Whom you choose as the host for your website is important. After all, in the absence of a reliable hosting platform, your webpage can fall victim to everything from data breaches and security failures to lessened search engine rankings. Additionally, the most obvious threat of a poor hosting service is the potential for your site to go down at critical points, causing everything from a decrease in total revenue to a less pleasurable experience for viewers.
Fortunately, there are a host of hosts available that provide robust, reliable hosting at affordable rates. In this article, we'll compare the benefits of SiteGround vs HostGator, pitting the tried-and-true options HostGator against the innovative, new solutions of Siteground.
The most distinguished features and tools are completely useless if your webpage is down, so a primary element upon which to focus when considering a host is uptime. Both companies claim to have 99.99% uptime, but of course, there can always be a discrepancy between company promises and real-world results. Consequently, we decided to test the uptimes of both sites to get an unbiased representation of their real-world efficacy.
In our test of SiteGround, we chose a WordPress site as our guinea pig, and we tracked it's availability once every minute. This allowed us to gather an impression it's likelihood to go down, and what we discovered was promising: Over the span of our initial trial week, we experienced no lapses in uptime, and for the subsequent three months, our downtime amounted to a meagre five minutes.
Roughly five months into our experiment, we began to see more sustained periods of downtime, and the platform seemed like it was going through a patch of turbulence. Interestingly, this period of volatility coincided with reports from the company that they had sustained several DDoS attacks upon their servers in The Netherlands, which, incidentally, was where our website was based.
Without question, their ability to fare through some of the hazards of the cyber realm is an element prospective subscribers should also take into consideration, and how they emerge from this concern is something that will inform public perception of their stability as a platform.
HostGator, in turn, managed to pass a similar test with flying colours. True to its claims of 99.99% uptime, the site stayed buoyant as though it were a dirigible with an extra dose of helium pumped into it.
Though, of course, it would have taken an act of cyber-terrorism on our end to see how well they can weather through a DDoS attack, it would not be an extravagant logical leap to infer that, perhaps, the reason why we didn't experience interference from a DDoS attack with them was not due to the absence of one, but because of how well they keep them at bay.
Succinctly stated, market demands make it so that a need for speed is a survival mechanism for successful web pages, and both of these platforms have highly respectable loading times. Using Bitcacha, we tested out the host speed during low upkeep for SiteGround, and found the following results:
With only Sydney even marginally surpassing 300 ms, it was a pleasant surprise to see how evenly-distributed host speeds were throughout the globe. This uniformity in host speed is an important contingency for those interested in using a service that allows them to provide equal quality of service to clients across the planet.
HostGator, on the other hand, displayed erratic variability in its speed, with non-US countries getting the shorter end of the stick and the longer end of the wait. In the table below, you can see the diversity in response rates. Though Bitcacha's servers could have impacted the times of the responses, it is still very clear that HostGator can be sub-optimal for those seeking to create a similar user experience irrespective of the user's location.
To test the mettle of both hosts' security protocols, we conducted a two-part test: The first part was to enter random alphanumeric combinations in mass, thus presenting the system with the hallmarks of a brute force attack. The second phase involved trying to seduce customer service into giving up the information. So, how did SiteGround vs HostGator fare?
Despite allowing us to log in after a lengthy string of attempts, SiteGround refused to furnish credentials through customer service unless the requesting party had either access to the email address attached to the account, the phone number provided at registration, or could send over a copy of their Identification and the Credit Card on the account.
While not making access to the page completely closed off, they certainly did not allow us to retrieve our credentials because of our way with words.
Like SiteGround, HostGator was a bit permissive about how many times they allowed us to feign a brute force attack without locking the account. However, they shone spectacularly when it came to the customer service response to our wiles. In the absence of being able to access the email attached to the account, they requested ID and a bank account statement to corroborate our identity, making it so that, in this respect, HostGator wins the toss-up between SiteGround vs HostGator.
One of SiteGround's most exciting features is that it comes with the Weebly Site-builder built-in! This gives users the flexibility to create websites in minutes with templates that are both stunning and easy to use.
In contrast, this was one element in the SiteGround vs HostGator fight which HostGator lost without a shadow of a doubt.
Though their templates were far from being below industry-standard, they lacked the visual appeal of Weebly's site-building tools and didn't feature the transportability of content for which Weebly is known.
SiteGround draws in customers with reduced starting rates and then charges renewal rates each month that vary depending on the package that you have opted to go with. Their three pricing strata post-renewal are labelled “StartUp,” “GrowBig,” and “GoGeek,” with their costs ranging from $3.95 a month to $11.95 a month.
HostGator's pricing structures bend and sway a little more to match the needs of their clients. Though they offer three main plans, they also allow for upgrades for those that need more resources.
More heavily trafficked pages can take solace in some of their higher-grade offerings, such as Reseller Hosting at $19.96 per month, VPS Hosting at $11.97 per month, or Dedicated Hosting at $105 per month.
All of HostGator's plans come with unmetered amounts of bandwidth and disk space.
SiteGround vs HostGator: Who Comes Out on Top?
SiteGround brings evenness of host speed and incredible customer service to the table, while, HostGator caters to those that might be concerned with disk space limits.
However, due to their high-performance quality, the intuitiveness of their menu, and the top-notch customer service they rendered, SiteGround makes us want to say, “'See you later, HostGator."
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