SiteGround Vs. GoDaddy (2020) – WordPress Hosting
Today, we have 2 platforms with a different focus and approach to—arguably—the same goal: web hosting. Both GoDaddy and SiteGround offer shared, dedicated, and WordPress hosting among other options, but that doesn’t mean they’re the same.
It’s actually quite far from it.
My objective for today is to help you make up your mind—in case you split between both for hosting your own website. I’ll go through their speed, technology, features, and price, of course. Once you’ve finished reading the last word in the conclusion, you’ll know everything you need to decide which one you want.
Alright, now let’s start.
SiteGround has 3 different hosting choices: web, WordPress, and WooCommerce specifically. It also supports cloud and dedicated hosting as well as an Enterprise custom plan for people with very specific needs.
For the main 3 plans, you have 3 more choices: StartUp, GrowBig, and GoGeek. Each one has a different size and pricing to adapt to different business sizes and budgets. Naturally, StartUp is the smallest one, with limited storage and support for 1 website only.
However, the other 2 plans let you host as many domains as you want, and the only reason to keep upgrading is your business growth.
GoDaddy is more famous as a registrar than a full host. Simplified, GoDaddy is know as the place you can get your domains from. While that’s true, it also offers a fairly comprehensive hosting suite with different solutions.
You have both web and WordPress hosting—like SiteGround—but it brings reseller, business, and virtual private server hosting to its options.
Just like SiteGround, shared hosting has different plans. This time, they’re 4: Economy, Deluxe, Ultimate, and Maximum. All plans let you host all the domains you want—except for Economy—with Ultimate being the standard experience.
GoDaddy offers very flexible storage capacity, with 100GB in its entry plan. All other plans offer unlimited space, unlike SiteGround, but we’ll dive into this feature later. You also have 4 plans for WordPress, and while they have somewhat different names, they follow the same pricing-features approach. WordPress users get a domain for free, and the 2 highest tiers come with an SSL certificate.
Besides hosting and domain registration, other tools in GoDaddy’s suite email services and both store and site building.
Unsurprisingly, GoDaddy is the most popular of the 2. You can verify this using Google Trends, which shows a huge interest difference between the two.
Now, I say “unsurprisingly” because GoDaddy is easily the largest domain registrar today, and that’s what drives most of the traffic. In fact, if you add “hosting” to GoDaddy in Google Trends, SiteGround actually comes out on top.
When it comes to domains, GoDaddy manages over 50 million names. Again, being a registrar, there’s no way to tell how many of those are actively hosted with the same platform. SiteGround is just on its way to break the 10 million mark, and I’d argue GoDaddy shouldn’t be horribly far from that for hosting only.
Popularity isn’t a strong metric for actual quality. However, it’s important to point this out because it can mess with performance: having more domains means resources are more spread.
However, none of the 2 seem to struggle because of this.
The technology used by a hosting service plays a huge role in their quality. After all, modern solutions simply perform better than more traditional alternatives.
You can check out the technologies used by SiteGround in a dedicated section of their website. Sadly, you can’t do the same for GoDaddy; if you’re curious, you’ll have to contact the support team directly.
Don’t worry; I already did that and condensed the information I got into the following categories.
Data centers are one of the main relevant factors for your site’s speed. Not to get too technical, the closest you are to a data center, the faster your website loads. That’s why hosting companies tend to spread their centers around the globe, covering as much ground as possible.
SiteGround has 5 centers in 3 continents. You can find 2 in the US, 2 in Europe (the UK and Netherlands), and 1 in Singapore.
GoDaddy seems to have 9 data centers, according to the most recent resources I found. You can find most of these in the US, which houses most of the centers. They’re located in Amsterdam (Netherlands) and Singapore. As a side note, GoDaddy owns their main data center located in its HQ: Arizona. The others are leased.
SSD refers to solid-state drives, and they’re essentially the next evolutionary step for hard drives. They’re a lot faster so they’re fairly standard for hosting companies these days.
SiteGround is the clear winner here since you’re given SSDs with all shared plans. On the other hand, GoDaddy restricts SSD storage to their managed hosting for WordPress; if you go for standard hosting, then you’ll probably experience significantly slower performance.
NGINX is both a revers proxy server and a type of HTTP. What matters is that it speeds up loading times for static content.
SiteGround is—again—the better choice here since NGINX is available in both cloud and shared hosting. GoDaddy restricts NGINX to the dedicated plans.
A brief note here: I use “web protocol” to refer to different languages and structures related to web hosting. I’m not talking about literal web protocols, yet I’m including methods that can seriously alter internet speed.
Thankfully, you have access to some of the latest iterations, like CDN and PHP7, with all shared plans for both GoDaddy and SiteGround. However, the latter has an advantage since it supports Linux containers, which don’t seem to be featured in GoDaddy’s packages.
Storage is how much server space your website can occupy.
