Bluehost vs HostGator Comparision
There are literally thousands of web hosting firms to choose from — but if you’re reading this, more possibly you’re trying to decide between two of the giants — HostGator or Bluehost.
Both are great shared hosting hosts, and both have a lot of different schedules, price choices, and other services they offer — but who’s the best? Which one has the best performance? Who’s the quickest? Who’s got the best price?
It’s enough to make a person dizzy! There’s so much detail there! But that’s where this article falls in— I’ve checked all hosts for a whole year and broken down all that a prospective buyer would learn about. For more than 10 years, I have been developing websites and web resources and I am a web hosting professional. I also have many years of professional experience with hundreds of hosting companies, so not only do I know what’s good, but I also know what’s evil.
On this link, you will get Bluehost vs HostGator’s unfiltered, truthful, and full expert comparison!
Without further ado, let’s dig in and look at the Bluehost-HostGator link.
HostGator vs Bluehost: Measuring Stick There are 5 key measures I like to use when contrasting site hosts. I think these indicators paint an outstanding picture of a web host’s efficiency (click any of the links below to skip to that section). These are the following:
- Performance & Speed
- Ease of Use/User Interface
- Features & Pricing
I’ve gone ahead and tested these hosts in the past year, so let’s see who wins in each category!
Overall performance and speed when it comes to Bluehost with Hostgator hosting
Speed is very important compared to the first aspect of Hostgator First. Many search engines now use link speed as a rating metric in their search results, so that faster-loading websites can be shown below. This means choosing a web host with fast servers that is good at managing their resources, especially on shared servers, is very critical.
I have a website hosted on Bluehost for over a year and a website hosted on HostGator for over a year for this comparison. Although these sites are not 100% close, they are very similar for testing purposes.
To begin with, I used Dotcom-Monitor’s page speed test application (Dotcom-Tools.com) to perform a website speed test. It’s a free app that can be used by anybody, and it offers load times from all over the world. I selected the American network of Dotcom-Monitor to monitor load speed from 11 places across North and South America for this study. The results of the speed test for Bluehost are summarized in the following table and image:
|Monitoring Location||Bluehost Page Load Time (Seconds)||Errors?|
|Buenos Aires, Argentina||1.4||Yes|
When stated above, in order to determine who had the best web output and who is the fastest, HostGator was placed through the very same measures when Bluehost. The results of the HostGator speed test are described in the following table and image:
|Monitoring Location||HostGator Page Load Time (Seconds)||Errors?|
Looking at the tables and photos (including the waterfall chart), you can see that in the Argentina datacenter, Bluehost had a lead on load times with the fastest time coming in at 1.4 seconds, opposed to the Colorado datacenter’s average load time of 2.1 seconds.
Nonetheless, if you look at the images below of my 12-month tracking study, you will see that Bluehost had a response time of 1,1521 second server over 12 months, and HostGator had a response time of 1,0981 second over 12 months, granting HostGator a slight edge.
Looking back at the speed test chart, you can see that HostGator’s average load period on a one-off speed test was 7.3 seconds, as the value of HostGator’s 50th cycle in Florida actually dropped. Bluehost’s average load period was 3.3 seconds as it had no crazy long waiting times.
The velocity and performance winner: a tiny bit of Bluehost.
HostGator is still an excellent option for a fast web host, but Bluehost had a very slight edge in speed and performance according to these tests and my analysis. This was, of course, a 12-month test, but with only two sites; if there had been a larger sample size, the outcome might have been different. These are both excellent hosting companies and two I use on a regular basis, either way. Continue reading to see the data summary for uptime / downtime over 12 months.
Uptime: Bluehost vs. HostGator
Simply put, uptime is how often a server is up or down relative to how often it is down. If a host has a lot of downtime, that means that your website is often down or unavailable, which is a bad thing; you want a host that has very little downtime.
Many hosting companies have an uptime or SLA assurance, which is typically 99.9% or a similar number. Bluehost no longer promises a specific percentage of uptime, but Hostgator gives 99.9 percent as a figure to guarantee their uptime.
To test these hosts, I monitored their uptime for a whole year using the ServerView platform of Dotcom-Monitor. Each website hosted on Bluehost and Hostgator was pinged from several North American data centers each 3 hours. It is important to test over a long period of time because it allows with more data points to create a larger sample size.
When it comes to monitoring, 12 months is a fairly long-term test, and this length of time gives a fair assessment of the host’s reliability. Having a 12-month test ensures that each host has the chance to recover from downtime here and there and still has a decent long-term average for their servers ‘ uptime and reliability.
Surprisingly, HostGator came in at a staggering 100 percent uptime after 12 months! This is absolutely excellent because a single error on the HostGator site was not identified by Dotcom-Monitor over a whole year!
Bluehost still performed fine, but sadly dropped a little shy of the industry standard 99.9 percent uptime guarantee coming in at 99.81 percent for the year, which is still a pretty strong uptime ranking.
The uptime winner: HostGator, with an outstanding uptime assessment of 100 percent over 12 months!
I believe HostGator is the best when it comes to uptime because it not only promises a specific number that you can check against, but it also has amazing uptime during my long test year. It’s really essential to have a clear SLA for uptime (such as 99.9 percent) because if a host doesn’t give it (such as Bluehost) you can’t measure uptime against anything. This makes it harder to make a claim if you have data logging to support the fact that your server has been down too much, because frankly, if hosts do not have a given SLA percentage of uptime, it makes it look like they’re attempting to get out of being kept to a specific standard.
Customer Service: HostGator vs Bluehost –Who’s the Best?
