With an impressive breadth of overall hosting services offered, SiteGround is a leading innovator in the hosting space — from custom software solutions to premier customer support. They offer the full... read more +
With an impressive breadth of overall hosting services offered, SiteGround is a leading innovator in the hosting space — from custom software solutions to premier customer support. They offer the full range of web hosting features, including a free Cloudflare CDN, cPanel with SSH access, and unlimited MySQL databases and bandwidth — not to mention their prize-worthy customer support.
We got a chance to sit down with both the CEO, Tenko Nikolov, and Founder of SiteGround, Ivo Tzenov, to discuss the technology behind some of their incredible innovations. They gave us the inside scoop on SiteGround's features, and took us through the solutions they've engineered to enhance the user experience.
What's SiteGround's strongest "pull" factor, you ask? Well, customer service has been their claim to fame, without a doubt. However, customers come to SiteGround for the support, only to be blown away by the custom solutions they've built to make the hosting experience as stress-free as possible.
SiteGround has engineered an in-house chat software that allows users to select and rate thoroughly vetted customer service agents with whom they've worked previously. They've written their own ticketing system as well, which is comprised of an algorithm designed to select appropriate technical support representatives for specific tasks.
They've taken their preference for in-house software solutions for customer support and applied it to their entire business. "All of our infrastructure and all of our code beds are done internally," Tenko said.
For their shared hosting service, they've conceived a one-of-a-kind server isolation system that prevents vulnerable servers from taking down entire networks. In place of VPS hosting, they've built their own cloud container platform, featuring thousands of containers and top-notch scalability and security. All SiteGround hosting service users benefit from their unique downtime prevention mechanism, which has helped SiteGround develop their reputation for uptime rates: 99.996% annually and 99.999% monthly.
In the cases of caching and backups, customers have access to SiteGround's in-house SuperCacher, with a flexible range of options to meet any and all page load needs at optimum speeds. Their custom backup software improves upon technology off the shelf, which often takes up to a day to run. Instead, SiteGround customers receive daily backups from a system that only takes about an hour.
SiteGround is, without a doubt, an esteemed leader in customer service within the hosting industry. They've emphasized that commitment to quality with the unique, custom solutions they've built. On the development side, they devote a tremendous amount of time to UX testing, epitomizing their commitment to the user experience.read less -
HostGator has been around for more than a decade and is well-respected for its large number of servers and consistent reliability. Known mostly as a shared hosting provider, HostGator still supplies decent... read more +
HostGator has been around for more than a decade and is well-respected for its large number of servers and 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 the brand's reputation for strong infrastructure and helpful support. HostGator offers decent features in its basic shared hosting offerings, such as unlimited disk space, a nice control panel, and free website templates. Plus, you get the flexibility to add numerous add-ons for privacy, security, and productivity as you see fit.
Aimed primarily at the semi-technical user, HostGator's flexibility is its strong suit. Dedicated, VPS, and Windows hosting is available if that fits your needs. For those that 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.read less -
Hosting with the perfect balance of technological innovation and superior customer support, SiteGround offers a range of affordable hosting services to meet your needs. In addition to the expected cheap... read more +
Hosting with the perfect balance of technological innovation and superior customer support, SiteGround offers a range of affordable hosting services to meet your needs. In addition to the expected cheap web hosting perks — free website builder and unlimited bandwidth — they specialize in the custom-built tools they bring to the table for technical and customer support.
SiteGround has developed their own ticketing system and custom chat software, allowing you to chat with trusted and capable representatives with whom you've had success in the past. Their custom software takes in around 1,500 chats on any given day. Their ticketing system uses an algorithm to assign tasks to the most appropriately qualified team member out of their dozen-or-so web developers.Their website itself receives about one million visitors per month, with users coming for both their tutorials and knowledge base articles written and updated by their tech support team.
"Everybody says we have 24/7/365 support," Tenko said. Once a month, SiteGround tests the support of a list of hosts, themselves included, with dummy accounts. They measure response times, politeness, responsiveness, et cetera, and if a competitor is really doing something well, SiteGround's team takes note and acts on that to improve their own services. “Quality is #1 for us, not the revenue or the numbers," Tenko told us.
