How Did We Choose the Best Managed WordPress Hosts?
We analyzed the best managed WordPress hosting providers and selected those that are developer-friendly, provide high speed, performance, and scalability, and allow for custom configuration of servers.
Then we factored in expert and consumer ratings from our large database.
What is Managed WordPress Hosting?
Managed WordPress hosting is a specialized hosting service that includes:
WordPress installation and maintenance
A network infrastructure optimized for WordPress security and performance
Customer support provided by staff with WordPress expertise
You can start a WordPress site on either WordPress.com or WordPress.org. WordPress.com is a blogging platform that allows people to create a free website. Though it will cost you nothing to build your WordPress site on WordPress.org, you will still have to pay for hosting.
Managed WordPress hosting can be a bit on the pricey side. So if it’s the cost that you’re worried about, just start on a super-cheap basic shared hosting plan.
Many hosting providers offer plans for managed WordPress hosting, each offering slightly different features.
What they all have in common:
A network optimized for WordPress hosting
Feature packages that take care of most routine maintenance
Customer support with WordPress expertise
How to Choose a Managed WordPress Hosting Provider
With managed WordPress hosting, website owners and developers can let the managed WordPress hosting provider take care of most of these issues, freeing them to focus on building their WordPress site, blog, and business. These are the must-have features of the best managed WordPress hosting provider.
Automatic WordPress installations and plugins: Managed WordPress hosting plans simplify or completely remove the installation process and provide built-in maintenance. No matter your skill level, it’s still much easier to install WordPress automatically from your host’s control panel than manually.
Backups and updates: Automatic updates to both WordPress and your plugins can ensure your website continues to function properly and remains safe from security threats. Most hosts will make a backup of your WordPress site before they apply major WordPress updates.
Optimized network for WordPress: Managed WordPress hosting includes a network optimized specifically for WordPress.This means websites hosted on a managed WordPress account should load faster than those hosted on a generalized hosting account.
Content delivery network for speedy site loading: The managed hosting environment also typically includes a content delivery network (CDN) to speed up the delivery of websites for visitors who are geographically distant from the server location.
SSL certificates included: You may want an included SSL certificate. These protect the data of visitors who are on your website. When you have an SSL certificate, your WordPress site’s domain name is stamped with a secure seal that is visible to website visitors.
High uptime: You want to look for a web host that provides at least 99.9% uptime. But 99.95% and higher is even better. The uptime guarantee issued by a managed WordPress hosting provider is their SLA or service level agreement. If your website experiences more downtime than their SLA allows for, they will usually compensate you with web hosting credits.
Advanced caching: One reason why managed WordPress hosting plans can run the platform so much faster than basic hosting is because of their use of advanced caching. Caching is extremely important when it comes to WordPress sites.
Expert customer support: Managed WordPress hosting typically includes 24/7 access to premium support from support engineers with WordPress expertise. With most general hosting plans, application support is not included. So if you have a WordPress installation running on a general hosting account, customer support is unlikely to help with WordPress-specific questions.
WP Engine was one of the first hosts to offer managed hosting services specifically for WordPress, which means they have loads of experience. The company’s hassle-free hosting provides you with fast and robust servers which can handle almost anything.
While most hosts claim that their various WordPress plans are fully optimized for speed, usually that only means installing a couple of standard tools (Varnish and NGINX) and tweaking a few settings. WP Engine is different as it has its customized EverCache system, PHP 7 and HTTP/2 support, and a free CDN. It also offers a choice of data centers in regions, like North America, Asia, and Europe.
Also, you will like WP Engine as it does its best in order to keep the hosting service running smoothly. They also automatically install major WordPress updates and test minor ones prior to recommending them. And there is also built-in malware detection as well as blocking.
All managed WordPress hosting plans offer access to WP Engine’s amazing and responsive 24/7 live chat support. And you can easily access their live chat support from the control panel.
Pros and cons of WP Engine
Loads of premium features
Prices are above average
What customers are saying about WP Engine
WP Engine works well for small businesses with WordPress websites, offering fast loading speeds and a secure environment. But this is not the best choice for larger sites or people seeking consistently good customer support, and plans are pricey.
Why it’s best: Automatic plugin updates with visual comparisons
Nexcess offers managed WordPress hosting services. It is equipped with a plugin performance monitor that keeps your website fast, built-in CDN, and advanced caching. Their service includes automatic plugin updates with visual comparisons.
