We rely on web hosts.
And when they have issues – it costs us money.
Usually more money than we pay them in a given month.
In the past, I’ve had countless web hosting headaches. I’m sure you’ve had a few yourself right?!
No web hosting company is perfect, but what really matters is that any issues are fixed quick.
And then there’s performance.
We need blazing fast servers that don’t buckle when a handful of people are viewing our sites at the same time.
So, will WPX Hosting be any different?
Keep on reading this review to find out…
My WPX Hosting review and why you need a fast web host
Before we dive into what WPX Hosting (previously Traffic Planet Hosting) has to offer, I need to explain why fast hosting is important:
If you’re serious about your website, you need a web host that is capable of handling traffic.
Sure, there are plenty of budget web hosts out there and they’re super cost effective. And sometimes they’re exactly what’s needed.
But, the truth is that how a lot of these types of web hosts do business is terrible.
They offer unlimited plans that are severely limited when you actually read the fine print. Not cool at all.
They cram as many customers into each server as possible without considering performance.
So, when simultaneous visitors land on a site, page load times skyrocket and user experience is ruined.
This is serious because just 1 second delay could negatively impact conversion rates by more than 7%.
And more to the point – it annoys the hell out of people and when that happens, chances are that they won’t come back.
An interface that simply works
One issue that I find with a lot of web hosts is that for first time users, or even some more experienced users – the interface can be unnecessarily complex.
But, the WPX Hosting’s interface is different.
It’s very simple, and I can see how that could be an issue in some circumstances. But, we live in an age where everything is complex and overly time consuming.
And with some hosts, finding a single setting can take way too long.
Here’s a look at how simple the WPX interface is:
The simplicity is refreshing.
Occasionally I find that I have to contact support for features that I’d be able to access myself with other hosts. But when we consider the fact that most of my support requests are answered in 10 minutes – it’s not a major issue.
The power to handle traffic spikes without ruining user experience
One interesting thing about WPX Hosting is that their infrastructure was designed to host large, resource intensive ecommerce websites.
And this is good news for us because their servers are designed to deal with serious amounts of traffic.
They typically leave 50% of a servers resources available which results in fantastic performance and the ability to deal with traffic spikes.
And as soon as the number of customers on a machine could potentially impact performance, they’re moved to another machine.
So, how does WPX Hosting perform?
Results are impressive.
With minimal optimization and a little help from MaxCDN (now StackPath), This is the kind of performance that’s possible:
Note: CDN stands for Content Delivery Network. They allow assets to be loaded from servers closer to the visitor, which has a significant impact on page load times.
The above image is a test ran with LoadImpact.com that tests how page load times are impacted with multiple visitors on the site at the same time.
Most visitors experienced loading times of under 1 second, which is incredible.
Here’s the good news:
From November 2018 onwards, WPX Hosting offer their own CDN with 20+ endpoints around the world.
It’s built by them – this isn’t just some other CDN slapped on the side. This means they can tweak and optimize it for better performance.
And it’s completely free!
Support that doesn’t leave you hanging
Support is the main gripe that I’ve had with a lot of web hosts in the past.
I’ve had some web hosts cause serious issues on my sites that have resulted in a lot of lost revenue.
It’s bad enough that these mistakes happen, but a lot of hosts handle them badly.
Here’s an example of a scenario with a host I no longer use:
- Something breaks and I wait for 45 minutes to get onto live chat.
- I spend an hour trying to convince the support operative that there is a problem, and he escalates the problem to level 2 support (via support ticket).
- Level 2 support takes 18 hours to respond to my ticket, with a less than helpful response.
- 9 days later, my issue hasn’t been resolved and I look for a new web host.
Here’s an example of a typical support request going through WPX Hosting:
- An issue crops up, or I need help with something and I send in a support ticket.
- Within 10-15 minutes I get a reply to let me know they’re looking into my ticket.
- 15-30 minutes later, I get a reply saying that the issue has been fixed.
Crazy fast right?!
Responses are sometimes as fast as 5 minutes. The slowest has been 30 minutes and that’s very rare.
The slowest an issue has been resolved was about 6 hours – and after being a customer for well over a year, that’s the only time I’ve had to wait so long. But, I was kept updated along the way so I wasn’t just twiddling my thumbs.
Here’s an example of a specific issue I faced recently:
On a Sunday afternoon (31st July 2016 to be exact), I set about migrating one of my small domains over to WPX hosting.
I planned to use a plugin to handle the migration so I could do it myself. But part way through the migration, the plugin failed and I needed to get it sorted ASAP.
So, I emailed support asking them to handle the migration for me using my latest backup. I thought, well, it’s a Sunday so it’s probably going to take a while.
Within 7 minutes, they emailed me back saying the migration had started. 3 hours later, it was done.
All on a Sunday afternoon. Needless to say, I’m impressed with that level of service.
WPX Hosting’s support is like no other I’ve experienced.
Great features that empower and protect site owners
Certain features can be a big deal for us site owners.
I’m talking about things like SSL and site migrations.
Recently, WPX Hosting began offering completely free SSL certificates that are sponsored by Google.
What’s great about this is how fast SSL can be activated.
Seriously. A couple of clicks in the control panel – and you’ve got SSL activated.
Sure, there are other changes you’ll need to make to your site if you’re activating SSL redirects and what not. But the process of actually getting SSL setup is faster than I ever thought possible.
Oh, and they’ll migrate your site to their servers for free.
But, the number of migrations you can get for free depends on which plan you’re on.
What about protecting site owners?
They recently shelled out on enterprise-level DDoS protection from Incapsula and they run daily malware scans. And offer their own free CDN with 20+ endpoints.
Got an issue with malware? No problem, they scan for malicious code, and they’ll remove it for you too.
A pricing structure that offers value for money
The first thing that attracted me to WPX Hosting was the price, when compared to other WordPress managed hosts.
I’d looked at other WordPress specialist web hosts but the technical limitations put me off.
For example, some don’t support email.
And not to mention how some WordPress specialist web hosts gear their pricing plans around unique visitors/month. And reset what they consider to be ‘unique’ every 24 hours. What the hell? Yeah, that sort of pricing gets costly fast.
WPX Hosting gears their plans around a monthly maximum bandwidth, which can be offset even further by using a CDN like MaxCDN (now StackPath).
Here’s a closer look at their pricing plans:
For more information on their plans & pricing, click here.
WPX Hosting pro’s and con’s
- Built to handle traffic without sacrificing page load times
- Fast and effective support
- Amazing pricing in comparison to competitors
- Supports emails (unlike some WordPress hosts)
- Easy to use interface (all the important stuff is 1 click away)
- Can support other content management systems (not just WordPress)
- Enterprise level DDoS protection
- Malware scanning and cleanup
- Interface is lacking on features but this could be classed as a pro since the interface is easier to work with
- No phone support (but live chat & email is very fast)
The verdict on WPX Hosting
I have multiple sites hosted with WPX Hosting, and the experience has been great.
In the past year there was only one serious issue with downtime, and it didn’t last for too long.
How they handled it was amazing. I got a few months free, migration to a newer server and their founder was super transparent about what was happening.
And my sites were up and running pretty quick fortunately.
That’s the only serious issue I’ve had with them. With previous hosts just getting an answer from support was a challenge.
But it gets better because they keep adding new features without adding to the cost. For example, they offer free malware cleanups and a free in-house built CDN.
The bottom line:
They really seem to care about their customers, unlike a lot of the big web hosts out there. And their page load times are impressive, and they have the support to match.