WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wp Engine Hosting Login
WP Engine is a Managed WordPress Hosting service based in Austin, TX. They was among the (if not the) very first business to supply managed hosting services particularly for WordPress. Wp Engine Hosting Login
While they have lots of competition in both the basic hosting and handled WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the marketplace leader in numerous ways -and they have broad name recognition and cutting-edge features.
With the growth of both self-hosted WordPress and site home builders, the hosting industry has become a super-confusing place.
I composed an entire post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. However here’s the brief version: They all vary in services supplied. Some merely have WordPress-trained tech support. Some offer services such as server-side functions and staging for WordPress.
Then there’s a separate level of managed WordPress Hosting where you are not truly buying hosting per se, but rather services to keep your WordPress install live. Basically, a Managed WordPress Hosting service provides a menu of services customized to WordPress at a greater price point, so that the site owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the website content + performance.
Every rival in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a various offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of options, however as an entire, they all take on conventional shared Linux hosting offerings and personalized WordPress hosting options.
In either case, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s complicated, yes, but it is necessary to comprehend before making apples to oranges contrasts.
There are a lot of WP Engine examines online, usually with user-generated evaluations based upon anecdotes and individual experience. That’s fine however I take a various method. This review will take a look at the pros + cons of WP Engine in the context of all web hosting choices to see who it is a “best fit” for. Wp Engine Hosting Login
I’ve used WP Engine for various jobs since 2012. I do not utilize them for my primary websites today (see conclusion), however I do have a present client on WP Engine who absolutely likes them. Here’s my WP Engine review structured as benefits and drawbacks.
Disclosure: I receive referral fees from any business mentioned. All information & viewpoint is based on my experience as a paying client or expert to a paying customer.
Pros of WP Engine
To start, WP Engine does pretty much measure up to its pitch on its homepage where they assure “spectacular speed, effective security, and best-in-class customer support.” Here is their promotion 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 Hosting Login
Speed and Performance
There are a great deal of variables that enter into site speed, however the general rule is that the more intricate your site is, the more complex the options to speed ended up being.
From the box, WordPress is relatively lean and fast. If you are running a mostly text website with a few standard plugins and a couple of small images, you’ll be great with a budget-friendly shared hosting strategy from somebody like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
However couple of website owners keep their WordPress install lean. There’s normally additional plugins, customized style files, great deals of images, widgets, advertisements, kinds and more.
All these features integrated with decent levels of traffic can begin to decrease your WordPress install.
However a sluggish site does not mean that you need a larger, much better server. It does suggest that you need to get smarter about speed. Often it’s as simple as getting a more effective server, however sometimes it’s more about caching certain resources in a certain order and optimizing your files. In other words, it gets complex.
Picture you are attempting to transport a trailer with a pickup. Envision your trailer keeps getting heavier. It’s pointless to keep grumbling that your truck is not big enough when you might just need to remove the emergency brake, set up a turbocharger, revitalize the transmission fluid and consolidate your load.
The point is that WordPress requires help to stay quickly as you grow. There are plenty of solutions … however either you or a developer must implement them.
That’s where managed WordPress hosting can be found in. WP Engine takes care of (nearly) all speed concerns. They have actually tailored servers with very aggressive caching as well as more advanced “stack” than a common web host. They also have actually trained support who will go into your WordPress install and recognize the exact chokepoint to get your site moving. Wp Engine Hosting Login
They do not even permit caching plugins on their installs due to the fact that they have such a tailored caching setup.
The interesting thing is that even unoptimized WordPress installs still do well on their platform because their platform does the extra work.
Here’s the speed test for one of my clients on WP Engine (who has a bloated theme, extra scripts, a lot of uncompressed images, among other things):
Keep in mind the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That determines how rapidly the server returned enough data to begin loading the page.
It’s great to have that kind of speed right out of package, and have it remain that method no matter how huge or complicated the site gets.
