SiteGround Review: Solid Specs, Stellar Support, and Super Pricing
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SiteGround Review: Solid Specs, Stellar Support, and Super Pricing

Your choice of web host is more than choosing the best server. Many factors to consider include functionality, support, and whether the hosting fits your budget. In this SiteGround review, we’ll examine everything the provider has to offer.

SiteGround offers so much that we might be unable to cover it all. It has a custom control panel, automated backups, a suite of tools developed ‘in-house’, and plenty for site owners of all stripes. What’s more, the company is known for its fantastic support provision.

Over the next few minutes, we will give you a deep SiteGround review. It will examine the control panel, the host’s strengths and weaknesses, and its pricing plans. You will have enough knowledge to make the best decision by the end.

Introducing SiteGround

For the unaware, SiteGround has been a leading web hosting service in business since 2004. It looks to provide a balance between functionality, power, and price. SiteGround is recommended by both WordPress.org and WooCommerce and hosts over 2.6M domains worldwide.

siteground logo

We’ll discuss the specifics of each plan later. In general, all users get “unmetered” traffic, an almost unlimited number of databases, free access to a Content Delivery Network (CDN), and out-of-the-box caching functionality. The latter two have a big impact on the speed of your WordPress site, so know that your site will be fast regardless of your pricing tier.

You’ll also get some choice plugins for your site, built by our in-house development team, to help you run your site. The SiteGround Security plugin, Optimizer plugin, and Migrator all give you essential tools to run your site without needing third-party solutions.

There’s more to give you, and we’ll cover those aspects throughout the rest of this SiteGround review.

Touring SiteGround’s Control Panel

SiteGround used to use a version of cPanel, although now the host has a custom control panel that looks slick and easy to use:

siteground dashboard

When you first log in, you will see a welcome screen full of handy tips and suggestions for making your site successful. You can access your websites, hosting services, billing information, and more along the top navigation:

siteground navigation

The first two – relating to websites and your services – will be the screens you visit most. The Services screen is where you purchase hosting, and if you haven’t done this yet, you’ll be prompted to do so:

siteground services

Once you have a host in place, the Websites page lets you create sites – SiteGround lets you create almost an unlimited number of sites for higher-tier plans. You may also want to take advantage of the WordPress Starter plugin, which offers you a selection of essential themes and plugins. Getting your site up and running can be a rapid process.

add new website siteground

Compared to the old cPanel interface, SiteTools is a breath of fresh air. The development team has worked hard to provide a dashboard that is right for users rather than sysadmins or developers. Its user-focused design improves your workflow rather than hinders it.

SiteGround’s Plans and Pricing

siteground hosting

SiteGround keeps pricing straightforward. There are four types of hosting you can choose from:

You’ll notice that there aren’t the usual dedicated Virtual Private Server (VPS) plans here. SiteGround switched from VPS to cloud hosting a while ago, and while hosting in the cloud is inherently virtual and private, it’s not a VPS.

siteground pricing

As for pricing, each type has three tiers, and you’ll find that the named prices here have heavy promotional discounts upfront. Shared, WordPress, and WooCommerce accounts have StartUp, GrowBig, and GoGeek tiers.

The pricing below is the ongoing pricing but there are very competitive introductory offers or discounts for multi-year plans that are well worth considering:

  • StartUp ($4.99 per month). This is the lowest tier, giving you 10GB of web space, the bandwidth for around 10,000 users, and space for one website. However, you do get access to key collaboration tools, the SiteGround Optimizer plugin, and much more, e.g., free SSL, CDN, automated daily backups, and restore functionality.
  • GrowBig ($24.99 per month). This plan offers more value than the StartUp tier, almost doubling bandwidth and storage. You can store as many websites as you need. You also get staging functionality and on-demand backup copies.
  • GoGeek ($39.99 per month). This tier gives you the full SiteGround experience. It adds support for Git repositories, white-labeling, priority support, and further resources (such as backups on demand and collaboration tools) to keep your site running smoothly.

Both the GrowBig and GoGeek tiers also include SiteGround’s Ultrafast PHP implementation. This in-house development lets your site process more visitors than usual. It reduces your Time to First Byte (TTFB) and, as such, helps you increase your traffic figures.