In all honesty — it is really a subjective thing when it comes to customer service and support. One participant with a certain host may have a good experience, while another individual may have a different experience.
Only Bluehost and HostGator provide 24/7/365 web, talk, and ticket service something I believe should be provided by all hosts. There are many places to get in contact with them, and this is fantastic if you’re having a problem late at night or need assistance on a break, etc. But… I’ve found that HostGator’s service hasn’t been what it used to be in the past 6 months or so. I had a ticket open and waited days for a reply, so much so that the technician excused me and offered me a month’s reimbursement to stay too long. Their talk service often hangs and the waiting time is over 20 minutes.
We even require you to sign in to get chat help if you’re an existing customer, which I think makes sense, but it seems to me like a bit of a hassle. To be honest, their service has been great in the past, so maybe it’s going to be better in the future — and that’s just my view, of course. Their help now is not bad, but from my experience it used to be stronger.
HostGator was the first professional hosting I’ve ever used, and I have multiple accounts I’m using with them now, so they’re certainly a host I trust, it’s just that I’ve been a little frustrated with their recent support.
By comparison, Bluehost support appears to react faster, and overall they appear to be a little more helpful. Unlike HostGator, they do seem to outsource their service, but if you inquire you may link to a higher-level engineer.
Who has the best support: Bluehost, right now.
A couple years ago I would’ve said HostGator hands down, but I just haven’t seen it that way lately. They are technically owned by the same parent company, EIG, so I hope that they can get things sorted out with HostGator and bring the support back to the level that it used to be.
Bluehost and HostGator setup and user interface
As I’ve mentioned in other reviews, I really think that Bluehost is very “noob friendly” which makes them a great host if you’re just getting started out online. They do an excellent job of providing help documentation and laying everything out in a way that makes a lot of sense for people who might be new to hosting. One thing I like about Bluehost is that when you log in, many aspects of the account and hosting are immediately visible. You can easily switch back and forth between your hosting control panel and the main account dashboard. With HostGator, you need to go through a few more clicks to get to cPanel and in my opinion, it’s a bit more cumbersome to navigate. This doesn’t mean that HostGator is hard to use, I just don’t think it’s as easy as Bluehost right off the bat. Once you know what you’re doing though, either panel is just as easy to navigate.
Both hosts offer either Softaculous or Fantastico so installing WordPress is a breeze, and there are a lot of automated tools in order to make managing your website easier. Again, I think it’s a bit easier to find these things in the Bluehost interface if you’re new to dealing with web hosting, but once you know your way around, HostGator is also easy to use.
Who has the best user interface and ease of use? Bluehost
Bluehost wins in this category in my opinion, primarily because I think their user interface makes “more sense” than the HostGator user interface.
Features & Pricing
All hosts are extremely similar when it comes to features— it’s almost a tie. This is because they are now full-featured hosts use cPanel as well as all the bells and whistles that come with it. I think it’s a bit easier to manage Bluehost domains, but they’re very close apart from that.
Feature-wise, not much is offered by one host that is not provided by the other. I noticed that HostGator is a little more willing to comply with custom demands, particularly when it comes to changing shared hosting accounts in some way.
They’re fairly close to cost, but I’d give Hostgator the advantage here. The longer you sign up for, the cheaper it will be, as with any hosting. Besides that, annual rates are generally always more costly than the discounted levels. In this way, I think HostGator has a little less “renewal surprise” in my choice, and over the years they’ve been more eager than Bluehost to change renewal prices.
In terms of Bluehost rates, they often have deals that provide hosting for less than $4/month ($3.49/month at the time of writing), although you normally need to sign up for multiple years at a time to get this price, and it’s generally not open for renewal. Usually, Bluehost does not allow people to pay for shared hosting on a monthly basis, with a minimum payment of 12 months.
Between time to time, bluehost vouchers or promotions are also available. We already have an exclusive Bluehost discount promo that helps you to get a $2.95/month offer on shared hosting services that’s as cheap as you’ll ever find.
On the other side, HostGator has more vouchers accessible all year round (in my experience). The lowest non-coupon price accessible on the hatchling schedule for HostGator at the time of writing was $3.30/month with a contract of 36 months. Also, there are often travel discounts and deals that can render this price much cheaper from my knowledge, but for Bluehost I can’t really say the same.
Who is the most affordable? HostGator.
Over the years, I’ve had a lot of hosting plans with HostGator and Bluehost, and I can definitely tell from my own experience that both initial pricing and renewal pricing were cheaper with HostGator. This doesn’t suggest Bluehost is too costly per se, it’s just that HostGator’s price is doing a little bit better.
Who is the winner, then? Bluehost or HostGator?
That’s the answer— it depends. They are both great hosts, so a definite winner is hard to nail down. In my opinion, a level of experience really depends on your needs.
Best community host for those new to web hosting: Bluehost If you haven’t handled a server before or created a website, I believe Bluehost allows it a little simpler with better support and a simple interface. They’re a bit more expensive, but they’re a decent, fully featured web host and if you’re just getting started, you can’t really go wrong with their shared hosting.
HostGator is difficult to beat when it comes to uptime and pricing. Their servers are incredibly well-managed and secure, and in my experience dealing with both hosts at a professional level, their service has been the lowest of both.
Whatever host you choose, both are well-known, reliable and robust web hosting choices. Essentially, the decision is up to you and your interests. While I think Bluehost is somewhat better for beginners and HostGator is somewhat cheaper, I think both hosts offer good quality shared hosting at an affordable price. For more information on web hosting, please check out other sections on this site and take in some experience about networking!