Why you should avoid HostGator

Today I got a tweet from a user of WordPress SEO who had their site disabled by HostGator, without any prior notice. They said that while they had a cache plugin running, their caching wasn’t working, and HostGator blamed it on two plugins, our own WordPress SEO plugin and WordFence.

Why would these plugins prevent caching?

They said that these two plugins prevented caching based on a grep through the source for DONOTCACHE constants. These DONOTCACHE constants are a method for a plugin or theme to prevent W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache from caching the current page because sometimes you have to.

In the case of my WordPress SEO plugin, it’s to test whether title rewriting works, which is only done on installation of the plugin. In the case of the WordFence plugin, they do it when they’re locking out users for security reasons, but don’t want the caching plugin to serve that “lock” to everyone else. Both are entirely legitimate reasons for not wanting to cache a page, but of course it does mean that when you search for DONOTCACHE constants in the source of the plugin, you’ll find them.

The admin at HostGator should have, of course, bothered to look a bit deeper. Instead, he opted to send this email:

Email from Hostgator

He did a search through the source, found the constants and stopped looking. Also, he didn’t email this customer saying he had a concern, no, he disabled their site and then emailed them. Know that this was a personal site, with very little traffic. Calling this extremely poor customer service is probably still taking it too positively.

I wish it was the first time this happened, but it wasn’t. Which is why I decided to dive deeper and see if it could be solved. It pains me to have to write this post and I have reached out to HostGator to see if they’re willing to change their ways. For now, the only honest advice I can give you is to switch hosting if you’re on HostGator. Not just because they dislike my plugin, but for disabling a site without any notice…

So where should you host your site?

I have an article about WordPress hosting, filled with advice. On top of that, I know that WP Engine likes our SEO plugin, so much in fact that they use it on their own site and they offer decent hosting. Also, DreamHost, who are awesome if only because they employ the fabulous Ipstenu, have never done anything weird like this.

So, if you’re on HostGator, vote with your wallet. Get away from there.

Disclaimer: I make a bit of money for referring you to each and every host I mention, but since they all offer me money that doesn’t really affect my thinking on any of them. Synthesis, my current host, pays me the same as WP Engine, as does VPS.net, etc.


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265 Responses

  1. RamananBy Ramanan on 10 October, 2013

    Is Bluehost fine?

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      Not had any recent issues with them.

      • Orun BhuiyanBy Orun Bhuiyan on 11 October, 2013

        Bluehost forked cPanel into their own proprietary software to diversify backup functionality.

        Unfortunately this means that if you want to move away from them at some point, you can’t just back your environment up via cPanel and move to another cPanel-based hosting company (instead you’d probably need to sftp, or better yet, rsync the content via ssh from one server to another, and even then there’s some manual configuration to do).

        • MichaelBy Michael on 13 October, 2013

          I ran into this issue almost 2 years ago. No warning to customers and basically a way for them to hold customers hostage.

          The best options; your suggestions, or asking the new host to take care of the migration to avoid any mistakes.

      • JurgenBy Jurgen on 13 October, 2013

        You know anything about hostnet?

      • FranBy Fran on 8 November, 2013

        Bluehost was bought a while back by Hostgator and use the same support system, plus I’m guessing the same support center. For anyone who hosts sites with both and have used the support channels in the last 12 months you’ll probably have picked this up. Apparently they are both owned now by EIG. I’m by no means any kind of expert on it all though.

        • Richard CarterBy Richard Carter on 8 November, 2013

          If you’re not an expert, then maybe you shouldn’t be posting your mis-information…..

          Hostgator was not purchased by Bluehost. It was purchased by EIG. I think you are mixing up Hostgator with HostMonster.
          We have been with HostMonster for four years with very few issues. We also have one VPS with them in addition to other shared hosting. Support has been fine and we have not seen any incompatibilities with cPanel or WHM.
          We stay with them because they know what they are doing.

          • John DavisBy John Davis on 9 November, 2013

            Dude, don’t be such a jerk. If he misspoke, kindly correct him with fact-based evidence and then move about your daily activities.

            Good day, sir

    • Glen AllsoppBy Glen Allsopp on 10 October, 2013

      Bluehost and Hostgator are owned by the same company :)

      • DavidBy David on 10 October, 2013

        I host multiple sites with Bluehost and the Yoast plugin with no problems. Have done so for years now.

        • Glen AllsoppBy Glen Allsopp on 10 October, 2013

          And I’m sure there are tens if not hundreds of thousands of people using Yoasts plugin on Hostgator too.

          Doesn’t make them look very good that they disable accounts without warning though.

          • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

            And that they repeatedly blame plugins and their authors for issues…

      • PaulBy Paul on 21 October, 2013

        I will recommend https://sfwebhostin.com been using for 4 years now with no issue

      • Scott ChartersBy Scott Charters on 26 October, 2013

        Update on HostGator.I was informed last week they were moving my servers and as such I had to change some IPs.

        I changed a few then went to look on who is hosting this, The domain I had just changed now says it is hosted by CyrusOne.

    • HectorBy Hector on 10 October, 2013

      Have you considered the following:
      WordPress probably has the worst code base, its absolute rubbish how WP was built, I’m not even going into detail about the laughable plugin architecture and HUGE security flaws in WP plugins and WP itself.
      And I’m saying this as a seasoned MVC developer (12+ years) and 4 years on WP.
      I stopped using WordPress about 2 years ago, in order to maintain my sanity and self-respect.
      Wordpress is VERY risky business for any decent website (and hosting company) that takes security, scalability and standardization seriously.

      • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

        I disagree and honestly don’t care Hector. HostGator sells WordPress hosting. They know what they’re getting into.

        • HectorBy Hector on 10 October, 2013

          You can find mechanics who “supports” maintenance on old 1970′s VW’s, fact is, you will always have problems with these old vehicles, no matter who promises what.
          Never to late to switch from WordPress to a respectable modern alternative.

          • MatsBy Mats on 10 October, 2013

            What would you suggest to use instead of wp? Drupal?

          • KimBy Kim on 10 October, 2013

            And what would that alternative be?

          • iMadalinBy iMadalin on 10 October, 2013

            Drupal of course.

        • BryanBy Bryan on 10 October, 2013

          HostGator sells hosting, not WordPress. They also support installing Joomla, Drupal, Magento, MediaWiki, and literally hundreds of other web applications. Are you an expert in all of those, or even one of them besides WP? Do you really expect a tech support rep handling tickets to be an expert in all of them either?

          You can’t scream fire over a small incidents like this where the customer in question isn’t even actually paying for managed WordPress hosting, but the tech support rep is still trying to help in the extremely limited ways they can. When you can’t solve the issue though, you don’t let the whole server with hundreds of other customers on it go down because of this one customer – you disable it. That’s just what you get when you pay for shared hosting.

          Someone has reached out to you for help, and rather than helping, and maybe writing up a friendly post for everyone else explaining what the issue was and how to avoid it, you’ve decided it’s better to just publicly bash on the hosting company because they didn’t provide the level of support other WordPress-specific managed hosting companies charge $30/mo for.

          • rickBy rick on 10 October, 2013

            Of COURSE you can scream when a host *disables a site* without notice. If not then, what the hell would be cause for being upset?

          • DebBy Deb on 11 October, 2013

            Well said! Any hosting company has vulnerabilities. Shared hosting is significantly less proficient than a dedicated server.
            If you consider your virtual properties an asset, show them some love by serving the sites on a virtual silver platter.

          • MickBy Mick on 13 October, 2013

            Yes I agree with you. If this is how a query is handled I think the issue is self interest rather than helping someone.

            I noticed that you have not replied to Bryan’s comment. Is he right in suggesting it could have been handled differently by you? Or is it a matter of hoping people switch to other hosts via your links? I think your comments are very biased and defamatory. Many hosting sites including mine have issues with auto install CMS and Blog platforms. I have hosting in Europe, USA and Australia and all of them make mistakes or don’t fully understand issues. Telling people to switch hosting is a poor solution to hand out.

          • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 17 October, 2013

            If shutting down your hosting is their way of solving problems, which it is, because as you can see this is far from an isolated situation, you shouldn’t host there. There are hosts out there who deal with things differently and who DO understand WordPress, so I think moving to a better host is the right thing to do.

          • SloaneBy Sloane on 14 October, 2013

            Yes, my experience with the HG guys is pretty good…I feel that they do everything possible to help, often going above and beyond the call of duty. No need to take a swipe at them…why not just make this a case study: ‘How I solved a crisis with HG by doing xyz’? Many of us aren’t just going to switch hosts for the sake of a plugin.

          • Richard CarterBy Richard Carter on 8 November, 2013

            Totally Agree!!!

      • HassanBy Hassan on 10 October, 2013

        I just want to confirm whether you were serious or just being sarcastic?

        • AndyBy Andy on 10 October, 2013

          I think the word you’re looking for is “trolling”. ;)

          • John GardnerBy John Gardner on 10 October, 2013

            yes… bad troll trolls badly.

    • MyTrustedBiz.ComBy MyTrustedBiz.Com on 16 October, 2013

      I had my website http://www.mytrustedbiz.com hosted with BlueHost for about two years before I jumped ship. My own personal experience was a bad one (not at first) with mostly downtime and server errors. I switched to A Small Orange which was recommended by a friend in the SEO biz. Haven’t been there long enough to know how its going to go but if things don’t work out I’ll probably look into the Rack Space or Synergy.

  2. JuliaBy Julia on 10 October, 2013

    As with most web hosts, your mileage may vary. I’ve never had a problem with HostGator, but I had MANY problems with DreamHost. Shared hosting seems to be pretty similar across the board, with praises and horror stories for all of them. At least we can all agree not to use GoDaddy. :)

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      I had my issues with DreamHost in the past but to be honest, ever since they hired Ipstenu and some other WordPress heroes, those issues seem to have been resolved. If you do encounter issues with them I’d urge you to talk to @ipstenu :)

      • KevBy Kev on 10 October, 2013

        I recently purchased DreamPress, the managed WordPress hosting from DreamHost. I had nothing but issues and awful support from the get go (with the exception of a WordPress expert they finally referred me to).

        I would never go back to DreamHost, I wrote a very similar article to this on my personal blog (kevquirk.com) explaining all the issues I had in detail.

        I’m actually with DogotalOcean now, and I’m finding them to be excellent.

        • Mika E. (Ipstenu)By Mika E. (Ipstenu) on 10 October, 2013

          The 2-day delay was actually because I was out of the office and little more. Sucks, btu I’ve not yet gotten everyone up to speed on this. Thanks in part to your problems, I’ve changed my training to specifically address that kind of problem.

          Is DreamHost perfect? Hell no. Is ANY host perfect? Nope! We do try, though, and when I blame a plugin, I try to be absolutely sure (to the point that I email the plugin dev to talk if I’m at ALL wondering).

          Sorry you had a shitty time with us :(

          • MichelleBy Michelle on 10 October, 2013

            Well, *I* still love you, Mika! (and DreamPress) :)

        • MichaelBy Michael on 17 October, 2013

          I personally think that DreamPress and any other host that offers WordPress on the side (host-dot-com/wordpress-dot-com/wp, etc) is just offering their same standard packages and just added WordPress to the package name for SEO purposes. True WordPress hosts will list what’s under the hood. WordPress on the side hosts don’t list important details about the account.

      • PritushBy Pritush on 10 October, 2013

        Actually , bluehost , iPage , Hostgator, fatcow +lots of other hosts are owned by a single company named Endurance International Group (EIG).
        Once iPage blamed Cloudflare when I queried them about lots of downtime.

        • MyTrustedBiz.ComBy MyTrustedBiz.Com on 16 October, 2013

          BlueHost did the exact same thing to us… started pointing fingers else where when the errors started happening and the questions started to get thrown their way. All the internal audits and third party audits of our site came up with the same conclusion… GET A NEW HOST!

        • Bill LawrenceBy Bill Lawrence on 8 November, 2013

          I can’t say I’m all that thrilled with iPage’s online tech support. It seems they do the bare minimum in trying to resolve issues – and failing.

          When I called, though, I got a young lady who was very helpful. I still ended up having to reinstall WP (and my site) however, due to some glitch on their end.

      • tony greeneBy tony greene on 16 October, 2013

        I sure wish they could get someone over there at Dreamhost to help me figure out why I can’t login to my dashboard. Using DreamPress has been a nightmare for page speed too.
        Thinking of going with WestHost.

  3. Zach RussellBy Zach Russell on 10 October, 2013

    I completely agree, disabling sites with no prior warning is unacceptable from a hosting company. For my shared hosting I personally use WebFaction. I did have an issue once where my website was using up more RAM than my plan allowed (due to a traffic increase) and they emailed me with a personal message saying what was happening and if this continued i’d either have to upgrade or my site would be disabled. Traffic died down within a day and hosting life went on with no further problems happened.

    Lesson to learn, simply contact your customers and give them a chance to resolve the issue before you potentially ruin your relationship with them. I know i’m very sentimental about hosting, i’m sure others are as well.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      We all are “sentimental”, or I’d actually say: reasonable: we want our sites to be up.

    • Richard ArellanoBy Richard Arellano on 12 October, 2013

      I think everyone here is missing the point, first off HostGator sells ‘shared’ hosting and it’s in their terms of services that they have the right to disabled and even suspend any account for any reason if they see fit. In fact most hosting I’ve tried out and used over the years have this in their Terms.

      So the fact they disabled it doesn’t mean anything. Clearly there was a problem and as I read it’s easy to find that while they might not have done the best job, in the end they have the right to do it because you agreed to the terms of service.

      I am shocked that a post like this was even posted on a website like this. Sort of disappointed reading this because I valued the opinion of this website. Now I think I’m gonna have to rethink that opinion.

      • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 12 October, 2013

        If that’s truly your opinion, that they had every right to do this and did the right thing, you should never start a business. This is NOT how a company that wishes to last treats customers.

        On top of that, they WRONGLY blamed a plugin for issues.

        In fact, they themselves have admitted to me via email that this was handled poorly. I’ve given them a few other examples where the same thing happened and we got support email because of their unwillingness to take the blame. We’ll see if they change their ways.

