Individuals and companies have websites for a variety of reasons. After creating a website, you must find a host so that others may view the page online. While many site builders offer web hosting services, they are often less effective than companies that exclusively offer web hosting. These firms have the equipment, technology, and personnel to host your webpage with few interruptions. Let's take a look at the differences between Bluehost vs Hostgator.
As you may suspect, not every web hosting firm provides top-notch service. Two of the best-known firms on the market today, Bluehost and HostGator, generally do. Because both services have devoted customers, we endeavor to settle the Bluehost vs. HostGator battle once and for all.
Bluehost: Pros & Cons
Hostgator: Pros & Cons
Our Criteria: Bluehost vs Hostgator
Both HostGator and Bluehost have a well-earned reputation for being excellent web hosting services. As such, we want to be fair in our assessment of what each has to offer. Therefore, we compare the two based on the following five criteria:
Keep reading to learn special features of both Bluehost and HostGator and to see how the services rate in each part of our test.
(Bluehost vs HostGator) WordPress Compatibility: Advantage Bluehost
For a variety of reasons, WordPress is one of the most popular website builders on the internet. In fact, more than a quarter of all websites and blogs online have their foundation in the WordPress builder. Therefore, it is important that web hosting services integrate perfectly with WordPress sites.
Bluehost has the distinction of being recommended by WordPress. For purposes of our analysis, this is significant. When looking at its capabilities, it isn’t difficult to see why Bluehost receives the WordPress imprimatur. With Bluehost, you easily install WordPress and create your blog or website through an integrated control panel. You also get a free SSL certificate and CloudFare CDN. If you choose to upgrade to premium WordPress hosting, your site benefits from daily malware scans and vulnerability assessments. The premium package also gives you dedicated backup, a customized PHP-FPM configuration, NGINX architecture and a VPS powered platform. Because Bluehost has collaborated with WordPress for years, the hosting service is about as good as it gets for your WordPress site or blog.
Even though HostGator is not officially recommended by WordPress, it is quite good. Like with Bluehost, HostGator offers one-click installation of WordPress with a dedicated control panel. Unfortunately, though, HostGator does not offer a free SSL certificate, which is a considerable drawback. You do get global CDN and instant malware removal through SiteLock without upgrading your basic HostGator account, though. The obvious benefit of choosing HostGator is its WordPress load speeds, which are up to two-and-a-half times faster than other hosting services.
(Bluehost vs HostGator) Security: Advantage Bluehost
Whether you use your website for personal or business reasons, you need it to be secure. Not only must you keep malware from destroying your page, you must protect visitors from viruses and other damaging cyber threats. Therefore, you must choose a web host that prioritizes your website’s security.
If your site is compromised, having a backup will likely help you mitigate damage. Since Bluehost provides automatic backups, you don’t have to manually save your site’s data. Still, Bluehost provides no warranties or guarantees for its backup service so you may wish to rely on another vendor for backing up your page. Backups are only part of the security battle, however.
Bluehost also offers a free shared SSL that is upgradable to a dedicated SSL with a premium package. Unfortunately, the company does not include malware scans with its basic service. Instead, you must upgrade to take advantage of the following security features:
- Spam monitoring
- Malware scans
- Site verification certificate
- Blacklist monitoring
- DDOS protection
While HostGator does security better than most hosting services, it doesn’t quite measure up to Bluehost. With HostGator, you get backup services, but they aren’t automatic. If you want automatic backups, you must pay for the service’s CodeGuard. There is also no free SSL certificate available through HostGator, but you can pay for several different certificates that are valid and effective. When you use HostGator, you get malware and hack scans through SiteLock and HackAlert, respectively. You also get DDOS protection by taking advantage of the site’s impressive firewall.
(Bluehost vs HostGator) Ease of Use: Advantage HostGator
Whether you are new to web hosting or have extensive experience working online, you want your web host to be user-friendly and intuitive. To get started, you may need a domain name from your web host provider. During your working relationship, you want easy-to-use, one-click functionality. Then, if you decide you don’t like the web hosting service, you also want a simple, painless way out of your service agreement.
