The Best cPanel Web Hosting Companies of 2020

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Compare cPanel Hosting

If you are building your own website, you want it to be as simple as possible. One way to do that is to use a cPanel hosting site, which allows you to use the world’s most popular control panel for all of your website managing needs.

Many web hosts use cPanel, but there are a few key things to consider when choosing a cPanel host, including good server speeds and stability, smart resource allocation, customer support, and price. We compared several cPanel web hosts on these points, to create a list of recommendations that are worth your attention and money.

Below, we dive into the details of the best cPanel hosts.

Best cPanel Web Hosting of 2020

Best-cPanel-Web-Hosting-Companies-Badge

How Did We Pick the Best Hosts for cPanel?

We’ve taken all the hosting plans that offer cPanel and then further limited them to only the top-rated hosts with above average customer support.

Our experts have reviewed over 380 web hosting companies and 1,500 hosting plans. We used these, along with thousands of customer reviews, to determine the our top recommendations.

A2 Hosting

A2-Hosting

All of A2 Hosting’s shared hosting plans include a cPanel control center. Even if you don’t have much technical experience, this intuitive interface makes it easy to manage your domains, web software, databases, and email. 

These shared hosting plans also include a free SSL certificate, DDoS protection, and CloudFlare CDN. And if you upgrade to the Turbo Boost or Turbo Max plan, you get access to A2 Hosting’s turbo servers, which feature load times 20 times faster than average. 

In addition to shared hosting, A2 also includes cPanel-based site management with its VPS hosting, reseller hosting, dedicated hosting, and WordPress hosting plans.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Startup: Starts at $2.99 per month
Drive: Starts at $4.99 per month
Turbo Boost: Starts at $9.99 per month
Turbo Max: Starts at $14.99 per month

30 days

>949 ms avg. response time
>99.835% uptime
>24/7 live chat and phone support
>More features at A2 Hosting

Pros & Cons of A2 Hosting

There’s a lot to like about A2 Hosting, as it offers many feature-rich plans with cPanel site management as well as a flexible money-back guarantee and 24/7 phone support. But according to an independent audit, their uptime for shared hosting falls short of the industry standard 99.9%.

Pros

Cons

>Turbo servers
>24/7 phone support
>Flexible money-back guarantee

>Uptime below 99.9%.

What Customers Are Saying

The customer reviews show that with A2 Hosting’s cPanel features, getting your site up and running is easy. “I like the ease of setting things up in the cPanel, pretty straightforward and simple,” wrote one user. “Included cPanel made website administration very easy,” wrote another.

Cloudways

cloudways

Cloudways offers its users managed hosting with infrastructure from some of the world’s top data center providers, including Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud. 

This hosting option is notable for their flexible pricing structure. Most companies offer annual and monthly plans — with Cloudways, you can purchase hosting services by the hour if you prefer. 

All Cloudways plans include a free SSL certificate, dedicated firewalls, managed backups, managed updates, and access to CloudwaysCDN.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

AWS Small: $36.51 per month
AWS Medium: $86.77 per month
AWS Large: $176.26 per month

No, but they do offer a three-day free trial with no credit card information required

>Dedicated firewalls
>CloudwaysCDN
>24/7 live chat and ticket support
>More features at Cloudways

Pros & Cons of Cloudways Web Hosting

The flexible pricing will surely appeal to users with short-term hosting needs, but overall there are more affordable options available.

Pros

Cons

>Flexible pricing

>More expensive than comparable plans

What Customers Are Saying

Customers love how easy it is to use Cloudways. “As a designer, I don’t have the skill set and knowledge to run a dedicated server, but with Cloudways it’s really easy to set this up,” wrote one user. “Their very good support and extensive guide pages helped me through managing some heavy-duty websites and optimizing them to become faster. Creating a new server is easy, just a few clicks and you’re set.”

CoolHandle

coolhandle

CoolHandle offers shared hosting, reseller hosting, and WordPress hosting plans, which all come with cPanel-based site management. 

On the backend, CoolHandle’s cPanel interface includes AWStats, Webalizer, a raw log manager, and error logs. And for the frontend, it offers features for managing shopping carts, customer portals, blogs, forums, password-protected directories, and custom error pages.

The Starter shared hosting plan works for one site and provides unlimited bandwidth, five email accounts, and 50 GB of storage space. Upgrading to the Business or Pro plan would open your account up to unlimited websites, unlimited storage space, and unlimited email accounts. Also, the Business plan offers $250 in advertising credits, and the Pro plan features faster performance and priority support.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Starter: $3.95 per month
Business: $4.95 per month
Pro: $8.95 per month

30 days

>523 ms avg. response time
>100% uptime
>24/7 phone and email support
>More features at CoolHandle

Pros & Cons of CoolHandle Web Hosting

All of CoolHandle’s plans feature an easy-to-use, yet robust cPanel interface. The service is also quite fast with an average response time of 523 ms, and they have a great track record with their uptime. The only downside is that if you’re looking for VPS or dedicated hosting, you’ll need to find another provider.

