Our BloggingTips Breakdown
- Monthly rates increase exponentially with renewal
- Limited backup options unless you pay for add-ons
- Not many advanced features considering how much you pay after renewal
- Easy for beginner webmasters to set up and use
- 99.9% uptime guaranteed
- Get a free domain name, email address, and SSL with your subscription
- 45-day money-back guarantee if you don’t like the service
- 24/7 customer support for help with any issues you encounter
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Many types of web hosting are available, and new users can find it tough to pick an option.
It’s challenging to understand what each provider offers and what’s a fair price for the features you get.
If you’re a blogger, artist, or business, you need an online presence—and the right web host will make this step easier for you.
This HostGator review will help determine if the platform is right for you.
HostGator offers quality web hosting on different types of servers.
You can start with a small site on a shared server and, as you grow your audience, move up to a dedicated server on the same platform.
Subscribing to a reliable host like this prevents the need to transfer your site’s design and files to a new provider in the future.
Overview of HostGator
HostGator offers a lot of great features for webmasters.
Before you learn about the platform, get familiar with HostGator as a business and its experience over the years.
What Is HostGator?
HostGator is an online platform that offers web hosting and many other features.
You can get web services such as:
- Domain Names
- Website Builder
- Hosting—Shared and WordPress
- Virtual Private Servers
- Dedicated Servers
- Cloud Hosting
These options make it seamless to start a site as a beginning webmaster and develop your audience until you need a dedicated server for sites getting more than 10,000 unique visitors a month.
HostGator helps you, so you don’t have to worry about switching your website, design, and files to another host as you grow.
HostGator hatched back in 2002.
The founders are native Texans, but they, along with their mascot Snappy, now have a worldwide reach.
The company hosts more than 25 million websites and made a name for itself by going green to reduce its impact on the environment.
In 2012, Endurance International Group (EIG) bought the company for $225 million.
The corporation also owns other technology brands, such as Bluehost, Constant Contact, and iPage.
EIG is HostGator’s parent company to this day.
Pros and Cons of Hostgator
- Easy for beginners: Newbie webmasters can easily create a site without needing HTML skills.
- 24/7 customer support: Though it’s easy to build a site, 24/7 customer support can help you solve any problem you encounter building your page or regarding maintenance and updates.
- Domain name and email: Along with hosting, each plan includes a domain name and email address, so your professional site is ready to go as soon as you create it.
- Money-back guarantee: While there’s no specific free trial, the 45-day money-back guarantee allows you to explore the service without risk.
- Limited customization: While it’s good for beginners, it can limit experienced webmasters who want more freedom for customization.
- Cost increases: The cost increase from the initial plan to the renewal fees is a major jump many users don’t see coming and can’t afford.
- Hard selling: In addition to the cost increases, HostGator does a hard sell to push you to sign up for three years of service at once.
How Much Does HostGator Cost?
HostGator pricing is fantastic when you first sign up.
You get great offers, such as:
- Hatchling plan for $2.75 a month
- Baby plan for $3.50 a month
- Business plan for $5.25 a month
However, these are introductory offers.
They hook you and reel you in.
You’ll create a stunning site and enjoy your first year of service until the renewal email arrives.
Then you’ll see the true cost of HostGator’s services, which look more like:
- Hatchling plan for $8.95 a month
- Baby plan for $11.95 a month
- Business plan for $16.95 a month
While these prices aren’t absurd for quality web hosting, it’s more the issue of the increase for most users.
Going from a plan that’s less than five dollars to one that’s almost ten is a big jump, and it can price many casual bloggers out of the game.
Is HostGator Worth the Cost?
HostGator can be worth the cost if you like the platform.
It’s so easy to use that you might prefer to pay more for the simplicity.
Also, you can pay upfront for more hosting time to save money, maximizing your benefits.
You can choose a monthly plan when first registering with HostGator, but they offer longer plans.
Six months is the next step, then a year, but they push the three-year service.
Why HostGator Is Worth the Cost
HostGator’s features, and the simplicity of their dashboard and site management make it worth the cost for most people.
You’re getting things that you might have to pay extra for from other services, so your price most likely evens out over time.
Remember that the prices change depending on your hosting package beyond the monthly plans listed above.
Shared hosting is the most affordable, but you can pay more for dedicated hosting, WordPress hosting, cloud hosting, and VPS hosting.
The Problem HostGator Solves
HostGator solves any problem creators, bloggers, individuals, or businesses might face as they build their online platform and presence.
