US-based web host InMotion Hosting is a popular provider that has been in the business for over 15 years. It’s known for its impressive range of web hosting services, which include pretty much everything you can imagine.
For starters, there’s standard shared hosting, managed and unmanaged cloud VPS, and managed and unmanaged dedicated servers. On top of this, InMotion Hosting offers managed WordPress hosting, custom enterprise solutions, reseller hosting, and a WordPress-based BoldGrid website builder.
And all these are backed by a wide range of powerful features. For example, the low-end shared hosting Launch plan (from $4.99 per month) lets you connect two websites with unlimited bandwidth, 50GB of SSD storage, and up to 10 email accounts. It also comes with a one-click app installer, a free domain, a free SSL certificate, and a cPanel control panel.
Although there are a few restrictions here—such as the limit of two MySQL databases—very few competitors offer the same value for money.
InMotion Hosting’s cheapest Lite plan is just $2.49 per month. However, it’s only available with a three-year subscription, and it renews at $7.99 per month.
Upgrading to a Power or Pro shared hosting plan will give you more access to advanced features and provide higher limits on databases, the number of websites you can host, subdomains, and more. They also offer better performance than the low-end shared plans and include a selection of eCommerce features. The Power plan costs from $7.99 per month over three years, while the Pro plan starts at $12.99 per month.
The specs here are great, but InMotion’s relatively small initial discounts make their plans look quite expensive. For example, the Launch plan costs $143.76 for a two-year plan, and prices increase from there. In comparison, something like HostGator’s Hatchling plan costs just $99 for three years and includes unlimited bandwidth and storage, although it does only let you connect one site.
One of the things we loved though was the impressive customer support. All users have access to live chat, email, and 24/7/365 phone support, regardless of their plan.
And on top of this, InMotion offers an industry-leading 90-day money-back guarantee, which means you can essentially test it for three months, risk-free. There are a few limitations—for example, domain registration fees aren’t included and dedicated servers only come with a 30-day guarantee—but overall, we’re a big fan of InMotion’s confidence in their service.
With some web hosts, WordPress hosting is nothing more than simple shared hosting with the WordPress software pre-installed.
However, InMotion provides so much more than this, including a range of features that most other providers don’t offer.
For example, all new users will benefit from free WordPress site migration. Various performance optimizations, an integrated CDN, and regular automatic updates are also included.
On top of this, InMotion’s integrated BoldGrid website builder allows you to build a new site fast and efficiently, even if you don’t have any tech skills. It’s based on a drag-and-drop editor, and it includes a range of pre-designed templates.
There is also a full staging environment available, which means you can edit and test a copy of your site without affecting the live version. Many popular hosts, including HostGator, don’t offer any form of staging environment. Others, like Bluehost, only offer it with their high-end premium type plans.
InMotion, on the other hand, provides everything we’ve outlined here in it’s cheapest WordPress plan, with prices starting from just $3.99 per month for a three-year WP-1000S plan. Note that this renews at $7.99, double the price. It also comes with 50GB of SSD storage and allows you to connect one website with up to 20,000 visitors per month.
Although InMotion’s VPS and dedicated server plans appear to be on the expensive side, they actually offer great value for money. They include a wide range of advanced features and are a great choice for those looking for flexibility and true hosting power.
For starters, the managed VPS plans cost from $22.99 to $54.99 per month for an initial three-year plan. They include everything from free server migrations and automatic backups to integrated WHM and cPanel control panels. On top of this, the InMotion team will look after security updates and other low-level management tasks.
If you would like to use a self-managed VPS server instead, prices start from just $5.00 per month, with no minimum subscription term. This includes full root server access and the ability to configure things exactly the way you want to.
In addition, InMotion Hosting’s VPS and dedicated plans come with a selection of interesting features. For example, you can choose between WordPress or PHP-optimized configurations when you’re setting up a VPS. You can load your own OS with a dedicated server, and all managed plans include “Launch Assist”, a feature offering two hours of time with a system admin expert. You can do what you want with this time, including app installations, software setup, site migrations, or pretty much anything else.
