Liquid Web and Nexcess are two of the most respected web hosting brands in the business. Liquid Web has been at the forefront of dedicated and VPS hosting for more than 25 years. And Nexcess has excelled in providing managed hosting and ecommerce hosting solutions for over 23 years of service.
In an era where enterprises are facing challenges with growing security threats, increasingly complex web applications, and a need for improved technical support, both companies strive to meet these needs.
In this article, we’ll highlight the features of both web hosting companies so you can decide which hosting company best suits your needs.
Here’s what we’ll cover:
Overview of Liquid Web vs. Nexcess Hosting Providers
Let’s start with a high-level overview to compare Liquid Web vs. Nexcess hosting.
Both Nexcess and Liquid Web brands belong to the CloudOne Digital/One Equity Partners portfolio. Nexcess joined the Liquid Web family of brands when it partnered with the company in 2019. Then in 2023, Liquid Web and all its brands were acquired by One Equity Partners.
After the acquisition, CloudOne Digital was created as a platform to house all these brands and consolidate their presence in the cloud hosting sector.
Liquid Web was formed in 1997 to offer web hosting services. Since its founding, it’s become a market leader, providing high-performance managed hosting to over 187,000 customers in 150 countries, with more than 500,000 sites under its management.
Liquid Web specializes in managed hosting services, cloud services, and enterprise hosting for clients that require advanced hosting solutions, such as freelancers, businesses, resellers, and agencies. It offers “the best and widest choice of hosting products.”
Liquid Web is especially proud of its support team. It describes them as Most Helpful Humans in Hosting®.
For over 23 years, Nexcess has provided web hosting services for small and medium businesses (SMBs), enterprises, and hobbyists.
At its core, Nexcess hosting is all about empowering its clients with the technology they need to grow the business they want. It provides fully managed hosting services specifically designed to support content management systems (CMS) like WordPress, Drupal, and Craft CMS. Nexcess also offers plans focusing on ecommerce, such as managed Magento hosting, managed WooCommerce hosting, and custom enterprise hosting.
In 2019, Nexcess and Liquid Web partnered to share experiences and expertise. With over 50 years of combined web hosting experience, both companies aim to help small entrepreneurs, SMBs, and midmarket enterprise clients grow and succeed by offering best-in-class hosting infrastructure, cloud capabilities, and excellent customer support.
What’s the Difference Between Liquid Web and Nexcess?
Liquid Web focuses primarily on managed VPS, dedicated servers, cloud dedicated servers, HIPAA-compliant hosting, and VMware private cloud hosting, while Nexcess offers a range of fully managed plans with an ecommerce focus, including shared hosting and enterprise-level custom hosting.
Performance and Uptime
Both Liquid Web and Nexcess deliver reliable hosting solutions for clients.
Page Load and Server Response Times
A slow website leads to lost sales. Both Nexcess and Liquid Web offer good server response times and ways to improve page load speeds.
Liquid Web offers powerful dedicated servers that limit the competition for server resources and increase your website speed. Cloudflare CDN and Akamai CDN are also available options through Liquid Web.
Nexcess uses Edge CDN powered by Cloudflare with over 280 locations to ensure your content is delivered quickly, no matter what location a website visitor is from. And as a fully managed solution, Nexcess helps keep your website optimized for better response and loading with updated software, performance monitoring tools to spot problems quickly, and server caching options.
Liquid Web offers the option of VMware cloud and dedicated server clusters to allow for seamless horizontal scaling when you need it.
Nexcess offers autoscaling to handle high traffic spikes for you automatically.
Nexcess guarantees at least 99.99% uptime for its customers, with a 100% uptime guarantee for enterprise hosting. To verify this information, Nexcess provides a portal for customers to monitor the uptime status of its network and data centers.
The service level agreement from Liquid Web guarantees 100% network availability for its customers. It also compensates customers if it is ever unable to meet this level of service.
Another area where Liquid Web vs. Nexcess differ is the prices for their plans and the kinds of features included.
Managed Hosting Services
With managed hosting, the hosting company provides the infrastructure for your websites and maintains that infrastructure so you can spend your time running your business. Both Liquid Web and Nexcess offer managed hosting plans across various use cases.
Nexcess managed hosting plans range from entry-level WordPress hosting plans to cloud hosting to robust enterprise-level solutions such as server clusters. Features are plan-specific and focused on content management systems and ecommerce platforms. For example, WordPress website hosting includes features like automatic plugin updates and free iThemes Security Pro.
Nexcess enterprise hosting features include:
- Custom architecture.
- Instant cloud servers.
- Robust data compliance.
- Daily server backups.
- Staging environments.
- Advanced auto/scaling/custom PHP workers.
- Premium migration service.
- Advanced security.
Liquid Web focuses on high-performance traditional, cloud, and hybrid hosting environments. As a result, most of their hosting plans are built for dedicated server hosting, virtual private servers, and enterprise clusters. This applies to its regular and enterprise hosting plans. However, features vary by plan type.
Liquid Web enterprise hosting features include:
- Built-in redundancy.
