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GoDaddy review: is it any good for website hosting?


GoDaddy is best known as the largest domain registrar in the market. However, it's just as big in the web hosting market, offering a wide variety of services, including shared, WordPress, VPS, and even dedicated hosting. Yet, there are quite a few GoDaddy customer reviews saying that GoDaddy is no good when it comes to hosting services.

So to see whether that's true or false, I purchased a hosting plan from GoDaddy. Throughout the following sections of this GoDaddy review, you’ll find what I discovered about pricing, ease of use, performance, security, extra features, and customer support.

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Rating:
4.0
💲Price:
Pricing starting at $1.99/month
▶️ Uptime:
99.98%
🏘️Hosting types:Shared, WordPress, VPS, dedicated hosting
🌎Server locations:North America, Europe, Asia
👨‍💻Support:24/7 live chat, email, phone
🔥Coupons:
GoDaddy coupon 77% OFF
Best GoDaddy alternatives:

Pros and Cons of GoDaddy

Hosting management – is it easy to use?

When it comes to user experience and hosting management, GoDaddy is really easy to use. It helps you set up a website in the native dashboard while cPanel is also available.

All I needed to do to set up was select a domain name, a data center, and optionally – install WordPress. This is something I like about GoDaddy – it offers a one-click installation process with lots of apps. No more than 2 minutes later, I had WordPress installed and ready for testing.

Keep in mind that you should always choose to upgrade to the latest PHP as it’s one of the things that can speed up your website considerably. Unfortunately, not all providers support it. Even GoDaddy is yet to make PHP 8 available.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for a hosting provider with PHP 8 available – Hostinger is one of the best hosting providers to consider.

Best alternative to GoDaddy
Hostinger is an affordable, high-quality hosting solution for both advanced users and beginners. The provider offers good performance, useful features, and helpful support agents.
cybernews® score
4.8 /5

In any case, the initial account set up with GoDaddy was smooth, and I had no issues whatsoever. So basically, in the first 5 minutes of you owning a GoDaddy web hosting account, you’ll have a website ready to be worked on. Which is quite impressive.

But that’s not all that the provider has on its toolset.

WordPress starter templates

The first time you open the newly installed WordPress admin panel, GoDaddy will have a starter process ready. This is a neat detail that allows you to install one of GoDaddy’s offered themes and make your website look good and professional immediately.

GoDaddy WordPress starter themes

Plus, all of the templates are mobile-friendly, saving you time from adjusting everything for the mobile version.

Having a theme with demo content on it makes the website building process very easy. You can simply switch the demo text and images into your own, and the site is good to go.

If you’d like to use GoDaddy’s WordPress starter templates, all the demo stuff will be installed for you, for free.

What you should keep in mind is that some providers charge extra to make your site look like the nice “demo” template that all of the themes showcase. That’s because that “demo” content is not available by default and has to be installed with all the settings attached.

Overall, GoDaddy took an extra step in terms of making the website building process easier. It's a good WordPress hosting, and starter templates areis a great option for beginners and those in a rush.

What does the GoDaddy control panel look like?

In addition to the native interface, GoDaddy still remains faithful to cPanel for more advanced website management tasks. It uses the standard version of it, so you can easily find all the main management modules – file manager, email accounts, domains, software, and databases.

GoDaddy cPanel control panel interface

But if we already set up a website, do we ever need to use cPanel? It’s up to you, but you should know that cPanel has more “advanced” tools, such as:

  • Installatron – in case you don’t want to use WordPress or need to add a second website, head there. Installatron is a one-click installation library similar to Softaculous or QuickInstall. It has hundreds of different apps you can build your website on.
  • Email accounts – you can create a professional email address with your domain name in this section for free. It’s as simple as filling out details like the name of the mailbox and password. Just keep in mind that this will only be good for casual use, as each email client used is rather outdated and hosted on the same server as your website.
  • Addon domains – if you have a domain hosted with another domain name registrar, but want to use it for your GoDaddy website, go ahead and add it there. Just don’t forget to point it to GoDaddy.
  • Backup – you can manually back up the whole cPanel (with files and databases). This is a tool of precaution or for website migration. It can save you if you break your website or want to move it elsewhere.

All in all, GoDaddy is easy to use and functional. I liked the possibility to install WordPress during the initial setup as well as choose a data center. cPanel is another invaluable tool when it comes to managing your website.

