In our previous top 10 fast hosting for WordPress review, SiteGround emerged as the best in class when it comes to WordPress hosting. SiteGround, as a hosting platform is beginner-friendly. To sum it up, SiteGround’s hosting plans offer a balanced combination of high-quality hosting features and tools, cost-effective pricing, and highly scalable features. Two of SiteGround’s standout features/tools are the Migrator plugin that enables even beginners to migrate their website to WordPress without the help of professionals and the WordPress Starter panel, an all-in-one hosting management dashboard.
But one of SiteGround’s hosting plans stands out from the rest: the GoGeek plan. In this SiteGround review, we will take a closer look into the merits of investing $11.95 a month on the SiteGround GoGeek Site ground plan. What features will you get with the GoGeek plan? Does is it bring more value in comparison to the Siteground StartUp and Siteground GrowBig Siteground hosting plans? Is it highly scalable? And most importantly, is the SiteGround GoGeek plan the hosting plan you need?
What is the GoGeek Plan and Why Is It Advantageous for You!
GoGeek is “crafted for real WordPress geeks.” With a special monthly fee of $11.95 a month ($34.95 is the regular monthly fee), this semi-dedicated Siteground hosting plan includes all essential and premium WordPress features with the “geeky” WordPress features. These geeky features allow users to have greater control over hosting management and hosting performance options that SiteGround provides.
SiteGround GoGeek’s main advantages include:
- Immediate ticket answers with the priority support feature. Ticket answers are usually within the 10-minute mark.
- Unlimited number of hosted websites.
- More server resources for websites that have medium to high traffic and need high processing power.
- Faster than shared hosting with its semi-dedicated servers and speed-optimized server architecture. It uses some of the best technology available: RAID10, SAS HDD, MySQL on separate SSD, 24 CPU cores, etc.
- Hosting cPanel access with FREE Cloudflare CDN, Railgun, minify code, and aggressive caching for optimum load speeds.
- One-click staging environment for creating and testing demo websites
- E-commerce functionality with PCI-compliant servers, free Let’s Encrypt SSL, and Wildcard SSL (on the first year of subscription.)
- Priority daily backup including storage of up to 30 copies and complimentary manual restore service. The GoGeek plan also allows you to request for restoration assistance from SiteGround’s tech support team.
- Pre-installed Git for the creation of a repository for WordPress installation
How Does the GoGeek Plan Measure Against Other Siteground Plans? (GoGeek vs StartUp and GoGeek vs GrowBig)
First thing in this Siteground review, we need to discuss SiteGround’s hosting plans, how you can you make the most of each plan, and what the process involves. Signing up to a SiteGround hosting plan takes only three simple steps and they are:
SiteGround offers three hosting solutions:
- StartUp plan: for those who have only one website that has more or less 10,000 monthly visitors.
- GrowBig plan: this premium plan is perfect for those with multiple sites that want to have enterprise-level features, support, and fast speeds at an affordable shared hosting plan.
- GoGeek plan: this enterprise-level plan is perfect for those that have large sites, large e-commerce site, or those who want to have access to developer options.
Here is the pricing for each of SiteGround’s plans and the summary of their features:
You’ll have the option to either buy a new domain (free for one year on all plans) or use an existing domain name. If you selected either the GrowBig or GoGeek plans, you can avail of SiteGround’s free website transfer service.
You’ll have the option to either buy a new domain (FREE for one year on all plans) or use an existing domain name. If you selected either the GrowBig or GoGeek plans, you can avail of SiteGround’s free website transfer service.
Review and Complete
You can review the details of the plan including the data center you want to use (should be closer to your audience marker, but since you will get a FREE Cloudflare CDN, it’s not crucial), the duration of the plan (1-month trial, 12 months, 24 months, or 36 months for a better discount and SEO), and any add-ons you want with your plan. When you are done reviewing these details, you can pay for the plan and avail of SiteGround’s hosting services.
But before you click the “Pay Now” button, are you sure that you’re making the right decision? The features that GoGeek offers are very advantageous especially for WordPress and/or e-commerce (Woocommerce or whatever CMS you are willing to use) sites but is it really the plan you need? We’ll next take a closer look at what the other plans have to offer.
As you can see on SiteGround’s plan comparison chart, all three plans offer great features including but not limited to:
- Free drag & drop builder
- Unmetered data transfer
- Free CMS install.
- Free email accounts.
- Free domain.
- Free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificates.
