Best Web Hosting Service for Your Small Business
Quick Tip: A good web host will provide 3 essential types of web hosting services that will take your business from small to medium, and finally to BIG size!
By Soon Chai
Selecting a long-term web host for your Internet business is like choosing your better-half. Done right, you two will live happily ever after making as much money for as long as you desire. Done wrong, you die an ugly death. Period.
Imagine this: You put up a persuasive sales letter that's ready to motivate and "seduce" whoever hop on your website to flip out their wallets and buy your products. But... "Oops, this website is down, server is not responding!" is what your potential buyers see. Worse is, if that happens frequently, you can imagine how many sales you're losing... how many Adsense clicks you're not getting... how much money you're not making.
That's why I couldn't stress enough that even if you're just getting started, you must make sure you get off on the right foot and pick the right web hosting service right out of the gate.
You don't want to go back to square one and waste weeks desperately seeking high and low for another web host all over again, do you?
I've been using HostGator Web Hosting since 2008. I've tested its service against the toughest criteria (particularly its customer support service) and it has passed with flying colors. Best part is, it's been creating much more revenue (an extra $2160 - $5330) for me every month (I got about 10 websites hosted with it) than the few hosting providers I previously used.
Why, by simply changing or using a good web host can increase your income? Let me explain...
Most User-Friendly Control Panel in the Industry
Knowing that control panel is one of the most vital components in creating and managing websites profitably, HostGator pulls no punches in getting the top control panel (cPanel) for you, at all costs, yet you don't pay a penny more.
Clear-cut, user-friendly, easy to use... managing your files, configuring security, checking stats, monitoring web traffic volume, transferring domains, editing files with WYSIWYG (What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get) editor and many more features and functions could not be any easier now.
Take a closer look at some insider screen shots below:
The left side of the main control panel above shows you the disk storage (web space), bandwidth, the type of server you're using, the number of domains and sub-domains you're currently hosting with, your email accounts, hosting package, operating system and many others to let you grab the stats at an instant. While the right side shows you all the powerful features and functions well categorized to allow for easy access (due to space limitation, I can only display part of it).
This alone separates HostGator from its competitors. Next, let's step down one level to zoom in on its File Manager.
Look at those one-click functions. What's so great about them? You don't get to have these small yet efficient widgets in other control panels, I don't know why. But if you use cPanel, you can simply click any of them and quickly access your most commonly used functions and applications.
Couldn't be happier with Host Gator
I have been with Host Gator for just over 6 months. In that time I have not had one single issue or down time. The control panel is so superior over the garbage that AIT provided, I just had no idea what I was missing.
Not only do my websites run flawlessly, but I've been able to set up two extensive, professional store fronts and generate sales at no additional cost. The Mcart that AIT offered was an embarassment.
I am extremely pleased with Host Gator and their tech staff and would recommend them to anyone, without hesitation.
Everet D. Regal
Phoenix, NY USA
Host Gator does it for me!
My Host of choice is HostGator. They have the best (read cheapest) starter packages and in my opinion the best services and choices. You’ve gotta love Fantastico Deluxe on the Cpanel. It makes it so easy that even if you make a mistake configuring your blog or whatever, you can always just start over. Very easy to become a veteran webmaster with those kind of tools.
Brewster, Massachusetts, USA
Now you got such a user-friendly control panel at your fingertips, how about a dedicated support team to wait on you at your beck and call?
24/7/365 Instant Customer Support
You can "scream" for help anytime, even during weekends or public holidays or at 2 A.M. in the morning, because HostGator is one of the few customer-oriented hosting companies that truly delivers 24/7 round-the-clock customer support service (including email, live chat, and phone) throughout the year.
In short, regardless of which part of the world you live and what time zone you're in now, they're always there for you whenever you need help.
Also, if you prefer to "chat online" because you're shy to speak over the phone, afraid that they may not understand you due to your specific regional accent or having sore throat and not able to communicate your hosting issues clearly over the phone, their live chat support will be the best tool for you to get your issues across and resolved.
To top it off, they have grown to having 500+ in-house customer support staffs (and they're still expanding their support team) to cater to the demand of growing customer base, which explains their quick response to enquiries.
On one occasion, I emailed them about a simple bug issue but it took about 4 to-and-fro interactions (within a day — that's a fast response!) before it was resolved. We could have fixed it in just one correspondence. Blame it on me for not being specific in my first message.
So, if you want to get things done quickly, take a few more minutes to provide more details so you'll get it done once and for all. Or even better, call them directly instead of using email or live chat as you'll receive immediate attention and get your problem fixed even faster.
You can also access their peer support forum which they specially create for all their users to share experiences, interact with and help one another. Again, it opens 24/7 around the clockwork. You'll love going there (like me) as you'll get lots of very useful feedback and assistance, and some nifty website building tricks from other friendly and knowledgeable users besides the staffs.
By the way, Brent Oxley (founder of HostGator.com) rewards his staffs based on their performances rated by customers like us. A brilliant way to stimulate top quality customer support service, which explains why more and more website owners (including me) immigrate to HostGator.
