• CPU: Yes
  • RAM: Yes
  • RAID LEVEL 1 STORAGE: 2 x 500 GB
  • NETWORK BANDWIDTH: Unlimited
  • FREE DOMAINS: /
  • DEDICATED IPS: Yes
  • CPANEL & WHM WITH ROOT: /
  • SHARED HOSTING: /
  • VPS HOSTING: /
  • DEDICATED HOSTING: Yes

minimum price:

£24/month

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WP Engine Review

Are you looking for the most reliable web host for your WordPress site? WP Engine is a WordPress optimised hosting provider that will ensure your site is secure, fast-loading and SEO optimised. If you want to know more, this WP Engine Review holds all the details.

WP Engine Review

minimum price:

£24/month

Visit Website
  • CPU: Yes
  • RAM: Yes
  • RAID LEVEL 1 STORAGE: 2 x 500 GB
  • NETWORK BANDWIDTH: Unlimited
  • FREE DOMAINS: /
  • DEDICATED IPS: Yes
  • CPANEL & WHM WITH ROOT: /
  • SHARED HOSTING: /
  • VPS HOSTING: /
  • DEDICATED HOSTING: Yes

Best For

WordPress hosting

STRENGTHS

  • Multiple staging environments
  • Automated free migrations
  • Free SSL Certificates
  • EverCache Technology
  • Excellent speed and uptime

WEAKNESSES

  • No email hosting
  • No domain registration

If you have already made the choice of powering your site with WordPress, you must be wondering which hosting provider offers the best services for WordPress sites.

Seeing as WordPress powers a large chunk of the Internet right now, there is an overwhelming amount of choice. Virtually every hosting provider, from budget to high-end, offers a WordPress hosting solution. 

WP Engine is currently one of the most reliable web hosts that offers WordPress specific services with managed plans that are fully optimised for the platform. In this WP Engine Review, I will cover this web host’s key features so you can get a better idea of whether it is the right choice for your needs.

 

  • What is WP Engine?
  • Main Features
  • Services and Hosting
  • Performance and Speed
  • Pricing and Plans
  • Privacy and Registration Process
  • Competitors
  • Customer Reviews

 

What is WP Engine?

WP Engine is a hosting provider solely dedicated to WordPress sites. Back in 2010, its developer and now primary shareholder, Jason Cohen, noticed the rapid growth of WordPress as the go-to website builder for individuals and businesses alike. So, he saw an opportunity to create the first professional web hosting provider explicitly tailored to WordPress needs.

Since then, the company has grown substantially, with over 150,000 customers, more than 1000 employees and multiple offices worldwide. Now, WP Engine prides itself on being the leading WordPress digital experience platform

Main Features

Here are all the crucial features every site owner should consider before choosing a hosting provider.

 

cPanel

If you are at least slightly familiar with web hosting, you’ve probably already heard of cPanel. It is the leading hosting automation platform used for managing all site aspects. But you won’t find a standard control panel in WP Engine. Instead, this web host uses a proprietary control panel called WP Engine User Portal.

The User Portal is the central hub for managing your site. As such, you can use it to access your CDN, backups, database, create new sites and environments, and much more. The good news is that this control panel is extremely user friendly and easy to navigate. 

Add-ons

Independently of what each hosting plan provides, all hosting companies offer additional pre-bundled services that usually come cost-free. WP Engine delivers several add-ons to facilitate your business management and improve your site’s functionality. Those are:

 

  • 24/7/365 Support
  • CDN
  • Genesis Framework
  • StudioPress Themes
  • Let’s Encrypt SSL Certificates
  • Advanced Network and Page Performance
  • Prod/Stage/Dev Environments
  • GeoTarget tool

You can access most of these add-ons through the WP Engine User Portal.

Site Builders

If you’ve already gone through a site creation process, you are probably aware of how time-consuming it can be. Luckily, WP Engine provides a one-click WordPress installation that will allow you to start building your site instantly. Moreover, this web host also offers free access to Genesis Framework and 35+ StudioPress themes.

