AccuWeb Shared Hosting Review (2020): Affordable, But Is It Any Good?

Are affordable renewals and great website security enough to sell the sizzle? Read our review summary below for an answer.

  • Starting Price $3.09/mo
  • Maximum Storage 50 GB
  • Free Domain Yes
  • Refund guarantee 30 days

Pros

  • Very affordable renewals
  • Free daily backups
  • Free daily malware scans
  • Multiple server locations

Cons

  • Dated user interface
  • Not great at anything in particular
  • Unreliable live chat support

Disclosure: if you purchase through any links on this web page, I earn referral fees from partners. These fees do not influence my recommendations.

Review summary:

AccuWeb has competitive first contract and renewal prices.

However, the quality of their service feels lackluster. Our test website’s load speed wasn’t as stable as we expected. Their user interface doesn’t help beginners easily get their footing, and the quality of live chat support is subpar.

Overall, AccuWeb failed to wow us with anything other than top-notch security, which doesn’t cut it.

If price is your number one consideration, look into DreamHost or Hostinger – both offer better-quality hosting at a better price.

If excellent website performance is your top priority, SiteGround and InterServer are much better choices.

Scenarios where AccuWeb makes a superior choice include:

  1. You need to host your website on a server in Johannesburg or Mumbai. No other host we’ve reviewed has servers in these locations.
  2. You’re a student and could use one year of free hosting.

Otherwise, go with any of the alternatives we listed above or take a look at our hosting rankings by purpose page.

Plans and Pricing

AccuWeb’s shared hosting plans are available at the following discounted first-term prices.

First-term prices (per month):

 PersonalSmall BusinessEnterprise
6-month term$3.25$5.60$12.74
Annual term$3.24$5.52$12.04
2-year term$3.19$5.31$10.98
3-year term$3.09$5.09$9.99
Websites UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Storage (SSD)10 GB30 GB50 GB
Data transfer500 GB / mo750 GB / mo1,000 GB / mo.

Higher plans don’t see a significant jump in features; the main differences between plans are in bandwidth and storage limits.

The Personal plan starts at $3.09 per month. This is an excellent introductory price and compares favorably with other affordable providers, including DreamHost, SiteGround, and InterServer.

What’s more, the plan lets you host unlimited websites. This contrast sharply with competing providers, most of which don’t allow more than a single website on their cheapest plans. However, in reality, the number of websites you can host will be significantly restricted by the storage and data transfer limits that are in place.

The Personal plan includes 10 GB storage and a 500 GB monthly of data transfer (bandwidth). Whether this is enough depends on the type of website you plan to host. In short:

Basically, if you’re looking to launch a new website, AccuWeb’s limits will not be a problem for you in the foreseeable future.

(For a broader overview of bandwidth and storage requirements, please see: website bandwidth requirements and website storage requirements.)

Small Business is a good upgrade over Personal if you need the extra resources: you get a threefold increase in storage (from 10 GB to 30 GB) and a 50% increase in data transfer (from 500 to 750 GB) for a modest price increase (from $3.09 to $5.09 per month).

As for Enterprise, it offers just 60% more storage (30 GB to 50 GB) and 35% more data transfer (750 GB to 1 000 GB) than Small Business while costing twice as much ($5.09 to $9.99). The fact that Enterprise comes with a dedicated IP address for one year doesn’t justify this price difference, in our opinion. On the flip side, Enterprise compares favorably when you bid it against similar plans offered by other hosts, such as GoGeek from SiteGround.

If you decide to extend your subscription after the first term, you’ll be charged AccuWeb’s standard renewal prices.

Standard prices (per month):

 PersonalSmall BusinessEnterprise
6-month term$3.70$6.44$14.65
Annual term$3.71$5.52$13.85
2-year term$3.66$6.35$12.63
3-year term$3.55$5.85$11.49
Websites UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Storage (SSD)10 GB30 GB50 GB
Data transfer500 GB / mo750 GB / mo1,000 GB / mo.

