WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wp Engine Job Reviews
WP Engine is a Managed WordPress Hosting service based in Austin, TX. They were one of the (if not the) first companies to provide managed hosting services specifically for WordPress. Wp Engine Job Reviews
While they have a lot of competition in both the basic hosting and managed WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the marketplace leader in many ways -and they have broad name recognition and cutting-edge features.
With the development of both self-hosted WordPress and website home 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 variation: They all vary in services supplied. Some merely have WordPress-trained tech support. Some offer services such as server-side features and staging for WordPress.
And after that there’s a different level of handled WordPress Hosting where you are not actually buying hosting per se, but 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 rate point, so that the website 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 a whole, they all take on traditional shared Linux hosting offerings and personalized WordPress hosting choices.
In either case, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s confusing, yes, but it is essential to comprehend prior to making apples to oranges comparisons.
There are a lot of WP Engine reviews online, normally with user-generated reviews based on anecdotes and personal experience. That’s fine but I take a various method. This evaluation will take a look at the pros + cons of WP Engine in the context of all web hosting options to see who it is a “best fit” for. Wp Engine Job Reviews
I have actually used WP Engine for various tasks since 2012. I do not use them for my main websites right now (see conclusion), however I do have a present client on WP Engine who definitely enjoys them. Here’s my WP Engine evaluation structured as benefits and drawbacks.
Disclosure: I receive referral fees from any business discussed. All information & opinion is based on my experience as a paying consumer or specialist to a paying consumer.
Pros of WP Engine
To start, WP Engine does basically live up to its pitch on its homepage where they guarantee “sensational 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 Job Reviews
Speed and Performance
There are a great deal of variables that enter into site speed, but the guideline is that the more intricate your site is, the more complicated the services to speed become.
Out of package, WordPress is relatively lean and quick. If you are running a mainly text website with a few standard plugins and a few little images, you’ll be great with a budget friendly shared hosting plan from somebody like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
But few site owners keep their WordPress install lean. There’s typically extra plugins, custom style files, great deals of images, widgets, ads, kinds and more.
All these functions combined with decent levels of traffic can begin to slow down your WordPress install.
But a sluggish site doesn’t suggest that you require a bigger, better server. It does indicate that you need to get smarter about speed. Sometimes it’s as basic as getting a more powerful server, but often it’s more about caching certain resources in a specific order and optimizing your files. Simply puts, it gets complex.
Imagine you are trying to transport a trailer with a pickup truck. Picture your trailer keeps getting heavier. It’s pointless to keep grumbling that your truck is not huge enough when you might simply have to eliminate the emergency brake, set up a turbocharger, refresh the transmission fluid and combine your load.
The point is that WordPress needs assistance to stay fast as you grow. There are plenty of services … but either you or a designer need to implement them.
That’s where managed WordPress hosting can be found in. WP Engine takes care of (nearly) all speed issues. They have actually tailored servers with exceptionally aggressive caching and even more advanced “stack” than a typical web host. They also have trained support who will enter into your WordPress set up and recognize the specific chokepoint to get your site moving. Wp Engine Job Reviews
They don’t even permit caching plugins on their installs due to the fact that they have such a tailored caching setup.
The intriguing thing is that even unoptimized WordPress sets up still do well on their platform because their platform does the extra work.
Here’s the speed test for among my clients 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 quickly the server returned enough information to begin loading the page.
It’s nice to have that type of speed right out of package, and have it stay that way no matter how huge or intricate the site gets.
*Keep in mind that the other point here is that if you are obsessed about speed, you can get even much better numbers with WP Engine than you may get with other services because you are free to concentrate on speed aspects that you can easily control like image compression, use of scripts, etc.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not just supplies an incorporated CDN, however they likewise supply global information centers in case your audience is mostly in Asia and/or Europe. Wp Engine Job Reviews
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wp Engine Job Reviews
Client support has actually been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch because they wased established. After all, they are really selling more of a service (ie, handled hosting) than an item (ie, hosting). It makes good sense for them to put a big focus on support.
