Survey: Is Managed WordPress Hosting Worth the Extra Costs?

Paying for managed WordPress hosting services can be pricey, but is it really worth if you’re a small-to-medium business owner or a blogger?

With WordPress powers 31.9% of the Internet and more popular amongst business owners and bloggers, it’s not surprising that some people would prefer extra care when it comes to hosting services.

However, not all managed WordPress hosting services are created equal and for some users, it might not even be worth it at all. To get the bottom of this, we decided to run a survey asking users about they think about the cost of managed WordPress hosting.

Plus, we’ll also dive into a few topics about managed WordPress Hosting and the factors that can help you determine whether they are worth the extra costs or not.

Users survey: Should you spend that extra money on managed WordPress hosting? Click To Tweet

The 5 Big Takeaways From Our Survey

We recently sent out a survey to a number of people, asking what their thoughts and opinions are on managed WordPress hosting. The results were quite interesting to say the least.

#1: 52.2% of the users say managed WordPress Hosting worth the extra costs

More than half of the people who answered the survey say that managed WordPress hosting services is definitely worth the extra costs. The reason being is that you get professional support and curated server performances to handle a large amount of traffic.

#2: The rest believes they can do it themselves

While more than half believes that the extra support and server performances are worth the extra costs, the rest believes that it’s not worth it as they have the knowledge to handle all the technical parts by themselves, when renders the professional support pointless.

#3: Support is the biggest concern for most users

One of the biggest concerns regarding hosting services for users is the quality of support it provides. Given that the service is all about providing that extra attention to detail, having good support is probably the main point of consideration especially for WordPress users in the survey.

#4: Most users are paying $6/mo and above on hosting

At least 82.6% of the users on the survey are currently paying $6/mo and above to host their websites. This shouldn’t come as a surprise as most shared hosting, small business hosting and WordPress hosting services fall within that price range.

#5: Users will opt for managed WordPress hosting if they can’t do it themselves

If they didn’t have the knowledge or time to handle the technical aspects themselves, most users would opt for using managed WordPress hosting services.


Our Experience With WordPress Managed Hosting

Finding the best-managed WordPress hosting for your website can be tricky and you might be wondering, what does WordPress managed hosting has to offer?

Based on our experience here are some of the pros and cons that you should be aware of.

Pros:

  • Speed: The way that Managed WordPress hosts are optimized makes it perfect to run WordPress websites on. While exact speeds tend to vary, you expect better performance overall compared to shared hosting.
  • Tools: From free themes to multifunctional tools such as JetPack, you can expect plenty of WordPress-specific to be available in your disposal.
  • Support: Given that you’re using WordPress, odds are you’ll need WordPress experts to help you out. With managed WordPress hosting, all the support are the expert professionals in WordPress-related issues that can help you out.
  • Updates: Given that WordPress uses a modular design, any additional plugins you run, you have to maintain them individually which can be tiresome. Managed WordPress hosts, on the other hand, helps automatically update all of them for you.
  • Developers: If you’re a developer or are interested in tinkering with your website, managed WordPress hosts offers a suite of tools that are developer-centric. So, if you want to make custom edits or play around with your system, you can do so without worrying about destroying your website.

Cons:

  • Price: Across the board, managed WordPress hosting will be more expensive than shared hosting services. This can be beyond the budget for bloggers or website owners who are just starting out.
  • WordPress: As the name implies, managed WordPress hosting is only for WordPress websites only. If you’re thinking of trying other CMS, you’re going to have to start again from scratch.
  • Updates: If you opt for the automatic updates with managed WordPress hosting, you’re going to have to be extra careful about as they are cases when a developers release a new update that ends up messing your website or worse.

Aside from those pros and cons, there are few cases regarding managed WordPress hosting that we do want to highlight. Some of them are:

The Server Performance

WP Engine is one of the top WordPress hosting company around and I’ve personally tested out their services. One thing that stood out was their server performances, which we've used to host WHSR.

The time to first byte (TTFB) result from WebpageTest shows 224ms
The server speed test at Bitcatcha shows a good result – mostly having 250ms and below

Needless to say, I’ve had nothing but amazing results with hosting uptime at above 99%, TTFB (Time-to-first-byte) below 250ms, and getting an A+ rating on the Bitcatcha Speed Test.

All these performances without needing to do any extra fine-tuning means that WP Engine hosting is optimized for WordPress websites.

