Nexcess Review: Managed WooCommerce and Managed WordPress Hosting Solutions for Businesses

Nexcess Hosting Pros

 

Excellent Speed

99.99% Uptime Guarantee

Scalable Hosting

Cloud-based Hosting

Managed Hosting

Superb Security Features

Auto-Scaling

Amazing Support

Great value

Free Trial

Nexcess Hosting Cons

 

Documentation could be better

No cheap hosting solutions

How we tested Nexcess Hosting

In order to test the performance, capabilities and the potential of the web hosting services provided by Nexcess, we have conducted a rigorous test lasting 1421 hours or 59 days and 5 hours, on one of the most popular web hosting products offered by Nexcess: Managed WooCommerce Hosting.

Although the Creator package is the most popular Managed WooCommerce Hosting plan offered by Nexcess, we thought of testing out the Starter package to assess what Nexcess has to offer to clients who go for their most basic Managed Hosting solution.

By testing the most basic web hosting plan, you, as our reader, can understand the least you can expect from Nexcess.

And despite trying out their most basic managed hosting package, we have been amazed by the superior performance of their Managed Hosting solutions, in comparison to those offered by other web hosting providers.

Let’s take a look at some of the results to understand why.

Excellent Speed and Performance

To test the speed of their managed hosting solutions, we purchased the Managed WooCommerce Hosting Starter plan, which comes with WooCommerce pre-installed on WordPress along with some additional high value WooCommerce plugins as discussed in details below.

Although we tested the overall performance, including uptime performance, of the Managed WooCommerce hosting solutions for about 2 months, the speed test results that we will be presenting and discussing in this review pertain to the last 30 days of our testing.

Since we wanted the results of the speed test to accurately depict page load times and other speed related metrics of real e-commerce website pages, we tested web pages that were 3.58 MB to 5.42 MB.

To conduct the test, we measured the page speed and performance metrics using PageSpeed Insights by Google, and StatusCake.

PageSpeed Insights (PSI) runs Lighthouse to calculate a Performance score, on a scale of 0 to 100, which summarizes the web page’s performance.

This Performance score is a weighted average of the following speed metrics:

  • First Contentful Paint: First Contentful Paint is the time at which the first text or image is painted. It is measured in seconds and contributes 15% to the overall Performance score.
  • Speed Index: Speed Index shows how quickly the contents of a page are visibly populated. It is measured in seconds and contributes 15% to the overall Performance score.
  • Largest Contentful Paint: Largest Contentful Paint records the time at which the largest text or image is painted. It is measured in seconds and contributes 25% to the overall Performance score.
  • Time to Interactive: Time to Interactive is the amount of time it takes for the page to become fully interactive. It is measured in seconds and contributes 15% to the overall Performance score.
  • Total Blocking Time: Total Blocking Time measures the amount of time that a page is blocked from responding to user inputs such as mouse clicks, screen taps or keyboard input. It is measured in seconds and contributes 25% to the overall Performance score.
  • Cumulative Layout Shift: Cumulative Layout Shift measures the cumulative movement of visible elements within the viewport. It is expressed as a percentage and has a 5% contribution towards the overall Performance score.

Detailed information on these scores and metrics is available here.

In short, the higher the PSI Performance score, the faster the page loads.

Now that you have a basic understanding of how the Performance score is calculated, we can take a look at the results of the test that we conducted on Nexcess Managed WooCommerce Starter package.

In our experiment on Nexcess Managed Hosting, the PSI Performance score readings were recorded at various times of the day and an average speed score was calculated for each day.

These test scores were obtained from Google PageSpeed Insights and are presented here as a graph in Figure 1 for Desktop Page Speed and in Figure 5 for Mobile Page Speed:

nexcess review using google performance score to measure speed of website on desktop

Figure 1: Desktop Performance score of sample E-commerce Website hosted on Nexcess Managed WooCommerce Hosting Starter plan. Results obtained from Google PageSpeed Insights.

The results above pertain to page speed metrics of the webiste as tested on a Desktop device.

