WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Web Hosting Kochi
WP Engine is a Managed WordPress Hosting service based in Austin, TX. They was among the (if not the) very first business to offer handled hosting services particularly for WordPress. Web Hosting Kochi
While they have a lot of competition in both the general hosting and handled WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the marketplace leader in many methods -and they have broad name recognition and innovative functions.
With the development of both self-hosted WordPress and site home builders, the hosting industry has ended up being a super-confusing location.
I wrote a whole post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. But here’s the short variation: They all vary in services offered. Some merely have WordPress-trained tech support. Some deal services such as server-side features and staging for WordPress.
And after that there’s a separate level of managed WordPress Hosting where you are not really purchasing hosting per se, but rather services to keep your WordPress set up live. Basically, a Managed WordPress Hosting service provides a menu of services tailored to WordPress at a higher cost point, so that the site owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the site material + performance.
Every rival in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a various offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of choices, but as an entire, they all compete with conventional shared Linux hosting offerings and customized WordPress hosting options.
Either way, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s confusing, yes, but it is necessary to comprehend prior to making apples to oranges contrasts.
There are a lot of WP Engine evaluates online, normally with user-generated reviews based upon anecdotes and individual experience. That’s great but I take a various approach. This evaluation will take a look at the pros + cons of WP Engine in the context of all webhosting alternatives to see who it is a “finest fit” for. Web Hosting Kochi
I have actually utilized WP Engine for various tasks since 2012. I do not use them for my primary sites right now (see conclusion), however I do have an existing customer on WP Engine who absolutely likes them. Here’s my WP Engine evaluation structured as pros and cons.
Disclosure: I get referral fees from any business mentioned. All data & viewpoint is based on my experience as a paying client or consultant to a paying customer.
Pros of WP Engine
To begin, WP Engine does basically live up to its pitch on its homepage where they guarantee “spectacular speed, powerful security, and best-in-class client service.” Here is their promo pitch video:
They primarily target websites that are moving from other hosting companies (ie, customers dissatisfied with current hosting).
Here are some of the big advantages that I’ve seen as a customer & consultant to a customer. Web Hosting Kochi
Speed and Performance
There are a lot of variables that go into website speed, but the guideline is that the more complicated your website is, the more complex the solutions to speed ended up being.
Out of the box, WordPress is relatively lean and quick. If you are running a primarily text website with a couple of standard plugins and a couple of small images, you’ll be fine with an economical shared hosting plan from someone like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
However couple of site owners keep their WordPress set up lean. There’s generally extra plugins, custom style files, great deals of images, widgets, ads, kinds and more.
All these features integrated with good levels of traffic can start to slow down your WordPress set up.
But a slow site does not indicate that you require a larger, better server. It does indicate that you have to get smarter about speed. Often it’s as simple as getting a more effective server, but often it’s more about caching certain resources in a specific order and optimizing your files. To puts it simply, it gets complex.
Picture you are attempting to transport a trailer with a pickup. Envision your trailer keeps getting much heavier. It’s pointless to keep complaining that your truck is not big enough when you might just have to remove the emergency brake, install a turbocharger, refresh the transmission fluid and consolidate your load.
The point is that WordPress requires help to stay fast as you grow. There are lots of services … however either you or a designer should implement them.
That’s where managed WordPress hosting comes in. WP Engine takes care of (almost) all speed concerns. They have tailored servers with very aggressive caching and even advanced “stack” than a normal webhosting. They also have trained support who will go into your WordPress set up and determine the exact chokepoint to get your site moving. Web Hosting Kochi
They do not even enable caching plugins on their installs since they have actually such a tailored caching setup.
The fascinating thing is that even unoptimized WordPress sets up still do well on their platform since their platform does the extra work.
Here’s the speed test for one of my customers on WP Engine (who has a bloated theme, extra scripts, too many uncompressed images, to name a few things):
Note the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That measures how rapidly the server returned enough data to begin loading the page.
It’s good to have that sort of speed right out of package, and have it stay that way no matter how big or complex the website gets.
*Note that the other point here is that if you are consumed about speed, you can get even better numbers with WP Engine than you may get with other services given that you are totally free to concentrate on speed factors that you can easily manage like image compression, use of scripts, and so on.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not just provides an integrated CDN, but they likewise supply international data centers in case your audience is mostly in Asia and/or Europe. Web Hosting Kochi
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Web Hosting Kochi
Customer support has been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch given that they wased established. After all, they are actually offering more of a service (ie, handled hosting) than an item (ie, hosting). It makes good sense for them to put a huge focus on support.
