WHMCS is one of the leading web hosting billing software. Due to vast number of features and functionality, it is widely used by the hosting companies.
We previously wrote about why hosting companies require a web hosting billing software, if you have not read it yet, check it out here. The article also mentions about the main features that every billing software should have. WHMCS is one of the leading software that majority of the web hosts use it, we will be covering all about WHMCS in this article.
What is WHMCS?
From the name WHMCS, it stands for WebHost Manager Complete Solution, and as it mentions complete solution, it provides the perfect automation for web hosting completely. Which means, that you may not need to worry about activating the client’s services manually, or having the staff manage the client’s services manually.
Why is it a leading software in the industry?
One of the main reasons why it is leading in the market is due to the fact that it provides numerous amounts of integrations for other platforms, such as modules, payment gateways, plugins, and lot more features. For example, sometimes you can even find the integration of a payment gateway that just operates locally, however WHMCS may always have an integration for such payment gateways, most likely. However, the main aim is to make everything automated, this is why most people prefer WHMCS over other software billings platform, even though they may be more feature rich.
Web Hosting Modules
Every billing software comes with the integration of cPanel, DirectAdmin, Plesk and other control panels. If some web hosting software does not have these integrations, it cannot be called a web hosting billing software as the leading web hosting control panels are cPanel, DirectAdmin, Plesk. Though there may be more free control panels, but we are talking about premium ones. Just as WHMCS cover all these integrations of premium control panels, it also covers the control panel that may be rarely used, or in different regions. While other billing software may not be able to provide integrations of those control panels.
What if a payment gateway that is mostly used by your customers is missing in a billing software? How many customers you can lose without having that payment gateway? It is one of the biggest issues, however WHMCS provides the payment gateway integrations, so you do not have to worry about it at all. This is the advantage that WHMCS provides, while you may need to specifically look for payment gateways in other web hosting billing softwares, whereas WHMCS will mostly likely have the integration for the payment gateways that you are looking to use.
WHMCS pricing starts from $15.95/month for a starter license with up to 250 clients with a branding link of WHMCS. This is actually affordable due to the fact that it provides integration with lot of platforms and worth it. For companies looking to have up to thousand clients, they can go for a Professional plan which costs $24.95/month, whereas the companies that have more than thousand clients can use an unlimited license for $39.95/month. However, WHMCS does not sell the owned or lifetime license officially anymore, but the old users who already has the owned license can trade it once. It might not be worth to get an owned license as their prices are just what the seller says, and goes up to $1000-$1500, where there are more better options than WHMCS if one has to go for owned license.
By looking at the official marketplace of WHMCS, lot of useful things can be found there to extend the functionality of WHMCS. There are two type of products, commercial and free. Free ones can be used without any cost. The marketplace has also a section for themes, so anyone that does not look the default WHMCS theme can change the look and feel. Moreover, just as this is the official marketplace of WHMCS, lot of other themes that are integrated with WHMCS can be found on large platforms such as ThemeForest.
WHMCS is updated very frequently, which is good and also brings major feature with major releases. Recently, WHMCS has released WHMCS 8.0, which brings a completely new functionality of sub-accounts, which allows the client to create multiple accounts within an account. This feature can be actually good for big companies using WHMCS. Also, that is a feature that cannot be found in other billing software.
Some disadvantages of using WHMCS
We covered up lot of the advantages of using WHMCS, but everything has advantages and disadvantages. Though, these disadvantages not may have an effect on your usage as they are specifically for a user with different roles.
WHMCS uses Ion Cube to protect their code from getting stolen, hence it is encrypted and cannot be modified by the user. A developer that is interested in modifying the features of WHMCS may not be able to achieve with this software due to encryption. Modules and plugins can be made to extend the functionality, however modifying WHMCS and its base features is not possible. This does not affect the normal users, as they would mostly rely on its base features and the extended plugins.
Since the code is encrypted with Ion Cube, it is possible that there might be vulnerabilities, while an open-source can be seen by anyone and vulnerabilities can be found and fixed immediately, allowing the software to become more better, while encrypted software is hidden, and so vulnerabilities may be hidden too.