WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wp Engine Gdpr
While they have a lot of competition in both the basic hosting and handled WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the market leader in numerous methods -and they have broad name recognition and advanced features.
With the growth of both self-hosted WordPress and website builders, the hosting market has actually ended up being a super-confusing location.
I wrote a whole post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. However here’s the short version: They all differ in services provided. Some merely have WordPress-trained tech support. Some deal services such as server-side functions and staging for WordPress.
And then there’s a separate level of managed WordPress Hosting where you are not truly buying hosting per se, however rather services to keep your WordPress install live. Essentially, a Managed WordPress Hosting service offers a menu of services tailored to WordPress at a higher cost point, so that the website owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the website content + performance.
Every competitor in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a different offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of alternatives, however as a whole, they all compete with traditional shared Linux hosting offerings and tailored WordPress hosting alternatives.
In either case, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s complicated, yes, but it is essential to understand before making apples to oranges contrasts.
There are a great deal of WP Engine evaluates online, normally with user-generated reviews based upon anecdotes and individual experience. That’s fine but I take a different method. 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. Wp Engine Gdpr
I have actually utilized WP Engine for various projects given that 2012. I do not utilize them for my primary websites today (see conclusion), but I do have a current client on WP Engine who definitely likes them. Here’s my WP Engine review structured as advantages and disadvantages.
Disclosure: I get referral fees from any companies mentioned. All information & viewpoint is based on my experience as a paying customer or specialist to a paying customer.
Pros of WP Engine
To begin, WP Engine does practically live up to its pitch on its homepage where they assure “sensational speed, effective security, and best-in-class customer support.” Here is their discount 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. Wp Engine Gdpr
Speed and Performance
There are a great deal of variables that enter into site speed, however the rule of thumb is that the more complex your site is, the more complicated the options to speed become.
Out of package, WordPress is relatively lean and fast. If you are running a mostly text website with a few standard plugins and a few little images, you’ll be great with a budget-friendly shared hosting plan from someone like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
But couple of website owners keep their WordPress install lean. There’s typically extra plugins, customized theme files, lots of images, widgets, advertisements, kinds and more.
All these functions integrated with decent levels of traffic can begin to decrease your WordPress install.
But a sluggish site doesn’t suggest that you need a bigger, better server. It does mean that you have to get smarter about speed. In some cases it’s as simple as getting a more effective server, however sometimes it’s more about caching particular resources in a specific order and optimizing your files. To puts it simply, it gets complex.
Picture you are trying to carry a trailer with a pickup truck. Envision your trailer keeps getting heavier. It’s pointless to keep complaining that your truck is not huge enough when you may just need to get rid of the emergency brake, set up a turbocharger, revitalize the transmission fluid and consolidate your load.
The point is that WordPress needs aid to stay quickly as you grow. There are plenty of services … but either you or a developer need to implement them.
That’s where managed WordPress hosting comes in. WP Engine looks after (nearly) all speed concerns. They have actually customized servers with very aggressive caching as well as more advanced “stack” than a normal webhosting. They likewise have trained support who will go into your WordPress set up and determine the precise chokepoint to get your site moving. Wp Engine Gdpr
They don’t even allow caching plugins on their installs due to the fact that they have actually such a personalized caching setup.
The intriguing thing is that even unoptimized WordPress sets up still do well on their platform due to the fact that their platform does the additional work.
Here’s the speed test for one of my clients on WP Engine (who has a puffed up theme, extra scripts, too many uncompressed images, among other things):
Note the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That determines how quickly the server returned enough data to begin packing the page.
It’s great to have that type of speed right from the box, and have it stay that way no matter how big or complicated the website gets.
*Keep in mind 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 considering that you are complimentary to focus on speed elements that you can quickly control like image compression, usage of scripts, and so on.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not just provides an integrated CDN, however they also offer global data centers in case your audience is mainly in Asia and/or Europe. Wp Engine Gdpr
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wp Engine Gdpr
Customer support has been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch given that they were founded. After all, they are actually selling more of a service (ie, handled hosting) than a product (ie, hosting). It makes sense for them to position a big focus on support.
