Siteground is a web hosting platform tailored for easy web management. Currently, there are 2,000,000 domains they host and are one of the largest independently owned hosting companies. They offer domain management services for every user; they have access to domain registration with more than 50 extensions such as .com, .org, .net, and more. You can either do a site migration or start from scratch. The company has data centers in Chicago, London, Amsterdam, and Singapore.
There is much to unpack in this Siteground review with regards to the services and their features. We’ll explore all the various services offered as a whole give you a complete picture of what you stand to get when buying into the service. Consider this a crash course before we get into the specifics of the primary service offerings available.
What to expect from Siteground
If you wish to build a website from scratch, Siteground offers tools and services for doing just that. It is made easy and fast particularity for those who need a website and haven’t the idea of where to start. The company provides solutions that include two site builders to choose from, both with premium features and support when the time to launch the site comes. The available tools are Weebly site builder and WordPress installation, both of which are free.
Weebly is perhaps one of the easiest site builders in the market. The target market is first time users, and it’s plain to tell why. All one requires to do is drag-and-drop to build and edit the site. That gives the user plenty of designs to choose from. Depending on what you wish your website to be, you can insert shop, contact forms, and other functionalities. For each plan available, the user gets a free version of Weebly.
With WordPress, you’ll be partnering with the most popular Content Management System (CMS) in the market. Growth-oriented persons or businesses could consider using WordPress. The primary reason is the thousands of plugins and theme available at the user’s disposal. Additionally, WordPress has a community that you can join for support and comradery.
The Siteground website transfer services are easy and fast. That’s because the transfer gets done by the hosting’s experts who work on more than 50,000 sites annually. You’ll expect to have all your files and databases to be part of the migration. Those using a cPanel host, Siteground will help to do the migration of your email, FTP and the add-on sites too. The service is free of charge for one site if you’re on the GrowBig and above plans. For additional websites that need transferring, you’ll have to part with as $30.00/site. The good thing is that all the work’s done for you.
There is also an automated WordPress migration as an alternative that comes with plugins. Should you currently be using WordPress and wish to move hosting to Siteground, it’s easy enough to do it yourself. All that’s required is installing the WordPress Migrator plugin. That then generates a token from your account that then initiates the migration. This easy removes any stress; even the novice website user could potentially have. Before going any further, we do have to state that for those taking the StartUp plan, you’ll have to pay for the service. For the other two, you can use their Siteground Migrator plugin, which is a professional transfer service.
Modern Software Stack
Site Ground’s hosting platform does run on Linux Containers (LXC). That gives you more efficient and equally quick resource allocation in the event of a spike in traffic. Apache, which is highly customized, and NGINX get used as a reverse proxy for the caching system. Siteground also runs the latest PHP versions, PostgreSQL and MySQL (Percona) as well.
Top Security Policies
Siteground has a WAF where they continually write new security rules. They added 300 custom rules that were aimed at dealing with vulnerabilities that had been identified but not yet resolved in the past year. Some of the adopted solutions available include those that stop brute force attacks hourly, all thanks to their AI bot. It also prevents security threats targeted to the servers.
Powerful Speed Technology
The Siteground servers are located in data centers that are considered the best in the world. They run the latest SSD disks, and the hardware gets updated every two years. There are multiple software speed enhancements available such as HTTP/2, Memcached, and OPCache extension.
This hosting company boasts of being among the most dependable platforms. It develops solutions in-house that prevent outages as they monitor the uptime. Should there be a hitch, there is an alert made to you thanks to the automated uptime checks that run every 0.5 seconds. Additionally, system administrators step in quickly. They work round the clock so need not worry.
There are various hosting options available that we’ll explore in this Siteground review to establish what the right one for you could be. These are Web hosting, WordPress hosting, WooCommerce hosting, and Cloud hosting.
We will break down WordPress hosting due to the organization’s lion share of the internet. However, WooCommernce and Web hosting have similar offerings with regards to pricing, security, customer support, backups, email services, and the like. We’ll finish off with Cloud hosting given its differences, and lastly focus on reseller and enterprise hosting, which are both a unique offering.
Managed WordPress Plans
WordPress plans include WordPress installation, the mentioned automated migration, updates that run automatically, advanced caching, and WordPress support from their expert team. If this does sounds like something you’d want to go for, Siteground offers three plans: StartUp, GrowBig, and GoGeek.
In the StartUp package, you get charged an initial special offer of $3.95 monthly whereby after the given time lapses you’re charged $11.95 monthly. It’s meant for those with just one site. One also gets 10GB web space. For GrowBig, which is also their bestselling plan, you start with the special price of $5.95 monthly and then revert to the regular monthly rate of $19.95 upon renewal. As the name indicates, if you’re a company with more than one product or service line, this deal works best. You can manage unlimited sites. You get 2GB web space and ideal for people with traffic of 25,000 visits monthly.