Performance – is GoDaddy fast?

GoDaddy went through all of my standard tests and showed good performance results. I got long-term uptime monitoring data, tested website loading speed on multiple occasions, and checked if the provider can handle the traffic.

GoDaddy uptime and response time

I have monitored GoDaddy for 2 months now. In this time, it had 3 outages which totaled 16 minutes of downtime. In this period, the uptime rate was 99.98%, which is great.

GoDaddy uptime

The standard uptime guarantee, backed up by Service Level Agreement (SLA) is 99.9%, so GoDaddy is significantly better. For example, 99.9% means 43m 49s of monthly downtime. With 99.98%, that number drops to 8m 45s.

This tool also checks server response time every minute. GoDaddy averages at 341ms, which is a very good result. In comparison, the shared hosting average is around 600ms.

GoDaddy speed

As for the next test, I ran a website with a standard WordPress theme on it through a speed test from 3 different locations – the US, UK, and India.

GoDaddy page load time test comparison in different locations

Just as I expected, GoDaddy was great in the US, where it is hosted. What we are looking at is Largest Contentful Paint (LCP). This number should be lower than 2.5 seconds to be considered good. It loaded in 481ms.

Very naturally, other locations took longer to load. UK visitors would have to wait 1 second, while India – 1.6 seconds. That’s because data needs to travel longer distances when compared to the US.

But even with this, the website fits into the recommended 2.5 seconds with a margin to spare.

Next up, I went through GoDaddy’s WordPress Starter and installed one of the themes with demo content on it. This made the website heavier and increased LCP to 791ms.

GoDaddy page loading time with premium theme

Still, an excellent load time result for a page with some nice pictures on it.

But this does not help me compare it to other providers. That’s why I went in and installed my regular Astra theme that I use for all providers’ testing.

This time, LCP increased to 1.5 seconds.

GoDaddy page load speed with Astra WordPress theme

As a result, it is great. We fit in the recommended 2.5 seconds with one second to spare.

On the other hand, providers like Hostinger and SiteGround load this theme in under a second because they have advanced optimization measures in place. I cannot say the same about GoDaddy.

Best GoDaddy alternatives:

GoDaddy stress testing

Now for the last test, I’ve sent 50 virtual visitors (bots) to the website. This puts big pressure on the server and lets us see how much traffic GoDaddy can handle.

GoDaddy failed stress test

We can see that from the red line – it's all over the place. It shows when the server did not manage to respond to or fulfill a request.

I decided to reduce bots by 5 till GoDaddy was capable of passing the test. As it turns out, GoDaddy can handle 40 virtual users.

GoDaddy stress test with 40 users

Right now, the red line is nowhere to be found, and the blue line (speed) remains very stable when the purple (requests) and the gray (virtual users) increase.

This is exactly how good performance should look like.

Looking at the numbers purely, GoDaddy can handle high peaks of traffic. 40 VUs could easily add up to 20 000 monthly visitors if that number remained throughout all days.

All in all, this part of GoDaddy review showed that the provider is very good when it comes to performance. It checks all 3 boxes – reliability, speed, and stability. So while it did not handle the stress test at the maximum load, it was still a good result.

Security – is GoDaddy secure?

As far as security is concerned, GoDaddy is disappointing. Standard plans come with basic security features such as fraud, virus, and spam protection. Email privacy and protection are also included. However, this is the least a provider can do.

According to our tests, there are much safer alternatives of hosting providers, such as Hostinger. It comes with internal server security, DDoS protection, regular site backups, and two-factor authentication.

The most secure web hosting provider
Hostinger is a wallet-friendly hosting solution for those who are looking for advanced security. It’s suitable for both novice and experienced users and offers a user-friendly hosting platform with many handy features.
cybernews® score
4.8 /5

GoDaddy thought of the most basic security it can offer and chose not to go an inch further. My biggest shock was that SSL certificates are included only with two more expensive shared hosting plans. And for one of them, it’s free for only a year.

So analyzing the plans, I saw that 2 security features are included in all shared web hosting plans:

  • 24/7 network security – security and DDoS protection monitoring
  • Email privacy with encryption

Now, the problem is that the provider doesn’t elaborate at all. Are they really implemented or not? I assume that the 24/7 monitoring of the system is the feature that handles DDoS attacks and offers fraud, viruses, and spam protection. Again, it’s only an assumption. There isn’t much information about it out there.

