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Choosing Managed WordPress Hosting: A Buyer’s Guide

This article is part of Hosting: A Buyer’s Guide, a series on finding the right web hosting for your business.

full course
  1. Why Site Speed Matters to Your Business
  2. Web Hosting: Finding The Right WordPress Hosting at the Right Time
  3. Choosing a Shared Host for your WordPress Site: A Buyer’s Guide
  4. Choosing Managed WordPress Hosting: A Buyer’s Guide
  5. Choosing a VPS or Dedicated Hardware: A Buyer’s Guide

For many WordPress website owners, managed WordPress hosting will be the last type of web hosting that they will ever need. Whether you are upgrading from an entry level shared host, or plan to start your website off on the best hosting available, managed WordPress hosting is a great choice.

Managed WordPress hosting offers higher levels of performance and specialist support.

Last week we discussed the pros and cons of shared hosting, but if you are ready for a web host that offers higher levels of performance and specialist support, then today’s post will help you choose a WordPress managed web host.

What is Managed WordPress Hosting?

Before we get to the providers offering this type of web hosting, let’s take a quick look at what managed WordPress hosting is and why you might want to choose this option for your website.

If you want a more in-depth look at this type of hosting, as well as the other options open to WordPress then please read our guide to finding the right WordPress hosting at the right time.

The Benefits of WordPress Managed Hosting

The server is optimized for WordPress.

The main attraction of managed WordPress hosting is that you website will be hosted on a server that is optimized for the WordPress software and its database.

As the server has been configured to work efficiently with the way WordPress stores and access data, your site will load much faster than it would on a non-optimized host, or an entry level shared hosting package.

The Benefits of a Fast Site

A fast website can help your business portray a professional image.

We’ve already discussed how a fast website can help your business, but the main advantages are that your visitors will spend more time on your site and form a better opinion of your business.

Site speed can also help your efforts to get your website ranked higher in the search engines, increasing the number of potential customers who find their way to your site.

A faster-loading website is not only beneficial to your visitors, but it also makes managing your site and publishing content a more efficient and less time-consuming task.

Better Support and Less Responsibility

As this type of hosting is managed, the web host will take care of ensuring your website is secure, backed up regularly, and that updates to the WordPress software are carried out automatically.

Your website will be managed by a team of WordPress exports.

Another key benefit of choosing a specialist WordPress host is that your site will be looked after by a team of WordPress experts.

This not only minimises the chances of something going wrong, but it also means that if you do need support, you will be talking with someone with an in-depth knowledge of WordPress and how best to work with this software.

Who is the Best Managed WordPress Host?

Unfortunately there isn’t a one size fits all answer to this question. Like most decisions, it will come down to what level of service you are looking for, what your site’s needs are, and your budget.

So to help you make a decision, here are some of the main companies offering WordPress managed hosting.

WP Engine

WP Engine has long been a popular choice in the managed WordPress hosting space. They are one of the most established hosts of this type and have grown rapidly since their launch, although this has not been without its problems.

WP Engine Dashboard

WP Engine has a high staff to customer ratio.

WP Engine boats the best “number of customers per technical employee” ratio of any hosting company.

This should help ensure you can get access to an experienced member of the support team when you need to.

WP Engine have four hosting plans, each optimized for WordPress users, and offer a 60 day money back guarantee that allows you to sign up with confidence. There are also no long term contracts so you won’t be locked into their service.

WP Engine isn’t the cheapest option, but they do offer a good set of features, as well as having lots of experience managing and hosting WordPress websites.

Is WP Engine Right For You?

Pros: hosts many high profile WordPress websites, high customer to technical employee ratio, four hosting plans to choose from, one-click staging area, a 60 day money back guarantee.

Cons: not the cheapest option, SSL and CDN costs extra, reported growth-related customer service issues, can only host one site on entry level plan.

Visit WP Engine

Pagely

Pagely are the original managed WordPress host.

Promoted as a “five-star hotel for WordPress,” Pagely are the original managed WordPress hosting provider and were founded in 2006.

