NameHero and Cloudways are two hosts you're likely to bump into in your quest for a web hosting service. They're both well-known and have a growing user base. Talking about each separately is easy. But you're likely to begin scratching your head as soon as you consider choosing one over the other.
It doesn't have to be that stressful anymore.
This article simplifies the process by giving you a comparative analysis of the two hosts. We purchased hosting packages from both NameHero and Cloudways then ran hundreds of tests on each, very deliberate tests. For example, we took each through GTMetrix test to establish load speed, and performance, among other web vitals.
And we've shared our findings here with you.
But before we have a look at our findings, let's get a brief preview of each separately.
NameHero is one of the most reputable and well-rounded hosts. It has more than 40,000 customers and hosts over 700,000 websites. Visit their website and you'll realize that they've got almost everything for everyone. Whether you want to host a simple website or you want enterprise hosting services, NameHero has you covered.
They offer you both shared and dedicated servers as well as generalized and specialized hosting services, including managed WordPress hosting. Their hosting services are divided into three main categories, namely, Web Hosting, WordPress Hosting, and Reseller Hosting, doing their best to offer everything under one roof.
Many users love it. On Trustpilot, for example, NameHero has a 4.7-star rating from more than 1,200 reviews.
Cloudways offers managed cloud hosting, sold on a solemn promise to deliver fast and reliable services that give you peace of mind. Founded more than a decade ago, Cloudways is trusted by over 90,000 customers. From simple to complex, performance-intensive websites, Cloudways commits to meeting the hosting needs of each of its more than 550,000 websites.
Cloudways' hosting approach is more of an outlier. Why would we say that? The host has molded a working relationship with different companies, including Google Cloud, AWS, and Digital Ocean to offer something for everyone. While Cloudways taps into this ecosystem, they shoulder the responsibility of setting up and optimizing the servers to ensure top performance.
Now that you've got a picture of these two hosts, let's see how these two stack against each other, beginning with performance.
If you're considering choosing between NameHero and Cloudways, performance is an indispensable metric.
To help simplify your decision-making process, we purchased hosting packages from 10 different hosts and took each through strenuous tests. We created a demo Elementor website, replicated it across the 10 hosts, and ran our tests on different pages of the website, with one of the pages being a "heavy landing page with images."
To be sure that we weren't dealing with inexplicable figures, we tested the page 4 times for different locations - 7 in number. Instead of using all the 4 tests, we discarded the first and only focused on the last three, meaning we had 21 test results - 3 for each of the 7 locations. Using the results, we created a graphic for the global average load time. We did this by finding the global average for all the 21 results, doing so for each of the 10 hosts.
Below is the graphic, and, in our Best WordPress Hosting Review, we share a link to the raw data.
Cloudways performed slightly better than NameHero, only beating it by a fraction of a second. While the difference appears negligible, the gap might widen in the case of heavier content. Nevertheless, we can confidently say that the load time wouldn't be significantly different for average websites that don't have heavy content.
Why is Performance Important?
In simple terms, performance measures the load speed and responsiveness of your website. It extends to cover a web page's usability, interactivity, and reliability.
The above definition already gives an idea of why performance is an indispensable metric. Good performance means fast load speed, with your web content being delivered to your website visitors correctly and according to a predefined layout. If your website's performance is top-notch and it contains quality content, it'll definitely attract more visitors.
Performance improves user experience, reduces bounce rate, boosts conversion, enhances brand image, and significantly improves SEO.
In as much as we've looked at performance in a general context, we're narrowing everything down to each host's server performance. Come to think of it; why did NameHero and Cloudways post different load times, yet we tested the same heavy landing page? It shows that the two servers offer different performance.
The graphic below tells it all.
The above graphic shows the server performance of each of the 10 hosts. As you can see, NameHero performed better than Cloudways in all three segments. The WordPress Performance Tester test is a very good one because it exposes the performance difference of the actual servers away from the hosted website.
We ran the test using the WP Performance Plugin by Kevin Ohashi. We've got more information about why we used this plugin in our 10 Best WordPress Hosting article.
Comparison of NameHero and Cloudways Features
We've considered the performance of NameHero and Cloudways. Let's now look at a few more features to watch out for when you want to purchase a hosting plan.
