Cloudways Review 2022 – Honest Opinion

Has your website load increased recently? Do you feel like you need powerful hosting with no downtime? People know Cloudways for its blazing-fast managed hosting that solves 2 of the primary problems I discussed above.

They provide enterprise-level hosting with no downtime at an affordable price. A team of professionals 24/7 manages their servers to ensure everything is working perfectly.

I started using Cloudways a few months back, and it is impressive. They have a unique platform where you can choose different cloud service providers. You don’t need shared slow servers anymore.

Cloudways has a pay-as-you-go model, making it easy to try their services at no cost. You decide when to upgrade, and they don’t require you to sign long-term contracts. You can try it out for free for three days without entering any credit card information.

I will talk about every aspect of this hosting in this Cloudways Review. I like them, but some people don’t like a few of their features. I’ll tell you both sides of the story (Good and Bad), so you can make your own decision.

This is one of the most detailed articles on the internet, so it’s long and deep. Use the table of contents to navigate through the critical sections. This will save you some time. Let’s get started.

Cloudways Review – Quick Overview

A website helps you do business with people. The old way was to buy some servers, hire some engineers, and run your website. The new method is to buy a service from Cloudways, and they will run it for you. Over this, they claim to eliminate all your common hosting problems, like downtime, slow sites, and minor hosting errors.

It is mainly designed for three main things: Speed, Security, and Performance and is one of the cheapest and most sustainable platforms out there in the market.

They have partnered with top hosting providers in the industry. (Examples: DigitalOcean, Linode, Vultr, AWS, Google Compute Engine). You can host anything from a small WordPress website to a vast web-based app and everything in between.

However, it is not made for beginners. You might be new to the space and can’t wait to start your website. But we would recommend you not jump and try this hosting because it is not meant for beginners.

Cloudways is meant for users concerned with maximizing the delivery of their content, who have established websites, and receive a lot of traffic. It is born to handle the heavy website and high traffic, so if you’re still in the process of building your blog, other hosting services might be more suited to your needs.

However, once you have an established website and want to move from shared hosting or even VPS, Cloudways will be a perfect fit because it is built on top of VPSs, so it has all the advantages of VPS without any complexities of managing one.

Before We Continue…

From here on, we will discuss the different aspects of Cloudways and answer some of the most frequently asked questions. I’ll also share a personal experience that might be helpful to you.

Cloudways User-Friendliness

Cloudways does not offer you cPanel, which is one of the most common web hosting management programs that people have been using for the last 30 years. This often makes people run away.

But in reality, they offer a user panel that is just as convenient as cPanel itself.

Also, you can set up your website by reading their documentation, using online tutorials, or even contacting their support. Once you’re all set and get familiar with their user panel (their version of cPanel), you won’t get stuck at any point.

I think that Cloudways provides you with a smooth “ease of use” experience, and here is why…

They have a clean and sleek user panel, making it easier for you to use them.

You can always learn about it because people have created hundreds if not thousands of tutorials online.

Sign up process is very easy; you don’t even need a credit or debit to sign up. It takes less than 10 minutes to select your server and proceed further. You need to choose the resource and location of your server; that’s it. However, there is a limit on how large your server can be when using the free version of the software. You can upgrade to a larger server as soon as you add your payment method.

They provide you with a one-click installation of platforms like WordPress. This feature also applies to all other users using CMS and PHP. Moreover, you can also install apps like Laravel, Symfony, woocommerce, Joomla, etc.

Setting Everything Up

Cloudways makes it easy to connect the dots when setting up a new site. All you need to do is become familiar with their user panel, and you’ll be able to follow the steps on your own without any external help.

You can use their free plugin to migrate your site from your previous hosting to their hosting easily. Their team offers a service for migrating a site from another host to theirs. The best part is that they won’t charge you for this and promise you no downtime while migrating and manage to sustain the overall traffic you’re already receiving. I will expand on this in the website migration section.

Unfortunately, they don’t supply you with the option of registering your domain name, so you’ll have to purchase it from another firm, such as Namecheap or GoDaddy, and then connect it with the hosting service you get on Cloudways.

Over this, Cloudways doesn’t want you to have full access to the root file; so that they can manage your website whenever required. And hackers won’t hack your website because they don’t have full root access. It is also part of their auto-healing feature, which prevents your website from crashing and repairs it automatically whenever required.