WP Engine’s suite of free WordPress themes, developer tools, and drag & drop functionality will make the site-building process as effortless as possible. 

 

Domain-specific Email Addresses

It would seem unprofessional to use your private email for business communication. For that reason, most hosting companies today offer domain-specific email addresses as part of their plans. 

Unfortunately, WP Engine is not one of them. That inevitably means you will have to invest in a third-party email host and then connect it to your domain name. Luckily, your options are plentiful. You can try MXRoute, Fastmail, Office 365, or Google Workspace, to name a few.

 

Uptime 

When it comes to owning a website, there are a few things as crucial as its availability. Frequent downtime can result in fewer visitors and less profit. So, how does WP Engine perform in this regard? The company claims to have an uptime of 99.95%

To put that in perspective, it means your site will be down an average of only four hours a year. That is impressive, but what if the company fails to meet that expectation? Well, WP Engine offers compensation if your website’s uptime goes below the guaranteed time, so you have little to worry about.

 

SSD Web Space

Recently, more and more web hosts, including WP Engine, are starting to use Solid State Drives (SSD). They are a significant improvement over hard disk drives and have several advantages. That translates to more reliable hosting, a higher data transfer rate, and better handling of a traffic boost for your website. So this cutting-edge technology will significantly improve your site’s speed and performance. 

 

SSL Certificate 

An SSL Certificate is imperative if you want to appear more trustworthy before your clients and site visitors. In addition, most people today are hesitant to leave personal information on sites without an SSL Certificate. 

So, it is reassuring to know that all WP Engine hosting plans come with Let’s Encrypt SSL Certificates. These can be activated with just a few clicks and will auto-renew before expiring. And if you require even more security, you can easily import third-party certificates for your WordPress site. 

Servers

WP Engine uses some of the industry’s most trusted data centres facilities, such as Google Cloud and Amazon Web Servers. This web hosting company currently has data centres all over the globe. Here are the specific locations:

  • Iowa
  • South Carolina
  • Oregon
  • Belgium
  • Taiwan
  • Tokyo
  • London
  • Frankfurt
  • Sydney
  • Montreal
  • Virginia
  • Ohio
  • Washington

 

Note that choosing a data centre closest to your target audience can benefit you, as it can significantly increase the site load time and reduce latency.

 

Services and Hosting

Now that we’ve covered the basic features of WP Engine let’s take a look at the hosting plans it provides.

Managed Hosting

Shared web hosting is a hosting service where multiple sites use the same server and its resources. While it is the most affordable way to get your site online, it also has disadvantages, such as slow response time and frequent downtime. For that reason, it is not suitable for high-traffic websites. 

Rather than offering shared hosting plans, WP Engine only provides managed hosting services. The plans differ based on the website’s specific needs, such as the number of websites, storage, bandwidth, and expected visitors.

WordPress Hosting

As the name suggests, WP Engine only provides hosting plans for WordPress sites. As a result, it is optimised to meet all the security and performance requirements of a site powered by the WordPress engine

In addition, this web host provides only managed WordPress hosting, meaning it takes care of most of the key tasks. These include site updates, malware scanning, performance optimisation, etc.

Managed WordPress web hosting also translates to faster speeds, server site caching, better security, and expert customer support.  Moreover, WP Engine comes with a one-click staging tool, which means you can test changes to your WordPress site before making it live. 

 

Dedicated Hosting

Dedicated hosting means having an entire physical server to yourself. While it is the most expensive option, it offers far better security, reliability, and flexibility for your website. High-traffic websites, for instance, those with over 300,000 hits per month, can significantly benefit from a dedicated server’s resources. As a premium hosting provider, WP Engine offers a custom dedicated hosting solution.

Websites

WP Engine includes only one website in its most basic plan. Still, as you move further up the ladder, you have the choice of hosting multiple websites. Namely, its top tier includes the option to host up to 30 websites.

