Who doesn't know GoDaddy?
Not only it's the largest hosting provider but the most famous one as well. It aims to offer great, and always improving performance alongside the overall user satisfaction with the service.
Right now, GoDaddy focuses on a wide range of services that include shared, WordPress, VPS, reseller, and dedicated hosting both for Linux and Windows as well as email, marketing, and web security services. GoDaddy also functions as a domain registrar and a website builder.
That's quite a lot to handle. So how does it go for the hosting emperor?
We compiled all of the pros and cons in this GoDaddy review to see, whether it's worth to be the #1.
GoDaddy wouldn't be the most popular hosting provider if it wasn't actually good. So it wins at constantly improving performance, multiple server locations, a wide variety of plans, ease-of-use, choice of domain names, and excellent support.
Check the details.
1. GoDaddy improves its performance constantly
Once we bought a hosting account with GoDaddy, the performance wasn't promising any good. It averaged well over 500ms with some higher spikes. Still, the number was around the industry average of 553ms, but not impressive.
So why is the performance a pro?
GoDaddy managed to impress us by constantly improving its performance. A month or so later we've got results averaging at around 400ms. Pretty good - two blinks of an eye to be exact (one blink is 200ms). But we pushed GoDaddy further.
We decided to contact GoDaddy support about the server speed. Google recommends the response time to be no longer than 200ms so that's what we want.
After we made our contact, response time decreased even more - it averaged at 300ms.
So, GoDaddy impressed us with its constantly improving performance. Even when the response time was not bad, it was proactive in making it even better.
A quick tip: if the performance of server speed does not satisfy you - try contacting the host. Most of the times they are quick to respond and solve your problems. And if the host reacts - you know you're in good hands.
2. Global data centers
GoDaddy has over 37,000 servers scattered across the globe in 9 different locations. The provider owns 1 data center which is located in Pheonix, Arizona.
Other data centers include Mesa, Los Angeles, Chicago, Ashburn, Virginia, Scottsdale, Amsterdam, and Singapore.
What does this mean for you?
With global data centers, you can choose where to host your website from. So if your audience is located in Asia - it's better to host from Singapore (even if you are in the US). The closer the server is to the user, the faster can the pages load.
3. Wide range of flexible plans
GoDaddy is brilliant at offering services for all kinds of users. Probably everyone can find a suitable option - from those looking for small business hosting to enterprises looking for extended resources. GoDaddy covers it all.
Shared hosting and business hosting plans will get you sufficient resources to launch any project. As well as affordable pricing, domain name, and Windows/Linux hosting choice.
GoDaddy promises to launch your site in minutes with slightly more expensive WordPress plans. It includes hosting on WP optimized servers for the better performance, daily backups, and WP expert support team.
You can make good use of VPS plans as well. At some point, websites grow and shared hosting becomes too weak. VPS plans include dedicated IPs, SSL certificate, and root access for full control.
For those who grew up already, GoDaddy has managed dedicated hosting plans. They include extensive resources, dedicated IPs, SSL certificate, and proactive monitoring.
All in all, GoDaddy has everything from the start to the enterprise - it allows you to upgrade any time according to the needs.
4. Easy to use control panel
To make it easy even for beginners, GoDaddy features a user-friendly control panel. Everything you'll need to manage your website is accessible there.
You can see the data you've used in the sidebar, icons also illustrate each and every menu option - pretty self-explanatory.
And while it does not look exactly like your traditional cPanel, it actually is - GoDaddy just put a custom skin on it. So if you're used to cPanel - GoDaddy's control panel will not disappoint you.
5. Choice of affordable domain names
GoDaddy functions as a one-stop-shop - you can get hosting, website building, security, marketing, and domain hosting services.
Not only can you buy a new domain name there, but it's also possible to purchase an already established one in an auction.
GoDaddy is one of the biggest domain name registrars, and not without a reason.
The provider has probably the largest choice of top-level domains available for an affordable price. It has around 500 TLDs. You can even get unique extensions such as .rocks, .art, or .earth. Pretty cool.