For hosting users, SiteGround's interface and API are simple and intuitive. They have free automation-migration from popular hosting sources, so you can just input SSH data directly from your site. SiteGround makes it affordable and easy to get your website up and running, and their support crew doesn't leave your side at any point.read less -
#5 out of 10 in Cheap Hosting reviews
HostGator is a great compromise between performance and price. The company offers unlimited emails, MySQL databases, disk space, and bandwidth, plus one-click installs of popular open-source projects, in... read more +
HostGator is a great compromise between performance and price. The company offers unlimited emails, MySQL databases, disk space, and bandwidth, plus one-click installs of popular open-source projects, in addition to a 99.9% uptime guarantee on its shared hosting plans.
HostGator’s price-to-performance perks also apply to its vast array of other hosting options, such as VPS, dedicated servers, and even reseller hosting. The company's 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. The company’s custom website builder comes with more than 4,500 drag-and-drop, mobile-friendly templates to help users launch their website, blog, or ecommerce store, while the familiar cPanel interface helps customers seamlessly manage domains, email, databases, and one-click software installations.
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.read less -
#8 out of 10 in Dedicated Hosting reviews
Looking for limitless server resources that are easily accessible across the globe? Look no further than SiteGround's dedicated hosting. Featuring multiple datacenters based out of the US, Europe, and... read more +
Looking for limitless server resources that are easily accessible across the globe? Look no further than SiteGround's dedicated hosting. Featuring multiple datacenters based out of the US, Europe, and Asia, SiteGround's dedicated servers offer extreme accessibility, scalability, and security.
If you're interested in dedicated hosting, you're probably not new to the web hosting community, as hosting on dedicated servers is designed for site owners faced with extremely high traffic volumes (ie. not entry-level site owners or mom-and-pop shops looking to build a web presence). These customers are therefore in need of a server dedicated to providing blazing-fast page load speeds and mega-scale bandwidth for their very popular website, and their website alone.
With dedicated servers, the key points to consider before choosing a host are bandwidth limitations, speed and processor performance, as well as RAM and storage options. To ensure your account is secure, you'll also want to look into data protection, downtime prevention, and of course, network size and overall security.
SiteGround starts you off with Intel Xeon E3 or E5 processors, with a minimum of four CPU Cores and eight Threads. Depending on whether you choose the "Entry Server", "Power Server", or "Enterprise Server" Plans, you'll be given 4-16GB of DDR3 RAM, and 8-15MB of CPU Cache. Disk space ranges across the three plans, from 500GB of SATA II to four 500GB SATA IIIs with RAID 10 (all HDD). Best of all, all SiteGround dedicated hosting customers are alotted five terabytes of bandwidth.
On the hardware side of things, SiteGround uses the latest hardware, while keeping replacement parts on-site for every model used. Their Dedicated Server Operations Team puts a tremendous amount of resources into testing and tweaking hardware configurations for optimum server performance. To reward their loyal customers, hardware is regularly updated, with seamless transitions and zero downtime. Overall, SiteGround averages 99.999% uptime each month and 99.996% annually.
For software, SiteGround prides itself on using mostly in-house solutions and performing their own custom patches and bug fixes for products bought off the shelf, which are also always kept up-to-date. "We really obsess over doing everything ourselves, because we believe that’s the best way to do it,” Tenko said. Their customer service offerings, including their ticketing and chat systems, were developed in-house, and offer top-level support 24/7.
In terms of security, SiteGround was the first to implement a unique server isolation mechanism that protects servers from becoming compromised by a single, vulnerable account. They actively monitor and detect security exploits. The unique downtime prevention software they developed detects and resolves the majority of server issues instantaneously, while most hosts take up to 40 minutes to detect, triage, and react to security breeches.
For unmatched support, server resources, and technological innovation, you can't go wrong with choosing SiteGround as a dedicated server host. As Tenko put it best: “Quality is #1 for us, not the revenue or the numbers.”read less -
#5 out of 10 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.read less -
When it comes to VPS hosting, SiteGround does things a little differently. Instead of managing a typical virtual private server network, they have their very own cloud platform that they built from the... read more +
When it comes to VPS hosting, SiteGround does things a little differently. Instead of managing a typical virtual private server network, they have their very own cloud platform that they built from the ground-up. It's similar to VPS, with shell access included, but it's much more scalable, according to Tenko.
Their managed cloud hosting includes thousands of containers and is much faster than most products you'll find on the market. A single cloud instance can be provisioned, up, and running in seconds, according to Tenko. "Unlike most of the container cloud platforms out there, it's completely secure," he said.
Tenko also told us they've done around 70 kernel patches to ensure security for their cloud hosting innovation. “We’re really obsessed with performance and security," he said, "and we really obsess over doing everything ourselves, because we believe that’s the best way to do it.”
