Background: Founded back in 1997, GoDaddy is the world’s largest domain registrar, with over 13 million customers. The company provides hosting plans to small businesses, web design professionals, and individuals and has offices in some of the world’s hottest tech corridors, including Silicon Valley, Cambridge, Seattle, Hyderabad, Belfast, and Phoenix. Even if you are unfamiliar with the hosting/domain registration industry, you’ve likely heard of GoDaddy via one of their Super Bowl or NASCAR commercials. Interestingly, GoDaddy is also committed in supporting a range of philanthropic causes – In Phoenix, where GoDaddy has a 270,000-square-foot facility, the company has made substantial donations to the Phoenix Children's Hospital, the Arizona Humane Society, and the Phoenix Zoo. GoDaddy's IPO raised $460 million in April 2015. In June 2014, GoDaddy Inc. filed for its IPO in June 2014 with a placeholder value of $100 million on the deal. The company eventually raised $460 million from its IPO on April 1st, 2015.
GoDaddy is world's biggest domain registrar – I personally use GoDaddy services to register and manage most of my domains. But when it comes to hosting, I think GoDaddy is just average. There are plenty of choices around which are cheaper and better than the Daddy. Read on to find out more.
Hosting with GoDaddy offers many advantages. However, their positioning seems to have somewhat shifted from being a “value host” to a “value-add” host. That means you’ll pay more but get more. It’s hard to blame them since times are tough for business, but so are they for us!
1. GoDaddy allocates generous resources
GoDaddy's approach to hosting means you get generous amounts of storage, bandwidth, and databases. Most of its shared hosting plans get unmetered resources. The only exceptions to this are the two cheapest options on the menu – Starter and Economy shared hosting.
It’s important to note, though, that “unmetered” doesn’t mean you can use your hosting plan as a file dump. As with many other hosting service providers, GoDaddy spells out some conditions on resource usage on its hosting agreement page. Still, as long as you don’t plan to abuse the generosity, it’s unlikely you’ll ever run out of space.
2. The website builder plans are outstanding
Most web hosting companies include a free website builder with hosting packages. Website builder hosting plans are sold separately at GoDaddy – at a higher price. Before you frown, be aware that these are comprehensive packages.
The website builder is simple and easy to use, plus you get access to lots of templates. More interesting is the inclusion of everything else. That covers a mobile website editor, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) tools, marketing tools, and more.
Their website builder plans are a one-stop shop for anyone interested in building a website that grows.
3. GoDaddy is the daddy of domain names
The domain name game is another area where GoDaddy pulls far ahead of the crowd. Instead of simply allowing you to buy or transfer domain names, you’ll find it offers all domain name related services.
They offer domain name auctions, appraisals, premium DNS, and more. To GoDaddy, domain names are a big business, and they can support even the most seasoned domain name investor. The domain name you like already taken? No problem, they can negotiate with the owner on your behalf.
4. Price are affordable at GoDaddy
While I winced at the thought of saying this, the fact is that GoDaddy hosting fees are fairly affordable. Most of the things listed for sale at GoDaddy are barebones (except their website builder plans). That helps them keep costs down so you can pay less.
However, if you’ve got specific needs, extras are available as separate add-ons. That’s convenient, but add too many, and you’ll find that prices can quickly escalate beyond control.
5. They’re running on upgraded and optimized servers
In the past, GoDaddy garnered mixed reviews about their service's performance. Some users loved it, while others faced nightmares. GoDaddy gave in and did an equipment overhaul to bring things closer into the 21st century.
Upgrades to the service include hardware changes, with solid-state drives now powering their hosting servers. Other areas have also seen some fine-tuning, such as the inclusion of PHP OPcache and beefed up I/O resources to prevent bottlenecks.
Cons: Things I Dislike About GoDaddy
While there is a lot to love about GoDaddy, I, unfortunately, uncovered some disadvantages. TO be fair, many of them are annoying more than a serious letdown. Here are some things that may turn you off;
1. Near-constant Upsells
I always find upsells an annoyance, and GoDaddy is guiltier than most about this matter. Regardless of what product or service you purchase, they’ll try to get you to buy more. For example, they’ll try to sell privacy protection separately if you buy a domain name.
