GoDaddy vs WP Engine (2018)

Ryan Frankel Ryan Frankel Hosting Expert
“We tested GoDaddy & WP Engine — The winner is GoDaddy!”

Which would you rather be: a big fish in a little pond or a little fish in a big pond? That’s the dilemma facing web hosting customers choosing between GoDaddy and WP Engine. As the world’s largest hosting brand, GoDaddy represents that big pond — more than 17 million fish call GoDaddy their hosting home, which comes with pros and cons. Obviously, so many site owners wouldn’t continue swimming to GoDaddy if the company didn’t have a solid, well-supported platform of web hosting, site builders, support, and domain registration tools. However, the big fish swimming in WP Engine’s cloud-powered pond have more resources and optimized experiences. Which is the right habitat for you?

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Overall Rating
4.7/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit GoDaddy »
Overall Rating
4.5/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit WP Engine »

Overall Hosting Comparison

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

GoDaddy is exceptionally well-known in the hosting space — deemed the World's #1 Domain Name Registrar. They make it incredibly easy and affordable for folks to choose a domain name, sign up for hosting,... read more +

GoDaddy is exceptionally well-known in the hosting space — deemed the World's #1 Domain Name Registrar. They make it incredibly easy and affordable for folks to choose a domain name, sign up for hosting, and start building their online business or personal web property. While known for their domain, email, and shared hosting services, GoDaddy offers options for virtual and dedicated servers as well. They make the upgrade process as seamless as possible, so you shouldn't shy away from scaling your site as your business needs grow.

The user control options are pretty popular in the hosting space: your choice between the easy-to-use cPanel or Plesk control panels, plus Root (administrative) access for more tech-savvy customers. If you're particularly interested in webmail, GoDaddy offers their GoDaddy Workspace feature, an intuitive interface for keeping up with the unlimited email accounts you have available to you as a customer. All of this can be easily accessed and secured with your GoDaddy login info that you receive upon sign-up.

Customer support has been a focus of the GoDaddy team as they constantly work to improve. Today, they have an award-winning team of experts on staff, readily available to handle customer support tickets and emails 24 hours a day, seven days a week. While they're on hand to talk you through any issues, they're also keeping an eye on your server (as well as other clients sharing your server). Their security monitoring is round-the-clock and they guarantee uptime rates of 99.9% or better. This uptime rate is by no means outstanding in the industry, but for most end-users, it's all that's required. Their page load speeds (the time it takes for your webpages to load) are industry-leading, however.

The bottom line is this: GoDaddy is a go-to domain web host for millions of users world-wide for a reason. They maintain their ever-expanding network of users by offering blazing-fast load times, award-winning security and support, and a free domain name when you sign up for a year-long plan. It's a great hosting deal, particularly for first-timers and SMB owners, at a really great (low!) price point.

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  • Industry-leading load times
  • Award-winning support and security
  • World's #1 Domain Name Registrar
  • Choice of cPanel or Plesk included
  • 99.9% uptime guaranteed
  • Get started on GoDaddy now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
100 GB - Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (w/ annual plans)

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.5/5.0

We absolutely adore WP Engine as a hosting company, but there's one huge reason we can't recommend it to everyone: It's exclusively built for WordPress users. If you are a WordPress fan, then read on! If... read more +

We absolutely adore WP Engine as a hosting company, but there's one huge reason we can't recommend it to everyone: It's exclusively built for WordPress users. If you are a WordPress fan, then read on! If not, you'll want to try one of our other recommendations.

If you care enough about your WordPress site — its security, scalability, load time, and uptime — to spend upward of $20 per month on it, then WP Engine is an ideal choice for you. It'd be tough to make a strong case arguing otherwise.

While WP Engine's price tag may scare off newbies, those who know WordPress will attest to the impressiveness of WP Engine's proprietary platform. Always updated with the latest hardware to maximize server performance, WP Engine boasts a market-leading software layer built exclusively for WordPress users. This includes the company's own caching system to ensure your site loads super quickly for visitors, a one-click staging area, and constant security monitoring to ward off online threats.

