HostPapa Review (Pros & Cons, Features and Plans Compared)

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As a small business owner, it can be tough to find the right web hosting provider. HostPapa distinguishes itself from other web hosts with its cheap beginner-friendly hosting for small businesses and beginners.

From $2.55 per month

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In an effort to help small businesses seeking a reliable hosting provider, I’ve set out to show you the ins and outs of a web host designed to help your small business succeed: HostPapa.

HostPapa offers affordable pricing on web hosting plans for beginners and small business sites with plans that include a free domain name, unlimited bandwidth and disk space, and free SSL & Cloudflare CDN.

Here I will look at the most important features of HostPapa, what their pros and cons are and what their plans and prices are like. When you have finished reading this you will know if this is the right (or wrong) web host for you.

Pros and Cons

HostPapa Pros

  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Free domain name
  • Unlimited diskspace & data transfer
  • Free “PapaSquad” site migration service
  • Fast servers (PHP7, SSD & CacheCade Pro 2.0 caching)
  • Free SSL & Cloudflare CDN
  • PapaSquad support team available 24/7

HostPapa Cons

  • Expensive renewal prices
  • Automated site backups is only included with Business Pro plan
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Here is how our web hosting review process works:

1. We sign up for the web hosting plan & install a blank WordPress site.
2. We monitor the site's performance, uptime, & page load time speed.
3. We analyze the good/bad A2 hosting features, pricing, & customer support.
4. We publish the great review (and update it throughout the year).

Established over ten years ago, HostPapa has experienced considerable growth since then. And, while they are definitely not without their drawbacks, they do have a reputation for things like being eco-friendly, having exceptional customer service, and having a suite of tools perfect for beginner business owners.

hostpapa review

So, let’s get started with this HostPapa review (2022 update), shall we?

HostPapa Pros

As I just mentioned, HostPapa is doing something right to have experienced such a rise in popularity in such a short amount of time. In fact, it has been suggested that they host nearly half a million websites in the United States and Canada alone.

So, let’s see what makes them so great, and why some people choose them over all other hosting providers on the market.

1. Speed

The faster your website loads the better. Research has revealed that most site visitors will abandon your website if it fails to load within 2 seconds or less.

HostPapa has invested in the latest speed technology to ensure your web pages load fast:

  • Solid State Drives. Your site’s files and databases are stored in SSD hard drives, which are faster than HDD (Hard Disk Drives).
  • Fast Servers. When a site visitor clicks on your website, the web and database servers deliver content up to 50 times faster.
  • Built-in Caching. HostPapa uses Cachewall that optimizes, protects, and improves the response time for your website.
  • Content Delivery Network. HostPapa comes with CDN powered by CloudFlare, to cache your content and deliver it fast to site visitors.
  • PHP7. HostPapa makes sure you are taking advantage of the latest technologies on your website too.

How fast is HostPapa load times?

I decided to test the load times. I created a test website hosted on HostPapa (on the WP Starter plan), and then I installed WordPress on it and used the Twenty Seventeen theme.

hostpapa account

Out of the box the test site loaded relatively fast, 1 second, 211kb page size, and 17 requests.

hostpapa load times

Not bad .. but it gets better.

HostPapa already uses built-in caching that is enabled by default, so there are no settings to edit, but there is a way to optimize speed a bit further by compressing certain MIME file types.

Login to cPanel, and find the software section.

cpanel software section

In the Optimize Website setting, you can optimize the performance of your website by tweaking the way Apache handles requests. Compress the text/html text/plain and text/xml MIME types, and click update setting.

cpanel optimize website

By doing that my test site load times improved a bit more, from 1 second down to 0.9 seconds.

hostpapa page speed

To speed things up, even more, I went and installed a free WordPress plugin called Autoptimize, and I simply enabled the default settings.

autoptimize plugin

That improved the load times even more, down to 0.8 seconds and it reduced the total page size to just 197kb and reduced the number of requests down to 12.

hostpapa fast page loading

WordPress sites hosted on HostPapa will load pretty fast, and I’ve shown you two simple techniques you can use to speed things up even more.

Get started with HostPapa.com right now!

2. 24-Hour Support

HostPapa doesn’t just provide stellar support like so many other hosting providers do these days. No, instead they go above and beyond to set themselves apart from the rest of the competition.

