Every single business needs to have a site, and for that you need a reliable web hosting. It does not matter if it is a simple page with your contact information or a huge e-commerce site. HostGator will have your back with balanced features and prices as well as offer loads of tools to webmasters. HostGator has VPS packages, but the dedicated and shared server plans are what really make this company stand out.
When it comes to the money back guarantee, HostGator does better than most of their competitors by offering a 45-day guarantee.
Shared hosting packages
HostGator will give you monthly shared hosting plans, but it will push you harder to get longer terms, which start at 6 months. It did irk us that during the whole process, HostGator defaults automatically to a three-year term. It is one thing to encourage customers to not go month-to-month, but trying to push them into a three-year term is a bit much.
With that being said, HostGator offers shared web hosting packages that will give medium to small businesses plenty of room to expand their presence on the web. The Hatchling plan starts at $7.17 monthly and offers unlimited disk space, databases, bandwidth, email addresses, as well as support for one domain and third-party applications like content management systems and e-commerce platforms.
The Baby plan starts at $7.96 monthly and builds on to the Hatchling plan by offering unlimited domains. The top-tier Business plan starts at $11.96 monthly and includes specialized options like a private SSL certificate and free toll-free phone number.
Unlimited storage and monthly data transfers sound amazing, but most competitors offer this. HostGator offers both Linux- and Windows-based shared hosting. The Windows server option is a very important one if you plan to create or even migrate a site that has been built on an ASP.NET framework.
HostGator offers Linux-based VPS hosting that starts at $19.95 monthly. If you need to have more power, expect high traffic volumes, or have a certain compliance requirement that prevents you from using a shared server, these are the option that you should consider.
The basic VPS plan that happens to be called Snappy 500 starts you out with 512MB of RAM, 25GB of disk space, as well as 500GB of monthly data transfers. The most advanced package called Snappy 8000 gives you 8GB of RAM, 240GB of disk space and 3TB of monthly data transfers.
Dedicated server packages
HostGator has dedicated server packages that begin at $139 monthly and offer plenty of features. You will be able to customize your servers with up to 1TB of storage, 16GB of RAM and a quite impressive 25TB of monthly data transfers.
The dedicated servers will come in Linux or Windows, which are not very common at all, although Linux tends to dominate the fields. HostGator is one of the few web hosts that offer both operating systems.
Setting up a HostGator hosted site
It is a very good thing that HostGator will send you a getting started email that is full of links because the interface is a little hard to work with, at least in the beginning. HostGator has a billing login link at the top of the site that will lead to the customer portal, where all the payment information, options to purchase add-ons, and details about your plan are listed. This particular page has tabs across the top for domain and account management.
The Hosting tab is where you will see your control panel with all of your site building tools, web statistics, and applications, just to name a few. The getting started email also has a direct link for the control panel, but it looks a bit different from what you would see on the Hosting tab which will throw you for a loop.
Build your site with HostGator
HostGator has quite a few options when it comes to building a website. You are able to use the included Weebly site builder, which gives you drag-and-drop functionality. Or you can install your favorite CMS such as WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, Tiki, b2evolutions, Mambo, etc.
There is a file manager tool that will let you manually upload files to the server in order to create a website that way. The tool is better than just your basic FTP client because you are able to edit the files directly or you can use a built-in HTML editor.
Setting up WordPress
HostGator added three tiers of managed WordPress hosting called Blog, Pro, and Business. Blog starts at $12.95 monthly and gives you the ability to host one WordPress site, have 100,000 visitors, as well as parked domains, storage and unlimited emails. Business starts at $29.95 and allows you to have five WordPress sites and 500,000 visitors. Pro starts at $89.95 monthly and gives you 20 WordPress sites and 1 million visitors.
WordPress is easy to set up even if you do not decide to go with managed WordPress hosting. There are quick links that will open a dedicated interface for installing third-party applications. You just set that path to the blog’s installation folder, enter your username and password for WordPress console and then click Install. It is really that simple.
HostGator does not offer any type of security protection for email, which is somewhat disappointing. The Hatchling plan does give you access to a Shared SSL in order to protect your e-commerce store, but you will need to upgrade to the Business plan to get a dedicated SSL site.
During making our account, we had to create a PIN for the billing account. It could only be numbers between four and eight digits long. Although we were not exactly happy with the restriction on the length, we would have preferred a higher minimum because four-digit PINs are easily cracked.
HostGator has great uptime, while it did go down just about the same number of times as it was up.
Hostgator is a great web host that will make setting up a site or even a WordPress blog simple. It does not have one-click installs or imports, but the Quick Link is simple to understand and has plenty of options. HostGator hosting offers a lot to any kind of user, so check them out today.