For the first 23 days, the e-commerce page that we tested was 5.42 MB.

During this time, the PSI Performance score averaged at about 51.6, as is evident in Figure 1 above.

This score corresponds to an average Page Load Time of 1.95 seconds, as measured by StatusCake.

Although a score of 51.6 indicates that there is still room for improvments, a page load time of 1.95 seconds is very impressive, especially considering the fact that this is the most basic plan offered by Nexcess.

For the last 7 days of our testing phase, the page size was trimmed down to 3.58 MB.

Consequently, the PSI Performance score increased to 72.8 on average, which indicates pretty fast page load times.

This increased Performance score of 72.8 corresponded to an average Page Load Time of 1.41 seconds, as measured by StatusCake.

For a perspective on PSI Performance Scores, consider a fact that we have recorded Amazon.com having as low of a score as 72 on Desktop and 49 on Mobile!

amazon.com scores 72 on google pagespeed insights for desktop

Figure 2: Amazon.com scored 72 on Google PageSpeed Insights test on Desktop. Test conducted on 11 December 2020 at 08:51 EST. Included here as a reference only.

 

amazon.com scores 49 on google pagespeed insights for mobile

Figure 3: Amazon.com scored 49 on Google PageSpeed Insights test on Mobile. Test conducted on 11 December 2020 at 08:52 EST. Included here as a reference only.

If an average Google PSI Performance score of 72.8 is not good enough to convince you, a GTMetrix Grade A and Performance score of 97% should be sufficient to prove how fast Nexcess is, especially considering the fact that this is just their most basic package!

review of nexcess hosting using gtmetrix page speed report

Figure 4: GTMetrix Grade, Performance score, Structure score, and Page Load Times of our test E-commerce Website on Nexcess Managed WooCommerce Starter plan, as measured on 23.11.20 at 12:21 PM EST.

If the basic Nexcess Managed WooCommerce Starter plan is this fast, imagine how fast their premium higher-end plans would be!

Now that we have seen how fast Nexcess hosting is on Desktop devices, let’s see how fast Nexcess-hosted websites are on Mobile devices.

nexcess review using google performance score to measure speed of website on mobile

Figure 5: Mobile Performance score of sample E-commerce Website hosted on Nexcess Managed WooCommerce Hosting Starter plan. Results obtained from Google PageSpeed Insights.

The results above pertain to page speed metrics of the test E-commerce webiste as tested on a Mobile device.

As is evident from Figure 5, the PSI Performance scores for our sample e-commerce website as tested on mobile are slightly lower than those pertaining to the desktop version, as expected.

When the e-commerce page was 5.42 MB, the PSI Performance score averaged at 33.2.

When the same e-commerce page was reduced to 3.58 MB, the PSI Performance score averaged at 48.6.

Again, as explained above, these Mobile PSI Performance scores are considered to be relatively good speed test scores, for the reasons discussed above.

To sum up the results of our speed test of Nexcess Managed hosting, we conclude that Nexcess does indeed provide very high speed managed hosting solutions.

Now that we know how fast Nexcess is, let’s try to understand what makes the hosting services by Nexcess so fast.

    Nexcess CDN

    If you have been shopping around for the fastest web hosting services, you should have come across the term CDN.

    A CDN or a Content Delivery Network is a network of servers located all over the world that stores and serves static assests including images, videos, HTML code, CSS styles, JavaScript and other content to users from servers that are closest to them.

    By storing and serving content to users from servers closest to them, a CDN significantly speeds up page load times for users when they visit a website or web app.

    At the same time, CDN reduces the load on the origin server hosting the website, since the static content is served from a different server than the one hosting the website or web application itself.

    This again helps the origin server maintian its speed and performance for the end users.

    As a result, the Nexcess CDN, with edge servers all over the world, forms the backbone of their super fast web hosting insfrastructure at Nexcess.

    What’s more?

    In additon to just storing files, the Nexcess Edge CDN also compresses these files with the next-generation lossless compression algorithm Brotli.

    If a user’s browser does not support Brotli compression, the Nexcess CDN resorts to Gzip compression.

