I highly recommend WP Engine. It’s a great web host that’s perfect for WordPress users.
In fact, WP Engine ranks high on my list of the best web hosting for WordPress. This is the hosting provider that we use here at Quick Sprout, and we love it.
If you like reliability, great service, and an optimal experience for WordPress, this is the way to go.
I’ve reviewed all of the different WP Engine plan options. I’ll also explain why WP Engine stands out as a top web host, and cover any potential drawbacks as well.
The Benefits of Using WP Engine Web Hosting
Below are all the upsides to using WP Engine as your web host. There are many more, but these are the biggest reasons you should choose it.
WP Engine is pricey when compared to competitors. That price is well worth it for their amazing service.
But we get it: You want to save as much cash as possible.
To get the best possible rate, you need to commit to an annual contract. Some of you might be hesitant to commit for so long at a high rate.
Fortunately, WP Engine has a 60-day risk free period for their hosting plans. If you’re not happy with the service, you can opt-out and get refunded.
60 days is double the standard guarantee for most hosting providers in the industry.
Furthermore, the fact that WP Engine offers this is a testament to how they feel about their services. They wouldn’t offer it if they didn’t think you’d be satisfied. That’s reason enough to give them a try.
If you like reliable WordPress hosting with a ton of great tools and features, you’re going to be glad to stick around after the trial.
I love the fact that WP Engine’s pricing is straightforward and transparent. That can’t be said for the majority of web hosting providers in the industry.
It’s pretty common for hosting providers to advertise really low rates but only apply them to 36- or 48-month contracts that are prepaid in-full. Then when those contracts expire, the renewal rates double, triple, or even quadruple.
WP Engine doesn’t do that.
Your price remains the same even after your contract is finished. You can get two months free if you prepay for a year, but they’ll never force you to commit longer than that.
Outstanding Customer Support
As a managed WordPress hosting provider, WP Engine really stands out amongst the competition in terms of support and service. This more than justifies the cost in my eyes.
You won’t have to do anything aside from running your website. The WP Engine team will maintain everything at the server level, including security.
WP Engine has hundreds of employees on their support team as well as on their outreach and development team. Other providers with less than 30 employees just can’t match that level of technical support.
You’ll never have to worry about updates, security, your tech stack, or server optimizations. All of this is handled for you.
The 24/7 live chat with every plan is a huge bonus as well. 24/7 phone support also comes free with every plan except the Startup option.
As a WP Engine customer, I’ve been impressed with the quick and informed responses whenever I’ve reached out to the support team.
A web host is only as good as the performance of your website. This is an area where WP Engine truly excels.
Each plan has more than enough resources to accommodate the appropriate website sizes and volumes of traffic. This translates to high uptime rates and blazing fast loading speed.
Since their hosting solutions are built for WordPress, everything is optimized for peak performance. Other hosting providers with cookie-cutter hosting for any CMS just can’t deliver as well in this area.
Being the world’s most popular CMS comes with its own set of problems. In fact, as of 2019, 90% of all hacked sites run on WordPress. That number is up from 83% in 2018.
But WP Engine goes the extra mile to protect your site at every level. They block more than 150 million attacks per day.
One of the reasons why WordPress sites get hacked is because their software isn’t up to date. You won’t have to worry about maintaining these updates manually. WP Engine will handle it for you to ensure old software isn’t making your site a target to malware.
WP Engine is one of the most developer friendly hosts out there. That’s what makes them so popular with people with more technical knowledge.
They provide easy and automated on-click setups for faster deployment. You’ll also benefit from an integrated DevKit for the WordPress framework.
This translates to smoother launches and fluid maintenance.
- SSH gateway access
- Genesis Framework
- Dynamic content blocks that are reusable
- 35+ premium themes for WordPress
- Third-party tools for builds and debugging
- Push and pull deployments
And these are just a handful of the developer-specific benefits provided by WP Engine.
WP Engine isn’t perfect. So before you sign up, there are a few drawbacks and other considerations that you should keep in mind.
Not for beginners
I do not recommend WP Engine if you’re new to web hosting or WordPress.
There’s two reasons for this: price and complexity.
For the price, you can do better with another provider. But WP Engine definitely isn’t trying to appeal to everyone with their pricing structure.
This web host is made for pros and experienced webmasters. The developer-friendly tools and benefits are worth it if you know what you’re doing and how to use them.
Businesses that are established and running on WordPress already should consider switching to WP Engine if they aren’t satisfied with their current hosting plans.
High entry-level pricing
WP Engine is a professional host for professional budgets. It’s for people trying to get the most value from every dollar they spend.
Starting at $30 per month, the entry-level plans are ten times higher than some of the alternative hosting options out there. So if this is out of your price range, you can check out my guide on the best cheap web hosting to find another provider.
With that said, it’s worth mentioning again that WP Engine doesn’t spike their rates when your contract renews. If you’re comparing entry-level plans, the rate may not seem significantly higher when you factor in the renewal costs and hidden fees charged by other hosts.
However, once you get beyond the Starter plan, the price points aren’t even in the same ballpark as other shared web hosting options. To be blunt, WP Engine is expensive.
I have to mention this to ensure there isn’t any confusion.
If you’re not using WordPress, you can’t consider using WP Engine as a hosting provider. This eliminates anyone who is using another CMS to run their website.
I briefly mentioned this earlier, but I want to talk about it in greater detail. The WP Engine plans have traffic limits.
