We all want our websites running at peak efficiency, right? After all, your site is like your online business card, which potential customers and clients use to decide whether or not to work with you.
Thankfully, there’s an ever growing list of things you can do for that to happen. You may try caching your WordPress website, include a CDN (check our best CDN list), see whether you can remove outdated or unused plugins and maybe try reducing image size. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Who has time for all of that? Nobody. But is there an alternative? Thankfully, yes: Managed WordPress hosting.
With managed WordPress hosting,. you can have an optimized website without spending your time and energy on getting it there. Going with a managed solution can greatly reduce your workload and reduce the stresses involved with hosting your website by yourself.
In this post, you’ll learn about what managed WordPress hosting is and the unique benefits it has to offer. In the end, we want to you to be able to decide whether this type of hosting is applicable to you and your business needs.
What Is Managed Wordpress Hosting?
You are probably already aware of what hosting is: it means storing your website on a publicly accessible computer (aka server) to that people can view it in their browser.
In most cases, this means you simply rent some server space from a provider where you can upload your own website and point your domain name to. However, all aspects of running your site, including its security, performance and backups are up to you. This is also referred to as unmanaged hosting.
Managed website hosting, on the other hand, is when a company provides additional services/support that greatly reduce the amount of work you need to do for your site. Instead of leaving you to fend for yourself, these providers will take an active role in the state of your website, allowing you to achieve better results than without them. Let’s talk about what that means for you and your site now. Oh, and by the way, here is a more comprehensive description for managed hosting.
The Top 7 Benefits of Managed Hosting
Now that we have the definition out of the way, let’s talk about what managed WordPress hosting has going for itself.
As mentioned, managed WordPress hosting makes running your site a lot easier. This starts at the very beginning. In many hosting providers, their support team will help move your existing website over to their server. That way, you don’t have to figure out the migration process all by yourself.
This is especially useful for beginners. For those just starting out, setting up a site in an unmanaged hosting environment can be confusing as you have to control and manage everything yourself. With managed WordPress hosting, you can leave this to the experts who do it day in day out.
Plus, this simplicity and ease extends to other things. For example, you could run several websites on one custom-made dashboard without having to care how it works in the least. The host will handle all technical challenges for you, including updates, backups and more. All you need to think about is how to make your site as successful as possible by focusing on your core competencies.
Speed is everything on the web. We used to tolerate slow websites as it was the norm. Today, if a website takes more than a few seconds to load, website visitors will leave and look for answers elsewhere. Google will interpret it as a negative search signal and might downgrade your site accordingly. Thankfully, with managed WordPress hosting, this is another thing you can leave to the experts.
If you are taking care of your site yourself, there is a whole host of things you can do to make your site load fast. The aforementioned caching is one such measure. However, as also mentioned earlier, it will be on you to implement, configure and monitor any such solutions, including keeping your WordPress site and its components up to date.
With managed hosting, this is another thing that is taken care of for you. The servers of managed hosting providers are optimized for speed and they have other measures in place to make your WordPress site as fast as possible. This includes banning certain plugins so you can not hurt your website’s loading speed accidentally.
Managed hosting boasts a team of experts ready to support you by answering any questions or concerns you have. Many hosts have a list of 24/7 contact methods, from live chats to phone calls.
When you choose an unmanaged hosting option, calling it unmanaged is misleading. It’ll be managed by somebody - you. While you can receive support with unmanaged hosting, it’s usually less personalized. Managed hosting providers take you by the hand every step of the way, while traditional hosting is more focused on helping you manage and control your site yourself.
So, if you don’t consider yourself proficient in handling technical issues, then managed hosting will be more supportive in this aspect.
4. Additional Services
Service is similar to support, but it’s not the same. With managed WordPress hosting, you wouldn’t have to constantly supervise your website as you do in unmanaged hosting. Instead, as already mentioned, a lot of it is taken off your hands.
This usually includes running regular backups, updating your WordPress site, caching and other administrative and performance-related tasks. However, what’s even more important is protecting yourself from cyber attacks, handling bugs, and/or dealing with website crashes. Managed hosting really shines here as a host’s team will handle all of these tasks for you.
5. Increased Security
Attacks happen and there are steps you can take to prevent and block them; many of them are simple, some more technical. However, all of them need time, energy and know-how to implement.
This is a great strength to managed hosting because their teams will provide you with a security strategy and then you’re set. They’ll implement preventative measures, monitor your website for suspicious activity, and will have a plan to restore your website if anything were to happen.
Plus, they will handle site backups for you and keep them safe. This way, no matter what happens, you will have a way to recover your site – and you don’t even have to lift a finger.
In short, going with a managed hosting provider takes a load off your shoulders. You can sleep easy knowing your site is taken care of and that others are worrying about its safety so you don’t have to.
Scalability is important when it comes to website traffic, especially if you sell products. Think of events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday. If you’re a retailer of any kind and sell products on your WordPress site and run any sort of marketing campaign, there will most likely be a surge of traffic on your site. What sounds good for your wallet, can actually make your site crash from the sudden spike in activity.
On your own, you may not be able to prepare for this kind of scenario. Again, this comes back to whether you think you have the technical know-how to handle a situation like this. A surge and crash is stressful and it’ll take you time to reboot your website. Managed hosting, on the other hand, has the capabilities to scale your website through dedicated servers so that there’s an efficient response to any surges, which will keep your site running smoothly.
A managed host will also have the staff - and resources - to handle surges: they will have multiple datacenter locations to help make sure that not all your data eggs are in one basket, so to speak. Unmanaged hosting will usually only have one datacenter.
7. More Value for your money
Providers are making managed hosting more and more competitive, placing prices on parity to unmanaged hosting. By now, you can find very similar pricing options for both.
Some hosts now offer managed WordPress hosting for less than $10.00 per month. So, if you are weighing managed vs unmanaged hosting, with prices like this, why not benefit from the added convenience? As shown with the list of benefits on this page, you’ll quickly see that you can get more value for your money with managed hosting because of all the additional advantages.
Managed Hosting Can Save You a Headache
Unmanaged hosting requires technical know-how, doesn’t offer as much value for the cost and is time consuming as you have to constantly manage/monitor everything yourself. And with worrying about cyber attacks, crashes, bugs, or tasks like performing backups, updates and caching, this kind of hosting can be stressful. This is why managed hosting can give you peace of mind with the help from a knowledgeable team to take care of these challenges and issues.
Here’s a quick list of managed hosting benefits to remember:
- Simplicity in management
- Speed for a smoother-run website
- A hands-on support system
- Team-provided services
- Higher security and regularly managed backups
- Scalability to avoid crashes
- More value for the costs
Nick Schaeferhoff is a WordPress expert writing for WP-Engine
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