Flywheel vs WP Engine (2022)

Written by: Laura Bernheim

Laura Bernheim

Laura has spent more than 12 years crafting engaging and award-winning articles that share the passion behind organizations' products, people, and innovations. As a long-time HostingAdvice contributing expert, she combines a reputation for producing quality content with rich technical expertise to show experienced developers how to capitalize on emerging technologies and find better ways to work with established platforms. A professional journalist, Laura has contributed to The New York Times, Sports Illustrated, the Sun Sentinel, and the world's top hosting providers.

Edited by: Lillian Guevara-Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro

Lillian brings more than 30 years of editing and journalism experience. She has written and edited for major news organizations, including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the New York Times, and she previously served as an adjunct instructor at the University of Florida. Today, she edits HostingAdvice content for clarity, accuracy, and reader engagement.

Updated: October 10, 2022
Laura Bernheim Laura Bernheim Hosting Expert
“We tested Flywheel & WP Engine — The winner is Flywheel!”

We present the behemoths of managed WordPress hosting: Flywheel and WP Engine. If you’re looking to invest in the best provider to give you supreme WordPress hosting, you’ve come to the right place. In this comparison, we look closely at Flywheel and WP Engine, two bar-setting hosts. While you can expect to pay quite a bit more for a quality plan from one of these hosts, you’ll be backing your WordPress site with the best features, highest performance, and fastest infrastructure available. Let’s take a closer look at the details.

Overall Rating
4.8/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit Flywheel »
Overall Rating
4.5/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit WP Engine »
Advertiser Disclosure

Overall Hosting Comparison

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

A fast-growing web hosting provider laser-focused on performant WordPress hosting, Flywheel serves experienced designers, developers, and agencies a beautifully designed hosting experience with the muscle to back up the good looks.

More than a pretty face, Flywheel appeals to a more experienced customer base that understands the importance of a technology stack specifically tailored to hosting the world's most popular content management system.

Instead of trying to be all things to all hosting customers, Flywheel employees put all their effort into managed WordPress services — there is no email hosting, no domain services, no website builder, and no built-in eCommerce tools. Those limitations might frustrate mainstream hosting consumers, but the more tech-savvy Flywheel customers should have no problem arranging the services they need. As avid WordPress users ourselves, we appreciate Flywheel's dedication to optimizing WordPress hosting.

Flywheel deploys each customer on its revamped cloud platform, meaning each user receives ample computing resources, stability, and security. With instant, automatic scalability, the company's infrastructure is never overcrowded or overtaxed.

In business since 2012, the host based in Omaha, Nebraska, doubled its staff in 2016. In addition to software developers and designers, Flywheel employs numerous Happiness Engineers and Customer Success Specialists to ensure happy hosting experiences.

We appreciate that Flywheel prioritizes customer support so much that it developed its own proprietary systems. Instant chats and email tickets are never more than a click or two away, but phone support is only available to customers that spend $250 or more per month.

Even better, however, the company recently expanded its support availability beyond regular business hours. Plus, we trust someone to promptly respond to our inquiries at all times of day, unlike other mainstream hosts that tout 24/7 support but make you wait an hour.

  • WordPress-exclusive managed hosting
  • Updated cloud platform powered by Google Cloud
  • 1-click staging or local development environments
  • Multi-site tools geared toward developers and agencies
  • Streamlined collaboration and billing management
  • Get started on Flywheel now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
5 GB - 50 GB
Domain Name
N/A

Best Overall Rating

★★★★★ 4.5/5.0

We absolutely adore WP Engine as a hosting company, but there's one huge reason we can't recommend it to everyone: It's exclusively built for WordPress users. If you are a WordPress fan, then read on! If not, you'll want to try one of our other recommendations. If you care enough about your WordPress site — its security, scalability, load time, and uptime — to spend upward of $20 per month on it, then WP Engine is an ideal choice for you. It'd be tough to make a strong case arguing otherwise. Although WP Engine's price tag may scare off newbies, those who know WordPress will attest to the impressiveness of WP Engine's proprietary platform. Always updated with the latest hardware to maximize server performance, WP Engine boasts a market-leading software layer built exclusively for WordPress users. This includes the company's own caching system to ensure your site loads super quickly for visitors, a one-click staging area, and constant security monitoring to ward off online threats. For beginners, installing a WordPress theme and getting a site up and running couldn't be easier. For more experienced folks, such as myself, WP Engine's advanced features, such as single-click development staging areas, Git integration, multiple server locations, CDN compatibility, and a ton of other niceties, can't be beat. These features make the monthly price worthwhile, compared to what the more economically competitive hosts offer.