Here’s a screenshot from among 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 business has grown & altered a lot since then. They went through a stretch where they were getting a lot of criticism about over-promising on support.
That stated, the tough thing about consumer support is that so much of the judgment is anecdotal. Everybody has a story, but you never ever know if the story is because they spoke to the one rockstar-vs-rookie having an awesome-vs-terrible day. Like I discuss in every hosting evaluation, the important part is to see if a business treats support as a financial investment or a cost.
I like to look for gain access to, systems, and knowledge, all 3 require a financial investment of loan, time and know-how.
Based upon my current interactions and research study, they are doing much better striking all three boxes. They maintain a variety of support channels (consisting of phone for non-Basic plans). They have a quick, trackable ticketing system and are readily available all over on the site by means of chat.
Based upon their tutorial videos and extensive knowledgebase, they tick the understanding box. Every support that I or my client has actually engaged with actually knew the great workings of WordPress and has had the ability to problem-solve on the fly.
The most remarkable (yes, this is anecdotal, however still) experience was a three-way call in between my client, myself and WP Engine throughout my customer’s transition to HTTPS/ SSL. The rep was not just able to get on (and stay on) the phone, however he was able to expertly help us “turn the switch” quickly in addition to taking care of several concerns (ie, submitting a non-HTTP sitemap and repairing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wp Engine Gdpr
I’m sure that WP Engine still has support problems,specifically due to the fact that their customized platform puts a lot of pressure on quick, accessible support (as I’ll display in the disadvantages). However they seem to know that support is core to their worth and do make the required financial investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the whole Internet. That means that it is a prime target for hackers & malware distributors.
But there is absolutely nothing naturally insecure about WordPress that is not a concern with all software. WordPress has the upside of being open-source with a huge community releasing updates & testing vulnerabilities.
If you run your very own WordPress set up, the security fundamentals are relatively simple:
- 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 business arm of WordPress.
You’ll observe that despite the fact that security on WordPress is uncomplicated, the obligation is still on you to keep things protect. Much like having a deadbolt does nothing if you do not lock it, keeping your website secure 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 & all set to roll back if something happens. Considering that you technically have an “install” on their server (rather than an account), they deal with a lot of security issues globally on the server level.
WP Engine likewise works closely with top security companies on code evaluations in addition to running their own team. They also make the assurance that if you’re hacked, they look after it totally free.
I personally have never ever been hacked on my primary/ or secondary sites (knock on wood), however have actually helped clients who have actually been. It’s aggravating, tiresome & a generally expensive scenario (even if you are using a service like Sucuri). Having a professional security group look after your WordPress install is a big pro in my book. Wp Engine Gdpr
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not low-cost. Their Startup plan is $35/mo and consists of a single set up and only up to 25,000 visits each month.
For benchmarking, you can get an effective, reputable VPS (ie, your very own not-shared server) for the same price from InMotion. And if you are simply starting with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting plan from Bluehost for simply a couple dollars each month.
Both which permit more storage & more sees (ie, essentially as lots of as you can deal with) than WP Engine. I have actually run sites that have had 60k visits monthly on a shared server. I have actually also run lots of small WordPress sites off a low expense shared hosting.
However I’ll cover that prices downside in the cons of WP Engine, however here’s the thing.
For some site owners, if you break out WP Engine by total value & consider your own (or your developer’s) time, their pricing is amazing.
Just running WordPress updates every month & QA’ing your installation can take around Thirty 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 regular monthly charge right there.
If you lose any gos to 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 site down … then that could be WP Engine’s whole regular monthly charge right there.
Losing visitors due to speed problems or downtime costs lost income.
Furthermore, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to point out any individual or designer time repairing problems.
Essentially, if your time is better designated far from technical issues, then WP Engine makes a great deal of sense on value. As a managed WordPress hosting service, that’s truly their thing. Hosting services are an investment rather than an expense.
And that sort of value-based pricing segues into another pro for WP Engine, their concentrate on their core markets. Wp Engine Gdpr
Like I stated at the beginning, WP Engine isn’t for everybody. There are 3 kinds of clients that WP Engine seems to be a fit for. For those 3 kinds of consumers, WP Engine has a strong focus with plenty of tools & focus for each.
