WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
WP Engine is a Managed WordPress Hosting service based in Austin, TX. They were one of the (if not the) very first business to provide handled hosting services specifically for WordPress. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
While they have a lot of competition in both the general hosting and managed WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the marketplace leader in lots of ways -and they have broad name acknowledgment and cutting-edge features.
With the development of both self-hosted WordPress and website contractors, the hosting industry has ended up being a super-confusing location.
I wrote a whole post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. But here’s the short variation: They all differ in services offered. Some merely have WordPress-trained tech support. Some deal services such as server-side functions and staging for WordPress.
Then there’s a different level of handled WordPress Hosting where you are not truly purchasing hosting per se, but rather services to keep your WordPress install live. Generally, a Managed WordPress Hosting service uses a menu of services tailored to WordPress at a greater price point, so that the site owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the website material + functionality.
Every competitor in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a different offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of options, but as an entire, they all take on standard shared Linux hosting offerings and tailored WordPress hosting alternatives.
In either case, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s complicated, yes, however it is very important to comprehend prior to making apples to oranges comparisons.
There are a lot of WP Engine reviews online, generally with user-generated reviews based on anecdotes and personal experience. That’s great however I take a different 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 Technical Support Salary
I’ve utilized WP Engine for numerous projects since 2012. I do not use them for my main sites right now (see conclusion), however I do have an existing client on WP Engine who definitely loves them. Here’s my WP Engine evaluation structured as advantages and disadvantages.
Disclosure: I receive referral fees from any companies discussed. All data & viewpoint is based upon my experience as a paying client or specialist to a paying client.
Pros of WP Engine
To start, WP Engine does basically live up to its pitch on its homepage where they promise “sensational speed, powerful security, and best-in-class customer service.” 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 Technical Support Salary
Speed and Performance
There are a lot of variables that go into website speed, but the general rule is that the more complicated your site is, the more complicated the solutions to speed become.
From package, WordPress is relatively lean and quick. If you are running a mainly text website with a couple of basic plugins and a couple of little images, you’ll be fine with an affordable shared hosting strategy from somebody like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
However few website owners keep their WordPress install lean. There’s normally extra plugins, custom theme files, great deals of images, widgets, advertisements, kinds and more.
All these functions combined with good levels of traffic can start to slow down your WordPress set up.
However a slow site doesn’t indicate that you require a larger, much better server. It does indicate that you need to get smarter about speed. Sometimes it’s as easy as getting a more effective server, but sometimes it’s more about caching particular resources in a particular order and optimizing your files. In other words, it gets complex.
Imagine you are aiming to haul a trailer with a pickup truck. Imagine your trailer keeps getting heavier. It’s meaningless to keep complaining that your truck is not big enough when you might just have to remove the emergency brake, set up a turbocharger, revitalize the transmission fluid and combine your load.
The point is that WordPress needs help to remain fast as you grow. There are plenty of services … however either you or a designer need to implement them.
That’s where handled WordPress hosting is available in. WP Engine looks after (nearly) all speed issues. They have tailored servers with very aggressive caching as well as more advanced “stack” than a typical webhosting. They likewise have trained support who will go into your WordPress install and determine the precise chokepoint to obtain your website moving. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
They do not even permit caching plugins on their installs since they have actually such a tailored caching setup.
The fascinating thing is that even unoptimized WordPress installs still succeed 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 puffed up style, extra scripts, a lot of uncompressed images, among other things):
Note the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That measures how rapidly the server returned enough information to start loading the page.
It’s great to have that type of speed right out of the box, and have it remain that way no matter how huge or complex the website gets.
*Keep in mind that the other point here is that if you are consumed about speed, you can get back at better numbers with WP Engine than you might get with other services considering that you are free to concentrate on speed aspects that you can easily control like image compression, usage of scripts, and so on.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not only supplies an integrated CDN, however they also provide international data centers in case your audience is mainly in Asia and/or Europe. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
Consumer support has actually been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch given that they wased established. After all, they are actually selling more of a service (ie, handled hosting) than a product (ie, hosting). It makes good sense for them to put a big focus on support.
