Fatcow Hosting Review
Our Experts Opinions
*Rating Based on our Experience
Founded in 1998, Fatcow is one of the oldest web hosting providers, besides offering other services as well. It was created to provide new users, those with small businesses and individuals, with affordable plans without burdening them with the need to have any technical knowledge. They say on their rather unconventional “about” page that they have made every effort that their services are easy to use and provide real business value.
Fatcow is now a part of the hosting giant Endurance International Group (EIG) which also owns other big brands such as HostNine, Bluehost, Hostgator, iPage and Justhost to name a few of the 83 companies. It has 2 data centers in Boston, MA, that are monitored 24/7, have the same equipment and architecture and comprise thousands of servers.
The relaxed (but by no means lax) unconventional approach is apparent by their use of the term “oodles” when their competitors would use the word “unlimited” (when speaking of some of their basic features), and the word really does mean unlimited. The company offers several services that include Fatcow web hosting, WordPress, domain parking, dedicated and VPS hosting.
Apart from these, Fatcow runs partner and affiliate programs, where the affiliates can earn as much as $150 for every new customer they refer. This is a unique feature which they run from their own website instead of a partner network.
In this Fatcow web hosting review, we will look at some important features of the host such as pricing plans, customer support, security features, uptime and other factors.
Fatcow has a lot to offer in terms of customer support, such as tutorials, knowledgebase, user guide. They also offer 24/7 support, live chat and telephone, which shows clearly that the company has invested greatly in their customer support. Plenty of Fatcow hosting reviews have appreciated the company’s own fun spin while maintaining professionalism; they call their customer service as “Moo Crew”!
Fatcow sports a “Live Chat” button on their homepage which can be accessed from anywhere on the website (except the help section) and customers can log in using the standard method (by providing their name, domain and a few other details). Moments within your log in, a helpful “Moo Crew” will come forth to help you sort any issues you may be having with your account/website. As usual, the experience may vary here, but overall their chat support has a good rating.
Their customer service is backed by what they call “HeiferCratic Oath” which guarantees a consistent “can-moo” attitude, around-the-clock online support, and say that the customer should let them know right away if they have not satisfied this guarantee.
They also have a support page which can be accessed from here.
The Fatcow knowledge base has a very simple-to-understand structure and has sections that cover your account, advanced hosting, files, email, database, policies and so on. You can often find images in there, it is pretty well organized and the support guides in there are detailed. It is a great platform for those who are new to hosting.
Interestingly, this section has a “Share Screen”, which lets the user share their computer screen with a Fatcow customer service representative through remote sharing. This gives the representative a “view only” access to the user’s computer screen after the user downloads and installs an applet. This is quite a unique feature that we have yet to see on other provider’s websites.
Fatcow does not guarantee a 99.9% uptime unlike many of its competitors, which is surprising, given their attention to detail about customer support aspects. But they assure the user that their technical team and system management tools that work hard 24/7 to ensure that the data center keeps running smoothly.
Their data centers run on N+1 power (both DC and AC), and their front-end network runs redundant routers that connect the world over multiple providers using Border Gateway Protocol (BGP). To minimize the risk of data loss, they also do regular backups. Also, they claim that they have customized the machines to the service it performs which makes them faster. Also, if the primary unit crashes, it will be taken over by an identical machine that it is clustered with.
Apart from this, there is no mention of uptime or uptime guarantee on their technology page.
Fatcow provides a host of features for its customers who want reliability and functionality over a limited budget.
Online Store/Selling Tools
To help you sell online, the company offers you a variety of tools such as ShopSite, PayPal shopping cart integration, PowerPay and many others. The carts can be easily integrated into Joomla, Gallery2, WordPress, GBook and other content management systems.
They also provide their users with free Bing and Google ad credits (each worth $100) so that they can reach new customers and grow their businesses.
Fatcow says on their website that if you are not satisfied with their services, they will refund your money, without asking any questions. So, in the first 30 days, you will be refunded in full. This guarantee applies to their hosting plans only though and not their add-on services such as domains.
Drag-and-Drop Website Builder
You can create high-quality blogs, website or online stores using the Weebly drag-and-drop builder tool which is used by over 40 million people worldwide for its ease of use. You can integrate contact forms, blogs, pictures and videos and other site elements for that professional look. Read more about it here.
Fatcow supports a variety of databases that include MySQL, CGI directory, script library and much more. You can choose these and manage your database with the help of the control panel that came with your specific hosting plan.
With Fatcow’s plans, you get unlimited of everything! Unlimited disk space, unlimited bandwidth, unlimited domains per account and unlimited email accounts! Also included are domain pointing, POP mailboxes, subdomains, MySQL databases and unlimited FTP users and sub-users.
When you open Fatcow’s homepage, you are greeted with attractive offers and bonus features. Fatcow hosting plans are well-promoted, and they offer a multitude of plans which cover the original Fatcow plan, WordPress hosting, domain parking and VPS and dedicated hosting.
Fatcow offers its original plan, which they claim has everything that you will need to build an online presence.