From their backend process, the very first consumer type appears to be WordPress developers and designers who wish to focus on development & 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, introduces the site, then hands the website over to their customer.
The designer can assure their client that WP Engine manages the hosting, security & speed. There’s little requirement for an ongoing standard website upkeep. For this market, WP Engine has intriguing tools including staging, git push, site migration and transferable installs.
The 2nd client type is the growing site owner who is irritated at needing to deal with technical growth headaches. They have actually outgrown their shared hosting and have to transfer to a better host.
They’re also developed enough that they have some budget plan for managed services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & customer support to make that procedure happen. The phone support is a key element, particularly having the ability to “just call WP Engine an have them repair it.”
The third consumer type is a startup site owner that has the spending plan and wants a long-term platform that they can grow with. They are comfortable learning WP Engine’s unique backend and plan on introducing a near-complete website simultaneously.
They don’t have any previous routines or customizeds brought over from previous hosts or sites. Again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable functions, consumers, and support that they can make guarantees and supply support to win & keep this type of consumer.
With these kinds of customers, WP Engine knows how & where they are originating from, many of the enhancements they make are focused on these markets (ie, the Git push functionality), instead of mass-market improvements like knowledge-bases, user-friendly backend, etc.
This benefit resembles WP Engine’s market focus, but it’s actually worth calling out in this evaluation revision. Wp Engine Gdpr
WP Engine stands out not only on existing functions but likewise on producing new, cutting-edge hosting functions. Every variation of WordPress 4 has actually presented brand-new designer features that WP Engine has actually had the ability to incorporate.
Even general web development finest practices have changed significantly because I began observing the market *. WP Engine has actually developed tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ online marketer by trade. I understand enough web advancement to incorporate best practices into application & tasks with developers.
Here’s a screenshot of WP Engine’s Git Push setup that has actually 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
Similar to any service, WP Engine is not the best fit for everyone. There are plenty of WP Engine problems around the Web. Some are anecdotal. Some are embellishment (ie, SEOs grumbling about dev websites). And numerous stand since they simply aren’t a suitable for everyone. For all their awesomeness in some locations, they have some cons which keep them from being an excellent fit for some customers. I do not use them for this site because I do not require many of their functions and I’m comfortable “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wp Engine Gdpr
All that said, here are a few of the larger photo downsides of using WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To achieve the speed, security, and scale they assure, WP Engine does things in a different way. Which difference can be quite complicated– specifically if you have just sufficient experience with hosting environments to be unsafe.
Their backend setup has improved. It’s cleaner, however it’s still customized. It’s nothing like a conventional cPanel hosting backend. Unlike many hosting companies, they also don’t provide DNS nameservers.
Even if all the functions are there, the special backend can result in some designers making errors varying from annoying redirect loops to replicate content concerns to leaving the dev website available to the public or merely not enabling the functions you’re buying.
If it weren’t for fantastic support, I think they ‘d lose more novice consumers than they currently do.
Like lots of custom platforms, it makes sense once you get over the knowing curve. But WP Engine’s onboarding is really developer-focused & remains so exception-focused that they never ever describe best practice for the basic user. Wp Engine Gdpr
Here is their video on pushing your website live –
I have actually established my share of websites from platforms to custom-made hosts to cPanel hosting sites, but I needed to see that video multiple times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the right IP address.
Again, if you remain in WP Engine’s core markets, the customized backend isn’t really going to be a big deal (when you get past the learning curve). But for most, you’ll likely get to discover very first hand about WP Engine’s support group.
However here’s the important things.
WP Engine never ever actually stops being eccentric and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a wide variety of site checklists to help repair 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.
Again– they have reasons they do all this. And most of the times, support will simply take care of all of it.
But, you still don’t get to set & forget your site. Sure, you don’t technically don’t need to enter into the weeds of a server panel. In numerous hosting cases (ie, a handled VPS), you don’t need to do it anyhow, and when you do, the knobs and buttons recognize. Wp Engine Gdpr
WP Engine’s proprietary setup cuts both ways in regards to decreasing & increasing intricacy.
