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Drupal, Joomla, and WordPress: Comparing Popular CMS Hosting

Drupal, Joomla, and WordPress: Comparing Popular CMS Hosting

Drupal, Joomla, and WordPress are three of the most popular open source content management systems (CMS) used for building websites and web applications. Choosing between them for a new project can be difficult, as each has its own strengths and weaknesses. One major consideration is choosing a hosting provider that offers optimized support for your preferred CMS. The hosting environment can significantly impact the performance, security, and ease of management of a CMS-based site.

In this guide, we will compare Drupal, Joomla, and WordPress hosting in depth. We will look at the specific technical factors that make a hosting provider ideal for each platform. We will also overview the leading web hosts for each CMS. By the end of this article, you should have a clear sense of which hosts to consider when building a site with Drupal, Joomla, or WordPress.

About Drupal

Drupal is an open source CMS platform built with PHP and MySQL. It powers over 1 million websites, including many high-traffic sites and web applications. Drupal offers advanced content management capabilities out of the box. Its core features include:

  • Flexible content modeling and taxonomy.
  • Sophisticated user roles and permissions system.
  • Extendable modular architecture with thousands of add-on modules.
  • Robust API and developer tools.

Some of the most popular Drupal modules extend its functionality for ecommerce, social networking, personalization, mobile responsiveness, SEO, and more. Large enterprises and organizations commonly use Drupal for building custom web-based applications.

Factors for Optimal Drupal Hosting

When selecting a hosting provider for Drupal, there are several key technical factors to consider:

PHP Version

Drupal requires PHP to run server-side scripts and dynamically generate web pages. Most Drupal sites today run on PHP 7.3 or higher. Make sure your host supports modern PHP versions for maximum Drupal performance and features.

MySQL Database

Drupal stores all content, settings, and metadata in a MySQL database. Ensure your web host provides optimal MySQL performance and security for Drupal with features like database caching and backup tools.

Apache or Nginx

The Drupal platform is built to run on web servers like Apache and Nginx. Your host should utilize a well-optimized configuration of either software for serving Drupal sites.

Caching and Performance Optimization

Drupal sites can become slow and resource-intensive without proper caching and optimization. Choose a service that offers Drupal-specific performance features like Redis, Varnish, Memcached, and PHP caching.

One-Click Drupal Install

A simplified Drupal installation with your hosting account makes launching a new site much easier. Look for hosts with 1-click installs of Drupal core.

Drupal-Optimized Hosting

Some hosting providers offer specialized Drupal hosting plans. These are optimized at the server level specifically for Drupal sites. They typically offer all of the above benefits and more Drupal-centric support.

Drupal Auto-Updates

Keeping Drupal core, contributed modules, and themes up-to-date is critical for security and new features. Choose a host that can automatically apply Drupal security patches and version updates.

Git Integration

Many Drupal sites utilize Git for version control and deployments. Select a hosting provider with built-in Git repositories and deployment workflows.

SSH Access

Direct SSH access will allow more technical users to customize the server’s Drupal configuration and optimize performance.

In-House Drupal Experts

Look for a host with Drupal specialists on staff who can provide tailored guidance, troubleshooting, and support for your site.

Top Drupal Hosting Providers

Some of the leading hosts that offer managed Drupal hosting plans and optimized features include:


Pantheon is one of the most well-known managed hosting providers focused exclusively on Drupal and WordPress. Key features include:

  • Drupal 8/9 compatibility.
  • Git push-to-deploy workflow.
  • 1-click installs, updates, backups.
  • Global CDN, Varnish, Redis caching.
  • Dev, test, live environment management.

They offer specialized plans optimized at the infrastructure level for Drupal performance and security. Pantheon also provides professional services like migration, scaling, and development assistance.


Acquia provides enterprise-grade, fully managed cloud hosting for Drupal. Key features include:

  • Drupal-specific performance optimizations.
  • Auto security updates.
  • GIT integration and deployment pipelines.
  • Scalable on-demand infrastructure.
  • 24/7 technical support.

They focus exclusively on Drupal hosting and even contribute developer resources directly to the Drupal project.


WPEngine offers managed WordPress hosting but also accommodates Drupal sites with plans offering:

  • 1-click Drupal installs.
  • PHP 7.4, MySQL, Nginx stack.
  • Drupal performance optimizations.
  • Managed security updates.
  • Granular traffic management.
  • Scales to handle high traffic loads.

