When you decide to start a website or a blog, there are two main things that are required and those are, Domain Name & Web Hosting. Without these two things you cannot proceed further to fulfill your dream of launching your own website.
So naturally the question arises, which hosting provider should you choose?
Disclosure: We receive compensation from SiteGround, Bluehost & Hostgator for promoting their product at no additional cost to you.
Bluehost was founded in 2003 in Utah & the hosting provider powers more than 2 Million websites worldwide. Around 750 employees work there. Endurance International Group (EIG), bought Bluehost in 2010.
SiteGround was founded in 2004 & this hosting provider also powers more than 2 Million website all over the world. Around 400 employees work there. In the recent years SiteGround has managed to become one of the most popular hosting providers, due to its speed & performance.
First lets see what hosting provider is & why we need it.
What Is A Hosting Provider?
Hosting Provider is nothing but a service provider who sells storage space & resources for storing the data of your website. A hosting service runs internet servers, allowing organizations and individuals to serve content to the Internet. There are different levels & kinds of services offered, one out of which is web hosting, where you can put all your website data.
Why Do We Need A Hosting Provider?
Consider that you want to start a website. Now, the most obvious question is what do you need?
You would require a domain name for your website & some space where you can store all your website data. A Hosting Provider provides both these things.
You can choose to host your website/blog on your home server, but that is not a practical approach. You will have to keep your server running all the time if you want people to visit your website/blog & in doing so you will end up paying high electricity bills. Also, the website/blog data will take up space on your server and also utilize your server resources.
A hosting provider provides solutions to these kind of problems by offering a hosting space on their servers for a monthly fee, so that you don’t have to worry about hosting and concentrate on bettering your website.
Comparing Different Parameters
- Ease Of Use
- Website Migration
- Server Location
- Pricing & Plans
Ease Of Use
Bluehost Hosting has a CPanel with a lot of features (FTP accounts, File Manager, Email Account, PHPMyAdmin) which makes is really easy to use. However, SiteGround has their own Custom Panel that is really powerful in its own way.
Both Bluehost & Siteground can be used with Cloudflare (Content Delivery Network Provider). Having said that Bluehost is a bit more cluttered than SiteGround. In other words, SiteGround is much cleaner to use than Bluehost.
Some people find a cluttered interface easy to use & some people find a clean minimalist interface easy to use. Its really up to you to decide which hosting provider you want to choose, since both are easy to use in their own way.
There are a lot of features to take into consideration while evaluating these below mentioned parameters.
1). Bandwidth – Bandwidth is the amount of data transferred from servers to the end users. In other words, it is the amount of data that your website will be allowed to transfer.
Bluehost offers Unmetered Bandwidth with all its plans, meaning there is no limit set on how much data people are using up. SiteGround also offers Unmetered Bandwidth with all its plans, but there is a catch here.
SiteGround limits its monthly visits to 10,000 for the StartUp Plan, 25,000 for GrowBig Plan & 100,000 for the GoGeek Plan. So, if your website receives more than 100,000 visits per month then should go for Bluehost.
2). Backups – Hosting Providers create a backup of your website so that if anything goes wrong with your website, you can still retrieve all your data through backup.
Bluehost offers website backup with Basic & Plus Plans for extra money but its included with the Choice Plus & Pro Plans.
Whereas SiteGround offers Daily Backup with all its plan & On-Demand Backup with its GrowBig & GoGeek Plans.
Winner: Here SiteGround is the winner.
3). Storage – It is the amount of space you get on the server to store your files. Bluehost web hosting offers 50 GB SSD storage with its Basic Plan & Unlimited Storage with their Plus, Choice Plus & Pro plans.
Whereas SiteGround Web Hosting offers 10 GB SSD storage with its StartUp Plan, 20 GB SSD storage with its GrowBig Plan & 40 GB SSD storage with its GoGeek Plan.
Winner: So the clear winner here is Bluehost when it come to Storage Space offered.
4). Domains, Subdomains & Parked Domains – Bluehost offers 1 Domain, 25 Subdomains & 5 Parked Domains with its Basic Plan but Unlimited Domains, Unlimited Subdomains & Unlimited Parked Domains with its Plus, Choice Plus & Pro Plans.
SiteGround also offers Unlimited Domains, Subdomains & Parked Domains.
If you have to rank higher in the search results then you need to have a fast loading website which loads in less than 2 seconds and this can be achieved by SiteGround. Net Promoter Score (NPS) for SiteGround is 62 compared to 46 for Bluehost.
Winner : Without any doubt, SiteGround is the clear winner here.
Migrating a website from one host to another can be a painful process for those who don’t have technical knowledge.
SiteGround won’t migrate your website for free, you’ll need to pay $30 per site migration. They also offer a free and easy-to-use migration plugin for WordPress users.
Bluehost doesn’t offer migration services either unless you pay (about $150). For this price, they’d migrate up to 5 sites and 20 email accounts.
Uptime is another important aspect of hosting a website. If your website is down all the time, no one will be able to visit it and you will lose your audience. And, hence your website should have a good uptime.
Winner: Both are winners in this segment.
Bluehost hosting servers located in-house in a 50,000 square feet facility in Orem, Utah.
Where as SiteGround has server all over the world i.e. in US (Chicago & Iowa), UK (London), Netherlands (Amsterdam) and Singapore.
Winner: The winner definitely is SiteGround here.
Bluehost comes with SSL, SFTP and SSH access. They don’t share much else about their security protocols, but they do offer SiteLock, an external security solution that starts at around $1.25 per month.
SiteGround also comes with SSL, SFTP and SSH access. They also monitor the traffic to block brute force attacks. They sell SG Site Scanner too, as an add-on that will scan your website looking for malware & this add-on costs around $1.50 per month.
Winner: In this segment there is no winner. Both are almost the same.
This is one of the most important factors. If there is no support then you won’t be able to solve your server side technical problems.
SiteGround Support offers 24-hour support via phone, email (ticket) and live chat. Their support is friendly, gives a solution & is fast.
But when it comes to Bluehost Support their service is not as fast. Having said that, they also provide support via phone, email & chat.
Winner: Can’t select a winner here, as both provide equal support. Experience of the user is essential.
Pricing & Plans
This is probably the most important aspect of buy a hosting.
- Basic for $2.95 a month: Host 1 website, 50GB of storage and unlimited bandwidth.
- Plus for $5.45 a month: Unlimited websites, unlimited storage and unlimited bandwidth.
- Choice Plus for $5.45 a month: Same as the Plus plan with the advanced backup solution.
- Pro for $13.95 a month : Choice Plus Plan + Dedicated IP.
- StartUp for $11.95 a month: Hosting for 1 website, 10GB of storage with no bandwidth limitations
- GrowBig for $19.95 a month: Hosting for unlimited websites, 20GB of space, unlimited bandwidth, advanced caching system, staging and on-demand backups.
- GoGeek for $34.95 a month: Same as the previous plans, priority support and Git repository pre-installed.
Which hosting provider to chose is completely up to the end user. As mentioned above, the decision should be driven by requirements.
If you are just starting out & want to go for a cheaper plan with good storage then Bluehost is a good option for you.
If you want a service oriented hosting with super fast servers then you should opt for SiteGround.