Take a look at what they offer every customer:

  • Extensive Knowledge Base. Find easy to understand guides and tutorials if you’re looking for a little self-help. Divided into categories such as Hosting, Email, and Domains, you can always find exactly what you’re looking for.
  • Video Tutorials. If you’re more of a visual person and prefer to follow along to video tutorials, this is the place for you. Learn how to use every feature HostPapa offers and watch step-by-step tutorial content.
  • Live Chat. Talk to a real live person with an issue you’re having right now using HostPapa’s 24/7 live chat feature.
  • HostPapa Dashboard. Manage your HostPapa account using the intuitive dashboard. Login using their login page, Facebook, Google, or even Twitter. Make purchases, view billing information, and even print invoices for your own records.
  • Support Tickets. Submit support tickets, or check the status of existing ones, all through your HostPapa dashboard.
  • HostPapa Experts. Join their weekly webinar, or even schedule a 30 minute one-on-one training session with an expert support representative (for FREE!).

As an added bonus, HostPapa also makes accessing the status of the network simple to do so you always know what’s going on.

Network Status

See the status of web hosting and email services, DNS hosting, Linux servers, and even the billing and support systems. Not to mention, see if they are any current issues being addressed and whether there is any planned maintenance coming up that may disrupt your service.

And if that’s not enough, know that HostPapa translates the content of their site into English, French, Spanish, and German, which caters to their growing international customer base.

knowledgebase

And get this, not only can you read HostPapa’s site content in multiple languages, you can get live chat and telephone support in multiple languages too.

3. Highly Secure Data Centers

HostPapa has a reliable hosting infrastructure and maintains the highest standards when it comes to securing their data centers.

For instance, expect the following security features to be in place on all HostPapa servers:

  • Climate and temperature controls
  • Raised floor facilities
  • Fault protection
  • Fire-suppression systems
  • Water detection systems
  • Uninterruptible power supply (UPS)
  • Standby and redundant power generating
  • Diesel backup generators

Intel Server products power all HostPapa equipment and a fully-featured Cisco-powered network ensure your site’s data is fully secure.

4. Impressive Uptime

The team at HostPapa wants to give you a 100% uptime guarantee. But the nice thing about them is that they understand that because of the way shared hosting is set up, this is not only unrealistic, it’s wrong to promise.

After all, it only takes one website on a shared server to throw everything into chaos. Whether it be a security breach, overuse of resources, or a huge spike in traffic, the truth is, shared hosting servers will go down from time to time.

That said, HostPapa does guarantee 99.9% uptime.

And, if within the first 30-days of hosting your website with HostPapa you are at all dissatisfied, you can get a full refund (minus any setup and domain name registration fees).

I have created a test site hosted on HostPapa to monitor uptime and server response time:

The above screenshot only shows the past 30 days, you can view historical uptime data and server response time at this uptime monitor page.

5. Tools for Small Businesses

Remember when I said HostPapa caters to small businesses? Well, in an effort to see how true this was, I looked into all the features they offer customers that may be helpful to small business owners.

And this is what I came up with:

Domain Names

Inexpensive Domain Names

Run a quick domain name search using HostPapa’s own domain name tool. Choose from classic domain name endings, or pick a more unique one such as .guru or .club. Either way, you can choose a truly standout domain name to be the foundation of your new website in a cinch.

And, if you happen to sign up for HostPapa’s hosting, you can register your cool new domain name for free for the first year of service.

Email Solutions

HostPapa Email Solutions

Email is crucial to the success of your small to medium business. Luckily, HostPapa has plenty of email solutions for you to pick from:

  • Basic email that comes with a professional identity using your business’ name
  • Advanced email that comes with more mobile-friendly security features
  • Office 365 email that comes with Microsoft Office, and none of the management cost
  • G Suite email, complete with productivity tools and online storage, again without the added cost

SSL Certificates

SSL Certificates

Let's Encrypt SSL certificate comes included for free. Premium Wildcard SSL certificate is not offered for free, HostPapa does have some robust SSL certificates available for your growing site. And, since securing your site’s data, and more importantly the data of your site visitors is important for your reputation, you might look into purchasing an SSL certificate from your hosting provider.

If you invest in HostPapa’s SSL certificates, you’ll enjoy:

  • 256-bit data encryption
  • Immediate and automatic installation
  • 99% browser compatibility

Lastly, you’ll be able to display a clickable seal containing your SSL certificate’s information for site visitors to see, which adds credibility to your site and makes you appear trustworthy.

Content Network Delivery (CDN)

Cloudflare CDN

All HostPapa Business and Business Pro hosting plans come with free Cloudflare CDN services to help deliver your website’s content to a global audience faster than ever.

Maximize your site’s uptime by balancing the server load, boost site speed and performance, and even enjoy added security from hackers and other security threats. Plus, get analytics to help you see where traffic is coming from so you can monitor potential threats.

