In a Nutshell
- Unlimited bandwidth
- Free email inboxes
- 99.99% uptime guarantee
- Big bump in price after the introductory period
- Important Ecommerce features require a high-tier plan
Fasthosts at a Glance
Free marketing offer
Free domain for the first year, plus introductory pricing
Price per month
Starting at £1
Fasthosts is a solid choice for any business, large or small, that has customers primarily based in the UK. As all of Fasthosts’ servers are in the UK, your website should load more quickly for UK visitors.
Fasthosts offers many different types of hosting. At the lower end of the price scale, you can choose traditional shared hosting, where you share server resources with other customers. Then there’s performance hosting, where you get your own dedicated slice of server resources.
Fasthosts offers WordPress hosting, where your hosting is already set up with a WordPress installation. Currently, WordPress is the leading content management system (CMS) by market share.
Larger companies may be interested in the virtual private server (VPS), dedicated server, and cloud server options from Fasthosts. These types of hosting enable your hosting to scale more easily when your traffic increases and give you better control over what’s installed on your servers, but they’re also more expensive.
Uptime and Performance
Reviews of Fasthosts have bemoaned the service’s relatively slow performance and poor uptime in the past. However, Fasthosts now offers a 99.99% uptime guarantee, stronger than most online hosts in its price range.
If your site becomes unavailable and you report the fault to the company, Fasthosts will pay you a 5% service credit of the paid monthly fee for every hour your website is unreachable.
This doesn’t cover outages outside the company’s control, such as poor network conditions beyond Fasthosts’ network.
Website Builder Features
Fasthosts offers a website builder so you can build a complete website without writing a single line of code. You can try the website builder for free for one to three months, depending on your chosen plan.
The Essential plan costs £5.99 per month after the initial free month. This is quite a limited plan, though, with just 800MB of storage and a maximum of 10 web pages. You get a free domain and SSL certificate for the first year, as well as a personalized email address.
The Complete plan is priced at £9.99 per month. This has a more generous 350 web page limit, unlimited storage, and the option to set up a limited online shop.
Then there’s the Ecommerce Start Up plan, which costs £15 per month. In addition to the features from the Complete plan, you get search engine optimization (SEO) tools and integration with over 160 third-party apps.
Beyond this, there are three more Ecommerce plans for the website builder. The Ecommerce Grow plan is £20 per month and includes abandoned cart recovery and support for selling digital items up to 1GB in size. Ecommerce Pro is £35 per month and adds real-time delivery tracking options, product filters, support for gift cards, and multilingual support.
Finally, the Ecommerce Expert plan costs £50 per month and allows you to sell unlimited products. You can sell through Amazon and eBay and offer volume discounts on products.
Fasthosts includes unlimited 100MB email inboxes on all plans. On top of this, all shared hosting plans have several 2GB email inboxes.
Some of Fasthosts’ plans, such as the Complete and Ecommerce website builder plans, include support for Microsoft Exchange, which could be useful if you need to manage email addresses for everyone in your company.
Fasthosts even offers two email hosting plans that are separate from its web hosting. The Standard Email plan costs £2.19 per month after your introductory year and includes two 2GB mailboxes, two email addresses, antivirus, and spam protection.
The Exchange Basic plan costs £3.25 per month for each 5GB mailbox. You also get access to a shared calendar and shared contacts.
Once you’ve signed up with Fasthosts, you’ll have access to your control panel. Here, you can manage your domain names, hosting, email, databases, and SSL certificates. You can run online backups, check traffic statistics, and access advanced settings like firewall policies and cloud servers if your plan supports these features.
The control panel is all very well laid out, and access to an excellent support site is integrated into the interface. Fasthosts has created many videos discussing how to perform typical tasks in the control panel, so if you’re relatively new to website hosting, then you should be able to hit the ground running.
Some of Fasthosts’ higher-tier offerings include alternative control panels—cPanel and Web Host Manager. These control panels are considered the industry standard for larger deployments and are available on Fasthosts’ dedicated, cloud, virtual, and CloudNX hosting plans.
Pricing and Packages
There are many different types of hosting available from Fasthosts, each with its own pricing plans. In this review, I’ll focus on the hosting types most applicable to small businesses.
Fasthosts often offers generous discounts for a plan’s first six or 12 months. For instance, the most economical Start shared hosting plan costs only 50p per month for the first 12 months before rising to a still-reasonable £5 per month.
Fasthosts’ pricing doesn’t include VAT, so you’ll pay 20% more than the advertised prices. It has four shared hosting plans ranging between £5 and £18 per month. The higher-priced plans have better performance, more storage, and allow you to create more websites.
Fasthosts offers three plans for WordPress, ranging between £5 and £18 per month after the introductory period. These plans make managing a WordPress website easier, including automatic updates, free backups, and plugins that boost WordPress performance.
2x FREE 1-year SSL certificates
3x FREE lifetime SSL certificates
5x FREE lifetime SSL certificates
2 x 1GB
2 x 1GB
20 x 1GB
120 x 1GB
5 x 2GB
5 x 2GB
100 x 2GB
1090 x 2GB
Help and Support
Fasthosts offers 24/7 support via phone, support ticket, and live chat. Customers are encouraged to first head to the Fasthosts support site if they have an issue. Here, you will find hundreds of support articles on hosting a site with Fasthosts. I found the search to be quite slow, often taking up to a minute to return results.
Fasthosts is also active on social media and has a YouTube presence with over 200 videos. These are mostly useful how-to guides on Fasthosts’ features.
Fasthosts is a UK-based hosting provider offering something for every type of business that has a UK presence. Its shared hosting starts at just £1 per month, but it’s worth paying a little more for a plan that will offer better speeds for your visitors.
Fasthosts has had problems with reliability in the past but now offers a 99.99% uptime guarantee. Its control panel is well laid out, and customer support is good. If you’re looking for a UK-based website host to serve your website to UK visitors, Fasthosts should be on your shortlist.