      • GrizzleBy Grizzle on 19 October, 2013

        I have never encountered an idiot like you, wow :)

      • Gilles LacroixBy Gilles Lacroix on 8 November, 2013

        Just can’t believe I just read this…

      • Richard CarterBy Richard Carter on 8 November, 2013

        Totally agree.
        Would be interesting to know if HostGator had any prior communication with the site prior to the action. Did they; or, did someone just conveniently leave that out of the article?

        Stepping back, HostGator is huge and a major competitor. We don’t use them, but they are on our “A List” when shopping. You don’t get to be that successful and continue to remain successful by being rude, or discourteous, or unprofessional with customers.

        Personally, I thought the notice posted in this article was professional. And after given the objective reasons for the action, I am wondering why the plugin authors don’t avoid the commands pointed out, and why they don’t create new code to handle the issue; code that isn’t a ‘patch’ or misappropriation of a command already in use and normally used for other functions.

        Seems that ‘entire story’ may be missing here.

        • Scott ChartersBy Scott Charters on 8 November, 2013

          Richard, had you read the posts you would have seen my example, which no, there was no previous communications.

          Though I do like a good conspiracy your statement “Did they; or, did someone just conveniently leave that out of the article” was comical. Next you’ll be telling us the moon landing was faked and how do we know the earth isn’t flat.

          • MogensBy Mogens on 8 November, 2013

            Scott: you’re using the straw man logical fallacy, tsk tsk. And I do think Richard has a point, which actually IS logical, which is: “There are two sides to every story”.

          • Scott ChartersBy Scott Charters on 8 November, 2013

            By Mogens: Great now there are 2 of you that believe the earth is flat…Like I said read the all posts.

          • MogensBy Mogens on 8 November, 2013

            Are you a HG rep? Doubt it. Earth is flat? What asinine arguments are those?

          • Russell JamiesonBy Russell Jamieson on 8 November, 2013

            Given that Yoast (a.k.a Joost) hails from the Netherlands he will no doubt have a special perspective on these important controversies.

            1) Yes, the earth is indeed flat (it is patently obvious as everyone in Holland rides a bike); and

            2) Yes, the moon landing was faked. There was a suspiciously large order of 2 billion tons of Dutch cheese made by NASA in early 1969. And Armstrong said in that famous scrambled transmission: “One small step for man, een gigant leep forma maasdammer kind”

          • MogensBy Mogens on 8 November, 2013

            Well, now that you mention it Russell, I guess you are right…

  4. Bruce GerencserBy Bruce Gerencser on 10 October, 2013

    I use all the mentioned plugins with a Hostgator install. I have never had a problem. (At least the problem you are describing here)

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      Lots of people use my plugin on HostGator, but that doesn’t prevent you from the randomness in which they do stuff like this. It’s not the first time this has happened…

      • Bruce GerencserBy Bruce Gerencser on 10 October, 2013

        Sure, but that could be said of any hosting company. I have been with Hostgator for five years and I have been impressed by their technical support.

        Before definitively saying, leave Hostgator, I would want far more evidence than one users problem. There are other variables that may cause one person to have a problem and another person to not have a problem.

        That said, Hostgator support handled this poorly and disabling the site was not the right thing to do.

        • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

          I can see where you’re coming from wanting more evidence, I’m emailing people who’ve emailed me with similar questions before to get their permission to post their emails. This is unfortunately more common than is good for any of us.

        • Creativity PleaseBy Creativity Please on 10 October, 2013

          I too agree with Bruce here, I’ve had major issues with some reputed hosts (or so many people believe them to be), who never helped me find the problem, but kept on raising my “levels” to translate into higher and higher costs, while the issues were more with a particular MySql table here or there or even worse when it was simply caching done wrong.

          I was inexperienced then and asked them for help with basic stuff instead they spoiled my budgets with arguments like “we’ve done our research and our experts believe that your installs need a higher spec VPS or dedicated server, etc.” and that meant me shelling out more money… which is fine if we understand why.. but they did like extortionists.

          They would close down websites overnight (time differences between my locales & theirs) and I would see some random messages from them in the morning saying “sorry but we had to…. because of blah blah”.

          There have been very few companies who’ve stood the test of basic common sense in understanding what their customers want and i’d happily recommend the best of them if anyone’s interested.

          Gorakhnath Sirsikar.

        • MichaelBy Michael on 13 October, 2013

          Hi Bruce,

          Experience is the best teacher/evidence. I’ve worked with WordPress sites for many years, understand WordPress, used Yoast plugins in many cases, and was a HG customer many years ago (before the unlimited craze). In this situation, they were trying to “correct/blame” the good plugins to make the “bad” plugin work….a plugin which does have known issue.

          The other fact, HG is now owned by EIG, notorious for letting a company go downhill once bought. This is what I’ve seen over the years;

          BlueHost; EIG bought them, service and support fell apart (what I’ve heard from people in this longer than myself)

          Netfirms; EIG bought them, fired ALL Canadian staff, moved to US. Sites and Emails were down or lost for weeks while customers were being told to be patient during the “upgrade”. This I dealt with directly since I have clients who were with them.

          HostGator; many of us (hosts, supports, designers, etc) were surprised when this occurred. We all knew Brent and many of us have exchanged emails at some point, including watching him grow HG to what it is today….or was. When news came out about EIG and HG in the same sentence, it was shocking. A few months ago HG migrations started, once again telling customers it’s an “upgrade”. The amount of complaints that occurred..social media could not handle it, and the HG support forums were flooded. The sad part is everyone was hoping EIG would not mess up HG. Other buy-outs fell apart right away, HG’s fall apart was about a year after the sale.

          Situations like this that Joost has described happens many times where the host points the finger at the customer, but in this case, another EIG icing on the cake.

          • Gilles LacroixBy Gilles Lacroix on 8 November, 2013

            Well Micheal, this is what I heard as well. I dealt with HG for years and was always happy with them until the takeover. This was also confirmed by HG support (disgruntled staff I guess) that HG is heading to hell in a hand basket.

  5. davidBy david on 10 October, 2013

    yeah hostgator were a breath of fresh air 5 years ago; their service has deteriorated so much that we’ve gone on to try a number of hosting companies and ended up with simpleservers in the UK. Really fast servers for both wordpress and magento sites and never any problems.

  6. Diane BourqueBy Diane Bourque on 10 October, 2013

    Thanks for sharing this with us. It’s important to know this as we are always asked to recommend hosting companies. It sounds a bit like e-mails that some of my clients received from a hosting company threatening them to take their site down if they continued to store backups on their server. Some clients received the e-mail – others did not. I am trying to solve the issue. Keep us posted on HostGator!

  7. SantelBy Santel on 10 October, 2013

    It’s too technical for me to understand but I agree that any hosting company should not shutdown a website without notice.

    We are not all Tech guys and that’s why we don’t use Amazon EC2 where we need to manage everything on our own.

    We relay on the support of the hosting company to solve technical issue for us.

    I am happy with Media Temple!

  8. Philip BuskBy Philip Busk on 10 October, 2013

    I’m hosting several sites with them; several with your plugIn. Haven’t had any problems but one never know when they will start. Thanks for the hosting suggestions as we are always looking for better hosts.

  9. Richard PetersenBy Richard Petersen on 10 October, 2013

    Are people having this same issue with the HostGator VPS’s?

    • DavidBy David on 10 October, 2013

      Doubt it – VPS’s have semi-dedicated resources so you aren’t sharing a box with several thousand other accounts.

    • RuddBy Rudd on 10 October, 2013

      VPS isn’t in the same league as shared hosting. So yeah, like David said you might have not this issue.

    • Jonathon HarrisBy Jonathon Harris on 14 October, 2013

      I have a client on a Hostgator VPS plan right now – once they were acquired and the server migrations took place, we’ve have 3 periods of downtime where the site was offline and email down. I was told they were doing server maintenance and that the server was online, but upon further digging found that Apache on the VPS had not restarted.

      We upgraded the the VPS so that we could avoid the 25 processes limit – Lot of good that did… Looking for a new web host.

    • Jason WeberBy Jason Weber on 1 November, 2013

      I have mega issues with Hostgator’s VPS. I pay $50/month for their “Level 3″ VPS, and my plugins get blamed constantly.

      Additionally, they offer nothing on their servers that W3 Total Cache utilizes, including opcodes, memecached, and xcache. They just simply say “you don’t need these; our servers are optimized for WordPress” … but this is just factually incorrect.

      I’m switching to either Bluehost or Dreamhost. Dreamhost looks like it has horrible support, but they’re cheap …. $15/month. Bluehost is only $29.95/month but seems like it has all the bells and whistles.

      Anyway, yes, Hostgator VPS plans are crap. They now want me to upgrade to a Level 5 VPS, which is $105/month, in order to get Xcache or any opcode installed. That’s not happenin’. And YES, they do often blame your plugins — even if they’re some of the most trusted, venerable plugins around, such as Joost’s SEO plugin.

      Their tech support staff isn’t too knowledgeable until you get into their higher level (level 2) support. When you’re on live chat, you’re dealing with people who know about as much regarding servers as I do — which isn’t much. Our live chat conversations usually end up with the good old, “I’ll submit a ticket for you” …

  10. Adeel SamiBy Adeel Sami on 10 October, 2013

    Joost, I am using HostGator with your plugin and never ever had any issue with HG. In fact, the said issue with that customer, I will not use WordFence on my site to not cause any issue.

    However, it really is the bad customer service shutting down the site without prior notice, they must had to do this first. No one wants issue with their site so I do hope the customer, if notified, would either remove WordFence for sure.

  11. Wayne AustinBy Wayne Austin on 10 October, 2013

    Heart Internet in the UK are a prime example of following this same line of action against sites, disable first ask later.

  12. Cliff SealBy Cliff Seal on 10 October, 2013

    I’ve been a Hostgator user for 5+ years. While I can’t confirm that this particular combination of plugins causes any problems, what I can confirm is that this is indicative of the way they’ve been handling support in the last year or so. I think that’s the bigger issue. I’ve found it nearly impossible to get straight answers to questions when I challenge a support ticket like this.

    You could chalk this up to being budget hosting, but I don’t, because I remember when this wasn’t the case. Their support used to be knowledgeable and personable. Instead, it seems like they’re either strapped for employees or simply focus on larger accounts. I’ve been in the process of migrating all my sites from them for the last few months.

  13. Meg GeddesBy Meg Geddes on 10 October, 2013

    At one point I had close to a hundred sites hosted with Host Gator, for myself and for clients, many of which were WordPress. Moved them all off. They may sell WordPress, but they’re not optimized for it; always had performance issues there. At one point one of their shared hosting servers got hacked, and a whole bunch of sites were defaced at the same time (it happened levels up from the root dir on the sites). Moved everything to TigerTech and never looked back.

  14. JimBy Jim on 10 October, 2013

    I haven’t had any plugin-centric issues like this, but HostGator’s service and support have quickly gone downhill across the board since they were acquired by EIG.

  15. AhmedBy Ahmed on 10 October, 2013

    Hosting Companies doing this to users is the exact reason why we started our own hosting venture 4 years ago!
    I can’t imagine how can a Tech Support Rep/Engineer not do their homework to identify issues properly before disabling websites just like that – *Sigh*.

  16. Neil GowdBy Neil Gowd on 10 October, 2013

    I think this maybe a mad moment by support that is not the norm with Hostgator. I have never had issues with the Yoast plugin on dedicated, VPS or shared hosting with HostGator over 3 years on over 200 sites.

    Will admit their live chat support sucks and can lead to les desired outcomes, but this is their first line of support, the tickets are normally escalated to a higher knowledge level, try support on Media Temple for example which pales in comparison.

    Yes it is a stupid thing they did, but I wouldn’t urge customers who have no issues to abandon the service, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

  17. Chris WalkerBy Chris Walker on 10 October, 2013
    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      Funnily enough, in another article in their knowledge base, they say most SEO plugins are resource hogs….

      • KrishnaBy Krishna on 10 October, 2013


        Most embracing moment in life is when our site goes down without notice. I have faced like this issues when using Godaddy.com. We could find good hosting because you guys are sharing genuine details. If we look at the hosting web sites, they say 99.9999% up time :), but the reality its not right. Hope host gator would contact you. They would loose lot because of this post.


  18. JosBy Jos on 10 October, 2013

    Hi Joost,

    Are the providers you mention also ok if you only have Duthc oriented websites or do yu advice Dutch hosting providers in that case (I have always understood that this would be better, seo wise). And if so, do you know good Dutch WordPress hosting parties?

    • PietBy Piet on 18 October, 2013

      I am always surprised when people say something like this. My thinking is completely the opposite of Jos’.
      Why would it matter when the physical location of your host and the physical location of your prime target group differ?

      Can you give a definite answer on this, Joost?

      • Mark VisserBy Mark Visser on 23 October, 2013

        A website hosted in Amsterdam would notably run faster than one in for example Houston, USA.

      • Alex HartmanBy Alex Hartman on 23 October, 2013

        I see that Yoast is using qweb.nl for his yoast.nl website, so the theory of Jos is probably right.

        Or is there a different reason for not using Synthesis for his Dutch website?

        • Chris ChristoffBy Chris Christoff on 7 November, 2013

          Speed speed speed.

          In particular, Trans-Atlantic Latency. If you have a host serve files for North and South America visitors from the US, and Europe from the Netherlands, your site will load faster, rather than if you used a US based host for the entire world. It comes down to the speed at which files can move across the Atlantic.

          Most CDNs, like the one Yoast is using, store his static files at dozens on dozens of locations around the world for this reason.

  19. Matthew SniderBy Matthew Snider on 10 October, 2013

    I would recommend that you all upgrade your hosting and use a Managed Host as Yoast points out is an option.

    I currently use Flywheel and do not see myself ever switching. They are amazing, their customer service is awesome and my sites load in milliseconds, not seconds.

    I wrote an article named “It’s Time to Switch to Managed Hosting” not going to link to it, but you can find it if you want.

    Yoast is correct on this one, you honestly get what you pay for. Stop being cheap with your blog, site, business etc. STOP!

  20. Geoff SnyderBy Geoff Snyder on 10 October, 2013

    Being a current HostGator subscriber, I can empathize, as I have seen a drastic change in the way they handle things and disable sites without notice. They’ve also tried telling me that my site was offline due to using Cloudflare, yet it never saw any downtime from it. Although I’ve experienced good things from HostGator, over the past 6 months or so, I’ve been proactively looking to moving all my sites to a more WordPress and WordPress SEO friendly environment. Sorry HostGator… you guys just can’t seem to get things right. :/

    Thanks for this post, Yoast… you the man!