While HostGator does not offer you a free domain name, it does not charge a fee for domain transfers. If you choose to buy a name through HostGator, you receive competitive rates starting at about $13. HostGator really shines with data transfers. Within 30 days, the company swaps all your website’s data. If you need to build your website, HostGator’s builder’s drag-and-drop feature is logical and simple. You also get a few free templates and dozens more for an upgrade fee. If you decide you aren’t happy with HostGator, you benefit from the company’s 45-day money-back guarantee. The guarantee applies to web hosting only and does not apply to domain name purchases or other costs.
Like HostGator, Bluehost is simple to use. The service offers a free domain name with a web hosting contract. If you need to purchase an additional or different name, Bluehost’s pricing is as competitive as HostGator and other well-known domain sellers. If you need to migrate data to your new web host, you must do so manually with Bluehost. Or, you can pay around $150 to have the company automatically transfer your website’s information. The website builder at Bluehost is simple and easy to use, with drag and drop functionality. Finally, Bluehost also offers a money-back guarantee, although it ends after 30 days. Beyond that timeframe, you receive a prorated refund, should you decide to cancel your service contract.
(Bluehost vs HostGator) Uptime: Advantage Tie for Bluehost vs HostGator
One of the most important parts of a happy client-web host relationship is speed and uptime. If your site is constantly going down or slow to load, your visitors may easily become irritated. As you may suspect, irritated users eventually stop visiting your site altogether. For fast speed and continuous uptime, Bluehost and HostGator are both excellent.
Bluehost has more than 20 data centers. Each center has quad-processor servers that boast Tier 3 certification. Also, Bluehost features an uninterruptible power source, protecting your website from downtime due to power outages. The company’s technological capabilities produce 99.982 percent uptime for your website. Spread out over a year, you can expect fewer than two hours of website downtime.
For speed and uptime, HostGator is virtually indistinguishable from Bluehost. The company has many Tier 4 data centers, each equipped with backup generators and quad-processor servers. The result is better than 99.9 percent uptime.
Both HostGator and Bluehost feature a content delivery network through CloudFare, giving your website fast download and upload speeds.
(Bluehost vs HostGator) Customer Support: Advantage Tie for Bluehost vs HostGator
HostGator offers live chat support, informational forums, articles and other helpful resources. Whether you rely on the expert assistance of professionals at HostGator or work with another user, you receive fast, competent answers to your questions. If those don’t do the trick, take a look at the company’s online tutorials, which are always available.
Like HostGator, Bluehost has a well-deserved reputation for delivering exceptional customer service. The professionals there work hard to address customer questions and complaints quickly and effectively. Use the chat or phone features to receive immediate assistance on technical or account-related questions. While you may submit support tickets online with Bluehost, the service lacks the user-initiated support HostGator has.
Our Conclusions: Bluehost Barely Edges HostGator
As you can see, both Bluehost and HostGator rate highly in each of our five criteria. HostGator is slightly easier to use than Bluehost, making it an excellent option for beginners. With its fast, automatic data transfer and generous money-back guarantee, HostGator is also ideal for individuals and organizations looking for a new web hosting service.
With Bluehost, you get a free domain name, something HostGator does not offer. Still, if you must pay for a name, both Bluehost and HostGator offer competitive prices, often starting as low as $13. Since WordPress officially recommends its service, Bluehost may be a better option for WordPress websites and blogs, though. With its included backups and complimentary SSL certificate issuance, Bluehost also beats HostGator in security options.
Even though HostGator vs Bluehost share many commonalities, including fast speeds and limited downtime, Bluehost slightly edges HostGator in our estimation. For those looking for a new web host, giving Bluehost a try probably makes sense. If you are already a devoted user of HostGator, you likely won’t find enough of a reason to switch to Bluehost. Simply put, you can’t go wrong with using either Bluehost or HostGator for your web hosting solution.