As for the email & privacy protection with 256-bit encryption, it’s guaranteed by GoDaddy, but you can’t find it anywhere. I sifted through that dashboard like nobody’s business, and I got nothing.

It’s worth noting that if you want extra security, you should be ready to pay for it. The provider bundles a bunch of stuff into one package – an SSL certificate, a Web Application Firewall (WAF), malware scans, and cleanup.

Paid security tool in GoDaddy shopping cart

This whole thing will cost you $171 for 3 years. That’s more than the plan itself.!

Do I want to pay more for security features than for hosting? Hell nah. Especially when some of these features are pretty basic:

  • SSL certificate – all other providers give SSLs for free. Unlimited ones.
  • WAF – most of the time, it’s also free.

To summarize, when it comes to security, GoDaddy is a greedy shark. It includes only the most basic features, and you have to pay for the rest.

GoDaddy plans and pricing

GoDaddy is a slightly more premium host, although its cheapest shared hosting plan retails only for $1.99/mo. Other options include WordPress, Business, VPS, and Dedicated hosting options.

Hosting typeBest for
Shared web hosting Small websites. A very affordable option. GoDaddy coupon 77% OFF
WordPress hosting Small online business and personal WordPress websites.
Business hosting eCommerce ready plans.
VPS hosting Powerful hosting for advanced needs.
Dedicated serversAn enterprise-level solution for those in need of a private server.

There are a ton of options for all kinds of users and their websites. Prices for these solutions are pretty average too. However, if we'd look at, let's say, VPS pricing, I'd suggest you check out our list of cheap VPS hosting solutions.

As for this GoDaddy review, I’ll be sticking to shared hosting, as it's the most popular option.

In any case, there are 3 shared hosting packages. All of them are very generous and include a free domain and unmetered bandwidth. The advertised prices are available with annual hosting plans.

PlanFeaturesPrice
Economy 1 website limit, 100GB storage, and 10 databases. It’s a good option to host your service page, portfolio, or blog.$1.99/mo
Deluxe Unlimited websites and storage, plus 25 databases. It's a plan for when you need more than 1 website.$7.99/mo
Ultimate Unlimited storage, websites and databases, premium DNS management, and an SSL for the first year. It’s also hosted on a lower-density server and is capable of handling more traffic.$12.99/mo

100GB storage on a basic plan is generous! However, the lack of an SSL certificate with most plans is a big drawback.

Pro tip

If your hosting does not provide an SSL certificate, you can install one for free on your own. Some of the most reliable providers are Cloudflare and Let's Encrypt.

Looking at these plans, it’s safe to say that GoDaddy’s shared hosting is best for heavy websites that are not necessarily offering eCommerce functionality (for those you better check the best eCommerce hosting options). That means you are better off not dealing with sensitive data like credit card info on these. At the same time, they’ll be great for news sites, blogs, and portfolios because of the huge storage space capacities.

If you need 1 website only, the GoDaddy Economy hosting plan is the way to go. It provides you with everything you need for a kick-start – a free domain and 100GB of storage.

You should be aware about price increases after renewal, which is usual – it will happen with 99% of providers. That’s why you need to weigh your needs against the price to see if GoDaddy offers good value for you. Another thing you should be mindful of is the migration fee. If you wish to transfer your site to GoDaddy, a single website migration will cost you a one-time payment of $99.

Also, GoDaddy has a 30-day money-back guarantee. However, the free domain price will be deducted, and you’ll get to keep the domain. More so, if you purchased for a period shorter than a year, you’ll have 48 hours to cancel the service.

Side note: For this hosting review, I chose the Deluxe plan. While I disregarded it as "bad value," Deluxe gave me the ability to host multiple sites, which is exactly what I needed.

So in general, GoDaddy prices are average when compared to other hosts. On the other hand, it does give generous resources and some good discounts. The only not-so-good thing is that free SSLs are not included as a default in every plan.

Customer support – will GoDaddy help me?

To get in touch with GoDaddy’s customer support, you can do it in two ways. You can either use the 24/7 live chat or phone support option. The provider also delivers an extensive knowledge base, and there’s a community forum too.