Automatic Website Backups

Free Website Backups

There’s nothing worse than investing a lot of hard work into building an online business, only to have it wiped away because of a server crash, hacker, or some other site malfunction.

That’s why HostPapa steps in and gives its customers automatic daily site backups:

  • Choose from 7 different restore points
  • Data stored in separate locations for added protection
  • Basic plans come with up to 1GB of backup space (additional space available)
  • Backup your site’s files, database, and emails

Keep in mind, this is a premium service.

6. Website Builder

Building a website has never been easier using the exclusive HostPapa Website Builder.

Use the drag & drop web page builder, choose from hundreds of pre-designed templates, and even build an eCommerce shop to sell either physical or digital products and services (or both!).

 Website Builder

Here are some of the key features you can expect when you use the HostPapa website builder:

  • Easy customization of all site elements including color schemes, fonts, and images
  • Mobile responsive design for all size devices
  • Customization of HTML, JS, and CSS if you have the skill set (though it’s not required)
  • Integrated social share icons and contact forms
  • SEO optimization for better search rankings
  • Facebook publishing capability
  • Live preview mode for desktop and mobile devices
HostPapa Website Builder

With the HostPapa website builder, you can publish a professional-looking website in minutes without knowing a lick of code.

Get started with HostPapa.com

7. Green Hosting

HostPapa prides itself on being one of the first hosting companies to declare they would be going green to help the world we live in.

They promote the development and use of wind and solar energy by purchasing green energy certificates. This is to offset the power being used in both their data centers and offices.

HostPapa uses nothing but 100% renewable Green Tag energy, coming from a variety of sources across the United States and Canada. In doing so, they not only reduce their own carbon footprint, but hope to get more people on board with using clean energy and trying to reduce their imprint on the Earth too.

You can add banners to your website to let site visitors know you’re doing your part by using green web hosting.

Green Energy Banners

Add a full banner, half banner, or even a small rectangle to complement your website’s design.

HostPapa Cons

Now that you have a good idea of what HostPapa has to offer customers, it’s time to look at some of the drawbacks, so you can make the most informed decision when it comes to choosing a hosting provider.

1. Expensive Renewal Fees

At first glance, HostPapa seems like a very cost-effective hosting provider, especially because it’s a green web host, which can bump up prices significantly.

In addition, it’s customary for hosting providers to have exceptionally low signup prices to encourage more people to start using them. Then, after a year of satisfactory service, the hosting provider then jacks up the monthly prices and hopes most people renew.

After all, no one wants to change web hosts every year, especially when they’re happy with the service.

That said, increasing renewal prices can be unexpected and cause some serious sticker shock. And unfortunately, that’s exactly what HostPapa does.

Expensive Renewal Prices

Come to find you have to invest in a long-term contract to get the low introductory price and the markup for renewal is significant.

2. Missing Features

HostPapa’s initial feature set seems strong for small business owners. However, I feel they are missing some key things:

  • Their money-back guarantee of 30 days comes up short compared to competition that offers 60 or even 90-day money back guarantees
  • Automatic backups are a premium service for both Starter and Business hosting plans, which is again unlike the competition, where at least weekly backups are offered as part of the hosting plan
  • Though they claim to be an international hosting company, the data center locations are quite limited (even with CDN services, this is bound to affect the speed of sites that are geographically far away). If you are located outside of the United States or Canada then HostPapa isn't the most ideal web host to use.

HostPapa Hosting Plans

HostPapa offers many hosting plans, such as VPS and Reseller hosting. That said, I’ll look at their shared and WordPress hosting plans so you have a good idea what to expect when you sign up to use HostPapa hosting.

Shared Hosting

HostPapa has shared hosting that works great for those just starting out or those that have minimal traffic coming to their websites.

HostPapa Shared Hosting Plans

Depending on the tier you choose, you’ll receive features like:

  • Multiple to unlimited hosted sites
  • Unlimited disk space and bandwidth
  • Free domain name registration
  • 24/7 support
  • Free Let’s Encrypt SSL, Cloudflare CDN, and website transfer
  • 99% uptime
  • Performance and security enhancements
  • CloudLinux servers
  • And much more

You’ll also have access to the HostPapa website builder, cPanel control, the Softaculous tool for integrating apps, and even free one-on-one training.

HostPapa shared hosting ranges from $3.95/month to $12.95/month depending on which plan you choose.

The Business Pro plan is the most expensive plan but it's well worth the extra cost as it comes packed with enhanced performance, security, and speed.

Fast loading sites matter. A study from Google found that a one-second delay in mobile page load times can impact conversion rates by up to 20%.

It comes with rocket fast premium servers (3x server performance) and doubles the RAM and hard drive space.

