GoDaddy has long been known for being a low-price leader for purchasing domains and web hosting. This is part of the genius of their marketing. By breaking up all of their offerings into their smallest components, each component appears to be inexpensive. In addition, they offer 20-25% discounts off this pricing in the first year, to make costs appear even lower.
However, you can rarely get away with only the basics, so by the time you add up everything you need, you will quickly find that GoDaddy’s hosting is not as cost-effective as many believe.
For example, say that you wanted to host a basic WordPress website and you needed 3 email addresses for your business. GoDaddy’s base pricing for this is $6.99 per month and you get free “business email” with that. The total first year cost: $83.88.
Where’s the Beef?
However, their hosting package alone is absent of some important features. For example, do you want backup? That’s another $3/month. What about an SSL Certificate? That’s pretty important these days for all sites, not just ecommerce sites as Google search gives a nod to sites that are secured with SSL. GoDaddy’s Managed SSL will cost you another $150 for the year. Don’t forget to add website security, which is critical given how often insecure WordPress websites get hacked. That will set you back another $192 per year.
Also, while GoDaddy’s “business email” is adequate, most businesses today opt for Office 365 or G Suite. Three Office 365 mailboxes will set you back another $287 for the year. Here is the GoDaddy shopping cart with these items in it:
The real total for the first year, then, is $761.27. But don’t forget, in the second year, all of those services go up by 20-25%. What’s the second year total? $913.85. That’s $76 per month, a far cry from what a lot of people think they are going to pay when they first look at the $6.99 per month hosting fee. You can buy quite a bit of web hosting elsewhere for $913.85 per year.
Compare Costs at Other Hosting Companies
For example, let’s take a look at our own hosting offering, which is comparable with more premium managed WordPress hosting packages from companies like WP Engine and Pantheon.
For $49.95 per month, you get everything above included – SSL, nightly backup, WordPress security PLUS you get 1/2 hour of our development time which you can use for anything you like – maintenance, upgrades, training and more. For another $6 per month per box, we offer G Suite email hosting. Grand total for both for the year: $815.40. That’s only slightly more than GoDaddy in the first year but it doesn’t go up, so from year 2 onward. So with us you actually SAVE money over GoDaddy while getting a premium level of managed WordPress hosting that GoDaddy doesn’t offer.
While GoDaddy’s technical support is highly rated, they draw the line at anything having to do with making changes to the website itself. They are not WordPress developers, so their support technicians can’t do anything if a theme update breaks your site or if you just need someone to swap out a photo.
Before just going with GoDaddy because you assume they are less expensive, we recommend that you shop around and compare the true cost of GoDaddy hosting, including all the extras you need, to the cost of premium managed WordPress hosting packages where many of the “extras” are standard fair. See our Managed WordPress Hosting Page to review or sign-up for one of our hosting plans.