Papaki Review 2020: Great Features, But Is It Any Good?

The hosting industry is a crowded field. Every time you think you’ve heard of all the web hosts out there, a new one comes up that’s been around forever and has a loyal base.

And one of the best things about the hosting industry’s crowded field is its diversity.

One company that stands out is Papaki—a Greek hosting company that offers an array of accessible hosting plans for smaller businesses.

Papaki claims to be Greece’s #1 web host.

But is it?

And even if it is the best web host in Greece, is it worth considering if you live outside of Greece?

I’ll answer those questions and more in this review. Let’s get started with the positives of Papaki:

Pros of using Papaki

Pro #1: Overall good performance

Papaki guarantees 99.9% uptime, which is pretty standard to guarantee.

99.9% sounds like a super high number, but if you actually look at it, it’s not that great:

Papaki uptime

So I wouldn’t trust Papaki’s performance based on the uptime guarantee alone (check out our uptime calculator to make more sense of these downtime numbers).

Luckily for us, Papaki consistently does a lot better than its guarantee. Not to mention, in addition to pretty good uptime, Papaki is fast.

Is Papaki the most responsive host of all time? No.

But it’s definitely on the faster side, and on the higher side of average in terms of uptime—and that’s pretty reliable.

Pro #2: Nice set of accessible hosting products

By accessible, I mean the hosting plans that are great for small to mid-sized businesses (SMBs) particularly for their lower cost and greater usability.

Most hosting providers offer a basic range of hosting products with one or two that are good for SMBs, and then premium hosting products that are too costly and hard to use for many SMBs.

Papaki’s range of hosting products is entirely on that accessible side of the spectrum.

So here’s what Papaki offers:

  • Shared web hosting plans
  • Managed WordPress plans
  • WooCommerce plans
  • “Semi-dedicated” hosting plans
  • If you count it, website builder plans that include hosting

Those “semi-dedicated” plans aren’t renamed VPS plans. They’re a higher quality version of shared hosting (more about that here).

So this means that ALL of Papaki’s products are better fit for smaller businesses and sites, and such sites have a wider range of options aimed at them than they would with other hosts.

Pro #3: Generally good pricing

This overlaps somewhat with the last point, but it’s worth looking at price more specifically.

The regular shared web hosting plans have pretty normal prices:

Papaki pricing

This is more or less the range of shared web hosting everywhere, so it’s not too special.

But things get more interesting with the managed WordPress hosting plans.

Managed hosting tends to be more expensive in general, particularly managed WordPress hosting.

That’s because you’re paying for extra ease-of-use, and outsourcing some of the tedious (or difficult) aspects of site management to your hosting company.

Papaki’s managed WordPress hosting is still pricier than regular web hosting with WordPress installed, as you’d expect.

BUT, it starts a lot cheaper than what many competitors offer:

Papaki wp pricing

Specifically, it’s quite common for managed WordPress solutions to START at about twice Papaki’s starting plan.

However, this doesn’t mean Papaki is limited here:

There are actually six tiers of managed WordPress hosting, with the last being over €149 and supporting a lot of resources.

Papaki’s WooCommerce-optimized plans are a little more ordinary, but still on the affordable side of average.

Papaki woocommerce pricing

Lastly, there’s the semi-dedicated plans.

Remember, you have to evaluate these price tags with the understanding that the semi-dedicated hosting plans are basically high-quality shared hosting:

Papaki dedicated pricing

But even so, this is a pretty agreeable price range.

One last word about price that I think is great about Papaki:

The Managed WordPress and WooCommerce plans can be paid for monthly.

While just about all hosts label their prices as a figure per month, you usually have to pay for year-long commitments or more.

However, by allowing customers to pay for the hosting that is a little pricier month-to-month, Papaki gives more flexibility to people.

It’s true that in the long run, it’s cheaper to pay annually. But thanks to this, many businesses can access WordPress-optimized hosting without paying a lot up-front.

