Top Reasons to Consider A Godaddy Alternative

Why Consider an alternative to Godaddy Shared Web Hosting? Below the next section I’ll list some reasons I can come up with for why one might consider alternatives to shared hosting with Godaddy.

Let us try to put this in perspective. Godaddy is good at many things.

First of all they are a successful registrar of domain names. Second they are a huge presence in the web hosting business. Godaddy offers stable platforms for stable web sites.

Godaddy might be better too if you do lots of buying and selling of web sites. Because they are such a huge business, you can often find people more interested in buying your site if it’s on Godaddy.

In summary, Godaddy is good at providing a decent home for web sites that don’t need to use current or new technologies in new or creative ways. So for established site with relatively static content Godaddy works best.

That said, there are many reasons why a godaddy customer would want to seek alternatives to Godaddy’s Shared Hosting. These reasons can be informative to anyone looking to purchase shared web hosting plans. 

Coming from the perspective of a Godaddy Windows Shared Hosting plan customer I’ll present some reasons why one would consider other alternatives.

Reasons to consider other alternatives to Godaddy Web Hosting

  • Small nimble teams of developers that need a responsive web hosting environment get frustrated with Godaddy because they are slow to offer services they directly help customers. Instead they offer features that appeal to the crowd on marketing campaigns.
  • I found the general lack of ‘keeping pace’ with the newest database and development environment features to be disappointing. The culture at Godaddy is frequently not friendly to application developers.
  • Godaddy is a laggard when it comes to keeping up with new SQL Server database releases. They are slow to a fault. If you want to use current or new versions of a database don’t expect Godaddy to move fast. It may be better to go with a more nimble web hosting provider.
  • Irritating email barrage of marketing and sales offers. The never-ending supply of email offers from godaddy, quaint at first, never ends. It’s like a slightly irritating sound that annoys you more and more because it never stops and there is nothing you can do about it.
  • The jpeg infused emails with tons of links … too much flash not enough substance
  • At one time godaddy’s web interface may have been helpful. Currently Godaddy’s web pages seem designed to corral you into buying more products, more services, more upgrades.
  • Godaddy’s Web User Interface can be a bloated mess that causes eye strain. It’s a visually crowded, hard to figure out, non-intuitive mishmash of flashy fonts and colors that can move and change in unexpected ways. Many of us have to work on flat screens all day. Please clean up that mess, tone it down, and please  make it easier on those of us that have to work in it.
  • Lost productivity results when users natural inclinations to conduct work and do business are interfered with due to the manipulations with the web interface. Sooner or later users begin to resent this!
  • When you buy anything from Godaddy, its like running gauntlet. You know you want one thing but they drag out the shopping cart experience, trying to influence you to buy more than what you need. Come on! I can’t blame them trying to be a profitable business. But I think over time, many users begin to dislike this behavior.
  • Godaddy’s Windows WordPress installation somehow doesn’t work that well. I often experienced ‘fatal errors’ and lost entire days where visitors could not get to my pages. This seems to be a problem with WordPress running on Windows Servers.  It’s not at all Godaddy’s fault. But I fault Godaddy for not, at least, warning customers that issues might come up. (Why not recommend some alternatives).
  • Installation of third-party software: While I like how Godaddy attempts to make the installation of third-party software open to everyone, I was often frustrated that Godaddy’s first response to any question was “Sorry. we don’t support it”. I understand why they do it this way but as a customer I felt I wasn’t always in good hands with Godaddy. After that happening a couple of times, I was more suspicious of Godaddy ‘features’.
  • Searching for community content seems harder with Godaddy. I never noticed this until I tried Arvixe but they make finding community content a harder chore than it should be. Why is this the case?  I think it’s because the top guy at Arvixe does many of the support blog posts. And, that interface is just plain easier and more pleasant to read from. The blogs are at Arvixe are easy to read, nice orderly web interface, and easy to find. Ahem, Godaddy, please take notes!
  • Godaddy’s philosophy and focus is different. They got started as a domain name registrar (not by providing web hosting services). So, Godaddy has web hosting plans as profitable side business. Arvixe seems totally focused on customers and web hosting.

What alternative to Godaddy? I know of one web hosting company that will do anything within reason to help application developers, that is  Arvixe.  I found Arvixe after falling into a tar pit on various issues with Godaddy. One such issue with Godaddy was over not supporting Web Matrix on Windows Shared Hosting Accounts. It was distressing that they never heard of it!

I also noticed that Godaddy was slow with adopting SQL Server 2008 too. MS SQL Server was out years and Godaddy still didn’t offer it! 

In hind sight, it makes sense, because such a large company as Godaddy has a hard time implementing change fast enough to keep up with technology.  That is how I found Arvixe. I used the Microsoft WebMatrix built-in web hosting search tool. One of the web hosting providers that I discovered was Arvixe. I did some more research, read some reviews and then signed up here.

One thing I liked about Arvixe is they had an attitude of accommodation to developers and a willingness to implement new technologies that customers want. This was one of the biggest factors in addition to the low-cost.

The low-cost was a better surprise than I originally anticipated. Arvixe has an active coupon code campaign that allows you take significant percent points off the total cost when you sign up. I decided to sign up without knowing about this. I was quickly able to find a coupon code that worked and use it without any problems.

I also liked the clean, direct communication style from their support and sales departments. No fluff, just the facts. From the font styles up to the simple and elegant interfaces, I was pleased to find communication was more pleasant than was with Godaddy.

There is also appears to be more substantial committment to customer service from Arvixe. I only used it once, but if you ever need urgent action, they have a service to resolve any issues that get  bogged down in their normal support channel.  How does it work? If you are ever unhappy for whatever reason about an action you can push your issue up a level via a link that all customers get in the support emails. I did this once and it worked great. Godaddy has nothing like this, of if they do, they don’t advertise it to customers. 

What if you are a current Godaddy customer and decide to stay put? There may be some changes in the future. Godaddy became recently, under new management. It will be interesting to see, from the perspective of customers, if things get worse or if things get better.