Is Cloudways the Best WordPress Host?

On this publish I’m going to evaluate Cloudways as a WordPress host. This web site, in addition to our Impartial Journey Cats website and Journey Images Course are powered by WordPress and hosted by Cloudways.

As a little bit of background, earlier than I grew to become a journey blogger I labored as a software program developer constructing web sites, and I deal with all of the coding and administration of our three websites.

Having nicely performing web sites is essential to our enterprise, and an excellent host is a key a part of that.

On this publish I’m going to do a evaluate of Cloudways from the attitude of a WordPress website operator, that will help you resolve if that is the suitable WordPress host for you. I’ll examine it to plenty of different well-liked WordPress internet hosting suppliers in the marketplace, and hopefully assist you resolve if Cloudways is the suitable host on your WordPress web site.

We’ve been utilizing Cloudways to host our WordPress websites since 2019. I’ve been wanting to jot down a evaluate for some time, however I did wish to guarantee I’d used the service in the true world for an excellent size of time so I might share my actual world experiences.

This consists of my expertise migrating to Cloudways, technical help, efficiency, and value. I’ve additionally obtained an superior Cloudways promo code you should utilize to save lots of in your first three months of internet hosting.

Let begin with an summary as Cloudways as a service.

What’s Cloudways?

Cloudways is a managed cloud internet hosting supplier. Which means that they supply and handle servers which can be utilized for a variety of net purposes.

They provide these purposes pre-installed and able to use, so all it’s important to do is design your website and create the content material.

Cloudways homepage

When it comes to net purposes, Cloudways presents WordPress, in addition to different well-liked purposes like Magento, Joomla, Laraval and Drupal. Cloudways handles all of the technical facets of managing the servers and putting in this software program.

On this publish, I’ll be speaking particularly about Cloudways as a WordPress host. WordPress is a bit of software program which is used to energy over 450 million web sites, or over 20% of the web.

WordPress makes it simple for content material creators to publish and handle content material, and is appropriate for the whole lot from static enterprise web sites via to blogs, ecommerce retailers and extra. It’s virtually infinitely customisable, and can even scale to deal with hundreds of thousands of customers.

We’ve used plenty of completely different WordPress hosts through the years of working our web sites, so we have now expertise with most of the internet hosting choices on the market.

As I discussed, we’ve been working our three websites on Cloudways since September 2019, so we’ve had a good bit of time to become familiar with what it presents.


Cloudways Internet hosting Particulars

Cloudways presents customers what is named a Digital Personal Server, or VPS. There are three major sorts of server internet hosting – shared internet hosting, VPS internet hosting, and devoted internet hosting.

Shared internet hosting is finest for these with low visitors web sites ( lower than 10,000 guests a month), VPS is for medium to excessive visitors (10,000+ guests a month), and devoted is for very massive websites (within the hundreds of thousands of holiday makers a month).

A VPS comparable to Cloudways presents is a big step up from the cheaper shared internet hosting that many WordPress website house owners begin with via suppliers like Bluehost.

A VPS has a number of benefits over a shared server. The principle one is that you’ve a selected variety of assets devoted to your web site.

On shared internet hosting, plenty of web sites compete for a similar server assets, which implies that one web site being overloaded can shortly overload the opposite websites on the server.

With a VPS, you might be allotted a selected set of assets and your website is far more sturdy consequently. You additionally often have much more management and entry to the server in order for you it.

If you’re on shared internet hosting, we might suggest shifting to a VPS when you attain round 10,000 t0 20,000 guests a month. Relying in your web site design, you’ll be able to scale a VPS to in extra of 1,000,000 customers monthly. As you begin to scale past that, you may then take into account a devoted server. 


What Options Does Cloudways Supply?

You possibly can see a full record of options on the Cloudways website right here.

Listed here are a number of the major options of Cloudways that we like:

  • Managed internet hosting. Cloudways presents a selection of varied net purposes on their platform. While we use WordPress, and this evaluate is predicated on utilizing Cloudways for WordPress internet hosting, we might additionally use Cloudways to run plenty of different purposes like Laraval, Drupal, Joomla or Prestashop ought to we select.
  • Managed WordPress internet hosting. These of you working, or seeking to run a WordPress website, then you’ll possible use Cloudways managed WordPress internet hosting. What this implies is that you just don’t want to fret concerning the server itself or the software program on the server. Cloudways manages that for you. All it’s important to do is the web site administration (design, plugins and so forth), in addition to creating content material.
  • Selection of suppliers. You possibly can choose from a variety of VPS companies to choose the one which most accurately fits your price range and viewers location
  • Optimized WordPress Stack. Cloudways have constructed a know-how stack that works to present you a quick WordPress set up with minimal work required in your finish when you use WordPress
  • Selection of software program. WordPress requires PHP and a database, and Cloudways helps you to select which PHP model and database supplier you favor. If you happen to use WordPress, I like to recommend PHP 7.x and MariaDB 10.1+ for one of the best efficiency.
  • Scalability. You possibly can simply scale a server up and down in dimension, and even swap suppliers if you want, all with only a few clicks.
  • Hourly billing. You solely pay for what you utilize, so when you spin up a VPS, use it for a number of hours after which delete it, you solely pay for the hours it was in use.
  • 24/7/365 help. If in case you have an issue, stay chat is all the time there to assist out
  • No contract. If you happen to cease utilizing Cloudways, you cease paying.
  • Limitless Purposes. There are not any limits to what number of websites you’ll be able to run in your server, even on the most affordable plan. You simply pay for the server. All you might be restricted by are the assets you utilize. So if in case you have a number of low visitors websites, you don’t need to pay extra to host them.
  • Free migration. If you’re coming from one other WordPress host, Cloudways will migrate your website for you, and even present recommendation as to what dimension server you want primarily based in your present visitors ranges
  • No restrictions. Not like many managed WordPress hosts, Cloudways doesn’t prohibit what plugins you put in in your server
  • Superior options. If you need superior options, Cloudways has them and doesn’t cost further. Options like Redis, memcached, and Varnish, in addition to full SSH and SFTP entry to your server
  • Safety. Cloudways presents two issue authentication to guard your account, you’ll be able to arrange IP whitelists so solely particular customers can entry your database or filesystem, they usually have bot safety to assist shield your website from hack makes an attempt
  • Straightforward, price efficient incremental backups. Backing up the positioning occurs routinely, on a schedule of your selecting, from each few hours to each few weeks. It’s also possible to set how lengthy backups are saved from, from per week to a number of weeks. And since the backup is incremental, it’s very price efficient even when you run it each few hours.
  • Staging atmosphere. When a significant plugin replace or WordPress model is launched, having the ability to take a look at it on a non-production model of your web site can prevent the headache of crashing your major website

