WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wpengine Promo Code
WP Engine is a Managed WordPress Hosting service based in Austin, TX. They were one of the (if not the) very first companies to supply handled hosting services particularly for WordPress. Wpengine Promo Code
While they have plenty of competitors in both the general hosting and handled WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the market leader in lots of ways -and they have broad name recognition and advanced features.
With the growth of both self-hosted WordPress and website home builders, the hosting market has ended up being a super-confusing location.
I composed an entire post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. However here’s the short variation: They all vary in services supplied. Some just have WordPress-trained tech support. Some deal 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 truly buying hosting per se, however rather services to keep your WordPress set up live. Essentially, a Managed WordPress Hosting service uses a menu of services customized to WordPress at a higher cost point, so that the site owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the website material + functionality.
Every rival in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a various offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of choices, but as a whole, they all compete with conventional shared Linux hosting offerings and tailored WordPress hosting alternatives.
Either way, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s complicated, yes, but it’s important to understand prior to making apples to oranges contrasts.
There are a lot of WP Engine examines online, generally with user-generated evaluations based upon anecdotes and personal experience. That’s fine however 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. Wpengine Promo Code
I have actually utilized WP Engine for various jobs given that 2012. I do not use them for my primary sites today (see conclusion), however I do have a present customer on WP Engine who definitely enjoys them. Here’s my WP Engine evaluation structured as pros and cons.
Disclosure: I get referral fees from any business pointed out. All information & viewpoint is based on my experience as a paying consumer 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 guarantee “sensational speed, effective security, and best-in-class customer service.” 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. Wpengine Promo Code
Speed and Performance
There are a great deal of variables that go into site speed, however the rule of thumb is that the more complex your website is, the more complex the options to speed ended up being.
Out of package, WordPress is relatively lean and fast. If you are running a mostly text site with a couple of fundamental plugins and a couple of little images, you’ll be fine with a budget friendly shared hosting strategy from someone like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
But few site owners keep their WordPress set up lean. There’s generally extra plugins, custom-made theme files, lots of images, widgets, ads, types and more.
All these features combined with decent levels of traffic can start to decrease your WordPress set up.
However a slow site does not mean that you need a larger, better server. It does imply that you need to get smarter about speed. Often it’s as simple as getting a more effective server, but often it’s more about caching particular resources in a specific order and enhancing your files. In other words, it gets complex.
Imagine you are attempting to haul a trailer with a pickup truck. Envision your trailer keeps getting heavier. It’s pointless to keep complaining that your truck is not big enough when you may simply need to get rid of the emergency brake, install a turbocharger, refresh the transmission fluid and consolidate your load.
The point is that WordPress requires aid to stay fast as you grow. There are plenty of services … however either you or a designer must implement them.
That’s where handled WordPress hosting is available in. WP Engine looks after (nearly) all speed issues. They have tailored servers with incredibly aggressive caching and even advanced “stack” than a common webhosting. They likewise have trained support who will go into your WordPress set up and determine the precise chokepoint to get your website moving. Wpengine Promo Code
They don’t even permit caching plugins on their installs since they have actually such a tailored caching setup.
The intriguing thing is that even unoptimized WordPress sets up still succeed on their platform since their platform does the extra work.
Here’s the speed test for one of my customers on WP Engine (who has a puffed up style, extra scripts, a lot of uncompressed images, to name a few things):
Note the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That measures how rapidly the server returned enough information to begin loading the page.
It’s nice to have that kind of speed right out of package, and have it remain that method no matter how big or intricate the site gets.
*Keep in mind that the other point here is that if you are consumed about speed, you can get even much better numbers with WP Engine than you may get with other services because you are complimentary to focus on speed factors that you can quickly control like image compression, usage of scripts, and so on.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not just supplies an incorporated CDN, but they also supply international information centers in case your audience is mostly in Asia and/or Europe. Wpengine Promo Code
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wpengine Promo Code
Client support has actually been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch given that they wased established. After all, they are truly selling more of a service (ie, handled hosting) than a product (ie, hosting). It makes sense for them to put a big emphasis on support.