Based on this review’s name and focus, you know that the company offers web hosting.
But they go above and beyond.
With HostGator, you can get a domain name, a website builder, an email address, unmetered bandwidth, Google Ad credits, and more with your subscription.
Beginning webmasters might not need all of those features, but as you build your site and learn more about it, you’ll love that these perks are already in your package.
Why Would Somebody Want to Use HostGator?
People want to use HostGator because it’s easy to create a site from scratch, even if you have no website building experience.
You don’t have to know codes because you can select professional templates and customize them to fit your brand.
The ease of site creation doesn’t end with the templates—you also get a domain name and email address when you sign up.
You must pay extra for the domain name and a set fee per email address when you host through many other services.
Connecting your site to your domain address can also take a lot of work, so getting it all from HostGator simplifies the tasks.
Who Is HostGator Best For?
HostGator has a lot to offer all users.
Businesses can subscribe to the hosting plan for the domain name, website builder, unmetered bandwidth, and SSL certification.
These basics make the site a secure, professional option for any company that needs an online presence.
However, content creators like bloggers and artists seem to get the most out of HostGator’s features.
Why HostGator Is Best for Creators
Bloggers and artists appreciate the ease of building a website that’s easy for them to update and maintain.
It’s equally easy for visitors to navigate, which pays off in terms of traffic and ad clicks, helping creators generate income from their site.
Who Should NOT Use HostGator?
Casual users won’t get much out of HostGator.
It’s easy to use and doesn’t require any tech knowledge of web building skills, so many casual users think it’s a great option.
However, the price increases with renewal, so casual users will pay a lot of money for a site they just view as a hobby or fun project.
Why Casual Users Should Not Use HostGator
Some people want a low-key website to share their thoughts, pictures, or hobbies without updating it often or trying to monetize it.
In those cases, paying for HostGator isn’t worth it.
You can take advantage of the cheap introductory plan and host a website for a short period, but when the renewal comes, it’s tough to justify those costs.
If you’ve already used HostGator and now find it’s not right for you, follow these five easy steps to cancel your account.
What To Think About Before Buying HostGator
Before you choose any web host, think about what you need.
You don’t want to pay for a premium plan if you only need a basic option or realize your host doesn’t offer everything you need.
The following factors will help you understand whether HostGator is the right service for you.
- Plan options
- Help resources
- Included features
Let’s look at each of these in more detail.
1. Plan Options
When looking for a web host, you want to find someone with different plans.
This option means you can find the plan that suits your needs as they are now.
You also want a provider with tiers, so you can upgrade as your site grows.
That scalability prevents you from having to transfer your site to a new host if you reach your current host’s limits.
Price plays into plan options as well.
You don’t want to fork over all your profits—or more—any given month.
There are so many web hosting options around that you want to find the right balance of price and features.
You need to get value for your money.
The price you pay for a plan includes many factors, such as limits of users, storage, bandwidth, and the type of server you’re on.
For example, HostGator uses a shared server to make basic plans more affordable, while you’ll pay more for hosting on a dedicated server.
Any reliable host offers at least 99% uptime.
A statistic like this means your site is almost always available to your audience.
You won’t miss out on traffic or alienate people struggling to access your site.
This feature is especially important for monetized blogs since they rely on ad revenue.
A company that can’t guarantee this type of uptime might be reliable in other ways.
If your website is randomly offline, you might find other issues behind the scenes that could impact your visitors’ experiences.
4. Help Resources
Knowing that a web host has help resources should make you feel more confident buying from them.
They might have 24/7 customer service, so you can always call or chat with someone to help you with a problem.
Many web hosts have robust online help centers where you can search for your issue and see what resources they’ve created.
An active community of other users can also help you learn the ropes to building better sites.
5. Included Features
A web host is just the baseline of what you’re looking for, but additional features are always nice.
HostGator offers premium features in all plans, including a domain name, an email address, and an SSL certificate for security.
You want to look into what each host and plan offers because some might have perks.
For example, you’ll want your traffic analytics to help grow your audience if you plan to use your site for passive income.
Features and Benefits of HostGator
As previously mentioned, the features a host offers are a major component of if you should buy the product or not.
The following five features of HostGator let you know what you’re getting when you subscribe to their service.
1. Domain Name
When you buy a hosting plan with HostGator, you get your domain name simultaneously—for free.
This bundle saves you from buying a domain name separately and figuring out how to connect it to your site.
If you already have a domain name, you don’t have to give it up.
You can transfer the name to HostGator and connect it to your new site.
