If you’re looking for WP Engine alternatives, this is the post for you. After a few weeks of research, I think I’ve found the best option for professional bloggers – like me!
I should start by saying, I’ve been using WP Engine’s managed hosting since 2015. And it’s great. My WordPress site has been consistently fast and live. But recently it’s been getting more and more expensive.
A couple of months ago they doubled their overage fees from $1 per 1,000 visits to $2. For me, this was the final straw!
My WP Engine Monthly Invoices
When I moved my site from Bluehost to WP Engine in 2015, I signed up for their $29 per month ‘Personal’ plan – which included 25,000 visits per month.
Back then, my WordPress blog (ExpertTableTennis.com) was getting about 50,000 visits per month – so my total monthly bill would come in at roughly $54 ($29 plan + $25 overages).
Over the years, my traffic increased. By 2018, an average month would see roughly 90,000 visits – giving me a monthly bill of $94 ($29 plan + $65 overages). It was quite a lot of money. But WP Engine
During that time I was occasionally contacted by a WP Engine sales rep trying to get me to upgrade to their $99 per month ‘Professional’ plan. But seeing that my monthly bill never exceeded $99, it seemed like an unnecessary upgrade.
Then WP Engine Hiked Their Prices!
The first thing that happened was they changed their pricing structure. The $29 per month ‘Personal’ plan was gone and in its place was the $35 per month ‘Startup’ plan. That didn’t bother me hugely.
Then they doubled overage fees.
Some customers appear to have received an email about this. I didn’t. I’ve searched through my entire inbox. Nothing.
The first I knew about it was when I opened up my monthly invoice attachment in an email to see a bill of $165! My 65,000 additional visits were now costing me $130!
I jumped onto WP Engine live chat to find out what was going on and only then did I discover the price hike.
I could have moved onto their $115 per month ‘Growth’ plan (which includes up to 100,000 visits per month) but instead, I thought this is probably the motivation I need to go out there and find a cheaper alternative to WP Engine.
WP Engine Alternatives
The name that kept popping up at first was Kinsta. I’d never heard of them but they looked like they were almost as expensive as WP Engine.
- Their $30 per month ‘Starter’ plan gives you 20,000 visits (and then you’re charged $1 per 1,000 visits for overages)
- Their $100 per month ‘Business 1’ plan gives you 100,000 visits
I’d had enough of paying anything like $100 per month for my hosting!
I was convinced that there must be a cheaper option out there with similar performance to WP Engine.
Introducing… WPX Hosting!
What I did start to hear, though, was positive review after positive review. At first, I was worried that it might be a bit of a scam. Fake reviews. That’s how good all the reviews were!
What I liked about WPX Hosting was that they didn’t charge for overages. That alone could save me a ton of cash!
Their ‘Business’ plan is just $24.99 per month –
WP Engine vs WPX Hosting
The WPX Hosting $24.99 per month ‘Business’ plan allows you to host up to 5 websites. WP Engine’s ‘Startup’ plan only includes 1 site. So that’s pretty cool. I’ve now added this WordPress blog to my WPX Hosting. Previously, it was on my shared Bluehost account.
Both WP Engine and WPX Hosting allow you to select a USA or UK hosting location. As I’m based in the UK, this is important to me.
Here’s a few more comparisons between the various plans…
|Local storage||10 GB||20 GB||10 GB|
|Bandwidth (per month)||50 GB||200 GB||100 GB|
|Visits (per month)||25,000||100,000||No limit|
|24/7 Live chat||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Price (per month)||$35.00||$115.00||$24.99|
WPX Hosting looks perfect. So, what’s the catch?
I started looking for customer reviews to see if I could find anyone slagging off WPX. I couldn’t find anything. They do incredibly well on Trustpilot.
A quick chat with one of the customer service agents on WPX Hosting assured me that they had a full money-back guarantee for the first 30 days. But they don’t offer pro-rata refunds.
That was all the convincing I needed to jump in.
I Decided to Switch to WPX Hosting!
I went for the monthly payment option rather than the discounted yearly price just in case it was rubbish and I wanted to move elsewhere. I didn’t want to feel tied in or have to forfeit the rest of the annual cost.
And then it was over to the WPX Hosting team. I was on live chat for about 15 minutes talking the whole process through, I filled in a quick form with my WordPress site’s current details, and then I let them get on with it.
WPX Hosting offer to do the whole migration/moving process for you – which is great when you’re worried about messing something up!
Less than 24 hours later, I received an email letting me know that the process is now complete and my site is now being hosted by WPX Hosting. It couldn’t have been easier.
They even set up a new SSL certificate for me, hooked my site up to their CDN, and install a WordPress plugin with their recommended setting to optimise site speed.
Let’s have a quick look at how the move affected my site speed…
The Speed Test
Before transferring over to WPX Hosting I did a couple of speed tests to check how my site was performing on WP Engine. Now, let’s compare the before and after scores…
Back in March, on WP Engine, it produced the following results…
Today, on WPX Hosting, the site is faster, the YSlow score is slightly higher, and the PageSpeed score is slightly lower…
PageSpeed Insights (by Google)
Back in March, on WP Engine, I received the following scores…
- Desktop = 84
- Mobile = 53
Today, on WPX Hosting, I get…
- Desktop = 81
- Mobile = 51
So, very little difference there!
There are clearly a few things I need to do to improve those scores, but I didn’t want to do anything like that until after I’d written this comparison article.
WP Engine vs WPX Hosting
Now, I’m no expert when it comes to all this stuff, but one month into switching from WP Engine to WPX Hosting and my site appears to be performing just as well as before.
The loading speeds are the same. My overall traffic is the same. My SEO rankings are the same. I’ve had no downtime.
The live chat on WP Engine is excellent but occasionally I would have to wait a few minutes to get through to someone. On WPX Hosting I’ve gone straight through to a CS rep every single time. And they’ve been superb.
From looking at my WPX Hosting stats, I can see that I’m currently averaging about 400MB of bandwidth per day. That’s only 12GB per month, so I’m well under the 100GB limit.
Overall, I’m a very happy customer!
But best of all, I’ve avoided being forced onto WP Engine’s $115 per month ‘Growth’ plan and instead I’m paying just $24.99 per month to WPX Hosting.
That’s a saving of $90.01 per month, or $1,080.12 per year!
Add VAT into the equation… and I’m saving a massive $1,296.12 per year!!!
And WPX Hosting accepts PayPal (WP Engine doesn’t) – which is great for me as I have a pretty hefty USD balance I’m trying to clear.
I Can’t Recommend WPX Hosting Highly Enough!
If you’re a slightly disgruntled WP Engine customer, on the hunt for WP Engine alternatives, give WPX Hosting a try.
You’ll probably be surprised at how much money you can save.
And like I said, I know nothing about the hosting side of running a website but WPX handled the whole migration process for me and it was all done within 24 hours.
If you’re still running your WordPress site on shared hosting (something like Bluehost), have a look at WPX Hosting. You’re going to get a much better service, a faster site, more traffic, and all for just $24.99 a month!