HostGator Website Builder Review 2017
Does HostGator have a good website builder? Read our full HostGator Website Builder review with pros & cons, complaints, recommended use, FAQs, & more.
|Drag & drop:||Yes|
|# of templates:||100+|
|Money-Back Guarantee:||45 days|
A Quick Overview:
Hostgator is known primarily for being a web hosting company, but also has its own website builder used by many EIG owned brands. This is the company’s response to the ever-changing landscape of web development. With website builders like Wix, Weebly, Squarespace and many others being a full service solution for beginners and non-programmers, Hostgator has now introduced their own website builder in response. This website builder includes features such as drag and drop functionality, over 100 mobile-friendly templates, SEO tools, eCommerce shopping carts, Google Analytics, and more. There are 3 pricing plans which go up to $15.99 per month. If you already have a shared hosting plan with Hosgator, then you can access the Basic plan of their website builder at no additional cost. One of the reasons Hostgator gained popularity among users is because they provide helpful and accessible customer support. This goes for users of the website builder as well which can be a big plus for those who don’t have the slightest clue how to build a website even with the drag and drop interface. For that reason, amongst a few others, we would recommend this website builder for users who are completely new to web design/development. It’s simple, affordable and very functional to publish a website in a matter of minutes.
Why choose HostGator Website Builder:
- Very helpful customer support
- The Basic plan is free if you already have a shared hosting plan
- Drag and drop editor is very easy to learn and use
- No coding is required & excellent for beginners
- Credible reputation with over 10 years in the industry
- The Business plan is great for eCommerce/online stores
- 99.9% uptime guarantee
- Same EIG proprietary site builder with the high performance of HostGator web hosting
What are the disadvantages:
- There is no free trial or completely free option available
- More expensive than other website builders
- Unable to change your website template without cancellation
- Fewer template options than most website builders
The bottom line:
Hostgator is undoubtedly one of the best and most credible hosting providers around, but are they just as good a website builder? As with any platform, Hostgator has their own pros and con. It is good in terms of uptime and load times because all websites are hosted on this solid hosting provider with a 99.9% uptime guarantee. One of their cons is pricing. Many other website builders have a free version or a free trial. Hostgator does not offer such options and their Basic Plan is only available once you have purchased one of their hosting plans. For this reason, we would only recommend this website builder if you are certain that you want to make the commitment and if you are expecting high traffic to your website. Their pricing is higher than its competitors but even on its Basic plan, Hostgator offers better hosting than most website builders.
HostGator has a 45 day money-back guarantee, so you can start building risk free. Try it Now
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Hostgator was founded by Brent Oxley in October 2002. The company is known primarily for its hosting and domain registration services. By 2006, they had over 200,000 registered domains and 2 years later, Inc. Magazine ranked the company as #21 on its list of fastest growing companies in the United Sates. CEO and Founder, Brent Oxley, announced the sale of the company to Endurance International Group on June 21, 2012 for $225 million. Hostgator, which is based in Austin, Texas also has operations in Canada, India, and Brazil. By 2013 they were hosting over 9 million domains across over 400,000 customers. Hostgator as a whole, is highly recommended by us as an excellent web hosting provider. Their website builder solution was previously provided by integrating Weebly as an option on the cPanel but they have since launched their own website builder which can be used instead.
Hostgator’s website builder offers 3 pricing plans namely Basic, Pro and Business. Each plan comes with a number of features that gets better with each upgrade. Unlike most website builders, Hostgator does not offer a free version nor free trial. The cheapest plan is called Basic and it is free with any hosting plan. The cheapest hosting plan is the Hatchling plan which has an introductory price of $3.95 so essentially, a user will pay this price to try out Hostgator’s website builder. The most expensive plan is Business which costs an additional $15.99 per month with any hosting plan. These prices are introductory/promotional prices which are subject to change and last only for a short period. The plans are then renewed at the higher standard price. Features of the Hostgator website builder range from 100+ mobile-friendly templates and SEO Tools to Ecommerce Shopping Carts and Facebook Integration. Let’s take a look at each plan individually. The price for each plan listed below is an additional cost to whatever the cost of your hosting plan is.
|Paid Plans:||Yearly Subscription:||Compare:|
|Basic||Free w/ any hosting plan||View Details|
Basic: If you already have a hosting package with Hostgator then you’ll be able to access the website builder through this plan at no additional cost. As the name suggests, you will have the basic features needed to get your website published in a matter of minutes. You will have access to over 100 mobile-friendly templates, pre-built sections/pages, SEO tools, the drag/drop editor, social media links, and PayPal integration. Some downfalls of this plan are that you will only be allowed to have up to 6 pages and there will be a Hostgator ad/link in the footer.
Pro: The Pro plan has everything that the Basic plan has and more. Some additional features include: unlimited pages, removal of the Hostgator link the footer, embedded HD video, revision history, custom favicon, and Google Analytics integration. The only feature missing that would make this plan perfect is eCommerce capability. Because that is not included, the plan is best suited for business and individuals who want to focus of content creation/management and lead generation.
Business: This is the best plan that Hostgator offers for its website builder. This plan has everything that the Pro plan has, along with eCommerce capabilities such as an eCommerce shopping cart, inventory management, payment processor coupon codes, and Facebook integration. We would recommend this plan to an individual or business wanting to operate an online store, and even high traffic online stores.
