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HostGator Review 2021 – Quality & Speed Tests (with Screenshots)

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HostGator is one of the largest and most popular hosting companies in the world. They offer shared hosting, VPS hosting, dedicated servers, and managed WordPress hosting plans.

Read our detailed HostGator review to find out if HostGator is the right choice for you.

 

In this detailed HostGator review, we will put their promises through our testing process. Following are the areas we will look into:

  • Reliability: Will your website be available 24/7/365 without any downtime?
  • Performance: How fast will your website load on HostGator? We will run our own performance tests to analyze this.
  • Customer Support: Can you count on their customer support? Will you be able to easily get help when needed?
  • Features: Do their features help you easily create and manage your website?
  • Pricing: Do they offer the best pricing in industry? Are there any HostGator deals that can save you money?

If you don’t want to go through all the details, then the following is a quick summary of our HostGator review score with our conclusion below it.

HostGator Review Summary
Performance grade A+
Average load time 1.03 s
Average response time 143.4 ms
Free domain Yes
Free SSL Yes
1-click WordPress Yes
Support Phone / Live Chat / Knowledge base
Start with HostGator

Bottom line: Want to skip the details? To summarize, we found HostGator to be a reliable and customer friendly hosting service. Their 24/7 customer support is among the best.

That’s why we’ve added HostGator as one of the best WordPress hosting companies.

Let’s jump to the more detail-oriented parts of our HostGator hosting review. This will help you figure out if HostGator is right for your website.

About HostGator

HostGator was founded in 2002 and grew quickly to become one of the biggest hosting companies in the world. You can credit the monstrous growth to their great shared hosting plans, reliable web hosting, and quality customer service.

Today it is headquartered in Houston, Texas, and hosts over 10 million domains. They have 850+ employees that offer around-the-clock support and serve businesses of all sizes.

It is a subsidiary of Endurance International Group and offers a wide range of web hosting solutions to a massive global customer base.

Pros and Cons of HostGator

Like every other product and service, each hosting company has its pros and cons. Here are the pros and cons of HostGator that we learned.

Pros

  • Reliable hosting: HostGator guarantees an uptime of 99.99%. If you experience downtime below that, then you will get back one month credit on your account.
  • Generous moneyback guarantee: HostGator offers 45 days moneyback guarantee. Normally, web hosting companies do not offer a moneyback guarantee beyond 30 days.
  • Flexible billing periods: You can choose between monthly and yearly billing periods. Longer billing periods will get you the most discount.
  • Free migration: HostGator offers free migration service with all new accounts. Their expert team will transfer your website from your previous host at no extra cost during the first 30 days of signing up.

Cons

  • Higher monthly pricing Monthly pricing is quite higher than annual plans. You can remedy this by choosing the annual plans as they do offer a 45-day moneyback guarantee.
  • Aggressive upselling: You need to review the additional services pre-selected during the sign up process. If you are unsure, then uncheck them anyways. You can always add them later when needed.

HostGator Performance

What would you do if you sign up for a host and find that your website is painfully slow and often disappears? You’d have to switch providers, and this will cost you more money and headache.

That’s why you want to choose a web hosting provider that is reliably fast with stable performance record all around. But how would you get this information?

We decided to check HostGator’s performance by running our own tests. Let’s find out how well it performed.

HostGator Speed Test Results

The most important performance indicator is speed. A faster website is good for your users, and it also helps your SEO rankings.

In fact, studies suggest that 1 second delay in page load will cost you 7% fewer conversions, 11% less page views, and a 16% decrease in user satisfaction.

For our detailed HostGator review, we created a test site to find out how fast HostGator really is.

Our test site was powered by WordPress using the default theme. We also imported dummy content for theme development, including images.

After that we used Pingdom website speed testing tool to run the tests. Here are the results:

As you can see, our test site loaded in 1.03 seconds which is great.

However, this is a new website with no traffic at all so speed test alone is not the best way to judge its performance. We wanted to see how it would perform under peak traffic.

To test this we used a tool called K6 (formerly LoadImpact). We used it to send virtual users to a website and gradually increased the number of users on the site up to 100 at once.

You can see the result in the chart below:

The blue line in the chart is page load time and the green line shows the number of users on the site. As you can see, our test site performed really well throughout the test with an average response time of 203 milliseconds.

These results are particularly good for a shared hosting account.

HostGator Uptime Test

Another remarkable thing to be noticed is that our test site didn’t go down during the test.

HostGator Server Response Time

The content of your website significantly affects the page load time. For example, if your website has many images, then it will increase the page load time.

This affects your server’s speed test results. We wanted to see how fast the HostGator server actually responds.

To test this, we used a tool called Bitcatcha. It works differently than other website speed testing tools. Instead of loading the content, it only tests the response time of the server.

Here is how HostGator performed in these tests:

Our HostGator review site performed really well. The server response time remained less than a second. In the United States, it was merely 26 ms.

