Building a great website for your new business, blog, or project is one thing. Keeping it going is another. Not every website owner has the technical ability, expertise, and most of all, time to keep on top of the many small tasks that keep a WordPress website up and secure.
Managed WordPress hosting means those tasks are dealt with by somebody else (hopefully, a managed WordPress hosting expert!). Technical maintenance jobs handled by website hosting management include:
Every website host is responsible for maintaining the server, which is the physical home of your website, but that doesn't mean they are providing managed website hosting.
Managed website hosting essentially means that the host takes care of all your website's technical needs. If you're just paying for website hosting, without any management specified in the price, you’re likely just getting unmanaged hosting.
Many website owners use shared hosting for low-cost website hosting. But that can bring security risks (for example, if one site is hacked, the others on the same server can be at risk), plus another site's increased traffic can cause your site to slow down. However, managed website hosting can refer to either shared or private website hosting.
A typical host has websites using many different platforms on the same server, so the environment has to be pretty generic. In contrast, managed website hosting offers an environment that's fully customized for the needs of WordPress websites in particular, with all systems tailored to WordPress sites.
There are a number of benefits to using managed WordPress hosting for your website.
Managed WordPress hosting means you effectively have a WordPress expert at your disposal all the time. You don't need to learn the tech side of things yourself, or hire a techie every two minutes to troubleshoot a bug or handle core updates, you can just leave it to the hosting management team.
WordPress hosting management optimizes your website for speed at the server level, so your site won't slow down when traffic levels spike, and you can scale up whenever you like without worrying about it.
Managed website hosting teams improve performance with proxy content distribution network (CDN) centers and server-level caching, so you won't break your head installing and managing plugins for site-level caching, plus the fewer plugins you have, the fewer potential backdoors there are into your site.
Managed website hosting boosts security in numerous ways. It typically boasts features like free SSL certificates, and real-time scanning for worms, viruses, spyware, malware, spam, etc. baked into the system. Because it's for WordPress websites only, managers can optimize security features to compensate for known WordPress weaknesses.
Managed WordPress hosting ensures that your WordPress core, theme, plugins, etc. are updated promptly, closing security loopholes. If you are unlucky enough to get hacked, your managed WordPress hosting team will help you deal with it.
Managed WordPress hosting includes a staging site that allows you to test drive different features and experiment with your website without worrying about affecting visitor experience or affecting something on your existing site.
Other advantages to managed WordPress hosting include the option of a complete WordPress install within minutes; advanced dashboards that help you track visitor numbers and behavior; and automated daily backups that ensure that you can quickly and easily get your website back if anything goes wrong.
The decision whether or not to use managed WordPress hosting depends on your specific circumstances. If you have plenty of tech knowhow, and also enough time to handle ongoing maintenance and management yourself, you probably don't need managed WordPress hosting. It's also not an option for website owners on a very tight budget.
But if you don't have the time and knowledge to manage all aspects of website maintenance alone, and/or you need reliable website uptime and can't afford any downtime or glitches, then it's even odds you need managed WordPress hosting to give you peace of mind and time to dedicate to running your business.
The short answer is Yes, and Probably yes.
Managed WordPress hosting always costs more than unmanaged hosting, because you are receiving a higher level of service than with unmanaged hosting. However, you have to balance those extra few dollars a month for the service against the money you're saving from the results of unmanaged hosting.
For a start, without managed WordPress hosting you'd probably need to pay for technical support on a regular basis, or put up with the hassle of managing plugins, caching, maintenance, updates, and security trouble-shooting yourself. The cost of just one security incident a year is probably more than you'd spend on managed WordPress hosting.
With managed WordPress hosting, you can focus on building your business instead of dealing with technical issues and maintenance tasks. It gives you peace of mind while also ensuring that your site operates at optimized performance and delivers the best speeds so that visitors are always satisfied.
We hope we managed to explain the differences between managed WordPress hosting and regular WordPress hosting. As always, please contact us if you have any questions about managed WordPress hosting services, or any WordPress question at all!