A Small Orange claims to provide the best web hosting service at an affordable price, which is very appealing to many webmasters. In order to value their promise, our editors have made an in-depth review of this company based on its reputation, price, features, reliability, speed, and technical support.
We have been hosting one of our small-sized Joomla sites on its shared platform for about 5 months and kept monitoring this site closely. Besides, we have read numerous verified feedbacks on the web. Thus, all the results presented come from real-world testing and customer reviews.
Since its establishment in Atlanta in 2003, the company now has over 70 employees and provides web hosting services for hundreds of thousands of people all around the world. Although the company invests a lot of money in upgrading its technologies and infrastructures, it is still far from being a leading role in the industry as we have reviewed below.
Price – Not Budget-Friendly
The company offers five plans named Tiny, Small, Medium, Large and Super. The prices of these packages range from $2.92/mo to $30/mo. For the cheapest plan – Tine, its price is quite affordable, even lower than the average in the market. However, this low-rate plan comes with limited features.
In fact, the highlighted one is Medium that is pricing at $10/mo without any discount. To be honest, the price is much higher than the average level in the market. In regard to the most expensive one – Super, its price is even higher than many VPS plans.
|Money Back||90 Days||90 Days||90 Days|
|How to Claim||Not Recommended||Not Recommended||Not Recommended|
Apart from the price, money-back guarantee is an indispensable factor of worry-free purchasing. Considering this, the company offers 90 days money-back guarantee. However, instead of a full refund, this company provides prorated one that means only the unused portion can be refunded.
Besides, fees paid for setup, domain registrations, domain transfers, domain renewals, and SiteLock add-ons are non-refundable. Also, although the company offers many kinds of payment methods, some of them are non-refundable such as bank wire transfers, Western Union payments, checks, and money orders.
Features – Limited Server Resouces
A Small Orange provides unlimited POP3/IMAP mail accounts, MySQL databases, mail lists, subdomains and FTP accounts. Apart from those basic features, the company also adds some advanced ones in recent years such as PHP, Perl, Python, Ruby on Rails, SSL and many more.
However, all the plans offered by this company have limited storage and bandwidth, even the most expensive one. For example, the recommended plan only features 5 GB storage and 100 GB bandwidth. This practice may cause troubles for people whose websites have numerous visitors.
|Disk Space||250 MB||5 GB||25 GB|
|Bandwidth||5 GB||100 GB||500 GB|
|Databases & MySQL||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Perl/Python/Ruby on Rails|
One of the merits of this company is that it utilizes the user-friendly cPanel which is featured with easy-to-recognize icons and icon names. Thus, managing emails, files and many other things can’t be easier anymore. Moreover, in order to simplify the installation process of lots of software, the company also offers a 1-click installer named Softaculous that is integrated with cPanel. With this tool, people can install more than 100 scripts successfully with comfort and ease.
Reliability – Good Uptime
The company promises to provide at least 99.9% uptime. With the purpose of figuring out the real situation, our editors have carried out a performance testing and set up a new website hosted with A Small Orange. The new site is monitored 24×7 continuously for one month; as a result, it keeps a good uptime track record as it says.
The reason that A Small Orange has such good performance is that it uses quality server and state-of-the-art data centers. The data centers are monitored over CCTV, and the servers are located behind multiple redundant lines of physical security. Besides, the company utilizes the standard climate control, fire suppression, redundant power batteries and diesel power to ensure the appropriate operation of the data centers.
Performance – Not Good
When monitoring the uptime of A Small Orange, we also have checked its hosting performance by testing the server response time. According to the result, our sample site that is hosted with this web host requires 600 ms on average for responding to the server request. Sometimes, the consumption even exceeds 700 ms.
To be frank, as compared with many other quality web hosts, the hosting speed of A Small Orange is not satisfactory. Besides, unlike those fast hosting provider that adopts multiple speeding up technologies to benefit the hosting performance, A Small Orange lacks behind in this aspect. Even the CloudFlare CDN and caching tools are not included in the solution.
Technical Support – Lack of Support Efficiency
A Small Orange takes customer service seriously; thus it provides 24×7 technical support through various ways such as toll-free phone call, live chat, and email. Whenever people have questions, they can get in touch with the company in a short time.
Besides, all of the support staff have at least 5 years’ experience in this field. Before officially working for this web host, they have to pass the strict selection process and constant training. Thus, they are all qualified and able to provide professional suggestions to all customers.
As for the support efficiency, however, the result is not that good. According to real customer feedbacks and data presented on its home page, the average response time is longer than 50 minutes, which is much slower than the average level in the industry.
Obviously, the company provides 99.9% uptime as well as a user-friendly control panel. However, when it comes to its price, money back and features, it is not recommended. For those who are seeking for web hosts with a budget-friendly price, rich features and unmatchable customer service, our editors have carefully selected several ones. Check the detailed information for the top three options below.