2. Email Address
HostGator comes with a free email address.
It will link directly to your site’s dashboard so you can have all your site information in one place.
The free email address is a major perk because you’ll get a professional email with your domain address.
Other hosts offer this as an additional paid feature, which can blow your budget.
3. SSL Certificate
HostGator sites get free SSL website security certificates—even with the basic plan.
The SSL certificate encrypts information sent back and forth between your site visitors and the server.
You see proof of this with the lock in the address bar.
This symbol inspires confidence in visitors because it shows you’re a legitimate website.
4. Various Hosting Options
HostGator isn’t just a WordPress host, so you’ll have plenty of server options when you buy a plan.
You can choose to host your site on a shared server to keep the cost lower as you grow your audience.
Once you get more monthly hits, you can upgrade to a dedicated server.
They also offer VPS hosting, which gives you more control over the site for professional webmasters.
5. Customer Service
Customer service is necessary when you’ve put your online presence in the hands of a web host.
You want access to help whenever you have trouble updating or maintaining your site, even if it’s late at night.
Having a website means people worldwide can access it, so any downtime could impact your visitors and ad revenue.
HostGator offers 24/7 customer support, so you can always get help with your problems.
They have a chat option on their website, or you can email or call them.
HostGator makes it easy for people to get in touch through whatever method they prefer.
HostGator Customer Service
Anything dealing with a website and technology can cause frustrations.
If you’ve hit a roadblock with your HostGator site, consider contacting customer service for help.
Does HostGator Offer Customer Service?
Yes, HostGator offers customer service.
You can also search for your problem in their extensive help database.
What Types of Customer Service Does HostGator Offer?
HostGator customer service includes a toll-free phone number, a help desk email address, and live chat on their website.
Why Should You Trust Us?
You can trust us because we try the products we review.
We know blogging, website building, and monetizing, so we know what works and what’s not worth the hassle.
That’s why we’re focused on presenting a fair review of all services on this site.
We don’t gloss over the cons, like the pricing issues with HostGator.
But we also present the facts diplomatically, so you realize that, if you can afford the service, it’s definitely worth it for the ease of use.
But you don’t have to trust blindly—check out these customer reviews.
What HostGator Users Are Saying
HostGator has many positive features, but the renewal price can push people to look for other options.
Check out these HostGator competitors if you’re interested in an alternative.
SiteGround offers similar types of sharing as HostGator, such as shared, dedicated, cloud, and WordPress.
You can try it for 30 days to see how it compares to HostGator before you buy it.
How Does SiteGround Differ From HostGator?
SiteGround is similar to HostGator, down to the low startup cost that skyrockets on renewal.
The big difference is that SiteGround plans are more expensive than HostGator.
They don’t even include a free domain name for your troubles.
Who Is SiteGround Best For?
SiteGround is best for more experienced developers who can build their own site and connect the domain name.
There’s more effort required for a SiteGround subscription, and you’re paying more, too.
You can also check out our comparisons of SiteGround and DreamHost.
Bluehost is a great company with reliable uptime and 24/7 support, making it the ideal choice for beginners.
How Does Bluehost Differ From HostGator?
Bluehost is specifically for WordPress sites, while HostGator offers general sites and a WordPress option.
For even more information before making your choice, check out our comparison of Bluehost and GoDaddy, which we also list as one of HostGator’s competitors.
Who Is Bluehost Best For?
Bluehost is best for users with a WordPress site who can’t code it themselves.
The drag-and-drop editor of Bluehost makes site design simple.
There are other WordPress options to choose from, too.
GoDaddy is a big brand in web hosting that also includes domain names with hosting packages.
How Does GoDaddy Differ From HostGator?
The biggest difference between GoDaddy and HostGator is the level of security.
GoDaddy offers basic security in their plans, and you must upgrade to get SSL certificates, which come standard with HostGator.
We have a full review of GoDaddy hosting with more information.
Who Is GoDaddy Best For?
GoDaddy doesn’t offer a sign-up discount like HostGator, so the plans are more initially, but you won’t get a huge rate increase with renewal.
The basic plan starts at $5.99 monthly, which is cheaper than HostGator.
People who want a reliable price for their site over the years might prefer GoDaddy, or you can check out more GoDaddy alternatives.
HostGator is a great host provider for people who don’t have the skills to create their own website or don’t want to spend the time doing so.
Subscribing to a host that includes the domain name and email address greatly simplifies setting up your online presence.
Don’t waste more time before signing up with HostGator—check it out.