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As a hosting provider, you’re probably looking to do as much as you can to please the growing number of website owners who make use of WordPress to run their sites. The platform you use to run your hosting solution can make a big difference to how much your client will get out of WordPress. Platforms can make all the difference when it comes to setup, configuration, and customization. In this article, we review three of the main platforms for WordPress managed hosting: Serverpilot, Cloudways and Plesk.
ServerPilot vs Cloudways vs Plesk – introducing the players
For a fast way to run PHP sites and WordPress, Serverpilot is worth thinking about. When considering Serverpilot vs Cloudways it is the ease of use of Serverpilot that stands out. It is a platform which has a modern format, including its control panel. It is a single interface where developers can manage every server and app across the entire cloud network from one place. Serverpilot is a platform, it is not a provider of servers. What Serverpilot does is make it easy to host PHP sites, whether these sites are hosted on cloud servers or through virtual server provision.
Operating a cloud hosting service involves a lot of complexities, and in the often-cited battle Cloudways vs Serverpilot, it is the way Cloudways can simplify the hosting environment that makes it stand out. The central point of Cloudways is the Web App Management Platform which is streamlined in a way making it easy to launch cloud servers that can be used for the deployment of cloud apps.
Cloudways can interface with Vultr, DigitalOcean, Google, Amazon, and Kyup. Its interface supports all the usual technologies including Free SSL, Git, SSH and much more. It’s a comprehensive environment that allows users to deploy any of the many great web apps, not just WordPress. Cloudways also supports Magento, Drupal, and Stack.
Though the discussion is often about Cloudways vs Serverpilot or even in terms of Serverpilot vs Cloudways, Plesk is, in fact, the platform that offers some of the best benefits and features. The number of users running Plesk proves this: it is active in 140 countries and by all estimates, 50% of the top 100 hosting service provides globally actually use Plesk for their WordPress hosting solutions.
Plesk estimates that it is in use by over 300,000 servers which automate over ten million websites. It is a platform that has simplified the work of small businesses and system administrators alike since the 2000’s, mainly by providing access to a very simplified and very secure method for managing website infrastructure. Plesk has a WordPress-specific solution called WordPress Toolkit which is a terrific way of managing WordPress instances. Toolkit also helps with backups, cloning and the synchronization of websites.
Comparing the benefits of each platform
Most technology platforms have a range of pro’s and con’s, and so with the range of WordPress hosting platforms on the market. Here, we analyse the pros and cons of the three platforms previously described to give you more insight into which platform is the best for you.
One advantage of Serverpilot is that it runs on top of an existing VPS that you are paying for with a third-party cloud hosting provider, and that it only charges you one price – regardless of the size of the server you are running. You can run multiple databases on Serverpilot, and even use the free account type if you prefer to do so – something worth thinking about when considering Serverpilot vs Cloudways.
Not every platform is perfect, and things to watch out for with Serverpilot include the fact that most users will need some basic understanding of Linux to operate it. Its Varnish component is not available by default but it is user-configurable. There is no option for one-click app development and there is no database management tool in Serverpilot.
Considering Cloudways vs Serverpilot it is worth keeping in mind that Cloudways is usable even by newbie webmasters who have no Linux experience. It also includes a one-click app deployment mechanism which Serverpilot does not. Both Varnish and Memcached is simply pre-installed and it has a managed app and database backup and restore function.
Yet there is no root access with Cloudways and no way to make server modifications. Its database management is not up to date and rarely works well, while you are also restricted to a single PHP version. Lack of DNS management and the inability to automatically downgrade a server are also issues.
There’s no question that Plesk is a very popular platform, used around the world which would only be the case if the platform is doing a great job of hosting WordPress sites. Each individual VPS can have a custom configuration on Plesk, while there is an ecosystem of over one hundred Plesk plug-ins which can fill further needs. Plesk is also compatible with both Memcached and Varnish. The WordPress Toolkit that comes with Plesk is the perfect solution for all WordPress tasks ranging from installation through to updates and the cloning and backup up of a site.
As with the other platforms, Plesk has some drawbacks, including the fact that doing a basic configuration of a server can be a bit time-consuming. Yet it is an easy process that is quite intuitive. Some custom configurations with Plesk can also require quite an advanced level of technical skills.
Choosing your WordPress hosting platform
Clearly, every platform has advantages and disadvantages. Each of the three platforms described is scalable and top in its industry, and all include ways to customise including optional modules. However, for the quick and easy way forward it is a matter of Cloudways vs Serverpilot. On the other hand, for more serious infrastructure with a high level of scalability Plesk Onyx would be the preferred choice. Please do not forget that to use Plesk Onyx hosting platform you still need a vps/dedicated hosting.