HostPapa is a web hosting provider based out of Toronto, Canada. It is independent and not owned by any large holding company.
They offer various hosting services, including VPS and shared hosting. The focus is on small businesses owners rather than bloggers or other online-only operators.
This review will go over HostPapa to see if it really is the best web hosting provider out there.
Now, I do want to be totally honest in this review, so…
This HostPapa review has been thoroughly researched with information and testimonials that are available online to anyone in the public. Any conclusions drawn by myself are opinions.
Table of Contents
Pros: What I Liked
- Value pricing & transparency
- Independence and ownership
- Excellent customer support
- Comprehensive features
Cons: What I Didn't Like
- Feature pricing
- Overstated marketing
- Missing features and bonuses
And at the end, I’ll answer some of the most often asked questions regarding HostPapa and web hosting in general.
But most importantly, you’ll see the exact step-bey-step system that many others have used to grow their own successful online business to more than $40,000 a month in passive income.
SPEED: 569 ms (August 2020 to July 2021)
UPTIME: 99.98% (August 2020 to July 2021)
SUPPORT: 24/7 Live Chat, Phone, Email, Mail, Fax, and Knowledge Base
APPS: 1-Click Installs for WordPress, Joomla, Drupal+Softaculous App Installer for 400+ Apps
FEATURES: Unlimited Bandwidth, 100 GB Storage, Two Websites, Free Domain Registration, 100 Email Accounts, SpamAssassin, Free SSL Certificate, cPanel, 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee, Website Builder, etc.
HOSTING PLANS: Shared, WordPress, VPS, and Reseller Hosting
SITE TRANSFER: Free
PRICING: Starting at $2.95/mo (renews at $9.99/mo)
What Is HostPapa?
HostPapa provides web hosting services as an independent service, along with complementary products, such as domain names, web design, website builders and email services.
They offer web hosting services – from shared to Virtual Private Servers to dedicated servers dedicated alongside custom products like WordPress and Reseller hosting.
Is HostPapa Legit?
HostPapa positions itself as one of the few growing, stable hosting companies that is not owned by one of the 3 large web services holding companies (ie, GoDaddy, Endurance, and Web.com) that also has the breadth, resources, and expertise to serve websites for businesses, organizations, and long-term projects.
HostPapa started in 2006 and has seen rapid growth in the past few years.
Like most hosting companies, HostPapa also provides email, a website builder, and various complementary services with 24-hour support and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
HostPapa is legit. They aren’t a fly-by-night hosting service.
What Is HostPapa Used for?
HostPapa allows you to host websites or web applications. Their marketing focus is on growing businesses and organizations. They offer a complete range of website products, including domain names, hosting, email, and web design.
But remember that the key to finding an excellent web hosting service is finding the right fit for your needs.
HostPapa offers several hosting plans. Here’s a quick overview.
Web Hosting Plans
Web hosting is the core of the website hosting industry. They are made up of individual accounts on a Linux Server.
They can run WordPress and any other application on a LAMP Stack. It is a reliable and cost-effective way to host most websites.
HostPapa has three tiers in its shared hosting plan.
WordPress Hosting Plan
WordPress can be run on shared hosting. However, many hosting companies offer WordPress hosting plans to meet customer demand and meet WordPress hardware requirements. A lot of hosting companies today offer WordPress hosting that is identical to their shared hosting plans.
HostPapa can be described as such to a certain extent. The WordPress plans offer web hosting plans that include WordPress auto-installed. They have the same pricing as Web hosting plans. It’s a good deal, and there is no harm in it.
VPS Hosting Plans
VPS hosting offers an excellent way for you to allocate server resources to a specific area without renting an entire server.
You have complete control over a particular amount of resources, even though your website is located on the same web server as the other websites.
This guide will give you a detailed background on VPS hosting. HostPapa provides competitively priced VPS hosting plans that include managed and unmanaged options.
Reseller Hosting Plan
Reseller hosting is essentially a shared or VPS plan or dedicated server with third-party billing and management.
Reseller hosting allows anyone, without even starting their own company, to set up their own hosting company. This guide provides more information about Reseller-hosting.
This is an excellent way for companies to make recurring revenue and also provide additional value to clients. HostPapa offers Reseller Hosting Products.
Email Hosting Plan
HostPapa provides a great email hosting service for small businesses that do not want to use Microsoft’s productivity suite. It’s a great option to save money while maintaining an @company.domain email address.
