Is it really that scary? We don’t think so, but then again, when it comes to WordPress Multi Site hosting, we do know what we are doing!
Whether you have an existing WordPress Multi Sites or are contemplating launching your own shortly, hosting should be top of your list to review and evaluate. All hosts are not created equal and WordPress Multi Site certainly does perform better in some data centres or hosting environments than others.
Multi Site also becomes complicated when you start to factor in elements like domain name mapping, user access permissions, plugin and theme accessibility and backups. It’s kind of like looking at a single WordPress website, but with many more moving parts that can derail not only one site, but many all at the same time.
So how does Multi Site hosting vary?
Technically, as long as the server is resourced effectively and powerful enough, it’s setup doesn’t really have to change. Most of the hard work is done at the application level, i.e. your WordPress Multi Site installation.
Where the hosting requirements vary is actually in the support and know how that you will need and more importantly actually receive. Many hosting companies avoid Multi Site’s due to their added complexity (full disclaimer: we don’t shy away from Multi Sites).
The other way in which the hosting requirements will vary is the need for a level of multi site compatibility. For example, a good hosting solution will give you added features of being able to create staging websites for each of the sites within your Multi Site install as well as independent backups etc. This enables you to be able to treat each of the sites as if they were standalone, whilst reaping the benefits of them being in a Multi Site setup.
Looking for the best WordPress Multi Site hosting solutions?
Here is a checklist that includes just some of the items you should be on the look out for:
- Customer service. Does the hosting company offer a method that you like to communicate in. For example, phone, email, twitter, online chat etc. Find a company that suits your normal communication style and has Multi Site specialists on their team.
- Location. This one is two fold. Firstly, if the company is in a different timezone, they may not be available during YOUR business hours. Secondly, if they are located overseas (or far away) this may not be the best option. The closer your server is located to your customers, the fast the website will load for them.
- Back up routines. This one is no-brainer. Any decent website host company will take backups, but what you have to ask how their process for Multi Site installs work. Is it treated as one large site or as individual websites. The later is generally preferred, although your situation may be unique.
- Speed. Does the WordPress host offer any caching at their server level to speed up your site? If so, awesome! If not, their other offerings will need to be amazing. You may also need to ask if they have any restrictions on which caching plugins you can use. Some hosts will have restrictions in place to protect the stability of the server.
- Specialisation. Does this hosting company specialise in hosting Multi Site WordPress installs or does it only host standard WordPress installs? The more specialised a provider, the better their knowledge of your Multi Site platform.
- Staging sites. When you are making big changes (or in some cases, even small ones) it’s recommended to do this in a staging environment. Does the hosting provider offer individual staging sites for each site within your Multi Site installation? Some hosting companies have some great solutions to facilitate this process better.
- Other services. Depending on your website, you may need things like SSL protection (the little padlock that appears in the address bar of safe sites) or a Content Distribution Network (CDN) to speed up your site to international website visitors. Check if your hosting company can supply and integrate these seamlessly within the Multi Site installations. Any growing site(s) will have a strong need for these overtime.
So what about us?
Glad you asked! We offer WordPress Multi Site hosting as part of our website maintenance plans. Actually it’s generally a requirement that we host your site as we have a leading setup that is rarely matched. If on the rare occasion we do manage your site located outside of our server, we will still make as many server side tweaks as we have access to to ensure your website is running as good as possible.
See all of the boxes above, we can confidently tick ALL of them as we over all of these features as part of our best practice approach.
Ultimately, our goal is to put your website in the best possible website hosting environment to excel online and better service YOUR customers.
Please note, you will need a WP Perk website care plan per individual site on your WordPress Multi Site installation. This ensures we can give each and every one of your sites the attention it deserves!