When asked about the motivation behind crafting an in-house cloud platform rather than using a container product off the shelf, Tenko said, "there are a lot of reasons, but the main one is flexibility." It may require more groundwork in the beginning, but being able to dictate changes to the technology means that SiteGround stands out, providing an enhanced, faster, more-scalable service. "People feel that they're getting something custom," he said.
The container platform that their cloud hosting is built upon isn't the only in-house technology they've got up their hosting sleeve. Instead of using third-party software, the SiteGround team writes almost all of their software themselves.
Among SiteGround's many custom solutions is their unique server isolation system. The technology shields servers from falling victim to the vulnerability of single, corrupted accounts. SiteGround was the first in their field to develop such a mechanism.
SiteGround also created their own backup system, which runs daily backups in about an hour, a downtime prevention mechanism that has yielded stellar uptime rates, and their SuperCacher, which offers four caching options for optimum load times.
Lastly, but perhaps most importantly, SiteGround developed the software to build their very own chat system and ticketing system, which enable them to provide the ultimate customer support. Ivo told us, "customers come for the customer service, but they stay because of the technology."
With each custom innovation SiteGround has engineered, customers have reported being pleasantly surprised by how much the technology simplifies their hosting experience. SiteGround's cloud hosting service is no different. They offer all the hit features they're known for, plus the added scalability and security that surpasses most VPS hosting providers. If you're ready to move beyond shared hosting, and want to do so with a king of customer service and tech solutions, look no further than SiteGround's cloud hosting.read less -
#8 out of 9 in VPS Hosting reviews
HostGator has built a great reputation in the industry for its shared hosting options. The company's VPS solutions, with optional cPanel support, provide a nice and easy introduction to those that are new... read more +
HostGator has built a great reputation in the industry for its shared hosting options. The company's 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 server.
Starting at low price points and boasting tons of support, HostGator makes transitioning to a VPS plan reasonable and doable. Each plan comes with two IP addresses and a bunch of storage, and recently expanded CPU and RAM offerings lend a ton of computing power.
HostGator’s strongest point comes from its 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. The company has more than 12,000 servers under management and award-winning support. If you are looking for a small VPS server or value the strength of a great network, give HostGator a shot.read less -
#4 out of 10 in WordPress Hosting reviews
Want a hassle-free, WordPress-compatible hosting service? SiteGround has thought of everything you need to get your site up and running. Starting with the essentials, users get free email accounts, site... read more +
Want a hassle-free, WordPress-compatible hosting service? SiteGround has thought of everything you need to get your site up and running. Starting with the essentials, users get free email accounts, site transfer, Cloudflare CDN, and cPanel license. Then they make it simple for you to start rolling out content by offering easy, single-click installs for popular CMSs, including WordPress.
With SiteGround's WordPress hosting, you'll find features you would normally only have access to with managed (more cost, less control, compared to shared) WordPress hosting services. "Our WordPress product has several distinct characteristics that make it attractive to the end user," Ivo told us.
Users experience a seamless site transition with transferring conducted by SiteGround's WordPress experts, with a free template and template installation included as well. Sites experience no downtime during the transition, but that's no surprise given that SiteGround is reputed for an incredible 99.999% monthly uptime rate (99.996% annually!).
SiteGround's unique downtime prevention software monitors servers' statuses in real-time and resolves over 90 percent of server issues instantly and automatically. With most competitors, it can take an average of 5-20 minutes to detect, plus up to 20 minutes to react to and resolve issues.
SiteGround's WordPress hosting also features autoupdates to the core and plugins, with WordPress caching built-in as well. Users can easily stage and deploy changes to their site, with SiteGround's single-click staging, and Git is available for version control. "Our customer feedback on these features has been extremely positive," Ivo said.
SiteGround's technical support and reliability is uncanny. In addition to downtime prevention, they've developed a server isolation system that prevents vulnerable servers from devastating entire networks; SiteGround was the first to innovate in such a way in the shared hosting space.
When their team of about 26 developers, designers, and DevOps gurus isn't writing and building premier solutions from scratch, or coming up with new tutorials and knowledge base articles for the SiteGround site, they're talking to customers directly.
On the customer support side of things, SiteGround hits the ball out of the park. Two innovations contribute to their unbeatable customer service: their ticketing/help desk and chat system. Both of these user-focused software solutions were custom-built in-house.