My first attempt at getting connected to live chat was not very successful. On the Contact Us page, the live chat button was on Chat Loading… For as long as I was on that page.

GoDaddy review of live chat-loading

So I went on the homepage and there was another Contact Us button available. At first, a chat with the bot was needed, but they connected me with an agent really quickly. So basically no wait time.

I asked if it was possible to get a free SSL certificate for my Deluxe plan. That’s a tricky question as you can install your own free SSL, but as GoDaddy has a paid option, I had little hope of a positive answer.

GoDaddy live chat

So the agent went in, checked my plan, and even offered to do a big discount on an SSL as the free one is “not available.” What I get from this is that the agents are not allowed to say that there are ways to get free SSL certificates.

At the same time, I’m happy with the interaction. They also offered to get me a discount, which was very nice of them to do.

Generally, I think GoDaddy’s support is okay. It might be tricky to find the live chat button at times, but wait times are almost non-existent. Some agents are not entirely fluent in English, so some miscommunications can happen.

Alternatively, there’s a help center with a wide range of how-tos, a community forum, a blog, and a system status page.

GoDaddy hosting video review

If you’re not much of a reader or are a visual learner, check out our GoDaddy review on YouTube!

GoDaddy hosting video review

GoDaddy review – the final verdict

GoDaddy might not be the nicest guy in the web hosting industry, but it surely isn’t the worst. Sure, it offers high prices and expensive security features. But at the same time, GoDaddy has an amazing interface to work with and keeps up its end when it comes to performance. Not to mention helpful support agents.

So if we take every feature part by part. What does it all look like?

Feature
4.0
Great for small businesses
Pricing
GoDaddy’s prices are very average, starting at $1.99/mo for shared hosting. Occasional discounts lower that price to $1/mo, which makes it an amazing deal to start a website.
Ease of Use
From signing up to having a WordPress website working, it takes no more than 5 minutes. Every essential feature can be set up directly from the dashboard, while cPanel also has its perks.
Performance
In the performance department, GoDaddy did a good job. It handled reliability and speed tests great. Also, it proved to be capable of supporting big surges of traffic.
Security
GoDaddy does not include SSLs in the cheaper plans but does have 24/7 DDoS monitoring and spam protection. Unfortunately, paid security features are more expensive than hosting plans.
Support
As far as my experience goes, GoDaddy support agents are helpful, fast, and proactive. There’s also a big support center with how-tos and a community forum.

So who and when do I recommend GoDaddy to?

GoDaddy has many options for all kinds of websites. On the other hand, shared hosting will be great for blogs, news sites, and small business websites.

Best alternatives to GoDaddy

While GoDaddy is good, you might be looking for something different – cheaper, faster, or more functional.

In that case, I have a list of providers to consider. Hostinger will be a cheaper alternative, SiteGround – a faster and more functional one, while DreamHost is the perfect middle in terms of price and security.

Hostinger

With pricing starting at $2.59/mo, Hostinger is way cheaper than GoDaddy. Moreover, it showed better performance results.

Plus, it comes with a free SSL certificate even in the cheapest plan. What you’ll be missing out on is storage space and domain. Instead of 100GB offered by GoDaddy, Hostinger includes 30GB. Meanwhile, free domains start with more expensive plans. Overall, Hostinger is a good all-rounder if you’re on a budget.

SiteGround

During my testing, SiteGround proved to be one of the fastest and most powerful providers. With a starting price of $2.99/mo, it also comes with a bunch of premium stuff – 3 layer caching, optimizations, and staging environment in more advanced plans.

What you’ll be missing out on are a free domain and generous server resources. SiteGround only adds 10GB of storage instead of GoDaddy’s 100GB with the entry plan. In any case, choose SiteGround if you need the fastest website with shared hosting possible.

DreamHost

DreamHost prices are pretty similar to GoDaddy, starting at $2.59/mo. At the same time, it comes with much better security features – free SSLs, daily backups, and even domain privacy.

On the other hand, DreamHost performance is not as shiny as GoDaddy’s. So it’s a better option for personal websites and businesses that are not working in the most competitive of markets.

GoDaddy FAQs

Comments

Michael Sadler
Michael Sadler
prefix 5 months ago
Nice info here...this will help me to decide which to choose to host my little site!
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