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Behind every successful WordPress website is a powerful hosting provider.
Think of your host as the foundation of your site — without a reliable hosting service, your site will be slow, unresponsive, and prone to security threats.
You might be tempted to go for the cheapest hosting option, but trust us — cheap hosting is never worth the risk. If you’re serious about building a WordPress site that looks and functions at its best, you need to choose a managed WordPress host.
Not sure if managed WordPress hosting is right for you?
What’s Managed WordPress Hosting?
Imagine a world where you don’t have to think about web hosting. You don’t have to worry about keeping your WordPress site up-to-date, optimizing it for performance, or managing security threats. That’s the world of managed WordPress hosting.
With managed WordPress hosting, your host will take care of all the technical aspects of running your WordPress site, so you can focus on creating content, marketing your business, and growing your audience.
Typically, managed WordPress hosting plans come with the following features:
- Auto-updates for WordPress core, themes, and plugins
- Enhanced security features, like two-factor authentication and malware scanning
- Easy to incorporate SSL certificate
- Automatic backups
- Performance optimization
- 24/7 support from WordPress experts
Think of it as a 5-star hotel’s concierge service, where you don’t need to do a thing — everything is taken care of for you, and all that’s left for you is to enjoy your stay.
Likewise, with managed WordPress hosting, you only need to focus on creating a fantastic WordPress site. Your host will take care of the rest. You’re guaranteed top-speed, security, backups, 99.99% up-time, and more.
In other words, managed WordPress hosting is the perfect solution if you’re serious about your WordPress site and want to ensure it’s running at its best.
Why Choose Managed WordPress Hosting?
Now that you know what managed WordPress hosting is, let’s look at some of the benefits of choosing a managed host for your new site.
#1. Worry-Free Maintenance
As we mentioned earlier, one of the biggest advantages of choosing a managed WordPress host is that they’ll take care of all the maintenance and updates for you.
With a regular WordPress host, it’s up to you to ensure your WordPress site is running the latest version of WordPress core and any themes or plugins you might be using. That can be a full-time job in itself.
Not only do you need to keep track of the latest updates, but you also need to make sure those updates don’t break your site. It’s a lot of responsibility — and if you’re not a WordPress expert, it can be incredibly overwhelming.
With a managed WordPress host, on the other hand, you rest assured your site will always be up-to-date with the latest security patches, performance enhancements, and features. And if anything ever does go wrong, you have a team of WordPress experts on hand to help you fix the issue — fast.
#2. Enhanced Security
Another huge benefit of managed WordPress hosting is enhanced security.
Since WordPress is the most popular content management system in the world, it’s also a prime target for hackers and cyber-attacks. In fact, WordPress sites are hacked every single day.
While there’s no such thing as a completely “hack-proof” website, you can significantly reduce your risk by choosing a managed WordPress host. That’s because most managed WordPress hosts offer security features like two-factor authentication, regular malware scanning, and brute force protection.
Plus, if your site gets hacked, most managed WordPress hosts have a team of security experts ready to help you clean up the mess and get your site back up and running as quickly as possible.
#3. Improved Performance
Another big perk of managed WordPress hosting is improved performance.
Managed WordPress hosts are designed specifically for WordPress sites, which means they’re optimized for speed and performance. They also offer features like server-level caching and content delivery networks (CDNs), which can further improve your site’s speed and performance.
In addition, managed WordPress hosts often offer performance enhancements like one-click site staging and site cloning. These features can come in handy if you need to make changes to your site or test out new plugins and themes — without risking taking your live website offline.
#4. Easy to Incorporate SSL Certificate
The green padlock in your browser’s address bar is quickly becoming the new standard for website security. The ‘HTTPS’ padlock means your website uses an SSL certificate, encrypting sensitive information like credit card numbers and passwords.
While most web hosts now offer SSL certificates for free, it can still be a bit of a hassle to set up. You must generate a certificate, install it on your server, and then update your site’s URL to HTTPS.
