$201-500/Month WordPress Hosting Performance Benchmarks 2022

$201-500/Month WordPress Hosting Performance Benchmarks 2022

Please read the Methodology to fully understand the scope of these tests.

Note: Please check company profiles for summary of performances across multiple tiers. Some companies also offer promotions or coupon codes for a discount as well.

Servebolt submitted two plans, the ACD plan is utilizing their Accelerated Domains addon, which adds performance, scalability and security enhancements.

Cloudways competed with an XL AWS instance.

The Companies and Products

CompanyPlan Monthly PricePlan Visitors AllowedPlan MemoryPlan Disk SpacePlan BandwidthPlan Sites Allowed
Cloudways $275Unlimited16 GB20 GB2 GBUnlimited
Nexcess $299unmetered20 GB RAM base with burst300 GB5 TB50
Pressable $3501,000,000512 MB / Process200 GBUnlimited50
Presslabs $299500,000 page viewsDinamically allocated up to 10G15 GBUnmetered1 site
raidboxes 300€Unlimited32 GB40 GBUp to 10Gbit1
Servebolt $492Dynamic Requests are set per planUmetered34 GBUnlimited30
Servebolt Accelerated $248Dynamic Requests are set per planUnmetered6 GB (+flex)Unlimited5

LoadStorm Testing Results

The Load Storm test (in k6) is designed to simulate real users visiting the site, logging in and browsing. It tests uncached performance.

The key metrics are:

Results Table

CompanyTotal RequestsTotal ErrorsPeak RpsAverage RpsP95Page Cum AvgAsset Cum AvgLogin Cum AvgWp-login Average Response Time
Cloudways 13015631766591128.75711671227293276157
Nexcess 94817330796.25515509300149291267
Pressable 10630600870.8357830919570230205
Presslabs 11032270909.0860121915813166151
raidboxes 7712530627.174182831158032616471465
Servebolt 121249901062.1765925621319217199
Servebolt ACD 120957331069.565727122925229221

Discussion

Nexcess, Pressable, Presslabs, and both Servebolt plans handled this test without any issues.

Cloudways started erroring around 900 VUsers.

Raidboxes started to show signs of load around 1900 VUsers and had increasing response times.

K6 Static Testing Results

K6 Static test is designed to test cached performance by repeatedly requesting the homepage.

Results Table

CompanyRequestsErrorsPeak RpsAverage Response TimeAverage RpsP95
Cloudways 148644303280.332121630489
Nexcess 144270303181.672481580473
Pressable 179095303939.55.9196619
Presslabs 177700603908.6714194653
raidboxes 143166403158.172581572583
Servebolt 153157293368.671761629283
Servebolt ACD 173792903849.3337190850

Discussion

Every company handled the static test near flawlessly. Zero total errors for all companies. The average and P95 response times show which companies have CDNs (or more relevant CDN locations for our test). The difference between Servebolt and Servebolt with Accelerated Domains is pretty clear here, ACD is adding a lot of speed.

Uptime Testing Results

Uptime is monitored by two companies: HetrixTools and Uptime Robot. A self hosted monitor was also run in case there was a major discrepancy between the two third party monitors.

Results Table

CompanyUptime RobotHetrix
Cloudways 99.99699.8954
Nexcess 99.99699.9926
Pressable 99.994100
Presslabs 10099.9955
raidboxes 99.99199.99
Servebolt 100100
Servebolt ACD 10099.9888

Discussion

Everyone except Cloudways had near perfect uptime. Cloudways had an issue across multiple tests where one monitor struggled for a short window but the other was reporting it fine.

WebPageTest Testing Results

WebPageTest fully loads the homepage and records how long it takes from 12 different locations around the world. Result are measured in seconds.

Results Table

CompanyVirginiaCaliforniaSalt Lake CityLondonFrankfurtCape TownSingaporeMumbaiTokyoSydneyBrazilDubaiAverage
Cloudways 0.1790.3890.3620.470.521.2051.1361.1190.8251.0640.6581.0110.7448333333
Nexcess 0.3340.5250.4690.5861.0561.7011.341.4320.9031.5961.1621.8211.077083333
Pressable 0.2150.3350.3150.2310.1870.2540.2440.6610.2450.1740.3160.4670.3036666667
Presslabs 0.1730.140.2620.1520.1840.210.1480.1670.170.150.1610.140.1714166667
raidboxes 0.6870.930.8750.2220.2260.8950.910.8011.2671.571.1550.7030.8534166667
Servebolt 0.3560.2970.4330.5770.6780.9881.0170.9720.7740.8420.6770.9610.7143333333
Servebolt ACD 0.4140.4520.490.2970.30.2770.4680.4770.4980.2620.5280.2790.3951666667

Discussion

Presslabs went a perfect 12/12 as the fastest in every region. Pressable was the second fastest with Servebolt + ACD not far behind.