Here’s a screenshot from one of 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 grown & altered a lot since then. They went through a stretch where they were getting a lot of criticism about over-promising on support.
That said, the tough feature of customer support is that so much of the judgment is anecdotal. Everyone has a story, however you never understand if the story is due to the fact that 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 business deals with support as an investment or an expense.
I prefer to look for access, systems, and understanding, all three require an investment of money, time and know-how.
Based upon my recent interactions and research study, they are doing far better hitting all three boxes. They maintain a range of support channels (consisting of phone for non-Basic plans). They have a quickly, trackable ticketing system and are available all over on the site via chat.
Based on their tutorial videos and extensive knowledgebase, they tick the knowledge box. Every support that I or my client has communicated with really knew the great operations of WordPress and has actually been able to problem-solve on the fly.
The most excellent (yes, this is anecdotal, however still) experience was a three-way call between my client, myself and WP Engine throughout my client’s transition to HTTPS/ SSL. The rep was not just able to get on (and remain on) the phone, but he was able to expertly assist us “turn the switch” rapidly in addition to looking after numerous problems (ie, uploading a non-HTTP sitemap and fixing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wpengine Promo Code
I make sure that WP Engine still has support issues,particularly because their custom-made platform puts a lot of pressure on fast, available support (as I’ll display in the drawbacks). However they appear to understand that support is core to their worth and do make the needed investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the entire Internet. That suggests that it is a prime target for hackers & malware suppliers.
However there is absolutely nothing inherently insecure about WordPress that is not a problem with all software. WordPress has the upside of being open-source with a large community launching updates & screening vulnerabilities.
If you run your own WordPress install, the security fundamentals are fairly uncomplicated:
- 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 two. It’s made by & powered by Automattic, the commercial arm of WordPress.
You’ll discover that despite the fact that security on WordPress is straightforward, the obligation is still on you to keep things protect. Similar to having a deadbolt not does anything if you do not lock it, keeping your website protected is still ultimately 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 takes place. Since you technically have an “install” on their server (instead of an account), they deal with a lot of security issues internationally on the server level.
WP Engine also works carefully with top security firms on code evaluations in addition to running their own team. They likewise make the warranty that if you’re hacked, they take care of it totally free.
I personally have actually never ever been hacked on my primary/ or secondary websites (knock on wood), but have actually assisted customers who have actually been. It’s aggravating, laborious & a typically costly circumstance (even if you are using a service like Sucuri). Having an expert security team take care of your WordPress set up is a huge pro in my book. Wpengine Promo Code
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 a powerful, trusted VPS (ie, your own not-shared server) for the exact same price from InMotion. And if you are simply beginning with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting plan from Bluehost for simply a couple dollars each month.
Both which allow for more storage & more sees (ie, essentially as many as you can manage) than WP Engine. I have actually run sites that have had 60k sees each month on a shared server. I’ve likewise run dozens of little WordPress sites off a low cost shared hosting.
But I’ll cover that rates downside in the cons of WP Engine, however here’s the important things.
For some website owners, if you break out WP Engine by overall value & consider your very own (or your designer’s) time, their pricing is incredible.
Just running WordPress updates every month & QA’ing your setup can take around Thirty Minutes monthly. If your (or your dev’s) services are billed at $50 (or more)/ hour, then that’s WP Engine’s whole month-to-month cost right there.
If you lose any visits due to downtime from a bad plugin update, then that might be WP Engine’s entire month-to-month cost right there.
If you do a hot-fix (ie, you do not utilize a staging area) on your PHP code, and knock your website down … then that could be WP Engine’s entire monthly fee right there.
Losing visitors due to speed problems or downtime costs lost income.
Additionally, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to point out any individual or developer time fixing issues.
Essentially, if your time is much better assigned far from technical issues, then WP Engine makes a great deal of sense on worth. As a handled WordPress hosting service, that’s actually their thing. Hosting services are a financial investment instead of a cost.
