US host with plenty of features
3 Essentials are a US-based host that offer web hosting solutions for everyone from individuals to large businesses. They are based in North Carolina in the Research Triangle Park, where their neighbors are companies such as IBM and Microsoft. As well as standard Linux and Windows shared hosting packages, 3 Essentials also offer WordPress and DNN hosting.
3 Essentials also have a number of dedicated hosting packages available and customers can take advantage of a simple and easy to use web builder to make the process of constructing their website much easier.
Uptime & Reliability
Always up, always reliable
3 Essentials are very reliable when it comes to uptime. There is rarely any break in their service and their speeds are constant throughout, regardless of the size of your website. As with many web hosting providers 3 Essentials promise a 99.99% uptime, but unlike many others they actually manage to deliver on this promise.
Downtime can be one of the biggest annoyances facing website owners, a website that is lagging or is down altogether not only frustrates the owners but also the customers, which is bad for business. Their reliability is easily the best thing that 3 Essentials has going for them.
A vast array of features
The features are one of the strong points of 3 Essentials hosting, emphasizing why this is a hosting provider for people who know what they are doing or have created and run websites before. You can choose from a huge number of hosting packages and operating systems, and the control panels are plentiful and easy to navigate.
3 Essentials also have packages that incorporate WordPress features (giving bloggers a quick and easy way to host their own blog), Anti-Spam features and TweetAdder, all of which can further bolster your website’s potential.
|Disk Space and Bandwidth||Unmetered storage and transfers is available on all of their hosting packages.|
|Site Builder||There is a site builder available.|
|There are 25 email accounts, including POP, IMAP and SMTP.|
|Stats||Webstats are available for shared hosting plans.|
|FTP Access||FTP access is available, with extra accounts at the higher price point.|
|Domains||The more expensive shared hosting plan caters for 6 domain names, whilst the cheaper options have just 1 domain.|
|MySQL||MySQL databases are available, with 1 database for the cheapest option.|
|Shopping Carts||A variety of shopping carts are available for shared hosting plans.|
Knowledgeable but cold customer support
The one thing that lets 3 Essentials down is their support. Their staff are very knowledgable, but at times it can feel like you’re talking to a computer or a preprogrammed brick wall. They lack the compassion and the human touch that many customers need and want. If you have a problem or if you ask a question they will assist you, but not always very quickly and not always very coherently. It might be okay for the technically minded amongst us, but if you need someone to hold your hand and guide you through any complicated processes then this host may not be for you.
The upsides of the support are the access to a live chat facility which can speed the process up, and a large knowledgebase which stores easily accessible information in a troubleshooting format, allowing you to bypass the 3 Essentials customer support staff altogether.
Very reasonably priced hosting packages
The price of the 3 Essentials packages are up to par with what you would expect from a host of this calibre. If you want a simple site with reliable uptime, then you can pick up a shared hosting plan for as little as $4 a month. If you want your own dedicated server then you will be looking at paying closer to $150 a month. The VPS hosting are some of their better deals, with packages that begin at just $8. The most expensive plan on offer at 3 Essentials is a whopping $256 a month, but in all fairness you definitely get what you pay for.
Let down by poor customer support
As mentioned above, the customer support is very robotic and unfeeling, which can feel cold to users who don’t really know what they’re doing. There are also a few niggles with the site itself, including issues that seem to rise during the account creation process, and when you’re stuck in a frustrating loop and can’t go anywhere, and your only assistance is someone from customer support who lacks the personal touch, things can get incredibly annoying.
Despite that, the setup process can go through without a hitch sometimes and the control panel itself is easy to navigate.
A worthy choice, but with disappointing customer support
Overall, if you want a host that gives you more bang for your buck, one that offers a wide range of packages and one that is reliable, then 3 Essentials is a good choice. However, if you’re new to web hosting and want someone to help you into these troubling waters for the first time, then 3 Essentials might not be right for you.
If there are no issues then 3 Essentials is the perfect host; the uptime is second to none, the pricing is great and there are a good choice of packages and features available, but if anything does crop up then you could well be introduced to the bad side of 3 Essentials: the customer support.
Pros and Cons:
- Great customer support.
- A long list of features and capabilities.
- Fantastic prices.
- Great uptime and reliable service.
- Money back guarantee.
- Poor customer service.
- Sometimes very frustrating, particularly during setup.