With a managed WordPress host, however, an SSL certificate can be as easy as flipping a switch. In fact, many managed WordPress hosts have partnered with Let’s Encrypt to install a free SSL certificate on your site with just a few clicks– no setup required.
#5. Developer Friendly
If you’re a developer, managed WordPress hosting is a dream come true. That’s because most managed WordPress hosts offer developer-friendly features like staging environments, Git integration, and WP-CLI support.
Plus, since managed WordPress hosts take care of all the WordPress updates for you, you can spend more time working on your projects — and less time managing your site.
#6. Support from WordPress Experts
If you ever run into issues with your WordPress site, the hosting company’s support team will be more than happy to help you. They can even help you troubleshoot plugin and theme issues and offer advice on how to make the optimum use of your WordPress plan.
#7. Fully Managed Services
When you choose a fully managed WordPress host, you get a complete solution for your WordPress site. That means the hosting company will take care of everything — from updates and security to performance and backups.
Plus, most fully managed WordPress hosts offer additional services like website migrations, malware removal, and managed security.
#8. Free Site Migration
If you’re already using another web host, migrating your site to a managed WordPress host can be a pain. Fortunately, many managed WordPress hosts offer free site migrations — so you can move your site over without breaking the bank.
#9. White-Label Services
If you’re a web designer or developer, managed WordPress hosting can be a great way to offer white-label services to your clients. Most managed WordPress hosts offer reseller plans that allow you to bill your clients directly for hosting services.
Plus, with a managed WordPress host, you can often brand your client’s control panel with your own logo and company name. That way, your clients will never know you’re not the one running the show.
As your website grows, you’ll need to upgrade your hosting plan to accommodate the extra traffic and data. With a managed WordPress host, this is usually as easy as clicking a button — no migration necessary.
Plus, since most managed WordPress hosts offer pay-as-you-go plans, you can scale your site up or down without penalty. That way, you only have to pay for the resources you use.
#11. Free CDN
A content delivery network (CDN) is a global network of servers that helps deliver content faster by caching it closer to your visitors.
With a managed WordPress host, you’ll get a free CDN. That way, you can speed up your website loading without paying extra.
#12. Free Daily Backups
Backing up your WordPress site is important — but it can also be a hassle. Fortunately, many managed WordPress hosts offer free daily backups, so you can rest easy knowing your data is always safe.
#13. Easy Site Restoration
If your WordPress site gets hacked or corrupted, you can always restore it from the backup. With a managed WordPress host, this is usually as easy as a few clicks. Plus, you have the web host’s support team at your beck and call should you need any help.
#14. Malware Removal
If your WordPress site gets infected with malware, the most logical thing to do is to clean it up immediately. Fortunately, most managed WordPress hosts offer malware removal services that can help you get your site back up and running in no time.
#15. Cost-effective Pricing
Managed WordPress hosting can be a bit more expensive than traditional shared hosting — but it’s still a cost-effective solution, especially when you consider all the features and benefits you get.
Plus, many managed WordPress hosts offer a pay-as-you-go pricing model, so you only have to pay for the resources you use.
#16. Easy Time Management
If you’re running a WordPress site, there’s always something that needs to be done — from updating plugins and themes to creating content and promoting your site.
With a managed WordPress host, you can offload some of the tasks to the host’s support team. That way, you can focus on growing your business instead of worrying about the technicalities of your WordPress site.
Who Can Benefit from Managed WordPress Hosting?
Managed WordPress hosting is an excellent solution for businesses of all sizes. If you’re running a small WordPress site, managed WordPress hosting can help you offload some of the tasks associated with running a website.
Plus, managed WordPress hosting can be a great way to offer white-label services to your clients. If you’re a web designer or developer, you can use managed WordPress hosting to bill your clients directly for hosting services.
However, if you belong to any of the following categories, you may want to consider managed WordPress hosting:
- Freelancers Building Creative Websites: If you’re a freelancer who specializes in building creative WordPress websites, managed WordPress hosting can help you offload some of the tasks associated with running a website.
