Bluehost vs. FatCow (2022)

Written by: Ryan Frankel

Ryan Frankel

Ryan began developing websites in the late '90s and has personally tested just about every web host and cloud platform worth trying on the market today. He leverages his extensive knowledge of hardware, software, and their engineering relationship to inform HostingAdvice readers of the technical implications of their hosting choices. Ryan's subject matter expertise includes, but is not limited to, WordPress, cloud infrastructure management, product UI/UX design, and popular web development languages such as JavaScript and PHP.

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Edited by: Lillian Guevara-Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro

Lillian brings more than 30 years of editing and journalism experience. She has written and edited for major news organizations, including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the New York Times, and she previously served as an adjunct instructor at the University of Florida. Today, she edits HostingAdvice content for clarity, accuracy, and reader engagement.

Updated: September 3, 2020
Alexandra Leslie Ryan Frankel Hosting Expert
“We tested Bluehost & FatCow — The winner is Bluehost!”

Notwithstanding the argument that a somewhat silly brand name is a requirement for running a successful hosting business, Bluehost and FatCow are two of the most well-known names in hosting. One can’t help but smile while browsing their services — which include shared, VPS, and dedicated hosting solutions. We compare them each below.

Overall Rating
4.9/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit Bluehost »
Overall Rating
4.6/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit FatCow »
Advertiser Disclosure

Overall Hosting Comparison

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.9/5.0

Bluehost has long been a favorite of mine in the shared and WordPress hosting spaces. The company adheres to modern standards for hardware, and its customer service resources are now backed by hosting industry titan Endurance International Group (EIG). Bluehost’s shared hosting options will accommodate the vast majority of customers' needs. Independent proprietors, small business owners, and non-developers needn't look beyond the host's shared server (read: cheap hosting) plans. Once your website outgrows the traffic allowances of a shared hosting plan, however, Bluehost excels in the VPS hosting and dedicated server niches, too.

Bluehost has revamped its user experience — beefing up the user-friendliness factor significantly in recent years. Users will find the web host dashboard and overall customer experience to be welcoming. Easily navigate installing popular apps, such as WordPress, Joomla, or Zen Cart, with the familiar cPanel control panel. The domain management panel makes it easy to add on domain services, should you choose to opt for an upgraded plan, where domain privacy and support for unlimited domain names come standard.

If you’re looking for WordPress hosting specifically, whether on a shared, virtual, or dedicated server, you’ve come to the right host. Bluehost is one of the few providers endorsed by the WordPress Core team, ranked among SiteGround and DreamHost. Install the popular blogging platform in a single click via the web hosting control panel, or have the Bluehost pros take care of it for you by leveraging a managed WordPress hosting service.

As previously mentioned, Bluehost also tops the charts in VPS and dedicated server hosting — offering fantastic performance at competitive prices. With two to four cores and guaranteed resources, your virtual or dedicated server will be performant, powerful, and online virtually 24/7. The Bluehost team leverages industry-leading open-source technologies, such as KVM and OpenStack, to eke out as much performance as possible, leaving you with the utmost flexibility and reliability. And in case you're not quite yet sold: Both the VPS and dedicated hosting plan options include instant provisioning because waiting for your server is so 2000s. Read on for more Bluehost reviews as we rate the web hosting company for affordability, reliability, ease of use, as well as the features offered in each hosting product category.

  • Up to unlimited website domain and email hosting
  • 1-click WordPress installs and software updates
  • Support for popular shopping carts with FREE SSL certificate
  • Up to $200 in Microsoft and Google Ad credit available
  • Industry-leading hardware and uptime rates
  • Get started on Bluehost now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
50 GB SSD - unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.6/5.0

Having some of the most affordable shared hosting out there, plus plenty of extras, warrants FatCow be on our list of top web hosts overall. Their customer service, performance, and focus on environmental responsibility leave you feeling good about yourself and your website.