Hosting Features (Critical Performance Features)
As we've seen above, both NameHero and Cloudways have fairly good load time. But now let's have a look at how each performs in other critical performance features.
NameHero Critical Performance Features
NameHero uses NVMe storage, a technology that has pretty much become the industry standard to boost server performance. The host uses LiteSpeed, which enhances speed to levels way above what the traditional Apache delivers. NameHero offers other features that differ based on the package you purchase. For example, they offer options ranging from 1 to 4 cores for processor, and 1GB to 4GB for RAM.
Besides, NameHero has both shared and dedicated hosting.
Cloudways Critical Performance Features
Cloudways uses SSD technology, Nginx, Varnish Cache, and PHP-FPM. The host allows users to choose Google Cloud, Digital Ocean, Linode, AWS, and Vultr. These are well-known server options with a reputation for their excellent performance. Cloudways also promises all their customers dedicated services, which, as you'd expect, maximizes website performance.
Backups and Staging
NameHero prides itself on automated daily and weekly offsite backups. While their automatic backup system works, it only offers a day retention period. But that's not a problem if you've got a few extra coins to spare per month. You can pay an additional $1.99 fee to enjoy their 30-day retention period. NameHero also has one-click staging laced with one-click staging to go live.
Cloudways has both automatic and on-demand local backups. They also offer an optional offsite backup, which costs $0.033 per GB. Their server-level backups can be quite frequent to even every hour, depending on your liking. The backups are stored for up to 7 days.
Uptime and Reliability
NameHero sells on a 99.9% uptime guarantee. Their proprietary platform has been tested for high traffic and, to avoid hiccups, NameHero partners strictly with reliable software services. The host has a robust security setup that includes a web application firewall, automated real-time virus scanning, and a proprietary Security Shield that employs machine learning to monitor and protect your website, all this backed up by a strong malware scanning and security patching system.
Cloudways sells on a 99.99% uptime guarantee, anchored on their systems that have performance monitoring and troubleshooting with a restorative purpose. As we all know, security is critical for your website's uptime and, in most instances, your host's security helps protect your website. And that's why Cloudways has put in place OS-level firewalls, free SSL installation, security patching, bot detection and blocking, Cloudflare's DDoS protection, WAF with Cloudflare, and secure updates for your WordPress engine and plugins.
When looking at speed and performance, server distribution isn't something to downplay. That's why, to help you make a good hosting decision, we deemed it fit to share with you the server distribution of NameHero and Cloudways.
What does it look like for the two?
Hands down, Cloudways beats NameHero in server distribution. NameHero only has its servers in the US and Europe, with the Netherlands as their only Europe data center.
On the other hand, Cloudways prides itself on flexibility. They've got more than 65 data center locations across the globe, in diverse places across America, Europe, Australia, and Asia. They've got this advantage because of their five hosting options - Digital Ocean, AWS, Google Cloud, Vultr, and Linode.
Ease of Use
Let's kick it off with NameHero, which has a very easy-to-use, decent, and intuitive user interface, with all the essential links easily available. Their dashboard has appealingly and strategically positioned icon links for different services and settings. They continue to introduce more settings within the user dashboard, with only a few left for the cPanel.
Cloudways, on the other hand, has a lackluster user interface, with content thrown all over. Although you can figure out the links to click for the available settings, the links are very dull and have no icons. That's not to say you won't be able to find your way, just that their design and layout appear to be from back in the day.
After purchasing hosting services from the 10 hosts, we reached out to the respective hosts' customer support with questions through their chat, ticket, and email support to establish how fast they'd respond. We only used a ticket where there was no chat option, and email where there was neither chat nor ticket. We received answers from all the hosts, although some took too long to respond.
The graphic below shows how much time it took the hosts to respond.
NameHero isn't on the graphic because they didn't have chat support. We reached out to them through a support ticket to which they responded satisfactorily but after 46 minutes.
On the other hand, Cloudways responded in about a minute, and their response was concise.
Real User Reviews
It didn't end with the customer support responses. We reached out to real users of web hosting services for their comments about their respective hosts.
Want to know why we went this extra mile?
We reason that if a host has customers, the customers would definitely have something to say whenever an opportunity presents itself. We also know that real user reviews read and feel authentic, giving a convincing view of their unique experiences.