- Small Businesses with Limited IT Resources: If you’re a small business owner with limited IT resources, managed WordPress hosting can help you focus on growing your business instead of managing your website.
- Large Businesses with High Traffic WordPress Sites: If you’re running a large WordPress site with high traffic, managed WordPress hosting can help you scale your website without having to worry about migrating your site or dealing with downtime.
- Web Designers and Developers Offering White-label Services: If you’re a web designer or developer, you can use managed WordPress hosting to bill your clients directly for your software solution.
- Ecommerce Site Owners: If you are running an ecommerce site on WordPress, managed WordPress hosting can help you offload some of the tasks associated with running an online store.
- An Individual Site Owner with Limited Understanding of WordPress: If you’re an individual site owner with a limited understanding of WordPress, managed WordPress hosting can help you get the most out of your website.
- Digital Marketing Agencies: If you are a digital marketing agency, managed WordPress hosting can help you offer white-label services to your clients.
Unmanaged Web Hosting Vs. Managed WordPress Hosting
You’ve probably never heard of unmanaged WordPress hosting. That’s because it’s not a thing.
Unmanaged web hosting is simply web hosting that doesn’t include any WordPress-specific features or services.
In other words, with unmanaged web hosting, you’re on your own when managing your WordPress website.
It’s a complete DIY system offered by companies like Digital Ocean, Linode, Interserver, and Vultr, starting at $5 to $10 per month.
So, if you’re a developer who knows how to manage a server, unmanaged web hosting can be a great option.
But if you’re not a developer or don’t have the time or expertise to manage a server, it would be best to opt for managed hosting services.
So, what do you get when you choose unmanaged WordPress hosting?
- You get complete control of your server: You can install any software you want and customize your server to meet your specific needs.
- It cuts costs: Unmanaged web hosting is cheaper than managed WordPress hosting because you’re not paying for any WordPress-specific features or services. But it comes with a trade-off: you’ll be entirely responsible for any WordPress-related maintenance tasks.
- It allows you to choose your server location, resources, and control panel: When you choose unmanaged web hosting, you’ll have the opportunity to select your server’s location, CPU, RAM, storage, and other resources.
- No dev support: One of the biggest downsides of unmanaged web hosting is that you won’t have access to any dev support. If you run into any technical issues, you have to either hire a developer to help you or figure it out yourself.
- Migration can be challenging: Unmanaged web hosting doesn’t offer any migration services, so if you want to move your WordPress website to a new host, you have to do it yourself.
Side note: Almost all managed hosting services also offer options to choose unmanaged versions, where you can get the same hosting with root access for a lower price.
Managed WordPress hosting, on the other hand, is a complete solution offered by companies like WP Engine, Kinsta, Flywheel, and Pressable.
The cost of managed WordPress services can range anywhere between $20 and $150 per month.
So, what do you get by choosing managed WordPress hosting services:
- Complete server management
- Full-on development support to meet tech needs
- 24/7 expert support
- Malware scanning and hacking prevention
- Pre-installed CMS with several add-on features
7 Things to Look for in a Managed WordPress Hosting Provider
Now that we know some of the benefits of using managed WordPress hosting let’s dive into some of the elements that make one hosting provider better than the other.
Before you pick any managed WordPress hosting provider, you should check to ensure they offer the following features:
#1. A Stellar Support Team
What’s the point of opting for a managed WordPress hosting provider if you can’t reliably reach them for support?
When something happens and your website breaks down, you want to be sure you can lean on the hosting service provider for help.
Before you commit to any managed WordPress hosting provider, you want to check the following:
- What support channel are they using?
- What other self-help resources do they have in place?
- Do they offer migration services?
- How hard is it to install SSL certificates?
If the hosting service has a comprehensive knowledge base or resource centre, that means they have all the answers and resources you need. It’s even better when the content is well-written and easy to read.
#2. Glowing References from Users
Popularity might be a good indicator of quality services. But it’s not as strong as the reviews that happy customers leave online.
You have to dig deeper. Find out what current and past clients say about the hosting provider and their services. Are their services reliable? Do they respond to questions?
