All the Top Managed WordPress Hosts Compared

Posted on September 12, 2016 by in Resources | 135 comments

All the Top Managed WordPress Hosts Compared

Choosing the right web host is one of the most important decisions to make, and also one of the most difficult. Good hosting is critical for truly optimizing the end user’s experience; however, it’s easy to feel confused when trying to choose the perfect host for your website – online recommendations may not be the impartial, unbiased opinions we need. It all stands to make us throw up our hands, and plump for the cheapest option available.

Specialized WordPress hosts are often at a higher cost than your basic shared hosts – however, they provide premium features, and are optimized specifically for WordPress. We recommend using a managed host for your business, and there are several good managed hosts out there to choose from.

In this article, we’ll review and compare the top managed WordPress hosts (including their features and pricing) to help you make an informed decision.

What Is Managed WordPress Hosting?

Managed hosting is a service where the hosting company not only provides you with hosting space for your website, but also takes over management of the technical aspects – so you can focus on running your website. This typically includes tasks like backups, updates, security checks, and site protection.

In the case of managed WordPress hosting, the web host also provides finely-tuned, WordPress-optimized servers which improve the speed, scalability, and security of your website. Finally, premium support from experts in WordPress hosting is another benefit of a managed service.

Standard shared hosting is the cheapest means of hosting a website – with this method, hundreds or thousands of hosting accounts are placed on the same server. This limits the speed, scalability, and security of your website because server resources are shared between all of the accounts.

With shared hosting, servers are optimized to provide the most common needs of websites, regardless of which Content Management System (CMS) powers them. Support provided is very generalized, with CMS-specific issues often being referred out to the respective support forums.

Managed WordPress hosting is a completely different world to standard shared hosting, so let’s dive a little deeper into the benefits.

Why Use Managed WordPress Hosting?

In explaining what managed WordPress hosting is, we touched on what the benefits are. Hosting your website on servers tuned and optimized for WordPress means you’ll benefit from speed improvements, but this may not be sufficient to justify the increased cost.

Managed hosting does cost more than shared hosting, but that cost is for the time you save. Managed WordPress hosts carry out backups and WordPress updates for you, saving lots of time and creating peace of mind. Additionally, the security checks and protection they provide go a long way to keeping your website safely up and running.

We’ve taken a look before at whether managed hosting is worth the cost, and concluded it depends on how you prioritize speed, security, and support, as well as how much time you are prepared to put into managing your website yourself.

Now that you better understand managed WordPress hosting, let’s look at the top managed WordPress hosts, and how they compare.

The Top Managed WordPress Hosts Compared

Managed hosting – especially managed WordPress hosting – is a growing market. Each year we see new hosts joining the market, which does make your decision process harder. We’ve had to keep our list manageable, so couldn’t compare all managed WordPress hosts out there – it means your favorite may not have made the list.

We created our list of the top managed WordPress hosts based on a number of factors, taking into account their industry reputation, presence, and their rating by industry insiders. Here’s our top ten – not listed in any particular order.

1. WP Engine

WP Engine hosting
WP Engine is one of the best known and highest rated managed WordPress hosts around. Current figures have them serving over 30,000 customers all around the world. They are definitely one of the pricier managed WordPress hosting options, with their lowest plan starting at $29 per month, but they focus on fast loading times, secure servers, and great support.

Key Features:

  • One-click backup and restore, as well as automated daily backups.
  • 24/7 technical support from on-site WordPress experts.
  • Malware scans and firewalls to protect your data.
  • Proprietary caching technology for scalability and speed.
  • Easy-to-use staging area for testing.

WP Engine is a great host for enterprise sites given the attention paid to scalability and security. The caching technology and Content Delivery Network (CDN) functionalities make it a suitable choice for sites with a large, global audience. If you are just starting out, you may find the pricing expensive – but it’s well worth the money if you anticipate your site growing and don’t want the hassle of managing it.

Price: From $29 per month | More Information

2. SiteGround

Siteground hosting
SiteGround stands out in the hosting world by offering premium WordPress hosting features at shared hosting pricing. With their lowest plan starting at $3.95 per month, they are among the cheapest managed options. The full range of managed features requires a higher priced plan, but you can access WordPress automatic updates, daily backups, isolated accounts, and anti-hack systems on even their cheapest plans.

Key Features:

  • Built-in WordPress auto-installer for easy setup.
  • Automatic updates to WordPress core files and plugins.
  • SuperCacher to improve site performance.
  • Staging sites for testing (on their GoGeek plan).
  • 24/7 WordPress expert support.

SiteGround is a great way to go if you are on a budget and looking for managed WordPress hosting features – even the GoGeek plan is affordable. If you want control over your site but like the availability of support to help you out, SiteGround will work well for you. The geek in you could use the command line interface if desired, but SiteGround utilizes the cPanel interface primarily.

Price: From $3.95 per month | More Information

3. Media Temple

Media Temple's Managed WordPress hosting
Known more for their shared and cloud hosting, Media Temple jumped onto the managed WordPress hosting bandwagon with a bang. With their lowest plan starting at $20 per month, Media Temple is not a budget provider. However, they provide a solid set of managed hosting features including WordPress core updates, automatic daily backups, and 24/7 uptime monitoring.

Key Features:

  • Automatic WordPress core updates.
  • Automated daily backups.
  • One-click site staging and site cloning.
  • Load-balanced, SSD servers with multiple caching layers.
  • Certified WordPress support technicians providing round-the-clock support.
  • Exclusive Media Temple-designed themes.

MediaTemple could work well if you’re familiar with their custom control panels. Agencies might also like having access to custom-designed themes optimized for MediaTemple’s hosting. Finally, the security and scalability features will also appeal to more technical WordPress admins and enterprise customers.

Price: From $20 per month | More Information

4. Pagely

Pagely hosting
Pagely sets itself apart by focusing on offering managed WordPress hosting built on Amazon Web Services (AWS). Developed for Amazon’s sprawling online empire, AWS is nothing if not scalable. Pagely’s fully managed services offer performance at scale, with plans starting at $99 per month. For that, you get automated updates and backups, built-in caching, and top-notch site security.