But because of this restriction, some people may find it difficult to set everything up here. I, too, experienced difficulty when I first used the program several years ago.

Cloudways provide you with a balanced approach, ensuring both programmers and non-programmers find it easy to use. They offer hosting from top leaders in the industry, like AWS and Google Computer Engine.

But the question arises, Why don’t people buy services directly from AWS or GCE?

And that’s where Cloudways come. They offer you other company hosting services but manage those services on your behalf. Those giant-sized hosting centers are not meant for medium-size businesses; they build it for big giants in the industry like Netflix uses AWS.

However, Cloudways makes it accessible to medium size businesses in addition to just small costs. I will discuss this cost in the pricing section below in this article.

But for now, they can’t give you complete access to your root files because of their own server issues. If it’s not a big deal for you, go ahead and sign up with Cloudways now.

Performance & Speed

Here is the exciting part. Cloudways offers a 99.99% uptime guarantee and average load times of 500 milliseconds, which means that your visitors will be able to access your site quickly, which they love, while Google loves it too because they rank fast sites higher in their search results. Based on the results of the past two years, Cloudways gave their users 100% uptime in 2020 and 2021, following two years of flawless site performance.

Because Couldways are hosting partners with top industry leaders like Google Compute Engine, AWS, and more, they provide their clients with the most sophisticated and advanced infrastructure available. Plus, you can select any one of its servers located all around the world. In fact, in some Tier 1 countries, such as the United States, you can select cities as well.

I personally think that their speed is 60% faster than my previous shared hosting provider. I conducted an in-house test, which you can see from the screenshot below. My website sometimes goes down with my last shared hosting provider.

But since I’ve been using Cloudways, I no longer deal with this problem. There are no limits, either, so you can add as many sites as possible. You can even get as many visitors as you want on your server. Cloudways won’t come to interrupt you.

Other cloud hosting providers also let you set up a new website, but they will interrupt you and charge you extra for the service.

Additionally, it’s scalable, so you can increase or decrease your server power anytime. This is especially useful during the particular season when customers buy more products. When upgrading your server, only heighten the features you use. If you upgrade your server too much, you will find some extra features that can’t be downgraded.

So, we encourage you to be aware of this. Some people don’t realize this early on and end up calling Cloudways a spam or fraud service. We call this feature Vertical Scaling, and it’s not something you’ll find easily with other providers.

Server

Now, you might be wondering why I’m talking about servers again. Well, I’m not here to talk about the server itself; instead, I want to talk about its functionality, pros, and cons.

You can install and use MySQL or MariaDB as your database manager, and they provide you with different versions of PHP from 5.6 to 8 and all upcoming versions. You can create more databases, but you’re limited in webspace and bandwidth.

The minimum web space you can get is 25 GB of Digital Ocean, and you can add up more as per your preferences. The same thing happens with bandwidth which starts with 1TB and can be increased by paying at least $0.02 and can go up to $0.14 per additional GB. I have expanded on this in the pricing section.

Typically, Cloudflare offers free CDN services to customers. However, the CDN on Cloudways is paid. You can purchase 25GB of CDN space at $1 per month. This may be expensive for a heavy website, but you can still use free external CDN services with Cloudways.

After all, CDN helps you increase speed. It is a must, especially for eCommerce stores, because a half-second late could become a sale choice or lose customers.

Security

You get to use the PHP version from 5.6 to 8 and all upcoming versions as told earlier. You can also use MySQL as a database manager; this ensures that the security of your website is in the right hands.

Moreover, you won’t be able to access your website’s root directory, which will ensure that malicious hackers won’t be able to access your website hosted through Cloudways.

Here I’m listing down all the security features Cloudways has to offer.