  21. Geek DashboardBy Geek Dashboard on 10 October, 2013

    This is strange, i never seen this kind of mail from hostgator. I used Hostgator for about couple of years and later shifted to Bluehost. Now I’m afraid that both these Hostgator and Bluehost is owned by same company now. But funny part is this same Hostgator recommend yoast plugin during recent pasts

  22. Bilal SarwariBy Bilal Sarwari on 10 October, 2013

    This post will change mind of persons, the support of hostgator is really very bad, they dont care of customer, we need to wait more than 20 minutes for chat, I face these type of issues in past, but my issue solved by using cache plugins. They disable my sites for more than 48 hours which is big loss for me.

  23. TopherBy Topher on 10 October, 2013

    Interestingly we ran into the same issues with WPSEO flushing cache FAR too often on our site. We’re running out own server, so we looked mighty hard to figure out what was going on.

    WPSEO was flushing our cache about every half second, but only when we were under heavy load, which is the worst time of course.

    I combed the plugin to find all the places it was flushing cache. One was every time it checked to see if there was a new version, which seems like a *terrible* time.

    I found several others that simply shouldn’t be there and commented them.

    Attempts to get feedback from yoast.com failed utterly. :(

    This was months ago, and I don’t work there anymore, so I don’t have the records anymore, but it made me mighty sad at the time.

    Unrelated, I don’t like hostgator either, they make it a pain in the butt to get SSH set up.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      Hi Topher,

      WP SEO doesn’t flush your cache unless you change its settings. It seriously doesn’t.

  24. Chris SchryerBy Chris Schryer on 10 October, 2013

    While I feel for the individuals in question, I’m much more in the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” camp. I recently moved my site to HostGator, after a horror-show with VPS.net. It was brutal. And yet a variety of people have had positive experiences and still give them top recommendations. Hopefully people here are intelligent enough to think for themselves, but leaving a hosting provider that you have a positive experience with, on the grounds that other people haven’t seems a tad extreme to me……

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      If they freeze your account, and I’ve had multiple reports of them doing this, without prior notice, then I don’t think it’s so weird to leave proactively.

  25. LeoBy Leo on 10 October, 2013

    HostGator always does this: freeze an entire user account in a case of the smallest problem. It’s beyond me why so many bloggers advertise them. Good affiliate program maybe?

    • AhmedBy Ahmed on 10 October, 2013

      Oh yes, they pay select affiliates extremely well. I’ve heard of some ridiculous numbers to be honest…

  26. John BurnetteBy John Burnette on 10 October, 2013

    For all the years I was with HG, they have always disabled first, then email. The reasoning being is protect the server, and in the case of shared hosting, the other clients on the same server. I always appreciated the fact that they did email.

    Their position has always been that they won’t fix scripting problems of any kind, but always (for me anyway) have provided info on what they are seeing as the problem. Can’t blame them.

    I used the Yoast plugin on my WP sites without issue, but never heard of the other one. I do know a couple of other ‘security’ plugins I used did cause issues with the sites. Funny thing with the cache plugins is they seem to make site load slow and be a bit quirky.

    I think the bigger issue you are seeing is the recent buyout of HG by EIG. If you do a search, you will see their history is typical of a ‘corporate raider’. Find a solid money maker, then gut it for all it’s worth. There were a lot of quality people that either bailed, or were ‘let go’ when the switchover took place.

    Of course, there was a lot of bailing out by long time customers as well.

  27. NickBy Nick on 10 October, 2013

    There isn’t a single perfect host on this planet, and you’re likely going to have an issue at some point, with some thing, wherever you go.

    Case in point, VPS; the folks you still recommend, but get paid for, so you still recommend them. ;)

    Advising folks to Hostgator based on this one incident is a little crazy, although I guess I can understand if you’re taking it a bit personally because it’s your own plugins. I’d probably be doing the same.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      I’ve said it before above and I’ll repeat it here: this is not one single incident, if it were, I would not have posted this.

      • NickBy Nick on 10 October, 2013

        Right on. Personally I’ve hosted small sites on them for many years, and have never had that issue. I guess it comes down to the user knowing when and when NOT to use these types of plugins.

        Of course it doesn’t help that people just install these things because “they heard it makes their shit really fast.” lol

  28. RyanBy Ryan on 10 October, 2013

    Hostgator is garbage I just cancelled them last week for a different matter. Their hosting sucks with WordPress.

  29. NileshBy Nilesh on 10 October, 2013

    I have used the service of Hostgator and they are really ridiculous as they only know to suspend the sites. Also, they didn’t look for any solution for their clients.

  30. MichaelBy Michael on 10 October, 2013

    Unrelated but it’d probably improve your bounce rate if you included _blank for your affiliate links.

  31. DavidBy David on 10 October, 2013

    I’ve currently got my blog hosted on Hostgator and sure I’ve had a whole shit storm of issues with HTACCESS files getting corrupted and taking down the site. Issues with slowness and caching problems and when my blog was getting massive amounts of attempts by hackers to get in Hostgators support was kinda useless in trying to reduce they would succeed. But they are also only $9.95/month and I understand you get what you paid for, I only went with them as it was a managed move away from WordPress.com and Hostgator seemed to be the most competent option available at that time…

    But i’ve also had just as much trouble with Dreamhost running out of memory and crashing, very strange memory configuration issues even on VPS, also had performance issues with Australian host VentraIP and with VPS.NET it favoured going down each time the automated backup would run.

    So many hosting platforms are not really setup to run more than a handful of sites and when there is an error it’s upto you to notice and often resolve it, unless you are paying additional fees for a “managed” service.

    Sorry but your core business is web hosting why should I have to pay extra to ensure you take more care to see my site doesn’t go down. I’m not sending tens of thousands of visitors but yet there is never a perfect host that ticks all the boxes.

    • rickBy rick on 10 October, 2013

      For the same price, I’ve had clients on Webfaction and they’ve had almost zero issues. Things like you describe are perhaps understandable from the $2/month “jam as many sites on that server as it can take” hosting farms. But for $10/month you can get really pretty decent shared hosting.

      BTW, I’m NOT saying WF has been perfect – there have been little issues here and there. But they have responded promptly on email and been quite courteous and professional.

  32. Brandon HimpfenBy Brandon Himpfen on 10 October, 2013

    In recent years, it seems HostGator has been having problems with their customer service. The level of service is not where it used to be.

    However, this type of service, reckless suspension, is common among oversold unlimited shared hosing providers.

  33. Hamza SheikhBy Hamza Sheikh on 10 October, 2013

    I agree with you. There was a time when HostGator was the best WordPress hosting platform, but since they are acquired by some other company they have start acting like an idiot.

    They don’t give a shit to your hard work, and simply disables the whole website. I have faced the similar issue, and talked about with W3TC guys. They were also clueless.

  34. Miriam SchwabBy Miriam Schwab on 10 October, 2013

    Shared hosting always seems to lead to issues. We have a dedicated server with Hostgator and rarely have problems with them.

  35. William BeemBy William Beem on 10 October, 2013

    I have a VPS with HostGator and considered getting off their system a few months ago. The problem is that the managed platforms you mention have their own faults. While I can deal with the extra cost, what I don’t like is the limit on the number of domains and the lack of voice or chat support.

    When I have a problem, I need to work with someone to get my system back online at whatever time it goes down. Email support is slow, leaving me out of service until someone gets around to it. Considering the extra cost of managed systems, I just couldn’t rationalize it when the support options aren’t available.

    I like StudioPress and wanted to use Synthesis, but the cost ratio compared to a VPS at HostGator is just way out of the ballpark when you look at multiple domains.

    • Thomas ZickellBy Thomas Zickell on 10 October, 2013

      Synthesis will let you install multi site on their 2 larger plans.
      Pagely drops the cost by 30% every time you add this new site.
      ZippyKid has very good pricing when you look at their new plans and they scale well.

      WP engine is a lot less per site when you get the larger package and you can you be more flexible with site views

      Get flywheel the least expensive right now at $15 a month base with pricing matching WP engine at $10 the site when you go for 10.

      I hope this is of help to you.

  36. Bill RobbinsBy Bill Robbins on 10 October, 2013

    My reason for not recommending Host Gator is they include WP Super Cache turned on by default with their WordPress installs. I’ve run into lots of new WordPress users who are confused when they make changes on their site and can’t see them all because a caching plugin they didn’t install or activate is running.

    Running a caching plugin is a great idea, but forcing it on users who don’t know what it is or where it came from is troublesome.

  37. KrishnaBy Krishna on 10 October, 2013

    I have recently switched my hosting from Godaddy to VPS.net. It is based on your review. WP Engine is expensive, So I have chosen VPS.net is little cheaper compare to the WP hosting solutions. It is the past one month I am with VPS.net. I have purchased using your referral link :). Now my site is very fast, their support is also very good. If you have high traffic website, then I could suggest VPS.net from my little experience. Thank you for posting useful details here.

  38. zee chenBy zee chen on 10 October, 2013

    I have been HG for over 7 years. I came to use them after another company I was with, ipower web was sold to EIG and then became a nightmare. Unfortunately the exact same thing has happened again. EIG is the worst company. They could care less about actual clients, it is just an investment company who is buying up all the hosting companies. Go to wiki to see how many hosting companies they now own. You will be shocked.
    All of those companies have been moved to a crap server farm in Provo, Utah called Ace Data Center. Simply horrible data center and what a nightmare. All of us are on the same servers now! Slow, buggy and of course they totally went down for 4 days two weeks ago. HG customer service is crap now too. I have to wait 30 min minimum on the phone and 20 minutes for lame live chat. The answers I was given , was a link to close my accounts! Wow way to care now HostGator. Thank Brent Oxley for nothing. You could of at least sold your company to a decent company vs. this soulless corporation who only cares about money.
    I hope you choke on your 225 million. You did not even tell your users what you did, so we now are all stuck trying to find a decent host.
    I have over 200 clients with my reseller accounts and we are all leaving and I am already referring new business to a new company I found who looks decent and promised me they are not selling to EIG. Oh and they are on the awesome Softlayer data center in Dallas that Hostgator used to be on.

  39. ScottBy Scott on 10 October, 2013

    Really? You’re discrediting HostGator on what appears to be an isolated incident (as far as you’ve shown) so that you can steer people to companies like Dreamhost?

    Dreamhost has been a nightmare for the past year. Ask anyone who hosts with them about the downtime they’ve experienced. They also don’t have a support number and for extended periods they’ve even removed chat support.

    Of course it makes sense that you recommend them (using as affiliate link) since last I checked they pay out $100 to affiliates for new customers.

    I don’t know how much you care, but you’ve just lost an awful lot of credibility with me.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      It’s not an isolated incident. Just read the comments to see it’s not. I’ve always been and always will be honest in my posts about hosting as I’ve experienced ups and downs with that myself.

      Dreamhost does pay $97 or so for a referral, indeed. Other hosts actually pay double that, yet I chose to include Dreamhost because so far I’ve not seen issues with them like I have seen with some others.

      • MikeBy Mike on 10 October, 2013

        Any web host will have some problems from time to time even the really good ones. But what has been going on with HostGator since EIG purchased them last year is looking like they are a host to think twice about. Props to you for sharing this story and I understand why you do not recommend them. I mostly promote WebHostingHub, a part of InMotion Hosting, as an alternative to EIG brands now. You should look into them and consider including them in the hosting you recommend.

    • Thomas ZickellBy Thomas Zickell on 12 October, 2013

      I agree with Joost on this
      I can tell you from having over 30 hosting accounts with different hosts “discrediting HostGator” something anyone with knowledge of the hosting industry should do. They have been found to do very sketchy things and there unfortunately an all-around poor host if you want a dedicated server or VPS and you thought their infrastructure was good go to SoftLayer that’s where HostGator purchases its hosting and resells it to you if you think a enterprise level hosting company or a managed wordpress would put out a calling all cars alert without investigating there is no way they would figure out what exactly the issue is and try to fix it then come back with a lot more data if there ever really was a problem with one of the plug-ins. There repackaged budget/ problematic hosting. Use a managed WordPress hosting company

  40. RobertBy Robert on 10 October, 2013

    Yoast, this was a tough article to read. I’ve had the flip experience with Hostgator and Dreamhost, but these companies change over time.

    I’ll be a bit more wary, and agree a company should never just turn off someones account, this is the first I’ve heard Hostgator doing it.

    I like to act with caution with any cheap hosting provider, and caution users making anything more than $1000 a month on their website to use a high end provider like WPEngine where things like this are unheard of.

  41. MikeBy Mike on 10 October, 2013

    In my opinion HostGator has gone down badly over the last 9 months or so. 12 months ago ‘Gator was one of the choices I offered clients. In the last few months I’ve moved most customer sites to another service.
    One customer site still hosted there – I recently submitted a support ticket RE database gone-away issue (WordFence related) . Their response was script was timing out at 60 seconds. But – they also noted there was no cache system plugin installed. If they’d looked properly they would have seen W3 Total Cache is installed and working.
    I won’t plug my preferred hosting service – but it’s shared VPS on the GNAX backbone. Another client’s site moved from HostGator last month serves cached pages about 1000ms faster now – around 300ms average (and WordPress SEO is installed – and definitely not hogging resources).
    I’ve never had a site suspended for not-caching, no plugins are forced on clients, and I’ve used script time-outs of 5 minutes on occasion without complaints. This is not my own VPS – that’s coming soon hopefully :) so we don’t have server root access or direct configuration for many settings.
    Direct comparison is probably not valid – the package structure is restricted in other ways – one domain per account is the main difference (unlimited sub-domains). Costs are however similar – Starting around $5 to $6/m per domain. Costs depend on no. of databases and base traffic (This is not so-called ‘unlimited hosting’), which is the way I prefer it. Performance is very important to me, as is site server security.
    No hosting service is without problems. The GNAX server network hosting our sites went down completely yesterday – and it took nearly 24 hrs to get back up. (probably a dDoS attack). No one host will suit everybody.
    ‘Gator seems to be going the way of GoDaddy – lots of branding, advertising and pesky pop-ups in CPanel

    • MichaelBy Michael on 13 October, 2013

      It is sad. It’s even worse because a lot of people “ran” to HostGator to get away from other situations that were not working for them.