This con is likewise related to WP Engine’s distinct setup. In order to run their architecture along with possible, all the installs on their platform have to be rather consistent.
They need to have predictable plugins; foreseeable visitor patterns; foreseeable usage cases. Every hosting company has rules (or very real physical limits), however WP Engine goes a bit further to define what you can and can’t have on your WordPress set up in addition to tiered overage rates to discourage seasonal traffic spikes and regional storage usage.
They do ban particular plugins & admin habits for great factors, but those bans limit versatility and experimentation if your website could handle it.
For instance, Yet Another Related Post Plugin is a typical plugin. It’s resource extensive, but on smaller websites, it gets the job done well. It’s not allowed on WP Engine. That’s not good or bad always. However it does make WP Engine less versatile and open to experimentation compared to running a shared or VPS server.
The method their prices is structured enables less adaptability as well. It’s a positive that they will deal with all the traffic you can send out, however it’s likewise costly to pay based upon a variety of check outs.
If you are running a huge launch; are a seasonal service; or simply wish to drive a surge of traffic to your site, you’ll have to aspect additional hosting expenses into the mix. That puts a cap on how flexible you want to be with your marketing.
If you are running a lean cached site on a VPS server, you can deal with a lot more traffic than WP Engine would permit on a Personal or Business. And this point goes even more if your site needs numerous plugins for complete functionality.
The same opts for storage. With WP Engine, you are spending for efficiency, not for storage. So if you are aiming to utilize a server for media storage … that utilize case is out.
Additionally, you can’t really do automated e-mail marketing campaigns from WP Engine. This was something that my client got called for & wound up needing to do an uncomfortable migration to another email supplier mid-campaign.
In either case, that point segues into the last con I found with WP Engine, their rates based on features.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are usually paying for efficiency & not needing to think too much about maintenance, security & speed. If you look at WP Engine’s rates based upon the functions you’re getting, you actually do not get a lot.
And if you are the type who will consider your website’s health anyhow (ie, keeping WordPress updated and generally visiting frequently), you’ll likely be paying for “management” that is unnecessary. Wp Engine Gdpr
Many shared hosting servers can manage the exact same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a portion of the cost. My individual site (running on a shared hosting strategy from HostGator with fundamental caching) managed more than 15,000 check outs in a 24 Hr period when a post of mine went viral.
And if you are running a reliable VPS, you can certainly manage 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 “little” website owners how quickly they can get into the $290 per month tier.
And as discussed earlier that doesn’t even consist of many of the features you do not get with WP Engine’s plans. You cannot run any email from your servers. You have low limits on local storage. Anything above the limits needs additional expenses & technical implementation of Amazon cloud services.
And most importantly for me, you are limited on your installs. If you have a few side projects or low-traffic test sites, you have to factor those into the cost. You can’t utilize them to spread out the cost of your plan,specifically if you are hitting your visitor cap instead of your set up cap.
If you are aiming to pay for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & provide your site files, WP Engine is a costly choice, particularly compared to other non-managed hosting options.
Like any service, it’s not about exactly what is finest overall, but what is best for you based on your objectives, budget plan, resources & habits.
If you remain in what I think of as WP Engine’s core markets, they offer a great service with a solid product. Their rates is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting area, and they offer more features than “WordPress hosting” plans from other hosting brands. Their feature-set is unequaled for savvy DIYers, WordPress site designers and/or high-traffic sites that don’t want to stress over hosting problems.
If handled hosting is a suitable for you, then go check out WP Engine’s strategies here.
They do a 60-day money-back guarantee. So do a test set up and see what you consider their backend. Make sure to chat w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your present host & want more freedom/ better rates than WP Engine, check out InMotion Hosting’s VPS option. I’ve appreciated their balance of instinctive backend & responsive customer support.
And last but not least, if you are more confused than ever, go take my WordPress hosting quiz. I put all these aspects into an enjoyable, Buzzfeed-esque test to streamline things. Wp Engine Gdpr