TFhost Review: Here’s everything you need to know before you buy a web hosting plan with TFHost.
So everyone who reads my blog knows how critical I can be (or have been) of Nigerian hosting companies in the past.
What can I say, I’ve used some really terrible ones in the past and I’ve seen some pretty good ones. If you missed my other reviews, open these links below on a different tab and continue reading this post:
So back to our review of TFhost.
I decided to do a full stack review of this web hosting company like I haven’t done before now. This review promises to highlight virtually all aspects of their hosting service and uncover anything covered. Think of this as a good ol’ fashion investigative reporting.
The Criteria for our TFHost Review
In this piece, we will be reviewing TFhost website hosting using the following criteria. I call it the 6 Rs:
1. Reputation: What do users say about TFHost? Any awards won? Etc.
2. Reliability (Uptime): How real is the 99.9% uptime guarantee.
3. Room (Higher Hosting plans): Is there room to grow if one outgrows their hosting plan?
4. Responsiveness (Customer service): How responsive is their customer care in the day time and at night? How many options exist to reach them?
5. ROI (Price point): How affordable is it?
6. Roadblock (Security): Do they offer SSL certificates?
P.S – This is shaping up to be a 1,000+ words post so strap in and be ready to read every word. You’re going to love it!
TFHost Review Criteria 1: Reputation
What users say about a business on the internet can go a very long way in influencing potential clients’ minds. If I read trash about a company online, chances are I’m not going to risk it, whether it’s true or not.
On this note, let’s take a look at trusted sources of online reviews to see what people are saying about TFHost:
According to Google review from their Google My Business listings, TFHost scored a 4.7 rating over 5 from 26 verified reviews, and the majority gave them a 5 star review.
Let’s see some of what the reviewers had to say:
That’s that for that. If you need to see the rest, you can checkout their full Google reviews here.
The only thing that can be said to rival what your customers think about you is knowing that you’re also considered worthy of winning an award.
According to TechEconomy, TFhost was nominated in 4 categories and went home with the award for Best Local Hosting Company in Nigeria at the 2018 Nigerian Internet Registrars Associations (NiRA) .ng Awards. Leadership.ng further reported that the web hosting company won the same award the following year back to back.
Our verdict based on the above fact findings rate TFHost’s REPUTATION at 5/5.
We could stop here and I would already be sold on hosting my next few websites with them but we still have 5 more bus stops to go.
TFHost Review Criteria 2: Reliability
Now we have come to the meat of the review, which is website Uptime. For all the web hosts claiming 99.9% uptime guarantee, this is where we usually catch you!
To have an idea of just how true this uptime guarantee is, we will be using 3 randomly selected websites that are all hosted on TFhost. To track their uptime and downtime frequency, we’ll be making use of a dedicated uptime tracking website called Freshping.io.
The Uptime/Downtime Test Results
After a 7 day period, I’m delighted to announce to you all that all three sites we tested all came back negative! (Clears throat) What I mean is that we recorded no downtimes through out this 7 day period for any of the 3 websites hosted on TFhost.
While I would have loved to track uptime/downtime metrics for at least 3 months, I’m afraid I don’t have that much time on my hands but, there you have it people.
It’s important to note that this test was conducted during the time of the Lagos 14 days lockdown issued by Nigeria’s President to curb the spread of the Coronavirus. This means that during this period, most businesses were either half functioning or half dead or just plain dead.
Therefore, for our systems to report that there were no downtimes is a very big deal that speaks much about the efficiency of TFHost’s services.
I think it’s safe to say that if you decide to use TFhost, you can be sure that you’d be getting that highly coveted 99.9% uptime guarantee after all.
If there’s one thing I’ve learnt from all the time I spent horning my skills to become an SEO expert in Nigeria, it’s that website Caching plugins can only do half the work (if not less) when it comes to speeding up a site.
At the core of that ability is the website’s hosting. The hosting server or environment is the foundation of the website so if the server is naturally slow, well, there’s hardly anything a Caching plugin can do for you.
By default, Shared Servers are slower than VPS Servers, and VPS are slower than Dedicated servers. In my lifetime on the internet, boy have I seen some ridiculously, helpless, Tortoise-slow-moving Shared hosting Servers. And I’ve seen some fast ones too.