Great Customer Service, Thanks Mitchell I!
Hi, I just wanted to recognize Mitchell I for providing great customer service! He was detailed yet personable and offered very helpful advice about different hosting methods. He made it easy for me to relate to his ideas by using personal experiences from hosting his own sites. I think that is key to quality CS, talking to people not over them. Customer service of this quality is becoming so rare that anytime I come across someone who really does an exceptional job I make a point to tell others. On a scale from 1 to 10 he gets a 10, easy.
For what ever this worth I hope someone in HG management sees this and thanks him for a job well done and making HG stand above the rest!
Michael Allen Talbot
Appleton, WI USA
Best Support in the Industry
I have been using Host Gator over 5 years. I can not tell you the number of times they have helped me with situations. Even some that I don't think really had anything to do with them. I have a dedicated server with close to 80 websites on it. Whenever I have a problem, I simply send a ticket and within a very short time the problem is addressed.
A couple years ago, the servers went down due to a problem with The Planet. They did everything they could to help even though most of it was out of their control. I delt a great deal with a gentleman named Josh, who gave me advice that really saved me a lot of time and money.
Anyone interested in hosting sites can not go wrong with Host Gator.
Cumming, Georgia USA
However, to be honest, you can't be all things to all people, and HostGator is no exception. Gerard Farrell is unhappy because...
Re: Very dissapointed with hostgator!
Well, to my surprise I feel a little led on by the sales dept. I purchased the business plan at 2:15 today and requested my plan to be canceled at 2:40 - did I set a new record? lol..
Before purchasing my plan I spoke with three different sales people on your chat system and was made to believe I would get all of my domains transfered for free, along with databases and files, etc..! Not the case as I found out.
I'm not trying to blame anyone, I should've read the plan more carefully, but also, the sales dept should also know what there selling.
When chatting with the hostgator sales dept. I clearly stated what plan I wanted to purchase and how many domains and databases I needed transfered.Watch how HostGator handles this complaint
Excellent Website Uptime
Hardware in servers are subject to aging effect while software programs are prone to virus attack. Even if there's absolutely no hardware or software defects, a server may still require occasional reboots upon hardware / software upgrade or for maintenance reasons.
These undeniable facts make no honest hosting services dare to guarantee 100% website uptime, including HostGator, who is renowned for its capability to maintain superior uptime.
Taking a step further to set your mind at ease, HostGator promises you a 99.9% uptime on server + network. Meaning, if they fail to keep your website up and running 99.9% of the time, they'll compensate you by giving out one month of credit on your account, provided the downtime is not caused by you on your end.
We switched to Host Gator because our last host was getting worse and worse. Our site was frequently down and the old host techs kept telling me there was no problem. We have a business and can't afford for our site to be down. Night and day difference between what I had and Host Gator. To my knowledge the site has never been down since we switched to Host Gator and it's a faster connection.
Host Gator's cpanel is light years ahead of my last host. It is a hugely useful cpanel. I especially like the Awstats. It not only gives you all sorts of traffic statistics for your site, but it also shows 404 link errors and other such errors. Adding subdomains and other such stuff is a breeze.
I've only called support once. They answered right away and fixed the problem right away. The problem was some annomus ftp was using up my bandwidth. The tech blocked them and I've had no problems since.
Garden Valley, CA USA
Hostgator: Extremely Reliable
In the few months that I've had with Hostgator as my host, I've never been let them. If there were any indications of downtime, I haven't had any. This may be because the websites that I have aren't huge, nor are the resources that I take up. I pay about $10/month for hosting, and I have several websites so it's quite a deal. The customer service is responsive and you do get your questions answered. All in all, I would recommend Hostgator to friends and family.
San Carlos, CA USA
High-Speed Page Loading
I couldn't agree more with Paul on the page loading speed:
The graph don't lie!
Please look at the attached graph, and see if you can tell when I moved to Hostgator. It is a capture direct from my Google Webmaster Tools account.
Edit: I should have listed the website, for anyone interested.
Deland, FL USA
The first couple of web hosts I used sucked at their web page loading speed. The last one was pretty fast. But when I switch over to HostGator, my website loads even faster.
How long did your browser take to load this content-intensive web page just now?
Let's see how fast this web page (i.e. website) loads in 3 different locations using Pingdom.com:
As this website is hosted on HostGator's server in Provo, Utah, USA, end users who access this page in Dallas, Texas will apparently experience faster web page load time at 0.98 secs (as shown in Figure 5 above) because the distance between both locations is only 1198 Miles / 1928 Km.
Distance between end users in New York City and this website server is about 2188 Miles / 3522 Km, so it takes slightly longer to load the page. Amsterdam users take even longer because this place is about 4992 Miles / 8034 Km away from Provo, Utah, USA.
Is such page load speed considered fast?
If you use a low-speed hosting server to run web page of this size (about 1.4 MB) that contains more than 8,500 words with 50+ small and large images, your end users can take anywhere from 20 - 60 seconds to load the page (depending on where they view your page). You'll drive them nuts.