With no average fees, traffic limits, or metered pageviews, they help to monitor the underlying infrastructure, manage, and optimize WordPress.
Pros and cons of Nexcess
Free white-glove site migration
No free domain
No money-back guarantees
What customers are saying about Nexcess
Nexcess’ customers’ service is commendable. One of their satisfied customers mentioned, “Working with Nexcess has been excellent. If ever there is a problem, support is readily available and very knowledgeable. I’ve not run into any situation yet that they have not been of great assistance. We have switched from Magento to WordPress with no issues. We’ve grown via WordPress and had to change plans, and the transition went perfectly smooth. I have nothing but good things to say about Nexcess and their support team.”
Why it’s best: Large range of website hosting services
Bluehost is a large website host well-known in the industry for its WordPress expertise. It is also popular for its variety of “one-stop-shop” solutions and services and bargain prices.
Besides offering a complete range of website hosting services, the company provides SEO services, marketing training, social media marketing, graphic design services, and content creation.
Bluehost has an advanced and reliable WordPress hosting category called WP Pro. Note that WP Pro is available in 3 tiers. It is an excellent managed WordPress hosting offering that gives your website back end the coveted white-glove treatment and includes amazing social media, SEO, and email marketing tools. And WP Pro’s three plans (Grow, Build, and Scale) all feature unlimited website hosting, domains, monthly data transfers, and storage.
Pros and cons of BlueHost
Prices are above average
What customers are saying about Bluehost
Bluehost is a reputable provider offering shared and VPS hosting. The company is easy to use, affordable, and has great uptime. It is geared toward entrepreneurs and small online startups. Billing might be confusing, but they have solid customer service for any issues.
Why it’s best: Many options for webmasters looking to develop attractive and flexible websites
DreamHost prides itself on being a reliable and award-winning WordPress hosting provider. Dreamhost hosts more than 1.6 million websites for over 400,000 members and is one of only four website hosting services that WordPress endorses, so the company is reliable.
DreamHost’s managed WordPress hosting services provide many options for webmasters looking to develop attractive and flexible websites. DreamHost is ideal for WordPress hosting, with its managed, shared, and other options.
Keep in mind that shared WordPress hosting is DreamHost’s standard shared plan. While there is an option that allows you to pre-install WordPress and a template-based and convenient WordPress site builder, otherwise it is just normal shared hosting.
Pros and cons of DreamHost
No telephone support
What customers are saying about DreamHost
A reliable and affordable hosting provider, Dreamhost offers great customer service and a variety of plans. It is easy to use, though there are some complaints that the speed and webmail could be improved.
Why it’s best: Knowledgeable customer support reps
SiteGround is one of the more popular shared hosting providers and the company provides multiple server types like shared, WordPress, WooCommerce, and cloud hosting services. It offers a managed WordPress hosting plan.
When it comes to the performance of their servers, SiteGround beats out most of their competition. These servers have an average page loading speed of 534ms and an uptime of 99.99%.
SiteGround also excels at customer service and tech support. They are available to help with any issues that develop with your site 24/7. Their reps are very knowledgeable about their systems and resolve most issues promptly.
Pros and cons of SiteGround
Blazing fast servers
Fast and secure tech stacks
Staging environments provided
Limited storage space on starter plans
Requires a three-year contract for the lowest rates
What customers are saying about SiteGround
SiteGround is a reliable web hosting company with fast speeds, a user-friendly interface, and solid customer service. Some customers are not thrilled with the price increase and back-end support.
Kinsta provides managed WordPress hosting for businesses of all sizes. With the help of tools like NGinx and MariaDB, sites load quickly and are automatically scaled.
The latest framework helps your development stack run, and simplified site management allows you to easily view site analytics. Admins can add ElasticSearch site search capabilities as well as other extensions to their stack.
DDoS detection and hardware firewalls protect your sites, and uptime is checked over 700 times per day. Kinsta hosting starts at $30 per month.
Pros and cons of Kinsta
Packed with collaboration features
Well-designed for e-commerce
Made for WordPress
No email hosting
Limited storage, CDN, or monthly visits
What customers are saying about Kinsta
Accordingly, Kinsta’s hosting services are fast and responsive. One of their customers mentioned, “The whole process of launching the site through Kinsta was a positive experience. I’ve used many hosts, from shared and VPS through to other managed providers. Kinsta’s live chat support was fast and responsive. The provisioning was quick and worked immediately. The performance was excellent, even prior to my optimizations.”