In this comparison of WP Engine vs Liquid Web, we take a look at two titans when it comes to premium managed WordPress hosting. For years, WP Engine has been the industry standard when it comes to managed WordPress. They focus solely on WordPress and are one of the most respected web hosting companies in the WordPress community. Meanwhile, Liquid Web has recently taken their managed WordPress hosting to whole new level—with exclusive innovative features.
Which one should you choose for your managed WordPress hosting? Here, we take a look at how they really match up head to head.
Video: WP Engine vs Liquid Web
Check out our video for a quick overview of WP Engine vs Liquid Web/Nexcess.
WP Engine vs Liquid Web: Differences
Reasons for Choosing WP Engine over Liquid Web:
- Faster Website Speeds with Google Cloud Platform
- More Responsive Customer Support
- Includes Free StudioPress Themes
- Includes Page Performance Tools
- 60 Day Money Back Guarantee
Reasons for Choosing Liquid Web over WP Engine:
- Includes iThemes Sync
- No Restrictions on Themes and Plugins
- Automatic Plugin Testing and Updates
- No Pageview or Traffic Limits
- Less Expensive to Host Multiple Websites
WP Engine vs Liquid Web Details
Website Speed and Performance
When it comes to website speed, WP Engine and Liquid Web are two of the very best for managed WordPress sites. Through both my own personal experience and our testing results, these two hosts have provided some of the fastest performing websites that we’ve seen.
Overall, Liquid Web had slightly better speed, except in the east, where WP Engine was a little faster. While we’ll give the edge to Liquid Web in this category, the difference between the two is not a game changer in our opinion. See our speed testing results below.
While both WP Engine and Liquid Web provide full website staging for WordPress sites, we prefer WP Engine. I like the way that both hosts easily allow you to make a copy of your live site and place it in the staging area. However, with WP Engine, you can just as easily copy the changes in your staging copy back into your production live website. With Liquid Web, you have to download and use their migration plugin to move changes to your live site. In this category, WP Engine is the winner.
Data Backup and Restore
With Liquid Web and WP Engine, you get top quality data backup and restore capabilities. Both of these managed WordPress hosts provide daily automatic backup, along with the ability to manually create a backup whenever you need to. Restoring your data is also easy to do. We’ll have to call it a draw here.
WP Engine and Liquid Web both have quality customer support teams. On one hand, WP Engine focuses solely on WordPress, so you expect a bit more expertise here. On the other hand, Liquid Web strives to provide support for mission critical websites. So which one is the winner in this category? I’ll have to go with WP Engine here. While both provide excellent response times, WP Engine has more consistently provided helpful, friendly assistance. It’s kind of a close call here, but WP Engine gets the edge when it comes to customer support.
- Startup ($35 mo.)
1 Website/10GB Storage
- Growth ($115 mo.)
10 Websites/20GB Storage
- Scale ($290 mo.)
25 Websites/30GB Storage
25+ Websites/100-300GB Storage
25+ Websites/400GB – 1TB Storage
Data Centers: U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia, Australia
Free Domain?: No
Money Back Guarantee: 60 Days
Advantages of WP Engine
- WordPress Hosting Specialist
- Faster Performance with Google Cloud Platform Virtual Machines.
- Proprietary EverCache Technology
- True Staging Environment
- Automated and Snapshot Data Backups
- Free StudioPress themes are included with your hosting plan.
- Transferable Installs and Billing Transfer
- Page Performance Diagnostics
- Enterprise Solutions Available
- Expert WordPress Customer Support
- Personal ($29 mo.)
1 Website/20GB Storage
- Freelance ($69 mo.)
4 Websites/40GB Storage
- Professional ($99 mo.)
10 Websites/100GB Storage
- Business ($149 mo.)
25 Websites/150GB Storage
Data Centers: Lansing, Michigan; Phoenix, AZ; Amsterdam, EUR
Free Domain?:: No
Money Back Guarantee: Pro-Rated
Advantages of Choosing Liquid Web:
- Specialize in Upscale Managed Hosting
- Automatic Plugin Updates
- 100% Uptime Guarantee
- Auto Image Compression
- Manage Multiple Sites with iThemes Sync
- iThemes Security Pro
- No Pageview Limits
- Automatic Daily Backups Stored Offsite for 30 Days
- Full Server Access
When it comes to managed WordPress hosting, WP Engine and Liquid Web are definitely two of the best hosting providers I’ve used. Both are equally capable of providing excellent hosting features, website performance, and support. In the past, we would have easily given WP Engine the edge overall. However, due to their recent price increases at all levels, they are not quite as high on the value meter (except for the Starter plan) as before. So, it’s definitely a closer call.
If you need managed WordPress hosting only for a single site, then we would certainly recommend WP Engine. For multiple WordPress website hosting (i.e. for developers, consultants, and agencies), we would also recommend WP Engine–if you can afford the increased cost. If you’re on a tighter budget but still need managed WordPress hosting for multiple sites, then Liquid Web is a better fit.
Overall, for most website owners looking for premium managed WordPress hosting, WP Engine is the winner in this comparison. See our review ratings for WP Engine below.