Well, if you want to get technical, I technically do use managed WordPress hosting. But what I’m trying to really say is why I don’t use most of the common managed WordPress hosting solutions out there. This is a real review of hosting solutions, by a real web designer who has had her fair share of using numerous different companies for hosting.
Because I’m a web designer who has built or worked on over a 100 different websites in my time so far, I’ve had to deal with almost all of the major hosting companies out there. There are 3 types of hosting companies in my mind: Garbage, It’s Okay and Awesome.
I’m a huge fan of Yoast. I read a lot of his articles and follow a lot of his advice. Who wouldn’t take the advice of the best WordPress SEO in the world? Right? Well, he wrote an article once about his favored wordpress hosting companies which include Synthesis and Westhost. Well, because of his advice, I went ahead and tried both hosting companies. West host wasn’t so bad. My client’s website is decently fast on the standard shared plan. The interface was rather simple.
Now synthesis I used for 2 clients. Synthesis hosting is a WordPress Only hosting solution. They only host WordPress websites, you cannot install any other type of site or software on the server you pay for. There is no ability to purchase domains, email or SSL certificates from them. But they do have a lot of nice features for WordPress like security, speed, backups and the use of scribe.
For my first client, it was a rather simple new e-commerce WordPress website and everything was fine and dandy. I didn’t need much help from synthesis hosting. The second client however I had a very bad experience.
First Problem, We moved an already existing WordPress website to web synthesis hosting for the Hefty cost of $200 dollars (because it’s a big job and we wanted it done right). When we were moved over, her site was very fast. Awesome. We were happy. Then came the time she needed an SSL certificate. Guess what, that was the worst experience I EVER had with SSL certificates. What a HUGE waste of time for everyone. If you want SSL installed, they require you to purchase it somewhere else. Which we did. Then they give you some file, that you have to then provide to your SSL provider who in turn needs to give you back a file to then give back to web synthesis. That took literally hours on the phone with our SSL provider at host gator who had no freaking clue what to do with this file. They provided us with something that synthesis rejected. So they both suggested we go directly to geo trust and get the info, and even going to geo trust you have to jump thru a bunch of freaking hoops just to get this stupid file that synthesis needs. Once you get the file, oh boy, it better be correct when you send it to Synthesis because if its not, you gotta do it ALL OVER AGAIN! Eventually the stupid SSL was installed. It took two weeks to get this all done and over with. In the past, I’ve always have been able to install SSL myself or the host company installed it for me. Barely any work on my end with other hosting companies.
Second problem, synthesis allows you to enter an email for response when you open a ticket. Well, in the past with my first client, I didn’t have a problem getting a response emailed back to me. Well, with the second client, any time I entered my email, rather than respond to me and the email I provided to them, they responded to the client. The client did not want anything to do with the support, it was MY JOB. So the client had to forward me all the information. I had to tell her how to respond and she would then every single time have to attache me and tell them that I needed to be a part of the conversation. Bunch of bullshit. Seriously. And it’s freaking RUDE. And not to mention it would take 24 to 48 hours to get a response from these people. You can only contact them via support tickets. No phone to call. No chat. Just support tickets and the response time is ridiculous. 24 to 48 HOURS each time you respond! So one ticket can take days to figure out when responding back and forth and back and forth. You cannot wait that long when you have a problem with your site. Especially us web designers. We don’t have that kind of time.
Third problem, her company is rather large and she needed a CRM solution and Help Desk Software solution for this site. Well guess what, because Synthesis is wordpress hosting ONLY, we can’t install that software. No matter if we pay 47/mo, 97/mo 147/m or 300/mo. It doesn’t matter. You can only have wordpress websites. No emails, no SSL’s, no nothing. Sorry, go somewhere else for that. As a web designer, if we can centralize most items, that’s cool and easy for us. For clients it makes things a lot less confusing because the normally don’t understand why all these products could be in different places and why in the first place. Centralizing for your clients is a must in my book. Make things easy for your clients, not hard. Synthesis is not web designer friendly nor client friendly. I will no longer be sending clients to them.
- Network Solutions (horrible customer service, horrible server, navigation is so,so)
- Dream Host (not easy for clients to navigate, no phone support)
- 1 and 1 Hosting (horrible customer service, horrible for clients to navigate, horrible server)
- Web Synthesis (fast server, bad customer service, no phone support, 48 hour response to email support, they don’t sell any other services)
- Ipower (vdeck is super easy for clients to navigate and great customer service, great documentation, affordable)
- GoDaddy (not easy for clients to navigate, great customer service, good documentation, affordable)
- West Host (pretty easy for clients to navigate, good customer service)
- Siteground (awesome knowledgable customer service, fast response, super fast servers, easy for clients to navigate, great documentation, affordable)
Why is Siteground awesome? Support and Server. The support at Siteground has top notch fast support and the staff are knowledgable in your problem areas. They are not your typical phone support calling center. If I need support, I can call, I can chat and I can open a support ticket 24/7. Whatever is convenient for ME. I opened a support ticket this morning regarding a mySQL Database question. I posted the ticket at 11:28am. It was answered and over with at 11:36am. 8 Minutes after creating the ticket. I’ve opened about 3 other tickets since I’ve been with them and each one was answered within 15 minutes. I’ve chatted once with an individual regarding a question and he directed me on how to do things thru chat and waited patiently as I did. I’ve called once and had the same awesome experience. I am a customer for life if this is how awesome my support system is. Support is #1 in my book for hosting.
My website is lighting fast. On a shared server. Yup. No need to get cloud hosting just yet. Maybe one day if I install a lot more sites, but for now, I’m GREAT! I’m HAPPY! I’m ECSTATIC! (and once I do need to upgrade, it will be an easy task of just upgrading thru my current account). The hosting control panel is easy for clients and web designers to use. They also have cpanel. There is tons of easy to follow documentation so you can direct your clients one how to do simple things like create their own emails and more.
Siteground has affordable managed WordPress hosting options. I’m on one of those affordable plans right now. Guess what, I can also install any other kind of software I want on my managed wordpress hosting server. So invoicing software or cms or just customer service software. I doesn’t matter. I can have it all in one place. They also have the strong dedicated and cloud hosting plans too. One hosting plan they offer that I don’t see very often is student pricing. So if you are student in school learning to become a web designer or similar, you can get a HUGE discount on incredible hosting and when you’re ready, you can upgrade easily.
Don’t just take my word for it, there are many other professionals who agree that siteground hosting is the best solution.
- Hosting Facts – Siteground Hosting Review
- Make A Website Hub – Siteground Hosting Review
- Tech Tage – Siteground Review
Siteground will also transfer your current website, for FREE.
So yes, I’m an affiliate only because I’m a super happy customer. I highly highly recommend Siteground for your managed WordPress hosting solution.Visit Siteground Hosting