Key Features:

  • Automatic WordPress core and plugin updates.
  • Automated daily backups.
  • PressARMOR custom WordPress security configuration.
  • Global CDN for faster loading.
  • Included cache and DNS services.

Pagely is for enterprises, with the focus on world-class scalability and security. The price is definitely not for the faint of heart, but if you want to swim in the same waters as Fortune 500 companies and fast-growing tech startups, you can’t go wrong with trusting your websites to the hardware infrastructure of Pagely.

Price: From $99 per month | More Information

5. Liquid Web

LiquidWeb Managed WordPress hosting
Liquid Web had already established itself in the cloud and dedicated server hosting world, before joining the managed WordPress hosting market. As owners of their own data centers, Liquid Web promises both performance and superior support for your WordPress websites on their fully managed Virtual Private Servers (VPS). With plans starting at $89 per month, you get access to the standard managed WordPress hosting features.

Key Features:

  • Automatic core and plugin updates.
  • Automated snapshot backups.
  • Built-in custom CDN for faster load times.
  • Optimized SSD storage.

Where performance is a major consideration, Liquid Web is a good option to consider. This is especially true for those of you who don’t want to hand any more power over to the Amazon overlords. The pricing, however, may put this hosting out of reach for smaller or newly started businesses.

Price: From $89 per month | More Information

6. Synthesis

Synthesis hosting
Synthesis is the product of some of the most successful WordPress minds around. The folks over at StudioPress, creators of the Genesis framework, saw room in the world for a managed WordPress host that also provides SEO, marketing, and copywriting tools to help you grow your website. Starting at $47 per month, the Synthesis plans provide not only the standard managed WordPress hosting features, but performance optimized hardware, the Genesis framework, and tools for content marketing like keyword research.

Key Features:

  • Managed performance VPS hosting.
  • Included marketing and SEO tools.
  • Genesis framework provided.
  • Automated updates and backups.
  • 24/7 expert support.

Synthesis will work well if content marketing forms a big part of your website’s growth strategy. If you are also interested in the performance of your website, Synthesis might be a good fit as it is somewhat more cost-effective at the lower levels than other hosts such as Pagely. If you want to run a WordPress multisite, however, you will need to look elsewhere.

Price: From $47 per month | More Information

7. Pressable

Pressable hosting
Built on the infrastructure of cloud hosting giant Rackspace, Pressable is a managed WordPress host that aims to provide top notch customer satisfaction. With plans starting at $25 per month, Pressable is affordable for smaller businesses and offers optimized servers, one-click staging, and intrusion detection systems.

Key Features:

  • Dedicated WordPress expert support.
  • Managed upgrades and daily backups.
  • Malware scanning and intrusion detection.
  • Premium CDN for faster content delivery.

Pressable offers fast, scalable, and secure hosting that works well for e-commerce and enterprise sites. It is also a good option for developers and agencies wanting a robust platform for hosting their clients’ websites.

Price: From $25 per month | More Information

8. Flywheel

Flywheel hosting
Flywheel is a relatively new addition to the managed WordPress hosting marketplace. Designed primarily for designers and creative agencies, Flywheel has rethought the concept of a web hosting control panel to create a beautiful interface. Plans start at $15 per month and include managed updates and backups, as well as project collaboration tools and expert support.

Key Features:

  • Managed updates and automated backups.
  • Malware monitoring.
  • Unlimited project collaborators.
  • Free demo sites.

Flywheel will be a godsend to the creative minds of designers and agencies, with its unique and clearly thought out interface and project collaboration tools. While the plans are affordable, the cost can quickly add up if you have multiple sites. Consider a bulk or reseller account if you plan to host multiple sites.

Price: From $15 per month | More Information

9. DreamPress

dreampress-managed-wordpress-hosting

From the folks at DreamHost comes DreamPress – a managed WordPress hosting solution focused on security, speed, and quality support. It’s positioned as a fully managed upgrade from DreamPress’ basic shared hosting plan. With managed plans starting at $16.95 per month, it’s certainly not a budget provider, though it could be ideal for individual site owners and small companies. You get a lot of functionality for the price, although DreamPress does lack support for multiple sites and automatic backups.

Key Features:

  • No bandwidth or visitor limits.
  • Automatic WordPress core updates.
  • 24/7 expert support.
  • Multiple layers of caching to ensure site speed.
  • Pre-installed Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate.

For someone who already uses DreamHost’s shared plan, upgrading to DreamPress’ managed hosting package is logical and easy. The pre-installed SSL certificate will also appeal to current or would-be e-commerce site owners, as it provides a hassle-free solution to implementing a crucial customer security step. However, anyone seeking an easy solution for managing multiple sites may want to look elsewhere.

Price: $16.95 per month | More Information

10. Bluehost

Bluehost Managed WordPress hosting
Bluehost is another very well known name in the shared hosting world, not least because of their relationship with and support for WordPress. Like GoDaddy and other hosts on our list, they created a managed WordPress hosting offering to complement their existing services. Starting at $12.49 per month, Bluehost’s plans are far more affordable than most other managed WordPress hosts.

Key Features:

Bluehost may be a good start for smaller businesses dipping their toe into the managed hosting waters. If you are already a Bluehost customer, this offering could be an easy sideways step to managed hosting. However, there are other comparable hosts for the price that might make more sense.

Price: From $12.49 per month | More Information

Bonus: GoDaddy

godaddy-wp-hosting

GoDaddy is probably the best known web hosting brand in the world, and their shared hosting is the first stop for thousands of small businesses. Admittedly, their past relationship with the WordPress community is rocky, with a history of poor customer service and support (as discussed in the comments section below). However, recently GoDaddy have begun to focus more seriously on the WordPress market, acquiring WordPress site management tool ManageWP, and offering a managed WordPress hosting package of their own. Hosted on premium WordPress optimized hardware, plans start as low as $7.99 per month.

Key Features:

  • Automated WordPress core and plugin updates.
  • Automated daily backups and one-click restore.
  • Access to thousands of free themes and plugins.
  • Free Microsoft Office 365 email.

This solution could be a suitable first step for small businesses already comfortable with the GoDaddy brand. However, it doesn’t provide the focus on performance and scalability offered by some of the other hosts covered – so you may want to check out the other solutions available if that’s your primary concern.

