CloudWays Review

CloudWays Review

Are you in search of a managed WordPress hosting solution that is very reliable, secure and fast? I must say you have stopped by the right place. 

Cloudways hosting offers powerful and affordable hosting for all WordPress sites. And that’s not all; they are also very fast and easy to set up. 

In this review, you will learn if Cloudways is that host for your business. Many times, if you are just starting your business and don’t have much knowledge about WordPress hosting providers, then at times, you could end up with the wrong host. 

In this review, it would not be possible for me to explain at length and in detail about each and every fast, reliable and affordable WordPress hosting provider in the market.

However, I could highlight the best one, and you already know the name, Cloudways! 

Our rating: 4.6 out of 5 

Now the big question is, is Cloudways hosting good? Yes, it is, hence the 4.6 rating. Cloudways is an affordable and very reliable hosting provider available in the market.

I say this only because they offer performance-focused and secure managed WordPress hosting that is very affordable and user-friendly, offering total satisfaction. 

Cloudways

Let’s take a quick look to add a couple of things that we really liked about Cloudways; 

Pros 

  • Cloudways hosting offer a trial period of three days at no additional charge. 
  • They support Redis, HTTP/2, PHP7, Memcached/Varnish Caching, Apache/Nginx servers, SSD hosting. 
  • Their infrastructure includes GCE Google computing engine, AWS- Amazon Web Services, Linode, Vultr, DigitalOcean. 
  • They also provide single click WP installs as well as staging sites. 
  • They will also receive GIT and WP-CLI integration that is preinstalled.
  • Various features are offered free that includes dedicated IP, CDN, automated backups, migration service.
  • They do not compel you to enter into any sort of locked contracts. You can pay for what you use accordingly.
  • Their customer support team is extremely friendly and responsive. They are also available 24/7. 

In this review, we will take a quick look at some of the most essential features that Cloudways provides; we have conducted an internal speed test, we will speak about that in detail soon, we will also discuss certain strengths and weaknesses, thus helping you to decide if Cloudways is the host for you. 

It would take ten minutes of your valuable time, but I can assure you it would be worthwhile because, by the end of this review, you would be able to decide if they are meant for you. 

Moving on, if you are looking at simplifying your hosting experience, then I must point out that Cloudways hosting focuses on giving their clients that have businesses of various sizes, teams or even individuals, the complete power to offer their website visitors an experience that is as seamless as possible. 

I must also mention, this company provides PaaS that is a platform that offers services that are cloud-based hosting.

This sets them apart from the many hosting providers that provide multiple hosting solutions. 

Their hosting plans offer great features, reliable support and affordable prices. 

The core of their hosting is performance-based. Their technical stack is designed to offer maximum for every dollar that you spend.

The combination of Apache, Memcached, Varnish, and Nginx offers a fast user experience, and the code compatibility is not compromised. 

This implies that the infrastructure they have is optimized especially for speed, security and performance. All these qualities are noticeable in good hosting that is cloud-based. 

There are multiple reviews and opinions out there in the market that claim that the best cloud-based host is Cloudways. 

This is because they are extremely popular among users that are real. WP hosting has a Facebook group that has over 9000 active members that are all dedicated to WP hosting. 

Every year these members are requested to vote for the best WP host that is their favourite as well.

And the results for these votes indicate very clearly that they are pretty popular as they have backed the second position on the voting poll. 

So what can Cloudways hosting offer you? Let’s look closer. 

Cloudways advantages 

Web hosting is taken very seriously by Cloudways, and they always strive to offer their users the best in terms of support, security and speed. 

Their hosting plans are also packed with plenty of useful and essential features that can be used by all types of sites, business owners and skill levels. 

Cloud Hosting Service 

As mentioned earlier, Cloudways only provides hosting that is cloud-based for all website owners.

Let us take a look at how is this hosting different from traditional hosting that is commonly offered in the market. 

