WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wp Engine Down
While they have a lot of competition in both the basic hosting and managed WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the marketplace leader in numerous methods -and they have broad name acknowledgment and innovative features.
With the development of both self-hosted WordPress and site builders, the hosting market has ended up being a super-confusing place.
I composed an entire post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. But here’s the brief variation: They all differ in services supplied. Some just have WordPress-trained tech support. Some deal services such as server-side features and staging for WordPress.
And after that there’s a separate level of managed WordPress Hosting where you are not really purchasing hosting per se, however rather services to keep your WordPress install live. Generally, 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 material + performance.
Every rival in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a different offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of alternatives, however as a whole, they all take on conventional shared Linux hosting offerings and tailored WordPress hosting alternatives.
Either way, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s confusing, yes, however it is very important to comprehend before making apples to oranges comparisons.
There are a lot of WP Engine examines online, generally with user-generated reviews based on anecdotes and individual experience. That’s fine but I take a different method. This evaluation will look at the pros + cons of WP Engine in the context of all webhosting options to see who it is a “best fit” for. Wp Engine Down
I’ve utilized WP Engine for various tasks because 2012. I don’t use them for my main sites today (see conclusion), however I do have a current customer on WP Engine who absolutely likes them. Here’s my WP Engine review structured as pros and cons.
Disclosure: I get referral fees from any business discussed. All information & viewpoint is based on my experience as a paying customer 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 “stunning speed, powerful security, and best-in-class customer support.” Here is their promotion pitch video:
They primarily target websites that are moving from other hosting companies (ie, customers dissatisfied with current hosting).
Here are some of the big advantages that I’ve seen as a customer & consultant to a customer. Wp Engine Down
Speed and Performance
There are a great deal of variables that enter into website speed, but the rule of thumb is that the more intricate your website is, the more complicated the services to speed ended up being.
From package, WordPress is relatively lean and fast. If you are running a primarily text site with a few basic plugins and a few little images, you’ll be fine with a budget-friendly shared hosting plan from somebody like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
But few website owners keep their WordPress set up lean. There’s usually extra plugins, customized theme files, lots of images, widgets, ads, kinds and more.
All these features combined with decent levels of traffic can start to slow down your WordPress install.
However a sluggish site does not suggest that you need a larger, better server. It does suggest that you need to get smarter about speed. Often it’s as easy as getting a more powerful server, but often it’s more about caching specific resources in a specific order and optimizing your files. In other words, it gets complex.
Imagine you are aiming to transport 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 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 remain quickly as you grow. There are a lot of solutions … however either you or a designer should execute them.
That’s where managed WordPress hosting is available in. WP Engine takes care of (nearly) all speed issues. They have actually customized servers with very aggressive caching and even more advanced “stack” than a normal webhosting. They likewise have trained support who will go into your WordPress install and identify the exact chokepoint to obtain your website moving. Wp Engine Down
They do not even allow caching plugins on their installs due to the fact that they have actually such a customized caching setup.
The fascinating 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 among my customers on WP Engine (who has a bloated theme, additional scripts, a lot of uncompressed images, to name a few things):
Note the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That determines how rapidly the server returned enough information to start loading the page.
It’s great to have that kind of speed right from package, and have it stay that way no matter how huge or complex the site 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 may get with other services given that you are complimentary to focus on speed aspects that you can quickly control like image compression, usage of scripts, and so on.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not just provides an integrated CDN, but they also offer global data centers in case your audience is mostly in Asia and/or Europe. Wp Engine Down
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wp Engine Down
Consumer support has actually been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch because they wased established. After all, they are actually selling more of a service (ie, managed hosting) than an item (ie, hosting). It makes good sense for them to position a big emphasis 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 company has grown & changed a lot since then. They went through a stretch where they were getting a lot of criticism about over-promising on support.
That said, the tough feature of customer support is that a lot of the judgment is anecdotal. Everybody has a story, but you never know if the story is because they spoke with the one rockstar-vs-rookie having an awesome-vs-terrible day. Like I point out in every hosting review, the fundamental part is to see if a business treats support as an investment or an expense.