Price: From $7.99 per month | More Information

How to Choose the Right Managed WordPress Host for You

Now that we’ve taken a look at some of the top managed WordPress hosts, you should have an idea of the functionality to look for. The most important thing when searching for a web host for your website is ensuring that it matches your needs.

Major considerations will include your budget, which may play a critical role in the host you choose. You should also be aware of your workflow when developing WordPress websites. Some hosts include Git and WP-CLI intergration, and many offer simple staging sites to be used for testing. If you don’t use this functionality, you may be able to save money with a less feature-heavy web host.

Your project requirements will also play a key part in how you choose your managed WordPress host. You should make sure that your selected host can accommodate the necessary attributes of your project, such as the need to use WordPress multisite.

Conclusion

Choosing the right web host can be difficult, especially when you are looking at higher priced managed hosting – all in all, you want the best bang for your buck. Every host claims to be the best, and the recommendations you find may not always be helpful.

We’ve done the work for you, and reviewed the top ten managed WordPress hosts for you. Let’s recap the hosts:

  1. WP Engine
  2. SiteGround
  3. Media Temple
  4. Pagely
  5. Liquid Web
  6. Synthesis
  7. Pressable
  8. Flywheel
  9. GoDaddy
  10. Bluehost

We’ve looked at the features they provide, as well as given you some tips on how to choose the best host for your needs – so you should now have all of the information you need to choose the right host for you!

What do you look for when considering a WordPress host? Comment and share your insights, then subscribe to the comments below!

Article thumbnail image by Macrovector / Shutterstock.com.

135 Comments

  1. Namecheap with it’s $20/year has been good for me so far and covers my needs.
    I used Rapidgator in the past and had nothing but bad experiences with them. Rapidtechhosting is also a good alternative to namecheap.

  2. PC Mag rated 1and1 as the best WordPress host.

    I signed up yesterday.

    12 months at 99 cents/mo for the first year.

    Check it out.

    • Hey Ollie, 1and1 is not the best WordPress host. PC Mag only cares about affiliate commissions and they receive about $50 for everyone they refer to 1and1’s cheap, crummy hosting. This list is far more accurate than PC Mag, which most likely doesn’t list a single true managed wordpress hosting provider.

      • So should I stick with GoDaddy?

        • No – you should get a real host.

          Cheap != good.

        • I have been putting most of my small business WordPress clients on Godaddy’s managed WordPress hosting since it was introduced about two and a half years ago, about 30 so far. I am VERY pleased with their performance and security, and their tech support for WordPress is top notch. Their Deluxe tier at $5/mo gives you about 90% of what I get at WP Engine for $30/mo. Godaddy’s shared hosting (cPanel) plans still suck for WordPress IMHO.

          • I agree with Pieter about Godaddy in a couple respects. The tech support is amazing if you sign up for the Godaddy Pro which is a free service independent of the hosting. I use and have set up a number my clients up on managed WordPress accounts but I also use the deluxe cPanel on a number of them also including my own and to be honest I like cPanel better. Much easier to get in the back end and make changes myself. I could not be happier with Godaddy.

          • I do agree with Pieter. Godaddy is quite good and also cheaper than other options.

          • Thanks Pieter.

            I have been using GoDaddy’s Deluxe Hosting Plan w cpanel.

            Doesn’t seem to work well for WordPress.

            I will look in to the plan you suggested.

            • Ollie,

              Yah, it’s like night and day. All the folks complaining about GoDaddy on here either haven’t tried it in 2 years or have used the shared plan.

              Try the GoDaddy Pro Managed WordPress Deluxe (includes staging). $5.99/mo can’t be beat.

    • You may regret that Ollie. My experience with 1and1 is very poor. My wife used to be a sub editor of a computer magazine and lets just say ‘recommendations’ need to be taken with a pinch of salt.

      Lots of back scratching goes on in that industry.

    • If cost is your biggest concern, there are few that are even in the same league as A Small Orange or SiteGround. If you are looking for real managed WordPress hosting, WP Engine, Flywheel and Kinsta are the best in the business.

    • Yeah wow no.

      1and1 may be fine for a site on the cheap, but in terms of tech and support (especially support) I’ve not been impressed with them at all.

      Would definitely agree with WPEngine at #1; have installed several clients there and their service is pretty fantastic. The rest of the list seems fair as well, I might shuffle some of the lower ranks, but not by much.

    • Good luck with 1and1. I used them for several years and their customer service was not the greatest.

    • 1and1 are an absolute nightmare! Check the Forums! LEAVE NOW! Terrible support (if you’re lucky)… spam-blocked email servers…
      I abandoned them x1 month ago demanding a full refund because of their abysmal service. My colleague has also abandoned them due to terrible service. Sorry but they are 100% CRAP!!

    • I’m currently migrating from 1&1 to VPS after 3 years of using their service. Very bad customer support experience recently, unreliable service (my formerly speed website took over 40 seconds to load for 2 days – tests showed that the server waiting time was the cause) and the reply I got was such a technical crap that I decided to move away from it and never look back. I am still there for another week or so, and (surprise, surprise) my website speed is back again, but I never know when shit hits the fan again.

    • Have used 1and1 for years and am appalled at their service. I now only use them as the registrar for my existing domains. Mediatemple is no better, having been a customer of theirs for years as well. Poor customer service from both, but at least 1and1 is cheap whereas {mt} is so overpriced that I am about to jump from their ship for hosting to something else: maybe amazon, vultr or linode.

    • 1and1 is a far cry from the best WP host. They’d be toward the bottom of any unbiased (non-affiliate driven) the list.

      Unfortunately, such is the hosting industry that it can be challenging to find an unbiased opinion on a provider.

    • I’ve had 1&1 for a good while now, and have to say I love it!

    • I have had 1&1 for my sites for a long time now and have never had a problem. It always runs, is always fast and never goes down. I read all these reviews about other hosting companies and while I am sure they are great in their own right, I have never found a compelling reason to move my sites.

    • I’ve had clients host with 1&1 in the past and they were a nightmare to deal with. I’d find a host who actually uses cPanel instead of the 1&1 Tomy Time system. They also made things harder than it should be to transfer away; at least they did when we had the pleasure of discovering this. Not been back since.

