There are plenty of well-known hosting control panels (for example, cPanel, Plesk, SPanel, DirectAdmin, etc.). They all lead their separate marketplaces but lack the inspiration to change something with their panels. I’m not going to discuss them. They all basically do the same thing. Provide an attractive visual user interface for managing the servers and tasks. Make it simple for users to navigate settings/tasks and manage servers.
The majority of those are business hosting control panels. They are not just for users and function with payment and invoice for the business owner and hosting resellers.
Origin of Cloud Hosting Control Panels
Many people felt tired of slow and poor shared hosting, and most of them switched to cloud VPS, or some moved to dedicated or premium web hosts like Rocket.net, Kinsta, Servebolt, etc. Today, there is an open competition for new hosting markets.
One example is cloud hosting control panels, which do not require coding or server admin skills. Another reason is the rise of cloud hosting providers like Vultr, DigitalOcean, Linode, Contabo, Google Cloud, UpCloud, Hetzner, OVH, and others at an affordable cost.
Also, there is other competition for Litespeed hosts that already have good ones, like GURU, HostArmada, Krystal-UK, ChemiCloud, MechanicWeb, etc. Having a wide range of options is always good when looking for the ideal host. They try to stick with the game.
Cloud hosting control panels are most likely designed for website owners who require the blistering speed of cloud VPS or dedicated servers. They are ideal for innovative users.
And provide numerous tools for website management and most of the features can be easily reached with a few taps. People have different needs in different types of markets, such as website owners, developers, resellers, and admins. Some panels are intended for site owners. Others are for developers, while others are for resellers or small businesses.
So I’ve listed some of the best WordPress cloud hosting control panels based on my experience and reviews from others. They are not only for WordPress; most also support other applications such as PHP, Laravel, Joomla, etc. Let’s look at them now!
Best WordPress Hosting Control Panels
RunCloud is a cloud hosting control panel similar to GridPane, Cloudways, SpinupWP, etc. Ideal for those who want something technical, easy to use, and with good performance at a reasonable price. If you enjoy complete host panels that control server resources and websites, you’ll find it a lot easier and less stressful to launch a server with RunCloud.
But RunCloud is not designed for beginners. If you’re not a techie and don’t understand some administration and technical things, RunCloud is most likely not for you. No help. They will be backed, but not for beginner-level work like WordPress installations.
They only assist with dev stuff. RunCloud doesn’t provide any technical support for web hosting. The good news is that you can choose any cloud hosting provider, meaning there are tons of cloud or VPS hosts worldwide. Before utilizing RunCloud, check that your server has at least one CPU and 512 MB of RAM. RunCloud simply accepts unmanaged virtual servers and turns them over to people who hate messing with admin tasks.
RunCloud operates with hosting service providers, including:
- Microsoft Azure
- Google Cloud
- Alibaba Cloud
- Any other who supports APIs
RunCloud Features & Pricing
RunCloud performs just like Cloudways, but RunCloud keeps the web hosting apart from your server control panel, while Cloudways blends everything into a single box.
It’s almost as simple to use when it’s set up as regular web hosting. RunCloud dashboard is much faster than Cloudways. However, if you use RunCloud to host your website, you’ll need two separate accounts, one at any VPS or Cloud provider and one at RunCloud.
That means you’ll have to pay for both, which is why I said they’re unsuitable for starters or small sites. Unquestionably a more complicated process than regular web hosting.
Here are some screenshots from the RunCloud Panel:
RunCloud WordPress & Other Features
- WordPress staging: it helps keep up with changes without crashing a live site.
- RunCache: this is a WordPress caching layer similar to Rocket.net, Kinsta, and others. It improves server performance (server-side cache). However, if you select OpenLiteSpeed, you can use the LiteSpeed cache.
- Unlimited Installation: even with the starter plan, you can install any application other than WordPress. It is helpful if you have multiple websites to manage in one location. It is also valuable if cost is a key issue for you.
- Auto-update: good for beginners, but auto-update is not a useful option.
- Free SSL: Let’s Encrypt
- File Manager: most cloud panels lack a file manager, making managing files and folders tricky. But with RunCloud, a game-changer, you can easily manage your files and folders, from editing and renaming to removing and adjusting access rights.
- MariaDB: better performance, features, and reliability than MySQL.
- Clone application: clone with a single click
- Change owner: useful if you need to transfer your site or another account.
- Cloudflare DNS: you can manage Cloudflare DNS at the RC panel.