Though their hardware isn’t super modern like some of the other hosts, speeds are decent and very reliable. 24/7 phone and email support is there for you every step of the way, should you run into any issues.

Don’t be fooled by their lower price, their feature-rich offerings are adequate for many users, particularly first-timers. Website builders with eCommerce and a free domain get you started quickly and easily; unlimited disk space, bandwidth, and emails give you room to grow.

If you are looking for a low-priced web host with a good feature set and you love cow puns, look no further than FatCow.

  • FREE domain name
  • Included point-and-click website builders
  • 24/7 support
  • Unlimited disk space, bandwidth, emails, and databases
  • GREEN: Powered 100% by wind energy
  • Get started on FatCow now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Cheap Hosting Comparison

Cheap Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

#2 out of 10 in Cheap Hosting reviews

Bluehost pricing is about as competitive as the industry offers. Sign up for a shared hosting plan for as little as $2.95 per month, and WordPress hosting packages are consistently priced; a VPS plan starts at around $18.99 per month; and the dedicated hosting rates are as little as $79.99 per month. The only way to feasibly sweeten this deal would be a free trial, which, unfortunately, the hosting company does not offer. However, the 30-day money-back guarantee is marketed heavily. The Bluehost customer support team promises complete service satisfaction or a full refund.

Bluehost hosting has reputation for affordability and usability, which both web novices and veterans can appreciate. Unlimited website hosting — from domains and email to disk space — is available with almost all plans. Even the most basic Bluehost plan sets users up for success with ample hard disk storage, unmetered bandwidth, and both a free SSL certificate and free domain registration for the first year of hosting service. Optional add-on services, such as automated backups, and complimentary marketing credits for select plan holders sweeten an already attractive hosting bargain. Some common freebies we love seeing include:

  • Free domain name registration (for the first year of service)
  • Free Let's Encrypt SSL certificate (also for the first year)
  • Free website builder (Weebly, an industry favorite)

Due in part to its affordability but mostly the quality of service, most Bluehost reviews will rank the hosting company atop (or near the top of) lists of the best shared, VPS, and/or WordPress hosting services. You'll see similar results from our Bluehost review. We regularly recommend Bluehost hosting products that are geared toward beginners, including shared, WordPress, and WooCommerce hosting customers, where cost and ease of use are top priorities.

Bluehost is a solid, reputable choice of hosting provider with competitive pricing, industry-standard hardware performance, and all the premium add-ons imaginable. The web host's low costs, coupled with its supremacy in the shared hosting arena, make this web host a bang-for-the-buck favorite throughout the hosting community.

  • Cheap shared hosting from a highly reputable provider
  • Ideal for hosting a WordPress website
  • FREE Weebly website builder and Cloudflare CDN
  • Unlimited traffic and 24/7 live chat support
  • Get 63% off today with our Bluehost coupon
  • Get started on Bluehost now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
50 GB SSD - unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Cheap Rating

★★★★★ 4.5/5.0

FatCow is one of the better budget hosts out there. They offer great hosting features and server performance for a low price. They are also the feel-good host of the list, with a cute, pun-filled site running 100% on eco-friendly wind power; however, don’t for a second think they aren’t serious about great hosting.

New users will love the inclusion of a domain name, unlimited email addresses, and a website builder with eCommerce support. Included integration with popular merchant accounts get you one step closer to selling online. All of it is wrapped up nicely in a simple-to-use control panel, cPanel.

All users will love what they call the "Script Barn," which allows for 1-click installation of popular open-source apps and scripts like WordPress, Joomla, phpBB, and more.

FatCow is a fantastic budget host, with high-budget features and flexibility with which you can easily grow your site.