Data Center Availability

With some managed WordPress hosting, they also offer multiple data center locations, which can be very helpful in improving loading speeds if you’re targeting certain locations (i.e.: Asia, Europe, United States, etc.)

More data center locations mean to ensure low latency and blazing fast load times
You can choose to host the website in a data center closer to your audience

Kinsta, for example, offers 20 different data center locations that are available all across the globe. That way, you can choose the data center that best fits your audience.

Case Study: Intelisys

Of course, we're not the only one that benefitted from transitioning into a more WordPress focused hosting. Intelisys is another company that improved remarkably in terms of server performance when they switched over to managed WordPress hosting with LiquidWeb.

But it also goes beyond just the technical aspect. LiquidWeb also provided comprehensive support for Interlisys, 24 hours, 7 days a week, as part of their package. This gave Interlisys the confidence and ability to focus on their work without worrying about technical issues.


What to Consider Before Paying Extra for Managed WordPress Hosting

As you can see from the results of our survey, there are a number of interesting statistics about users and how they perceive managed WordPress hosting services.

But, what about for you?

Whether you’re a small business or a burgeoning blogger, can you justify the price tag for using a managed WordPress hosting?

The answer: It all depends on what your website needs are.

So, before you commit to a managed WordPress hosting plan, it’s best to consider the following factors to help you decide whether they are worth the extra costs.

1- Time and Knowledge

This is often the biggest deciding factor for using a managed WordPress hosting or not and for whether they are worth paying a little bit extra than the average WordPress hosting plans.

If you are someone who’s capable and knowledgeable about WordPress hosting, then odds are, you don’t need to hire someone else to take care of the technical aspects.

A lot of the participants on our survey are more than happy to handle their website themselves and believes managed WordPress hosting is not worth the extra if they can do it themselves.

However, if you don’t have that technical know-how or just don’t have the time to maintain a WordPress website effectively, then a managed WordPress hosting service can easily help you with taking care of all the technical details.

I got used to the WordPress already and can manage most of the things there. I've been in web design/development for years and very seldom have any problems these days. But I think for those who are new with WordPress and don't have much experience with the websites Managed WordPress Hosting could be useful. – Marina Barayeva

Happy where I am! I'm on a dedicated server with HostGator. I enjoy the freedom, versatility and speed of this service. – Erik Emanuelli

I personally have enough technical skill to manage all of our hosting myself. I'm also not a fan of the WordPress platform, mostly because of their upselling monetization model. – Aleksey Weyman

2- Website Traffic

Let’s say you have a WordPress blog or a website and it’s experiencing tremendous growth and you getting high surges of traffic, chances are that using a managed WordPress hosting might be the better choice for you.

In general, regular shared hosting plans aren’t capable of handling huge amount of traffic as your server resources are shared with other users. So, if you used up all the allocated resources for your website, then you’ll end with up a slow loading page and have to upgrade to a different plan.

With managed WordPress hosting, the amount of server resources you have at your disposable can help you handle huge levels of incoming traffic.

However, it’s important to remember that if you’re not getting that high level of traffic consistently, then you’re basically paying extra for server resources that you’re not going to even use.

It’s important to be aware of your website’s traffic and activity so that you can have a better understanding of what server resources your WordPress website needs.

I think it depends on the traffic level. I would definitely consider paying extra when my website will get regular heavy traffic that a shared hosting can't support and is not WordPress optimize to handle it. I believe that shared hosting packages from some good hosting companies are adequate for most bloggers and paying extra cost for managed WordPress hosting is not cost effective for them. Personally I won't pay until I see a regular peek in site traffic. – Harpreet Siddhu

3- Hosting Company Concerns

In our survey, we listed out a number of concerns that users can choose from (and they can choose for more than one option) when it comes to hosting concerns for a WordPress website.

Here are the results starting with the biggest concerns to the least:

  1. 78.3% of users chose support as the biggest concern for WordPress websites.
  2. 69.6% voted equally that security and speed optimization is a major concern.
  3. 30.4% are concerned regarding maintenance for their WordPress website.
  4. The rest were the things that users were least or weren’t concerned with regarding WordPress sites, such as renewal costs, SSL support, WHM and cPanel interface.

Here’s the thing, if you share a lot of the concerns with our survey participants, then signing up with a managed WordPress hosting will help alleviate a lot of those concerns.

