Websites are an integral part of any business, in today’s digital world, regardless of its nature. It could be a website showcasing your portfolio to help you generate leads, an e-commerce platform enabling you to display your products and make sales, or a personal blog helping you generate advertisement revenue. In any case, websites are a valuable asset that requires your constant attention to function securely and efficiently.
Unfortunately, not everyone has as much time, or knowledge for that matter, as it is required to manage a website to keep it afloat at an optimum level. That is where managed hosting services come in. But before we get into the details, let’s just get some basics out of the way.
What is WordPress and WordPress managed hosting?
WordPress is the most popular Content Management System, or CMS, on the planet today. It currently powers more than 455 million websites on the internet, dominating the CMS market share gripping more than 61% of it. And there is a very likely chance that your website will also be based on the WordPress CMS platform. If that is indeed the case, you are quite possibly already using a WordPress hosting service to keep your website live.
Hosting is a service offered to website owners to store their website data on servers managed by third parties. It is through these servers that people can connect to your website by using its domain name.
WordPress hosting is basically the same thing. Only, the servers for such a service specifically host websites designed using the WordPress platform.
Is managed WordPress hosting right for you?
For a website to stay active securely and efficiently with almost zero downtime, a number of things need to be managed at the back end. These things can range from server level to application level and everything in-between.
Consider this little scenario to understand managed WordPress hosting a little better. You have an up and running business website that’s generating great leads and helping you make sales. You’re busy with business activities and miss a couple of WordPress updates. Over time, the number of leads from your website drops, despite the constant efforts of your SEO agency, costing you a lot of money. Your agency runs an audit of your website and reports to you that it has slowed down or is facing security issues because you missed a couple of updates.
In the above scenario, one little mistake cost you money on two ends. Your sales suffered and the time and money invested in SEO of your website suffered. All because of one mistake. While it is understandable that core business operations deserve more of your attention, but things like your website’s backup, security, updates, and uptime monitoring cannot be ignored either.
A managed WordPress hosting service can take all of this off of your hands, giving you the freedom and peace of mind to concentrate on the money-making aspects of your business.
Benefits of managed WordPress hosting
If you’re overwhelmed by the idea of switching to a managed WordPress hosting or are unsure about it, maybe looking at a few of its benefits will change your mind:
- They are experts at WordPress and can help you resolve any conflicts the website may be facing due to a buggy theme or plugin, or at the server level.
- Most managed hosting providers make regular backups of your website and can bring it to live faster if it falls victim to a cyber-attack.
- They are ahead of the curve in terms of protection. And while there are no guarantees against hacking, they put forth the best security practices for WordPress based websites, minimising vulnerabilities.
- You get better uptime and faster load times, as their setup is specifically designed to optimise the performance of WordPress based websites.
- Some might offer extra features like team collaborations, custom plugin creation and demo sites or staging environments.
- It’s easier to add SSL certificates to websites under managed hosting service. Some providers even do it for you.
- You make money through a referral programme or reselling their hosting services (this might not be offered by every managed hosting provider but a majority of them do).
- They allow most common developer tools to be easily accessed through their hosting app.
- Thanks to a managed hosting provider you don’t have to add as many security and performance-optimizing plugins as you would on a self-hosted website.
- They handle all of the technical aspects of website hosting, so you can concentrate on other, more important aspects of your business.
While managed WordPress hosting service might not be a one-size-fits-all kind of thing, but it can prove to be beneficial for you if you:
- Are a creative agency or individual developing websites for clients
- Have no technical knowledge about managing a self-hosted website
- Rely on your website for the growth and profitability of your business
- Want to start a hosting reselling business
How to choose the right managed WordPress hosting provider?
Choosing the right hosting provider is crucial if you want everything to fall in place according to your plan. So, when you’re skimming the market to find one for yourself, remember to compare the prices from all the providers invoking your intrigue, to find the one that fits in your budget.
Check out some online forums to read user reviews about their service and after-sales support. Make sure your preferred providers are offering 24/7 support under all circumstances. See if there are any extra fees involved for things like malware removal.
Once you have made up your mind about a provider, ask them if they can get you a free trial period or a demo of sorts, before you purchase their service. There’s also a chance that you might not find a provider that is offering the type of plan you require, in which case, you can ask them to give you a quote for a customised plan that meets all your needs.
In the end, if you have a website running on WordPress, moving it to a managed WordPress hosting server can be what an arc reactor is for Tony Stark.