In the land occupied by Managed WordPress Hosting companies, this name is one of the most commonly used to describe the entire industry. Yes, that is correct. People tend to mistake the entire portfolio of companies with this one. It is no coincidence that this happens, not at all. Simply put, this is one of the oldest companies that started providing Managed WordPress Hosting solutions to the masses. At reasonable prices.
What is Managed WordPress Hosting?
Simply put, that is just a hands free approach to the hosting of your WordPress blog or website. You don’t have to think about updates, security, optimization, cashing, scripts compatibility, etc. I did an in depth blog post regarding this subject, pros and cons, and some of the reasoning behind it all. You can check it out here!
Features, features and more features.
Shall we start with free automatic migrations? Yes, the bloody thing actually works quite fast. Copies all your website posts, media files, and almost all add-ons it has. I say almost because it can’t transfer your scripts that are not supported. So, be a doll, and check before you transfer, perhaps your website relies on something you can’t use on WP Engine platform. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. W3 Total Cache for example is not supported, but heck, with the way their servers are optimized, you will never need it.
Look at this:
Unfortunately, I have no idea what this Strategic Account Management or Launch Readiness Assessment are. I bought Professional Package, not that I needed it, I just wanted to see what their Phone support looks like.
As you can see, there is a plethora of options to choose, and all the goodies you get are quite nice.
Free SSL Certificate, Yes please.
Visitors? What the? What happens if I have more than the paid number of visits?
There are no entry processes that are reserved for you, just your allotted number of visitors per month. As you can see above, each package has those numbers, and don’t worry, WP Engine will never slow you down, turn you off, or suspend you for overstepping that number. They will just bill you for it. Awesome? Right?
I have heard some stories about people getting charged for bot or bounce visits. I can not say anything about it, because I did not manage to find any evidence for this. After checking all my logs, no bot visit was ever counted toward my monthly number of visitors, nor was I ever charged for those visits. If you want some more info on what they actually count as visits take a look at this.
What happens if I have more visitors? What is the cost of extra visits to my WP Engine website?
Nothing bad happens, all your visitors will get to your website, and you will be charged accordingly.
The price for every extra 1000 visits is just $1. Not so bad. If that price changes, you can always check it here.
Ease of Use
I can go on and on with this one, but I will try to keep it short. This is one of the most elegant and user friendly interfaces that I have seen so far. Everything is easy to understand, clearly marked. Colors are crisp and sharp. There are no ambiguous tools or features. Simple and powerful, yes, that’s the way to put it.
One thing that I just have to point out is the famous Staging Area. It is a simple and powerful Sandbox Mode in which you can test out and preview new features, posts, scripts or add-ons. Preview them, edit your code, whatever you can or will change, can be done safely and without destroying a single bit of code, or losing your visitors because you installed that new script and it just crashes your web site. This is one of the best features available at WP Engine, and it is available even to the starter packages.
Help & Support
Well, I must admit, I never used their email support. But ticket and phone support are awesome. Support guys (and girls) are knowledgeable, and will do much to help you settle in. Not to mention, answering all of my stupid questions 2 or 3 times repeatedly. What can I say, I am a pain in the ass sometimes. They, were very polite, professional, and quick to resolve my issues. Average waiting time for me was around 6 minutes for chat, and 5 minutes for phone support.
WP Engine Summary
This is a tough one to explain. I really liked my stay with WP Engine, and I would gladly recommend them to anyone. But I had to go. It wasn’t for me. I don’t like the fact that I don’t have full control over my scripts and add-ons. I know, it is nothing important, groundbreaking, but it bothers me. I like to control every aspect of my website, and Managed Hosting is just not my cup of coffee.
But that’s just me, look at National Geographic website, they are hosted at WP Engine, and they are enjoying it.
So my advice is this: take a look, and if you like that carefree way of living, then have a pleasant stay. If you don’t, ask for a refund, 60 days of no questions asked refund policy, sweet, right?