*Note that the other point here is that if you are obsessed about speed, you can get even much better numbers with WP Engine than you might get with other services considering that you are totally free to concentrate on speed elements that you can easily manage like image compression, use of scripts, and so on.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not only offers an incorporated CDN, however they likewise supply international data centers in case your audience is mainly in Asia and/or Europe. Wp Engine Hosting Login
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wp Engine Hosting Login
Consumer 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, managed hosting) than a product (ie, hosting). It makes good sense for them to put a huge emphasis on support.
Here’s a screenshot from one of my very first contacts with support back in 2012:
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. Everybody has a story, but you never know if the story is since they spoke to the one rockstar-vs-rookie having an awesome-vs-terrible day. Like I mention in every hosting evaluation, the vital part is to see if a business deals with support as an investment or an expense.
I prefer to try to find gain access to, systems, and understanding, all three require an investment of cash, time and competence.
Based upon my current interactions and research study, they are doing far better striking all 3 boxes. They preserve a range of support channels (including phone for non-Basic strategies). They have a quick, trackable ticketing system and are available all over on the website through chat.
Based upon their tutorial videos and comprehensive knowledgebase, they tick the understanding box. Every support that I or my client has engaged with really understood the fine workings of WordPress and has been able to problem-solve on the fly.
The most remarkable (yes, this is anecdotal, however still) experience was a three-way call between my client, myself and WP Engine during my customer’s transition to HTTPS/ SSL. The associate was not just able to get on (and remain on) the phone, but he had the ability to adeptly help us “turn the switch” quickly in addition to looking after a number of concerns (ie, submitting a non-HTTP sitemap and fixing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wp Engine Hosting Login
I’m sure that WP Engine still has support concerns,specifically because their custom-made platform puts a lot of pressure on quick, available support (as I’ll display in the disadvantages). However 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 indicates that it is a prime target for hackers & malware suppliers.
However there is nothing inherently insecure about WordPress that is not a problem with all software. WordPress has the benefit of being open-source with a huge community launching updates & screening vulnerabilities.
If you run your very own WordPress set up, the security essentials 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 utilize JetPack for the last two. It’s made by & powered by Automattic, the industrial arm of WordPress.
You’ll notice that even though security on WordPress is straightforward, the duty is still on you to keep things protect. Much like having a deadbolt not does anything if you do not lock it, keeping your site safe and secure is still ultimately on you.
And like speed & efficiency, WP Engine generally takes all those finest practices and does them for you. They run automated backups to keep everything off-site & ready to roll back if something occurs. Since you technically have an “set up” on their server (rather than an account), they deal with a lot of security issues worldwide on the server level.
WP Engine likewise works carefully with top security firms on code reviews in addition to running their own team. They likewise make the assurance that if you’re hacked, they take care of it totally free.
I personally have never ever been hacked on my primary/ or secondary sites (knock on wood), however have helped clients who have actually been. It’s discouraging, tiresome & a normally expensive circumstance (even if you are using a service like Sucuri). Having an expert security group take care of your WordPress set up is a big pro in my book. Wp Engine Hosting Login
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not inexpensive. Their Startup strategy is $35/mo and consists of a single install and only approximately 25,000 visits each month.
For benchmarking, you can get an effective, dependable VPS (ie, your own not-shared server) for the very same price from InMotion. And if you are just starting out with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting plan from Bluehost for simply a couple dollars each month.
Both of which allow for more storage & more check outs (ie, generally as lots of as you can handle) than WP Engine. I’ve run websites that have had 60k visits monthly on a shared server. I’ve also run lots of little WordPress sites off a low cost shared hosting.
But I’ll cover that pricing disadvantage in the cons of WP Engine, however here’s the thing.
For some website owners, if you break out WP Engine by total worth & consider your own (or your designer’s) time, their prices is incredible.
Simply running WordPress updates monthly & 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 entire regular monthly fee right there.
If you lose any visits due to downtime from a bad plugin update, then that might be WP Engine’s whole regular monthly cost 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 could be WP Engine’s entire regular monthly charge right there.
Losing visitors due to speed issues or downtime expenses lost income.
In addition, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to mention any individual or designer time fixing issues.
Essentially, if your time is better assigned far from technical problems, then WP Engine makes a great deal of sense on worth. As a managed WordPress hosting service, that’s really their thing. Hosting services are an investment instead of a cost.
