My guess is you are probably torn between the two, given that both have really built a good name for themselves in the hosting and domain industry. In fact, both score pretty high on many fronts, including performance, security, cost, and speed.
If you’ve never interacted with either but have watched their ads or seen reviews, that makes the decision on which host to choose even more complicated. It’s unfortunate that a good number of people fall for the ads, only to realize later they made a really bad decision.
Usually, you have to look at a couple of features in relation to hosting (and other related services a hosting provider offers) in order to weigh their capacity to meet your needs. Well, that’s what I’ll do shortly, and even better, I’ll tell you who performs way better than the other.
But before that, it would be great if you get to know each company better, including what Namecheap Vs Hostgator is all about.
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More About Hostgator Vs Namecheap
When it comes to hosting, not many names share the popularity and reputation that Hostgator enjoys. Actually, it’s one of the few companies with millions of users across the globe.
Some of the hosting services they provide currently include shared, virtual private server (VPS), dedicated, and reseller hosting. Part of their offerings also includes a website builder tool, named Gator, designed for non-pros.
Unmetered bandwidth and storage, coupled with affordable prices and fair money-back guarantees, have made Hostgator quite an attraction to many.
Namecheap, on the other hand, dominates the domain buying and selling space and, like its competitor, has millions of users spread across the world. It started off as a domain registration service but later on expanded into hosting.
One question I see lots of website owners ponder on time and again is if Namecheap has succeeded at web hosting as they have in domain services. That’s another thing you’ll find out in a bit.
Right now, they provide different types of hosting services, including shared, WordPress, VPS, dedicated, and reseller, in addition to selling privacy protection services, SSL certificates, and more. From just one package, you get to host more than one website on their servers, enjoy free DNS service and flexibility in managing your website, among other enticing features.
Top Features of Namecheap Vs Hostgator
Despite both Hostgator and Namecheap upgrading to SSD storage memories to maximize speed and boot time, their speeds still vary a bit. Here’s what the tests show:
Hostgator’s average page load speed in the past few months has been around 2.80 seconds. The issues reported at their data centers (which came after the buyout) may have made things a bit shaky, given the occasionally high page load times.
Nonetheless, they’ve tried their best to remain consistent and not go beyond 15 seconds at their worst.
Namecheap has managed to stay consistent, with the average page load speed being about 3.09 seconds. The worst ever recorded in the last couple of months was 72.72 seconds, which, unfortunately, is pretty high.
Experts, however, believe that the load times could be improved through caching headers and compression.
Hostgator’s page load speeds are evidently better and above what most hosts have been able to achieve, including Namecheap.
Hostgator promises a 99.9% uptime guarantee, and their investment in powerful and recent hardware updates, like the Opteron 6000 series CPU combined with DDR3 ECC RAM, have made things even better. To date, they continue to record the best uptimes in the hosting space.
So far, their average has been 99.97%, with 100% being the best ever recorded and 97.5% the worst. All these good results have been achieved despite the recent issues at their data center.
99.9% is what Namecheap promises to deliver with regards to uptime. And if it’s not delivered, they promise to give you credits. Now, to make that a reality, they have invested in some of the latest powerful hardware, as well as software firewalls. As for the server models, they use the most recent ones from Dell, HP, and Supermicro.
Uptime tests done by down.com in the months leading up to now give an average result of 99.93%. 100% was the best ever achieved, while 92.0% was the lowest. There are reports of outages but just for a few minutes. That shouldn’t worry you, though, because it’s common even with other popular hosts.
Clearly, Hostgator appears to have slightly better uptime than Namecheap.
In order to fully secure their servers and, in turn, prevent your account from being vulnerable to attacks, Hostgator has employed a couple of measures including an extensive custom firewall rule, plus large modsecurity rule sets. Put simply, these are generic attack detection rules that you could use with ModSecurity or any other compatible web application firewalls.
There’s also the network level flood protection, which ensures things are handled well when there’s heavy flooding, which basically are attacks designed to bring a network or service down by congesting it with a huge amount of traffic. Above all that, they have additional security methods to further protect their servers.
Security-wise, Namecheap utilizes top-grade software and hardware firewalls, combined with an in-house security system. To help protect your website from hacks, they have this feature called Leech Protect, which lets you set the limit on logins per 2 hours.
Other features they’ve incorporated into their systems to enhance security include virus scanners, SSL certificates, DDoS protection, hotlink protection, DNSSEC, WhoisGuard, among many others.
On security, these two seem to have a tie. No serious incidents or breaches that comprise the servers’ security have been reported in the recent past, meaning all score well on this front.
Hosting Plans And Pricing
As we saw earlier, Hostgator offers different types of hosting. Their shared plan includes three packages: Hatchling, Baby, and Business. Hatchling, which is the cheapest, currently retails at $2.75 per month.