Here’s a screenshot from among my very first contacts with support back in 2012:
Look at the response|reaction|action} time, that wasn’t an autoresponder either.
Now, the business has grown & altered a lot ever since. They went through a stretch where they were getting a great deal of criticism about over-promising on support.
That said, the tough aspect of customer support is that a lot of the judgment is anecdotal. Everybody has a story, however you never know if the story is because they spoke to the one rockstar-vs-rookie having an awesome-vs-terrible day. Like I point out in every hosting evaluation, the vital part is to see if a company treats support as an investment or a cost.
I prefer to search for access, systems, and knowledge, 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 3 boxes. They preserve a range of support channels (including phone for non-Basic strategies). They have a fast, trackable ticketing system and are readily available all over on the website via chat.
Based upon their tutorial videos and comprehensive knowledgebase, they tick the understanding box. Every support that I or my customer has actually engaged with in fact knew the fine operations of WordPress and has actually been able to problem-solve on the fly.
The most impressive (yes, this is anecdotal, but still) experience was a three-way call between my customer, myself and WP Engine throughout my client’s shift to HTTPS/ SSL. The representative was not only able to get on (and stay on) the phone, however he was able to adeptly help us “flip the switch” quickly in addition to taking care of a number of issues (ie, publishing a non-HTTP sitemap and fixing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wp Engine Job Reviews
I’m sure that WP Engine still has support problems,particularly due to the fact that their customized platform puts a lot of pressure on fast, accessible support (as I’ll show in the downsides). But they appear to understand that support is core to their value and do make the needed financial investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the entire Internet. That indicates that it is a prime target for hackers & malware distributors.
However there is 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 & screening vulnerabilities.
If you run your very own WordPress set up, the security basics are relatively simple:
- Keep your install & all your plugins updated
- Only install files from reputable creators
- Run a security plugin to lock down the most common brute force attacks
- Keep a backup for when things go wrong
* Aside, I utilize JetPack for the last two. It’s made by & powered by Automattic, the commercial arm of WordPress.
You’ll observe that despite the fact that security on WordPress is simple, the responsibility is still on you to keep things secure. 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 basically 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 happens. Because you technically have an “install” on their server (rather than an account), they deal with a great deal of security problems worldwide on the server level.
WP Engine also works closely with top security companies 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 never ever been hacked on my primary/ or secondary websites (knock on wood), however have assisted customers who have been. It’s frustrating, tedious & a normally costly circumstance (even if you are using a service like Sucuri). Having a professional security team take care of your WordPress set up is a huge pro in my book. Wp Engine Job Reviews
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not inexpensive. Their Startup plan is $35/mo and consists of a single set up and only up to 25,000 visits monthly.
For benchmarking, you can get an effective, trusted VPS (ie, your own not-shared server) for the same cost from InMotion. And if you are just starting out with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting strategy from Bluehost for simply a couple dollars per month.
Both which allow for more storage & more visits (ie, generally as many as you can handle) than WP Engine. I’ve run sites that have actually had 60k check outs per month on a shared server. I have actually likewise run dozens of small WordPress sites off a low cost shared hosting.
However I’ll cover that prices disadvantage in the cons of WP Engine, however here’s the thing.
For some website owners, if you break out WP Engine by overall value & factor in your very own (or your designer’s) time, their pricing is fantastic.
Simply running WordPress updates on a monthly basis & 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 entire monthly fee right there.
If you lose any check outs due to downtime from a bad plugin upgrade, then that could be WP Engine’s whole regular monthly cost right there.
If you do a hot-fix (ie, you don’t use a staging area) on your PHP code, and knock your website down … then that could 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 discuss any personal or designer time repairing concerns.
Basically, if your time is better assigned away from technical issues, then WP Engine makes a great deal of sense on value. As a managed WordPress hosting service, that’s really their thing. Hosting services are a financial investment rather than an expense.
