Hostinger and Siteground are two names that always come up whenever one discusses web hosting. Which one is better? We have used both extensively and will compare both in this article to give you a heads-up about which is better for you.
So, which is the best web hosting for beginners in 2021? We pit the two main contenders (Hostinger vs Siteground) against each other.
Before we start, we have to mention that all our blogs are hosted on Hostinger (like this one) as it is the best value for money web hosting service in our experience.
We used to host our blogs on Siteground.
So everything that we mention here is based on our real-life experience of having used both of these web hosting services.
As of the date of publishing this post, our Siteground hosting plan is still active.
Meanwhile, we have moved all our blogs over to Hostinger.
Web Hosting is a crucial decision not to be taken lightly. It could well be the deciding factor that can make or break your blog.
Anybody who wants to start a blog must give very careful consideration to the web hosting service that they will use to host their blog. This is an important decision which can otherwise lead to a lot of inconvenience later.
If you make the wrong choice now, moving your blog to a new web host later is a task that if not executed properly can undo all the SEO and marketing gains earned over months or even years of hard work and effort.
What is Web Hosting?
Web hosting is the providing or renting of space on a server where all the files (text, audio, video, and images) which make up your blog or website will be stored and accessed over the internet. In simple terms, while the domain name is the actual address of your blog or website on the internet (just like the physical address of an organization), web hosting is the actual space on a server where all the files that make up the blog or website are stored (just like the actual brick and mortar office or factory where all of the organization’s assets are stored),
In this article, we will be discussing shared hosting since this is the most cost effective type of hosting and best suited for a new blog and for beginners.
As the name suggests, shared hosting means that your blog or website is hosted along with and shares server space and resources with many other blogs or websites. This is the most cost-effective form of web hosting as the cost gets divided among the users.
Which is the Best Web Hosting for Beginners in 2021?
Without any doubt it has to be Hostinger because they use the latest technology to ensure blazing fast speeds, have 99.9% uptime hence reliability is excellent, provide great customer service, and are great value for money. That is why we host all our blogs exclusively only on Hostinger.
The chart below shows the time to first byte (TTFB) measured for the same test site when hosted both with Hostinger and Siteground.
What is TTFB?
TTFB is ‘Time to First Byte’, It is a measurement of the responsiveness of a web server. In layman terms, it is the time taken between a user hitting ‘enter’ or clicking on a link on a web browser (i.e., a HTTP request being sent from the browser) and the browser receiving the first byte of data from the web server. Obviously the lower the value or less the time taken, the better it is.
This test was run on 7 different online page speed measuring tools and the results were recorded
It was noted that the test site when hosted on Hostinger loaded much faster than when hosted on Siteground.
The average ‘Time to First Byte (TTFB)’ was significantly lower (lower is better) when hosted with Hostinger than with Siteground.
Reliability / Uptime
Uptime is the actual amount of time that your web host’s servers are up and running. It is a measure of the reliability of the web host’s infrastructure.
The opposite is downtime, which is when the web host’s servers are down or unavailable which means that your blog or website will also be down and unavailable to visitors.
Hostinger offers a 99.9% uptime guarantee with all their plans and they are very transparent about it.
It is mentioned prominently on the plan features page.
Siteground on the other hand does not explicitly mention anything about any uptime guarantee nor are they very transparent about it.
They also do not display the status of their servers publicly.
As far as security is concerned, both are equally good as both offer free SSL and 2FA, so you can be sure that your blog and its data are secure.
SSL ensures that your customer data will also be secure.
Value for Money
Hostinger is not only great in terms of speed, reliability and customer support, they are also much cheaper.
If we look at the pricing of both Hostinger and SiteGround, then the top of the line business shared hosting of Hostinger at $3.99/ month is cheaper than the entry-level ‘start up‘ plan of SiteGround which starts from $6.99/ month.
Let us compare the two plans.
Hostinger vs SiteGround Comparison Table
|Plan Name||Business Shared Hosting||StartUp|
|1||Price||$3.99/ month (48 months)|
$6.99/ month (12 months)
|$10.49/ month (36 months)|
$6.99/ month (12 months)
|2||Renewal Charges||$8.99/ month (48 month plan)|
$10.99/ month (12 month plan)
|$ 14.99/ month (both plans)|
|3||Number of Websites||100 Websites||1 Website|
|4||Storage||100 GB SSD Storage||10 GB Web Space|
|5||Traffic||100,000 Visits Monthly||10,000 Visits Monthly|
|6||Free Email||Free Email|
|7||SSL||Free SSL ($11.95 value)||Free SSL|
|8||Domain||Free Domain ($8.99 value)||X|
|9||Google Ads Credit||Google Ads Credit||X|
|10||Bandwidth||Unlimited Bandwidth||Unlimited with conditions|
|11||Managed WordPress||Free Managed WordPress||Free WordPress Installation|
|12||WordPress Acceleration||WordPress Acceleration||X|
|13||Money-Back Guarantee||30 Days Money Back Guarantee||30 Days Money Back Guarantee|
|14||Number of Databases||Unlimited Databases||Unlimited Databases|
|15||Backups||Daily Backups||Daily Backups|
|16||CDN||Free CDN||Free CDN|
Let’s discuss each feature in a bit more detail.
