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One of the most essential tools in any small business owner’s arsenal is their website. A fast, well-maintained site can make or break your revenue. The web host you choose should provide speed, security and support at a price you can afford. Bluehost and HostGator are two of the most popular hosting services available today.
When it comes to choosing between Bluehost and HostGator, there are pros and cons to both. Here’s everything you need to know about Bluehost vs. HostGator, so you can decide which is best for your needs.
Bluehost vs. HostGator: At a Glance
Bluehost and HostGator are dominant leaders in the web hosting industry with a reputation for low first-year rates, free secure sockets layer (SSL) certificates and money-back guarantees. While only HostGator has an uptime and network guarantee, both hosts historically have at least 99.9% uptime. Both web hosts are fast, but Bluehost is slightly quicker.
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How Bluehost and HostGator Stack Up
Bluehost offers three categories of hosting: shared, virtual private server (VPS) and dedicated. Each of those categories has several plans ranging in price from INR 149 to INR 10,799 per month. When you commit to a full year, you get the best price per month compared to paying month-to-month or for a 36-month term. Several hosts price it this way so you have to renew after a year at a much higher rate.
HostGator will migrate your WordPress or cPanel site for free, and Bluehost is temporarily offering free website migration for just WordPress sites under 2 GB. Otherwise, professional migration costs around INR 12,211. HostGator supports both Linux and Microsoft servers, whereas Bluehost only uses Linux servers. Thankfully, not many sites require Microsoft, but if yours does, you’ll have to choose HostGator.
One of the more significant complaints from customers about Bluehost is occasional downtime, which isn’t unheard of with shared hosting companies. There weren’t many complaints about this with HostGator in comparison. HostGator does have several complaints about slow customer support response, although both hosts have 24/7 support. This support comes via phone, email and chat.
However, only HostGator has an uptime guarantee with its shared and reseller accounts; if a server doesn’t meet its 99.9% uptime guarantee, you receive one month of credit on your account. VPS and dedicated servers have a network guarantee; receive a prorated credit for the amount of time the server was down.
WordPress endorses three web hosts, and one of those includes Bluehost. That’s not to say HostGator doesn’t work well with WordPress, just that it considers Bluehost to be one of the best—since 2005. Bluehost provides WordPress-specific training and support, so it’s ideal for people running their sites via WordPress—there’s an entire community of support for your platform.
It’s important to regularly back up your site if anything breaks, and Bluehost does that automatically, so you don’t have to—no matter which plan you have. HostGator backs up your site using CodeGuard, but not if you have a VPS or dedicated server.
Both Bluehost and HostGator have security tools included in every plan; SSL certificates, malware scans and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) protection come standard, and both hosts use SiteLock. However, Bluehost’s SiteLock includes spam monitoring, a site verification certificate, business verification and blocklist monitoring. You can even set up notifications to know when it blocks attacks if you want to block IP addresses manually.
Securing your website is essential, which is why SSL certificates come standard with most web hosts—Bluehost and HostGator included. An SSL certificate will help protect you and your customers during online transactions because it encrypts data traveling between your computer and the server.
Either web host will provide you with near-perfect uptime, 24/7 customer support and security features your site needs. We recommend using Bluehost if your site runs on WordPress and HostGator if you need Microsoft-based servers.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is Bluehost good for beginners?
Yes, Bluehost is intuitive to use and easy to navigate, and it works well for both beginners and professional web developers. Bluehost also has an impressive WordPress hosting plan, and many first-time website builders choose to use WordPress because of the accessibility it provides.
What is web hosting?
Web hosting is a service that allows anyone to rent space on the internet. Websites must have web hosting to be accessible online. Some content management systems (CMS), such as Squarespace and Wix, include web hosting as part of their monthly fee. However, if you’re building a site on WordPress, you’ll need to purchase web hosting from a web hosting provider. Several factors go into selecting the best solution for your individual budget and needs, which is why we created this guide to the top ten web hosting services.
What are the different types of web hosting services?
There are several different web hosting services, but the most common are shared, VPS (virtual private server) and dedicated. Shared is the most popular choice because it’s the most affordable. However, VPS and dedicated hosting offer more website security and enhanced performance, making them a more popular choice for large and well-established websites.
Which type of hosting is best for a small business?
The best options for a small business are either shared hosting or VPS hosting. Both options can cost around 1,639 or less per month (usually when paid on an annual basis) and offer a high level of security and reliability.