  • Enterprise-level WordPress hosting
  • Built-in caching and staging
  • Unlimited data transfer
  • Daily backups and 1-click restore
  • 20% discount for HostingAdvice users (was $24.20/month)
  • Get started on WP Engine now.
Money Back Guarantee
60 days
Disk Space
10 GB - 30 GB
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Cheap Hosting Comparison

Cheap Rating

N/A

Cheap Rating

N/A

Neither host currently offers this type of hosting. While we do not recommend choosing these hosts for this web hosting category, we do recommend our expert's top pick for 2022's Best Cheap Hosting. See 2022's Best Cheap Hosting »

Dedicated Hosting Comparison

Dedicated Rating

N/A

Dedicated Rating

N/A

Neither host currently offers this type of hosting. While we do not recommend choosing these hosts for this web hosting category, we do recommend our expert's top pick for 2022's Best Dedicated Hosting. See 2022's Best Dedicated Hosting »

VPS Hosting Comparison

VPS Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

Flywheel takes an interesting approach to web hosting by giving each customer a fine-tuned cloud environment perfectly optimized for WordPress. The company rebuilt its infrastructure from the ground up, partnering with Google Cloud Platform to provide the high-availability hosting and dedicated resources needed to power high-traffic sites.

Flywheel offers single-site or bulk hosting plans, referring to the number of WordPress installations allowed. The $23-per-month price tag for the most affordable single-site plan will seem a little steep for novice customers who are used to seeing shared hosting, unlimited websites, and costs less than $5 per month. The added infrastructure, resources, and managed support, however, make Flywheel an excellent deal for developers and designers with more discerning tastes.

Flywheel starts single-site hosting plans with 5GB of storage and 250GB of bandwidth, along with a free site migration and SSL certificate. Traffic is limited to 25,000 monthly visits with the most basic plan, but Flywheel won't shut off your site if you go over.

With the infrastructure optimized for speed, Flywheel engineers also devote ample time to security. Servers are configured with WordPress security best practices, and server-level blocking and scanning services prevent brute force attacks and protect core files.

If a site does become infected, Flywheel will remove the malware for free. Flywheel's partnership with Sucuri means customers get world-class malware scanning, and the company's intelligent IP blocking detects attackers within seconds and prevents them from attacking the network.

  • WordPress-optimized plans on Google Cloud
  • Auto-healing and instant-scaling technologies
  • FREE CDN and staging environments included
  • Easy site management on a custom dashboard
  • Enjoy a 14-day FREE trial for demo sites
  • Get started on Flywheel now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
5 GB - 50 GB
Domain Name
N/A

VPS Rating

N/A

WP Engine does not currently offer this type of hosting. We would not recommend choosing this host for this hosting category.

WordPress Hosting Comparison

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

It seems rather obvious (and repetitive) to say that a web host that solely hosts WordPress sites excels at hosting WordPress — but it's true. In addition to revamped infrastructure optimized for the world-famous content management system, Flywheel offers several proprietary, one-of-a-kind services that extend WordPress hosting beyond traditional norms.

We're suckers for hosts that provide WordPress staging environments, and Flywheel has one of the best — no need for an additional server or plugins. Users can push and pull changes between production and staging environments with just one click of the mouse, in addition to selectively merging the database or just themes and plugins. Staging environments are the perfect way to test how new plugins or updated versions of WordPress will affect your website.

Flywheel further streamlined the design and development process when it acquired popular local WordPress development platform Pressmatic, eventually relaunching it as Local by Flywheel. Local™ removes the technical headaches of configuration and debugging local environments and allows for one-click WordPress installations, flexible infrastructure, simple root access, and shareable URLs.

We also appreciate that Flywheel enables designers, developers, and agencies to package together commonly used themes and plugins for rapid, automated configuration of new sites and projects. Blueprints can be saved and deployed with speed and simplicity, empowering you to focus on a client's specific needs and customizations.

In addition to free site migrations and fine-tuned cloud architecture, Flywheel further expands WordPress hosting with performant server-side FlyCache solutions and full-featured, free demo sites.