Hostinger offers you its best deal of $3.99/ month for the 48-month plan.
Siteground offers its best deal of $6.99/ month for a 12-month plan.
If you feel that you would rather start with a 12-month plan, Hostinger is still the better deal as the price is the same as Siteground i.e. $6.99/ month for the 12-month plan (see below illustration).
Even with the 12-month plan, Hostinger offers you all the features that come with the 48-month plan.
The list of features that Hostinger offers is fabulous and Siteground does not even come close.
Even with the 12-month plan,
- You can start up to 100 websites on Hostinger (versus just 1 on Siteground)
- Hostinger provides you with 100 GB of storage (versus just 10 GB on Siteground)
- Hostinger allows you up to 100.000 visitors/month (versus just 10,000/ month on Siteground)
- Hostinger gives you a free domain name along with hosting (versus no free domain name on Siteground)
All other features like free email, SSL, CDN, SSH, and daily backups are available on both.
We recommend Hostinger’s 48-month plan as it is value for money. You can also lock in special discounted prices for a full four years and are spared the higher renewal charges if you have opted for a shorter term.
Why do we recommend this plan? Wouldn’t it be better to go for a short term plan to start?
Well for one, it always helps in any kind of business (and blogging is a business) to back yourself to succeed. Negative thoughts and a ‘let me see how it goes’ attitude will set you up to fail.
If you play the game then you must play to win, or don’t play at all. That way you will put in 100% effort and ensure that you are always on your toes.
2. Renewal Charges
All hosting providers charge renewal charges which are higher than the initial discounted offer rate so it makes sense to lock in the initial discounted offer for as long a tenure as possible.
This is why Hostingers 48-month plan is such a great deal.
Hostinger charges $8.99/ month for renewal of the 48-month plan and $10.99/ month for the 12-month plan whereas Siteground charges $14.99/ month for renewal irrespective of the tenure.
Even if you only consider the renewal charges, Hostinger is still value for money.
3. Number of Websites
Irrespective of the tenure of your plan, Hostinger will allow you up to 100 websites compared to just 1 on Siteground.
For a similar feature on Siteground, you will have to pay $9.99/ month (12 months) for unlimited websites.
Even here Siteground will give you just 20 GB of storage and up to 25,000 visits versus 100 GB storage and 100,000 visitors on Hostinger.
The number of websites that you will be allowed to host may not seem like an important issue if you are just starting out with a single blog.
But as a beginner, as you continue to hone your skills and get better at blogging you may at some point want to start afresh by avoiding all the amateur blogger mistakes that you may have made while starting your first blog. In this scenario, you may not want to be hampered by having to spend money again to purchase a completely new hosting plan from scratch.
Even if this may not be the case, you may want at some stage to start multiple blogs to be able to cast a wider net to bolster your efforts to monetize your blogs.
Storage is important. As your blog grows you will need more and more space to store all your text, images, videos, and other files that make up your blog and the last thing you want is to run out of space.
With Hostinger’s 100 GB of storage at your disposal, you will never run out of space.
Hostinger offers you 10 times the storage space (Hostinger’s 100 GB vs Sitegroung’s 10 GB) and at a much lower price.
As you grow your blog and get more traffic coming to it, the last thing you want is your hosting provider restricting the number of visitors coming to your blog.
Hostinger allows you up to 100,000 visitors/ month irrespective of whether you opt for the 48-month plan at $3.99/ month or the 12-month plan at $6.99/ month. For a similar feature on Siteground, you will have to pay $14.99/ month
Siteground has a limitation of 10,000 visits for the 12-month plan at $6.99/ month.
Both Hostinger and Siteground give you free domain-based emails.
Hostinger gives you extra email storage space of 15GB per website or domain and allows setting up a total of 100 email ids.
They also allow you to allocate storage to each email id as per your requirements.
Siteground on the other hand allows setting up unlimited email IDs but with a storage limit of 2GB / email id which is inconvenient because you will have to keep deleting older emails to make space for new messages as you keep hitting this limit with each email id that you have.
Both have a user-friendly webmail interface where you can send, receive, and check your email.
You can also configure both to work with any email client of your choice (e.g., Outlook, Thunderbird, or Apple Mail) using either POP3 or IMAP access as per your choice.
Both web hosts provide free SSL
SSL is the “Secure Sockets Layer” protocol that allows for a secure and encrypted channel of communication between two machines on the internet.
8. Free Domain
Hostinger offers you a single free domain name along with your hosting plan.
Siteground does not so you will have to purchase buy your domain separately. Siteground does not provide a free domain with any of its hosting plans.
As a new blogger, choose the domain name for your blog carefully as it can be crucial to the success of your blog.
9. Google Ads Credit
Hostinger offers you $150 worth of Google Ads Credit along with your hosting plan.
Siteground does not.
