WP Engine: My Pros and Cons of WP Engine Hosting How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
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 managed hosting services specifically for WordPress. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
While they have a lot of competitors in both the basic hosting and handled WordPress hosting verticals, they are still the market leader in numerous methods -and they have broad name acknowledgment and cutting-edge features.
With the growth of both self-hosted WordPress and website home builders, the hosting market has become a super-confusing location.
I wrote an entire post about WordPress Hosting vs. Web Hosting. However here’s the brief variation: They all differ in services offered. Some merely have WordPress-trained tech support. Some offer services such as server-side functions and staging for WordPress.
Then there’s a separate level of handled WordPress Hosting where you are not truly purchasing hosting per se, however rather services to keep your WordPress install live. Essentially, a Managed WordPress Hosting service offers a menu of services customized to WordPress at a higher cost point, so that the website owner can focus less on speed + security and more on the site content + functionality.
Every competitor in the Managed WordPress Hosting has a various offering. And there is no standardized “menu” of choices, however as an entire, they all take on conventional shared Linux hosting offerings and personalized WordPress hosting choices.
Either way, that’s the field where WP Engine plays. It’s confusing, yes, but it’s important to comprehend before making apples to oranges comparisons.
There are a lot of WP Engine evaluates online, usually with user-generated evaluations based on anecdotes and personal experience. That’s fine however I take a different method. This evaluation will take a look at the pros + cons of WP Engine in the context of all webhosting alternatives to see who it is a “best fit” for. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
I’ve utilized WP Engine for various projects since 2012. I don’t use them for my main websites today (see conclusion), however I do have a current 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 pointed out. All information & opinion is based upon my experience as a paying client or expert to a paying customer.
Pros of WP Engine
To begin, WP Engine does practically live up to its pitch on its homepage where they guarantee “spectacular speed, powerful security, and best-in-class customer care.” 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. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
Speed and Performance
There are a great deal of variables that go into site speed, but the rule of thumb is that the more complicated your site is, the more intricate the options to speed become.
From package, WordPress is fairly lean and quick. If you are running a primarily text site with a few basic plugins and a couple of small images, you’ll be fine with a budget-friendly shared hosting plan from somebody like InMotion, HostGator or Bluehost.
However few website owners keep their WordPress install lean. There’s generally extra plugins, custom style files, lots of images, widgets, ads, kinds and more.
All these functions integrated with good levels of traffic can begin to decrease your WordPress set up.
However a slow site does not imply that you require a bigger, much better server. It does indicate that you need to get smarter about speed. In some cases it’s as simple as getting a more effective server, but often it’s more about caching certain resources in a certain order and optimizing your files. In other words, it gets complex.
Envision you are attempting to carry a trailer with a pickup. Envision your trailer keeps getting much heavier. It’s meaningless to keep complaining that your truck is not huge enough when you might 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 stay quick as you grow. There are a lot of options … but either you or a designer must execute them.
That’s where handled WordPress hosting can be found in. WP Engine looks after (almost) all speed concerns. They have customized servers with exceptionally aggressive caching as well as advanced “stack” than a typical web host. They also have trained support who will go into your WordPress set up and identify the exact chokepoint to get your website moving. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
They don’t even enable 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 installs still succeed on their platform since their platform does the additional work.
Here’s the speed test for among my customers on WP Engine (who has a puffed up style, additional scripts, too many uncompressed images, among other things):
Keep in mind the Time To First Byte and the Start Render numbers. That measures how rapidly the server returned enough information to start packing the page.
It’s great to have that sort of speed right out of package, and have it remain that method no matter how big or intricate the site gets.
*Note that the other point here is that if you are obsessed 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 focus on speed factors that you can quickly manage like image compression, use of scripts, etc.
. The last observation on speed, WP Engine not only supplies an integrated CDN, but they also offer worldwide information centers in case your audience is mainly in Asia and/or Europe. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
If you are trying to get top speeds without messing with layered caching plugins ” the WP Engine does exactly that.