Website Builder Plan
HostPapa has its own template-driven website builder. It is included as part of the hosting plan purchase.
It gives you many benefits, such as Wix, Weebly, Jimdo, or WordPress.com. But it’s on a server that you can completely control.
Pros Of HostPapa
You can find several HostPapa reviews online. Usually, they are based on user-generated reviews and anecdotes. While that’s great, I have a different approach. In my opinion, there is no such thing as the “best” web host. Based on your goals and budget, your experience, and your expertise, the “best” host is the one that will best suit your project.
These are the advantages of HostPapa:
Value Pricing & Transparency
HostPapa is an excellent option because of its pricing structure.
While web hosting companies sell the same thing: a site for your website, each plan has different limitations, bonuses, renewal prices, and caps. It is difficult for most to figure out the actual value of web hosting companies without breaking them down into various components.
To help you compare the hosting companies I use, I have broken it into Core and Bonus hosting options.
Hosting’s core features include the “3 D’s”, domains, databases, and disk space. A hosting server’s core function is to provide website files for anyone who types in your domain name.
- Domains show how many domains you can point to your hosting account. Multiple domains are necessary if you wish to have numerous websites. Email addresses per domain are another thing to consider – they can be limited.
- The Databases indicate how many pieces of software you can run on your hosting server. A WordPress Install needs one database. You’ll need to have more databases for any other apps, Listservs, or similar.
- Diskspace is the number of files you can upload to your server – images and text as well as PDFs.
Other features include website builders software, advertising credits to backend programs, and so forth.
It is possible to compare apples with apples and gain a sense of value based on what you need.
HostPapa offers three pricing levels.
The Starter renewals are at $9.99/mo. The Business Plan renews at $14.99/mo while the Business Pro plan continues at $23.99/mo.
Starter restricts you to two websites (Domains) and 100GB of storage. This is plenty if your site has only a few images. Unlimited* allowance is available for business. All have unlimited bandwidth and SSD storage. All include a free domain name for one year and a complimentary SSL certificate.
*Aside, remember that “unlimited” for all companies means “no particular limit but still limited by the actual servers space and abuse policy.” For example, they use “unmetered bandwidth,” which is more precise in all cases.
The Business Pro plan offers additional bonus features that elevate it above the Business plan.
All HostPapa plans are affordable for the shared web hosting market. The Starter and Business plan actually comes in at a reasonable price, even though they sound a little too good to be true.
Because every hosting company operates with a similar business model, similar infrastructure, and costs, it is easy to see why. It all comes down to how they manage the variables, recruit good people, and maintain their processes.
HostPapa clarifies that their servers are being given more resources and that their service is “higher-touch.” To honor their bargain, I would expect prices to remain the same.
HostPapa pricing has a strong advantage, especially considering overall value as well as short-term discounts.
You don’t always want total value or a discount for a short time. Sometimes you don’t need more value for the extra cost. This will be covered in the cons section.
Independence & Ownership
HostPapa is one example of an independent private-owned hosting company. This is a rare find in a world with only a few corporations controlling nearly all of the hosting brands.
However, independence and being private are not always good. Likewise, being part of a large corporation does not necessarily make you a poor person.
Independent businesses might not be able to raise the capital needed for long-term improvement. They may not be able to provide top-notch service. They are often “closer” to customers and more willing to make adjustments for the good of all.
While big corporations may have the resources and expertise to provide world-class services, they might also see departments (like customer support) as a cost or customers as entries on a spreadsheet.
Some people prefer independent, local businesses. Most of the time, I don’t care which way they go.
The hosting industry is well-known for being highly consolidated. On the enterprise end, Amazon and Google are dominant. Endurance, GoDaddy, and other small businesses own shocking numbers of brands. Some are well run, others poorly.
In any case, I think diversity and competition in the hosting industry are good. That’s why I think it’s great to see HostPapa, an independent company, grow like this.
While I wouldn’t pick them solely for their independence, I believe it’s a solid pro in the column.
I also like that they provide small touches of transparency, such as the Network Status Page, where you can access 24/7 updates about their service.
Customer Support & Service
It can be challenging to assess customer service. It’s hard to tell what’s actually going on behind the scenes.
Many online reviews from users are either exaggerated or positive. Aside from that, anecdotes make it challenging to know if what you’re reading is true or just a passing trend.
Instead, I suggest that you look at indicators that indicate whether customer service is considered a cost- or an investment. Or, do they try to reduce costs and increase profits for the short term? Or are they looking to make long-term relationships with customers?