Here’s a screenshot from one of my very first contacts with support back in 2012:
Take a look at the response|reaction|action} time, that wasn’t an autoresponder either.
Now, the company has actually grown & changed a lot since then. They went through a stretch where they were getting a lot of criticism about over-promising on support.
That said, the difficult thing about client support is that a lot of the judgment is anecdotal. Everyone has a story, but you never ever understand if the story is because they talked to the one rockstar-vs-rookie having an awesome-vs-terrible day. Like I mention in every hosting evaluation, the important part is to see if a business treats support as an investment or an expense.
I like to search for gain access to, systems, and understanding, all 3 require a financial investment of money, time and competence.
Based on my current interactions and research, they are doing far better hitting all three boxes. They preserve a variety of support channels (including phone for non-Basic plans). They have a fast, trackable ticketing system and are readily available everywhere on the site via chat.
Based upon their guide videos and comprehensive knowledgebase, they tick the knowledge box. Every support that I or my customer has interacted with actually knew the great workings of WordPress and has actually been able to problem-solve on the fly.
The most outstanding (yes, this is anecdotal, however still) experience was a three-way call between my customer, myself and WP Engine throughout my customer’s shift to HTTPS/ SSL. The associate was not just able to obtain on (and remain on) the phone, however he had the ability to adeptly help us “turn the switch” quickly in addition to taking care of numerous issues (ie, publishing a non-HTTP sitemap and repairing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Web Hosting Kochi
I make certain that WP Engine still has support concerns,particularly because their custom platform puts a great deal of pressure on quick, available support (as I’ll display in the drawbacks). But they appear to understand that support is core to their value and do make the required investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the entire Web. That means that it is a prime target for hackers & malware suppliers.
However there is nothing naturally insecure about WordPress that is not a concern with all software. WordPress has the advantage of being open-source with a large neighborhood releasing updates & screening vulnerabilities.
If you run your very own WordPress set up, the security fundamentals are relatively straightforward:
- Keep your install & all your plugins updated
- Only install files from reputable creators
- Run a security plugin to lock down the most common brute force attacks
- Keep a backup for when things go wrong
* Aside, I use JetPack for the last 2. It’s made by & powered by Automattic, the commercial arm of WordPress.
You’ll observe that despite the fact that security on WordPress is uncomplicated, the duty is still on you to keep things secure. Similar to having a deadbolt does nothing if you don’t lock it, keeping your website protected is still ultimately on you.
And like speed & performance, WP Engine basically takes all those best practices and does them for you. They run automated backups to keep everything off-site & prepared to roll back if something occurs. Given that you technically have an “install” on their server (instead of an account), they deal with a lot of security problems internationally on the server level.
WP Engine also works closely with leading security firms on code reviews in addition to running their own team. They also make the assurance that if you’re hacked, they take care of it totally free.
I personally have actually never been hacked on my main/ or secondary sites (knock on wood), but have assisted clients who have been. It’s frustrating, tiresome & a generally pricey circumstance (even if you are using a service like Sucuri). Having an expert security team look after your WordPress set up is a big pro in my book. Web Hosting Kochi
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not low-cost. Their Start-up plan is $35/mo and includes a single set up and just as much as 25,000 visits monthly.
For benchmarking, you can get an effective, reputable VPS (ie, your own not-shared server) for the same rate from InMotion. And if you are simply starting out with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting strategy from Bluehost for just a couple dollars each month.
Both of which enable more storage & more visits (ie, generally as many as you can handle) than WP Engine. I have actually run websites that have had 60k sees monthly on a shared server. I have actually also run lots of little WordPress websites off a low cost shared hosting.
However I’ll cover that pricing downside in the cons of WP Engine, however here’s the important things.
For some website owners, if you break out WP Engine by overall value & factor in your very own (or your developer’s) time, their rates is fantastic.
Simply running WordPress updates every month & QA’ing your installation can take around 30 minutes on a monthly basis. If your (or your dev’s) services are billed at $50 (or more)/ hour, then that’s WP Engine’s whole month-to-month fee right there.
If you lose any sees due to downtime from a bad plugin upgrade, then that might be WP Engine’s whole month-to-month fee right there.
If you do a hot-fix (ie, you do not use a staging area) on your PHP code, and knock your website down … then that might be WP Engine’s entire monthly cost right there.
Losing visitors due to speed concerns or downtime costs lost earnings.
Additionally, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to mention any personal or developer time repairing concerns.