In fact, there are a lot of extra options, however these are a number of the most essential in our opinion.


How A lot Does Cloudways Price?

Cloudways pricing at present begins at round $11 a month, after which the costs go up relying on the scale of the server you require.

One factor to pay attention to is that Cloudways don’t truly run their very own servers. They mainly provision servers from well-known VPS suppliers, then set them up for optimum WordPress efficiency. This consists of managing the safety updates, and providing you with technical help.

I’m telling you this as a result of the price of Cloudways depends upon the scale of the server you select, in addition to the precise server supplier you go for.

At present, there are 5 suppliers to select from when you use Cloudways. They’re Vultr, Digital Ocean, Linode, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), and Amazon Internet Companies (AWS).

The primary three of those provide simple to grasp pricing. There’s a fastened month-to-month price for every server, which will increase primarily based on the capabilities of the server.

Pricing begins at $10/mo for the bottom price Digital Ocean server, $11/mo for the bottom price Vultr server, and $12/mo for the bottom price Linode server.

You possibly can see full pricing for all their plans right here.

Cloudways Pricing

Even these low-cost servers provide a beneficiant 1TB of bandwidth, which ought to be sufficient for many customers particularly when paired with a free content material supply community (CDN) like Cloudflare.

A CDN shops copies of your mostly used recordsdata, comparable to pictures, on servers all over the world. This improves the efficiency of your web site to customers situated additional away out of your server, and likewise reduces your servers bandwidth use.

If you happen to exceed the included bandwidth on Cloudways, you do pay an overage payment, which is detailed right here. Nonetheless, I really feel that the majority customers are unlikely to exceed the included bandwidth on these plans.

Google Cloud Platform and Amazon Internet Companies have a barely completely different pricing mannequin. While there’s an identical value scale primarily based on {hardware}, bandwidth is billed on a pay as you go foundation. At time of writing, AWS costs $0.12 USD per Gigabyte, and GCP costs $0.14 USD per Gigabyte. You possibly can see these particulars right here.

For many customers, I feel Vultr, Digital Ocean, or Linode will possible be the most suitable choice because the pricing is simple to grasp and the efficiency is nice.

Observe that while pricing is quoted month-to-month on the Cloudways web site, it’s truly billed hourly. So when you begin a server, use it for a number of hours, after which delete it, you might be solely billed for the hours you truly use moderately than the entire month.

There are another costs to pay attention to with Cloudways. First, backup prices $0.033 USD per GB, which is rounded as much as the closest $0.50. Backups are incremental, so having common backups received’t price you an awesome deal.

For instance, with our three web sites our backup is round 25GB in complete (we have now a whole lot of pictures!) and so prices us a moderately insignificant $1 USD monthly ($0.825 rounded up).

Provided that we take a backup of all three websites each 6 hours and preserve them for plenty of weeks, that’s remarkably low cost for the peace of thoughts it presents.

As well as, Cloudways doesn’t provide built-in electronic mail companies. Nonetheless, you’ll be able to pay for the Rackspace electronic mail service via Cloudways for $1 a month when you don’t have your individual electronic mail resolution already. Once more, not precisely a giant price.


Cloudways Promo Code and Free Trial

We now have an unique promo code for Cloudways, which gives you 10% off your internet hosting for the primary three months. Simply use the code TRAVELCATS while you join.

This Cloudways low cost code could be utilized to any internet hosting plan or utility, so it’s not restricted to WordPress or any particular supplier.

As well as, Cloudways comes with a Three day free trial, so you’ll be able to join and check out it out for your self with no dedication.


Cloudways Price vs Different Fashionable Internet Internet hosting Suppliers

Total, I feel Cloudways is a really aggressive providing contemplating what you get. Let me undergo some instance web site setups so you’ll be able to examine pricing with different well-liked WordPress hosts, for plenty of completely different web site sizes.

These web site examples are all normal blogs and web sites with pretty frequently up to date content material and feedback, however no e-commerce.

For e-commerce, membership websites, or websites with very quickly altering content material (e.g., day by day information web sites), you may want larger specification servers because the demand on the server goes to be larger.

  • Web site 1 – 10,000 guests a month. 5GB of storage.
  • Web site 2 – 50,000 guests a month, 10GB of storage
  • Web site 3 – 250,000 guests a month, 20GB of storage
  • Web site 4 – 1 million guests a month, 50GB of storage

I’ll use DigitalOcean for my instance. I’d select the next setups for every web site. These setups can be greater than able to working every server in my expertise, with loads of headroom for visitors spikes, backup duties, and the rest you may wish to do on the server.

  • Web site 1 – 1GB RAM, 1 Core CPU, 1TB bandwidth.
  • Web site 2 – 2GB RAM 2 Core CPU, 2TB bandwidth
  • Web site 3 – 4GB RAM, 2 Core CPU, 4TB bandwidth
  • Web site 4 – 8GB RAM, Four Core CPU, 4TB bandwidth

For web sites 2 – 4, when you wished to economize, you might in all probability downscale to a decrease priced plan and nonetheless get good outcomes.


