DreamHost is a popular award-winning hosting company and one of WordPress.org’s officially recommended hosts. They offer domain registration and web hosting services, including managed WordPress hosting. Their platform offers everything you need to grow your website, whether you’re a new blogger or an established business. See our expert DreamHost review to decide if it’s the right choice for you.
In this detailed DreamHost hosting review, we’ll put their promises to the test. For a comprehensive overview, we’ll look into the following areas:
- Performance: Speed is critical for making successful websites. How fast will your website load with DreamHost?
- Reliability: Will your website be up all the time without any service disruptions?
- Customer Support: How good are DreamHost support options?
- Features: What features do they offer to make it easier to run your website?
- Pricing: How much would it cost you? Are there any DreamHost deals that can save you money?
This is a comprehensive DreamHost review with lots of details. If you don’t want to read the full review, here is the quick scorecard with our verdict right below it.
|DreamHost Review Summary|
|Average load time||1.69|
|Average response time||255 ms|
|Support||Live Chat / Knowledge base|
|Start with DreamHost|
Bottom line: We found DreamHost to be fast and reliable. They have flexible hosting plans and friendly technical support.
That being said, let’s get into the detailed DreamHost review so that you can compare our test results and make up your own mind.
DreamHost was founded in 1997 by four friends at Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, California: Dallas Bethune, Josh Jones, Michael Rodriguez, and Sage Weil. Since then, DreamHost has become one of the most well-known and popular web hosting companies. They now host over 1.5 million websites, including over 750,000 WordPress installations. They’ve won PCMag’s Business Choice Awards for Best Web Hosting Service for 2014-2016.
DreamHost is also a certified carbon-neutral host and makes every effort to conserve resources in its own offices. They’re also a member of the U.S. Green Chamber of Commerce.
Pros and Cons of DreamHost
DreamHost is a popular web hosting provider, but it may not be right for everyone. Consider these pros and cons before choosing a plan.
- Award-Winning Hosting – DreamHost has won the PCMag Readers’ Choice Award for best business hosting. They rated high in reader surveys for their reliability and tech support.
- Money Back Guarantee – DreamHost offers a 97-day money-back guarantee. That means you can cancel your account within 97 days of signing up and get a full refund.
- Free Domain and Privacy – Every DreamHost plan includes one free domain name registration plus domain privacy, so your contact information isn’t made public on the web.
- Monthly Billing With No Setup Fee – DreamHost pricing plans allow you to pay month-to-month without a setup fee.
- Automatic Daily Backups – DreamHost plans come with automatic daily website backups. Although we always recommend users to set up their own real-time WordPress backups.
- Limited phone support – DreamHost does not offer a phone number for technical support. Instead, customers can request a call back during set hours and at an additional cost.
- No Email – DreamHost doesn’t offer email accounts for the Starter plan of their WordPress shared hosting. However, you can get it for $1.67/ mo or use an external business email provider.
DreamHost Performance Tests
WPBeginner users trust our reviews of WordPress products and services because we only recommend the companies that we have used ourselves.
For our WordPress hosting reviews, we sign up for each top hosting provider. After that, we set up demo websites so that we can properly test their claims with our own performance tests.
We signed up for a hosting account and installed WordPress for this DreamHost review. We used the default theme and filled our test site with Theme Unit Test Data, including media and images. This way, our test site looked and behaved like an actual WordPress site.
DreamHost Speed Test Results
No one likes a slow website. A faster website is crucial for a better user experience and SEO rankings.
That’s why we ran the website speed test first. For this test, we used Pingdom, and here are the test results:
Our test site loaded in less than two seconds, which is good. However, this page load time test alone does not show the full picture because our test site has no traffic.
DreamHost Stress Test Results
Next, we wanted to see how well DreamHost handles website traffic during peak hours. To measure this, we used a tool called K6 (formerly called Load Impact).
We gradually built up to 50 unique visitors at once to see how the server would handle increased requests from multiple connections at the same time.
Here is our first stress test result.
The light blue line represents the page response time, and the purple line represents the number of requests on the site.
As you can see, our site remained available throughout the test. However, the response time fluctuated with users increased.
That’s because we turned off DreamHost’s pre-installed WordPress caching solution. Once we enabled a caching plugin, the stress test result improved dramatically.
As you can see, our test site handled 39.6 requests per second (6.600 requests total) with an average response time of 255 ms.
DreamHost Response Time Test Results
Next, we wanted to test how our DreamHost test site responds to requests from different geographic locations. To measure this, we used a tool called Bitcatcha.
As you can see, our response times remained steady across the globe. They were particularly great in North America and Europe.
DreamHost Uptime Test Results
It is also important to note that our website didn’t go down during testing. We enable the downtime tracker because often, during stress tests, some hosting servers will crash.
This is another sign that DreamHost is a reliable hosting platform.
DreamHost Hosting Plans and Features
DreamHost provides hosting for web designers, developers, bloggers, and online businesses. They support and use open-source technologies, apps, and platforms like WordPress and Joomla.
