What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear about Siteground? If you ask their long-time customers, they will say WordPress expertise.
Well, they will not be named as one of the best recommended web hosts by WordPress.org if they weren’t that good. However, is that all that they can offer?
In this Siteground review we will go over what this web host has to offer, what’s good about them, and of course the downsides as well. We will also check out the stats and make recommendations as to who their service is best suited for.
Pros and Cons in a Glance
The following is a gist of the upsides and downsides of Siteground’s hosting service. We’ll go over the details in the discussion that comes after.
- Above average uptime
- Every hosting plan comes with a free SSL certificate
- Integrates CloudFlare for better security and performance
- Customers are allowed to choose their preferred server locations.
- Loads of free services included in each plan
- Cloud hosting is pretty robust and reliable
- Dedicated hosting allows you to configure CPU, storage, RAID, and RAM as needed
- Customer service is top notch compared to other hosting companies.
- They don’t offer large storage space with each hosting plan
- There aren’t any shared hosting plans that are payable month to month. All shared hosting is paid 12, 24, or 36 months.
- Hosting plan prices are a bit too high. But they make up for that with reliable and quality service. That’s going to be the tradeoff you will have to think about.
- Data transfer allowances are a bit lower compared to other hosts. For instance, their dedicated hosting plans usually give you 10 TB of data transfers allowed. There are hosts that give you 15 TB allowance.
- They have a reseller hosting service but it doesn’t provide you with a lot of flexible options—but at least they have it offered (plenty of improvements to be made in this department)
They do not offer any Windows server options, which can be a downside for some developers. But if you don’t need that resource then you’re good to go.
The Company at a Glance
Siteground is a company based in Bulgaria. It was founded back in 2004 by Nikolay Todorov, Reneta Tsankova, and Tenko Nikolav. They were actually a college friends.
They shared a vision and that was to create a hosting service that was to be unparalleled. It would be a service that provided better support, one that was faster, and safer.
Note that Siteground is an independent company. That means they are not controlled or owned in part or in full by a larger holding company.
Today, the company is one of the fastest growing independent hosting companies in the world today. Now that tells us a lot about this web hosting company.
Siteground Shared Hosting Plans
Siteground has three shared hosting plans—StartUp, GrowBig, and GoGeek plans. These hosting plans are recommended for beginners. If you’re just starting out and you’re making your first websites, then these are the plans that the company recommends.
These plans are well suited for low traffic websites. Remember that with a shared hosting plan, your websites will share resources with other websites that will also be hosted in the same server.
Note that shared hosting plans include hosted applications such as the following:
- WordPress Hosting
- Magneto Hosting
- Joomla Hosting
- WooCommerce Hosting
- PrestaShop Hosting
- Drupal Hosting
You get to choose which application your shared hosting plan will be optimized for when it comes to managed applications hosting.
The following are the details for each of the company’s shared hosting plans:
- StartUp Plan
|Features||10 GB of space, 10,000 visits monthly, 1 website|
|Cost||$3.95 per month (special rate)
Regular rate is $11.95 per month
|Special Features||Comes with all Essential Features|
The StartUp plan is perfect for blogs and smaller ecommerce sites that don’t require a lot of storage space. Note that you are only allotted 10 gigabytes of space, which isn’t much for multiple sites or larger ecommerce sites. Remember that this entire package can only be used for one website only.
The amount of network traffic allowable is 10,000 visits a month. So, what if your site becomes really popular and traffic exceeds the allowable load? Your next option is to move up to the next hosting plan or tier.
- GrowBig Plan
|Features||20 GB of web space, 25,000 visits monthly, unlimited websites|
|Cost||$5.95 per month (special rate)
Regular rate is $19.95 per month
|Special Features||Comes with all Essential Features plus Premium Features|
The GrowBig hosting plan is for webmasters who are looking for shared hosting solutions. If you need to host multiple websites using one hosting account then this might be a good option for you.
However, do take note that you are only afforded 20 GB of storage space and 25,000 visits monthly. Depending on the type of content that your sites will have, that may either be okay or cutting things close.
Obviously even though Siteground may say that you can host “unlimited” websites with this account, the actual limit is in the drive space given to you.
You definitely can’t use this account to host 100 photography or photo sharing websites, for instance. You will run out of storage space and other resources really fast at that rate.
However, the premium features do make this hosting plan quite attractive. You can see the list of premium features in below.
- GoGeek Plan
|Features||30 GB of space, 100,000 visits monthly, multiple websites|
|Cost||$3.95 per month(special rate)
Regular rate is $34.95/month
|Special Features||Comes with all Essential Features and Premium Features plus it also includes Geeky Features (see feature list below)|
The GoGeek hosting plan is the go to plan for true blue web geeks. It’s expensive and yes, the web space isn’t that big considering but you can already workout the fine details in spite of the limited amount of web space.
