SiteGround vs Bluehost vs Hostgator vs Dreamhost vs Inmotion vs GreenGeeks vs Godaddy vs Hostwinds * Pros & Cons for 7 Top Web Hosts

Pros & Cons for 8 of the Top Web Hosting Services

Browse by Category
SiteGround Hosting
Bluehost Hosting
HostGator Hosting
DreamHost Hosting
Inmotion Hosting
GreenGeeks Hosting
HostWinds Hosting
GoDaddy Hosting

Below are the top 3 reviews with pros & cons for each of these web hosting services. You will find side by side comparisons & answers to common questions. New to web hosting? Jump to the glossary to learn webhosting jargon.  

Table of Contents

SiteGround Hosting

SiteGround Hosting
Siteground-Intro

Launched in 2004, Siteground now hosts about 2 million domains, and has around 500 employees. They offer 3 levels of shared hosting plans: Startup, GrowBig, and GoGeek. They also offer premium hosting services including cloud and dedicated.

From an overall quality point of view, Siteground appears to be the gold standard against which other hosting services are compared. This page will take that same approach for the comparison sections.

One quick example: Siteground has developed a reputation for above average website speed and performance. They have developed a tool they call SuperCacher as one of the components that makes this possible. So you will find web hosting review sites using Siteground as the control to compare against when testing the speed of other web hosting services.

Siteground is one of 3 web hosts recommended by wordpress.org, along with Dreamhost and Bluehost. That is high praise coming from WordPress, the open source content management software used by 40.5% of the top 10 million websites (ref Wikipedia). 

So whether you are planning to use WordPress or not,  SiteGround, Dreamhost, and Bluehost are well worth considering as a trusted source for high quality web hosting. 

Especially since they are all mainstream web hosts that don’t charge the huge premium often found at so called “managed wordpress” hosting services.

Although your ultimate choice can depend on the many factors discussed on this page, Siteground comes in as my top overall recommendation. 

Here are some common questions asked about Siteground hosting, with answers from digital.com.

does siteground offer staging? (via cpanel)

Yes, SiteGround offers staging via its cPanel control panel. It’s available for free for WordPress and Joomla users on the GrowBig plan. SiteGround also offers a straightforward tutorial on how to use their staging. Staging enables you to try out changes to your website design and functionality without the changes going live. Your current site is saved and secure during this process.

is siteground good for wordpress?

SiteGround is one of only 3 hosts worldwide recommended by the WordPress organization. That recommendation is based on SiteGround offering a technology environment that is specifically optimized for WordPress.

And from wpbeginner.com:

SiteGround is one of the most popular and highest rated hosting providers in the WordPress community. They provide unique in-house WordPress speed and security solutions to make your site as fast and secure as possible. They are known for the best 24/7 support in the industry which is why they’re an official ‘WordPress’ recommended hosting provider. This is also why we use SiteGround for hosting the WPBeginner website. SiteGround features include automatic upgrades, daily backups, built-in WP caching, free CDN, free SSL, one-click staging and GIT version control. They are also one of the few companies offering location specific hosting with 6 data centers in USA, Europe, Asia, and Australia.

Now let’s see what some of the top web hosting review sites are listing as pros and cons for Siteground (and for the other web hosts further down…)

Top 3 SiteGround Reviews
* Pros & Cons

$ 6
99
Per Month (Startup)

SiteGround Pricing
  • Pros: Super fast servers: All SiteGround servers are highly optimized for speed; They use Google Cloud platform for all new customers which is one of the fastest platforms on the market; Top Notch Customer Support: Their customer support is amazing to say the least; They offer 24/7 phone, live chat, and ticket based support; Free CDN and SSL: They offer instant setup of Cloudflare’s free CDN and free SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt; Multiple Server Locations: They have data centers in three continents. You can choose the location you prefer during signup.

    Cons: Limited Storage: Their plans come with fixed storage. However, this storage is quite large, and if you are just starting out, then you will most likely never need extra storage; Higher fee for monthly billing: The hosting service gets expensive if you choose monthly billing; But if you sign up for a longer billing period, then you’ll get bigger discount and a lower rate; They offer a 30-day money-back guarantee anyway, so it’s a good idea to choose a longer billing period when you sign up.

    Reviewer: wpbeginner.com

  • Pros: Excellent uptime: SiteGround has some of the best availability figures around (nearly 100%); High-speed hosting: Because of the hardware they use (e.g. SSD disks) and the software solution (e.g. SG Optimizer and HTTP/2), they offer above-average speeds; Easy and intuitive to use: The system is easy to use; Excellent support and assistance: SiteGround offers a very complete level of customer care; Its tutorials and guides are also high quality; Server location: When you open your account with SiteGround, you can choose between servers in America, Asia, Australia and Europe; Advanced features: SiteGround incorporates features that many other hosting providers don’t have. For example, staging, own caching or Git repositories. Or free integrations with CloudFlare or Let’sEnrcypt (SSL); Unlimited traffic: they don’t measure your website’s traffic; Collaborators: With SiteGround you’ll be able to create additional users with access to the different websites you manage.

    Cons: Price: Personally, I think that SiteGround offers a good price-quality ratio, but it certainly isn’t the cheapest in the market; Professional migrations: If you’d like a SiteGround support agent to take care of your website migration, you’ll be requested to pay $30 [however] there is a free WordPress migration plugin that you can use; Database size: Each SiteGround plan comes with a maximum size for each database. This will only be an issue for larger sites.