- Pure Nginx Or OpenLiteSpeed: You can use pure NGINX, which is faster than Apache+Nginx but may cause WordPress issues. Or select OpenLiteSpeed.
The significant advantage is that you can obtain top-notch performance for an affordable price. If you host a high-traffic website with a pricey hosting provider like SiteGround, you will need at least $100 per month for a start plan. However, if you choose Vultr+RunCloud, you can manage for less than $50 per month. But this approach is more technical.
But you do not need to be a coder to use RunCloud. I’m not an ace, but I like them as they fulfill my requirements. You can also choose between Nginx and OpenLiteSpeed.
They are affordable, faster, and easier to use. A truly feature-rich panel. Ideal for growth conditions. My favorite option at this stage. Here’s a good RunCloud review and tutorial.
I used to be a big fan of Cloudways. But after being acquired by DigitalOcean, I wouldn’t say I appreciated how they grew their fees. And now that Cloudways has dropped Linode and Vultr. It makes Digital Ocean stand out even more. However, I still prefer Linode and Vultr high-frequency servers, but they can be used with other cloud panels like RunCloud.
However, DigitalOcean is a solid cloud hosting service with a reliable background and a good uptime guarantee. If you like DigitalOcean, Cloudways is a better cloud panel with free credits. I still recommend Cloudways as a secure option. And it keeps working for a lot of folks. The most difficult part is the slow dashboard, which is totally out of place.
A lot of processes are slow and waste too much time. Sometimes it takes 10 minutes to create a server. Cloudways’ support is quick and friendly compared to other WordPress hosting control panels. And is among the most user-friendly for newbies. You are free to question all types of stuff. Cloudways isn’t the fastest or most affordable option, but it gives you what you need. It can be used without touching any coding, at least one.
Compared to RunCloud, GridPane, SpinupWP, CloudPages, and other cloud panels, CW is not a customizable option. This means that most cloud panels are customizable. And can choose servers, databases, object caches, and any VPS server with an IP or APIs.
But Cloudways, like other managed hosts, cannot pick a server because they are already configured with Nginx+Apache. You can’t use any VPS. Only you can use DO, AWS, and Google Cloud. And they are most like now the official cloud panel for DigitalOcean.
Here are some pics of the Cloudways panel:
Cloudways Cloudflare Enterprise Add-on
Cloudways now offers the Cloudflare Enterprise add-on as a paid service, meaning you must pay to get it. It starts at $5 for 1 domain but can be less for multiple domains.
I think they were inspired by Rocket.net, which provides free access to full Cloudflare Enterprise. But Cloudways CE is still unstable, with limited features. If you use Cloudflare Enterprise, you don’t need cache plugins. But plugins like FlyingPress are still effective.
However, as a CDN service, it is much faster than others. And can access features such as Argo, priority routing, load balancing, image optimization/Ezgif, full-page caching, and other enterprise performance and security features. But still lack APO. And it’s still a good option for the average site because it can get quick page loads and a high global TTFB.
Cloudways Positive Aspects
- Simple to Use: They are beginner-friendly, require no technical expertise to use, and have all features built in. You can access a website with a few clicks.
- Cheap: A bit cheaper because you don’t have to pay for both the host and the cloud panel; their price includes both. However, it is ideal for small servers with 1 or 2 GB of RAM. If you require 4GB or more RAM, RunCloud is a better option.
- Redis: All plans include Redis, and the 2GB+ RAM plans include free Redis Pro.
- Cloudflare Enterprise: A paid add-on but robust and useful option compared to other CDN and security services. Avoid many slow plugins. And security plugins.
- Server migration: transfer your server to another account using the CW dashboard. This is helpful for migration. Move your website or server smoothly.
- Most recent software: use updated versions of server apps like PHP, Database, caching layers, etc. (can boost server performance)
- Simply work: It is easy and works well. With some others, stuff occasionally fails to perform. With Cloudways, you can handle most regular tasks without support.
- Team Access: They allow multiple users to access any account, which is useful if you need to share a server or application with teammates or customers.
- Varnish Cache: Cloudways has a pre-configured Varnish cache to serve as a reverse proxy. This is a proven method to improve the loading speed of your website.
- Limited cloud providers: now only provide DigitalOcean, AWS, and Google Cloud; you cannot use any other cloud provider. Old accounts can still use Linode and Vultr, but limiting them is possible. They will make it a cloud panel for DO.
- Costly for larger servers: The biggest complaint is that it gets more pricey as you grow. Ok, for small ones, but anything over 4GB can result in a large bill.