And that's what prompted us to send thousands of emails to real users, requesting that they share with us their personal views on the hosts whose services they're currently using. Out of those emails, we received close to 1,000 responses, with NameHero and Cloudways both receiving comments.
The following graphic gives a picture of the real user responses;
From the above graphic, we see that Cloudways performed better than NameHero, attaining 8.69/10 in overall user experience, compared to NameHero's 8.1. Cloudways also performed better under customer support, pricing, staging, and backups, with NameHero only winning under site migration from host and malware cleanup.
We cannot help but mention how Rocket.net performed, attaining a near-perfect score from users. Under overall user experience, it floored all the rest, with a stellar 9.57/10. The host managed a clean 10/10 under site migration from the host and malware cleanup.
Kinsta was another notable performer, coming right after Rocket.net in overall user experience. Although Kinsta lost to Rocket.net in all the 7 categories, its performance is still pretty remarkable, scoring above 9.0/10 in 5 segments.
It's, clearly, not for nothing that Rocket.net and Kinsta were among the top 3 hosts in our top 10 hosts review article.
Seeing what real users say is very important. With our test results shared, real user reviews presented in graphic form, and our commentaries on the different results very well articulated, we believe you're very well placed to make an informed decision on which host to choose between NameHero and Cloudways.
We reckon that it does no harm knowing what real users are saying. That's why we've sampled a few real user reviews for you.
NameHero Real User Reviews
Their customer service is really good. I just discovered that they offer a stage option in the new Jupiter Cpanel, which was missing before but I have not used it yet. They are fast responding to any issues. Been singing Namehero for over 4 years now and I love it. What I would like to see would be more multisite SSL support. I wanted to use a multisite with Namehero a few years ago but they did not have what I wanted. ALl my sites are with them.
Web Host User
11-50 Websites Hosted
The best provider I have come across. However, as they are growing it is testing their customer support and the people they employee which occasionally leads to a lack of attention to detail on support tickets.
Twister Web Services
More than 50 Websites Hosted
Good value for money compared to most other hosts. User friendly.
Web Host User
1 Website Hosted
North America/Europe/Australia/New Zealand
These are just a few of the user reviews we received. Click here to check out more of the NameHero reviews.
Cloudways Real User Reviews
I switched to them from Siteground on recommendation for speed. Yes, my TTFB went down immediately with them. I think Siteground has a better interface. I don't like that they don't have a file manager and that I have to load up my FTP client for every small thing.
Web Host User
Making my own website
4-10 Websites Hosted
Well managed Wordpress hositng with the power of cloud hosting simplified. I use VultrHF and very happy with Cloudways.
Web Host User
11-50 Websites Hosted
It felt like the ultimate hosting reselling option, but the malware issue was unending inspite of an active live support team. Malware issue was the single issue that made me move my hosting elsewhere.
Employee/Owner of Agency
11 to 50
The three reviews are just a sample of the many we received from users. Click here to view more reviews about Cloudways,.
When it comes to reviewing two hosts, it's easy comparing their features side-by-side. However, it gets a little tricky recommending one, especially where they've got different strengths. While that's true of many hosts, it wasn't that difficult picking one between NameHero and Cloudways.
Let's now consider everything together.
In our heavy landing page test, Cloudways won over NameHero, with 3.19s against NameHero's 3.22s. In an unlikely twist, NameHero beat Cloudways in our WordPress Performance Tester test, winning in all the three disciples. However, Cloudways has an upper hand when it comes to server options, offering Google Cloud, AWS and Digital Ocean.
We give NameHero and Cloudways around the same rating when it comes to uptime and reliability, as well as backups and staging. But on matters server distribution, NameHero isn't Cloudways match. In fact, it doesn't even come close. Cloudways is way ahead, with more than 65 data locations against NameHero's limited centers in the US and Europe.
Cloudways also beat NameHero, in customer support, responding within a minute, while NameHero doesn't even have chat support. Real user reviews confirmed Cloudways win, giving it an 8.4/10 compared to NameHero's 7.4/10. Moreover, Cloudways beat NameHero in 5 of the 7 categories.
Looking at the above facts, we can say without an iota of doubt that Cloudways is the better host.