GreenGeeks was founded in 2008 by Trey Gardner, and they’ve now shot up to hosting over 300,000 websites (with data centers in the U.S., Canada, and the Netherlands).
Trey’s background is important, as he’s worked with eight different web hosting companies, including iPowerweb, iPage, StartLogic, Dot5Hosting, Globat, Lunarpages, HostPapa, and now GreenGeeks.
On their website, GreenGeeks goes on to make two bold claims:
- 99.9% uptime
- 100% customer satisfaction
So what’s the verdict? Do they have excellent, wind-powered uptime and support? Or are their promotional claims just full of hot air?
To see for ourselves, we purchased the GreenGeeks ‘Shared Plan’ and set up a basic WordPress test website to run performance tests for over 12 months.
Read on to find out if GreenGeeks got our recommendation.
General Info & Hosting Overview
Pros of Using GreenGeeks Hosting
GreenGeeks has a lot of good things going for them. This includes solid uptime, support, and important mission-driven service. Here are the details:
1. Reliable Uptime Performance
Uptime is one of the most crucial factors when choosing a web host. Not only does solid uptime show the reliability of a web host but it directly affects your site’s visitor experience and bounce rate (which can potentially mean lost profit for your business).
GreenGeeks didn’t disappoint in this area. They delivered an average uptime of 99.99% during the 6-month testing period. Throughout the whole half a year their uptime was between 99.99% and 100%.
Last 6-month average uptime:
- May 2022: 100%
- April 2022: 99.99%
- March 2022: 99.99%
- February 2022: 100%
- January 2022: 99.99%
- December 2021: 99.99%
2. Good Page Loading Time (480 ms)
Another important factor to look for when choosing a host is their server speed.
There’s a 32% probability of a site’s bounce rate increasing if it takes one to three seconds to load a website. In short, the longer your page takes to load, the more likely visitors will leave. And that’s just one of the ways how speed can affect your website.
Once again, GreenGeeks didn’t let us down.
Their speed is better than the industry average, clocking in at around 480 ms.
Overall, GreenGeeks’ loading times have been consistently good which makes us believe that they’re a reliable host.
3. Good Support with Quick Answers
Customer support is another “big element” of the review.
We tested out GreenGeeks’ live chat and were connected to a customer support agent within a minute, who then answered questions quickly and concisely.
GreenGeeks also has an extensive knowledge base where users can search for answers to their questions.
That’s a great perk if you prefer self-help over asking a customer service representative for assistance.
GreenGeeks has a ton of different article categories and subcategories to select from, including sales questions, general hosting, reseller hosting, VPS hosting, billing questions, video tutorials, and more.
You can use the search bar in case you can’t find your solution within the above-mentioned categories.
That way, you always have access to the help you need, even if GreenGeeks’ live chat feature is offline for some reason.
Besides live chat and knowledge base, GreenGeeks also have phone support.
4. Free Domain Name & Website Migration
GreenGeeks offers free domain name registration and transfer. If you get your domain name through them, they will keep it free for as long as you use their services – kind of. See the Cons section for the details.
However, it’s also worth mentioning that the domain name is free for the first year only. After that, you’d have to pay the renewal price, starting from $13.95 per year for .com, .net, .org domains.
Moreover, if your website is already hosted elsewhere, they can help you transfer your site to their servers for free.
GreenGeeks claims to be – well – green. What does that mean exactly?
Here’s how they explain it:
GreenGeeks will purchase three times the wind energy credits to make up for the energy used by their services to power your website.
They replace more than 615,000 kWh a year. To put that in perspective, the average American consumes 12,000 kWh of electricity per year.
GreenGeeks is a recognized Green Power Partner with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), too.
6. 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
If you’re unhappy with moving over to GreenGeeks, they have a full 30-day, ‘no-questions-asked’ money-back guarantee on most hosting plans.
There are a few exceptions, though. Read more in the Cons section.
7. Nightly Backups
Sometimes bad things happen. And by bad, we mean that sometimes your site just crashes.
Maybe it’s self-inflicted, or it could be someone with malicious intent trying to hack their way in. Regardless, GreenGeeks provides free nightly backups (in addition to SSH access). This way, you can sleep soundly, knowing that even if something goes wrong, your data is backed up regularly.
