If working with a company that puts the environment at the forefront of all it does is a priority, then GreenGeeks is the hosting provider for you. It puts three times the energy its servers use back into the grid.
The company also plants a tree for every new hosting account–it doesn’t get greener than that. Other providers have started to follow suit, but GreenGeeks were the first and are doing the most to offset their impact. Using a hosting provider like this is a great idea for businesses, web stores, and other organizations that promote going green as part of their brand values.
How GreenGeeks Stacks Up to Other Web Hosts
GreenGeeks is excellent for eco-conscious brands who prefer to work with companies that align with their values. From planting trees and adding renewal energy into the grid, there’s no doubt they do their part. But it’s not the easiest host we’ve ever used, nor is it the most scalable option.
So, if ease of use and scalability are at the top of your priority list, a different provider might be a better fit.
Our favorite web hosting services include:
- Hostinger – Best overall hosting company
- DreamHost – Best WordPress hosting
- SiteGround – Best ecommerce hosting
- Bluehost – Best hosting for beginners
- ScalaHosting – Best customer service
- GreenGeeks – Best eco-friendly web hosting
- HostGator – Best website hosting for scalability
- WP Engine – Best managed WordPress hosting
- A2 Hosting – Best shared hosting for site speed
- InMotion Hosting – Best for technical users
Where GreenGeeks Stands Out
Aside from its focus on being the greenest website hosting company, GreenGeek delivers a top-notch experience in several ways.
Ease of Use (the good)
GreenGeeks offers three shared hosting plans and lays out the key features of each in a clear, understandable way. You can quickly find the right plan for your needs.
When it comes to paying for your hosting services, GreenGeeks only accepts credit cards. You’ll need a Visa, MasterCard, Discover Card, or American Express to complete your transaction. A minor inconvenience for some, but worth noting.
Once your account is activated, you’ll find the user dashboard is very easy to understand and navigate. There’s no unnecessary information there and no attempts to upsell, just a clean, minimalist design.
Even if you’ve never hosted a website in your life, you won’t get lost navigating your user dashboard with GreenGeeks. You find what you need on the left side panel.
The center area is reserved for the most common tasks related to your website management—your services (such as the web hosting plan you’re subscribed to) and open tickets. You’ll also find an area dedicated to GreenGeeks’ referral program.
GreenGeeks isn’t the only hosting provider that offers a referral program, but it is one that promotes it most prominently. You will find a link to it on your dashboard. Get $100 for each person you refer that signs up for service with GreenGeeks.
GreenGeeks will also plant a tree for each of those referrals, too.
GreenGeeks will also migrate your existing site for you, free of charge. You can start that process through your user dashboard.
GreenGeeks uses cPanel to manage many website and hosting tasks. But, unlike other hosting providers, GreenGeeks has also built common web hosting tasks into the user dashboard. This means you’ll only have to go into cPanel for uncommon or advanced functions.
You can access all of the following cPanel tasks directly from the Hosting menu, via the top menu bar:
- Site statistics
Even less tech-savvy customers can find their way around with ease without having to dive into the depths of cPanel. But, of course, the actual cPanel is available just a few clicks away, too.
One thing we really like is the Quick Launch Wizard. It is always accessible via the Hosting option on the sidebar menu. With it, you can get a new site up and running fast.
This can be a huge time saver when you’re ready to create your new website or migrate an existing one.
GreenGeeks offers two options for live support. Both deliver fast, clear, and helpful responses to your questions.
Live chat is available 24/7 and phone support is available between 9:00 a.m. and midnight, Eastern time.
We tested both options and had an excellent experience each time. Every agent we connected with was knowledgeable, friendly, and able to explain solutions in a clear way.
GreenGeeks ranks among the best for live support. Base on our experience, you can count on when you need it.
There is also a ticket-based support system. The form for submitting an issue or request is straightforward and easy to use. You can also track all submitted tickets and responses directly from your user dashboard.
If you prefer to find answers yourself, GreenGeeks also offers a knowledge base, tutorials, how to articles, webinars, and even a WordPress glossary. We found each resource to be easy to use and helpful, especially for anyone new to web hosting.
Where GreenGeeks Could Improve
There’s a lot to love about GreenGeeks as a general web hosting provider. But not everything is perfect in terms of using the service and stepping up when your site needs more.
Ease of Use (the not so good)
When it comes to picking a shared hosting plan, GreenGeeks doesn’t make it easy to compare much beyond basic plan features.
Unlike other web hosting companies, GreenGeeks does not include any information about different contract lengths while you are browsing plans. We had to reach out via live chat to find that information, which is incredibly frustrating.
We feel it’s unnecessary to hide basic information like this and make potential customers search for it. This lack of information is called out in third-party reviews, too.