Cloudways Price

Primarily based on every web site, the whole price of Cloudways can be as follows. I’ll additionally embody backup and even e-mail. Costs don’t embody any taxes which may be due relying on the place you reside.

  • Web site 1: $11.50 USD / mo ($10 internet hosting + $0.50 backup + $1 e-mail)
  • Web site 2: $23.50 USD / mo ($22 internet hosting + $0.50 backup + $1 e-mail)
  • Web site 3: $44 USD / mo ($42 internet hosting + $1 backup + $1 e-mail)
  • Web site 4: $83 USD / mo ($80 internet hosting + $2 backup + $1 e-mail)

I feel you will see that this pricing may be very cheap. Let’s examine it towards another well-liked suppliers to see the way it compares.


Cloudways vs Bluehost

Bluehost is a well-liked host, particularly for these beginning out. Actually, Jess ran Impartial Journey Cats for 3 years with Bluehost, earlier than the variety of guests necessitated a transfer.

On the time, Bluehost primarily supplied shared WordPress internet hosting. As of late, nonetheless, Bluehost additionally presents VPS and devoted servers.

The principle draw back is that while they provide engaging pricing, to reap the benefits of that value you might be locked into a 3 12 months contract, after which the costs enhance considerably.

For this comparability, I’ll use their normal pricing moderately than the low cost pricing, which I imagine is a extra honest comparability.

Utilizing my earlier web site examples, pricing for these on related Bluehost packages could be:

  • Web site 1: $7.99 (fundamental shared internet hosting, new signups can get this for $2.95)
  • Web site 2: $29.99 (Commonplace VPS, new signups can get this for $19.99)
  • Web site 3: $59.99 (Enhanced VPS, new signups can get this for $29.99)
  • Web site 4: $119.99 (Final VPS, new signups can get this for $59.99)

For web site 1, this isn’t precisely an apples for apples comparability as a result of Bluehost don’t have a smaller VPS. Nonetheless, their fundamental shared internet hosting is definitely effective at these visitors ranges. We ran Impartial Journey Cats for a number of of years on a shared Bluehost plan with out points, till our visitors ranges required a transfer.

Total, you’ll be able to see that the usual pricing for Bluehost for roughly equal {hardware} is larger for web sites 2, Three and 4. The distinction varies, from round $6 a month on the cheaper ranges via to over $30 a month on the dearer tiers.

If you will get the introductory pricing, then it’s extra aggressive, however you might be committing your self to a 3 12 months contract, after which the worth will go up.


Cloudways vs Kinsta

Kinsta is commonly thought to be one of many quickest WordPress hosts round. They construct out a really quick stack which takes benefit of the Google Cloud Platform. This runs on very quick {hardware} and tremendous high-speed community connections, so efficiency is usually nice.

Nonetheless, you definitely pay for this velocity. Kinsta bases its pricing on customer numbers, so for our web sites the pricing could be:

  • Web site 1: $30 / mo (starter)
  • Web site 2: $60 / mo (professional)
  • Web site 3: $200 / mo (enterprise 2)
  • Web site 4: $600 / mo (enterprise 1)

As you’ll be able to see, the pricing at Kinsta isn’t precisely low cost. It can save you by paying yearly, which saves you the equal of two month-to-month funds, but it surely’s positively nonetheless costly.

As well as, superior options like Redis and Elasticsearch that are included as free add-ons with Cloudways, price an additional $100 / month every with Kinsta.

Now you could be considering, Laurence, this isn’t a good comparability. Kinsta is utilizing Google Cloud Platform, and you might be evaluating it towards a slower DigitalOcean VPS product.

Actually, in the true world, for the standard web site or weblog, I might argue that the distinction shouldn’t be going to be that nice. It’s definitely not going to be greater than $500 a month nice, as you’ll be paying on the larger visitors quantity instance.

Kinsta is pricey as a result of at excessive visitors volumes you might be doubtlessly utilizing a whole lot of bandwidth. In 2019, the typical webpage was 4MB in dimension, so with 1,000,000 guests a month you’d be 4TB of bandwidth. Primarily based on Google’s bandwidth costs, that’s over $500 in bandwidth. So Kinsta has to cross this price on to you.

Nonetheless, this assumes no CDN. I feel Kinsta’s pricing may very well be made fairer by charging primarily based on bandwidth used as an alternative of customer numbers.

In my expertise, most customers could be higher off spending a few of that saved cash hiring an internet developer to carry out some velocity optimizations on their website, which is able to possible end in a quicker total expertise than shaving off a number of milliseconds of server response time.

You possibly can see all of the Kinsta plans right here.


Cloudways vs WPEngine

WPEngine is one other premium managed WordPress host. They use Amazon Internet Companies and Google Cloud Platform companies within the again finish, which once more has the potential to ship a really quick internet hosting expertise.

Nonetheless, once more, it comes at a price. Listed here are our 4 web site examples, and the place they fall on the pricing scale with WPEngine. That is primarily based on month-to-month pricing, once more, there’s a low cost when you pay for a 12 months.

  • Web site 1: $30 / mo (Startup)
  • Web site 2: $115 / mo (Development)
  • Web site 3: $290 / mo (Scale)
  • Web site 4: ? / mo (Customized)

Like Kinsta, WPEngine bases its pricing on customer numbers. And since AWS and GCP invoice primarily based on bandwidth, they need to cross these costs on to you, the client. Not like Kinsta, WPEngine additionally caps bandwidth per plan with charges for overages.

Once more, the DigitalOcean server we suggest is likely to be marginally slower in benchmarks, however the true world distinction by way of the customer expertise goes to be negligible for many WordPress web sites.