Normally, a web hosting provider will tell you roughly how much traffic your plan can accommodate. If you go over that number, it will impact the performance of your website.
But WP Engine has a different approach. Rather than throttling down your website resources and hurt your performance, they simply charge extra for exceeding your limits. Depending on your plan, you’ll pay an extra $1 to $2 per every 1,000 monthly site visits over your limit.
This can be costly, considering the drastic jumps of traffic limits between plans.
For example, let’s say you’re on the Growth plan, paying $115 per month for up to 100,000 monthly visits. As your business grows, you may start getting 200,000 visits per month, which would cost you an additional $200 per month. At that point, it would be more cost-effective to upgrade your plan, even though you still aren’t coming close to the 400,000 limit on the next tier.
The structure of these overage fees may force you to upgrade to a higher plan from the beginning in order to avoid these extra charges.
Compare WP Engine Web Hosting Plans
WP Engine offers four different packages:
- Managed Hosting
- Managed Hosting Plus
- Ecommerce Hosting
- Secure Hosting
The difference between the first two plans is that Managed Hosting Plus gives you an easy way to automatically update all your plugins. Ecommerce, as you can guess, is designed for online stores.
Secure Hosting is ideal for heavy traffic sites that have a lot of plugins (which increase your attack surface). All WP Engine hosting is extremely well-protected, but Secure Hosting adds a few extra layers for companies that are worried about being targeted.
For each package, WP Engine offers five hosting plans:
All plans come with more than 35 StudioPress themes, 24/7 chat support, free site transfers, an SSL certificate, and a global CDN.
Below you’ll find an in-depth review of each plan that includes the price, features, and benefits.
Have a small blog or website? Expecting less than 25,000 visitors per month? Go with the Startup hosting plan. It comes with all of the basic hosting features that you should need to accommodate you.
The Startup rate is $30 per month. But if you prepay and sign up for an annual contract, you’ll get two months for free.
Your website will have 10 GB of local storage and 50 GB of bandwidth per month. This is pretty good if you compare it to other entry-level hosting plans on the market.
It’s a basic plan with straightforward pricing, but WP Engine gives you the option to add-on some extra features during the checkout process.
While they may sound appealing, you can skip these. I really can’t justify the additional costs for an entry-level plan. A small personal blog with under 25,000 visitors won’t need these extras to run smoothly.
If you’re going to spring for anything, the enhanced site security would be my only recommendation.
With a Professional plan, you can build up to three sites. You also get more storage, more bandwidth, and a greater number of site visitors per month.
It starts $60 per month, and represents a good opportunity for companies that need more than one site, but don’t want to spring for a Growth plan.
This is aruguably the best bang for your buck on WPEngine. For additional fees, you can expand security, add plugins, and expand site building capabilities.
The Growth plan is a big jump from Starter. But it comes with features and tools to justify it.
The plan starts at $115 per month.
It includes hosting for 10 WordPress sites, 100,000 monthly visits, 20 GB of storage, and 200 GB of bandwidth per month. These features make the Growth plan an appealing option for growing businesses.
Another big difference between the Startup and Growth plan is the level of customer support. With Startup, you’re limited 24/7 live chat support (although that’s still good for an entry-level hosting plan).
But Growth also comes with 24/7 phone support. So this is a huge bonus for those of you who would rather get on the phone and talk to an agent as opposed to chatting online.
Even if you’re only expecting 40,000 or 50,000 monthly visitors, you’ll need to upgrade to the Growth plan. WP Engine charges overages for exceeding monthly traffic limits, but we’ll talk about that in greater detail later on.
As the name implies, the Scale plan is made for websites that have scaled beyond the limits of other plans.
For $290 per month, your plan can accommodate 400,000 visitors per month. You’ll also get 30 GB of storage, 400 GB of bandwidth, and hosting for 15 websites.
Those are enough resources to keep your site running smoothly even with increased visitors and traffic surges.
The features included with the Scale plan are actually pretty comparable to the Growth plan. So the major difference is really just the ability to accommodate more traffic and the extra resources to support it as well.
This plan is best for large websites and WordPress users that want to host multiple sites on one plan.
WP Engine offers custom plans for enterprise-level websites. With up to 1 TB of local storage and 400+ GB of bandwidth per month, the custom plans can accommodate millions of monthly visits to your site.
Here’s a side by side comparison of the plans to put this into perspective for you.
Note that the monthly prices below reflect the discount you get for being a reader of QuickSprout. If you sign up for an annual plan, you’ll save even more.
As you can imagine, only a small percentage of websites would be interested in the custom plan.
For a higher price point, the plan comes with some free extras that are normally paid add-ons for the other plans. These extras include WordPress multisite, GeoTarget, and content performance.
To get rates for the custom pricing solutions, you’ll need to get in touch with a WP Engine sales specialist. They’ll work out the details with you to figure out how much resources your website needs.
WP Engine is arguably the best managed WordPress hosting provider on the market today.
But it isn’t for everyone.
If you’re an advanced WordPress user, or if you’re a seasoned pro looking to get the most out of your WordPress website, I highly suggest WP Engine.
However, it’s expensive. The high entry-level pricing isn’t worth it for new or small websites.
I wouldn’t even recommend the Startup plan because it’s so basic. I’d only consider using WP Engine if you were ready to sign up for the Growth or Scale plans.
However WP Engine delivers world-class service if you do sign up. As a satisfied WP Engine customer, I’m happy to recommend this web host to you as well.