- Unlimited number of subdomains and parked domains.
- cPanel access.
- SSD storage.
- Free one-click CDN.
- Super Cacher feature.
- Automatic daily backups and backup restore.
- Security features with hacking, spam, and data loss prevention.
- Free shopping cart install.
- HTTP/2 enabled servers.
- Multiple and updated PHP versions (7.3, 7.2, 7.1, 7.0, and 5.6).
- FTP accounts.
- MySQL and PostgreSQL databases.
- 24/7support via chat, phone, and tickets.
- All essential hosting resources.
As with anything else, premium plans cost more and offer more features and functionalities. But what will you miss if you choose one plan over the other? We need to take a closer look at the key differences between the three SiteGround hosting plans.
Siteground Review: GoGeek vs StartUp vs GrowBig
The monthly fee for the Siteground StartUp and GrowBig plans is not far from each other at $3.95 and $5.95 respectively. The GoGeek plan is a jump at $11.95 per month but it really worth it in terms of the add-ons included: Staging where you can test plugins, themes before moving to production, GIT that allows developers to manage versions of their code, PCI compliant server for eCommerce websites and Free backups. All plans have a 30-day money back guarantee.
Siteground GoGeek is four times faster than StartUp and two times faster than the GrowBig plan. It has up to four times server resources with each server hosting only a limited number of GoGeek plan users. All StartUp and GrowBig plan users need to share the same servers located in three continents (a total of 4 data centers in North America (1), Europe (2), and Asia (1)).
SiteGround promises an uptime of 99.99% for all plans. The key difference is that GoGeek has almost 0 downtimes and a better response times in comparison to the two other plans. GrowBig and GoGeek plans can also handle more or less 500 visitors at the same time. GoGeek, especially showed impressive response time even with more than a thousand requests per second.
Backup and Storage
GoGeek has 10gb more web space storage allocation than the GrowBig plan and 20gb more than the StartUp plan. All three plans receive free 30 copies of auto daily backups but only GrowBig and GoGeek plan users will have access to free backup restores. Free backups on demand is a geeky feature available only on GoGeek plans.
Database and Email
Both the StartUp plan and the GrowBig plans use more or less 10% of the server resources for database queries, 400 emails sent per hour (with up to 40 recipients per email and maximum of 50mb for attachments). The only difference is that the database size for the StartUp plan is only 500mb with a mailbox size of 2000mb while the GrowBig plan has a database size of 750mb and a mailbox size of 4000mb.
The GoGeek plan, on the other hand, has a database size of 1000mb and uses more or less 30% of the available server resources. The mailbox size 6000mb with a sending limit of 800 emails per hour (maximum of 80 recipients per email and a maximum of 50mb for attachments).
All 3 plans have cPanel, one-click FREE Cloudflare CDN, and Super Cacher features. But, as with other features, StartUp and GrowBig plans can only access limited capabilities.
GrowBig and GoGeek plan users will have access to all three of the Super Cacher levels (Static Cache, Dynamic Cache, and Memcached) while StartUp plan users will only have access to level 1. Static Cache only covers static content like images and CSS files. Dynamic Cache covers the website’s dynamic content. Finally, Memcached keeps both data and objects within the server’s memory, speeding up database and API calls as well as page rendering.
World Class Support
GrowBig and GoGeek plan users have access to priority support and free site transfer service.
Shopping cart installs and free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificates features are available on all three plans but the PCI compliant servers are only available on the GoGeek plan.
Developer Features and Advanced Technology Features
SiteGround offers two geeky features for developers: pre-installed Git and a staging environment for testing website code and design. Technology-wise, SiteGround provides equal footing to all plan users. SiteGround commits itself into delivering the latest technology to their users to ensure optimum speed, performance, and security. Several of SiteGround’s advantageous technology features include:
- PHP 7.3 (always the latest PHP versions)
- TSL 1.3 and OCSP stapling for faster HTTPs sites
- SiteGround Migrator Plugin for a hassle-free site transfer
- SG Optimizer plugin for hosting management optimization
All basic security features like server monitoring, anti-hack systems, proactive updates and patches, and spam prevention are available for all plan users. In order to prevent attacks, SiteGround also has an anti-bot AI.
To sum it up, GoGeek has:
- Unmetered traffic and number of websites.
- Free backup restore and backups on demand.
- Free site transfer.
- Pre-installed Git.
- Staging environment.
- Unlimited MySQL and PostgreSQL databases.
