1&1 IONOS (formerly 1&1 Internet) is a German web hosting provider that was founded way back in 1988. Today though, the company is now the largest web host in Europe and it handles 19 million domains across 70,000 servers with data centers in London, Frankfurt and Karlsruhe in Europe and in Las Vegas and New Jersey in the US.
Last year 1&1 combined its web hosting, applications and server product lines with ProfitBricks’ cloud infrastructure to become 1&1 IONOS.
Let’s take a closer look at this web host’s plans, pricing and features to see if 1&1 IONOS is the right fit for your website.
1&1 IONOS: Pricing
While 1&1 IONOS does offer a wide variety of web hosting products including WordPress hosting, cloud hosting, dedicated hosting and ASP.NET hosting, in this review we’ll be focusing on its shared web hosting plans as these will likely appeal to both first-time and experienced users alike.
1&1 IONOS’ has three general-purpose web hosting plans. These start with the ‘Business’ plan for £5 per month which includes one domain, one Wildcard SSL certificate, 25 email accounts with 2 GB storage per account, 100 GB of storage for your website, 25 databases (1 GB SSD), up to 2.5 GB of RAM and PHP 7.3. Typically, other web hosts don’t provide this many features with their lowest tier plans, so it was a nice change to see how much value 1&1 IONOS provides for its customers.
Next up is the ‘Pro’ plan for £7 per month which gives you 2 domains, 100 email accounts, 250 GB of storage for your site, 100 databases and up to 6 GB of RAM in addition to everything included in the Business plan.
Finally we have 1&1 IONOS’ ‘Expert’ plan which includes everything the Pro plan does as well as 3 domains, 500 email accounts, 500 GB of storage for your website, 500 databases and up to 9 GB of RAM.
As 1&1 IONOS offers such a large number of email accounts, this web host is our current top pick for businesses looking to either create an online presence or revamp their current website.
1&1 IONOS: Signing up
1&1 IONOS’ setup process does involve several steps but luckily the company provides a well-designed wizard to help walk you through the process.
At checkout you’ll need to decide how long of a contract period you want with your plan and here you’re given the option to sign up for either two or three years, though you’ll still be able to keep your introductory discount. 1&1 IONOS also offers a number of useful add-ons including SEO, an extended website builder a basic eShop and more. Since all of these add-ons come with a free 30-day trial, you’ll be able to test them out for yourself before making your final decision.
Once you’ve picked out your preferred products, the company asks you for your detailed billing information which includes your name, physical address, email and phone number.
After completing the payment process, an email will arrive from 1&1 IONOS with a copy of its lengthy (almost 5,000 word) terms and conditions. From here, you’re redirected to your 1&1 Control Panel where you’ll be able to view and manage your account information.
1&1 IONOS: Creating a site
Regardless of which plan you end up choosing, you’ll still get access to the 1&1 Website Builder. This simple web-based site creator allows you to choose from a variety of bundled site templates. The 1&1 Website Builder also gives you the ability to customize your content and add image galleries, YouTube videos, social media feeds, forms and more by dragging and dropping the content you want to add onto your page.
In our experience, we found 1&1 IONOS’ website builder to be fairly easy-to-use though the templates were a little dated and you’re limited to just five pages. However, you can get around this limitation by upgrading to 1&1 Website Builder Plus for an extra £5 a month and the paid option of the company’s site builder allows you to create sites with up to 500 pages.
You can also install a CMS such as WordPress from the 1&1 App Centre. All you have to do is enter the title of your website and with just a few clicks you’ll be ready to go. However, users with 1&1 IONOS’ basic plan will need to configure themes, extensions and updates on their own.
Experienced users can even manually access the 1&1 webspace via secure FTP, SSH or by using a browser-based file manager called Webspace Explorer. While this isn’t too difficult to do, the interface is slightly crowded. 1&1 IONOS’ shared hosting panel is quite different from the industry standard of cPanel so if you thought you’d be able to put your existing cPanel skills to use, unfortunately you’re out of luck.
1&1 IONOS: Performance
When evaluating a web host’s performance, one of the first things we look at are the support options on hand as even the most experienced users will likely run into some difficulties when configuring their sites.
1&1 IONOS provides 24/7 support via email, live chat and over the phone. The company also has a help centre with useful support articles on a wide variety of web hosting related topics including domains, SSL certificates, email hosting and online marketing. The 1&1 IONOS Community even gives customers a chance to talk with other users to discuss web hosting further.
Recently 1&1 IONOS launched its own personal consultant service that is available for free to all of its users. The service connects you to a support agent who can offer hosting tips as well as advice. 1&1 IONOS’ personal consultant service is available via web chat, email and by telephone.
We wrapped up our performance tests by testing the speed of our site using Bitcatcha and it scored somewhere between a C+ (slightly above average) and a D+ (slightly below) on the site’s Server Speed Checker. However, real-world testing showed no noticeable issues and the overall performance of our site was more than acceptable for a base plan.
1&1 IONOS: Verdict and Conclusion
1&1 IONOS offers great value plans for both novice and experienced users and we were impressed by how the company’s lowest tier offering included more features than the competition. cPanel support would be a welcome addition but the company’s own control panel is more than enough to manage your website.
- Want to see the competition? Check out our guide to the best web hosting