For beginners, installing a WordPress theme and getting a site up and running couldn't be easier. For more experienced folks, such as myself, WP Engine's advanced features, such as single-click development staging areas, Git integration, multiple server locations, CDN compatibility, and a ton of other niceties, can't be beat. These features make the monthly price worthwhile, compared to what the more economically competitive hosts offer.

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  • WordPress-exclusive hosting
  • Proprietary caching technology
  • 1-click WordPress install
  • FREE SSL and CDN ready
  • 20% off your first payment (was $24.20/month, now $19.33)
  • Get started on WP Engine now.
Money Back Guarantee
60 days
Disk Space
10 GB - 30 GB
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Cheap Hosting Comparison

Cheap Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

A main pull factor for GoDaddy's hosting services is certainly the cost. It's hard to beat web hosting for a dollar per month, especially when they include a free domain name (with annual plan sign-up),... read more +

A main pull factor for GoDaddy's hosting services is certainly the cost. It's hard to beat web hosting for a dollar per month, especially when they include a free domain name (with annual plan sign-up), cPanel control panel, and some of the industry's fastest webpage load times. They make it not only affordable but super easy to get started — for first-timers, bloggers, business owners, and others.

You can choose a GoDaddy hosting plan based on your needs, with a range of options for storage, email, processing power, et cetera. If your site grows to need scalable and/or dedicated resources, their team makes that transition easy as well. VPSs and dedicated servers can be provisioned in minutes, with Root and cPanel access, and no re-provisioning is required for upgrades. All GoDaddy plans are equipped with the user control of cPanel (or Plesk, if you prefer). From cPanel, you can easily install and set up popular web applications for blogging and/or eCommerce (e.g., WordPress, Drupal, or Magento).

A big name in the budget web hosting space, GoDaddy is consistently improving the performance of their servers, their site, and their services in order to offer a great customer experience. With cPanel control and 1-click installations for standard web apps, you can get your website up and running quickly. Their 24/7 security monitoring and DDoS protection allow you the comfort in knowing that the professionals are making sure your site is online, loading quickly, and hacker-free. That power and peace of mind — at such a low price point — is quite a value deal.

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  • World's #1 Domain Name Registrar offers a FREE domain with hosting
  • Industry-leading page load times for your site's webpages
  • Unlimited bandwidth with up to unlimited storage space
  • Choose from two popular control panels: cPanel or Plesk
  • Award-winning support on-hand 24/7
  • Get started on GoDaddy now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
100 GB - Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE (w/ annual plans)

Cheap Rating

N/A

WP Engine does not currently offer this type of hosting. We would not recommend choosing this host for this hosting category.

Dedicated Hosting Comparison

Dedicated Rating

★★★★ 4.1/5.0

GoDaddy dedicated server hosting plans feature managed support options, on-demand resources that are all yours, and the intuitive user control of cPanel. They offer plans for Linux and Windows users, with... read more +

GoDaddy dedicated server hosting plans feature managed support options, on-demand resources that are all yours, and the intuitive user control of cPanel. They offer plans for Linux and Windows users, with a variety of options for operating systems, RAM, processing power, disk space, and hardware choices.

With award-winning security monitoring, GoDaddy support is not only available around the clock to help you troubleshoot issues with your server but they're keeping an eye on your server status. They offer a 99.9% uptime guarantee, which isn't significant in the hosting industry, but their team is committed to keeping your site online and running speedily. They offer premier DDoS protection, anti-hacking services, and other SiteLock security add-ons. GoDaddy managed hosting customers benefit from the assurance that the experts will facilitate security patches, bug fixes, and site backups. In general, customer support is an element of the hosting experience that GoDaddy is consistently striving to improve in their offerings.

With resource configurations customized to meet your needs, GoDaddy offers dedicated server hosting that you can grow your business with — starting with a free domain name if you start with a 12-month plan. The GoDaddy tech support team is available 24/7, guarding your site against malware, hackers, unexpected downtime, and DDoS threats; meanwhile, their support agents are handling any support ticket requests that come through their chat portal or email system. With on-demand resources and industry-leading page load speeds, GoDaddy is a dedicated host that's worthy of your consideration.

