Choosing a website host seems like a simple task but can get you in a wild goosechase looking around at endless options. Today we are going to look at the two most popular choices for web hosting, Bluehost and Hostgator. If you search around for host recommendations, you’ll most likely come across these two names quite a bit. They are some of the most used and successful web hosts to date with Mastro Digital having experience with both. We are going to get into the pros and cons of each, pricing, features and more so you can leave today with a decision made for what host to try.
Bluehost vs Hostgator
For a little background knowledge, Bluehost was started by a gentleman named Matt Heaton back in 2003. Before this for several years he worked with computers and websites but felt they lacked depth and speed. To solve this problem, he set out to create his very own web hosting service that would be more convenient and powerful. Today they boast over 700 employees in their Utah headquarters and amazing service.
Hostgator was founded in 2002 by Brent Oxley and by 2006 had already surpassed the 200,000 domain mark. After moving its headquarters to Florida and being named one of the fastest growing US companies, Hostgator proudly serves around a half of a million customers with 9,000,000+ domains. Lets begin by taking a look at some key areas of hosting and comparing the two companies.
Pricing and Features
When you are spending money every month a service like hosting, you want to assure you are getting the best bang for your buck. Every host offers a little more or a little less of different features so here’s how Bluehost and Hostgator compare. These are their basic shared hosting plans.
|Features||HostGator Hatchling||HostGator Baby||BlueHost Starter||BlueHost Plus|
|Price||$ / month||$ / month||$ / month||$ / month|
|1 Month||$10.95||$11.95||No Monthly Plans||No Monthly Plans|
|1 Year Term||$5.95||$8.95||$7.49||$11.99|
|2 Year Term||$4.95||$6.95||$6.99||$10.99|
|Sign Up Now!||Sign Up Now!||Sign Up Now!||Sign Up Now!|
Right away we can that Hostgator seems to be winning in this department, offering more affordable pricing along with more features. From disk space and email accounts to databases, you’re getting more with them. Also remember that Bluehost does not offer monthly payments, but rather you must at least for one year of hosting or more. With Hostgator you can pay month by month if that’s what you prefer.
When it comes to anything technical, you want a good team to help you and to have your back. Even if you are skilled with computers it’s always nice to have people you can contact for assistance. Both Bluehost and Hostgator offer email, live chat, phone and ticket support for your customer service needs. Support is also available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and all year round. This means if you ever have a question then you can get a answer and won’t have to wait long. Since we’ve had experience with both support teams several times, our honest opinion is that they are dead even. We always received quick responses, positive staff and had our issues worked out very quickly.
Ease of Use
Bluehost and Hostgator both use a control panel system called Cpanel. From there you can access one click WordPress installs, create professional email accounts, use their website builder tools, access databases and more. Bluehost also offers you a free domain name when signing up while Hostgator does not so if you need one, the first may be a better choice. Website transfers and migrations are free by Hostgator as long as its within 30 days of your purchase. Bluehost on the other hand will be charging you $149.99 unless you want to do it by yourself.
Security and Speed
Having a fast website and a secure one to boot is probably in your interests as a webmaster. With Bluehost you will get a free SSL(secure socket layer) certificate while Hostgator will charge you for one depending on the plan you choose. This certificate acts as an extra layer between you and the website keeping your users and their information more safe. If you’ve ever used a website with “https” before the URL then you used a website that had an SSL. Some people may use browsers or extensions that force SSL for protection and if you don’t have one, it will warn them. It has become a staple feature to have for your website in modern times.
The plans you choose will dictate your website speed, with cloud, VPS, and dedicated being the fastest. The standard plans are known as shared hosting because you share the servers with other customers. This can at times result in slower speeds and less than optimal performance.
Keeping your websites backed up is also key incase of any technical difficulties. Bluehost offers free, automatically generated backups so you can have the peace of mind that your website data is always safe. With Hostgator you will have to pay for Codeguard to achieve the same thing or just by doing it manually. Both companies have also paired up with SiteLock to offer an anti-malware addon that will keep your sites safe from hackers. As well, the two hosts have DDOS protection built into their services.
Bluehost vs Hostgator, who’s better?
It’s clear that both hosting platforms have their advantages and disadvantages. Before deciding which one is more suitable for you, take into consideration:
- How much your budget is. With Hostgator you can be paying month by month but yearly at minimum with Bluehost.
- How much you value security because Bluehost offers a free SSL and generated backups while Hostgator charges for these features.
- What kind of speed and resources you’re interested in because there are more plans like Cloud, VPS etc you can choose from or upgrade to later.
- If you need a domain since Bluehost gives you one for free. Hostgator does not but you can purchase one through them if you’d like.
When it comes to Hostgator vs Bluehost, we have to say they are pretty much even. We’d recommend that you go check out their plans and features in more detail on their websites. They also may be offering certain promotions that could be available at the time you read this article. Happy web host hunting and best of luck!