      If you’re after decent hosting that’s reasonably priced I highly recommend SiteGround. I’ve also used WPEngine which has an excellent staging environment but SiteGround also has this on their top tier and I find the speed of SiteGround to marginally pip WP Engine. Fast support too.

  3. I have problems with my actual hosting provider, these options are good options, thanks for the info.

  4. Great list. What are your thoughts on HostGator for a multisite install?

  5. I preffer 2MHost and Lunarpages by far! Awesome support, cheap to use and almost perfect uptime! Quick ticket support and even now with Live chat!

  6. I concur with the results ??

    I moved to WPEngine as my 1st choice and SiteGround as my 2nd about 18 months ago. Both excellent companies with nearly instant support and very reliable.

  7. This list is obviously US focused. Don’t forget your UK customers.

    • David, you can better say, our European customers. Beside that, can find ET customers around the globe. 🙂

    • And guys from Down Under.. Surly people have heard of us? 😀

  8. I personally recommend Tiger-Tech for hosting WordPress sites. They have great prices, great service, great response times and customer service. They have personally done a lot of things for me that other services would never do. They have excellent prices that include a lot of email options. I have used them for several years for several clients’ sites.

  9. I’ve been using Flywheel (three sites at the moment) for three years now. Granted, I first tried them because the dev at our agency left to work for them, but they’re service is great. I have one small site on 1and1 (where I have my domains registered) that is cheaper, but it’s harder to set up. Plus, Flywheel let’s you have a staging site, which is just awesome.

  10. Regarding the GoDaddy Managed WordPress options.. you mentioned…
    Key Features:

    Automated WordPress core and plugin updates.
    Automated daily backups and one-click restore.
    Access to thousands of free themes and plugins.
    Free Microsoft Office 365 email.

    .. These are not entirely accurate. The following would be more accurate.

    Automated WordPress core updates. (no automatic plugin updates by defualt)
    Automated daily backups and one-click restore.
    Access to thousands of free themes and plugins.
    Free Microsoft Office 365 email.
    Malware scans to protect your data. (certain plans or paid option on others)
    Proprietary caching technology for scalability and speed.
    Easy-to-use staging area for testing. (available on multiple plans)
    Limited permissions on WordPress core files for added security
    24/7 tech support

    • Yeah… Problems with GoDaddy here as well. Had started moving my sites there after meeting them at Wordcamp and they promised stability and scalability up to millions of visitors- choked down after just hours of a slow season for my site- only about 10,K visitors a day.

      Moved to SiteGround and been amazing ever since! REALLY happy with SG and support is amazing. Not only for customers, but for the WP community as well- they sponsor many wordcamps to support the community and know their stuff.

      • Agreed. GoDaddy gets no respect. I’ve never had an issue with them and the pricing is lower than anyone in this list. Highly recommend them.

  11. SiteGround is the best hosting provider from the list. Yes, Wpengine and Media Temple have good services as well, but SiteGround has everything you will ever need under one complete package at much more affortable price. The auto-update, caching, backups starting from 3.95, who else can offer that?

    • +1!! Really great company for anyone but the busiest sites.

    • +1

      Had issues with our host earlier this year so have been testing the waters with other managed hosts.

      Love the SiteGround features/price/support. PHP7 and Supercache for WP is a great bonus

      • php 7 ?

        🙁 …. we’re still at php5 over at hostgator

  12. MediaTemple is surely the worst host of the list! I’ve used there a dedicated plan, another plan called GRID and special plans for WordPress. Support is very flawed, time consuming and absolutely uncompromised … Everything that happened that I needed support, when I came in contact I received a message that needed to hire more resources, or an analysis of something … and had serious security problems there, in all cases they said that I should have had problem with wordpress vulnerability, but all domains used in GRID were affected, including those who did not use wordpress … This means that the invasion had widespread access to seridor. And they never admitted. They were not honest with me about what was going on and charged a technical analysis that I paid, but nbão solved the problem.
    I do not recommend this server even for my enemy.

  13. Where is HostGator? They are one of the most popular hosts on planet earth. The no nonsense approach and great pricing are perhaps what makes them an attractive host. I’ve never had anything but positive dealings with their support either.

    • Agreed

    • Yes Scott, i fully agree with you. I have been running almost 10 wordpress based websites for my clients in hostgator and no complain at all till date.

    • I agree Scott. I use Hostgator on 10+ sites that I look after and have had wonderful service with them.

    • Same here! Just moved over to their new Hosted WordPress Cloud offering and happy so far. This was based another review that panned their shared service but hailed their cloud dedicated WP service.

    • Same here! Just moved over to their new Hosted WordPress Cloud offering and happy so far. This was based another review that panned their shared service but hailed their cloud dedicated WP service.

    • Blue Host is HostGator. Same company.

      • Try same company but different offerings. ie Reseller Hosting programs. We have used HostGator both as a reseller for the hosting div of our company and for our company sites for over 10 years. There online chat support is phenominal. We have over 40 customer websites supported on our reseller shared server. There are MANY automated backup plugins, security plugins and auto plugin update via JetPack /WordPress.com that we use. Granted I would expect a fully scalable AWS approach to be idea but the costs are over the top compared to learning to do this yourself via AWS services.

        NO ISSUES WITH HOSTGATOR / BLUEHOST in 10 years of any consequence. Rockbridge Services, LLC

    • HostGator support is just crap, all they offer now is chat and you need to wait 1 hour and sometimes more just to start chatting. This is a big issue for us and we are moving away. Please consider this before you sign in with them.

      • I’ve had no problems with HostGator. There re-seller program pricing makes sense. Based on bandwidth and storage rather than a charge for each domain like SiteGround. I use ManageWP for client site management anyway.

        On that note, ManageWP was just acquired by GoDaddy. I can hear the groans from here, but supposedly GoDaddy is making a big push for re-sellers and plans include upgraded servers and management. Will be interesting to watch.