Here’s a screenshot from one of my first contacts with support back in 2012:
Look at the response|reaction|action} time, that wasn’t an autoresponder either.
Now, the business has actually grown & altered a lot since then. They went through a stretch where they were getting a great deal of criticism about over-promising on support.
That stated, the difficult feature of customer support is that so much of the judgment is anecdotal. Everybody has a story, however you never ever understand if the story is because they talked with 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 company deals with support as an investment or a cost.
I want to try to find gain access to, systems, and understanding, all 3 need a financial investment of money, time and know-how.
Based on my current interactions and research, they are doing far better striking all three boxes. They preserve a variety of support channels (including phone for non-Basic plans). They have a quick, trackable ticketing system and are available all over on the website via chat.
Based on their tutorial videos and comprehensive knowledgebase, they tick the understanding box. Every support that I or my client has communicated with really knew the great workings of WordPress and has actually had the ability to problem-solve on the fly.
The most impressive (yes, this is anecdotal, but still) experience was a three-way call between my client, myself and WP Engine throughout my customer’s shift to HTTPS/ SSL. The associate was not only able to get on (and remain on) the phone, however he had the ability to expertly help us “flip the switch” quickly in addition to looking after several problems (ie, uploading a non-HTTP sitemap and repairing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
I make certain that WP Engine still has support problems,particularly due to the fact that their custom platform puts a great deal of pressure on fast, available support (as I’ll display in the downsides). However they appear to know that support is core to their value and do make the needed investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the whole Web. That suggests that it is a prime target for hackers & malware suppliers.
But there is nothing naturally insecure about WordPress that is not a problem with all software. WordPress has the benefit of being open-source with a huge neighborhood releasing updates & testing vulnerabilities.
If you run your own WordPress set up, the security basics are fairly 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 2. It’s made by & powered by Automattic, the industrial arm of WordPress.
You’ll see that although security on WordPress is uncomplicated, the obligation is still on you to keep things secure. Similar to having a deadbolt does nothing if you don’t lock it, keeping your website safe and secure is still eventually on you.
And like speed & performance, WP Engine essentially takes all those best practices and does them for you. They run automated backups to keep everything off-site & ready to roll back if something takes place. Given that you technically have an “install” on their server (instead of an account), they take on a lot of security concerns worldwide on the server level.
WP Engine also works closely with leading security firms on code reviews in addition to running their own group. They also make the guarantee that if you’re hacked, they take care of it free of charge.
I personally have actually never ever been hacked on my main/ or secondary sites (knock on wood), but have actually assisted customers who have actually been. It’s aggravating, tiresome & an usually pricey scenario (even if you are utilizing a service like Sucuri). Having an expert security team look after your WordPress set up is a huge pro in my book. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not inexpensive. Their Startup strategy is $35/mo and consists of a single install and only up to 25,000 visits per month.
For benchmarking, you can get an effective, reliable VPS (ie, your very own not-shared server) for the very same cost from InMotion. And if you are just beginning with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting plan from Bluehost for just a couple dollars per month.
Both of which enable more storage & more check outs (ie, essentially as lots of as you can handle) than WP Engine. I’ve run sites that have had 60k visits per month on a shared server. I’ve likewise run dozens of small WordPress websites off a low cost shared hosting.
However I’ll cover that prices downside in the cons of WP Engine, however here’s the important things.
For some site owners, if you break out WP Engine by overall worth & consider your very own (or your developer’s) time, their prices is remarkable.
Simply running WordPress updates each month & QA’ing your installation can take around 30 minutes on a monthly basis. If your (or your dev’s) services are billed at $50 (or more)/ hour, then that’s WP Engine’s whole 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 entire regular monthly charge right there.
If you do a hot-fix (ie, you don’t use a staging area) on your PHP code, and knock your site down … then that might be WP Engine’s whole regular monthly charge right there.
