WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wp Engine Php 7
While they have lots of competition in both the basic hosting and handled WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the market leader in lots of methods -and they have broad name acknowledgment and innovative functions.
With the development of both self-hosted WordPress and website home builders, the hosting industry has become a super-confusing location.
I wrote an entire post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. However here’s the brief version: They all differ in services supplied. Some simply have WordPress-trained tech support. Some offer services such as server-side features and staging for WordPress.
Then there’s a different level of managed WordPress Hosting where you are not really buying hosting per se, but rather services to keep your WordPress install live. Basically, a Managed WordPress Hosting service uses a menu of services customized to WordPress at a greater cost point, so that the website owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the site content + performance.
Every rival in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a different offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of alternatives, but as a whole, they all take on standard shared Linux hosting offerings and tailored WordPress hosting options.
In any 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 evaluates online, generally with user-generated reviews based upon anecdotes and individual experience. That’s fine but I take a different approach. This evaluation will take a look at the pros + cons of WP Engine in the context of all web hosting options to see who it is a “best fit” for. Wp Engine Php 7
I’ve used WP Engine for numerous tasks considering that 2012. I do not utilize them for my primary websites today (see conclusion), however I do have a current customer on WP Engine who absolutely likes them. Here’s my WP Engine evaluation structured as benefits and drawbacks.
Disclosure: I receive referral fees from any business discussed. All data & 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 basically measure up to its pitch on its homepage where they assure “spectacular speed, powerful security, and best-in-class customer care.” 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. Wp Engine Php 7
Speed and Performance
There are a great deal of variables that enter into website speed, but the guideline is that the more complicated your site is, the more intricate the options to speed ended up being.
Out of the box, WordPress is relatively lean and quick. If you are running a mainly text site with a few fundamental plugins and a few little images, you’ll be great with an inexpensive shared hosting plan from someone like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
But couple of site owners keep their WordPress install lean. There’s usually extra plugins, custom-made theme files, great deals of images, widgets, advertisements, kinds and more.
All these features combined with decent levels of traffic can start to decrease your WordPress install.
However a sluggish site does not indicate that you need a larger, much better server. It does imply that you need to get smarter about speed. Often it’s as basic as getting a more powerful server, however sometimes it’s more about caching particular resources in a certain order and enhancing your files. In other words, it gets complex.
Envision you are aiming to haul a trailer with a pickup. Picture your trailer keeps getting heavier. It’s meaningless to keep complaining that your truck is not huge enough when you might just have to eliminate the emergency brake, install a turbocharger, refresh the transmission fluid and combine your load.
The point is that WordPress requires aid to remain quick as you grow. There are a lot of solutions … but either you or a designer need to execute them.
That’s where handled WordPress hosting is available in. WP Engine takes care of (nearly) all speed concerns. They have actually personalized servers with very aggressive caching and even advanced “stack” than a normal webhosting. They likewise have actually trained support who will go into your WordPress install and determine the precise chokepoint to obtain your site moving. Wp Engine Php 7
They don’t even permit caching plugins on their installs due to the fact that they have such a customized caching setup.
The intriguing thing is that even unoptimized WordPress sets up still succeed on their platform due to the fact that their platform does the additional work.
Here’s the speed test for among my customers on WP Engine (who has a bloated style, 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 information to begin filling the page.
It’s good to have that type of speed right from the box, and have it stay that method 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 back at much better numbers with WP Engine than you might get with other services considering that you are free to concentrate on speed elements that you can easily manage like image compression, use of scripts, etc.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not only offers an integrated CDN, but they also supply international data centers in case your audience is primarily in Asia and/or Europe. Wp Engine Php 7
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wp Engine Php 7
Client support has been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch since they wased established. After all, they are really selling more of a service (ie, managed hosting) than an item (ie, hosting). It makes good sense for them to put a big focus on support.
Here’s a screenshot from among my 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 actually grown & changed a lot ever since. They went through a stretch where they were getting a lot of criticism about over-promising on support.