SiteGround offers varying capacity depending on which plan you choose. It can be either 10GB, 20GB, or 30GB. On the other hand GoDaddy seems to offer better space since it starts with 100GB and removes all limits with the higher plan tiers.
However, it’s not as simple as saying “this one is better because it has more space”. Remember that GoDaddy doesn’t offer SSD in these plans, whereas SiteGround does. It means the latter is faster, and the capacity limit is quite hard to break if you’re considerate about the quality of your visuals (i.e. images and video).
Therefore, if you simply want more space, GoDaddy is better. If you want better performance, SiteGround wins.
The importance of backups is fairly self explanatory: they let you restore your website to an older version instead of losing it completely if things go south. That’s why every large hosting company takes care of your backups in one way or another.
SiteGround creates a backup for your website every day, and these expire after 30 days if you’re going with the shared hosting plans; cloud users have 7 days instead. You can recover any backup you want by going to the dedicated tool in your cPanel.
You can also create backups on-demand. These cost an additional fee if you’re a StartUp user. The other 2 plans come with free backups, and you can have 5 at all times.
GoDaddy is the inferior solution when it comes to backups. You can create manual backups for your website anytime you want. However, automatic backups come as an additional service that will set you back for $3 extra every month.
Sites and subdomains
Most entrepreneurs need only 1 website when starting out, and many of them can stick to a single domain for their entire lives. Still, being able to host several websites with a single hosting plan can be a huge advantage.
Besides, if you’re a webmaster, it becomes a critical feature for your hosting service.
Luckily, you can’t really go wrong in this sense if you go for a shared hosting plan with either platform. You can host as many websites as you need with any of the shared plans except for the entry ones.
GoDaddy does fall short for a bit regarding WordPress hosting, though. These plans limit the amount of websites you can keep.
Data transfer is often synonymous with bandwidth in these reviews. It determines how much traffic your website can handle, and many hosting companies limit this in one way or another. When this is the case, it can seriously hinder your business’ growth.
Fortunately, neither GoDaddy nor SiteGround limit how many visitors your website can handle. As long as you don’t see a huge and sudden rush of visitors overnight, you don’t have to worry about any warnings.
Even in that scenario, the worst thing that could happen is that customer support reaches out to help you reduce this load.
You can create as many email accounts as you want with SiteGround. The limit comes in how much space each account is allowed. StartUp users have a 2GB limit, and it increases all the way to 6GB for GoGeek users. You can also access 3 different clients for your emails.
On the other hand, GoDaddy is quite confusing with its email support. It seems like you can have as many accounts and as much space as you want if you’re using cPanel. However, dedicated and WordPress hosting grant you a free mailbox with Office 365.
As such, I think I have to call it a tie here. SiteGround places a limit on your email space, but you can open as many accounts as you want with all plans. GoDaddy appears to limit this feature (normal accounts, that is) depending on the plan you decide to get.
WordPress is a favorite for most webmasters and website owners today. It’s grown to be an industry standard thanks to how intuitive it is. Therefore, it’s only natural for hosting services to offer specialized hosting for WordPress sites.
The capacity and features of these plans aren’t the same among all platforms, however. That’s why—even though both SiteGround and GoDaddy offer WordPress hosting—they can be quite different.
The first noticeable difference is the amount of websites you can host. Both solutions limit your entry level plan to a single domain; the difference becomes evident once you upgrade. SiteGround lets you host all the WordPress sites you want from the 2nd tier; GoDaddy still limits this depending on which plan you get, from 2 sites all the way to 50.
If you want to host more than a couple of sites with GoDaddy, you’ll have to go for the Pro 5+ subscription, which is the most expensive.
However, GoDaddy wins if you have lots of traffic but a single website. You can hold between 25,000 and 800,000 visitors every month with GoDaddy. SiteGround is a lot more restricted: from 10,000 to 100,000. You can also create forms, business emails, and you get your free domain.
Therefore, I’d say the winner here comes down to personal needs. If you need to host several websites, then SiteGround is the best option by far. However, GoDaddy is better if you have a single website, but your traffic is massive.
Speed is one of the most relevant aspects when running a website. It’s crucial when considering good user experience. Furthermore, it can make or break your SEO efforts, as Google and similar engines value loading speeds greatly when ranking websites.
GoDaddy seems to be fairly quick. You can find different opinions on its loading times stating the same, but it doesn’t distance itself too far from the industry average. It’s faster than other services like HostGator, but there are still many faster options—including SiteGround.
In fact, SiteGround consistently ranks above most of its competitors.
However, this is the internet. There are dozens of tools to help you measure their actual speed; you don’t have to ask around or start opening websites you know are hosted by them to measure how quickly they load.
Therefore, I decided to run tests with a few of the most popular tools, and turns out that previous statement was right. SiteGround rarely broke the 2-second mark, with an average around 1.20 seconds—sometimes dipping below a single second.
On the other hand, GoDaddy seemed to take well over 2 seconds with all the tests I ran. The average was actually slightly higher than 3 seconds—sometimes breaking the 4-second mark.