    Reviewer: websitetooltester.com

  • Pros: Free Domain Name; Free Daily Backup and Restore; Free Let’s Encrypt SSL; Solid State Drives; Free CloudFlare CDN; 99.9% Uptime; Data Centers on 3 Continents; Secure Account Isolation on Shared Servers; Shared Hosting Utilizes Linux Containers; Improved Server Restore Technology; Proactive Server Monitoring; Unique Anti Bot Artificial Intelligence System; Fast Responsive Support; Last 30 Backup Copies Available for Restore; Staging for WordPress and Joomla; Automatic WordPress Plugin Updates; SuperCacher for Increased Speed.

    Cons: Web Space Capped at 10GB – 30GB; Managed Hosting Features Require GrowBig or GoGeek Plans; Higher Renewal Costs.

    Reviewer: webhostingcat.com

  • Siteground is best if you are looking for high quality, high performance web hosting, and are less concerned about getting the cheapest possible deal.

siteground shared hosting prices

siteground details
Compare cloudways vs hostwinds web hosting.

Bluehost Hosting

Bluehost Hosting
Bluehost-Intro

Top 3 Bluehost Reviews
* Pros & Cons

$ 3
95
Per Month (Basic)

Bluehost Pricing
  • Pros: Bluehost is surprisingly easy to use; They’re surprisingly fast around the world; They’ve got High-Performance servers; Fantastic security features; They’ve got a buffet of benefits; Support responds very fast; Freebies that matter.

    Cons: Only 1 datacenter; Untrained trainees; No uptime guarantee.

    Reviewer: bitcatcha.com
  • Pros: Big brands such as Bluehost have the resources that other smaller hosting companies may not have. They can hire the best network engineers, the best customer support team leaders, and the best executive teams in the industry. They have the capital and financial resources to make large investments in their network and servers; Big brands such as Bluehost are not going to up and disappear overnight. With something like your website data where security is more important than really anything, it’s important to know that your hosting company isn’t going to just go out of business; Bluehost has done a good job making sure all the technical tools are available for customers who want them – while also maintaining a clean user interface. Their onboarding process is straightforward for new customers who may not want to see the technical tools right off the bat.

    Cons: [A big company like] Bluehost is inherently going to have lots of people trash-talking them everywhere online, even if most of their customers are more or less happy with them.

    Reviewer: shivarweb.com
  • Pros: Over 2,000,000 sites worldwide are hosted by Bluehost so the company is obviously doing something right; Offers a wide range of web hosting options; Easy to upgrade your plan to VPS or dedicated server without having to move your website; Offers free anti-spam solutions built right in cPanel; Provides you with integrated Cloudflare support; Includes several security features such as unique IPs, SSL, & SiteLock protection; Allows a 30-day (no questions asked) money-back-guarantee for all hosting plans.

    Cons: A few users have complained that tech support wait times are long and that the staff does not give customers much personal attention; Charges a fee to have your site migrated from a different hosting company to Bluehost. Most hosting companies offer this service at no cost; Bluehost only offer servers in Linux, Windows hosting is not available; You must do your own daily backups for full security.

    Reviewer: digital.com

    Note: Brad recommends the free UpdraftPlus WordPress plugin to manage daily backups. Awesome plugin, no reason to depend on a webhost for your backups. See the Web Hosting Glossary section below for details and screen shots.

bluehost shared hosting prices

bluehost details

SiteGround vs Bluehost

Often the web hosting choice comes down to 2 questions. SiteGround or Bluehost? Bluehost or SiteGround? Here is some comparison criteria to help you decide.

comparison chart (7 criteria)

Compare Their Cheapest Plans

SiteGround Hosting
Bluehost Hosting

Price (monthly)

$6.99

$3.95

Sites

1

1

Free Domain

No

Yes

Traffic (monthly)

~ 10,000 visits

unmetered

Free SSL

Yes

Yes

Out-of-the-box caching

Yes

No

Managed WordPress

Yes

No

Tap Logo’s to View Details

Below are 3 of the top questions and answers related to Siteground vs Bluehost. (source: WebSiteHostingRating.com)

is siteground better than bluehost?

In a SiteGround vs Bluehost comparison, SiteGround is better than Bluehost. Choosing between SiteGround and Bluehost is going to come down to two things. Performance and price. SiteGround offers better performance but Bluehost offers cheaper pricing.

are siteground and bluehost good for wordpress?

Both SiteGround and Bluehost are officially recommended by WordPress.org. Both come with 1-click WordPress installation, automatic WordPress updates, and built-in caching and CDN to speed up your site.

is siteground or bluehost faster?

Both Bluehost and SiteGround offer SSD drives, PHP 7, Cloudflare CDN, and built-in caching. However, SiteGround’s server infrastructure is powered by Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and is therefore faster than Bluehost.

why choose siteground over bluehost?

For more detailed comparisons, I recommend going to inlinehostblogger.com. Here are some of the things they cover with their in-depth review of Siteground vs Bluehost: 

1. Bluehost Vs SiteGround Speed Test – SiteGround is super fast.

2. Popularity – SiteGround grew its customer base four-fold in the last 5 years. Bluehost is owned by EIG…

3. Bluehost Vs SiteGround Pricing – Bluehost is cheaper in the long run. So, which SiteGround plan is the best?

4. Server Quality Test – Which hosting is better for websites with high traffic? Which Hosting Uses the Fastest Domain Nameserver?