The last plan, as the name indicates, is for geeks. GoGeeks starts with the monthly price of $11.95 and goes to $34.95 after. Here you also have unlimited websites, but an additional 10GB space than the previous plan. If you do have more than 100, 000 visitors to your site then this managed WordPress plan to go for.
WordPress Launch & Staging Tool
Siteground is big on easy, so it’s no wonder they offer a click-and-install WordPress option. It is, however, not unique to them; it something hosting companies in the industry do. The logic for it is it eliminates the lengthy manual process of downloading, installing, and configuring. That then leads for a faster launch time from when you first get an account to when your site goes live. Siteground does offer WordPress Starter that’s unique to them. It contains a collection of professionally done site designs and other vital functionalities you’ll need to bring your site to life.
(For WooCommerce, the same applies. There’s a plugin for WooCommerce and a professionally done Storefront theme. You don’t need any of the technical skills to get a beautiful store. All it takes is a few clicks for installation.)
Our first versions of the websites we put online aren’t always perfect. That’s why Siteground has the staging tool. How it works is you make a copy of your site, make the necessary changes, and then share it with your visitors. This handy tool is especially important when you have to continually update your website, for example, if you have new stock or some of the items are sold out. It helps you make real-time updates and share them without downtime. Again, this is only available for only GrowBig and GoGeek plans. There is also freedom for developers to code as they wish.
Security and updates
Siteground works to give users protection both on the application and server level. That means you’re operating on the latest versions of their plugins and other features. WordPress does have a lot of hackers coming against their sites; therefore, their server firewall gives users security. The WordPress application itself runs on the latest versions too for the sake of having a safe website.
The updates are automatic, but Siteground gives users freedom on how often they do the updates. If you feel you can run on your current version longer, there’s no pressure on your end to get the update. Go for it when you’re ready.
Siteground offers a WordPress performance solution to make the site fast. It also optimizes resource storage, for example through caching, image and front-end optimizations and others. The hosting enables static cashing for all domains so that images and other large files load faster from the server’s memory. Their SuperCasher service and the SG Optimizer plugin available for GrowBig and GoGeek plans make the loading speeds even quicker.
A user can also gain access to the hosting’s HTTPS option with just a click and set up the PHP version for the WordPress site. These both add to the site’s loading speed. There is also the free CDN service courtesy of Cloudflare that allows your website to load fast even when you have visitors from various locations around the globe logging in. Through their features, there’s auto caching, blocking malicious traffic to make your website unnecessarily slow and also reduces spam. Currently, it has 152 locations for their CDN network to make loading easier for visitors closest.
Customer support for WordPress users
Siteground states their customer service has top-rated WordPress hosting support. They are considered fast, skilled in multiple areas and of course, helpful. The team is on call 24/7 either by ticket, phone, or chat.
Tools for WordPress Webmasters
You get free SSL Certificates on all hosting plans. There’s also Wildcard SSL and Let’s Encrypt Standard certificates that come preinstalled for free. SSL is an industry standard that protects data transmitted through your site. It means that your site meets search engine requirements for a safe website to avoid it getting flagged as an unsecured site to visitors.
The free SSL certificates are free courtesy of their Let’s Encrypt project. It allows Siteground to issue and renew certificates for their users automatically. You can switch to Wildcard SSL whenever you wish through the control panel.
Backups can get done automatically manually where you opt to do it yourself or allow the hosting to do it for you, creating up to 30 copies. Such a feature will enable you to go about your day and night peacefully knowing that in the event of human error, a hacking or data loss, previous versions are available for restoration. It is also the fastest way to get your site up and running in no time to avoid downtime.
The automatic backups are free for all hosting plans. However, if you wish to make on-demand backups, for the StartUp plan, you’ll have to pay $29.95. The same service is free for the other hosting plans.
Still, on the services you can expect to get when you sign up to the managed WordPress plans, there’s the freedom to create unlimited email accounts. That adds a level of professionalism when your email matches your domain name. These accounts come with the usual features of autoresponder and the like. The webmail interface gets included. There’s the free SpamExperts service to stop spam.
Siteground offers cloud hosting as well, which is super-fast and auto-scalable to accommodate traffic spikes without you having to reboot. There is the option of customizing your plan as well. If you’re using this platform, you can expect priority customer support round the clock. There are different price points to accommodate various clients; from the person with a small project to someone who has a high traffic enterprise website.
