Earlier today, WPBacon hosted a WordPress hosting roundtable featuring high-profile employees of notable webhosting companies. The panel consisted of the following people.
- Ben Welch-Bolen CEO of Site 5
- Tenko Nikolov CEO of Siteground
- Vanessa Vasile Tier 3 Systems Architecture Lead of InMotion Hosting
- James Grierson VP Business Development of Bluehost
- Ryan Sullivan Founder of WP Site Care
While the entire show was filled with great information, these are the statements that really caught my attention:
75% of customer sites on Site 5 are powered by WordPress. This is the reason for setting up an optimized server configuration specifically for WordPress.
50% of users on Bluehost have WordPress installed on their account.
What’s The Biggest Security Threat Affecting Hosts?
Brute force login attempts were labeled as one of the biggest threats to webhosting. Hosts are getting increasingly aggressive in protecting users and forcing customers to use strong passwords. The majority of those on the panel stated they are blocking thousands of requests per second of automated attacks. 80-90% of the attacks are determined to be automated.
Welch of Site 5 explained how the core of WordPress has been solid for the past two years. The focus has now shifted towards themes and plugins for security and performance issues.
How Do They Contribute Back To WordPress?
Siteground has a contractor who works for them but also contributes to the core of WordPress. Siteground is pro-active in fixing bugs and sends those patches upstream for the benefit of everyone who uses WordPress.
Out of all the companies represented on the panel, Bluehost is the only one that works exclusively with Automattic and the WordPress project. They also have two employees who work full time contributing to WordPress.
Site 5 attends and sponsors as many WordCamps as they can. Site 5 helps users get a grasp of WordPress and solving customer problems is their way of contributing to the larger WordPress ecosystem.
What’s The Biggest Challenges Facing WordPress Specific Hosting Companies?
So many hosting companies advertise their support of WordPress, that Vasile of InMotion hosting says you need to specify that you can run WordPress on your servers or else customers don’t think it’s possible.
One of the largest challenges in WordPress hosting is struggling to host customers who fail to keep WordPress and their site up to date and secure. Auto updates for security and bug fixes have been a big help in keeping sites secure.
What Is The Most Common Support Issue?
InMotion hosting sees a bit of everything. Sometimes the security measures put in place to protect users such as mod_security can cause problems.
Site 5 has a lot of support requests that are high level due to their customer base. A lot of customers are the developer/designer type. They don’t have many customers who ask basic questions.
Bluehost sees a lot of support requests due to plugins and themes if they negatively affect the performance of their customer’s sites.
Questions I Would Have Asked
Although I submitted a few questions to the panel, none were asked. In the hopes that these individuals will stop by and answer them in the comments, here are the questions I submitted to the show.
To the panel: Have you made any strategic deals with WordPress product and service companies in order to offer your customers more than just a hosting account?
To Bluehost: How beneficial has it been for the company to be one of the recommended webhosts on WordPress.org? A follow up question would ask them to explain how they ended up in that position.
To the panel: How are they differentiating themselves from each other considering almost every webhost has the capability to host a WordPress site?
Watch The Entire Interview and Tell Us What You Think
The hosts of WPBacon, Robert Neu and Ozzy Rodriguez announced they will be hosting a WordPress Managed Hosting roundtable in the near future. Since the market has a lot of choices between shared and managed WordPress hosting, the duo decided to host two seperate roundtables.
If you need help choosing the right webhost, consider these 14 things before you make your decision.
Watch the interview and let us know what you think in the comments. A word of caution, some parts of the episode contain language of an adult nature.