5. Uptime Test – Do they fulfill their 99.99% uptime guarantee?

6. Security – SiteGround is safer against multiple web threats and malware. Bluehost Vs SiteGround For Beginners – Which Hosting Is Good For Beginners?

7. Bluehost Vs SiteGround – WordPress is easy with SiteGround and Bluehost. Bluehost and SiteGround are officially recommended by WordPress. So, which WordPress host is better for WordPress: SiteGround or Bluehost?

Cloud Hosting – Bluehost cloud is nothing but an extension of their shared hosting. Do you really need cloud hosting?

Which Hosting Company Offers Better Cloud Hosting? SiteGround or Bluehost?

Bluehost vs SiteGround – Which hosting uses the latest technology? Why PHP version is important?, and more about SiteGround and Bluehost’s PHP version.

How does SiteGround’s TCP 1.3  and OCSP stapling method make your website faster?

8. Customer Support
Which hosting offers better support? SiteGround’s support is A+ Support; waiting time for each host.
Bluehost’s customer support team is pathetic most of the time…

9. User Interface
SiteGround Staging Tool
Bluehost Vs SiteGround User Review
SiteGround Or Bluehost – Who’s the Best?
SiteGround is best for you and here’s why.
Bluehost vs SiteGround FAQ

Visit inlinehostblogger.com for their full SiteGround vs Bluehost review.

 

Hostgator Hosting

HostGator Hosting
Hostgator-Intro

Top 3 HostGator Reviews
* Pros & Cons

$ 2
75
Per Month (Hatchling Plan)

HostGator Pricing
  • Pros: Plenty of storage: All plans come with unlimited storage, although all your files combined should not be more than 250,000; Flexible terms: Hosting plans can be purchased on 1, 3, 6, 12, 24 or 36 months base; Many programming languages: One of the hosting providers that supports more languages. PHP, Ruby On Rails, Perl and Python are all allowed; Unmetered bandwidth: They don’t limit the traffic your site can get.

    Cons: Tricky prices and fees: Very cheap prices the first term and expensive upon renewal. $25 is charged if you need to restore from one of their backups; Constant upsells: Like many other EIG products, their backend is packed with unnecessary upsell options; Uptime could be better: They should improve their uptime. Poor backups: Unless you pay for an add-on, you have access to only 1 backup; Missing advanced features: For example, you don’t get staging areas and it doesn’t have a built-in server-side caching system; Unreliable support: At times, I found myself waiting over 30 minutes to be connected with the support team.

    Reviewer: websitetooltester.com
  • Pros: Unlimited storage & bandwidth; Free Website, Domain, MYSQL & Script Transfer; Customized firewall against DDoS attacks; Free SSL Certificate with Let’s Encrypt; 24/7/365 Support via Phone, Live Chat, and Ticket System; Up to 2.5x faster servers, Global CDN, Daily Backup & Restore, Automatic Malware Removal (HostGator's Managed WordPress Hosting only); 45 day money back & 99.9% server-uptime guarantee; HostGator uptime & speed monitoring.

    Cons: Only the Cloud & Managed WordPress plans come with the Speed, Security & Extra features; Expect some upsells along the way.

    Reviewer: websitehostingrating.com
  • Pros: Linux- and Windows-based plans both available with shared and dedicated servers; 99.9% uptime guarantee; 45-day money-back guarantee; Plesk & cPanel control panels; Free migration service; Courtesy off-site backups; Free advertising offers; 24/7 support.

    Cons: Long commitment periods – discounted prices are only available if you commit to HostGator for a few years; No Windows-based VPS hosting; No free domain registration.

    Reviewer: webhostingmedia.net

hostgator shared hosting prices

hostgator details

SiteGround vs Hostgator

Often the web hosting choice comes down to 2 questions. SiteGround or Hostgator? Hostgator or SiteGround? Here is some comparison criteria to help you decide.

comparison chart (7 criteria)

Compare Their Cheapest Plans

SiteGround Hosting
HostGator Hosting

Price (monthly)

$6.99

$2.75

Sites

1

1

Free Domain

No

Yes

Traffic (monthly)

~ 10,000 visits

unmetered

Free SSL

Yes

Yes

Out-of-the-box caching

Yes

No

Managed WordPress

Yes

No

Tap Logo’s to View Details

For detailed comparisons of SiteGround vs Hostgator, I recommend going to inlinehostblogger.com. Here are some of the things they cover with their in-depth review of Siteground vs Hostgator:

should you choose siteground over hostgator?

SiteGround Vs HostGator – Why not to choose EIG?

SiteGround Vs HostGator Comparisons:

  • Performance 
  • Uptime Report
  • Speed Test

Speed Of Sites Hosted On SiteGround and HostGator from around the world.

Server Quality Test:

  • Response time of SiteGround – 90ms
  • Response time of HostGator – 120ms

Control Panel – HostGator vs SiteGround – Free migration (not anymore)

Price, Plans, and Features
SiteGround Vs HostGator – Backup feature 

 

Dreamhost Hosting

DreamHost Hosting
Dreamhost-Intro

Top 3 Dreamhost Reviews
* Pros & Cons

$ 2
95
Per Month

Dreamhost Pricing
  • Pros: Good server performance with zero downtime; SSDs now included on shared & VPS hosting plans; DreamPress: a managed web hosting plan for WordPress sites; 97 day money back guarantee which is amazing; Allows for the hosting of unlimited domains; Recommended for tech-savvy users, programmers, & web developers; Affordable, entry-level cloud computing & VPS plans; Offers a free domain name “for life” with the company.