- Slow: This is the worst part because lots of things are slow. The dashboard is lazy, and the stack is weak. On the backend, everything moves slowly. They are currently developing a new UI, but it seems to be the same and buggy.
- No file manager: Most control panels look to take this path without a file manager. However, some provide it, like Spanel, Runcloud, and others, so Cloudways still lacks a file manager and requires you to use FTP. When handling more than one server, that’s a lot more clicks. And it’s perhaps the most difficult part for me.
- Not customizable: For most people, this isn’t a big deal, but if you’re a developer, CW isn’t a customizable option; you can’t use your favorite things because everything is already set up and only requires a few clicks. For example, CW only provides a blend of Apache and Nginx. Most of the others are the same.
Cloudways has hourly charges; no higher renewal rates. If you create a server and only use it for one day, they will only charge you for what you used, known as pay-as-you-go.
However, as you scale, it becomes more expensive. Most shared hosts lock you into lengthy agreements, such as one year or more on a plan with few server resources.
Even, Cloudways can be expensive if you scale up. Suppose you only use 1 GB of RAM on DO standard servers; it can cost less than 12 USD monthly. However, if you scale it up to 2, 3, or more, the cost increases by 2x, 3x, or more. Therefore, it is not a good choice for eCommerce or other high-traffic sites requiring more server resources. Yet they remain inexpensive compared to Kinsta, WP Engine, etc., with complete Cloudflare Enterprise.
You should know that GridPane is not intended for single servers, websites, or beginners. GridPane is a good option for running 50+ websites because prices start at $100/mo.
GridPane only wants serious customers with serious requirements. So, GridPane isn’t an ideal option for anyone handling fewer servers. And you have a variety of cloud service providers to pick from, including Akamai, UpCloud, Vultr, Hetzner, DigitalOcean, etc.
GridPane is simply a software package suited for agencies and hosting companies. They always have an eye on a fast control panel. I enjoy how it looks faster than Cloudways and others. GridPane has a simple interface with fewer places to navigate, letting you focus on what is most critical. It makes managing servers feel easy. But too expensive.
Some GridPane Functions
- Server: you can pick Nginx or OpenLiteSpeed.
- Database: Choose between Percona MySQL or MariaDB
- Object Cache: Redis (highly recommend)
- FastCGI Page Caching: useful if your website receives thousands of visitors.
- Redis Nginx Page Caching: Redis is an OC solution but can also be used as a static cache combined with Nginx. R+N page caching is typically ideal if your site is small, a blog, or another static website. (faster than FastCGI)
- Staging: a one-click staging feature that allows you to test with a fully functional copy of the site to verify that everything is running properly before the live website.
- Cloning: GridPane makes it simple to move a site to a different one. Possible to copy a website from one domain to another and clone a whole server to another.
- Backup strategy: GridPane has a solid backup format with many options.
- Theme & Plugin Installation: They have an auto theme/plugin installation feature, which allows you to specify which plugins/themes should be installed on your sites.
GridPane starts at $100/m, and the second plan is $500/m also can choose the custom price for enterprise-level business and can get a 14-day free trial. But you need to connect a credit card. GridPane’s agency plan offers the choice of white labelling. It is a huge advantage for agencies and hosting companies when running a large business.
IMO, the price is too high for what we receive. They constantly change their pricing, preferences, and decisions. It indicates that GridPane is more intent on gains than existing a better WordPress cloud hosting control panel. GridPane has some really good features. The dashboard is well-designed and user-friendly. Speed is impressive.
However, I do have some concerns about the future. GridPane has a history of changing its structure, which makes me nervous. I hope they can maintain their current standards and not make drastic changes that could negatively affect the user experience.
SpinupWP is another WordPress-specific cloud-based server control panel. I’m not a huge fan of them. They seem kind of plain and boring to me. They’re definitely simple, but sometimes that simplicity can become slightly monotonous. SpinupWP design gives the impression that anyone can launch a web server and simply run their business.
Nothing is cutting-edge like GridPane or RunCloud. They work with any hosting service provider but ask for some requirements (OS – Ubuntu, CPU – 1 core, 1 GB RAM).
SpinupWP is so simple for those who prefer to deploy servers from Digital Ocean and Akamai (Linode) because they are pre-integrated. But with others, you’re going to get into some problems. The significant downsides are no file manager or PHPMyAdmin.
However, they are compatible with any VPS.