Pros

Cons

>Exceptional performance
>24/7 phone support

>No VPS or dedicated hosting

What Customers Are Saying

While the 24/7 phone support is certainly a nice feature, this customer’s experience with CoolHandle has been so hassle-free that they haven’t even found a reason to use it: “I’ve been using CoolHandle for the past 2 years and to date haven’t faced any issues, so I’ve never needed to call customer service.”

DreamHost

DreamHost Logo

DreamHost’s web hosting performance is one of the best. They have a faster average response time than any of the options on this list, and their uptime is on the right side of 99.9%. 

There are two plans for shared hosting: Shared Starter and Shared Unlimited. Shared Starter works for one website and includes unlimited traffic, a free SSL certificate, free automated WordPress migrations, and a free WordPress site builder. The Shared Unlimited plan works for unlimited websites, and it provides you with unlimited email accounts.

DreamHost also offers VPS hosting, dedicated hosting, cloud hosting, and managed WordPress hosting.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Shared Starter: Starts at $2.59 per month
Shared Unlimited: Starts at $4.95 per month

97 days

>396 ms avg. response time
>99.902% uptime
>24/7 chatbot, live chat available from 5:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. PT
>More features at DreamHost

Pros & Cons of DreamHost Web Hosting

The high-end performance will make DreamHost a top option for many users. You must consider, though, that their support is rather limited compared to your other options.

Pros

Cons

>Exceptional performance
>97-day money-back guarantee

>Customer support is not available 24/7

What Customers Are Saying

Customers praise DreamHost for their intuitive interface and WordPress compatibility. “Easy to use and implement,” wrote one user. “I’m not a web designer but was able to set up and manage my own ecommerce website through DreamHost and WordPress.”

FastComet

FastComet

FastComet offers shared hosting, cloud VPS hosting, and dedicated hosting with cPanel-based site management.

Even their most basic shared hosting plan, FastCloud, is packed with features, including 15 GB SSD storage, daily backups, CloudFlare CDN, Let’s Encrypt SSL, BitNinja server security, and a drag-n-drop site builder. Upgrading to the FastCloud Plus plan would allow you to host unlimited websites, and it also includes 25 GB SSD storage and better performance. The FastCloud Extra plan features 35 GB SSD storage and even better performance.

But you should note that unlimited traffic isn’t an option for any of the shared hosting plans. These plans are limited to “fair usage,” which means that they can’t significantly exceed what a small business or community site would generally need. FastComet sets this limit at roughly 25,000 visits per month for the FastCloud plan, 50,000 visits per month for the FastCloud Plus plan, and 100,000 visits per month for the FastCloud Extra plan. And even the cloud VPS hosting and dedicated hosting plans have limits on bandwidth.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

FastCloud: $2.95 per month
FastCloud Plus: $4.45 per month
FastCloud Extra: $5.95 per month

45 days

>1,369 ms avg. response time
>99.991% uptime
>24/7 live chat support
>More features at FastComet

Pros & Cons of FastComet Web Hosting

While FastComet does provide reliable service and feature-rich plans, the average response time is slower than most and the amount of traffic you can receive is limited.

Pros

Cons

>Above-average uptime
>CloudFlare CDN
>BitNinja server security

>Below-average speed
>Limited traffic

What Customers Are Saying

The impressive set of features that come included with FastComet are frequently mentioned in customer reviews. “There are so many features that I’ve only just started to explore what I can do with FastComet,” wrote one user. “I’ve gone from completely new, to building and transferring multiple sites with ease in a short space of time thanks to FastComet tools and support.”

GreenGeeks

GreenGeeks

GreenGeeks stands out from other hosting providers with their commitment to protecting the environment. They’ve invested in energy-efficient tech infrastructure, and they also guarantee a 300% green energy match via carbon offset products for each amperage they use to run their system.

With the Lite shared hosting plan, you get cPanel-based site management, unlimited data transfer, unlimited email accounts, nightly backups, free CDN, a free SSL certificate, and a free domain name for one website. Upgrading to the Pro or Premium plan would allow you to host unlimited sites, and these plans feature better performance.

The GreenGeeks managed VPS hosting and reseller hosting plans also include a cPanel interface.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Lite: $2.95 per month
Pro: $4.45 per month
Premium: $5.95 per month

30 days

>866 ms avg. response time
>99.975% uptime
>24/7 live chat, phone support available every day from 9 a.m. to 12 a.m. EST
>More features at GreenGeeks

Pros & Cons of GreenGeeks Web Hosting

Eco-conscious consumers will surely love the GreenGeeks 300% green energy match and their above-average performance will appeal to everyone. If there’s a downside to this provider, it’s that users with more than one site won’t be able to use their most affordable plan.