  42. Chris OlbeksonBy Chris Olbekson on 10 October, 2013

    Back when Hostgator was a local Houston (my home town) company they offered very good support and actively supported WordPress. I met Josh (the employee who sent the email referenced in the post) when they sponsored WordCamp Houston. Now they are worse than the other mega shared hosting hosts when it comes to support and disabling accounts without warning. The process for them is automated and your account will be disabled any time it uses to many resources without notice which is unfair to the consumer.

  43. Jim WalkerBy Jim Walker on 10 October, 2013

    You shop at “Walmart,” you get Walmart quality plastic.

    All the same company, EIG owned:
    BlueHost, HostGator, HostMonster, JustHost, et al.

    Nuff said…

  44. Jeremy MyersBy Jeremy Myers on 10 October, 2013

    Three weeks ago, Hostgator shut down my site for violating their TOS. Apparently, I was “using too many server resources.” When I called them to find out why, they said that the culprit on my site was the WordPress SEO plugin. Apparently (they said), it was making too many concurrent SQL queries.

    So what did I do?

    I dropped HostGator and moved to a new hosting company. But I did some research and found one that is NOT OWNED by EIG. EIG is destroying every hosting company they purchase.

  45. The BloggerBy The Blogger on 10 October, 2013

    “Today I got a tweet…”

    Did you now… :)

    p.s. Nick’s comment rocks.

  46. YvonneBy Yvonne on 10 October, 2013

    I used to LOVE Hostgater….
    Luckily I made the decision to switch right before the big outage.
    I found a great company called Laris Hosting and went out of my comfort zone and even signed up as a reseller (to host my clients sites there too).
    Troy has been amazing, even with it being a small company (which usually, just like the big ones has it’s good and it’s bad) I get 24/7 customer service and he has been helping me along the way of learning all the things being a reseller entails.
    I am now staying away far, far from any EIG company….

  47. Jan McClintockBy Jan McClintock on 10 October, 2013

    Thousands of your own customers host their sites very inexpensively on HostGator’s shared servers, and now you are telling them to abandon that company and find another– over a tiny incident that affected a single, small site. I find that incredibly arrogant.

    Why don’t you get the facts first before blaming the hosting company for doing something that is clearly within their policy? HostGator server management software automatically shuts down sites for several specific reasons in order to save other sites on the same server. That’s one reason their shared hosting is so cheap.

    No one pushed a button because they hate your plugin. But the way you’re behaving, more people will be avoiding it. GROW UP.

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 10 October, 2013

      Jan, I did get the facts, I’ve been talking with them for quite a while. This is NOT an isolated incident.

      • Scott ChartersBy Scott Charters on 15 October, 2013

        I have been with HostGator, for around 3 years and have had a few times when they have taken down a site for for issues related to high loading issues. But always with a warning they would have to commence this process if it wasn’t fixed. Then on the June 23rd of this year I got the following notice at 8:00 PM : Though lengthy I include it here so everyone can see the notice and the solutions they sent. This was our largest client in the middle of their season which accounted for:
        8600 visitors on the 22nd
        7500. on the 23rd
        1500 on the 24th.
        As you can see there was no mention of the Yoast Plugin which we use on all 40 account we host.


        Unfortunately, we were forced to disable the script “/home/DOMAIN/public_html/index.php” as it was causing high loading issues on the server. Due to this affecting all of the other accounts on the system, we had to take immediate action for the health of the server.

        We noticed that this is a WordPress blog, and recommend a few different steps you can take to prevent this issue from recurring.

        First, try to reduce the total number of active plugins on your blog. The following types of plugins are known to cause high resource usage and should be avoided:

        - All related posts plugins (WordPress Related Posts, YARPP) can cause significantly high load in most cases.
        - WPRobot3 and other auto-posters can also cause high load issues, and should be disabled if they are causing issues
        - StatPress and other wordpress statistics software should also be disabled, as these too can consume too much CPU in certain cases. Use Google Analytics instead for statistics as well as Awstats which already comes by default on your account.
        - WP Post Views is also a plugin that you’ll want to avoid as it causes significant resource usage.
        - Any other plugins that are not vital to your WordPress should be disabled.

        View this link for further tips on optimizing your blog: http://support.hostgator.com/articles/specialized-help/technical/wordpress/optimizing-wordpress

        Second, install the plug-in WP-Super-Cache. This plug-in helps to greatly reduce the CPU required to run a WordPress blog and can help you to have more traffic while using less CPU. You can optimize your WordPress installations for use on our shared servers by following the tips in this article: http://support.hostgator.com/articles/specialized-help/technical/wordpress/wp-super-cache-plugin

        Lastly, if you’re using auto-blogging, please keep in mind that in most cases the current production version of Mysql on our shared servers will have significant delays querying databases with over 100MB of data. Future versions may not have that problem as we are always looking for ways to improve performance for our clients. You can check the sizes of your databases in your cPanel under the MySQL section.

        We will need you to update us with your IP address so that we can safely open access for you to make the needed changes to your site. Please let us know how you would like to proceed.


        Below were the active processes, MySQL queries, and incoming site requests at the time of suspension:
        Running Processes:

    • Scott ChartersBy Scott Charters on 15 October, 2013

      Wow Jan do you own stock in these companies. GROW UP was a little harsh for a blog posting with dozens of collaborating stories. Go read the post on HostGators own blog about the issues they are having for a little historical review. No fiction here. just a company that was once great and now they have issues that are causing a lot of people to seek new options and not just because of Joost’s post.

      Arrogant indeed!

    • MichaelBy Michael on 15 October, 2013

      I agree with Scott too…a bit harsh.

      If your looking at this from a “customers” point of view, then sure. But if you do your research and also look at it from the perspective of people who work online everyday that are either hosts, marketeers, or freelancers, you will see that many people saying the same thing, and the ACTUAL reasons behind their words. Not made-up theory’s.

      If your one of the few that’s not been effected, hats off to you. Just keep have a daily backup system in place. The BIGGEST mistake is relying on your host for backups.

  48. Ross TaylorBy Ross Taylor on 10 October, 2013

    Definitely food for thought. I began my search for an alternative to HG a few weeks ago after one of my reseller accounts was down for about 3 hours. My clients were not happy.
    I think the main thing to do is get off shared hosting if your site matters to your business in any way. I can’t see moving to Dreamhost who are basically the same, but someone like mediatemple or vps.net are definitely looking like they type of organization I need to move to.

    • tony greeneBy tony greene on 17 October, 2013

      I’m currently having DreamHost horrors with their DreamPress solution. It’s been 4 weeks now and I still can’t login to my dashboard.
      Yesterday 10/16 gave the tech nearly 3 hours on live chat to resolve issue – still ongoing and he also left all of my plugins disabled with no resolution email or explanation.
      Will give WestHost a try and eventually will move to synthesis when the funds are free.

    • IanBy Ian on 8 November, 2013

      look carefully into Media Temple before you go there I read MT has gone the same way ( same company now owns MT as HG ) … I have moved my important sites off HG to Inmotion because of constant down time and poor support I had one site down for 4 days recently HG kept insisting it was up and working fine, but they had accidentally moved it to an internal IP during their server upgrade? to them it looked fine to the world it didn’t exist … but I must say they apologized and promised never to make this mistake again :( WTF

  49. Cesar LeeBy Cesar Lee on 10 October, 2013

    My problem is the same as William’s, the limited number of domains. But I am also interested in hearing Ross’ results after his search. This i such a great discussion, guys! Thanks so much!

  50. Thomas ZickellBy Thomas Zickell on 10 October, 2013

    I agree to Host gator is junk and if you are serious about having a site on the web for business you should invest in it just as you would an office or a brick-and-mortar storefront.

    Hostgator is part of EIG a company that owns a lot of junk hosting companies. You really have to check Wikipedia to see how many hosting companies are really the same company.
    For example
    Hostgator, Bluehost, HostMonster, or JustHost? not performing well that might be because because EIG owns them all.
    the one that I see is a shame is a small orange I truly liked them but times are changing.

    recommend managed WordPress hosting with Web Synthesis, WP Engine, Zippykid, Pagely, Get Flywheel, PressLabs and you can always use a enterprise hosting company like Firehost I just finished moving 17 sites to them however it was not inexpensive I am pleased with the results.

    With a hostgator like hosting company
    Very rarely do you get told anything more than your websites up that’s all we can do by the hosting company.

    I can assure you the managed WordPress companies I’ve listed will help you far beyond that especially with their WordPress issues.

    every managed WordPress host is slightly different but one thing is true of all of them there trying make you happy and literally working very hard on your behalf to accomplish that.
    managed WordPress companies do the small stuff that needs to be done and a lot of huge stuff that needs to be done combining that with the newest technology and almost 100% across-the-board Nginx
    servers you will be pleased with your choice to spend a little bit more for the ROI in time and cost of care and repair let me not forget speed increases conversion rates and is in Google algorithm.

    or you can go with a company that has headlines that read like this.
    A former employee of Hostgator has been arrested and charged with installing a backdoor that gave him almost unfettered control over more than 2,700 servers belonging to the widely used Web hosting provider.

    fully managed Enterprise hosting and fully managed WordPress hosting companies are the money I have accounts with every company I’ve listed except for the EIG companies host’s and I can tell you there all going to make you smile.

    • Scott ChartersBy Scott Charters on 15 October, 2013

      Thanks Thomas for your review and recommendations. Per my issues above I too am looking for a new VPS host for my 40 clients. Anyone else have experience with FireHost?

      • Thomas ZickellBy Thomas Zickell on 20 October, 2013

        Hi Scott,
        I would have to say that fire host is the best hosting I’ve ever used. I have a lot of hosting accounts with many different great hosting companies. However if I can help you in any way shape or form I would be more than happy to tell you and show you what is so great about fire host.
        I hope to hear from you if not ask for Jesse at fire host he understands setups better than anyone else.

        All the best,

      • Russell JamiesonBy Russell Jamieson on 8 November, 2013

        @Scott, if you do not proceed with Firehost then I can recommend either Servint or LiquidWeb for VPS hosting.

        • Scott ChartersBy Scott Charters on 8 November, 2013

          Thanks to both of you for the information…had to move quite quickly (the IP change at HG) and went with SingleHop. The move has been a very trying with one issue after another. But I’ll save that for a post I am doing on webhostingtalk.com and just to be fair I am staying with them because I beleive the service will prove out.

          Again thanks

  51. kamboBy kambo on 10 October, 2013

    We get to hear more and more complaints about Hostgator on the webhosting forums. I have the impression that where EIG goes, nothing good remains.
    There are very decent providers, even some small ones are reliable and trustworthy. Search on the forums before switching your host. Some real horror stories are out there.

  52. MichaelBy Michael on 11 October, 2013

    You should add to stay away from DreamHost, but I guess they are your sponsors.

    Hostgator & DreamHost are owned by the same company, EIG. Hostgator recently relocated their server, in the past half year, to an EIG server cluster. Ever since, performance has been abysmal, and I will be making a switch.

    I don’t have if Dreamhost servers have been relocated yet or not, but I would highly advise against it. Performance on the EIG cluster is plagued with issues, namely first byte time & shared server usage allotment.

  53. Rev. Stephen B. Henry PhD.By Rev. Stephen B. Henry PhD. on 11 October, 2013

    Is there a relatively decent shared hosting service other than Hostgator or Bluehost that offers a reseller package with cPanel? Suggestions? Recommendations?

    • Thomas ZickellBy Thomas Zickell on 12 October, 2013

      Yes Stephen try Pair Networks they offer outstanding shared hosting and are one of the top 10 most reliable companies available.

      If you want a truly great reseller package go to Single Hop they have outstanding uptime as well and give you more than a C panel you will get backups and everything through their “tandem” reseller they might be the number 1 for reselling quality hosting.
      I hope that helps.

  54. StacieBy Stacie on 11 October, 2013

    I had been with Hostgator since 2010 and finally moved my site off there in August this year. I started on a shared server and they shut me down more times than I can count for hogging resources. They did exactly the same thing where they shut it down then email you. When you call them to ask why they won’t talk to you and tell you that you have to talk to them via the email they sent only. They made me upgrade to a VPS then I had major issues with that and finally they said I needed a dedicated. I was naive and trusted what they told me. I found out though that I didn’t even need a dedicated and now I’m with a new host and saving myself $160/month! I wrote more about my experience with Hostgator here: http://bloggingwithsimplystacie.com/switched-hosting-companies/

    • tony greeneBy tony greene on 16 October, 2013

      I’ve been down the same road with them of “hogging resources”. However, in my case the site was slammed and then the email came several days later.
      Will read and share your experience with others. I’m steering towards WestHost in the middle of this month.

  55. MikeBy Mike on 11 October, 2013

    Been using HG for years for numerous customers. Agree performance has gone downhill after the move to the new DC.
    Disagree that hosts should “never” shut down an account without notice – security or extreme performance issues should trump politeness; it is “shared” hosting, after all.
    For those of you crying “isolated incident,” a) read the whole thread, and b) read the comments in this August “letter” from HostGator.

  56. RevertaBy Reverta on 11 October, 2013

    I have also been experiencing issues with Hostgator. Their support has gone downhill and over the summer they migrated my sites to a new IP without notification. This has caused me a number of issues (lost traffic etc.) and I also don’t trust them anymore.

  57. King-slaveofAllahBy King-slaveofAllah on 11 October, 2013

    im using host gator from last 2 years…have 3-4 accounts with them..never faced problem…how ever after they transferred data to new server…with my 1 account i faced problem,they shut my site ,when i contacted them they said its due to extra cpu use resources.. they asked to remove related post plugins..

    other than this i never faced problem…

    looks like this post is sponsored by someone..!

  58. MBy M on 12 October, 2013

    Its certainly interesting to discover that it turns out all these big hosting companies are owned by an investment firm; not sure why it surprised me given that companies such as P&G, Johnson & Johnson, GSK, Tesco etc. also own what appear to be independents; why wouldn’t the same happen for money-making hosting companies?

    I would suggest something: please can Joost kindly consider making the referral disclaimer bold and thus obvious? I believe this might be of help in absolving you of some critics.

  59. Bruce GerencserBy Bruce Gerencser on 12 October, 2013

    Well, you win. :)

    After reading the comments here and doing some digging on my own, I decided it was time to move from Hostgator. What sealed the deal was the inability to easily publish my posts with Live Writer. On and off over the last week I have gotten a 500 server error when trying to post. Today it took five tries to successfully make a post.