      • i was shocked and appalled at how time consuming they’ve become since i took a break for a year. They give good support.. don’t get me wrong, but I have to call them now just so I can get some help, or I would be waiting for about 20 min – 1 hour

    • Agreed! I’ve use HostGator for 6 years and loved it. Pricing is excellent, service is wonderful, great support staff (both online as well as call-in), and if i ever have any issues with speed or whatnot (which has been very rare) one contact ticket and they can usually solve it within the day.

  14. After my sites were hacked multiple times on cheap hosting (even with Wordfence installed), I switched to WP Engine, and it was one of the best decision I’ve ever made for my business! Lightening fast load times (even for eCommerce) and extremely secure. They also have amazing support 🙂

  15. I build and manage wordpress sites and went through a number of hosting companies (including some on your list) until I found the best – not on your list. Pressidium. They are pretty new – about 1 1/2 years that Ive known about them. Excellent tech support (better than some of the others on your list), one click staging and one click back up and restore and much more.

  16. Good thorough list Tom. I have recent experience with WP Engine, SiteGround, and Flywheel and all are very good, but have to say that Flywheel takes the prize in my experience on all key fronts:

    – page load speed: slightly faster than the others.
    – customer support: never a problem getting a real person on the phone who can help me.
    – admin interface: super-clean and simple without sacrificing power.
    – security: they take care of it on their side; no need for any plugins.
    – backup and restore tool: dead simple (one click) and rock solid.

    The only hiccup I’ve experienced was that their staging server was slightly buggy, but that was a year ago when it was still in beta (so understandable) and I haven’t used it since. Might be all good now.

    For the money, they seem to offer more (or better) for about the same price. For the first time in a while I feel I’ve found a solid managed WP host that ticks all the right boxes, consistently.

    Btw – I have no interest or association with Flywheel whatsoever. Just a genuinely very happy customer who is happy to spread the word. 🙂

    • The problem with flywheel, pressidium, pressable, and others is that they dont provide email. It becomes an issue, a small business that requires 16 emails would cost an additional $80 per month with google apps. If you are a developer and want to add an additional maintenance plan on top of this it becomes a challenge. Those services are not really looking for business from a new developer who is trying to grow their business and create a recurring revenue stream. Siteground looks good but they dont offer the interesting feattures of their shared hosting plans to the resellers unless you go to their cloud plans and not first tier, only starting second tier at $60 per month. I am going to check out go daddy managed wordpress, and A2 hosting seems very promising , green geeks is close but does not allow let’s encrypt.

  17. Use Siteground for years because of outstanding support. David, Siteground have servers in US and Europe.

  18. sitegrund is not managed hosting. You still have to clean your website from malware which on there hosting you catch like crazy. You can pay extra for malware protection but you can buy this extra with most of hostings.

  19. It’s a very helpful article for me & subscribed the blog. Thanks for sharing an informative article with us.

  20. I am using fastcomet for wp shared hosting and think it’ s the best overall value for money

    the first on your list are tooooo expensive for small biz sites – so overpriced…

    also i cannot get it having godaddy, bluehost in top 10, no way

    thx

    • Have you tried GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress in the past two years? It’s not your Dad’s host anymore. No pun intended.

  21. Do all of these hosts listed us a Linux type system with Apache? Is anyone using Windows or Nginx to run WordPress?

    • Last time I had a look, Flywheel and WP Engine both use Nginx (maybe some of the others do as well). SiteGround uses Apache.

      I personally prefer Nginx, as I find it more stable and generally faster – though (arguably) Apache is more flexible for less-techy folks as it uses .htaccess files.

    • Carol – As a WPEngine customer I know that WPEngine uses Nginx.

  22. I cant believe you missed MDDhosting yet included the notoriously slow and poorly supported Bluehost. MDD Hosting offer amazing support, fast servers and a good range of hosting options at reasonable prices. I’m not affiliated to them in any way, just wanted to balance things a little.

  23. OMG you guys, you completely missed Cloudways, which is very good, and a great interface. and us cheaper and far superior to most. another good one we use is A2. But overall, I take Cloudwabys over WP Engine, and WPEngine is good.

    • Cloudways – I completely concur, It’s a terrible omission from this list. Extremely scalable, SSD hosting with great support and built on the infrastructures of Amazon, DigitalOcean, Google, Vultr, and KYUP.

      A recent independent test gave a 1000% increase in speed on a WordPress site.

      Some of their features:

      Multiple Cloud Infrastructure
      Multiple Datacenters
      Multiple Apps Support (WordPress, Joomla! etc…)
      Dedicated Environment
      SSD Based Hosting
      1-Click Cloning
      1-Click Backup & Restore
      1-Click Scaling
      Team Collaboration
      Staging Area & URLs
      1-Click Domain Mapping
      Git Deployment
      Server Settings
      Platform Level Firewalls
      SSH & SFTP Access
      Real-time Monitoring
      1-Click SSL
      ThunderStack
      Multiple Databases
      Multiple Addons
      Security Patching
      Unlimited Domains
      Multiple Versions
      Two-Factor Authentication
      Projects
      Elasticsearch
      HTTP/2
      IP Whitelisting

      Cloudways is where all my future sites will be hosted 🙂

      • Oh, and I forgot to mention – their plans start from only $5 a month.

        • The only problem I have with Cloudways is that their control panel software that has to be installed on the server takes up so many resources that you cannot run too many sites even on like their $70 per month server. If you run like 1 or 2 sites it’s fine but if you run a business with a bunch of sites I think Serverpilot, whose control panel is much much more lightweight, together with a VPS/Dedicated is a much better solution. Also keep in mind both Cloudways and Serverpilot do not include e-mail inboxes.

          • Hi Mia,

            I’m interested to know what you mean. I have 10 applications running on their $15 DigitalOcean server, and it’s running flawlessly.

            I’m not sure what control panel software you’re talking about.

  24. You guys are missing out Serverpilot here 🙂

  25. Thank you elegant themes for not putting affiliate links in this post. Makes your recommendations more trustable.

    • Agreed!! Keep up the great work ET!

  26. Some of the benefits mentioned above apply equally to shared hosting.

    cPanel, the software used by most shared hosts, has included free automated updates for some time (2 years?). Via Softaculous, which installs WordPress, you can select for cPanel to automatically update WordPress, themes, and/or plugins automatically, with or without email notifications once completed.

