$101-200/Month WordPress Hosting Performance Benchmarks 2023
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.
Cloudways competed with a DigitalOcean 16GB Premium Droplet.
The Companies and Products
|Company||Plan Monthly Price||Plan Visitors Allowed||Plan Memory||Plan Disk Space||Plan Bandwidth||Plan Sites Allowed|
|A2 Hosting||$189.99||Unlimited||16 GB||250 GB||3 TB||Unlimited|
|Cloudways||$160||Unlimited||16 GB RAM, 8vCPU||320 GB NVMe||6 TB||Unlimited|
|Leverage WP||$197||Unlimited||16 GB||160 GB||20 TB||Unlimited|
|Pressable||$155||400000||512 MB/PHP process||80 GB||Unlimited||20|
|Presslabs||$150||210,000 page views||2.5 GB||90 GB||Unmetered||1|
|Seravo||110 EUR||3,000,000 HTTP req (soft limit)||10 GB+||60 GB||2 Gbps+||1|
|Servebolt||$182||Unlimited||Unlimited||16 GB||Unmetered server bandwidth. 100 GB CDN bandwidth.||5|
|SiteGround||$200.00||no limit||12 GB RAM / 8 CPU Cores||80 GB SSD||5 TB||no limit|
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:
- Total Requests - Number of requests k6 made
- Total Errors - Number of error requests
- p95 - The 95th percentile response time
- Page Cum Avg - Cumulative average response time for Pages (html)
- Asset Cum Avg - Cumulative average response time for Assets (css, js, images)
- Login Cum Avg - Cumulative average response time for Login (wp-profile.php)
- WP-Login Avg Response Time - Average response time for login (301 redirect which validates credentials)
|Company||Total Requests||Total Errors||Peak Rps||Average Rps||P95||Wp-login Average Response Time||Page Cum Avg||Asset Cum Avg||Login Cum Avg|
Pressable, Presslabs, Seravo, Servebolt and SiteGround all handled this test without issue.
Leverage WP had a slightly bumpy start but handled the test without issue with the p95 starting under 1000ms and dropping down to around 300ms as the test went on.
A2Hosting started to slow down around 1400 users.
Cloudways started to slow down and show signs of load around 1200 VUsers, but didn't ever show a single error.
K6 Static Testing Results
K6 Static test is designed to test cached performance by repeatedly requesting the homepage.
|Company||Requests||Errors||Peak Rps||Average Response Time||Average Rps||P95|
Every company handled this test without issue. Incredibly the median average response time would be 20-22ms.
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.
All the companies maintained 99.9% uptime or higher.
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.
|Company||Virginia||California||Salt Lake City||London||Frankfurt||Cape Town||Singapore||Mumbai||Tokyo||Sydney||Brazil||Dubai||Average|
Presslabs had the fastest average speed in the WPT test and 2/12 fastest single location results.
Servebolt had the second fastest average but wasn't the fastest in any single location
A2 Hosting was the third fastest average and 6/12 of fastest single location speeds.
SiteGround had 4/12 of the fastest single location speeds.
Despite A2 Hosting and SiteGround picking up the majority of the fastest single location speeds, a couple slow results in other locations pulled down their averages.
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.
|Company||PHP Bench||WP Bench|
Servebolt had the fastest PHP bench and WP Bench scores by a significant margin. Servebolt run a patched version of MariaDB whereas the default version performs AES_ENCRYPT() function slower. I debated changing the plugin before I was aware it was patchable, but considering it is something fixable, I opted not to change it this year.
SSL Testing Results
The tool is available at https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/
|Company||Qualsys SSL Grade|
A2 Hosting, Presslabs, Seravo, and Servebolt all earned A+'s. Everyone else earned an A, except Leverage WP which earned a B.
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.
This year's Top Tier WordPress Hosting Performance Award goes to the following companies who showed virtually no signs of struggle during the testing.
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.