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Liquid Web standout features
PerformanceFast and reliable hosting
Email serviceEvery server option offers an email server
First byte response timeApproximately 292 milliseconds
Connection response timeApproximately 106 milliseconds
Domain name registration and hostingNo need to go to a separate provider
SupportExcellent 24/7/year-round support with real people

Liquid Web landing page

What Are the Pros and Cons of Liquid Web?

Liquid Web has many web hosting options available. Its product portfolio ranges from a partnership with Nexcess for managed WordPress and similar services to completely dedicated, bespoke solutions developed for and with you. The common thread I found was its quick and informative support.

Here are some pros and cons of choosing Liquid Web for your web hosting.

Pros of Liquid Web

  1. Control panel choices: Liquid Web’s hosting allows you to choose between cPanel, Plesk, and InterWorx for hosting.
  2. Incredible support: Every time I needed help, Liquid Web’s live chat quickly responded with well-informed answers and fast solutions.
  3. Softaculous installer: This web hosting software manager has just about every package you’d ever want to use on your site, including WordPress, Joomla, Magento, and many more.
  4. Email hosting included: Every hosting option includes an email server at no extra charge for that extra professional touch for your website or business.

Cons of Liquid Web

  1. Confusing pricing descriptions: Introductory and long-term pricing made it a bit difficult to determine the true cost of a given product. But this was somewhat clarified after I made an account.
  2. Two Liquid Web portals: Not all features (such as Cloudflare) are available in the default portal (my.liquidweb.com) and need to be set up in a second, older portal (manage.liquidweb.com).
  3. Managed hosting is a separate company: Though managed hosting options are presented as Liquid Web’s, you are taken to a partner provider (Nexcess).

Liquid Web may be the best web host for: Someone just stepping into the world of web hosting. While the plans may cost a bit more, its excellent support will help you avoid lost time and confusion.

Liquid Web products

Multiple options for control panels

I configured one Linux VPS instance with Liquid Web’s default control panel, InterWorx, and an additional Linux VPS instance with cPanel. Login information was a bit difficult to find at first; it’s located in secure notes under the account drop-down. These secure notes are only viewable once and are automatically deleted when closed (see the screenshot below).

Liquid Web control panel options

Getting access to my InterWorx server was relatively straightforward. Your username is the case-sensitive email address you used to sign up for Liquid Web, and the password is provided in the secure notes (see above).

I had a bit of difficulty (I didn’t realize the username was case-sensitive), but thankfully, Liquid Web’s support staff includes live chat support. Accessing this was easy; even at 10:30 a.m. on a Saturday, I got quick help and resolved my issue.

Liquid Web dashboard

Once you’re into InterWorx, you’ll need to create a separate SiteWorx (the site administration tool for InterWorx) account internally for hosting your site, but that’s not different from WHM + cPanel.

By comparison, accessing cPanel and WHM was easy; the username is “root,” and the password is provided in Liquid Web’s secure notes as above. Liquid Web creates the WHM account, but you create the cPanel account. Once this is done, though, cPanel is easily reached via WHM or the credentials you created.

Liquid Web cPanel

InterWorx option

For InterWorx-based sites (the default option), Softaculous is the main way of installing hosting tools such as WordPress. Walking through this installer was pretty straightforward; after a few clicks through some setup pages, it was done. However, once it was installed, I was unable to access my new WordPress site.

I reached out to support to find out what was wrong and learned this is a common issue with InterWorx.

cPanel option

cPanel is another option (for $10 more than InterWorx) for your site’s control panel, but the cPanel WordPress toolkit worked, for the most part. When attempting to log in to WordPress via the login button, I received a cryptic error.

Liquid Web cPanel options

But through the setup link, I retrieved my WordPress login credentials and URL and accessed the WordPress admin panel.

Hundreds of web hosting tools through Softaculous

Softaculous is a package manager used for installing and managing tools on your website such as WordPress, Joomla, Magento, and many more. There are over 300 different scripts and more than 1,000 Hypertext Preprocessor (PHP) classes. Liquid Web’s cPanel and InterWorx hosting options both provide access to Softaculous and include tools for anything you may want to do with your website.

Here are a few that stood out to me:

  • Content management platforms
    • WordPress
    • Joomla
  • E-commerce platforms
    • Magento
    • Open source point of sale (POS)

Liquid Web 3rd party apps

Acronis backups

Liquid Web’s hosting choices offer options (selected by default) for backing up your server and website. This is important for a few reasons: backups can be used to recover files that were accidentally deleted or to restore a file (such as a web page) to a previous point in time.

Domain name registration and hosting

You can register your domain with a different provider, but with Liquid Web, there isn’t any need to. Liquid Web provides DNS services integrated into its control panel. Registering a domain is easy, but the listed price when searching for a domain name does not include privacy protection, which is automatically added when checking out.

domain name registration

Free Cloudflare integration

Liquid Web provides Cloudflare integration with your account directly in the control panel. The caveat: this is one of the features provided by the old manage.liquidweb.com instead of the new my.liquidweb.com control panel.

