HostPapa vs. HostGator (2017)

Laura Stamey Laura Stamey Hosting Expert
“We tested HostPapa & HostGator — The winner is HostPapa!”

HostPapa and HostGator — two similarly sounding hosting providers offer very different hosting experiences. The first, HostPapa remains one of the few independently owned hosting companies in the market. Meanwhile the latter, HostGator thrives under the giant umbrella that is Endurance International Group. Let’s compare the two almost-homonyms side by side.

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Overall Rating
4.7/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit HostPapa »
Overall Rating
4.5/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit HostGator »

Overall Hosting Comparison

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

One of the earliest hosting companies to power their datacenters with renewable energy, HostPapa is an established provider that furnishes customers with plans backed by award-winning customer service and... read more +

One of the earliest hosting companies to power their datacenters with renewable energy, HostPapa is an established provider that furnishes customers with plans backed by award-winning customer service and covered with a bevy of features. Currently hosting more than 500,000 websites, HostPapa is the epitome of a high-value, low-cost provider.

We recently went straight to the source to find out what sets HostPapa apart from other hosting companies and sat down with CEO Jamie Opalchuck, who said HostPapa is "a little bit different than the average beast" in the hosting industry. The privately-owned company considers themselves less of a straight-up hosting provider and more of a 1-stop shop for small businesses looking to grow their brand and online presence.

Whether through CRM tools, automatic backups, or unlimited storage, we found that HostPapa excels at giving their customers a seamless, easy experience.

Each user gets a dedicated account manager and a single bill, no matter how many services are added on. That account manager will recommend products, such as email platforms, based on your needs — even if it means suggesting Google Apps or Microsoft Office 365 instead of HostPapa's proprietary platform.

"We want to act as consultants and help our customers reach new heights," Jamie said. "It's a different take on the hosting industry."

With locations in 18 countries and support in four languages (English, French, German, and Spanish), customer support is a major component of HostPapa's modus operandi. Representatives are available to assist users around the clock, including for one-on-one video chats.

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  • Award-winning PapaSquad Support available 24/7/365
  • One-on-one video training sessions with HostPapa expert
  • FREE drag-and-drop website builder
  • Unlimited storage and bandwidth
  • SiteLock, CloudFlare, Google Apps, and Office 365
  • Get started on HostPapa now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
100 GB - Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE for life!

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.5/5.0

HostGator has been around for over a decade and is well-respected for their large number of servers and their consistent reliability. Known mostly as a shared hosting provider, HostGator still supplies... read more +

HostGator has been around for over a decade and is well-respected for their large number of servers and their consistent reliability. Known mostly as a shared hosting provider, HostGator still supplies decent dedicated and VPS options if you need your site to scale.

HostGator costs a little more than some of the other budget-minded shared hosts, but that contributes to their reliability and well-known support. They offer decent features included in their basic offerings, unlimited disk space, a nice control panel, and free website templates. While the feature list is short compared to other hosts, you do get the flexibility to add them as you see fit.

Aimed primarily at the semi-technical user, HostGator's flexibility is their strong suit. Dedicated, VPS, and Windows hosting is available if that fits your needs. For those than need it, root access, SSH, and support for Ruby, Perl, Python, and other languages is available on all plans.

HostGator has nearly limitless options and control available for their server, however, they require a little more knowledge than beginner-focused web hosts. If you need to host multiple sites, their wide array of offerings make them a great choice.

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  • Easy-to-use control panel
  • FREE Weebly site builder
  • Unlimited disk space, emails, and bandwidth on all plans
  • No contract required and 45-day money-back guarantee
  • 50% off your first month, plus domains starting at $5!
  • Get started on HostGator now.
Money Back Guarantee
45 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Cheap Hosting Comparison

Cheap Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

#5 out of 10 in Cheap Hosting reviews

Where HostPapa shines is with their shared hosting, which offers affordable and feature-rich plans geared toward helping website and small business owners alike grow their online presence. ... read more +

Where HostPapa shines is with their shared hosting, which offers affordable and feature-rich plans geared toward helping website and small business owners alike grow their online presence.

HostPapa wants to be more than just a web host, according to CEO Jamie Opalchuck, who told us that the company aims to be a 1-stop shop for small businesses looking for a seamless and simple experience to help them grow.

"We're looking for a person that we can bring in for $4 a month and help him become more and more successful," he said. "Our goal is to find that person that just doesn't have the IT support they need. They can call us, and we'll actually answer the phone."

