SiteGround Vs DreamHost: Which is better? (2021)
Find out whether SiteGround is better than DreamHost or not Below!
Table Of Contents
- SiteGround VS. DreamHost
- Solutions offered by SiteGround
- Solutions offered by DreamHost
- Data Center
- Solid-State Drives (SSDS)
- Other technologies
- Websites and Subdomains
- Data Transfer
- Email Services
- Website Transfer
- SiteGround or DreamHost?
Today is the battle of the web hosts as we review two currently popular web hosts on the market, SiteGround VS DreamHost. Both these hosting solutions might already be familiar to you by now because they have received so much hype on the market. But the question still stands – is one better than the other? And if so, which web host is better? SiteGround or DreamHost? In this review, we’ll be going through all the criteria that make a good web hosting solution good. We’ll be investigating factors such as speed, affordability, reliability, and other features like storage, backup, etc. So if you want to search for a new web host, this review should help you make the ultimate decision.
SiteGround VS. DreamHost
Before we begin, I’ll summarize the findings of my review: one web host is definitely superior to the other. My verdict is based on personal experience and tests that I’ve carried out to measure speed, uptime, etc. These tests were mostly carried out on the web hosts’ shared hosting plans. However, for dedicated hosting, it can be assumed that they will have similar metrics.
Solutions offered by SiteGround
SiteGround provides three types of hosting packages in their shared plan. You have your regular web hosting, WooCommerce hosting, and WordPress hosting. And for each of the packages, you get three-tier pricings named the StartUp, GrowBig, and GoGeek. From the most affordable to the pricier tier plans, the number of domains, storage space, and other additional features differs. So the higher the price, the more flexibility you’ll have to expand. You also get cloud hosting with dedicated resources with SiteGround and Enterprise hosting.
Solutions offered by DreamHost
DreamHost’s hosting solutions have more variety as you get both your standard hosting services, WordPress, WooCommerce, managed WordPress, and cloud hosting. The basic hosting solution comes in two-tier plans, which is the Starter plan and the Unlimited plan. With the Starter Plan, you only get one website, up to 50GB of storage, and only up to five subdomains. And as for the Unlimited Plan, you get unlimited websites, storage, and email accounts, as the name suggests.
For their managed WordPress plans, you can choose from the DreamPress Basic, DreamPress Plus, and DreamPress Pro that each comes with a free 1-click staging area and an SSL Certificate.
One of the main selling points for DreamHost is its convenient and innovative drag-and-drop website builder. This website builder is available for both general hosting and WordPress. For WordPress, you get the site builder included in all your shared plans with no additional cost.
DreamHost also has VPS hosting, domain registration, dedicated hosting, and email hosting.
In terms of who’s more favorable with the crowd, SiteGround overtakes slightly. This is important to note considering SiteGround rarely beats other web hosts in these side by side comparisons. Nonetheless, according to Google Trends, DreamHost is always about 20 points behind SiteGround. But if you measure in terms of domains, SiteGround hosts around 2,000,000 and counting whereas DreamHost hosts over 1,500,000 domains.
Having said that, a more extensive customer base might create more of a challenge in managing resources that usually end in sub-par performance overall.
To look at the technologies SiteGround uses, you can view the entire section on their website. They’ve categorized it into three groups, which are speed, data centers, and uptime. As for DreamHost, you can also get this information from the Knowledge Base or Help Center. Here, they have complete documentation regarding their web hosting technologies to know if any of your plans include them.
Data centers are important because they are what ensures your site loads with great speed and stability. Data centers are usually located throughout the globe for maximum coverage as to how your site works relies on the location of the closest data center.
You can view SiteGround’s five data centers via a map with their exact locations, which are the US, the UK, Singapore, and the Netherlands.
DreamHost has data centers located in Hillsboro, Oregon, and Ashburn, Virginia. In Irvine, California, you can also find their DreamObjects server. However, as for the hardware information and facility characteristics, not much information was found.
Solid-State Drives (SSDS)
Solid-State Drives (SSDs) work better and faster than your usual hard drive and therefore has a huge impact on hosting performance. Thus, both web hosts offer this on their shared hosting plans.
SiteGround has NGINX on all shared and cloud plans, but DreamHost only has this on VPS hosting. NGINX is what’s working to boost the speed of any slow loading websites or static content. With NGINX, your sites will load much seamlessly.
PHP 7, HTTP/2, and CDN are all technologies that can speed up the loading of your page. With SiteGround, you get all three technologies on every shared plan and also free CDN with Cloudflare.
As for DreamHost, they used to have DreamSpeed CDN, but it is no longer in use. They also have PHP 7, but if you HTTP/2 technologies, you need to subscribe to a DreamPress plan.
Additionally, SiteGround also has Linux containers or LXC, which is an uptime technology. They also have anti-bot artificial intelligence. DreamHost does not seem to have new technologies.
