How to Choose the Best Managed WordPress Hosting
Now that you’ve explored different managed WordPress hosting services, you might be wondering, what factors should you be looking for while choosing a hosting service?
Before you choose one, you need to have a clear understanding of why you want managed WordPress hosting for your site. You’ll also want to ensure that the hosting service you choose meets your budget and requirements.
Before we dive in, let’s take a look at what managed WordPress hosting is actually.
What is Managed WordPress Hosting?
Managed WordPress hosting services are built for hosting blazing fast, highly secure and scalable WordPress sites. With a managed hosting setup, you operate your site in a server that’s uniquely optimized for the security configuration of WordPress. You can also count on qualified support professionals who know the ins and outs of your WordPress site and server.
Running your site on a managed WordPress hosting service gives you a peace of mind because you don’t have to know the technicalities of optimizing your WordPress for improved performance.
Your hosting provider handles all the system administration tasks so that you only need to focus on what’s important for your business.
- Ease of management: You don’t need to handle any system administration aches. Instead, you can focus on what you’re really good at—publishing great content and managing your business.
- Security: Most reputed managed WordPress hosting services come with WordPress caching, automatic WordPress vulnerability fixes, etc., which give you an extra layer of protection for your site. This way your site gets bulletproof security without having to configure complex WordPress security plugins.
- Speed: Most managed hosting providers offer content caching at the server level. In fact, some hosting provider doesn’t even allow you to install a caching plugin to speed up your site.
- Expert support: In case you need help regarding your WordPress site’s performance, you’ll get expert WordPress assistance.
- Autoupdates: Most managed WordPress hosting companies offer automatic WordPress core updates. Some even offer automatic WordPress theme and plugin updates. This ensures you’re using the latest version so that it protects your site from any known vulnerability threats.
- Expensive: Compared to shared hosting, managed WordPress hosting is quite expensive. If you’re just starting out, managed WordPress hosting isn’t a good solution for you.
- Limitations: Some managed WordPress hosting providers like WPEngine don’t allow you to use certain plugins that might clash with their hosting service.
- Only WordPress sites: Obviously, you can’t build a non-WordPress website on your managed WordPress hosting account.
Factors to Consider When Choosing Managed WordPress Hosting
Before you choose a random managed WordPress hosting provider, below are a few things you need to consider.
Understand Your Purpose
As a result of the growing popularity of WordPress, a lot of web hosting companies now offer WordPress hosting that comes preinstalled with WordPress with low price. The best thing is that the WordPress hosting service emphasizes on the easiness of building a WordPress site. Even a user who doesn’t have any previous experience with WordPress can quickly set up a WordPress site with ease.
Aside from convenience, a typical WordPress hosting service may not have much to offer in terms of performance boost.
That means before you dive into choose a WordPress hosting, it’s vital for you to understand why you actually need it. For instance, if you’re just after convenience, you can choose a WordPress hosting service from Bluehost that makes it easy to build a WordPress site without having you to manually setup WordPress. Their plans are best suited for beginner level consumers.
If you’re opting for a managed WordPress hosting service for boosting your WordPress performance, you might choose a company that specializes in WordPress hosting like WPEngine.
WPEngine emphasizes on your site’s performance and it charges you based on the traffic you attract and the bandwidth you consume. This way you could offer enterprise class performance to your visitors without having to handle the tedious system administration tasks.
In the rest of the article, we’ll be talking about managed WordPress hosting services built for boosting your site’s performance.
Out of the box, managed WordPress hosting providers often offer automatic vulnerability fixes and many other security measures to protect your website from security threats.
Below are a few security measures you can find from reputed managed WordPress hosting services are:
- Malware scanning: Inspect your WordPress files for detecting vulnerabilities and fixing them automatically.
- Brute force mitigation: Brute force attack is still one of the popular cracking methods. Aside from password cracking, it’s also be used to discover hidden pages and vulnerable files.
- A web application firewall (WAF): WAF is employed out of the box in managed WordPress hosting setup to ensure attack vendors are blocked.
- DDoS mitigation: It avoids any attempts to exhaust the resources in a network.
Agile Development Environments
Managed WordPress hosting often comes with an agile development environment that allows you to quickly create staging and production site with one-click tools. Staging helps you build your sites before pushing them to production. This way you can ensure your site is perfect before deploying.
Daily backup is another important feature you can expect from a managed WordPress hosting plan. Some users prefer having their own backup system set up on their site in addition to the backup offered by managed hosting service.
Be sure to check if your web host allows you to install your favorite backup plugin on your site.
Regularly updating your WordPress is highly recommended because it protects your site from newly discovered vulnerabilities. Some managed WordPress hosting companies even offer automatic WordPress themes and plugins update.
However, keep in mind that enabling auto updates for your themes and plugins can sometimes break your site, so you need to be cautious when doing so.
One of the main benefits of choosing a managed WordPress hosting is that you get technical assistance from experts who know WordPress inside and out. Your support team can also walk you through many best practices in how you can boost your WordPress performance and troubleshoot with WordPress specific errors.
