Why Reliable Web Hosting Matters & My Preferred Solution

cloud-hosting

Anyone who knows me knows I love a good deal. I enjoy them so much I have a tendency to get carried away when sharing them with the world and all over social media (I‘m working on better channeling my enthusiasm as you’ll soon discover). Even when it may not be a wise use of my time, I pursue deals because I love the search and find it exhilarating. As a small business owner, deals have helped me grow my business and maintain an innovative streak. In fact, I enjoy them so much that I’ve recently launched a site, PressGems, where I aggregate my favorite WordPress plugins, themes, hosting and particularly look forward to sharing deals. 

Still, I’d like to distinguish between a good deal (which provides great value) and one that’s “cheap”. With web hosting (or video hosting or any form of hosting, really), I strongly advise against “cheap“ solutions. While good solutions may offer promotions, they will probably never compete with cheap solutions, but cheap solutions are often not worth the risks at all. 

Your website is something not to gamble with. Reliability, performance and uptime matter substantially, as does the ability to get prompt support should you have any concerns. For most businesses, there’s just too much at stake to take a gamble here and go with a cheap solution.

Recently, I’ve required that my website clients use my preferred hosting solution (whether they maintain it on their own or hire me is their prerogative, but I require it because I want to build their solutions on a powerful, reliable and secure environment I can trust will be stable and worthwhile for us all.) 

Let me tell you why… 

I’ve spent countless hours in numerous hosting environments over the years ranging from ultra low-end solutions provided as lifetime deals to premium hosting solutions such as the one I’m requiring that my web design clients use. I’ve also spent a substantial amount of time in communities specific to the tools I use. I’m very selective about my technology stack and especially the solutions I use with my clients (though I remain selective, I am perhaps a bit more experimental with my own sites as I use my environments to test new solutions and always remain competitive), so these are high quality tools to begin with great reliability.

What I’ve noticed over the years is that a significant amount of the issues users face are not a problem in the hosting environment I use.

That’s not to say my preferred WordPress hosting solution, Flywheel, is perfect. I value honesty, and no host is 100% perfect as there’s just so many parameters to consider for a flawless hosting experience. Still, it’s by far the best I’ve tried in terms of the value it provides and its security, reliability and stellar, knowledgeable support. Flywheel is not “cheap” when you compare it to many lower-cost providers, but its features, environment, support and design provide great value.

Flywheel offers managed WordPress hosting, so if you look forward to managing and tinkering with server configurations and environments, Flywheel isn’t right for you. (I admittedly enjoy this, given my computer science background, but I chose peace of mind and time-saving and I have not once regretted it for my needs). Should you require server-level changes, their team will often help you and respond quite promptly to your requests, however. 

While this may seem like a notable limitation (and it might be depending on your needs), it’s also beneficial in many ways. Here’s why: 

Flywheel offers reliable infrastructure that’s secure (in fact, I’ve had zero issues with malware or intrusions on my own and client sites since using Flywheel nor have I experienced any outages. (That’s not to say these things can’t happen – there are no absolutes when it comes to the web these days, but Flywheel goes above and beyond in creating an environment that’s both stable and optimized for security).

Source: GetFlywheel.com

As a designer, I am delighted with Flywheel’s back-end and interface. They’ve created a dashboard that’s a delight to use and extremely user-friendly. Unlike traditional Cpanel hosting, Flywheel’s dashboard gives me the features I need without additional “noise”. It’s very streamlined and makes accessing my sites, backups, adding SSL,SFTP & more enjoyable and quick. 

Flywheel’s “blueprints” feature is powerful as it allows me to quickly spin up new sites using my preferred stack of tools. For example, I can rapidly spin up new sites using my preferred theme, suite of plugins & more or clone a website. I can also launch quick “demo” sites for new clients and projects and upgrade them to a paid plan after two weeks. 

Collaboration with clients, teams and partners on projects is seamless and enjoyable. It’s simple to share access to websites without having to share passwords across emails, etc. Revoking access to sites is simple, too. 

When compared to other direct competitors, Flywheel shines by not charging overages if you have viral content or occasional spikes in traffic. So, let’s say you’ve written a blog article that gets great exposure! This is something to celebrate, right? 🎉 Until you look at the statement from your hosting provider… On some hosts, this temporary success can be costly! 😲 Flywheel will never charge you overages. If your traffic consistently increases and isn’t the result of a one-off or a few random spikes in traffic, they’ll work with you to find the right plan and solution for the future growth of your company instead of penalizing you for your (at times, short-lived) succes. That’s a win-win.  🍻

Besides the features mentioned above, Flywheel also offers:

  • A custom-built hosting solution tuned specifically for WordPress (and a support team that lives and breathes WP, too!)
  • High performance (the Flywheel environment is optimized for speed and is only getting better with their latest migration to the Google Cloud! ☁️)
  • Nightly back-ups (and quick and painless restore option should you ever need it)
  • Staging sites and powerful integration with their intuitive Local development environment 
  • Free website migration from other WordPress hosting environments 
  • Free SSL certificates for all sites 
  • White-label (a paid add-on for agencies & designers offering maintenance plans)
  • And a wonderful, thoughtful team to support you! Flywheel cares about the customer and it shows.
  • 24/7 support now available!

If you’d like to learn more about Flywheel or explore WordPress hosting solutions candidly, please contact me. I will always give you my honest opinion and try to find the solution tahat works best for your specific goals and situation whether it by Flywheel or another reliable solution. 

If you’re interested in trying Flywheel, please use this link. I hope you enjoy it as much as I have!

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