So, taking only less than 3 seconds in about 5000 miles away to load a page of this size is indeed very fast.
Okay, why don't we test using www.diehardwebhosting.com/hostgator/customer-reviews.htm which is a normal page size of about 18 KB instead so that you can get a more realistic idea of how fast a HostGator's server can run?
You see that? It takes only less than 1 second to load a normal web page even in the faraway Amsterdam, Netherlands. That's because all servers in Hostgator are running constantly at 100 Mbps. Other web servers may not offer such a speed or are running on burstable rather than constant speed.
Apart from the server speed itself, overall size of the page and distance between hosting server and end users, factors like network traffic volume at the time visitor loads the page, number of redirects, type of browser used, and quantity and size of special scripts used (e.g. java, perl, asp) etc can also affect your page loading speed (and overall performance grade).
Oh, how fast a web page loads also relies partly on individual's network bandwidth.
Although most people nowadays subscribe to broadband (cable modem, DSL, T-1) service, there's still a 1% (about 16 million online users) who for some reasons stick with their run-of-the-mill 56k dial-up or even lower network service.
This could mean that if your server functions at low network speed, yet on the user end they're using the low speed network, then you can imagine how frustrated that person will be. As slow as 120-second loading time is no stranger to them.
On the other hand, if your website runs constantly at 100 Mbps on HostGator's fully-optimized high-speed server, slow-network users at least won't need to wait too long, probably around 15 - 20 seconds (big bonus to them!).
If you can make that 16 million users happy, you're destined to make even more money than those who are hosting their websites on a low-speed server.
You Pay Less, But You Get More!
Bandwidth controls your website traffic volume and disk space governs the size of your website. When you got unlimited bandwidth, you can drive as many visitors as you wish to your website without hitting the ceiling. When you got unlimited disk space, you can grow your online business from a 3-page mini-site to a 500-page website, or even larger.
Oh, not forgetting you can host as many profitable websites as you deem fit because there's simply no limit.
You might wonder, bandwidth and disk space are finite commodities, how can they be unlimited?
The 'unlimited' simply means unmetered — they don't keep tabs on how much you use. You can use 10 GB or 100 GB for all they care, so long as you don't violate their terms of service that could have posed problems to other users (if you're using the cheapest shared hosting plan).
Honestly, it's unlikely of anyone to break their terms of service, unless you're a renegade. It's just like you're driving on the road and you observe traffic rule carefully, traffic police won't come to you. Simple as that.
I've been hosting this website via HostGator's shared hosting plan since 2009 and until now I never had any problem with their terms of service. However, it's good to read carefully their terms of service before you buy.
Hosting Multiple Domains on Hostgator
I have been with hostgagor for 5 years now, after moving from a much more expensive Australian Host (who hosted from US anyway) and have been delighted with them. As a web developer and professional and personal blogger I host over 20 domains on the one account (.com and .au) and multiple sub-domains (for myself, clients, friends and a couple of non-profits). A few have Google ratings of 5-7 which indicates how much traffic they get and I am only on their baby plan.
If there has been any downtime at all since have been with them it must have been so short as neither myself or clients have noticed it and I am working with my sites for hours each day.
The only times I have needed to contact customer support has been for problems I have created myself and the matter has been dealt with speedily through their online chat. The operators have all been friendly, very helpful and knowledgeable. I have helped other bloggers with their own sites hosted through various different hosts so I am confident that I have chosen the best.
PS - I am not a hosting reseller for Hostgator so I have nothing to gain from writing such a glowing review.
Good "Traffic Spikes" Absorber
Going back to the "unlimited bandwidth", few other web hosts also offer this same benefit, but their unmetered bandwidth may not be large enough to absorb "traffic spikes", depending on the number of websites hosted on the same server (shared hosting plan) and the bandwidth alloted to each individual site.
I've seen way too many people having their websites and accounts suspended for introducing high traffic volume (e.g. 1000 visitors per day) on some days with other web hosts. I do also experience roughly that kind of traffic surge few days in a month but all my websites remain active and operational without a single suspension issue with HostGator.
Catering to Your Business Growth
Are you going to stay "small" with your business for good?
I don't think so. You definitely will expand your business in the near future so that you can make more money online, right? As such, shared hosting may no longer satisfy your needs. You need to upgrade!
But what if your small-scale hosting provider only offers you shared hosting service and nothing else? You'll have to transfer your websites to another company that offers better hosting solutions which provide more powerful resources for your business growth.
To be frank, transferring 1 or 2 websites is no big deal. But if you got 5 or 10 or even more websites to move, I tell you, it's gonna take you heck lot of time as you need to backup your files and re-set up your sites at the new host — familiarize with the new control panel, configure FTP, set nameservers, add domains, set up sub-domains, set up email accounts, perform redirects, check scripts and links, and lots of other tests to make sure all your websites are working properly in the new hosting environment.
It's time-consuming and tedious. What's worse is that if something goes wrong in the process, all your websites may go down and that's it to your income for that few days of downtime.