    Cons: In general, most plans are priced fairly high; No customer support available via phone; Live chat support only during US business hours; Difficult to use, with a confusing custom-built control panel; DreamHost is not BBB accredited.

    Reviewer: howtogetonline.com
  • Pros: Generous 97-day money-back guarantee; Free Domain and Privacy (on unlimited plan); Unlimited disk space & data transfer; Free SSD storage Fast servers (PHP7, SSD & built-in caching); Free SSL & CloudFlare CDN; DreamPress high performance WordPress hosting.

    Cons: Don't offer cPanel control panel; There's no phone support.

    Reviewer: websitehostingrating.com
  • Pros: Unlimited Data Storage; Unlimited Bandwidth; Host Unlimited Sites; Unlimited MySQL Databases; Unlimited Sub Domains; Free Domain with Whois Privacy; One Click Software Installation; Live Chat is Available (After Logging In); 100% Uptime Guarantee; WordPress Website Builder; Recommended by WordPress.org; 97 Day Money Back Guarantee; Optimized WordPress Hosting Available (Additional Fee).

    Cons: Text Based Control Panel Not Always as Intuitive; Many Features in the DreamHost Dashboard Cost Extra; Premium WordPress Hosting Requires Additional Costs; Live chat support wait times are sometimes long.

    Reviewer: webhostingcat.com

dreamhost shared hosting prices

dreamhost details
Compare inmotion vs liquidweb web hosting.

SiteGround vs Dreamhost

Often the web hosting choice comes down to 2 questions. SiteGround or Dreamhost? Dreamhost or SiteGround? Here is some comparison criteria to help you decide.

comparison chart (7 criteria)

Compare Their Cheapest Plans

SiteGround Hosting
DreamHost Hosting

Price (monthly)

$6.99

$2.95

Sites

1

1

Free Domain

No

Yes

Traffic (monthly)

~ 10,000 visits

unmetered

Free SSL

Yes

Yes

Out-of-the-box caching

Yes

No

Managed WordPress

Yes

No

Tap Logo’s to View Details

Here is a nice high level summary of the differences between SiteGround vs Dreamhost (source: webhostingcat.com): 

Advantages of SiteGround over DreamHost:

  • Includes Managed Hosting Features
  • Superior Customer Support
  • SuperCacher Technology for Faster Speed
  • Includes WordPress Starter for Easier Site Creation
  • Automated Daily Backups

Advantages of DreamHost over SiteGround:

  • Free Domain plus Privacy
  • Remixer Website Builder
  • 97 Day Money Back Guarantee
SiteGround comes out ahead in a number of key categories. I’ve had better website and email speed/performance there as opposed to DreamHost. Customer support response time has also been faster at SiteGround. And, we like that SiteGround provides cPanel as your control panel interface. DreamHost by contrast has their own text based control panel, which isn’t as intuitive to use.
 

Inmotion Hosting

Inmotion Hosting
InMotionHosting-Intro

Note: The site you are on now is hosted on Inmotion’s Nginx servers. More details on that in the Glossary below.

Top 3 Inmotion Hosting
Reviews * Pros & Cons

$ 2
49
Per Month (Lite)

InMotion Hosting Pricing
  • Pros: 90-day money-back guarantee; SSD drives on all plans; Managed WordPress hosting on all plans; Free private SSL certificate; Free no-downtime website migrations; Free automatic daily backups; BoldGrid website builder; Innovative speed technologies (SSD, PHP7, WP-CLI, CloudLinux, OptimumCache + more).

    Cons: Delayed account setup (manual verification); No CDN is included.

    Reviewer: websitehostingrating.com

    Note: Inmotion can be integrated with the free CloudFlare CDN as per their CloudFlare help file.
  • Pros: 90 day money back guarantee: InMotion Hosting offers 90 day money back guarantee, which is quite generous; Most other hosting companies only offer a 30 day guarantee; (Note: Domains are not included in the guarantee, once registered they are yours to keep and use with any other host) Free website transfer: If your site is already hosted somewhere else, InMotion Hosting will transfer it for you at no extra cost; Choose your data center location: InMotion Hosting has data centers at both East and The West coast of the United States; You can choose a data center that’s closer to your target audience; Your site will load even faster for users near those locations; SSD drive Storage: All InMotion Hosting servers use SSD drives instead of old spinning hard drives; SSD drives are way faster than the old drives which makes your website load even faster; Most web hosts don’t offer SSD storage and some charge extra for it; Free SSL Certificate: SSL is required for creating an eCommerce website, and it’s included in all InMotion Hosting plans; Typically other hosts charge $30 – $60 per year for SSL certificates.

    Cons: Phone verification: As a fraud prevention measure, InMotion Hosting asks clients to verify their purchase by phone; This can be difficult for non-US based customers; No monthly billing: Their starter plans don’t have a monthly billing option; You can pay for 1 or 2 years in advance; If you choose 2 years, then you get a larger discount; Pro plan customers can choose monthly billing, but there’s a $40 setup fee; Not the cheapest: InMotion Hosting plans are competitively priced, but they are not the cheapest in the market.

