At WP Engine, we focus our energy and infrastructure on providing a premium hosting platform to build world-class WordPress sites and applications. When our customers want to send emails, we want them to have the same best-in-class service for that as well, and as such we recommend using 3rd party services like MailChimp, Mandrill, or Constant Contact. When configuring a 3rd party SMTP plugin, please see Using 3rd party email providers for more help.
There are 3 major reasons WP Engine does not allow large amounts of emails to be sent as part of our hosting platform:
- Email blasts are a sensitive business, and there is always the chance that the recipients of an email will flag the email as spam, which will reflect back on IP addresses. We take every precaution to keep our IP address squeaky clean. Emails generated via WordPress are sent from our IP infrastructure, so if those IP addresses ever get blacklisted for spam, it might adversely affect a large number of customers. That’s not good.
- When you send an email blast, you also want to ensure deliverability. Companies like MailChimp, Mandrill, and Constant Contact, spend a great deal of time and resources ensuring deliverability for emails sent via their IP addresses. Managing their IP addresses to make sure emails reach their destination is a key part of their business, just like managing the scalability of your high traffic WordPress sites is part of ours.
- On a standard server, WordPress emails are generated for lost passwords and comment notifications by a command line service. The service generating these emails is somewhat generic and doesn’t usually allow a SysAdmin to manage and ensure deliverability. Rather than generating and sending system emails on the server itself with that basic software, we use a premium 3rd party managed SMTP provider. This ensures a high level of deliverability and consistency, even for WordPress system emails. Those little details make a big difference for the sites you choose to host with us.
Please Note: to ensure server stability across our shared-hosting platform we do limit the amount of emails that can be sent in an hour.
WordPress is an amazing and versatile tool, and there’s almost no limit to the things you can build with it. However, just because you can send emails with WordPress, that doesn’t always mean you should. In a best practice environment, there are specialized services like MailChimp, Mandrill, and Constant Contact (+ others) that are a complete email solution for your business, and will provide you with the optimal results. Our article Using 3rd party email providers can help you configure these plugins for use on your website. With this method, your email service provides its own SMTP server, which helps ensure mail deliverability.
While it is possible that WP Engine could add email to our services and possibly create another tier of service that we could charge for, we’re choosing to refer that business to other providers that will ensure the best results for our customers. We’d simply rather focus on being the premium platform for you to build awesome sites with WordPress.
If you’d like to set up your own SMTP service like Mailchimp, here’s a detailed checklist they’ve written that details all the things that need to be set up first. You can learn a ton about building a best-practice SMTP server by imitating a provider like MailChimp. The following link includes all the things you need to have up and running when you send email blasts.