Based on the idea of scalability and flexibility, Cloudways hosting services stand out for their powerful features. The company focuses exclusively on providing cloud-based managed hosting, but it distinguishes itself with a pay-as-you-go model, making it ideal for small and medium-sized businesses on a budget.
For our Cloudways expert review, we put the company’s hosting through a multi-month trial that tested its performance and features. Overall, we found that Cloudways offers you great value and customization with its multiple cloud options. Read our Cloudways review below to see if this is the right hosting service for your business.
Pros and cons
- Choose the best hosting tool for you with AWS, Google Cloud, DigitalOcean and more available server options.
- Pay only for what you need with a handy usage-based subscription model that lets you pay as you go.
- The company’s production times are among the highest in the industry, and loading times are equally fast.
- Give your applications an additional layer of trust with free SSL certificates with your hosting plan.
- Find answers to any questions or problems easily with Cloudways’ exceptional customer support.
- Avoid unnecessary vulnerabilities and protect your servers with automated firmware and patch updates.
- Keep your team coordinated and efficient with automatic GIT deployments, unlimited storage areas, and more.
- Cloudways’ service is more web-oriented, making it less useful if you’re building a website.
- The company’s hosting plans are fully managed, which means you don’t have root access to its servers.
- The variety of scripts available for easy deployment on your servers is somewhat limited.
Prices and payment methods
One of the most unique aspects of Cloudways is the company’s pricing model. The service calls itself “pay-as-you-go”, and we are pleased to see what it offers. You can choose from one of the five infrastructures available from the company: DigitalOcean, Linode, Vultr, Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud.
Cloudways’ most affordable plan is the $ 10 per month DigitalOcean base package, which features 25GB of storage, 1TB of bandwidth and 1GB of RAM. The equivalent Linode plan starts at $ 12 a month, while Vultr starts at $ 11 a month. The highest levels offer 8GB of RAM, 160GB of storage and 5TB of bandwidth. Digital Ocean’s offer starts at $ 80 per month, while Linode offers the most expensive plan at $ 90 per month.
We have more demanding needs, so we also studied Cloudways AWS and Google Cloud services and were impressed with the results. Amazon’s most affordable solution starts at $ 36.51 a month and offers 1.75GB of RAM, 20GB of storage and 2GB of bandwidth. AWS servers are fully configurable and their bandwidth is based on usage, so you don’t have to worry about going over the initial allocated space.
Google Cloud offers you a similar offer, starting at a slightly more affordable price of $ 33.30 per month, though it does come with a minor reduction in RAM. Overall, we liked the flexibility and ease of budgeting all of these plans offered, as they allow you to pay only what you owe, and avoid blocking yourself on plans that can be expensive in the long run.
Easy to use
We were very impressed with the amount of control Cloudways offers users. The platform uses its own custom control panel (unlike most hosting services that provide the cPanel standard), which gives you several options. We liked the CPU monitoring tab, which allows you to see the performance of your servers and make smarter decisions about capacity scalability at peak times. If you need to add or remove server space, use the vertical scaling feature, which allows you to select the amount of space you need with a few clicks.
The lack of cPanel can be overwhelming for beginners who are unfamiliar with some of the more complex features Cloudways offers. Still, you can still easily create websites and spawn new instances for your apps with a few clicks and some useful 1-click integrations for ecommerce and web development. While the service is geared towards more experienced developers, you can still get great value if you are a beginner thanks to educational resources and customer support.
Charging times and reliability
A server that constantly crashes or doesn’t load things quickly can cut your business revenue, so we’re pleased to see that Cloudways works well on both counts. Our Cloudways review measured the company’s uptime and load times over a period of several months to determine its average performance. Cloudways offers at least 99.99% uptime on its available server options, with some, like Vultr, offering an impressive 100.00% in our tests. Charging times were equally impressive with charging speeds ranging from 0.4 to 0.6 seconds on average, which is well above the industry average.
An important selling point for us when reviewing a hosting service is the features it offers. Cloudways offers all of its plans a comprehensive list of features including more than ten 1-click integrations like Drupal, Magento, WordPress and more. You can also easily add SSL certificates to all your sites and applications with a single click.
Take advantage of 1-click server cloning if you need to quickly set up a new instance, and managed backups help in case something goes wrong. In terms of security, Cloudways offers you dedicated OS-level firewalls, automated software patches and updates, as well as two-factor authentication.
If you need more advanced features, Cloudways also offers a suite of developer tools. The company offers you unlimited app installations, MySQL and MariaDB support, dedicated staging areas and temporary URLS, and multiple versions of PHP. Although we would have liked to see more 1-click app integrations, you can still use PHP to install new ones, or manually add any app you need.
It can be scary to have a crisis with your website and feel helpless. Fortunately, our Cloudways expert review found that the company offers a variety of excellent support channels. If you want to solve the problem on your own, you can take advantage of Cloudways’ active user community to ask others for corrections or to search the company’s vast knowledge base.
If you need more in-depth support, teams are available around the clock through live chat, and an online ticketing system. We found that Cloudways support staff was well trained and able to solve most of our problems.
Cloudways user reviews
We focus our comments on providing a broad overview of the services and characteristics of a company. If you want to see what others have to say about their experiences, please read our Cloudways user reviews below:
Overall, we were happy with the service Cloudways offers. We appreciate the availability of multiple cloud server providers, giving you the flexibility to choose the right service for you. The usage-based payment model is also ideal if you’re on a budget or prefer not to lock yourself into an expensive annual or multi-year plan.
Although the company doesn’t offer as many 1-click integrations as some of its competitors, it does give you a rich ecosystem to build web applications and websites with world-class security and great back-end tools. With a remarkable Utility Suite and the support of stellar customer support, Cloudways is right if you are looking for a cost effective solution for your web applications or websites.