  • Included domain name
  • CGI, PHP, Python, Perl, Ruby, and MySQL support
  • 1-click script installs
  • Access to website builders with eCommerce cart
  • 60% off for joining today
  • Get started on FatCow now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Dedicated Hosting Comparison

Dedicated Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

#4 out of 10 in Dedicated Hosting reviews

Built on modern technology, with a minimum of four CPU cores per dedicated server, Bluehost offers reliable and flexible dedicated hosting options at an extremely reasonable price. We continually praise the company's shared hosting options for having fantastic hardware and a great management console, and the brand's dedicated server offerings are no different.

Designed and maintained in house, Bluehost servers rely on only the latest technologies. The hosting company leverages open-source platforms, such as OpenStack and KVM, to boost flexibility and performance. All dedicated machines boast at least four CPU cores, 1TB of RAID-1 storage, and at least 4GB of available RAM. Each dedicated server is provisioned instantly and can be upgraded at any time with essentially just a few clicks.

Bluehost prides itself on the always-available customer support staff. The experienced support agents work directly with engineers who have their hands on your machine, so to speak. As a former Bluehost customer, I've always found the support technicians to be incredibly responsive and helpful.

  • Instant provisioning for all Bluehost server plans
  • Minimum 3 dedicated IP addresses
  • Modern hardware, built and maintained in house
  • 24/7 expedited support from a dedicated team
  • Sign up to save 33% on your first term
  • Get started on Bluehost now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
500 GB - 1 TB (Mirrored)
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Dedicated Rating

★★★★ 4.2/5.0

If you want maximum performance and security for your site, and a host with a customer- and environmentally friendly company, FatCow should be at the top of your list of prospective web hosts.

When it comes to dedicated hosting features, FatCow has what you should be looking for: two to four CPU cores, 4GB to 16GB RAM, tons of bandwidth, and tons of mirrored storage. They also offer all these things at a very fair rate.

What really impresses us is the many customer-first policies they have. The first that comes to mind is the "predictable pricing model," meaning they don’t financially penalize you for usage overages, nor simply shut you down. Their servers are built on cloud-based architecture, so there is always room to grow and scale with FatCow as your demands increase. Finally, their monthly billing rates are very reasonable when compared to their yearly, which is great for those who are not ready to make a long-term commitment just to save a few dollars.

  • Fully managed servers
  • RAID 1 mirrored storage for data protection
  • Cloud-based flexibility and scalability
  • Predictable monthly costs with no overage charges
  • 3 dedicated IP addresses per plan
  • Get started on FatCow now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
500 GB - 1 TB
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

VPS Hosting Comparison

VPS Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

#8 out of 10 in VPS Hosting reviews

We love recommending Bluehost for its lifetime customer growth potential, meaning you can start with shared hosting and seamlessly scale to VPS hosting plans and beyond. The price versus performance is pretty unbeatable in the virtual hosting space, and Bluehost's engineering team will kick off the customer relationship by instantly provisioning your server.

Bluehost’s VPS offerings boast several benefits compared to standard shared hosting and other VPS providers. The first is speed; Bluehost offers your choice of two or four cores and 4GB to 16GB of RAM with guaranteed resources, so you have the power you need when you need it. The second perk is security; Bluehost offers redundant storage and optional SiteLock protection to secure your data.

For those new to VPS hosting who may not know exactly what is needed, Bluehost makes it incredibly easy and seamless to switch between plans to find the perfect package for you. The company's enhanced cPanel interface enables users to instantly adjust computing resources. If you have questions or need some advice, Bluehost's wonderful support staff is standing by to assist 24/7.

  • Seamless migration from any Bluehost shared hosting plan
  • Robust VPS with 2-4 cores and 2-8GB of RAM
  • Ample RAID-1 storage and tons of bandwidth
  • Each plan gets at least 3 dedicated IP addresses
  • cPanel and WHM with root access
  • Get started on Bluehost now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
30 GB SSD - 120 GB SSD
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

VPS Rating

★★★★ 4.3/5.0

FatCow offers very customer-friendly VPS plans with a lot of storage for the price. If you are looking for a reliable host, with great support and a lot of disk space, give FatCow a serious look.

