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Bye, bye Hostgator!

I have been hosting my websites at Hostgator for more than 4 years, the first invoice being paid at 2010.02.10. In the beginning it was OK, it was my first paid hosting and I was very happy that I didn’t have ads above my website placed inside an ugly iframe by the hosting company that provided free web hosting…

The move from free hosting to paid, shared hosting was a big one for me at that time, I had no idea what a DNS was, how to register my own domain name or how to create sub-domains. Simple stuff, but 4-5 years ago I had no idea how they worked. Later on we had courses at the university and we have been taught all about these, but I always felt that I have learned easier alone by exploring stuff and seeing how they work instead of it being told to me. By the time I had several VPS hosts and other shared hosts as well, but my first was at Hostgator and my whole attraction for the web has sparked there…

On one hand, in the past few years the price of hosting services seemed to be continuously decreasing. Even while working at Colt Technology Services we had several meetings when the leaders were worried about the decreasing prices of the company’s services. And contrary with the market trends the price for my hosting plan at Hostgator has increased over time. It started at $7.96 and increased to $9.95 in a few months. Around a year ago Hostgator has added the value of VAT to it and since last March my expense on a Hostgator has increased to $12.34 ($2.39 being the VAT). Now for that price you can already get a VPS that may very well serve for a couple of low-traffic websites.

On the other hand, the performance of the server my account was created on has been continuously decreased. The loading time of my websites has increased and quite often did I have to hit the refresh button in my browser, because the page just wouldn’t load after half a minute. Last year I have already moved, my flagship website to another host because of this issue, but decided to keep the rest of my websites including my blog, vCard and portfolio on Hostgator. It got worse and worse, Hostgator clearly started overselling since it has been acquired by EIG.

Furthermore, I have been using the mail server configured on Hostgator. Last month there was a day when I couldn’t access my email account at all for almost a day and not even my websites were up. That was the moment, when I have decided to cancel my plan at Hostgator. It is sad to see the quality of services of a very popular provider decrease by time. Unfortunately I had similar experiences with other service providers (not necessarily hosting providers) as well – in the beginning they provide quality services at a competitive price, but after a while they do not care about the existing customers and let the quality of their services decrease.

All in all, moving my websites and configuring my account is a lot of wasted time, but I got to the point when I do not want to do anything with Hostgator any more. The price got too high compared to the quality of the services. I have moved to a hosting company in Cluj-Napoca last year, the price is right and the quality of hosting is just awesome. Instead of my Hostgator account I have created another plan there for my emails and will probably move only my valuable sites and resign to the rest of them. It actually is a good chance for a spring (pre-summer) cleaning.