Best GoDaddy Alternatives
GoDaddy is a company that is a prominent name when it comes to web hosting and domain registration, and has millions of customers (they claim to have over 18 million customers). It has been around since 1996, and that in itself should inspire confidence in the service.
But being popular does not mean that they are the best at what they do. Even though GoDaddy offers hosting, it is not very well known in the web hosting space, since its primary business is being a name registrar. Customers have often said that they registered with the company only because they seemed to be everywhere and because of the aggressive marketing campaigns. You can get a domain at an initial cheap price, but a lot of customers have complained of much higher prices when it comes to renewals.
This simply goes on to show that the company leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to customer satisfaction. They might be great at building their brand awareness with numerous TV and web spots, but there are other, more cost-effective and efficient providers that offer better features and take pride in their customer support. And this is that this article is going to be about.
Some of the best alternatives that are around are:
This shared hosting company is nearly as old as GoDaddy, and has built its reputation on great customer support, excellent service and great prices. They host over 2 million websites worldwide and have a robust help system that includes tutorials, guides and much more.
For people who are looking for a WordPress website, Bluehost is a great option, because, you will be pleased to know, they are officially recommended by them. Bluehost is owned by Endurance International Group, a hosting conglomerate that also owns over 80 companies that include HostGator, Hostnine and iPage among others.
Bluehost is one of the few companies that takes pride in providing 24/7 telephone support that is based in the United States. Compare this to GoDaddy’s customer support services and you’ll find that most of their support services are based overseas where their executives have little or no idea about the products and services.
Bluehost’s chat and ticketing support system is excellent and apart from that, they have an excellent knowledge base that covers many vital topics, has a clean interface and is easy to navigate. The section is comprehensive, and the pre-answered queries are of great help. If you cannot find your answers here, the company also has a YouTube page that offers a host of tutorials on WordPress and a host of other topics.
Their combined support effort is reason enough to consider them as a Godaddy alternative. And, of course, they have other services on offer.
Uptime is something that every potential customer looks for in a provider. The higher the uptime, the more the chance of them being noticed. If the downtime is noticeable, there is a high chance of loss in revenue and the customer jumping ship to a better, more reliable platform.
To counter this, Bluehost has Cloudsites, that has been designed from the ground up for high availability and redundancy. Cloudsites offers many great features such as scalability, which means that the user can add memory and CPU power on the fly without the need to reboot, great performance thanks to the built-in content delivery network, automatic failover and the fact that it is fully managed is a bonus.
This is a content delivery network (CDN) that acts as a proxy between Bluehost servers and the user. It caches the static content for the website, which, in turn, lowers the number of requests to the site. CloudFlare is very useful in terms of page load improvements, stopping malicious threats, alerting visitors that they may have an infected computer, low CPU usage and much more.
Bluehost offers 4 plans for their shared hosting — Basic, Plus, Choice Plus and Pro. These are some main features of these plans, in no particular order:
- Starting plans start at $3.95, $5.95, and $13.95 per month (depending on the plan)
- All plans come with unmetered bandwidth
- Other than the basic plan, all other plans have unlimited parked domains
- Other than the basic plan, all other plans have a $200 marketing offer
- Most plans allow you to host unlimited websites
- Most plans come with unlimited storage
- All plans come with a free SSL certificate
- The most premium plan comes with a dedicated IP
- Bluehost offers daily, weekly and monthly backups
- You can upgrade your resources in just a few clicks
- On upgraded plans, you have access to SiteLock, spam protection and CodeGuard
Siteground was founded in 2004 and is based out of Bulgaria. This independent company provides its services worldwide. The company has more than 1,900,000 domains and more than 400 employees and claims that it processes thousands of chat, ticket and phone call requests per day. Siteground offers to host your websites on the fastest web servers with extremely fast load times and on the best hardware.
SiteGround offers proprietary software to boost your server performance and give you more functionality. They may not be the cheapest, but they provide their customers with top security and one of the best customer support services in the hosting industry. They also provide highly available networks which are supported by redundant electrical systems that prevent electrical outages by using the latest technology and are provided high-end physical security, 24×7.
Among shared hosts, as we stated earlier, SiteGround offers one of the best customer support. They claim that they always overstaff all their shifts so that there is always someone to pick up the phone and the customer does not have to wait for more than a few seconds to be serviced. They also say that they evaluate each employee’s performance as an individual and that of the team on a regular basis. They are also known to answer their tickets very fast.
What’s more is that they put up the technical profiles of their employees, so every time a customer gets in touch with them via their support center, they can see their number of years of experience, specific areas of expertise, technical background and so on. This process, they say, makes the whole process a bit more human.
Apart from the human side, SiteGround also has made available a whole section of tutorials which cover numerous topics such as getting started, WordPress, Joomla, CloudFlare CDN, cPanel, resellers, staging, SSH and much more. The tutorials are exhaustive and are of great help for those who are self-hosting. Complementing the tutorials is their knowledge base which is neatly divided into many sections such as billing, cPanel, applications and others, and is easy to navigate.