    There is also a selection to run automatic backups, and choose what schedule you’d like.

    Our host — Midphase, excellent Utah-based tech support — disallows backups, but only because they prefer to run daily backups themselves, with an archive of those backups, and they restore them for you if needed. For free.

    Our hosting packages at Midphase only cost 60-75 per year (we got them a few years ago, and the pricing remains constant). I wish their CPU and other account limits were higher, but they work great the majority of the time.

    So, I guess I am failing to see the advantages of wordpress-specific hosting.

    • I agree with you James. I am not a big fan of managed WordPress. I like cPanel better…

  27. Accelerated WP is an outstanding, and affordable managed WordPress host with stellar customer service. I don’t see them mentioned and they should be.

    However, I typically won’t work with clients on Godaddy and Bluehost. Both of them suck so bad they make my clients, and me–their developer–miserable.

  28. For French-speaking users, definitely WP Serveur should be added to the list. They focus only on WP (sites only, no email hosting), and are probably the equivalent to some of the top WP hosting companies on your useful list (if WP Serveur would not exist, I would definitely have chosen one of the hosts on your list – but I enjoy having support in French, and good support!).
    I have started using WP Serveur in January this year, and it has just been my best hosting experience ever (either WP or non-WP). They offer staging environment for each site, one-click restore, they promise to clean a site in case it would be hacked (unlikely, considering security measures they implement). Plans for 1, 3, 5 or 10 sites. Support is reactive and efficient. And really, they know WP. (Part of their site is available in English, but obviously their primary focus is French-speaking Europe.)

  29. Hi,
    Nice list.
    I miss Rainmaker Platform from the guys at coppyblogger.
    It’s certainly not cheap but you get a comprehensive set of tools to help you building your business.

  30. Hola

    I know not all hosting providers would be tested, but I have mine over inmotion hosting.

    Any experiences there?

    Mine has been Very Good, with an inch left for being excellent
    Not the cheapest, but reliable, safe and specifically good customer support specially for the technical type of customer, yes you need some tech server knowledge.

    Wells that’s my grain of salt.

    Enjoy!

    • Same here Oscar. I’ve bee using inmotion for around 6 of months now, and so far they provided and excellent service and nice customer support.
      They even provide a free website builder. I particularly use Divi , but for those looking for a web hosting with this feature this is a nice perk.

    • I’m with InMotion from last 2 two years, I’ve never been happier & more stress-free with any of the other hosts. Customer Support is Awesome. InMotion should be on the list.

      GoDaddy is the worst hosting provider on the planet, the customer service is also worst, it shouldn’t me mentioned on any list other than the “Worst Hosting Provider” list.

      Sorry, I don’t like to talk negative but me and many of my friends have had nightmares due to them.

      • So you clearly haven’t tried GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress solution, which is about 2 years old and is completely different than their shared hosting, which you must be referring to. So, basically you are arguing from ignorance.

  31. Exactly how much reasetch did you do for this? Cloudways wipes the floor clean with a least 8 of the top ten… looks like you did a google search and picked the first ten on the list….

    • I’ve tried dozens of web hosts and Cloudways is the best service I have ever used.

      • Agreed!

    • I like Cloudways for low cost experimenting, but dislike their obtuse support (they speak “Dev”, not layman’s terms). Anything else goes on Flywheel, where I can get (sympathetic) answers I understand, plus, less security and cache tweaking headaches. Cloudways just isn’t as “managed” as I prefer.

  32. I’m using Dreamhost for some projects, their DreamPress WordPress hosting is nice. One of the main reasons I like them is they do month to month payments and take PayPal. Customer serverice has been spot on as well. Shared hosting is kind of slow, but the Managed WordPress hosting has been great with little to no issues. For me anyway.

    • I also use Dreamhost and like it for the same reasons.

    • I <3 Dreamhost. Their support is fantastic. I've been with them for about 15 years strictly because of that. Every now and again, I'm hit with a brain full of stupids, so it's nice to know I can rely on them. That said, I haven't used their Managed Hosting, only their shared hosting. So far, *knock on wood*, I haven't had issues with it being slow. If I ever DO go to Managed Hosting, though, I can guarantee that I'd look at them first.

      And to second what others have said… run far away from 1and1. I was with them for awhile on a friend's project, and they were a *mess*.

    • I’m with Dreamhost as well, but purely because they were rated as ‘OK’ but had the cheapest price. That was fine for me for a website that had very little traffic. They aren’t amazing, but for a shared host I figure it’s fast enough. Their chat support is always up and I’ve never waited longer than 10 minutes to get helpful support, and it’s usually instant. Can anyone recommend a better service for renewal time when their full price comes into effect? They are worth $20 a year, but once it goes up to around $100, I’m sure there are better options. I realize this isn’t the perfect post to ask this question as it’s meant for managed hosts, but it’s pretty close. Hope you don’t mind.

    • I use Dreamhost’s DreamPress as well and they have been the best low-cost Managed WP hosting I’ve found, and I’ve used a bunch. Better than GoDaddy and better than Bluehost and Hostgator. Faster and more responsive, decent service, monthly billing. I’ve been very happy with them.

  33. Godaddy and Bluehost can’t tell which is worse. You don’t include Hostgator, which I know is good. I think your list is suspect.

    • Have you tried GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress? It’s fantastic and 1/10th of the cost of everything else.

  34. I can’t believe you guys included Bluehost in this list. A friend recommended them to me a few years back and I moved my sites there. That was a decision a deeply regretted not long after making that choice. My server was down often and on one occasion for over 12 hours. It was a bonehead mistake by someone in their technical support department, but it cost me a big client. The server also went down two other times for up to 6 hours. I could say more about my experience with Bluehost, but I will leave it at that. The rest of the list looks good with exception to Godaddy, because they have a serious caching problem. Albeit they do have a clear cache button in the control panel but that should tell you something all by itself.

  35. I will vehemently disagree with BlueHost being anywhere on this list. They are incompetent, unresponsive, and an outright negative 100+ stars in all categories across the board. From personal experience with hours on hold with their not so technical support (unless you get a good one) to repetitive non-responses to requests for support, they qualify for the absolute worst excuse for any type of hosting on the planet. Watch your billing. You will see a nice low rate only to be slammed into a higher rate without warning for no reason.

