WP Engine is icreate’s recommended hosting provider.
If you are building a website with icreate or engaging icreate to maintain or upgrade an existing website, we recommend you move your hosting to our preferred host, WP Engine.
Some of our clients will be happy to trust our recommendation, but many will be interested in knowing the benefits of shifting (without getting deep in technical details).
This blog article summarises the case to move.
1) It's very very very fast.
Many factors contribute to overall site performance such as image optimisation, and thousand geeky-technical considerations I won’t delve into, but the quality of the hosting is the single most important factor to get right.
WP Engine is the Ferrari of web hosting platforms. We’ve experienced hundreds of hosting companies over the years, and WP Engine is by far the best performer. It beats managed dedicated VPS hosting costing hundreds of dollars per month.
How can we measure this?
One of the primary tests we use for looking at hosting is the TTFB (Time to first byte) this is effectively how long it takes the website to pick up the phone and start sending data to your web browser.
We regularly move client websites to WP Engine and reduce their TTFB by a factor of 10 or more.
What’s their secret sauce?
- They physically host your site in Google’s Data Centre in Sydney. Leveraging the best hardware in a location close to your audience.
- WP Engine only hosts WordPress websites. This specialisation means that they are able optimise all sorts of technical aspects of their hosting and proprietary caching specifically for WordPress in a way that would not be possible if they supported hosting any and all platforms.
- They only do hosting. They don’t bundle in email and a myriad of other things. They just provide premium hosting.
2) It saves us time working on your site, therefore saving you money
WP Engine has a number of ‘web developer-friendly’ features.
I won’t list these, because they are geeky and won’t mean a lot to most people unless you are a web developer.
One highlight is its built-in staging server feature that allows us to very quickly create a ‘working copy’ of your website when you want work done. We can have you view our changes on staging and approve them before applying to the live site. This is possible with traditional hosting of course but involves a lot of time downloading backups and manually setting up a staging server. With WP Engine this is automatic and happens in minutes.
The takeaway is that these things result in us being able to work much more efficiently on your website and save you money whenever you need us to do upgrades or other work on your website.
3) Fantastic uptime and excellent backup functionality included
Asides from being fast, the other main thing you want from your hosting is for it to be reliable. You want downtime to be very rare.
WP Engine is very reliable with fantastic uptime.
WP Engine is managed hosting, meaning that if there are any server related issues affecting your hosting they have engineers working 24/7 and will usually resolve issues before you even know about them.
As another layer of protection, because 90% of our clients host on WP Engine our web developers are working WP Engine sites constantly during our working hours, and in the rare cases there are hosting issues, we pick up on these straight away and get in contact with WP Engine support.
WP Engine has the best backup system we’ve ever come across from a web host. If your site is ever hacked, or if you accidentally delete a whole bunch of stuff, don’t worry, you’ll be able to restore to any state in the last 30 days in minutes.
4) If you subscribe to our 'security and maintenance ' package, it will be cheaper if you are on WP Engine
The built-in backup, staging server and other web developer-friendly features allow us to perform scheduled patching, maintenance and testing of your site more quickly and efficiently than sites hosted elsewhere.
This enables us to provide this service at a lower cost to our clients on WPE.