HostGators web hosting services are frequently recommended in hosting reviews and on line comments by their users are overwhelmingly positive but there are a few other companies about which the same can be said.
Many people struggle with choosing a web host, firstly wondering if a free service will meet their needs or whether they should get a paid service. In either case there are a large number of providers competing for business which makes the process very confusing.
There are always limitations, of one sort or another, with a free service and since support is expensive to provide this will be limited (probably to email). However if you just want to put up a personal site and performance is not critical this may be a good way to start.
On the other hand if you are setting up a commercial site, or a non-commercial site that you want to rank well on the search engines and become popular, you need to go for paid hosting at the outset. You can then expect fast page loading, 99.9% uptime and 24/7 support if you have any problems.
Even with paid hosting you can still get a poor service so it is not a good idea to look for the cheapest price. HostGators service started in 2002 and they now host over 4 million domains so they must be doing something right.
HostGators cheapest price is obtained by paying for 3 years in advance but they are one of the few hosts that actually allow you to pay monthly (albeit at a higher rate) without any contract, so you can cancel at anytime. Using a coupon code you can get the first month for $0.01 and in any case there is a money back guarantee. There is also an uptime guarantee of 99.9%.
As well as the basic shared hosting packages HostGator also offer Virtual Private Server Hosting, and Dedicated Server Hosting so they can cater for businesses of all sizes and provide an upgrade path if you are just starting out.
Support is HostGators big selling point. The website has an extensive help section with FAQs covering common issues. Support is available 24/7 by phone (free in US), live chat, and email. My own experience is that the support staff are helpful and will give advice even if the problem is outside their control. They claim that despite their growth you can still ask for an issue to be referred to the founder and Chairman if you are unhappy.