Features:

  • Faster servers
  • 300% performance boost
  • Fewer accounts per server
  • 4x more CPU and MYSQL resources
  • Premium wildcard SSL
  • Automated website backup
  • SiteLock detect
  • Domain name privacy

WordPress Hosting

HostPapa WordPress Hosting

HostPapa also offers WordPress hosting that caters to those who choose to use the popular WordPress content management system.

And, while most of the features mirror what is offered in the shared hosting plans, you can also expect these additional hosting features:

  • Auto-installed WordPress (very handy for beginners)
  • WordPress caching
  • Free WordPress site transfer
  • Enhanced SSD drives
  • 24/7 expert WordPress support
  • Built-in SEO optimization plugin (Yoast SEO)
  • Automatic WordPress core updates

When I tested HostPapa's page load times I tried it on their WP Starter plan.

WordPress hosting plans differ slightly when it comes to price: $3.95/month, $5.95/month, and $12.95/month, again only when you invest in long-term contracts.

As with the shared plans above, I recommend the WP Business Pro plan. Yes, this is the most expensive plan but it comes packed with enhanced performance, security, and speed. You'll get rocket fast premium servers (3x server performance) and double the RAM and hard drive space.

Features:

  • Faster servers
  • 300% performance boost
  • Fewer accounts per server
  • 4x more CPU and MYSQL resources
  • Premium wildcard SSL
  • Automated website backup
  • SiteLock detect
  • Domain name privacy

Get started with HostPapa WordPress hosting

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions:

  1. What is HostPapa? HostPapa is a Canadian-based privately owned web hosting company that provides Shared, Reseller, VPS, and WordPress hosting. Their official website is www.hostpapa.com. Read more on their Wikipedia page.
  1. What kind of control panel is used? The commonly used cPanel.
  1. Will my website load fast? Most hosting plans have access to free Cloudflare CDN services, which help boost site speed and performance. If you use WordPress hosting, you’ll also get a built-in WordPress caching solution for delivering static files to site visitors fast.
  1. What happens if my site falls below the 99.9% uptime guarantee? After reading through the website and Terms of Service, I can’t seem to find anywhere that addresses whether you receive credit for any downtime. HostPapa instead relies on their claims that they will maintain 99.9% uptime, all the time.
  1. Is there a free SSL certificate available? Yes, though there are some advanced SSL certificates available for purchase, every hosting plan can receive a free Let’s Encrypt SSL certificate, which is great for small business owners accepting payment on their site.
  1. Are there any built-in marketing tool? Yes, you can use the HostPapa website builder to integrate social sharing on your site, optimize your site for SEO and higher search rankings, and even work together with Google Analytics so you can track where site visitors come from and what they do once on your website.

HostPapa Review 2022 – Summary

Do I Recommend HostPapa?

In the end, HostPapa is a solid web hosting solution for those that need something a little more beginner-friendly. It’s also good for those that are running small businesses. The feature set is large enough to get the job done, but not overwhelming to those that just don’t need that much.

However, if you begin to notice your small business scaling, you will find the resources available may not be able to serve your needs in the best way possible. You will, however, have a secure site that maintains an impressive uptime. Not to mention, you’ll be able to feel good about the fact you’re reducing your own carbon footprint by using green web hosting.

If you decide to use HostPapa for your hosting needs, make sure to examine your budget beforehand, since there are some questionable fees built into each plan. You’ll also have to make sure to give your host a good go because you only have 30 days to decide whether you want to keep them or not (if you want a refund that is).

If HostPapa sounds like a web hosting provider that you want to check out, hop on over to their website, see what they have to offer, and make sure they have the hosting features you need to run your small business website successfully.

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Flash Sale! Up to 74% OFF hosting plans

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User Reviews

No downtime yet

Rated 4 out of 5
May 23, 2022

I have never experienced any downtime with HostPapa for any of my sites, which is most of what I ask for from a web host. Their support team has been kind and professional with me whenever I have had a problem. They also have a knowledgebase with a lot of articles where you can learn and fix your own problems. Support seems to have gotten a little slow these days.

Avatar for Olof Svenson
Olof Svenson

Happy user

Rated 5 out of 5
March 31, 2022

My experience with HostPapa has been nothing short of amazing. I launched my first site witI have never experienced any downtime with HostPapa for any of my sites, which is most of what I ask for from a web host. Their support team has been kind and professional with me whenever I have had a problem. They also have a knowledgebase with a lot of articles where you can learn and fix your own problems. Support seems to have gotten a little slow these days.h them a year ago and it's been running smoothly ever since. I have faced some minor hiccups along the way but it was nothing that the support team couldn't help me out with.