Their one-click installer includes configurations for many open-source apps. As a Dreamhost customer, you get expert support, free migrations, and built-in security features.
Their hosting options include shared hosting, email hosting, managed WordPress hosting, VPS hosting (Virtual private servers), and dedicated servers. They also offer cloud hosting packages and cloud storage.
All of DreamHost’s plans use SSD drives for faster loading. DreamHost also uses a proprietary control panel instead of cPanel.
Shared hosting includes:
- One free domain registration and Let’s Encrypt free SSL
- Unlimited storage and bandwidth
- Easy-to-use control panel
- Unlimited email accounts and subdomains (with WordPress unlimited shared plan)
- 1-click installation of WordPress
Shared Hosting Pricing
DreamHost’s shared hosting plans start at $2.59 monthly (3 years billed). You can also pay monthly for the Shared Starter plan, but the price goes up to $4.59 per month.
For additional functionality and email accounts, you can upgrade to the WordPress Shared Unlimited plan, which starts at $3.95 (billed 3-years). This plan also allows you to add unlimited websites to your account.
Managed WordPress Plans
DreamHost also offers a managed WordPress hosting plan called DreamPress. DreamPress is over five times faster than shared hosting. The Linux servers are optimized for WordPress, and they can handle traffic spikes (millions of visitors) without your website going down.
Managed WordPress hosting also includes:
- Automatic WordPress core updates for security
- Private IP address and SSL certificate pre-installed for eCommerce sites
- SSD storage and unmetered bandwidth
- Web application firewall to block malware and brute-force attack mitigation.
- One-click staging site set up
- Free website builder along with on-demand as well as daily backups
- DreamPress Pro and Plus plans also include unlimited CDN and Jetpack Professional add-on features.
- Dedicated hosting with your own CPU server resources for maximum performance
In our DreamHost review, we found that they provide high-quality, reliable hosting at very affordable prices. Their plans include everything you need to build your website and room to upgrade when your site grows.
Support and Customer Service
DreamHost offers 24/7 email support via a ticket system. You can open a request for support through your DreamHost account dashboard.
They also offer 24/7 Live Chat support through the panel. You can also request a callback service for an additional fee.
Customers can also access their vast knowledge base resources, including tutorials and troubleshooting articles.
Many reviews mention the quality of their support, though some reviewers were frustrated by not having access to immediate phone support (24/7).
While live chat and phone support can be helpful for simple questions, the support team can ask users to open a ticket for more complicated issues.
More experienced users would find their support resources and articles quite helpful when dealing with some common hosting issues.
Dreamhost used to offer a community support forum, but they ended it in 2022 because the reliability of information in forums cannot be guaranteed.
Conclusion: Is DreamHost Right for You?
Now that you have read through our entire DreamHost review, you might be wondering whether DreamHost is the right web host for you.
After reviewing DreamHost services in detail, we award them with the title “Best DIY Hosting” for WordPress users.
DreamHost is highly rated for its fast and reliable hosting. They’ve won numerous awards and get rave reviews from their customers. But it may not be the right choice for you if you need a lot of help getting started.
Their customer support can be slower, but the quality of support is excellent. We recommend DreamHost to DIY users who want affordable prices, a high uptime guarantee, and are comfortable figuring things out on their own using the comprehensive knowledge base.
Ready to get started with DreamHost? Click here to select your DreamHost plan today.
All you have to do is click on this link to purchase. The discount will be auto-applied.
Frequently Asked Questions About DreamHost
Following are a few of the commonly asked questions (FAQs) about DreamHost that we have been asked by our users.
Is DreamHost a good host?
Yes, DreamHost is a good host for any type of starter WordPress website. They offer great features, a rock-solid platform, and fast servers at an affordable cost.
Does DreamHost use cPanel?
No, DreamHost does not use cPanel. Instead, they have built their own custom control panel that has all the management features you’ll find in cPanel.
You can easily do MySQL database management, change PHP versions, access 1-click installers for WordPress, manage SSH & FTP access, and more.
Which is better, Bluehost or DreamHost?
Bluehost and DreamHost offer similar features, and they are both good hosting providers. However, Bluehost has an edge in terms of performance and fast customer support.
Which is better, DreamHost vs SiteGround?
If you were comparing DreamHost vs SiteGround based on shared hosting prices, then DreamHost is better. However, if you were comparing DreamPress managed hosting vs SiteGround, then SiteGround offers a lot more value for better pricing.
DreamHost and SiteGround used to be similar, but recently, SiteGround has significantly improved their web hosting platform. However, they have also increased their pricing by 2x. That’s why the comparison isn’t fair anymore.
Where are DreamHost servers located?
DreamHost servers are located in the United States. They have data centers in Ashburn, Virginia, and Hillsboro, Oregon. DreamHost’s headquarters is located in Brea, California.
Can I Install WooCommerce on DreamHost?
Yes, you can easily install WooCommerce on DreamHost shared hosting as well as VPS plans.
Ready to start with DreamHost? Get 72% off on your DreamHost plan by clicking here to sign up for DreamHost. The discount will be auto-applied.