    Both of these compression algorithms are lossless, and further help reduce page load times for end users while mainting the quality of data. 

    And the best part? 

    You can avail this CDN for free if you purchase one of their Managed WordPress or Managed WooCommerce hosting services.

     

    Nexcess Cloud Acclerator

    In conjunction with the Nexcess CDN, the aptly-named Nexcess Cloud Acclerator is another vital technology that helps decrease page load times of websites and web apps hosted on the Nexcess Cloud.

    Powered by NGINX, a high performance server,  the Nexcess Cloud Acclerator caches static assets, including images, JavaScript, and other static content and serves them to your end-users from servers that are closest to them, so that they can be served quickly.

    Like Nexcess CDN, the Nexcess Cloud Acclerator is enabled by default on Nexcess Managed Cloud Hosting solutions.

    99.99% Uptime Guarantee

    The uptime of a website, as the name suggests, is a period of time during which the website or the web service is up and available to users.

    Nexcess guarantees an uptime of 99.99% on all of its hosting solutions, which means that any website or web service hosted on any Nexcess hosting service, including their managed hosting services, will be available to its users 99.99% of the time.

    To put it into perspective, consider this:

    A month with 31 days has 744 hours.

    An uptime guarantee of 99.99% would mean that the website or web service should be available for at least 743 hours and 55 seconds, with a downtime of just 5 seconds in a month.

    To test their uptime guarantee, we started measuring the uptime of our sample e-commerce website hosted on a Nexcess Managed WooCommerce hosting environment at their servers in Southfield, Michigan, with the help of StatusCake.

    After conducting an HTTP uptime test for 59 days, 5 hours, 56 minutes and 2 seconds, the results of the uptime test revealed an uptime of 100% for our sample e-commerce website hosted on Nexcess Managed WooCommerce hosting.

    nexcess review of server uptime

    Figure 6: Results of Uptime tests on our sample e-commerce website hosted on Nexcess Managed WooCommerce. Results revealed 100% uptime during the period analyzed.

    Based on these results, it is safe to conclude that the team at Nexcess strives hard to make sure that they meet their 99.99% uptime guarantee on all of their hosting services, including their Managed Hosting services.

     

    Cloud-based Hosting

    One of the major reasons why Nexcess is able to provide such superior performance compared to other web hosting companies is their modern cloud-based hosting insfrastructure.

    In traditional hosting, websites and other applications are deployed on a single physical on-premises server.

    In Cloud Hosting, on the other hand, a web application or a website is hosted on a network of connected virtual and physical cloud servers, rather than being hosted on a single server.

    Since websites or applications are stored on a network of interconnected servers, hardware failures cannot cause downtime.

    This might explain why Nexcess has such high uptime guarantee of 99.99% as discussed above.

    In additon to that, cloud hosting is scalable, and cloud hosting resources can be easily deployed on demand, or made redundant when required.

    As a result, most cloud hosting companies, including Nexcess, charge users only for the resources that they use on an hourly or monthly basis.

    At Nexcess, all of their web hosting services are cloud hosting solutions, and Nexcess charges for these on a monthly basis.

    Cloud hosting packages offered by Nexcess  include:

    • Managed WooCommerce Hosting
    • Managed WordPress Hosting
    • Managed Magento Hosting
    • Drupal Hosting
    • ExpressionEngine Hosting
    • Craft CMS Hosting
    • OroCRM Hosting
    • Cloud Hosting
    • Unmanaged Hosting

    We will explore some of these hosting products in details below, but before that, let’s take a deeper look into one of the most important features of cloud hosting: scalibility.

    Scalable Hosting

    As discussed before, one of the major advantages of cloud hosting is the availability of scalable hosting resources.

    To understand how scalable hosting differs from upgarding your hosting plan, consider this:

    Let’s say that the Black Friday sale or another huge sale period is approaching in about a months time from now.

    In anticipation of the upcoming sale, you are expecting the traffic to your website to increase significantly.

    Let’s assume that you are expecting your website traffic to more than double during the sale period.

