Starting a blog and choosing a fully managed WordPress hosting should take the speed of your site page loading time to the next level. But once you neglect the fact that not all WordPress web hosts are optimized for performance, speed, and security, you’ll end up with issues.
Because there are hundreds of companies that offer blog hosting, it’s not that easy to determine which one is really offering what you expect for PHP, MySQL, and server optimizations.
So here is all that you need to know. In this guide, I’ll show you the list of the best-managed WordPress hosting companies to choose from. Now, make sure you understand the differences and what your website needs as resources to save money when choosing a good hosting plan.
Managed WordPress Hosting Comparison
Data matters, and we’re in a world where every piece of information counts as a factor in choosing which WordPress-managed hosting is the best and what others you need to avoid. For that reason, I’m going to show you the following managed WordPress hosting comparison. That way, you get an idea and overview of what web hosts can suit the needs of your website. For detailed review and information, read the next guide.
What is an optimized WordPress hosting?
When a company offers optimized WordPress hosting, it starts by looking into the server configurations, hardware, and software to make things work faster and more securely. In fact, Self-hosting WordPress is not just because you should have 100% ownership of the site or other reasons, but also, it’s because you can customize the server architecture, security, caching, and even hardware implementations.
So, when we talk about WordPress-optimized hosting, we also refer to site speed, a higher level of protection, flexibility of use, more resources, and of course, better crawling and indexing for Google.
Some providers go further and build custom memory management for their servers, so CPU, RAM, and PHP requests work faster and more efficiently.
In general, here is what a good optimized WordPress web host does to make things work faster:
- An optimized CSS delivery
- The database will be optimized to cache requests
- Optimized images to save size and load faster
- Optimization for WordPress theme files like static assets for faster downloading and access
- The servers that are optimized to handle more requests and work faster
- Multiple layer caching
- Daily scan to search for possible malware, and viruses and remove them automatically
- Improved security measures…
Optimized vs managed WordPress web hosting
Now, what about managed WordPress hosting is all about optimization as well. No, of course, a managed WordPress hosting plan is not necessarily optimized for performance and protection.
In reality, there are dozens of web hosts that you can choose from, and they only feature the term “Managed” just to attract new customers like bloggers and business owners who don’t want to mess with WordPress plugins and theme updates.
So, managed WordPress hosting is all about saving your time, and just updating your blog tools, and fixing malware and hacks automatically. But wait, Don’t you think that technicians of these web hosting services will do nothing for your site?
After all, there are enterprise-level software and tools that automate the WordPress core and all the tools without even touching a button. Also, did you know that popular WordPress security plugins like Sucuri offer automatic malware scan and removal for bloggers or agencies?
So, how can you call these managed web hosts “Optimized”?
During the last couple of years, I noticed that most web hosting solutions tried to feature WordPress hosting on their home pages. So they play with words like Optimized, managed, etc… And of course, not all people know what server optimization is about and confuse managed with optimized just because they saw an ad somewhere. Premium WordPress hosting is not always managed or even optimized for speed and security.
Now, it’s not all bad, there are trusted web hosts that offer optimized and managed WordPress hosting, and it works very well compared to regular share servers. So, let’s talk about the best options for really optimized WordPress servers.
Top-rated managed WordPress web hosts
1. Nexcess by Liquid Web
With their own data centers in the US, Nexcess by Liquid Web manages the servers directly and has access to the network architecture like no other company does (at least the popular ones). So, it’s more capable of doing what their WordPress expert engineers need in server hardware, caching, management, and of course, security measures. This is the best WordPress hosting provider I tested.
It’s like letting someone build your own site scan, security, and malware scanning environment without forgetting the speed of all the page loading time.
I personally use Liquid Web servers and never found an issue with their fully managed and optimized WordPress hosting. However, their prices are not cheap compared to popular companies, and that’s because the quality is much better. So, many don’t mind if it costs dozens or hundreds of dollars to host their blogs and sites with one of the fastest WordPress hosting providers.
Here is Liquid Web’s WordPress-optimized hosting plan cost:
- Spark: This costs $19/month or $190 a year (2 months free), 15 GB SSD storage, and a single installation of WP
- Maker: This plan comes with up to 5 installs, and it cost $79/month
- Builder: You cause this package to host up to 25 WP sites at the cost of $149/month, which works well for freelancers
- Producer: With up to 50 WordPress installs, this plan costs $299/month
- Executive: 300 WordPress installations are allowed in this plan, which is great for web agencies
- Enterprise: This is the best-optimized WordPress solution for hosting up to 250 sites for clients. It costs $999 per month.
