HostGator Reviews User & Expert Reviews 2019-PROS & CONS
HostGator Reviews User & Expert Reviews: Full List Of Pros & Cons + Speed Test
According to HostGator Reviews, his story began in a college dorm in Florida in 2002. Its founder, Brent Oxley, with only $ 1000 in his bank account, with no room air conditioning and power outages, turned his small business into an empire.
Now reviews and HostGator reviews are excellent, the service is immensely popular and you can call yourself one of the largest hosting providers on the planet. It has grown and has become one of the leading providers of Shared Web Hosting for Resellers, VPS Hosting and Dedicated and now its headquarters is located in Austin, Texas.
They also have offices in Houston, as well as in Sao Paulo and Florianópolis in Brazil. In addition to these countries have offers of sites located for Russia, China, India, Turkey, Singapore, and Mexico.
In 2012, HostGator was acquired by Endurance International Group (EIG) for $ 225 million dollars. The international group has giants like iPage, Bluehost, and FatCow. Many of the purchases of EIG have been received with a particular humor, due to their reputation of not improving the services they acquire.
On the other hand, HostGator is a giant company within another giant company. In its fight for dominance of the industry, HostGator competes with GoDaddy, InMotion, Siteground and other popular web hosting providers.
They strive to offer a wide variety of high-quality services and make them easy to use and affordable. There’s a lot of positive reviews from HostGator that they say it’s an amazing company. We will analyze the technical and functional aspects not only according to HostGator opinions but also through a detailed review of each aspect to see if it is true.
- Shared Web Hosting
- Hosting Cloud Cloud
- VPS Hosting
- Dedicated Hosting
- Hosting for Resellers
- Domain Names (Enom reseller)
HostGator’s hosting service tries to cover all types of users looking to start a business, develop a website and find the best possible business. There is a large variety of services to choose from as well as plans.
All Shared Plans, in the Cloud or Cloud, WordPress, VPS, and Dedicated have 3 options each, with prices ranging from $ 3.95 to $ 149.95 per month. These packages are available in many periods of time, ranging from 1 month to 3 years.
Also, there are other very interesting things that I found while browsing your site. These are the additional features that HostGator offers:
Customer Knowledge Base
The HostGator knowledge base is a great way for users of different skill levels and skills to get the information they need. From a lost key to dedicated server systems in containers, HostGator uses an intelligent search system and an extensive menu. This helps everyone find the answers they need before contacting the Customer Support team. In fact, if you try to contact the live HostGator chat, you must first check the solution there.
HostGator offers a giant library (+500) of video tutorials. However, it has not been updated for some time. Only a small part of the videos are on YouTube, most of them are available as downloads and in Shockwave Flash (.SWF) files. But if you have a way to view.SWF files there is a lot of material to visualize.
This is bad news for those who want to access with mobile devices such as phones or tablets because mobile operating systems do not support files in SWF format.
It has about 500 free templates (more than 100 of them are mobile friendly) to choose from. HostGator reviews fill your free website builder with flowers. In addition to the free plan, there are also two plans, one “Professional” and another “Bussiness” (Business), which include features such as integration with Google Analytics and e-commerce capabilities.
Considering all this, we can say according to our HostGator opinions wants to be a wild card, providing almost every service there is for web hosting. The available features are good for both business, experts and novices. And its flexible implementation makes it suitable for projects of different lengths.
Precisely this service, HostGator’s Shared Web Hosting was one of those promoted on its website. It is also the most accessible – starting at just $ 3.95 per month and going up to $ 5.95. This is the service I chose to try it.
What is included in the HostGator packages?
There are three main web hosting packages to choose from.
- Hatchling – regular size package for a website
- Baby (Baby) – plan multiple websites for intermediate users
- Business – plan multiple websites, suitable for business and e-commerce websites.
