Have you ever flown with Spirit Airlines? Their schtick is that they offer cheap, barebones flights. If you are traveling alone with just a backpack, their ads tell you that you can fly for pocket change in comparison to other airlines.
I have actually not flown with Spirit. Don’t get me wrong, I tried really hard to. My wife and I booked a flight and everything. The first thing we noticed is that their cheap rates are misleading. They have an a-la-carte system where every little thing you want is extra. Do you need to check a bag? You’ll wish you didn’t. Did you bring a bag bigger than a purse or backpack? Pay up. Any food or drink at all is extra. You even have to pay if you want to pick your seat or check-in at the airport.
My wife and I got the tickets, paid the strange fees, and were ready to board. Then, they announced that not enough of their flight crew showed up to work, so they were canceling the flight. It was surreal. And since they were offering us a flight scheduled for the next day, we did not qualify for any kind of refund or credit for the inconvenience.
I bring up Spirit because they remind me of GoDaddy web hosting. I am talking about the emphasis on being cheap. There is also the tendency to charge extra fees that cancel out the initial cheap cost. Especially, I think about the treatment of their customers.
If you have been considering GoDaddy hosting, feel free to scan through the article with the table of contents below.
Table of Contents
How Much Does GoDaddy Hosting Cost?
The upfront cost of your GoDaddy WordPress hosting looks very attractive. Under $3 per month? That’s a steal! Keep in mind, though, that everything else is extra. Plus, if your hosting is cheap, how are they making money?
If you want to access your site’s hosting on GoDaddy, prepare yourself for advertisements. Ads and banners plague the site, even when accessing your dashboard. It may seem like a small nuisance, but it is one that you do not have to be bothered with at plenty of other hosts. Plus, they go a little overboard and have ads to an obnoxious degree.
Nickel and dime
GoDaddy is going to nickel and dime you. They will even try to convince you to buy vague add-ons like SEO Optimization. That one in particular is a little troubling. They are not upfront with what the add-on is actually doing. And since they do not have access to your CMS, their influence is mainly on the backend they have control over. So it either does little to nothing for your site or, worse, they are purposely withholding best SEO practices from the sites they host by default so they can charge for it.
Then, there is the topic of email. Your host is usually able to provide you with a domain-based email. These are the fancy email addresses that end with your domain instead of Gmail, Yahoo, or whatever. Sometimes, other hosts may include a basic level of email with the hosting. Some hosts charge a small fee to provide this because emails take up storage space. And there are limits to how many emails they can store so that you are not eating up storage with junk mail.
GoDaddy takes things to a new level. There is a comparatively higher fee involved, and they end up with more control than they should. One example is that they block emails they think are spam. They do this instead of just allowing you to configure your email software to manage your incoming email how you want. There is no way to change this, so if important emails get blocked by accident, it is going to stay that way. On top of that, they have a 500 email a day limit. This may seem like plenty at first, but if your site grows much in scale, this limit comes at you fast.
On a similar note, GoDaddy does not provide SSL certificates for free. Many of the most reputable hosting services have begun supplying these for free. GoDaddy charges a fee for you to be able to have one on your site. SSL helps keep sites secure and is mandatory on any eCommerce site. Other hosts saw this evolution of internet security and adapted to integrate it into their hosting. It seems GoDaddy saw it as an opportunity to throw in another fee.
Unlike many hosts, GoDaddy is a domain registrar. Using GoDaddy typically means having them be the ones to register your domain. One of the ways they got popular over the years is that they offer domain registration at incredibly low rates. It already is not expensive with sites like WhoIs. However, they are known to offer domains for less than a dollar. Sometimes, they supply domains for free.
Unfortunately, that sometimes ends up being a discount for the first year. By that point, they hope you gained many repeat visitors and are dependent on using that same domain. That is when they increase the fold exponentially. The idea is to make their customer feel they have no choice. You either pay the new fee or lose your domain. And if you lose it, GoDaddy will usually still renew it. They just will not let you use it. Instead, if you want to register it yourself, you’ll have to pay them a ridiculous upcharge first.