FatCow’s VPS plans are all fully managed and come with cPanel for ease of use. They take the hassle out of installing software like Apache and MySQL and handle the hardware monitoring for you. We also appreciate the plethora of pre-installed scripts.

Arguably the most feel-good host on our list, FatCow’s datacenters and offices are 100% powered by eco-friendly wind power. They also want the best for their clients' sites and do not penalize with overage charges, should your site exceed its limits.

Founded in 1998, FatCow has been in the hosting industry for a long time. Don’t let their cheeky image throw you though; they are committed to providing excellent service and value in their hosting packages. If you are looking for a nice VPS hosting solution with a lot of storage, check FatCow Out.

  • Instantly deploy and scale
  • Predictable monthly costs with no overage fees
  • Guaranteed RAM and resources
  • Fully managed with around-the-clock monitoring
  • Anytime money-back guarantee
  • Get started on FatCow now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
40 GB - 120 GB
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

WordPress Hosting Comparison

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.9/5.0

#1 out of 9 in WordPress Hosting reviews

Bluehost's WordPress hosting packages are aimed at first-time site owners and personal bloggers. These services come at a premium compared to the standard Bluehost web hosting (basic shared hosting) plans, but the WordPress optimization and platform-specific resources are arguably worth the cost.

The shared WordPress hosting plans are arguably the most popular. Equipped with the web's famous MOJO Marketplace, enjoy single-click installations of popular apps and tools, including WordPress. Bluehost is on a short list of providers officially endorsed by the experts at WordPress.org, so, when faced with WordPress-specific issues, you can reach out to the customer support team with confidence.

Bluehost's managed WordPress hosting service is based on the hosting company's VPS offering. Though not as customizable as others, this managed hosting service focuses on simplicity and speed. The account management interface is easy to navigate, and the instant provisioning allows for speedy setup. Integrated features, such as the MOJO Marketplace and ManageWP, are nice touches as well.

Though simple by design, Bluehost doesn't skimp on WordPress fan favorites:

  • Automatic WordPress installation and updates
  • Customizable themes for WordPress in the Bluehost Marketplace
  • Global content delivery network (CDN) powered by Cloudflare

Formed in 2003, Bluehost has long been one of the foremost shared hosts on the planet, and the hosting company now powers more than 2 million websites. With an experienced team, competitive pricing, and always-there support, Bluehost is an industry veteran when it comes WordPress hosting.

  • Recommended by WordPress.org since 2005
  • Automatic WordPress updates and initial install
  • FREE WordPress themes in the Bluehost Marketplace
  • 24/7 support via live chat, phone, and email
  • Get exclusive discounts on WordPress plans
  • Get started on Bluehost now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
50 GB SSD - unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.5/5.0

FatCow is a good, budget-minded option for those looking to host their WordPress site. With two choices (WP Starter or WP Essential), you can choose the hosting package that best fits your budget. With either plan, you are offered a free domain, plus unlimited transfers and disk space, which is nice.

Their WP Essential plan, the more expensive of the two plans, benefits from an all-SSD infrastructure, which provides greater speeds than their WP Starter package. Enhanced security from SiteLock is also added, which virtually eliminates malware. 24/7 phone support is included on this plan, so if you find yourself needing a little help now and then, I would consider this package over WP Starter.

For the brave or the capable minds on a budget, the WP Starter plan may work for you. Though lacking some of the extras and support of the bigger package, their WP Starter plan is one of the least expensive WordPress hosts you can find. Both plans come with pre-installed plugins and curated themes to get your site up and running sooner.

FatCow is a great budget WordPress web hosting solution. They offer great hosting features and decent server performance for a low price.

