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A Review of Hostgator’s Hosting Services

From its beginnings as a tiny web host in Boca Raton, Florida, Hostgator has grown to serve 400,000 clients in 200 countries. Now based in Houston, Texas, they are expanding more rapidly than any other company in the state, and among private companies offering business services, they are the second most rapidly growing company in the world. The company currently hosts more than 5 million domains, comprising 1 percent of the Internet population. Customers range from individuals to prominent corporations, and Hostgator boasts a 90 percent customer satisfaction rate. With this hosting service, customers get:

POWERFUL SHARED HOSTING

Hostgator offers a wide variety of hosting options, but its cheapest and most popular choice is its shared hosting. This type of hosting ranges in price from about $4 a month to approximately $12 a month, and it offers a lot for the money. All of the shared hosting plans come with unlimited disk space, bandwidth and sub-domain names, and each plan also offers customers an unlimited number of FTP accounts, MySQL Databases and even POP3 e-mail accounts. Shared hosting clients also receive $100 in Google Adwords credit to jump-start their advertising campaign. This type of hosting is perfect for personal websites and smaller businesses; however, like with any shared hosting plan, websites that get thousands of visitors at a time may have problems because the CPU is shared with other customers.

A VARIETY OF HOSTING PACKAGES

Within the shared hosting option, there are three different hosting packages. The Hatchling Plan starts at around $4 a month, and it offers a single domain name and a shared SSL certificate. The Baby Plan adds unlimited domain names and the option to include a private SSL or a dedicated IP for a low monthly charge, and the starting price is $6.36 a month. The most expensive plan is the Business Plan, with a beginning price of $10.36 a month. For this amount, customers receive unlimited domains, a free toll-free number, an anonymous FTP, and a free private SSL and dedicated IP. Each of these plans is the cheapest when customers pay for three years at a time and the most expensive when they pay month to month.

DEDICATED AND VIRTUAL PRIVATE SERVERS

For customers who want more resources and more control over their website, Hostgator also provides virtual private servers and dedicated servers. Their dedicated servers offer the most resources and the greatest amount of flexibility. They are fully managed and come with root access, and they also provide a minimum of 2 GB of memory, five dedicated IPs and a free cPanel. However, they are also the most expensive. There are four different dedicated server plans, and they range from $139 to $299 a month for the first month and $174 to $174 a month thereafter. Customers who want functionality similar to a dedicated server without the cost may appreciate Hostgator’s virtual private server option. There are nine levels in this option, and prices start at around $16 for the first month and $20 for subsequent months.

EXTRA FEATURES

With Hostgator, customers get more than just web hosting. They also get a free site builder to help them build their website, 4,500 different web templates and 52 scripts, and a powerful cPanel control panel. The company promises a 99.9 percent uptime and a 45-day money-back guarantee, and these promises are backed up by the owner of the company himself. The business is also famous for its exemplary customer service. Support is available 24/7 via phone, e-mail and live chat, and the CEO often deals with problems personally. In addition, Hostgator provides articles, video tutorials and a support forum for customers who want to deal with problems themselves, and data is automatically backed up off-site on a weekly basis.

E-MAIL AND E-COMMERCE

When it comes to e-mail and e-commerce, Hostgator has a lot to offer as well. In addition to unlimited e-mail addresses, the company offers web mail, auto responders and mail forwarding as well as an e-mail alias, a catchall address and a spam filter. Other e-mail services include mailing lists, SMTP and IMAP support. For e-commerce, customers can get osCommerce, ZenCart or Cube Cart for free.

ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY SERVICE

Hostgator is an environmentally friendly company. The owners pride themselves on the fact that they use energy efficient servers and power them with wind power from Texas windmills. They also purchase Renewable Energy Credits; in fact, they actually generate 30 percent more power than they use. This is the equivalent of saving 551 acres of forest every single year.

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