I want to search for access, systems, and knowledge, all three require a financial investment of loan, time and expertise.
Based upon my recent interactions and research study, they are doing far better striking all 3 boxes. They keep a variety of support channels (including phone for non-Basic strategies). They have a quickly, trackable ticketing system and are available all over on the site by means of chat.
Based on their tutorial videos and extensive knowledgebase, they tick the knowledge box. Every support that I or my client has connected with really understood the fine functions of WordPress and has had the ability to problem-solve on the fly.
The most impressive (yes, this is anecdotal, however still) experience was a three-way call in between my client, myself and WP Engine during my client’s shift to HTTPS/ SSL. The rep was not only able to get on (and stay on) the phone, but he had the ability to adeptly help us “turn the switch” rapidly in addition to looking after several issues (ie, submitting a non-HTTP sitemap and repairing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wp Engine Down
I make sure that WP Engine still has support problems,especially since their customized platform puts a great deal of pressure on fast, accessible support (as I’ll display in the drawbacks). But they appear to know that support is core to their value and do make the needed financial investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the entire Web. That indicates that it is a prime target for hackers & malware suppliers.
However there is absolutely nothing inherently insecure about WordPress that is not a concern with all software. WordPress has the upside of being open-source with a huge community releasing updates & screening vulnerabilities.
If you run your very own WordPress install, the security essentials 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 use JetPack for the last two. It’s made by & powered by Automattic, the industrial arm of WordPress.
You’ll observe that even though security on WordPress is uncomplicated, the responsibility is still on you to keep things protect. Just like having a deadbolt does nothing if you don’t lock it, keeping your site secure is still eventually on you.
And like speed & performance, WP Engine generally takes all those best practices and does them for you. They run automated backups to keep whatever off-site & all set to roll back if something occurs. Because you technically have an “set up” on their server (rather than an account), they take on a great deal of security concerns internationally on the server level.
WP Engine likewise works closely with leading security companies on code reviews in addition to running their own team. They likewise make the guarantee that if you’re hacked, they look after it free of charge.
I personally have actually never ever been hacked on my primary/ or secondary websites (knock on wood), however have helped customers who have been. It’s frustrating, tedious & a typically costly circumstance (even if you are utilizing a service like Sucuri). Having a professional security team take care of your WordPress set up is a big pro in my book. Wp Engine Down
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not low-cost. Their Startup strategy is $35/mo and consists of a single install and just approximately 25,000 visits per month.
For benchmarking, you can get an effective, dependable VPS (ie, your very own not-shared server) for the very same price from InMotion. And if you are simply starting with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting strategy from Bluehost for just a couple dollars each month.
Both of which permit more storage & more check outs (ie, basically 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’ve likewise run dozens of small WordPress sites off a low expense shared hosting.
However I’ll cover that pricing downside in the cons of WP Engine, but here’s the thing.
For some site owners, if you break out WP Engine by total value & consider your own (or your designer’s) time, their prices is incredible.
Just running WordPress updates on a monthly basis & QA’ing your installation can take around Thirty Minutes every month. If your (or your dev’s) services are billed at $50 (or more)/ hour, then that’s WP Engine’s whole monthly charge right there.
If you lose any visits due to downtime from a bad plugin update, then that could be WP Engine’s entire regular monthly cost right there.
If you do a hot-fix (ie, you do not utilize a staging location) on your PHP code, and knock your site down … then that could be WP Engine’s entire monthly cost right there.
Losing visitors due to speed problems or downtime costs lost earnings.
In addition, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to mention any individual or developer time fixing issues.
Essentially, if your time is better designated away from technical issues, then WP Engine makes a lot of sense on worth. As a managed WordPress hosting service, that’s actually their thing. Hosting services are an investment instead of an expense.
Which sort of value-based rates segues into another pro for WP Engine, their concentrate on their core markets. Wp Engine Down
Like I said at the start, WP Engine isn’t really for everyone. There are 3 kinds of customers that WP Engine seems to be a suitable for. For those 3 kinds of consumers, WP Engine has a strong focus with lots of tools & focus for each.