However, to stay competitive, Pagely has recently refreshed their hosting plans and upgraded their hosting hardware.

Pagely now offers three hosting plans, each broken down into separate tiers, with improved levels of access and features. This multi-level approach to their packages allows you pick the best option for your site as it is now, while also giving you scope to upgrade within the plan as your needs grow.

Pagely Dashboard

Pagely has now teamed up with Amazon Web Services.

As part of the recent upgrade to their services, Pagely has chosen Amazon Web Services as the company to host their stack. This means when you choose Pagely, you not only get access to their team of experienced WordPress experts, but also get to have your site running on hardware from the global leader in cloud computing.

By teaming up with Amazon Web Services, Pagely are now in a great position to scale their hosting plans in order to help fast growing businesses ensure their websites always have access to enough resources.

Is Pagely Right For You?

Pros: long established, recently upgraded hardware used to host websites on, now offers three hosting plans each with multiple tiers, entry-level plan cheaper than WP Engine, includes CDN.

Cons: no staging site on entry level plan, SSL not allowed on entry level plan, can only host one site on entry level plan.

Visit Pagely

Pressable

Formerly known as ZippyKid, Pressable have been in the managed WordPress hosting space since 2010.

Pressable Dashboard

Pressable have a team of WordPress experts on standby to assist you.

Pressable also have three pricing plans on offer, which includes all the features you would expect from a managed host, such as daily backups, managed upgrades, and more. You also get access to a team of WordPress support experts who can help you with any plugin or theme issue you might encounter when managing your site.

Is Pressable Right For You?

Pros: can host five WordPress sites on entry level plan, entry level plan is cheaper than WP Engine, includes CDN and staging sites, optional SSL is $10 a month on any plan.

Cons: no money back guarantee, higher plans don’t offer more features just more capacity.

Visit Pressable

Conclusion

If you’ve looked at any of the pricing plans available from these managed WordPress hosts, you will have seen that they that while they are all comparable, they are more expensive than the entry level shared hosting plans offered elsewhere.

Managed hosting results in a lighter workload and increased peace of mind.

This extra cost is justified by the optimized servers, which results in a faster loading WordPress website, as well as the management of updates, security and backups.  This is as well expert support staff who are on hand to help should you experience any problems with your site.

Managed WordPress hosting lets you get on with publishing content, promoting your business, and engaging with your visitors, while the host takes care of upgrades, security, site speed, and backups, giving you more free time and greater peace of mind.

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6 Responses to Choosing Managed WordPress Hosting: A Buyer’s Guide

  1. Eddie Mayan says:

    I will prefer Cloud Hosting service for wordpress. Cloudways offer PaaS Platform to deploy your application in a click.

  2. Richard Brenton says:

    Hi Joe,

    good collection thanks for sharing it. One note, before anyone sign up at wpengine I think they should read this: How WPengine Hijacked my Business http://www.matthewwoodward.co.uk/reviews/webhost-trusted-wp-engine-hijacked-business-avoid-them/

    • Keith peters says:

      Even I had similar problems with WP-Engine. There support started of very well but recently it had gone downhill. Now I have shifted to WPOven, they seem to have all the features of wp-engine and at a lower price. The thing of there’s that concerns me is that they don’t have 24 hour support helpline.

      I will provide a mini review of there’s shortly for you guys

  3. Pingback: Choosing a VPS or Dedicated Hardware: A Buyer's Guide | WP Business Tips

  4. Jeff says:

    Here’s my Pressable managed WordPress hosting review:

    My agency is about to leave Pressable. Lately, they’ve had issues with speed and downtime… FREQUENTLY.

    When you pay for a service like managed wordpress hosting, you expect to get better service/quality than shared hosting. But since we’ve been with Pressable, we’ve experienced nothing but problems.

    Now we have to look for other solutions and are planning to move all of our hosted sites to somewhere else.

    AVOID PRESSABLE!!!

    • fred says:

      Thanks for the review, Jeff! Sounds like a pretty bad experience… Has anyone else used Pressable and want to comment?

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