Once we signed up and got our hands dirty with HostPapa's services, we found they are poised to achieve that and more. A ton of features make marketing, eCommerce, and email a breeze. Beyond Google Apps or Microsoft Office 365, HostPapa also offers two in-house email plans with a user-friendly interface and modest functionality. HostPapa's email storage limits pale in comparison to the Gmail or Outlook offerings, but the price — less than half of Google and Microsoft — makes HostPapa a great alternative.

"Our plan might be more economical, but it's not necessarily for everyone," Jamie said of HostPapa's email packages. "We want to act as consultants and help our customers reach new heights."

In addition to unlimited bandwidth and CloudFlare's content delivery network, Business Pro plan customers can also boost speed and performance with Rocket Fast Premium Servers — double the RAM, double the hard drives, and up to three times faster. HostPapa's 99.9% uptime guarantee isn't spectacular but should be plenty sufficient for most users.

Need extra help getting started? HostPapa is the only hosting provider that offers one-on-one sessions with one of their support experts. The 30-minute conference, done via phone or video chat, is included in HostPapa's Business or Business Pro plans.

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  • FREE drag-and-drop HostPapa website builder
  • Host unlimited WordPress sites on one account
  • 24/7 support via phone, email, and live chat
  • Enhanced security features included included
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee and unlimited bandwidth
  • Get started on HostPapa now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
100 GB - Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE for life!

Cheap Rating

★★★★★ 4.6/5.0

#7 out of 10 in Cheap Hosting reviews

HostGator is a great compromise between performance and price. They offer unlimited emails, MySQL databases, disk space, and bandwidth, plus 1-click installs of popular open-source projects, in addition to... read more +

HostGator is a great compromise between performance and price. They offer unlimited emails, MySQL databases, disk space, and bandwidth, plus 1-click installs of popular open-source projects, in addition to a 99.9% uptime guarantee on their shared hosting plans.

HostGator’s price-to-performance perks also apply to their vast array of other hosting options, such as VPS, dedicated servers, and even reseller hosting. Their many hosting options make them a great choice for sites on the rise, in need of options for the future.

For those just getting started and looking for a good, cheap host, HostGator bundles some nice features that hosting newbies can appreciate. A very nice site builder from Weebly is included. Their control panels are also very easy to use and a free domain is a nice touch.

If you are looking for a solid web host, with a ton of flexibility, plenty of power, and great price points, you should consider making HostGator your web host of choice.

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  • FREE Weebly site builder
  • Easy-to-use control panel
  • Unlimited disk, emails, and bandwidth
  • 24/7/365 premium support
  • 50% off your first month, plus domains starting at $5!
  • Get started on HostGator now.
Money Back Guarantee
45 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Dedicated Hosting Comparison

Dedicated Rating

N/A

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

Dedicated Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

#4 out of 7 in Dedicated Hosting reviews

Founded in 2002, HostGator is one of the largest web hosts with a long lineage of dedicated server hosting. With updated hardware, including Intel Xeon Quad-core processors and a boatload of RAM, HostGator... read more +

Founded in 2002, HostGator is one of the largest web hosts with a long lineage of dedicated server hosting. With updated hardware, including Intel Xeon Quad-core processors and a boatload of RAM, HostGator balances performance, quality of service, and competitive pricing.

As one of the few hosts to offer managed support and a Windows-based operating system, HostGator is an excellent fit for those seeking hassle-free ASP.NET support.

HostGator boasts a top-of-the-line, fully redundant network and datacenter, which dedicated hosting users should appreciate. The company also offers several unique IP addresses per dedicated server account.

Finally, HostGator has a fantastic support network and 24/7 customer service available via phone, chat, or email. Combining that support with plenty of power, HostGator is a very respectable choice for a dedicated server host.

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  • Linux or Windows servers available
  • Top-of-the-line fully redundant network and datacenter
  • Unlimited MySQL databases
  • SSH access and support for multiple languages
  • Use code HA30OFF for 30% off first month
  • Get started on HostGator now.
Money Back Guarantee
N/A
Disk Space
500 GB - 1 TB RAID
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

VPS Hosting Comparison

VPS Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

If you've outgrown shared hosting and are ready to take on new challenges and customers, consider expanding with HostPapa's high-performance VPS hosting. ... read more +

If you've outgrown shared hosting and are ready to take on new challenges and customers, consider expanding with HostPapa's high-performance VPS hosting.

Their Linux or Windows plans simultaneously give users high levels of both control and flexibility. The affordable, fully managed solution is easy to scale as your site or application grows. You can choose your operating system and server location, then use cPanel and root access to manage your environment.