    If your website was hosted on a traditional server, with limited hosting resources, your website would not be able to handle any increases in traffic during the sale period and as a result, the website would simply crash.

    After you notice that you have lost a lot of sales already due to the server crash, you will contact your hosting company to request them to permanently upgrade your hosting plan to the another package which probably costs three times more than the existing package.

    Plus, you will have to pay for this new expensive hosting package in advance for an entire year, even if you will not be using these upgraded resourses once the sale is over!

    And you cannot downgrade back to your old hosting plan after the sale is over!

    This is where cloud-based scalable hosting comes in.

    Instead of having to permanently upgrade to a more expensive hosting hardware, you can simply scale your cloud hosting resources, for example, by increasing the amount of RAM memory during the sale period.

    Once the sale is over, you can scale down the cloud hosting resources back to what you need.

    In doing so, you only have to pay for the additional resources that you used during the period of increased traffic on your website.

    Many cloud hosting service providers will allow you to upgrade and down resources as per your needs.

    In addition to that, Nexcess offers something even better: Auto-Scaling!

    Nexcess Auto Scaling

    As the name suggests, Auto Scaling makes sure that your cloud hosting resources scale up automatically whenever traffic to your website starts to exceed the concurrent user capacity.

    In the event of a traffic spike, if your website or web application is hosted on one of Nexcess’ cloud hosting solutions, Auto Scaling will be triggered automatically.

    This scaling event adjusts the PHP process limit to accomodate significant increases in concurrent user traffic, as would be the case during a promotion or sale!

    So if you are having a major sale coming up, like a Black Friday sale, a holiday sale or flash sales, you can be sure that your website will be able to handle any unexpected bursts in traffic automatically!

    Without Auto Scaling, your website would start to slow down as the traffic increases and after a certain limit, the website will eventualy crash.

    At Nexcess, Auto Scaling is enabled by default on:

    • Managed WooCommerce
    • Managed WordPress
    • Managed Magento

    Each of these plans receive 24 hours per month of auto scaling for free!

    If you need more than 24 hours of auto scaling, wou will be charged $0.10 per minute in 30 minute increments, with a minimum charge of $3.

    Nexcess has also started offering an all-new Advanced Auto Saling product which offers predictable performance during extreme traffic bursts.

    Now that we have learnt about scaling, and how it sets Nexcess apart from other traditional web hosting providers, let’s explore another vital feature of the hosting services provided by Nexcess: Managed Hosting.

    Managed Hosting vs Unmanaged Hosting

    Simply put, in a Managed Hosting plan, most software related technical aspects of web hosting like backups, updates, and security are managed by the web hosting company.

    In Unmanaged Hosting plans, the web hosting company mostly manages server hardware issues, including server speed, uptime, security and other hardware issues.

    Managing the software and applications on the server is the responsibility of the client hosting on the Unmanaged server.

    So if your website is hosted on a managed web hosting service, you do not have to worry about the technical maintenance realted issues of hosting.

    You just focus on your business and your managed hosting provider will take care of all the technical issues.

    Nexcess offers both Managed Hosting plans and Unmanaged Hosting Plans.

    Managed Hosting plans at Nexcess include:

    • Managed WordPress Hosting
    • Managed WooCommerce Hosting
    • Managed Magento

    Nexcess Managed WordPress Hosting

    If you need to host one or multiple WordPress websites on a super fast web hosting service with high security and performance features, you should give Nexcess Managed WordPress Hosting a try!

    Normally, plans start at $19 per month on monthly plans and $15 per month on annual plans, but if you use the links on this page to make a purchase, you can get up to 50% off for your first 4 months, during the extended Black Friday and Cyber Week sale!

    After the sale is over, you can still avail 25% discount by purchasing Nexcess Managed WordPress hosting through the links on this page, which will direct you to the landing page with the discounted offers.

    nexcess managed wordpress plans

    Nexcess Managed WordPress Hosting. Plans start at $9.50 per month. Image: © Nexcess

    Why Nexcess Managed WordPress

    The Managed WordPress Hosting offered by Nexcess is one of the best web hosting services available on the market!