Customer Support How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
Consumer support has been a core part of WP Engine’s pitch given that they were founded. After all, they are truly offering more of a service (ie, managed hosting) than a product (ie, hosting). It makes sense for them to put a big 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 company has grown & changed 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 difficult feature of client support is that so much of the judgment is anecdotal. Everyone has a story, but you never know if the story is since they talked to the one rockstar-vs-rookie having an awesome-vs-terrible day. Like I discuss in every hosting evaluation, the important part is to see if a business treats support as an investment or a cost.
I want to look for access, systems, and knowledge, all three require a financial investment of money, time and knowledge.
Based upon my current interactions and research study, they are doing much better striking all three boxes. They maintain a variety of support channels (including phone for non-Basic plans). They have a quick, trackable ticketing system and are readily available everywhere on the site via chat.
Based on their tutorial videos and substantial knowledgebase, they tick the understanding box. Every support that I or my client has communicated with in fact understood the great functions of WordPress and has actually had the ability to problem-solve on the fly.
The most remarkable (yes, this is anecdotal, however still) experience was a three-way call between my client, myself and WP Engine throughout my customer’s shift to HTTPS/ SSL. The representative was not only able to obtain on (and remain on) the phone, but he had the ability to adeptly help us “turn the switch” quickly in addition to looking after several concerns (ie, uploading a non-HTTP sitemap and fixing insecure image links) within WordPress for us. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
I’m sure that WP Engine still has support problems,especially since their custom-made platform puts a lot of pressure on fast, accessible support (as I’ll display in the drawbacks). But they seem to understand that support is core to their value and do make the required investment.
WordPress now powers over a quarter of the whole Internet. That suggests that it is a prime target for hackers & malware distributors.
But there is nothing inherently insecure about WordPress that is not a concern with all software. WordPress has the advantage of being open-source with a very large community launching updates & testing vulnerabilities.
If you run your very own WordPress set up, 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 although security on WordPress is simple, the obligation is still on you to keep things secure. Similar to having a deadbolt does nothing if you don’t lock it, keeping your website secure is still ultimately on you.
And like speed & efficiency, WP Engine essentially takes all those best practices and does them for you. They run automated backups to keep whatever off-site & ready to roll back if something happens. Considering that you technically have an “install” on their server (instead of an account), they tackle a great deal of security issues internationally on the server level.
WP Engine also works closely with top security companies on code evaluations in addition to running their own team. They also make the warranty that if you’re hacked, they look after it for free.
I personally have never ever been hacked on my primary/ or secondary sites (knock on wood), however have assisted clients who have actually been. It’s aggravating, tiresome & a typically costly situation (even if you are utilizing a service like Sucuri). Having a professional security group look after your WordPress install is a huge pro in my book. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
Pricing on Value
WP Engine is not inexpensive. Their Startup plan is $35/mo and consists of a single install and only up to 25,000 visits per month.
For benchmarking, you can get an effective, dependable VPS (ie, your own not-shared server) for the exact same price 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 monthly.
Both of which enable more storage & more gos to (ie, basically as lots of as you can handle) than WP Engine. I have actually run sites that have had 60k visits per month on a shared server. I have actually likewise run dozens of small WordPress sites off a low expense shared hosting.
But I’ll cover that pricing downside in the cons of WP Engine, however here’s the important things.
For some site owners, if you break out WP Engine by total worth & factor in your very own (or your developer’s) time, their pricing is amazing.
Just running WordPress updates monthly & 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 regular monthly charge right there.
If you lose any sees due to downtime from a bad plugin update, then that might be WP Engine’s whole regular monthly cost right there.
If you do a hot-fix (ie, you do not use a staging location) on your PHP code, and knock your website down … then that might be WP Engine’s entire regular monthly fee right there.
Losing visitors due to speed problems or downtime costs lost earnings.
Furthermore, premium security can cost about $16/month minimum. Not to discuss any individual or developer time repairing problems.
