Verio shared hosting review (2019) – Too Expensive?

Verio shared hosting review (2019) – Too Expensive?

Welcome to my review of Verio’s shared website hosting service.

Pros:

  • Excellent website load times
  • Responsive live chat support
  • Generous email sending limits
  • 30-day money-back guarantee (verified)
  • Refunds on unused subscription months when you cancel

Cons:

  • Expensive first term
  • Can only host one website on the Basic plan
  • Confusing pricing structure
  • Their website is glitchy

1. Verio shared hosting plans & pricing

Verio offers both Linux and Windows hosting. My focus will be on their Linux hosting since it’s by far the more popular choice.

1.1 Initial term pricing

Verio BasicVerio Enhanced
Monthly term$11.99 / mo.-
Annual term$10.99 / mo.$19.99
2-year term$9.95 / mo.$18.99
3-year term-$16.95
Domains allowed1Unlimited
StorageUnmeteredUnmetered
BandwidthUnmeteredUnmetered

There is no 3-year term available for the Verio Basic, and no monthly term for the Verio Enhanced for new customers – they are only available when you renew.

However, their check-out page lists a monthly term for the Enhanced plan, but if you try to buy it as a new customer, you’ll get an error on the payment page.

This was confusing and took a 10-minute Live Chat session to resolve.

Overall, their first term is very expensive compared to competitors like SiteGround or HostWinds. Not only that, but the Basic plan only allows you to host one domain and create one MySQL database.

At this price, I’d expect transparency, stellar performance, and top-notch customer support – keep reading to find out if they deliver.

If you’re mostly interested in yearly plans, please see out our rankings of the cheapest web hosts with yearly plans.

1.2 Renewals pricing

When I tried to open Verio’s renewal pricing page, the link was broken. I contacted support and they told me the page was taken down because their renewal prices change every year.

When I asked what the renewal prices were for the current year specifically, they told me they were the same as the first-term prices.

Overall, I was confused. It’s standard practice for hosting companies to list their renewal prices on their website. Without knowing how much I can expect to pay after my first term is over, it’s difficult to budget accordingly or compare them to other hosts.

1.3 Does Verio offer public discount promo codes?

It seems there are no discounts available at Verio. I even connected with customer support and asked if they’d be willing to provide a promo code if I sign up right now for their 3-year plan, and was told this wasn’t possible.

They apparently send discount codes via email to loyal customers from time to time, but I wasn’t able to get any specific details.

1.4 Does Verio offer a student discount on their shared hosting plans?

Not at this time; some hosts offer special discounts to anyone with access to an .edu domain (presumably a student or scholar). Verio isn’t keen on offering discounts of any sorts.

If you’re looking for discounted student prices, see our recommendation of hosts that offer exclusive discounts for students.

1.5 What payment methods does Verio accept?

At the time of this review, Verio was accepting payments via credit cards and PayPal, which is standard practice at the majority of hosting companies.

1.6 Are Verio’s hosting prices negotiable?

As of July 2019, all prices at Verio are fixed and not subject to negotiations.

If negotiable prices are important to you, see our guide to web hosts with negotiable prices.

2. Verio’s shared hosting resources and restrictions

2.1 What bandwidth is available on Verio’s shared servers?

As with must budget hosting providers, Verio advertises “unmetered” bandwidth to lure customers.

Make sure to read The Hidden Pitfalls of "Unlimited" Bandwidth and Storage for more.

I asked their support agent if this means that my websites hosted with them can theoretically receive millions of visitors per month, and I was told no.

And that’s the crux of the matter – “unmetered” hosting is awesome as long as your websites don’t serve a lot of visitors, but once your traffic spikes, you have no way of anticipating what’s going to happen.

You might also want to read my article about estimating a new website’s bandwidth usage.

2.2 What are Verio monthly visitor limits?

Apparently, Verio’s server architecture was built to support roughly 500,000 users per month, or 16,500 users per day, per shared hosting package.

Again, that’s per package; if you have more than one website under the same hosting account, the limit above will be split between all your sites.

Of course, if your websites use more resources than is “typical,” you’ll run into bandwidth issues way before you reach the user limits above. What’s “typical” resource usage? No one knows except Verio – which is another reason you probably don’t want to host a high-traffic site with them.

2.3 How much storage space does Verio offer?

Verio offers unlimited storage as long as you use your server to host website-related files and not to store backups of your personal files or as a file-sharing platform.

Please see my article on how much server storage does a WordPress website need for more.

2.4 What is Verio’s Inode limit on their shared hosting plans?

Although there is officially no Inode limit at Verio, a tech support operator told me that if your server hosts “tens of thousands of files,” you’ll probably be contacted by a company representative who will work with you to reduce your file counts.