This account gives you access to SuperCacher, this is the Siteground’s proprietary website optimization solution. This tool gives you some interesting advantages.
First off, it gives your site’s loading speed a big boost. You can choose from three caching options: static, dynamic, and memcache.
- Dynamic Caching – this caching option is of course powered by WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal 7. With dynamic caching, the PHP code that is generated by these apps is directly fetched from the server’s RAM as they are generated. You will have to upload the plugin that is developed by the Siteground team for any of the three apps above. After installing that plugin you can then activate the dynamic caching service.
- Memcached Caching – this is the go to option for web sites that are powered by databases. Examples of such sites include Facebook and YouTube. The database queries are cached into the server’s RAM, which of course improves the speed and performance of the website.
Other geeky features that are included with the GoGeek hosting plan include free backups on demand and PCI compliant server support.
All Siteground hosting plans have the following essential features:
- Free website builder
- 24/7 support
- Free SSL and HTTPS
- 30 day money back guarantee
- Free email accounts
- Unmetered traffic
- Free Cloudflare CDN
- Unlimited MySQL
- Free daily backup
- cPanel and SSH
The GrowBig and GoGeek hosting plans come with the following premium features apart from the essential features listed above.
- Free site transfer (site migration)
- Free backup restores
- SuperCacher (improves page load times)
- Priority technical support
- Free backup on demand
- Fewer accounts on each server
- One click grit repo creation
- Joomla and WordPress Staging
- PCI compliant servers
Siteground’s reseller hosting is mainly targeted for developers who have long-term customers. If part of your business includes reselling hosting services then the company gives you that opportunity.
With reseller hosting, you’re basically renting a server owned by Siteground. You automatically have a service that you can sell without having to invest on the expensive infrastructure.
Here are the hosting features that you can sell to your clients:
- 10 GB of server space
- cPanel and SSH access
- Four server locations
- Unmetered data transfer
- Unlimited MySQL databases
- Unlimited FTP accounts
- Free daily backup
- Free email accounts
- Free CloudFlare CDN
Yes, it’s basically the same as the basic plan that Siteground offers. You can use your own brand when you resell the service.
Is this the best reseller hosting service around? Unfortunately it is not the best offer we’ve seen. The web space and allowed bandwidth isn’t really as competitive—but at least you have something basic to offer.
You can think of it as an add-on that you can offer to your clients instead of the entire package.
There are other reseller hosting programs from other providers that are more generous than what Siteground offers. Perhaps one day they would beef up their offerings in this department. Who knows?
The blurb on the Siteground official site says that their cloud hosting service is fast, scalable, and fully managed. And that is exactly what you are going to get from their service.
Cloud hosting of course is a viable upgrade to the shared hosting plans described above. Every hosting service has these next tier upgrades, which is a must for developers who have sites that have increased in traffic volume and material or data thus they need a little more web space.
You can customize your cloud hosting plan as needed and they put their best foot forward when it comes to customer support. If you’re looking to setup a high traffic and professional level website with plenty of options that can’t be covered by their regular shared plans then this might be a good option to look into.
They have four standard cloud hosting plans to offer to their customers, which includes the following:
- Entry: The Entry level plan includes a host of features such as 5 TB of data transfer, web space of up to 40 GB on an SSD drive (it’s much faster), 4 GB of memory, and a server with 2 CPU cores. This plan costs $80 a month.
- Business: The Business level plan provides you with 5 TB of data transfer allowance. It also affords you SSD web space amounting to 60 GB. You will have a server with 6 GB of memory and 3 CPU cores. This hosting plan will cost you $120 per month.
- Business Plus: The Business Plus cloud hosting plan also gives you an allowance of 5 TB of data transfer, which is pretty much the standard offer of this hosting company. This plan ups your SSD web storage space up to 80 GB, which is pretty good. Computing power is also raised up to 8 GB of memory and 4 CPU cores. The Business Plus plan will cost you $160 a month.
- Super Power: This is the company’s top notch cloud hosting offer. Again you get an allowance of 5 TB of data transfer, 120 GB of web space, 10 GB of memory, and 8 CPU cores. The Super Power cloud hosting plan will cost you $240 a month.
Note that these cloud hosting plans include an SSL certificate that will last for an entire year. On top of that, since Siteground makes use of multiple servers, the resources will auto scale depending on the amount of traffic that your sites are getting. That means you are not going to get any outages due to lack of power.
Now, the question if you compare Siteground’s cloud hosting offerings to what the competition has to offer, can we say that theirs is competitive?
The answer to that is yes. They do provide a competitive edge to their customers.