- More server resources.
- Super-fast loading speeds with all three levels of the Super Cacher feature.
- PCI-compliant servers for eCommerce websites.
- Priority support.
Do i really need the Siteground Gogeek plan?
Even with all its CLEAR advantages, you still need to assess whether you really need to go with SiteGround GoGeek or if your website is better suited for a StartUp or a GrowBig plan. SiteGround recommends GoGeek for websites with high traffic and e-commerce websites. GoGeek is also perfect if you need hosting for several smaller sites. If your website is none of these, then the GrowBig or Startup will fill your needs.
But if your website(s) pass the criteria, here is a checklist that can convince you to upgrade to a GoGeek plan or stay in a GrowBig plan:
- You want to improve your website’s speed and performance? (loads peed is Crucial for SEO, see how i reduced my blog speed directly after migrating to siteground.
- You need a reliable hosting solution for multiple websites(if you have different websites or landing pages)
- The limits on the GrowBig plan storage, database, and email are too low for your needs.
- You want to have access to backups on demand and website restore from SiteGround’s support team.
- You want to access the staging feature that allows you to create a staging or demo site for testing themes, plugins, code and design features.
- You need a PCI compliant server for your e-commerce website.
- You want a ROCK solid 99.99% uptime with quicker response time in comparison to the StartUp and GrowBig plans.
- You need more control over your hosting management
Cons of SiteGround GoGeek Hosting Plan
Every hosting plan, not just one from SiteGround has its cons. One of the main concerns with GoGeek is that it is just-out-of-reach for some businesses, not just because of its upfront monthly fee and additional expense that it entails but also because of its traffic requirements.
Plan renewal is a bit higher. After your plan’s first period expires, the plan’s pricing returns to regular. From $11.95 per month, it becomes $34.95 per month.
One Final Advantage of the SiteGround GoGeek Hosting Plan: The SG Optimizer Plugin
We’re not done yet. Aside from the plan-specific features, there are also other ways that availing of a Growbig and GoGeek plan are advantageous. One of the most obvious is through the SG Optimizer plugin. Created by SiteGround itself, the SG Optimizer plugin links SiteGround to your WordPress blog and provides powerful optimization options to help improve WP instances that are hosted on SiteGround.
Specific instances that the SG Optimizer plugin optimize include:
- Super Cacher settings – you can easily configure Dynamic Caching and Memcached (after enabling them from the cPanel). GrowBig and GoGeek plan users can enable or disable test webpages for proper caching, enable or disable automatic cache purge, or exclude any URLs from the cache.
- Environment optimization – you can configure your site to create a secure connection via HTTPS, switch PHP versions, enable GZIP compression (GZip is a form of data compression: ie it takes a chunk of data and makes it smaller. The original data can be restored by un-zipping the compressed file.), and add browser caching rules.
- Image optimization – you have the option to allow the automatic optimization of new images uploaded to the Media Library or to allow the bulk optimization of existing images. You can also enable lazy loading of image assets in your website, i also recommend to install an image smashing plugin such us WP Smush it.
The SG Optimizer plugin also has features that are very beneficial for GoGeek plan users that manage multiple sites. SG Optimizer’s multisite management panel enables the configuration of multisite networks to enhance speed.
In order to access these multisite options, you need to log in as a Network Admin in the WordPress multisite installation. The multisite management panel in SG Optimizer is only accessible by Network Admins. Once inside the panel, you can access two tabs:
- Global settings – shows the real-time network status of the sites within your network. Settings available in the SG Optimizer like PHP version, GZIP compression, browser caching options, and Memcached settings are uniform throughout your sites so if you enable or disable these features within the Global Settings tab, the said settings will apply to all your sites. Aside from this, you can also control what features or interface of the SG Optimizer your site admins can access or see. Any changes on these permissions will affect the access of all site admins.
- Per site defaults – this tab will allow you to set the default SG optimizer setting status of separate sites within your network. Unlike the PHP version and browser caching options, you can set individual site defaults for Dynamic Caching, HTTPs, Minify options, query strings removal, and many more.
The SiteGround GoGeek semi-dedicated hosting plan is one of the best options in the market for WordPress. For an $11.95 per month hosting, you’ll get almost the same speed, features, and reliability as a cloud hosting plan that is x3 times the price.
This further proves SiteGround’s superiority in comparison to its competition. SiteGround, especially its GoGeek plan outperforms competitors not only in terms of features but also performance.
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