Pros

Cons

>Above-average speed
>Above-average uptime
>300% green energy match

>Basic plan only works for one site

What Customers Are Saying

The GreenGeeks cPanel interface has received rave reviews from many customers. “Email setup through cPanel works great, and it’s really nice to have unlimited storage on the primary domain on my reseller account,” wrote one user.

HostGator

HostGator logo

HostGator’s shared hosting, dedicated hosting, and reseller hosting plans include not just a cPanel-based interface, but also advanced tools such as a web-based file manager, hotlink protection, and IP deny manager.

The HostGator Hatchling shared hosting plan works for one website and includes unmetered bandwidth, a free SSL certificate, and free domain registration. Upgrading to the more premium plans will provide you with extra features such as unlimited websites, free dedicated IP, and free SEO tools.

Also, all of HostGator’s shared hosting plans include $100 in Google Adwords credits and $100 in Bing Ads credits to help you get your name out there and attract new visitors to your site.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Hatchling: $2.75 per month
Baby: $3.95 per month
Business: $5.95 per month

Yes, 45 days

>1,158 ms avg. response time
>99.932% uptime
>24/7 live chat and phone support
>More features at HostGator

Pros & Cons of HostGator Web Hosting

The advanced management tools are a nice touch, and the uptime rate is satisfactory — but if you’re looking for particularly fast service, you’ll need to keep looking.

Pros

Cons

>Advanced management tools
>Advertising credits
>24/7 phone support

>Below-average speed

What Customers Are Saying

In addition to the cPanel interface, users also like that they offer a wide selection of different hosting plans. “I like HostGator because it has different plans according to the needs of your website, so you never have to pay more,” wrote one customer. “HostGator includes cPanel as a control panel, so file and database management is very easy to carry out.”

Hostinger

Hostinger-Web-Hosting

Hostinger is most notable for the low cost of their service. With prices starting at just $0.99 per month, you’ll be hard-pressed to find cheaper hosting.

But that $0.99 per month Single Shared plan works for just one website and only offers one email account and 100 GB of bandwidth. Another limitation that you should take into account is that Hostinger has the lowest uptime rate of any of the providers covered in this guide.

For unlimited websites, email accounts, and bandwidth, you’ll need to upgrade to the Premium Shared or Business Shared plan. Hostinger offers cloud hosting and VPS hosting as well.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Single Shared: $0.99 per month
Premium Shared: $2.89 per month
Business Shared: $3.99 per month

30 days

>459 ms avg. response time
>98.79% uptime
>24/7 live chat support
>More features at Hostinger

Pros & Cons of Hostinger Web Hosting

Although the uptime rate is low, Hostinger somewhat makes up for it with a blazing fast average response time. And while the basic plan is rather limited, that incredibly low price point simply can’t be ignored.

Pros

Cons

>Low starting price
>Above-average speed

>Uptime below 99%

What Customers Are Saying

The Hostinger user interface has received plenty of positive feedback. “Hostinger has a very intuitive interface, I like how easy it is to manage and configure my domain with just one click,” wrote one customer. “Hostinger is one of the best web hosting programs we have ever used, the user interface is very friendly,” wrote another user.

HostPapa

HostPapa Logo

HostPapa’s shared hosting, VPS hosting, and reseller hosting plans all feature a cPanel interface.

The Starter shared hosting plan works for two websites and includes 100 GB of SSD storage, unmetered bandwidth, CloudFlare CDN, Let’s Encrypt SSL, and free domain registration. Upgrading to the more premium plans unlocks extra features such as unlimited websites, unlimited storage, unlimited email accounts, automated backups, SiteLock security, and a business website builder.

One unique benefit that HostPapa provides for all their shared hosting plans is one-on-one training. Users who don’t have much technical experience are often confused by the processes involved with hosting and managing websites — HostPapa pledges to help walk you through  it until you can do it on your own.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Starter: $3.95 per month
Business: $3.95 per month
Business Pro: $12.95 per month

30 days

>954 ms avg. response time
>99.954% uptime
>24/7 phone support
>More features at HostPapa

Pros & Cons of HostPapa Web Hosting

HostPapa is a solid all-around hosting option, as it offers plenty of features and there are no performance issues. But one concern is that there’s no live chat support, which some users may prefer over phone support.

Pros

Cons

>Solid performance
>CloudFlare CDN
>One-on-one training

>No live chat support

What Customers Are Saying

Long-time users say they’ve never been let down by HostPapa’s customer support. “I have been a customer for something like 12 years or so,” wrote one user. “I haven’t had much need for support over the years because things have always worked as they should, but when I have had questions, their customer service was always amazingly quick and thorough.”