The plan, which is priced at a flat $49 per year at a special introductory rate, has 1 domain name (free for 1st year only), offers unlimited bandwidth and disk space, unlimited email accounts and domains per account and unlimited POP mailboxes. You also get the following:
- PHP 5.3, 5.5, 5.6, 7.0 and 7.1 support
- Python support
- Script library
- Registrar transfer
- Google Adwords bonus worth $100
- Bing search marketing tool worth $100
- HubSpot’s website grader
- Counter, poll, survey tools
- WordPress, Gallery2, phpBB, Joomla and GBook
- 24×7 support
- Customizable control panel
- Web analytics tools
- Website builder
- Newsletter management tool
- Spam filtering
Please note that this is a special introductory offer for just the first term, and renews at the regular prices. The prices are as follows:
- For a 1-month term, the price is $14.95 (billed monthly)
- For a 12-month term, the price is $14.95 (billed $179.40 for a year)
- For a 24-month term, the price is $13.95 (billed $334.80 for 2 years)
- For a 36-month term, the price is $12.95 (billed $466.20 for 3 years)
For prices in Canadian and Australian dollars, British pound and euros, please click this link.
For those wanting maximum speed and security, Fatcow’s dedicated servers are the answer. They have three plans.
- Startup: As the name suggests, this plan is for businesses that are small but are expanding quickly and need that extra power and security. For a starting price of $119 per month (the price is 20% off your first term, it renews regularly at $149.99 a month), you get 2 cores, 4GB RAM, 500GB storage and a bandwidth of 5TB. It is ideal for businesses that have outgrown shared hosting and need more and more resources.
- Professional: This plan is for businesses that are already established and want to make their online presence felt. For a starting price of $151.99 per month (the price is 20% off your first term, it renews regularly at $189.99 a month), you get 4 cores, 8GB RAM, 1000GB storage and a bandwidth of 10TB. Those who want to make use of the flexibility and to expand the capabilities of their website.
- Enterprise: For those who have a thriving business with heavy traffic and frequent data transactions. For a starting price of $191.99 per month (the price is 20% off your first term, it renews regularly at $239.99 a month), you get 4 cores, 16GB RAM, 1000GB storage and a bandwidth of 15TB. Ideal when response time and performance are really important.
With all plans comes independent control, which means you are free to install applications without restrictions, optional root access, dedicated resources that ensure maximum performance that is unaffected by other users and no overage charges for surpassing the limits.
You also get free domain name registration, personalized email, referrer and error logs, Webalizer, AWStats, Urchin 5 and raw log access.
For those who want to move to a less crowded field and want customizable configurations and instant deployment, Fatcow offers 3 plans.
- Basic: If you have just started your business and are not sure of how much power your website requires yet, this is an ideal plan. For a starting price of $19.99 per month (the price is 20% off your first term, it renews regularly at $24.99 a month), you get 1 core, 1GB RAM, 40GB storage and a bandwidth of 1TB. You can start small and scale your resources as required.
- Business: This is for those who have outgrown the need for shared plans, but are not yet ready for dedicated servers. For a starting price of $47.99 per month (the price is 20% off your first term, it renews regularly at $59.99 a month), you get 2 cores, 4GB RAM, 90GB storage and a bandwidth of 3TB.
- Optimum: If your website peaks during a particular season and you require it to handle at least 5,000 visitors. For a starting price of $79.99 per month (the price is 20% off your first term, it renews regularly at $99.99 a month), you get 4 cores, 8GB RAM, 120GB storage and a bandwidth of 4TB. You can start small and scale your resources as required. You can scale down the resources as the season passes as well.
With each plan, you get cloud-based flexibility that lets you expand or scale down as per your requirement, seamless migration options, high-speed mirrored SAN storage and world-class support.
Fatcow provides this safety feature that will protect your domain from unauthorized changes. It does this by requiring verification proof before any domain setting has to change. Thus, you can protect your domain from name server changes, tampering of contact information, any changes in account ownership and other factors.
You can read more about NameSafe here.
SiteLock secures your website while keeping it public. It automatically searches and removes malware, and makes sure that the website does not get blacklisted by Google. It also blocks all backdoor entry attempts. If it finds something that is not right, you are informed via your control panel and your email.
This is a paid service and you can find out more about the packages here.
You can secure customer data and payments with SSL certificates, and Fatcow provides these powered by Comodo. These certificates not only help boost Google rankings but improve customer confidence in your website and provide the highest encryption.
To know more about this paid service, please click here.
Pros and Cons
Let's go quickly through their main benefits:
- Though Fatcow does not say it anywhere on their website, customers have often praised their uptime
- Stress on customer satisfaction means you are sure to get great service
- Daily backups protect your website’s data
- Affordable pricing compared with other competitors
- Environment-friendly data centers help keep the environment safer to live with
- Free website migrations though not uncommon, are a nice touch
- Free website icons in 16×16 and 32×32 pixel format
- Some customers have complained of very slow page loads
- Plenty of upsells can be upsetting for some customers
So, is Fatcow a good hosting company? Fatcow offers great customer service, very competitive pricing and a very light approach makes them endearing to customers. They offer a lot of services, and proper guidance to start your own website if you are new to the scene. Though some customers have indeed complained about their slow uploads, no one can argue about their affordability and customer service.
If you're just starting out on a budget then you might even consider checking out this free web hosting review we did a while ago.