Our SEO agency currently uses about 30 different hosting providers, and if we add our clients’ websites to the mix, that number hits more than 70. As with anything, some of these hosting companies are great, some aren’t.
What makes a hosting provider great, in my opinion:
- No first level support: With many hosts, if I write a ticket the first answer will be by somebody who isn’t equipped to answer my questions.
- They take care of security and backups: I don’t want to flip switches and check backups and so on. I have my own business to run.
- Speed out of the box: I want my sites to be fast from the start.
- Scalability: I don’t want my site to be down just because I was mentioned on a news site.
- Uptime: I don’t want 99.99 percent; I want 100 percent.
- Staging environment: In my opinion this should be a standard, but sadly it isn’t with most hosting providers.
How I came to WP Engine
About 18 months ago, our SEO agency site and a few of our main projects went down for several days due to a “hardware” failure. On top of that, some of the sites also got hacked a few days later. We decided it was time for a change. Sometimes you need serious pain to get moving. 🙂
Some friends of mine on WickedFire (Affiliate Marketing Forum) had recommended WP Engine. They told me it would load faster than my own configuration and it would be totally hassle free. After building up everything on my own, I originally wasn’t that convinced by something called managed WordPress hosting … but I was so wrong.
My two cents about support
Because some of my WordPress installs were messed up by the old configuration, my transition and migration weren’t 100 percent smooth. But once we got everything moving with the help of WP Engine Support, well, I was more than convinced.
Note: The support staff of WP Engine is first class. Every single person I’ve worked with knows every single detail about WordPress.
At this point I should mention that I am not a simple client to have. I want all those weird SEO tweaks. With WP Engine that is not an issue. They will even protect you against your own stupidity and inquire if you are really sure about this or that before moving forward.
But let’s wrap this up with a few stats about my sites that I achieve with WP Engine:
- 100 percent uptime (not just 99.99 percent)
- Response time: 219 milliseconds on average
- Hassle: 0 percent
I am not going to talk about specific loading times as that also depends on the website you are running.
All I can say is this: If you use WordPress you should be hosting on WP Engine. Period.
Alexander Rus is the CEO of Evergreen Media, a search engine marketing company from Innsbruck, Austria. He started out as a affiliate marketer during college and now helps clients from Austria, Germany, and Switzerland to own their online markets. He loves drinking coffee, reading search engine patents, and making fun of online marketing gurus.