Generally, if your time is much better designated away from technical issues, then WP Engine makes a lot of sense on value. As a managed WordPress hosting service, that’s truly their thing. Hosting services are an investment rather than a cost.
Which sort of value-based prices segues into another pro for WP Engine, their concentrate on their core markets. Web Hosting Kochi
Like I stated at the start, WP Engine isn’t really for everybody. There are 3 kinds of clients that WP Engine seems to be a suitable for. For those 3 kinds of consumers, WP Engine has a strong focus with lots of tools & focus for each.
From their backend process, the very first customer type seems to be WordPress designers and designers who wish to focus on advancement & design without dealing with hosting upkeep, and have customers who have some budget. The designer/dev develops the site directly in WP Engine’s staging environment, launches the site, then hands the site over to their client.
The designer can assure their customer that WP Engine manages the hosting, security & speed. There’s little requirement for an ongoing basic site maintenance. For this market, WP Engine has fascinating tools including staging, git push, website migration and transferable installs.
The second client type is the growing website owner who is frustrated at needing to deal with technical growth headaches. They have actually outgrown their shared hosting and need to relocate to a much better host.
They’re also established enough that they have some budget for managed services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & customer support to make that procedure occur. The phone support is a key element, especially being able to “simply call WP Engine an have them repair it.”
The 3rd consumer type is a start-up website owner that has the budget plan and desires a long-lasting platform that they can grow with. They are comfortable finding out WP Engine’s distinct backend and plan on introducing a near-complete website all at once.
They do not have any previous practices or custom-mades brought over from previous hosts or websites. Again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable functions, clients, and support that they can make pledges and supply support to win & keep this type of client.
With these kinds of consumers, WP Engine understands how & where they are originating from, numerous of the improvements they make are concentrated on these markets (ie, the Git push performance), instead of mass-market enhancements like knowledge-bases, intuitive backend, etc.
This advantage resembles WP Engine’s market focus, but it’s really worth calling out in this evaluation revision. Web Hosting Kochi
WP Engine excels not just on present functions however also on producing new, advanced hosting features. Every version of WordPress 4 has actually presented brand-new developer functions that WP Engine has actually been able to integrate.
Even general web advancement best practices have altered significantly considering that I began observing the market *. WP Engine has actually developed tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ online marketer by trade. I know sufficient web advancement to integrate finest practices into implementation & jobs with developers.
Here’s a screenshot of WP Engine’s Git Push setup that has been around for more than 2 years.
Even for non-developers like me, WP Engine has one-click staging areas to allow even DIY siteowners to get away from “cowboy coding” into proper web development best practices.
There are too many other specifics here to name, but in general, WP Engine has a strength in rolling out new, useful hosting features.
Cons of WP Engine
Much like any service, WP Engine is not the very best fit for everybody. There are plenty of WP Engine grievances around the Web. Some are anecdotal. Some are hyperbole (ie, SEOs grumbling about dev sites). And numerous are valid due to the fact that they simply aren’t a suitable for everyone. For all their awesomeness in some areas, they have some cons which keep them from being a great fit for some consumers. I do not utilize them for this site because I do not require many of their features and I’m comfy “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Web Hosting Kochi
All that said, here are some of the bigger photo disadvantages of using WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To attain the speed, security, and scale they assure, WP Engine does things in a different way. And that distinction can be rather complicated– particularly if you have just enough experience with hosting environments to be dangerous.
Their backend setup has gotten better. It’s cleaner, but it’s still custom. It’s nothing like a conventional cPanel hosting backend. Unlike lots of hosting business, they also do not offer DNS nameservers.
Even if all the features are there, the distinct backend can lead to some developers making mistakes varying from annoying redirect loops to replicate content issues to leaving the dev site open up to the general public or merely not allowing the features you’re buying.
If it weren’t for amazing support, I believe they ‘d lose more novice clients than they currently do.
Like many custom-made platforms, it makes sense once you overcome the learning curve. However WP Engine’s onboarding is extremely developer-focused & remains so exception-focused that they never ever discuss finest practice for the general user. Web Hosting Kochi
Here is their video on pushing your website live –
I’ve set up my share of websites from platforms to custom hosts to cPanel hosting sites, but I had to see that video several times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the right IP address.
Once again, if you are in WP Engine’s core markets, the customized backend isn’t going to be a big offer (when you get past the knowing curve). However for a lot of, you’ll likely get to discover very first hand about WP Engine’s support team.
But here’s the thing.
WP Engine never ever truly stops being eccentric and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a myriad of site checklists to help fix all sorts of concerns.