Siteground uses lightweight Linux containers with SSD disks which contribute to the high speed and efficiency in service provision. They are also in charge of configuring and managing the infrastructure and the server software. That removes the stress off you as the client as you don’t have to do IT maintenance to ensure your site is running at optimum.
There are three plans: Entry, Business, Business Plus, and Super Power. For entry, you pay $80.00 monthly. You’ll then gain access to two CPU cores, 4GB memory, 40GB SSD space, and 5TB data transfer. For the Business plan, you part with $120.00 every month. Here the user gets three CPU cores, 6GB memory, 60GB SSD space, and 5TB data transfer. For the next package, it costs $160.00 monthly and comes with four CPU cores, 8GB memory, 80GB SSD space, and 5TB data transfer. Lastly, the Super Power subscription, you pay $240.00 per month. The CPU cores are eight and the GB memory is two more than the Business Plus, but the SSD Space is 120 BG. The data transfer is the same as the previous plan.
For the plans mentioned, there are daily backups of your account, and they put seven off these backups offsite. The action takes place seven days consecutively to ensure no data gets lost. As mentioned, there are four data centers, and you can choose which one you wish to use, and after add CDN for free. The idea is to choose the closest data center so that there are better geographical accessibility and high speeds on your end.
Those on WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, and even Magento can sign up for these services. For those using Magento, Siteground offers users unique caching to speed things up. GIT comes preinstalled for easy repo creation on your site. Other cloud hosting features come preinstalled as well and use between 10 and 13GB of the server storage. As with other features, you only need to click for installation, and the rest gets done for you.
Reseller Hosting Program
Developers and web designers that maintain their client’s website on a long term basis can sign up for the reseller hosting program. Doing so makes ‘hosting services’ automatically appear on their list of services offered. Doing so increases one’s revenue even when you don’t own a hosting company. The rates for reseller hosting start from $42.00 annually. The pricing is volume based whereby those managing a large number of client accounts end up getting a higher discount.
Those in the reseller hosting program also have access to exclusive deals for domain names for about $14.95 or more per year. That also means they can add this service to their portfolio and get more clients who prefer to work with a service provider that meets all their needs. There are also reseller credits that a person can get.
The reason to get this package is that you, as the buyer, get to tout excellent hosting quality, an uptime of 99.99 percent and security to your clients. Also, it’s not hard work because all the tools required are in one place, so hosting the various accounts is painless. If you wish to brand the cPanel and Private DNS with your business name, you can do too. When you stumble on an issue, the client doesn’t have to know as you can reach out for support from Siteground and have the issue resolved in no time whatever the time.
If after reading this far and you feel that there’s something still missing, here is where enterprise hosting comes in. It is a tailored solution for businesses. That means you pay for what you need and leave out what you don’t require to enjoy seamless hosting. What Siteground does is craft the infrastructure based on your needs. Even though you’re not entirely familiar with the requirements, the team is patient and will suggest several solutions that you can select.
What custom solutions they come up with are based on Linux Containers which promote availability and scalability when you get traffic spikes. The other fantastic thing about the option is that Siteground fully manages your enterprise hosting for you. That way you can focus on your business. That means you’ll get help from an account manager with uploading or transferring your projects so that you can have a successful launch for your site. As you grow, the account manager stays on to keep you and your website updated on new or updated technology.
Siteground work with the following applications: WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, and Magento. Also, a user can get stable and performing services with NGINX, Apache, PHP, MySQL, and Linux Containers while having custom technologies such as MongoDB, ElasticSearch, Redis, Solr, and Memcached added to your needs.
Drawbacks of Siteground
While there is indeed much to be admired with Siteground, there are some not so fantastic aspects about them. Let’s explore:
- As you may have noticed, the StartUp plan they have for WordPress, WooCommerce, and hosting itself is little to be desired. Account owners are exempted from a lot of services that they have to pay extra for now. One would think the hosting is discouraging people from getting the plan and opt for the higher ones instead.
- Siteground has a short billing cycle. While other hosting platforms offer three-year plans and above, Siteground only works on 12-month durations before renewal.
- Renewal rates with Siteground are high after the initial signup period. They also don’t offer automated renewal, meaning that a forgetful account owner could lose their domain or have their site go down.
- The pricing is higher compared to other companies, but they do offer more in general, which somewhat balances it out.
- They offer limited storage when compared to other hosts; you can get the same for lower with others.
- WooCommerce hosting is basic and not as expansive as WordPress hosting. The latter appears to be their core business.
Siteground has a lot of offer when compared to other hosting companies in the industry. A comparison is somewhat harder given their extensive service offering. Overall, they tend to the expensive side, but that is justifiable with what you get from the plans. If you are a startup or an individual running small projects, this might not be the hosting for you. However, larger organization and those looking to scale will find Siteground more advantageous.