That stated, the hard feature of customer support is that a lot of the judgment is anecdotal. Everybody has a story, however you never ever know if the story is since they talked to the one rockstar-vs-rookie having an awesome-vs-terrible day. Like I mention in every hosting review, the important part is to see if a business deals with support as an investment or an expense.
I want to try to find access, systems, and knowledge, all three require an investment of money, time and proficiency.
Based on my recent interactions and research study, they are doing better hitting all three boxes. They preserve a range of support channels (including phone for non-Basic strategies). They have a fast, trackable ticketing system and are readily available everywhere on the website through chat.
Based on their tutorial videos and comprehensive knowledgebase, they tick the knowledge box. Every support that I or my customer has actually engaged with in fact knew the great workings of WordPress and has had the ability to problem-solve on the fly.
The most excellent (yes, this is anecdotal, however still) experience was a three-way call in between my client, myself and WP Engine during my customer’s shift to HTTPS/ SSL. The rep was not only able to get on (and remain on) the phone, but he was able to adeptly help us “turn the switch” quickly in addition to looking after numerous issues (ie, uploading a non-HTTP sitemap and fixing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wp Engine Php 7
I’m sure that WP Engine still has support issues,particularly due to the fact that their custom-made platform puts a great deal of pressure on fast, available support (as I’ll show in the drawbacks). However they seem to understand that support is core to their worth and do make the needed financial investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the entire Internet. That indicates that it is a prime target for hackers & malware distributors.
However there is absolutely nothing inherently insecure about WordPress that is not a problem with all software application. WordPress has the upside of being open-source with a very large neighborhood releasing updates & screening vulnerabilities.
If you run your own WordPress set up, the security basics 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 utilize JetPack for the last 2. It’s made by & powered by Automattic, the business arm of WordPress.
You’ll discover that even though security on WordPress is simple, the duty is still on you to keep things secure. Just like having a deadbolt does nothing if you do not lock it, keeping your website protected is still eventually on you.
And like speed & performance, WP Engine essentially takes all those finest practices and does them for you. They run automated backups to keep whatever off-site & ready to roll back if something happens. Since you technically have an “set up” on their server (rather than an account), they deal with a great deal of security concerns globally on the server level.
WP Engine likewise works closely with top security firms on code reviews in addition to running their own team. They also make the warranty that if you’re hacked, they look after it totally free.
I personally have never ever been hacked on my primary/ or secondary websites (knock on wood), but have assisted customers who have actually been. It’s aggravating, tedious & a typically costly scenario (even if you are using a service like Sucuri). Having a professional security team take care of your WordPress set up is a huge pro in my book. Wp Engine Php 7
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not inexpensive. Their Startup strategy is $35/mo and includes a single set up and only 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 just beginning with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting plan from Bluehost for simply a couple dollars monthly.
Both of which allow for more storage & more check outs (ie, generally as numerous as you can handle) than WP Engine. I have actually run sites that have actually had 60k check outs each month on a shared server. I’ve likewise run lots of little WordPress sites off a low expense shared hosting.
But I’ll cover that rates drawback in the cons of WP Engine, however here’s the thing.
For some site owners, if you break out WP Engine by total worth & consider your own (or your designer’s) time, their pricing is remarkable.
Just running WordPress updates each month & QA’ing your installation can take around 30 minutes monthly. If your (or your dev’s) services are billed at $50 (or more)/ hour, then that’s WP Engine’s entire month-to-month fee right there.
If you lose any visits due to downtime from a bad plugin update, then that could be WP Engine’s entire monthly fee right there.
If you do a hot-fix (ie, you don’t utilize a staging area) on your PHP code, and knock your website down … then that might be WP Engine’s whole monthly charge right there.
Losing visitors due to speed problems or downtime expenses lost earnings.
Furthermore, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to discuss any personal or designer time fixing concerns.