Renewals are just 15% more expensive than initial terms. This contrasts sharply with the typical two or even threefold price hike you’ll see at other hosts.

Overall, AccuWeb’s prices are competitive in both the short and longterm – as long as you don’t mind their storage and data transfer limits.

However, if you need to host multiple websites or a single very large site, consider a host with unlimited storage and unlimited data transfer instead, such as InterServer.

Related reading: cheapest hosting with unlimited websites.

What Payment Methods Does AccuWeb Accept?

You can choose either credit card or PayPal during checkout

AccuWeb accepts check and bank transfer payments as well, but only for invoices exceeding $1,000.

Are AccuWeb’s Prices Negotiable?

AccuWeb prices are currently non-negotiable. However, considering how affordable their plans are to begin with, we don’t have a problem with this.

Related reading: hosts with negotiable prices.

Does AccuWeb Offer Discounts for Non-Profits?

There are no special discounts available to non-profits.

If you work for a 501(c)(3) organization and can verify your status by submitting a photocopy of an IRS tax determination letter, check our list of hosts with non-profit discounts.

Features and Server Resources

How Much Data Transfer (Bandwidth) Do You Get?

 PersonalSmall BusinessEnterprise
Data transfer500 GB / mo750 GB / mo1 000 GB / mo

AccuWeb’s data transfer limits compare very favorably with those at other hosting companies.

For example, WPX‘s cheapest plan costs around $21 per month and includes just 100 GB of data transfer.

Similarly, SiteGround’s basic shared hosting plan, which starts at $3.95 and renews at $11.95 a month, is suitable for just 10 000 unique visitors per month (which we estimate is the equivalent of 50 to 100 GB of data transfer).

If you need more bandwidth than what AccuWeb provides, either choose a shared host with unlimited bandwidth or go with a VPS solution.

What Server Locations are Available?

AccuWeb has servers in the following locations:

This is a very extensive list. In fact, none of the budget hosts we’ve reviewed come close to matching the variety of server locations you’ll find at AccuWeb.

Related reading: best hosts with servers in Europe.

How Much Disk Storage Space Do I Get?

 PersonalSmall BusinessEnterprise
Storage (SSD):10 GB30 GB50 GB

These are generous limits for hosting packages at this price point.

For comparison, SiteGround’s most expensive shared plan offers 30 GB of storage.

If you need more than 50 GB, you have multiple options:

  1. Choose a budget hosting provider with unlimited storage, while keeping in mind the various limitations that come with it.
  2. Chose a VPS or dedicated server
  3. If you plan to host WordPress websites exclusively, consider InMotion’s WP hosting; their $10/mo. plan comes with 80 GB, while their $13/mo. plan offers 120 GB.

Related: how much server storage do you need?

How Many Websites Can You Host?

All plans, including the cheapest Personal plan, support unlimited websites. This gives AccuWeb a leg up over competitors, the majority of which restrict you to a single website on their cheapest plans.

Email Limits

 PersonalSmall BusinessEnterprise
Email accounts1505001 000
Sending limit500 / hour500 / hour500 / hour

The hourly sending limit applies to your entire hosting account, not to each email account separately.

This limit is towards the lower end of what other hosting companies offer, but it should still be enough for all business and personal communications.

Related: hosts with the best email sending limits

Is There an Inode Limit at AccuWeb (Advanced Webmasters)?

AccuWeb has a 250 000 Inode limit on all shared hosting accounts. This is in line with what we expected, as most hosts we reviewed offer between 150 000 and 300 000 Inodes.

250 000 may pale in comparison to Hostinger‘s 3.2 million Inode limit or to A2‘s 600 000, but it’s still enough to host multiple large websites or dozens of small ones.

If you have limited hosting experience, you may find our website inode requirements guide useful.

Is There a Limit To The Number or Size of MySQL Databases (Advanced Webmasters)?

 PersonalSmall BusinessEnterprise
DatabasesUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Max. sizeUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited

Even though database size is “unlimited,” the combined size of your databases can’t exceed your hosting plan’s disk storage limit.

