7 GoDaddy Alternatives, A Pre-Purchase Must-Read

12 Oct

After years of marketing my business online, and managing a few websites, I’ve recently come to ponder about alternatives for my hosting service. For the most part I sort of took the obvious way when I got started online and chose to go with what was easily the most popular choice of the time (and still is). In fact, at that time, it was one of few choices.

But since that time things have changed, and a number of other hosting companies have risen to the surface. Many have simply followed the lead of GoDaddy, while others have outdone them, showing me that there is some real competition for GoDaddy’s service.

Yet many people don’t ever hear about these, because just like I thought in the beginning, they think that the most popular is always the best.

Now, that doesn’t mean that I have any problem with GoDaddy. This is a great company and their shared hosting is affordable and very simple to use. However, it’s always good to step back, and assess whether or not a previous decision is still the right decision.

So what I’ve done is to go through 7 Alternatives to GoDaddy’s Shared Hosting, picked them apart with a fined tooth comb, and I’m giving you my findings below.

But First, Let’s Dig a Little Deeper Into What GoDaddy Does Offer

  • They’ve made a fine art of exceptional customer service
  • Their hosting has outstanding ease of use
  • You get up to 1000 fast and secure email accounts, using Built-in Spam and Virus Protection
  • SSL security so that visitors feel safe and secure when shopping on or browsing your site
  • WebSite Tonight giving you simple step-by-step website creation
  • Over 2000 website templates in their template library
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee.

So there you go, not easy to beat. But again, it’s important that we keep our eyes open at all times for alternatives that are equal to or even better!

7 Alternatives to GoDaddy Shared Hosting…

HostGator

HostGator has quickly become a favorite among MANY in the internet marketing field. The reason is pretty simple actually. They give you a lot more flexibility than you typically have for building and managing your websites.

You have to figure that the majority of the people who are building websites in this world are people who don’t know a whole lot about it. That being said, HostGator also has a site builder for those less technically savvy. There’s probably more of a learning curve than GoDaddy, but nonetheless, it’s still not rocket science.

Here’s a bit of what HostGator offers:

  • Unlimited disk space and bandwidth
  • A flexible, easy to use control panel
  • Unlimited sub domains, FTP accounts, and email accounts
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee
  • 4,500 free website templates
  • Latest cPanel control panel
  • Very thorough website statistics including AWStats, Webalizer, and more
  • Fantastico which gives you instant shopping carts, blogs, portals, forums, and more

Personally, after giving HostGator a look, I would highly consider moving over my hosting to them.

The reasons are pretty simple. CPanel is incredibly easy to use, making each operation a simple click-button solution. Having Fantastico gives me a huge flexibility in the abilities of my website, the design of my website, as well as the number of supporting capabilities to my site.

Price wise, HostGator seems cheaper than GoDaddy, especially when you consider that everything is included in the second and third tier account types at $6.36 per month and $10.36 per month, while with GoDaddy many of the features must be added separately.

MyHosting

MyHosting is a name that you’ll probably hear pop up if you’ve been looking around for hosting.

All in all, for a beginner MyHosting looks pretty comparable to GoDaddy on some levels. Building a site may not be quite as easy as it is with GoDaddy’s site builder, however adding a blog, or discussion forum is probably easier with this hosting. Unfortunately neither use CPanel like HostGator does.

Here’s what MyHosting offers:

  • Unlimited disk space and data transfer
  • FREE dedicated IP address
  • Unlimited domain hosting
  • 20 Microsoft Exchange email accounts
  • Free installation for software such as WordPress, Joomla, and other popular choices
  • Free eCommerce solutions
  • FREE SSL Certificate
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee

So the number of emails is less as you can see. But to be honest, how many different email accounts will you really use?

The real difference is most certainly the price. MyHosting starts at $4.95 on the first level, then goes up to $9.95 for the business level, and then jumps to $18.95 for Ecommerce hosting.

I can’t say that I’d be very compelled to switch to this hosting from GoDaddy, except for the fact that I would get a dedicated IP address with the “business level”, but that would be the only thing that would tempt me. Otherwise, I would say that you wouldn’t be doing yourself a disservice if you in fact did choose MyHosting over GoDaddy if you’re in a situation where you’re not already in a hosting plan.

But the jump for me might be more trouble than it’s worth.

iPage

So iPage is one of those hosting services that really makes me wonder if I should switch. While HostGator tempts me very much, iPage makes me think that most likely down the road with the next website or so, I will eventually be using them. There’s just really too much to ignore with their website hosting package.

  • Unlimited domains, sub-domains, and add-on domains
  • FREE Online Store with your account.
  • Unlimited email accounts,
  • Unlimited disk space and bandwidth
  • Simple and easy to use Drag and Drop Site Creating Tool
  • Domain privacy package
  • 24/7/365 customer service
  • You’re not satisfied with their service, you can get an ANYTIME refund

These guys have been around for quite some time as well, since 1999 in fact. From what I’ve heard they’ve really done a great job at tweaking and fixing their earlier mistakes that they made as a younger company, and now they’re very near perfect as far as hosting goes.

Of course price is often an issue when you’re getting this much great service, but NOT with iPage. You can get started your first month for just $3.50 for the first month, and then depending on how long you’re signing up for, from $6.99 per month to $8.99 per month. These are amazing prices for this much service.