Cloudflare is a content delivery network (CDN) that speeds up your site’s loading by re-hosting copies (caches) of it at locations all around the world. When someone loads your site, they get a page much quicker rather than having to load your site from potentially halfway around the world.

Email hosting

Once you get access to your cPanel or InterWorx control panel, it’s just a few clicks to set up your website and configure custom-domain email hosting. Having a business email like “@yourdomain.com” versus a commonly available provider such as “@gmail.com” adds more professionalism to your small business.

Other managed hosting options through its partnership with Nexcess

Liquid Web partnered with Nexcess in 2019 to add managed (sometimes called “shared”) hosting services to its portfolio. If you’re less interested in purchasing a whole server and instead want to jump straight to a content or commerce app like WordPress, this may be an option.

Through this partnership, the following solutions are offered:

  • Managed WordPress
  • Managed WooCommerce
  • Magento Cloud

Uptime and reliability

As a technologist, I’m immediately suspicious of any service that offers “100% uptime,” as this is often more marketing than anything else. From a technical perspective, offering any service that is meant to be up “100% of the time” is practically impossible to achieve without some big caveats. In Liquid Web’s case, the main caveats are that any planned maintenance or malicious attacks (such as a denial of service attack) are not counted.

The exclusions given mean the only time you’d reasonably be expected to be compensated for downtime is if there was some unplanned maintenance issue or network-level error preventing you from getting to your server.

Liquid Web service level agreement

And the data somewhat proves it. This is hrank.com’s uptime report for Liquid Web:

Liquid Web uptime results

Site response times

How quickly (or slowly) a website loads often has more to do with the webpage than the servers hosting the site. However, in my testing, Liquid Web’s server response times are quite fast.

Liquid Web also offers optional Cloudflare integration, which can help your sites load even faster.

response times

My testing shows that Liquid Web has an average first-byte time of 292 ms, which is how long it takes to start receiving data after you navigate to a webpage. In general, for a fast website, the first byte times should be less than 300 ms, which in most locales, Liquid Web meets. Utilizing a CDN such as Cloudflare would also speed this up.

Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and passwords

I was pleased that most generated passwords and logins for my Liquid Web were decently secure: randomly generated passwords including upper and lower case letters, numbers, and symbols. Liquid Web also provides SSL certificates for purchase, but if you dig into SiteWorx, there is also an option to use Let’s Encrypt to set up a free SSL certificate. But I couldn’t get this feature to work.

Firewall and antivirus

Every option I tested came with firewall (for web hosting) and antivirus (for email hosting) features available, and the default configurations were secure.

Liquid Web Support


Liquid Web’s “24/7/365 Human” support was stellar. While I may have had a few issues getting my servers set up, every time I reached out to live chat, I got a quick response from a real person, and my issue was resolved.

Every time I needed some help, it absolutely delivered, even at odd times and on the weekend. The live chat tool is excellent, though I had some issues getting the tool to work in Firefox (Chrome, Safari, and other browsers work better). But the live chat itself was excellent and Liquid Web’s support technicians provided a quick resolution every time.

Liquid Web Support

The following are just some of the recent product improvements rolled out by Liquid Web:

  • Control panel updates: Liquid Web’s control panel is currently split between a legacy panel (manage.liquidweb.com) and a more modern one (my.liquidweb.com). Some offerings, such as Cloudflare integration, are missing from my.liquidweb.com, but you get redirected to manage.liquidweb.com automatically.
  • Partnership with Nexcess: It added managed hosting options to its product portfolio by partnering with Nexcess in 2019. Managed hosting options are great if you just want the hosting software (for example, WordPress) without the responsibility of managing an entire server.

Compare Liquid Web Alternatives

I ranked Liquid Web pretty well, but alternatives like SiteGround, Bluehost, and HostGator may be a better fit for your needs. We’ve used these hosting companies’ services and spent hours researching their tools and performance. Our research provides objective information about each company so you can find the best one for you.

See how Liquid Web compares to other top-tier hosting companies the team here at Digital.com recommends:

Web hostPricingHosting packagesBasic plan featuresCompare
Liquid Web

Overall rating

Consider Liquid Web if: Excellent customer support is a high priority or you need help with a customized hosting solution.

$25 to $1,830.25 per month
  • VPS (Linux or Windows)
  • Dedicated
  • HIPPA compliant
  • Custom options
  • 2 vCPU Cores
  • 40 GB solid-state drive (SSD) storage
  • 10 TB bandwidth
  • AlmaLinux or CentOS 7
  • InterWorx, Plesk Web Pro, or cPanel Admin
Liquid Web’s best features are its support customization features. Its price points start a bit higher than the others, but you get stellar support and a lot of customizability.

Overall rating

Read our full Bluehost review.

Consider Bluehost if: your hosting needs are smaller or tech support is less of a priority for you.

