It would be a waste of time and resources to create or redesign a WordPress site that no one will ever visit or one that one won’t serve your needs. Sure, you can choose the perfect theme and the right plugins, but the company you select to host your site matters as well.
Beyond finding a reliable web hosting, you also have to decide what type of hosting is right for your needs. While this might seem overwhelming at first glance, many find that managed WordPress hosting is the best option.
Here is what you need to know about managed WordPress hosting, why it’s a good choice, and the steps you can take to choose the right host to get the best outcome for your website.
What is Managed WordPress Hosting?
Hosting and administering a website, even one built on WordPress, can be complex. When something goes wrong, do you have the time and resources to troubleshoot the issue and get your site back online quickly? If you don’t, it might be a good idea to explore managed WordPress hosting.
With managed WordPress hosting, you don’t have to worry about servers, site updates, security issues, and most problems relative to site speed. The host has people on staff that will take care of this in the background while you focus on running your business, building more websites, or doing something else you enjoy.
Benefits of Managed WordPress Hosting
The primary benefit of managed WordPress hosting is that it is a more hands-off solution. If you’re wondering whether this is the right option for you, here are several benefits of choosing managed hosting over the DIY variety:
Support from WordPress Experts
Most hosting companies offer some level of support. But, with a managed hosting plan, you have peace of mind knowing that the host’s support team are experts in working with WordPress.
You’ll not only get priority support from the host, but also help with any technical issues that might be holding you back. For example, they will be able to recognize the difference between a server-level problem and a plugin or theme conflict.
Better Performance and Faster Sites
Google gives preference to faster-loading websites, and WordPress is an excellent content management system (CMS) to optimize for site load speed. But you also need a robust web host, and most managed hosts will optimize their servers so that your site loads quickly and without errors. And it does this without the need for any tinkering on your part.
More Thorough Security Practices
Even if you’ve never had trouble with hackers in the past, you should always take website security seriously. While managed WordPress hosting isn’t foolproof, you’ll receive the benefit of a wide range of security enhancements. For example, most managed hosting providers optimize their servers for WordPress security.
One-click Staging and Testing
Have you ever updated your WordPress site or made some other change and then experienced the white screen of death? Following this, you might spend hours or days trying to get your site back online, and it’s a lost cause in a few rare instances.
Many managed WordPress hosting providers offer a separate staging area and local environment that allows you to copy your site or test updates before they go live. This can save you a lot of time and hassle.
Easy Site Management
When you use managed hosting, everything is much more organized. You don’t have to tangle with different setups or jump between providers to get things done. You get to manage your site through a clean interface, which always has the latest version of WordPress installed as well as up-to-date PHP.
Fewer Plugins Required
Ideally, you want to use as few plugins as possible to speed up your site. WordPress hosts that offer managed services give you a list of features that allow you to eliminate a variety of WordPress plugins. Some of the plugins you can likely deactivate include:
- Security plugins
- Backup plugins
- Performance plugins
- Caching plugins
How to Choose the Best Managed WordPress Host for Your Website
Now that you know what managed WordPress hosting is and some of its advantages, how do you choose the best provider? Here are some of the things to consider:
While you should never choose the cheapest hosting plan unless they’re also the best, there’s nothing wrong with using price as a factor in your decision process. Figure out how much per site it will cost for managed hosting. Is this figure acceptable to you? As you scale your business, can the host grow with you, and how much will that figure per site go down?
Further, will the host charge extra for certain services? Some examples might include extra charges for traffic spikes or malware removal.
You’re choosing managed services for a reason, so it’s important that the host you choose be available when you need them. If their customer support is only online Monday through Friday during business hours, you might want to choose someone else.
What extra services does the host provide, and are they free? For example, will they move your sites from another platform when you set up your account? Are there free daily backups of your data? What about a free SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) and CDN (Content Delivery Network)? All of these add value to your hosting package.
Once you’ve narrowed down your list of potential hosts to a few, be sure to research their online reputation. Read some customer reviews and online comparisons of managed WordPress hosts. What do others think of the ones on your shortlist?
Demo the Platform
Finally, one of the best ways to determine if a managed WordPress host is the right choice is to ask the company for a demo. Many have this option set up through a generic login, a video, or even a free trial.
Your WordPress site is a valuable asset, so it makes sense that you give some careful thought to a hosting provider. Managed WordPress hosting is an excellent first step in this decision process, and you can use this guide to choose the perfect host for your needs.