Shared Hosting Verdict:
A++ Highly Recommended
|SiteGround Coupon||60% Off|
|Unlimited Space||Unlimited Bandwidth|
|Integrated Cloudflare||Daily Backup|
Our SiteGround Shared Hosting Review
SiteGround has been in existence for nearly 10 years now, and have become widely known and accepted in the industry for pushing the technological boundaries that make them one of the fastest, most reliable and secure web hosting providers around. For that reason (among others) you will find our SiteGround Review ranked number one out of all the hosts we have reviewed. In fact, no other host we have reviewed comes close in terms of technical ability, features and performance. Even our own site that we host at SiteGround has an amazing 100% uptime over the last year. At the last count in 2012 SiteGround had well over a quarter of a million customers, and has recently even been recommended on the Google blog for their adoption of latest hosting technologies. They are a fast growing web host, and we suspect they will become much more widely known in the public eye over the next couple of years. Indeed, 2013 seems to have been a very proactive, and productive year for them. Not only did they employ an addition 35 employers, but they revamped their hosting plans and refreshed their website and branding. But there is more… they have sponsored 20 events globally, and given 9 talks at events such as WordCamp and JoomlaDay.
What we like about SiteGround
- Great Uptime – Like many hosts they boast a 99.9% uptime guarantee. We have bee hosting with them for around 12 months now, and they certainly have kept their promise. We have experienced no downtime at all with their service (see a recent screenshot above and to the right of our uptime). SiteGround have redundancies built in at every level, including the rare step of having a completely empty server all setup and ready to go in the rare occasion they need to migrate one server to another. Of course, they also keep spare parts for every server they use, to enable lightning fast repairs. But did we say we have 100% uptime?!?
- Great Support – We have always been extremely impressed with their willingness to go the extra mile. Unlike other hosts, SiteGround usually answer their live chat within a few seconds and on occasions have even helped us with some WordPress issues that have nothing at all to do with their hosting. But we think the most significant thing about SiteGround’s support is that they hire truly exceptional people, that have interests in developing new tools (such as Site Staging, Auto Update just to name a few examples). They really understand what they are doing, and are confident to offer custom server setups to really take advantage of their specialist knowledge.
- WordPress & Joomla Specialists – SiteGround have servers specifically optimized for WordPress and Joomla Sites, making them run faster with less load on the server. However, you will need their GoGeek plan for all three levels of caching, even their basic plan is blazingly fast.
- Great server security – SiteGround have developed special server software that isolates each account, so that your site doesn’t suffer when another has been compromised. Not only this, when threats occur they are extremely quick to react to ensure the security of your site by applying fixes at the server level. For a demonstration on how far they go, check out their Joomla security webinar (but the same thing applies to WordPress and other software as well).
- Unlimited bandwidth and clear usage policies – It goes without saying that unlimited is better. These days the majority of hosts limit CPU usage rather than space and bandwidth, and with all of SiteGrounds’ caching technologies and CDN, you will find even a busy site will have no difficulties on their basic tariff. You can clearly monitor your CPU usage on the cPanel dashboard. SiteGround are one of the few hosts that allow the upgrade of CPU usage, via their tiered plans. Whats more, this is one of the few hosts that will give you an indication of how much traffic each of their plans can cater for, with their StartUp plan being good for around 10,000 monthly visits… good enough for most blogs, or business websites.
- CPanel – We highly recommend using a host that uses cPanel, as it is the most common administration interface for website hosting. The biggest benefit is that if you ever need to move your site to a new host it makes it incredibly easy, as most hosts will carry out the task for you free of charge.
- Free Domain – Whilst we love Namecheap to host our domains, who is going to pass up a free domain?
- Free CDN – Cloudflare is integrated at the cPanel level, so with just one click you can enjoy all the benefits of this technology, significantly speeding up your site. A Content Distribution Network distributes copies of your site to servers across the world which reduces latency as people viewing request copies locally. It also reduces the strain on the server, and has some other neat security features as well.
- Advanced Caching – SiteGround uses their own specially developed Caching technology that they call “SuperCacher”. What this does is stores fully built copies of pages (rather than dynamically built from database queries), and increases the speed of your site significantly. You will need to sign up for their GrowBig plan for this at $7.95 for all 3 levels of caching, but to be honest, the GrowBig plan is worth it just for all the additional features you get with it (30 days backups, premium support, Free SSL, and all 3 levels of caching).
- GoGeek plan – See below.
This deserves a special mention, as it was previously their semi-dedicated plan. It has much better hardware configurations, and we have included a comparison between the GoGeek plan for the more technical minded (this plan is great for developers), and the other two plans below:
1. Hardware setup
Shared servers – StartUp and GrowBig:
MySQL + mail accounts run on SAS – just one hard drive.
File partitions use 3 SATA disks in RAID 5
GoGeek (business) servers:
MySQL + mail accounts runs on SSD (2 drives in RAID 0).
File partitions use 4 SAS disks in RAID 10
All in all:
-On Geek servers SiteGround use up to twice more RAM than on StartUP and GrowBig servers.
-MySQL runs on separate drives in both cases but in Geek configuration is a lot more faster because they use SSD drives instead of SAS/SATA disks
-file partitions(client’s files) are normally hosted on SATA, but with Geek are on SAS disks
-On Geek RAID10 setup which runs faster than RAID5
2. They host less accounts on GoGeek servers – this results in ability to provide up to 4 times more server resource than on the StartUp and GrowBig plans.
3. GIT + Staging is available for GoGeek. Servers are also PCI compliant + GoGeek users get free SSL.
What we don’t like about SiteGround
- Cpanel backup 500MB limit - Slightly annoying if you need to transfer your site.
- You should be aware of a couple of limitations that we have found – No Windows hosting (meaning no ASP.net), no Ruby on Rails on shared hosting platforms.
Our SiteGround Review Verdict
A++ Highly Recommended
For all the reasons mentioned above, you can start to understand why our SiteGround Review is extremely positive. By using our 60% off coupon you can get their hosting for just $3.95 per month, but be sure to sign up for as long as possible to make the most of the savings. SiteGround is the only hosting provider that has so far received our “A++ Highly Recommended Rating”, due all the reasons we have stated above. There simply is no other host involved so highly in the community, designing bespoke technologies to vastly out class the competition, and providing such excellent levels of support and high levels of uptime. Forget what we say about all other hosting providers, they don’t even come close.