Today, dozens of companies claim to offer “managed WordPress hosting.” But what exactly do they manage for you? Do they actually take care of your WordPress site, freeing your time to focus on what you do best? Liquid Web does.
These days, every Managed WordPress host keeps your WordPress core software up to date. But what about your plugins? Do they also update your third-party plugins when a new version is released? No.
Does your WordPress host automatically compress your uploaded images so they load faster? Probably not.
Does your host offer support for PHP7? If so, how easily can you upgrade your site to take advantage of the significant speed boost in PHP7? Can it be done with just one click?
Does your host include helpful tools like iThemes Sync Pro to help you manage all your WordPress sites via a single dashboard?
If you run a WooCommerce-powered online store, will your host help you optimize your site so it loads faster? What happens when your site experiences a sudden spike in traffic? Will your host step in to help, or just try to sell you a more expensive plan?
You have to ask yourself… what exactly are they managing?
Have you heard of Liquid Web?
Liquid Web has been around a long time. And they’re investing more than any other hosting company into their Managed WordPress hosting platform, having recently hired well-known WordPress advisor, Chris Lema, as Vice President of Products and Innovation.
Chris is passionate about the WordPress community, having spoken at dozens of WordCamps around the world. And over the past several years, Chris has been a trusted advisor to nearly every major WordPress hosting company in the industry. So you can bet Liquid Web’s WordPress solution stands to benefit from his considerable expertise, and succeed where others have not.
Liquid Web is solving problems other hosts aren’t willing to tackle.
Liquid Web’s Managed WordPress product offers customer service, security, and speed — like everyone else. But what sets them apart are the problems they’re focused on solving:
- Updating all your plugins for you automatically,
- Resizing and optimizing your uploaded images automatically,
- Making WooCommerce-powered online stores run faster and take fewer resources, and
- Syncing your staging and production environments — while you edit both of them.
These aren’t technical problems, they’re business problems.
But no other managed WordPress host has offered solutions to these fundamental problems… until now. Liquid Web is finally building a business-oriented WordPress solution for mission-critical sites.
This is why we recently migrated this site to Liquid Web. And if you run an online business, you should consider them as well.
Here are 7 Reasons You Should Check Out Liquid Web
1. Some of the fastest page load times we’ve seen!
First impressions are everything. And not just for visitors to your site. Page load times are now a factor in where your site ranks in Google search results. Faster sites will show up higher in search results. Liquid Web owns their own data center, which can’t be said of many other WordPress hosts. They use SSD storage, and their server stack is purpose-built for the unique demands of WordPress. Which means your site will load faster than ever.
As a test, I recently migrated my personal blog to Liquid Web. It was previously hosted on one of the most well-known managed WordPress hosting companies around.
Before migrating to Liquid Web, my homepage took more than 5 seconds to load (screenshot). After migrating the site to Liquid Web, I was astonished to see the same page load a whopping 4 seconds faster! (screenshot)
That’s without changing anything else! Same theme, same plugins. Significantly faster page load times. Instantly.
But it doesn’t stop there. Because they also offer a one-click upgrade to PHP7.
Why is that important? Because PHP7 brings a host of improvements to PHP, the underlying software that powers WordPress. One of the most notable improvements is substantial performance improvements. Benchmarks of WordPress using PHP7 show a 2-3x speed improvement compared to PHP5.6!
And just look how it easy to enable PHP7 in your Liquid Web control panel:
That’s right. One click and they’ll automatically scan your site for potential PHP7 conflicts. If any plugin or theme on your site is not compatible with PHP7, you’ll have the option of upgrading anyway, or opening a support ticket. If no conflicts are found, you’re set! Your site will be upgraded to PHP7 instantly. No support ticket required.
2. Free SSL for every site. No action required.
In case you haven’t heard, 2017 is the year of HTTPS and SSL for websites. In 2014, Google announced a call for all websites to use HTTPS. Today, it’s yet another ranking signal for Google. Is your site served over HTTPS? If so, you’ll enjoy higher search engine rankings.
In response, every site on Liquid Web automatically gets a free SSL certificate. You don’t need to ask for it. You don’t have to purchase an expensive SSL certificate. It’s just included. With every website. Automatically. What could be easier?
3. Automatic Plugin Updates
Liquid Web automatically monitors your website for updates — not just to the WordPress core software, but also for any plugin you’ve installed. Whenever a plugin is updated, they take several visual snapshots of your site (see example), then update the plugin automatically. They take another set of snapshots and then visually compare the two. If anything changes, the update is automatically rolled back and you’ll receive a notification email, inviting you to review the changes for yourself.