You don't have to move your websites, go through the troubles and hassles and worry about incurring website downtime if you stick with HostGator because this company has a shared hosting plan for your small business start-up, then a virtual private server (VPS) hosting plan to take your business from small to medium size, and finally, a dedicated server hosting plan for you to build an even larger-scale business.
Why make yourself suffer when there's a good web host having everything planned out for you already?
Quick Problem Recovery
Let's face it. You can't expect a web hosting service or any other services to stay problem-free. It's just not practically possible. Problems will always surface in one way or another. It's the attitude of the support team and the speed of recovery that make the difference.
In my past several years with HostGator, I merely experienced slow page loading once in a blue moon and occasional downtimes from as short as 5 seconds to as long as 25 mins due to battery change, file system check (FSCK) or other server updates. I'm fine with all these maintenance works because they're necessary, essential and understandable.
But on Aug 2, 2013, an unexpected outage broke out at their data center in Provo, Utah during a network maintenance. Some servers went down.
Unfortunately, my server was among the down servers and so all my websites went down for about 17 hours. That was a pretty bad downtime for the first time I was with HostGator.
But come to think of it, firstly, they took only 17 hours to settle a disastrous outage, secondly, comparing to my last web host (one of the leading web hosting providers) whom I had my websites gone down for almost 3 weeks (496 hours) due to a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack, the downtime caused in HostGator is so much lower.
Moreover, this experience could further strengthen HostGator's skills in handling similar serious outages in future and thus, shortening the downtime dramatically. Just like our body's immune system that always grows stronger and becomes more vigilant after a viral infection.
In view of that, I have absolute confidence that HostGator will perform even better than ever after that incident and continue to strive for what they have always been doing in the past — keeping excellent uptime.
Oh, I almost forgot to tell you that HostGator has credited my account with one month of hosting as compensation (they honor their uptime guarantee). Although this compensation cannot fully make up for my revenue loss during the incident, it's better than nothing. And what's even more commendable is that they never attempt to shirk responsibility and save their ass, unlike some dirty web hosts out there who will never admit their fault and honor their promise.
Thanks Security Team
Over the past couple of weeks I've had a very unique security problem with one of my sites. I would like to thank Security Administrators Tom J. and Adam D. for taking the time early on to start pinpointing the cause of the problem.
I'd also like to give a special thanks to Security Administrator Patrick H. for all the time he's spent over the last 48 hours looking into it. It was his dedication to my ticket and taking the extra steps that (hopefully) helped me put the final nail in the coffin of my problem.
Sarasota, FL USA
Well Done HG
I wish all hosting companies were as efficient & effective as Hostgator.com
This morning I reported a phishing site on one of their shared servers.
I reported it at 07.46 am UK time
They replied at 08.05 that they were investigating
At 0807 I saw the phishing pages on the site had been removed and the legitimate content on the site was still working
It is so refreshing to report a breach of TOS & it get immediately dealt with, with none of the usual crap you get from several well known hosting companies who try to pass the buck to the client
Every malware spreader or hacked site or phishing site I have ever reported to Hostgator has always been dealt with quickly & efficiently. I think the longest that I have ever seen a dodgy site active after reporting it, was 1 hour.
10-15 minutes is a brilliant response time, especially bearing in mind that it is the middle of the night in Texas USA where you are based
That is one of the reasons why I use them for my hosting and always recommend them to others. Good customer service and a willingness to help
Transparency in System Status
HostGator always has a thread dedicated for notification of network/server status. Because of that, I can always update myself on when my websites will be down for what sort of server maintenance so that I can take steps or measures to minimize the impact on my end or at least won't get shocked over my website downtime if there is.
That's how I was able to know the downtime of my websites in the outage on Aug 2 and claim compensation against their uptime guarantee when my websites' uptime go below 99.9%.
Many other reputable web hosts do not have such a thread. That's why their customers have essentially no clue as in how long their websites have gone down and when their websites will be up. They have to rely on third party software or other means to track their website uptime/downtime and use the data to file a claim for compensation if they need to.
Comprehensive Online Video Help
You can self-help yourself with their exceptionally comprehensive how-to tutorial most of the time. The tutorials are all video demos, which makes it faster and easier for visual non-techies like us to learn quickly. Just monkey see, monkey do.
High Security Level
They're always improving to furnish their users with the highest security level possible so that we can gain peace of mind for we know our confidential info and identity kept in their super tight virtual security locker will not have a chance to leak out.
Months ago they implemented another new security system that will hold our data in an even more closely guarded manner.
No-no, it's not those simple security alert systems prompting you to change your password once every few months. That's history and far from what HostGator is currently using.
It works by helping you to generate a highly secured password that no matter how clever the hackers are, they will never be able to crack the code. Of course, the system can also work with you to set the password to your liking, and you'll get the instant advice from the system on how secure your password is.
In short, you can do it in auto, or manual mode. Up to you.
They'll even perform random check on your password and if they feel your password can easily get hacked, they'll notify you and even "force" you to set a more secured password unless you use their password generator to help you come up with one that will definitely rip off the hackers' hair.
Now I feel even safer having my personal data with them. And the best part is, the new system costs higher, but they never let us bear any additional cost.