And, when you actually wish to take a look at out the efficiency distinction, it’s a matter of some clicks in Cloudways to clone your server onto a GCP or AWS occasion and take a look at it your self.


Cloudways vs Flywheel

Earlier than we moved to Cloudways, our two websites had been hosted on Flywheel. This was as a result of we had been utilizing a developer to host our websites who was utilizing Flywheel.

As our websites visitors grew although, the price of internet hosting with Flywheel was going to extend, so we seemed for different companies, and we migrated to Cloudways. We left our developer at this level as I used to be completely happy to deal with the whole lot ourselves, however he additionally migrated all his purchasers to Cloudways primarily based on our expertise. Which was a optimistic signal.

Anyway, again to Flywheel. Flywheel has a very nice wanting interface, they usually additionally use the Google Cloud Platform for his or her companies.

As of 2019 Flywheel are literally owned by WP Engine, nonetheless, they nonetheless provide their very own platform and merchandise so I wished to incorporate them as they’re a well-liked choice. Let’s have a look at how the pricing works out. Once more, they use customer numbers to distinguish between plans.

  • Web site 1: $30 / mo (starter)
  • Web site 2: $115 / mo (enterprise)
  • Web site 3: $290 / mo (enterprise 2)
  • Web site 4:  ? / mo (Customized)

That is primarily based on month-to-month pricing, once more, there’s a low cost when you pay for a 12 months. If you happen to have a look at the pricing, you may discover that it’s mainly the identical as WP Engine. Like WP Engine, in addition they cap bandwidth per plan.


Cloudways vs Agathon

Agathon are a comparatively small internet hosting firm, however they get excellent evaluations from bloggers I’ve spoken to who’ve used them. I’ve additionally chatted extensively with their help workforce they usually definitely know what they’re doing.

Agathon, fortunately, don’t cost primarily based on customer numbers (you’ll be able to see their reasoning for that right here). In addition they imagine that because of their optimized stack, most bloggers and web site house owners will match effective onto their normal plan.

Let’s have a look at our web site examples, and see what the pricing could be with Agathon. You possibly can see their full pricing right here.

  • Web site 1 – $80 / mo (2GB RAM, 1 Core CPU, 50GB storage)
  • Web site 2 – $120 / mo (2GB RAM 2 Core CPU, 60GB storage)
  • Web site 3 – $200 / mo (4GB RAM, 2 Core CPU, 80GB storage)
  • Web site 4 – $300 / mo (8GB RAM, Four Core CPU, 160GB storage)

At present, I can’t discover any reference to bandwidth limits on Agathon, they usually don’t cost primarily based on customer numbers. Billing is month-to-month moderately than yearly.

Evaluating the worth between Cloudways and Agathon, you’ll be able to see that Cloudways are considerably cheaper.

Nonetheless, Agathon does provide a extra hands-on service, particularly relating to WordPress. So if in case you have points together with your WordPress website that solely require a couple of minutes of labor, they’ll often assist out. Whether or not that is well worth the value premium is in fact as much as you.


Cloudways vs BigScoots

BigScoots is one other well-liked managed WordPress host that plenty of my blogger mates use. Their service is definitely totally managed, which implies they deal with the whole lot for you, together with backups and plugin updates. Their help workforce can be readily available that will help you with any WordPress or internet hosting points you might have. And, if you want, you’ll be able to nonetheless get your arms soiled with full SSH and FTP entry, in addition to staging.

Regardless of this hands-on method, BigScoots remains to be reasonably priced. Their costs are primarily based on customer numbers, however fortunately they’ve fairly excessive thresholds for every plan, so the pricing shouldn’t be too dangerous. Right here’s how every of our instance web sites would look on Bigscoots.

  • Web site 1 – $34.95 / mo (starter)
  • Web site 2 – $34.95 / mo (starter)
  • Web site 3 – $98.95 / mo (Skilled)
  • Web site 4 – $248.95 / mo (Enterprise)

There are a number of extra variations between these plans to think about. For instance, the starter plan solely consists of 1TB of bandwidth and only one web site is allowed. Because of this, many customers will possible as an alternative take into account the skilled plan which has limitless bandwidth and might take as much as 10 web sites.

In comparison with Cloudways, BigScoots is dearer; nonetheless, they often do a bit extra for you by way of serving to you handle your website.


WordPress Host Value Comparability Abstract

Okay, clearly there are much more WordPress internet hosting suppliers on this planet which I haven’t included on this evaluate.

Nonetheless, this part ought to have given you an concept of the place Cloudways matches by way of the worth, in addition to the information to have the ability to make your individual comparisons with different suppliers.

In abstract, I feel you’ll discover Cloudways presents outstanding worth for WordPress internet hosting, no matter dimension of web site you might have.

As well as, the power to scale servers up and down in dimension as your wants evolve, and the truth that you might be billed on an hourly foundation, makes it a superb platform for the long run.

If you happen to really need much more hands-on technical help, then you definately may take into account BigScoots or Agathon as strong alternate options. In my view although I really feel that Cloudways will work completely for many customers.


Which is the Greatest Cloudways Supplier?

Whenever you come to join Cloudways, you’ll have to resolve between Vultr, DigitalOcean, Linode, Google Cloud Platform (GCP) and Amazon Internet Companies (AWS).

Cloudways Hosting options

For many WordPress web sites, my suggestion could be to decide on one of many first three choices: Vultr, DigitalOcean, or Linode. The pricing of those is less complicated to grasp as they embody a beneficiant quantity of bandwidth.

While GCP and AWS are extensively thought to be the quickest internet hosting choices in the marketplace, it’s important to pay for bandwidth, and this may shortly grow to be costly. I might additionally argue that for many WordPress websites, particularly with caching in place, the velocity distinction is not going to be well worth the elevated price.

