For your business to succeed online today you have to juggle all sorts of things; everything from marketing, hosting, social media, advertising, content creation, etc. This can all become quickly overwhelming and very stressful. Today we want to explore why choosing a managed WordPress hosting service, as opposed to a shared host or small VPS, can be one of the most important decisions you can make as it pertains to your website.
Your business deserves the best and a managed WordPress host gives you that competitive edge.
What is Managed WordPress Hosting?
So first off, what exactly do we mean when we say managed WordPress hosting and how is it different than shared or do it yourself (DIY) hosting? To best explain this let’s first break down the general online population into the three hosting scenarios we typically see:
1. Shared WordPress Hosting
The first crowd is typically people just starting out who choose to go with low-cost shared WordPress hosting. These include hosts like GoDaddy, Bluehost, Hostgator, SiteGround, etc. Usually, these are people who are:
- Building their first website.
- Migrating away from WordPress.com.
- On a strict budget and need to keep things as cheap as possible.
- Someone that doesn’t understand the differences between the different types of hosting, and therefore is simply making a decision based on price (hint: this is not good!).
Shared WordPress hosting plans usually range anywhere from $3 to $25 a month. There is nothing wrong with starting like this, but there are a few things people should be aware of:
- No matter how you do the math, after expenses, $3 a month isn’t actually generating any revenue for the hosting company. Especially when you attribute support into that. One support ticket and they’re already in the red. The way a shared host makes a lot of their money is on upselling and hidden fees. These upsells include things like migrations, domain registrations, renewal fees, SSL certificates, etc.
- To make money most hosts offer what they call their “unlimited resources” plan. You have probably all seen this. Well, there is no such thing in the real world as unlimited resources. What hosts will do is throttle the clients using up a lot of the resources. This, in turn, ends up with those angry clients leaving, making room for more clients that don’t use a lot of resources. In the end, you have a vicious cycle of the hosting company pushing cheap plans, signing up customers who they hope won’t use a lot of resources and will purchase upsells. It’s all about volume. We did the same some time ago but even on our shared hosting plans we now show what resources you get and what not. We believe honesty is key in business.
- Also, because the plan is so cheap this usually forces the host to overcrowd their servers to consolidate resources. So even though you don’t know it, your website might be on the same server as 500+ other people. Any performance issues that pop up with other sites can, in turn, affect your site.
You combine everything mentioned above together and what do you get? You get slow performance and bad support. Shared hosts have to spread their teams way too thin, which results in long ticket times and subpar customer service.
2. DIY VPS WordPress Hosting
The second crowd of people are typically bootstrap startups and people with a little more development or WordPress experience. They are the DIY crowd. These folks are typically still trying to save money, but they are also usually concerned with performance and realize its importance in the success of their business. We see a lot of such setups on our cloud based on centOS or Ubuntu and even one of our tutorials to create a good and fast WordPress VPS yourself.
A small VPS starts at $15 a month. So depending on your setup you could be looking at a cost of between $15 or more a month. The DIY approach can definitely cut costs, but it also means that you are responsible if something breaks, and for optimizing your server for performance.
The DIY approach can be great, but it can also backfire on you if you aren’t careful. Don’t go this route just because you want to tinker! Your time is worth money and you should be spending it on growing your business. Take advantage of experience the Bamboozle team has fixing WordPress issues on a daily basis. The underlying technology is more complex then it looks like and our Managed WordPress solution means you only focus on your website, not on the underlying stuff.
3. Managed WordPress Hosting
The third crowd of people are typically small to medium-sized businesses, high traffic blogs, and companies looking for specialized enterprise WordPress hosting. This crowd realizes that a managed WordPress hosting is a good investment because it saves them manpower, time, and usually offers better performance since it’s fine-tuned for the CMS.
Plans for managed WordPress hosting typically range anywhere from $25 to $150 a month or more depending on the size of your site and needs. Some popular managed WordPress hosts you are probably familiar with, or maybe also are currently using include Kinsta, WP Engine, Flywheel, Pressable, Media Temple, Pressidium, and Pagely.
Bamboozle is a major player in the game and only company offering this enterprise services hosted directly in countries like the UAE or Austria. And we are the only one offering our services on our own cloud, hardware, networks and datacenters while most other offers rely on AWS or Google Cloud. So we can control the complete stack.
Large companies like Walt Disney, The New York Times, Sony, and Toyata are all using WordPress to host their website.
Why You Should Choose Managed WordPress Hosting
Now just because we separated people into three different groups above doesn’t mean it is necessarily always the right way to go. You should do your research to make the right choice for your business. Perhaps you start with the DIY method and upgrade to managed hosting after you grow.