The Liquid Web account creation is not automatic like other web hosts, and that’s because they take your WordPress security seriously, even before getting access to their well-protected hosting environment.
This is a secure WordPress hosting, so if your account is not approved in a few minutes, wait for a call confirmation to make sure you’re human and not a robot and also to make sure you’re willing to host a site for good reasons and not for spamming.
People who host their blogs on Liquid Web are owners of popular blogs, high-traffic websites, and eCommerce stores that outrank others in speed and reliability.
Here is why Liquid Web offers the best hosting
- Unique WordPress hosting architecture built from the ground with lots of testing, adjusting, improvements, and modifications.
- WordPress hosting plans start at $19 per month for super-fast servers
- Data Centers located in the US and also in Europe
- Unlimited email accounts, and yet it’s a managed WordPress hosting with email
- Best customer support in the web hosting industry, 24/7/365 by phone, live chat, or emails
- Automatic WordPress updates (make sure you install the best plugins with regular updates to avoid incompatibilities with WordPress core releases)
- Advanced Nginx server configurations that improve page speed with their in-house caching
- PHP acceleration with the latest versions of packages
- No pageviews limit and no traffic limit, so you don’t have to worry about how many visits your plan supports like other web hosts
- Staging site area (when you are testing without applying changes to the live site, this is a good option)
- Automatically compress every image you upload to WordPress. They offer a plugin for that)
- Automatic daily backups, so, you can restore your site using any version for the last 30 days
- Dedicated WordPress dashboard to manage your sites from one place
- Cache management with one click
- One-click migration tool, or let them migrate your site for free
- Solid server security
- The preferred platform for WordPress bloggers, stores, and membership sites that are speed geeks
- The Premium plugins: iThemes Security Pro and Sync are included for free (that saves $100 per year)
- Your dedicated passphrase to use when getting support (few companies take security that seriously)
- Step-by-step guides, tutorials, and articles for developers and site owners
- A developer-friendly web host that supports WP-CLI, SSH, and Git.
No matter if you’re looking for WordPress hosting for agencies, Woocommerce, or blogs, Liquid Web has more to offer when it comes to optimizations and speed. You should have a better user experience on your site and faster-crawling reports in the Google search console.
The WooCommerce managed hosting plan comes with exceptional server speed, exclusive store themes, and tools, and, best of all, top-notch security. Moreover, Liquid Web partnered with Jilt to capture abandoned carts and never lose revenue again.
Here is an overview of the High-Performance WordPress Woocommerce hosting that Liquid offers for the first 3 plans.
As you can see, the server has a maximum limit for the number of orders per hour, so, the next two plans will be more convenient for a big site store that uses Woocommerce. They allow up to 10.000 orders per hour, which is super powerful for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and the end-of-the-year promotion handling. In addition, these plans support dropshipping, Dockan Pro for multi-vendor WooCommerce sites, and more.
Nexess is the best WordPress hosting service that you can count on for any project online. In fact, we can’t talk about WordPress optimizations without mentioning CDN. It’s what takes the speed to the next level and even protects the site with custom rules and permission levels.
Liquid Web has its own CDN network, and it partnered the big guys like Akamai and Cloudflare CDN to offer premium quality services with superior optimization techniques. All the WP plans come with their CDN enabled, so, there is no need to think about using a separate provider.
2. WP Engine
If you prefer WordPress hosting in the cloud that’s optimized for speed and performance, and get access to 35 premium Studiopress plugins for free, then, WP Engine is the right choice. The web host is the first provider that introduces fully managed WordPress hosting, and for years, they have worked hard to improve security and add more features.
In 2018 WP Engine acquired StudioPress, one of the top web design companies that specialize in WordPress themes, so, there are dozens of well-crafted designs to choose from built using the Genesis framework, which is itself an optimized WordPress framework with solid security and schema markup included.
These days, choosing a managed WordPress website hosting for developers is not that easy for some reason. The prices will be high, and the support can be challenging sometimes to fix your client’s problems if they happen. However, WP Engine has 300 support technicians, which is great for helping site owners and fixing their WordPress issues by phone or live chat.
Don’t be surprised to know that this web host combines the power of Nginx with Apache servers, so, you’ll use both for WordPress, and that’s because of their cloud architecture. In reality, WPEngine partners with the biggest cloud providers like Linode to offer incomparable speed for WordPress with ease of use.
Here is an overview of the WPEngine prices, limitations, and numbers of installs per plan.
The first 3 plans of WP Engine do not support WordPress multisite, however, the Custom plan does. So, when you want to host a WordPress multisite that’s optimized for speed, caching, and security, then have a look at that deal.