See Papaki Hosting Plans

Pro #4: Pretty good features

I mean this generally, across the hosting products offered by Papaki.

There ARE some things I consider deficiencies, but those are minor and I’ll talk about them later.

Let’s look first at the web hosting packages:

Papaki features

These are the basic features that each package comes with. For the most part, it’s pretty standard.

But, there are some things that stand out. Take a look at the other features that come with these plans:

Papaki other features

The first two columns apply to ALL the hosting plans. From them, we can see pretty nice technical details, along with the typical one-click installs and support for scripts, SSL, etc.

But what stands out are the daily backups: this isn’t that common on lower-tiered shared hosting plans, let alone as a free feature. It’s even better that backups are such a strong useful feature.

Additionally, Papaki implements account isolation. This improves the security and performance of customers using shared servers by enforcing stricter boundaries between accounts.

It might sound like basic practice, and it should be, but it isn’t. So it’s great that Papaki makes sure the basis of a popular form of hosting is secure.

And if you take a look at that third column, features reserved for the highest tier of shared hosting, note the website staging and free-forever domain.

Site staging is a tool for experimenting with draft/clone versions of your site. It’s super useful for testing out big changes without altering the main thing, and it’s not super common on shared hosting plans.

And the domain—that’s unique. Most hosts promise free domains, but they’re only free for a year, whereas this makes it for life.

As for the other types of hosting offered by Papaki, I don’t want to burden you with details, so I encourage you to check out the full feature lists yourself on their site.

That being said, here are some highlights:

  • Basically all hosting plans come with daily backups. Except for semi-dedicated hosting…which comes with 3 daily backups!
  • All managed WordPress plans include a free domain forever—meaning after the first year
  • Managed WordPress plans also have “on-demand scaling,” which lets you double your resources for 48 hours FREE (you’d use it if your site suddenly goes viral).
  • WooCommerce plans include managed updates
  • Semi-dedicated plans include a WordPress toolkit to help people manage WordPress sites

So looking at things holistically, it’s not that any single hosting plan is loaded with crazy features.

But overall, each tier comes with pretty good features, and as a whole, each type of hosting product has good features too.

Plus, some of these features are pretty unique to Papaki—which makes them even more attractive.

Pro #6: Mostly good customer support

Customer support agents are generally helpful and responsive, even for international customers.

They can be reached through live chat or ticket, and there are also Greek phone numbers available for phone support.

But let’s take a look at the informational support—the material that users can look at to their convenience on the website.

There are two main areas for this: the primary support center, and the community pages.

The support center is overall pretty good:

Papaki support center

It mostly consists of the knowledge base and ways of contacting representatives.

Most of the articles are solid. Generally these are written in Greek, but your browser’s translate function usually does just fine.

There’s also a link to Papaki’s YouTube channel, which includes a bunch of video tutorials:

Papaki youtube channel

That’s handy, but there are a couple limitations: the playlist was last updated over three years ago, and the tutorials are mostly in Greek.

If you know Greek, that’s great, but English-only speakers may struggle a bit even with captioning.

Then there’s the community forum:

Papaki community forum

As you can see, it’s in Greek. This isn’t surprising, or a bad thing, as many of Papaki’s customers are Greek.

Papaki’s website does have a location and language setting, but while it works on other pages, it won’t change the language on this one—an error in their site.

So unfortunately for non-Greek speakers, the community forum page is hard to use.

Still, looking at things holistically:

If you know Greek, Papaki clearly has a solid support set-up. And even if you don’t know Greek, the resources available in English and/or that can be translated are still good.

Pro #7: Overall, particularly good as a Greek host

For the most part, I’m evaluating Papaki as an overall host.

But as many of its customers are Greek, and as Papaki advertises itself as Greece’s #1 host, it’s worth looking at it from that perspective.

And overall, Papaki is a good host—but it also has several things that make it particularly strong for customers in Greece.