Are there any downsides? Yes, there are downsides. Again, we don’t know why they skimp out on the web space even for their cloud hosting offers. The server space offered is larger than usual but they’re not the most generous so to speak.
The data transfer allowance is also generous but there are also other cloud hosting providers that offer unlimited monthly data transfers. As to the RAM and available CPU cores, they’re pretty much spot on with the competition.
But how about the price—is Siteground’s offer competitively priced? Unfortunately, the prices and rates that the company asks are a bit steep. If you have an enterprise level site and you’re a bit stiff on the budget then Siteground may not be a good fit for you.
However, if you’re looking for reliability, stability, and top notch support along the side of the regular cloud hosting service then they have a pretty good offer.
Dedicated hosting puts your website in a dedicated server for your website—that means you don’t share the resources with other users or customers. Yes it is more expensive but it does give your site a lot more power compared to shared options.
Siteground’s dedicated hosting services allow you to host your website on a high end dedicated server. You get to choose from different server configurations.
The servers are posted on select locations, which give you the best of what the company has to offer. Siteground staff manages the machine you rent, monitor its performance 24/7, and updates its software as needed.
You are given three server configurations: Entry Server, Power Server, and Super Power Server.
The Entry Server option gives you a machine that has a CPU Clock Speed of 3.20 Ghz. For storage you get an Intel Xeon E3-1230 SSD with 480 GB. Your machine will have 16 GB DDR3 RAM. It will also be outfitted with 4 CPU Cores and 8 CPU Threads. This package will cost you $269 a month.
This dedicated hosting option gives you a machine that has a CPU clock speed of 3.50 Ghz. When it comes to storage options you will be allotted an Intel Xeon E3-1270 SSD drive with a 960 GB capacity.
Your machine will also have 32 GB DDR3 RAM as well as 8 MB CPU Cache. It will also be powered by 4 CPU Cores with 8 CPU Threads. Taking this option will cost you $349 a month.
Super Power Server
This is the best that Siteground has to offer when it comes to dedicated hosting. Your machine will have a CPU clock speed of 2.00 Ghz. For storage options, your machine will be outfitted with a pair of Intel Xeon E5-2630 SSD drives with a total capacity of 2×960 GB each on RAID 1.
For RAM, your machine will have 64 GB DDR3 with a CPU Cache of 15 MB. Your machine will have a pair of 6 CPU Cores and 12 CPU Threads. Getting the Super Power Server will cost you $729 a month.
NOTE: all of these dedicate hosting options will come with a bandwidth allowance of 10 TB of data transfers each month. Now, that will be enough for some webmasters but others will have need for more bandwidth.
That is why we are a little bit on the fence on this. However, another thing that may be a bit of a disappointment for some web developers is that Siteground only has Linux base dedicated servers. If you prefer to use Windows operating systems then you may encounter a problem here.
Enterprise hosting is suited for big businesses that require a tremendous amount of traffic. The web traffic of course comes from within the company’s operations as well as those from customers and leads.
The websites that will be hosted here are the ones that will have truly challenging server requirements. The big difference about Siteground’s Enterprise Hosting service is that there are no fixed hosting plans.
To sign up for enterprise hosting, you will need to get in touch with the Siteground team for consultation. You will discuss the specific build of the server that you will need, how much traffic are you expecting, and other requirements that you will need.
They will need to know if you will need certain specifications for the setup like an architecture that is geographically dispersed, whether you need a public or private cloud configuration, and if you need a single instance setup or not.
Siteground will fully manage the hosting infrastructure so that you, the customer, can concentrate on your business. The entire setup is completely scalable.
Every detail is customizable. If you want to develop your custom workflow then you can. All you have to do is to contact the Siteground team and discuss your options. They can help you create your own or if you already have one, the team will work with you so that it can be integrated into the host’s prepared solutions.
Are there any downsides to their enterprise level hosting? Well, there is one. It’s an absolutely great offer—there’s no way we can take anything away from what they are already providing to their clients.
The only drawback is that the architecture Siteground uses is based on Linux containers. Well, of course, there we go again. It’s the same issue earlier. If you need a Windows based platform then your options are a bit limited here.
Who is This Host Recommended For?
If you are looking for a hosting service that has solid customer support behind it then this is a pretty good option for you. Siteground is known for their high quality customer service. Add the fact that they have strong uptime then they do have a pretty good offer.
However, if you are looking for better virtual private servers or maybe you prefer Windows servers then it is better for you to look for a different web host. Just remember that they can provide you with alternative options—just contact the Siteground team.
If your websites require a lot more storage space then Siteground may not be the one for you. Consider these factors when deciding to sign up for this company’s hosting service or not. You need to find a middle ground between not so generous specs and world class service.