  • Multiple copies – The content of your site is safe on many servers. This is particularly helpful in the event that the central server faces downtime; the multiple copies that were made and stored on the other servers will jump in and minimize downtime.
  • Easy migration of the website – You can with much ease migrate your website to various servers that are based at various data centres if required. 
  • Quick loading times – You will experience quick loading times, and this is because of the various server set up and also the premium CDN solution. 
  • Secure environment – You can now enjoy a secure environment as every server works independently as well as together. 
  • Dedicated resources – You can now benefit from the resources that are dedicated for your site, in this way, your website will not be affected by another website.
  • Easy scalability of the site – Your site can now be easily scaled on account of increased resources, that you can add as and when your website faces a spike or rise in traffic, or maybe the sales have increased. In such a case scalability is very easy as it can be done with a single click. 
  • Pay as you go – This feature is particularly beneficial as you would not have to commit to things that you might never use. In this way, you select the services that suit your business requirement and pay for just that. 

This type of hosting solution is very different in comparison to the regular hosting packages that are available in the market, but you can be rest assured that they are excellent, and they also allow you to use it with all popular CMS – content management systems like; Drupal, Magento, Joomla and WordPress with just a couple of clicks. 

Performance that is of high speed 

The servers that Cloudways have are blazing fast, which allows the content of your site to be delivered to your users quickly. The performance is not affected even if your site is experiencing high traffic. 

It doesn’t stop here; Cloudways also provides plenty of features that are speed-related: 

Dedicated Resources 

All the servers have been allotted a certain amount of resources on account of the environment that is dedicated, they are in.

This means that your website will never be at risk, and as other websites increase their resource requirements, the performance of your website will never be sacrificed. 

Caching WP Plugin 

They offer their customers a caching plugin known as Breeze, which is exclusive to all their users and is also offered with no additional charges.

All the start-up packages are available with advanced caches that are built-in like Redis, NGINX, varnish and Memcached. You will also receive a cache of Full Page. 

Redis Assistance 

When you enable Redis, it helps the website database to perform better. It also has a mix of Varnish, NGINX and Apache; hence your site’s performance would never be a concern. 

PHP Servers 

All their servers are PHP enabled and is the fastest version available. 

CDN Service 

You will receive a CDN service that is premium, so the servers that span the globe will provide your website content to visitors according to their location. 

Servers that Auto-Heal 

If ever your server faces downtime, Cloudways will step in immediately, activating self-healing that is automatic in order to reduce downtime. 

It is very clear that performance and speed will never be a concern if you are hosting with Cloudways. 

I can say that websites that load very slowly will not do well. There was a recent study conducted by Google that mentioned even a single second delay on a mobile page loading time would impact the conversion rates by almost 20%. 

We have also created our testing site and posted it on Cloudways in order to monitor server response and uptime: 

Los AngelesMiamiMontrealRoubaixFrankfurtSingaporeTokyoSydney
355 ms296 ms245 ms321 ms440 ms450 ms312 ms370 ms

Is Cloudways WP hosting fast enough? Let’s find out.

We have tested the performance of Cloudways speed by hosting a website on SiteGround, and an exact copy of that website was hosted on Cloudways too.

  • First, we tested the load time of the site at a current host that is SiteGround. 
  • Next, we tested the load time of the similar cloned website at Cloudways. 

*  We used a migration plugin and exported the site, and hosted it on Cloudways. 

* The plan that we used on Cloudways was the DO 1 GB package. We paid a monthly charge of $10 for this plan.

In this way, we got a better understanding of the loading speed of the website that was hosted on Cloudways. 

The home page loaded in 1.24 seconds; this is amazing in comparison to various other web hosts. SiteGround is not considered a slow host at all. 

The big question remains: Will Cloudways be faster than SiteGround? 

Our test results showed a similar homepage that was posted on Cloudways loaded in 430 ms. This concluded the test that Cloudways was any day faster than SiteGround as the page loaded within a second. 

Let’s take a look at the blog page at the current review pages. On SiteGround, this page loaded in 1 second, and as I said, SiteGround offers amazing speed but, does Cloudways do the same? 

Well, with Cloudways, this page loaded in 795 ms. Once again, they are well within one second, and were faster.

So what do we understand by it all? 

There’s one thing that is definite, and that is, if a website is hosted on Cloudways, it will load way faster. 

Managed Security 

We always advise you to take proactive steps to improve your website security. Your sensitive security will be safe with Cloudways on account of multiple security features that are built-in; they include;

  • Your servers will be protected with OS- level firewalls. 
  • They contact regular firmware upgrades and routing patches. 
  • They also offered their users a single-click SSL certificate that can be installed for free.
  • The user of Cloudways account will have 2- factor authentication. 
  • They also offer IP addresses whitelisting. 