$2.95 to $119.99 per month
  • Shared
  • WordPress
  • VPS
  • Dedicated
  • 2 cores
  • 30 GB SSD storage
  • 2 GB RAM
  • 1 TB bandwidth
  • 1 IP Address
  • cPanel/WHM
Bluehost is a well-regarded web hosting service that offers a wide range of shared, managed, and dedicated services. Bluehost’s pricing is a bit cheaper, but it lacks the depth of options available at Liquid Web.

Overall rating

Read our full SiteGround review.

Consider SiteGround if: You need managed hosting or your needs are smaller overall.

$3.99 to $400 per month
  • Shared
  • WordPress
  • WooCommerce
  • Cloud
  • Reselle
  • 1 website
  • 10GB storage
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Free SSL certificate
  • Free email
SiteGround offers smaller server packages and managed hosting packages (such as shared WordPress), but Liquid Web’s servers can be made larger and more customized.

Overall rating

Read our full DreamHost review.

Consider DreamHost if: You are interested in website design or SEO services.

$1.99 to $279 per month
  • Shared
  • WordPress
  • WooCommerce
  • VPS
  • Cloud
  • Dedicated
  • 1 website
  • SSD storage
  • Unlimited traffic
  • Free domain
  • Free SSL certificate
DreamHost, particularly, offers design and SEO services for its customers. While Liquid Web’s support could offer the same (it specializes in customized options), it’s nice to see this called out specifically by DreamHost.

Overall rating

Read our full GreenGeeks review.

Consider GreenGeeks if: Environmentally friendly hosting is important to you or your mission.

$2.95 to $109.95 per month
  • Shared
  • WordPress
  • VPS
  • Reseller
  • 1 website
  • 50 GB storage
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Free SSL certificate
  • Free nightly backups
GreenGeeks major mission is to be an eco-friendly hosting solution, responsible with the energy it consumes and purchasing renewable energy credits to offset its power usage.
InMotion Hosting

Overall rating

Read our full InMotion Hosting review.

Consider InMotion Hosting if: Your business is primarily or exclusively in the U.S., or if purchasing from a primarily U.S.-based hosting provider is important to you.

$2.99 to $539.99 per month
  • Shared
  • WordPress
  • VPS
  • Dedicated
  • Reseller
  • 2 websites
  • 100 GB SSD storage
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • 10 free email addresses
  • Free SSL certificate
InMotion Hosting’s data centers are located within the U.S., and its target audience is primarily individuals living in the U.S. Its VPS/Dedicated hosting packages overall are comparable to Liquid Web’s at least up to the price point it offers.

Overall rating

Read our full HostGator review.

Consider HostGator if: You are interested in saving money with a free domain and SSL certificate.

$2.75 to $139.89 per month
  • Shared
  • WordPress
  • VPS
  • Dedicated
  • Reseller
  • 1 website
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Free SSL certificate
  • Free domain
HostGator offers many freebies, including a free domain name, and the hosting packages start at a very reasonable price.

Frequently Asked Questions About Liquid Web

What are the Liquid Web nameservers?

Liquid Web has two name servers, ns.liquidweb.com and ns1.liquidweb.com.

Where are the Liquid Web servers located?

Liquid Web’s U.S.-Central data center and founding location is Lansing, Michigan. Additionally, there is a U.S.-West data center in Phoenix, Arizona, and an EU-Central data center in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

What are the best alternatives to Liquid Web?

Liquid Web is a reputable web hosting provider, but some quality alternatives are: Bluehost, GreenGeeks, SiteGround, HostGator, InMotion Hosting, and DreamHost.

What is Liquid Web’s cheapest hosting plan?

Excluding Managed WordPress and WooCommerce, which are offered by Nexcess (a Liquid Web partner), the cheapest hosting plan is $25 per month when you buy two years up front. This gets you:

Can you register domain names with Liquid Web?

You can buy domains from Liquid Web through your account dashboard. Domain Whois privacy is also available for a small yearly cost and is automatically selected when purchasing a domain.

Can you automatically install WordPress with Liquid Web?

WordPress can easily be installed for free with the Softaculous app, which was pre-installed in every Liquid Web option I reviewed. There are many other options Softaculous offers; see the full list here.

How I Rated Liquid Web

I took a comprehensive approach to rate Liquid Web’s services. It offers many choices, and I picked what I felt would be the most representative sample from these to review.

As an IT consultant, I’m often tasked with putting together technical solutions for customers or myself. Many times during this review, I found myself asking: “Why would I choose Liquid Web over a more hands-off solution such as AWS?” The answer is Liquid Web’s incredible support.

If you’re looking for a website builder, Liquid Web has tools to do this, but it mainly focuses on custom hosting, VPS options, and various other tools.

While several hosting providers are cheaper, all of Liquid Web’s hosting options I tested were excellent. I wanted to rank it a full 5 out of 5, but some lack of price transparency and initial technical issues with a few of the hosting packages brought that down a bit. On a positive note, if I could rank its support higher than 5 out of 5 I would, as the team was always knowledgeable and fast at responding.