GoDaddy Review: Can You Trust Their Shared Hosting?

GoDaddy is one of the largest domain name registrars. With them you can get almost any domain extension you are looking for: .com, .net, .org, .law or even .today. A .com domain will cost you $14.99 the first year and $19.99 after, not the cheapest.
At GoDaddy, there are shared hosting plans available too. It’ll cost you between $8.99 and $24.99 at renewal. With this type of hosting service, you’ll share a server with other clients. It’s suitable for small and medium projects that don’t need top-performing servers.
Like many other hosting providers, GoDaddy has a WordPress optimized shared hosting service. They seem to prepare their servers for a higher WordPress performance, offer WordPress pre-installed and have a selection of themes available. Nothing too exciting if you ask me. It starts at $9.99 a month when you renew.
GoDaddy VPS plans are for those with special server configuration needs. With the root (administrative) access you’ll be able to configure your server to your preferences. They also come with a higher performance than shared hosting plans. VPS plans at GoDaddy start at $6 a month (self-hosted) and can go all the way up to around $100 per month.
If the higher performance of a VPS is not enough for your site, a dedicated hosting package is your best next option. With these, you’ll have your own server for yourself and won’t have neighbors interfering with your project. But you’ll need a budget for that as dedicated servers start at $130 per month at GoDaddy.
GoDaddy also offers email hosting plans, so you can have a professional-looking address like [email protected]. They start at $5.99 per user per month for 10 GB of email storage.
For the less tech-savvy users, they also have a website builder to create your site with. To be honest, it’s not my favorite site builder as some features come up a bit short (e.g. the blog). Other alternatives like Weebly, Wix or Squarespace seem to me more well-rounded.
But their offering doesn’t stop there, among others they also have a hosting reseller program so you can sell hosting plans to your clients, web design services and SEO consulting.

GoDaddy Pricing: What Do Their Shared Plans Include?

Websites1 site10 sites25 sites50 sites
CPUMemory1 CPU512 MB1 CPU1 GB2 CPUs1.5 GB2 CPUs2 GB
Max. files amount250,000250,000250,000250,000
BandwidthUnmetered *Unmetered *Unmetered *Unmetered *
Storage25 GB50 GB75 GB100 GB
DatabaseMax. DB size101 GB251 BG501 GB751 GB
SSL certificateNoIncluded free the first termYesYes
BackupPaid add-onPaid add-onPaid add-onPaid add-on
First-year special price$5.99 a month$7.99 a month$12.99 a month$19.99 a month
Renewal price$8.99 a month$11.99 a month$16.99 a month$24.99 a month

The Economy plan is for those only looking to host 1 website (1 domain) and don’t need more than 25 GB of storage. It also comes with a database limitation of 10. SSL certificates aren’t included either.

The Deluxe tier comes with the same specs and features as the Economy package, but you’ll be able to host 10 sites and have 50 GB of storage. It also grants you a SSL certificate for the first term – at renewal you’ll need to pay for it.

If you need a higher performance (e.g. 2 CPUs and 1.5 GB of memory) you can purchase the Ultimate plan. It also comes with free SSL certificate for all your sites. 25 sites and 75 GB of storage are allowed.

With the Maximum tier, you’ll get 2 GB of memory, 50 sites and 100 GB of storage.

I don’t like that some basic features you’ll need aren’t included with the shared hosting plans. For example, if you want to have your sites backed up, it’ll cost you around $3 extra a month for 5 GB of storage, and SSL certificates are about $7 extra a month (in a time where most hosting companies offer free Let’s Encrypt certificates!).

This adds up quickly. The Economy plan jumps from $8.99 to $17.50 a month when these must-have add-ons are purchased. Not so ‘Economy’ anymore.

GoDaddy Review: Pros & Cons

GoDaddy is one of the largest domain name registrars and reputable hosts. Their performance is good and offers tons of web storage. However, it lacks some features like backups, SSL certificates and staging areas.

