The In-Built Hostgator CDN is Good Enough

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Hostgator is known for its affordable hosting plans. At the starting levels, they’re pretty basic, but solid – nothing fancy. So it’s reasonable to ask whether or not it includes a Hostgator CDN, and if not, should you pay for a separate CDN service? After all, if it’s vanilla web hosting, you might need to garnish it up a bit, right?

Short answer, no. You do not need to pay for a CDN when purchasing a Hostgator plan. There are two separate Hostgator CDN options:

  1. Basic web hosting – Cloudflare
  2. WordPress hosting – Hostgator global CDN network

I discuss both of these below.

Hostgator Coupons and Discounts

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Duration: 12 months
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Now here’s the Hostgator CDN review.

The In-Built Hostgator Cloudflare CDN is Sufficient

All Hostgator plans come with in-built Cloudflare integration. Since you’re probably purchasing Linux web hosting with cPanel, you can simply select the Cloudflare icon in cPanel, and set up your integration with the click of a button.

Cloudflare offers two ways to integrate your web hosting:

  1. Through the hosting providers (easy)
  2. By manually changing your DNS records (advanced)

The first method is for those who don’t want to mess around too much. Your website will continue to use Hostgator’s servers. The second method is a bit more involved, but you use Cloudflare’s DNS servers instead, which I find to be faster than almost everyone else’s.

No Railgun Integration

However, Hostgator doesn’t appear to be a Cloudflare Optimized Partner with access to Railgun – Cloudflare’s service for speeding up the delivery of dynamic content. But my personal experience with Railgun has been very iffy. Whenever I’ve tried Railgun, my server response times have spiked, and I typically get worse performance.

So I don’t think this is a big deal. You’ll do just fine without Railgun as long as the rest of your site is optimized.

But is the Hostgator CDN with Cloudflare Good Enough?

I know what you’re thinking. “Cloudflare is free. How good can it be?”. The answer is – pretty damn good. I’d written an article earlier about whether you should pay for a CDN in the face of Cloudflare. And the answer for most situations is “No”.

Cloudflare’s CDN service is so good and seamless, that you most likely do not need to pay for a separate CDN service. Unless you require logging, and a few advanced features, your site is probably faster with Cloudflare.

The Hostgator Global CDN with WordPress

While most Hostgator plans will use Cloudflare, Hostgator does have a global CDN that customers can use. But not just any customer. Only those who sign up for the Hostgator WordPress plan. This is a special kind of hosting that brings all sorts of benefits if you’re on WordPress such as:

  1. Cloud architecture
  2. SSD drives
  3. CDN
  4. Malware detection and cleaning
  5. Automatic updates
  6. Streamlined dashboard

The Hostgator CDN benefit is mentioned on their WordPress hosting page as shown here:

Hostgator CDN Comes with WordPress
In-built Hostgator CDN Comes with WordPress

This is the only reference to CDNs on the Hostgator website for any kind of hosting package. WordPress users can preferential treatment, and I personally think that Hostgator has one of the best affordable WordPress packages on the market. There are others of course, like Kinsta and Liquid Web, but they fall into the more “premium” slots.

Bottom Line

In short, unless you’re on the WordPress plan, you should be using the built-in Hostgator CDN with Cloudflare. And personally, just between us, I think Cloudflare is superior of the actual Hostgator CDN as well. Don’t let the “free” tag fool you. I’ve been web hosting since 2008, and I’ve tried everything. Nothing beats Cloudflare.

About Bhagwad Park

I've been writing about web hosting and WordPress tutorials since 2008. I also create tutorials on Linux server administration, and have a ton of experience with web hosting products. Contact me via e-mail!

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