    I decided to give Flywheel a try. First impression? Great guys to work with. Helpful and prompt in their email response to me. They migrated my site without charge and everything works. This will end up costing me about 12.00 more a month, but the value-added features with Flywheel make their service worth it.

    Thank you for provoking me to take a hard look at Hostgator.

  60. Thomas ZickellBy Thomas Zickell on 12 October, 2013

    They have a truly unique reselling system and are a great new asset to anybody that needs WordPress hosting the fact that their marriage means you will not have to deal with 99% of the problems HostGator forced upon you I say that’s a smart choice sir plus they’ve got a phone number if you have an emergency call them 24/7

    (888) 928-8882
    Get flywheel is a deal

  61. wedaBy weda on 12 October, 2013

    yoast is the best, all of my blogs are using yoast

  62. CarlosBy Carlos on 12 October, 2013

    Disturbing. Very disturbing indeed.

  63. Jarrett HolmesBy Jarrett Holmes on 12 October, 2013

    I have been with Hostgator for about 3 years and have set up dozens of SEO my clients signed up with them (small businesses). I find this decision appalling ad they definitely handled it the wrong way. I’m not confident this was a company decision, but possibly was a poor decision by the rep on the phone. Anyone with common sense should know to contact the customer first for something as serious as shutting down their site. The other thing is everyone uses those plugins mentioned or many others that restrict cache like W3 or WP Better Security.

    I will say that I was with Bluehost before switching to Hostgator and have been super happy with them except for that outage they had a month or so ago. Their customer service has always been world class. many of my IM friends recommend Sitepoint so I might start looking for a better alternative.

  64. Marty RogersBy Marty Rogers on 13 October, 2013

    I hate reading stories like this about HostGator because I always believed and still like to hope that they are a great host, though I know they act out of character at times.

    Personally, I have quite a few small WordPress blogs hosted under one shared HostGator account and use all of the discussed plugins mentioned here and, as of right now, have never had any of my accounts suspended by them.

    It’s a shame that they choose to do things like this, especially suspending without warning – that is wrong.

  65. LouisBy Louis on 13 October, 2013

    Anyone with much experience, working with WordPress should already know that with the thousands of plugins available in their Repository, there are going to be conflicts. Any host with experience hosting WordPress, will know there are going to be issues with resources simply because of what I mentioned above and they will be prepared to work with you. If they aren’t, DUMP them.

    I have a friend who recently had her site disabled by Hostgator (without notice), she also uses WordPress SEO plugin. However they didn’t blame WordPress SEO plugin for the problem.

    Given the reasons for disabling the site, I recommended to my friend that she find another host. And she did. Since then, she has had no issues. A few minor adjustments to the site and she is doing great. Yes, she had some issues. But those issues shouldn’t have been outside the abilities of the host to assist her.

    Having said all that, I do not recommend any particular host. I also do not recommend shared hosting for WordPress. Life is so much easier if you start with a reasonably priced VPS.

    I don’t use BlueHost and never have. However, if I were looking for a hosting company where I needed managed hosting and / or shared hosting, I would recommend finding one with support personnel as knowledgeable as Mika E. (Ipstenu). Unfortunately, you won’t find a lot of hosts who have someone with the kind of knowledge Mika has, or someone as willing AND able to help the way she does. I know this because of the interviews I have seen with her in them, as well as what she shares on her site http://halfelf.org/ and in the WordPress.org forums.

    Disclaimer: I do not have any association with BlueHost, or any other host. I am not affiliated in any way with Mika, or any venture she is involved with, except WordPress. I have followed her site for a while. She knows what she is talking about and she has no problem sharing her point of view.

    If you are having issues with your host, and they behave as Hostgator has behaved in the example above, and what I have seen personally, get rid of them. They aren’t Google, and you don’t have to put up with them, if they aren’t happy to have you there.

    Google is another story..

  66. FhBy Fh on 13 October, 2013

    I use host gator at the moment. I am actually going to make a change within this month. I can actually agree. Hostgator will limit you, disable you, throttle you, or ban you for using plugins. It’s happen to me before. Allegedly one of my plugins burned all 25 cores of their CPU. I don’t believe it, but they almost ban me. I had to reason with support. It’s an ok company. They have also accused one if my sites for killing their server. They allegedly had to contact the datacenter and get a whole new server because while the sites were migitating I entered a new domain. They claim it got stuck in between servers and caused the load balance to overwork itself. They said the server over heated and over worked itself. They tried adding extra charges to my hosts gator bill. I refused to pay. They will even require you to move and ban you if you get to much traffic even for a small period of time. I know people who have been ban, locked out, and can’t even get a backup of their current site state. It really sucks. I personally thing they are ok, but they are more into the advertising game than hosting game. Just like McDonalds Is a marketing team, not a food provider. I am looking for something fast, stable, and secure. I was looking into cloud hosting. I’ve tried some of the hosts you listed Yoast, but none of them were that great. I seemed to always get a bad batch. Not blaming you, but I don’t know. Just don’t see it in them. But I am hoping to get something cloud based, and get some CDN to load my site faster. :)

  67. GabrielBy Gabriel on 13 October, 2013

    You can’t just blame HostGator for incompetence just because an inexperienced employee disabled someone’s website. Of course he should not have done that and actions like this should be investigated by the company. But similar things are happening on SHARED hosting accounts with so many companies out there. I’m using a dedicated server from HG and I’m very happy with it. The service and the uptime are excellent. It also comes with the cPanel® & WHM® software package which is awesome!

    • LouisBy Louis on 15 October, 2013

      Hi Gabriel,

      Would you be saying the same thing of a restaurant that put an inexperienced cook in charge of making your meal and they poisoned you or served your food raw or cold, or it just didn’t taste right? I think not.

      Disabling a website is no small matter. Especially when there is no communication prior to doing so.

      If it were me, yes, I can blame the hosting company for what happens. It is the hosting company I pay.

      It is the hosting company I rely upon to serve my website to the public. If there is a problem, and since the service I pay for says “support”, “Managed”, or anything resembling that, they have the obligation to place people in support who know what they are doing. If the employee is inexperienced, then they shouldn’t be allowed (without proper supervision) to manage anyone’s websites, or even touch them.

      Hostgator is not without sufficient resources to secure the expertise of very experienced techs. There is no excuse for what has been going on over there.

      This article isn’t about Hostgator’s dedicated server hosting. It is about what is happening with shared hosting. I am quite sure you get much better service paying for premium resources.

      Let me ask you a question though………. Do they manage your server for you? If they don’t, then you are comparing apples to oranges because you are in control of your server, resources and whether or not your sites stay up, get disabled or are deleted entirely. That’s not what this post was about. But thanks for the sales pitch on HG dedicated servers.

      My point of view is this. If a company doesn’t take care of the small people (people using shared hosting), those small people won’t likely choose their service in the event they get bigger.

      I know of several companies who don’t treat people the way Hostgator is treating people. This is no isolated incident being talked about here. This has developed into a business practice. That is bad.

      • BryanBy Bryan on 15 October, 2013

        This is a terrible analogy. Not only is it perfectly legal for a company to refuse you service if you’re being an abusive customer, but every single hosting company out there explicitly reserves the right to do so in their terms and conditions (including managed hosting services). Restaurants don’t make you sign a waiver as they seat you allowing them to poison you if you start covering the buffet line with spray paint. They just kick you out, and refuse you service – and they don’t even have to make you agree to those terms and conditions before doing so.

        If I was actually paying for “managed” hosting, I would expect something better than this, but this customer wasn’t. They were paying for support that covered the operation of the server, email, FTP, the control panel, DNS, maybe an SSL certificate. Especially on a shared hosting account, that support has never covered the software you choose to run on it (you actually install it yourself too). The same goes for literally all shared hosting companies including DreamHost and GoDaddy. This is why everyone can point out similar stories at those hosting companies too.

        Gabriel does have a point about dedicated servers too though. Even if they aren’t managed, you aren’t sharing the server with other customers, so if your site is having problems and eating away at resources, it’s not a problem to keep the server and website online and running anyway because you aren’t affecting other customers (unless your server was hacked, and is now running brute force attacks or spamming other servers).

        As stated numerous times throughout this discussion, it really does come down to what you pay for, and there’s only so much a shared hosting provider can help you with when you’re only paying them $5 a month. Some webmasters are very happy with this because they know how to troubleshoot their own website. If you know you need the support though, that’s what “managed” hosting is for, and this customer should have paid for it.

        • LouisBy Louis on 15 October, 2013

          Actually, it wasn’t a “terrible analogy”, it is similar in a few respects. The statement I made was that the cook was inexperienced and served substandard food, which was ordered. And comparing it with the statement made “You can’t just blame HostGator for incompetence just because an inexperienced employee disabled someone’s website.”

          I can make the same analogy with regard to dedicated server hosting vs shared hosting. Based on what you are saying, because it is more difficult to handle shared hosting for the host, they shouldn’t be expected to provide as good a service as what they provide to those who pay for dedicated servers, which aren’t normally managed by the host. Again, just because I don’t order steak, and order a peanut butter sandwich, if I go with your reasoning, I shouldn’t be able to expect the peanut butter sandwich to come with fresh bread because I didn’t pay for better service.

          The statement I responded to did not include any reference to abusive practices by the customer. It was a statement about the incompetence of the Company for placing an inexperienced person in charge of handling something wrong. If you want to change the parameters and then say my analogy is terrible, then we can do that, I will change the analogy to fit your example.

          Fact of the matter is, if Hostgator doesn’t want to provide the service for WordPress, then they shouldn’t offer it. Plain and simple. And simply disabling accounts without talking with someone they consider an offender isn’t the way to do business.

          However, as I have stated above, I don’t recommend shared hosting for WordPress. I think anyone using WordPress with shared hosting is asking for problems. And the reason I say that is because WordPress, while “recommending” plugin and theme authors use a certain practices, WordPress does not make it a requirement and many plugins cause conflicts because of authors refusing to conform to what is recommended.

          And, any time there is a conflict between plugins and / or themes and plugins, it is highly likely that resource usage is going to jump. Thus causing issues with shared hosting accounts. So, I guess we could really blame WordPress for not requiring certain standards be met.

          But, I return to the reason I replied in the first place. Yes, if a company places inexperienced workers in charge of handling services they are not qualified to handle, the person paying for the service (that would be the agreed upon price), can and should blame the hosting company.

          • BryanBy Bryan on 15 October, 2013

            “Fact of the matter is, if Hostgator doesn’t want to provide the service for WordPress, then they shouldn’t offer it.” — They do not, and have never claimed to offer support for WordPress, otherwise it would be called “managed WordPress hosting”. It’s not though, it’s called “shared hosting”. They sell and support a hosting service, not support for the software you installed. There is a difference, and it’s one that most hosting companies charge an extra $25 per month for (six times more than what this customer was likely paying).

            The fact that the technician was even trying to help the customer with WordPress at all was going out of their way to go above and beyond the service the customer paid for.

            The reasons for disabling the site wasn’t because the technician was inexperienced, it was because their website was causing problems for other customers. It was abusing server resources, and it is “abuse” even if the customer didn’t do it intentionally, they are responsible for the software they install on their account and how they use it. The technician was obviously not experienced enough to fix this customer’s WordPress-specific problem for them, but they weren’t ever obligated by any support contract to fix it before shutting the site down in the first place either.

            Nothing in this story even remotely resembles “bad practices” to me, it’s all pretty standard operating behavior for any shared hosting company.

          • LouisBy Louis on 16 October, 2013

            I would like to add this to my comment, being that replies aren’t being allowed for the response to what I have said.

            To Bryan, below, who said “They do not, and have never claimed to offer support for WordPress, otherwise it would be called “managed WordPress”

            I would suggest that Bryan go to Hostagator and look at this page; href=”http://www.hostgator.com/apps/wordpress-hosting.shtml ” >Premium WordPress Hosting It says so in the first paragraph on that page, which clearly advertises “WordPress Hosting”.

            If you defend Hostgator by just making statements that can so easily be proven wrong,are you really doing your argument any good? I would suggest not. Once there is a proven false statement in an argument, the entire argument must be called into question.

            I would agree with the author of the post and suggest to stay away from Hostgator if you need or want shared hosting.

  68. kurniaBy kurnia on 14 October, 2013

    I have been with HG for more than 5 years with excellent experexperience. They are helpfull, try to help best, and fast.

  69. Bruce GerencsefBy Bruce Gerencsef on 15 October, 2013

    As I mentioned in my last comment, based on this post and discussion, I moved my site from Hostgator to Flywheel. My, definitely technology challenged, wife asked me why I made the move. I told her the personal, friendly contact with Flywheel was quite refreshing and it reminded me of how Hostgator used to be years ago when I first started using their service.

    Companies grow. The key is maintaining that friendly, personal touch that made people want to do business with you. Sadly, a lot of companies forget this.

    I used to use Squeezeboxes to play music. I encouraged people to buy them. They were a small company and the founders of the company were readily accessible. Then Logitech bought them…and within 2 years they ruined customer support and destroyed the brand. Far too often, small companies sell themselves to a bigger company and the company loses the very things that made them great. So it is with Hostgator.

  70. JonathanBy Jonathan on 15 October, 2013

    I left Host Gator about 2 months ago and went with Synthesis. I didn’t realize how bad they were until I made the switch, the speed difference was almost night and day. My site was running incredibly slow and I was thinking it was my site design (which it partly was, but not the main cause). They were pretty cheap, but I’d rather pay more for a reliable hosting plan than the cheap bargain prices that came with host gator. Sad too, they used to be pretty good, but over the years they just turned to junk. I never had issues with them disabling my site or anything of that sort but I did hear of some horror stories of people suddenly seeing their site completely crash and having to start over. I got worried something similar would happen to me and the year I spent building my site would go to waste so I took the plunge with Synthesis and also went with the Genesis framework myself. Best decision I’ve made for my site. I also have the Yoast SEO and video SEO plugins.