Hostwinds

Hostwinds

Hostwinds offers cPanel-based site management for their shared web hosting and managed VPS plans.

The three shared hosting plan tiers available are Basic, Advanced, and Ultimate. The Basic plan works for one website and includes unlimited bandwidth and unlimited disk space, the Advanced plan works for four websites and includes the same, and the Ultimate plan offers unlimited websites, bandwidth, and disk space.

All Hostwinds shared hosting plans also include unlimited email accounts, a free SSL certificate, a free dedicated IP, nightly backups, website monitoring, and the Weebly site builder.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Basic: $3.29 per month
Advanced: $4.23 per month
Ultimate: $5.17 per month

60 days

>547 ms avg. response time
>99.722% uptime
>24/7 live chat and phone support
>More features at Hostwinds

Pros & Cons of Hostwinds Web Hosting

Hostwinds isn’t up to par when it comes to their uptime rate, but it does tend to provide a fast response time. Also, the 60-day money-back guarantee gives you twice as much time as normal to get a refund.

Pros

Cons

>Above-average speed
>60-day money-back guarantee
>24/7 phone support

>Uptime under 99.9%

What Customers Are Saying

The Hostwinds support team has been able to keep even their most demanding customers happy. “Hostwinds has been extremely professional handling anything I’ve thrown at them,” wrote one user. “I have many different domains with them and like to self-teach myself about all the backend stuff by just messing around there and seeing what happens. So I’m probably not their favorite client but nonetheless, every time I’ve managed to mess something up they have managed to fix it.”

InMotion Hosting

inmotion-hosting

InMotion Hosting is a little more expensive than most of your other options, as their lowest price is $5.99 per month. That’s for their Launch shared hosting plan, which works for two websites and includes cPanel-based site management, 50 GB SSD storage, unlimited bandwidth, 10 email accounts, a security suite, marketing tools, a free SSL certificate, and a free domain. 

Upgrading to the Power plan would bump the number of websites up to 50, the SSD storage up to 100 GB, and the number of email accounts up to 50 as well. And if you upgrade to the Pro plan, which works for up to 100 websites, you get 200 GB SSD storage, unlimited email accounts, and an SLA guaranteeing 99.999% uptime.

InMotion’s VPS hosting and dedicated hosting plans also include a cPanel interface.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Launch: $5.99 per month
Power: $5.99 per month
Pro: $14.99 per month

90 days

>1,168 ms avg. response time
>99.836% uptime
>24/7 live chat and phone support
>More features at InMotion Hosting

Pros & Cons of InMotion Hosting

It’s good to see that InMotion Hosting is confident enough in the quality of their service to offer a 90-day money-back guarantee, and they do have many features that will entice users to stick with them for good. But shared hosting users may feel pressured to upgrade to the Pro plan and its 99.999% uptime SLA, as this provider’s verified uptime across all shared hosting plans is just 99.836%.

Pros

Cons

>Security suite
>Marketing tools
>90-day money-back guarantee

>Basic plan more expensive than comparable plans
>Below-average speed

What Customers Are Saying

Many of the glowing reviews for InMotion Hosting emphasize the usability of their cPanel interface. “I love how InMotion uses cPanel, as a server administrator I have grown to love WHM and cPanel and the fact that they use this makes everything far simpler,” wrote one user. “From taking backups to transferring sites from server to server, cPanel is a huge deal when you are deciding on which hosting provider to use.”

InterServer

InterServer

InterServer’s shared hosting, cloud VPS hosting, and dedicated hosting plans all use a cPanel-based user interface. 

With a starting price of $5 per month, InterServer is also pricier than many of your other options. But you get a lot of value for that cost, as this basic plan works for unlimited websites and includes: 

  • Unlimited storage
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Unlimited email accounts
  • Weekly backups
  • A free SSL certificate
  • Free CloudFlare CDN
  • An automatic virus scanner
  • A machine learning firewall
  • The SitePad website builder. 

Many providers would charge you extra for a set of features like that.

Another benefit you get with InterServer is excellent performance. They offer one of the best combinations of response time and uptime rate of all the providers covered in this guide.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Standard Hosting Plan: $5 per month

30 days

>724 ms avg. response time
>99.920% uptime
>24/7 live chat and phone support
>More features at InterServer

Pros & Cons of InterServer Web Hosting

With their features, performance, and support, InterServer provides you with everything you need for high-quality web hosting. The only reason you may want to use another provider is if you’re on a tight budget and you’re looking for the absolute lowest prices.