Features are another vital aspect of a web host that you must pay attention to. Let us go through the features of each web host in detail:
Storage is important because it represents the amount of server space your site can take up. With SiteGround, you have 10GB of SSD with the StartUp plan, 20GB SSD with the GrowBig plan, and 30GB SSD with the GoGeek plan. DreamHost is more straightforward with 50GB SSD on the Started Plan and unlimited storage for their Unlimited plan.
Nonetheless, from my experience, it’s quite hard to even reach these storage limits even for SiteGround unless you use a lot of videos and high-resolution images and videos. You shouldn’t be doing this, however, as it will slow down your site.
Backups are another important thing you should look for in a good web host because you don’t want to be missing any data should anything happens to your site.
SiteGround has free daily backups that are stored for 30 days for shared hosting plans and seven days for cloud hosting plans. To recover your backups, you can do so via the Backup Tool in the cPanel. With SiteGround, you also have up to five on-demand backups if you are on the GrowBig and GoGeek plans. You also can request this on the StartUp plan with an additional cost.
DreamHost also has great backup options as they have daily automatic backups for all shared hosting and WordPress hosting plans. Up to two weeks’ worth of backed up, data will be stored. You can use the backup tool via your account to create a backup.
Websites and Subdomains
Some webmasters require more than one website at a time. Therefore, a web host should also offer solutions that allow multiple websites under a single plan.
Both SiteGround and DreamHost have unlimited websites on their shared plans except for the lowest tier Starter and StartUp plans that allow only one website. SiteGround also has unlimited subdomains and parked domains, but DreamHost only offers five subdomains, which is on their Starter plan.
Data transfer is referring to the amount of traffic your site receives. Both DreamHost and SiteGround have unmetered bandwidth, which means you can build as much traffic for your site as you can. All they ask you to do is stay within a reasonable amount in accordance with your usual operations.
With SiteGround, you can create as many email accounts as you like, but they are limited to 2GB for the StartUp plan, 4GB for the GrowBig plan, and 6GB for the GoGeek plan. Your choices for email providers are such as SquirrelMail, Horde, and Roundcube, which is pretty sound.
DreamHost Email services are slightly more complicated. Their shared Unlimited plan allows unlimited email accounts. But if you are on the Shared Starter Plan, you need to pay $1.99 a month to purchase an email for each mailbox. For all emails, you get 25GB of storage; however, DreamHost recommends you keep it below 1GB.
Depending on whether you are seeking to have multiple accounts, DreamHost might not be so flexible to accommodate your needs unless you pay more for their Unlimited plan.
You will find that many web hosts partner with WordPress simply because many of their customers enjoy using WordPress. Therefore, if you also want to use WordPress, it is crucial to find a web host that is optimized for it. Trust me, and it will make a whole world of difference and convenience for your entire process.
Both SiteGround and DreamHost have managed WordPress hosting. Their basic features are pretty comparable, but they also have distinct differences. Right off the bat, the number of websites offered in SiteGround is one on their StartUp plan and unlimited for their other two plans. But for DreamHost, you get only one website for all three plans. Already this sets DreamHost back by a lot because if you do decide to expand your site, you will be restricted if you’re on a DreamHost plan.
Then, the number of daily visits also varies among the two platforms. SiteGround can carry between 10,000 to 100,000 visits a month. But if you think this is impressive, DreamHost can support between 100,000 to 1,000,000 visits a month! Obviously, DreamHost is a winner in this category.
For the other WordPress features, SiteGround has all of them, but DreamHost lacks automatic plugin updates.
You already know the importance of speed for your website. A fast website is good for customers and also good for search engines to rank your site more visibly in search engines. DreamHost is known for good speed and loading time, even ranking at the top 25% of web hosts in this category, overtaking other hosts like GoDaddy, HostGator, and BlueHost.
SiteGround’s speed has also always been quick and reliable.
As for the specifics, tests were carried out using Webtestpage.org tools and the GT Metrix. While analyzing the results, it should be noted that the speed depends on several other factors and not just the hosting infrastructure. Overall, SiteGround almost always beats DreamHost by around 0.5 to 2 seconds for each test, which is quite comparable.
When other tests like the Pingdom test was carried out, results were also quite similar.
Uptime is another uber crucial element as disruptions in uptime are a big no-no. They can end up frustrating your customers and cause even your loyal customers to shift to your competitors. Search engines will also favor your site less if you always experience downtime. Both SiteGround and DreamHost’s’ uptime is always 99.95% and above.
And if your uptime decreases a lot, web hosts usually give out compensations. SiteGround, for example, offers a months’ subscription for free if your uptime falls under the guaranteed threshold. DreamHost offers compensation in the form of up to 10% credit towards your hosting renewal fees, and you have to contact support to get your credit.
A trustworthy and reliable customer support system is vital for web hosts because many things might occur, such as downtime, and you want to get it resolved ASAP. Prolonged downtime is not something you want for your website because it causes visitors to leave and have a bad impression of your site. Therefore when it does happen, you need prompt support and prompt response to get it fixed.