Some of that is the support stuff I just mentioned above—other, bigger hosting companies won’t have forums and video tutorials that are mostly in Greek.

Additionally, as a point of pride, Papaki is the only ICANN-accredited registrar located in Greece.

Cons of using Papaki

Con #1: Lacks some more premium hosting products

Earlier, I emphasized that Papaki has a strength in specializing in accessible hosting products. Stuff for smaller businesses with lighter needs.

However, sometimes even small businesses need a lot of power and resources online.

And in those instances, virtual private servers (VPS) or certain cloud hosting models are great options. They offer some of the premium quality of dedicated hosting, but at fractions of the cost, and are very scalable.

Unfortunately, such options are not available with Papaki—nor are dedicated server options.

Con #2: Generally poor storage allowances

First, to be fair to Papaki, a defense of those storage limits:

Most people on shared servers, on many hosting platforms, rarely go up against their storage limits. Even when those limits are low.

And many hosts will claim to offer “unlimited” storage to even entry-level accounts.

Which sounds nice, but is more of an exaggeration, as shared hosting can’t work if everyone on a shared server is using as much of the server’s resources as they can.

So, to an extent, the storage limits with Papaki look low compared to other hosts but are actually more realistic and won’t affect customers too much.

BUT:

The key phrase there is, “to an extent.” Because SOME of these limits are still frankly a bit too low to excuse the way I explained above.

Take the first tier of web hosting: it’s about normally priced for an entry-level plan, if a bit on the higher side.

But I would expect a storage allowance of AT LEAST 10GB for even an entry level plan, and with Papaki, it’s 5GB.

What I said earlier is still true: for most users on that entry-level plan, 5GB is still plenty. BUT, it’s a lot more restrictive than most other hosts would be.

This general trend of lower storage allowances continues on most tiers and for most of the hosting products offered.

Which makes this a more noteworthy issue. However, with other plans offered, the low limits aren’t that bad.

Con #3: Some limitations to customer support.

Again, customer support is overall good. But there are a couple limitations to note.

The first is that the live chat can sometimes take a while.

Papaki chat1 Papaki chat2

The second is that the informational support is mostly in Greek. I already showed you this, so there’s no need to explain too much.

The key point I’d like to reiterate is that overall, customer support is still good. Reps are nice, and most of the information can still be accessed.

However, video tutorials and the community page aren’t really usable unless you know Greek, and the live chat can sometimes be slow.

Con #4: Doesn’t say much about security

As I often point out, simply not saying much about security isn’t the same thing as having poor security.

However, it does make it more likely that a company will have sub-par security, and at the very least is bad in and of itself as a transparency issue.

Here’s an example of what I mean. This is from Papaki’s privacy policy:

This is very vague and short—it doesn’t really tell you anything on how your security is safeguarded.

The privacy policy itself is clear, which is nice, but still needs more info.

However, to be fair to Papaki, there is a good point about security:

Papaki security

Papaki got audited and certified by ISO, the International Organization for Standardization.

ISO has been around for decades and is recognized by the UN, so getting a certification from them in a certain area—like data security, in Papaki’s case—means high industry standards are met.

So while my complaint about transparency still stands, and Papaki should still offer more information, the ISO accreditation means Papaki is still secure enough to use just fine.

Do we recommend Papaki?

So, our moment of truth is here.

The short answer: yes, I do recommend Papaki.

I recommend it in particular to Greek customers, and it’s good in general for most readers.

But, there are some natural caveats:

First and foremost, people whose sites need to heavily use resources may want to investigate other options.

Secondly, non-Greek people who aren’t too familiar with hosting may find the learning curve is steeper with certain limitations in customer support. Though overall, the service is easy to use.

But that’s about it. For smaller businesses and sites that are best suited for shared hosting, Papaki has got a great selection of options.

And if you’re not sure…just try them:

Papaki privacy policy

Happy hosting!

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