WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wp Engine Redirect Loop
WP Engine is a Managed WordPress Hosting service based in Austin, TX. They were one of the (if not the) very first companies to provide handled hosting services particularly for WordPress. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
While they have a lot of competitors in both the general hosting and managed WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the market leader in lots of methods -and they have broad name acknowledgment and innovative features.
With the development of both self-hosted WordPress and website builders, the hosting market has ended up being a super-confusing place.
I composed a whole post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. But here’s the brief version: They all differ in services provided. Some just have WordPress-trained tech support. Some offer services such as server-side features and staging for WordPress.
And then there’s a different level of managed WordPress Hosting where you are not actually buying hosting per se, however 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 greater price point, so that the website owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the website content + functionality.
Every competitor in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a various offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of choices, however as a whole, they all compete with traditional shared Linux hosting offerings and customized WordPress hosting options.
In either case, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s complicated, yes, however it is essential to understand prior to making apples to oranges comparisons.
There are a great deal of WP Engine examines online, typically with user-generated reviews based on anecdotes and individual experience. That’s great but I take a various method. This review will 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 Redirect Loop
I have actually used WP Engine for various tasks because 2012. I don’t utilize them for my main websites 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 benefits and drawbacks.
Disclosure: I receive referral fees from any business pointed out. All data & viewpoint is based on my experience as a paying client or consultant to a paying consumer.
Pros of WP Engine
To begin, WP Engine does basically live up to its pitch on its homepage where they guarantee “spectacular speed, effective security, and best-in-class customer care.” 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 Redirect Loop
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 complicated the services to speed become.
From the box, WordPress is relatively lean and quick. If you are running a mainly text site with a couple of standard plugins and a couple of little images, you’ll be fine with a cost effective shared hosting strategy from somebody like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
But couple of site owners keep their WordPress set up lean. There’s usually additional plugins, custom theme files, great deals of images, widgets, ads, kinds and more.
All these features integrated with good levels of traffic can begin to decrease your WordPress install.
But a slow website doesn’t indicate that you require a bigger, much better server. It does indicate that you need to get smarter about speed. Often it’s as basic as getting a more effective server, but sometimes it’s more about caching specific resources in a certain order and optimizing your files. Simply puts, it gets complex.
Imagine you are aiming to carry a trailer with a pickup truck. Envision your trailer keeps getting heavier. It’s meaningless to keep grumbling that your truck is not big enough when you may simply need to get rid of the emergency brake, set up a turbocharger, revitalize the transmission fluid and combine your load.
The point is that WordPress needs assistance to stay fast as you grow. There are a lot of solutions … however either you or a developer must implement them.
That’s where managed WordPress hosting can be found in. WP Engine looks after (almost) all speed issues. They have actually tailored servers with exceptionally aggressive caching as well as advanced “stack” than a common webhosting. They likewise have actually trained support who will go into your WordPress set up and recognize the specific chokepoint to obtain your site moving. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
They don’t even allow 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 succeed on their platform because 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, to name a few things):
Keep in mind the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That determines how rapidly the server returned enough information to begin packing the page.
It’s good to have that type of speed right out of the box, and have it remain that way no matter how big or complicated the site 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 given that you are complimentary to focus on speed elements that you can quickly manage like image compression, usage of scripts, etc.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not just provides an integrated CDN, but they also provide global data centers in case your audience is primarily in Asia and/or Europe. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wp Engine Redirect Loop
Customer support has actually been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch since they were founded. After all, they are really 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 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 company 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 said, the difficult feature of client support is that a lot of the judgment is anecdotal. Everybody has a story, however you never ever know 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 fundamental part is to see if a company deals with support as an investment or a cost.
I prefer to try to find gain access to, systems, and understanding, all 3 need an investment of money, time and know-how.
Based on my current interactions and research, they are doing much better hitting all three boxes. They maintain a range of support channels (consisting of phone for non-Basic strategies). They have a quick, trackable ticketing system and are available all over on the website by means of chat.
Based on their guide videos and substantial knowledgebase, they tick the understanding box. Every support that I or my customer has connected with actually knew the great workings of WordPress and has 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 transition to HTTPS/ SSL. The associate was not only able to get on (and remain on) the phone, however he was able to adeptly assist us “flip the switch” quickly in addition to taking care of a number of issues (ie, publishing a non-HTTP sitemap and repairing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
I make sure that WP Engine still has support problems,especially due to the fact that their custom platform puts a lot of pressure on fast, available support (as I’ll show in the disadvantages). However they seem to understand that support is core to their worth and do make the required investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the whole Web. That indicates that it is a prime target for hackers & malware suppliers.
However there is absolutely nothing inherently insecure about WordPress that is not an issue with all software. WordPress has the advantage of being open-source with a huge neighborhood launching updates & testing vulnerabilities.
