WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting Wpengine Setting Up Emails
WP Engine is a Managed WordPress Hosting service based in Austin, TX. They were one of the (if not the) very first business to supply handled hosting services specifically for WordPress. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
While they have lots of competition in both the general hosting and managed WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the marketplace leader in many methods -and they have broad name acknowledgment and cutting-edge functions.
With the development of both self-hosted WordPress and website contractors, the hosting industry has actually become a super-confusing place.
I wrote an entire post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. However here’s the brief version: They all differ in services provided. Some simply have WordPress-trained tech support. Some offer services such as server-side functions and staging for WordPress.
And after that there’s a different level of managed 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 offers a menu of services tailored to WordPress at a higher price point, so that the website owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the website content + performance.
Every competitor in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a various offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of alternatives, however as a whole, they all compete with traditional shared Linux hosting offerings and tailored WordPress hosting options.
Either way, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s confusing, yes, however it is necessary to comprehend before making apples to oranges comparisons.
There are a lot of WP Engine reviews online, generally with user-generated reviews based upon anecdotes and personal experience. That’s great however I take a various approach. This review will look at the pros + cons of WP Engine in the context of all webhosting choices to see who it is a “best fit” for. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
I’ve utilized WP Engine for various jobs given that 2012. I don’t use them for my primary websites right now (see conclusion), but I do have an existing client on WP Engine who definitely likes them. Here’s my WP Engine review structured as advantages and disadvantages.
Disclosure: I receive referral fees from any business pointed out. All information & opinion is based on my experience as a paying customer or expert to a paying customer.
Pros of WP Engine
To begin, WP Engine does pretty much live up to its pitch on its homepage where they promise “spectacular 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. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
Speed and Performance
There are a great deal of variables that enter into website speed, however the general rule is that the more intricate your website is, the more intricate the solutions to speed ended up being.
From package, WordPress is fairly lean and quick. If you are running a mainly text site with a few standard plugins and a few small images, you’ll be fine with an affordable shared hosting plan from somebody like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
However couple of site owners keep their WordPress install lean. There’s generally extra plugins, custom-made style files, great deals of images, widgets, ads, types and more.
All these features combined with good levels of traffic can start to decrease your WordPress set up.
But a sluggish site doesn’t mean that you require a larger, much better server. It does mean that you have to get smarter about speed. In some cases it’s as simple as getting a more powerful server, but often it’s more about caching specific resources in a certain order and optimizing your files. Simply puts, it gets complex.
Imagine you are aiming to transport a trailer with a pickup truck. Envision your trailer keeps getting heavier. It’s pointless to keep grumbling that your truck is not huge enough when you may just have to eliminate the emergency brake, set up a turbocharger, revitalize the transmission fluid and combine your load.
The point is that WordPress requires help to remain fast as you grow. There are lots of solutions … however either you or a developer need to implement them.
That’s where handled WordPress hosting comes in. WP Engine takes care of (almost) all speed issues. They have actually customized servers with exceptionally aggressive caching and even advanced “stack” than a normal web host. They also have trained support who will enter into your WordPress install and determine the exact chokepoint to get your website moving. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
They don’t even enable caching plugins on their installs due to the fact that they have actually such a customized caching setup.
The intriguing thing is that even unoptimized WordPress installs still succeed on their platform because their platform does the additional work.
Here’s the speed test for one of my clients on WP Engine (who has a puffed up theme, additional scripts, a lot of uncompressed images, among other things):
Keep in mind the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That determines how quickly the server returned enough data to begin filling the page.
It’s good to have that sort of speed right out of package, and have it remain that method no matter how huge or intricate 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 quickly control like image compression, use of scripts, etc.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not just supplies an integrated CDN, but they likewise provide global information centers in case your audience is primarily in Asia and/or Europe. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support Wpengine Setting Up Emails
Client support has actually been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch because they wased established. After all, they are actually offering more of a service (ie, handled hosting) than a product (ie, hosting). It makes good sense for them to put a huge focus on support.
Here’s a screenshot from among 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 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 feature of consumer support is that a lot of the judgment is anecdotal. Everybody has a story, but you never understand if the story is since they spoke with 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 business treats support as a financial investment or a cost.
I prefer to search for gain access to, systems, and knowledge, all three require a financial investment of money, time and know-how.
Based on my recent interactions and research study, they are doing far better striking all 3 boxes. They maintain a range of support channels (consisting of phone for non-Basic plans). They have a fast, trackable ticketing system and are offered all over on the website through chat.
Based upon their tutorial videos and substantial knowledgebase, they tick the understanding box. Every support that I or my customer has actually engaged with actually knew the great operations of WordPress and has actually had the ability to problem-solve on the fly.
The most excellent (yes, this is anecdotal, however still) experience was a three-way call in between my client, myself and WP Engine throughout my client’s transition to HTTPS/ SSL. The rep was not only able to get on (and remain on) the phone, however he was able to expertly help us “flip the switch” rapidly in addition to taking care of a number of problems (ie, submitting a non-HTTP sitemap and fixing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
I’m sure that WP Engine still has support issues,especially because their custom platform puts a great deal of pressure on fast, available support (as I’ll display in the disadvantages). However they seem to know that support is core to their worth and do make the required investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the whole Web. That indicates that it is a prime target for hackers & malware distributors.