The ticketing system they designed uses an algorithm to select appropriate tech ops team members for specified jobs. Users can submit support ticket requests under an array of categories and can expect a reply in 10 minutes or less (usually less). The algorithm calculates based on skill level and specialty, assigning the most appropriately qualified developer to each job in the queue.
The custom chat system harnesses the relationships built in previous chat scenarios by allowing users to select team members they've previously worked with, rather than waiting on the next available agent. Customers can also preview profiles and rate representatives based on their experiences.
Tenko and Ivo took us through an impromptu demo of the chat system, revealing both the ease of use of the product and the genuine helpfulness and responsiveness of their Support Team members, who had no idea who they were chatting with at the time.
From in-house solutions on the technical side to warm and unwavering support from a customer service angle, SiteGround has crafted a complete package for any hosting need. For WordPress-specific hosting, they offer popular perks that you wouldn't necessarily get with other shared hosting providers. Get started with all of the awesome freebies, enjoy their helpful and polite team, and prepare to be blown away by SiteGround's commitment to building hosting solutions intended to make your web experience easier than ever.read less -
#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.read less -
#6 out of 9 in Website Builder Hosting reviews
Do you know you need to build a website, but don't know where to begin? Well, SiteGround will start you off with unlimited email accounts, site traffic, and database storage options — all for free. Those... read more +
Do you know you need to build a website, but don't know where to begin? Well, SiteGround will start you off with unlimited email accounts, site traffic, and database storage options — all for free. Those are just some of the essential starting perks.
From the beginning, you'll also experience unrivaled customer service, whether you're transferring a domain or want a relatively hands-off experience starting your very first site. Even web savants will love the support they receive from SiteGround.
SiteGround hosting includes easy installations for your choice of CMS, including WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, and Magento. Their WordPress experts will even migrate your site for you — a seamless transition with zero downtime — or first-timers can benefit from their in-house setup wizard.
Once you're up and running, if you run into any trouble, their custom ticketing and chat systems' software has been engineered and implemented to provide you with pleasant and tech-savvy customer support 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
SiteGround offers tons of additional freebies and add-ons to make building your website with WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, or Magento intuitive and stress-free.
Other WordPress website-building perks you'll enjoy with SiteGround include staging options to easily test and deploy changes to your site. Their SuperCacher offers four different caching options, including those for static and dynamic content, for optimized page loading. You can also opt to have Git pre-installed, so you'll always have version control and revision history.
SiteGround also conducts daily site backups, using their own in-house system that can run backups in about an hour, compared to rival technologies that can take up to half a day to operate. For "GrowBig" and "GoGeek" Plan customers, up to 30 copies of these backups are available.
Tenko told us that customers "come for the customer service, but they stay for the technology." Whether you're a hosting newb or a site-building savant, you can trust SiteGround to provide you with a hosting and website-building combo that's simple to manage and pleasant to troubleshoot.read less -
#3 out of 9 in Website Builder Hosting reviews
Setting itself apart from the scores of competitors that rely on white-labeled website builder solutions, HostGator spent the time to painstakingly craft its own platform. Gator provides a frustration-free... read more +
Setting itself apart from the scores of competitors that rely on white-labeled website builder solutions, HostGator spent the time to painstakingly craft its own platform. Gator provides a frustration-free experience that pairs the simplicity of drag-and-drop design with the company’s powerful and respected web hosting services.
Signing up is a breeze, and HostGator gives customers an option to add a suite of social media marketing tools. Users are quickly ushered into a gallery of more than 200 modern, mobile-responsive, and visually impressive templates that can be sorted by categories like beauty and fashion, music and entertainment, real estate, business consultant, portfolios, and others. Gator covers blogs and ecommerce stores, even coming with a free domain name and SSL certificate.
Once you choose your basic look, Gator ushers you through a 15-second tour to show you the basic features of the editor — and it’s all you need. Clicking on any element opens a menu that gives you options to change styles, whether it’s a section’s complete design or something simple like font or color.
We especially appreciate how Gator’s drag-and-drop interface gives users pixel-perfect control while still suggesting guides and grids for appropriate spacing. Throughout the customization and design phase, users can seamlessly switch between desktop and mobile views to understand how your site will appear to all visitors.
Adding a blog or ecommerce store takes just a click. We wish Gator would suggest a select few designs that matched the current site’s template instead of the dozen or so options that reflect a wide range of categories, but we were impressed that the in-depth previews covered both the blog page and individual posts, for instance.
All in all, HostGator can be incredibly proud of its proprietary site builder — and customers can sit back and enjoy the confidence in having such a well-rounded tool at their design disposal.read less -