Which sort of value-based pricing segues into another pro for WP Engine, their focus on their core markets. Wpengine Promo Code
Like I stated at the start, WP Engine isn’t for everyone. There are 3 kinds of consumers that WP Engine appears to be a fit for. For those 3 types of consumers, WP Engine has a strong focus with plenty of tools & focus for each.
From their backend procedure, the very first client type seems to be WordPress developers and designers who want to focus on development & style without dealing with hosting upkeep, and have clients who have some spending plan. The designer/dev builds the website directly in WP Engine’s staging environment, introduces the site, 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 fundamental website upkeep. For this market, WP Engine has interesting tools including staging, git push, website migration and transferable installs.
The 2nd customer type is the growing website owner who is annoyed at having to deal with technical growth headaches. They have actually outgrown their shared hosting and have to move to a much better host.
They’re also developed enough that they have some budget for handled services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & client support to make that procedure occur. The phone support is a key element, specifically having the ability to “just call WP Engine an have them fix it.”
The 3rd customer type is a start-up site owner that has the spending plan and desires a long-term platform that they can grow with. They are comfy finding out WP Engine’s special backend and intend on introducing a near-complete site at one time.
They do not have any previous habits or customizeds brought over from previous hosts or websites. Once again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable functions, clients, and support that they can make pledges and provide support to win & keep this kind of client.
With these types of consumers, WP Engine understands how & where they are originating from, many of the improvements they make are concentrated on these markets (ie, the Git push functionality), instead of mass-market enhancements like knowledge-bases, user-friendly backend, and so on.
This benefit resembles WP Engine’s market focus, however it’s really worth calling out in this review revision. Wpengine Promo Code
WP Engine stands out not only on present functions however likewise on creating new, advanced hosting functions. Every variation of WordPress 4 has actually presented brand-new designer functions that WP Engine has been able to incorporate.
Even general web development best practices have altered significantly considering that I began observing the market *. WP Engine has actually produced tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ marketer by trade. I know adequate web development to incorporate finest practices into execution & jobs with designers.
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
Similar to any service, WP Engine is not the best suitable for everyone. There are a lot of WP Engine problems around the Internet. Some are anecdotal. Some are embellishment (ie, SEOs complaining about dev websites). And lots of are valid due to the fact that they merely aren’t a suitable for everyone. For all their awesomeness in some locations, they have some cons which keep them from being a great fit for some clients. I don’t utilize them for this website because I do not need a number of their functions and I’m comfy “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wpengine Promo Code
All that said, here are some of the bigger picture disadvantages of utilizing WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To achieve the speed, security, and scale they guarantee, WP Engine does things differently. And that distinction can be quite complicated– specifically if you have simply adequate experience with hosting environments to be harmful.
Their backend setup has gotten better. It’s cleaner, but it’s still custom. It’s nothing like a conventional cPanel hosting backend. Unlike lots of hosting companies, they likewise do not supply DNS nameservers.
Even if all the functions are there, the special backend can lead to some developers making errors ranging from frustrating redirect loops to duplicate content problems to leaving the dev website available to the public or merely not allowing the features you’re buying.
If it weren’t for incredible support, I think they ‘d lose more novice customers than they already do.
Like lots of custom-made platforms, it makes good sense once you get over the knowing curve. But WP Engine’s onboarding is really developer-focused & remains so exception-focused that they never ever describe finest practice for the general user. Wpengine Promo Code
Here is their video on pushing your site live –
I’ve set up my share of websites from platforms to customized hosts to cPanel hosting sites, but I needed to watch that video multiple times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the best IP address.
Again, if you are in WP Engine’s core markets, the customized backend isn’t going to be a huge deal (when you get past the learning curve). However for most, you’ll likely get to discover first hand about WP Engine’s support group.
But here’s the thing.
WP Engine never actually stops being wacky and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a myriad of website checklists to help troubleshoot all sorts of problems.
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 why they do all this. And in many cases, support will just look after everything.
