t was time to dump the cumbersome and archaic cPanel in a Shared Hosting environment and aim for the clouds! I began a long journey of discovery.
My first stop was Amazon Web Services (AWS), which I had been introduced to both recently and several years ago. I had never given it a thought to learn more about the service, let alone use it. But I started hearing more and more mention of its popularity, so I decided that this giant’s Cloud services were worth a peek. I had certainly relied on this grand behemoth for my personal shopping needs over the years. Maybe I could use her for business too!
AWS is not for the faint of heart
It didn’t take long to realize that going from being an expert user of cPanel to Cloud Computing with AWS would be more than just a challenge. I am technically adept and quick to learn new tools and technologies. But I came across one too many stories of technical gurus pulling their hair out during an attempt to utilize AWS.
I searched for WordPress on AWS with hope of finding some kind of ‘shortcut’, and found WordPress Certified by Bitnami, an image that somewhat automates the installation of WordPress on AWS. Great! This looked promising. The price was listed as approximately $0.067/hr which further explains the reasoning behind all the buzz.
But then it happened. I hit that dreaded tab labelled ‘Reviews’. I don’t have a lot of faith in user reviews. Just like fake news, fake reviews are rampant. But if I’m going to make a purchase, and I was, after a quick read about the features, I instinctively head for the user reviews.
Page one had three beautifully detailed accounts of what to expect after installing WordPress Certified by Bitnami. You can read the full reviews on the AWS site, but here’s a glimpse of what to expect:
“Annoying” was strike three as far as I was concerned and I was out. Hours of research turned into days, and somehow along the way I came across a comment on one of the comparison sites, “I just moved all of my websites to Cloudways.” Cloudways? I’d never heard of them.
Repeating the steps I had taken to research Amazon Web Services, I started by Googling “Cloudways Reviews”. The more I read, the more excited I became:
When looking for managed WordPress hosting, you’ll no doubt come across many companies that offer similar services. While the vast majority of web hosts offer managed WordPress hosting on a shared, VPS, or dedicated server environment, one company has truly stepped out of the norm and provided a unique managed hosting solution. That company is Cloudways.
Read more: digital.com
Cloudways, based in Malta, has two distinct faces. It’s an integration point for many cloud services, all managed from a single console. It’s also a site which lets PHP developers deploy their own containerized applications. It offers a rich array of features for PHP app development. The company was founded in 2011. It completely revamped its site in 2016, calling it “Cloudways 2.0.”
The reviews, so far, were great. Cloudways has a free trial so I opted in. First I had to pick a cloud hosting provider. Cloudways offers six of them:
Based on pricing, I was able to quickly eliminate AWS, Google, and Kyup. I read several posts comparing DigitalOcean, Linode, and Vultr and decided to compare for myself. I spun up three servers and migrated one of my WordPress sites to each. I pasted each URL into GTMetrix 5 times and recorded the results:
Vultr came out ahead for ‘Fully Loaded time’ 4 out of 5 times so I shutdown the other two servers and went live with my Vultr managed server. The next step is to choose a managed application to be installed to the server. Cloudways supports a variety of CMS, E-commerce and other PHP web applications. These are all available as 1-click installations:
I chose the latest version of WordPress which includes Cloudways’ own caching plugin. The server was up within minutes and I began migrating my first WordPress site. This task is extremely simple, again due to Cloudways development of their own migration plugin. Simply download it and provide the Cloudways SFTP details to the Plugin, then sit back and relax. The time it takes will depend on the size of your site. You receive an email when it’s complete.
I migrated 13 WordPress sites from GoDaddy to Cloudways in no time at all. And from the start, beginning with my trial period, the support was probably the best that I have ever experienced…ever! Some might object to the no-phone, online chat only support model, and all I can say is DON’T!
As I was getting used to this new environment, I inevitably had LOTS of questions along the way. I can honestly say that every single time I opened up a chat for support, someone would respond within seconds! And if the issue requires another level of support, Cloudways’ SLAs are very reasonable:
Cloudways offers two support options, Live Chat and Ticketing System. Chat Service is intended to provide an interactive method to request and receive basic information and troubleshooting assistance on a first-come, first-served basis.
Chats are expected to last between 5 and 15 minutes. For more complex issues requiring troubleshooting, Cloudways’ Live Chat agents create a ticket with information obtained during the chat. Senior engineers respond as follows:
Cloudways goal is respond to High Priority tickets presented by Customer or created on Customer behalf by our agents within thirty minutes (Response Time). For Normal Priority tickets our Response Time is within six hours. Our Response Time goal is a time to acknowledge and “work started” only, not a time to resolve.
All of our new WordPress sites are built and hosted on Cloudways, and with Cloudways’ migration plugin, we can easily migrate existing WordPress sites from any hosting company to Cloudways.
Make the switch today! WordPress, Cloudways, Free SSL, and fantastic support! Just click the button below to contact us right now!