Understandably, newbies may not always know what they need. But constantly trying to get everyone to buy more just comes off as being so needy. It’s excessive and unnecessary. Sometimes, all we want is what's in the shopping cart.
2. Navigating the GoDaddy website isn’t easy
Web hosting may feel technical to some, but the reality is that fixed hosting categories exist. Hosting hunters typically look for what they need; shared, VPS, or otherwise. GoDaddy took something straightforward and made it as confusing as possible.
The menu system on their website is labelled very unusually. If you’ve landed on their page for the first time and tried to find their web hosting packages, you’ll understand what I mean. For a web hosting company to have such poor UI design is odd.
GoDaddy Plans and Pricing
Like many reputable web hosting service providers, GoDaddy offers an extensive range of products. However, it can be challenging to find most of them since only a few product lines are featured prominently. We’ll focus mainly on their Shared Hosting and VPS plans;
GoDaddy Shared Hosting
For Shared Hosting, GoDaddy offers four different hosting plans, which is more than you’ll typically find. I’m sure this range split is part of their sales funnel design. If you aren’t interested in limited resources, you’ll likely skip the Starter and Economy plan entirely.
Free Domain Name
GoDaddy VPS Hosting
The range of VPS plans GoDaddy offers are more in line with industry norms. The main difference between plans is that as the price increases, so do system resources. By default, all plans are unmanaged, helping keep costs manageable.
All prices are accurate during March 2022 updates. For best accuracy, please check the official price list at https://www.godaddy.com/
Alternatives to GoDaddy
Compare GoDaddy vs Bluehost
Both GoDaddy and Bluehost are big names in the web hosting sphere. Yet, there are subtle differences. GoDaddy excels in its domain name services and website builder plans. Comparatively, Bluehost is renowned for excellent WordPress hosting.
Both hosts are par for the course at the lower end of the spectrum. Here, GoDaddy is slightly pricier than BlueHost but offers more options. That is if you’re willing to spend that much for shared hosting.
Compare GoDaddy vs HostGator
HostGator is one of the more budget-oriented options in the market. That makes it a formidable competitor to GoDaddy in the shared hosting space. However, GoDaddy’s newly revamped servers are likely to give it an edge in performance.
Yes, GoDaddy is safe to use. GoDaddy secures its servers with enterprise-grade security like all reputable web hosting companies. It also includes free SSL for all websites, along with firewall, malware scanning, and a single annual website cleaning session.
What is GoDaddy used for?
GoDaddy is a web services company that offers web hosting, domain name services, and other associated products. The product range is highly comprehensive, and you’ll likely find everything you need to build a website with them.
How much does it cost to use GoDaddy?
The cheapest web hosting plan at GoDaddy costs $3.99/mo for an extended subscription of 3 years. Prices may increase depending on the plan you choose or optional add-ons to your basic web hosting package.
Does GoDaddy have a free plan?
No, GoDaddy does not offer free web hosting. It provides limited refunds per terms and conditions spelt out in its hosting agreement. For cancellations after 48hours of sign-up, GoDaddy only refunds 50% of the original payment minus the first months’ fees.
How good is GoDaddy?
GoDaddy is a reputable service provider and has improved its servers for better performance. These improvements include new hardware like SSD storage and optimisations for increased reliability.
Final Thoughts: Is It Worth Paying for GoDaddy Hosting?
On paper GoDaddy Hosting is a highly affordable and comes with rich website-creation tools and a wide selection of add-on features. However my actual experience with their service says otherwise – they are not that bad; but not that great neither. Unless you are looking for a popular name to host your site (then GoDaddy is definitely for you) – else there are plenty of choices around which are cheaper and better.
Founder of WebHostingSecretRevealed.net (WHSR) - a hosting review trusted and used by 100,000's users. More than 15 years experience in web hosting, affiliate marketing, and SEO. Contributor to ProBlogger.net, Business.com, SocialMediaToday.com, and more.