    Reviewer: wpbeginner.com

  • Pros: Max Speed Zone Technology; Business Class Hardware; UltraStack Servers; Free SSD Drives; Free Site Transfer; Unlimited Disk Space; Unlimited Data Transfer; Outstanding Customer Support; cPanel Interface; Get WordPress, Joomla, or PrestaShop Preinstalled; Over 310 Free Applications; Softaculous One-Click Application Installer; Premium Website Builder; Secure IMAP Email; Separate Account Management Login for Added Security; 90 Day Money Back Guarantee; Fast Response Time on Live Chat Support; Server and Network Upgrades Allow Up to 99.999% Uptime; DDoS Mitigation Systems; BoldGrid Plugin for Quick and Easy Professional Looking WordPress Sites; Also Access Customer Support by Skype.

    Cons: Inmotion Lite and Launch Hosting plans have a fixed number of websites allowed per account (1, 2). This is not an issue for most customers–except if you’re an online marketer or entrepreneur that needs to create a ton of different sites.

    Reviewer: webhostingcat.com

inmotion shared hosting prices

InmotionHosting details

Siteground vs Inmotion

Often the web hosting choice comes down to 2 questions. SiteGround or InmotionHosting? Inmotion or SiteGround? Here is some comparison criteria to help you decide.

comparison chart (7 criteria)

Compare Their Similar Plans

SiteGround Hosting
Inmotion Hosting

Price (monthly)

$6.99

$4.99 (Power)

Sites

1

50

Free Domain

No

Yes

Traffic (monthly)

~ 10,000 visits

unlimited

Free SSL

Yes

Yes

Out-of-the-box caching

Yes

Yes (Nginx)

Managed WordPress

Yes

No

Tap Logo’s to View Details

Here is a nice high level summary of the differences between SiteGround and Inmotion hosting (source: www.bitcatcha.com). This really mirrors my feelings as well, since I use Inmotion to host this website, and am very happy with them.

What I Love About Siteground

SiteGround has always remained on my list of top hosts and running through it once again is always refreshing. It’s a consistently high performer with an excellent history and to date, I’ve yet to find many real competitors for it.

In a nutshell;

  • Excellent speed and stability
  • Great customer support
  • Wide range of products

 

What I Love About Inmotion Hosting

As I ran Inmotion Hosting through the gauntlet it gave me quite pleasant surprises at times. This is a strong contender for SiteGround and offers both features and performance that is competitive. I especially like that it doesn’t offer crazy discounts for first time sign ups, because to me, that just seems a little wrong.

 

In a nutshell;

  • Good Price Point
  • Impressive speed and stability
  • Excellent customer support

I’ll be honest – yes, I loved them both. It is so very difficult to not only find one fantastic hosting service, but another that matches it.

However, despite my final tally of 4:4, I feel that I owe it to everyone out there to break the tie – and I’d still go with SiteGround.

 

Read Timothy’s full SiteGround vs Inmotion review at www.bitcatcha.com

 

Hostwinds Hosting

HostWinds Hosting
Hostwinds-Intro

Top 3 Hostwinds Reviews
* Pros & Cons

$ 5
24
Per Month

Hostwinds Pricing
  • Pros: Huge range of products; Good value (and Bitcoin accepted); Consistent performance; Support website is stuffed with helpful articles.

    Cons: Finding full pricing details can be tricky; No managed WordPress hosting; Support site might intimidate beginners; Very short two-day refund period for subscriptions under 12 months.

    Reviewer: techradar.com
  • Pros: Good shared hosting packages pave the way to the massive power Hostwinds packs for advanced users. Good support and powerful servers host a wide range of products for businesses and individuals alike; Weebly Site Builder Included; Easy Plan Upgrades/Downgrades; Instant Account Setup, Free Migrations; Nightly Backups; eCommerce-ready; Robust Infrastructure; Value for money: 9/10; Features: 8.5/10; Performance: 9/10; Support: 9/10.

    Cons: Hostwinds hosting limits are reasonable, but they are unnecessarily vague about the plans; Limited Choice of Data Centers.

    Reviewer: hostingtribunal.com
  • Pros: Free Migration; Responsive Customer Service; Free SSL Certificate; Free Unlimited Email Accounts; Access to Weebly Website Builder; Unlimited Disk Space with All Plans; Easy to Use Dashboard and Control Panel.

    Cons: Limited Server Locations; Prorated Money-Back Guarantee.

    Reviewer: websitesetup.org

hostwinds shared hosting prices

hostwinds details

SiteGround vs Hostwinds

Often the web hosting choice comes down to 2 questions. SiteGround or Hostwinds? Hostwinds or SiteGround? Here is some comparison criteria to help you decide.

comparison chart (7 criteria)

Compare Their Cheapest Plans

SiteGround Hosting
HostWinds Hosting

Price (monthly)

$6.99

$5.24

Sites

1

1

Free Domain

No

No

Traffic (monthly)

~ 10,000 visits

unlimited

Free SSL

Yes

Yes

Out-of-the-box caching

Yes

No

Managed WordPress

Yes

No

Tap Logo’s to View Details

Summary of SiteGround vs Hostwinds from the hosting experts at hostingadvice.com:

“SiteGround and Hostwinds are sure to resonate with tech-savvy or simply passionate site owners who can appreciate the pride these two companies have in their platforms. 