This lack of transparency is troubling to me – on the one hand, there’s no Inode limit, but actually, there is – they just choose not to be specific about it.

If you are hosting a personal blog or website then this is probably fine, but if you rely on income from your website to pay your bills, I recommend looking for a more transparent hosting provider. SiteGround and WPX Hosting are great and affordable alternatives.

If your website(s) requires a lot of Inodes, see our best hosts with unlimited Inodes or high Inode limits rankings.

2.5 Is there a limit on the number or size of MySQL databases?

The Basic plan is limited to one MySQL database, while the Enhanced plan lets you create unlimited databases.

There is no limit on the size of the database in either case.

This is somewhat disappointing since many providers – including SiteGround – let you create unlimited databases on their basic hosting plans.

Also, Verio has a 20 concurrent database connections limit, which is more than enough for the overwhelming majority of websites. However, if your website requires more connections, refer to our rankings of the top hosts with the best database connection limits.

2.6 How many domains can you host with Verio?

You can host one domain on the Basic plan and unlimited domains on the Enhanced plan.

Considering how expensive the Basic plan is, I would have expected to be able to host at least five domains on it.

Please see our guide to the best cheap hosts with unlimited domains if you need to host multiple sites.

2.7 Does Verio limit your email sending?

You can create one email account with Verio Basic and unlimited accounts with Verio Enhanced.

Verio’s email-sending limits are quite generous and similar to those offered by Powweb.

Basically, you are limited to 500 emails per hour and 5,000 emails per day per email account if you use webmail or a standard email client.

If you decide to send emails using your own scripts, the limits will be lowered to 200 and 2,000.

3. Verio’s user interface and usability

3.1 Does Verio shared hosting come with cPanel?

Verio does not offer cPanel.

Instead, they employ a customized version of vDeck. This simple control panel offers all the crucial features that you’ll find in cPanel, but without the clutter:

You can also access more advanced options, such as an .htaccess editor, disk usage statistics, an SSL certificate manager, and various server information:

Overall, a simple and beginner-friendly user interface that anyone can get used to in less than 30 minutes.

However, considering Verio’s relatively high pricing, I would have expected a more modern and intuitive panel.

3.2 How easy is it to install WordPress?

Like almost all hosts nowadays, Verio offers a WordPress one-click installer.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t work.

When I tried to install WordPress, I got an error: “Installation Failed – Something went wrong. Failed to extract the package files.”

I contacted live chat about this and they said this was a system-wide issue that’s been reported by multiple users. I asked if a support representative could manually install WordPress for me, and an hour later I received the following email:

So all in all, Verio’s customer support handled the issue to my satisfaction.

Still, considering the WP one-click installer is a basic feature, I didn’t expect to have to go through these extra hoops to do something that takes less than 45 seconds at other hosting companies.

Definitely not what I’m expecting at this price point.

3.3 How can you manage your website files at Verio?

Verio lets you access your server files using FTP (File Transfer Protocol) or through the built-in File Manager:

As with most shared hosting providers, Verio doesn’t offer SSH (Secure Shell) access.

4. How quickly do websites hosted with Verio load?

I set up a test website on my Verio server following my standard procedure.

I then tested the website’s loading speed once per hour for two days using GTMetrix. Results:

Most of the time, the test website loaded in less than 1.2 seconds. There were two minor spikes to a little over 1.5 seconds, and one dip to around 0.7 seconds.

The average load time over the two-day period was 1.27 seconds.

These are great results – many shared hosts experience serious load time issues multiple times per day. From my brief test, this doesn’t seem an issue at Verio.

5. Verio safety and security

5.1 Does Verio offer free website backups on its shared plans?

They do take free daily back-ups and keep them for:

  • 14 days for website files and emails
  • 3 days for MySQL databases

The 14 days are standard in the industry, but keeping DB backups for just three days is unusual – many hosts back up databases for as long as they do website files.

Additionally, if you choose to restore your backups, you’ll pay:

  • $100 to restore your website files or database
  • $50 to restore an email account

These are hefty fees by industry standards. For example, HostGator and SiteGround only charge $25-$30 for restoration, while Bluehost offers them for free.

Please refer to our list of top hosts with free backup restorations for more recommendations.

To avoid the restoration fee, you have two options:

  • If you use WordPress, you can install one of the many available backup plugins to create and manage your own website backups
  • Pay $15/year for Verio’s premium backup service, which offers unlimited free restorations

I definitely recommend the first option.

5.2 Does Verio offer automatic malware detection and removal?

According to a customer support agent, Verio uses the ClamAV antivirus to perform free daily scans on all websites hosted on their servers.

As with almost all shared hosting providers, Verio does not clean up detected infections for free – if they find malware, they’ll email you a list of the infected files and leave the rest up to you.