With a discount, you can get your domain name for as low as $1. The most popular, .com TLD costs around $11.99/year.
6. 24/7 customer support
GoDaddy has a bunch of support options - from the self-help how-tos, community, and blog to 24/7 live chat and phone support.
It also has email support, but it will only be available if your problem requires a more difficult solution. Your live chat or phone support agent will simply redirect your issue to the email team - no need to write long letters for you.
Talking about self-help, GoDaddy has a huge community and most of the issues can be solved in the community forum. Just search for the answer to your question or create a new topic - you'll get an answer fast either from the community or from one of the admins.
Live chat is only available when the agent can reply instantly. It means you'll see Chat Busy busy at some point.
That does not look good. But only when you are not used to GoDaddy's strange support strategy.
The wait time for the status to change is so insignificant you won't actually feel a difference from the waiting time with the chat open. You can search for an answer in the community forum in the meantime.
So, we were connected with an agent after a few minutes searching the community forum.
The agent was friendly and helpful. He knew his job well offering us the advice we needed.
For the sake of this GoDaddy review, we tried phone support as well. And it was a pleasant surprise.
The agents compensated the average wait time of around 5 minutes really well.
I was asking for "FTP hosting" and the agent didn't try to offer the expensive VPS plan (which is a logical solution). Instead, he advised me on contacting Dropbox or similar online storage company.
I checked and GoDaddy appears to have no affiliation with Dropbox. It meant that the agent offered me a solution that is the best for me, not his company's interests.
Such a personal touch is very welcomed - especially when you consider that GoDaddy has been trying to sell me something all the time while waiting to be connected to the agent.
No matter how good GoDaddy appears to be, it has some issues (don't we all?).
GoDaddy is aggressive with its pricing and its uptime has not been the best lately.
The details are below.
1. Aggressive pricing strategy
GoDaddy does offer affordable pricing starting at $5.99/month. For the initial first term. Then the prices go up - for example, shared hosting Economy plan for $5.99/month becomes $7.99/month.
Pricing going up is no surprise. But not only that.
You'll also have to pick the longest term subscription in order to get the advertised price.
For example, to get the $5.99/month price you need to sign for 36 months. If you want to pay yearly - the price jumps to $6.99/month.
Also, GoDaddy's upsell game is strong.
First of all, the provider does not include an SSL certificate - an essential part of every website. You have to purchase it for $6.67/month. Not that cheap considering that others include it for free or as a one-time installation fee.
Also, automated backups cost $2.99/month and the Essential Website Security service for website monitoring and protection hackers and malware costs $5.59/month.
While the prices going up after the first term is not as significant, the upsells can increase the prices a lot. So check this table below to compare each shared hosting plan and see what's included:
|Disk space limit||100GB||Unmetered||Unmetered||Unmetered|
|SSL||Extra||Extra||Free for 1st year||Free|
|Customer Support||24/7 phone, live chat|
2. Below average uptime
GoDaddy promises 99.9% uptime.
Unfortunately, reality is a bit different. During our testing period, GoDaddy scored 99.46% uptime. That means, it was more than 7 minutes out, every day (more like a couple longer blackouts in the period of a few months, but still). And that's not good.
None of the hosts manage to score 100% uptime all the time - servers are just not that reliable. However, keeping the number as close to 100% is important - you wouldn't want to lose visitors during another regular blackout.
We just hope that GoDaddy will improve its server uptime just how it improved the response time.
GoDaddy Review - the Verdict
As we figured in this GoDaddy review, it is not the most affordable host out there. But it sure offers reliable services - server performance keeps improving, support is great, and the control panel is easy to use.
On the other hand, there are some flaws as well.
Many features and services, such as automated backups or an SSL certificate require either a separate payment or a very expensive plan.
All in all, it's a fairly solid hosting provider, offering good services. If you are prepared to pay a little bit extra, you won't go wrong.
- Free domain names included
- Great performance
- User-friendly interface
- High scalability
- High renewal prices and upsells
- Poor uptime