Pros

Cons

>Security suite
>Marketing tools
>90-day money-back guarantee

>Basic plan more expensive than comparable plans
>Below-average speed

What Customers Are Saying

This customer liked just about every part of their experience with InterServer: “If you spend $5 per month you will get unlimited shared storage. Every feature of this hosting plan is unlimited, so you need not be worried about the storage at all. The server is super fast and the response time is excellent, and I was really impressed about the cPanel interface of Interserver.”

SiteGround

SiteGround

SiteGround’s basic shared hosting plan costs $6.99 per month. It works for one website and includes 10 GB SSD storage, unlimited email accounts, daily backups, free CDN, and a free SSL certificate. And while it does also offer unmetered data transfer, SiteGround suggests that its performance is only suitable for up to 10,000 monthly visits.

If your site has more traffic than that, you should upgrade to either the GrowBig plan (25,000 monthly visits) or GoGeek plan (100,000 monthly visits). These plans also work for unlimited websites and offer more SSD storage. And if your needs are even more demanding than that, SiteGround offers cloud hosting and reseller hosting plans.

It should also be noted that SiteGround, by using Google Cloud as their data center provider, matches all the energy they use with green energy offsets.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

StartUp: $6.99 per month
GrowBig: $9.99 per month
GoGeek: $14.99 per month

30 days

>534 ms avg. response time
>99.986% uptime
>24/7 live chat and phone support
>More features at SiteGround

Pros & Cons of SiteGround Web Hosting

While the price tag is relatively high, you should balance that negative against the positive of their powerful performance when making your decision. Plus, they’re carbon neutral.

Pros

Cons

>Exceptional performance
>24/7 phone support
>100% green energy match

>Basic plan more expensive than comparable plans

What Customers Are Saying

User reviews often acknowledge that SiteGround isn’t the cheapest provider available, but just as often they say that the price is worth it for the performance. “What makes SiteGround really stand apart is how well the hosting plans perform with dynamically loaded pages like those in WordPress,” wrote one customer. “I think that the pricing is very good when we consider how fast our pages load.”

TMDHosting

tmdhosting

TMDHosting offers everything from shared hosting to dedicated hosting to VPS hosting to reseller hosting — all with cPanel-based site management. 

There are three plan tiers for shared hosting: Starter, Business, and Enterprise. With the Starter plan, you get unlimited SSD storage, unlimited bandwidth, a free domain, Let’s Encrypt SSL, and the Weebly site builder for one website. The Business and Enterprise plans allow you to host unlimited websites, and they include extra features for improving performance.

Also, all TMDHosting plans include security features such as live malware protection and free daily backups.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Starter: $2.95 per month
Business: $4.95 per month
Enterprise: $7.95 per month

60 days

>Let’s Encrypt SSL
>Weebly site builder
>24/7 ticket support
>More features at TMDHosting

Pros & Cons of TMDHosting

TMDHosting’s affordable prices, feature-rich plans, and 60-day money-back guarantee will surely make them a good choice for many users. One concern, though, is that they don’t offer live support of any kind.

Pros

Cons

>Security tools
>60-day money-back guarantee

>No live chat or phone support

What Customers Are Saying

TMDHosting may not offer live chat or phone support, but their ticketing system is apparently quite efficient. “The service they provide is simply amazing,” wrote one customer. “From the moment that you send a service request until they answer and take care of it takes at most 5 minutes.”

Web Hosting Hub

Web-Hosting-Hub

With Web Hosting Hub, you can choose between the Spark, Nitro, and Dynamo tiers of shared hosting plans. 

The Spark plan works for two websites and includes unlimited storage, unlimited bandwidth, a free SSL certificate, free domain registration, a website builder, and cPanel-based site management. You also get $150 in free advertising credits.

Upgrading to the Nitro plan would allow you to host unlimited sites. It also gives you a performance boost and lets you choose the location of your data center. The Dynamo plan gives you even more of a performance boost. 

One thing that sets Web Hosting Hub apart from your other options is that they offer web design services as well. Nitro plan members can get a discount of up to 20% on web design services, while Dynamo plan members can get a discount of up to 30%.

Price

Money-Back Guarantee

Features

Spark: $5.99 per month
Nitro: $7.99 per month
Dynamo: $9.99 per month

90 days

>878 ms avg. response time
>99.938% uptime
>24/7 live chat and phone support
>More features at Web Hosting Hub

Pros & Cons of Web Hosting Hub

Anyone who has both hosting and web design needs will be able to find incredible value with Web Hosting Hub. But if all you need is hosting, you may be better off with one of the providers that offers a lower starting price.

Pros

Cons

>Advertising credits
>90-day money-back guarantee
>24/7 phone support

>Basic plan more expensive than comparable plans

What Customers Are Saying

Customers are fond of Web Hosting Hub’s interface and support options. “The interface works with a trusted cPanel,” wrote one user. “The support is responsive and knowledgeable when utilized, and the support articles are rather in-depth.”