Check to see what other WordPress sites use the service, especially the larger ones with heavy traffic flow.
When going through reviews, you want to focus on the impartial ones specifically – those where the reviewer has no vested interest in the service provider.
#3. Flexible and Scalable Plans
A managed WordPress hosting provider will offer a broad range of hosting plans. When choosing a hosting service, you shouldn’t just look at a service that matches your current requirements and future ambitions and aspirations.
Your business will probably grow, and when it does, you don’t want to start worrying about migrating it to a better web host. The managed WordPress hosting provider you choose must also accommodate your future needs.
Choose a hosting service that offers value and scalability as your business grows.
#4. A Solid Foundation in Multiple Industries, Niches, and Site Sizes
The idea is to determine the hosting service’s experience dealing with heavy traffic loads and numbers.
If you have modest goals, you can have peace of mind knowing that the hosting provider handles even bigger sites with heavier traffic loads and numbers.
Make sure your uptime will remain high.
Go through their testimonials to see the type of companies the hosting provider considers average. What do these companies have to say about the hosting service?
What’s their uptime?
#5. The Ability to Use a Top-of-the-shelf Content Management System such as WordPress
Unless advised otherwise, you want your website to run on a CMS such as WordPress.
In a layman’s language, a CMS is a well-rounded package that lets you manage your website’s content (from creating new posts and pages to making minor changes to your website’s design) without touching a single line of code.
If the hosting service doesn’t work with a CMS (mainly WordPress), you’re doing yourself a disservice.
You must ensure the hosting service offers managed WordPress hosting services, specifically. By that, we mean they should have a dedicated team of WordPress experts working behind the scenes to make sure your WordPress site will be performing at its optimum.
#6. Focus on Speed
Speed is of the essence.
Not only does a slow-loading website kills users’ morale, but it also works against your performance in the SERPs.
Since a managed WordPress host is optimized for speed, it can be a great weapon to grow your search engine ranking and boost your traffic levels.
You want to do more than look at the web host’s homepage for speed information. We recommend you take a peek at what’s under the hood.
First, ensure the server is running the latest version of PHP (PHP 8.1)). What other speed technologies are they using?
If the web hosting is actively looking to help you optimize your site for speed, that’s a good indication that they have your best interest at heart.
#7. The Extras
Peripherals aren’t necessarily important, but they might tell you a thing or two about the web hosting service you’re about to hire.
Does the hosting provider offer freebies? If these freebies are genuinely helpful and valuable, then there’s no harm in trying them out, with all the other factors held constant.
Check for discount codes or if they’re proactive in helping you find the right tools for the job.
Some hosting providers offer free CDNs to help you speed up your website, while others provide a collection of industry-specific themes to help you create the perfect website for your business.
Think of all these extra as a “virtual icing” on your web hosting cake.
If a few hosting kills it in all the other departments, then use the “extras” as the deciding fact.
How to Choose a Managed WordPress Host?
So, how do you choose a managed WordPress hosting provider? What are some of the things to consider?
That’s not to say that you should go for the cheapest option unless they’re the best. But pricing could be a deciding factor in the hosting service you choose.
First, you must figure out how the hosting will cost you per site. Is the amount reasonable to you? If not, look into the next option.
Next, look at the cost of scaling your business. Will the price still be reasonable to you?
Lastly, you want to look at how much the hosting service charges for extras. How much do they charge for an SSL certificate, migration, backup, CDN, malware removal, etc.?
#2 24/7 Expert Support
When your website breaks down, or something happens, you want to be sure you can count on the hosting service to bail you out.
Will the hosting provider be available when you text or call them in the middle of the night asking for their help?
If the support is only available during the day from Monday to Friday (and not on weekends), that’s reason enough to sample the next option.
You also want to look into their expertise. Does the support team understand what runs under the WordPress system? Can they troubleshoot plugin or theme-related issues and get your site up and running in no time?
#3. Extra Services
What extra services does the hosting service provide? And most importantly, are they free, or do you have to shell out extra cash for these services?