Everything is controlled from a gorgeous, easy-to-use interface. All your sites are hosted and accessible through the admin portal, meaning you don't have to remember all the different logins for sites you manage. Traditional hosting customers might miss the standard cPanel installation, but Flywheel's platform was clearly designed for people passionate about well-crafted user experiences.

  • High-touch managed WordPress hosting
  • FREE speed boost via built-in CDN and custom FlyCache technology
  • One-click sandbox environment for staging
  • In-house WP expertise and support available 24/7
  • FREE security scans and malware removal
  • Get started on Flywheel now.
Money Back Guarantee
30 days
Disk Space
5 GB - 50 GB
Domain Name
N/A

WordPress Rating

★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

With prices much higher than many WordPress users are accustomed to seeing, we understand that WP Engine may not be for everybody. But for those developers, designers, agencies, and growing businesses passionate about website performance, stability, and cutting-edge WordPress features, WP Engine will be a godsend. Installing WordPress, setting up a theme, and moving a site from development to staging to production is simple for beginners. The company's 2018 acquisition of StudioPress, the makers of the ultra-popular Genesis theme framework, further solidified customers' design options and WP Engine's involvement in the WordPress community. More experienced users will appreciate the single-click staging areas, Git integration, choice of server locations, CDN compatibility, and other niceties. Plus, don't forget available add-ons for WordPress Multisite, geotargeting, and edge security. These luxurious features make the higher-end monthly price exceedingly worthwhile. Plus, the built-in caching system allows WP Engine sites to outperform almost all other WordPress sites without the use of plugins, meaning you can focus more on your content and design and let the experts at WP Engine focus on maintaining your site's ridiculously great performance.

  • 20% OFF your first payment for our readers
  • FREE Genesis Framework & StudioPress themes
  • Fast, scalable, and secure WordPress
  • FREE SSL certificate and CDN ready
  • Upgrade for geotargeting and edge security
  • Get started on WP Engine now.
Money Back Guarantee
60 days
Disk Space
10 GB - 30 GB
Domain Name
New or Transfer

Site Builder Hosting Comparison

Website Builder Rating

N/A

Website Builder Rating

N/A

Neither host currently offers this type of hosting. While we do not recommend choosing these hosts for this web hosting category, we do recommend our expert's top pick for 2022's Best Site Builder Hosting. See 2022's Best Site Builder Hosting »

Advertiser Disclosure

HostingAdvice.com is a free online resource that offers valuable content and comparison services to users. To keep this resource 100% free for users, we receive advertising compensation from the hosts listed on this page. Along with key review factors, this compensation may impact how and where hosts appear on the page (including, for example, the order in which they appear). HostingAdvice.com does not include listings for all web hosts.

Our Editorial Review Policy

Our site is committed to publishing independent, accurate content guided by strict editorial guidelines. Before articles and reviews are published on our site, they undergo a thorough review process performed by a team of independent editors and subject-matter experts to ensure the content’s accuracy, timeliness, and impartiality. Our editorial team is separate and independent of our site’s advertisers, and the opinions they express on our site are their own. To read more about our team members and their editorial backgrounds, please visit our site’s About page.

Flywheel vs. WP Engine - Our Conclusion

Laura Bernheim Laura Bernheim Hosting Expert
“We tested Flywheel & WP Engine — The winner is Flywheel!”

Individual developers and designers may have a tough time justifying the high price tag of these two hosts when compared to more cost-effective choices. But business owners and organizations may find the investment worthwhile. Like any investment in your business, you get what you put in. We appreciate how fine-tuned both companies are by focusing on doing one thing exceptionally well. That’s all for this comparison — good luck as you make your selection.

Overall Rating
4.8/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit Flywheel »
Overall Rating
4.5/5.0 ★★★★★
Visit WP Engine »

About The Author

Laura has spent more than 12 years crafting engaging and award-winning articles that share the passion behind organizations' products, people, and innovations. As a long-time HostingAdvice contributing expert, she combines a reputation for producing quality content with rich technical expertise to show experienced developers how to capitalize on emerging technologies and find better ways to work with established platforms. A professional journalist, Laura has contributed to The New York Times, Sports Illustrated, the Sun Sentinel, and the world's top hosting providers.
Laura Bernheim