Which sort of value-based pricing segues into another pro for WP Engine, their focus on their core markets. Wp Engine Hosting Login
Like I stated at the beginning, WP Engine isn’t really for everyone. There are 3 kinds of clients that WP Engine seems to be a fit for. For those 3 kinds of clients, WP Engine has a strong focus with lots of tools & focus for each.
From their backend procedure, the very first customer type seems to be WordPress developers and designers who want to focus on advancement & style without handling hosting upkeep, and have customers who have some budget. The designer/dev constructs the website directly in WP Engine’s staging environment, launches 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 a continuous standard website upkeep. For this market, WP Engine has interesting tools including staging, git push, site migration and transferable installs.
The 2nd consumer type is the growing site owner who is frustrated at needing to handle technical development headaches. They have actually outgrown their shared hosting and have to relocate to a better host.
They’re likewise developed enough that they have some spending plan for managed services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & client support to make that process take place. The phone support is a crucial element, particularly having the ability to “simply call WP Engine an have them fix it.”
The third client type is a startup website owner that has the budget 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 site at one time.
They don’t have any prior practices or customs brought over from previous hosts or sites. Again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable features, consumers, and support that they can make pledges and supply support to win & keep this type of consumer.
With these kinds of consumers, WP Engine understands how & where they are coming from, a lot of of the enhancements they make are focused on these markets (ie, the Git push performance), instead of mass-market enhancements like knowledge-bases, intuitive backend, and so on.
This advantage resembles WP Engine’s market focus, however it’s actually worth calling out in this evaluation modification. Wp Engine Hosting Login
WP Engine stands out not just on existing functions however also on producing brand-new, advanced hosting functions. Every version of WordPress 4 has actually presented brand-new developer features that WP Engine has been able to integrate.
Even basic web development finest practices have altered drastically considering that I started observing the industry *. WP Engine has actually created tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ online marketer by trade. I know sufficient web development to incorporate finest practices into execution & projects 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 best suitable for everybody. There are a lot of WP Engine complaints around the Internet. Some are anecdotal. Some are hyperbole (ie, SEOs complaining about dev sites). And lots of are valid because they simply aren’t a fit for everybody. For all their awesomeness in some areas, they have some cons which keep them from being a good fit for some clients. I do not utilize them for this site since I do not need a lot of their functions and I’m comfortable “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wp Engine Hosting Login
All that stated, here are a few of the bigger image downsides of using WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To achieve the speed, security, and scale they promise, WP Engine does things differently. Which difference can be rather made complex– especially if you have just sufficient experience with hosting environments to be unsafe.
Their backend setup has gotten better. It’s cleaner, however it’s still customized. It’s nothing like a standard cPanel hosting backend. Unlike many hosting business, they also do not offer DNS nameservers.
Even if all the features exist, the unique backend can result in some designers making errors ranging from annoying redirect loops to duplicate content issues to leaving the dev site open up to the general public or just not making it possible for the features you’re buying.
If it weren’t for fantastic support, I believe they ‘d lose more newbie clients than they currently do.
Like lots of customized platforms, it makes sense once you overcome the learning curve. But WP Engine’s onboarding is extremely developer-focused & remains so exception-focused that they never ever discuss best practice for the general user. Wp Engine Hosting Login
Here is their video on pushing your site live –
I have actually established my share of sites from platforms to custom hosts to cPanel hosting websites, however I needed to view that video several times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the right IP address.
Once again, if you remain in WP Engine’s core markets, the customized backend isn’t going to be a substantial deal (as soon as you surpass the knowing curve). But for the majority of, you’ll likely get to find out very first hand about WP Engine’s support team.
However here’s the important things.
WP Engine never truly stops being eccentric and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a huge selection of website checklists to help repair all sorts of issues.
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 they do all this. And in most cases, support will just take care of all of it.
But, you still do not get to set & forget your site. Sure, you don’t technically do not need to enter the weeds of a server panel. In numerous hosting cases (ie, a managed VPS), you do not have to do it anyway, when you do, the knobs and buttons recognize. Wp Engine Hosting Login
WP Engine’s proprietary setup cuts both methods terms of minimizing & increasing intricacy.