- In the following table there is a comparison of the three plans and their characteristics:
Hatchling Baby (Baby) Business (Business) Disk space limit Not specified Not specified Not specified Bandwidth Limit Without meter Without meter Without meter Number of Domains allowed one Unlimited Unlimited SSD or HDD disks on servers HDD HDD HDD SSL SSL not supported Supported, not included in the package Supported, not included in the package Anti-DDoS protection Feature sold separately Feature sold separately Feature sold separately Anti-malware protection Feature sold separately Feature sold separately Feature sold separately E-mail accounts Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited FTP accounts Unlimited Unlimited Unlimited Website Builder Included Included Included Website templates 100+ 100+ 100+ Assisted Transfer of Websites Free for 30 days, after payment Free for 30 days, after payment Free for 30 days, after payment cPanel Included Included Included Self-installer Included Included Included Self-installable scripts 50+ 50+ 50+ Money back guarantee 45 days 45 days 45 days Customer Support 24/7 online chat, email, phone 24/7 online chat, email, phone 24/7 online chat, email, phone Choice of Server Location Do not Do not Do not Free Automatic Resguardos Do not Do not Do not
We all know that businesses usually try to show us the lowest possible prices to make us buy more. For example, that’s how the $ 3.95 plan looks when we put it in the cart:
What you saw earlier is a package of $ 3.95 per month for 3 years. You will have to pay $ 140 to have the advantage of the monthly HostGator price. If you want to commit to a shorter plan, the prices will change. In the following table you will see the total prices that you should pay in the cart:
|Payment Period / Plan||Hatchling||Baby (Baby)||Business (Business)|
|1 month||$ 10.95||$ 11.95||$ 16.95|
|3 months||$ 32.85||$ 35.85||$ 50.85|
|6 months||$ 65.70||$ 71.70||$ 101.70|
|12 months||$ 75.00||$ 107.41||$ 107.40|
|24 months||$ 126.00||$ 166.80||$ 166.79|
|36 months||$ 142.19||$ 214.20||$ 214.20|
|48 months||Not available||Not available||Not available|
The prices exclude taxes (VAT), if you do not come from any of the countries where HostGator is located, it may include the additional VAT.
HostGator Opinions: First Impressions
You can see that each plan offers unmetered bandwidth and disk space. The bandwidth is unlimited until you use 25% or more of the CPU for more than 90 seconds. Disk space is limited to 999GB – and this is virtually unlimited because you will rarely use it in its entirety. This is a good change in relation to other web hosting providers, which have strict borders in terms of disk space and/or bandwidth in their most economical plans. Anyway, if you expect to use the hosting services very actively be cautious, you could suspend your account.
One of the most remarkable things was the Hatchling plan. It is not that it does not include free SSL, it is that it does not support it directly. This is a great hurdle to not move forward if you want to have an e-commerce website or do any SEO optimization. Both practices require valid SSL certificates installed.
There are many features available for HostGator customers, however, almost all of them must be purchased separately. Things like anti-malware or anti-DDoS protection are not included in any of the plans – but they can be purchased as additional.
There are a lot of things that are worth noticing. First is the fact that promotional prices are valid only if a 36-month plan is paid and paid in advance. For example, the ‘Hatchling’ plan. Choosing it for 36 months will cost you $ 144.19 ($ 3.95 per month). Reducing the package to 12 months will cost you $ 75 ($ 6.25 per month). And choose only one month? This will come out $ 10.95. It is a common practice done by everyone in the web hosting business but make sure you know the price increase.
Another thing that can be noticed is the difference between the prices of the plans according to the length of the package. The package ‘Bussiness (Businesses)’ is considerably more expensive than the ‘Baby (Baby)’ when you buy for 6 months or less. However, when you buy the Bussiness plan for 12, 24 or 36 months it costs exactly the same as ‘Baby’. The ‘Bussiness’ plan includes a private IP, an SSL certificate and a voice over IP (VoIP) service for the same price.
And the last important thing is the renewal prices. After your package expires in order to continue using the services, you will be billed monthly. For the ‘Hatchling’, ‘Baby’ and ‘Bussiness’ plan, the monthly prices are $ 6.95, $ 11.95 and $ 16.95 respectively. But there is a little trap! For the ‘Hatchling’ plan, the monthly renewal price of $ 6.95 is only valid if the chosen package is 36 months. If it were a shorter period, the renewal price shoots up to $ 10.95.
It is common to expect prices to increase when your subscription ends. But make sure you know what is waiting for you.
It is clear that HostGator tries to keep the client captive with long-term contract plans and has reasonable renewal prices. Now it’s time to see how your customer service compares to the competition.
HostGator Customer Service
HostGator has a well-established customer service, try to use a wide variety of resources on your website. The knowledge base I mentioned earlier is the place where you can find a lot of answers. Writing your question you will get many articles that will help you.
If you are more visual in your learning, HostGator also provides a large number of video tutorials. They show exactly how to fix most problems and do a great variety of things.
But if browsing through the video tutorials does not give you the information you were looking for, there is a ‘Contact Us’ button provided below. It’s a little disappointing that clicking on this button does not get you anywhere.
After a series of tests and errors, these are the means of communication that I have found:
Live chat support and support ticket system
Telephone and fax
There also seems to be a way to contact them by email, but it is very difficult to find and even more difficult to use. It seems that the company wants you to either call them or use their online chat system.
Anyway, I value customer support a lot through emails – since waiting in line for a chat or a call is not acceptable to me. If your telephone or internet communication lines are not reliable, you should be able to support you in the email. But I bet HostGator has some valid reason for not doing it. Then without further adding we will see how your customer support service works.