Firewalls – They block any unrecognized access or activity to your website, preventing your website from all threats out there on the internet.
SSH/SFTP – Their server provides secure shell (SSH) and secure file transfer protocol (SFTP) login protection, which means that they first secure the path of your password and then stop someone else from trying to brute force attack your account. A brute force attack means trying every possible password combination until the right one is found and your account is unlocked.
Bot Protection – The Captcha feature was designed to stop spambots from performing an automated task on a website. This can be very annoying for WordPress people because these bots perform Brute force and DOS attacks. Cloudways got you covered here.
Database security – There are quotes for beginners – “Set your database, connect it to your website and forget the database with its password.” You know why it’s said because once someone wrong gets their hand on your database, you’re done operating your business. Cloudways know about it, and they take your database security seriously, which is why remote access to your database is disabled by default. If you need remote access, you can configure it to allow a specific IP address (whitelisting).
Isolation – Cloudways allows you to set up your application on a single server and launch multiple other apps on the same machine. This sometimes can cause an interruption between the application, which leads to your website crashing. They solve this problem with isolation. Each app is isolated into a new space and prevents the apps from getting in each other’s way.
URM – This means “User role management.” You must have a team, and you can set a role for each team member with limited or full access to the server.
Bug Bounty and Patching – Cloudways keeps on updating its latest patches and fixes to counter the latest vulnerabilities in the market. It partners with Bugcrowd to find vulnerabilities and fix them accordingly.
Two-factor Authentication – Cloudways has a two-factor verification system to safeguard customer accounts. This feature makes it impossible for a person who has stolen user credentials to access your servers.

Over this, they also offer you a free SSL certificate, making your website even more secure. An SSL certificate also helps you rank higher on search engines faster, which Google itself has said.

Now, by default, Cloudways makes backups for your website every day and retains them for a week. But here is the problem, they don’t allow you to choose the backup. This means you cannot stop it, and the fact is that they charge you for this at the rate of $0.33 per GB. But before you start saying this is a lousy service, let me tell you how exactly it is working.

First, you can select the frequency of your backups—daily, weekly, or monthly. And you can schedule each backup to be removed automatically by week, month or year.

With most companies, you can backup your website; however, they charge you money to do so. And these companies keep the backups on the same servers they host your website on, thus increasing the load on your website.

But in Cloudways, they keep your backup files away from your hosting account and make it easy to re-install them whenever you need to restore a previous version of your website. This is the main reason why they charge you for the backups.

Here is another fact, Cloudways takes a backup of your entire site website only once and then adds extra elements to the backup you keep adding on your site. However, if you haven’t made any changes to your website it will not take any backup.

You can always go back and get the latest version of your website if your site is being crashed or lost, and you can restore it in minutes.

Website Migration

Migration. This is one of the words that can scare people as it sometimes causes your website to crash completely, resulting in a massive loss to you. But, in here, this doesn’t happen.

Because they offer a complimentary service of migration with your plan, yes, they can migrate your website from your previous hosting to their hosting by default if you fail to do so.

If you don’t want to trust anyone, that’s fine. The company offers a free plugin that does the same for you, and you can do it as per your preferences. Just make sure you do it correctly, or your traffic may be affected.

In the usual method, people first transfer their domain and then the website. You should do it the other way around–move your website first and then your domain.

In Cloudways, you can create an account that assigns you a dummy domain name. Here, you’ll synchronize your website files with the server first. Later on, you can replace the dummy domain with your actual domain name. This way, your website won’t go offline.

Also, when you transfer your website from one hosting to another using this method, Google does not have to update anything in its database. Thus traffic will remain constant as before.

Free Trial

Are you unsure whether you need Cloudways hosting? Don’t worry! They offer a three-day free trial, so you can explore their service and see for yourself whether it’s the right fit for your site.

The best part is that you don’t even need a debit or credit card to sign up and try it out. So, go check it out. I also tried it before becoming a paying member.

Support

Just one word. Amazing. I’m not saying this because I got a great response from customer support or whatever. Nah. That’s not the case.

I said that word because I got a dedicated customer service rep who could help with any problems.

However, there’s a chat option on their support page, and I can quickly get in touch with my account manager over the phone or via email. Their website also provides solutions to all of the problems people face with the platform. You can read those documentations, and they can solve your problem.

Pricing

Cloudways offers a range of pricing; all thanks goes to its partnership with popular hosting leaders.

You can choose five different cloud server companies. Few of them are divided as premium and standard.

Digital Ocean has a segment of standard and premium, and it starts from just $10/month and can go up to $96/month.

[Digital Ocean – Standard Plan]

[Digital Ocean – Premium Plan]

Linode starts from $12/month and can go up to $90/month.

[Linode – Plan]

Vultr has a segment of standard and high-frequency plans. It starts from just $13/month and can go up to $100/month.