When selecting between Vultr, DigitalOcean or Linode, my recommendation could be to choose the host which has places closest to nearly all of your customers, and which inserts your price range.

There’ll actually not be an enormous distinction in efficiency between these three suppliers.


How Massive a Server Do I Want for My WordPress Web site on Cloudways?

Choosing the right server dimension on your WordPress web site is vital. If the server isn’t highly effective sufficient, customers will expertise gradual load instances and even web page timeouts.

If the server is extra highly effective than you want, you’re mainly losing cash.

Whenever you come to host your web site on Cloudways, after you might have selected a supplier, you’ll have to resolve the scale of the server.

There are a whole lot of components that go into selecting a server dimension, together with how dynamic the positioning is, how frequently you replace it, and what kind of caching you implement.

As well as, when you put a CDN  in entrance of your website, this can offload a lot of the work your server does to a 3rd celebration.

As a tough information although, take into account the next server necessities for a WordPress web site.


Server Necessities for a WordPress Web site

  • 0 – 50,000 guests a month: 1GB RAM, 1 Core CPU, 1TB bandwidth.
  • 50,000 – 250,000 guests a month: 2GB RAM 2 Core CPU, 2TB bandwidth
  • 250,000 – 1 million guests a month: 4GB RAM, 2 Core CPU, 4TB bandwidth
  • 1 million+ guests a month: 8GB RAM, Four Core CPU, 4TB bandwidth

Observe that reminiscence is measured in bytes. 1 Megabyte (MB) is 1,000,000 bytes. 1 Gigabyte (GB) is 1,000 MB. 1 Terabyte (TB) is a thousand GB.

In fact, you might positively run every of those WordPress websites efficiently with a decrease specification VPS, relying on the setup and sort of website it’s. However these are an excellent common.

One factor to keep in mind is that with Vultr, DigitalOcean and Linode you’ll be able to scale these up in dimension when you want extra assets with simply a few clicks.

Nonetheless, if you wish to scale all the way down to a smaller server, this takes a bit extra time. It’s nonetheless comparatively simple as you simply need to clone the server onto a brand new server, however there are a number of extra steps concerned.

So my suggestion when selecting a server is to begin with the bottom dimension that matches your wants, after which scale up if wanted, as that is simpler than cutting down.


How Quick is Cloudways for WordPress ?

By all of the metrics that matter, Cloudways is blazing quick for internet hosting a WordPress website. That is with all of the default settings, earlier than you even begin to tweak.

Cloudways additionally comes with all of the options that you just want when you want to additional optimize a website. This consists of help for superior caching methods together with memcached, Redis and Varnish. It’s also possible to allow the Cloudways  Content material Supply Community, or CDN characteristic, which may enhance website velocity instances at a price.

On this website for instance, which is working adverts (these are dangerous for efficiency!), I nonetheless rating over 90/100 on Google’s Pagespeed Perception scores.

Pagespeed Insights score for Cloudways hosted site

Webpagetest has the identical optimistic outcomes, with quick server response instances and “A” scores throughout all of the checks they carry out.

webpagetest score for Cloudways hosted site

When it comes to precise person expertise, Google Analytics studies that the typical time to completely load a web page on this website is below three seconds.

Google Analytics site speed

Once more, not each metric within the above checks is immediately associated to server velocity, however a gradual server would positively negatively impression these scores.

It is because a gradual or overwhelmed server could have a gradual server response time.  That is often known as the Time to First Byte (TTFB), and if the server takes a very long time to answer the customers request, the entire load course of is delayed.

Google recommends a TTFB of below 600ms for one of the best person expertise.

In my checks with Cloudways, our server responds in below 50ms when examined from a location close to to the bodily server (New York Metropolis). This means the server is greater than quick sufficient. Even places farther from this are nicely inside the necessities.

TTFB test

You should use this device to test the TTFB on your server from places worldwide.

Total, Cloudways is in my view a superb base for making a extremely performant WordPress web site.

Out of the field it has Varnish enabled, which is a quick server aspect caching mechanism. As soon as your net pages are cached in Varnish, they are often returned to your person with out even invoking WordPress .

Energy customers can additional tweak by benefiting from extra superior caching options like Memcached or Redis, however even when you don’t wish to use these options, your website is not going to be held again by the Cloudways platform, which is optimized for quick WordPress websites.


Is Cloudways Just for Technical Customers?

I’ve been requested if Cloudways is just for extra technically savvy web site house owners. I personally don’t assume that is the case.

The interface is likely to be a bit completely different from what you might be used to, however you might say the identical for many VPS WordPress suppliers which every are inclined to have their very own feel and look.

The advantage of Cloudways is that actually it just about simply works. Launching a WordPress website simply takes a number of clicks, and the default setup will work nicely for many customers.

If you wish to tweak issues, then all of the options that energy customers will need (SSH entry, SFTP, useful resource monitoring, Redis, direct log file entry and so forth.) are all there, however you’ll be able to simply ignore all that in order for you and nonetheless have an awesome expertise. Or you’ll be able to rent a WordPress professional and know that they’ll have all of the instruments at their disposal to get probably the most out of your host.

If you’re migrating from one other WordPress host, then the Cloudways workforce provide a free migration as a part of their service, which guarantees no downtime in the course of the migration. In addition they have a free migration plugin and detailed migration recommendation which incorporates taking a server stay when you would favor to do it your self.

When you might have any questions or points, I’ve all the time had a optimistic expertise with the technical help workforce. Whether or not it’s recommendation on cloning a server, organising a staging atmosphere, or putting in an SSL certificates, the response has all the time been inside a couple of minutes and has all the time answered my query.

In fact, this isn’t a totally managed resolution. So it’s important to deal with issues like plugin updates, theme updates, and main WordPress updates your self. That is once more only a one or two click on course of from the WordPress dashboard, as with all different host.

