Arvixe is another web hosting company owned by, you guessed it, Endurance International Group.
Founded in 2003, the company offers shared hosting services in addition to the usual mixture of reseller, dedicated, and VPS plans.
Widely regarded across the industry as one of the fastest growing hosting companies, you may rightly assume that their shared hosting service is going to be of a good quality. Is it, though? Well, that is the question and is going to be the focus of our review today.
We have weighed up the pros and cons, providing honest information, so that you can make an informed purchasing decision. Choosing a new hosting provider is difficult, however, we like to think we make the job easier by doing all the research so that you don’t have to.
We aren’t going to tell you to sign up or not—that’s for you to decide.
What’s Unique About Arvixe?
Arvixe offers ASP.Net (Windows) and CentOS (Linux) hosting for their plans, giving you the choice of which one to use. Although this won’t make much difference to the average webmaster with little technical experience, it’s a huge bonus for the more technically minded individual who will be able to distinguish between a server running the two.
Not many hosting companies provide a choice of OS. Linux is usually the choice for many DIY developers while Windows holds a big brand name for the masses. Our recommendation? Go with Linux.
What We Love About Arvixe
These are the things that stood out to us about Arvixe.
Plenty of Security Options
For all shared hosting accounts, Arvixe provides a lot of security measures that help to protect your website.
Plans, for example, come with:
- SPF (email security);
- Domain keys; and
- Malware scans.
In addition to these basic options and gimmicks, Arvixe also offers 24/7 monitoring of its systems, nightly updates of their security infrastructure, daily backups, brute force detection, firewalls, and SSL support (this costs extra, though, as we will see later).
Given that many hosting companies provide nothing more than a weak firewall, it is great to see that Arvixe is taking the security of its customers’ websites seriously indeed.
After all, the internet is becoming an increasingly dangerous place to operate a business without any protection.
Free Website Migrations
If you are an existing webmaster who is hosting a site elsewhere, Arvixe will transfer it across to their servers for free.
Instead of having to go through the motions yourself, cause yourself undue stress, and risk breaking something, the professionals at Arvixe will do it for you completely free of charge. This is something that many hosting companies offer to their new customers.
There is a catch, though—your website must be hosted using cPanel in-order for Arvixe’s staff to transfer it. It’s not a hard requirement, the chances are, you probably used cPanel.
This is a little restrictive but is also sweetened by the fact that Arvixe will transfer multiple sites for free without any extra charges. This is perfect if you are running multiple cPanel websites and are looking for a new host.
No Price Increases at Renewal
Many hosting companies employ what we call the “classic” industry price trick. It works by pulling in new customers with a very attractive and ultra-low introductory price deal—sometimes plans can go for as little as $1 to $3 per month—and at the end of the customers’ initial subscriptions, the ultra-low price reverts to the (sometimes very high) non-discounted price.
Given that this price can be as much as two, three, or four times as much as what was initially paid, it goes without saying that we do not support any hosting company that does this. At least, we do not support any hosting company that does this and is not honest about it.
There’s nothing worse than being surprised by a sudden and unexpected large bill for $600 when you were only expecting to pay $150.
A 45-Day Money Back Guarantee
Plenty of hosting companies have a money back guarantee; it’s nothing special.
What is good, however, is that Arvixe’s money back guarantee is 45 days duration instead of the industry standard duration of 30 days.
Personally, we do not think that 30 days is enough time to test out a hosting company’s plans and decide, with certainty, that it is right for you… that is, unless you are completely on the ball and get everything set up, configured, and deployed on day one, giving you 29 days to test and monitor everything.
45 days is a good amount of time. There are some companies that go as high as 90 days, though.
If at any time during the first 45-day period since purchasing your hosting plan, you are unhappy for any reason, you can simply cancel your plan and contact Arvixe’s customer support team for a refund.
There are a few standard restrictions:
- Refunds are only available for shared hosting, reseller hosting, and VPS plans;
- Administrative fees, where applicable, will be deducted;
- Domain name fees (e.g. your “free domain” price) will be deducted; and
- The cost of any add-ons (e.g. SSL certificates) will be deducted.
These are nothing new.
Free Domain Name
Again, like most hosting companies, Arvixe will provide their new customers with a “free” domain for their first year. When any hosting plan is purchased for the duration of one year or longer, Arvixe will throw in a free .com, .net, .org, .us, .biz, or .info domain name.
There are some restrictions:
- Within the first 60 days, you cannot transfer the domain to another registrar;
- If you transfer the domain, you will be charged for it;
- After the first year, you will be charged for it anyway.
The good news is that Arvixe only charges $9.95 for their domains. This is the standard price for domain name registration. Unlike many hosting companies, some of whom charge in excess of $15 or $20, they aren’t ripping you off at renewal.
Honest and fair domain name prices? This is a good sign.
Things We Didn’t Like About Arvixe
These are the things that we didn’t like.
Abysmal Uptime Statistics
Unfortunately, Arvixe fell down here… like, really fell down. They have some of the worst uptime statistics we have ever seen by far. We aren’t sure what happened, but since September 2018, their monthly uptime has been below 99%.
In fact, it has dropped as low as below 60% and between October 2018 and February 2019, their uptime barely broke the 80% mark.
These are very, very, very bad figures.
