I’m sitting having my coffee this morning reading another email about someone who had a website at Hostgator and it suddenly became infected with malware – and Hostgator pulled the plug on it.

That’s right, Hostgator took down the company’s website and did so without advanced warning.

When they called into technical support at Hostgator they were told to buy their Sitelock service “which will resolve the issue” and your website will be put back online.

The business ran a malware scan on their site using Securi SiteCheck – no malware was found.

Interestingly noted, Sitelock is owned by a senior executive at Endurance International Group, which owns Hostgator.

Sketchy.

I’ve had my own very bad experience with Hostgator years ago when my $249/month dedicated server became infected with malware and “cross-contaminated” dozens of sites I had hosted there, according to their technical support.

As you might expect, I had very good security in place at all the sites and all my WordPress software and WordPress plugins were up-to-date. The Hostgator technical support person suggested that maybe my password was compromised. I doubt it: 86`i\3>"J?;:wlf

At Go Daddy I’ve had problems with tools like Backup Buddy not working properly. Backups and disaster recovery is important to me (it should be to you also!) and frankly I got tired of bantering back and forth with Go Daddy to resolve the issue. Plus, is it just me, but every time you call into Go Daddy they hard-sell you on some “must have” add-on (read: $$$$$) or “upgrade your hosting to 3 years and save….”.

Again, sketchy.

So my Public Service Announcement today is:

Avoid Hostgator and Go Daddy for website hosting.

I have nothing personal against these two companies, it’s just when I hear story after story about poor business hosting experiences, including my own, and hard-sell tactics where people buy hundreds of dollars of services they don’t need, I find the need to say something about it.

Today for domain registration I use Google Domains. For hosting I’ve moved all my websites and client websites over to SiteGround.

For those of you who are quick to say: “I’ve never had a problem with either Hostgator (or Go Daddy)…”, I’m glad you’ve dodged the bullet – so far. And I hope you have a solid backup and recovery program ready-to-use.

Chris Jaeger produces the BOOK MORE WEDDINGS NEWSLETTER and is the Founder and Director of the INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF WEDDING INDUSTRY PROFESSIONALS (IAWIP). He is a wedding industry marketing veteran with more than 20 years of experience marketing to brides and grooms.