Their core expertise is in WordPress hosting, but their infrastructure includes many of the technical elements optimal for hosting Drupal as well.


Kinsta provides flexible managed WordPress hosting with Drupal compatibility, including:

  • 1-click Drupal installer.
  • Built-in Git version control.
  • PHP 7.4, Nginx, MySQL optimized stack.
  • CDN, Varnish caching, and DDoS protection.
  • Server-level performance tuning.
  • Powerful account dashboards and analytics.

Like WPEngine, their focus is WordPress hosting, but Kinsta offers many of the same benefits suited for hosting Drupal sites as well.


Bluehost is a popular shared hosting provider with Drupal-specific options including:

  • 1-click Drupal installer.
  • Free SSL certificate.
  • Simplified Drupal updates.
  • WYSIWYG editor integration.
  • Shared plans are low cost.

Their shared servers are less optimized for Drupal than true managed Drupal hosts. But Bluehost can be a cost-effective option for smaller Drupal sites.

About Joomla

Joomla is another leading open source CMS that is purpose-built as a content management system and publishing platform. Key features include:

  • Front-end site building and design framework.
  • Customizable templates and themes.
  • Robust access controls, user management, and permissions.
  • Extendable with thousands of add-on extensions.
  • Multi-lingual capability.

Joomla is used to publish blogs, news sites, ecommerce stores, social networks, government portals, and more. It provides an accessible CMS solution for web designers, developers, and less technical users.

Factors for Optimal Joomla Hosting

The ideal web hosting environment for Joomla shares many common requirements with Drupal sites. Some factors to look for include:


Like Drupal, Joomla is powered by PHP and MySQL for serving dynamic pages and storing site data. Up-to-date versions of both platforms are essential.

Apache or Nginx Support

Joomla requires either Apache or Nginx to efficiently serve web pages. Be sure your host provides well-configured and optimized servers.

One-Click Joomla Install

Quick one-click installation of Joomla for new accounts makes launching sites simple.

Hosting Environment Optimized for Joomla

Some hosts offer plans tuned specifically for optimal Joomla performance, caching, security, and scalability.

Auto Joomla Updates

Having the ability to auto-update Joomla, extensions, and themes on a schedule is key for maintaining a secure site.

Integrated Development Tools

Developer-friendly hosts may provide built-in Git support, staging sites, SSH access, and other helpful tools.

Joomla-Knowledgeable Support

Make sure support staff have expertise in Joomla for troubleshooting issues that may arise.

CDN and Caching

Content delivery networks and reverse-proxy caching provide significant performance lifts for media-heavy Joomla sites.

Top Joomla Hosting Providers

There are quality managed web hosts available that specialize in or cater to Joomla sites, such as:


SiteGround offers fully managed WordPress hosting plans that are also compatible with Joomla sites. Their Joomla features include:

  • 1-click Joomla installer.
  • Built-in CDN and caching layers.
  • Managed security patches and upgrades.
  • Supports SSH, SFTP, WP-CLI.
  • Scalable on-demand resource allocation.
  • Knowledgeable 24/7 customer support.

Their infrastructure is highly optimized for WordPress performance but also well-suited for hosting Joomla sites.

A2 Hosting

A2 Hosting provides a range of shared, VPS, and dedicated server planscompatible with Joomla, including:

  • Easy Joomla installer.
  • Managed server stack updates.
  • Optional server restarts and caching flush.
  • Turbo servers and caching for speed.
  • Anytime resource upgrades.
  • Solid uptime and performance guarantee.

Their exclusive turbo servers include optimizations for 20x faster page loads. Their support staff is Joomla-savvy.

InMotion Hosting

InMotion is another well-known premium shared host with Joomla support:

  • One-click Joomla installation.
  • Optimized hosting stacks and server configurations.
  • Optional SSD storage for faster load times.
  • Unlimited email accounts.
  • Scales to business-class VPS and dedicated servers.
  • 90-day money-back guarantee.

InMotion delivers excellent performance and support for Joomla sites. They provide a cost-effective solution for many use cases.


Kinsta, mentioned above for Drupal hosting, also caters to Joomla sites with features including:

  • Joomla one-click setup.
  • Built-in Git version control.
  • Google Cloud infrastructure.
  • CDN, Varnish caching, and DDoS protection.
  • Server-level performance tuning.
  • Powerful account dashboards and analytics.

Their managed WordPress hosting translates well for Joomla site owners needing scalable and speedy hosting.


