IONOS Review: The Pros and Cons of its WordPress Hosting

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Josep Garcia

Josep Garcia

Author

Cai Ellis

Cai Ellis

Researcher

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A leader in the online world, IONOS was founded in Germany in 1988. It provides services to several countries, including the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. This web hosting giant has over 7,000 employees and hosts 12 million websites.

It has an extensive product offering: you can purchase domain names, website builders, dedicated servers, and much more. But in this review we’ll just focus on WordPress hosting, one of its star products.

IONOS claims that its web hosting is fast, reliable, and trustworthy. But is this true? Let’s have a look.

Screenshots

IONOS Hosting Prices

$4

Essential

$8

Business

$18

Unlimited

This review focuses on the IONOS WordPress hosting services, so the prices below refer to these hosting plans.

Essential: $4/month for 25 GB of storage and 2 databases.

Business: $8/month for 100 GB of storage and up to 10 databases.

Unlimited: $18/month for unlimited storage and databases.

Please note that the above prices reference the monthly cost of annual plans, be aware that the full amount needs to be paid in advanced.

IONOS Hosting Pros & Cons

  • Pros
  • Cons

Pros

  • Unlimited traffic

    IONOS doesn’t limit the amount of traffic or number of visits to your website each month.

  • Plenty of web space

    They give you plenty of space for hosting your site, starting at 25 GB. And you have unlimited space if you opt for its Unlimited package.

  • Affordable

    IONOS WordPress hosting is very affordable. It’s among the cheapest WordPress hosts on the market, even for renewals.

  • Decent speed

    IONOS hosting scored pretty well in our speed tests (read more below).

When is IONOS the best choice?

You could consider using IONOS if you’re planning to host a small or medium-sized website and don’t expect to receive many visitors. Performance wise, it’s unlikely to impress the most demanding webmasters as its uptime leaves a lot to be desired.

It’s suitable for traditional websites (e.g. a bakery or restaurant), portfolio sites and other personal web projects (not professional projects).

When is IONOS not the best choice?

If you have a professional, moderately large web project and you need the best performance – e.g. to compete organically on Google – then I don’t think IONOS is the best choice.

If you have an e-commerce business, a blog, or similar, that receives a lot of visitors, have a look at other services like SiteGround, Cloudways and GreenGeeks.

IONOS Hosting Specifications

Ease of Use

IONOS has its own control panel for hosting management, but it’s not very intuitive. It also lacks certain features that experts will miss (e.g. it has limited database options). And we had problems installing WordPress — the installation didn’t finish so we had to contact support to sort it out.

Domain Names

Includes a free domain name for the first year. You have to pay for it after that. You can add additional domains and subdomains. The subdomains are almost unlimited, since you can have up to 10,000 of them.

Email Rating

All IONOS packages allow you to create just one email account, which cannot use more than 2 GB of space.

Databases

The IONOS Essential package allows you to create up to 2 databases. You can create up to 10 with the Business package and as many as you want with the Unlimited package. The databases cannot be larger than 2 GB each.

Applications

N/A. This is a WordPress focused hosting package, therefore only WordPress can be installed and used. If you need to use another CMS, IONOS provides hosting plans that you can use (e.g. IONOS Web Hosting).

Webspace Limit

IONOS hosting packages include very generous web space. The Essential package comes with 25 GB, the Business package with 100 GB, and you get unlimited space with the Unlimited package. It has a policy that you can’t have more than 262,144 files in your hosting account, but that should be enough for most people.

Monthly Data Transfer Limit

IONOS hosting has no monthly traffic limit.

FTP Accounts and Secure FTP

You can create as many SFTP (secure FTP) logins as you like. You can also set up SSH access and a GIT repository to enable version control on the IONOS hosting platform.

Server Location

The servers are located in the United States for customers in the Americas, but you could also have the server in Europe if you prefer.

Security Features

All packages include an SSL certificate for a single domain or subdomain. The Unlimited package includes an option for scanning and removing malware from your website. The other packages only include a site scan, so you would have to resolve the malware problem yourself if detected.

Server Speed

In our tests, IONOS proved to be a fairly fast provider, but not among the best.

Uptime

Unfortunately, IONOS hosting scored very poorly for availability in our tests (see below).

Backups

IONOS hosting includes daily backups, and they claim to store them for up to 20 days. However, when you try to retrieve files from its control panel, it only shows the last 6 days. They don’t seem to have a system for creating on-demand backups either.

CDN

IONOS includes a CDN in its Unlimited package.

Server Features

On Linux servers they offer PHP 7.3, 7.4 and 8, and MySQL 5 databases. If you purchase a hosting package that is not optimized for WordPress, you can choose either a Linux or Windows server. You can also use Perl, Python or Ruby.

Refunds and Guarantees

You can try its services free of charge for 30 days.

Assistance and Support

They have 24-hour support via email, chat and phone, but it’s not easy to get hold of them.