  71. david gBy david g on 15 October, 2013

    wow guys, lots of opinions here, and some great information to
    the one thing you have all forgotten is the agreement you have with your bank re credit card transactions,

    when you pay for a product or service via your credit card it is up to the supplier (hostgator) to make sure they deliver exactly what was promised at the time of purchase,

    if they fail to meet these requirements at any time you can generally charge back all of the money you paid them for at least six months, obviously move your sites first then do it,

    they have no recourse on this as they have to allow it as part of there merchant facility to accept online payments

    so if this happens don’t loose your money charge it back, your bank will ask you why your charging it back,, you simply tell them that they refused to supply the product or service that you paid for, it literally is that simple, its because people don’t hold them accountable they continue to have these shoddy practices

  72. Michael JohnBy Michael John on 15 October, 2013

    HostGator has gone done. All my sites were hosted there for the last 3 years with no problems then about 3 months ago my sites were down more than they worked for about 1 week they did not seem to worry. There Facebook page was full of complaints and some were saying that they have been sold and the new owners are using inferior web servers causing problems. I moved to a different company and have not looked back. So I agree 100% avoid HostGator they not what they use to be.

  73. SteffenBy Steffen on 16 October, 2013

    is not caching against their terms? if you pay for unlimited bandwidth it shouldn’t matter. i mean, they should have no right to do that, or?

  74. mishainfotechBy mishainfotech on 16 October, 2013

    I never had such experiences.

  75. YehudaBy Yehuda on 16 October, 2013

    I have only ever hosted with Hostgator so I wouldnt know if it was good but I have never had any problems. Long wait for the live chat but thats about it. It worries me that they were bought over and I never knew about it.

    I host all my sites at Hostgator, and just recently advised a client to host there too. Had I known that they were being bought over by EIG I would never have done so.

    How can I stay on top of such news as it happens so I dont get caught again, is there a blog that posts useful information like this?

  76. YehudaBy Yehuda on 16 October, 2013


    Since writing my previous comment all my sites are down at hostgator.


    Have contacted live chat, 1 min waiting time, will update

  77. YehudaBy Yehuda on 16 October, 2013

    Fixed!! God knows how long it was down for until I spotted it, could have been an hour

    • tony greeneBy tony greene on 17 October, 2013

      You might want to look into registering your sites with a monitoring service like “pingdom”. Based on their monthly reports, I ran away from the hostgator for another hosting solution.

  78. TomBy Tom on 16 October, 2013

    Weird, never had a problem with these.

  79. GarethBy Gareth on 17 October, 2013

    I use to host with Hostgator. They also shut me down for exact same reason as described above. Luckily I had a back up and now I host with http://www.mediafortress.com.au/

    Much better for me anyway as I only have Australian sites. But yea, the problem magically stopped once I uploaded to another server

  80. AkhilBy Akhil on 17 October, 2013

    Looks weird! I’m an Indian blogger and using znetlive.com, any comments con znetlive?

    • JesinBy Jesin on 17 October, 2013

      I don’t know how they are now but I’ve used them back in 2010 and it was a terrible experience.

      There are proactive and reactive people but these guys react very late (after the problem is solved). I had a WordPress blog on their shared hosting and they’d just shutdown the mysql service whenever their server is overloaded causing my blog to show a MySQL error.

      When I created a ticket it would take a couple of hours for them to reply and they’d reply saying “Everything is fine at our end”

      Only after a lot of pressure did they tell that admit shutting down the mysql service.

      Moreover they remove features from their hosting packages without prior notice. When I signed up they had “Shared SSL” feature. After a couple of months they removed it without any notice :-(

  81. CelulukBy Celuluk on 17 October, 2013

    OMG! All of my sites locate at Hostgator hosting. Should I move my hosting to another?

  82. Saket JajodiaBy Saket Jajodia on 17 October, 2013

    I have been using HG as my web host from day one and of-course with your SEO plugin in my blogs (including all my clients’ blogs/websites). But these days I am hearing lots of negative feedback about them after it was bought by EIG. As my hosting is about to expire next month and still I am confused to move to another host or not.

  83. Lon KoenigBy Lon Koenig on 17 October, 2013

    I work with many hosting providers running many sites (including a lot of WordPress) I always include Yoast SEO plugin on any site with an active blog.

    I’ve had sites “pulled” on all the popular providers for consuming more resources than the hosting provider liked.
    They guess as to what the cause may be and (maybe) send you a note blaming it.

    This is understandable from the host admin’s point of view, but terrible customer service.

    The reason I’m bothering to comment here is that the last time this happened on a HostGator site (late 2012), I got excellent support once I got past the first level gate keepers. They were willing to work with me as we tried disabling things that were eating resources.

    But any “shared” hosting platform is really at risk of being pulled if you get a traffic spike.
    Of course, clients don’t want to pay for dedicated hosting either. Some of the “cloud” products out there can support limited scaling of WordPress, but you need to understand the issues.

    Bottom line: cheap shared hosting is risky hosting. My experience with HostGator has been no worse than any other host.

  84. LenoraBy Lenora on 18 October, 2013

    Very bad news :( I’ve hosted many sites on HostGator server. It’s time to change the server, many people are complaining about HostGator.

    I want to use your WordPress SEO plugin so I’ll slowly migrate my sites to another host.

  85. Todd KrauseBy Todd Krause on 18 October, 2013

    I am currently in the process of moving to a small independent host from a combination of sites at Hostgator, Bluehost, and Rackspace Cloud Sites. I two had issues with Hostgator & Bluehost, Hostgator shut down one of my sites for the same reason and Bluehost has claiming that I had malware on the site that had completely clean code. Both were done without warning or notification. I just moved the site to a different server for both domains. The last major host that I am moving away from is Rackspace cloud sites. When Rackspace cloud sites first came out it was fast and reliable. After a while, it has become really expensive shared hosting with bad performance and constant downtimes. All three hosts at one time or another were the best in the game at what they did and were ones that openly recommended. Now they have grown too big to manage what they do, or their to diversify further thinning out their support staff.

    As a result, I went out and got a managed dedicated server for a local host. Sites are typical load faster can install mod_pagespeed apache module (highly recommended), and can control the site to server ratios. Most shared hosts have a 1:1000 or more ratio vs I do 1:100 based on CPU and Memory Usage. However even this has a catch, smaller hosts come and go every day. Do you research first, make sure that they are financially stable and have the support staff the matches your needs.

    • Thomas ZickellBy Thomas Zickell on 20 October, 2013

      You want the best in the game FireHost is the best in the game.

  86. AltaBy Alta on 19 October, 2013

    Very informative post!

    I just had a client email me today about HG. They were getting tons 500 errors all of a sudden. (There’s nothing wrong with the site) .. HG told them “we don’t know what’s wrong as we are not web developers.” End of story.

    Two weeks ago the same person forwarded me a notice with lots of happy talk about the server “upgrade” that HG was so generous to give them.

    I often tell clients that shared hosting is like cheap cell phone providers and airlines.. the most annoying one is likely to be the one you’re using at any given point.

    I know GoDaddy is quite unpopular in the WP world, but I think they have come a long way over the past year .. WP is much faster and they are (trying at least) to provide good WP support. I think they have pretty good security compared to a lot of others as well.

    BTW I have zero incentive to promote anything .. other than maybe a death wish of getting told I’m crazy/dumb to say anything good about WP on GD. : D

  87. PrakashBy Prakash on 19 October, 2013

    thank’s joost, i was about to go for shared hosting from HG but after reading you’r thread i made up my mind to go for WP Engine. I hope i made a good decision.:)

  88. Thomas ZickellBy Thomas Zickell on 20 October, 2013

    What is the world coming to?
    Go Daddy purchases Media Temple
    then they tell the world there’s no changes planned and basically don’t worry about it life will go on.

    I don’t like Go Daddy for a lot of reasons SOPA being the main one aside from junk hosting they sided with a bill that tried to single-handedly destroy the Internet.

    whatever rewards Go Daddy would have gotten from that deal they would’ve had today had it gone through.

    I don’t think a company that large can change the way it does business overnight or in a year just because there’s a new CEO does not mean it’s a new company.

    My $.02

  89. John RBy John R on 20 October, 2013

    i just setup hosting with hostgator not too long ago
    have a slight feeling of discomfort after reading this
    for the people asking bluehost and hostgator belong to the same company from whay i’ve heard

  90. DennisBy Dennis on 20 October, 2013

    I have 2 stories about hostgator:
    1) They forgot to invoice me for the last 6 months for the VPS server. Received an e-mail blaming on bug…
    2) I set up redirections 3 weeks ago and last week I tried to remove them. Actually I did removed them in cPanel but pages was still redirecting.
    I have to set up new URL to solve the problem redirections are still there. I dont know why they just cant remove them?
    Admin said “you have a permalink issue” WTXXX…
    Actually this the first time that I have an unsolved problem with them. But HG Admin comments sounds a bit weird though.

  91. JuliusBy Julius on 21 October, 2013

    One of our website is down after their system update or the migration. We contact them about the issue and we need to pay $15 for restoring the website.

  92. PaulBy Paul on 21 October, 2013

    I had multiple sites on HG all using Yoast SEO plugin and they have all dropped dramatically quite recently strange coincidence il be changing to a managed host shortly.

  93. Eric VannBy Eric Vann on 22 October, 2013

    Just got an email today from BLUEHOST suggesting that I voluntarily upgrade to PHP 5.4. But when I do I see nothing on my screen. Are there incompatibilities between PHP 5.4 and the WordPress 3.6.1 installation? Are there some settings I should check?

  94. Eric VannBy Eric Vann on 22 October, 2013

    BTW, Bluehost indicates that they will be switching me over against my will to PHP 5.4 in seven days. Does that mean that I will effectively lose my ability to run WordPress 3.6.1?

    • MichaelBy Michael on 22 October, 2013

      Blue Host seems a little late to the party, but the core file of WordPress will work fine with PHP 5.4. I run multiple sites on such.

      The key issue will be your plugins and theme(s). Most plugins “should” be ok, but always safe to double check. Also check your theme. Check with the theme designer or site where your theme came from.

      But to also be on the super safe side….backups backups backups….which is something that should be in place anyways. Have backups ready in case the switch does break things, and have backups anyways since your with Blue Host. and a backup host on hand. The Blue Host part is my personal opinion from dealing with clients who had sites them, but since they at least gave you warning which in many case nowadays or the topic of this thread, doesn’t happen. Break first, Support Later.

  95. GuestbloBy Guestblo on 22 October, 2013

    All I could say is that HostGator shouldn’t have disabled the site without informing the concerned individuals. You can “count out” these incidents as being isolated ones. But once you’re digging deeper you would definitely find out about similar stuff. Not happening!

  96. Queen CBy Queen C on 22 October, 2013

    I always use hostgator for all my sites… :( i am very upset now that they might take it down at moments notice….
    i am too lazy to move them all over…. **giggle**

  97. charlesBy charles on 23 October, 2013

    A fan of the Yoast plugins but this article is pretty irresponsible with the selective host bashing. I develop WordPress sites for customers of all sizes on all different hosts. I have dealt with this same issue with a number of sites, and really comes back to the site developer ensuring that WP plugins, memory limits, and caching are implemented in a way that you’re not hogging memory on a shared server, or causing security risks for other customers.

    ALL of the hosts mentioned in these comments will pull your site down under the same circumstances, and all do it for the same reasons. To protect the speed and integrity of their servers on which many other customers are also relying.

    HostGator’s team has been amazing over the past 5 years, and will always go to the ends of the earth to help resolve these issues over the phone or online.

    Keep up the good work Joost, but go easy on the personal vendettas. :)

    • Joost de ValkBy Joost de Valk on 23 October, 2013

      Charles, I’m sorry but that’s nonsense. No decent host will disable a site under circumstances like this and THEN contact the owner. In fact even HostGator have admitted to me that they have handled this poorly.

      • charlesBy charles on 4 November, 2013

        Joost… I work with them all. Dreamhost, Bluehost, GoDaddy, HG, etc all do this to sites with small plans on shared hosting. Once you upgrade to more serious plans they are more likely to handle it more professionally. I’m not saying it’s the right way to do it, I’ve been burned by it in the past too. I’m just saying, all of these hosts have demonstrated to me that they will do it. Dreamhost will in fact take your entire site down, and rename folders without even contacting you first if the security threat is great enough.

        • darrellBy darrell on 8 November, 2013

          I agree with Yoost and the “they all do it” is no excuse for just shutting down a site without even contacting the owner beforehand. That is really crap customer service and there is really no excuse for it. HG has done this twice now to accounts I am familiar with. As soon as the contract is up HG is history. I can not and would not recommend HG to anyone but my enemies. Charles says he is a web developer. Ok, are you going to just stop working on a customers site if you don’t like what they do or say to you and not tell them about it? Especially after they have paid you to do the work? If you do things like that to your own customers you won’t be in business very long, now will you? HG used to be a great company. Now they are most certainly not. They are like Go Daddy where they are great until you have a problem or issue and then they become the problem. Yoost’s customer service is many times better than HG. What he is trying to do here is warn people of HG’s practice of just shutting down websites with no warning to the owners. If you’re depending on your website for your livelihood this can have catastrophic consequences to your business. It is not ok just because some of the other big shared hosting companies do it too.

  98. Arup GhoshBy Arup Ghosh on 23 October, 2013

    What about arvixe.com hosting. Does anybody have experience about them?

  99. JoeyBy Joey on 24 October, 2013

    Spot on post. But I must also say the same applies to ALL shared hosting. It may not have happened to you yet, but it will. Overselling shared servers combined with low paid/low trained tech support who you can almost hear turning pages in the manual as they give canned answers to your question is just the nature of the business. Their goal is to upsell you and it almost seems like they pick victims randomly.

    And Dreampress? Slightly faster than my shared hosting experience with them. Not worth the extra money.