WPPerformanceTester Testing Results

WPPerformanceTester performs two benchmarks. One is a WordPress (WP Bench) and the other is a PHP Bench. WP Bench measures how many WP queries per second and higher tends to be better (varies considerably by architecture). PHP Bench performs a lot of computational and some database operations which are measured in seconds to complete. Lower PHP Bench is better.

Results Table

CompanyPHP BenchWP Bench
Cloudways 8.993478.6979416
Nexcess 7.7281044.932079
Pressable 10.0131347.708895
Presslabs 6.891538.461538
raidboxes 7.9711466.27566
Servebolt 5.862222.222222
Servebolt ACD 5.8652207.505519

Discussion

Both Servebolt plans stood out as having the fastest scores in both tests which were near identical to one another.

SSL Testing Results

The tool is available at https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/

Results Table

CompanyQualsys SSL Grade
Cloudways A
Nexcess A
Pressable A
Presslabs A+
raidboxes A+
Servebolt A
Servebolt ACD A+

Discussion

Everyone got an A with Presslabs, Raidboxes and Servebolt+ACD Earning A+.

Conclusion

There are two levels of recognition awarded to companies that participate in the tests. There is no ‘best’ declared, it’s simply tiered, it’s hard to come up with an objective ranking system because of the complex nature of hosting. These tests also don’t take into account outside factors such as reviews, support, and features. It is simply testing performance as described in the methodology.

Top Tier

This year's Top Tier WordPress Hosting Performance Award goes to the following companies who showed virtually no signs of struggle during the testing.


Honorable Mention

The following companies earned Honorable Mention status because they did very well and had a minor issue or two holding them back from earning Top Tier status.

No company achieved this status.


Individual Host Analysis

Cloudways handled the static test without issue. Cloudways had great uptime on one monitor and lower than expected on the other. This seemed like it maybe was a bug and showed on every Cloudways monitor on the Hetrix Tools platform. Unfortunately, the Load Storm caused the server to error out and fail the test. I'm not sure what happened but I hope they figure it out and we see a comeback next year.
Visit Cloudways Website
Nexcess had stellar uptime with both showing above 99.99%. Nexcess also handled the static and Load Storm tests without issue. While it didn't particularly stand out compared to some of it's peers, it delivered flawless results on everything we threw at it. Top Tier.
Visit Nexcess Website
Pressable had the fastest average and p95 load times on the static test. Pressable also picked up the 2nd fastest page response time in the Load Storm test. Pressable had perfect or near perfect uptime. Unsurprisingly, yet another Top Tier performance for Pressable - Well done.
Visit Pressable Website
Presslabs had the fastest P95, Page, Asset and login response times on the Load Storm test. Presslabs had the second fastest average response time and third fastest p95 on the static test. Throw in perfect or near perfect uptime. Presslabs also went 12/12 as the fastest location for every test on WebPageTest. Overall, a very impressive performance put on Presslabs which saw them at the top or near the top of every test. Top Tier.
Visit Presslabs Website
Raidboxes had an excellent 99.99%+ on both uptime monitors. The Static test was handled without issue. Unfortunately the Load Storm test was a bit too much and slowed the server down below the acceptable threshold of 1000ms to earn any recognition this year.
Visit raidboxes Website
Servebolt picked up 2nd fastest P95, asset and login response times in the Load Storm test. Servebolt had perfect uptime. Servebolt stood out as the fastest on the PHP and WP Benchmarks in a virtual tie with its other offering. Servebolt earned yet another Top Tier honor.
Visit Servebolt Website
Servebolt + ACD really shined over its sister product in the static load test and earned itself the 2nd fastest p95 load time. Servebolt + ACD picked up 3rd fastest P95, asset and login response times in the Load Storm test. Servebolt had perfect and near perfect uptime on the monitors. Servebolt stood out as the fastest on the PHP and WP Benchmarks in a virtual tie with its other offering. The ACD addition didn't slow Servebolt down, it doubled down on a second Top Tier award.
Visit Servebolt ACD Website

About the Author

Kevin Ohashi

Kevin Ohashi is the geek-in-charge at Review Signal. He is passionate about making data meaningful for consumers. Kevin is based in Washington, DC.

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