Overall Rating

3.3

Our review of IONOS is not that positive. We liked its speed and generous web space, but its system is not intuitive and availability is very poor. And it would be nice to see more options for creating backups.

IONOS Performance Test

Below are all the tests we carried out on IONOS hosting to give you an idea about its performance.

Loading Speed

Based on the results of our tests, IONOS hosting is quite fast, and it’s a reliable hosting provider. Read about why speed is important in our website loading time study.

Provider GTmetrix Pingdom Webpage test Pagespeed insights Total
SiteGround 0.71 0.71 1.78 2.94 1.54
GreenGeeks 0.81 1.49 1.79 2.2 1.56
Namecheap 0.99 1.40 1.92 2.08 1.6
Hostinger 0.97 2.07 1.77 1.62 1.61
WP Engine 1 1.99 1.46 2.2 1.65
Cloudways 0.80 1.39 1.89 2.84 1.73
Kinsta 0.78 2.18 2.17 1.98 1.77
DreamHost 1.16 1.72 2.56 1.92 1.84
GoDaddy 1.14 2.27 2.23 2.1 1.94
IONOS 1.21 2.08 1.74 2.78 1.95
A2 Hosting 0.96 1.40 3.78 1.9 2.01
InMotion 2.02 2.86 2.61 3.52 2.75
iPage 1.76 2.82 2.73 3.74 2.76
HostGator 2.4 5.21 1.87 1.65 2.78
Bluehost 1.74 4.5 2.42 2.82 2.87

Results in seconds

To ensure the validity of our results, we conducted the tests using GTmetrix, Webpagetest.org, Pingdom and PageSpeed Insights (by Google).

For best speed, we recommend SiteGround and GreenGeeks (among others).

Uptime

As you can see from the results of our availability tests, IONOS has a lot of work to do in this area ‒ they had the worst results of all the hosting providers. Ideally, the uptime should be 99.95% or higher for serious online projects.

Provider 2019 Uptime 2020 Uptime 2021 Uptime Starts at
Kinsta No data 100% 100% $25/month
Cloudways No data 100% 100% $10/month
SiteGround 99.98% 99.97% 100% €12.99/month
Namecheap No data No data 100% $2.40/month
WP Engine No data 99.99% 99.99% €23.25/month
Bluehost 99.98% 99.96% 99.99% $9.99/month
HostGator 99.94% 99.91% 99.99% $8.95/month
A2 Hosting 99.93% 99.99% 99.98% $8.99/month
GreenGeeks No data 99.98% 99.98% $10.95/month
DreamHost 100% 99.99% 99.96% $6.99/month
GoDaddy 99.97% 99.9% 99.96% $8.99/month
InMotion 99.97% 99.73% 99.95% $11.99/month
IONOS No data No data 99.93% $4/month
Hostinger 99.62% 99.48% 99.92% $5.99/month
iPage 99.66% 98.45% 99.85% $8.99/month

To monitor uptime, I use StatusCake, a tool that checks each website every 5 minutes.

So, if you have a project that needs a high availability rate, then IONOS hosting is not your best option. Other providers such as Kinsta, Cloudways and SiteGround give better results.

Conclusion

Our final impression of IONOS web hosting (for WordPress) service is a mixed bag. We were pleasantly surprised by some aspects, while not so impressed by others.

A few of its strong points are that they have no limit on monthly data transfer and are very generous with web space. Speed is pretty decent too, and prices are very competitive.

However, there’s room for improvement in some areas. Its hosting management system is not the easiest to use; it’s not very intuitive and lacks many advanced options. Availability could be improved too, and the functions for managing and creating backups could be better.

> Try IONOS

Frequently Asked Questions

IONOS web hosting packages give you plenty of web space for your project. But keep in mind that availability is not so good, so make sure you do your homework before you decide. IONOS also offers hosting packages that run on Windows servers, so it’s particularly suitable for .NET web development. Also, if you’re thinking about using Python, Perl or Ruby, then IONOS is one of your best options.

It’s only interesting for small web projects, where your website is not a priority for your business. Also, we weren’t exactly enamored with its customer service. So, if you think you might need help on a regular basis, you’d be better off taking a look at other providers such as SiteGround or Dreamhost. You can also check out other cheap web hosting providers here.

Its Unlimited package gives you access to the IONOS CDN. You also have the option of adding an external CDN (some of which are free) if your package doesn’t include one.

The authors

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Josep Garcia

Content Manager

Hi there, I am Josep Garcia. Since 2014 I've been testing and writing about website builders and hosting services, and I share all my learnings at Tooltester.com. Today I am not an active staff member anymore, but I do hope you enjoyed this article. And if you have any questions, please leave me a comment below.

Cai Ellis

SEO Manager

Hi! My name is Cai. Over the years, I've used countless hosting providers, built innumerable ecommerce stores and picked up a bit of SEO know-how too. If you've got questions about these or any related subjects, I'll be happy to help!

Learn more about us

We keep our content up to date

25 Jan 2022 – New rating for apps
10 Oct 2021 – Initial IONOS review

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