Site speed test results
So to get an idea of just how fast (or slow) websites hosted on TFHost are, we used this same 3 websites across three major hosting Server capacities. Using GTMetrix, a site speed checking tool, we arrived at the following results:
Note: Each website was tested from test servers in Dallas, USA using Chrome Desktop on a 3G network speed.
Note: I tested each of these websites at least 3 times just to be 100% sure these stats were real.
Also note: According to GTMetrix, Average page load time stands at 6.8 seconds (anything above or equal to the average is as slow as a Tortoise). Average total page size is 2.97mb (anything above or equal to the average is as slow as a Tortoise) and average number of server requests is 85 (anything above or equal to the average is as slow as a Tortoise).
1. Bank of Agriculture (BOA)
2. Sagif Ventures limited
3. Capital Meat
So there you have it. These 3 sites failed woefully in how fast or how large their pages are. Just number 2 and 3 managed to do okay in server requests score.
Now because I was so concerned with the repeatedly low scores these tests were throwing, I decided to do a last test, a Control Experiment to know if it was the tool that was just shooting out fables or if it was the website’s themselves.
So I tested this very website using all the same parameters as the above three, and what did I find:
I don’t have to say much: Pictures speak louder than words. Mind you, this is from a Shared hosting server and yet, the stats are by far better than the above.
As to what hosting company Richeetech is using…well let’s keep that under wraps for now.
Now this one shocked me.
I don’t think I have ever seen a Nigerian hosting company plant it’s Servers in Nigeria before now. But TFhost’s Customer Rep confirmed that their Servers were here in Nigeria.
Now that’s not inherently a bad thing. It’s no secret that the power supply here is shambolic. Which means if you’re going to plant your Servers in Nigeria, you had better be NEPA proof. If that requires using 24hrs Generator or Solar Panels, Wind Turbines, Hydroelectricity, I don’t know, the Server farm sha must be NEPA proof.
If they got that side covered, the next logical 6-feet-deep gully to cross is convincing Nigerians to host their websites in their Motherland, knowing fully well that they know they can’t trust NEPA.
There’s typically going to be a general lack of confidence about this. But hey, if they’ve gotten so many rave reviews and Awards to back up their claim, then somehow somehow, it must be working without a hitch.
Our verdict based on the above fact findings rate TFHost’s RELIABILITY at 3/5 (without support from it’s downtime/uptime monitoring reports, I’d have given it a 1/5).
TFHost Review Criteria 3: Room
Imagine your child was finishing 100 level at College only for the school to tell you that they don’t offer 200 Level studies and above.
That’d be totally ridiculously, wouldn’t it?
So also, when you’re choosing a hosting company, you need to know that whatever growth your website attains, they still got your back.
TFhost Hosting Plans
TFhost offers 3 levels of hosting plans depending on your needs. These are standard across top hosting companies and include Shared, VPS and Dedicated hosting. They also sell Reseller Hosting to people looking to start their own hosting companies.
Some VPS Hosting plansWithin each Hosting level, you can find several plans that cater to various needs depending on factors like your website traffic, how much disk space you need, etc.
Our verdict based on the above fact findings rate TFHost’s ROOM for growth at 5/5. They provide customers with more than enough allowance to start a website at zero users and scale to millions without the fear of outgrowing their hosting company.
TFHost Review Criteria 4: Responsiveness
Back when I was unfortunate to have been using Qservers, it took their customer service days to reply my email. Makes you wonder if they had just one Customer Rep handling the entire Nigeria (I wonder o).
A true mark of great customer service, you’d agree with me, is first and foremost, how many channels exist to enable a customer reach out to the company.
In the best case scenario, a company should have the following channels of communication clearly stated on their website:
- Live chat
- Social Media
Out of these four, TFhost had just two which were Live Chat (of which they had WhatsApp and website Live Chat, so I guess that’s a plus) and Social Media.
In order to really stress test this aspect of our review, I decided to check the efficacy of their Customer Rep in times when they’re needed the most – at night, during a public Holiday and in the middle of the Coronavirus “Stay at home” order in Nigeria all together at once.