From their backend procedure, the first consumer type appears to be WordPress designers and designers who wish to concentrate on advancement & style without dealing with hosting upkeep, and have customers who have some budget plan. The designer/dev builds the site straight in WP Engine’s staging environment, launches the site, then hands the website over to their client.
The designer can ensure their customer that WP Engine handles the hosting, security & speed. There’s little need for a continuous basic site maintenance. For this market, WP Engine has interesting tools consisting of staging, git push, site migration and transferable installs.
The second customer type is the growing website owner who is irritated at needing to handle technical growth headaches. They have actually outgrown their shared hosting and need to move to a better host.
They’re also developed enough that they have some budget plan for managed services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & consumer support to make that procedure occur. The phone support is a key aspect, particularly having the ability to “simply call WP Engine an have them repair it.”
The 3rd consumer type is a start-up website owner that has the spending plan and wants a long-lasting platform that they can grow with. They are comfortable finding out WP Engine’s distinct backend and intend on launching a near-complete site at one time.
They do not have any prior practices or customizeds brought over from previous hosts or websites. Again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable features, consumers, and support that they can make guarantees and offer support to win & keep this kind of consumer.
With these kinds of clients, WP Engine knows how & where they are originating from, a lot of of the improvements they make are focused on these markets (ie, the Git push functionality), instead of mass-market enhancements like knowledge-bases, user-friendly backend, and so on.
This advantage resembles WP Engine’s market focus, but it’s actually worth calling out in this review revision. Wp Engine Down
WP Engine excels not just on current functions but likewise on creating new, cutting-edge hosting features. Every version of WordPress 4 has actually rolled out brand-new designer features that WP Engine has actually had the ability to integrate.
Even general web advancement finest practices have actually changed drastically because I began observing the industry *. WP Engine has produced tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ online marketer by trade. I understand sufficient web development to integrate finest practices into implementation & jobs 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 very best fit for everyone. There are lots of WP Engine grievances around the Internet. Some are anecdotal. Some are hyperbole (ie, SEOs grumbling about dev sites). And numerous are valid since they simply aren’t a suitable for everyone. For all their awesomeness in some areas, they have some cons which keep them from being a good fit for some customers. I don’t use them for this website because I do not require many of their features and I’m comfortable “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wp Engine Down
All that stated, here are a few of the bigger picture disadvantages of utilizing WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To accomplish the speed, security, and scale they assure, WP Engine does things in a different way. Which distinction can be quite complicated– especially if you have simply enough experience with hosting environments to be hazardous.
Their backend setup has actually improved. It’s cleaner, however it’s still custom. It’s nothing like a conventional cPanel hosting backend. Unlike lots of hosting companies, they likewise don’t provide DNS nameservers.
Even if all the functions are there, the special backend can result in some developers making errors ranging from frustrating redirect loops to duplicate content problems to leaving the dev website open up to the public or simply not allowing the features you’re buying.
If it weren’t for amazing support, I believe they ‘d lose more beginner customers than they currently do.
Like many custom platforms, it makes sense once you get over the knowing curve. However WP Engine’s onboarding is very developer-focused & stays so exception-focused that they never ever explain best practice for the basic user. Wp Engine Down
Here is their video on pushing your website live –
I’ve set up my share of websites from platforms to customized hosts to cPanel hosting sites, however I needed to watch that video several times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the right IP address.
Again, if you are in WP Engine’s core markets, the custom-made backend isn’t going to be a big offer (when you surpass the knowing curve). However for many, you’ll likely get to learn first hand about WP Engine’s support team.
However here’s the thing.
WP Engine never ever actually stops being eccentric and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a plethora of site checklists to assist repair all sorts of issues.
And ” if you did not setup your DNS exactly how they’ve recommended ” your site could go down at any time.
Again– they have reasons that they do all this. And in most cases, support will simply look after everything.