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  • "Ready NOW" dedicated resources
  • Self-, semi-, and fully-managed plans
  • Maximum performance and data protection with RAID 1 disk mirroring
  • Total administrative control with Root access, plus cPanel control panel
  • Disaster recovery included
  • Get started on GoDaddy now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
512 GB - 2 TB
Domain Name
FREE (w/ annual plans)

Dedicated Rating

N/A

WP Engine does not currently offer this type of hosting. We would not recommend choosing this host for this hosting category.

VPS Hosting Comparison

VPS Rating

★★★★ 3.8/5.0

If you're looking to grow and scale your website — you currently need, expect to need, or want the option to require scalable resources on-demand, GoDaddy has you covered. They have options for... read more +

If you're looking to grow and scale your website — you currently need, expect to need, or want the option to require scalable resources on-demand, GoDaddy has you covered. They have options for cloud-based, virtual, and dedicated servers along side their shared server offerings. Upgrading to any of these options is a relatively-seamless process. For example, after provisioning your server (in mere minutes) before initial deployment, you won't have to re-provision should you choose to upgrade later.

Dev folks will be pleased to hear that GoDaddy offers Root access, so you can install PHP, modules, and proxy servers via the command line with ease. Plans also include cPanel, so you can easily manage your hosting service. Meanwhile, the GoDaddy team will monitor your server 24/7, including handling patches and backups should you select one of their managed plan options.

The GoDaddy name may not immediately bring VPS hosting to mind. Nonetheless, GoDaddy's cloud server offerings include the security, support, and value deal that together embody the GoDaddy reputation in the hosting space. They give you everything you need to scale your web presence in the Cloud.

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  • Designed to handle traffic with Linux or Windows operating systems
  • Provision your server in minutes, with Root access and cPanel included
  • Provision-free upgrades, with tons of SiteLock security add-ons
  • Unlimited bandwidth and tons of processing power available
  • Managed services come standard
  • Get started on GoDaddy now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
40 GB - 240 GB
Domain Name
FREE (w/ annual plans)

VPS Rating

N/A

WP Engine does not currently offer this type of hosting. We would not recommend choosing this host for this hosting category.

WordPress Hosting Comparison

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

Upon first getting started with GoDaddy, customers who sign up for an annual plan receive a free domain name and the power to control their hosting via cPanel or Plesk control panels. From either of these... read more +

Upon first getting started with GoDaddy, customers who sign up for an annual plan receive a free domain name and the power to control their hosting via cPanel or Plesk control panels. From either of these interfaces, you can quickly install and set up the WordPress environment at no additional cost. Even if you don't sign up for a 12-month GoDaddy plan, they're still known as the World's #1 Domain Name Registrar, so they're a reputable choice for hosting your domain.

GoDaddy WordPress plans feature managed services, which means you don't have to worry about tedious details of maintaining the server on which your site is hosted (e.g., security patches and bug fixes). While you're busy adding content, photos, or products to your WordPress site, GoDaddy ensures that your web pages are loading quickly and hackers are staying away. GoDaddy offers award-winning security practices, including DDoS protection, 24/7 server monitoring, and the peace of mind in knowing that experts are not only watching your server but they're keeping an eye on the activity of other users sharing your server.

Folks seeking a WordPress website are in need of the WordPress install itself, the domain at which to host the site, and as many easy-to-use features for managing the WordPress site as possible. GoDaddy offers all of the above: the 1-click install, domain, email, security monitoring, and hosting management power via cPanel. Especially for the low, low cost, they're a fine choice for WordPress hosting.

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  • 1-click WordPress installs via cPanel or Plesk control panels
  • World's #1 Domain Name Registrar offers a FREE domain
  • Experience 24/7 expert support
  • Award-winning security monitoring
  • Screaming-fast page load speeds
  • Get started on GoDaddy now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
10 GB SSD - 50 GB SSD
Domain Name
FREE (w/ annual plans)

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

#8 out of 10 in WordPress Hosting reviews

Do you care enough about your WordPress site — its security, scalability, load time, and uptime — to spend around $20, or more, per month on it? If you answered "yes," then WP Engine is a fine... read more +

Do you care enough about your WordPress site — its security, scalability, load time, and uptime — to spend around $20, or more, per month on it? If you answered "yes," then WP Engine is a fine choice! You've come to the right place.