[Vultr – Standard Plan]

[Vultr – High-frequency Plan]

AWS starts from $36.51/month and can go up to $274.33/month.

[AWS – Plan]

Google Compute Engine (GCE) starts from $33.18/month and can go up to $225.93/month.

[GCE – Plan]

Now, the pricing you have seen above is just the base price, and it can increase based on what you need. You can always start with the lowest plan and expand as your site grows.

By the way, this article you’re reading is hosted on the Cloudways platform and costs me just $xx/month, which is cheaper for me.

They primarily accept debit and credit cards and PayPal as the secondary payment method for payment. They also offer a “pay as you go” service, meaning that you only need to pay after using their services. This is great for small businesses and start-ups.

Now, on the top industry leader like AWS and GCE, you need to buy bandwidth separately. This is because you only pay for the resources you consume; by default, bandwidth limits are set to 2GB which is very low even for a simple website.

Below I mention bandwidth pricing for each of their partners.

  • In AWS, for each additional GB, you’ll have to pay $0.12. For 100GB, you’ll pay $12.
  • In GCE, for each additional GB, you’ll pay $0.14. For 100GB, you’ll pay $14.
  • In Vultr, for each additional GB, you’ll pay anywhere between $0.01 to 0.05. For 100GB, you’ll pay $1 to $5.
  • In Linode, for each additional GB, you’ll pay $0.02. For 100GB, you’ll pay $2.
  • In Digitalocean, for each additional GB, you’ll pay $0.02. For 100GB, you’ll pay $2.

Here is the statement you need to know. If you sign up directly with AWS or Google Compute Engine, you can get the same plan for less money on their official website, but you need to keep a dedicated programmer and many other people to manage your website. Here Cloudways does all of that for a much more affordable cost. So, yes, they charge you more and save you some money simultaneously.

Let me give you an example. If you take Linode in Cloudways, it will cost you $50 per month, but it will cost you $30 for the same plan if you go directly to the Linode website. But here is a problem, setting up your website on the Linode website would require some programming, and if you don’t have time or skill to do so, you’ve to pay Linode $100 per month to set up and maintain the website for you. If you go with Linode, its package would cost $130, while Cloudways offers the same service for just $50.

So, if you feel like this is the real deal, sign up for Cloudways now.

Refund And Guarantees

Cloudways is different from other hosting providers. They have a unique model where refunds are not available after you’ve used their service.

Now, Are there any feature level guarantees?

Although nothing has been said about this, the short answer is yes. However, a refund or money isn’t connected with the guarantee. This means they promise you will have 99.99% uptime, but there won’t be any refunds if you don’t get that. So, it doesn’t make any sense, but at least they have made an enormous promise.

Also, refunds aren’t possible because they don’t make you sign up for a contract. You can leave them at any moment during the month, and they will charge you only for the resources you’ve used.

Undeniable Features

They offer you some of the features that you can’t deny using, and the best part is all of the below-mentioned features comes with every plan they have to offer. So, just check it out.

There is a feature I hadn’t heard of before, and I got to know about this once I started using Cloudways. The feature is called Auto-healing Servers. In this feature, they designed their system to correct any small error automatically, preventing your website from crashing.

And another helpful feature is the web monitoring feature, where you can check your website’s overall health with 15+ metrics.

This is the last but my favorite feature. Listen, to have high server performance; you periodically clear out unnecessary files in its caches. Here Cloudways makes it easy for you.

Suppose you want to ensure that the cache is cleared at a specific time. In that case, you can set a rule, and the system will delete any unnecessary files without human intervention.

My Opinion

When I started my career, I used a shared host, and I began to experience recurring problems. It’s just like if you own shared or VPS hosting, it’s all too common to encounter issues.

I faced new problems every month; then, I got tired of the hassle, so I switched to HostGator hosting. They’re not perfect, but they’re a lot better than my last provider.

I spent my days on YouTube looking for a solution when I was facing an issue. But since I started hosting my site with Cloudways, I haven’t had to go there for an answer.

Whenever I have a problem, I contact them, and they respond right away. They pick up the phone and solve my problem within minutes as if it were nothing, just as Thanos snapped his fingers to erase half of all life in the universe.