Let’s check out the main pros and cons in detail:

Easy to use: I find their interface pretty intuitive to use, I would recommend it for beginners.Speed: In my tests, GoDaddy offered OKish speed.Uptime: GoDaddy’s uptime is not the best one, but it’s reliable, more information below.Windows servers: GoDaddy also offers Windows-based hosting.Bandwidth: The traffic your site can get with each plan won’t be limited.Expensive: They don’t offer the cheapest deals out there. They become even more expensive when the basic add-ons (backups and SSL certificates) are purchased.No backups: Unless you purchase their paid add-on, there’s not a backup system in place.No SSL: If you want to have your site SSLed (pretty important these days), you’ll need to pay for a certificate or get one of the 2 most expensive plans.Missing advanced features: Sadly, GoDaddy doesn’t come with some advanced features like staging areas or Git repositories that may come in handy for developers.No migration services: Unlike some other hosting providers, they won’t help you migrate your websites from another host.Sites limitation: All plans come with a maximum of websites you can have.

But you are probably wondering when is it a good idea to use GoDaddy and when it’s not. Let me give you a couple of examples.

When to Use GoDaddy’s Hosting?

First of all, you should set aside some budget for hosting, as GoDaddy comes out a bit pricey, especially when you start adding the basic add-ons.

I would suggest GoDaddy’s shared hosting for those looking for a host that’s very generous with the storage (but don’t need unlimited space) and doesn’t measure your traffic.

GoDaddy also offers Windows-based hosting services, this may be a good argument to convince some.

When Not to Use GoDaddy’s hosting?

I would not suggest GoDaddy if you need an affordable hosting provider, check DreamHost, GreenGeeks or our round up of the best cheap web hosts instead.

And if you’re specifically looking for affordable WordPress hosting, check out our guide to the best low cost hosting providers for WordPress websites.

In our tests, GoDaddy has also proved to be a reliable hosting provider, but it wasn’t the top-performing service. So serious projects like avid bloggers should consider other alternatives like SiteGround or GreenGeeks.

Finally, those looking for advanced options like staging areas, server-side caching or CMS (e.g. WordPress) optimization options may want to check out other alternatives.

GoDaddy Shared Hosting Details

Ease of UseI have to say that registering can be a bit tricky, there are way too many add-ons offered at check out. Their cPanel-based backend is easy and intuitive. Perhaps their support materials could be a bit more detailed.
Domain NamesGoDaddy will give you a free domain for the first term if you purchase a 12-month (or longer) deal.With the Economy plan, you can only have 1 domain name (website), 10 with Deluxe, 25 with Ultimate and 50 sites with Maximum.
Email RatingEmail accounts are pretty generous at GoDaddy. Get up to 100 accounts with the Economy plan, 500 with the Deluxe tier and unlimited with the others. There’s not a direct email storage limitation. *
DatabasesAll databases are limited to Where your servers are 1 GB of size. With the Economy plan you can have up to 10 databases, 25 with the Deluxe package, 50 Ultimate and 100 databases with the Maximum plan *.
ApplicationsUsing their cPanel you’ll be able to easily install all sorts of applications like WordPress, Joomla, Drupal or Magento.
Webspace LimitThe storage is limited to 25 GB with the Economy plan, 50 GB for Deluxe, 75 GB for Unlimited and 100 GB with the Maximum plans. The maximum files (inodes) hosted can’t be over 250,000, which is pretty generous.
Monthly Data Transfer LimitGoDaddy doesn’t meter the traffic you can get with any of their plans. However, if your website uses too many server resources they may require you to upgrade your hosting account.
FTP Accounts and Secure FTPCreate up to 5 FTP accounts with the Economy, 25 with Deluxe, 50 with Unlimited and 75 with the Maximum tiers. Secure FTP connections are allowed and SSH access too.
Server LocationYou can choose between servers in America, Europe and Asia.
Security FeaturesThey seem to monitor your server’s security and possible attacks (e.g. DDoS) 24/7. I can’t get my head around why SSL certificates are paid extra. It’s also difficult to understand the lack of backups (more on this later).
Server SpeedAlthough GoDaddy’s speed is not as good as SiteGround’s or GreenGeeks’s, their hosting server is fast and shouldn’t disappoint you. They also offer the latest PHP version, which will give you an extra speed boost. Sadly, they don’t offer a server-side caching system and their shared hosting doesn’t come with dedicated speed optimization plugins for WordPress and similar CMSs.
UptimeIn our latest test, GoDaddy offered OK uptime rates.
BackupsThey only offer a database backup, but after speaking to support I am unsure how often is it run and what exactly is backed up. You’ll need to purchase a paid add-on for having proper backups, which starts at around $3 a month for 5 GB of backup storage.
CDNIt doesn’t include a CDN out-of-the-box. However, you can always add an external service like Cloudflare.
Server FeaturesWith GoDaddy, you can use PHP version 7 and 8, and MySQL for your databases. Using other programming languages like Python or Perl is also possible. Advanced features like staging areas or Git repositories are missing. You can also get a Windows-based server instead of a Linux one.
Refunds and GuaranteesIf you purchase a 12-month hosting plan or longer, you’ll have a 30-day money-back warranty. You have a 99.9% uptime service level agreement.
Assistance and SupportYou can reach GoDaddy via live chat or phone. I didn’t have to wait long to be connected with an agent, however, the quality of the support could be better. I wish their learning materials were a bit more detailed.
Overall Rating4.1/5GoDaddy’s performance is good and their support isn’t terrible. However, they can be a bit overpriced as you’ll need to add some add-ons (e.g. SSL and backups) to have a fully functional hosting service.

