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Company Overview

Cloudways Hosting is a cloud hosting provider that is unique in its approach to the management layer of web hosting. Founded in 2009 out of Malta, Cloudways takes some of the most powerful and capable cloud hosting providers, including DigitalOcean, AWS, Google Cloud, Vultr and Linode and provides a hosting layer over these top Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS providers) for maximum performance, security and high-availability. These traditional cloud service providers, while efficient hosting options that allow for easy scalability, often lack in usability for the common user, and that’s where Cloudways comes in.

Cloudways is pay as you go, which is a departure from the longer yearly terms required for savings on traditional hosting. You can even spin up a website on a free trial in a lot of cases, depending on the cloud provider you choose to build your plan off of. They offer optimized solutions for a number of extensions of the WordPress ecosystem, as well as other Content Management Systems. These include, but are not limited to, WordPress and WooCommerce, Magento, PHP, Laravel, Drupal, Joomla and Prestashop.

There are a couple of things that Cloudways does not offer in its stable of products and services, which limits it for some customers. You cannot purchase domains on Cloudways, meaning you will need to purchase your domain from somewhere else, and point it to your hosting with Cloudways. They also do not offer email hosting as a part of their web hosting packages, something that has typically come standard with most cPanel hosting providers.

Products and Services

Like we mentioned above, Cloudways is unique in the way they do hosting, which provides some advantages as well as some disadvantages, depending on your website or business’s use case. As a completely cloud-based provider, your site is stored on multiple servers as opposed to one server, which improves uptime and allows for quick migration in the case of an emergency. It also allows you to scale as you go, and traditionally provides improved speed over single Solid State Drive (SSD) servers. The downsides are minimal for Cloudways, as they remove the difficulty of managing a cloud provider by providing a management layer. Just keep an eye on your usage, as costs can climb quickly depending on the success of your website.

The main hosting component we want to focus on today is Managed WordPress Hosting, which is Cloudways flagship product. Trusted by over 100,000 websites of small businesses, agencies and individuals, Cloudways deploys a WordPress website over a preferred cloud provider layer from Digital Ocean, AWS, Google Cloud, Vultr or Linode. Each of these plans have their individual pricing options, which we will review below. Whether you are an individual spinning up a single site, a business looking to sell products online, an agency looking to host a number of sites controllable from one centralized location, or looking to get your small or medium size business online for the first time, Cloudways has an optimized Managed WordPress Hosting plan to match.

From a features standpoint, Cloudways offers SSD hosting with a built-in cache that includes Varnish and an optimized stack for faster speeds and better performance. They offer SSL certificates and a dedicated firewall with regular upgrades and patches to keep your website secure. Finally, they offer block storage and vertical scaling to let your website grow as fast as it needs to, without a prepaid contract that keeps you stuck for years.

Cloudways also offers 24/7 Support via live chat and has an active community of customers sharing their knowledge with other Cloudways users and the WordPress community as a whole. They have a pretty extensive knowledge base of guides, which is helpful as they have some proprietary pieces such as the control panel.

Pricing

First you will want to pick your cloud hosting provider for your WordPress site. You can choose between Digital Ocean, Linode, Vultr, AWS and Google Cloud. From there you will want to choose the plan that first the pricing and the specs that make sense for your business. We are including screenshots of these pricing tiers below.  You can choose either monthly or hourly options.

Digital Ocean

Linode

Vultr

AWS

Google Cloud

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Great balance between affordability and features
  • Quickly and easily scalable
  • Lets you choose from 5 premium cloud hosting providers
  • Simple control panel
  • Optimized for WordPress, including one-click staging and a free caching plugin

Cons

  • Email hosting not included
  • Pricey option for higher tier plans, may want to consider hiring an AWS architect once you reach an enterprise tier
  • Domains need to be registered elsewhere
Ryan Balikian
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