Avatar for Sunita
Sunita

Good!

Rated 4 out of 5
March 2, 2022

HostPapa is great in some aspects but not the best web host overall. Their web hosting products are really simple and easy to use. One thing I don't like is that they only offer 3 server locations to choose from.

Avatar for Paul Emerson
Paul Emerson

Thanks but no thanks

Rated 2 out of 5
October 4, 2021

HostPapa comes cheap on the surface. But the catch here is that you'll have to pay more expensive renewal fees than usual. This is such a no-no for me so I'm looking for other options.

Avatar for Cyd K
Cyd K

TOTAL DISAPPOINTMENT

Rated 1 out of 5
August 6, 2020

A bad service. Pay for a $ 1322 package that included domain, hosting, and security. Before deciding, I asked all my doubts in the chat and what they told me is that the package I was selecting included several domains, mailboxes and you could also edit the templates. At the mere hour, there were only two domains, the super cheap and complicated mailbox. And the template editor only has two or three functions to maneuver. HORRIBLE!! Very complicated for someone without much experience. I decided to cancel and they immediately charged me $ 499 for the domain (??? !!!!) and they returned only $ 933. A COMPLETE SCAM. BE CAREFUL AND RECORD WHAT THEY TELL YOU IN THE CHAT.

Avatar for Claudia Leticia Paredes
Claudia Leticia Paredes

Excellent Web Hosting Service

Rated 5 out of 5
June 30, 2020

HostPapa has hosted my blog for years. The uptime is great. On a rare occasion, I've had a problem, but the customer service has always been great with helping out. I have and will continue to recommend them.

Avatar for Annie Thune
Annie Thune

Checks all the boxes

Rated 5 out of 5
April 3, 2020

I have a little side business I do and I've been out looking for a good provider that doesn't break the bank. Hostpapa fit what I wanted, they assisted me along the way. I am not the best tech person out there, so finding a provider that gives you a seamless, easy experience is definitely something I value. Every step of my business online growth I know I can count on them to help grow the online presence of my business.

Avatar for Wayne
Wayne

Hostpapa is great!

Rated 5 out of 5
February 26, 2020

In terms of price to quality relationship, Hostpapa gets this right. It is quite user-friendly and things have been running well for me. If you're a newbie, they have a one-on-one training session that is free when you sign up with them. They are great! Highly recommended.

Avatar for Shirley F.
Shirley F.

Left Hostpapa after meh customer service

Rated 2 out of 5
February 25, 2020

I recently (Nov 2019) left Hostpapa after meh customer service. Because I live in New Zealand, I opted to move to Australian-based Crazy Domains. But after only 3 months, Outlook on my Android phone started complaining about an invalid certificate, and the Crazy Domains so-called support is horrendously pathetic! Not wanting to return to Hostpapa (once bitten), what web host would you suggest? It seems they are all more or less a rip-off.

Avatar for Shalk
Shalk

A nightmare really

Rated 1 out of 5
February 12, 2020

They claim that they have a money-back guarantee available but I realized how much you have to go through to get your money refunded. You'll have to think twice before signing up with these guys if you don't want your money floating around before they realize you're actually angry and they have to return the money.

Avatar for James
James

Not the fastest

Rated 3 out of 5
December 12, 2019

Loading speeds are not the fastest at the price range of the package you purchase, there are better providers out there with better value. They have great support though so I'll give them that. You have to weigh everything out if you really want to stick with them. As for me, will probably sign up with another provider after my time is done with them.

Avatar for Damian Andrews
Damian Andrews

Great so far

Rated 4 out of 5
October 22, 2019

4 months in and everything has been smooth sailing so far. I am a small business owner and they are just right for me. I actually have not experienced any downtimes and the one time I did contact customer support, they were quick to address the problem. I hope this continues on as I do not want to bother into looking for another provider for the time being.

Avatar for Louis D.
Louis D.

Not great

Rated 2 out of 5
June 3, 2019

Do not use Host Papa, that are just the slowest websites ever. 5 mins to do a click. On top on that, they switch on automatic renewal on your account (event when you have switched it off) and then they send the bills and you cannot even discuss with them. I never write reviews, never complain about anything but frankly that is worth mentioning. People should know about these things. There are tons of complains all over the internet.

Avatar for Jonas
Jonas

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Review Updates

  • 23/12/2021 – Minor update
  • 02/06/2021 – Acquires Seattle-based iHost
  • 12/05/2021 – Invests in Managed WordPress provider Rocket.net
  • 01/01/2021 – HostPapa pricing update

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