Having helped thousands of users to set up a WordPress site, we’ve found that people used to ask the same sort of questions again and again. This is why we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions, so you can get started with the best hosting service for your WordPress site.
How does managed WordPress hosting differ from other hosting services?
Managed WordPress hosting services are built for delivering blazing fast, highly secure and scalable WordPress sites. With a managed hosting setup, you don’t have to know the technicalities of optimizing your WordPress for improved performance.
You can count on qualified support professionals to assist you in need whenever you detect a performance issue.
Simply, managed WordPress hosting gives you the peace of mind you deserved without having you to worry about system administration.
Do I need managed WordPress hosting for my site?
Managed WordPress hosting is a concierge service where all technical aspects of running WordPress is managed by the host. It’s built specifically for running WordPress websites on it, and it’s optimized for speed, security and scalability, etc.
If you’re just starting out, it’s in your best interest to get a shared WordPress hosting service that comes with all the set of hosting features (such as one-click WordPress install) to get your WordPress website up and running.
Managed WordPress hosting could be the best choice for those websites that attract a lot of traffic and need a tight security layer, so you don’t need to take care of any technical configurations to make your sites blazing fast.
What are the drawbacks of managed WordPress hosting?
Of course, you’re allowed to host only a WordPress site with a managed WordPress hosting setup. Aside from that, some other drawbacks are.
- Expensive: Managed WordPress hosting solution isn’t for everyone. If your site is small, you won’t find any performance improvement with a managed hosting setup and you won’t find it affordable as well.
- Limited customizations: For best performance, some WordPress hosts limit the number of customizations you can do on your WordPress site.
- Plugin restrictions: Some hosting providers restrict certain plugins from installing on your site, which could potentially clash their system.
How much does it cost to purchase a managed WordPress hosting?
It depends on what kind of managed WordPress hosting services you’ll need for your site. If you want to choose a company that specializes in managed WordPress hosting like WPEngine, the pricing starts at $350 per year. When you choose a specialized managed hosting company, you get a clear idea of traffic and bandwidth limit offered on each individual plan. This allows you to choose the right plan accordingly.
If you’re choosing a WordPress hosting for the convenience of building a WordPress website, then you might want to choose a WordPress hosting plan from Bluehost or HostGator. Their WordPress hosting pricing starts at as low as $120 per year.
Do I need to have domain and hosting from the same provider?
Not necessarily. You can get a domain and hosting from different providers. Some hosting providers allow you to register a domain name for free when purchasing a hosting account, which makes it easy to set up a blog from the ground up.
Alternatively, you can buy a domain name from a domain registrar. In the long run, buying a domain name from a domain registrar will be profitable for you because the domain renewal cost will be low.
Do I need to get a hosting addon?
No. Hosting companies used to upsell several hosting addons when you purchase a new hosting account. Those hosting addons are not needed when you’re starting out, so make sure to uncheck those addons. In case you think you need to them in future, you could always purchase them without a hassle.
Do managed WordPress hosting companies keep backups of my site?
If your site is hosted on a reputed managed WordPress hosting provider like WPEngine, your data will be backed up on a daily basis. If you feel more secured with an additional backup plugin, you can always do so. However, make sure whether your hosting company allows installing your favorite backup plugin on your site because some backup plugin has proven to consume more resources which could potentially impact your server’s performance.
Do managed WordPress hosting companies preinstall any WordPress plugins?
It depends on the hosting company you choose. Some WordPress hosting plans, for example, by Dreamhost, come preinstalled with premium plugins, like Jetpack Pro for no additional cost. Such plans could be a nice option for some. But if you don’t want to be enforced to use a specific premium plugin, it’s in your best interest to contact your hosting provider or choose another hosting company that doesn’t enforce you any unwanted plugins on your site.
How do I migrate my WordPress site to my new managed WordPress hosting account?
Most managed WordPress hosting companies offer free WordPress site migration to a new managed hosting account. All you have to do is to check whether your hosting provider offers a free transfer and request for it via support.
Can I install any plugins I want?
It depends on your hosting provider. Hosting providers like WPEngine forbid certain plugins that could clash with their hosting solutions.
Below are a certain classes of plugins you’re forbidden to install on WPEngine, for example.
- Caching plugins
- Backup plugins
- Server & MYSQL thrashing plugins
- Related posts plugins
- Broken link checker plugins
- Duplicate behavior plugins
- Email plugins
It’s in your best interest to check with your hosting provider whether they allow your beloved WordPress plugin on your site before you signing up.
Can I change my managed WordPress hosting later?
Absolutely! Just like any other hosting account, you can switch over to other hosting providers if you want to.
Can I send email blasts with my managed hosting account?
Most reputed managed WordPress hosting providers don’t allow you to send blast emails using a WordPress plugin. By sending blast emails, you’re risking your IP address to be blacklisted. Instead, you’re advised to use an email marketing tool like AWeber or MailChimp.