Safety updates to the principle WordPress set up are routinely put in.

It’s additionally price noting that Cloudways additionally provide some superior help addons, the place for an inexpensive month-to-month payment they’ll assist you troubleshoot extra particular website and WordPress points, together with plugin and theme points.

If you’re new to a bunch like this, then paying for a month of two of a complicated help plan may present you the peace of thoughts you require as you get began with them.

Lastly, actually technical customers may desire to bypass Cloudways solely. You possibly can in spite of everything arrange an account with a VPS supplier with Vultr or Digitalocean, and set up all your individual software program on a server stack your self.

This offers you complete management, though in my view the slight further price of getting Cloudways deal with all that for me is greater than price it. Time spent managing a server at that stage is time I may very well be higher spending writing content material, answering scholar questions, or taking photographs. I’d say that is an choice extra for folk who run their very own internet hosting corporations or who actually like to tinker.


Cloudways Overview for WordPress Internet hosting

We now have been working our three web sites on Cloudways since September 2019. I’ll now undergo our private experiences utilizing Cloudways as a WordPress host.

Migrating to Cloudways

We migrated our web sites from Flywheel, the place we had been hosted for a few years.

Cloudways does provide a free migration service for brand new customers; nonetheless, we did our website migrations ourselves utilizing the Cloudways migrator plugin since we had multiple website emigrate.

The migration was a comparatively painless course of which simply concerned organising the websites and copying the information throughout, earlier than updating our DNS supplier to level on the IP deal with of our new servers.

Initially, I arrange our web sites on two completely different DigitalOcean servers, with 4GB of RAM and a twin core CPU. At the moment our shared month-to-month customer numbers throughout our web sites was at round 1 million guests.


The Cloudways Interface

Cloudways presents a clear interface which is split into servers and purposes. You possibly can have a number of servers per account, and you can even set up a number of purposes on every server.

From the server interface you’ll be able to carry out duties like monitor useful resource utilization, allow, disable or restart companies like Redis or Apache, swap between PHP variations, scale the server up and configure backup frequencies.

Listed here are some screenshots to point out you a number of the options.

Cloudways server monitoring screen 1Cloudways server settings and packages screen 1Cloudways server scalingscreen 1

On the server display you can even add new servers, clone a server to a brand new server, create a staging atmosphere, cease the server and even delete it.

The appliance interface is the place you management settings particular to a single utility or web site. For instance, that is the place you’ll be able to configure issues like your SSL certificates, backup and restore single web sites, and get entry to server logs. It’s also possible to setup cron jobs, and regulate particular utility settings.

For probably the most half, you don’t want to the touch most of this, however once more, it’s there when you want it. Plus, if in case you have any questions or issues, stay chat is only a click on away.

Cloudways Application Screen


Cloudways Monitoring

With Cloudways, it’s simple to watch server useful resource utilization. From the server display within the Cloudways dashboard, you’ll be able to see a high stage view of the principle assets (CPU, RAM, disk and bandwidth) being consumed at any given time. If any of those are constantly near their limits, a warning can be proven with an orange image.

It’s also possible to click on via and monitor particular person useful resource usages, over time durations various from 1 hour via to six months.

Cloudways server monitoring screen 2

The server useful resource monitoring characteristic is nice for checking in case you are over or below using your servers.

For instance, after putting in our web sites on the 2 Digital Ocean servers,  I monitored our server useful resource utilization. I shortly got here to grasp that with good caching in place, as Cloudways presents, I didn’t want two servers as they spent a lot of their time idling.

As such, after a number of months I migrated all three of our websites to a single server. This was a easy process – I used the applying clone characteristic to repeat an utility from one server to the opposite. Then all I needed to do was replace the DNS information, test the whole lot seemed as anticipated, after which I might delete the unused server.

I did this with no downtime and it was a straightforward course of with clear documentation obtainable to stroll me via the applying cloning course of.

For a time, I continued to run all three websites on the one authentic DigitalOcean 4GB/2CPU server. Nonetheless, in 2020 Cloudways launched entry to VULTR high-frequency servers. These are larger efficiency servers with quicker SSDs and CPUs.

I wished to see if I might save a bit of cash by migrating to certainly one of these choices. I used the Cloudways server clone characteristic to immediately copy all our websites from a DigitalOcean VPS to a Vultr VPS, which solely took a couple of minutes.

Now the websites are hosted on a single core 2GB RAM Vultr HF server. For probably the most half, even with visitors volumes in extra of 1,000,000 distinctive guests a month throughout our websites, the server sits with 90% of its CPU not getting used. It’s solely when one thing like a backup course of runs that the CPU utilization goes up a bit.


Cloudways Efficiency

When it comes to efficiency, that is positively one thing I get a bit obsessed about. No-one likes a gradual web site, and I do my finest to ensure our websites are as quick as potential.

As I mentioned earlier within the part on how briskly Cloudways is, we have now definitely discovered their service lets us get nice efficiency from our web sites.

With Cloudways, I take full benefit of their varied caching options, together with Varnish and Redis, in parallel with the free W3TC caching plugin. Cloudways additionally provide their very own caching plugin referred to as Breeze, which many customers desire because of its simplicity.

I’ve managed to place collectively three web sites which can be often interactive in below a second, even lengthy weblog posts with a number of pictures and adverts.

While solely a few of that is velocity is to do with the host, I positively really feel that the Cloudways setup means I can get one of the best efficiency from WordPress which is, to be trustworthy, fairly a heavy and doubtlessly gradual utility for internet hosting net content material.


Restrictions on Cloudways

One factor I actually like about Cloudways, particularly in comparison with many different hosts, is that I’m not restricted by what plugins I select to run. In WordPress, plugins add performance to a website, and there are actually a whole lot of thousand of plugins to select from that may do the whole lot from add ecommerce capabilities to an internet site, via to picture sliders, backup plugins and extra.

