Managed Wordpress Hosting

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Wordpress is the favorite content management system of millions around the world. From building a blog or portfolio site to ecommerce and agency websites, companies and individuals use wordpress for building several kinds of websites. Wordpress is the most effective solution for creating a website in most cases because of its flexibility and ease of use.

However, there is also a technical side of wordpress which may be a bit complex for beginners. If you are an adept user and can set everything yourself, then no problem. Otherwise, dealing with the technical things related to wordpress may turn out to be a bit complex. Wordpress relies on php and mysql to deliver web content. Bloggers or individuals that are just starting off with wordpress may need some help setting everything and running a Wordpress site without difficulty.

There are many good hosting providers from whom you can buy server resources to host your wordpress site. However, even if you have bought a nice hosting plan with free Wordpress installation and migration, you may need to manage certain things on your end including security and other features. Sometimes, small or large technical problems may crop up that may pose a challenge for novice users. In such a situation, it is often better to use Managed Wordpress Hosting, so you can leave everything technical to your host and keep generating content.

Managed wordpress hosting providers

Managed WordPress hosting offers a range of features designed to simplify the hosting experience, optimize performance, and enhance security. Below, I’ll outline some of the key advantages, drawbacks, and provide examples of popular managed WordPress hosting providers:

Advantages of Managed WordPress Hosting:

  1. Performance Optimization:

    Managed WordPress hosts often come with server configurations optimized specifically for WordPress. This includes caching mechanisms, content delivery network (CDN) integration, and other performance-enhancing features to ensure fast loading times. For example, Kinsta, which is a premium managed wordpress hosting provider uses Nginx servers and Cloudflare integration to speed up and keep Wordpress websites secure. For a beginner, it may be very difficult to optimize every aspect of Wordpress himself.

When it comes to speed and security particularly new users may find it difficult to optimize Wordpress perfectly. In the case of managed wordpress hosting, people generally do not need to worry about performance and can easily scale up as their needs grow. In most cases, you can buy and add extra resources with just a few clicks. Managed Wordpress hosting providers like Cloudways also provide ultimate caching options for Wordpress users. You have the option to enable varnish Caching, Redis and Memcached on Cloudways managed wordpress hosting. Most managed hosting providers offer their own caching solutions. Cloudways provides object caching for free which can significantly speed up a Wordpress website.

  1. Automatic Updates:

    One of the key benefits is the automatic updating of the WordPress core, themes, and plugins. This helps ensure that your website is always running on the latest, most secure versions, reducing the risk of vulnerabilities. Several security and performance related risks are minimized in the case of managed Wordpress hosting since experienced developers take care of every aspect of Wordpress optimization for you and you have a ready final solution to use. You would not need to worry about updates. However, you can also switch off auto updates from your hosting account if you like. If you have a theme or plugin or the core that has not been updated, and you have disabled automatic updates, you will still receive notifications on your hosting dashboard to update them whenever an update is released.

  2. Enhanced Security:

    Managed WordPress hosts implement robust security measures. This can include firewalls, malware scanning, and daily backups. The providers often have teams of experts monitoring and addressing security threats proactively. Managed hosting providers include security features implementing which may feel overwhelming personally. It is so because it is a type of Wordpress hosting that has been designed by experts keeping in mind the needs of the users as well as the security vulnerabilities. For most managed wordpress hosting providers, security is among the most important concerns and you might be amazed to see the long list of security features that prevent attacks and keep your website secure.

For example, let’s take Kinsta. According to its website, Kinsta’s proactive and reactive measures automatically process 5.7 billion malicious requests and mitigate 90+ DDoS attacks per month. Kinsta provides enterprise level firewall and DDOS protection. It has a dedicated team to take care of malwares that scans websites hosted on Kinsta daily. Kinsta also offers several more security measures with each of its plans.

Cloudways also includes several security features with its managed Wordpress hosting plans including free enterprise grade DDOS attack prevention, web application firewall, security patching IP whitelisting and so on.

In this way, Managed wordpress hosting providers include several such security features that you can run your website without worrying about it getting hacked.

  1. Scalability:

    Managed hosting plans are scalable, allowing users to easily handle traffic spikes or accommodate growth. This flexibility is particularly useful for businesses with changing needs or seasonal variations in website traffic. Suppose, you started a blog, and a few months later there was a sudden rise in traffic. You are worried about the extra charges or that your host may take your website offline. However, it is not the case with managed hosting since even while they will charge you for extra traffic, you will receive notifications when resource utilization outgrows the limits of your plan.