As a general rule, we only recommend hosting companies that have an average monthly uptime of 99.95%. This means that Arvixe is way off the mark. Without uptime above this 99.95% figure, the industry average figure, your website will struggle to rank in search engine results pages.
Uptime is a vital ranking factor—one of the most important—and Google will penalize your website heavily if it is always going down and unavailable.
For reference, these are Arvixe’s uptime statistics for May 2018 to April 2019:
- April 2019: 99.96%
- March 2019: 94.61%
- February 2019: 80.18%
- January 2019: 57.98%
- December 2018: 62.45%
- November 2018: 75.96%
- October 2018: 63.96%
- September 2018: 96.51%
- August 2018: 100%
- July 2018: 99.99%
- June 2018: 99%
- May 2018: 100%
This works out at an average of 86.41%. This is far, far below the recommended figure of 99.95%.
Unfortunately, this completely ruins Arvixe for us. Unless they can improve this, there is simply no point hosting your website with them because it seems as though it will always be down.
If your website is only online for 86.41% of the time, it is going nowhere fast.
Abysmal Loading Times
One metric that is just as important as uptime is page loading speeds. Unfortunately, Arvixe failed here, too.
These were their page loading speeds (in seconds) over May 2018 to April 2019:
- April 2019: 6.49
- March 2019: 8.80
- February 2019: 10.95
- January 2019: 11.12
- December 2018: 10.64
- November 2018: 10.92
- October 2018: 10.78
- September 2018: 6.14
- August 2018: 5.61
- July 2018: 5.63
- June 2018: 5.4
- May 2018: 5.60
I’m sure that we don’t need to tell you why page loading speeds are important. Not only are they a major ranking factor—arguably the most important—you will know yourself that if a website takes longer than three seconds to load, most people will disappear and never return.
There simply is no point risking your website’s reputation by hosting it with Arvixe or compromising its earliest days by setting up shop with them.
SSL Certificates Cost Extra
Although Arvixe does offer some security extras that we covered earlier, they do not provide the most basic and most important one without charging for it—an SSL certificate.
SSL certificates show people who visit your site that it is safe, secure, and that their activities are encrypted. Without an SSL certificate, most people who are tech-savvy will leave your website. Also, more and more “regular” internet users are wising up to today’s security issues and are well aware of what an SSL certificate is and what the difference between a secure and unsecure site is.
If you want an SSL certificate with your Arvixe shared hosting plan, you are going to have to cough up $25 per year on top of what you are already paying.
So many hosting companies offer an SSL certificate for free; you should avoid those that don’t.
“Unlimited” Plans Are Not Unlimited
Although Arvixe lists its plans as coming with “unlimited” resource such as bandwidth and disk space, there are fair usage terms attached.
There is nothing wrong with fair usage terms, however, Arvixe’s are quite restrictive. If you fall outside of “normal usage” bounds, bounds that are relatively low, then they can suspend your account without warning, and you will need to pay a levy to get it back.
This is something that could catch a website out as it begins to grow. Given that Arvixe can’t even provide good uptime at the best of times, why risk your site being down for even more time when Arvixe takes it offline due to a fair usage violation?
Plans Are Expensive
Arvixe’s plans are very expensive when you take into account all of the above and then compare their lowest price, $7, to some of the other shared hosting providers available.
Also, that low price is only available if you pay up-front in full for 24 months.
We will explore pricing later… or, next.
Arvixe’s shared hosting plan—PersonalClass—comes with two plans: PersonalClass; and PersonalClass Pro.
These are available on both Linux and Windows. Windows plans cost $1 more per month than the Linux plans outlined below.
Arvixe’s PersonalClass comes with unmetered disk space, data transfer, and you can host six websites with it. As we mentioned earlier, you get a free domain name with it, too, for the first year that renews at $9.95.
PersonalClass will cost you:
- $10.00 per month for 1 month at a total of $10.00;
- $10.00 per month for 3 months at a total of $30.00;
- $9.00 per month for 6 months at a total of $54.00;
- $8.00 per month for 12 months at a total of $96.00; or
- $7.00 per month for 24 months at a total of $168.00.
As we have already mentioned, this is relatively expensive. Also, you shouldn’t be subscribing to their shared hosting plans anyway simply due to the uptime and page loading figures above.
Available add-ons include:
- An SSL certificate for $25.00 per year; or
- A wildcard SSL certificate (covering multiple domains) for $149.00 one time.
Again, many hosts provide this for free.
Arvixe’s PersonalClass comes with unmetered disk space, data transfer, and you can host unlimited websites with it.
PersonalClass Pro will cost you:
- $13.00 per month for 1 month at a total of $13.00;
- $13.00 per month for 3 months at a total of $39.00;
- $12.00 per month for 6 months at a total of $72.00;
- $11.00 per month for 12 months at a total of $132.00; or
- $10.00 per month for 24 months at a total of $240.00.
For Windows pricing, simply add $1.00 on per month for all the above plans.
Arvixe Final Thoughts
It should come as no surprise that we do not, by any means, recommend Arvixe.
While there are a few good points to like, their abysmal page loading speeds, uptime, and expensive low value for money plans completely let them down.
Although Arvixe was a great host once upon a time—there are plenty of great reviews online from years past—they seem to have gone downhill since they were purchased by EIG back in 2014.
Coincidence? We’re not going to comment…
Our recommendation is to go with one of the best hosting services we’ve reviewed…