Nonetheless, many hosts block sure plugins as a result of they’ll intervene with their setup, or trigger excessive server load. These usually embody backup plugins or cache plugins. For an concept of what hosts may not permit, see this record of disallowed plugins at Kinsta, this record at Flywheel or this record at WP Engine.

As a selected instance, many hosts block the Damaged Hyperlink Checker plugin as a result of it will probably use a whole lot of server assets. Nonetheless, we discover it useful for maintaining a tally of our hyperlinks, and admire that we are able to run it if we wish.

I do perceive that it will probably usually be simpler to dam plugins moderately than need to take care of the troubleshooting that plugin conflicts may trigger, and on shared internet hosting particularly plugins can shortly overwhelm a server.

Nonetheless, as I’m paying for a VPS, I like having extra management over what I can set up on it.


Cloudways Value

One of many main benefits for me relating to evaluating Cloudways to different managed WordPress hosts is that it’s remarkably price efficient.

For instance, our single VULTR VPS server, which to this point has proven itself greater than able to dealing with from 500Ok to 1,000,000 guests a month, at present prices us $26 USD a month for all three of our websites. Then there’s a few further {dollars} a month for backup and electronic mail.

All in all, it’s below $30 USD a month. And even when I had been to scale to the subsequent stage of server, which has double the facility, it might be below $60 a month.

I feel that’s fairly cheap.

In fact, your outcomes may range relying in your website kind and content material, and what you’ll be able to cache or offload to a CDN.

We use Cloudflare as our free CDN, which saves us a whole lot of bandwidth while additionally offering a further layer of server safety.


Cloudways Technical Assist

With regards to technical help, I’ve all the time had a really optimistic expertise with Cloudways. I wish to tinker (in all probability greater than I ought to) and have now and again wanted to achieve out for help.

Whether or not that’s been for recommendation on cloning a server, elevated OPcache reminiscence limits, or organising my SMTP credentials, I’ve all the time discovered the Cloudways workforce to be responsive and useful.


Server Entry on Cloudways

I positively admire having full server entry, so I can get to the positioning by SFTP and SSH, and do issues like monitor server assets utilizing linux instructions, arrange cron jobs, and edit recordsdata.

For instance, our promoting supplier requires us to maintain a file on our server, which is frequently up to date. I created a cron job which routinely updates this file as soon as a day, so I don’t have to do it manually, or depend on a plugin.

Once more, I admire not everybody will need this stage of management, however I all the time assume it’s finest to have issues and never want them than the opposite manner round.

It additionally implies that when you rent somebody to do work in your website, they’ll have all of the instruments at their disposal that they want with out being hampered by restrictions that your host might need imposed.


Cloudways Safety

Web site safety is clearly essential, particularly in case your web site is your enterprise.

Cloudways has plenty of options that assist shield your web site.

First, as a result of they deal with the server, you don’t have to fret about outdated software program variations being exploited. Like a Home windows or Apple laptop, a server runs an working system and software program stack which wants common safety updates, and Cloudways handles all that for you.

On high of that, Cloudways has plenty of safety features to maintain your web site safe, together with in-built firewalls, utility isolation and so forth. You possibly can learn extra about a few of their safety features right here.

In 2020, Cloudways launched a safety characteristic they name “bot safety”. This can be a safety characteristic to assist shield web sites from widespread assaults. For instance, it’s widespread for hackers to try to “brute pressure” a login web page, attempting hundreds of username and password combos in fast succession to guess the admin account of an internet site.

The bot safety characteristic helps to mitigate this kind of assault by recognizing threats and defending the positioning from them. This additionally improves website efficiency, as one motive a website may expertise gradual efficiency is when it’s being overwhelmed by malicious requests.

Bot safety is enabled by default on all new Cloudways accounts, and in my expertise it really works nicely to guard a website from widespread threats.

There are many different safety features to maintain your web site and Cloudways account safe, together with help for 2 issue authentication, the power to limit direct IP entry to your website, the power to whitelist particular IPs for distant database entry and so forth.

Lastly, superior customers can even manually edit their .htaccess file as nicely, for extra safety.


Downsides of Cloudways

In fact, not the whole lot is ideal. There are a few issues to pay attention to.

First, Cloudways don’t truly personal or have bodily entry to any of the servers they supply. They mainly take a VPS from a supplier like Digital Ocean, Vultr, or Amazon Internet Companies, provision it for WordPress, and supply administration and technical help.

Which means that if there’s an issue with the precise server {hardware}, Cloudways are on the mercy of the third celebration supplier to resolve it. With that stated, within the first full 12 months we had been with Cloudways, we skilled lower than an hour of downtime, and that was solely on certainly one of our three websites.

This was because of a problem with the VPS host. Cloudways has largely mitigated this difficulty by selecting a number of the most well-known VPS suppliers on this planet, so this isn’t one thing to actually fear about.

I exploit a free service referred to as Uptime Robotic, which displays downtime on our websites, and as you’ll be able to see, it’s been good for a very long time!

downtime monitor

One other element which may trouble extra superior customers is that you just do have to make use of the technical stack that Cloudways offers, and the hosts that they use.

Some superior customers may desire a Litespeed primarily based server, or a pure NGINX resolution for instance, and this isn’t an choice. Nonetheless, if that is you, then you might be in all probability already planning on working your individual VPS immediately anyway, moderately than going via Cloudways.

One other small difficulty is you can’t flip the backups off. So even when you don’t need Cloudways to do any backups of your website for some motive, you continue to need to pay the minimal of 50 cents a month for the minimal quantity of backup. Actually, I don’t assume it is a large deal, however provided that it’s unavoidable, I feel it ought to be included on the pricing web page.