We found HostPapa's 6GB RAM and 200GB of storage to be a touch shy of their competitors, but they're one of the only hosting providers to include unlimited bandwidth and fully managed support. You can add extra RAM for $20 per gigabyte per month and 15GB of storage for $10 per month.

HostPapa makes up for the slightly limited specifications with their fully managed services, however. "Managed" can mean anything to hosts, but HostPapa definitely put their technicians to work for you. Included in those services are automation, performance and firewall troubleshooting, email and backup configuration, software upgrades and migration, and security audits.

"We're doubling down on support," CEO Jamie Opalchuk said. "We're doubling down on a lot of things that make the client experience better."

Pair that with HostPapa's award-winning support teams who are available 24/7/365 via telephone, email, and chat, and you've got a solid managed VPS hosting plan ready to help you move on from shared hosting.

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  • Wholesale domain reseller account
  • Unlimited hosting and FTP accounts
  • Hyper-V monitoring technology and dedicated memory
  • FREE cPanel/WHMCS license, and Softaculous installs
  • Up to 6GB of RAM
  • Get started on HostPapa now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
50 GB - 200 GB
Domain Name
$14.99

VPS Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

#5 out of 8 in VPS Hosting reviews

HostGator has built a great reputation in the industry for their shared hosting options. Their VPS solutions, with optional cPanel support, provide a nice and easy introduction to those that are new to VPS... read more +

HostGator has built a great reputation in the industry for their shared hosting options. Their VPS solutions, with optional cPanel support, provide a nice and easy introduction to those that are new to VPS hosting and know their needs require more than a typical shared host.

Starting at low price points, HostGator makes transitioning to a VPS plan reasonable and doable. Each plan comes with two IPs and a bunch of storage, however, their CPU and RAM offerings could be better for their respective price tags.

HostGator’s strongest point comes from their state of the art datacenter. Featuring a fully redundant network with no single point of failure and multiple bandwidth providers, uptime should almost never be a concern.

Founded in 2002, HostGator is one of the largest online web hosts. They have more than 12,000 servers under management and award-winning support. If you are looking for a very small VPS server or value the strength of a great network, give HostGator a shot.

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  • Full root access
  • Redundant network with multiple layers of network security
  • Fully or semi-managed options
  • FREE website, domain, MySQL, and script transfer
  • Use code HA30OFF for 30% off first month
  • Get started on HostGator now.
Money Back Guarantee
45 days
Disk Space
25 GB - 3 TB
Domain Name
FREE (1 year)

WordPress Hosting Comparison

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

#7 out of 10 in WordPress Hosting reviews

Nearly all hosts these days include easy installations and support for WordPress, the world's leading content management system. While HostPapa is no different, we discovered their ultra-attentive support... read more +

Nearly all hosts these days include easy installations and support for WordPress, the world's leading content management system. While HostPapa is no different, we discovered their ultra-attentive support team can help new users navigate the sometimes challenging platform.

Available through Softaculous, we found the WordPress installation to be incredibly simple — find the WordPress logo in your control panel and follow the prompts to set up your site with the appropriate title and tagline.

Paired with all the apps and features HostPapa offers for marketing, eCommerce, and email, WordPress hosting opens the door to millions of plugins that should take care of all your needs. Also, you can give WordPress an extra boost by taking advantage of HostPapa's partnerships: CloudFlare's content delivery network for speed, SiteLock protection for security, and GlobalSign SSL certificates for additional safety and eCommerce capabilities.

"Our play is what we can supply a small business owner to help in any kind of way with their web properties," CEO Jamie Opalchuk said when we sat down with him. "Keep it simple; that's our place."

If you run into trouble, PapaSquad support is only a phone call, email, or chat message away. They're available 24/7/365 to help, as are HostPapa's video tutorials, downloadable manuals, and knowledgebase.

"We're doubling down on support," Jamie said. "We're doubling down on a lot of things that make the client experience better."

WordPress can be challenging at times, and HostPapa is the only hosting company that provides 30-minute sessions through video or phone with one of their support experts. Those sessions are included in Business or Business Pro plans but are available to other customers for a fee.

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  • 1-click WordPress installation script
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee
  • 24/7 support via phone, email, live chat, and video tutorials
  • Server firewall, monitoring, and intrusion detection
  • Unlimited MySQL databases and phpMyAdmin
  • Get started on HostPapa now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
100 GB - Unlimited
Domain Name
FREE for life!

