HostGator Review

Founded: 2002

HostGator Top 10 Best Web Hosting

HostGator is one of the most flexible web hosts we have reviewed to date. Instead of only including minimal standard features adding on extras like most web hosting services, HostGator offers 3 plans with flexibility so you only pay for the services you need.

HostGator is also designed so the beginner can create their own website, while the advanced web programmer will also be happy with the slew of advanced features offered. If you aren't looking for all the bells and whistles, then HostGator is one of the most affordable web hosting services. If you are looking for all the advanced features, then HostGator offers plans for you also at a competitive price.

HostGator is also a green web hosting company which uses wind energy for their servers and office. They also offer both Windows and Linux servers for your website.

Price

HostGator offers 3 pricing plans, called "Hatchling", "Baby", and "Business".  A very nice feature offered is the ability to have shorter billing cycles so you are not locked into a long contract. Right now HostGator's "Baby" plan is offering an introductory price of $7.96 / month. Be aware that for each plan, activation and setup are included, but unlike most other web hosting services, domain registration will cost you another $15.

Hatchling Plan Details:

Term 1-Month 6-Month 12-Month 24-Month 36-Month
Cost / mo $8.95 $8.95 $6.95 $5.95 $4.95
Billed As $8.95 $53.70 $83.40 $142.80 $178.20

Baby Plan Details:

Term 1-Month 6-Month 12-Month 24-Month 36-Month
Cost / mo $9.95 $9.95 $9.95 $8.95 $7.95
Billed As $9.95 $59.70 $119.40 $214.80 $286.20

Business Plan Details:

Term 1-Month 6-Month 12-Month 24-Month 36-Month
Cost / mo $14.95 $14.95 $14.95 $13.95 $12.95
Billed As $14.95 $89.70 $179.40 $334.80 $466.20

The plan pricing listed is the regular rate. The nice thing about HostGator is that everything is included when you signup. You aren't bombarded with extras to pick from when you signup.

HostGator also offers a 45-Day Full Money Back Guarantee. Keep in mind that you will not be refunded the $15 domain registration fee or any other setup or custom software fees. After the 45 days then your refund will be prorated.

Features

We compared HostGator's Baby Plan here because it included similar features to most of the other web hosting plans. The nice thing about HostGator is that all features are included in their plans and there do not exist many addons. However, the Baby Plan may be a little more expensive than other similar plans. You could always opt for the Hatchling Plan if you do not need all the features of the higher plans.

The Hatchling Plan is HostGator's basic plan. The Baby Plan includes all of the features of the Hatchling Plan and also adds unlimited domain hosting, unlimited addon/parked domains, private SSL, and a dedicated IP for $2 / mo. The Business Plan includes all the features of the Baby Plan and adds a free Toll-Free number, free dedicated IP, free private SSL, and anonymous FTP.

Be aware that when choosing a domain name through HostGator, you are only allowed to choose .com, .net, and .org addresses.

HostGator does also offer the best Google AdWords credit at $100. They also have a great section of their support page called "Compatible Technologies", which is a very detailed list of all the programming languages, features, and software they support on their Linux and windows servers. Not all web hosting services offer both Linux and windows servers, but HostGator does.

Core Features
Unlimited Disk Space
Unlimited Transfer Bandwidth
Unlimited Hosted Domains
Unlimited MySQL Databases
 
Web Creation & Design Services
Free Site Builder
Template-Based Site Builder
Fantastico Simple Script Installation
Blogs and Portals
Photo Gallery and Guestbook
Forums and FormMail
 
Marketing Tools
Google Webmaster Tools
$100 Google AdWords Credit
$25 Yahoo!/Bing Search Credit
Integrated Shopping Carts
Free Toll-Free Phone Number (Business Plan)
SEO Optimization Tools
 
Email
Unlimited Domain Email Addresses
Webmail Access
Email Forwarding
Autoresponders
Spam Assassin
Catch-All Email Address
 
Hosting Technology
User-Friendly cPanel Control Panel
24/7 Server Monitoring
Weekly Off-Site Data Backups
Raw Log Manager
Referrer & Error Logs
 
Customer Support
Online Help Center & Knowledge Base
24/7 Phone, Email, & Live Chat Support
Community Forum Access
Video Tutorials & Help Articles
User Friendly Support Ticket System
 

Ease of Use

One of the coolest features of HostGator is that they offer demos of their cPanel control panel and their site builder tools that you can try out before you even signup with them. HostGator is one of the few web hosting services to offer demos and it will make you feel much more confident about their features before you sign up. The cPanel control panel is intuitive and offers a vast array of information for your site all in one place. HostGator offers many SEO tools to evaluate your website and get your site visible to search providers like Google. They also offer a vast array of email features like mailing lists and spam assassin that are very simple to setup.

In keeping with their flexible approach, HostGator offers Fantastico to easily install add-on scripts to your site. These scripts include blogs (WordPress), discussion boards (phpBB), content management (Joomla, Drupal), polls and surveys (LimeSurvey), credit card payments (iPayment), and many more.

HostGator also offers help center and support ticket addons which we have not seen from other web hosting providers. This is a great feature for your customers and is easily installed through Fantastico.

Reliability

HostGator guarantees 99.9% uptime with the owner standing behind this guarantee personally. HostGator does have 24/7 network monitoring, weekly data backups, a fully redundant network, 4 world class data centers, and is very quick to resolve problems if they arise. All of these features help ensure reliable web hosting and a website that your visitors can always get to.

Marketing Tools

While HostGator may not offer as many marketing tools and credits as some other web hosting services, they do have the largest Google AdWords credit and the best SEO tools from Attracta built into their control panel.

  • $100 Google AdWords Credit
  • $25 Yahoo!/Bing Sponsored Search Credits
  • Many SEO Tools
  • Free Toll-Free Phone Number (Business Plan)
  • Search Engine Submission

The SEO tools offered are great for evaluating your website, detecting SEO problems, and getting your site noticed on the web.

HostGator also collects visitor statistics and site traffic information helping you determine how your visitors are getting to your site and what links they click on while browsing your site. This is an invaluable feature as it helps you target future visitors and adjust the design of your site to make it work better for you.

Customer Support

HostGator offers 24/7 phone, email, and live chat support. The owner, Brent, makes a guarantee that if you are not satisfied with regular support, you can request to be assigned to him to solve your issue. Overall, HostGator is very quick to respond to emails and the average phone wait time is less than 4 minutes. HostGator also has an extensive array of video tutorials and a great support ticket system to track your issue. Another nice support feature are the support forums which not all web hosting services have. HostGator definitely provides top quality customer support which makes them stand out from the competition.

Customer Reviews

they won't correct double-charges on ccWrite Review
April 1, 2015Price
Features
Dennis BridgesEase of Use
Reliability
Atlanta, GAMarketing Tools
Customer Support
they were very anxious to get us set up and take our money, but when they double-charged our credit card, everybody disappeared. They told us a credit would be issued but it wasn't. So we're having to waste our own time making sure they fix it this time. Will never use them or recommend them again.
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