If everything goes according to plan, you’ll receive an email like this:
4. Automatic image compression.
Look, your site will load more quickly if you don’t include full-size images in your blog posts and pages. But today’s digital cameras shoot very, very large images. If you upload those images to your WordPress site without first editing them, you could potentially have several 3-5 MB images included in your blog post. And that will impact your page load times negatively.
So Liquid Web automatically compresses those images, shrinking the file size dramatically, and improving your page load times. So if you forget to crop and resize your images before uploading them, Liquid Web has your back.
Just look at how much space the bulk image optimization tool saved my site:
5. No surprise charges for overages!
Did you know that some hosts charge you for every pageview — even if it comes from bots or unwanted traffic? We know this because it happened to our own site! We became the targets of a Russian bot attack, resulting in hundreds of thousands of unwanted, illegitimate hits to our website.
Then, the hosting company we were using at the time automatically charged us hundreds of dollars more — without any notice to us whatsoever. They wanted to use those inflated traffic numbers to charge us for overages and force us to upgrade to a much more expensive plan.
Consider this… what if this happens to your site? Or what if your site gets mentioned on Reddit? Why should you be penalized if your site becomes temporarily popular?
Liquid Web doesn’t charge based on pageviews. They don’t use your traffic as a way to charge more. The price is the price. Every single month. Isn’t that what you expect from a hosting partner?
6. Premium tools for managing ALL your WordPress sites!
Do you manage more than one WordPress site? Then you’ll love iThemes Sync Pro. It enables you to monitor all your WordPress sites at a glance, and even generate reports for WordPress maintenance.
You can limit what your clients see in their WordPress dashboard, monitor your site’s uptime, downtime and performance, and even track and view SEO or Google Analytics data.
Best of all, you get all the Pro features of this powerful administration tool (normally $130/year) with your Liquid Web hosting account. That’s right. It’s included with every Liquid Web hosting account.
7. Site Stencils so you can rapidly spin up new WordPress sites.
If you build new sites often, you’ll love Site Stencils. This innovate feature lets you set up a basic WordPress install with all your favorite themes and plugins, and then save it as a “stencil” — a snapshot you can use to spin up new sites quickly.
Imagine the time this can save you as a freelancer, rather than installing and configuring the same core themes and plugins every single time?
All this, plus the features you’ve come to expect:
- WordPress already pre-installed.
- Automatic nightly backups for peace of mind.
- Automatic updates, ensuring your site is always up to date.
- 24/7 security monitoring for malware or attempts to hack your site.
- Server stacks that are optimized for hosting WordPress sites… fast!
- Staging servers to make changes to your site offline, without affecting your live site.
- Developer tools like phpMyAdmin, SSL, SFTP, and command line.
- Heroic support from people who love WordPress — not just fumbling through a script.
We don’t want you to ever have to call support, but if you do, you’ll love them.” — Chris Lema, Liquid Web
Migrate your Site to Liquid Web for FREE!
Want to move your existing site to Liquid Web? Simply ask for a free migration and they’ll handle it for you. How many other hosts will do that?
What is the future of managed WordPress hosting from Liquid Web?
I had an encouraging chat with Chris Lema, Liquid Web’s Vice President of Product and Innovation, to ask him what’s in store for the managed WordPress offering from Liquid Web. He wrapped up by saying,
The future of Managed WordPress hosting is not needing support at all! Let’s face it — today’s hosting solutions require significant intervention from support teams because they’re unintuitive, poorly designed, and fail to take the customer’s real-world needs into consideration. But with advances in automation, we can empower our customers with the tools they need to enjoy the benefits of a truly managed WordPress site that frees them to do what they do best… focus on creating content and running their online business.”
Do you want a hosting company or a trusted partner?
Liquid Web is not for every site owner. Liquid Web is for people whose website is their business. It’s for people who need enterprise-level features — at more affordable prices.
Simply put, if you rely on your website to earn money, Liquid Web is your best choice. It’s designed specifically to serve business owners, agencies, and freelancers who run mission-critical sites. And no other WordPress host is innovating and adding new features for WordPress site owners as rapidly as Liquid Web.
Need another example of how Liquid Web goes above and beyond? Check out this 2-minute video!
During my conversation with Chris Lema, I mentioned to him that our audience is made up primarily first-time WordPress site owners who just need basic hosting. The top-tier hosting plans at Liquid Web are not cheap. So, Chris created a special offer just for WP101 members! Then, he recorded this personal video to share more about it. How many other VPs of hosting companies will take time out of their day to create a personal video for one niche audience?