Some may say I wasn’t fair but hey, first of all, I don’t know it was a public Easter Holiday. However, I was a very much impressed with my findings.
I first sent them a message via Live Chat at around 8:19PM.
Then I sent another message via their WhatsApp chat at 8:24pm.
I was shocked to say the least when at 9:14pm, exactly 50 minutes after my first Live Chat message, a representative responded to me via email. Wow! Thumbs up, Samuel B!
If I could get a response this quick in such a dire time as this, then I’m rest assured that on a typical work day free from all the extra hiccups that are present as at the time of this test, I bet you could get customer service feedback is mere single digits minutes.
Our verdict based on the above fact findings rate TFHost’s RESPONSIVENESS is 5/5.
Criteria 5: ROI
Web hosting is a recurring expense, and if you can afford to pay your first year and can’t guarantee payment for the rest of the lifespan of your website, there are two things involved: Either you’re cutting your coat far bigger than your size with a very expensive hosting company, or your size is just too tiny for any Coat you cut.
For the record, it’s no new thing that foreign hosting companies charge some really crazy recurring hosting fees even for just their minimum shared hosting plans.
Take for instance, when I was hosting on Siteground, I paid an initial New comers fee of NGN18,000 for the first year. E pain me small. I just bone face pay am. After all it was heavily discounted…until time to renew came.
That NGN18,000 quickly turned to NGN52,000. And that was for the “cheapest” Shared Hosting plan (their Fada). Nobody had to tell me that I was in over my head. Sharp Sharp, I Japa! I changed formation. I cut out.
Price of hosting: Value for money
Thanks be to God, you will never see such an outrageous fee on TFHost. The lowest hosting plan you can get here is as small as just NGN2,200 a year! Compare that to NGN18,000!
And with this NGN2,200, you get features such as 2GB Disk Space, 2GB Bandwidth, 5 Sub Domains, Unlimited Email accounts, Free SSL certificates and lots more.
When you eventually outgrow this plan, a higher plan at just NGN4,000 is available, and then another of NGN6,500 up to the Platinum Plan that comes at NGN15,000 a year and ships with as much as 50GB and 150GB Bandwidth!
Note: Even at the highest Shared Hosting plan, you still will not pay as high as what it costs to host on Siteground’s minimum Shared Hosting plan.
Our verdict based on the above fact findings rate TFHost’s ROI and value for money at 5/5.
Criteria 6: Road Block
These days I can’t dare build a website an SSL encryption. Asides from the fact that SSL or HTTPS is a ranking factor for Google search, whenever I see a site without HTTPS, I cringe. It just feels bare and unprotected.
It means you dare not enter your credit card details on that website. With all these Yahoo Boys in Nigeria out there, you’d want to make sure that any information you enter into any website, you’re 100% sure your details are encrypted. No Mayo Mago must happen.
SSL on web host
Before anything else, if your web hosting company does not have a secure site, you’re already in trouble. Now does TFHost have a secure site? Let’s find out:
TFHost has a secure website. Good. This means because it knows the importance of security in a website, it will also give websites under it the same opportunity. Let’s find out, shall we?
As it turns out, TFHost offers free SSL certificates for all their Shared Hosting plans and offers it for sale for their higher VPS and Dedicated hosting plans.
Our verdict based on the above fact findings rate TFHost’s ROADBLOCK at 5/5.
TFHost Review: Final Verdict
After a long and extremely detailed 2,300+ worded piece (officially my longest post ever), we’ve reached a verdict for our review of TFHost:
- Very reputable, great reviews
- Nationally recognized
- Fast Customer response time
- Lots of room to grow
- Security is a top priority
- Affordable pricing
- Site speed of hosting isn’t fast
- Servers located in Nigeria
Overall, we give our Review of TFHost a 4.5/5 star rating, which is very very good.
If they can just work on making their sites load faster, I think this company can easily come out on top with a clear margin and be rightly crowned the King of Nigerian Hosting.
To buy a hosting plan on TFHost, click here.
Now over to you
We hope you’ve enjoyed our review. Have you used TFHost before or do you know someone who has used them? Tell us your experiences in the comments section below.
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