- Traffic distribution via load balancer.
- Instant data replication.
- Customizable managed Windows hosting.
- VMWare private cloud.
- Managed backups and disaster recovery.
- Dedicated engineering team.
Hosting Control Panels
Liquid Web and Nexcess offer robust control panel options with their web hosting packages.
When you purchase a hosting plan from Nexcess, you can access the same control panel option across all packages. This is the Nexcess client portal, a management tool that gives you all the options to control your hosting plan and websites.
Liquid Web doesn’t use one control panel option for its hosting plans. Instead, it offers customers a client portal and a choice from three popular control panel options. These options are Interworx, Plesk, and cPanel. Each of these control panel software is designed for server management and configuration.
Both Nexcess and Liquid Web offer migration assistance services and have dedicated migration teams that will move all or part of your website to their infrastructure and ensure everything works perfectly with minimum downtime. So you know all your information and web files appear correctly.
Because of the wide range of plans and focus of Liquid Web vs Nexcess plan, pricing varies considerably. Part of this cost difference is because of the infrastructure both companies use for their hosting plans. Many entry-level hosting packages from Nexcess are based on a shared hosting infrastructure managed by the company to deliver the best performance for clients. While almost all of the plans from Liquid Web use dedicated or VPS server setups.
Managed WordPress Hosting: Ranges from $7.60/month for the Spark plan to $399.60/month for Enterprise plans.
Managed Magneto Hosting: Ranges from $31/month for the XS plan to $452/month for the XXL plan.
Managed WooCommerce Hosting: Ranges from $7.60/month for the Starter plan to $399.60/month for Enterprise plans.
Custom Enterprise Hosting: Pricing by request.
Managed VPS Hosting: Ranges from $59/month for the 2GB plan to $219/month for the 16GB Value Bundle.
Dedicated Server Hosting: Ranges from $149.25/month for the Intel Xeon 1230v6 plan to $411.75/month for the Intel Xeon Gold 6226R - Dual Bundle plan.
VMWare Private Cloud Hosting: Pricing by request.
Liquid Web and Nexcess provide exceptional customer service through a variety of mediums.
24/7/365 Expert Support
Nexcess and Liquid Web offer 24/7/365 support to all customers, regardless of their hosting plan. The teams of experienced support personnel from both companies are available via email, live chat, and phone to help customers resolve technical issues with their websites or servers.
Apart from live customer support, both hosting companies have extensive knowledge bases publicly available on their websites. These are repositories of articles, how-to guides, and troubleshooting steps accumulated over the decades of operation of both companies.
Whether you are an IT professional looking for instructions on configuring your web hosting server or a customer learning how to use the features of their hosting plan, you can find answers in the Liquid Web and Nexcess knowledge bases.
Security is a significant concern for many enterprise customers who manage and store sensitive data for their clients. That’s why Nexcess and Liquid Web emphasize security across their entire line of hosting services.
Security features offered by Nexcess vary by product. Enterprise plans include:
- Enterprise server monitoring.
- Automatic OS updates.
- Optional F5 threat detection.
- Full server backup.
- Multi-factor authentication.
- Onsite security.
Like Nexcess, Liquid Web security features vary by plan but include:
- Proactive monitoring.
- Multi-level DDoS detection.
- Off-server backups.
Enterprise hosting plans from Nexcess use servers that comply with several security and data integrity standards. These include the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (Level 1 PCI DSS compliance), General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), and the Statement on Standards for Attestation Engagements No. 18 (SSAE-18 — passing SOC audits 1 and 2).
This makes Nexcess servers an excellent choice for customers that handle personal and financial data, like ecommerce stores and payment processors.
Liquid Web hosting plans also use servers that comply with these cybersecurity standards but also offer Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliant hosting services for customers that handle personal data in the healthcare sector.
Final Thoughts: Liquid Web vs Nexcess
Liquid Web and Nexcess are well-established players in the web hosting market. They have some similarities in the quality of their support, their managed hosting services, and the fact that they have the same parent company.
But it's their differences that make them appealing to their target customers. Pricing, additional features, and custom enterprise-level flexibility on Nexcess plans make them an excellent option for ecommerce and content-focused customers of all sizes, while Liquid Web focuses on companies needing dedicated server solutions.
If your business requires an affordable and fully managed hosting plan, then you should consider the enterprise hosting solutions from Nexcess. Each hosting plan can be fully customized to your needs and comes with proactive IT management for your servers and expert technical support.
If you’re looking for a dedicated hosting provider that can help unleash the potential of your website, Liquid Web's scalable hosting plans are supported by a team of experts available 24/7/365 and offer flexibility and growth opportunities as your business expands. Explore Liquid Web's hosting plans today and unlock a world of possibilities for your website's success.
Ron is a Technical Writer at Liquid Web working with the Marketing team. He has 9+ years of experience in Technology. He obtained an Associate of Science in Computer Science from Prairie State College in 2015. He is happily married to his high school sweetheart and lives in Michigan with her and their children.
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