* All your files combined (storage, databases, emails, etc), can’t be more than 250,000.

GoDaddy Performance Tests

I checked GoDaddy’s performance to see if they are a reliable hosting provider. I’ve tested their uptime and speed using several tools: StatusCake, Pingdom, GTmetrix and Google PageSpeed Insights.

GoDaddy Speed Test

No one wants to have a slow hosting provider. Website visitors hate having to stare at a blank page that never seems to load.

This can cost you conversions as visitors will go elsewhere if they have to wait too long to read your content. And of course, the faster your site the higher search engines will rank it.

ProviderGTmetrixPingdomWebpage testPageSpeed InsightsTotal
WP Engine11.991.462.21.65
A2 Hosting0.961.403.781.92.01

Results in seconds

Is GoDaddy’s Uptime Good?With an average loading time of 1.94 seconds, GoDaddy wasn’t the top-performing host in our tests, but they were not too far from SiteGround at the top of the list with an average loading speed of 1.54 seconds.

The uptime measures how much time your website was online. Believe it or not, hosting providers can’t always guarantee that your site will be online 100% of the time.

Having a 99.95% uptime (or 0.05% downtime) is considered a good result. So if you are serious about your website, you should always aim for this. Otherwise, you may get punished by search engines and of course you’ll be offering a poor user experience to your visitors.

Provider2019 Uptime2020 Uptime2021 UptimeStarts at
KinstaNo data100%100%$35/month
CloudwaysNo data100%100%$10/month
NamecheapNo dataNo data100%$2.40/month
WP EngineNo data99.99%99.99%$25/month
A2 Hosting99.93%99.99%99.98%$8.99/month
GreenGeeksNo data99.98%99.98%$10.95/month
IONOS – Uptime test 2 monthsNo dataNo data99.93%$4/month

To monitor uptime I use StatusCake, a tool that checks each website every 5 minutes.

GoDaddy’s uptime was better than the industry-standard 99.95%. However, many providers performed better than GoDaddy did.

GoDaddy Review: Do I Recommend It?

Overall, I think GoDaddy offers a solid product to host small websites. I liked:

  • Their decent speed
  • Apart from classic Linux hosting, they also offer Windows-based hosting services – not many providers do
  • Their easy to follow and intuitive interface
  • Their unlimited bandwidth and generous storage

However, it has a couple of hidden downsides that you should know about. Some basic features like SSL and backups aren’t included in their already pricey plans – in the end, GoDaddy gets expensive.

Advanced features like staging areas are also missing, and they don’t offer migration services for new accounts. This may be a deal-breaker for developers or agencies. Sadly, its bad uptime record makes this provider not a good choice for larger sites.

> Try GoDaddy 30 days without risk

GoDaddy Alternatives

I think most projects could be hosted using GoDaddy without serious issues (if the backup add-on and SSL are added). However, this doesn’t mean that GoDaddy is the best option for your project.

Let me go over a couple of scenarios so you can compare GoDaddy to other alternatives:

  • I would say that DreamHost and A2 Hosting offer the best price to quality ratio
  • I’ve found the best support at SiteGround, DreamHost and InMotion, no doubt about that.
  • DreamHost and SiteGround are the top performing providers for both uptime and speed.
  • For those needing a hosting provider with a lot of WordPress features (e.g. staging and speed optimization), I would recommend to check SiteGround out.

> But, if you still want to go with GoDaddy, you can try GoDaddy 30 days without risk

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