime and full page load monitoring. The monitoring is performed from two locations in order to decrease chances of false alerts and make monitoring results more objective. You can read more about my methodology of monitoring here.

Here are the monthly monitoring reports screenshots:

Hosting Performance Contest April 2018 - uptime monitoring report
These monitor checks are performed with 1-minute interval, which makes it great for detecting website uptime and downtime.

So, we need Uptime values from this table for finding the winner of our Contest.
By the way, downtime is detected if server response time (time-to-first-byte) is more than 10 seconds.

Other values (just for information):
Response time is not that important for this Contest, because I’ve got a better indicator monitored, which is Full page load time (see below).
Number of failures may be interesting to look at, but this is just an additional information to Uptime, which is more important for the overall hosting evaluation.

Six hosts on the screenshot have not passed the uptime benchmark test (99.9%) for great hosting. The other hosts I’m monitoring were up more than 99.9% in April. Websites on the uptime-failed hosting were not available for more than 43.2 minutes in total this month.

Hosting Performance Contest April 2018 - full page load time monitoring report


These tests are performed with 20-minute interval from two locations. It makes it a perfect real-user performance monitor. This monitor’s activity is equal to 144 unique visitors per day (about 4,320 unique visitors per month).

Avg Test Duration is the Full page load time, which is very clear and important factor for the Hosting Performance Contest.

We don’t need Uptime from this table because we have got a better (more precise) Uptime indicator from the previous table.

Also, we don’t need Failures from this table, because it’s less precise than the same indicator from the previous table.

But we will need Apdex, particularly its S (Satisfactory) part. This shows how much time (in %) the website loaded faster than 2.5 seconds.

Conclusion

The best hosts which have demonstrated the best performance in April 2018 are the medalists: HawkHost, GeekStorage and SiteGround. The winners are from all different pricing categories.

By the way, all the top winners have passed the strict benchmarks determined for great hosting.

As regards the winners in different pricing categories, here they are:
The best hosts in the higher pricing category ($8-10/mo) in April 2018 go in the following order: SiteGround, GreenGeeks and InMotionHosting.

The best three hosts in the middle pricing category ($4-8/mo) in April 2018 are GeekStorage, HostWinds and Squidix.

The best three hosts in the most affordable pricing category (up to $4/mo) in April 2018 are HawkHost, LunarPages and MDDHosting.

Please note, that I’m using the cheapest plans available on each of the monitored hosts.

It’s interesting that many hosts from the most affordable pricing category outperformed most hosts from the higher pricing categories.

And the hero of the Contest in this month is HawkHost which is a host from the most affordable pricing category and which performed so well that it took the golden medal!


P.S.: My recommended hosts are here.
You can see real-time performance charts of the hosts I monitor as well as historical data on the hosting performance on this page.
Past and future Hosting Performance Contest results are (and will be) published on this page.
Other monthly roundups of this Hosting Performance Contest are available here.

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