    I have left them for InMotion and have had nothing but a wonderful experience. I have found actually competent technical support engineers that answer the phone without having to wait for over two hours on the phone. Very professional with SSD that you don’t have to pay extra for. If you want a real hosting company, check out InMotion. And no, I do not work for InMotion or am I an affiliated with them. They just host a couple of my sites.

    • Finally! Someone speaks my “language.” I have experimented with a few hosts including iPage- which was “okay” until they went offshore with their tech support. I agonized over who to go with next: SiteGround seemed to be a great choice but something clicked with me to go with inMotion…and I have nothing but good vibes with them…they are hosting three sites for me and I have had no complaints so far. Prices are competitive and tech support is really sharp…

  36. Go Daddy? you have to be fucking kidding!!! If you had a shred of credulity it was lost at G daddy.

    Words cannot express what a fucking stupid choice that was .

  37. After seeing a glowing review for Media Temple I have to call this list bogus. Media Temple is downright horrible. Completely convoluted custom back-end UI. Super super slow servers. None of my sites would even completely load.

    I ditched them and moved to an SSD VPS resellers box. Yeah I have to manage my own servers but at $39 a month I’m currently hosting 10 sites and they all load in less than a second. Severs don’t crash like MT’s did, multiple times a day.

  38. I really have a hard time believing that anyone who includes Go Daddy Managed WordPress hosting on a list has ever actually used them. On the other hand, some folks are mentioning Host Gator, and while I’ve used them, I didn’t realize they have a Managed WordPress hosting offer.

    Personally, I’m migrating my sites to WA Hosting. Yes, it’s mainly geared toward online marketers, but the pricing is good and the services included are excellent. Support staff is 24/7.

  39. I’m currently using one.com and im realy happy with there price, customer service and the hosting itself. i also always recommend it to my customers if they need a host for their first website.

  40. DigitalOcean is the best. Period. It is just a few tutorials away from the average Divi Developer. Give it a shot 😉

  41. Personally, I wouldn’t trust Bluehost with a 404 page. I lost considerable work when their server failed and they hadn’t done backups (I had *some* but they advertised backups) …because some weird rule that they couldn’t explain… I can’t believe anyone thinks they’re in any way worthy of this kind of a list. Disaster.

  42. I am using siteground and they offer awesome services and support independent of the price plan you are on. The quality of the support is comparable with the one from ET. I am not bound in any way with that company.

  43. Little companies can be a best alternative for both hosting and maintenance than these players that are now more in the marketing business than the hosting business. Since it is easier to manage a limited number of clients, you can get much better value. This is exactly like comparing your niche supermarket to your local organic food store. The smartest decision you could make is to not follow the masses especially when it’s about building and hosting your small business…this is the reason why we created our own hosting and maintenance company. Our approach in hosting and maintenance goes a little bit deeper and we only work with a few clients. As a result we spend more time per client/site than any companies listed here.

  44. I’ve been using #7 listed here, Pressable for several years. Issues are very rare and when there is an issue or question support is very quick, easy to understand and accurate. WordPress is kept up to date as they test the latest version before going live and update it for you. I couldn’t be more pleased and i do not receive anything for this endorsement.

  45. I use Fatcow hosting, it is not managed hosting. So far they are good with good customer service, the price is good. They also scan the website daily and if the site is infected they send an email. What i like the most is the Unlimited storage, for me that is important.

  46. Why pay so much for hosting one website? I pay €8 a month for a very big (1TB) server in Holland, and host +30 websites on it. It offers automated backups, Installatron and much more, and it’s fast and reliable. Is this different in the Americas?

    • Jurrie, I don’t mind hosting in Holland, what’s their website?

    • What hosting company are you using Jurrie?

    • I’m living in The Netherlands so I am also very interested in knowing the name of the hostingcompany you’re talking about.

  47. Siteground has been very supportive while I moved 3 websites from other servers over the last 9 months. Fantastic service and speed of advice. Have NEVER waited on the phone! And email advice always back in less than 30 minutes. I’m running 4 DIVI websites under my Geek account.

  48. Worst one: Network Solution
    It is very slow, WordPress files must be inside a diffrent folder than the main one. You have to call the support to get WordPress to work because none of options in the client panel work. The support never call you back…

  49. Over the years, I’ve come to know website hosts are a dime a dozen. They are like jelly beans. While they might taste different and come in a rainbow of colors, they are all still jelly beans. I wanted something more. A host that would be more inline with tackling the problem with human caused climate change and that fit our eco-tourism business.

    In the United States alone, data centers consumed $4.5 billion worth of electricity in 2006. At 4 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) annually per server, these un-utilized servers produce a total of more than 80 million tons of CO2 per year. This is more than is emitted from the country of Thailand and more than half of ALL countries in South America.

    I googled Green Web Hosts. I came across Fat Cow. They purchased Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) for their power needs. I signed up and used them for over a year. I recently went back to the site front page and learned they are no longer buying RECs. Well, that sent me searching for a new green host.

    Once again I went searching on Google and I came across aiso.net (Affordable Internet Services Online, Inc.) and learned that they have onsite solar power. They even post a live webcam of the panels (yes, it’s boring as it sounds), but at least it’s proof they have them. I even did a Google Map search and looked at their set up. I noticed some water tanks in the back, and learned that they also collect rainwater to use for high efficient air conditioning. They use solar tubes for indoor lighting and LEDs. If I wanted to build my own hosting company, this is exactly how I would do it. Knowing that the Discovery Channel’s Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ocean Futures Society has their site hosted with them, I decided to switch over to AISO next month when my contract expires with FatCow.

    While you’re searching for a WordPress hosting company, take a look to see where they get their power or if they are using RECs. If they are green, then I would support the heck out of them! Not only will you have the peace of mind that your company has taken one more step in reducing the effects of climate change, you’re visitors will see this too, if you mention about it on your site. They may even offer a Powered By logo to use on your site.
    Together we can reduce our footprint and still have amazing WordPress Hosts.