Popular shared host Bluehost also accommodates Joomla sites with:

  • Simple one-click Joomla installer.
  • Shared SSL certificate.
  • Access to WYSIWYG editors.
  • Shared hosting plans are low cost.
  • Chat, email, phone support options.

Bluehost is a budget-friendly starting point for newer Joomla sites with lower traffic needs. Their support is not Joomla-specific.

About WordPress

WordPress is the world’s most popular CMS platform. Powering over 40% of all sites on the web, WordPress offers:

  • Simplified website building and publishing.
  • Thousands of themes and plugins.
  • Custom post types, taxonomies, and metadata.
  • Robust developer framework and APIs.
  • Multi-lingual and multi-site capable.
  • SEO-optimization out of the box.
  • Extendable functionality with plugins.

WordPress powers blogs, news sites, ecommerce stores, membership communities, learning management systems, and more. Both open source and commercial plugins and themes are available to extend WordPress’ capabilities.

Factors for Optimal WordPress Hosting

Choosing managed WordPress hosting with the right optimizations can significantly impact a site’s performance and security. Some important factors to look for include:

Optimized Server Stack

WordPress works best on hosts running up-to-date versions of a LAMP or LEMP software stack (Linux, Apache/Nginx, MySQL, PHP). Optimized configuration of these platforms is key.

Caching and Performance Tuning

WordPress performance can be boosted with opcode caching, object caching, content delivery networks, and page caching.

One-Click WordPress Install

The ability to install WordPress with just a few clicks simplifies launching new sites.

Managed WordPress Core Updates

Keeping WordPress core automatically updated to the latest version is vital for security and features.

Staging Environments

Staging sites allow you to test themes, plugins, and customizations before deploying to production.

Integrated Development Tools

Built-in Git support, WP-CLI, SFTP, SSL, and SSH can streamline development and site management.

Scalable Resources

Plans that allow upgrading server resources like RAM and storage on demand provide flexibility.

WordPress-Specific Support

Knowledgeable WordPress technical support, troubleshooting, and guidance can be invaluable.

Top WordPress Hosting Providers

The WordPress community has spawned numerous managed hosting providers catering specifically to WordPress users. Some top hosts include:


WPEngine is one of the most popular premium managed WordPress hosts. Key features include:

  • High-performance architecture optimized for WordPress.
  • CDN, Varnish caching, and custom firewall for security.
  • Automated daily backups and restores.
  • Auto core, plugin, and theme updates.
  • Integrated Git-based staging.
  • WordPress-specific 24/7 technical support.

They offer high-end hosting plans focused exclusively on WordPress site performance, security, stability, and support.


Pagely exclusively provides managed WordPress hosting services like:

  • WordPress-optimized cloud infrastructure.
  • 1-click installs and managed updates.
  • Git push-to-deploy workflow.
  • Pagely CDN and Varnish caching stack.
  • Scalable resources and traffic management.
  • Pagely-built themes and Genesis framework.

Pagely caters specifically to WordPress users needing a high-performance and developer-friendly hosting environment.


Kinsta, mentioned above for Drupal and Joomla hosting, is also well-regarded for WordPress, offering:

  • 1-click WordPress installer.
  • Google Cloud infrastructure.
  • Integrated Git version control.
  • Server-level performance tuning.
  • Proprietary caching stack.
  • Staging sites for testing.
  • Powerful analytics and account dashboards.

They deliver speedy, secure, and easily manageable WordPress hosting.


Flywheel is another premium managed WordPress host providing:

  • Proprietary speed optimization stack.
  • Automatic security updates.
  • Fast CDN powered by Netlify.
  • Atomic staging environments.
  • Git connections with Bitbucket, GitHub, GitLab.
  • Gutenberg page builder support.

Flywheel offers simplified WordPress management and high performance.


Popular shared hosting provider Bluehost has WordPress-specific options including:

  • One-click WordPress installation.
  • Free SSL certificate.
  • Integrated WooCommerce support.
  • Curated WordPress themes and plugins.
  • Shared plans are low cost.

Bluehost is a popular starter option for newer WordPress sites on a budget.


Choosing managed hosting optimized for the unique needs of platforms like Drupal, Joomla, and WordPress can provide significant advantages in performance, security, ease of use and support. Leading providers like Pantheon, Acquia, WPEngine, and others provide specialized hosting for CMS users and developers. Carefully evaluating the technical capabilities of each host in relation to your preferred CMS solution will ensure you select an environment positioned for success.

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