  100. Allen D. WilsonBy Allen D. Wilson on 24 October, 2013

    We have a dedicated server and VPS with hostgator, running genesis framework, gravity forms, w3total cache, and Joost de Valk’s seo plugin. (Thank you all who have contributed to those projects and fostered a great community of support for each other.) I do remember having uber trouble in the early months of 2012 when I joined my current company and they had Hostgator. Boy, were those times painful, because the quality of service varies greatly.
    I had difficulty comprehending caching, rewriting, and how some of Joost’s stuff works in realtime, but most of the folks on the other end of the line were willing to help, even if it turned out to be not much help at all.
    With Hostgator’s support, it’s a roll of the dice: sometime’s you get the jedi knight server guy, and sometimes you get a guy who doesn’t know how to look up your phpinfo. What can I say, other than I’ve invested so much in terms of time with their staff. Last week they botched a major migration that should have been so simple: two sites into one site, one of which would become a subdomain. They charged me $75 even though my monthly bill exceeds $300, and to make matters worse, it took a week before they even got it right. It crashed our VPS because of too many MySQL errors. You know what they told me was their solution? Expanding MySQL timeouts from 20 seconds to 300 seconds!
    Joost: Thanks for the web hosting article: I still refer most of my new clients to your piece, hoping they’ll not freak out over $27 / month for excellence. But some people just can’t help going back to the stove that burned em.
    Think it’s time I stay away from the stove after reading this shutdown post…

  101. mikeBy mike on 24 October, 2013

    wow. it has a been a good read. i was with Bluehost previously and as far as shared hosting and support are concerned, BH is far from great (i would say ‘sucks’ even). during my time with them, BH kept ‘throttling’ my site, claiming spikes and stuff are happening, but then again, my site was just growing and isn’t even in the middle of the chart. it was just starting out for goodness sake. basically, it is their words and they could say whatever they want – plain and simple. in short, we are at their mercy.

    eventually i grew tired of their nonsense and left for HG (still on shared hosting though), which has been alright up till recently, or after they did some ‘server upgrade’, to be precise. and eventually, i also fell ‘victim’ of this uninformed suspension. now, here’s the thing: it is easy for those who weren’t suspended to sympathize with the host and say things like “it is part of the TOS.” yes. i honor the TOS, but like any good citizens, i expect the right to be informed before any sentencing. how would you like if you were judged before you could review your action? nobody likes that, TOS or not. so don’t go around and bullshitting about TOS. TOS is to protect the host and not to be abused.

    anyway, after much reading here and elsewhere, my conclusion is this: this is the price for shared hosting. it (shared hosting) almost never worked unless you are just starting out or have a small business to deal with. i am currently looking at a few VPS options, cos’ think it is ripe for me to move along. btw, after my suspension which lasted for nearly 24 hours, i am experiencing frequent errors (specifically error 500).

    as far as shared hosting is concerned HG is not what it used to be, but i cannot deny that HG has the most awesome support ever, no matter how big or small your question might be, which is why i am still with them and it is kind of hard to leave a service with superb support. so their VPS is also under my considerations right now and so is A Small Orange.

    • JustinBy Justin on 24 October, 2013

      Just had to add that Bluehost is by far the worst hosting company I have ever dealt with. They did not disclose a security issue properly, then offered no support in resolving the issues it caused. Their automated password generation was hacked along with tons of accounts. They would not help fix the hacked sites, I guess because they thought doing so would be to admit fault. Aside from that, their servers are SUPER slow! I mean CRAWL. My one site is 4x slower on their server than the same installation on other shared host. They offer you the absolute minimum in every way they can, I had to contact them to raise my PHP memory limit over and over again, they would only raise it i small bit each time. When asked about their unlimited offerings they gave me a reply about how their service is only for small businesses (basically with no traffic and one site) and that I should check their terms – where they basically say that nothing they offer is unlimited in any way. They are the most over hyped host out there.

  102. AronBy Aron on 24 October, 2013

    HostGator just wrote me:
    “I am sorry for the delay, it appears that the servers has ran out of IPs.”

    It appears? Ran out of IPs? LOL! WTF?! Seriously? (I can share screenshots if wanted)

    Imagine going to Starbucks and them telling you they ran out of coffee right after you pay… Really weird sense of humor!

    I get a full refund since I’m a new customer. But for the future: anything but HostGator. I agree with the title, avoid! HostGator sucks! It is just a waste of time with good Chat Support and nothing else… running out of IPs…. I’m running out of my laughs…

  103. DonBy Don on 24 October, 2013

    I’ve heard people have problems with each and every web host out there. 1and1 has been great to me. If anything avoid GoDaddy. They seem to have security issues they can’t fix for the life of em.

  104. JustinBy Justin on 24 October, 2013

    I don’t think it wise to advise people to avoid HostGator based on one person in their company (most likely) getting some information wrong. I have used 2 of the 3 other hosting companies you recommend: WP Engine and Dream Host. I used WP Engine for a year and they had hands down, without any question, more down time than any company I have ever worked with ALONG WITH a few security issues that also caused down time. On top of that, the limitations on which plugins you can and cannot use, and the reasoning behind a few (like “we have a better version we prefer) is just frankly not acceptable for me. I host over 50 WordPress sites and my view is that my hosting should be up all the time, fast, secure, AND I should be able to use any plugins I see fit! Way too restrictive, for what is at the end of the day a very basic service offering. I have nothing to say negative about Dream Host other than the service level and speed were sub par amongst the other companies I have used. Since 2008 I have used HostGator. While I tried many other hosts during this time, which I will not bore anyone by lsiting, my HostGator account was one that NEVER required any maintenance or even any action at all on my part. It has always been up and I rarely have any reason to reach out to them, I mean like never. So in closing, I just think there are quite a few things more to take into consideration when choosing a host than one incident where they seem to have made a mistake. I have high traffic sites and use 6 hosting companies as of now, and I would not be so quick to recommend these other services over HG, especially to beginners.

    • mikeBy mike on 27 October, 2013

      i have to agree that HostGator was never a problem to me until of late. so, to say that it has absolutely no issue is an overstatement. of course, we try to avoid generalization here. how well the host perform depends on the package you signed up for. we need to compare apple-to-apple here, so as far as share hosting goes, HG is as good as it lasts. like i said, the recent switch of server on their part really changes thing. however, you can’t deny the support are world-class and almost all tech support goes all the way out to help.

      as to ‘high traffic’, well, that depends on what’s your high traffic means. a million page view? or what? anyway, what Joost spoke off is the frustration of not being informed prior to the suspension, which HG on their part should have at least contact their customer so that appropriate action could be taken. of course, i totally understand the seriousness of the shared server “being threaten,” but that shouldn’t be an excuse, cos’ i think HG has the obligation to preamp us even before our hosting has reached the threshold of “threatening the shared server.”

  105. MikeBy Mike on 24 October, 2013

    I’ve had nothing but issues with Dreamhost…wouldn’t go there if my life depended on it.

  106. SushantBy Sushant on 28 October, 2013

    How is godaddy.com ?

    • DerekBy Derek on 29 October, 2013

      Godaddy is horrible, I would highly recommend avoiding them at all costs.

  107. Shane PaxtonBy Shane Paxton on 30 October, 2013

    just today hostgator took my entire server down. everything gone. my whole business and my reseller account which meant all of my customers sites are gone. they did this without any kind of notice at all. the tech on the phone refused to give me any kind of information and hung up on me. Hostgator people are crooks. period. they say they have 99% uptime which is a complete joke and outright lie. I recommend anyone that is thinking about using them to STAY AWAY! I would move my business BUT IT’S ALL GONE! everything I own…gone. This is theft and my lawyers agree with me

  108. DsareBy Dsare on 30 October, 2013

    Hi Yoast,

    I once had a horrible experience with bluehost ( they just locked my site telling me that they were receiving some spikes from my end–I only used a modem to connect to the net), I was shocked and had to wait for like two days for them to reopen the site after much hassle.

    Anyway, I migrated over to synthesis about 4 weeks ago and I’m really enjoying it.

    Thanks Yoast.

  109. JessiBy Jessi on 30 October, 2013

    I’ve had the worst experience with Hostgator. Our site goes down literally every single day. I’ll call and ask what’s going on and they say they don’t know, but they’ll restart the server. They still have zero solution to the problem and don’t even offer one. I basically have to send them a message everyday and tell them to restart the server. Pretty ridiculous. I’m considering migrating, but that’s going to give me another headache I’m not prepared for.

  110. Manh TranBy Manh Tran on 31 October, 2013

    i am using HostGator’s for my websites . I think they are not bad . i used their hosting services about 2 year . important are cheap and stable hosting . If you have a lot of money . let’s buy a delicate server . about 130 – 200$ per month . it would be perfect

  111. Gator BaitBy Gator Bait on 31 October, 2013

    Do not use Host Gator. Our server has been up and down for the last 36 Hours. Nobody knows anything and when its down its been down for 3 Hours minimum. We will be leaving as soon as we can extract everything.

  112. video haiBy video hai on 1 November, 2013

    Hostgato is no one !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  113. VikasBy Vikas on 1 November, 2013

    I have been using both these plugins on all my sites (about 25) for 3 years (shared hosting, no cdn). Haven’t had any issues from hg (yet). Will be vigilant with them though afterall, no corporation is good corporation.

  114. Josh TrenserBy Josh Trenser on 1 November, 2013

    OMG, I am hosting with them. So they can disable my account without warning???? SIGH….

  115. Bradley CharbonneauBy Bradley Charbonneau on 1 November, 2013

    Yoast, you jinxed me! ;-)
    I hadn’t had any troubles with HostGator until I read your article yesterday and now my site is down. Something about a heavy load on the SQL DB.
    But the way they’ve handled it was in the same manner, “Shoot first, ask questions later.” They just shut my site down, asked me to “fix it” (although they weren’t specific about what the actual culprit was … ) and let them know I fixed it, they’ll review it, and then they’ll make my site live again. Ouch. A polite, “Hey, there’s this busy script on your your site causing a heavy load. Please disable it by Friday or we’ll be forced to disable your site.” would have been nice.
    Groeten uit San Francisco!

  116. LakhyajyotiBy Lakhyajyoti on 3 November, 2013

    I have been using Bluehost for last few years and happy with their performance. Never tried hostgator. But I have seen many bloggers started complaining about their services.

  117. Umer IftikharBy Umer Iftikhar on 3 November, 2013

    Hello, I installed your plugin first time at my blog and found it a very very best plugin. I used to use All n one seo but never found such options as in yours. Just wanted to know one thing when should I care about traffic from search engines? I have 36 articles and having no traffic from search engine.

  118. SneheshBy Snehesh on 4 November, 2013

    That’s why I use a with a CDN , It’s really powerfull and cheap when compared to hosting.

  119. ChrisBy Chris on 5 November, 2013

    Recently I’ve been having a lot of issues with Host Gator specially after their most recent hardware upgrade. A lot of mysql issues and just a head ache. I’m thinking of moving some of my sites away from Host Gator hosting just to be on the safe side.

  120. Alex CardoBy Alex Cardo on 6 November, 2013

    I host my site at WP Engine. Yes, they really have a “forbidden plugins list”. I’ve tried to install W3 Total Cache and I’ve got an instantly message about it. But I can confirm that Yoast Seo Plugin is accepted by WP Engine, as I’m using it at my site. This plugin work perfectly, thanks.

    About hostgator and another cheap hosting services I can tell:
    “Miser pays twice”…So, now I’m using WP Engine, my plan is “professional” and I have CDN.

    My traffic is not too much now, it’s about 1200-1500/day… and I think, I could found cheaper than $100/month hosting for 1200-1500 visitors, but I’m believe that stability is preferred for me.

    P.s.: Why I can’t comment another posts??? I have a lot of questions for 2008-2012 posts.

  121. BrianBy Brian on 6 November, 2013

    Hey Joost,

    I totally get the frustration of having your work wrongly blamed for an issue that you didn’t cause, but don’t you think this post was a little extreme?

    In the post, you say, “It pains me to have to write this post and I have reached out to HostGator to see if they’re willing to change their ways.”, so that means you reached out to them to clear up the fact that it wasn’t your plugin’s fault prior to flying off the handle. From what you’ve said, it sounds like they’ve personally responded to you as well.

    So why turn a warning shot into full blown nuclear strike?

    My guess is that if you told them (and maybe you did, to be fair) that you’re going to publish a post like this after explaining what the real issue is, every admin in the company would know that your plugin isn’t the cause of whatever the real issue was here.

    If the situation were reversed and an issue were to be caused by your plugin (which I recommend 100% on my blog that’s hosted by HostGator ironically), should they immediately post a rant on their blog (http://blog.hostgator.com) about how Yoast sucks and that All-In-One SEO Pack or one of the many other SEO plugins are 1000X better?

    No, because that would be an unwarranted overreaction. Either way, you got their attention.

    Thanks for reading,


  122. Matt SagerBy Matt Sager on 7 November, 2013

    My experience with Hostgator was Kafkaesque. They are easily the worst host I’ve ever encountered, had astonishing levels of downtime, and customer service that was both incompetent and often extremely unpleasant.

    I’ve since moved to WP Engine, who are great by comparison but terrible by another measurement. I’m moving to Synthesis and crossing my fingers.

  123. Steve HornBy Steve Horn on 7 November, 2013

    I use Hostgator. I don’t plan on leaving but have had a week of headaches with them due to a migration they’re implementing. I have had frequents site outages of less than 5 minutes and one reseller account that had all sites down for a few hours (in addition to the frequent short outages). I assume this is a very temporary problem. When the sites are running, they are noticeably faster than before so I see signs of improvement. I think Hostgator is acting responsibly as far as hardware management goes.
    Now about Support. The ticket Yoast posted doesn’t surprise me at all. Hostgator has grown tremendously over a short period of time and their support show utmost valiance without the expertise to match. So I too get errant replies from them on a somewhat consistent basis. Shared hosting is shared hosting. At least I can understand their English. I love Yoast and all he does for our community. If you can afford Synthesis or WPEngine, I don’t know of anyone who has a single complaint against them and certainly nobody complains about Yoast’s products and services.

  124. LowellBy Lowell on 7 November, 2013

    Also had bad experiences with hostgator. They were very polite but I ran into issue after issue and had my sites down for a whole week at one point. I use green geeks and bluehost and am happy with them both. Green Geeks is probably my favorite.

  125. RonBy Ron on 7 November, 2013

    I had a lot of problems with hostgator but this was around two years ago when they suspended my site with no warning notice being given in advance of their action. This happened on four occasions.

    Each time I had to write and ask them to allow me access to the site backend (wp site) so I could have a look. at what was wrong. This took a few hours to get access to even pretend I knew what I was doing. I also asked them to send me a copy of their findings to could investigate better. What they sent gave me no information other than to say I was putting too much load on their processors. I optimised the database. and next days I wrote back and said that should do the trick. Thus was accepted and I was fully back on line

    It did for a few months and they again shut me down without warning. I asked for information which would help me to help their servers. The reply was fairly rude and said they could not help but they did again report that had seen a massive amount of load on my site. I must admit that my site according to my logs was getting around three hundred visitors a day which would have shut down a normal reseller account. . When it happened again around three months later I decided to move that one website to a cheaper server company and not had any problem with them. What’s more that company was far faster gtmetrix.com figures of page speed 95% I was struggling to get even 80% when I was with hostgator.
    I now no longer use hostgator for any website.


