I self-hosted WordPress for years until I started experiencing crashes every time a post made it to the first page of Hacker News. I switched to WP Engine right before speaking at a major event. Not only did my blog survive the traffic spike, but I’ve doubled the number of subscribers since then and haven’t experienced a single outage yet. It’s nice to pay someone to handle all the hosting BS that we’re no good at. They’re WordPress Pros.
We have run many clients on WordPress Engine and have had mixed reviews with our last experience ranging in the “awful” category. DO NOT go to them if you run a high profile client. Use Linode or similar. They use Rackspace for their hosting (which sucks) so any large scale sites will need to go to a better host since they don’t actually manage their own servers. Here are some issues we’ve run into:
Support – Our support team is a shining beacon within the company. We maintain a truly world-class NPS score of 86 along with 3 back-to-back Gold Stevie awards for customer service to prove it (more on that here). The team offers their best every day in an effort to serve our customers’ professional growth, and it shows in the feedback we get from them. This mentality is very much in line with one of our core values – Customer Inspired.
Extremely likely, between the simple setup, automated migrations and great support when you need just a little more control, WP Engine has not failed me yet. There seems to be times when the admin side of a site seems a bit sluggish. This is usually during peak hours, but if your site is on a server with other sites that have heavy loads, you can become affected. But you can usually ask them to move your site to another server and they’ll take care of getting you to a more reliable environment. – Bret Wegner, Drive Social Now / quoted from Fit Small Business.
Traditional Hosts: Beware of this new breed of hosting. WP Engine removes the need for a caching plugin. They’re faster than 97% of all websites tested by Pingdom. WP Engine enables your site to be as fast without the optimization tricks. Their support has earned an A+ in my book. The WP Engine staging area is a favorite of my development team, no more developing on a live platform. That gives them a hat trick.
The WP Engine PHP Compatibility Checker can be used by any WordPress website on any web host to check PHP version compatibility. When updating to PHP 7.2+ this is a great plugin to install and check if your website will not break after your update. many themes are not ready for PHP 7+ and will cause major issues. So the WP Engine team wanted to give back to the WordPress community by developing a plugin that will help you make sure you are safe to update your PHP version. The plugin will check the code of any other plugins and themes and give you back a report with compatibility issues so you can fix it before updating. WP Engine is a proud supporter and contributor to WordPress.org open-source community.
Take advantage of the built-in expert rule sets from the combined intelligence of Cloudflare and WP Engine, as well as data from Cloudflare’s 10 million websites, to protect you from emerging threats. You gain the best security protection against top OWASP security vulnerabilities, compromised data, and DDoS attacks that threaten to black out your digital business, brought to you by the leaders in WordPress and cloud security.
I have used quite a few big name hosting companies through the years but they were all the hosting companies that sell their service by price and with the 99.9% uptime promise which is usually pure BS. After years of issues with downtime over an hour at a time slow speed spells and tech support totally denying there was a problem, I switched my main WordPress site which is a life insurance website to WP Engine. The change was like going from driving a Pinto to a Mercedes Benz. I now have consistent super speed, great security which is a major factor for a WordPress site and a team of people that handle all of the updates and actually maintain the website. They even keep track of everyones plugins to make sure none of the plugins are prone to problems that consume heavy resources or become security risks. The only thing I can say is you get what you pay for. I wish I new about these people years ago. It could have saved me a ton of aggravation. When you think of the thousands of dollars you can invest into website design, it only makes good sense to use good hosting. A hosting company can either make or break a nice website.