You can scale your resources whenever you need. It is easy to switch from one plan to another with managed hosting. As your needs grow, you can opt for a bigger plan providing extra resources without the worry for technical optimizations. Usually, it takes only a few clicks to switch to another plan. Sometimes, you will not need to change the plan but can manage with just a few addons. If you have a very large website on Wordpress that experiences seasonal spikes, you can go for an enterprise plan which covers such spikes. Most managed wordpress hosting providers have an enterprise level plan to cater to the scalability needs of large websites.

  1. Expert Support:

    Managed WordPress hosting providers typically offer specialized support from experts familiar with the intricacies of the WordPress platform. This can be valuable for troubleshooting issues or seeking advice on optimizing site performance. After all it is technology and something unexpected can happen any time. Not everyone is a wizard of Wordpress technology. However, that does not mean that you should stay stuck if a technical issue crops up.

There are Wordpress experts to help you with everything and anything technical related to Wordpress. Some of them provide support through chat and phone and some only through chat. However, it is not an obstruction since you can ask them to help with any issue related to your Wordpress website and you are not going to be charged anything extra for it. This is a critical advantage of using managed Wordpress hosting since a failed update or lack of backups or some other technical error might leave you frustrated and scratching your head.

Not everyone knows how to manage .htaccess, wp-config and other critical wordpress files. Most of us seek guidance online or need to hire a developer to fix some issue with core Wordpress or the database. However, rest assured that in the case of managed Wordpress hosting, there are always a bunch of engineers ready to assist you.

  1. User-Friendly Dashboards:

    Managed hosting services often provide user-friendly dashboards tailored to WordPress users. These interfaces make it easy to manage various aspects of your website, from backups to performance analytics.

There are several tasks that you can easily perform from your hosting dashboard rather than having to login to your wordpress admin panel. For example, you can easily carry out website updates from your hosting dashboard, manage cdn, carryout backups, manage caching and other security related features.

None of these will require you to learn anything since you can perform tasks with a few clicks easily from your dashboard. Whether you want to enable object caching for your website or want to turn off a particular security feature temporarily for your website, all of this can be easily done from your dashboard.

  1. Staging Environments:

    Many managed hosts offer staging environments where users can test changes, updates, or new features before deploying them to the live site. This helps prevent potential issues on the production site.

Managed Wordpress hosting providers like Kinsta offer staging environments to create a Wordpress site and check out before pushing the final website online. These staging environments can be helpful in several situations and especially when you are creating a new blog that you want to be fully ready before it goes live or if you are planning to implement a major change on one of your existing websites but want to test them first.

  1. Managed Backups:

    Regular backups are typically included in managed hosting plans, ensuring that your data is secure and recoverable in case of unexpected issues. Managed wordpress hosting providers are considered for the security of your website and backups are a critical part of Wordpress security. If due to some reason your website goes offline, you can always bring it online using a backup.

Managed Wordpress hosting includes regular backups including daily and in some cases backups every few hours. You can revert to an older backup whether the latest or an older backup if you want to revert any changes you have made recently. If you are not on managed Wordpress hosting, you will need to use a plugin and do it manually to save a backup of your website. Some managed wordpress hosting providers also support external backups for small extra charges that can be as low as $1 or less.

Drawbacks of Managed WordPress Hosting:

  1. Cost:

    Managed WordPress hosting tends to be more expensive compared to traditional shared hosting. However, the added features and benefits may justify the higher cost, especially for businesses with specific hosting requirements. For example, Kinsta’s plans start from $35 and WP Engine offers plans starting from $15. However, if you experience traffic growth, since these hosting providers limit the number of visits you can have on a starter plan, you will need to spend extra for more resources. You can host your own Wordpress website on Amazon Lightsail for as low as $3.5 or $5, which might be sufficient for a few thousand visitors daily. So, there can be a significant price difference in terms of doing it yourself or going for managed hosting. However, if you want a headache free hosting where you do not want to spend time on wordpress performance optimization, it comes for a price.