However, you still don’t get to set & forget your website. Sure, you don’t technically don’t have to get into the weeds of a server panel. In lots of hosting cases (ie, a managed VPS), you do not need to do it anyway, when you do, the knobs and buttons are familiar. Wp Engine Down
WP Engine’s proprietary setup cuts both ways in regards to decreasing & increasing complexity.
This con is also related to WP Engine’s unique setup. In order to run their architecture in addition to possible, all the installs on their platform need to be rather consistent.
They have to have foreseeable plugins; foreseeable visitor patterns; foreseeable usage cases. Every hosting company has guidelines (or really real physical limitations), but WP Engine goes a bit additional to specify exactly what you can and cannot have on your WordPress install in addition to tiered overage pricing to prevent seasonal traffic spikes and local storage use.
They do ban certain plugins & admin habits for excellent factors, however those bans limit versatility and experimentation if your website might handle it.
For example, Yet Another Related Post Plugin is a typical plugin. It’s resource intensive, however on smaller sized websites, it does the job well. It’s not enabled on WP Engine. That’s bad or bad always. However it does make WP Engine less versatile and open to experimentation compared with running a shared or VPS server.
The way their rates is structured allows for less versatility too. It’s a favorable that they will handle all the traffic you can send out, however it’s likewise costly to pay based upon a number of sees.
If you are running a big launch; are a seasonal organisation; or just want to drive a surge of traffic to your website, you’ll need to element 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 website on a VPS server, you can deal with a lot more traffic than WP Engine would allow on an Individual or Organisation. And this point goes even more if your website requires many plugins for full performance.
The very same chooses storage. With WP Engine, you are paying for efficiency, not for storage. So if you are aiming to use a server for media storage … that utilize case is out.
Additionally, you cannot actually do automated e-mail marketing projects from WP Engine. This was something that my customer got called for & wound up needing to do a painful migration to another e-mail service provider mid-campaign.
Either way, that point segues into the last con I discovered with WP Engine, their rates based on features.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are generally spending for performance & not needing to believe excessive about upkeep, security & speed. If you look at WP Engine’s rates based on 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 logging in regularly), you’ll likely be spending for “management” that is unneeded. Wp Engine Down
Lots of shared hosting servers can deal with the same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a fraction of the cost. My individual site (running on a shared hosting plan from HostGator with fundamental caching) dealt with more than 15,000 visits in a 24 Hr duration when a post of mine went viral.
And if you are running a trusted VPS, you can definitely handle a lot more for much less.
They are relatively transparent about how they count gos to, but it can still be quite a surprise for “small” site owners how rapidly they can enter the $290 each month tier.
And as discussed previously that does not even consist of a number of the functions you don’t get with WP Engine’s plans. You cannot run any email from your servers. You have low limits on local storage. Anything above the limitations needs extra expenses & technical execution of Amazon cloud services.
And most importantly for me, you are restricted on your installs. If you have a couple of side tasks or low-traffic test sites, you need to factor those into the rate. You cannot utilize them to spread out the cost of your strategy,especially if you are hitting your visitor cap instead of your set up cap.
If you are seeking to spend for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & dish out your site files, WP Engine is a pricey choice, particularly compared with other non-managed hosting options.
Like any service, it’s not about exactly what is finest general, however exactly what is finest for you based on your objectives, budget plan, resources & routines.
If you are in exactly what I consider WP Engine’s core markets, they provide an excellent service with a strong item. Their prices is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting space, and they use more features than “WordPress hosting” strategies from other hosting brands. Their feature-set is unmatched for savvy DIYers, WordPress site developers and/or high-traffic websites that do not wish to worry about hosting problems.
If managed hosting is a fit for you, then go check out WP Engine’s strategies here.
They do a 60-day money-back guarantee. So do a test install and see exactly what you think about their backend. Be sure to talk w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your current host & want more freedom/ better rates than WP Engine, check out InMotion Hosting’s VPS option. I have actually appreciated their balance of user-friendly backend & responsive customer support.
And lastly, if you are more confused than ever, go take my WordPress hosting test. I put all these factors into an enjoyable, Buzzfeed-esque quiz to simplify things. Wp Engine Down