The best indicators I found were availability across multiple support channels and investment into DIY customer support.
HostPapa focuses on both.
There are several options for availability: chat, email, and phone. My chat time with the support team was quick, at just a few minutes. HostPapa provides multilingual support, which can be rare.
Their knowledge base includes an auto-translation feature that allows for different languages to be served. Google Translate can also do the same thing, but that is a high level of thought and investment.
A good selection of videos tutorials is also available, which shows that they are investing in their customer support infrastructure.
HostPapa appears to offer excellent customer support, especially when compared with other entry-level providers.
Comprehensive Hosting Services & Extras
HostPapa is not only a web hosting provider, but they also offer a wide range of complementary services. The majority of web hosts provide domain and email services.
HostPapa, however, provides these services at a slightly higher level.
They are domain resellers, not a seller of domains. Therefore they offer better pricing and a more extensive selection of domain TLDs than other hosting companies. They’re a great place to register domains.
It also works with email as well as design and hosting services. VPS hosting is offered for any resource-hungry site, along with a better-than-average WordPress Hosting product.
Improved Onboarding & Usability
HostPapa had issues when I first launched my small project. It was really frustrating.
While they hadn’t made any improvements (see the pros section), I noticed that they had made some significant improvements to their checkout and set-up processes. It’s the constant innovation that makes hosting companies great.
The signup and set-up process is made much simpler by the many little touches. It isn’t the best, but it is rapidly moving in the right direction. They have dedicated resources, which is excellent since they can implement the most current onboarding practices.
Despite some claims, they remain very focused on the target market. Small businesses are their specialty, so items like email hosting and transfers are integrated right into set-up and checkout.
Hosting Speed & Performance
As I’ve mentioned, web hosts are responsible for delivering website files to anyone who enters your domain name. Most people, however, agree that there is a missing word there. It should be “to deliver website file quickly.”
Website speed is an important factor, especially in today’s mobile world. While server speed is not the only factor that affects overall website speed, it’s a vital component.
This is critical because it also creates a “bottleneck.” So, no matter how fast or slow you compress your website, your server will respond.
This is a complex problem when it comes to measuring server speed and response time. Only the HostPapa Network Engineers can accurately assess server speed. Anyone can estimate server performance.
It’s called Time to First Byte (TTFB). It shows how quickly a web server responds after it receives a request.
HostPapa is not only doing okay, as you can see but has also seen significant improvements over the years. It’s great to see this trend, especially when you consider the solid growth that has occurred over the same period.
TTFB is best considered a trend. The trend is positive, but a lot of it depends on how they manage their website and continue the management of critical vendors and servers.
HostPapa is a solid provider of uptime guarantees, with high uptime rates as well as few incidents, according to their Network Status page.
Every hosting company is subject to downtime. YouTube and Amazon both experienced outages within the past year. The key to success is consistency and causes. HostPapa scores well in basic speed tests and infrastructure transparency. I’d place them in the Pros list for performance.
Cons Of HostPapa
HostPapa also has its drawbacks, as with any web host.
You can find quiet a few HostPapa complaints on the internet. Some are valid, while some are only anecdotal.
Below are the significant disadvantages that I encountered while using HostPapa:
HostPapa offers competitive pricing, as I already stated in the pros. You don’t have to necessarily pay more for higher quality. Sometimes, a site is required to be affordable. Sometimes, you just want the best price for certain features.
I’ve had clients who fall into the former category, but I also have projects under the latter. One example: I’ve had many microsites, and they needed a shared web hosting plan that provided enough databases and domains for them all, as well as enough memory to handle predictable, consistent traffic. The price was very reasonable.
HostPapa might not suit you if you are in these two groups. They offer low-tier and mid-tier plans at a steep discount, but only for a 3-year contract. Otherwise, renewals can be costly for a basic shared hosting plan.
Also, SiteLock and automated backups are not included in the price. This increases the cost per feature.
It’s the same if your first price comparison involves several websites and databases. HostPapa is not expensive, but they don’t offer the best deals. You may not be able to afford HostPapa if you have a strict budget or are uncertain about the duration of your project.
Overstated Marketing & International Presence
Marketing has three main goals: Take what you’re good at and decide who it’s for. Then, find a way that they can reach you.
Everyone must believe in all three parts to be happy.
HostPapa is an excellent choice for small North American businesses.
They actually do a lot of marketing for countries outside North America. They also make a lot of false claims.