Losing visitors due to speed problems or downtime costs lost income.
Additionally, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to mention any personal or developer time repairing concerns.
Generally, if your time is much better allocated far from technical problems, then WP Engine makes a great deal of sense on worth. As a managed WordPress hosting service, that’s truly their thing. Hosting services are a financial investment instead of a cost.
And that sort of value-based rates segues into another pro for WP Engine, their concentrate on their core markets. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
Like I stated at the beginning, WP Engine isn’t for everybody. There are 3 kinds of consumers that WP Engine appears 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 process, the first client type appears to be WordPress designers and designers who wish to focus on development & design without dealing with hosting upkeep, and have customers who have some budget plan. The designer/dev builds the website straight in WP Engine’s staging environment, launches the site, then hands the website over to their client.
The designer can assure their customer that WP Engine manages the hosting, security & speed. There’s little need for an ongoing fundamental website maintenance. For this market, WP Engine has intriguing tools consisting of staging, git push, website migration and transferable installs.
The 2nd consumer type is the growing site owner who is irritated at having to deal with technical growth headaches. They’ve outgrown their shared hosting and have to transfer to a much better host.
They’re likewise established enough that they have some spending plan for managed services. WP Engine has tools like the automated migration tool & customer support to make that procedure occur. The phone support is a key factor, specifically having the ability to “simply call WP Engine an have them fix it.”
The third consumer type is a startup website owner that has the spending plan and desires a long-lasting platform that they can grow with. They are comfy finding out WP Engine’s unique backend and plan on introducing a near-complete site all at once.
They do not have any prior practices or custom-mades brought over from previous hosts or sites. Once again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable features, clients, and support that they can make promises and supply support to win & keep this type of client.
With these types of customers, WP Engine understands how & where they are originating from, so many of the enhancements they make are concentrated on these markets (ie, the Git push functionality), rather than 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 actually worth calling out in this evaluation revision. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
WP Engine stands out not just on existing features however likewise on creating new, cutting-edge hosting features. Every variation of WordPress 4 has rolled out brand-new developer features that WP Engine has actually been able to integrate.
Even basic web development best practices have changed radically since I began observing the market *. WP Engine has actually developed tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ online marketer by trade. I understand adequate web advancement to integrate finest practices into implementation & jobs with designers.
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
Just like any service, WP Engine is not the best fit for everyone. There are a lot of WP Engine complaints around the Web. Some are anecdotal. Some are hyperbole (ie, SEOs grumbling about dev sites). And many are valid since they just aren’t a suitable for everyone. For all their awesomeness in some locations, they have some cons which keep them from being a good fit for some customers. I don’t use them for this website since I do not need a lot of their functions and I’m comfortable “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
All that stated, here are some of the bigger picture drawbacks of utilizing WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To attain the speed, security, and scale they promise, WP Engine does things differently. Which distinction can be quite complicated– specifically if you have just enough experience with hosting environments to be dangerous.
Their backend setup has gotten better. It’s cleaner, however it’s still custom-made. It’s absolutely nothing like a traditional cPanel hosting backend. Unlike numerous hosting business, they likewise do not provide DNS nameservers.
Even if all the features exist, the unique backend can result in some designers making mistakes ranging from annoying redirect loops to duplicate content problems to leaving the dev website available to the public or just not making it possible for the functions you’re buying.
If it weren’t for fantastic support, I think they ‘d lose more beginner clients than they already do.
Like numerous custom-made 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 describe best practice for the general user. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
Here is their video on pushing your site live –
I’ve set up my share of websites from platforms to custom hosts to cPanel hosting websites, but I had to view that video numerous times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the ideal IP address.
Again, if you remain in WP Engine’s core markets, the custom-made backend isn’t really going to be a huge deal (when you surpass the knowing curve). However for most, you’ll likely get to discover first hand about WP Engine’s support team.
However here’s the important things.
WP Engine never really stops being quirky and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a variety of website checklists to help troubleshoot 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.