Suppose, if something happens to the website, Cloudways provides automatic backups that are absolutely free as an extra bonus.

This means that all your server data, as well as images, will be regularly backed up.

The restore option is single-click and is a very beneficial feature as it is useful in minimizing downtime.

If your website does experience downtime at all, I’m not talking about scheduled maintenance or any sort of emergency maintenance, you can expect compensation from Cloudways. 

The credits will be applicable for next month’s charges.

Great Customer Support 

While choosing a host, always ensure that they have a good support team. All types of businesses today completely depend on the hosting to work smoothly. However, there are times that things don’t go the way they should.

In such times you would require assistance, and you must be able to connect with the host and the team that are responsible for the maintenance of the website’s data.

You will need to connect with the support team and speak with an executive either through ticketing, live chats or even phone support.

Cloudways offers their customers access to connect with your customer support team through the ticket system and live chat. 

The ticket system will also help you track the progress of the query raised, and you can also manage it. Some users are more comfortable speaking with someone, and if you are that sort of user, you can always ask for a callback.

The customer support team will connect with you on the number that you provide as soon as possible.

Cloudways also has a very active community. This community consists of their users. They are more than happy to share their experiences, vast knowledge and skills.

So if you are facing any concerns with your website, you can query it on the group, and at times people have already faced a similar sort of situation and may have some advice that could be extremely beneficial.

Cloudways offers their customers a knowledge base that is very extensive. This knowledge base has multiple articles that would help you with getting started, or with any application management and server management as well. They also have articles that speak about email services, billing, add-ons and much more.

Collaboration 

Cloudways provide their customers with various tools and features that are designed specifically to assist the user and their team to collaborate and thrive.

This is very helpful for agencies and developers that managed and handle multiple sites all at once across various servers.

For example, SPTP AND SSH secure access, the staging area is unlimited, GIT deployment that is automatic and allows you to launch various projects and ensure that they are perfect before you can make them live.

Not only that, but you can also assign members of your team-specific tasks, clone servers and applications, transfer servers, utilize the plugin for WP migrator that will help you to move all your WP sites from your current host onto Cloudways server. 

Website Monitoring 

Your website will now be monitored 24/7, and you can be at ease knowing that everything is perfectly fine all the time.

You can also view more than 16 metrics from the Cloudways console. 

You will also receive updates in real-time through text or email that is sent from CloudwaysBot. CloudwaysBot offers smart assistance by monitoring the website’s performance all the time. 

You can also integrate the platform with your slack, email, HipChat and various third-party apps.

Cloudways users can enjoy the latest integration – New Relic; this helps you to troubleshoot any issues that bottleneck the progress, and it fixes these issues immediately.

Cloudways Disadvantages 

I have no doubt that Cloudways is reliable and offers unique and high performing solutions. But, having said that, they are definitely missing a couple of vital features that include;

Registration of Domain Name 

This service is not provided by Cloudways to their users, neither free nor charged. So it would help if you made sure that before you can signup and utilize their services, you will need to get a domain name via a third party.

In addition, you will have to redirect that domain name to the hosting provider, after you set up it could get difficult, especially for users that are new to the world of hosting.

Due to this, various users decide to move on to another host. Because leaving to get your domain name registered and then returning to sign up with the host, redirecting your URL to the post can get very complicated, tedious, and it’s just too much of a hassle.

It would be worth it if you are pretty adamant about hosting with Cloudways; if not, in my opinion, it is a complete waste of time. 

If you look around in the market, there are plenty of very competitive web hosts that provide domain names absolutely free, and they would also assist you with redirecting the domain to the host.

Plesk or cPanel 

Cloudways does not support Plesk or cPanel dashboards because they are a service platform.

They do offer a console that is specifically dedicated to managing all applications that are hosted on the server. However, if you are used to cPanel or Plesk, you may find it different as well as complex.

I would also like to point out that the Plesk and cPanel are very comprehensive and allow you to manage things that are related to hosting, all from a single, very convenient dashboard.

It is true that navigating and learning the console that Cloudways offers doesn’t take much time; however, it can get very daunting for users who were switching from a hosting platform that supported either Plesk or cPanel.

Email Hosting 

Cloudways does not offer email account integration with any of their plans, unlike most popular hosting providers. But I would also like to mention that some WP web hosts don’t offer email hosting, for example, BionicWP.

Cloudways encourages their users to invest in every email account, making it very costly, especially if you own a large size business or even a team that is sizable.