If you run your own WordPress install, the security basics 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 industrial arm of WordPress.
You’ll discover 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 don’t lock it, keeping your website protected is still eventually on you.
And like speed & efficiency, WP Engine essentially takes all those finest practices and does them for you. They run automated backups to keep whatever off-site & prepared to roll back if something happens. Given that you technically have an “install” on their server (instead of an account), they take on a lot of security problems internationally on the server level.
WP Engine likewise works carefully with leading security companies on code reviews in addition to running their own group. They likewise make the warranty that if you’re hacked, they take care of it for free.
I personally have never ever been hacked on my primary/ or secondary websites (knock on wood), but have assisted clients who have been. It’s aggravating, tiresome & an usually pricey situation (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 Redirect Loop
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not low-cost. Their Startup plan is $35/mo and includes a single set up and just up to 25,000 visits per month.
For benchmarking, you can get an effective, trustworthy VPS (ie, your own not-shared server) for the 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 per month.
Both of which allow for more storage & more sees (ie, essentially as numerous as you can manage) than WP Engine. I’ve run websites that have actually had 60k visits per month on a shared server. I have actually also run lots of little WordPress sites off a low cost shared hosting.
But I’ll cover that pricing drawback in the cons of WP Engine, however here’s the important things.
For some website owners, if you break out WP Engine by total value & consider your own (or your developer’s) time, their pricing is remarkable.
Simply running WordPress updates monthly & QA’ing your setup can take around 30 minutes each month. If your (or your dev’s) services are billed at $50 (or more)/ hour, then that’s WP Engine’s entire regular monthly cost right there.
If you lose any sees due to downtime from a bad plugin upgrade, then that could be WP Engine’s whole month-to-month fee right there.
If you do a hot-fix (ie, you do not use a staging location) on your PHP code, and knock your site down … then that might be WP Engine’s entire regular monthly charge right there.
Losing visitors due to speed concerns or downtime expenses lost earnings.
In addition, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to point out any personal or developer time fixing issues.
Essentially, if your time is better assigned away from technical concerns, then WP Engine makes a lot of sense on value. As a handled WordPress hosting service, that’s actually their thing. Hosting services are a financial investment rather than an expense.
Which sort of value-based pricing segues into another pro for WP Engine, their focus on their core markets. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
Like I said at the start, WP Engine isn’t for everybody. There are 3 kinds of customers that WP Engine seems to be a fit for. For those 3 types of consumers, WP Engine has a strong focus with lots of tools & focus for each.
From their backend procedure, the very first consumer type seems to be WordPress developers and designers who want to concentrate on advancement & design without dealing with hosting upkeep, and have clients who have some budget plan. The designer/dev constructs the website directly in WP Engine’s staging environment, introduces the website, then hands the website over to their client.
The designer can guarantee their customer that WP Engine handles the hosting, security & speed. There’s little need for an ongoing standard website upkeep. For this market, WP Engine has intriguing tools including staging, git push, website migration and transferable installs.
The 2nd customer type is the growing website owner who is annoyed at needing to deal with technical development headaches. They’ve outgrown their shared hosting and need to transfer to a better host.
They’re also established enough that they have some budget for handled services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & customer support to make that procedure occur. The phone support is a key element, particularly having the ability to “simply call WP Engine an have them fix it.”
The 3rd client type is a start-up site owner that has the budget 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 site all at once.
They don’t have any prior routines or custom-mades brought over from previous hosts or websites. Once again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable features, consumers, and support that they can make guarantees and provide support to win & keep this type of client.
With these types of consumers, WP Engine understands how & where they are coming from, a lot of of the improvements they make are focused on these markets (ie, the Git push performance), instead of mass-market improvements like knowledge-bases, user-friendly backend, and so on.
This advantage is similar to WP Engine’s market focus, but it’s truly worth calling out in this review revision. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
WP Engine stands out not just on current features however also on developing brand-new, advanced hosting functions. Every version of WordPress 4 has actually rolled out brand-new developer functions that WP Engine has actually had the ability to integrate.
Even general web advancement best practices have altered drastically because I began observing the market *. WP Engine has produced tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ marketer by trade. I understand 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
Just like any service, WP Engine is not the best fit for everybody. There are plenty of WP Engine problems around the Web. Some are anecdotal. Some are hyperbole (ie, SEOs grumbling about dev sites). And lots of are valid because they merely 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 website due to the fact that I do not need much of their features and I’m comfy “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
All that said, here are some of the bigger picture downsides of utilizing WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To accomplish the speed, security, and scale they promise, WP Engine does things in a different way. Which difference can be rather made complex– especially if you have simply enough experience with hosting environments to be unsafe.
Their backend setup has improved. It’s cleaner, however it’s still custom. It’s nothing like a conventional cPanel hosting backend. Unlike numerous hosting companies, they likewise don’t offer DNS nameservers.