  • Curated themes and pre-installed plugins
  • Unlimited disk Space, bandwidth, and email accounts
  • Choice of two value-based hosting packages
  • Premium plan formore speed, security, and support
  • FREE domain with registration
  • Get started on FatCow now.
Money Back Guarantee
Anytime
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Site Builder Hosting Comparison

Website Builder Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

#5 out of 10 in Website Builder Hosting reviews

With Bluehost, new site owners have the drag-and-drop simplicity of the Weebly website builder and goMobi mobile site builder at their fingertips. This makes launching a new online brand, store, or personal site from scratch relatively painless. Sure, site building has its headaches for newbies, but the Bluehost team is ready and willing to assist you every step of the way. To help prime your site launch for success, Bluehost offers a plethora of unlimited freebies:

  • Free domain hosting (unlimited domains on select plans)
  • Free email hosting (unlimited by default)
  • Unlimited storage on most plans
  • Unlimited bandwidth (i.e., site traffic)

These freebies, coupled with several options for site building services, is everything a new website owner needs to get started, and the cost is hard to beat. If WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) isn’t for you, perhaps a CMS (content management system) option sounds appealing.

Choose from the most popular content management and blogging software, including Joomla, Drupal, and WordPress, and download and install the application(s) with a single click. Some Bluehost hosting plan options have even been customized to cater to WordPress — and Bluehost is one of three hosts officially endorsed by the WordPress Core developers. For quick, cheap, and easy website building — backed by one of the web’s most reliable web hosts — you can’t go wrong in choosing Bluehost.

  • FREE Bluehost website builder (powered by Weebly)
  • Easy integration with WordPress and other CMS platforms
  • Expert support available 24/7 via live chat, phone, and email
  • Get exposure with up to $200 in advertising credits
  • Optional professional services to help design, build, and market your site
  • Get started on Bluehost now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
10 GB SSD - unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

Website Builder Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

#10 out of 10 in Website Builder Hosting reviews

Aimed at the low-budget customer, FatCow gets you online in only a few minutes for only a few dollars. While pretty limited at their lowest price, if you need a very simple website with only a few web pages, it’s hard to argue with FatCow's value.

Using the CM4All drag-and-drop website builder, you can get a site online pretty quickly. Though their base plan is limited to only six pages, their other plans, with more support, are still very reasonable. Each plan comes with a free domain name, which saves you the trouble of purchasing one separately and waiting for name servers to propagate.

For those looking for a little more, FatCow offers support for popular blog and CMS software such as WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, and others. Integrated galleries and forums are also available. Finally, FatCow give you advertising credits towards sites like Google, Bing, and Facebook to get the ball rolling on your site’s exposure.

If you are on a budget and in need of a small, simple webpage today, with options to grow in the future, check out FatCow’s site builder offerings.

  • Easily build a 6-page site
  • CM4All drag-and-drop website builder
  • FREE domain name
  • Compatible with WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, and others
  • $250 in advertising credits
  • Get started on FatCow now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
2 GB
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)
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Bluehost vs. FatCow - Our Conclusion

Alexandra Leslie Ryan Frankel Hosting Expert
“We tested Bluehost & FatCow — The winner is Bluehost!”

The bottom line: Both of these providers make excellent first-time hosts, and if you’re a strictly shared hosting shopper, you can’t go wrong with either pick. That being said, they both offer dedicated and VPS options, but if VPS- or dedicated-level growth are in your hosting future, you’re probably going to get more power for your buck with Bluehost.

Overall Rating
4.9/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit Bluehost »
Overall Rating
4.6/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit FatCow »

About The Author

Ryan Frankel has been a professional in the tech industry for more than 20 years and has been developing websites for more than 25. With his background in integrated circuit design and digital signal processing, he has a fundamental understanding of hardware systems and the software that runs them. Ryan now sits as the CTO of Digital Brands Inc. and manages all of the server infrastructure of their websites, as well as their development team. In addition, Ryan has a passion for guitars, good coffee, and puppies.
Alexandra Leslie