Domains

WP Engine doesn’t provide domain registering services. The lack of domain registration is one of this hosting provider’s most notable flaws. Unfortunately, that means that you will need to purchase a domain name from a third-party domain registrar and then add it to your site.

eCommerce

WP Engine provides all the tools you will need to turn your business into an online store quickly and efficiently. So, you can choose from multiple eCommerce plans, all of which offer different features. But, at the most basic level, you will have access to

  • Premium eCommerce website themes
  • Faster site-building with Gutenberg blocks
  • A platform built for WooCommerce 
  • Automated Plugin Updates for site safety

Higher tiers also include Instant Store Search, multiple sites, and higher resources.

 

Speed and Performance

A website’s speed significantly affects the user experience. If your page takes too long to load, customers will inevitably become frustrated and move to a rival page instead. To avoid that, all web hosting providers focus a tremendous amount of time and resources on improving their speed and server response time.

To that end, WP Engine uses multiple advanced tools, such as CDN integration, NGINX extension, and SSD technology. Using Pingdom, I put their blazing fast speed claims to the test and compared the results to other top WordPress hosting providers. 

 

WP Engine Flywheel Kinsta SiteGround
Load Time 532 ms 1.71 s 1.03 s 2.14 s 
Server Response Time  3 ms 6 ms 4 ms 4 ms

 

As you can see, WP Engine outperformed other hosting providers in both speed and server response time. Furthermore, I tested this hosting provider’s site uptime and found that it had 100% availability in the last 48 hours. 

 

Plans and Prices

In this part of our WP Engine Review, I will quickly run through all the WP Engine plans and take a closer look at what each plan offers. The hosting plans are divided into two categories — managed WordPress hosting and eCommerce solutions. 

Managed Hosting

In the table below, you can see what each Managed Hosting plan provides and at which price.

 

Startup Professional Growth Scale
Monthly price £24 £47 £90 £227
Sites Included 1 3 10 30
Monthly Visits 25,000 75,000 100,000 400,000
Local Storage 10 GB 15 GB 20 GB 50 GB
Bandwidth 50 GB 125 GB 200 GB 500 GB

 

In addition to the features mentioned above, all plans include:

  • 24/7 support
  • Ten premium themes
  • Free automated migrations
  • Daily Backups
  • Free SSL Certificate
  • One-click staging site

 

eCommerce Solutions

In case you want to build a WooCommerce store, WP Engine offers several options. The Startup plan costs £29 and comes with the following features.

  • A platform built for WooCommerce
  • Auto-plugin updates for site safety
  • Premium Ecommerce website themes
  • Faster site-building with Gutenberg blocks

 

The Professional, Growth, and Scale plans also include Instant Store Search and come at  £59, £110, and £273 a month, respectively.

 

Registration Process

The WP Engine registration process is pretty straightforward. There are only a couple of steps to follow. 

First, go to the official WP Engine site and head over to the Pricing section. All the plans are nicely laid out and easy to compare, so finding what you are looking for shouldn’t be too much of a hassle. 

Once you click on the Get Started button underneath your preferred plan, you will be redirected to Checkout

At Checkout, you can choose whether to pay monthly or annually. In addition, you can enhance your plan with powerful add-ons such as Smart Plugin Manager, Global Edge Security, Additional Sites, and Genesis Pro

After that, just fill out the Account Info and Billing Info forms and agree to the Terms and Conditions. That’s it! You can now start hosting your WordPress site. Overall, registering to WP Engine won’t take up much of your time.

 

Customer Support

WP Engine offers excellent customer support via live chat, phone, and email, but it comes with only one slight drawback. Its 24/7 phone line isn’t available if you sign up for its most basic plan. Other than that, this hosting provider offers excellent customer support. 

To test it out, I contacted one of their sales representatives via live chat and had an overall positive experience. The Support agent seemed knowledgeable and eager to help. He provided an answer to my question immediately, with step-by-step instructions on how to resolve the issue.

What’s more, for more general issues, you can always reach WP Engine’s Resource centre. It is a rich source of information on both WP Engine related issues and web hosting in general. 

Competitors

This section of this WP Engine Review aims to give you a clearer picture of how WP Engine compares to other WordPress optimised hosting providers.