In such a case, you would require a lot of email accounts in order to maintain the smooth running of things.

Cloudways provides email services separately as an add-on that is payable. For mailbox email accounts, you can utilize the add-on called Rackspace, and it will be made available for you to add a monthly charge of $1 per email. For your transactional and outgoing emails, you can utilise the custom add on SMTP.

Cloudways Pricing and Plans 

Cloudways offers various managed hosting packages that suit everyone’s requirements irrespective of the size of the website, budget, or complexity.

To begin with, they offer five infrastructure providers that you can choose from and the prices of the plan will depend on the infrastructure you choose to go with. The plans are as follows; 

DigitalOcean 

With this plan, you will receive the following features;

  • You will be offered RAM of 1 GB to 8 GB. 
  • You will also be offered processors of 1-4 Core. 
  • You will receive storage of 25 GB – 160 GP. 
  • You will be provided with a bandwidth of 1TB – 5 TB.

This package is available at a monthly charge that ranges from $10 to $80. 

Linode 

With this plan, you will receive the following features;

  • You will be offered RAM of 1 GB to 8 GB. 
  • You will also be offered processors of 1-4 Core. 
  • You will receive storage of 20 GB – 96 GB. 
  • You will be provided with a bandwidth of 1TB – 4 TB.

This package is available at a monthly charge that ranges from $12 to $90. 

Vultr 

With this plan, you will receive the following features;

  • You will be offered RAM of 1 GB to 8 GB. 
  • You will also be offered processors of 1-4 Core. 
  • You will receive storage of 25 GB – 100 GB. 
  • You will be provided with a bandwidth of 1TB – 4 TB.

This package is available at a monthly charge that ranges from $11 to $84. 

Amazon Web Service 

With this plan, you will receive the following features;

  • You will be offered RAM of 3.75 GB to 15 GB. 
  • You will also be offered vCPU of 1-4. 
  • You will receive storage of 4 GB (across the entire board). 
  • You will be provided with a bandwidth of 2 GB (across the entire board).

This package is available at a monthly charge that ranges from $85.17 to $273.73. 

Google Computing Engine 

With this plan, you will receive the following features;

  • You will be offered RAM of 3.75 GB to 16 GB. 
  • You will also be offered vCPU of 1-4.  
  • You will receive storage of 20 GB (across the entire board). 
  • You will be provided with a bandwidth of 2 GB (across the entire board).

This package is available at a monthly charge that ranges from $73.62 to $226.05. 

These are featured plans; however, they also provide additional packages and customized ones too.

All these packages offer you the convenience to pay for what you use. In this way, you do not have any hassle. These plans also are very convenient in terms of scaling down or scaling up depending on your requirement, so the more bandwidth is used, you would need to pay for it accordingly.

The above hosting packages also offer 24/7 support along with application installation that is unlimited, SSL certificates at no additional charges and site migrations are also free.

All these plans also offer a 3-day free trial period, so you can go ahead and check out the various features they offer and if they are suitable for your business requirements.

Final Thoughts 

I guess it’s time for the big question that all of you are thinking, do we recommend Cloudways? 

My answer is very simple, yes, we do.

The bottom line is, Cloudways is a very affordable and reliable cloud hosting provider. They cater to sites of all sizes, types as well as various levels of skills too.

Cloudways has a platform that is cloud-based, allowing you to experience lightning-fast speeds, high level security and excellent website performance.

It is designed to offer website visitors only the best experience, and it also keeps all the website data secure and safe from any and all malicious activities.

All said and done, Cloudways does have certain differences that do make things a bit complex, especially for newcomers and first-time website owners.

They do not offer the traditional Plesk or cPanel, they also do not provide domain name registration, and the lack of email hosting is disappointing.

This definitely adds an additional overall price and makes it pretty expensive, especially if you compare them to most of the web hosts that are active in the market.

If you are planning on subscribing to their packages, it is essential that you weigh the advantages and disadvantages before you can sign up.

I also recommend that you should consider going in for their free trial of three days just to be sure that the features you receive are beneficial to your business in terms of scaling, managing and running the hosting account. You can also check our article on Kinsta review.

We also suggest that you take the time to go through the entire documentation that they give you; familiarizing yourself with the platform that is cloud-based is essential, helping you to not miss out on any features that come with Cloudways. 

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