  50. Thanks for the list! 🙂 I was here initially to look at tutorials for Divi related stuff. I’m pretty interested with some of these services 🙂

  51. I had more than my share of hosting nightmares. All I have to say is that any company owed by EIG stay away. FAR, FAR Away.

    HostGator, A Small Orange, 1&1 VERY FLAWED. And for HostGator and A Small Orange the downtime and problems went up and support went down after EIG bought them out.

  52. Great article! Maybe as an idea for a follow-up could we have some more technical details about what makes a great hosting platform for WordPress. For example: Apache vs Nginx – which hosts offer which option. PHP 7 offers massive performance boosts, but which of these hosting providers offers PHP7, MySQL vs MariaDB (same-same but not the same 🙂

    How about CDN? Yeh, its mentioned for some but do we assume where it’s excluded that it’s not possible on the hosting platform or just not offered as a service?

    Then, the big one… SSL. With Let’s Encrypt, all hosting providers SHOULD be offering SSL free of charge. Do they? Probably not (because it’s a cash cow) but if there were any hosting providers offering free SSL, I would love to know, especially considering the ranking factor.

    I would really like to see an article like this with a full comparison of each hosting providers technical details. Of course, it must offer more than just the amount of traffic and disk space offered as listed under the “Key Features”. And yes, knowing that we get SSD is important but is it true SSD? And what’s the point of SSD on a shared server that’s massively oversubscribed (Hello Go-Daddy).

    Great article nonetheless, and some awesome comments.

    • Nathan B. Weller

      Thanks for the topic suggestion Paul, I’ll take a look at how we might cover it 🙂

    • Flywheel just added free SSL (announced 9/11). Sounds like it’s super easy to configure. I’m excited to try it!

  53. I’ve been running a white label host through ResellersPanel for 7 years now without any complaint. RP uses Hepsia rather than CPanel, which many casual webmasters find much easier to use – one-click setup of WordPress works really well and there’s a good balance between techy stuff and simplicity. They have US, UK, Finland, Bulgaria & Australian data centres and have a host of features built into the account – one particular great feature is Remote Backup to Dropbox/Google Drive – meaning I don’t have to install a plugin to my site(s) to get an off-server backup. RP also backup sites to their own storage and restoration is unbelievably easy. Downtime is non-existent and support is usually very quick (and free).

    I only throw ResellersPanel into the mix because a) I’ve had no complaints in over 7 yrs, and b) there’s a free White Label Hosting Company option, giving you the possibility of an extra income stream. Their pricing is also really stable – I had a host a few years ago whose prices kept creeping up, and up, and up.

    And just to add my 2 cents … I wouldn’t touch 1and1 or 123-reg (UK) – both have the most dreadful configuration and support.

  54. I have used many webhosts over the last 15 years and currently with Fast Comet who are as good as most of the list especially for the price. Customer service is also first class.

  55. Thinking about upgrading to an managed hosting when my business grow. Thank you for this list! Learned a lot form comments!

  56. Wow, you included GoDaddy and Bluehost but left out Kinsta? shocking

  57. I’m a fan of Dreamhost’s Dreampress. I run on their VPS myself, but have several clients on Dreampress without issue. Customer service is awesome and other than a problem with email when they had a server issue it’s been great going on 6 years now.

  58. Tom what about A2 Turbo hosting with A2 WordPress plugin that include optimization, W3 Total cache, etc. It is fast and secure.

  59. Wow the opinions are all over the place. Certainly not a good start for a newbie. I am by no mean expert in WP, just trying to get my site converted into Divi. I am currently using HostMonster and have no complains except wait time for support has increased a little bit. I guess I just stick with them since the reviews and opinions are so spread out here.

  60. Nice article, thanks.
    Im curious about Hostgator. How does it rank with all the others?

  61. I am Developing new manage hosting service named WPHost9.com (The Most Secured & High Speed VPS Hosting for WordPress). And that site is developed with Devi Theme.

  62. Could you make a comparison between the best Reseller hosting with wordpress?

  63. An interesting comparison of managed WordPress host providers. Missed Cloudways. Would love to know your thoughts about Cloudways managed WordPress hosting platform.

  64. Hi, we are currently looking for a professional wordpress managed hosting solution. We have 4 websites and a blog network.
    What solutions do you suggest for a medium size company?

  65. I currently host over 30 WordPress sites on StackPress. I am really impressed by their support and performance.

  66. I’m not sure I understand all the kudos for GoDaddy. I’ve had their “Ultimate” Managed WordPress service for over a year, and it’s been problematic (that’s an understatement), especially over the past few months.
    Latency is crippling at times and servers have gone down completely on a regular basis.
    I’m making the move to WPEngine or Flywheel – today.

  67. I’ve been researching web hosts for the past few weeks. Veerotech has been recommended on the Divi FB page for WordPress hosting.

    WPOven has had great reviews as well. Fully managed WordPress hosting.

  68. Can the author or someone explain why the “unique visits” has not been discussed as a factor and what exactly it is?
    As in why do hosting companies have this limit only when it comes to WordPress hosting
    In this day and age where now most hostings plans don’t have a limit. They may have a bandwidth limit(and space) but no limit on unique users per month. We can have as many as our bandwidth allows…right?
    Which wordpress hosting do not have this limit.
    Just casually guessing to me it seems like a gimmick to get customers to upgrade. What is the justification for this limit is beyond my understanding.

  69. Just to let everyone know since LiquidWeb is mentioned here. PLEASE do not go with liquidweb. They just sold off their shared hosting to deluxhosting without even informing use the customers.
    They just said after the sale went through that they wanted to focus on their dedicated hosting.
    Tommorrow they may want to focus even more and might sell their wordpress hosting to some unknown company.
    I have never heard of deluxehosting the name never comes up.
    If I knew they were going to sell I would have migrated out to siteground or wpengine. They are cheaper and are pretty good. I just went in for the heroic support since a client offered. I am not paying the same price to some unknown host.
    So guys beware liquidweb.com. It shows they are sleazy there is not talk about it at all of their sale of the managed hosting.
    Kind of tells what sort of a company it is. After this happened I did some googling and found the company was sold in 2015 even that we customers did know. Only a few news sites covered. Matt is not the CEO anymore he sold it and stepped down.

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