 

WP Engine vs SiteGround

SiteGround currently hosts over 2 million domains worldwide. Given that it is not limited to only hosting WordPress sites, SiteGround appeals to a much broader audience than WP Engine. 

Another SiteGround advantage is that it offers free email hosting. At the same time, with WP Engine, you will need to look for third-party email hosting services. It is also worth mentioning that both hosting providers use their own intuitive and easy to navigate control panels. 

Moreover, if you are looking for a secure web hosting company, neither web host will let you down. They both provide daily backups of all your sites, as well as free Let’s Encrypt SSL Certificates for all plans. 

Still, when it comes to advanced features, WP Engine is the definite winner. For example, it provides a built-in CDN, automatic plugin updates, EverCache Technology, and multiple staging environments.

 

WP Engine vs Bluehost

Bluehost includes three fully managed WordPress hosting plans with features such as one-click installation, a free domain name, a staging environment, and unlimited sites with no traffic limits. That, combined with the affordable price, makes Bluehost a viable option for many WordPress site owners.

That said, WP Engine’s Google Cloud Platform services translate to some of the fastest speed and performance results you can find in any hosting provider. WP Engine also offers expert WordPress support and free automated site migrations

In short, Bluehost’s shared servers will provide more than enough resources for low to medium traffic websites. However, if you are looking for a managed WordPress host for your high traffic website, I suggest you go with WP Engine. 

 

WP Engine vs GoDaddy

While GoDaddy is not a WordPress only solution, it offers several valuable benefits for hosting WordPress sites. Some of them are:

  • 99.99% uptime guarantee
  • One-click migration tool
  • Temporary domain name
  • Free business email for the first year
  • Drag and drop page editor

 

For boosting speed, GoDaddy uses SSD Storage, load-balanced servers, and PHP 7. You can also find SSD Storage in WP Engine but in combination with even more advanced technology, such as EverCaching with a built-in Content Delivery Network (CDN).

In terms of security, GoDaddy only reserves malware removal for its Ultimate plan. In contrast, WP Engine includes malware removal, intrusion detection, firewalls, and daily backups on all its plans. These are in addition to the security tools you can get at Checkout.

So, even though WP Engine is the more expensive option, it will provide far greater value for your WordPress website. 

 

Customer Reviews

To see how users perceive WP Engine, I looked at a couple of WP Engine reviews on Trustpilot. 68% of users rated this hosting provider as excellent, which shows that people are generally satisfied with this product.

Most of the reviews mention WP Engine’s excellent customer support, reliable uptime, and free automated site migration as some of its most vital points.

In contrast, some users are dissatisfied with WP Engine’s billing practices, such as charging additionally for exceeding the site traffic limit. Also, some customers found this hosting provider too expensive.

 

Wrap Up

WP Engine is an excellent place to start if you want to get the most out of your WordPress site. Its managed hosting plans will ensure your site is available, fast and secure without having to do all the hard work yourself. 

Its only downside is that its plans come at steeper prices than most other WordPress web hosts. Still, it is a highly worthwhile investment if you own a medium to large website with lots of monthly visitors. 

To conclude this WP Engine Review, WP Engine is one of our top recommendations if you are looking for a secure hosting environment with reliable uptime and excellent speed.

FAQ

Is WP Engine worth it?

Yes, WP Engine is currently among the best WordPress hosting companies, and its services are definitely worth it.

Is WP Engine fast?

Yes, WP Engine incorporates a proprietary EverCache technology with a built-in CDN and Solid State Drives (SSD), contributing to excellent speed performance.

Is WP Engine free?

No, WP Engine doesn’t offer any free hosting services.

Who founded WP Engine?

WP Engine was founded by Jason Cohen, who is now also the company’s primary shareholder and CTO.

Is WP Engine legit?

Yes, WP Engine is a legit hosting provider that offers managed WordPress web hosting services.

What does WP Engine do?

As a leading WordPress digital experience platform, WP Engine offers managed hosting services for WordPress sites.

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