There are also four cloud hosting plans to choose from, each differing based on the computing power under the hood. Of course, there are also different price points to match, with a $100-$400 range per month. You can also create custom plans based on your own needs.

SiteGround’s cloud hosting performance has a solid pedigree. It runs on the Google Cloud network and offers auto-scaling to help keep your site optimized, no matter what the web can throw at it.

The Value of Each Plan

While you might think that each hosting type is specified differently, that’s not the case. Each hosting type often has something specific to the application. For example, WordPress and WooCommerce hosting offers dedicated auto installers and updates.

woocommerce features

However, the grunt under the hood remains unchanged regardless of your hosting. This is a great way to give back to the user, as it gives you the flexibility to create the sites you need rather than suffer from under-equipped functionality.

You’ll also notice that while each plan has a regular price, a discount is often applied. This has both positive and negative aspects. We can cover this in more detail next.

The Pros and Cons of SiteGround

Of course, no hosting provider will be perfect, although if it gets a lot right, those negatives don’t have as much impact.

In our opinion, SiteGround does a lot right.

Here are a few pros of using the hosting provider:

  • You have lots of power on hand regardless of the plan you choose.
  • Many extra and helpful features exist, such as a free email setup, a CDN, and a free Secure Sockets Layers (SSL) certificate.
  • You get a managed hosting experience on a shared hosting budget, complete with in-house optimized technology unique to the platform.
  • Customer support is an industry leader and is almost the top reason to choose SiteGround.
  • You can choose from six different data centers, depending on where your core traffic comes from.
  • The development team is geared towards giving you the tools you need to succeed.

These are all fantastic pros and read like a tick-list of needs for any site owner.

However, there will be a few drawbacks too:

  • Other providers don’t offer the same hosting options. If you need a dedicated VPS server (rather than cloud hosting), you’ll have to go elsewhere.
  • The pricing is heavily discounted when you first make a purchase. However, the renewal price shoots up, which often means carrying on long-term with SiteGround might be prohibitive. It’s worth mentioning that this isn’t exclusive to SiteGround, as lots of hosting providers have the same business model. Moreover, the tools and features SiteGround offers are on par with those of other premium hosting providers, yet pricing is often much more affordable.

SiteGround’s business model is a polarizing issue. Users want low costs throughout their time with the Company. On the other hand, the company has lots of innovative and helpful functionality. This means prices can’t stay low forever, unlike the competition.

Because SiteGround provides such stellar service, the price might not be a factor. You can (of course) take your chances with another hosting provider, but you often get what you pay for over the long term.

What Makes SiteGround Different From the Competition

While we’ve gone into the unique points of SiteGround, there’s been minor so far on what makes SiteGround a different proposition to any other web host. After all, equipment can change, and specifications can differ. Of course, you can read what real users have to say, but there’s more to the story.

Overall, SiteGround offers almost constant service improvements you wouldn’t find with other hosts. For example, the in-house development team provides custom tools for SiteGround users to help boost the User Experience (UX) and your website’s performance.

We’ve already talked about Ultrafast PHP, but there is also the SG Migrator and SG Optimizer, Artificial Intelligence (AI) that works to stop bots, the dedicated Site Tools for each site you create, and much more.

sg optimizer

In addition, you have numerous levels of support based on your requirements and needs. There is phone support, ticketing, and live chat options (in English, Spanish, and Italian), and each one, in our experience, delivers optimal, fast resolutions to your queries.

It’s one of the standout points of SiteGround and shows how much the company wants to deliver to its users. This is reflected in a client satisfaction rate of 97.7% (in 2020: https://www.siteground.com/blog/wrapping-2020/)

In Summary

While choosing a hosting provider can be challenging, it doesn’t have to be. One of the leading providers will be perfect for most users. After all, most site owners want support, robust functionality, server specifications, and the best price. SiteGround can offer all of these in one package.

Overall, SiteGround is stable and fast while offering some of the best web host customer support. Whether you’re new to web hosting or an experienced developer, there will be a package for you.

Are you considering SiteGround? If so, what appeals to you the most? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!

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