Leaders from both hosts have directed their in-house engineers and developers to create custom support systems, caching layers, and other tools to improve customers’ experiences and success rates. 

Both companies boast modern hardware that serves the full range of shared, VPS, and dedicated server customers. SiteGround has done more to tailor and optimize its WordPress hosting platform, but the powerful hardware behind Hostwinds environments means WordPress users will already start ahead of the curve.

SiteGround is the more mainstream of the two, offering robust stability and features. As the younger company, Hostwinds represents a bit of a gamble — but one that could hit the jackpot. With such strong emphasis on customer support, we’re confident you’ll be well taken care of with either host.”

GreenGeeks Hosting

GreenGeeks Hosting
GreenGeeks-Intro

Top 3 GreenGeeks Reviews
* Pros & Cons

$ 2
49
Per Month

GreenGeeks Pricing
  • Pros: GreenGeeks is 300% green; They’re definitely fast; They offer optimisations to help speed you up further; They’re reliable with 99.9% uptime; Unlimited resources & tons of features; You’ll have a team of professionals handy; An interface that’s great for beginners and experts; Easily install 3rd party apps with Softaculous; They know their data privacy; It’s independently-owned.

    Cons: No 24/7 phone support; Don’t take ‘unlimited’ too literally.

    Reviewer: bitcatcha.com
  • Pros: Free Domain Name for Life of Account; Unlimited Number of Domains can be Hosted; Unlimited Web Space; Unlimited Data Transfer; Unlimited Email; Unlimited MySQL Databases; 99.9% Uptime; Solid State Drives; PowerCacher Technology; Free Let’s Encrypt Wildcard SSL; Free Cloudflare CDN; Hosting Account Isolation of Servers; Proactive Server Monitoring; Real Time Security Scanning; cPanel Interface; Free Data Backup and Restore; Scalable Computing Resources; Free SEO Tools.

    Cons: First Line Chat Support Often Must Escalate Issues via Support Ticket.

    Reviewer: webhostingcat.com
  • Pros: 30-day money-back guarantee; Free domain name, and unlimited diskspace & data transfer; Free site migration service; Nightly automatic data backups; Fast servers (using SSD, HTTP/2, PHP7, built-in caching + more); Free SSL certificate & CloudFlare CDN; GreenGeeks uptime & speed monitoring.

    Cons: Setup & domain fees aren't refundable; Misleading (industry standard) pricing.

    Reviewer: websitehostingrating.com
  • GreenGeeks is best for environmentally conscious people looking for solid web hosting at a reasonable price.

greengeeks shared hosting prices

greengeeks details

SiteGround vs GreenGeeks

Often the web hosting choice comes down to 2 questions. SiteGround or GreenGeeks? GreenGeeks or SiteGround? Here is some comparison criteria to help you decide.

comparison chart (7 criteria)

Compare Their Cheapest Plans

SiteGround Hosting
GreenGeeks Hosting

Price (monthly)

$6.99

$2.49

Sites

1

1

Free Domain

No

Yes

Traffic (monthly)

~ 10,000 visits

unmetered

Free SSL

Yes

Yes

Out-of-the-box caching

Yes

Yes

Managed WordPress

Yes

No

Tap Logo’s to View Details

The top review for SiteGround vs GreenGeeks comes from websiteplanet.com:

SiteGround is one of the biggest names in WordPress hosting, but my most recent tests have given me reason to question its reputation. GreenGeeks hasn’t been around for as long, but it might just have what it takes to challenge an industry giant like SiteGround.

SiteGround is a favorite among web designers due to its streamlined control panel and agency-oriented features, but GreenGeeks’ excellent customer service and better performance make it a stronger overall candidate. Furthemore, GreenGeeks is an eco-conscious service, which means your website will actually be carbon-reducing when hosted on its servers.

I compared SiteGround and GreenGeeks based on five different aspects of their web hosting service:

The review goes on to compare SiteGround vs GreenGeeks on these 5 areas:

1. Plans and Pricing
The Grass Is Greener on GreenGeeks’ Side (Because It’s Cheaper!)

2. Features
You Get Plenty of Advanced Features with Both Hosts

3. Performance
GreenGeeks Is Faster than SiteGround

4. Security
GreenGeeks Is Secure, but SiteGround Has a Slight Edge

5. Support
SiteGround Has Decent Support, but GreenGeeks’ Is Excellent. SiteGround Is Good, but GreenGeeks Is Better

Read the full SiteGround vs GreenGeeks comparison review at websiteplanet.com

 

GoDaddy Hosting

GoDaddy Hosting
GoDaddy-Intro

Godaddy may be best known as a domain registrar, but they also offer web hosting.

Top 3 Godaddy Reviews
* Pros & Cons

$ 2
99
Per Month (Renewal $8.99/mo)

Godaddy Pricing
  • Pros: Easy to use: I find their interface pretty intuitive to use, I would recommend it for beginners; Speed: In my tests, GoDaddy offered OKish speed; Windows servers: GoDaddy also offers Windows-based hosting; Storage: All your files combined can’t be more than 250,000 files (inodes); That’s the only storage limitation they have – quite generous; Bandwidth: The traffic your site can get with each plan won’t be limited.