For example, will they charge you extra for migrating your site from your current web host? Are their backups free?
What about the SSL certificate and CDN?
All these peripherals add value to your hosting package. They’re the virtual icing on your hosting package.
With all the other factors held constant, they could influence which hosting service you choose in the end.
#4. Host Reputation
After narrowing your list to a selected few, it’s time to dig deep into their reputation.
The idea is to find out what other people say about their services. If most of their clients have a lot of nice things to say about their service, that could mean they live up to their hype.
Go through different review sites and read all the comments and reviews you find.
You also want to read how they compare to other hosting services.
Lastly, go through their testimonials to see the type of websites they have worked with in the past.
That should tell you something about their quality of service and if they can be trusted.
#5 Demo the Service
Lastly, you want to test the service before you can commit your hard-earned cash and web hosting needs to them.
Many hosting providers have this option as a video, generic login, or free trial.
The idea is to test the service beforehand and see how it works before you commit your hosting needs to them.
Your WordPress site is one of the most valuable assets you have. For this, you do not just want to rush the decision to choose a web hosting company.
You want to be careful and very analytical with the decision you make.
Choosing a managed WordPress hosting service is an excellent first step. After that, you want to select the perfect and most reliable hosting provider.
Top Managed WordPress Hosting Providers
Here are some of the most reliable and trusted managed WordPress hosting providers as voted in by users:
#1. WP Engine
WEBSITE LINK: https://wpengine.com
Who Is it Recommended for: Agencies and enterprise businesses
WP Engine is one of the most popular managed WordPress hosting providers. That explains why the name is almost synonymous with managed WordPress hosting.
Users love the hosting service because of its security and loading speeds.
It also offers a one-click backup process and easy site restorations. The hosting provider also scans sites regularly for hacking attempts, and if they come across anything suspicious, they’ll fix it immediately for free.
Here are some of our favourite WP-Engine features:
- 24/7 award-winning customer support
- Advanced CDN and caching
- Website caching
What’s more? WP Engine provides a free Speed Test tool that produces a brief report on your website performance, with recommendations on what you can do to speed it up.
Their pricing starts at $25/month, billed annually.
#2. WPMU Dev
Who’s it Recommended for: Freelancers and Agencies
You’ve probably heard about WPMU Dev. They’re popular with content.
The company offers many WordPress-related services, including managed WordPress hosting.
Thanks to their CDN and page caching, this service can significantly increase your website’s performance and speed.
They also offer regular updates, nightly backups, and security monitoring.
Here are some of the features we like about WPMU Dev Managed WordPress hosting:
- White-label client portal
- Site management tools
- A library of WP plugins
They offer an image optimizer, which allows you to optimize your site for speed without touching a single line of code or installing additional plugins.
Pricing starts at $12/month
#3. Dream Host
WEBSITE LINK: https://www.dreamhost.com
Who’s It Recommended for Content Heavy and High Traffic Sites
Dream host provides WordPress sites with a dedicated server, not shared with anyone.
That means your WordPress site is guaranteed 100% network uptime. Plus, your content is delivered quickly every time a user loads your website.
Here are some of the features we love about Dream Host Managed WordPress hosting:
- DDoS protection
- Uncapped bandwidth
- Supports PHP7/Python/Perl/Ruby
Side note: If you’re planning to use Dreamhost for multiple WordPress sites, we recommend choosing their reseller package. The sub-account features will help you keep your projects organized.
Their dedicated, fully managed WordPress websites start at $149/month.
Who’s it Recommended for Enterprise businesses and agencies
Nexcess is reliably fast. Their performance is also non-negotiables.
Their hosting offers all the features you need for managed WordPress hosting.
Here are some of the features we like about Nexcess:
- Full-server access
- 24-hours support
- Nightly backups
You can use their staging feature to create a full-proof workflow. Use this feature to check if your website or page looks how you want it to before publishing it online.
Their pricing starts at 19/month (with a $13.30 offer for the first three months).