GoDaddy Hosting Problems
GoDaddy has slow servers packed with more sites than the server can comfortably support. Users commonly complain about slow site speeds, especially during high traffic times. Not only does that lead to your visitors being turned off, but Google will notice and rank you lower in search results.
Strangely, they only offer single-user file transfer with SSH. This means that if you want to allow others to use the file transfer, they need your credentials. You cannot assign new users with their own credentials. So now, you have to give login information, which is a security no-no.
Also, similar to how their automatic email blocking, they perform selective DNS blocking. On the surface, this seems like a “better safe than sorry” solution. Unfortunately, it is more about being lazy. They know they can send out a blanket DNS block across all of their hosted sites instead of chancing someone not blocking a potentially malicious situation. This increases the chance of potentially legitimate traffic being blocked from your website.
Reviews for GoDaddy mention that the user interface feels clunky even after you disregard the ads. It seems disorganized and unprofessional. There are far too many vague options, many of them redirect users to support pages instead of actually doing anything. Needless to say, this makes for poor user experience.
Even knowing how to cancel GoDaddy hosting still leaves you with problems. This is partly because they probably are the ones who registered your domain. Having your GoDaddy web hosting and domain from the same company gives them a lot of power over you. When you cancel, they might have the power to keep the domain and charge you if you want it back. And of course, the cost would be greatly inflated. Likely, they would then offer to host you again for less than they want for the domain.
Is GoDaddy a Bad Hosting Company?
Even in the best-case scenario, the cheap upfront price does not make up for the GoDaddy hosting issues. Does GoDaddy hosting work? Yes, it works. If you pay them, they will put your site online. They are not a scam that will take your money and run. If so, they wouldn’t have been in business for more than two decades.
Do they provide good hosting? When you compare them with other host options online, they do not really measure up. There are many hosts who rely on their own performance to gain and keep new customers. Without focusing on huge ad campaigns, they need their work to speak for itself.
The best choice for hosting
If GoDaddy is out, who would be the best host for your WordPress site? Your new host needs to be one that puts a lot of care into their services. Your host should supply everything from fast speeds and reliability to features like update and plugin monitoring.
To make the best decision, let’s objectively compare GoDaddy WordPress hosting with WP Super Host. For a basic package, GoDaddy starts at $9.99 compared to WP Super Host at $17.50. With GoDaddy, this includes 30GB of storage, support for 25K visitors, manual backups, and a free domain (with a catch). At WP Super Host, you get access to 5 GB of storage, support for 30K visitors, automatic backups, and 100 GB of guaranteed bandwidth. That last feature is important. GoDaddy does not guarantee performance or guaranteed assets. Also, WP Super Host has automatic daily backups so you do not have to worry about it. If you do not configure your GoDaddy backups the right way, you could lose a lot of work. And while GoDaddy will supply your domain, keep in mind that this leaves them in control of it. Getting your own domain with WP Super Host leaves you in charge.
With WP Super Host, our other features are not dependent on your package. Even the SideKick package gets staging and dev environments, free SSL, SFTP access, CDN support, and speed reports. We also monitor for WordPress updates, plugins, and uptime. For GoDaddy, their next package up gives you a testing site, and you have to spring for higher packages for SFTP access. On top of that, if you want a free SSL certificate, you need to go for their high-range eCommerce package.
Based on what you get for your money, the best host for your new WordPress site is WP Super Host. Compared with GoDaddy, we give you the performance and features you need to keep you going strong with peace of mind. Take a few minutes to look at the packages we offer and find the right one for you.
GoDaddy hosting aims to attract new users with their low prices. After they start charging, it seems they stop caring. When it comes to your website, you deserve better. And to be honest, paying a little more upfront will probably even save you some money when you have a host who provides the features you need without ridiculous charges.