Even if all the functions are there, the unique backend can result in some developers making mistakes varying from annoying redirect loops to duplicate content issues to leaving the dev website open to the public or just not allowing the features you’re buying.
If it weren’t for amazing support, I think they ‘d lose more newbie customers than they already do.
Like numerous custom-made platforms, it makes sense once you get over the knowing curve. However WP Engine’s onboarding is very developer-focused & remains so exception-focused that they never explain best practice for the general user. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
Here is their video on pushing your website live –
I have actually set up my share of websites from platforms to custom-made hosts to cPanel hosting sites, however I had to enjoy that video numerous times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the best IP address.
Again, if you remain in WP Engine’s core markets, the custom backend isn’t going to be a huge deal (when you surpass the learning curve). But for most, you’ll likely get to discover very first hand about WP Engine’s support group.
But here’s the important things.
WP Engine never actually stops being quirky and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a wide variety of site lists to assist 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.
Again– they have reasons they do all this. And most of the times, support will simply take care of everything.
But, you still don’t get to set & forget your site. Sure, you don’t technically don’t have to get into the weeds of a server panel. In numerous hosting cases (ie, a managed VPS), you don’t have to do it anyway, when you do, the knobs and buttons are familiar. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
WP Engine’s proprietary setup cuts both ways in regards to lowering & increasing intricacy.
This con is also associated with WP Engine’s distinct setup. In order to run their architecture in addition to possible, all the installs on their platform need to be rather consistent.
They need to have foreseeable plugins; foreseeable visitor patterns; predictable use cases. Every hosting business has guidelines (or really genuine physical limits), but WP Engine goes a bit further to define exactly what you can and cannot have on your WordPress set up in addition to tiered overage pricing to prevent seasonal traffic spikes and local storage usage.
They do ban certain plugins & admin behavior for good reasons, but those bans limit flexibility and experimentation if your site might handle it.
For example, Yet Another Associated Post Plugin is a typical 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 available to experimentation compared to running a shared or VPS server.
The method their pricing is structured allows for less adaptability also. It’s a favorable that they will manage all the traffic you can send out, however it’s likewise costly to pay based upon a variety of visits.
If you are running a huge launch; are a seasonal business; or simply want to drive a rise of traffic to your site, you’ll need to aspect additional 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 site on a VPS server, you can handle a lot more traffic than WP Engine would permit on an Individual or Company. And this point goes further if your website requires many plugins for complete performance.
The very same goes for storage. With WP Engine, you are spending for performance, not for storage. So if you are planning to use a server for media storage … that utilize case is out.
Furthermore, you can’t actually do automatic email marketing campaigns from WP Engine. This was something that my client got called for & ended up having to do a painful migration to another e-mail provider mid-campaign.
In any case, that point segues into the last con I found with WP Engine, their pricing based on functions.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are normally spending for efficiency & not having to think too much about maintenance, security & speed. If you take a look at WP Engine’s pricing based on the features you’re getting, you really do not get a lot.
And if you are the type who will consider your site’s health anyhow (ie, keeping WordPress upgraded and typically visiting frequently), you’ll likely be paying for “management” that is unnecessary. Wp Engine Redirect Loop
Many shared hosting servers can handle the same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a portion of the cost. My individual site (running on a shared hosting plan from HostGator with fundamental caching) dealt with more than 15,000 sees in a 24 hour duration 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, however it can still be rather a surprise for “small” site owners how quickly they can enter the $290 monthly tier.
And as discussed previously that does not even consist of a lot of the features you do not get with WP Engine’s strategies. You can’t run any email from your servers. You have low limitations on local storage. Anything above the limits requires extra expenses & technical execution of Amazon cloud services.
And most significantly for me, you are limited on your installs. If you have a couple of side jobs or low-traffic test sites, you need to factor those into the rate. You can’t utilize them to expand the cost of your plan,specifically if you are striking your visitor cap rather than your set up cap.
If you are aiming to spend for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & provide your website files, WP Engine is a costly alternative, specifically compared with other non-managed hosting options.
Like any service, it’s not about what is finest overall, however what is best for you based upon your objectives, spending plan, resources & habits.
If you are in what I consider WP Engine’s core markets, they use an excellent service with a strong item. Their prices is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting space, and they provide more features than “WordPress hosting” plans from other hosting brand names. Their feature-set is unequaled for smart DIYers, WordPress website designers and/or high-traffic websites that don’t want to fret about hosting issues.
If handled hosting is a suitable 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. Make sure to chat w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your present host & desire more freedom/ better costs than WP Engine, have a look at InMotion Hosting’s VPS alternative. I have actually appreciated their balance of instinctive backend & responsive customer service.
And lastly, if you are more confused than ever, go take my WordPress hosting quiz. I put all these factors into an enjoyable, Buzzfeed-esque test to simplify things. Wp Engine Redirect Loop