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

#5 out of 10 in WordPress Hosting reviews

HostGator is great for all things shared hosting, and application-specific services — such as the classic one-click-install WordPress hosting — are no exception. The team recently updated its already... read more +

HostGator is great for all things shared hosting, and application-specific services — such as the classic one-click-install WordPress hosting — are no exception. The team recently updated its already clean and intuitive cPanel dashboard, wherein users can find a myriad of free apps and scripts to install, including WordPress. You could quite realistically have a WP-powered site up and running in as little as an afternoon.

As is the case with many of our favorite shared WordPress hosting providers, HostGator offers unlimited emails, databases, disk storage, and bandwidth. The one downfall is the lack of the popular free domain perk, but domain names are easy to obtain for around $10 to $15 bucks with any registrar. You can also select, register, and pay for a domain directly from the HostGator signup page.

If you're serious about your WordPress hosting, we recommend HostGator's new(er) managed WordPress platform, which is optimized for performance with cloud resources, multiple layers of caching tools, and a complimentary CDN. Managed WordPress plan subscribers enjoy up to 2.5x faster page load speeds for their website or blog. If you're running a business website, this is an excellent investment.

Once your site is designed and ready for promotion, HostGator helps you kickstart your online marketing efforts with $100 in paid advertising credits. Attract blog readers, potential clients, or online shoppers browsing Google search results. Yay, traffic!!

We wish you the best of luck in your blog or online business hosting endeavors. WordPress is a known favorite in the space, and HostGator has established itself as a trusted partner well worthy of your consideration.

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  • Easy-to-set-up WordPress hosting on shared servers
  • Install WordPress with one click via cPanel dashboard
  • Unlimited email addresses hosted at your domain
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee means your blog stays online
  • $100 in Google Adwords credit to kickstart marketing
  • Get started on HostGator now.
Money Back Guarantee
45 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
$12.95

Site Builder Hosting Comparison

Website Builder Rating

★★★★★ 4.5/5.0

Despite a few limitations that might not matter to rookie site owners, HostPapa offers an easy-to-use web builder with a surprising number of features. ... read more +

Despite a few limitations that might not matter to rookie site owners, HostPapa offers an easy-to-use web builder with a surprising number of features.

Coding experience or not, designing a website can be a long, confusing process. Hiring someone to do it for you can be expensive, stressful, and still doesn't guarantee you'll end up with something you like. CEO Jamie Opalchuk told us how HostPapa's site builder lets you avoid all the hassle and get a beautiful, professional website by yourself in a matter of minutes. Build and manage your site on your own, whether you're starting from scratch, getting a fresh look, or looking for a better tool.

We dug into the drag-and-drop editor, which is intuitive for the earliest of beginners — just click on the text you want to edit or area where you'd like to upload an image. For the more advanced users, you can customize your site even more by taking a swing at the HTML or CSS code. When we started our site, HostPapa showcased more than a dozen responsive template options. Once we made our selection, we could see more than 100 other choices. Not many site builders allow you to change templates once you've started adding content, so we appreciate the flexibility that HostPapa allows.

HostPapa's builder really shines, however, in the number of widgets you can add to your site. Easily add text, images, maps, videos, and social media widgets right from the start, or upgrade to include 1-click publishing to Facebook or an eCommerce store. You can build forms with their own tool or through Wufoo, just like you can add email marketing features through a Constant Contact integration.

"Our play is what we can supply a small business owner to help in any kind of way with their web properties," Jamie said. "We want to provide a seamless, easy experience."

Once your site is set up, you can preview how it will look on both desktops and mobile devices. You can always update on the go, from any web browser. The site builder is included for free with HostPapa's shared hosting plans, or you can buy builder-specific plans to add even more features.

If all else fails, HostPapa offers Do It For Me managed web design services. They will write your copy, design your site, and optimize it for search engines and mobile devices. Contact them when you need to update your site, and they'll take care of you.

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  • Drag-and-drop interface — no technical experience required
  • Hundreds of mobile-friendly, responsive templates
  • 1-click website publishing
  • Preview mode for desktop and mobile
  • Upgrade for eCommerce store
  • Get started on HostPapa now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
Unlimited
Domain Name
$14.99

Website Builder Rating

N/A

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

HostPapa vs. HostGator - Our Conclusion

Laura Stamey Laura Stamey Hosting Expert
“We tested HostPapa & HostGator — The winner is HostPapa!”

As you can see, both HostPapa and HostGator can fulfill your needs in most all niches. The two companies tout full-spectrum services — from shared hosting to dedicated servers. And based on our experience with the two teams, you couldn’t ask for a more welcoming experience as a first-time site owner. Best of luck with whichever host you choose — of the Papa or Gator variety!

Overall Rating
4.7/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit HostPapa »
Overall Rating
4.5/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit HostGator »