Because Hostgator’s hosting services and website builder are all under one company, the sign up process goes hand in hand. When signing up for Hostgator's website builder, you must first sign up to one of their hosting plans. These two services work together to create your new website. On the homepage, you'll see pricing and other information about their main hosting plans. It's important to note that Hostgator does not have a free plan so you'll have to pay right away but they do have a 45-day money back guarantee that it at your disposal if you don't like the service. Once you sign up, you will have to create your domain name. After that, you will be led to your account management page by clicking the Hostgator home icon at the top right of the screen. There are two main portals which you can access the website builder from; the Customer Portal and the Cpanel.
The Customer Portal is where you'll be able to manage your personal information, billing information, domains, and packages.
In order to access the website builder from the Customer Portal, you would click the “Hosting” tab and the domain hosting that you want to use. The website builder icon will appear in the menu bar.
The cPanel is Hostgator’s standard control panel which is essentially where you will be able to manage everything relating to your website. The previous cPanel was dark and crowded with upgrades and ads. It has been replaced by a cleaner and more modern layout. The features on the cPanel are not exclusive to the website builder so on this page you will find the WordPress installer, plugins, SSL certificates and themes, among other features. The website builder is indicated by a yellow, orange and blue cube. It is one of the first icons on the page.
Regardless of whether you access the website builder via the cPanel or the Customer Portal, once you click the icon, you will choose which plan best suits your needs; Basic, Pro or Business. If you select Pro or Business, you must select a billing cycle and create your invoice. If you choose the Basic plan, the next step is to select your template and then begin customizing your website in the drag and drop editor.
One of the great features of this editor is that it allows you to edit the Desktop version and Mobile version of your website separately. The mobile editor even allows you to hide certain elements that are still visible on the desktop version. You can customize the experience that your website visitors will have on each device.
The editor also allows users to edit and rearrange sections, view statistics, change colour schemes, add a blog and add an ecommerce store among other features. The drag and drop nature of it makes it very user-friendly which is important for any website builder.
Helpful FAQs About HostGator Website Builder
Here are some frequently asked questions you may have about HostGator Website Builder:
Before you can purchase a website builder plan, you must first purchase a hosting plan. The cheapest one is the Hatchling plan which is available at an introductory price of $3.95 per month. Once you’ve purchased the hosting, the Basic version of the website builder will be available to you at no additional cost. If you wish to upgrade to the Pro or Business plan, you will have to pay an additional cost.
Yes. Even though Hostgator does not provide as many template options as other website builders, the good news is that all templates are responsive, which means your website will configure or optimize itself for any device it is being shown on; whether that is a smartphone, tablet or desktop.
HostGator accepts all major credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, & Discover) and PayPal.
Disadvantages Explained – Things HostGator Website Builder Could Improve
Hosgator is solid and credible platform for web development overall but as it relates to its website builder specifically, there are a few disadvantages that we want to elaborate on:
Its prices are complicated and more expensive than that of competitors – Hostgator's whole pricing structure will be a bit confusing to the average user. The per month prices that are advertised on its homepage assume that you are registering for a 3-year period which can mean paying upwards of $100 upfront. If you decide to go for a 1 month payment instead, it would work out to be around $11 per month which is more expensive than the starting price for most website builders. What's worse is that the prices on the homepage are only promotional and will increase once that promotional period ends.
There is no free version or free trial – Most website builders have a free plan or at least a free trial so that you can decide if this platform or service is for you without the commitment of paying upfront. Hostgator does not offer this to its users. If you want to try out Hostgator, you will have to register for one of their hosting plans. Their cheapest plan is the Hatchling plan which has an introductory price of $3.95 and a renewal price of $10.95 per month. Although Hostgator does offer a 45-day money back guarantee, it can be quite a hassle to go through the cancellation process. It would be nice if they just offered a free trial.
Additional Features Worth Mentioning
Being one of the web development industry’s leaders for so many years, Hostagator has managed to get a number of things right. Here are some of the benefits that you will receive by signing up with Hostgator.
Accessible and helpful customer support – One thing that Hostgator takes seriously is being there for their customers to answer questions and help with issues. Customers can access support via phone, email, live chat, video tutorials, Hostgator forums, the Support Portal, and the Customer Portal. The support team is helpful and willing to access any questions you have about your service. Their toll-free support line is open 24/7 for you to call if you need help at any time.
99.9% Uptime Guarantee – Hostgator is so confident in its hosting services that it offers a 99% uptime guarantee to customers who have Shared or Reseller hosting. In their Terms of Service Hostgator states “If a shared or reseller server falls short of the 99.9% uptime guarantee, you may receive one (1) month of credit for that package on your account”. Once you build your website using Hostgator you can be confident that downtime won’t be an issue.
Conclusion – To Build or Not to Build?
As we reach the conclusion of our Hostgator Website Builder review, it’s important to keep in mind that every website builder has different strength and weaknesses. If you’re considering Hostgator, you’ll need to determine if this website builder offers the right features, pricing, and services to best suit your needs. For further information about Hostgator’s website builder, visit their website at www.hostgator.com/website-builder. If you found this review helpful, please like and share it!
Let Us Know Your Thoughts
Have you used HostGator Website Builder before? Have any positive or negative experience you’d like to share with us? Email us your feedback at . Thank you!