Overall, this result indicates that your site will load quickly around the world.

HostGator Hosting Plans and Features

HostGator offers a variety of hosting plans. Their plans include shared hosting, VPS hosting, cloud hosting, reseller hosting, and dedicated hosting. They also offer hosting for other platforms like Joomla and Magento.

However, their main offering is shared WordPress hosting and this is where most users begin their journey.

Let’s take a look at these plans offered by HostGator.

Breakdown of HostGators’s Shared Hosting Plans

HostGator’s shared hosting plans come in three different levels. All plans include unlimited storage and unlimited bandwidth under their terms of use. The main difference is the number of websites you can host.

  • Hatchling: The Hatchling plan allows you to host only one website. It includes one-click WordPress installer and comes with standard set of features.
  • Baby: The Baby plan allows you to host unlimited domains and subdomains. It includes all the features of the Hatchling plan, and you can also use addons such as private SSL.
  • Business: Suitable for small business websites. This plan includes unlimited websites, unlimited email, dedicated IP address, SEO tools, and is suitable for starting an eCommerce website.

Apart from web hosting services, they also offer Gator website builder, which is a fully hosted website builder.

HostGator Hosting Plan Features

Another thing you would want to look at is the features that you’ll get with each hosting plan. Here is what’s included in each hosting plan offered by HostGator.

  • 1-Click WordPress Installer
  • Free SSL Certificate
  • Easy to use control panel cPanel dashboard to manage hosting services
  • Free email accounts
  • 24/7 customer support
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee

With Baby and Business hosting options you can host multiple websites and domain names under the same hosting account.

As for security features, you can activate the free Cloudflare CDN to protect your WordPress site against malware and attacks. The Cloudflare CDN caching also gives you an additional performance boost.

During checkout, you would also be offered to purchase CodeGuard and SiteLock addons. Most beginners, don’t need them right away so you can skip them and add later if needed.

HostGator Support and Customer Service

HostGator offers one of the best customer services in the industry. Customers can reach out to the support team 24/7 via phone, live chat support, and ticket-based email support.

Inside your hosting dashboard, you will find their support portal. This portal helps you find quick answers from a knowledgebase of hundreds of articles and video tutorials.

Conclusion: Is HostGator the Right Choice for You?

Now that you have read our detailed HostGator review, you are probably thinking if HostGator is right for you?

HostGator offers a variety of hosting plans that fit all budgets and requirements. They offer all the user-friendly tools you will need to build a website.

Over 2 million customers have already trusted HostGator. Whether you are a seasoned Internet pro, or just starting out with your first website, you’ll find every necessary tool to bring your website to the next level.

Ready to get started with HostGator? Click here to select your HostGator plan today.

FAQs About HostGator Hosting

We have been answering user questions about WordPress hosting for over a decade now. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about HostGator that we have heard from our users.

1. Is HostGator good for WordPress?

Yes, HostGator is good for WordPress and highly recommended for anyone who wants to start a WordPress website.

It offers 1-click WordPress installation which even lets you pick essential plugins and templates during setup. Plus you get 24/7 tech support which comes in handy for most beginners.

2. Which is better HostGator or Bluehost?

HostGator and Bluehost are both our recommended hosting companies. In terms of Bluehost vs HostGator, they’re pretty similar when it comes to CPU resources, unmetered bandwidth, disk space, MySQL databases, pricing, and more.

We find Bluehost user experience to be slightly better as they’ve invested heavily in their WordPress platform.

Bluehost has advantage in overall performance, SSD storage, security, and value for money. HostGator tries to beat that with slightly cheaper hosting plans, 45-day moneyback guarantee, and faster support.

3. How does HostGator compare with SiteGround and GoDaddy?

HostGator is better than GoDaddy in terms of support, ease of use, and over all user experience.

The major difference between HostGator and SiteGround is pricing. SiteGround plans start at $4.95 and don’t include free domain name. This makes HostGator a better option for users on a tight budget.

3. Where are HostGator servers located?

HostGator servers are primarily located in Provo, Utah, and Houston, Texas. However, they also use datacenters in other locations.

4. Does HostGator has cPanel dashboard?

Yes, HostGator has cPanel dashboard integrated into their own custom dashboard. You will find the link to cPanel under your website hosting package. Your hosting dashboard also includes an FTP like file manager so you can easily upload files or edit them if needed.

5. Is HostGator good for eCommerce?

Yes, HostGator is good for running an online store using WooCommerce or other eCommerce platforms. However, as your business grows in terms of traffic then you may need to upgrade to a business plan to a virtual private server (VPS hosting plan).

6. Which HostGator plan do I need?

If you only want to start a single website or blog, then you can start with their Hatchling plan. However, we recommend starting with the baby plan as it offers multiple install support. You can always upgrade your hosting plan later if needed. Click here to select your HostGator hosting plan.

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