Managed WordPress hosting has been the buzz since 2014. It’s for people and businesses who want their website taken care of for them. Websites are like automobiles, they need regular maintenance to run well. This generally includes applying the latest updates to the WordPress core, plugins and themes, as well as maintaining security, protecting against malware & bots, and managing a backup and recovery plan.
When shopping for WordPress hosting, you generally have the option of whether you’d like to have these things taken care of for you (“Managed” hosting), or to do them yourself, if you’re the DIY type. These type of plans often look like “linux hosting”, or refer to server plans, often with cPanel and SSH access for developers.
Managed hosting plans ensure your site and plugins are always up-to-date, protecting against common exploits and malware infections. They also come with varying levels of support, so you always have someone to turn to when things go awry, as they sometimes do, by no fault of your own 😏
WordPress server or Linux hosting
Unmanaged or server plans are for small businesses with a dedicated tech or IT person, or freelancers and developers who want more control over their online environment, and aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty. With DIY server plans, you also get access to a wealth of one-click apps and resources, like WordPress, but also Magento, MediaWiki, forums, social media sites, and more. You can manage multiple domains and subdomains, custom SSL certificates, email and more. If all this sounds like greek to you, that’s OK! That’s what managed plans are for.
Managed WordPress plans should come with 24/7 instant website support, via live chat and or phone, so you can get help when you need it, not in 24-48 hours when the support department replies to your detailed bug report with an unhelpful form letter pointing to irrelevant knowledge-base articles.
“With great power, comes great responsibility” – Stan Lee. So too, is the way of web hosting. With unmanaged server-level plans, you have access to tools to manage your own backups, security, SSL certificates and domains, but you must use them wisely. The unique nature of different server environments means that troubleshooting your problems can take longer and require a professional. If you’re the intrepid type, this doesn’t scare you, and you revel in the excitement of untethered web development.
Cost vs convenience
Unmanaged plans are usually more affordable than managed plans (C$6-25/m vs C$20+/m), but managed plans come with the peace of mind that your online brand, reputation and customer data are secure, and can scale to meet increased traffic demands.
Are you a small business or pro blogger who doesn’t have time run a website, or are you a wizard web designer with a myriad of client configurations to host? The choice is yours.