Can I Get a Dedicated IP Address (Advanced Webmasters)?

AccuWeb provides a free dedicated IP address with every purchase of a premium SSL certificate.

If you need a dedicated IP for any other reason, you can get one for $3.00 a month – as long as you are not buying it purely for SEO purposes.

If a cheap dedicated IP is important to you, check out InterServer and A2 Hosting.

Is There a Concurrent Database Connections Limit (Advanced Webmasters)?

AccuWeb allows up to 40 simultaneous database connections. This is above the 15-25 limit you’ll see at many hosting providers.

If your website’s database queries are particularly slow or numerous, to the point where 40 concurrent connections are not enough, see our recommended hosts with high database connection limits.

Ease of Use and Interface Functionality

Is It Easy to Install WordPress?

Many of the providers we reviewed include an “AutoInstall WordPress” option on their checkout page.

While AccuWeb doesn’t have this, they make it easy to install WP after you purchase your hosting account: just fire up cPanel and click “WordPress” under the App Installer section:

Installation is automatic and takes about 30 seconds.

AccuWeb’s User Interface Dashboard

AccuWeb employs the same run-of-the-mill account interface that we have seen at many cheap hosting providers:

We are not big fans of this interface. Beginners frequently complain that it feels cluttered and overwhelming, and we agree. All the options are there, but you may have to dig around to find them.

A sizeable chunk of the options you’ll need on a regular basis is located on the product details page of your hosting package. That’s where you’ll find a link to cPanel, a File Manager, webmail, and a backup wizard:

AccuWeb shared hosting - Server Information

Overall, the design is dated and doesn’t feel inviting, but it gets the job done.

It can be easy to gloss over something as seemingly trivial as the user interface. However, in our experience, an intuitive and eye-catching dashboard can be the difference between a user who is happy to spend time learning the ropes of their account, and a user who requests a refund at the first signs of frustration.

All things considered, in terms of user interface quality, AccuWeb can’t hold a candle to the likes of DreamHost or Bluehost.

Does AccuWeb Shared Hosting Include cPanel?

AccuWeb includes cPanel for free with all shared hosting plans.

Importantly, the Backup Wizard feature is enabled in cPanel, so you can take manual backups of your website at any time. Some providers disable this feature by default, most likely in a bid to make their paid backup add-ons more appealing – a practice we dislike very much.

You can also access the RV Suite Builder 7 tool from cPanel to quickly create a good-looking website using one of over 400 available themes; a great option if you’re not a big WordPress fan.

Website Load Speed Test

We set up a test website on our AccuWeb server following our standard testing procedure.

Next, we used a website speed monitoring tool to test and record our website’s speed at hourly intervals. The goal was to see how speed fluctuated, as the stability of a hosting server can change throughout the day.

Here are the results of the 24 speed measurements we took:

AccuWeb shared hosting - gtmetrix load speed chart

During the day:

You want your website to load for your visitors in less than three seconds consistently. We base this conclusion on multiple large-scale tests, including this one by Pingdom.

In our test, AccuWeb’s average load speed was good, however, we expected fewer and smaller speed fluctuations. This is better than the stability we observed at Bluehost but falls short when compared to SiteGround or InterServer.

A good result if you plan to host a personal website, but we wouldn’t recommend hosting an e-commerce site with AccuWeb – when you rely on your website for income, you need top-notch stability throughout the day to avoid users abandoning your site due to load speed issues.

Safety and Security

Does AccuWeb Backup Your Website?

We were stoked to learn that AccuWeb takes free, automatic daily backups of all websites. Each backup is kept for at least 15 days, and you can restore your website from a backup for free.

This is all great on multiple levels.

For starters, some shared hosts (see: InMotion review) don’t offer free backups at all, and of those that do, most take backups on a weekly basis. Additionally, some hosts charge outrageous amounts to restore a website from an available backup, a prime example being HostGator with their infamous $150 restoration fee.