Incredible Server Platform
While maintaining a website, speed is of utmost importance, since it improves the visitor experience and is also important when it comes to search engine standings. SiteGround claims that the hardware for this purpose is handpicked by their system administrators and they used the latest in software and hardware to boost a website’s performance.
For their cloud and sharing platforms, SiteGround uses SSD drives and the latest PHP releases with a built-in opcode cache. To speed up the delivery of the static content, they use Nginx in conjunction with their web server software. They have also partnered with CloudFlare to provide a free CDN.
SiteGround has developed the SuperCacher technology, a website optimization technology to improve the performance of websites. It is also quite compatible with popular CMS applications such as Joomla and WordPress.
SiteGround provides 3 plans for their shared web hosting; StartUp, GrowBig and GoGeek. Here are some of the main features of these plans, in no particular order:
- All plans include unmetered data transfer
- All plans include a free drag-and-drop website builder
- Unlimited MySQL databases
- Unlimited parked and subdomains
- Softaculous and cPanel
- 30-day money back guarantee
- Each account is provided with a free CDN
- All servers are HTTP/2 enabled
- Proactive patches and updates
- Free email accounts
Dreamhost is one of the oldest hosting companies in existence and was founded by friends Michael Rodriguez, Dallas Bethune, Sage Weil and Josh Jones (while they were still undergraduates) in 1997 in Claremont, California. The company hosts over 1.5 million websites and WordPress blogs and applications for small businesses, designers and developers. Since their inception, their customer count has risen above 400,000.
The company has multiple data centers and a number of products and services such as DreamPress (it is one of the few hosts recommended by WordPress), DreamCompute (cloud computing service), and DreamObjects. Dreamhost also offers 4 types of web servers, such as VPS, shared, dedicated and cloud. Dreamhost is an OpenStack Foundation Gold Member and has stood hand-in-hand in the development of OpenStack.
Dreamhost offers many support options that include trained staff that is available 24/7 to its customers. Existing customers can raise a ticket request through their control panel, or they can use a form available on the website. They also have chat functionality, but unfortunately, it is only available to existing customers and mostly available when their ticket system is not available.
This chat functionality perpetually available to paying customers and they claim that no problem is too basic or too complex. They do offer phone support, but only in the form of a callback for a small fee.
Their excellent customer forum can be used to virtually find a solution to almost any problem you may come across. The forum is well maintained and active and has been in use for many years, and has a lot of members, quite a few of them experts in their fields.
This is Dreamhost’s click-to-edit site builder tool to create ready-to-publish websites in a few simple steps. The user is not required to have any knowledge of coding and is optimized for mobile use.
Dreamhost offers this fully-featured shopping cart that can be customized to modify the way it looks and various modules can be quickly installed to modify the functionality of the cart. ZenCart is an open-source system that is written in PHP, is user friendly, and most importantly, free!
100% Uptime Guarantee
Whether you are a new website owner or a seasoned one, you know the importance of uptime, and the company guarantees it. Dreamhost’s terms of service state that failure to provide a 100% uptime will result in customer compensation of one day of service for each hour the service is down.
Dreamhost offers a full refund on shared hosting plans if you cancel your plan within the first 97 days of opening your account. They have 2 plans; shared starter and shared unlimited. These are some features of these plans:
- Unlimited traffic
- Fast SSD storage
- Included free domain
- Free SSL certificate
- 1-click installer
- 24/7/365 pro-level support
- 97-day money back guarantee
InMotion is considered of the largest web hosting services in the world and has been operational since 2001. It is based in Los Angeles, California and offers fast and reliable services to millions of customers worldwide. They have an impressive customer base, with over 300,000 customer domains and offices in both the East and West coasts.
InMotion offers a very comprehensive help section with website tutorials, product guides, domain name setup info, email tutorials and billing FAQs. There are sections on educational channels and community support too. Customers can get in touch with InMotion via a ticketing system, email or live chat. The live chat system works wonderfully, with a knowledgeable support executive answering your queries.
So Many Freebies
- You can migrate to InMotion from any other host for no extra cost.
- InMotion will back up your website’s data on a regular basis for free for up to 10 GB and provide you with tools that you can use to manually do that but will charge you for frequent data restores. GoDaddy charges for this.
- DDoS protection provided for no extra cost.
- The domain is free for the first year.
InMotion offers WordPress, VPS, reseller hosting and dedicated servers. Let us take a look at some features of their WordPress plans.
- All plans come with a free domain
- All plans include BoldGrid plugins
- Unlimited bandwidth and email accounts
- SSD storage
- 90-day full money back guarantee
- Super fast server stack
- 24/7 access to US-based support team
As you know by now, there is not a single all-round solution to your hosting needs, the 4 contenders we have listed here are certainly better in terms of customer support, page load speeds, great features and uptime. Always remember that most of the hosting providers these days come with a money back guarantee, so you can try them out without the fear of losing your money, and get the best features possible.