Essentially, if your time is better designated far from technical concerns, then WP Engine makes a great deal of sense on worth. As a handled WordPress hosting service, that’s really their thing. Hosting services are an investment instead of a cost.
And that sort of value-based prices segues into another pro for WP Engine, their concentrate on their core markets. Wp Engine Php 7
Like I stated at the beginning, WP Engine isn’t really for everyone. There are 3 kinds of consumers that WP Engine seems to be a fit for. For those 3 types of clients, WP Engine has a strong focus with a lot of tools & focus for each.
From their backend process, the first customer type seems to be WordPress designers and designers who wish to concentrate on advancement & style without handling hosting upkeep, and have clients who have some budget. The designer/dev constructs the site directly in WP Engine’s staging environment, launches the website, then hands the site over to their customer.
The designer can assure their customer that WP Engine handles the hosting, security & speed. There’s little requirement for an ongoing basic 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 having to deal with technical development headaches. They’ve outgrown their shared hosting and need to move to a much better host.
They’re also established enough that they have some budget plan for managed services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & customer support to make that process happen. The phone support is a crucial factor, especially being able to “simply call WP Engine an have them fix it.”
The 3rd customer type is a startup site owner that has the budget and desires a long-term platform that they can grow with. They are comfy discovering WP Engine’s distinct backend and plan on launching a near-complete website at one time.
They don’t have any prior routines or customs brought over from previous hosts or websites. Again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable functions, customers, and support that they can make promises and provide support to win & keep this type of client.
With these kinds of clients, WP Engine knows how & where they are coming from, numerous of the improvements they make are concentrated on these markets (ie, the Git push performance), rather than mass-market improvements 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 revision. Wp Engine Php 7
WP Engine stands out not just on current functions however also on producing brand-new, innovative hosting features. Every variation of WordPress 4 has presented new designer features that WP Engine has actually been able to integrate.
Even basic web advancement best practices have actually changed drastically given that I began observing the industry *. WP Engine has actually produced tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ online marketer by trade. I understand adequate web advancement to incorporate finest practices into execution & projects 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 very best suitable for everyone. There are lots of WP Engine complaints around the Web. Some are anecdotal. Some are hyperbole (ie, SEOs complaining about dev websites). And numerous stand because they merely aren’t a fit for everybody. For all their awesomeness in some areas, they have some cons which keep them from being a great suitable for some consumers. I do not utilize them for this website because I do not need a lot of their functions and I’m comfy “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wp Engine Php 7
All that stated, here are a few of the bigger photo disadvantages of using WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To achieve the speed, security, and scale they assure, WP Engine does things differently. Which distinction can be quite made complex– specifically if you have simply enough experience with hosting environments to be hazardous.
Their backend setup has gotten better. It’s cleaner, however it’s still custom-made. It’s nothing like a traditional cPanel hosting backend. Unlike numerous hosting business, they likewise do not supply DNS nameservers.
Even if all the functions exist, the unique backend can cause some designers making errors varying from irritating redirect loops to replicate content problems to leaving the dev site available to the public or simply not enabling the functions you’re buying.
If it weren’t for incredible support, I believe they ‘d lose more beginner clients than they already do.
Like lots of customized platforms, it makes sense once you get over the knowing curve. But WP Engine’s onboarding is extremely developer-focused & remains so exception-focused that they never ever discuss finest practice for the general user. Wp Engine Php 7
Here is their video on pressing your site live –
I have actually established my share of sites from platforms to customized 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.
Once again, if you remain in WP Engine’s core markets, the customized backend isn’t going to be a substantial deal (when you surpass the learning curve). But for the majority of, you’ll likely get to find out first hand about WP Engine’s support group.
But here’s the thing.
WP Engine never ever truly stops being quirky and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a myriad of site checklists to assist 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 that they do all this. And in most cases, support will simply take care of it all.