If they were the best match for customers in those areas, it’s OK.
HostPapa offers multilingual support. They accept payment from different currencies and are great for international customers.
Despite everything I have found (including running Geolocation on Singapore websites), they continue to serve all customers via their Toronto, Canada Data Center, despite everything I have seen (including running Geolocation on Singapore websites).
I find it misleading to advertise “best Hosting for [country]” when the nearest data center is located 10,000 miles from your target customer. Make claims, they’re great global websites based in specific countries. This is just a caveat.
HostPapa is clearly targeting markets they don’t fit compared to SiteGround, which offers data centers worldwide, or hosts like InMotion that at least provides bi-coastal centers.
HostPapa might be an attractive option for someone in Australia, India, or the UK searching for a web host. Although the distance from HostPapa’s data center may be less important than customer service, it is still a competitor hosting company and not specifically for [insert nation].
This is also true for a lot of their marketing. Although they can provide transparency to clarify some claims, they still make many of the same claims.
This I consider a disadvantage as it reveals something about the culture of the organization. My view is that it’s more effective to under-promise and overdeliver. As a marketer, I know that it’s not always possible. It is still vital to learn from the customer’s point of view.
Missing Bonuses & Features
HostPapa does offer a variety of features for each plan. But, there are some extras that are not included.
First, they have a short money-back promise compared to others. HostPapa only gives 30 days. But corporate competitors like HostGator do 45 days. Independent competitors like DreamHost, InMotion, and Hub all offer a minimum of 90-day money-back guarantees.
Second, the Business and Starter plans don’t have any automated backups. It is a $19+/year additional charge. Most hosting companies provide some kind of automatic backup. Even if it’s a set-up like HostGator, where they do automated weekly backups. If you need to restore your data, there are many options.
No matter what service you use to backup your data, you must do so yourself. You can have backups made by your hosting company, but it’s always a good idea. HostPapa will charge you more for backups. Be sure to keep this in mind.
Is HostPapa Worth It?
HostPapa is one of the best solid small-business web hosting providers today. In an industry that is increasingly dominated only by a handful of mega-corporations, it’s refreshing for a small business to find a reliable, independent host company with a quality product like HostPapa.
What Is My Top Recommendation For Making Money Online In 2021?
Our review team has come across a program in the real estate industry that is next level!
Although it’s not real estate in the traditional sense, it’s all digital.
Where HostPapa falls short is in scalability.
You can’t realistically expect to be able to make passive income when you have to watch your store and manage ads all day.
But what if you leverage it?
With this digital real estate program, you can have the ability to completely walk away from the laptop because there is no ad management!
Sound too good to be true?
Of course it does!
But it isn’t… in fact, business owners wish they had this skill!
All you have to do is build and rank a website and forward the jobs off to a business owner in town, you could even email it to them!
This works for literally any service based business, tree service, plumbing, towing, etc.
How do you get paid and how much?
Simple, after you forward the jobs off to a business owner and he makes some money off of them, you simply ask to make the deal beneficial for each other.
A fair price to charge per lead, depending on the industry is 10-20%…let’s just use the tree service industry for example and go by worst case scenario.
Let’s say you build and rank the site and only 10 jobs a month come in. The average tree service job is anywhere from $500-$2000!
That means at bare minimum you have an asset worth $500 a month!
See why they call it digital real estate now?
That’s a rent payment.
The great thing is how easy it is to scale. You don’t have to answer the phone…all you have to do is get the phone to ring.
Remember HostPapa and all the small profit margins?
This one actually allows you to collect that without being on the laptop managing a store all day. Truly passive income!
The training program takes making money online to a whole other level. The owner of the program walks you through how to build and rank a site hand in hand, with the occasional voice over when he is sharing his screen.
You will learn the importance of keywords, website name, how to send call notifications via email, backlinking, etc.
Once the training program is completed you will also have access to a Facebook group much better than the HostPapa group in our opinion. This group is much more active.
Unlike HostPapa, where you have to run ads all day and worry about getting a $5 profit off a $50 product 1,000 times over…. A business will always want more leads and another job. In fact it doesn’t even matter that the job isn’t coming from their website name…they see it as it is…expanding digital real estate.
Unlike HostPapa, more people have been able to walk away from their 9-5 job as well.
Digital real estate allows you to have total passive income with most of your day being spent OFF the laptop.
Now, I know you probably have tons of questions… So, check this out to learn more.