  2. Less Control:

    While managed hosting is convenient, it may offer less control over server-level configurations compared to a self-managed solution. Users looking for extensive customization options may find this limiting. Sometimes, you may find some of the features unsuitable for your particular use or sometimes you may need features that are not compatible with your current plan’s limits. In terms of performance tuning, you may find that you have less freedom with the managed wordpress hosting. If you do not want Cloudflare but your host does not provide another option, you will have to use it like the others. So, managed Wordpress hosting might not be the best solution in all cases and for those wanting additional freedom, self hosted Wordpress would be a better solution.

  3. Plugin Limitations:

    Some managed hosts may restrict the use of certain plugins to maintain stability and security. Users should check the host’s policy on plugin usage to ensure compatibility with their specific needs. The managed hosts have some special settings that are aimed at maximizing security and performance. However, it also subjects users to several plugin limitations. For example, the managed hosting providers that offer their own caching solutions would like you to stick with their caching or use the caching plugin they recommend. Kinsta has a list of plugins that are banned on the platform. Instead you have to use the Must Use Plugin when your website is hosted on this platform. So, if you have a preferred list of plugins, you must check before trying managed Wordpress hosting.

Managed WordPress Hosting Providers:

  1. WP Engine:

    WP Engine is a popular managed WordPress hosting provider known for its performance optimization, security features, and excellent customer support.

  2. SiteGround:

    SiteGround offers managed WordPress hosting with a focus on speed and security. They provide a user-friendly interface and automatic updates. If you are just starting a blog and want a budget friendly managed Wordpress hosting solution, Siteground might be the best option.

  3. Kinsta:

    Kinsta is a premium managed WordPress host known for its high-performance infrastructure, advanced security features, and scalability options. It offers a user friendly dashboard and round the clock expert support. Kinsta has partnered with Cloudflare for CDN and DNS solutions. However, compared to the others Kinsta plans may be very costly.

  4. Bluehost (Managed WordPress):

    Bluehost, a well-established hosting provider, offers a managed WordPress hosting solution. They provide automatic updates, security features, and 24/7 support.

  5. Flywheel:

    Flywheel specializes in managed WordPress hosting for designers and agencies. It offers a user-friendly experience, staging environments, and performance optimization.

For individuals and businesses that want a hassle free, well optimized and secure hosting environment, managed Wordpress hosting might be an excellent option. Costs of managed wordpress hosting can be higher compared to self hosted wordpress. However, there are many benefits of using managed hosting for Wordpress also. The exceptional support and performance and security features may sometimes outweigh the costs, especially when you yourself are not an expert. Those whose priority is ease of use and peace of mind, managed hosting can be the best solution. However, for the experienced and savvy users, there are better solutions that can be less costly.

Below is a comparison table highlighting key features of managed WordPress hosting services offered by Kinsta, WP Engine, and Cloudways. Please note that specific details may change over time, and it’s advisable to check the latest offerings directly from the providers.

Feature Kinsta WP Engine Cloudways
Pricing Tiered plans starting at $35/month Tiered plans starting at $25/month Pay-as-you-go pricing with multiple cloud providers
Performance Google Cloud Platform infrastructure Own infrastructure and CDN Multiple cloud providers, including AWS, Google Cloud, and DigitalOcean
Automatic Backups Daily backups with retention period Daily backups with retention period Automated daily backups with flexible retention settings
Staging Environment One-click staging environments One-click staging environments One-click staging with easy-to-use interface
Security Features DDoS detection, hardware firewalls Proprietary firewall, malware scanning Dedicated firewalls, SSL, Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)
Scalability Vertical and horizontal scaling Vertical and horizontal scaling Vertical scaling, easy server and resource scaling
CDN Integration Built-in CDN (additional cost for premium CDNs) Built-in CDN with Cloudflare Integrates with external CDNs, including Cloudflare
Support 24/7 support via chat and ticket system 24/7 support via chat and ticket system 24/7 live chat support, ticketing system, and community forums
User Interface Custom-built dashboard Proprietary user portal Customizable platform with user-friendly interface
Global Data Centers Multiple global data centers Multiple global data centers Multiple cloud providers with global data centers
Money-Back Guarantee 30-day money-back guarantee 60-day money-back guarantee 3-day free trial, no money-back guarantee

This table provides a snapshot of some key features of managed WordPress hosting services offered by Kinsta, WP Engine, and Cloudways. Depending on specific requirements, budget considerations, and preferences, one provider may be more suitable than the others. So, please thoroughly review each provider’s website for the most up-to-date information and additional features.