Managed WordPress Hosting Alternatives – My Approach

Managed WordPress Hosting Alternatives

If you are spending a lot of money on Managed WordPress Hosting, then read my cost effective approach to host those sites in a better way.

Managed WordPress Hosting is a great thing for site owners until you grow bigger, they cost you way more expensive than you could imagine.

This post is a part of my random writing where I share the insights of my work be it handling servers, SEO or related to blogging.

You can take it as a pinch of salt, test it and if you find it useful, then you can save a hell lot of money.

A Cost Effective Approach to Managed WordPress Hosting Alternatives

A few weeks back, a new digital agency client approached us to improve their website performance. It's some bulk of 25+ sites out of their 150 sites network and we started our work by auditing the production sites and the list of issues shared by the client is

  • Few of the sites are getting high traffic and their hosting company asks to move such sites to the dedicated instance.
  • They are currently on 150 sites package and looking to add few more sites. The hosting provider asked to upgrade to a much higher package of handling 250 sites which would cost more than $1000 per month.

Due to COVID, they are not economically stronger to upgrade for higher plans and they asked for suggestions.

I found many of the managed WP hosting companies charges a lot of more than what a Managed Dedicated Server cost.

I tried many options available in the market like cheaper Managed WP hosting but they've very high limits and their architecture is not quite auto-scalable. We then looked for Managed Dedicated servers but they're quite costlier for our need.

After days of research, we found a gem in the middle, the Cloud Dedicated Servers from Liquid Web.

It's simply neither a VPS hosting nor a Dedicated hosting but an hydrid mix of both. Your resources are 100% scalable and 0% shared among others.

Power of dedicated at the price of VPS

If you are still confused, here is an easy understanding.

  • Cloud VPS – In a parent server, smaller virtual servers are created and the resources (RAM, CPU, etc) are shared with all servers.
  • Cloud Dedicated – Similar to Cloud VPS, small virtual servers are created, but resources are not shared. Each small servers have their dedicated resources.
  • Dedicated Server – A single dedicated bare metal server dedicated to a single account, no virtual servers are present.

In fact, I was surprised, no other major hosting provider has this unique “Cloud Dedicated Servers” similar to Liquid Web.

Now, let me compare the performance, pricing and other information you need to know between Managed WordPress and Cloud Dedicated.

Cloud Dedicated Servers are Cheaper, Faster & Reliable

We finalized between Liquid Web, WP Engine and Cloudways, and, later settled with Liquid Web. Now, we moved around 40% of the sites and they are already loving the experience.

FeaturesLiquid WebWP EngineCloudways
Pricing$250/month$290/month$230/month
Deal Price$125/month$290/month$205/month
EnvironmentDedicatedSharedVPS
Storage917 GB50 GB640 GB
Bandwidth5 TB500 GB7 TB
SitesUnlimited30Unlimited
TrafficUnlimited400,000Unlimited
CPU Cores16 CoresNA8 Cores
RAM32 GBNA32 GB
Uptime100%99.95%99.9%

Though Cloudways looks cheaper, it's on a VPS where resources like CPU etc while you are getting dedicated CPU/RAM for just $35 extra.

While Liquid Web provides 100% dedicated instances, the other two doesn't have dedicated resources. Apart from it, Liquid Web also provides 59 seconds chat support SLA which is great for high traffic sensitive sites that require immediate attention.

Other highlights of Liquid Web Cloud Dedicated Servers

  • The $20 Cloudflare Pro plan is available for $10 with exclusive Liquid Web Pricing.
  • DDOS Protection with up to 2Gbps
  • 100% network and power uptime SLA
  • Options to choose between cPanel, Plesk or Interworx
  • 59 seconds chat support SLA.

Performance

I really can't believe how this is happening. The average response time is around 300ms but it dropped to less than 100ms after moving to Liquid Web Cloud Dedicated Instances.

You should be aware, the premium Managed WordPress hosting deploys your website in shared environment and only on $1000 above plan, they will deploy your site in dedicated environment.

Although there a lot of pros, its time to discuss on the cons too.

  • You need to sacrifice on few Managed WP features like Automatic updates, custom control panel etc.
  • The dedicated plans won't be available all time, once the server is filled up, you need to wait for the plan to reappear again.