What Is cPanel Hosting?

cPanel is the most popular application for managing hosted websites. With a point-and-click interface, it allows you to do the most common tasks (set up email accounts, create backups, install software, etc) on your site easily.

Many web hosting companies offer cPanel. So if it is important to you, you have a lot of choices. This guide will help you sort through the issues to consider and pick the right host for you.

cPanel Hosting

What is cPanel?

Whether you’re a novice or an experienced webmaster, the control panel on your hosting account is the key to a smooth, easy experience, and cPanel has become almost industry-standard.

But is it right for you? And what about the competition?

Let’s take a look at the dashboard, to get a better idea of what to expect. All features covered in this section are accessible by this dashboard:

cPanel Hosting Dashboard
Take a look at the Dashboard – you can try it yourself on the cPanel Demo Site.

What Makes cPanel So Popular?

The cPanel control panel was originally developed for a web hosting company that offered Linux hosting. It allowed hosting customers to manage elementary parts of their hosting service, such as their FTP logins and email addresses. The software has evolved over 15 years and outlived a spinoff product, WebPanel, thanks to its friendly user interface and simple navigation.

There are a few big bonuses for hosts that deploy cPanel:

  • They can distribute generic help documentation and don’t need to develop as much help in-house
  • Customers can transfer their knowledge when moving from host to host
  • cPanel stops web hosting customers from doing anything risky or prohibited
  • WHM and cPanel work beautifully together, so the host can use the combination of both on server-based hosting accounts, giving users a consistent experience
  • WHM can also offer easy management of multiple client sites while providing a user-friendly cPanel backend
  • WHM and cPanel are secure if properly managed.

Check out the file manager below:

cPanel Hosting File Manager
A tidy looking file manager, accessible straight from the dashboard.

Hosting customers like cPanel because:

  • It’s super easy to navigate
  • The experience is the same on almost every host
  • Technical tasks have a very simple graphical interface
  • Built-in help stops you from doing anything potentially damaging
  • You spend more time on your website and less on the admin behind it
  • It can do all kinds of things you wouldn’t expect.

Common cPanel account features to look out for:

  • Unlimited resources like email accounts, databases, disc space, and bandwidth
  • MySQL database management and creation
  • Integrated site builders
  • 1 click installs via Fantastico or Softaculous.
cPanel Hosting mySQL
Brief demonstration of the Database options and mySQL management.

cPanel can also be used as a platform for bolt-ons. The most common is Fantastico, a script library that offers hundreds of applications for one-click install. Fantastico takes all the hassle out of setting up and deploying applications like WordPress, PhpBB, Joomla, and osCommerce.

Beyond Fantastico, you may also want to look for Softaculous script installer integration, as this will enable you to extend cPanel’s functionally even further.

Lastly, the cPanel host you end up choosing will be based on the goals of your website. For example, if you want to start an e-commerce website, then it’s a good idea to search around for a host service that bundles a free SSL certificate, along with shopping cart integration. You can usually add these on for a fee at a later date, but if you know you’re gonna be selling products, then it’s smart to make sure these features are included from the start.

Overall, most people end up opting for a hosting provider that provides a cPanel control panel, or at least their own customized version of it. Still, there are other options out there, which we dive into below.

cPanel for VPS, Shared, and Dedicated Hosting

Put simply, a cPanel host is any hosting provider that utilizes a cPanel control panel to manage its servers. This means there are a variety of cPanel hosting environments you might end up using. cPanel is most commonly used in shared hosting environments, as it’s incredibly beginner friendly and includes features like one-click software and CMS installs, easy database creation, simple domain management, and more.

cPanel Hosting E-mail Manager
Plenty of mail and e-mail management options, all covered by cPanel.

However, cPanel can also be used in more advanced web hosting packages, like VPS and dedicated servers. Those who are using VPS or dedicated hosting will enjoy SSH and root admin access, along with cron jobs creation, and simple database management options.

In short, it isn’t only cPanel’s features that make it worthwhile, but the problems it eliminates. We picked out 5 of the most important ones:

  1. Time
  2. Resources
  3. Money
  4. Stress
  5. Mistakes.

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cPanel Feature Details

Each of these could use some details.

Time

Your most valuable resource is time. It doesn’t take long-running a website to realize that.

Due to cPanel’s ease of use, it saves you plenty of time by making complex operations easy.

Resources

Your developers are a valuable resource. But they can be expensive.

With cPanel you can take on a ton of tasks, rather than having to pay other people to do them for you.

Money

Because cPanel is so easy to use, it is likely that you won’t have to hire developers.

Zero to little development resources are required for determined webmasters. If you are willing to learn, you can do most things yourself.