Now, I already explained that your location in relation with data centers plays an important role. Therefore, not everyone will experience the same speeds as I did.
That being said, the results were consistent enough that I can safely say that SiteGround is faster than GoDaddy, by more than a second in average. Also, while I didn’t experience alarmingly long loading times, I’ve seen people comment about how horribly slow GoDaddy can be.
It seems as if your loading speed depends on which plan you’re using. Therefore, SiteGround wins easily.
To keep things simple, uptime refers to the time your website is continuously live. Downtime—its opposite—means your website “shuts down” temporarily. It’s not hard to see why this is important: it completely cuts your traffic, and it can play a fairly relevant role in your SEO.
Of course, some people don’t need to care as much. Sites like blogs definitely can survive being “dead” for a bit; a brick-and-mortar store won’t suddenly explode if their sites suddenly die, either.
However, it’s never a “good” or even a “neutral” thing for your website to die out. It only does less damage for some entrepreneurs. Therefore, anything under 99% uptime is enough to call it quits.
That’s why you’ll be relieved knowing that both GoDaddy and SiteGround guarantee a 99.9% minimum.
Of course, claims aren’t enough, so we can test this as well. SiteGround seems to always rank above 99.99%, whereas GoDaddy sometimes dips below that level, sometimes nearing the 99.90% mark.
With that in mind, SiteGround wins.
This is the second part for our previous section. You see, things can always malfunction, even when it rarely occurs. That’s why all reputable hosting companies offer some form of compensation in case their uptime ever dips below their guaranteed minimum.
SiteGround has one of my favorite policies. They’ll grant you 1 month for free if you ever experience uptime issues, and the worse it is, the more months you’ll get.
GoDaddy is more standard in this sense: 5% of your monthly fee if it falls under their guarantee. If this sounds like little, that’s because it is, and it’s tied to a bunch of conditions to favor GoDaddy.
It’s actually one of the worse policies I’ve seen so far, so SiteGround wins.
Bad customer support can ruin even the best services, so I’m taking it into consideration. The good thing is that both platforms are quite good.
SiteGround offers all the standard channels: tickets, live chat, and phone. You can check out every agent’s profile, too; this includes a profile picture, amount of clients served, and even their average rating.
Finding support is quick, and the agents themselves are really effective. The technical team can solve pretty much everything, and everyone is quite friendly and patient. I’m yet to run into a problem they haven’t been able to solve.
It’s kind of the same for GoDaddy. You have both phone and chat support, and they also add a knowledge base. The latter contains resources like guides and tips, so you can try and troubleshoot your problems before reaching out.
Its support is also available in many languages, so it’s easy to talk to them. However, it does suffer form a larger customer base since waiting times can be really long now and then, and it can be frustrating quite often.
Therefore, I give a SiteGround a slight edge, but I’ll admit it’s also because I’m lazy with phone calls. If you don’t mind calling, GoDaddy’s phone support is actually stellar.
With SiteGround, you can migrate your website for free if you’re either a GrowBig or a GoGeek client. StartUp users can still request the service, but it costs $30. You also have the choice to migrate a single website or your entire cPanel with several at once.
GoDaddy is a bit more flexible.
You can migrate your website manually, and it can be a long process, but it’s not too difficult. You have access to a special tool if you’re using WordPress hosting, too. However, you’ll have to pay nearly 3 times more than SiteGround for the migration service.
Therefore, SiteGround is a lot more comfortable.
SiteGround is quite varied: you get SFTP, SSH, and your free SSL certificate right away. They also use modern methods to keep the entire platform and its users safe, like PHP7, suExec, IDS/IPS systems, and ModSecurity. There’s also a site scanner for less than a couple of bucks every month.
On the other hand, GoDaddy is quite secretive with its measures—at least the free ones. If you want an SSL certificate, you’ll have to pay, and the same goes for firewall protection. Just these 2 additions will set you back around $30 extra every month.
I find that somewhat annoying, especially when all those features are offered for free in almost all other services I’ve reviewed.
This one is quite interesting, but I’ll keep it simple since you can see the official pricing in their website.
Basically, SiteGround’s normal plans cost more than GoDaddy’s except for the basic tier. However, The discounted prices are significantly cheaper with SiteGround. Then, you have all the upsells I just mentioned for GoDaddy, so it’ll always be more expensive in the end.
It’s not difficult: SiteGround wins in this category.
Overall, SiteGround is simply a better platform. There are a few metrics in which GoDaddy comes on top, but SiteGround has a better service overall in terms of performance, speed, stability, security, and price.
I’d only recommend GoDaddy if its specific advantages are life or death for you. Other than that, SiteGround is just a better, more affordable service.
I hope you found this review useful and if you have any questions, please comment down below. I’ll be more than happy to assist you.
Once again, thanks for reading my SiteGround Vs GoDaddy and I wish you the best of luck.