HostGator India Review : A hosting nightmare you want to avoid at all costs

If you are looking for a reliable web hosting provider and considering Hostgator India (hostgator.in), I would strongly say “No” to it. However, I had decent experience with Hostgator International over the years and their newly launched cloud hosting has pretty decent support and great performance as far as my and my peers’ experience go. Price is a bit on the higher side but you are bound to get a much better performance, support and experience overall. Don’t get lured to a faster local ping, a lot of factors has to be weighed in while choosing the right web hosting provider.

Before we move on to why I strongly advise against Hostgator India and share my horrific experience with them, let me make some alternative suggestions.

For Shared Hosting :

  1. Hostgator International Cloud Hosting ( Read the full Hostgator Cloud Hosting Review)
  2. Siteground
  3. Inmotion Shared Webhosting

Pick one of the above based on your budget and the features they are offering for it. Hostgator cloud is a bit expensive as I have already mentioned before but is certainly worth the price tag. Siteground has been doing pretty well for sometime now and its users are all praise for their support. They seem to have some really good dedicated servers and managed VPS as well. Another recommendation would be Inmotion web hosting who has been consistent in performance and support for the last few years now. I am comfortable recommending them as well.

However, things tend to go out of hand plenty of times and these providers are no exception, but as far as my experience goes as a webmaster for the last 8 years, these are the best options at the moment.

For Programmers/Advanced users, go with one of these amazing unmanaged cloud hosting providers

  1. Digital Ocean
  2. Linode
  3. Amazon Web Services (AWS)

Please note that the above are unmanaged cloud VPS providers. That means you have to install your own OS and fully manage your server, don’t expect a cpanel login right after you buy one of these, if you don’t know what I am talking here, just buy a managed server. But if this is what you have been looking for, I recommend Digitalocean, for their no frills user interface, quick support and dynamic billing by the minute. Linode is a close second that looks to be offering more for less, however we have limited experience with them, so I cannot say how well they compare to Digitalocean in terms of speed and support but they do seem to offer more hardware for the same money than Digitalocean. Last but not least would be AWS, I don’t think it needs an introduction, so pick one as you cannot go wrong with any of them.

For premium dedicated servers and VPS, go with one these

  1. Mediatemple
  2. RackSpace
  3. LiquidWeb

These three are among the best web hosting providers out there but as I have mentioned above, they are premium, both in price and performance. They offer unparalleled support and are quite reliable. You should pick one of them if your looking to host a large website and need a managed VPS or Dedicated server. The peace of mind that comes with them totally makes up for the price.

Now for why you should avoid Hostgator India and probably hostgator shared web hosting in general, read on for my experience…..

Hostgator.in Review

So I have been a webmaster, blogger and an Internet entrepreneur for 8 years now, and the name Hostgator is almost synonymous to web hosting in this industry, atleast it was until Brent Oxley was running it, people mostly had good things to say.

Back in 2009, when I had hit the front page of Digg, my shared hosting with Hostgator could handle it with ease, I’m talking about 100K visitors in a span of few minutes, that’s impressive for a shared hosting server.

The Biggest Mistake : Hostgator.in

With that impression in mind, I turned to Hostgator, Hostgator.in’s Dedicated server in India when we had to host our most ambitious project to date, Shopsmart, a price comparison website with more than 11,000 products that took us more than a year to add.

I decided to pay for 12 months in advance just to avoid the monthly billing nuisance and that was the biggest mistake we made and Hostgator.in made sure to take full advantage of the situation.

Now, as you all can check, the date of full payment for 12 months is 10/9/2016, the very next day, we raised a ticket to Hostgator regarding our emails not delevering with the assigned primary, dedicated IP. Note dedicated, this is a dedicated server and we were assigned 111.118.214.117.

They kept trying to solve the issue in vain, a proof of it can be found below.

The only way they could solve it was by changing the IP for email, as I have shown you, we have raised the ticket the very next day of signing up on the server, we never even had the chance to set it up but they said issue is because of bulk email sending and has changed the IP to solve the issue.