Bandwidth is a measure of how much data you are allowed to transfer from and to your server. As your blog grows, so will the amount of data it contains. Similarly as the number of visitors to your blog increases, the amount of data that will be required to be transferred from your server to each client increases.
So with time as your blog grows both in terms of data as well as traffic, you are going to need a lot of bandwidth.
Both Hostinger and Siteground offer unlimited bandwidth.
That said, no web host is truly unlimited and there is always an unsaid ‘FUP’ (Fair Usage Policy) that has to be adhered to.
The difference here is how Hostinger and Siteground approach these limits.
Siteground has a rather unique ‘CPU Seconds Limit’ which is fairly easy to exceed even for a smallish blog with a monthly traffic of 300 -400 visitors/month.
The details are listed under server resources (see below image) and it limits you to CPU Seconds / Program and Script executions of up to 1000/ hour, 10,000/ day, and 300,000/ month
If you exceed these limits then you will have to either upgrade or reduce CPU usage or they will simply take down your blog for the remainder of the month.
Hostinger deals with this in a slightly different way which is much easier to comprehend and deal with.
In the h-Panel under ‘order usage’, there is a graph that shows your CPU usage statistics.
As your blogs grow both in terms of size and traffic, the blue line will start inching upwards towards the red line. However, as a new blogger it will take a while before you hit those limits and when you do, believe me, you will be earning enough to be able to afford an upgrade to the next level of hosting – i.e. cloud hosting.
11. Managed WordPress.
Both Hostinger and Siteground offer managed WordPress out of the box.
WordPress is the world’s most popular CMS (Content Management System) and 38% of the world’s websites have been built using WordPress.
12. WordPress Acceleration
Hostinger uses Litespeed web server technology and Litespeed cache for WordPress to enable server-level caching and optimization. In addition to cache management, it offers a variety of optimization features like image optimization, lazy loading of images, CDN support, combining and minification of CSS and JS, all designed to make your blog fast and reduce page loading time.
Page loading time is a ranking factor on Google so ensuring that your blog is fast is crucial to rank in Google search results.
Siteground, on the other hand, uses a rather outdated in-house implementation of Linux Containers with Apache as a web server and Nginx as a reverse proxy.
Litespeed, which Hostinger uses, is miles ahead of both Apache and Nginx.
13. Money Back Guarantee
Both Hostinger and Siteground will offer you a 30 day trial period with a money back guarantee if you cancel before the thirty days are up.
14. Number of Databases
Both Hostinger and Siteground allow you unlimited databases.
Both web hosts provide automated daily back-ups for your blog or website.
30 separate back-up copies of your blog are always available and should anything go wrong, you can restore your blog from any of the available copies.
16. CDN (Content Delivery Network)
Both Hostinger and Siteground offer you a free CDN (Content Delivery Network).
CDN’s are a network of servers that are distributed around the world and each server will carry a copy of your blog, so when someone accesses your blog they would be served from the server that is physically closest to them thus ensuring fast page loading times.
CDN’s also help secure your blog and data by preventing malicious attacks and even ensuring that your blog is never down and always available.
On paper, both web hosts promise 24/7/365 support.
Our personal experience with Hostinger’s customer support has been exceptional. Live chat is available 24x7x365 and any issues are promptly handled and resolved.
Siteground used to be good. In fact, customer support used to be their strong point. In recent times though, they have made some changes to their business and have been cutting costs to boost profits, which have caused a severe deterioration in their service levels.
They moved a large part of their infrastructure from their own dedicated servers into the Google cloud platform. While this is not necessarily a bad thing, the fact that customers’ websites, blogs, and data were moved to Google’s servers without adequate notice or choice did not go down well with many of Siteground’s customers.
Where cost-cutting has really hurt is customer support, which is now terrible. some of the comments (see below) on Siteground review sites make this very clear.
Shared hosting, like the ‘business shared hosting plan‘ offered by Hostinger, is good enough to take care of all your requirements as a new blogger well into the future.
Nevertheless, Hostinger offers ample opportunity to scale as and when your blog outgrows the limitations of shared hosting and you need to take the leap to the next level.
Hostinger has various VPS hosting and cloud hosting products at competitive rates so you will not need to look anywhere else.
We have discussed in detail all the various factors that you should consider before deciding upon the best hosting provider for your blog or website.
While there are many hosting providers available, we decided to focus upon the two most popular choices for shared hosting, especially for new bloggers, keeping in mind ease of use, reliability, value for money, and customer service
On all the parameters that we compared, Hostinger is way ahead of Siteground.
Whether it is speed, value for money, or reliability, Hostinger beats Siteground hands down.
The statistics below from Pingdom say it all.
We compiled uptime and response time data for a period of 1 year from Pingdom for both Hostinger and Siteground and this is what it looks like.
While both were neck to neck as far as uptime is concerned.
However, Hostinger’s average response time taken over a 12 month period was much better than Siteground over the same time period.
This is a big deal because the response time of the host impacts the speed of your site and speed is an important ranking factor on Google. The lower the response time of your webhost, the faster your site will load.
Are you ready to start your blog? Check out the exclusive (90% off) ultimate sale offer from Hostinger below.
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