Expect some decent features in their shared hosting plans, including unmetered disk space & bandwidth, unlimited emails, and one free domain name under the Hatchling plan. Baby plan includes all that, in addition to unlimited domains. All shared plans include a free SSL certificate plus website templates and a control panel as well.
Just like Hostgator, Namecheap has a variety of hosting services, shared being the most common. Under this plan, expect three packages as well: Steller, Steller Plus, and Steller Business. Steller, which is the lowest in the price ladder, goes for $2.88/month (or $15.44 year).
Unlike Hostgator, Namecheap limits the storage space in their shared hosting plan but gives you up to 3 free domain names and offers unlimited websites in the next plan up.
Namecheap’s prices may seem really enticing, but let’s not forget that Hostgator often throws around crazy offers and discounts, in addition to more value for your money. You will have to look at what offers or discounts are available at the moment, then compare both and see which host is pocket-friendly.
Hostgator provides 24/7 technical support through email, live chat, and phone. Their focus on providing support at any time of the day via multiple channels puts them above most competitors. On top of that, they have a solid knowledge base where you can get answers and information ranging from basic to the most complex topics.
Namecheap offers multiple support channels for its customers including e-mails, tickets, and 24/7 Live Chat. If you would like to learn things on your own and refine your knowledge, they have a resource center complete with video tutorials.
Through their community forums, you can engage in discussions with other users and even get answers and more information. Unfortunately, they don’t offer phone support.
Hostgator seems to have an edge over Namecheap when it comes to channels available. Presence of phone support sets it apart. As for response time and the quality of customer service, the reviews from customers suggest that many prefer Namecheap to Hostgator.
Hostgator’s flexibility is one of its distinguishing features. All plans support multiple languages, including Ruby on Rails, PHP, Python, and Perl, but only one database system, MySQL. That aside, they provide unlimited FTP and email accounts, in addition to unlimited bandwidth and storage.
On languages, Namecheap supports PHP, Perl, and a few others. As for the database, they support both MySQL and PostgreSQL.
If you are a small business owner, they’ve even made things easier for you through an online-based advertising service, named Business Promoter, which only requires you to feed it some information and then it will take over and run Google ads for you.
Namecheap’s shared plans also have this tool named Softaculous, which lets you install software that upgrades your website’s features and functionality. Also, they have a lot of apps for you in their app store, enabling you to diversify and improve the functionality of your site.
Even though this section isn’t conclusive, given the fact that each plan has its own set of features, each host appears to compensate for the lack of one key feature with another prominent feature.
But at the most basic level, Hostgator would still be better, as they are less restrictive on things like storage and SSL certificates and also generous with other key features like domains.
Ease Of Use
Hostgator utilizes the latest cPanel software, making it easy for the average user to navigate the different functions like installing CMS, linking domain names, and so on. They also have a drag-and-drop website builder as well, a fact that makes them friendly to beginners.
In addition to all that, expect an e-commerce solution with plenty of tools that could help make your website building process easier and better.
Namecheap’s web hosting interface is almost similar to their super-easy-to-use domain management panel. If you are connecting a domain bought from them to their hosting, it even becomes easier. Expect a cPanel that will simplify everything for you.
What’s even better is that their shared hosting plan comes complete with a website builder and includes plug-ins, multi-language support, e-commerce solutions, and hundreds of templates to choose from.
If you would like to make a website quickly, Namecheap lets you do so easily through their site building apps. And if you already have a website in place that you’d like to transfer, they’ll do so for you at no fee.
Not so many of us understand how to do that after all. In the video below, you can learn a few more things about transferring domain names to hosting and installing WordPress.
Clearly, there’s no winner as both seem to be friendly to all kinds of users.
Comparison Conclusion Of Namecheap Hosting Vs Hostgator
From this review, it’s fair to say that both Hostgator and Namecheap are competitive. Having crossed from domain services to hosting, Namecheap has clearly made great efforts in matching up to hosting legend Hostgator.
In almost every factor we’ve looked at, Hostgator seems to have an edge over Namecheap, with a few ties on aspects like security and ease of use.
For a beginner, and even middle and advanced users, either of these two would be a great fit. What’s most likely going to influence your final decision will probably be the pricing.
On sites like shooperapproved, Namecheap has an overall satisfaction rating of about 4.6, which is pretty decent, considering that it’s based on over a million reviews from their customers. Hostgator, on the other hand, wins on reputation as they’ve nurtured it over the years, and in the process, they’ve earned their place in the hosting ‘hall of fame’.
So, evaluate your needs properly, consider your budget, and keep looking at the reviews. This way, you are assured of making a decision you will be proud of when it comes to selecting a hosting provider.