Or you could invest in managed hosting, to begin with, and focus all of your efforts on growing your business. There is no right or wrong path, but let us share with you 10 reasons why managed WordPress hosting can benefit you today.
1. You Get Superior Support
The number one reason you should choose managed WordPress hosting is superior support.
The support team here at Bamboozle are all WordPress developers and Linux Engineers, contribute to open source projects, and use WordPress on a daily basis. As a result, the expertise of our support department is second to none. Nothing is worse than launching a chat session and feeling like you know more than the person on the other end. This will never happen at Bamboozle!
This is the reason large clients like Apparel Group or Tim Hortons chose Bamboozle to manage their WordPress environment. We solve problems, we are not part of them.
2. Optimized for High-Performance
The second reason to choose a managed WordPress hosting provider is that their environments are typically fine-tuned to work with WordPress.
If you go with a shared host or the DIY route they will typically be on more barebone machines and you will need to spend time installing software and optimizing to obtain the same speeds that a managed WordPress host offers out the box. Or in some cases, on a shared host, there won’t be anything you can do to achieve the speeds you need.
Our environment is exclusively tailored for WordPress and we create every client instance depending on their needs. This includes the latest releases of PHP, NGINX, mariaDB and other key tools to optimized your Site performance. We include Server site caching (Redis) and include tools like WP-ROCKET to optimize the code of your website. All without you touching anything. We take care of the performance. No complicated Dashboards or tools. We make it fast. Period.
A high-performance managed WordPress host should also provide you with the latest and greatest architecture and technology. This includes utilizing the latest versions of PHP 7, MariaDB, HTTP/2 and NGINX, which have all been proven to be one of the fastest combinations for WordPress.
If your WordPress host is taking ages to release the latest versions of PHP, they are holding you back! That doesn’t fly with us. In fact, Bamboozle released PHP 7.2 and 7.3 within weeks of their final and tested release. And we take care of your website using these new technologies. We don’t simply release it on our platform and have you test. We do this for you and ensure everything works on the latest platform.
3. Strategically Located where your business is
Besides just server-level performance, managed WordPress hosting providers also typically have a larger infrastructure that is designed for global reach. Thanks to our own Cloud Platform, we have multiple locations from which you can choose to host your WordPress site. This includes locations across the UAE, Europe, and the US. Strategically placing your site closer to your visitors and customers decreases network latency, TTFB, and ensures for faster page load times.
Latency refers to the time and or delay that is involved in the transmission of data over a network. The further the distance the greater the latency. For example, if you run a local WooCommerce shop in Dubai, UAE, you should be hosting your site in the UAE. If you were to host your site in the USA, customers would see a much longer first-time page load. The initial DOC load comes from your host server, so having the ability to place your site where your customers are is very important!
4. Automatic Backups (Never Lose Your Data)
What would you do if you suddenly lost everything? You should always be prepared for the worst-case scenario, and this includes always having backups of your WordPress site. A quality managed WordPress hosting provider should always include automatic backups for no additional charge. With shared hosts typically backups are included, but in the higher cost plans. And if you go the DIY route with a VPS, usually you have to set up your own backup system as well as VPS snapshots which also cost extra.
We include automatic backups of all WordPress sites for free, no additional setup is required. 14 backups are accessible at any given time from right within the MyKinsta dashboard for an easy one-click restore. You can also always take manual backups with a click of a button. This is very handy if perhaps you are installing something new and want to ensure you don’t break anything.
Not only do we have automatic backups, but you can also download a full backup (files and .sql file) of your WordPress site at any time. And if you have a WooCommerce store or site with a lot of dynamic content, we have add-ons in which you can automatically back up your site every hour.
5. Staging Environments
Testing, testing, testing. You can’t afford your website to go down so you should always be testing new changes, plugins and updates on a development site, not your production site! With most web hosting providers however testing involves a complex and time-consuming process of copying your site locally, testing, and then figuring out how to migrate the changes back.
On Bamboozle Managed WordPress we create a secure and easy to use staging environment for your and once all your changes are done it can be pushed with a single click. And of course you can always go back in case something goes wrong.
6. Security Is Taken Seriously
And you can’t forget security! Typically in shared hosting environments, they don’t provide any assistance if you’re hacked or if you encounter malware. This goes for the DIY VPS route as well. If your site is hacked, you’re responsible. A lot of managed WordPress hosting providers include support if your site is hacked and they have systems in place to protect you from malware.