  126. LilahBy Lilah on 7 November, 2013

    Interestingly enough, I saw this post within my WordPress dashboard, hosted on HG We had this issue several months ago. Several blogs, light traffic on most, all using both plugins. Within a day or two, every single site was shut down. I jumped through every hoop I was asked to, websites came back up, then were shut down again. It took me DAYS to deal with all of the garbage, before they finally told me it was the plugins and to remove them. One night in particular I was up all night long dealing with this nightmare.

    Now that I see I am not the only one, I might just have to consider other options. I thought it was ugly to begin with, but I thought this was just something I had done wrong.

  127. David MedinaBy David Medina on 7 November, 2013

    I dumped Hostagot earlier this year. I go tired of the lousy, incompetent support and the site downtime. I am now extremely happy with a wordpress dedicated hosting getflywheel.com excellence uptime, incredible support and amazing speed.

  128. Ken FreeemanBy Ken Freeeman on 7 November, 2013

    I spent 7 years at Hostgator with over 150 sites and had nothing but ups and downs and after the move it got worse. I recently migrated everything to LiquidWeb and I must say its like moving from an amateur host to a pro host who caught over 6,000 malicious files among our 1 million files and over 350 malicious redirects in one Joomla site. Today I am pleased to be where we are and we offer only WordPress hosting now.

  129. Margaret SchautBy Margaret Schaut on 7 November, 2013

    Hostgator totally DESTROYED my sites and then blamed me for using those plugins. They refuse a refund for their incompetence. If your work is important to you, even if they are small sites, I agree GET OUT OF HOSTGATOR IMMEDIATELY. It was DEVASTATING to me, after all that work, and all destroyed for no good reason.

  130. Mark UpshawBy Mark Upshaw on 7 November, 2013

    I dropped them yesterday over the same damn problem. They told me that it was 100% my problem since it was on the WP side not their server.

    Great excuse for me to leave that instant.

  131. Gilles LacroixBy Gilles Lacroix on 7 November, 2013

    Hostgator sent me an email advising that there were upgrading server. When I switched the DNS over, Host Gator disabled the entire account 10) websites because of an issue with ONE website. Caching issue and again blaming Yoast (SEO plugin).
    After talking to a tech, it turns out that Hostgator has been sold and they are moving server alright by adding more client than before per server. Anyhow, I am just about done with them. Looking around to see who I will be using.

    Thanks for sharing

  132. Jessica ZurikBy Jessica Zurik on 8 November, 2013

    I want to quit from HostGator… Any advice?

  133. S&SBy S&S on 8 November, 2013

    I too have had issues with Host Gator suspending sites for mysterious reasons. And them not being able or willing to explain why. And recent slowness. Still, I stay with HG and recommend them to clients. All shared hosting sucks, I’ve found, but HG seems to be among the lesser of the evils. I find the support better than most (dependent on which guy you get; be willing to hang up and try another), and eventually everything gets sorted. My take is that if a plugin maker finds his product clashing with a major hosting service, it is his gig to make it work. As in, we all hate IE, but it is a fact of life.

  134. DanBy Dan on 8 November, 2013

    I use Digital Pacific here a lot in australia. They’re great and the tech support guys know their stuff.

    It still boggles my mind that anyone who makes regular changes to their site use either W3 Total Cache or any other caching plugin. I have had massive problems with both of them and will never go back to using them.

    I just stick with CloudFlare. You have to disable it when working on a site (put it in dev mode) but it works like a charm, even for large site on the super fast settings.

    You get what you pay for with hosts. If you choose Host Gator you’re kidding yourself if you think you’re going to get good service… same with any cheap and nasty hosting provider in my opinion.

  135. HalBy Hal on 8 November, 2013

    Hostgator was a fine company for a number of years. Then, as someone mentioned, they were bought by Endurance International Group (EIG) and they are hardly worthy of mention. Incidentally, EIG owns Bluehost and more than 50 other hosting companies. See: for the list.
    The ONLY host I have found that actually does what they claim to do and has excellent tech service is SiteGround. I move one site to them in Aug and have had 100% uptime (so far).

  136. TristanBy Tristan on 8 November, 2013

    Moved away from HG when they were bought out, use A Small Orange now. No issues with them so far, always helpful if needed. They got funding by the founder of HG, but have no ties to the current owner of HG.

  137. PrisquaBy Prisqua on 8 November, 2013

    I have quite a few sites hosted on hostgator and use your plugin on all of them and never had an issue and I find their customer support awesome. Some many years ago I got my sites shut down without any warnings because of some wordpress issues. It was not hostgator and it took 3 days for it to be fixed but moved my sites away. But will not put them down just because it happened to me.

  138. MichaelBy Michael on 8 November, 2013

    Interesting article. I’ve been using HostGator for 5 months now with no problems whatsoever. I have several shared accounts and all are using the Yoast SEO Plugin. I will be getting in contact with HostGator to see what their response is to this article. I’ve used other webhosts and so far I’m completely satisfied with HostGator. The websites I’m operating are both commercial and personal.

  139. PD BlizzardBy PD Blizzard on 8 November, 2013

    Just finished migrating 35 sites from Hostgator to another site, because Hostgator shut down legitimate, well coded WordPress based business sites without warning, and support staff could never truly explain why. Sometimes I did nothing and asked them to check, only have them turn the site again and never shut it down again. My new host has been incredible. I will not miss Hostgator.

  140. Richard CarterBy Richard Carter on 8 November, 2013

    From what you have written in this article, you don’t know that the HostGator client wasn’t previously warned. All you know is that he received that notice. You know nothing regarding any previous communication regarding bandwidth usage issues. And if that client is on shared hosting, and if he was previously warned of hogging resources, I find that notice to be very appropriate.
    I think you have gone off the deep-end and out of context; not mention lucky that HostGator hasn’t sued you by now.

    • TristanBy Tristan on 8 November, 2013

      Sue him for what? Let me guess… defamation? All Joost is doing is re-stating what the HG customer told him in the email, and stating his own opinion about the incident and HG in general. In other words, there’s nothing to sue about. Read up on the law before making pointless comments…

  141. KyleBy Kyle on 8 November, 2013

    Crazy I just stumbled on to this. I haven’t used Host Gator or those other “big guys” but I just wrote a post about my host which is Interserver. I have had 0 troubles with them and support has been excellent to say the least. I too get paid as an affiliate if you sign up but I’m so confident that I won’t give you my referal link. Please note that the link above is just the direct link

    I have had tons of issues with every host I have had till now but have started steering away from shared hosting because probably wherever you go it will be the same, always getting suspended for a rogue script gone bad for a split second and not even giving you time to troubleshoot in between suspensions.

  142. VC NickelsBy VC Nickels on 8 November, 2013

    I’ve used HostGator for several years now and have had similar issues a few times, notably with some plugins from WPMU, on a Shared Server. The techs disabled the offending plugins, and once my site, and sent me an email immediately .

    Is it inconvenient, sure a little. but an errant site in a shared environment can bring down more than just one site so it’s better to err on the side of caution. Never have I had an issue with them not helping me get to the root of the problem and they have always, always, gone above and beyond.

    I think you, and the individual that sent you this, are over reacting a tad bit. It’s been my experience that when people often lay blame incorrectly. It is possible, though unlikely, that your SEO plugin and WordFence caused some catastrophic error. Most likely though, there is more to it or just an overly cautious Admin.

    As a professional with a tremendous following you should be careful when you give this sort of advice.

  143. MogensBy Mogens on 8 November, 2013

    Anyone having an important site on a shared hosting should know it’s not a good idea. Anyone hosting his business site on a shared site is NOT running a business.

    That said, my sites have been on HG for at least 5 years and zero issues, they are better than some 10-12 other options I’ve tried, so I certainly am not moving anywhere.

    Good luck to you all and don’t overreact.

  144. Charalampos KapetaniosBy Charalampos Kapetanios on 8 November, 2013

    I use both Plug ins so I went on to read the article and the comments.

    I currently use GoDaddy and it doesn’t look good when out of the (around) 10 people that posted their opinions and experiences on the hosting that this company offers only 1 had something somewhat good to say.

    I’m posting because in 2 months I have to renew and I need to make a decision and I need some extra help because honestly, those that say that we should avoid GoDaddy, do not say what’s really wrong and I’m confused.

    First of all, out of all the companies listed by Joost, only DreamHost can be compared with GoDaddy as far as it goes with the price. Price is very important for me and right now I use the Deluxe package that it is again on discount and it is really cheap.

    So far I had not any big problems and every time I e-mailed support, they replied within a few hours and they have been always very helpful.

    After reading all this, there is only one problem that made me suspicious. The Wordfence plug in is locking out at least 100 bots from different hostnames daily! Obviously this is very disturbing and this article along with all the comments made me think that this situation might partially be fault of my cheap hosting plan. Someone above said something like “you get what you pay for” and this is true in so many things in life. Unfortunately my knowledge on hosting is very very poor…

    Could an upgrade to the DreamHost Shared plan or to the GoDaddy Ultimate plan, fix this problem or any other problem I might have in the future?

  145. Marco RBy Marco R on 8 November, 2013

    I use your plugin on Hostgator without problems since 2 years.
    I think that hostgator has a great assistence and I had no problem with them.

  146. John CowburnBy John Cowburn on 8 November, 2013

    You say to move away from Hostgator as though it is a really easy thing to do! It is not! I have about 12 sites with Hostgator and have never had a problem. The thought of moving those sites is a nightmare! The last time I did this I asked InMotion (who have great reviews) to move my sites to them, they made a complete hash of everything and it cost a lot of time and money to get things back to normal!!! So I think you should modify your comments, if someone is having problems with Hostgator then yes they should consider moving but if they haven’t then why should they move? I have been with HG for the last 3 years and their customer service has been excellent. I have no axe to grind here – just saying it as it is.

    • PD BlizzardBy PD Blizzard on 8 November, 2013

      Most hosting companies that offer cpanel will move the sites for you, from another cpanel hosting company. Site5.com moved most of my sites for me. Zero downtime.

  147. Russell JamiesonBy Russell Jamieson on 8 November, 2013

    Surely this is just an isolated incident of really poor support. The problem has been misdiagnosed

    WordPress SEO and Wordfence use DONOTCACHE in limited circumstances where appropriate.

    I have dozens of sites running on Hostgator Baby and Resellers accounts using both WordFence and WordPress SEO without no performance or caching problems.

    It was just a case of a support person jumping to the wrong conclusion prematurely.

    I have no plans of moving from Hostgator unless they adopt a policy of inane support.

  148. yathavBy yathav on 8 November, 2013

    Always life is interesting !!. its my second day in host gator and i got a newsletter from yoast stating that reasons why should you avoid hostgator. awestruck!!

  149. KenBy Ken on 8 November, 2013

    You pay for what you get. A lot of these hosting companies are setup for volume of sites not for quality of service. I’m sure this bad PR will raise some concerns if they are not too big for their own good. Didnt they or another one of these small WP hosts have network failure this year? /facepalm

    Compared to the beginning of 2000, hosting is so cheap and amazing now its not even funny. Go to a company that focuses on the bigger picture and quality of service. Rackspace and Media Temple have been amazing for me. Their service is unmatched. Tweet them and see how fast they answer.

    • MichaelBy Michael on 8 November, 2013

      I agree with volume and not quality.

      EIG has no concern about customers. Dealing with EIG hosts over the years..perfect example….Netfirms, was a Canadian company just above Toronto….all employees fired…sites and emails lost….company moved south…..that’s who were dealing with. HG is no longer HG with Brent gone and the company in EIG’s hands. The situation described in this thread has happened countless amount times…..and those are just the situations posted publicly.

      The Network failure this year was not a failure, it was a global attack. On average, a WordPress site can receive between 50-200 per day. Times that by say 100 WordPress sites on one server….50,000 to 200,000 attacks a day. An average the almost any good server could handle. The global attack was in the range of 100,000 IP attacks per site. Now….100,000 times 100 sites….10,000,000 attacks….instant server shut down. There are many methods to control attacks, but these attacks around May made hosts big or small scramble for solutions.

  150. Brice EmryBy Brice Emry on 8 November, 2013

    Hello everyone and sorry for my english, I’m French.
    I host in Hostogator for a long time and I confess that I too I’ve received this message. Right now I use WordPress seo and I have no problem. In fact, it is at the plugins cache servers that problem occur. The trick is to choose the right onc cache plugin not to saturate their seveurs. I do not know anything about programming, but I try to understand how things work.

  151. DJBy DJ on 8 November, 2013

    This is concerning, we have been using HostGator for several years. There have been some patching moments but nothing as serious a being placed on a restriction list.

  152. channarithBy channarith on 9 November, 2013

    Hostgator is not so good. some of plugin was not allow and customer support seem very slow

  153. SvetlanaBy Svetlana on 9 November, 2013

    We had the same problem with Hostgator… :(
    Never AGAIN!!!

  154. BrunoBy Bruno on 9 November, 2013

    Recently moved from ipage (which sucks horribly) to hostgator, and sadly I didn’t see this. My website is down ATM because something is raising the number of queries and overloading their CPU. They haven’t told me this about your plugin, however they’re encouraging me a lot to change to another SEO plugin, which I won’t do.
    This is what they’re saying:

    I have done further research, and I’d like to suggest the following:

    Installed Plugin:

    * SEO Plugins. While many of these plugins are popular, the degree of automation they use causes performance problems for sites — especially those which have other intensive plugins. Ironically, this can actually hurt SEO, as a slow loading page is ranked lower by most search engine algorithms.
    A plugin we recommend instead is Greg’s High Performance SEO Pack. This plugin will guide you through proper SEO for your site, and will do it without causing performance issues.

  155. DavidBy David on 9 November, 2013

    Could anyone recommend which hosting company I should use for a site expecting a large volume of traffic over a relatively short period of time? I am working on an event specific site which would have a short life span but probably get a lot of visitors during the event and I was tempted to try Wp Engine for that – would that be a good idea or can anyone make any recommendations as reliability will obviously be a must!