But 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 large neighborhood launching updates & screening vulnerabilities.
If you run your very own WordPress set up, the security basics are fairly 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 discover that although security on WordPress is uncomplicated, the responsibility is still on you to keep things protect. Much like having a deadbolt does nothing if you do not 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 everything off-site & all set to roll back if something takes place. Considering that you technically have an “install” on their server (rather than an account), they tackle a great deal of security problems globally on the server level.
WP Engine likewise works closely with leading security companies on code evaluations in addition to running their own team. They also make the assurance that if you’re hacked, they look after it for free.
I personally have actually never ever been hacked on my main/ or secondary sites (knock on wood), however have actually helped clients who have actually been. It’s aggravating, tedious & a typically expensive scenario (even if you are utilizing a service like Sucuri). Having a professional security group take care of your WordPress set up is a huge pro in my book. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not inexpensive. Their Startup strategy is $35/mo and consists of a single install and just as much as 25,000 visits monthly.
For benchmarking, you can get a powerful, trusted VPS (ie, your own not-shared server) for the exact same cost from InMotion. And if you are simply beginning with a single domain, you can get a shared hosting strategy from Bluehost for simply a couple dollars per month.
Both of which permit more storage & more check outs (ie, basically as numerous as you can manage) than WP Engine. I have actually run websites that have actually had 60k check outs monthly on a shared server. I’ve likewise run dozens of little WordPress sites off a low cost shared hosting.
However I’ll cover that prices drawback in the cons of WP Engine, but here’s the thing.
For some site owners, if you break out WP Engine by overall value & consider your very own (or your developer’s) time, their rates is amazing.
Just running WordPress updates monthly & QA’ing your installation 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 fee right there.
If you lose any gos to due to downtime from a bad plugin upgrade, then that might 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 site down … then that might be WP Engine’s entire regular monthly cost right there.
Losing visitors due to speed concerns or downtime costs lost earnings.
In addition, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to discuss any individual or designer time repairing concerns.
Basically, if your time is better designated away from technical problems, then WP Engine makes a lot 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.
And that sort of value-based rates segues into another pro for WP Engine, their concentrate on their core markets. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
Like I said at the start, WP Engine isn’t for everybody. There are 3 kinds of customers that WP Engine seems to be a suitable for. For those 3 types of clients, WP Engine has a strong focus with lots of tools & focus for each.
From their backend procedure, the first client type appears to be WordPress developers and designers who want to focus on advancement & design without dealing with hosting upkeep, and have clients who have some spending plan. The designer/dev develops the site straight in WP Engine’s staging environment, releases the website, then hands the site over to their customer.
The designer can ensure their client that WP Engine deals with the hosting, security & speed. There’s little need for an ongoing basic website maintenance. For this market, WP Engine has fascinating tools including staging, git push, site migration and transferable installs.
The 2nd consumer type is the growing site owner who is annoyed at needing to deal with technical development headaches. They’ve outgrown their shared hosting and need to transfer to a better host.
They’re likewise established enough that they have some budget plan for handled services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & customer support to make that process take place. The phone support is a crucial aspect, particularly being able to “simply call WP Engine an have them fix it.”
The third consumer type is a start-up site owner that has the budget and desires a long-term platform that they can grow with. They are comfortable discovering WP Engine’s distinct backend and plan on launching a near-complete website at one time.
They do not have any previous routines or custom-mades brought over from previous hosts or sites. Again, for this market, WP Engine has the scalable functions, consumers, and support that they can make pledges and offer support to win & keep this kind of consumer.
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 performance), instead of mass-market enhancements like knowledge-bases, user-friendly backend, and so on.
This advantage is similar to WP Engine’s market focus, however it’s truly worth calling out in this evaluation revision. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
WP Engine stands out not just on current functions however likewise on developing new, advanced hosting features. Every version of WordPress 4 has presented new designer functions that WP Engine has been able to incorporate.
Even general web advancement best practices have altered radically given that I started observing the industry *. WP Engine has actually created tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ online marketer by trade. I know sufficient web advancement to integrate best practices into application & 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
Just like any service, WP Engine is not the best suitable for everyone. There are lots of WP Engine grievances around the Web. Some are anecdotal. Some are embellishment (ie, SEOs grumbling about dev sites). And lots of are valid due to the fact that they merely aren’t a fit for everyone. For all their awesomeness in some areas, they have some cons which keep them from being an excellent fit for some customers. I don’t use them for this site since I do not need many of their functions and I’m comfy “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
All that stated, here are some of the bigger picture downsides of using WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To accomplish the speed, security, and scale they assure, WP Engine does things in a different way. Which difference can be rather made complex– particularly if you have simply sufficient experience with hosting environments to be hazardous.