The alternative way to find out plan options is actually starting the checkout process, at which point you’ll find that information buried a few screens in.
But, to sign up for service, you must already know the domain name you plan to use, which is another potential hurdle.
If you are a customer that wants to secure hosting before you settle on a domain name, GreenGeeks is going to put you in a sticky situation. This is another place we think GreenGeeks could improve.
One more hurdle, albeit minor, is that you may be subject to a manual review to complete your order. We had that happen and found it surprising, as we didn’t have to wait to get started with any other hosting provider (except InMotion).
It’s not that GreenGeeks’ scalability is limited, but there are fewer options than you find with some of the other hosting providers.
When you start with shared hosting, you have your choice of three plans—Lite, Pro, and Premium. Lite is fine when you’re just starting out. It gives you the essentials to get going by supporting a single website and giving you 50 GB storage space plus other features.
When your site grows—especially if you plan to add something like ecommerce functionality—you may find that 50 GB storage just isn’t enough. You can upgrade to either Pro or Premium, as both give you unlimited storage and support as many websites as you need to host.
And, if you keep growing and outgrow shared hosting, the only option you’ll have is to move to managed VPS hosting. While robust, it is also expensive.
There is no middle ground, like you’ll find with many other providers on this list.
This isn’t necessarily a deal breaker, since many people with simple website needs will be perfectly happy sticking with shared hosting for a long time. But, if you are in growth mode, the limited options and expensive nature of making an upgrade could be a source of frustration.
When you do grow, GreenGeeks’ managed VPS hosting options include three matter-of-factly named plans:
- 2GB: starting at $39.95 per month
- 4GB: starting at $59.95 per month
- 8GB: starting at $109.95 per month
The names of these plans reflect the amount of RAM you get on each.
Unlike ScalaHosting and SiteGround, there is no option to configure your own solution.
All upgrade requests must be submitted to GreenGeeks via support. There is no option to upgrade yourself, even within the same plan category. All in all, scaling on GreenGeeks is just a lot less convenient and customizable than it is with other providers.
Pricing & Plans
GreenGeeks offers three shared hosting options. There is also WordPress Hosting and WooCommerce Hosting available, but those plans are identical in price to the tiers of shared hosting.
All shared hosting plans include a free CDN, free SSL certificate, and free nightly backups.
- Lite: $2.95 per month; includes one website, 50 GB storage space, and 50 email accounts
- Pro: $4.95 per month; includes unlimited websites and storage space, on-demand backups, and multi-user access
- Premium: $8.95 per month; includes unlimited websites and storage space, on-demand backups, multi-user access, a free dedicated IP, free AlphaSSL, and more
Lite is enough to get a small website up and running, but Pro makes sense if you plan to have more than one website now or down the road.
You can choose from one, 12, 24, or 36-month contract lengths. If you choose to be billed by the month, there is a one-time $15 setup fee.
You will get the lowest monthly rate when you choose an annual plan. For the entry-level Lite plan, that’s $2.95 per month. All other plan durations cost the full monthly price of $11.95 for each plan. This structure also applies to the other plan options, with Pro costing $4.95 per month on a 12-month term ($16.95 on all others) and Premium running $8.95 on a one-year contract ($26.95 on all other term lengths).
Now, we’ll crunch the numbers for what four years of web hosting on the Ecosite Lite 50 plan costs.
With Ecosite Lite 50 on the 12-month plan, you’ll end up paying a total of $35.40 at checkout, then $143.40 per year after that. The total four-year cost to you will be $465.60.
If you opt for any other plan duration, Ecosite Lite 50 will cost you $143.40 for the contract duration. To keep your hosting service after that, you’ll pay an additional $143.40 per year. Your total hosting costs for four years will be $573.60.
GreenGeeks is definitely not the cheapest hosting provider out there. Renewal prices will be a big jump. So, be sure and keep that in mind.
There are also a few add-ons that will cost you extra. The following should be factored into the total price for hosting services:
- Domain registration: You’ll get a free domain name for the first year with every shared hosting package, but prices after that will be $17.95 for each additional .com name you want to register. Prices vary depending on the extension.
- Domain renewal: When renewal time rolls around, expect to pay $17.95 per .com domain, and other prices depending on the extension of your website.
- Domain privacy: To keep your domain registrar information hidden, it will cost you $9.95 per year per site with GreenGeeks.
If you try GreenGeeks and decide it’s not for you, there is a 30-day money back guarantee. The cancellation process is not automated, though. You will fill out a form from your user dashboard, then wait up to seven days for the cancellation to be processed.
Our experience with canceling our account was smooth. Our request was processed quickly and we had confirmation of our refund within a few hours. The actual refund arrived a few days later.
If GreenGeeks isn’t right for you or you want to learn more about how we test and review hosts, check our complete guide on the best web hosting companies.