Another thing worth mentioning is, besides their own weekly data backup, they have also installed a manual data backup gadget on their control panel whereby you can fully back up your entire account (including all files in your home directory, FTP accounts, email accounts, add-on/sub/parked domains, databases, mailing lists, everything that is setup with the account) so that you can quickly restore your hosting account with ease in the event of data loss.
HostGator has gone green!
Yes, while other web hosting services are still "dancing cha-cha" on whether they should throw in thousands of dollars in saving the environment, HostGator has already leaped ahead of them by buying renewable energy to power their servers. Again, their new investment doesn't incur extra load on our shoulders.
Imagine running your small businesses online making money with your websites while protecting the environment against pollution from fumes coming out of gas-powered generators. How nice of it to kill two birds with one stone! Don't you just love it?
This is very good news and makes me proud to be working with Host Gator. I will recommend your company even more highly now.
Carmel, CA USA
I'm not happy with my current hosting provider, and have been looking to move when my contract is up. There are 1000's of hosting companies out there, and Hostgator made it to my top 5 list based on features and price. The fact that Hostgator has gone green in a big way makes it the winner! Expect a hosting order from me within the next month.
Robert D. Reite
Exeter, PA USA
Delighted by the green hosting, fellahs. Very proud to be using Hostgator for all my websites. Keep up the good work!
Verdun, QC Canada
I've always love host gator. Never had on ounce of trouble and support has been awesome.
Jay Jay Jagelka
Carmel, IN USA
Like the users above, I'm one who also supports green life since I myself have been a vegetarian since 1994. Come join us. Play a part and help minimize the impact on global warming. And you'll enjoy HostGator Green Web Hosting, like us.
45 Days Money Back Guarantee
While most hosting companies / providers offer you 30-day money back guarantee only, HostGator promises you a longer 45-day full refund risk-free protection.
Frankly speaking, you won't even want to ask for refund once you start using their web hosting service. That's why they confidently give you a longer guarantee period that not many hosting companies dare to offer.
Let me share with you how I signed up with them the first time, just to give you an idea.
I knew they offer 45-day money back guarantee. But I still felt the pinch of paying about $200 up front for a two-year package (well, you can opt for the one-year plan but two-year plan saves more money). So I chose the monthly package to test-drive their system first. Yes, it costs more but I was thinking for a few more bucks per month I get to gain peace of mind, why not? Moreover, I'll be getting back the monthly fee if it sucks.
Well, after that one-month test-drive, they blew me away! I then signed up with them for 2 years straight. They have a 3-year plan (I can save more with that) but I feel more comfortable with the 2-year contract.
You might think that why not they offer free hosting so that you can test the water without having to pay some fees up front.
Sounds like a good idea but it can unfairly pose annoying problems to website owners who are serious business people. That's because free hosting tends to attract spammers and crooks. You know these people... they're "proficient" in spamming the network. Spamming not only can overload the server and defunct the server's ability to speedily process users' requests, but also can cause the server IP to get blacklisted.
Imagine when you're on a shared hosting package and your websites are hosted on the same server with these bad "neighbors", you'll get implicated and your websites may get blocked or even crash.
It's not fair to the legitimate and innocent website owners.
That's why in order to ensure fair play for all their customers and uphold reliability of their shared servers at all times, Hostgator is very strongly against the idea of free hosting. You can now be sure that most, if not all your neighbors are responsible website owners, just like you who are serious about doing business and not spamming.
As for Designing Website...
You definitely need a website builder to help you build web pages once you have your web hosting in place. HostGator has its in-built website builder in store for you.
I've tried it. Although it took me some time to familiarize myself with the tools and functions inside the builder (because it's new to me), overall I still feel it's pretty easy to use once you get the hang of it.
All you need to do is to pick a suitable template, type in the title, edit the header, drag and drop your graphics, copy and paste your content, and boom, your web page is out! Here's a page that I created with the builder features spending only few minutes.
If you're not a person who loves hard coding or you're not HTML savvy, then this is the kind of website builder embedded in a web hosting service you'll definitely love. In fact, most user-friendly in-built website builders (like the one in HostGator) come in a simple format so as not to confuse people who are not code savvy.
However, as in all such embedded web-based site builders, the only con is you can't manually edit the layout of the template to suit your specific needs, unless you meddle with the HTML code.
For example, template A may have the color combo you like but you prefer to have the design layout of template B and the overall feel of template C. It would be nice if you can combine the 3 templates into one but usually you can't. The limitation is there. Signing up with other web hosting companies won't solve this issue.
Although the software developer keeps adding new design templates every now and then, making up to hundreds of templates, there's a chance that each template could have already been used by hundreds of other web hosting members. Your site design may end up clashing with several others.
If you want your website to look unique yet you don't want to get involved in any coding, the only way you can do is to get a standalone website designing software instead of the in-built designing software. But if you're not so concerned about the uniqueness of your site design but focusing more on the information aspect, then the in-built website builder should suffice.
Oh, I need to remind you this. When you want to use HostGator's in-built website builder, make sure you've already linked your domain name to their hosting server or you won't be able to access the builder application.