If you’d like to try it for yourself, then get their three days of free service. You can start using it right away. If you decide later that you don’t need their assistance, just leave them—there are no strings attached. They charge for extra storage space for backup files and email accounts, which most companies offer free.

But If you want better, you’ll have to invest in it while compromising on some other handy feature like using cPanel. Understand that when you gain something from upgrading, you will lose what you had before. With that said, below, I mentioned the pros and cons of using Cloudways.

Pros

  • Fast, High-speed, super-fast, great performance
  • Excellent user experience and easy to use
  • Excellent customer support
  • Increased security from viruses and malware
  • Prevent your website from Bot and hackers
  • Prevent your website from crashing other small errors
  • Free SSL certificate included in each plan
  • Increase the power of the server whenever you want
  • Offer Free Migration Service
  • One-click installation of any app
  • Manually and on-demand backup
  • Free Migration plugin for WordPress
  • Easy to scale (in one click)
  • SSH Security
  • Auto-healing
  • No limit for website creation or app installation

Cons

  • Bad for beginners
  • No domain name registration
  • Don’t have cPanel
  • No free email registration
  • No root access, no server modifications
  • Most add-ons are extra paid

For Whom Cloudways is for…

Well, Cloudways isn’t a platform that is best for every person. So, I will mention below for whom this particular hosting is made for.

Anyone who is selling anything online, both physically and digital, then you need it, even if you’re new to the industry. Significantly, eCommerce stores would especially benefit a lot.

If you have a successful blog and regularly get high traffic, consider switching to Cloudways.

If you own a heavy app with an extensive database, you should consider hosting it on Cloudways.

If you run an enterprise-level business and have employees to manage your website; Well, fire them and shift to Cloudways.

In other words, if you’re running a business that does a lot of business online and you receive a lot of web traffic, Cloudways might be a good web hosting platform for you.

FAQ

Should beginners use Cloudways?

My recommendation is no. Unless you understand the basics of running a website, you won’t ever comprehend Cloudways’s value. Plus, beginners will definitely get stuck while setting up their first website here.

How long is Cloudways free trial?

You can use it however you want for three days without paying—no payment method required. It lasts three days, and then you can decide what to do next!.

What is Cloudways hosting good for?

Those who own a heavy business and receive over 500,000 traffic per month or someone who has its heavy app can use Cloudways to host whatever they want. Personally, for eCommerce giants, Cloudways can be a boon for their business because their website speed and performance can make or break their business.

How does payment work in Cloudways?

Use the service, then give the server company money. If you don’t use their server, you won’t get charged for their service, even if you’re their signed user.

Is Cloudways suitable for WordPress?

Yes, it’s perfect for WordPress. eCommerce sites, too. Their basic plans are designed to provide the most value to users using WordPress and commercial platforms.

Is Cloudways a dedicated server?

No, but it gives you dedicated server power. You’ll also get your dedicated IPs, and your IP name will be retained even when you upscale or downscale your servers.

Is Cloudways CDN free?

Unfortunately, No. They charge you $1 for 25 GB of webspace, and additionally, they charge you $0.04 per GB.

Are Cloudways made only for technical users?

No, The platform is designed for both technical and non-technical users, so anyone can easily create a website while growing their business.

What is the primary function of Cloudways?

You probably know about the features and speed and blah blah and blah. But what is hosting actually serves you is a hassle-free experience. You just set everything up, and from that onward, the company will manage everything.

Which is Good Cloudways CDN or Cloudflare CDN?

Cloudways is paid, and Cloudflare is free. Cloudways CDN is, formerly known as MaxCDN that caches static assets, like images, CSS and JS. However, Cloudflare CDN cache the entire static website, including image, CSS, and JS.

But there are two types of websites which are dynamic and static. Cloudways CDN will be suitable for dynamic websites because it will cache the element. For static websites, Cloudflare will be a better choice than Cloudways.

Which one is better for an eCommerce site, Cloudways Vs. HostGator?

The no-brainer answer is Cloudways. I recommend it because of its speed, performance, easily upscaling of plans whenever needed, extra security protection, and their way of management.

How many real-time visits can a Cloudways 1GB server take?

It can handle around 80 – 100 live users and about 20,000 page views per day. But it’s hard to say precisely how much traffic it can take without testing it. The best way to discover how much traffic your website can handle is by sending that amount of traffic to it and monitoring its performance.

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