Generally, if your time is much better assigned away from technical issues, then WP Engine makes a great deal of sense on worth. As a handled WordPress hosting service, that’s really their thing. Hosting services are an investment rather than an expense.
And that sort of value-based prices segues into another pro for WP Engine, their concentrate on their core markets. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
Like I stated at the beginning, WP Engine isn’t for everybody. There are 3 types of consumers that WP Engine seems to be a fit 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 very first customer type appears to be WordPress developers and designers who want to focus on development & style without handling hosting maintenance, and have customers who have some budget. The designer/dev builds the site straight in WP Engine’s staging environment, releases the website, then hands the site over to their customer.
The designer can assure their customer that WP Engine manages the hosting, security & speed. There’s little requirement for an ongoing basic website upkeep. For this market, WP Engine has intriguing tools consisting of staging, git push, website migration and transferable installs.
The 2nd consumer type is the growing site owner who is irritated at needing to handle technical growth headaches. They have actually outgrown their shared hosting and need to transfer to a much better host.
They’re likewise established enough that they have some spending plan for handled services. WP Engine has tools like the automatic migration tool & consumer support to make that process occur. The phone support is a key element, especially having the ability to “simply call WP Engine an have them fix it.”
The third client type is a startup website owner that has the budget plan and desires a long-lasting platform that they can grow with. They are comfortable finding out WP Engine’s distinct backend and intend on releasing a near-complete site simultaneously.
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 functions, customers, and support that they can make guarantees and offer support to win & keep this type of consumer.
With these types of consumers, WP Engine knows how & where they are originating from, numerous of the enhancements they make are focused on these markets (ie, the Git push performance), instead of mass-market improvements like knowledge-bases, instinctive backend, etc.
This advantage is similar to WP Engine’s market focus, but it’s really worth calling out in this review modification. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
WP Engine stands out not just on current features but likewise on creating brand-new, innovative hosting features. Every version of WordPress 4 has presented brand-new designer features that WP Engine has been able to integrate.
Even basic web advancement best practices have actually changed drastically since I started observing the industry *. WP Engine has actually developed tools to match.
* I’m an SEO/ 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
Similar to any service, WP Engine is not the best fit for everybody. There are lots of WP Engine problems around the Internet. Some are anecdotal. Some are hyperbole (ie, SEOs complaining about dev sites). And lots of stand since 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 suitable for some consumers. I don’t use them for this site because I do not require a number of their features and I’m comfortable “putting pieces together” w/ my InMotion VPS setup. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
All that stated, here are a few of the larger photo downsides of utilizing WP Engine.
Initial and Ongoing Complexity
To achieve the speed, security, and scale they promise, WP Engine does things in a different way. Which difference can be quite complicated– specifically if you have just sufficient experience with hosting environments to be unsafe.
Their backend setup has improved. It’s cleaner, but it’s still custom-made. It’s absolutely nothing like a standard cPanel hosting backend. Unlike numerous hosting companies, they likewise do not provide DNS nameservers.
Even if all the functions are there, the distinct backend can result in some designers making mistakes ranging from annoying redirect loops to duplicate content concerns to leaving the dev site available to the general public or just not making it possible for the features you’re buying.
If it weren’t for fantastic support, I think they ‘d lose more newbie customers than they currently do.
Like numerous custom-made platforms, it makes good sense once you overcome the knowing curve. But WP Engine’s onboarding is extremely developer-focused & stays so exception-focused that they never describe finest practice for the general user. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
Here is their video on pushing your website live –
I’ve established my share of sites from platforms to customized hosts to cPanel hosting websites, however I needed to view that video multiple times to make sure I was pointing the right A record/ CNAME to the best IP address.
Again, if you remain in WP Engine’s core markets, the custom backend isn’t going to be a big deal (as soon as you get past the knowing curve). However for the majority of, you’ll likely get to discover first hand about WP Engine’s support group.
However here’s the thing.