Anyway, whatever issues you encounter, you can always check with their 24/7 support team via email, live chat or phone.
Last but not least, I heard they're running a 20% discount off all their hosting plans now. They rarely offer such a special deal. So, please make your decision fast or you may lose the discount ANYTIME from now.
3 Years +
I have used hostgator for three years without a single problem that wasn't resolved within a few minutes and my website has never been down due to a server outage. I have multiple websites with them and they all function amazingly well on a shared server. I use both Moodle and Joomla and have never had a serious problem.
Before I found hostgator, I went through 15 different hosts. Some of these were supposedly top quality hosts and had incredible reviews. There was always something that didn't work, and I was always the one that was blamed for it. If there was a restriction and Moodle didn't work correctly, they said it was because I misconfigured something.
It was only after moving to hostgator, that I began to realize it had nothing to do with my installations, it was the limitations of the servers I was on. Everything works perfectly in my installations at hostgator and functions are not blocked because of overly restrictive security policies.
The support is always quick, and friendly. I have never had a rude response yet. Although, the Live Chat probably isn't the way to go to get more in depth problems fixed. I have found that I get much more in depth answers when using the ticket system. Live chat is probably good for rebooting your server on a VPS or Dedicated account, or dealing with a billing issue, if those ever arise.
For me to stay with a host for more than 6 months is unheard of. Typically, what happens is that you find out the quality of the host after the introductory period as things start to fall apart. I was very satisfied with my previous host until a year in I started to receive hourly alerts that my website was down. They denied the issue, and I went to hostgator. I'm very glad that I did. I've gone through over 15 hosts. I used to tell my wife, that it seems that you just have to move hosts every year. They are always good at first and then they go downhill quickly.
I've read many of the negative reviews when looking for information on here and judging by some of them, it is not the fault of hostgator because they usually aren't given a chance to correct things. Things go wrong when you are hosting a website. You have to take responsibility for your site, make personal backups and monitor your usage. If you aren't willing to do this, fine, but that is your responsibility. Don't blame your host for things that are out of their control. They make it possible to make backups, and if your website is too big to do that, you can still backup through ftp.
Personally, I blame hosts for having server issues, rude service, and not being transparent enough to understand what is going on with your website. I understand there is a certain responsibility that falls to me as well. Your CPanel will show you the resources you are currently using. If you need to move to a bigger box, that will become evident as long as you pay attention.
Already gone through several hosting (the last disaster to Dreamhost) in several countries, came to the HostGator with a little afraid of this look, no no I needed a lot of research to see the good references.
Have an account, my website hosting, website customers, several blogs of friends and whenever I needed support I was very well attended and very fast.
Still recommended as the Hostgator hosting company in which I am responsible for technology, are nine different sites.
I still have another account for a most special project I want to put on "Site Promotion July" that in one week passed the milestone of 7mil visits and 30,000 views.
In total I have over 40 sites on Hostgator and never let me down, I keep all of them managed by the 99.8% uptime with Pingdom
Sorry for my English.
Renan Altendorf Bernodi
São Paulo, Brasil
Thanks to Support for the SSL
Many thanks to all the HostGator employees. I have been with HostGator going on 2 years I believe maybe more, as a reseller. Everytime I needed support it was there. This occasion was no different in most respects. Usually in support one would think only one tech deals with an issue. This time however more than one did & it created some problems getting my SSL done. In the end though, the minor problems were outweighed by the outcome. The SSL was installed and I am sure the fee paid for the install was not enough. The problem came as 2 techs took the same task seconds apart. They both created the same paperwork but had different codes. By the time I got the codes there were no less than 10 emails of different things for me. I had to do the rest by phone as it was confusing to everyone. I then dealt with 3 more techs on the phone.
As confused an issue as it would seem, the SSL is now in place and the sites 2 storefronts work better than ever. They even pass the new IE7 browser!!
Those wanting to know how good HostGator is should remember this. It may have been a flaw that too many took the same job to do but that is way better than not enough trying. That only goes to show they try to get the stuff done and sometimes over a hard to do basis. This job had to take it's toll on a few there. Again Thanks HostGator Employees!!!
Larry B. Overton
Chicago, IL USA
Upgrade from VPS to Dedicated Server
Hey guys, Ive been an all round customer of Hostgator since my shared hosting days. Ive worked through their shared hosting to reseller to vps all the way to our current dedicated.
I got a call today from HostGator, which surprised me to hear that they built the wrong dedicated server than which I had ordered. I'm a bit frustrated of course but being a business owner, I know mistakes happen. I am happy to see HostGator contact me to inform me of the mistake, rather than me confronting the issue. It shows that HostGator can admit to their own faults which I honor.
I'm praying we can get this fixed even quicker so our company can get back to work asap.
Will let you know the final results when we are running on what we ordered.
Cody, WY USA
I want to say that HostGator took care if the human made mistakes very well. I really appreciate how HostGator can admit to a mistake, and strive very diligently to fix it.