    Features of this Managed WordPress Hosting include:

    • Automatic WordPress core updates
    • Automatic WordPress plugin updates
    • Auto Scaling to handle increases in website traffic
    • 15 – 800 GB SSD Storage
    • 2 – 10 TB Bandwidth
    • Visual Regression Testing
    • One-Click Staging to test out anything on a copy of your website before making changes to the real live website
    • Unlimited email Accounts
    • Email Hosting so you can send and receive emails
    • Free SSL Certificates to secure data transferred through your website
    • Daily Backups
    • iThemes Security Pro to protect your website from malicious threats and spam
    • PHP 7+ for high speed performance
    • Nexcess CDN (Content Delivery Network) to make sure your content loads blazingly fast all over the world
    • Image Compression to reduce the size of images without affecting image quality, and thus speed up page load times
    • Image Lazy Loading to boost page load times as images only load when the end user is about to see them

    Nexcess Managed WooCommerce Hosting

    Need to build and host e-commerce website(s)? Look no further!

    Nexcess offers one of the best ecommerce hosting services with its Managed WooCommerce Hosting plans, which start at $19 per month on monthly plans and $15 per month on annual plans.

    You can get a 50% discount on these plans, by using the links on this page to make a purchase, during the extended Black Friday and Cyber Monday Sale period!

    After the sale is over, you can still get 25% discount by purchasing Nexcess Managed WooCommerce hosting plans through the links on this page, which will direct you to the landing page with the discounted offers.

    nexcess managed woocommerce plans

    Nexcess Managed WooCommerce Hosting. Plans start at $9.50 per month. Image: © Nexcess

      Why Nexcess Managed WooCommerce

      Some of the best features of this Managed WooCommerce Hosting include:

      • Hosting 1 – 30  Stores
      • 500 – 10,000 orders an hour. Most basic package is capable of handling 500 orders an hour and the most premium package can handle up to 10,000 orders an hour.
      • 30 – 800 GB Storage
      • 3 – 10 TB Bandwidth
      • Astra Pro Theme, one of the best themes for WordPress and WooCommerce
      • Beaver Builder, one of the best page builders for WordPress and WooCommerce
      • Automatic WordPress Core Updates
      • Automatic WooCommerce Updates
      • Visual Regression Testing
      • One-Click Site Staging so you can test out new features of your ecommerce store on a copy of your website before publishing changes onto the live website
      • Free SSL certificates to secure data of your customers
      • Daily Backups
      • iThemes Security Pro to protect WooCommerce store from malicious threats and spam
      • PHP 7+ for high speed performance
      • Nexcess CDN (Content Delivery Network) to make sure your content loads blazingly fast all over the world
      • Image Compression to reduce the size of images without affecting image quality, and thus speed up page load times
      • Image Lazy Loading to boost page load times as images only load when the end user is about to see them

      In addition to the above mentioned features, there are several other features of Nexcess Managed WooCommerce which make it an irresistible deal.

      Before we elaborate more on some of these features, we would like to bring something important to your attention:

      When you are planning to create a WooCommerce website, purchase one of the Managed WooCommerce Hosting solutions rather than purchasing a Managed WordPress Hosting plan and then installing WooCommerce on it.

      This is because, when you purchase a Managed WooCommerce Hosting plan from Nexcess:

      • the hosting environment is optimized for e-commerce and specifically for WooCommerce websites, and,
      • you can have access to high value WooCommerce plugins worth up to $5769 per year, including premium plugins for:
        • Affiliate Marketing: This plugin  allows you to sell your products/services through affiliates, by generating unique links to your website for each affiliate. Your affiliates can then use their unique affiliate links to sell your products to their clients and audience, thereby helping you increase your sales revenue.
        • Detailed WooCommerce Tutorials, developed by WooCommerce experts.
        • Abandoned Cart Recovery: This plugin reminds visitors to your website to complete the purchase of the product that they had added to their cart while on your website, but did not complete the purchase.
        • Multi-Vendor Marketplace: This plugin allows you to create your very own multi-vendor marketplace like Amazon or Ebay, on which millions of sellers/vendors can sell their products!
        • Stripe Payment Gateway: This plugin will enable you to accept online payments.
        • PDF Invoicing and Packing Slips generation
        • Importing WooCommerce products from any XML or CSV file
        • Dropshipping automation: This plugin can be used to automate a dropshipping business as it allows you to automatically import products from online market places like AliExpress etc. with jus tone click, price and inventory monitoring, and so much more.