InMotionHosting

This is another one of those impressive website hosting suites. InMotion has a ton of very viable features that allow you to truly have a positive experience with your website. They’ve been around the block as well, with the company being founded in 2001. This is a company that seems to make a lot of people happy, and holds customer service in high regard.

Here’s some of what InMotion hosting has to offer:

  • Unlimited disk space and bandwidth
  • Unlimited data backup
  • First-rate “Premium” site builder
  • 99.9% uptime guarantee
  • 90 day full-money back guarantee
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Includes the simple to use cPanel
  • Fast, “Spam-Safe” email
  • Enhanced site security
  • 1-Click simple CMS installs for WordPress, Drupal, Joomla!, and more.

One thing about InMotion  is that they only allow two websites on one account. This is sort of hard to overlook for someone who is planning on building more than one website business, or expanding their current website into other entities. On the other hand, if you’re pretty positive that you’ll only ever need one website, which a lot of small companies, and ‘mom and pop’ businesses are, then you’ll have no problem with this hosting company.

Their prices are very fair for what you get, with their “Business Class” package being only $5.95 they’re extremely competitive.

With all that being said, again, if I weren’t already using GoDaddy I might feel compelled to go with InMotion (but that’s only if I never saw iPage Hosting). Otherwise, there’s really nothing really exciting about this company that would cause me to even think from switching from GoDaddy the way that iPage has shown me.

BlueHost

This company has actually been around a little bit longer than GoDaddy has. Obviously the marketing savvy of GoDaddy’s founder has pulled them far ahead in the hosting world, but BlueHost has gone more on par with HostGator or iPage as far as their features.

This is one company that I would be inclined to take a closer look at and think of trying out for my next hosting service over using GoDaddy again (except for one thing I’ll mention later). Here are some of the features that BlueHost offers:

  • Unlimited domain hosting
  • Unlimited GB hosting space
  • Unlimited GB file transfer
  • Unlimited E-mail accounts
  • 1 Free domain
  • Ever so simple cPanel Control Panel
  • Free site builder w/ templates
  • Thorough traffic stats including AwStats
  • 24/7 phone, chat & email support

With the unlimited list and the simplicity of cPanel, along with great 24 hour support, this looks like a very promising company. Their only downside is their pricing structure which does NOT allow you to pay per month. You can get what would equal a very low monthly payment of $4.95 a month if you sign up for 36 months. But you MUST pay in full for that full time period, so basically you’d have to lay out $178.20 right away.

That’s not bad but I’d rather go with iPage or HostGator where I’d get the same features but where they’re easier to work with as far as payments.

FatCow

This is another company that’s been around since GoDaddy, and they’ve done very well for not just themselves, but apparently also for their customers. It’s very rare, but you can’t find a whole lot of bad being said about this company. I am a stickler on customer service, and so I tested out FatCow’s and they were on task with theirs. They answered their phones very quickly, replied to emails fast, and online chat was lightning fast. Here’s a bit of what they’ve got to offer you:

  • Unlimited domains
  • Unlimited add-on domains, sub, and forwarded (pointed) domains
  • 1 free domain name when you purchase hosting
  • unlimited POP3 email accounts
  • 60 Day Free Trial for Constant Contact auto-responder email service
  • FREE online store and shopping cart
  • Free easy, point-and-click website building tool
  • Integrated Google Webmaster Tools
  • Free Toll-Free number with a free auto-receptionist
  • Customer service available 24×7 via phone, email and online chat

This service falls right there with iPage. I can definitely see myself using them, and at the very least recommending them. This is a company that’s dedicated to keeping their customers happy. And for that reason, plus their extra features like the Constant Contact free trial, and the free 800 number with auto-receptionist, I’d feel great using them and recommending them.

For that I’d be willing to look over the fact that they, like BlueHost, do not allow you to pay by the month. You must pay for the full year (up to 3 years at a time). I think they’ll see my business in the very near future.

HostMonster

This is another oldie but goodie. They’ve been around since 1996. But don’t let the scary name fool you. This company is not scary at all, in fact for newbies and intermediates, they’re especially very friendly and useful.

Like many of the others, they give you a full array of features that makes your website ownership very simple and easy. Here’s a bit of what you’ll get with HostMonster:

  • Host unlimited domains
  • Unlimited E-mail accounts
  • 1 Free domain name
  • cPanel control panel
  • Free site builder
  • Free online store
  • “Simple Script” Script Installer for WordPress, Joomla!, and more!
  • 24/7 phone support

As you can see they’re very comparable with the others I’ve mentioned. As far as price they fall right into the nice and easy range at just $6.95 a month.

My only caution, and the reason that I very likely wouldn’t switch from GoDaddy is that there are some database restrictions as your site grows. That’s probably not something that most will have to worry about, and that probably wouldn’t be an issue for a while. But if you have a site that is larger or that you plan on growing large, then this could be a problem.

That plus I really have gotten spoiled and enjoy the chat support instead of strictly phone.

So You’re Truly Not Stuck With Just GoDaddy As Your Hosting Choice

Since you’ve seen so many of their commercials, you may have thought that they’re the best or only choice. If you went with them from early on then you probably never really thought that there were other options out there.

I think what we found out with my research is that there are some comparable and even a couple much better choices out there.

GoDaddy is a great service, with superb customer support, but there are some hosting companies that I’ve found now which are very tempting to switch over to. I just might do that, and now you’re armed with the information you need to make that choice yourself if you feel so inclined!

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