HostGatorHi — this is Benjy Portnoy, founder/owner of Mouthpiece Media.  You’re about to read my recommendation of HostGator web hosting services, where you can register your domain (website name) and host your website, which includes a free installation of WordPress if you want it.

My Experience

I have been building websites for 15 years — since 1996.  I have helped build marketing collateral for Fortune 500 companies and major entities like BMW, Alcon, Applebee’s, Washington University, Texas Department of Transportation, and more.

Over the years I’ve tried multiple web hosting companies.  Some have been okay, some bad, and some just straight up terrible.

There have been several reasons for this.  Over time, I started to develop a checklist — something that I would refer to when I would look at a new host.

That list included 5 elements.

  1. Pricing
  2. Value
  3. Reputation
  4. Scalability
  5. Customer Service

Let’s break these down one by one, and I’ll show you why I like HostGator the best.

HostGator

1. Price

Web hosting companies have gotten pretty competitive.  You can find a pretty good deal among several hosts.

That said, HostGator is very competitive.  Their lowest priced package is $3.97 for the intro plan.  That’s ahead of many hosting companies that are around $5-6/month or higher.

What’s even better is that when you sign up, they automatically apply a coupon to save you 20%.  Since I have such a good relationship with them, I’ve been able to secure an even better coupon code that will save you 25%.  If you’re signing up for 3 years worth of top hosting, that means you’d save $115.  Use coupon code MOUTHPIECE at checkout.

2. Value

I was used to having to pay for all services separately.  I would pay for hosting, then pay extra for my email (info@mouthpiece-media.com, etc.), then have to tack on more money every time I needed a service.

When I went to HostGator, I signed up for their “Hatchling” plan — the second level that starts at $6.36/month.  With that plan, I’m able to host several websites — about 25 in all — on one hosting plan.  If I just planned on hosting one website, I would have used their “Baby” plan and paid about half that much.

With these plans come the following features:

  • Free site builder
  • Free support over phone, email, or live chat — available 24/7 (more about this later)
  • Unlimited bandwidth (how much traffic goes to your site)
  • Unlimited email accounts, autoresponders, mailing lists, and more
  • Unlimited disk space (which means you can put as many videos, pictures, and pages as you want on your website)
  • Unlimited subdomains (http://SUBDOMAIN.yoursite.com)
  • Unlimited MySQL Databases
  • Latest version of cPanel (easy-to-use control panel to administer your site)
  • Instant Guestbook
  • Instant Forums
  • Custom Error Pages

3. Reputation

Some hosting companies are local businesses that run things from their small office.

HostGator is a MAJOR operation.  They host over 8,000,000 domains.  They’re known throughout the industry as a giant.

Here’s a list of awards they’ve won…most just in the last year:

  • 2011 Best Small Business Hosting
  • 2011 Code of Conduct Award by Web Hosting Search
  • 2011 Best Reseller Web Hosting by WebHostingGeeks.com
  • 2011 Best Windows Web Hosting by WebHostingGeeks.com
  • 2011 FindMyHost Editor’s Choice Award
  • 2011 Top 10 HostReview Award Best Budget Hosting
  • 2011 Top 10 HostReview Award Fastest Growing Company
  • Inc5000’s 239th Fastest Growing Private Company in America in 2009
  • #1 Recommended Most Popular Host – HostingCoupons.org
  • Websitehosting.com’s Best Web Host Winner
  • About.com 2010 Reader’s Choice Awards
  • FindMyhost.com Editors’ Choice Award
  • Dedicated Server Directory #1 Reseller Hosting Award
  • Web Host Directory #1 Reseller Hosting Award
  • Web Hosting Top Outstanding Host Award
  • Web Host Directory #1 Budget Hosting Award

And probably about 20-30 more that are available on their website.  Honestly, I got tired of typing how many awards they’ve won.  : )

4. Scalability

Most websites and blogs start out small.  You may only have one website.  You may not have any traffic.

But if you plan on growing your site, business, or blog in the future, it’s easy to start small with HostGator and then scale up as you go along.  You don’t have to lose or transfer your existing files and site in order to get larger options as you grow.

5. Customer Service

This is the #1 reason I changed and have stayed with HostGator, bar none.

With a former hosting service, I’ve been on hold for up to 45 minutes or longer to talk to technical support.

With HostGator, wait times for me have averaged literally about 30 seconds to 2 minutes.  At most, I’ve waited 10 minutes.

And once we’re on the phone, they’re wonderful.  I’ve needed them for as long as 60 or even 90 minutes, and they’ve always remained patient, pleasant, and helpful.

And every single time, they have solved my problem.  They have either told me what I need to do, or else they have even done it for me.  Whether it’s a question about WordPress, or email, or a database problem…or even transferring a site from a different host.  They have always come through, and for that reason, they’ve earned my loyalty.

The Only Downside to HostGator

The only thing I’ve seen about HostGator that isn’t as competitive about other companies is the cost to register a domain with them — $15, as opposed about $10 or $11 with some other hosting companies.

But, I mean…$4 or $5?  It’s worth it on service alone.

And you can even register a domain elsewhere and then host the website on HostGator.  I usually register my domains through GoDaddy and then host them on HG.  That said, I don’t recommend using GoDaddy for hosting.  They will constantly try to sell you everything they have, and their control panel is much more difficult to figure out.  Even for me after 15 years.

HostGator

Who Shouldn’t Use HostGator?

If you’re looking for free hosting, this isn’t it.  If you want a serious host for your company and website, you need to pay for it.

Conclusion

HostGator is a trustworthy, customer-centered company that offers great value and customer service at a terrific price.  Like I said at the beginning of the review, I recommend them because I use them.  If you’re looking to host a new website or transfer an existing one, HostGator is a great place to do it.

To learn more about HostGator and sign up for hosting today, click on the following link:

HostGator

HostGator Web Hosting Company

 

Note:

I want to be transparent with you.  I will receive a commission if you click on the link above and purchase hosting from HostGator.

However, even if I made nothing from recommending HostGator, I would still go out of my way to do it.

There are hosting companies that offer higher percentages and payouts if I send them business.  In some cases, twice as much.  However, I only want to support the companies that I believe in.