    Cons: Expensive: They don’t offer the cheapest deals out there; They become even more expensive when the basic add-ons (backups and SSL certificates) are purchased; Uptime: Sadly, GoDaddy’s uptime is below the 99.05% standard: No backups: Unless you purchase their paid add-on, there’s not a backup system in place; No SSL: If you want to have your site SSLed (pretty important these days), you’ll need to pay for a certificate; Missing advanced features: Sadly, GoDaddy doesn’t come with some advanced features like staging areas or Git repositories that may come in handy for developers; No migration services: Unlike some other hosting providers, they won’t help you migrate your websites from another host.

    Reviewer: www.websitetooltester.com

  • Pros: Godaddy is the largest Domain Name Registrar; Wide Variety of Services Available; Choose Linux or Windows Hosting; cPanel and Plesk Control Panel Interfaces; Unlimited Bandwidth; Unlimited Disk Space; Host Unlimited Websites (except Economy plan); Frequent Special Offer Discounts;

    Cons: Live Chat Support Not Available 24/7; Quality and Courtesy of Customer Support can be Inconsistent with Godaddy; No Detailed Hardware Specs Available;

    Reviewer: webhostingcat.com

  • Pros: You can create a website and get it live in a matter of minutes; It’s super easy to use; Its pricing plans are very cheap in comparison to some competitors;

    Cons: Not much creative freedom available; Lack of depth to some of its features; Sites aren’t as visually appealing as other website builders’.

    Reviewer: websitebuilderexpert.com

SiteGround vs GoDaddy

Often the web hosting choice comes down to 2 questions. SiteGround or Godaddy? Godaddy or SiteGround? Here is some comparison criteria to help you decide.

comparison chart (7 criteria)

Compare Their Cheapest Plans

SiteGround Hosting
GoDaddy Hosting

Price (monthly)

$6.99

$2.99

Sites

1

1

Free Domain

No

Yes

Traffic (monthly)

~ 10,000 visits

unmetered

Free SSL

Yes

No

Out-of-the-box caching

Yes

No

Managed WordPress

Yes

No

Tap Logo’s to View Details

The top SiteGround vs GoDaddy review goes to themeisle.com:

Both hosts offer a good range of features, but SiteGround offers managed WordPress features on its cheap shared plans while GoDaddy doesn’t (you need to upgrade to GoDaddy’s managed WordPress hosting to get those features).

is siteground better than GoDaddy?

Overall, users in our WordPress hosting survey of over 830 WordPress users ranked SiteGround much higher than GoDaddy. Here are the overall ratings for SiteGround vs GoDaddy:

  • SiteGround: 4.6 out of 5
  • GoDaddy: 3.5 out of 5

At the end of the day, choose SiteGround, if you are a non-developer, just starting up your blog and need a helping hand from world-class support.

Read the full SiteGround vs GoDaddy review at themeisle.com. 

 

Web Hosting Glossary

I recognize that if you are new to web hosting, a lot of what you read on this page may not make a lot of sense. For that reason, I’m including some of the more common web hosting jargon here:

what is cPanel? (with screen shots)

cPanel is short for Control Panel, but the term cPanel implies a particular style of web hosting control panel. cPanel is the most common control panel used by many web hosting services. It allows you to manage all aspects of your website from a single location. For example, you can use it to create and manage websites, databases, and email accounts for your website. Here is a partial screenshot of what my cPanel looks like for the website you are on now (hosted at Inmotion Hosting):

Inmotion Hosting cPanel
cPanel has many options you will never need, so don’t be freaked out by all the icons. The day you do need one of them, they are all there. Scrolling down my cPanel a ways, here are some more icons in the  Inmotion Hosting cPanel related to email and databases:
InMotion Hosting cPanel for Email and Databases

do you need wordpress hosting?

In a word, no. If you are thinking about using WordPress, and you should, you absolutely don’t need the more expensive WordPress hosting. The site you are on now uses WordPress. I use a normal “shared hosting” plan at inmotionhosting. It has all the “reverse proxy” caching benefits mentioned in the following section, and it allows for a 1 click WordPress installation from cPanel.

wordpress cpanel

caching & reverse proxy servers

By default a CMS (content management system) like WordPress (or others) “cooks up” a page every time it is requested. This means it pulls data from a database and combines it with files to create the page the end user sees. Every single time.

If you let your CMS do this every time, your pages will take at least a second or two to load for every visitor to your website. Even worse, if you have lots of visitors it can cause your site to seriously slow down, and even hit your hosts limits, causing your website to stop serving pages to your website visitors.

This is where caching comes in. In the WordPress ecosystem there are lots of caching plugins to choose from like WP Fastest Cache, WP Optimize and others. I have found those 2 plugins to work very well in the past. The former for smaller sites, the latter for larger sites.

What those plugins do is create highly optimized html pages (e.g. with gzip compression) from your “cooked up” pages, and stores them in a caching folder on your website. Then whenever a new visitor goes to a page on your website, they get that optimized html page. If you make a change to the page, the plugin automatically purges the cached version of the page, and creates a new one the next time someone visits the page.

With the cached files, there is no database request needed. This alone speeds things up considerably. And the compressed html page helps even more.