But, you still don’t get to set & forget your website. Sure, you do not technically don’t have to get into the weeds of a server panel. In lots of hosting cases (ie, a handled VPS), you do not need to do it anyway, and when you do, the knobs and buttons are familiar. Wp Engine Php 7
WP Engine’s proprietary setup cuts both methods terms of decreasing & increasing complexity.
This con is also associated with WP Engine’s distinct setup. In order to run their architecture along with possible, all the installs on their platform have to be somewhat consistent.
They need to have foreseeable plugins; predictable visitor patterns; predictable usage cases. Every hosting company has rules (or extremely real physical limitations), 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 pricing to discourage seasonal traffic spikes and regional storage use.
They do prohibit particular plugins & admin habits for great factors, but those bans limit adaptability and experimentation if your site might handle it.
For example, Yet Another Associated Post Plugin is a common plugin. It’s resource extensive, but on smaller websites, it does the job well. It’s not permitted on WP Engine. That’s not good or bad necessarily. However it does make WP Engine less flexible and open up to experimentation compared to running a shared or VPS server.
The method their rates is structured allows for less versatility too. It’s a favorable that they will manage all the traffic you can send, however it’s also costly to pay based on a number of sees.
If you are running a huge launch; are a seasonal company; or simply wish to drive a rise of traffic to your site, you’ll have to aspect additional hosting bills into the mix. That puts a cap on how versatile you want to be with your marketing.
If you are running a lean cached site on a VPS server, you can handle a lot more traffic than WP Engine would permit on an Individual or Organisation. And this point goes further if your website requires 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 wanting to utilize a server for media storage … that use case is out.
In addition, you can’t truly do automated email marketing campaigns from WP Engine. This was something that my customer got required & wound up having to do a painful migration to another email provider mid-campaign.
In any case, that point segues into the last con I discovered with WP Engine, their prices based on features.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are usually paying for performance & not having to believe excessive about upkeep, security & speed. If you take a look at WP Engine’s pricing based upon the features you’re getting, you actually don’t get a whole lot.
And if you are the type who will think about your site’s health anyhow (ie, keeping WordPress upgraded and generally visiting regularly), you’ll likely be paying for “management” that is unneeded. Wp Engine Php 7
Numerous shared hosting servers can handle the exact same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a portion of the cost. My individual website (operating on a shared hosting strategy from HostGator with standard caching) handled more than 15,000 check outs in a 24 Hr duration when a post of mine went viral.
And if you are running a reputable VPS, you can definitely deal with a lot more for much less.
They are relatively transparent about how they count sees, but it can still be quite a surprise for “small” site owners how rapidly they can enter into the $290 per month tier.
And as mentioned earlier that does not even consist of many of the functions you don’t get with WP Engine’s strategies. You cannot run any e-mail from your servers. You have low limitations on local storage. Anything above the limits needs extra costs & technical implementation of Amazon cloud services.
And most importantly 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 rate. You cannot utilize them to expand the cost of your plan,especially if you are striking your visitor cap instead of your install cap.
If you are wanting to pay for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & dish out your site files, WP Engine is an expensive alternative, especially compared to other non-managed hosting alternatives.
Like any service, it’s not about what is finest general, however exactly what is best for you based on your goals, budget plan, resources & routines.
If you are in exactly what I consider WP Engine’s core markets, they provide an excellent service with a solid product. Their pricing is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting space, and they provide more functions than “WordPress hosting” plans from other hosting brands. Their feature-set is unrivaled for smart DIYers, WordPress website developers and/or high-traffic sites that don’t wish to worry about hosting concerns.
If managed hosting is a fit for you, then go check out WP Engine’s strategies here.
They do a 60-day money-back assurance. So do a test install and see exactly what you consider their backend. Be sure to talk w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your existing host & want more flexibility/ better prices than WP Engine, check out InMotion Hosting’s VPS alternative. I’ve valued their balance of instinctive backend & responsive customer service.
And finally, if you are more confused than ever, go take my WordPress hosting test. I put all these elements into an enjoyable, Buzzfeed-esque quiz to streamline things. Wp Engine Php 7