SpinupWP Pricing & Features
SpinupWP provides two plans: Personal and Team. The personal plan costs $12 monthly and includes one server and unlimited sites. The team plan costs $39 monthly and has three servers, priority email support, and site monitoring. And here are some more:
- Redis object cache: this is maybe the fastest and most effective option.
- Full-page cache: store the complete page as a static HTML file and deliver it for later visits with SpinupWP’s full-page caching. This may significantly improve TTFB.
- Free Let’s Encrypt SSL
- Root access: It is a unique feature for most.
- External databases
- All other basic hosting and WordPress features.
SpinupWP is good if you only run a few basic sites and don’t want to mess with your database or perform anything beyond the bare minimum. The UI is OK but very minimal and has a nice design with attractive sets. The dashboard loads quickly and performs well, but it needs to be fairer for regular adjustments. It also includes full-page caching.
SpinupWP’s cost is reasonable if you only need one or three servers. But it becomes too costly if you need a lot. They are more expensive than RunCloud, have fewer features, and are less complex interfaces. They could be more expensive than Cloudways.
SpinupWP is ideal for people who only need somewhere to keep simple, easy-to-maintain sites without giving anyone else access. It’s incredibly user-friendly and easy to navigate.
Platforms like RunCloud, ServerPilot, GridPane, and Cloudways might be better suited for serious creations/sites. They offer more advanced features and customizations.
ServerPilot has a simple/unattractive UI but is clear and is a well-known panel in this marketplace. But it has limited abilities, meaning you must use a few codes for some functions. Not recommended for beginners. I feel RunCloud is much better at it.
ServerPilot provides a useful app stack for running your sites, with some advanced set-up optimization and the freedom to use any PHP or WordPress sites. You can connect to any cloud provider, such as DigitalOcean, AWS, GC, Azure, OVHcloud, RamNode, etc.
They also provide Pure Nginx, which is ideal if you don’t want to use htaccess. Also, you can use the mixed Apache and Nginx stack for htaccess support. (No LiteSpeed).
They provide any PHP version plus FastCGI, which improves server usage of resources by adjusting PHP handles according to request usage. However, FastCGI is better suited for high-traffic websites than average. ServerPilot only supports MySQL, but I would prefer MariaDB. They also support Brotli, which is better than the old Gzip compression.
ServerPilot makes it costly to host multiple sites because they charge a fee for each.
For your website’s security, ServerPilot uses the freshest security updates, a firewall, separate system access, SFTP, a free SSL certificate, and other security measures.
ServerPilot includes an integrated monitoring system that provides real-time server statistics. You can check CPU, RAM, disk space, bandwidth, and other parameters.
Regarding support, you should be aware that these types of cloud panels are specifically designed for dev minds and do not support beginner dump stuff. They have a technical support team for server administration. If you are new, consider Cloudways or other managed or shared hosts like GURU, HostArmada, Krystal, Scala, Rocket.net, etc.
Shared hosting is ideal for websites that receive modest amounts of traffic. It’s simple to use, can handle multiple sites, and is relatively fast if you pick the right web host.
CloudPages is simply another managed hosting control panel, and it’s very close to RunCloud and SpinupWP. They do exactly the same thing for similar charges. And let you utilize CloudPages apps for handling websites, including WordPress. CloudPages supports DigitalOcean, Hetzner, AWS, and Vultr cloud servers with the OpenLiteSpeed server.
My favorite part is how fast the Cloudpages admin panel is. Whatever you tap loads right away. It’s a lot more exciting than other similar WordPress hosting control panels.
CloudPages’ user interface is neatly put together and looks simple but vast. And you’ll get a lot of functionality from RunCloud’s background. It has everything you are looking for, and beginners can navigate what they need more easily and quickly than RunCloud.
Some CloudPages control panel images:
CloudPages Pricing & Features
CloudPages offers a free plan for one server, which is impressive but does not include all features. With the free plan, you can’t use features like Git Manager, LiteSpeed stats, team, WordPress staging, file manager, mod security, and many others, and it’s more like a basic version for new users. And here are the CloudPages pricing and feature lists:
- Free trial: they provide a free 7-day trial without asking for a credit card.
- WordPress Manager: set up WordPress sites, have auto-login, and staging.
- Team Management: if you guys are a team, this function will help you.
- Bubblewrap: it can assist you in separating multiple sites on your server.
- Staging: simple staging sites creation
- File Manager: Yes, they provide access to the file manager.
- Firewall: even on the free plan
I only know a little about CloudPages because I used it for a couple of days and have no idea about its support or some features. However, their V2 UI has been improved, and some issues are now fixed. And now even easier to use. If you only need a control panel and don’t need anything else, CloudPages’ free plan will be enough. However, I prefer RunCloud/GridPane because of their extensive features. You are free to use any server.