For starters, there are tons of benefits that you get with managed WordPress compared to the conventional shared hosting plans such as better security, speed, and customer support.

I would NEVER go back to conventional shared hosting. For a start, any regular shared host wouldn't be able to handle the traffic. And that's incredibly important.

But, even if I was starting a site from scratch I'd still go with a managed WordPress host because everything else is so much better too. Particularly the support.

For example, I host BloggingWizard.com with WPX Hosting. They reply to most support tickets within 10 minutes and their servers are fast.

Shared hosts do have their place, and they're a solid option when you're on a budget, but they're not always as good value as what they appear to be on the surface. – Adam Connell

(Not switching back to Conventional Shared hosting) because Managed is better for a busy blogger like me. – Ryan Biddulph

4- Preparing For Website Growth

A factor that you need to consider when it comes to WordPress hosting is whether you’re able to scale your hosting plans as your website grows as well. If you’re using a shared hosting plan, more often than not, you’re stuck with the server resources with very little room for scalability.

With managed WordPress hosting, you have better scalability for your website compared to a shared hosting plan.

If you have a WordPress website that has a lot of visitors, then odds are you’ll want the ability to scale your server resources as required. I would definitely recommend going for managed WordPress hosting if you’re willing to pay a little bit more.

Yes, I would consider paying more for managed WordPress hosting. Managed WordPress hosting is usually more high-performance and is more fine-tuned to work with WordPress. Another important advantage is that there is often better scalability for growing than shared hosting. There are more benefits when comparing managed WordPress hosting with common shared hosting such as security, speed, and better support.

Then you can ask the question if everyone needs managed WordPress hosting? My answer to it is: No, everyone does not need to use manage WordPress hosting?

If you have a well-visited WordPress website, want more scalability and willing to pay a little more then I would recommend managed WordPress hosting.

If you are a beginner, newbie-blogger, maybe have a small blog? It works very well with a shared hosting provider that costs a couple of bucks per month.

Would you consider paying extra for managed WordPress hosting? Yes, I would! Managed WordPress hosting is a definitely better solution than shared hosting. – Peter Nilsson

5- WordPress Focused Features

One of the benefits of using a WordPress-focused hosting service is that they tend to include features that will benefit your WordPress website’s performance. Below are some of the WordPress related features that you can expect from a managed WordPress hosting plan.

WordPress Features:

You can expect to pay anywhere between $19.95/mo – $37.50/mo for a managed WordPress plan, however, in addition to common features such as free SSL, they also provide extra features such as free malware scanning and removal, enterprise-level DDoS protection, and free CDN.

In general, the average shared hosting company doesn’t offer these services as part of their plans. Instead, you’re more likely to use an external provider or service to get all those features (and they tend to get pricey!).

Absolutely not (switching back to Conventional Shared hosting), I don't have the time to mess with it, and the performance is typically worse. – Shane

I would probably not consider switching back to conventional shared hosting (from managed WordPress hosting) unless I am running out of budget. Shared hosting are great for small blogs where budget is main concern and resources don't matter a lot. But, if you are running a business or professional website, getting yourself a managed hosting will give you peace of mind, full control over your blog and more resources.- Ammar Ali

(Not switching back to Conventional Shared hosting) Simply because Managed WordPress Hosting is more secure and better tuned for performance than Conventional Shared Hosting. – Abhijit Rawool

 

Read to Is managed WordPress hosting worth the extra price? on Quora

Read to Is managed WordPress hosting worth the extra price? on Quora

Read to What are the hosting concerns for a WordPress website? on Quora


Summary

Managed WordPress hosting can be an excellent arsenal, but only if your website demands. If you fit all the requirements needed, then it’s definitely worth the extra costs to go for a managed WordPress hosting plan. Bill Acholla, Maddy Osman, Bridget M Willard, James Hunt, and Marsha Kelly are among the website owners/bloggers who think Managed WordPress hosting worth the extra costs.

However, if you’re starting out and still a small blog or website, then it might not be worth to spend all that much money in it. Janice Wald, Bill Gassett, Adrian Jock, and Ashley are among the participants who wouldn't pay the extra price for it.

Bottom line, not everyone needs to use WordPress managed hosting, but if you do, it’s definitely worth it!

About Jason Chow

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Jason is a fan of technology and entrepreneurship. He loves building website. You can get in touch with him via Twitter.

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