Customer support at SiteGround is known to be one of the best. Many people praise their customer support team because it is so robust. There are many ways to reach out to them, including their 24/7 live chat, phone support, and ticket submission. I also like that they will reveal your agent’s personal profile so that you know you are talking to a real person. Their staff is also highly trained to give quick and highly efficient service. I tried reaching out to SiteGround support just to see how they responded, and I found it impressive as they responded less than 24 hours and got my issue resolved in a jiffy.
DreamHost support is also pretty solid. Firstly you get their Knowledge Base, which is where you have all your video tutorials and other information in reading format. It is basically like an extensive FAQ section, and you can usually find the answer to your questions here. But if your question is still not resolved, you can check out the Discussion Forum where it is quite active. By doing so, you can get some help from the DreamHost community.
And if these two options still don’t seem to help, they also have 24/7 customer support, and everything is in-house. What this means is that you’ll be getting help from the DreamHost professionals themselves! You can get support from either your hosting account or through email. I tried getting support via email, and to my great surprise, they also responded quickly and got my issue resolved. If you prefer talking to someone, they also have phone support or live chat options if you want to talk to a bot. However, live chat is only available if you pay for their service, but you can request a call back via their chatbox.
SiteGround’s lowest StartUp Plan does not come with free website transfer, but you can include it with an additional fee of $30. But if you pay slightly more for the GrowBig and GoGeek plans, you get professional website transfer for free. The number of websites or email accounts you can transfer will also not be limited. From single websites to whole cPanel consisting of multiple sites, all you need is to initiate the transfer from your host account.
For DreamHost, they offer several options for moving your site to DreamHost. You can choose to do it manually, and DreamHost gives you a step by step guide on how you can do this. Secondly, you can just pay them a fee for a migration service, which will cost you around $99. Or thirdly, just subscribe to the DreamPress plan and get free website migration. But if you are migrating from a DreamPress account to a DreamHost account or DreamHost to DreamHost account, your transfer service will be free. For more details, you can find it via the DreamHost TOS or contact support if you have further questions. Also note that before beginning the migration, create your hosting account beforehand.
Cybersecurity is vital as one wrong click can jeopardize your whole site. Web hosts offer security features that protect against hackers, bots, malware, and other forms of cyberattacks.
SiteGround protects its servers rigorously with SSH and SFTP access. They also give free SSL certificates for websites. All of their servers are also set to PHP 7, equipped with the latest updates and necessary fixes. They use suExec to run Apache in a chrooted environment, use complex IDS/IPS systems to block malicious hackers and bots, and even use ModSecurity to protect customers from basic attacks.
SiteGround’s SG Site Scanner tool scans for malware daily and only costs a little over $1 a month!
With DreamHost, you will also be secured. They have free SSL certificates with any hosting plan you are on, and they also support SFTP. Other security measures include ModSecurity, a high-performance firewall on NGINX-included hosting plans, and your WHOIS data is also secured.
DreamShield is a malware removal tool by DreamHost that you can use to scan your site every week. Should any issues be detected, you will find out via email. However, you need to pay an additional cost for it and for each domain you want to protect. The price is just a few dollars each month.
SiteGround seems more knowledgeable about the security measures they implement, and their malware tool is also more affordable.
Of course, price is a big deal when it comes to buying something. But most importantly, in my opinion, is the overall value for money. The amount of a good web host depends on what you are looking for in your business, as everyone has different variations of what’s important to them.
Overall, SiteGround is slightly pricier than DreamHost for their shared and dedicated plans. But when it comes to WordPress plans, SiteGround’s is more affordable. And if you compare SiteGround’s plan prices after discount, it equals to around DreamHost’s regular pricing. Nonetheless, you can’t really guarantee if there will always be a discount.
Below is SiteGround pricing (three-tiers) before the discount:
- Entry level $11.95 a month
- Mid-level $19.95 a month
- Upper level $34.95 a month
Below is SiteGround pricing (three-tiers) after discount:
- Entry level $3.95 a month
- Mid-level $5.95 a month
- Upper level $11.95 a month
Below are DreamHost pricing (two-tiers) before the discount:
- Entry level $3.95 a month
- Upper level $9.95 a month
Below are DreamHost pricing (two-tiers) after discount:
- Entry level $3.95 a month
- Upper level $6.95 a month
It is also important to note that DreamHost’s’ upsells will end up becoming way more expensive than SiteGround. To see what each plan includes in detail, head to both their web pages for more information.
SiteGround or DreamHost?
Overall, SiteGround outperforms DreamHost in a lot of categories, but most of all, their web host solutions are straightforward. They also use more reliable technologies that give better speed, security, and features while remaining affordable so that more people can use their solutions. Having said that, the end decision will still depend on what you are searching for your business. Is it speed? Security? Affordability? This review will help you know more about all these criteria and hopefully make the right decision.
Another way you can try them out is via their free trial. These web hosts also often have 30-day money-back guarantee policies, so you can also try them out without any cost.
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