Stree

When you run a website, there is always plenty of stress. So any way that you can reduce stress is great.

cPanel makes doing literally hundreds of difficult thing easy. And this will reduce your stress load — always helpful.

Mistakes

Even though we all make mistakes, having cPanel drastically cuts down your rate of annoying mistakes. It always helps to have tools do the work for you.

cPanel Reseller

While if you’re planning on being a cPanel reseller host, then being able to offer your customers either cPanel, or cPanel and WHM hosting can be a huge benefit. Since most beginners are on the lookout for a cPanel backend.

cPanel Hosting mySQL
Brief demonstration of the Database options and MySQL management.

If you’re sold on cPanel then you’ll have the choice between a free cPanel license and cheap cPanel hosting. The simplest way to get cPanel web hosting is to choose a cheap host that includes a cPanel license with their hosting plans. But, you’ll also have the ability to pay for a cPanel license and grab free hosting. This might sound appealing, but when it comes to making the best decision for your site, grabbing cheap hosting with bundled cPanel is going to be the best option.

Are Custom Control Panels Bad?

Not necessarily. Many hosts develop carefully optimized user-friendly control panels. DreamHost is a good example.

There are two main challenges for customers when it comes to custom control panels:

First, what is the learning curve going to be like? When you move hosts, and the two control panels are different, it’s going to take you a while to get used to the differences. That can make ordinary administration much slower and more cumbersome after the switch.

Second, can you export content from your old site? Databases and files aren’t usually a problem, but it’s far more difficult to export cPanel settings (such as email addresses and FTP accounts) to a completely different control panel. Often, it’s impossible, and you’ll need to recreate everything by hand.

Some custom control panels are well designed and very functional. Some are ugly and difficult to use. Whatever the control panel may be, give it a test drive before you commit to a contract with the host.

We wouldn’t exactly recommend complete beginners to go for a custom control panel, unless you’re an extremely fast learner.

Often you may find that a custom control panel works better for you, although the average webmaster is accustomed to cPanel, hence why it’s their first choice. Let’s take a look at some potential risks with custom control panels, as opposed to cPanel:

 PerformanceFeaturesPricing
CustomRisk of maintenance costs, should anything go wrongFeatures must be integrated by a developer, as well as maintainedHigh
cPanelPromised fast loading times and moreA great armory of features, covering mostly all aspects of website managementLow

What About Plesk?

The main competitor to cPanel is arguably Plesk. Some customers are fans of cPanel; some swear by Plesk. The two applications do more or less the same thing, so if you can work in both, it’s a bonus.

Plesk have a transparent and useful information page on known issues, preparing users for hurdles to overcome.
Plesk Dashboard
Plesk is also a good looking control panel, although slightly different in layout.

Here are the main differences between cPanel and Plesk:

  • Plesk is available for Windows and Linux; cPanel is Linux-only
  • Plesk contains server admin options if your account permits it. In cPanel, you don’t have any, since these tools are deployed separately in WHM
  • The two control panels look completely different, making it difficult to move from one to the other
  • You can’t export content from Plesk to cPanel, or vice versa.

It doesn’t matter whether you use cPanel or Plesk as long as you’re comfortable with the choice. Just don’t walk blindly into a hosting contract without checking which one you’ll get.

Other Alternatives to cPanel

If you have root access to your server or VPS, you can install anything you like, and there’s no reason to be limited to cPanel, that’s of course if you fancy the custom option. It goes without saying this can carry risks. If you’re willing to experiment, there are all kinds of control panels, and many of them come without the license fee that cPanel attracts.

General Pros and Cons of cPanel Hosting

Pros

  • Time-Saving
  • Financial Savings.

Time-Saving

Prior to cPanel, managing a website was a painful experience, avoided by many.

Thanks to the simplified usability and functionality, website management has become a stroll in the park.

This is due to automated features, as well as a non-programmer based user-interface.

Financial Savings

Yes, you guessed it right. Due to cPanel being such a simple interface to use, you often do not need a programmer or developer by your side, depending on the size of your project.

Even if you do, you are not required to pay them for all those extra hours of hard coding.

Cons

  • Licensing Costs

Licensing Costs

Licensing for cPanel is pretty costly when one has to purchase it privately.

Other than the downside of licensing, cPanel hosting as a whole really does not have many negative features. We could ask for an even hotter user-interface in the coming years, I guess?



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Other features in Control Panels

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is cPanel?

    cPanel is a hosting control panel. It allows you to change the settings on your account, set up email accounts, add domains, and more.

    cPanel also makes it relatively easy to create backups of your account, and move all of your data from one hosting provider to another.

  • Is cPanel free?

    Hosting accounts purchase cPanel licenses, and they pass the cost onto customers.

    On shared hosting plans, you probably won’t have to pay extra for it.

    On VPS and dedicated server plans, you may be asked to cover the cost of the license yourself.