If you want automated malware removal as well, you’ll need to either:

  • Install a free WordPress malware detection and removal plugin
  • Buy Verio’s SiteLock website security package at $19.92 per year
  • Choose a different host. See our list of the best hosting with free malware clean-up for more.

5.3 Is 2-Factor login authentication (2FA) available?

Some hosts, such as Bluehost, DreamHost, or SiteGround, let you enable 2-factor authentication as a way of enhancing the security of your hosting account.

Unfortunately, 2FA is not available at Verio. Make sure to choose a strong password for your account as it will be the only thing standing between a brute-force hacker and your websites.

6. Additional services and freebies

6.1 Does Verio offer free SSL certificates?

You’ll get a free SSL (Secure Socket Layer) “Let’s Encrypt” certificate for each website you host at Verio.

Free certificates are a standard offering at all hosts nowadays, so this was expected.

6.2 Do you get a free domain with Verio?

You’ll get a free domain for one year with the Verio Enhanced plan, but not with the Basic plan.

You can also purchase domains at Verio’s standard pricing. Here are examples for the most popular top-level domains:

TLDAnnual price (first year)Annual price (renewals)
.com$10.99$16.99
.net$11.99$11.59
.org$11.59$11.59

Their first-year pricing is very competitive – $3-$5 cheaper than what most hosts ask for.

6.3 Does Verio offer free website migrations?

Considering how expensive Verio is for a shared host, I was hoping they’d at least offer free migrations – and was disappointed to find out that they don’t.

They are happy to help with migrations, but they’ll charge a preposterous $150 fee per site. No thanks, it’s simple enough to migrate a website in less than 15 minutes.

7. How safe is it to buy from Verio?

7.1 Does Verio offer a money-back trial period?

Like almost all hosting companies, Verio offers a 30-day money-back guarantee to new customers. If you need a longer guarantee, check out my list of the top hosts with money-back guarantees longer than 30 days.

If you claim a free domain while registering and later request a refund for your hosting, they will deduct a $15 fee for the domain – standard industry practice.

To claim the refund, contact Verio’s billing department via Live Chat and ask them to cancel your hosting package and refund your money.

7.2 Testing their money-back guarantee

As I always do in the process of reviewing a host, I put Verio’s money-back guarantee to the test after trying out their product.

I contacted live chat and asked them to cancel my account:

About two minutes later, the friendly operator Vidya asked me to verify my identity by answering the security question I set up while creating my Verio account.

I answered and was asked to hold for a few minutes:

Around 8-10 minutes later, Vidya got back to me and told me that my request was processed successfully. I checked my Paypal statement right then and there, and there it was:

Took 15 minutes from start to finish. No unnecessary delays or complicated procedures, just a straight-up refund.

This is always great to see and it means you can test out their service, risk-free, for yourself.

7.3 Does Verio offer refunds on unused subscription months (pro-rated refund)?

They do, actually, which I found surprising as it’s rare for shared hosts to offer pro-rated refunds.

For example, if you purchase the 12-month plan and after eight months decide that their service doesn’t meet your expectations, you can cancel your plan and Verio will refund you for the four remaining months.

Keep in mind that I only know this because two customer support operators told me as much; Verio’s Terms of Service page makes no reference to pro-rated refunds.

See our guide to pro-rated refund hosts for more.

8. Live chat customer support quality

Verio’s tech support is available via Live Chat, 24/7.

Queue times are very short – in my case, I never waited more than 20 seconds before connecting to an operator.

The quality of support I received was decent – agents are obviously not native speakers, but their English is solid.

I did have to wait a bit longer than expected for some responses, but I guess that’s acceptable considering I would ask more than 15 questions per live chat session.

Overall, good support that should do it for the majority of webmasters.

9. What problems did I face while using Verio?

  • I had to wait 20-30 minutes to receive Verio’s automated emails, including password reset links and server activation confirmation.
  • I would enter my login credentials correctly but instead of being redirected to the control panel, I’d see an empty white page. A refresh was necessary to load up the panel. This happened twice.
  • Their one-click WordPress installer didn’t work – I had to request manual WP installation from their tech support.

10. Verio shared hosting – who is it for? Verdict

Considering the price, I expected much more. Overall, I see no compelling reason to choose Verio hosting over one of the many alternatives available.

In particular, if you’re on a tight budget, I’d recommend giving SiteGround a try.

Still, if you prefer Verio for whatever reason, there’s no strong reason why you should avoid them – their support is good, server performance and website load times are robust, and you get a free domain with the Enhanced plan.

Just keep in mind their website is a little glitchy, and that their lack of full transparency on bandwidth means that a high-traffic website hosted with them can run into unexpected problems.

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