GoDaddy has recently launched their new WordPress Hosting Product via a Google Hangout, where they highlighted not only the current features but also some of the features they are continuing to develop and introduce.
The hangout was held by Felix Gorodishter (Development Manager for WordPress initiatives), Kurt Payne (lead WordPress developer) and Dontay Baker (Product Manager for WordPress Initiatives). If you have the time, and you are interested in their WordPress hosting product, it is well worth viewing.
You can see the full replay of the GoDaddy Google Hangout below, but in case you do not have time to sit through the whole video, we have highlighted the main points underneath:
Why Choose GoDaddy Managed WordPress Hosting?
- GoDaddy hosts many WordPress websites and has a lot of experience in working with WordPress (1.94MM websites).
- GoDaddy built the Managed WordPress platform to help alleviate pain points that they see users deal with every day
- GoDaddy wants to allow you to focus on running your business and not worrying about your server
What are the Managed WordPress basics?
GoDaddy has created in their words "The simplest way for customers to use the fastest, most secure and reliable WordPress service". For customers that know very little about web hosting or WordPress, we think they are heading in the right direction with this. Some of the features:
- Temporary Domain Setup — No need to wait until you have chosen your domain name, or wait for propagation (can take 24-48 hours after purchasing a domain). You can easily get up and running as soon as you have signed up.
- Nightly backups — This is one of the things that we like. Many companies charge extra to keep 30 days worth of backups (most tend to keep either one day (including their cPanel hosting) or 3 or 4 days at most). For the moment, you have to contact support to restore to a previous date, but they will be introducing the option within the administrative control panel to restore your website quickly yourself from a choice of the last 30 days. We are impressed.
- Caching & Performance Tuning — They take all the responsibility for making your website faster, so you don't have to mess around with installing and configuring caching plugins.
- Dangerous Plugin Protection
- Automatic Core Updates
- Database Access
- Secure FTP (sFTP)
- Malware Scanning — this, along with the 30 days worth of backups makes it super easy to revert any issues from Malware.
What is GoDaddy doing differently?
- All-SSD storage, Cache & Database — This is nice to see, although an increasing number of companies are also doing this now.
- Customer Driven Agile Development — responding to customer feedback is essential.
- 24x7 phone support — GoDaddy is very weighted toward phone support which is great, but the lack of online chat and fast ticket support is unfortunate.
- Affordable Pricing — Not the cheapest hosting, but certainly for Managed WordPress hosting the features are incredibly impressive for the price. Pricing is extremely competitive.
- Localization in Spanish & Portuguese — A nice touch to have all the WordPress administration settings in the native language.
- Quick Setup — One of our favorite things about GoDaddy WordPress hosting. The idea is that it is so much easier to edit a website that has all the things pre-setup such as plugins and theme rather than
startfrom scratch with a blank WordPress install.
- Multilingual phone support
- One-click migrator — One of the most annoying things is having to migrate a WordPress website that doesn't have cPanel installed. More hosting providers should take GoDaddy's example and offer a free migration of WordPress regardless of which control panel the host uses. Essentially, GoDaddy has simplified the process by installing a plugin on your website, and using that to copy your website onto their hosting via a temporary domain. Of course, these type of plugins have been around for a while (such as Backupbuddy), but GoDaddy does all the database creation and uploading of files, so you don't have to think about a thing. Very impressive.
What’s on the Roadmap?
- SSL support — Ouch ... this is a must and should be available already.
- WP-CLI integration — great little command line tool for developers.
- GIT integration — again another essential feature for the more serious developer.
- Easy website restoration — this relates to the backup restore functionality. This will be a great feature to have automated.
- CDN inclusion — Not much was said about this. This could be referring to one-click setup for something like CloudFlare, which would be nice.
- Website Staging — This is the ultimate development tool for the non-developer. We use a form of this ourselves (via the plugin "website push"), as well as on other websites with the SiteGround Staging. If anything, we would recommend GoDaddy check out the functionality of the "
Sitepush" plug in when they consider what functionality they will be incorporating.
- Management of multiple websites — This is becoming more and more important. There are some monthly priced services out there that offer the management of multiple websites, but to be honest, we think they are overpriced. You can pick up a plugin like "MainWP" very cheaply for a one-off cost. Let's just hope their promotion of this feature doesn't involve a subscription to something like ManageWP.
At the end of the Hangout, a few useful questions were asked relating to the editor functionality in WordPress that had been turned off. GoDaddy has done this to prevent people unintentionally changing files they shouldn't. Of course, GoDaddy mentioned it is easy to reactivate, and they would even do this for you if you contact them. We are in mixed minds about this. We definitely would want it activated, but we can see where they are coming from.
- Jim Bowen: — While I like the fast set up, the security, etc., I've lost the ability to edit my theme files through WordPress. This feature is now gone /wp-admin/theme-editor.php and I now have to use a separate FTP client."
- Cathy Larkin — Curious about what +Jim Bowen said — I usually edit via child themes, but I think I would want the file editor to be on — option to turn it off. FTP is a pain. Maybe, you can have an easy to access on/off switch, rather than having to FTP to turn it on.
GoDaddy even followed this up via their Twitter asking for feedback on this, which shows a great willingness on their part to provide a product that people want.
Some more Questions:
GoDaddy responded that the speed improvements will be activated immediately. Caching will work straight away.
When will the WordPress hosting be available on reseller plans?
GoDaddy is working on reseller packages so keep an eye out.
From being a hosting provider that we were not particularly keen on last year, we have a whole new view of them. They are quickly becoming one of our favorite hosts for "newbies", and even then have some features that are looking great for even the more advanced user. Indeed, we will be keeping a close eye on them as their new management teams continue to turn things around.