Justin Bryant0 Comments
May 31, 2015
When it comes to a Bluehost vs Hostgator comparison, the first things that come to mind might be how affordable these web hosting services are or how much emphasis they put on customer support, but there is so much more that goes into these companies.
You have to look at not just customer support or prices, but also usability, email features, how easy it is to set up, what perks come with one over the other, which has better SEO potential, etc.
When you decide to start your WordPress blog or other website, and you look at Bluehost and Hostgator, it can be easy to have a hard time picking one over the other.
These two hosting companies have been battling it out for what seems like forever to prove who the best hosting company really is for new or experienced website owners and now it is time to finally decide which one really is best for your needs.
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Both Hostgator and Bluehost use Cpanel to help you manage your hosting services and website. It’s great that they both use Cpanel because of how easy that makes it to navigate website features and manage your account.
Both have one-click WordPress install, email setup, file folders, bandwidth usage, etc. and make it easy for you to access them. Because of how similar they are in this area, I can’t pick one over the other.
Winner –> Tie
Customer support is extremely important when it comes to choosing a hosting company to work with. If your website goes down, you have trouble setting up branded email, etc., you want to have people ready to quickly help you 24/7.
When it comes to customer support between Bluehost vs Hostgator, it is hard to pick one over the other. Both have 24 hour per day, 7 day per week, 365 days per year support ready to help you.
Both companies have live chat from 5 AM – 12 AM MST with email support and self help support pages. In other words, you can contact either Hostgator or Bluehost customer support countless ways and even help yourself to step by step walkthroughs if you are more of a do-it-yourselfer.
Both of these hosting services clearly put a high value on customer support for their customers, so I can’t say one is better than the other.
When you compare Hostgator’s Hatchling, Baby, and Business web hosting plans vs Bluehost’s Starter, Plus and Business PRO plans, you will notice a few differences.
Bluehost focuses on using yearly hosting plans, while Hostgator offers monthly plans. This can make a big difference depending on which you prefer.
You could look at this as it being better to pay smaller amounts of money at a time with more frequency. Or, you could see it as easier to pay it once a year and avoid spending much time paying the bill each month.
Another difference you will notice between Bluehost and Hostgator pricing plans is that Hostgator is slightly cheaper (this isn’t including promotions or discount offers).
You can save a few cents per month by going with Hostgator instead of Bluehost. For this reason, I have to give Hostgator a slight edge in the pricing department.
Winner –> Hostgator
Obviously, uptime is one of the most important aspects of your hosting plan. If your website is down all the time, people won’t be able to visit it.
Hostgator offers a 99.9% uptime guarantee. Bluehost hosted websites tend to have a lot more downtime than Hostgator after getting info from countless other website owners.
Just about anyone who compares these two web hosting companies will tell you the same. But, I have had a bad incident or two with Hostgator.
They actually shut down my site a couple of times without telling me why until I went out of my way to ask what happened. Of course, that was just my experience and that doesn’t cancel out the consistent data from others.
Related: How To Start A WordPress Blog In 5 Easy Steps
When it comes to speed and performance for these two services, it’s another close battle. Bluehost tends to have a slightly better server response time, page load time and time to first byte.
Some people do claim that they have better luck with Hostgator, but for the majority, Bluehost seems to be slightly ahead in this category.
Bluehost tends to load pages a little faster, but it also doesn’t have as many compatibility problems with SEO or performance plugins as Hostgator.
Therefore, Bluehost has the slight edge in speed and performance.
Winner –> Bluehost
As you should already know, SEO is extremely important.
It helps your website get more traffic and branding from search engines such as Google, allowing you to get more traffic, leads and sales for your business.
Hostgator has problems with the two best WordPress plugins for website SEO. Thousands of websites, big and small, depend on the Yoast WordPress SEO and W3 Total Cache plugins for their SEO, site speed and performance.
Yet, Hostgator has compatibility issues with both of these plugins. In fact, I got my site shut down for a few days once because of trying to use one of them with Hostgator hosting.
This makes it much harder to improve your websites rankings and SEO when you use Hostgator as opposed to Bluehost. For that, Bluehost is better for SEO purposes.
It really looks professional when you email people and your email looks like: firstname.lastname@example.org doesn’t it?
When your email is branded by your own website, instead of just being another person with an @yahoo.com or @gmail.com account, you look much more professional.
Your hosting company that you paired your domain with is who allows you to create these domain-branded emails. Luckily for you, both Bluehost and Hostgator support these email features.
Both of these hosting services offer unlimited email accounts, email access from any device and email forwarding for your website’s domain.
As competitors, it’s only natural that these big name web hosting services use different bonuses to set themselves apart and try to convince you to choose them over the others.
Bluehost offers a free domain and more promotions, as well as coupon codes through blogs and other sites.
Because of this, you may save more money in the long run if you take advantage of these extra features. Domains can cost from around $15 per year to as much as a few hundred or even thousands dollars for premium domains.
With blog promotions and coupon codes, you can save even more and lower your costs, for at least the first year with Bluehost.
So, although Hostgator may have slightly cheaper base costs, Bluehost can end up being cheaper when you factor in the other features.
This would also save you time during the initial website setup process because of Bluehost’s free domain already being registered with their services.
Their annual billing will save you time from logging in and paying bills every month as well.
On top of that, Bluehost also offers automated weekly backups for free, while Hostgator charges $15 for this service.
Hostgator has a lot of promotions through other blogs and websites as well, but they don’t offer free domains, backups or any other significant extra features. For that, Bluehost gets the edge.
Related: How To Start A WordPress Blog In 3 Steps On Bluehost Hosting
Like I mentioned earlier in the post, Hostgator can be bad about disabling your site without warning. If you install a bad plugin or do something that slows their shared servers in any way, they may disable your site first and ask questions later.
In fact, Joost de Valk, one of the bigger names in SEO, wrote an entire post about this after hearing complaints from many of his followers. I had this problem with Hostgator as well in the past.
As far as Bluehost, I haven’t ever had or seen any instances where they’ve disabled sites without warning like this. But, that doesn’t mean they don’t do it.
If you want slightly cheaper monthly rates, much better uptime, great customer support, email services, and easy usability, Hostgator may be your best choice between the two.
If you want a free domain, free website backups, less bills, better SEO, great customer support, email services, and easy usability, Bluehost might be your best bet.
Of course with Hostgator, there are the problems with getting your site disabled for a few days without notice. And with Bluehost, there can be quite a bit more website downtime.
I’m not going to pick one for you because you may have different views, seeing different features as more important than others. I’m just here to give you the facts so you can make a better decision.
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When it comes to the Bluehost vs Hostgator comparison, which web hosting service would you choose?
I'm an entrepreneur, fitness freak, artist, car enthusiast, sports fan and self improvement addict. My goal is to help people be their best and create incredible businesses that change the world.
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