Telephone Service Evaluation
Since I am not in Spain, I used the ‘International’ line to call. It took me 10 minutes to connect with a HostGator representative. Even simulating that I had a big problem and lost files, the employee remained calm and composed. She tried to answer each of the questions I have asked her. The quality of the call was quite acceptable may be a bit silent but I have not noticed any major problems. In short, a decent option. If you enjoy using telephone support, it will not be too much trouble.
Chat Service Evaluation
In order to evaluate the chat service properly, I have decided to see if the agents are polite and have knowledge. I have composed a couple of questions and I agreed to the queue to talk and try one of the representatives.
The waiting time was 4 minutes – which is very good. Anyway, after testing the customer support multiple times, I have not been able to establish how often it takes to arrive at a chat. The waiting times range from 2 minutes to 4 hours.
In one instance, I was waiting in line for 30 minutes, changed my browser, tried again and connected to 3. This shows that there is a clear problem in the system that HostGator should fix.
However, I connect with John. This is what we are talking about:
It is noteworthy that the cracks between my questions and John’s answers were quite large. Sometimes these cracks exceed five minutes. I can only assume that an agent is having multiple chats at the same time. It is impossible to give precise attention to each one at a time.
John was able to answer all my questions about the most recent fall times and how often they perform maintenance. Also, after asking about the hard disks used in the servers, I was immediately given a web link. However, the agent did very well by offering services in the Cloud cloud with SSL and CodeGuard. This is probably the best HostGator option for an owner of an online store that is worried about hacker attacks.
In short, the chat service was not bad. However, improvements are needed: for agents to keep information about HostGator offers and reduce waiting times.
First Impressions During and After the Purchase
You can pay both with a credit card and with PayPal, that is, the common options in this type of service. The rest of the process is a little more interesting.
In the cart, you are presented with an option to choose from among multiple extensions – some are added automatically, as protection with SiteLock or safeguards through CodeGuard. Make sure you do not accidentally pay for these extras unless you need them.
There are many additional services that you can buy, adding up to $ 120 per year.
After buying, there is a possibility that you can not use the service immediately as there is a strict verification process that you must pass. In order to activate the account, I had to send a photograph of my credit card and my identity document to a specified email address.
First, I assumed it was because I was not a resident of the United States or one of the localized areas. My IP was from Europe and that would not make sense. Anyway, after contacting the customer support chat, I was surprised by the news:
Apparently, there is a random selection that takes place no matter where you are located, you may be asked to send images of your document or credit card. The verification process may take some extra hours.
If you are lucky and do not need to perform the verification process, the hosting services will be activated about 15 minutes later. It’s a pretty good time since the DNS propagation cycle usually takes much longer than that (up to a full day). Once everything is finalized you are greeted with a HostGator board.
I gave myself a mission to find how intuitive this panel is. Then I dedicate myself to find some of the most sought-after aspects in a host – its nameservers. For this, I had to find where the cPanel is located. Rarely, to get to it, I had to click on one of the “Special Offers” – the one that worked was “WordPress – Installation with 1 Click”. And then finally arrive at the cPanel. A strange road but it works.
This is what the cPanel looks like. It is the classic version.
Here I finally saw the nameservers. It should be noted that the search areas did not work very well and did not show many of the things. Searching for nameservers did not give me anything and searching for “configure FTP server” did not give relevant results either.
I have decided to see if there is enough help in the Knowledge Base for those who need it.
There are two templates to choose from – the current “Paper Lantern” and the old “X3”. Many articles in the knowledge base provide help with the old version of the HostGator cPanel, the x3 similar to the classic one. The articles do not include help for people who use the new template “Paper Lantern”. Luckily, there was an article that showed how to switch between panels. That would make many of the useful articles.
But then try that …
It is clear that the current board and cPanel that HostGator uses needs many improvements. There are good intentions to make it as flashy and intuitive as possible. But you must admit that currently, it is not good enough.
If you decide to use WordPress – one of the most popular content management systems in the world, HostGator will offer you its services. This can be a viable option for those who need a little help dealing with it.
So far I have mixed feelings about HostGator services. Many options to choose from and extensions to buy have been overlaid with confusing payment options and a difficult verification process.
But while those things are important, the real test starts here: the performance evaluation of HostGator. There will be several things that we will evaluate here:
Host speed during low maintenance
Host speed with a website created with the HostGator website builder
General online server time
Evaluation of the anti-theft system
Some of the tests cannot be completed immediately, which is why we will update this section constantly to provide the most recent results.
