A few months ago, we announced a new pricing feature, which would allow customers to bridge pricing gaps between WP Engine plans when their visits fell somewhere in between plans on a given month.

For customers who want the reliability of WP Engine’s Platform, having the ability to bridge the gap between plans when they see a spike in traffic from positive publicity—or an article that goes viral—is a great thing.

WP Engine will never throttle customers, or cut them off, because of a traffic spike. A traffic spike is exactly what you want to see for your content.

However, after hearing customer feedback about pricing gap protection, we’re adjusting how WP Engine counts visits to best serve our customers. Effective immediately, visitors that only access static content will not be counted.

This includes:

  • JavaScript
  • Serving an image, i.e., a Google Image search
  • CSS (Cascading Style Sheets – a front-end code language for site design)

This will mean your WP Engine visits will only count traffic that is tied to site conversions. For example, someone who views an image from your site via Google Image search, but never actually visits your site, will not count as a visitor.

Robots, which are a key part of your SEO, will still count. Helpful robots (or “bots”) and webcrawlers are an essential part of bringing eyeballs to your site via search engines, and WP Engine’s platform will continue to serve them the same way we serve your users. As we’ve explained in the past, robot visits are calculated differently by WP Engine and Google Analytics.

Google Analytics is a great tool for gathering advertising metrics. But as an advertising tool, Google Analytics is not designed to be the authority on the actual traffic hitting the server, or the work the server is performing. Google Analytics will generally under-report visits, compared to the server access logs.

The discrepancy between visits calculated by Google Analytics and server access logs is one that every host must navigate in accurately reflecting traffic.

Refining the pricing gap solution—to not count visitors that only access static content— reflects a balance between our pledge never to throttle customers during a traffic spike, our ability to serve the essential webcrawlers that drive traffic to your site, and our commitment to listening to our customers.