3. HostGator WordPress plans
If you used HostGator in the past, then, chances are, you know how professional they are. It’s not that easy to find such fast customer support by phone like what the company offers. Now, for WordPress, HostGator’s managed web hosting comes with cloud infrastructure that speeds up the site loading tile up to 5 times for the business plan that costs $9/month.
Compared to other managed web hosts, HostGator is cost-effective and offers better quality for what you pay for. For example, if you just started and you want to save money on web hosting, but never mess with quality, then, choose the Starter plan, which costs $5.95 per month, and get all the benefits of superior quality WordPress hosting.
For limitations, this web host is amazing, there is no limit on disk space, and the recommended traffic level is higher than what other services offer. For example, it ranges from 100.000 to 500.000 monthly visits depending on the plan you choose, and in all cases, it’s more generous than other providers.
There are also daily site backups with file-level restore, so bloggers can roll back an old version of the site files if they made mistakes or changed files accidentally. The backup dedicated space starts from 1GB, and it’s totally secure and safe.
There is also a free SSL certificate, so, there is no need to buy an additional one. However, if you think that your site will be used to sell items online with WooCommerce, then, add the positive SSL that supports all the site subdomains for shopping cart pages, etc…
Unlike other hosts, HostGator offers SiteLock and CodeGuard for free, these extra tools scan the site daily for malware and clean the files if there is any malicious code, and that happens automatically. Then, the backup tool saves a copy of your WordPress site and lets you restore it anytime with one click.
There is email hosting with every WordPress install, so you don’t have to buy the domain from a third party; the web host lets you add as many email addresses as you need for WordPress. Best of all, there is a dedicated WordPress hosting control panel that simplifies things and allows users to focus on their site content instead of technical things and server configurations.
FAQs about managed WordPress hosting
What’s the truth about WordPress’s recommended hosting?
Lots of sites talk about the list of WordPress-recommended web hosts, and unfortunately, many beginners follow fake recommendations and reviews. So, Bluehost is recommended by WordPress, right? Now, does that mean it’s optimized for WordPress? The answer is simply No, it’s a shared web hosting provider that customizes some server configurations to offer different hosting packages for cheap prices. But if you try Bluehost and alternatives such as SiteGround and others, you’ll just waste your money and time.
It’s not as secure as what’s expected, and talking about WordPress-specific hosting, they’re not even near the level of security from cloud hosting companies like WP Engine and Liquid Web. So, all in all, WordPress has partnered with Bluehost to feature their service on their site. That’s the full story; that doesn’t mean it’s a recommended web hosting for WordPress, but it means, a web host that’s partnered with WordPress as any other company.
What does managed WordPress hosting mean?
Managed WordPress hosting is the service that you get for updating your blog code (plugins, theme, and WP without the need to click do that manually) which is not the same as optimized WordPress hosting, adds an extra level of resources and secures the WordPress file better and offer lots of server-level improvement dedicated to WordPress.
Is WordPress slower than HTML sites?
Technically speaking, WordPress is slower than HTML pages. That’s because every WordPress page you see in web browsers like Google Chrome is generated by PHP and MySQL database execution, which takes more time than static HTML pages.
Is managed WordPress hosting worth it?
Using a managed WordPress hosting that’s optimized at the server level for speed, security, and performance is worth the subscription price you pay. However, opting for any web hosting plan just because of its “managed” label is not worth it for bloggers who can just update their tools using a plugin or manually.
Even more, there is always a risk of automatically updating WordPress, which can break the theme or plugins completely. So, you should think twice before using managed hosting for your blog, and if you don’t have the time to manage all the things, install a good security tool, and save money for other things.
Managed hosting plans are good for busy people and companies who don’t want to deal with software updates, so, that can help them, but not for bloggers and personal sites.
Now, to tell if managed WordPress hosting is worth the extra price or not, keep in mind this information. If you think that you have a high-traffic blog, and you don’t want to mess with security and configurations, then, it’s better to choose a dedicated web hosting for WordPress that comes with full management and optimized performances.
Which hosting service is best optimized for WordPress?
It all depends on the WordPress site owner’s needs, the number of users or customers, and the size of the site. When you keep all these things in mind, you should be able to choose the right web host based on your budget and these factors. However, if we should suggest a web host, it will be Liquid Web, as I used their hosting and found it much better in optimizations than many others.
My recommendation is not that because of that, but also, the web Liquid Web owns its data centers, so, unlike other managed web hosts, this one has direct access to the server hardware, network monitoring, and more. That’s what makes datacenter and server-level optimization easier, better, and customizable for their WP users.
That being said, WP Engine is also well-optimized for handling millions of visits to your WordPress sites and protecting them professionally, at the same time.