      In addition to the plugins for the above mentioned features, several other high value plugins are also available based on the plan that you purchase.

      Superb Security Features

      In addition to providing high speed web hosting services, Nexcess also equips its customers with industry leading security features on all of its hosting plans.

      Each hosting plan implements a different set of security features.

      However, in this Nexcess review, will be discussing security features pertaining to Managed WordPress hosting, and Managed WooCommerce hosting.

      PCI-Compliant Hosting

      PCI stands for Payment Cards Industry and PCI Compliance helps ensure that your eCommerce store or website can process card payments securely by adhering to a strict set of guidelines.

      Nexcess is a PCI DSS Level 1 provider across all of its hosting services.

      This means that Nexcess is following all of the required security standards set by the PCI Security Standards Council with regards to its web hosting insfrastructure.

      So if your website or eCommerce store is hosted on any Nexcess plan, your customers can rest assured that their payment information is stored and processed securely.

      iThemes Security Pro Plugin for Managed WooCommerce and Managed WordPress Hosting

      If you purchase any Nexcess Managed WordPress or Nexcess Managed WooCommerce plan, you will get access to the premium iThemes Security Pro plugin worth $80/year for free!

      With the help of this plugin, your website and businesses can benefit from its premium security features, including:

      • WordPress Brute Force Protection
      • Local brute force protection
      • Network brute force protection
      • XML-RPC brute force protection
      • Database Backups
      • Google reCAPTCHA Integration
      • Two-Factor Authentication
      • Scheduled Malware Scanning
      • Security logging
      • User action logging
      • WordPress user security checking
      • IP address blocking
      • File Change Detection
      • Reducing Comment Spam

      And many more features to protect your website and business!

      SSL Certificates

      SSL Certificates are data files that allow secure connection between a web server and a user browser.

      Installing SSL certificates on your web server allows sensitive information such as payment information, personal identification numbers, and login credentials etc. to be securely transmitted between the user client and the host server.

      If your website is secured with an SSL certificate, your website will be accessible via the secure https protocol and a green padlock is displayed in the browser.

      Most modern browsers display discouraging warnings to users when they visit websites that are not secured with SSL.

      Users are also discouraged from sharing their personal details and payment iformation with websites that are not secured with SSL.

      Thankfully, SSL certificates by Let’s Encrypt are enabled by default on all Nexcess hosting solutions, including Nexcess Managed WordPress and Nexcess Managed WooCommerce.

      Support and Documentation

      Should you ever have any question or require any technical assistance, you can contact Nexcess via live chat or call them up directly.

      Having been a Nexcess customer for quite some time, we know how hard the team at Nexcess strive for attaining customer satisfaction. 

      Although the level of support is amazing, the support staff are only available from 8 am to 5 pm EST (Monday – Friday).

      If you need help outside of their working hours, you can try to lookup their support articles, blog and documentation.

      You may find a solution to the most common problems and issues in their documentation, which in our opinion, could have been better. 

      Note: We are recommending Nexcess because are using or have used Nexcess to host our websites. If you make a purchase using the links on this page, we may earn a small share of the sale at no additional cost to you. 

      Updated:
      nexcess review

      Overall Rating

      4.5 stars

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      Nexcess Hosting (Managed WooCommerce and Managed WordPress Hosting)

      Need Managed WooCommerce or Managed WordPress hosting? Read this detailed and honest Nexcess review before you buy this hosting service. Get 25% off on Nexcess today!

      Product Brand: Nexcess

      Product Currency: USD

      Product Price: 15

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      Editor's Rating:
      4.5