WP Engine never truly stops being eccentric and complex. In their knowledgebase, they have a plethora of site checklists to help troubleshoot 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 for the most parts, support will simply take care of everything.
But, you still don’t get to set & forget your site. Sure, you do not technically don’t need to enter into 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. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
WP Engine’s proprietary setup cuts both methods terms of reducing & increasing complexity.
This con is also associated with WP Engine’s distinct setup. In order to run their architecture in addition to possible, all the installs on their platform have to be somewhat consistent.
They need to have predictable 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 rates to prevent seasonal traffic spikes and regional storage use.
They do ban specific plugins & admin habits for good factors, however those bans restrict adaptability and experimentation if your site could handle it.
For instance, Yet Another Related Post Plugin is a common plugin. It’s resource extensive, however on smaller sized sites, it gets the job done well. It’s not permitted on WP Engine. That’s not good or bad always. But it does make WP Engine less versatile and open up to experimentation compared with running a shared or VPS server.
The way their prices is structured allows for less adaptability too. It’s a positive that they will manage all the traffic you can send out, but it’s likewise pricey to pay based upon a variety of gos to.
If you are running a huge launch; are a seasonal organisation; or just want to drive a surge of traffic to your site, you’ll have to element extra hosting expenses 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 handle a lot more traffic than WP Engine would allow on a Personal or Company. And this point goes even more if your website needs lots of plugins for full performance.
The same opts for storage. With WP Engine, you are paying for performance, not for storage. So if you are looking to utilize a server for media storage … that use case is out.
Additionally, you cannot really do automated email marketing campaigns from WP Engine. This was something that my customer got called for & wound up needing to do a painful migration to another e-mail company mid-campaign.
In any case, that point segues into the last con I discovered with WP Engine, their pricing based upon functions.
Pricing on Features and Usage
With WP Engine, you are generally paying for performance & not needing to think too much about upkeep, security & speed. If you take a look at WP Engine’s prices based upon the features you’re getting, you really do not get a whole lot.
And if you are the type who will think of your site’s health anyway (ie, keeping WordPress upgraded and normally visiting often), you’ll likely be paying for “management” that is unnecessary. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website
Many shared hosting servers can manage the same traffic numbers as WP Engine and cost a fraction of the cost. My individual website (operating on a shared hosting strategy from HostGator with standard caching) managed more than 15,000 sees in a 24 Hr duration when a post of mine went viral.
And if you are running a reputable VPS, you can certainly manage a lot more for much less.
They are relatively transparent about how they count visits, but it can still be rather a surprise for “small” website owners how rapidly they can enter the $290 monthly tier.
And as mentioned previously that does not even consist of many of the features you don’t get with WP Engine’s strategies. You cannot run any email from your servers. You have low limitations on local storage. Anything above the limitations requires additional expenses & technical application of Amazon cloud services.
And most importantly for me, you are restricted on your installs. If you have a couple of side projects or low-traffic test websites, you need to factor those into the rate. You can’t utilize them to spread out the expense of your plan,specifically if you are striking 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 a costly choice, particularly compared with other non-managed hosting alternatives.
Like any service, it’s not about exactly what is finest general, however what is best for you based upon your goals, budget plan, resources & practices.
If you remain in exactly what I consider WP Engine’s core markets, they offer a fantastic service with a solid product. Their rates is competitive in the Managed WordPress Hosting space, and they provide more functions than “WordPress hosting” strategies from other hosting brands. Their feature-set is unmatched for savvy DIYers, WordPress website designers and/or high-traffic websites that do not wish to stress over hosting problems.
If managed 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 about their backend. Make certain to chat w/ support & sales.
If you’re outgrowing your current host & desire more freedom/ much better prices than WP Engine, take a look at InMotion Hosting’s VPS choice. I’ve valued their balance of intuitive backend & responsive customer care.
And last but not least, if you are more baffled than ever, go take my WordPress hosting quiz. I put all these aspects into a fun, Buzzfeed-esque test to simplify things. How To Speed Up Angularjs Website