While WP Engine's price tag will scare off many, those who know WordPress, and the power that comes when the forces of WordPress and WP Engine combine, will likely praise the robustness of the WP Engine platform. Always updated with the latest hardware to maximize server performance, WP Engine boasts a market-leading software layer built exclusively for WordPress. This includes a proprietary caching system to ensure minimal page load times for visitors, a one-click development staging area, and around-the-clock security monitoring for your site.

Installing WordPress, setting up a theme, and moving a site from production to publication is simple for beginners. More experienced users will appreciate the single-click development staging areas, Git integration, choice of server locations, CDN compatibility, and other niceties. These features make the higher-end monthly price worthwhile, in my humble opinion.

Plus, there's my personal favorite feature: the built-in caching system. This feature allows WP Engine sites to outperform almost all other WordPress sites without the use of plugins. This means you can focus more on your content and design and let the experts at WP Engine focus on maintaining your site's ridiculously great performance.

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  • Enterprise-level WordPress hosting
  • Built-in caching and staging
  • Unlimited data transfer
  • Daily backups and 1-click restore
  • 20% discount for HostingAdvice users (was $24.20/month)
  • Get started on WP Engine now.
Money Back Guarantee
60 days
Disk Space
10 GB - 30 GB
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Site Builder Hosting Comparison

Website Builder Rating

★★★★★ 4.5/5.0

GoDaddy uses a version of the InstantPage website builder to offer a user-friendly site-building solution to their customers. Most of GoDaddy's hosting plans include this website builder as an option at no... read more +

GoDaddy uses a version of the InstantPage website builder to offer a user-friendly site-building solution to their customers. Most of GoDaddy's hosting plans include this website builder as an option at no additional cost. Plus, if you sign up for an annual hosting plan, this world-leading domain name registrar will include your website's new domain for free.

The InstantPage site builder interface is incredibly easy to use and includes a lot of options for customization. While you worry about making your website beautiful and professional-looking, the GoDaddy team is working around the clock to ensure that your site will remain online and performing speedily. Their award-winning security team monitors the server that's supporting your website — keeping an eye out for downtime, hackers, and other security threats. They also keep an eye on the usage of other customers sharing your server. The end result is their uptime guarantee of 99.9%, which isn't much in the hosting world, but it does the job for most users.

The bottom line is that for a mere dollar per month you can get started with GoDaddy's website builder plan and choose from hundreds of theme options to start designing the site of your dreams. See it as a free website builder with hosting that costs a dollar per month, or a dollar per month spent on a site builder with the hosting included for free — either way it's a pretty sweet deal.

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  • FREE InstantPage website builder included with most hosting plans
  • Easy-to-use interface with tons of customization options available
  • 24/7 expert support via phone, email, and ticketing system
  • 99.9% uptime with an award-winning team monitoring your site and server
  • Step-by-step walkthroughs
  • Get started on GoDaddy now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
1 GB - 50 GB
Domain Name
FREE (w/ annual plans)

Website Builder Rating

N/A

WP Engine does not currently offer this type of hosting. We would not recommend choosing this host for this hosting category.

GoDaddy vs. WP Engine - Our Conclusion

Ryan Frankel Ryan Frankel Hosting Expert
“We tested GoDaddy & WP Engine — The winner is GoDaddy!”

As you can see, GoDaddy and WordPress tend to serve two rather different needs in the hosting industry. GoDaddy is a well-rounded provider with solid tools that extend beyond domain registration. WP Engine, however, enacts a much narrower business model by choosing to concentrate on managed WordPress services. Making the call between these two providers likely hinges on your comfort with technology, budget restrictions, and website requirements. Feel free to click on our reviews above to get more information about the services GoDaddy and WP Engine offer. Hope your hosting goes swimmingly!

Overall Rating
4.7/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit GoDaddy »
Overall Rating
4.5/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit WP Engine »