This GoDaddy review if for anyone who's interested in great web hosting, or who has looked into purchasing a web domain. You’ve more than likely heard of GoDaddy (opens in new tab)- it’s been around for over twenty years and is one of the main players in the web hosting/domain registrar space.
Read our GoDaddy review below to find out if its hosting lives up to the marketing hype on its beautifully-designed website. Or go and check out our list of the best web hosting services available today.
01. GoDaddy review: Plans and pricing
GoDaddy’s cheapest WordPress hosting option starts at $6.99 per month for the first year, then renews at $9.99 per month thereafter.
GoDaddy’s shared hosting starts at $5.99 per month for a basic personal site, renewing at $8.99 per month after the first year.
Be aware that the most basic shared hosting packages do not include a SSL cert, which secures traffic to and from your site and is a must if you care about your site being ranked by search engines. An SSL cert will set you back an extra $6.67 per month.
GoDaddy’s website builder option costs $9.99 per month for a personal site and goes up to $24.99 per month for an e-commerce site
To compare with other hosting providers: DreamHost (opens in new tab) offers hosting from $2.59 per month, although they currently offer no phone support. If you have more money to spend, Kinsta has plans starting from $30 per month and is a great choice for speedy WordPress hosting.
02. GoDaddy review: Features
GoDaddy presents you with a bewildering array of hosting options to choose from. If you just want to get a portfolio site online, the specialized WordPress hosting is a decent choice.
GoDaddy guarantees that your website will be online a minimum of 99.9% of the time, although if you look at the fine print, they are only willing to give you back 5% of your monthly hosting fee should they fail to deliver on this promise.
WordPress is a very popular content management system (CMS) and blogging platform, powering millions of sites on the web.
Once you’ve signed up to their WordPress Hosting plan, GoDaddy enables you to do a one-click WordPress install, migrate an existing WordPress site, or do a manual install if you’re more technically minded.
You then get access to a myriad of possible themes for your website via the Admin panel. We put together a simple portfolio site using one of the free WordPress themes and were impressed by the speed with which it loaded.
It's well worth taking a look at the extensive guide that GoDaddy has on using WordPress on their website, comprising both online documentation and custom video content.
Shared hosting simply means that the server used to store your website’s files is shared with other GoDaddy users. It is a good option if you are in any way technically-minded, as it lets you pick and choose which technologies you use to power your website—if you hire a developer to build a site you have designed, it may well be their preferred type of hosting.
GoDaddy gives you a pretty standard set of tools for managing your site using the shared hosting plan: File Manager and FTP Manager let you deal with viewing files and moving them to and from your website’s server. cPanel lets you manage various technical things such as the installation of a content management system.
We got a simple HTML/CSS site online in a few minutes. The only issue we encountered was not being able to log into cPanel, but a GoDaddy agent helped us sort out that issue relatively quickly.
GoDaddy’s website builder is intuitive to use and lets you put together simple websites quickly without writing a line of code. Clicking on a piece of text enables you to edit it instantly. One feature we particularly liked was the ability to preview different font pairings with the click of a button.
Getting your website online is very straightforward: click on the “Publish” button, associate a web domain with the site you’ve built, and you’re done.
We found the themes available for GoDaddy’s website builder to be a little tired and uninspiring, unfortunately—if you want to build a slick portfolio site, you might be better off looking elsewhere.
03. GoDaddy review: Interface
It's worth noting that you will need at least some degree of technical knowledge to use the shared hosting and the WordPress hosting plans. The interface of cPanel, which enables you to manage various technical aspects of your website, is rather intimidating in appearance, giving you a vast array of configuration options to choose from.
In contrast, GoDaddy’s website builder is remarkably easy to use. This simplicity does come at a cost, however: the website builder gives you far less control over your website’s design and functionality than a sophisticated content management system such as WordPress.
04. GoDaddy review: Security
When choosing a GoDaddy hosting plan, you should take care to see what security features it includes. The website builder package, for example, lacks even a firewall—something you definitely want in place to reduce the chance of your site being attacked
GoDaddy’s most basic security package, which you can purchase on top of website hosting, gives you a firewall and regular malware scanning. If you want added protection against DDOS, a devious type of cyberattack that involves bombarding your site with requests, causing it to crash, you’ll need to go for the Advanced or Premium security packages.
05. GoDaddy review: Support
GoDaddy has a great range of support options: 24/7 phone and chat support, a knowledge base, a community forum, and user guides—you can even message them on Whatsapp.
All four agents we chatted to via web chat were knowledgeable and helpful, giving clear, concise answers to our questions.
GoDaddy’s website builder is intuitive to use, but we were unimpressed by its themes; equivalent themes on Squarespace, for example, are, in our opinion, considerably better for creatives.
We also didn’t like the hidden costs we found in some of GoDaddy’s hosting plans. Purchasing an SSL cert and adding basic security features has the potential to more than double the monthly cost you pay for basic shared hosting, for example.
If you like its UI/UX and value good customer service, then GoDaddy is a decent choice as a hosting provider. But if you want more transparent pricing and seek higher-quality website builder themes, we suggest looking elsewhere.