  • What can you do with cPanel?

    On the cPanel dashboard, you can find tools to create and manage email accounts, manage your website files, backup your data, create and edit databases, and more.

    Some hosts create their own add-ons for cPanel to increase its functionality.

  • Is cPanel secure?

    Like websites, cPanel is as secure as you, the user, makes it. It’s entirely possible for hackers to try to break into your server space through cPanel. Luckily, there are simple steps you can — and should — take to safeguard your cPanel against hackers. 

    These steps include basic security measures like creating a strong password, enabling a firewall, installing antivirus software, securing your entry points, and more. While all of these steps may be a little time-consuming, they are well worth it to protect your site.

  • Is cPanel easy to use?

    Yes. cPanel is easy for beginners to get to grips with.

    You don’t need technical knowledge to use the most common features, and there’s plenty of help material on the World Wide Web.

    cPanel is practically identical on every host, so once you know how to use it, you won’t have to re-learn it.

  • What kind of hosting plans does cPanel work with?

    cPanel can be used to manage shared, dedicated server, or VPS hosting plans.

    It’s included with most shared and reseller hosting plans, and may be installed on dedicated server or VPS hosting plans. Sometimes there’s an additional license fee for this.

  • What are the installation requirements for cPanel?

    cPanel must be run on a Linux operating system: either CentOS, Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) or CloudLinux.

    Your server should have a 226 MHz processor, 1 GB of RAM, and 40 GB of disk space. Before installing cPanel, you must install Perl on your server.

  • Why is cPanel so widely used?

    cPanel is just one of many control panels available for hosting users, but cPanel is the most common and established. That’s partly because of the comprehensive tools it offers, and because it’s also very reliable and intuitive.

    It’s generally easy to find community support, tutorials, and assistance for cPanel.

    Perhaps the most

  • Aren’t all web hosting control panels the same?

    No. Control panels vary considerably in terms of the features and interface they offer. cPanel is widely regarded to have the best of both, although some people do have a personal preference for another control panel.

  • How does cPanel compare to Plesk?

    Unlike cPanel, the Plesk control panel works on Windows as well as Linux servers. Plesk arguably provides more control over certain features, but it isn’t as intuitive.

    One positive aspect of Plesk is that it can be used to manage accounts and server settings, so there’s no need to install any other software if you plan to resell.

  • How does cPanel compare to DirectAdmin?

    DirectAdmin is a competing control panel for Linux servers. It’s less expensive than cPanel, it’s simpler, and it’s not as resource intensive as cPanel. But DirectAdmin lacks many of the features and tools in cPanel.

    Also, many hosting clients prefer and expect cPanel, partly because it’s so common and many hosting users already know how it works.

  • What’s the difference between cPanel and WHM?

    WHM is often used in conjunction with cPanel. WHM is for server administrators and hosting resellers, and allows them to create multiple hosting accounts, and manage settings on their VPS or dedicated server.

    cPanel just controls the settings on one hosting account.

  • Are there any drawbacks to using cPanel?

    Some developers and hosting providers have reservations about the way cPanel stores data. These won’t affect you as a hosting user.

    If you’re a system administrator, you probably already know that cPanel is too basic to do everything that you need to do. But many hosts give you the option of installing a different control panel, if you find cPanel restrictive.

    Perhaps the biggest drawback of cPanel is that it doesn’t work on Windows hosting accounts.

  • Why do some hosts refuse to migrate non-cPanel accounts?

    If you’re planning to move from one host to another, you need a really easy way to grab all of your account data. cPanel makes this very simple.

    Your host can seamlessly transfer all of your site content, databases, mailboxes, and preferences at once.

    With other control panels, this isn’t quite so simple. Some don’t have any export options at all, and the ones that do will produce an export file that is incompatible with cPanel.

    When you consider that cPanel is the most common control panel on shared hosting accounts, this can present a problem for hosting providers, because they have to move everything manually.

    cPanel to cPanel transfer is therefore very efficient, and has a very low risk of data loss. It’s quick and easy for hosts to transfer cPanel customers, which is why they often provide free migration.

  • Can I uninstall cPanel from my server?

    If you have a VPS, your host may allow you to uninstall the control panel software. However, it might not help you to install an alternative. If you have a dedicated server, you should be able to install whatever control panel software you prefer.

  • Who develops and owns the cPanel software?

    cPanel is developed and owned by cPanel, Inc., a privately owned company based in Texas. It was first developed in 1997 by developer John Nick Koston, who is now the CEO of cPanel, Inc.

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About WhoIsHostingThis Team

Our writing team comes from all over the world with diverse backgrounds in the arts and sciences. But what links them is their passion for the internet. All together they represent many decades of experience working in all facets of it — from programming and hardware creation to website design and marketing.

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