We take WordPress security very seriously here at Bamboozle and have implemented active and passive measures to stop attacks and malicious intent in its tracks. We even offer free hack repair and malware removal. If your site is infected our support team is most likely already cleaning it up. We also have software in place to detect DDoS attacks as they happen. Hardware firewalls are in place and have very tight software-based restrictions to protect your WordPress site.
The provider your web host uses is also important. We use our ownCloud Platform which means you get the benefit of a security model that has been built upon on our experience with large corporate clients.
Beyond the server-level security, your account is also very important. If someone gets access to your account they could change your passwords, delete your websites, change DNS records, and all sorts of horrible things. Thats why we put extra effort on securing your WordPress Admin Area from access.
We also add automatic uptime checks, so you know the performance of your website at any time, monitor any file change for potential threats and implement a Web Application Firewall to make sure hackers stay out.
If you pick a web hosting provider that offers the above features, not only will it save you time, but it will also give you peace of mind knowing that if anything ever happens that the host has your back! It’s important to invest in secure WordPress hosting.
7. Built with Scalability in Mind
Another important aspect for any host is scalability. When it comes to shared hosting your only option when you outgrow your resources is to upgrade to a higher plan. And this is if they haven’t already suspended you. Eventually, with a shared host you are going to reach a point where they will simply force you to migrate to a dedicated server. This can simply be time-consuming in itself as you’re constantly having to worry about watching your limits. And moving to a better server might require time on your part.
With the DIY VPS route it’s a lot easier to scale, but sometimes this requires a little more server knowledge to expand disks, etc. With managed WordPress hosting providers they usually handle all of this for you. If you’re going over their pre-defined limits they will simply notify you, and if required, an upgrade is just a click away.
A very cool and unique feature we have at Bamboozle is the ability to automatically scale your site due to the fact that we use our dynamic cloud to host your service. For example, other WordPress hosting providers are typically constrained to 2-6 CPUs per machine. We actually can let the site scale to as many CPUs as needed when there’s a traffic surge.
8. Better DNS (Reliable and Faster Lookup Times)
You should be using a premium DNS provider. You won’t get that with shared hosting providers or the DIY VPS method. You would have to sign up separately for the service. There actually aren’t a lot of managed hosting providers that even offer this, but Bamboozle does! We include premium DNS on all plans on our on own global Anycast DNS Service.
What is DNS? Well, think of it like a phonebook for the internet. Whenever you type an address into your browser this actually routes back to an IP address, even though you never see it. DNS servers do the mapping for you. Just like with web hosting, there are slow DNS providers and fast ones. Bamboozle has one of the largest networks in the world. By going with a fast DNS provider you will ensure faster DNS lookup times.
Typically the free DNS provided by domain registrars like GoDaddy and Namecheap is very slow. It also might not be consistent and lookup times can vary.
Another reason a reliable DNS provider is important is to protect you from DDoS attacks. And you should know by now from the DNS Doomsday on Friday, October 21st, 2016, just how important DNS really is. This is a good example actually of why you need multiple DNS providers. Many companies’ websites on that day went completely offline because they relied solely on Dyn, the DNS provider under attack. Companies like Reddit, Twitter, Spotify, all experienced downtime.
One common issue though is that DNS providers typically set high TTLs, which to put it simply means that if one of those companies had added a 2nd DNS provider on that day, it wouldn’t have mattered much because the TTL was set to expire in days not minutes. This can be resolved by simply setting up multiple DNS providers ahead of time in preparation. We set a typical TTL only to 300 which means within 5 minutes your site can switch to another provider if needed. And of course this is managed also.
9. Proper, free migrations
A lot cheap providers offer so called free migrations. This normally means the provider uses a plugin and copies the data over to his hosting. But that also copies any issues, potential hacks and non optimized items over.
Bamboozle Managed WordPress does migrations right. We move your data over and analyze it properly so that the new home of your website is the fastest and most secure one. We don’t stop until everything is optimized. So the migration is for us just a start. To get your WordPress Site better every day.
10. No Dashboard. We are serious.
We dont believe in having multiple dashboards for managing the same thing. While we take care of everything, we have included the most important directly where you use it – in WordPress. You can even directly contact our support team right from within WordPress, so you never have to leave the place that is most important – where you create and manage your website or webshop.
As you can see there are a lot of benefits from choosing managed WordPress hosting over shared hosting or a DIY VPS. Yes, managed hosting costs more money, but you should treat this as an investment in your business. How much is your time, peace of mind, and data integrity worth to you? If you have any questions regarding hosting for your business or blog we are only one click away here at Bamboozle. Let us help take you to the next level.