IMPORTANT NOTICE – the tools used cannot be 100% correct at all times. They depend on the servers. Here I use Bitcacha to control the travel speeds of the packages since it seems to be the most consistent. Also, to be able to have it; As clear as possible and avoid anomalies, 10 tests in rapid succession have been made to show an average of the results in this review.
Host speed during low maintenance
Here a simple website in HTML will be taken into account for the evaluation. HTML websites do not usually require many host resources. In theory, this should be the fastest test of all.
Then I went to the HostGator file manager (very convenient, I recommend it) to upload a small sample code that I prepared. Here is the website in question:
Let’s evaluate it!
Use a tool called Bitcacha to check the speed of travel of packages across the world. Here is the result of our test:
No single location had a response time of more than 1 second – which is a good sign. Performance in the United States is great too. It is worth mentioning that the response times compared to the HTML page were quite different in each evaluation. Sometimes the rating came to be A – with outstanding performance in Singapore, Sao Paulo, and Japan. But the response times of the United States were always stellar.
That makes sense since HostGator has servers only in Texas.
Host Speed with HostGator Website Builder
Now let’s check how optimized the HostGator website builder is.
I have taken the liberty to use one of its many templates and customize it in my opinion. This is what happened:
Now let’s see how fast the kittens were:
As with the last time, there was a serious lack of stability from the response times not located in the United States. There is no clear visible pattern, however, this image here shows the situation: stellar response times in the United States, with international servers lagging behind.
However, you can clearly discern that the website builder has not been affected by the response times so negatively. You can expect the performance to go down a bit – that was not the case. The optimization of the HostGator website builder has a plus point.
General Server Response Times
We test many servers. Click on this link to see the status and online time of all of them.
Note – This section of the reviews will be constantly updated with the latest and latest information.
The ‘Online Time Robot’ tool configured on the website not only shows the response time but also searches the server’s online time (checking 1-minute intervals). This shows the general availability of the server and lets you know if the server performance is stable.
In the following figure you can see the results after the first month of follow-up:
Click on this link to see the live performance of HostGator, showing the current response times and the recent offline times.
Online time of 99.99% in the last 7 days a great stability, we could round up to 100% in the last 30 days. In relation to online times, HostGator scores another point in favor.
Response Times show much of what we saw with Bitcacha. Times are good – rounding to 400ms for most of the time, but there are peaks of performance where it exceeds 1.7 seconds. As mentioned earlier, the tools do not offer 100% accuracy because they depend on the servers they are using. Without taking that into account, the trend suggests that the speed of HostGator is quite inconsistent.
Evaluation of Anti-Theft Protection
At this point, I want to make an assessment that will take into account how difficult it can be for someone to steal my HostGator account. In a classic procedure used to detect security systems, I tried to access my HostGator account 20 times using an incorrect password. Simulating an access attempt, I have expected the provider to temporarily block me so that I can not access even with a correct password. Anyway, after 20 attempts using different keys, I could access in attempt 21 with my correct password.
I have decided to give it two more attempts and I have tried 25 and 30 times (as fast as possible) and nothing. It seems that HostGator does not use any protection against access by means of Brute Force, which usually detect these accesses and block the IP address where they come from. Perhaps there is a protection that allows block attempts made by computers and not by humans and that is why I do not jump any security measure.
Now let’s see how HostGator’s customer service handles my attempts to obtain sensitive information without providing any serious proof. Let’s go to the live chat and try to simulate an attempt to steal the account. I have obtained a French IP and I have invented a false name in French and I have tried to steal the key from the company’s customer support service. This is what happened:
After the chat, I was offered a verification of last resort that I have accepted, and I have provided them with a “new email”, I have received a message in:
It seems that HostGator security measures are very good – you will not get your password unless you provide an identity confirmation through a bank statement or a PayPal ID and also a photograph of your document. The verification process I’ve talked about before has a bright side.
NOTE – keep your payment information safe and genuine when you make transactions online! If you lose your access data to your accounts, they can help.
In terms of performance, HostGator has a good score but it is not perfect. The servers are quite capable of good performance, especially for US users – with response times that do not reach 100ms. Online time is almost perfect and it’s worth applauding. It is difficult to enter an account. HostGator has provided a good mid-range service that can offer a lot of options for regular Internet users.
HostGator Reviews – Conclusion
HostGator really is a wild card. It has many features and offers many plans to choose from. In addition, from your website, you can buy a variety of available extensions. It is very good for many types of users and that is noteworthy since it is mentioned by most of the HostGator Reviews. However, they do not show you the negative aspects.
In short, HostGator offers a large number of options for you to choose from. However, for the moment, they are lagging behind the competition with their difficult to understand price list and performance that could be optimized, in addition to their customer service that needs improvement.
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