HostGator may be one of the oldest and largest web hosting companies in the industry, but they are still improving with an average uptime of 99.98% over the last 24 months.

Their standard shared hosting plans come with unlimited storage, bandwidth, free domain (first year) and a free SSL certificate. They also have excellent customer service, connect directly via live chat and answer any question in seconds. 

Unfortunately, HostGator's average load time disappointed them (1191ms average). Many additional services, such as backup and security, are added as an additional cost. The rate of renewal also increases aggressively when your first period is over. 

Here's an in-depth look at our practical testing using third-party data from Pingdom to highlight its performance.

 

Benefits of using HostGator Shared

HostGator's performance has been an issue for the last few years. But no more according to our 24-month follow-up. 

In addition, their customer service was fast and friendly. They help you move your site to their service for free. And beginners will love that many of the simple and intuitive options find their way.

 

Here is a quick summary: 

Strong and stable uptime of 99.98%

HostGator has achieved 99.98% uptime in the last 24 months. They have been in line with 99.98 to 100% uptime for several months.

However, that is not even the best part. They are uniform for a reason - their uptime guarantee says that if they fall below 99.90%, you can receive a one month credit on your account.

Of course, scheduled maintenance or unpredictable attacks are not covered by this warranty. However, you must contact and apply for the credit by submitting a support ticket to your billing department within 30 days.

We recently started seeing a number of other hosts with uptime guarantees, and that means all customers win as a result. Competitors who do this help raise the bar for the entire industry. It forces everyone else in the market to match your warranty and raise the standard of service, otherwise you risk being left behind.

 

Good support

HostGator offers a knowledge base, telephone, email and live chat support. The last option is the fastest and connects us with a service representative in about 15 seconds.

We tried to search through them with questions, jumping from topic to topic, and they never wavered. Your staff appears to be knowledgeable, trained and friendly. 

This means you can use them for more than a full month and still get your purchase amount back if a problem arises. 

This 45-day money-back guarantee applies to all VPS, reseller and shared hosting packages. 

After reviewing more than 30 terms of service, we found that these warnings are quite common in the hosting industry. 

For example, if your subscription includes a free domain name, the default domain of $ 15.00 will be deducted from the refund amount. 

There are a few other points that need to be emphasized. HostGator's terms give you up to 90 days to issue a refund. There are also no refunds for checks, money orders, Western Union payments or bank transfers. 

Refunds are only available for new subscriptions or accounts. So if you have previously signed up for a subscription and cancel an extension or other attempt, you will not get anything back. 

And last but not least, foreign currency refunds are treated on the basis of US dollar exchange rates.

 

Website security features available

HostGator's shared hosting plans are quite simple. This service runs daily, searches for possible violations or hacking of the site and notifies you immediately when they find it. 

They also offer Spam Assassin in their email plans for.

For starters, the customizable templates are quite modern and you can easily customize their appearance by dragging and dropping each function. You also get a site analysis and a free SSL certificate that helps protect your visitors' personal information (such as their physical location).

 

Disadvantages of using HostGator Shared

HostGator's consistent uptime was really amazing (in a good way). We also love their uptime guarantee. 

Plus, their beginner-friendly approach and helpful customer service mean there's a lot to like about their service the problems we encountered.

 

Slow page speed

HostGator's servers have had no problem keeping our site up and running for the last year and a half.

The problem is that the same servers were also constantly slow. Their average page load over the last 24 months averaged just 1,191 ms. 

It takes more than a second to load pages of relatively simple text content. Yes, it is not right. 

Slow page load times have been found to directly affect your visitor's experience. And it also has a trickle effect to get your profit. 

There are a few things you can do to speed up your site without changing hosts. But if your host is constantly slow, it means that she is constantly struggling to lose a battle.

 

Average charging times of 12 months:

Many additional costs for 'real' backups, Gmail and malware HostGator's shared hosting plans are inexpensive, with launch fees starting at just $ 2.75 / month (for 36 months). 

Their cheapest plan ("Hatchling") comes with a single domain name, one-click installs of popular applications like WordPress, Joomla, and more, unlimited bandwidth, unlimited storage, and a free SSL certificate. Basically all the main functions you need are for a complete website. 

However, it is about everything they offer in their standard plans. All the 'extras' like website backup, Gmail access, SiteLock monitoring, and SEO tools cost you more when it's time to pay.

This is disappointing because many of these features on the site are correctly worded as "available" so you think they are included. Scroll through the other top hosts we've reviewed and you'll see that many of them actually include them in their base prices. 

Only when you get to the end of the process, when you start entering your billing information, will you realize that all of these extra features will cost you a lot, more. 

Gmail, the default is $ 5 / month or $ 60 / year each. User, what is your usual price. But then SiteLock will cost you $ 19.99 / year, CodeGuard (to back up your pages) will cost you $ 23.95 / year and they won't even keep many older versions of your site if it encounters problems. 

So while the original plan may seem cheap at first, it starts to get pretty expensive after all is said and done.

 

Industry Standard Pricing 'Cheats'

In addition to the additional costs, HostGator has two prices that are pretty standard in the industry.

The former is advertised at a low rate, like $ 2.75 / month, so you realize that you have to pay upfront for three years to get it. Otherwise, you are looking for $ 10.95 / mo for an actual month of service.

However, that's just the beginning. Because furthermore, HostGator's renewal rates increase dramatically after your original subscription has expired. So let's say you go ahead and stick with the low rate for three years.

The problem begins when it comes time to renew your plan in three years. At that point, your monthly rate for the same plan increases to $ 6.95 / month (or $ 250.20 total), more than double what you just paid for the same service.

They basically attack the fact that the chances of you changing shifts after a few years are pretty low. So you're locked in for a while (like a cable company or a gym subscription).

Many other hosts we reviewed do the same trick. However, that doesn't mean we should like it.

However, a combination of slow speeds and further price increases makes it too expensive to be considered a decent value.

The reason we would not recommend it, however, is that they have a better option in the store that is really good value.

HostGator's WordPress cloud hosting is initially a bit more expensive on paper, but performance is also significantly better.

We therefore recommend that you check them first as you are likely to pay the same at the end of the day when you add these extra costs and price increases.