For additional security measures, they also offer real-time security scanning, automatic brute force detection, Spam Assassin protection, SSL secure server, and the ability to password-protect your directories.
8. Multiple High-Quality Server Locations
GreenGeeks offers data centers in three locations:
- Chicago, US
- Montreal, CA
- Amsterdam, NL
Choosing the right server location can have a huge, positive impact on your website’s SEO. Plus, if you pick a server closer to you, you’ll experience faster speeds.
GreenGeeks also promises customers that they will keep servers up to date with the following specifications:
- Never oversold
- Gigabit Connectivity
- The Latest Generation of Energy-efficient Intel Xeon processors
- Minimum of 128 GB DDR3 ECC-Registered Memory
- No desktop hardware whatsoever
- BGP4 Gigabit connectivity to several Fiber GigE Tier 1 Backbones
- Name brand server parts
- RAID-10 SSD Storage Arrays to give you maximum performance & redundancy
- Solid State Drive (SSD) Acceleration
So you can be sure with GreenGeeks that your data is stored on high-quality, state-of-the-art servers.
9. Free CDN
Everyone interacts with a Content Delivery Network (CDN) on a daily basis if they browse the web, whether they’re looking at news sites, social media pages, or shopping online.
GreenGeeks offers a CDN to users that are powered by Cloudflare. That’s great news for your site optimization, especially if you’ve got a global reach.
The best part? It’s absolutely free.
Cloudflare allows users to cache content and use servers closest to website visitors to get it delivered. As a result, web surfing is much faster for those who come to your website.
Cons of Using GreenGeeks Hosting
Unfortunately, all that glitters is not gold.
Despite all of the upsides to GreenGeeks, there are a few things you should be aware of before making a final decision.
1. Industry-Standard Pricing (Higher Renewals)
GreenGeeks follows the tried-and-true industry-standard practice of advertising a very low monthly rate of $2.95 on their website, only for you to find out that you actually have to sign up three years in advance to get it.
Moreover, the prices get more expensive the shorter the signup term:
- $3.95 Biennially
- $4.95 Annually
- $10.95 Monthly
2. Questionable Refund Policy
Many web hosts will throw in a domain name for free when you create a new account with them.
GreenGeeks also offers you a free domain name with them.
But be aware of the fine print:
If you request the aforementioned money-back guarantee and you took them up on that ‘free’ domain name offer, your refund will be deducted by the amount you paid for a domain name registration fee.
This means that the domain name is not really free and that their money-back guarantee has some strings attached.
This tactic is, however, quite common among many other hosts.
GreenGeeks Pricing, Hosting Plans & Quick Facts
Here’s a quick overview of the shared hosting plans offered by GreenGeeks:
WordPress Hosting: Their WordPress hosting is basically the same as their shared hosting plan, but it seems to be especially enhanced for WordPress. We haven’t tested it yet but will do it soon.
- Free domain? Yes.
- Ease of Signup: Easy signup process.
- Money-Back: 30-days money-back guarantee.
- Payment Methods: Credit Card, PayPal.
- Hidden Fees and Clauses: Your account must not use more than 100 percent of 1 CPU core and/or 1GB memory, or 20 concurrent connections, or 75,0000 files, or you will risk account suspension. If a due invoice is not paid within four days, your account will be suspended and you will need to pay a reactivation fee of $15 to have your account back online.
- Upsells: No upsells.
- Account Activation: Quick account activation.
- Control Panel and Dashboard Experience: cPanel.
- Installation of Apps and CMSs (WordPress, Joomla, etc.): 1-click install tool to easily install popular apps and CMSs.
Do We Recommend GreenGeeks?
Yes, we do.
GreenGeeks has a bigger mission than just simply providing web hosting, and we like that.
They’re not necessarily the best we’ve seen, but they do provide solid speed, uptime, and good customer support.
For those reasons, you should consider giving them a look.
Just be aware that you’ll need to sign up for the long-term if you’d like their lowest rate. And that your ‘free domain’ and ‘money-back guarantee’ might not be so iron-clad if you decide to ask for a refund.
Do you have any experience with GreenGeeks – positive or negative? If so, please leave a transparent and honest review below!