I got a call from HostGator tonight because one of their employees had taken the time to investigate my previous post above (Which had been weeks ago). Doug wanted to make sure that everything was resolved and working correctly as requested. I explained to him that multiple staff members had contacted me seeking to offer help and assistance regarding our standard dedicated server.
I want to say that I am very happy with the service I have received from HostGator and plan to be a customer for a very, very long time. As I know that no company is perfect, I do appreciate HostGator trying
Thank you both Peter and Doug.
Cody, WY USA
Re: get past hg using fake review sites
All I can say, is Ive tried the following in the past
Super Green Host
Let me tell you, not every web hosting provider is perfect, but having the feeling of comfort because a company stands by their promises and guarantees is fantastic. HostGator provides just that, and more.
You wont be dissatisfied.
Cody, WY USA
Longtime HostGator client still happy
I had a reseller account with HG for about 3 years and have recently upgraded to a dedicated server.
All in all I'm very happy with HG. Tech support is generally very good and reasonably fast - having the live chat capability is a big plus for less complex problems. There's a pretty good community of support available on the forums and HG is not afraid to post bad reviews - to me that says they care what people think.
The only major issue I've had with my hosting in the last year was an emergency drive replacement that resulted in basically 4 days of downtime while the RAID array was rebuilt - that was really difficult to explain to clients and I think that could have been handled better, possibly by scheduling the rebuiliding at night, which did help when they decided to do that on the last day. However, this was an isolated incident.
I still recommend HG to clients who don't go through my hosting company. I have no qualms about those recommendations.
Fort Collins, CO USA
HostGator has been so good of a provider. I am just sad I did not know about them when I first got my site on the web in May of 2006. I had to suffer 2 years with Yahoo! Google has gotten into the web hosting game and I think they too will be not much better than Yahoo and wont be able to compete against professional web hosting companies like Hostgator.
Greenville, SC USA
HostGator: friend also to those ignorant of web wisdom
Well well well! A week ago, I again reached the "one more year at HostGator" mark, and as is my custom, I post an update in this thread.
My priority timeline looks like this:
Two years ago, all I wanted was a personal website - and HostGator met the need.
One year ago, I began hosting an active forum - and HostGator met and filled that need.
This coming year, I hope to upgrade my personal webpage to a video showcase of my vlogs and become active in web entertainment. This will be a rather big step from merely interacting with my audience on YouTube. Thankfully, I'm glad I can trust the consistency of HostGator to meet this need as well.
Thank you HG and staff for yet another year of great hosting! This smilie says it best where words fail:
Re: HostGator: friend also to those ignorant of web wisdom
Well folks, I'm beginning my 4th consecutive year with HostGator. As is my habit, I leave a review on my thread here every year. (Happy new year 2009 btw.)
And it appears that something else is quickly becoming a habit: adding more domains to my HostGator hosting. I've begun another website, this time relating to live video broadcasts/streaming, and HostGator has worked like a charm. In fact, I didn't contact the HostGator's support group all year in 08 (sorry guys, I've missed you).
I'd readily suggest you begin a habit too: start hosting at HostGator. Over the past couple of years I've found this host to be tried, true, and trusted.
Thank you HG for taking care of the smallest details so that my hosting experience runs smooth as silk!
THANK YOU Hostgator
I have been a customer for a few years and have just cancelled my account. Not because of the great service you guys provided to me but i had to make some budget cuts due to the economy. I found hosting on my friends site and am getting all my sites hosted for a fraction of the cost. I do think your prices are more than fair and your services are top notch. I wouldnt rule out returning if things pick up for me in the future. It has been a great experience being a customer of hostgator. For now THANK YOU, and best of luck in your professional endeavors.
Douglassville. Pa USA
I love it here!
I'm a new site owner & Hostgator has been really patient & friendly with answering my questions. I'm also very pleased with how fast my site is, I have friends far bigger than I in the blogging world & a lot of their sites load pretty slowly. So far very pleased I chose HG as my 1st hosting company & hope to grow big enough to need to upgrade my plan
Outstanding, exceptional technical support
I have all of my clients switching to HostGator. Your technical support is simple outstanding.
With all the technicians you have on staff, I have yet to chat with one who was not willing to go beyond plain hosting support.
Your technicians have been willing to go beyond that and take a look at specific issues with my WordPress installations, even when they aren't directly related to hosting.
And your crew solved a problem where a hacker had attached a shell to my site and was feeding unsavory links from it. I had previously paid a WP design company several hundreds of dollars to address this for me and it still wasn't done right. But you guys solved in in just a few minutes.
Dr George C. Huang
Drew Sc Best Live Chat Operator
Drew Sc helped me for more than 30minutes, answering my questions immediately, and also had great knowledge. Usually I would need to dumb things down to make an operator understand what I'm saying, but with Drew he knows what I'm talking about. This is what I call premium support service.