Their backend setup has actually gotten better. It’s cleaner, but it’s still custom-made. It’s nothing like a standard cPanel hosting backend. Unlike many hosting business, they also do not supply DNS nameservers.
Even if all the functions are there, the distinct backend can result in some designers making mistakes varying from frustrating redirect loops to replicate content issues to leaving the dev website available to the public or just not allowing the functions you’re buying.
If it weren’t for fantastic support, I think they ‘d lose more novice customers than they currently do.
Like numerous custom-made platforms, it makes good sense once you overcome the learning curve. But WP Engine’s onboarding is really developer-focused & remains so exception-focused that they never explain finest practice for the basic user. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
Here is their video on pressing your site live –
I’ve established my share of websites from platforms to custom hosts to cPanel hosting sites, however I needed to enjoy that video several times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the best IP address.
Once again, if you are in WP Engine’s core markets, the custom-made backend isn’t really going to be a huge offer (when you surpass the learning curve). But for a lot of, you’ll likely get to find out first hand about WP Engine’s support team.
But here’s the important things.
WP Engine never ever really stops being eccentric and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a plethora of site lists to help fix 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.
Once again– they have reasons that they do all this. And most of the times, support will just look after it all.
But, you still don’t get to set & forget your site. Sure, you do not technically do not have to enter the weeds of a server panel. In many hosting cases (ie, a handled VPS), you do not need to do it anyhow, and when you do, the knobs and buttons recognize. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
WP Engine’s proprietary setup cuts both methods terms of minimizing & increasing intricacy.
This con is also connected to WP Engine’s special setup. In order to run their architecture as well as possible, all the installs on their platform have to be somewhat uniform.
They have to have foreseeable plugins; foreseeable visitor patterns; foreseeable usage cases. Every hosting company has guidelines (or very real physical limitations), but WP Engine goes a bit additional to define what you can and cannot have on your WordPress set up in addition to tiered overage prices to prevent seasonal traffic spikes and regional storage usage.
They do ban specific plugins & admin behavior for great factors, but those restrictions limit versatility and experimentation if your website might handle it.
For instance, Yet Another Related Post Plugin is a typical plugin. It’s resource extensive, but on smaller sized websites, it does the job 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 enables less flexibility as well. It’s a favorable that they will handle all the traffic you can send, however it’s also expensive to pay based upon a variety of check outs.
If you are running a huge launch; are a seasonal company; or simply wish to drive a surge of traffic to your site, you’ll need to element 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 manage a lot more traffic than WP Engine would permit on a Personal or Business. And this point goes even more if your site needs many plugins for complete functionality.
The very same chooses storage. With WP Engine, you are paying for performance, not for storage. So if you are aiming to use a server for media storage … that utilize case is out.
Furthermore, you cannot truly do automatic email marketing campaigns from WP Engine. This was something that my client got required & ended up needing to do an unpleasant migration to another e-mail provider mid-campaign.
In any case, that point segues into the last con I discovered with WP Engine, their prices based upon functions.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are usually spending for performance & not needing to believe too much about maintenance, security & speed. If you look at WP Engine’s pricing based on the functions you’re getting, you really do not get a great deal.
And if you are the type who will think about your website’s health anyhow (ie, keeping WordPress updated and generally logging in frequently), you’ll likely be spending for “management” that is unnecessary. Wpengine Setting Up Emails
Lots of shared hosting servers can deal with the very same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a portion of the cost. My personal website (running on a shared hosting plan from HostGator with standard caching) dealt with more than 15,000 gos to in a 24 Hr period 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 relatively transparent about how they count visits, but it can still be quite a surprise for “small” site owners how rapidly they can enter into the $290 monthly tier.
And as mentioned previously that does not even consist of a number of the features you do not get with WP Engine’s plans. You can’t run any email from your servers. You have low limitations on local storage. Anything above the limitations needs additional expenses & technical implementation of Amazon cloud services.
And most notably for me, you are restricted on your installs. If you have a couple of side jobs or low-traffic test sites, you need to factor those into the rate. You cannot utilize them to spread out the cost of your plan,particularly if you are striking your visitor cap rather than your install cap.
If you are looking to spend for hosting: ie, a server that will hold & dish out your website files, WP Engine is an expensive option, especially compared with other non-managed hosting options.
Like any service, it’s not about what is finest total, however exactly what is best for you based on your goals, budget plan, resources & routines.
If you remain in what I think of as WP Engine’s core markets, they provide an excellent service with a solid product. Their rates is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting area, and they provide more functions than “WordPress hosting” plans from other hosting brands. Their feature-set is unrivaled for smart DIYers, WordPress site designers and/or high-traffic sites that do not want to stress over hosting concerns.
If handled hosting is a fit for you, then go take a look at WP Engine’s plans 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 chat w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your present host & want more freedom/ better costs than WP Engine, take a look at InMotion Hosting’s VPS alternative. I’ve valued their balance of user-friendly backend & responsive customer care.
And lastly, if you are more confused than ever, go take my WordPress hosting quiz. I put all these factors into a fun, Buzzfeed-esque quiz to streamline things. Wpengine Setting Up Emails