And ” if you did not setup your DNS exactly how they’ve recommended ” your site could go down at any time.
Once again– they have reasons why they do all this. And in most cases, support will simply look after everything.
But, you still don’t get to set & forget your website. Sure, you do not technically do not need to enter into the weeds of a server panel. In many hosting cases (ie, a handled VPS), you do not have to do it anyhow, and when you do, the knobs and buttons are familiar. Web Hosting Kochi
WP Engine’s exclusive setup cuts both ways in terms of minimizing & increasing complexity.
This con is also related to WP Engine’s distinct setup. In order to run their architecture as well as possible, all the installs on their platform need to be rather uniform.
They have to have predictable plugins; predictable visitor patterns; foreseeable usage cases. Every hosting business has rules (or very genuine physical limits), but WP Engine goes a bit further to define exactly what you can and can’t have on your WordPress install in addition to tiered overage prices to dissuade seasonal traffic spikes and regional storage usage.
They do prohibit specific plugins & admin habits for excellent reasons, but those restrictions limit flexibility and experimentation if your site might manage it.
For example, Yet Another Associated Post Plugin is a common plugin. It’s resource intensive, however on smaller websites, it gets the job done well. It’s not allowed on WP Engine. That’s not good or bad necessarily. However it does make WP Engine less flexible and open to experimentation compared to running a shared or VPS server.
The way their pricing is structured permits less versatility also. It’s a positive that they will handle all the traffic you can send, however it’s likewise pricey to pay based on a variety of sees.
If you are running a huge launch; are a seasonal business; or simply wish to drive a surge of traffic to your site, you’ll need to element additional hosting expenses into the mix. That puts a cap on how flexible you wish to be with your marketing.
If you are running a lean cached site on a VPS server, you can manage a lot more traffic than WP Engine would allow on a Personal or Business. And this point goes further if your website requires lots of plugins for full performance.
The very same opts for storage. With WP Engine, you are paying for performance, not for storage. So if you are aiming to use a server for media storage … that use case is out.
Furthermore, you can’t truly do automated email marketing projects from WP Engine. This was something that my customer got called for & wound up needing to do an unpleasant migration to another e-mail service provider mid-campaign.
In any case, that point segues into the last con I found with WP Engine, their prices based upon functions.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are normally paying for performance & not needing to believe too much about maintenance, security & speed. If you take a look at WP Engine’s pricing based on the functions you’re getting, you truly don’t get a lot.
And if you are the type who will consider your site’s health anyhow (ie, keeping WordPress updated and usually logging in often), you’ll likely be spending for “management” that is unnecessary. Web Hosting Kochi
Lots of shared hosting servers can manage the same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a fraction of the cost. My individual site (running on a shared hosting plan from HostGator with basic caching) handled more than 15,000 sees in a 24 Hr period when a post of mine went viral.
And if you are running a trustworthy VPS, you can definitely deal with a lot more for much less.
They are fairly transparent about how they count check outs, but it can still be rather a surprise for “small” site owners how rapidly they can enter the $290 monthly tier.
And as pointed out earlier that doesn’t even consist of much of the features you do not get with WP Engine’s plans. You can’t run any e-mail from your servers. You have low limits on local storage. Anything above the limitations requires additional costs & technical application of Amazon cloud services.
And most notably for me, you are limited on your installs. If you have a few side tasks or low-traffic test websites, you need to factor those into the price. You cannot use them to expand the cost of your strategy,especially if you are hitting your visitor cap instead of your set up cap.
If you are looking to spend for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & serve up your site files, WP Engine is a pricey choice, specifically compared to other non-managed hosting choices.
Like any service, it’s not about what is finest total, however exactly what is best for you based upon your goals, budget plan, resources & habits.
If you remain in what I think of as WP Engine’s core markets, they offer a fantastic service with a strong product. Their pricing is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting area, and they use more functions than “WordPress hosting” plans from other hosting brands. Their feature-set is unrivaled for smart DIYers, WordPress site designers and/or high-traffic sites that do not wish to worry about hosting problems.
If handled hosting is a suitable for you, then go take a look at WP Engine’s plans here.
They do a 60-day money-back warranty. So do a test install and see exactly what you consider their backend. Be sure to chat w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your existing host & want more liberty/ much better costs than WP Engine, have a look at InMotion Hosting’s VPS option. I’ve appreciated their balance of user-friendly backend & responsive client service.
And lastly, if you are more baffled than ever, go take my WordPress hosting test. I put all these factors into a fun, Buzzfeed-esque test to streamline things. Web Hosting Kochi