Cloudways – Affordable and Reliable Managed Cloud Hosting

Cloudways is a popular managed cloud hosting service that offer reliable hosting at fantastic prices.

I first became aware of Cloudways in the Summer of 2015 when I met Cloudways founder Pere Hospital at WordCamp Europe in Seville.

Pere was extremely passionate and enthuastic about his business so it has been pleasing to see his business go from strength to strength. Just recently I read Jenni McKinnon’s article on how she made her website 1,311% Faster with Cloudways.

Mustaasam Saleem is the WordPress community manager for Cloudways. He hangs out on Rise Forums a lot and kindly set me up with a test account on Cloudways so that I can check their service out in more detail.

I hope you enjoy the review.

What Do Cloudways Offer?

Cloudways is one of the leading website hosting companies offering cloud hosting.

Cloud computing allows multiple computers across a network to act as one virtual network. This type of environment is well suited to website hosting as the infrastructure means there is no single point of failure. This makes the hosting environment more reliable and more secure. The setup also means that traffic spikes can be handled easily.

Cloudways Home
Cloudways hosts many large companies and organisations.

Cloudways have over twenty-five data centres across the world that store fast SSD servers to ensure fast delivery of content. They offer a managed service to customers that is packed full of features.

Customers are allocated a defined amount of resources in their plan thought resources can be scaled at the touch of a button by increasing the allocation of RAM and storage. You can deploy an unlimited number of domains and databases on your server

Quick deployment of platforms such as WordPress make the installation of new websites a breeze.

More amazing features include:

  • Website Cloning – Easily create duplicates of your websites and your entire servers.
  • One-Click Backups and Restores – Automated backups can be set to occur anything from weekly to weekly. You can then easily restore at the click of a button. There is even an option to reverse a restore if you made a mistake.
  • Website Staging – Staging gives you a safe testing environment to make changes to your website. After you have made changes to your website, you can choose whether to discard them or apply them to your live website. This stops errors and bugs ever making it onto your live website.
  • Team Colloboration – Members can be assigned roles on your team to manage specific tasks.
  • One-Click SSL – A built-in tool helps you configure SSL certificates quickly.
  • Real-Time Monitoring – Check website traffic directly from the hosting control panel.
  • Two-Factor Authentication – A two-factor authentication system can be activated to ensure that your server is secure.
  • Cron Job Manager – An integrated cron job manager helps you run tasks automatically.
  • IP Whitelisting and Blacklisting – IP addresses that present a security risk or hurt your server’s performance can banned and safe IP addresses can be whitelisted.

Other great features include one-click domain mapping, git deployment, platform level firewalls, SSH & SFTP access, and security patching. A range of addons are available that add additional features to your server.

Hosting with Cloudways

The Cloudways hosting control panel is straight-forward to use.

In the main navigation menu you will see links for servers, applications, team, and projects. Cloudways bot and addons can be selected via the grid icon.

To the right-hand side there are links to your account, support, a search bar, and a shortcut link to add a new server, member, or project.

Setting up a new server is simple.

All you need to do is select your app platform and then define a name for your app, server, and project. Next you select your cloud service, the server size, and the location of the server. At the bottom of the page you will see the cost of the server on a pay as you go basis and on a monthly basis.

Setup Cloudways Server
Setting up a server with Cloudways.

A new server only takes about ten minutes to setup. Once it has been configured it will be displayed on the servers page.

For each server you can see information about the plan you have chosen and the apps, projects, and members, associated with the server. There are options here to stop, restart, delete, and clone your server. You can also add additional applications to the server.

Server List
The server list page.

Clicking on your server will take you to the main control panel for the server. From here you can monitor your server, manage services, security, and backups. You can scale your server up and add more RAM from this area too.

Server Backups
I love the fact that Cloudways supports hourly backups. If you prefer, you can backup on a less frequent basis.

All apps you have added to your server are displayed on the apps page.

Cloudways Applications
The applications list page.

You can manage many settings from the application management page. You can handle domain management, cron job management, backup restores, app settings, and more. Migration tools can also be found here.

Cloudways App Information
You will find many useful otions in the application management page.

I love the fact you can add additional team members so easily to Cloudways. Three different permissions are available: Billing, support, and console. Team members can have their permission rights enabled and disabled at any time.

Cloudways Team Members
Add additional team members with ease.

Projects are a way of categorising apps into different projects for clients. It’s a handy addition to the service.

Project Information
The project management page.

CloudwaysBot is a server assistant that Cloudways provides to help you manage your server. It’s used to notify you of everything to do with your server. For example security, billing, applications etc.

CloudwaysBot
CloudwaysBot helps remind you of issues that need to be addressed.

A numner of addons are available that add additional functionality to your server. Some addons are free, others will cost you.

For example, the SMTP addon is free to use while the Elastic Email addon costs a set amount per month according to the number of emails you send.

Cloudways Addons
Hopefully more great addons will be added to Cloudways in the future.

It did not take me long to familiarise myself with the Cloudways control panel. It has a user-friendly interface however you will find a lot of advanced options available to you.

Price of Plans

Cloudways lets you choose which cloud hosting service you use to host your websites.

You can choose from one of four services: Digital Ocean, VULTR, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Google Platform Live.

The price you pay depends on the service you select.

VULTR and Digital Ocean are the cheapest services on offer and their pricing is almost identical. A plan with 1GB of RAM, one CPU core, 20GB of storage, and 2TB of bandwidth, costs $14 per month for VULTR. The same plan costs $15 per month with Digital Ocean but offers 30GB of storage.

Amazon and Google are slightly more expensive, though not by a grean margin. Plans hosted with those services with 1.75GB of RAM cost around $35 per month. In comparison, plans with VULTR and Digital Ocean with 2GB of RAM cost around $30 per month and provide more storage.

Cloudways Pricing
Cloudways gives customers many configuration options.

There is no limit to how you much resources you use. At the click of a button you can increase the amount of resources being allocated to you. There is no need for your website to be migrated to a different server if you need more power. Everything happens at the click of a button.

Cloudways does, of course, handle website migrations should you need them. They will help brings customers’ websites to their service when requested. They even have a WordPress Migrator pluginto help customers.

Support is provided in a number of ways. They have an FAQ area, knowledge base, live chat, ticket support, and telephone support.

Final Thoughts

All in all I was really impressed with what Cloudways offered. They offer customers complete control over their hosting environment and provide many features at affordable rates.

Their cheapest plan starts at only $5 per month and you can easily scale up the resources you need at the click of a button.

I highly recommend checking out Cloudways if you are looking for a secure and reliable hosting company.

Thanks for reading.

Kevin

If you operate a WordPress website, I encourage you to check out my Managed WordPress Hosting directory. It lists the top website hosting companies that offer specialist WordPress features such as website staging, daily backups, WordPress security, integrated content delivery networks and more.