Hosts I Don’t Recommend


As I’ve mentioned many places on this site, there are a lot of unethical web hosting review sites that will promote a particular host based solely on their commission structure and nothing else.

Many of these sites and bloggers are just out to make a buck and won’t actually tell it like it is! I wanted to make WebHostingBuddy different, and because of that I give honest reviews that aren’t influenced in any way by affiliate commissions. Yes, you may see affiliate links on this page in the sidebar or on other pages of this site, but understand that these do NOT affect or influence reviews.

I created this page to help people understand which web hosts I think should be avoided. You’ll notice that some of the hosts on this page (such as iPage) page huge commissions ($105 per referral) but I absolutely do not recommend them. If you search online for “web hosting reviews” you’ll see iPage at the top of most review sites—I believe this is solely based on the commissions that they pay, NOT because they are a good web host in my opinion.

The list below contains a variety of web hosts that I think people should avoid. I have personally used each of these hosts and can attest to them being a poor choice based on my experience and in some cases the experience of my colleagues who have also had a bad experience.

Without further ado, here are the hosts that I think everyone should avoid:

Laughing Squid

I have never been more frustrated with a web host in my life. They have awful support hours (9 – 6 p.m., what is this a bank?) and it took months to get an actual response from them.

They accepted payment from a client of mine and then never provided the hosting account credentials, despite multiple emails and calls. We ended up having to remove the credit card from their billing system just to get them to stop trying to collect more payments, and that was the only thing that eventually got their attention. By then, we wanted nothing to do with them. I have no idea how they ended up on the WordPress recommended hosts page, and they seem to care more about their blog posts and social media accounts than they do customer service. Avoid them at all costs.

iPage and iPage-Like Properties (FatCow, PowWeb, Netfirms, Globat & others)

It’s absolutely crazy to me that the same company that owns HostGator and Bluehost (EIG) also owns iPage and their similar clone hosting companies. HostGator and Bluehost are great hosts, but iPage absolutely stinks. FatCow, PowWeb, Netfirms, Globat and some others that I’m probably forgetting are what I call “iPage-like properties” because they all use the same crappy interface and are all owned by the same company.

From my experience and my colleague’s experiences, they are slow, expensive, their support sucks, and collectively, we’ve had the most sites hacked on iPage & iPage-like properties than anywhere else. There are so many better hosts for the money and I can’t recommend them at all. I honestly think that the people who sign up with them at this point are either coming from an affiliate site or are just not very savvy in terms of the hosting options out there. Their interface is clunky, cumbersome, and just plain stupid.

If you’re considering iPage or an iPage-like property, please consider a different host.

1&1 Hosting

While they’re ok for domains (free privacy for the win), their hosting interface is just the crappiest thing ever. It’s so cumbersome and confusing I have had to call customer support just to figure out simple things.

If you’re looking for a domain registrar, they’re not bad, but there are many better hosting companies out there.

Deluxe Hosting

I had the misfortune of finding out about Deluxe Hosting after Liquidweb cancelled their shared hosting plans.

Liquidweb rocks, and had a good shared hosting plan for years. However, recently they decided to stop offering shared hosting and migrated all of their clients automatically to Deluxe Hosting. Let me tell you—this was a huge mistake. I had some of my own sites and colleague’s sites that were down for days and their support was ridiculously unhelpful.

Getting login credentials was a huge pain and so was migrating the sites off of Deluxe Hosting. Liquidweb could’ve done a much better job choosing a partner and picking Deluxe Hosting was a big mistake. Liquidweb still rocks, but stay away from Deluxe Hosting. Slow servers, terrible support, and a problematic interface.


They are a small hosting company in Idaho and while their support is fairly responsive, they have been extremely rude—probably the rudest tech support people I’ve ever dealt with.

Their servers were fine, and the response time in terms of support was good, but they were so rude that I’d have to recommend staying away from them.

Acorn Host

In order to get in touch with someone who can troubleshoot your issue, you’re funneled through multiple people. Additionally, they are rude and have a lot of hoops that you need to jump through (which are completely subjective) in order to qualify for their nonprofit web hosting.

On top of that, they’re more expensive than SiteGround and other popular shared hosting companies with support that is many levels worse. Stay away.


I’ve been in multiple arguments with HostMetro about renewal pricing as they are completely inflexible about renewal rates (this is unheard of in the hosting industry) and are extremely rude. If you try to negotiate with them they will essentially tell you to get lost in an extremely rude way. I had this experience and so did a colleague of mine who had multiple accounts with them.


In my experience working with a colleague using WestHost, their servers were extremely slow and their customer support was extremely unhelpful. I can’t recommend them by any means.


They are a “budget” host in my opinion that charges way too much when there are better options. They sort of play of the “HostGator” image with the alligator which I also think is a little cheap. Their hosting was ok but their renewals are too expensive when there are better options out there.

Hawk Host

They are another “budget” host in my opinion and I have had issues with sites I’ve hosted there sharing the server with too many spammy sites. I didn’t like the “neighborhood” on their servers and wouldn’t use them again. Support and performance were good, but due to the “neighborhood” concerns, I couldn’t recommend them.

Hosts that I DO like

As you can see on this site, there are a lot of web hosts that I do like. Among my favorites are:

WP Engine

You can click on any of the links above to check out an honest review of those hosts.