And that sort of value-based rates segues into another pro for WP Engine, their focus on their core markets. Wp Engine Job Reviews
Like I said at the beginning, WP Engine isn’t for everyone. There are 3 types of clients that WP Engine appears to be a fit for. For those 3 kinds of clients, WP Engine has a strong focus with plenty of tools & focus for each.
From their backend procedure, the very first consumer type appears to be WordPress developers and designers who wish to concentrate on development & style without handling hosting maintenance, and have customers who have some budget. The designer/dev develops the website directly in WP Engine’s staging environment, launches the website, then hands the site over to their client.
The designer can guarantee their customer that WP Engine deals with the hosting, security & speed. There’s little need for a continuous basic website upkeep. For this market, WP Engine has fascinating tools including staging, git push, website migration and transferable installs.
The second client type is the growing site owner who is irritated at having to deal with technical growth headaches. They have actually outgrown their shared hosting and need to transfer to a better host.
They’re likewise developed enough that they have some spending plan for managed services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & client support to make that process occur. The phone support is a crucial factor, especially having the ability to “just call WP Engine an have them fix it.”
The third customer type is a start-up website owner that has the budget and desires a long-lasting platform that they can grow with. They are comfy learning WP Engine’s distinct backend and plan on launching a near-complete site all at once.
They don’t have any previous routines or custom-mades brought over from previous hosts or websites. Once again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable features, clients, and support that they can make pledges and offer support to win & keep this type of client.
With these types of clients, WP Engine knows how & where they are coming from, many of the enhancements they make are focused on these markets (ie, the Git push functionality), instead of mass-market improvements like knowledge-bases, intuitive backend, and so on.
This advantage is similar to WP Engine’s market focus, but it’s truly worth calling out in this evaluation revision. Wp Engine Job Reviews
WP Engine excels not just on current functions however likewise on producing new, advanced hosting functions. Every version of WordPress 4 has rolled out brand-new developer functions that WP Engine has actually been able to incorporate.
Even general web advancement finest practices have actually changed radically since I started observing the market *. WP Engine has actually produced tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ marketer by trade. I know sufficient web advancement to incorporate finest practices into execution & 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 everybody. There are lots of WP Engine grievances around the Web. Some are anecdotal. Some are embellishment (ie, SEOs grumbling about dev sites). And numerous stand because they simply aren’t a suitable for everyone. For all their awesomeness in some areas, they have some cons which keep them from being an excellent suitable for some customers. I do not utilize them for this site since I do not require much of their functions and I’m comfy “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wp Engine Job Reviews
All that said, here are a few of the bigger image downsides of using WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To attain the speed, security, and scale they guarantee, WP Engine does things differently. And that difference can be quite complicated– especially if you have simply sufficient experience with hosting environments to be unsafe.
Their backend setup has actually improved. It’s cleaner, but it’s still custom-made. It’s absolutely nothing like a conventional cPanel hosting backend. Unlike many hosting companies, they also do not offer DNS nameservers.
Even if all the features exist, the unique backend can cause some designers making mistakes ranging from irritating redirect loops to duplicate content concerns to leaving the dev site open up to the general public or merely not making it possible for the features you’re buying.
If it weren’t for incredible support, I believe they ‘d lose more newbie clients than they already do.
Like lots of customized platforms, it makes good sense once you overcome the learning curve. However WP Engine’s onboarding is extremely developer-focused & stays so exception-focused that they never ever discuss finest practice for the general user. Wp Engine Job Reviews
Here is their video on pressing your website live –
I’ve established my share of websites from platforms to customized hosts to cPanel hosting websites, but I had to watch that video multiple times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the right IP address.
Again, if you remain in WP Engine’s core markets, the customized backend isn’t going to be a substantial deal (when you get past the knowing curve). However 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 ever actually stops being eccentric and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a myriad of website lists to help 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.
Once again– they have reasons they do all this. And in most cases, support will simply take care of everything.
However, you still don’t get to set & forget your site. Sure, you don’t technically do not have to enter into the weeds of a server panel. In lots of hosting cases (ie, a handled VPS), you do not have to do it anyhow, when you do, the knobs and buttons are familiar. Wp Engine Job Reviews
WP Engine’s exclusive setup cuts both methods regards to reducing & increasing complexity.
