While most web hosting services offer web hosting with an easy-to-use website builder on the side, Homestead Sitebuilder is different. They focus on the free site builder, and will host the site as an extra, monthly fee. This way, a developer can start building their website before they ever spend a penny on hosting. Homestead also include some amazing tools in their plans such as free stock photos, custom templates, and email addresses. And what’s more, every plan from the Homestead Site builder can be tried for free before making any purchase. This Homestead Sitebuilder review is designed to show the major features, benefits, and flaws of the web hosting services they offer. We will also offer other useful recommendations.
Homestead Sitebuilder Overview
Homestead Sitebuilder offers a free, easy-to-use website builder which can create many different websites from online stores to business websites. They offer hundreds of customizable templates, and 1.1 million stock images in their free library.
Homestead was founded in 1996. They focus on giving small businesses an upper hand in the industry by allowing them to build their own, professional-looking website. The one thing they do not allow for is a blog on the website. Their website builder does not have the capabilities necessary to do this. Homestead also does not allow others types of websites. If you were hoping for a WordPress site, then Homestead Sitebuilder is not the host you want.
While anyone can start designing their website for free, one needs to sign up for a monthly billing if they want to publish it. Homestead Sitebuilder plans start at $7.99/month. The Starter plan provides 1 site with up to 5 pages. The Business plan offers up to 3 websites with no more than 100 pages total. Finally, their Business Plus plan gives the user an unlimited amount of sites and pages, though the storage and bandwidth is incredibly limited.
All of these plans feature the custom SiteBuilder software, countless templates with which you can have fun, 1 million free to use images, as well as a 30-day trial program. No matter how much money a user pays for the subscription, the quality of customer service will be the same. It includes toll-free phone support, chat, and community support via the company’s forum.
|Package Name||Dedicated to||Price||Disk Space||Bandwidth||Websites||Hosting Type|
|Business Plus||Medium Sites||$62.99/mo||10GB||500GB||Unlimited||Custom|
Homestead Sitebuilder Money Back Guarantee
Homestead does not offer a money back guarantee policy. However, it offers a trial period of 30 days, which does away with the possibility of banking errors in the case you would have wanted your money back.
Pro Tip: We suggest you choose a free trial for the Business Plus package, even if you plan on settling for the Starter pack. It will give you a good hint on how the company does its business, and how stable the websites that you will build with them actually are.
Security & Risk
Homestead Sitebuilder does not openly offer any type of extra security with their plans. This is horrific based on what they offer for eCommerce clients. ECommerce stores must be paid for in addition to the hosting with Homestead, so they may also offer some sort of security options once you have signed up.
A typical user will have round-the-clock protection from DDoS attacks, and a free scheduled backup option. Unfortunately, being a basic tool, the Homestead Site Builder doesn’t incorporate private SSL capabilities.
Usability & User Friendliness
Homestead Sitebuilder says that they offer a state-of-the-art website builder for small business owners, but there are a lot of limitations to not only their hosting but their site builder. Blogs are not an option with Homestead, though having a blog on your site helps with organic SEO. Customer reviews online state that the Homestead Sitebuilder is not up-to-date. There is no mobile support, and the templates are behind-the-times.
Because it uses custom servers to create custom websites, the Homestead SiteBuilder works really well with its own control panel. So no cPanel and no Odin Plesk, but a custom website builder to which Homestead has dedicated a lot of time in order to ensure that it’s the best, most user-friendly HTLM editor. Users with absolutely no knowledge of HTML will be able to easily use this one!
Customer Support & Additional Info
Homestead Sitebuilder offers customer support via phone, chat, and a community forum. Their phone support is only open 6:00 AM to 5:00 PM Monday through Friday. Though their website doesn’t clearly state what time zone they work from, we assume it is Eastern, since the company is based out of Massachusetts. The live chat also does not work 24/7. Chat representatives operate on the same hours as the telephone support does. The only 24/7 assistance they provide is their Homestead community, a forum filled with other customers who may be just as lost.
For Homestead support, users should visit the following options before writing a negative Homestead SiteBuilder review:
- Website: homestead.com.
- Telephone Number: 800 986-0958 or 1-888-412-9962 (for details about Homestead SiteBuilder Plans)
- Social Media: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, Blog, Pinterest
Homestead Sitebuilder Overall Rating
We provided this Homestead Sitebuilder review to give you a good look at what they offer. Here is the short list of what we like and don’t like about Homestead Sitebuilder services.
What we like:
- Easy to Get Started – To get started, all you have to do is build your website. We enjoy Homestead’s clean design that is intuitive and simple enough for everyone to use.
- Huge Stock Image Library – Stock images can be costly and hard to track down. With 1.1 million photos, this is probably one of Homestead’s best features. Its main focus is creating eye-catching websites that will thrill their customers’ audiences.
What we don’t like:
- No Obvious Security – Homestead is not very clear if they offer any type of security to their customers.
- Lots of Extra Fees – If you want more than a basic website, you’re going to be paying extra for a lot of features. Homestead is a pricier option when compared to other hosting companies.
- Outdated Templates and Builder – While easy to use, it is out-of-date, and so are it’s templates.
- No Mobile Support – In this day and age, mobile support is an absolute necessity. Aside from its limited bandwidth and minimal storage, Homestead also has another downside: its lack of mobile responsiveness and modern features.
Web Hosting Plans & Prices: 2/5
Security and Risk: 1/5
Usability & User Friendliness: 5/5
Customer Support: 2/5
Not sold on Homestead? Check out these top competitors for web hosting services.
- Bluehost – One of the biggest names in the webhosting industry, Bluehost offers Shared hosting, dedicated servers, VPS, and even reseller accounts. Their speed and uptime are about average for the industry.
- SiteGround – SiteGround offers all types of hosting, and specializes in hosting for WordPress and Joomla. You can even develop your own website from scratch, with or without the help of their website builder.
- TMDHosting – TMDHosting is super fast and incredibly reliable. They offer a wide range of hosting options from shared to dedicated servers and their prices are very affordable.
- JustHost – JustHost is just as fast as TMDHosting, and offers the same type of hosting options. They only offer 1 domain to all their shared hosting plans.
- A Small Orange – If you’re just looking for small, cheap host, then A Small Orange could be the place. They’re fast and reliable.
For startups and solo entrepreneurs, Homestead Sitebuilder is definitely an option worth considering. If you want flexibility and security, then we do not recommend Homestead Sitebuilder. While it is very easy to get started, the limitations will have you looking for a new hosting company within a short period of time.
Do you have any comments or questions about this Homestead Sitebuilder review? If so, leave your thoughts in the comments below!