(Related reading: hosts with free backups and restorations)

Despite the above, we still recommend that you periodically log into cPanel and download a backup of your website to your computer. This way, in the event of a (very unlikely) catastrophic failure of AccuWeb’s backup servers, you’ll be able to quickly restore your site.

Does AccuWeb Offer Free Malware Scans?

In keeping up with their thoughtful approach to security, AccuWeb performs free automatic malware scans on a daily basis using tools such as CX Scanner, Maldet, and ImunifyAV.

This is praiseworthy, seeing that some providers don’t offer free malware scans at all, while others only perform free scans if you ask them to.

Additionally, while the majority of hosts sell premium malware detection add-ons, AccuWeb doesn’t. We hope this stems from the company’s trust in the quality of its free anti-malware solution.

Free SSL Certificates?

AccuWeb issues a free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate for any website you host with them. This is not exceptional by any means, as the overwhelming majority of hosts do the same.

You also have the option to buy a 256-bit certificate for $49.00 per year, which is worth considering if you plan to process financial transactions through your website.

Is 2-Factor Login Authentication (2FA) Available?

Sadly, it isn’t.

This is the only aspect of security where AccuWeb lags behind other players in the hosting industry.

Additional Services and Freebies

Free Domain?

Like multiple hosts, AccuWeb offers a free domain (including .com, .net, and .org extensions) with their annual and longer hosting subscriptions.

The domain is free for one year, following which you’ll need to pay the standard annual renewal price if you wish to keep it :

TLDRegistrationRenewal
.com$12.99$12.99
.net$16.49$16.49
.org$16.49$16.49

$12.99/year for renewing a COM domain is very competitive.

NET and ORG extensions used to cost the same until 2018 when AccuWeb raised the price of both to $16.49/year.

If you’re looking to save as much as possible on long-term domain costs, take a look at InterServer.

Free Website Migration?

AccuWeb is unique in that they offer to migrate up to three cPanel accounts for free.

Note that you must initiate a transfer request no later than seven days after creating your hosting account with AccuWeb.

Refunds and Cancellations

Does AccuWeb Offer a Money-Back Trial Period?

AccuWeb offers the usual 30-day full moneyback guarantee that you’ll find at most hosts.

This pales in comparison to the refund guarantee at DreamHost or InMotion, but it should be enough to try out AccuWeb’s service before making a commitment.

Related reading: hosts with the longest money-back guarantee.

Can You Refund Unused Subscription Months (Pro-Rated Refunds)?

Unfortunately, no. The only way to receive a refund is to cancel your account during the money-back guarantee period.

Related reading: best hosts with pro-rated refunds.

Our Money-Back Request, Documented

After we were done writing this AccuWeb review, we put their money-back guarantee to the test.

We navigated to the details page of our hosting package and located the “Request Cancellation” link in the left menu:

AccuWeb shared hosting - request cancellation

This redirected us to the account cancellation request form, which we filled out:

AccuWeb shared hosting - cancellation request form

After we submitted the form, we received an email:

AccuWeb shared hosting - cancellation email

This was both unexpected and annoying, as we had already indicated our reason for canceling while filling out the request form.

Still, we replied to the email and waited (impatiently) for them to cancel our account, which they did around 30 minutes later.

Finally, we submitted a support ticket requesting a refund, which was granted almost instantly:

AccuWeb shared hosting - refund confirmation email

The refund was visible on our statement a few days later.

Live Chat Customer Support Quality

Live chat is available 24/7, and queues are super short – we’ve never had to wait more than a minute to connect to a rep.

While writing this AccuWeb review, we asked support over 40 questions about their hosting plans and services.

The quality and accuracy of the replies we received were excellent. However, we were disconnected in the middle of a chat session twice, which was annoying, to say the least.

Also, support agents would sometimes take an inordinate amount of time to respond; having to wait 10 minutes for a reply to an easy question is never an enjoyable experience.

We’re not sure if the above issues are caused by understaffing or by glitches in AccuWeb’s live chat software, but the end result is the same – we didn’t feel like we could count on live chat when we needed immediate help.

This is one area where AccuWeb could definitely use some major improvements.

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