Now observe, this took 7 days, we had to esclate numerous times and create multiple tickets and follow ups. Also, the support person in this is different from the one above, they just keep escalating to one another, and the worst part is, everytime, every freaking time you have to explain what the issue is, this is just scartching the surface though, we haven’t even started on how horrible hostgator.in’s service is, keep reading.

Check the image below.

Now, at this point, we just let it go, we had other priorities. The big question in our mind was, why on earth, an unused IP with our new domain would have been blacklisted by Gmail when we never even got to set it up, clearly there was a long standing issue with the IP.

Fast forward January, we found the issue still persists, and upon raising a ticket to Hostgator, they fixed it by changing the primary IP for the email , again. We had no clue what they did the first time as we did not even bother to look into it as we were busy working on our startup.

Is this bad? You bet, but as I said, we had more important things to worry than our IP being blacklisted with Gmail, and that ignorance led us to a disaster.

Hostgator.in’s Blunder costs us a huge penality:

While reviewing our webmaster tools, we found thousands of links from a strange domain datelineindia.net, upon opening the domain, we were shell shocked.

Have a look at this video

At first, we thought we have been hacked, some sort of advance DNS Hijacking, however it seemed impossible so we quickly contacted Hostgator support, and the reveal of the issue was even more shocking to us.

Yup, you read it right, they had their previous client on this same IP 111.118.214.117 and they did not even bother to reset the DNS before issuing it to us and here we were working our asses off to make the domain work in search results for the last 4 months with no clue that this issue was pulling us back like a bloody bulldrozer.

A quick “site:datelineindia.net” showed thousands of pages of our content indexed, we were baffled, petrified and just wanted to come out of the mess ASAP.

However, the support specialist at hostgator.in slapped us hard with an ignorent response.

So, thats it, “Google will reindex your website, we won’t change your IP.” WOW, I mean just WOW, I am in internet marketing for the last 7 years and to me this was totally absurd. If you read my response to it, “you know what I will just esclate it”, as I believed hostgator.com’s support will put them in place, spank them for the mistake and solve it with utmost preferance but boy was I being naive.

I literally had to email one hundred times, CCing hostgator.com support, their legal, and sales teams in vain despite crying out loud in social media.

I was dumbfolded by how they or Hostgator.com didn’t give two fucks about the whole issue.

Once every week, someone new from Hostgator India would mail back asking what the issue is?

I had enough of it, just decided to move on, we just wanted to focus on our website. I kept mailing them to cancel my account and initiate a refund. This is when Hostgator.com responded, Feb 17th, thats right, after 30 days. All they said is that they can’t help me with this.

So, this is all really bad you say? Wait, the worst is yet to come. After being done with this shit, we moved to Digitalocean and mailed them to just refund & close the account. Asked them to refund for the remaining 9 months of server fees that I had paid upfront . Could I have been any more subtle? And yet, this is what Hostgator India mails me today, this, this is freaking unbeliveble.

I had sent them 100s of emails, explaining the issue, they acknowledge it, then say they are escalating it to the concerned team, and someone new always come back with, whats the issue?

So, here, here is the whole issue on medium.com Sherlock, just read it, OK?

Funny thing, they called me yesterday telling me that they will close the issue ASAP and this is what they come back with, “Whats the reason? What happend? Why leave ? BTW, we won’t refund. We are bloody theives. HaHa”

This is plain harrasement and strong-arming the victim, I freaking let it go, we had our domain duplicated all across Google, we got an IP that was blacklisted in the first place and yet I choose to move on, all I asked them was to refund the upfront paid server fees. Yet this is how they handle the issue.

Hostgator INDIA Review: Opinion

I just have to say one thing to say to you, Hostgator.in, You Suck. That’s the rating I give to your services.

To everyone reading this, hope this helps, just stay away, far far away from Hostgator. You are welcome.

Update : Hostgator India contacted and apologized for the issue, a refund has been initiated with pro data rates. However, like anyone, I would have preferred this was taken care of, atleast when escalated the first few times, hopefully with my experience, Hostgator India will be more considerate to such issues in the future and would never forget that…

Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning. ~ Bill Gates