This con is likewise associated with WP Engine’s unique setup. In order to run their architecture along with possible, all the installs on their platform have to be rather uniform.
They have to have foreseeable plugins; foreseeable visitor patterns; predictable use cases. Every hosting company has guidelines (or extremely genuine physical limits), but WP Engine goes a bit more to define exactly what you can and cannot have on your WordPress install in addition to tiered overage prices to dissuade seasonal traffic spikes and regional storage use.
They do prohibit specific plugins & admin habits for good factors, but those bans restrict adaptability and experimentation if your site might manage it.
For instance, Yet Another Related Post Plugin is a common plugin. It’s resource extensive, however on smaller websites, it gets the job done well. It’s not permitted on WP Engine. That’s bad or bad always. However it does make WP Engine less versatile and open up to experimentation compared with running a shared or VPS server.
The way their rates is structured permits less versatility also. It’s a positive that they will deal with all the traffic you can send out, but it’s also costly to pay based upon a number of sees.
If you are running a huge launch; are a seasonal business; or simply wish to drive a rise of traffic to your site, you’ll have to aspect extra hosting costs into the mix. That puts a cap on how versatile you wish to be with your marketing.
If you are running a lean cached website on a VPS server, you can deal with a lot more traffic than WP Engine would permit on an Individual or Service. And this point goes even more if your website needs lots of plugins for complete performance.
The exact same chooses storage. With WP Engine, you are spending for performance, not for storage. So if you are wanting to utilize a server for media storage … that use case is out.
In addition, you can’t actually do automatic email marketing campaigns from WP Engine. This was something that my client got called for & wound up needing to do an agonizing migration to another email supplier mid-campaign.
In any case, that point segues into the last con I found with WP Engine, their prices based on functions.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are typically spending for efficiency & not having to believe too much about upkeep, security & speed. If you take a look at WP Engine’s prices based on the features you’re getting, you truly do not get a lot.
And if you are the type who will consider your site’s health anyway (ie, keeping WordPress updated and typically visiting often), you’ll likely be spending for “management” that is unneeded. Wp Engine Hosting Login
Lots of shared hosting servers can handle the exact same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a portion of the cost. My personal site (operating on a shared hosting plan from HostGator with fundamental caching) dealt with more than 15,000 sees in a 24 Hr period when a post of mine went viral.
And if you are running a reliable VPS, you can definitely manage a lot more for much less.
They are relatively transparent about how they count sees, however it can still be rather a surprise for “small” website owners how rapidly they can enter into the $290 per month tier.
And as discussed earlier that doesn’t even include many of the features you don’t get with WP Engine’s plans. You can’t run any e-mail from your servers. You have low limits on regional storage. Anything above the limitations needs additional expenses & technical execution of Amazon cloud services.
And most importantly for me, you are limited on your installs. If you have a couple of side jobs or low-traffic test sites, you have to factor those into the price. You cannot use them to spread out the cost of your plan,especially if you are hitting your visitor cap rather than your install 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 option, specifically compared to other non-managed hosting options.
Like any service, it’s not about what is best general, but exactly what is finest for you based on your objectives, spending plan, resources & practices.
If you remain in exactly what I think of as WP Engine’s core markets, they use a terrific service with a strong item. Their prices is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting space, and they use more features than “WordPress hosting” plans from other hosting brands. Their feature-set is unmatched for smart DIYers, WordPress website developers and/or high-traffic sites that don’t want to worry about hosting issues.
If handled hosting is a suitable for you, then go have a look at WP Engine’s plans here.
They do a 60-day money-back guarantee. So do a test set up and see exactly what you think of their backend. Make certain to talk w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your present host & want more liberty/ much better prices than WP Engine, check out InMotion Hosting’s VPS alternative. I’ve valued their balance of instinctive backend & responsive customer care.
And finally, if you are more baffled than ever, go take my WordPress hosting test. I put all these aspects into a fun, Buzzfeed-esque test to streamline things. Wp Engine Hosting Login