While Cloudways does help extra superior caching applied sciences like Redis and Memcached, setting these as much as get one of the best efficiency out of your setup does require a little bit of technical knowhow and using some third celebration plugins.

It’s not that tough, and Cloudways do present guides for Redis and Memcached, but it surely might maybe be extra of a single click on choice.

My final gripe, when you might name it that, is round pricing. I imagine Cloudways presents unbelievable worth for cash, however as you get to the very excessive finish server choices costing hundreds of {dollars} a month, I really feel that the associated fee is larger than it must be. It’s nonetheless definitely aggressive, however there may be room for enchancment.


Is Cloudways Proper for You?

Total, I might recommend that for almost all of customers seeking to host a WordPress web site, Cloudways is a wonderful choice.

Nonetheless, let’s do a fast abstract primarily based on varied wants.

If you’re simply beginning a WordPress web site

If you’re simply beginning out and have lower than 10,000 guests a month, then a shared internet hosting supplier will possible be less expensive to begin with.

On this case, Bluehost is a good choice, and it can save you much more with our hyperlink.

In fact, there may be nothing stopping you from beginning with Cloudways, and you may select a decrease priced server after which simply scale it as you go.

If you happen to assume you will shortly develop your website, then beginning with a service which lets you shortly scale and the place you’ll be able to keep away from having emigrate between hosts, is probably going a extra wise choice in the long run.


If in case you have a longtime website

If in case you have customer numbers in extra of 10,000 to 20,000 guests a month, then I feel Cloudways is a unbelievable and value efficient selection.

They may deal with all of the nitty gritty of server administration, provide around the clock help, and have a know-how stack which means your website can be quick. That is the case regardless if it’s a typical weblog with a number of updates per week, an ecommerce retailer, a pictures portfolio or a frequently up to date information website.

On high of that, Cloudways have a price efficient backup resolution, glorious built-in safety features, and all of the superior technical instruments you may want do you have to be extra of an influence person.

The interface is clear and nicely laid out, and even when you aren’t notably technically minded you shouldn’t have any points. In addition they have an intensive information base with a number of guides for the whole lot from going stay to managing your backups.

Cloudways will migrate your website from one other host totally free with a zero downtime promise. Since you pay hourly for what you utilize, you don’t have to fret about being locked in to a prolonged contract. You additionally get a free Three day trial to check the service out.


If you happen to want a whole lot of assist together with your website

The Cloudways help workforce is nice in my expertise, with 24/7 help and free migration help.

Nonetheless, when you want a number of assist on the utility stage, which implies WordPress, Cloudways is probably not the suitable selection. If you happen to desire to keep away from issues like plugin updates, or need assistance with modifying your theme recordsdata, that is outdoors their normal help.

If that is you, you might have a number of choices. First, there are many assets on the web the place you’ll be able to study some staple items your self. As a result of Cloudways has staging capabilities and a sturdy backup device, you’ll be able to positively use it to develop your abilities.

Alternatively, you’ll be able to pay further for a complicated help plan with Cloudways. This consists of issues like plugin and theme troubleshooting, and this is likely to be an excellent choice on your first few months.

Another choice is to rent somebody, both on an ad-hoc foundation or extra completely, who can deal with these items for you. Most websites want minimal upkeep over time, so I feel that this often works out cheaper in the long term that paying for dearer internet hosting.

In fact, when you actually would favor to let another person do extra of the be just right for you, then you definately may take into account a bunch like BigScoots or Agathon.


If you’re an influence person or have a number of websites

If in case you have a number of web sites, Cloudways makes managing them simple. You possibly can have a number of servers below one account, and set up as many or as few purposes on every one as you need.

It’s also possible to arrange completely different customers with entry to completely different purposes or servers when you want, making Cloudways an excellent choice when you host web sites for a number of customers.

Cloudways do greater than WordPress internet hosting as nicely, and you may even combine utility sorts on completely different servers.

If you’re an influence person who desires to squeeze probably the most efficiency out of your website, once more, Cloudways may help you do this. From superior caching applied sciences like Redis and Varnish, to look optimization methods like Elasticsearch, via to the choice to modify between PHP variations and database engines, there’s a lot right here to make you cheerful.

Plus, it’s very easy to begin and cease servers from completely different suppliers and with completely different specs, and take a look at how they be just right for you and your website. So when you’ve all the time questioned if a Google Cloud powered server would make your web site quicker, you’ll be able to strive it out for brief time interval and see!

In fact, you may desire to run your individual VPS moderately than join with Cloudways, and naturally you’ll save a bit of cash when you achieve this.

Nonetheless, I might argue that except you make a residing from internet hosting web sites, it’s going to work out less expensive in the long term to let Cloudways handle your server stack, so you will get on with duties that truly create you an revenue.


Cloudways Overview Abstract & Cloudways Internet hosting Low cost

In abstract, I feel that the majority web site house owners can be very happy with Cloudways and the companies they provide. If you wish to it out for your self, don’t neglect that we have now an unique low cost code for Cloudways.

This gives you 10% off your internet hosting for the primary three months. Simply use the code TRAVELCATS while you join.

As well as, you additionally get a 3 day free trial with Cloudways, so you’ll be able to check out the service with no dedication. Click on right here to strive it at present.


Additional Studying

Hopefully this evaluate of Cloudways WordPress internet hosting has helped you resolve if Cloudways is the suitable host on your WordPress web site.

We now have plenty of different articles and assets that we expect you will see helpful, masking each running a blog and pictures. Listed here are some to get you began.

Thanks for studying, and as all the time, if in case you have any questions on Cloudways or selecting a WordPress host, simply use the feedback part beneath. We’ll get again to you as quickly as we are able to!

This detailed Cloudways review has everything you need to know to decide if Cloudways is the best WordPress host for your website!


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