This con is likewise related to WP Engine’s unique setup. In order to run their architecture along with possible, all the installs on their platform have to be rather consistent.
They need to have foreseeable plugins; predictable visitor patterns; predictable use cases. Every hosting business has rules (or really genuine physical limits), however WP Engine goes a bit additional to specify exactly what you can and cannot have on your WordPress install in addition to tiered overage prices to discourage seasonal traffic spikes and regional storage usage.
They do ban particular plugins & admin behavior for great factors, but those bans restrict adaptability and experimentation if your website could manage it.
For instance, Yet Another Associated Post Plugin is a common plugin. It’s resource intensive, but on smaller websites, it gets the job done well. It’s not allowed on WP Engine. That’s not good or bad always. But it does make WP Engine less versatile and open up to experimentation compared to running a shared or VPS server.
The method their prices is structured allows for less flexibility also. It’s a positive that they will handle all the traffic you can send, but it’s likewise costly to pay based upon a variety of visits.
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 extra hosting costs into the mix. That puts a cap on how versatile you want 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 enable on an Individual or Organisation. And this point goes further if your site requires many plugins for full performance.
The very same chooses storage. With WP Engine, you are spending for efficiency, not for storage. So if you are seeking to use a server for media storage … that use case is out.
In addition, you can’t actually do automatic e-mail marketing projects from WP Engine. This was something that my client got called for & ended up having to do a painful migration to another email provider mid-campaign.
In either case, that point segues into the last con I found with WP Engine, their prices based upon functions.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are usually spending for efficiency & not needing to think excessive about maintenance, security & speed. If you take a look at WP Engine’s prices based on the functions you’re getting, you truly don’t get a lot.
And if you are the type who will think of your site’s health anyway (ie, keeping WordPress upgraded and generally visiting regularly), you’ll likely be paying for “management” that is unnecessary. Wp Engine Job Reviews
Numerous shared hosting servers can deal with the exact same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a fraction of the cost. My individual website (running on a shared hosting strategy from HostGator with standard caching) managed more than 15,000 gos to in a 24 Hr duration when a post of mine went viral.
And if you are running a reliable VPS, you can certainly manage a lot more for much less.
They are fairly transparent about how they count visits, however it can still be rather a surprise for “little” website owners how rapidly they can enter into the $290 per month tier.
And as discussed earlier that does not even include a lot of the functions you don’t get with WP Engine’s strategies. You can’t run any e-mail from your servers. You have low limits on local storage. Anything above the limitations needs additional expenses & technical application of Amazon cloud services.
And most importantly for me, you are limited on your installs. If you have a couple of side tasks or low-traffic test websites, you have to factor those into the price. You can’t use them to expand the cost of your strategy,especially if you are hitting your visitor cap instead of your install cap.
If you are aiming to pay for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & provide your website files, WP Engine is an expensive option, particularly compared with other non-managed hosting options.
Like any service, it’s not about what is best general, but exactly what is best for you based upon your goals, budget plan, resources & practices.
If you are in exactly what I think of as WP Engine’s core markets, they provide an excellent service with a solid item. Their rates is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting area, and they provide more features than “WordPress hosting” strategies from other hosting brand names. Their feature-set is unequaled for savvy DIYers, WordPress site designers and/or high-traffic websites that don’t wish to fret about hosting problems.
If handled hosting is a suitable for you, then go have a look at WP Engine’s plans here.
They do a 60-day money-back warranty. So do a test install and see what you think of their backend. Make sure to chat w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your current host & desire more flexibility/ better costs than WP Engine, check out InMotion Hosting’s VPS alternative. I’ve valued their balance of user-friendly backend & responsive client service.
And finally, if you are more confused than ever, go take my WordPress hosting quiz. I put all these elements into a fun, Buzzfeed-esque test to streamline things. Wp Engine Job Reviews