SPanel is simply the ScalaHosting hosting panel, but you can also use it as an alternative to Cpanel, Plesk, or even WordPress Cloud Hosting Control Panel. Also, this is good if you have a ton of websites or you are a freelancer or an agency because there are better options to host one or a few websites. SPanel has many features and is simpler to use than other WordPress cloud hosting control panels. Its user interface can seem complex.
But it’s simple and, perhaps, faster because all features are presented on the same page. In contrast, other panels require additional sets to navigate to other settings.
I like the user interface and board. Everything is like a standard hosting panel with some common spaces. It is less attractive than modern cloud panels. But it’s simple to use, and clicking around to change settings is quick and simple. It’s a nice experience.
Here are some UI screenshots:
SPanel offers two types of plans:
- Fully managed
Technical support for all server-related issues includes fully managed services, including filled server management. You can access live chat or create a ticket to ask for technical assistance in the SPanel UI. However, it is quite expensive, starting at around $20.
Self-managed services start at $10/m and include all SPanel features, basic support, and free installation. If you’ve experience with server administration, this is a good option.
Spanel is very similar to Cpanel, and here are some features.
- Manage Emails: This is uncommon in other cloud panels, but Spanel allows you to manage all your email boxes, forwarders, auto-responds, and filters for all domains in just one interface. Webmail is also supported.
- File manager: similar to Cpanel or Plesk
- SWordPress Manager: You can install, update, and secure unlimited WordPress sites using the security LOCK feature, similar to the Cpanel WordPress toolkit.
- 1-Click Installer: With the Softaculous auto installer, you can install Joomla, WordPress, Magento, and over 100 other web apps.
- Backups: Simply get backups and keep them locally or FTP server.
- Branding: Aka white-label, customize the control panel by changing the logo, adding your brand, and changing the color scheme.
- Staging/Cloning: via the Softaculous
- OpenLiteSpeed: Apache by default but can be switched to OpenLiteSpeed.
- Nginx: Nginx as a reverse Apache proxy
- Plenty of others: Compared to other cloud hosting panels, SPanel is a comprehensive solution with a plethora of features that are also reasonably priced.
Spanel is suitable for heavy users and is not recommended for simple VPS management. However, if you manage large VPS or dedicated servers, Spanel is a suitable option for everyone and the best alternative to Cpanel and Plesk. SPanel seems unprepossessing but quick, brisk, and working properly. It is inexpensive and fashionable if you are a techie.
CloudPanel is a free hosting control panel that is ideal for dev looking for a simple control panel with few features. Very modern and minimal. Dev-friendly and useful. CloudPanel seems to be intended for solo administration. I’m sure any dev will like this control panel.
The UI helps manage most typical server works. Many panels need clarification about their target market. Several are for admins and developers. Others for enterprises. And others for individuals. CloudPanel is clearly a dev panel for server admins. You still need to manually download and unpack things on the command line to install applications.
Here are some UI images:
This is not a drag-and-drop or one-click control panel. If you don’t know much about those things, ignore this and go with something simpler like Cloudways, RunCloud, etc.
But the best part is that it is completely free, and if you are familiar with server admin and command line, you should give it a shot because it is a cost-effective option. However, like most others, CloudPanel does not support file managers and must rely on FTP.
I suggest CloudPanel for your web hosting requirements. It is provided with a recent stack and is intentionally designed to be lightweight, ensuring your site will operate at best.
And the system requirements are one core, 2 GB of memory, and at least 10 GB of disk space. Varnish Cache is also built into CloudPanel. Also contain Yarn, Node.js, ProFTPD, Redis, MySQL, Python, and NGINX as servers, with SSL, Firewall, permissions, etc.
Those with critical websites should only use the most developed WordPress cloud hosting control panels. It should be more solid and trustworthy with fewer problems. Also, you should stick with a stable panel if you have many clients or servers. If you’re running a significant business, you should still use panels like cPanel, SPanel, Plesk, etc.
If you have a critical website with a lot of traffic, the most suitable choices are RunCloud, SpinupWP, ServerPilot, and even Cloudways, ok if you’re making a good income.
Feature-wise, GridPane is good if you have a small business or many websites or servers, but I can’t guarantee how it works because they frequently change their intentions.
These are some other panels I have yet to try. I’m aware that plenty of other hosting panels are doing similar things. If you know of any other good ones, let us know.