However, you still don’t get to set & forget your website. Sure, you don’t technically do not need to enter into the weeds of a server panel. In numerous hosting cases (ie, a handled VPS), you don’t need to do it anyway, and when you do, the knobs and buttons recognize. Wpengine Promo Code
WP Engine’s exclusive setup cuts both methods terms of lowering & increasing intricacy.
This con is also related to 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 uniform.
They have to have foreseeable plugins; predictable visitor patterns; foreseeable use cases. Every hosting business has rules (or really genuine physical limitations), however WP Engine goes a bit additional to specify what you can and cannot have on your WordPress set up in addition to tiered overage rates to prevent seasonal traffic spikes and regional storage use.
They do ban specific plugins & admin behavior for great factors, but those bans restrict versatility and experimentation if your site might handle it.
For instance, Yet Another Associated Post Plugin is a common plugin. It’s resource intensive, but on smaller websites, it does the job well. It’s not enabled on WP Engine. That’s not good or bad always. However it does make WP Engine less flexible and open up to experimentation compared to running a shared or VPS server.
The method their pricing is structured permits less versatility as well. It’s a positive that they will deal with all the traffic you can send, but it’s likewise pricey to pay based on a number of sees.
If you are running a huge launch; are a seasonal service; or just wish to drive a surge of traffic to your website, you’ll need to aspect extra hosting expenses into the mix. That puts a cap on how flexible 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 a Personal or Service. And this point goes even more if your website needs numerous plugins for full functionality.
The very same chooses storage. With WP Engine, you are paying for efficiency, not for storage. So if you are looking to use a server for media storage … that use case is out.
Additionally, you cannot truly do automatic e-mail marketing campaigns from WP Engine. This was something that my client got required & wound up needing to do a painful migration to another email service provider mid-campaign.
Either way, that point segues into the last con I found with WP Engine, their prices based on features.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are normally spending for performance & not having to believe too much about maintenance, security & speed. If you look at WP Engine’s pricing based on the features you’re getting, you truly don’t get a whole lot.
And if you are the type who will think of your site’s health anyhow (ie, keeping WordPress updated and generally logging in regularly), you’ll likely be paying for “management” that is superfluous. Wpengine Promo Code
Many shared hosting servers can manage the very same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a fraction of the cost. My individual site (running on a shared hosting strategy from HostGator with fundamental caching) managed more than 15,000 visits in a 24 hour duration when a post of mine went viral.
And if you are running a trustworthy VPS, you can definitely handle a lot more for much less.
They are relatively transparent about how they count check outs, however it can still be rather a surprise for “small” website owners how quickly they can enter the $290 per month tier.
And as pointed out previously that doesn’t even include a number of the features you do not get with WP Engine’s strategies. You cannot run any e-mail from your servers. You have low limits on regional storage. Anything above the limitations needs extra expenses & technical implementation of Amazon cloud services.
And most significantly for me, you are limited on your installs. If you have a few side jobs or low-traffic test websites, you need to factor those into the rate. You can’t utilize them to expand the cost of your strategy,especially if you are striking your visitor cap instead of your install cap.
If you are seeking to pay for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & dish out your website files, WP Engine is a pricey alternative, particularly compared with other non-managed hosting options.
Like any service, it’s not about what is finest total, however what is best for you based on your objectives, budget, resources & routines.
If you remain in exactly what I consider WP Engine’s core markets, they provide an excellent service with a strong product. Their rates is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting space, and they use more functions than “WordPress hosting” plans from other hosting brands. Their feature-set is unequaled for savvy DIYers, WordPress website designers and/or high-traffic websites that do not wish to stress over hosting problems.
If handled hosting is a fit 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 what you think about their backend. Make sure to talk w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your present host & want more freedom/ better prices than WP Engine, check out InMotion Hosting’s VPS option. I have actually valued their balance of intuitive backend & responsive customer care.
And last but not least, if you are more confused than ever, go take my WordPress hosting quiz. I put all these elements into an enjoyable, Buzzfeed-esque quiz to streamline things. Wpengine Promo Code