Again– they have reasons they do all this. And in many cases, 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 need to get into the weeds of a server panel. In many hosting cases (ie, a handled VPS), you don’t have to do it anyway, when you do, the knobs and buttons recognize. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
WP Engine’s exclusive setup cuts both ways in terms of reducing & increasing intricacy.
This con is also related to WP Engine’s special setup. In order to run their architecture in addition to possible, all the installs on their platform need to be somewhat consistent.
They have to have foreseeable plugins; foreseeable visitor patterns; predictable usage cases. Every hosting company has guidelines (or extremely real physical limitations), but WP Engine goes a bit more 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 local storage use.
They do ban particular plugins & admin habits for great reasons, however those bans restrict flexibility and experimentation if your website might handle it.
For instance, Yet Another Associated Post Plugin is a common plugin. It’s resource extensive, however on smaller websites, it gets the job done well. It’s not enabled on WP Engine. That’s bad or bad necessarily. But it does make WP Engine less flexible and open up to experimentation compared with running a shared or VPS server.
The method their pricing is structured allows for less flexibility as well. It’s a favorable that they will deal with all the traffic you can send, however it’s likewise pricey to pay based on a variety of sees.
If you are running a huge launch; are a seasonal company; or just want to drive a rise of traffic to your site, you’ll need to factor additional hosting bills 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 manage a lot more traffic than WP Engine would permit on an Individual or Business. And this point goes even more if your site requires lots of plugins for complete functionality.
The exact same opts for storage. With WP Engine, you are paying for efficiency, not for storage. So if you are seeking to use a server for media storage … that use case is out.
Furthermore, you cannot truly do automated email marketing projects from WP Engine. This was something that my customer got called for & ended up needing to do an uncomfortable migration to another email supplier mid-campaign.
In any case, that point segues into the last con I found with WP Engine, their pricing based upon functions.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are typically paying for performance & not needing to think too much about maintenance, security & speed. If you take a look at WP Engine’s pricing based upon the functions you’re getting, you actually don’t get a lot.
And if you are the type who will think of your website’s health anyhow (ie, keeping WordPress updated and usually logging in often), you’ll likely be spending for “management” that is unnecessary. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary
Numerous shared hosting servers can deal with the same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a fraction of the cost. My individual site (working on a shared hosting strategy from HostGator with fundamental caching) dealt with 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 certainly manage a lot more for much less.
They are fairly transparent about how they count gos to, but it can still be rather a surprise for “small” website owners how rapidly they can get into the $290 each month tier.
And as mentioned earlier that doesn’t even consist of a number of the features you do not get with WP Engine’s plans. You cannot run any email from your servers. You have low limitations on local storage. Anything above the limits requires additional costs & technical implementation of Amazon cloud services.
And most notably for me, you are limited on your installs. If you have a couple of side tasks or low-traffic test sites, you need to factor those into the cost. You can’t use them to spread out the expense of your strategy,especially if you are striking your visitor cap rather than your install cap.
If you are looking to pay for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & provide your website files, WP Engine is a pricey option, particularly compared with other non-managed hosting choices.
Like any service, it’s not about exactly what is finest overall, but what is best for you based on your objectives, spending plan, resources & routines.
If you remain in exactly what I think of as WP Engine’s core markets, they use a great service with a strong item. Their prices is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting area, and they use more features than “WordPress hosting” strategies from other hosting brand names. Their feature-set is unrivaled for smart DIYers, WordPress website designers and/or high-traffic sites that don’t want to stress over hosting problems.
If managed hosting is a suitable for you, then go have a look at WP Engine’s strategies here.
They do a 60-day money-back assurance. So do a test install and see exactly what you think of their backend. Make sure to talk w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your current host & want more freedom/ better prices than WP Engine, check out InMotion Hosting’s VPS option. I’ve valued their balance of instinctive backend & responsive customer service.
And finally, if you are more baffled than ever, go take my WordPress hosting test. I put all these factors into a fun, Buzzfeed-esque test to streamline things. Wp Engine Technical Support Salary