Namecheap are most well known as a domain registrar but they also provide hosting services. This website is hosted with Namecheap hosting so we can speak from first hand experience about their product.
Namecheap first started offering web hosting aroud 2007 and critics have called it side joint but as a customer I feel like Namecheap hosting is as professionally provided and supported as any other webhost out there.
Hosting I Don't Use
I have used and left quite a few hosting companies since I put my first website online in 2007, starting with free hosting, trying hosted services like blogger or wordpress (which have become quite restrictive as they monetize their services) and obviously paid hosting.
I don't use free hosting. Free hosting providers have a habit of dissappearing, or deleting your account without warning, or any number of other annoying things. Also, finding a free host with current PHP and MySQL is like finding the proverbial needle in the haystack. I once did and the next week it was gone. Along with my website. (Luckily I had back ups.)
The following webhosts I have tried and given up on after experiencing problems with their service.
- And maybe a couple I can't remember.
Of these, godaddy and arvixe are the two I have strong memories of having issues with and disliking them.
The others generally just had some kind of issue that made me leave but not problematic enough to leave any sense of anger for their service.
The issues I encountered were:
- slightly outdated PHP or MySQL (compared to very outdated with free hosts).
- site going down frequent enough for me to notice.
- site going down only once but for a long period of time (more than 24 hours) and not being contacted by the hosting company to inform me of the problem or why or to inform me of any kind of refund. My feeling was I shouldn't have to chase up refunds when they have a guarantee of 99.99% uptime.
- being locked out of my own site by the hosting anti-spam type defenses (which made me wonder how many of my visitors were also being locked out of seeing the site).
- difficult to use websites (things like accessing my website files was difficult, even getting to the website file manager was difficult).
Why I Use Namecheap
I have a few different personal websites. I also manage websites for my customers - which means I organise the hosting for their website.
After I moved my first website to Namecheap hosting, it didn't take long to see how nice their hosting system was.
They use C-Panel, the industry norm, meaning if you have tried any other hosting, Namecheap should seem familiar.
Easy to Navigate
I do have a complaint that within the Namecheap website, some things are a bit slow to load but that seems to be normal. No other hosts I've tried have been any faster.
From within Namecheap, you can easily find your way to C-Panel (which is where you manage your website files, etc). In other hosts, this was very difficult to get to, and in some cases there was no link and I had to enter a different URL into the web browser. Namecheap even make it so you can simply enter yoursite.com/cpanel and get to the cpanel login. Very nice.
I like to support the small guys whenever I can. I just ordered my new leather wallet from a self-employed custom wallet maker and my wedding ring, similarly was made by a self-employed goldsmith. But the advantage of using namecheap is their size means they have great documentation. When you want to do something but don't know how, you can usually find an answer and get it done.
With other hosts, documentation sometimes was lacking and so it means sending in a customer service ticket, which generally takes 12-24 hours to be replied to. If need to answer questions or have follow ups yourself, it takes days to get something done.
I recommend Namecheap as a reliable webhost that I expect always to have up to date software and hardware supporting your online business, whether you're selling goods online or earning money from content.
I now have all my websites hosted with Namecheap as well as all my domains and even though I tried to stay "diversified", I realised this isn't share investing and I find having all my eggs in this basket to be convenient and recommend them wholeheartedly.