So all that sounds great, right? I thought so too. For years I thought so. And for those years it was great. But I recently found something even better…

What could possibly be better you ask? Why a reverse proxy server of course! Here is how I stumbled upon this approach…

I had an Inmotion Hosting Power account for years, which limited me to 6 websites. I needed more, and noticed that Inmotion was currently advertising new Power accounts allowing 50 websites. So I reached out to ask them if that could be applied to my Power account.  

 

what & why is nginx (engine-x)

The answer was I would need to migrate my account to their new Nginx servers (pronounced engine-X). As it turned out, I was able to lock in this move at a lower price than what I was currently paying. I was paying around $60 every 6 months on my old plan. I was able to lock in the Nginx servers for around $170 for 3 years.

Now here is where the story gets really good. An Nginx server is what is referred to as a reverse proxy server. Which simply means all requests go through that one server, to be routed to the appropriate backend servers within the hosting companies infrastructure. This has many benefits, like the ability to do load balancing.

For our discussion here, the other thing a Nginx reverse proxy server is good at is caching files in memory. That means there are no html files in a caching folder anymore, as is the case with the old style caching plugins. So you don’t even incur the file access i/o overhead of serving pages to your website visitors.

Just click around on the website you are on now to see the speed at which the pages are served from my brand new (shared hosting) Nginx server. Unless you happen to hit a time when there is an issue with the “internet backbone”, you will notice it is lightning fast. Even very large pages like the one you are on now, which has over 12,000 words and lots of images. 

Note: I am currently using the WP-Optimize caching plugin AND the nginx server to get the best of both worlds (i.e. the nginx server only needs to cache the optimized html file in memory). Note sure it makes much difference, as the nginx server’s in memory caching is already super fast.

To get this level of Nginx “reverse proxy” website hosting, visit InmotionHosting, click on Shared Hosting, then you will see the Power Plan I am on now. Or click on the image below to go straight to the Shared Hosting Power Plan section…   

website & database backups (with examples)

Some of the pros & cons in the web hosting reviews on this page discuss backups. So I thought I would explain in some detail how and why you should insulate yourself from depending on your webhost for backups. Even if the web hosting service you end up choosing is one of the better ones when it comes to managing backups for you. 

I use the free UpdraftPlus wordpress plugin to manage backups on the website you are on now, along with over 3 million other WordPress users. To verify that, I can go to the “Add Plugin” page in WordPress:

backup manager download

From there you can see the number of Active installations and number of 5 star reviews (currently at 4,813). For me you can see the button says Active, because I already have it installed. I included the next plugin in my search to show what the button looks like for wordpress plugins you have not yet installed (it says “Install Now”).

Now to one of the main points as to why you want to do your own backups, rather than [only] relying on your web hosting service. One of the reasons you may need a backup is  if something goes wrong with the web hosting provider. In that case, do you really want those same people in charge of your backups?

That is where a plugin like UpdraftPlus comes in. After you install it, notice in the settings section that you can choose one of many remote storage services to use as your most trusted backup location:

backup manager schedule

Notice that I am using the Amazon Simple Storage Service (aka. Amazon S3). If anything ever goes wrong with my web hosting service, I can have my website back up and running at a new web host in a matter of minutes.

Beyond that extra level of backup security, the UpdraftPlus plugin makes everything super simple. In the screenshot above you can see how easy it is to set the frequency of your backups. Typically you want to backup your wordpress database at least daily. Backing up all your files can happen less often, but should be done before you upgrade your wordpress version. With UpdraftPlus, you can kick off a backup anytime, over and above the scheduled backups that happen automatically.

And in the screenshot below, see how simple it is if you ever need to restore a backup. I have tested this many times, not for extreme reasons, but more in cases where I go down a path with my website content or plugins that I end up regretting. In that case, I can just restore everything to where it was before I started down the “wrong path”.

backup manager restore

And just to be clear, the free version of UpdraftPlus includes everything shown here and much more. It is very unlikely you would need to upgrade to their paid  Premium version (at least I never have).

a comprehensive list of web hosting jargon

Rather than cover all the web hosting related terms here, I decided to search for a comprehensive web hosting glossary to include. I think the one Ari Denial created at websiteplanet.com fits the bill nicely. It starts off well with a nice image to illustrate the main types of web hosting:

Here are some of the web hosting jargon & concepts Ari covers:

Types of Hosting:

Shared Hosting; VPS Hosting; Cloud Hosting; Managed Hosting; Dedicated Server Hosting; Reseller Hosting

Common Web Hosting Terms:

Apache; Add-on Domain; Backup; Bandwidth; Bare Metal Server; Caching; CDN (Content Delivery Network); CGI; CMS (Content Management System); Control Panel; cPanel; Data Transfer; DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service); Disk Space; Domain Name; Domain Registrar; DNS (Domain Name System); Fantastico; Firewall; FTP (File Transfer Protocol); .htaccess; HTML (Hypertext Markup Language); HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol); HTTPS; ICANN; IP address; JavaScript; Linux Server; Load Balancing; MySQL; PaaS (Platform as a Service); Parked Domain; PHP; Scalability; SLA (Service Level Agreement); Softaculous; Subdomain; SSH; SSL (Secure Sockets Layer)SSL CertificateTLD (Top-Level Domain)UptimeWindows Server

Email Hosting Terms:

AutoresponderCatch-allDKIM (Domain Keys Identified Mail)IMAPMX RecordMailing ListPOP3 (Post Office Protocol 3)SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol)Webmail

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