The InMotion website is very well designed, and it does a great job of presenting the hosting plans to potential customers. It’s clear exactly what you’re going to get from the start, which means you won’t have to waste time searching the fine print to find out important details.
For starters, the Shared Hosting information page includes more than just a summary of the main features and a basic price. Instead, it provides a detailed table, in-depth explanations, and an interesting comparison with some of InMotion’s main competitors. And, there’s complete pricing transparency, with exact prices and subscription lengths advertised clearly for everyone to see.
There is one thing that concerns us about InMotion’s hosting plans—they aren’t always available for long and/or short subscription terms. For example, all shared hosting plans are only available with one, two, or three-year subscriptions. There’s no option to sign up for one or six months, which is something many people opt to do before committing to a particular host.
We decided to sign up for a one-year plan, and we were extremely happy with the checkout process. Unlike many other hosting companies, InMotion didn’t automatically add unwanted extras to the cart. A few options were available, including a backup manager ($2 per month) and a dedicated IP address ($6 per month), but these aren’t pre-selected or forced onto you.
Once we had selected our plan, we were asked to choose a free domain or import an existing domain. Alternatively, you can select an option that you don’t know what domain you want to use yet, and InMotion will provide you with a temporary URL that will look something like ba6ce8816c2976286.temporary.link.
Additionally, we could opt to have various apps pre-installed, including WordPress, Drupal, and PrestaShop. This is done through the industry-leading Softaculous one-click installer, which supports these and a huge selection of other apps and plugins.
Finally, we paid for our plan and were told that an email would be sent as soon as our account was active. This took almost two hours, which is a little slow, but it’s certainly not the worst we’ve seen.
As a quick side note, you will also receive a phone call from a ‘New Account Specialist’, who will confirm your order and make sure you’re ready to get started. Is this great customer service? We think so because it provides a great way to clear up anything you’re unsure about and ask important questions about your new hosting account.
Once we had activated our account, we received a welcome email outlining our service and the basic details we needed to know. It kept things beginner friendly, with a basic login link and account details. Scary technical information about nameservers and FTP credentials weren’t included, although there were a couple of helpful PDFs outlining the basics of starting and transferring a site.
These PDFs were quite simple, with a clear outline of the actions to take next. However, they also included a few useful links to more detailed resources.
At first glance, this appeared like a great idea designed to make things easier for true web development newbies. However, our opinion quickly changed when we clicked through to a page detailing how to assign name servers. Instead of the helpful guide we expected, we received a ‘page can’t be found’ error.
Following this, we had a quick look at the second PDF, which was supposed to provide instructions for migrating an existing WordPress site to our InMotion account. We clicked on the (apparently) correct link and were instead taken to a guide about ‘How to make basic changes to MediaWiki skins’. Not even close to what we were looking for.
In saying that, most of the other email and PDF links worked as expected. The required setup steps were clearly outlined, and it took no more than a few seconds to log in to our new account.
Account Management Panel
InMotion Hosting comes with an attractive, beginner-friendly Account Management Panel (AMP). It includes a wide range of tools and other resources to help you look after your hosting and website.
For starters, it comes with self-explanatory icons that lead to modules for changing your password, updating your personal settings, adding and removing domains, accessing support tickets, and much, much more.
In addition, there are also links to various website management tools for automatically installing various apps, managing SSL certificates, editing DNS records, and more.
Alongside its native AMP, InMotion also includes an integrated cPanel control panel for more advanced users. With this, you can access more advanced editing tools, including a file manager, FTP access, phpMyAdmin, and more.
Unfortunately, though, the AMP isn’t quite as good as it initially appears. Clicking on most icons will take you to another page, which slows down management tasks and makes it hard to view relevant information in one place.
For example, notifications can be viewed by clicking on the Account Notifications button, followed by a link that leads to a popup window. Then, you have to close the popup and navigate back to the AMP. It would be a lot easier if notifications were integrated with the main panel.