Oceanside, CA USA
I come from webs.com and was pretty happy with them, however I decided to open a forum and moved fully to a new host altogether (Webs doesn't support php and their forum alternative is really bad) I decided to go with HostGator because they seemed the most affordable. I was with them for 2 weeks now and was very happy. its absolutely amazing in a sense that its fast and it didn't shutdown for maintenance every month or so (which was a common problem with Webs). Another thing is support, its amazing at HostGator, I was able to get my questions answered quickly (which it took forever at webs). But the best part yet, is that I was able to get all of those amazing features for about the same price as webs (thats including more memory, bandwidth, sub domains etc)
Bellevue, WA USA
Host Gator Are Excellent
I have used Host Gator for a multitude of websites over the years and their service never ceases to amaze me. All packages are excellent value for money and are backed by supreme uptime and speedy and knowledgeable customer service; whenever I have a problem - which is a rare occurrence - or question, a live rep is generally online to help me out instantly. In the cases where one isn't online, I only usually have to wait about half an hour or so before I receive a reply to my e-mail.
Their shared plans afford you a fair amount of space and bandwidth and their policies are such that you could host almost any type of site you wanted with them (save for illegal sites, but that goes without saying). I have run media heavy websites with them before and have never really had to spend over $25 a month to support myself.
All in all, my experience with Host Gator has been an overwhelmingly positive one and I would recommend them to anybody looking to run a small to medium-sized website. You will not be disappointed.
Host Gator is the Best!
I have been a reseller with Hostgator for about 9 years with a small reseller account and I have always been treated like a VIP by their support teams who have gone out of their way to help me with things I needed help with, above and beyond what a support team would normally do. This includes over the phone or with their live chat. There are many web servers out there but I wouldn't recommend any one of them except Hostgator.
Springfield, CO USA
HostGator Hosting Company is AWESOME!
After about 15 years of experience with hosting companies, I finally found the BEST Customer Service, and it's from HOSTGATOR! I'm fairly savy when it comes to the internet. But there are some things I need to rely upon from a hosting company. One for sure it the ability to talk to a live person when a problem pops up. Hostgator provides 24/7 people service. They are available for general questions and security issues. With all the new PCI requirements and problems imposed upon merchants from the credit card companies, it's a relief to know the Server Admins at Hostgator are there whenever I call! I truly appreciate their help, kindness and understanding when I call. Thank you HOSTGATOR, you are AWESOME!
North Palm Springs, CA USA
Promising Web Host
registration was easy and straight forward.
its amazing how chat technicians resolved 160 customers in 20 min and my thanks to Michael who was really nice to help me on authorization.
account authorization was really fast, after a 2 min call with a nice lady in ext 1010 my site was up and running in no time, my thanks to her too.
server is fast, control panels are nice and user friendly.
couldn't ask for more, keep up the good work.
Mohsen Sadeghi Gol (Mike)
Outstanding Service From HostGator
I have been a HostGator customer for a number of years. Up until recently I have had two shared business accounts there, and have always been impressed by the service. Heck I was only paying ~$30 a month, but whenever I needed anything from the support group I was always made to feel like HostGator's biggest customer.
I just recently acquired a dedicated server for a new site (which will hopefully justify it in the next couple of months ). I was a little nervous about making the move, mainly because I have never managed anything other then some early Windows servers back in my "hands on" days at work.
The HostGator support & transfer team, along with the GREAT video tutorials HostGator makes available, made the move a snap. I spent a week or so going through the tutorials and familiarizing myself with my server and WHM (the managemnet interface which I had never used). When it came time for the move the HG transfer team was outstanding to work with. Immediately after the move I had a few questions regarding some standard practices on my server setup, and the support team was more than helpful.
HostGator just ROCKS. From the stable infrastructure, to the great equipment and affordable service, to one of the best support teams I have ever had the pleasure of working with. I am definitely looking forward to a long term partnership with HostGator as my business grows, and would recommend them to anyone!
Lake Forest, CA USA
Host Gator Still the Best Shared Host for The Money
I've been using Host Gator for about 6 months and it is the best shared host for the money.
Host Gator offers all of the services & software you need to run a professional site and their customer service is second to none.
Host Gator live chat customer service simply rocks. They have knowledgeable people online. They have always answered my questions right away and accurately.
I will keep using Host Gator. I will upgrade to a dedicated server once my business demands it.
Host Gator Rocks!
Paul D. Guyon
Traverse City, Michigan USA
OMG ... Amazing
Well I was having some issues within my WHMCS Licence and with my SSL.
The SSL issue was resolved via several people.
And with my WHMCS Licence I was speaking with "Jonathan Ma" - I must say I was extremly impressed at how the issue was handled and the matter was resolved quickly. Also, he kept his word by saying when he was going to update my ticket with a note so I knew exactly what was going to happen, it was done within minutes.
As a result of Jonathan Ma's support I have upgraded my Reseller account from the Aluminum to the Silver - Completly bypassing the Copper plan.
Thanks heaps Jonathan Ma, keep up the great work you
Dee Why, NSW Australia
Well after a few years now with hostgator, I have to say I could not expect more in terms of customer support or satisfaction. My French Property site has been rarely out of action in all that time.
The support team is A1. I am so pleased to have used them for their VPS hosting. Rarely have any problems not been resolved in minutes.