Fortunately, though, most of the AMP is attractive and functional. And, you can even bypass it entirely by bookmarking your cPanel link and navigating there directly.
InMotion Hosting provides various options for installing WordPress automatically. For one, you can tick a box when you’re signing up to have InMotion pre-install WordPress before you even get access to your account.
Alternatively, you can install it through the Install Popular Software feature in the Account Management Panel, which has options for both WordPress and the BoldGrid website builder.
Or, you can use the Softaculous one-click installer, which is available through both the AMP and the cPanel interface. It’s a popular platform that supports the rapid installation of WordPress, Drupal, Magento, PrestaShop, and hundreds of other common apps and plugins.
All three of these options provide a simple way to achieve your end goal: to quickly and easily install WordPress to your hosting account. We’d recommend getting familiar with Softaculous because it’s a useful platform all-round. For example, it can also be used to install popular WordPress plugins like WooCommerce, BoldGrid, and Jetpack.
In saying that, InMotion certainly doesn’t offer the most beginner-friendly WordPress setup we’ve seen. For example, Bluehost uses a very self-explanatory installation wizard which even lets you choose a website theme and configure other options.
However, it has more than enough WordPress features to get you off the ground. On top of this, the managed WordPress plans are powerful options that make InMotion a great choice for those lacking time or tech skills.
InMotion Hosting is backed by a comprehensive support center that comes with a wide range of self-help content. This includes everything from common FAQs and product guides to YouTube videos, tutorials, and detailed documentation. There’s even an active web forum where you can get help from other InMotion users.
More information can be accessed by filtering resources by category. For example, there are over 50 articles related to WordPress Hosting. These provide comprehensive details about everything from installing and setting up a new WordPress website to advanced things like building a custom plugin.
On top of this, the help center includes a nifty search box that lets you find resources related to your problem. During our testing, we tried numerous keywords and phrases, and we were more than happy with the search engine’s performance.
What’s more, every help article or guide is full of detailed information covering pretty much everything you would ever need to know. For example, the ‘Getting Started With Email’ guide includes information about creating and using new accounts, details various settings and configurations, has links to related material, and even explains how to set up multiple email clients.
Meanwhile, InMotion Hosting offers 24/7/365 phone, email, and online live chat support for more complicated issues. We tested the live chat and were very impressed. Rather than simply pointing us to a help article or video, the agent we spoke with answered our questions and resolved the problem fast and efficiently.
This is rare in the web hosting world, and it was nice to speak with someone who really seemed to know what they were doing, rather than an outsourced agent with no more knowledge than us.
It can be a little hard to put a number on a web host’s performance because of the sheer number of factors involved. Despite this, we ran a couple of tests to see exactly what sort of performance you can expect from InMotion.
To start with, we used Uptime.com to monitor the performance of a basic website every five minutes for a week. It checked and recorded both uptime and server response time.
Unfortunately, the results were less than excellent. Despite the length of the test, our server was offline five times for a total uptime of just 99.35%. The average response time was a slow 680ms, with a 230ms minimum and 4.15s maximum. Compared to Hostwinds, our top performer (151ms average, 118ms minimum, 2.2s maximum), this is terrible.
To make things worse, InMotion’s response time regularly went above one second. To us, this suggests that the shared server we signed up for was overcrowded and that there simply weren’t enough resources available.
However, it’s important to think about exactly what these figures mean. We’ve gathered them through short-term testing using InMotion’s cheapest shared hosting plan. There’s every chance that performance would improve over the long term, and that more expensive VPS and dedicated server options would be much better.
We also did a quick test with Bitcatcha’s server speed test. Understand that this is a simple, one-time test that provides no long-term information, but it was nice to see an A+ speed rating.
Ultimately, there’s a lot to like about InMotion Hosting. Its speed, support, and advanced features are impressive, and these are backed by a company that is professional, reliable, and transparent with its prices and overall service.