After 12 months of live testing in 2019, let’s compare SiteGround vs WP Engine and find out which WordPress host has performed best.
SiteGround vs WP Engine – Testing Method
- Prior to testing, I have setup identical content on all 6 Live Test Sites
- Each week over 60,000 speed & uptime tests are run using independent tools, GTmetrix & Pingdom
- Test results below are from 07 Jan 2019 to 04 Jan 2020
Test #1: Speed
The GTmetrix Speed Test checks how long it takes for a website to fully load using a desktop internet browser. This test is then repeated every hour throughout the week (1,080 times).
- SiteGround’s speed started off very poorly, recording the slowest speed of all our hosts across the first 5 weeks of testing. The good news, however, was they were able to totally turn that around once WP Rocket was installed. They charged to 3rd during this time, outpacing 2 premium hosts in the process. A similar trend occurred across Weeks 11-50, with slow speeds initially then significant improvement with WP Rocket on board.
- The speed WP Engine showed in USA across the 1st 5 weeks of testing was impressive, good for 2nd fastest of our hosts. Unfortunately, they dropped to the slowest host when WP Rocket was introduced across the 2nd 5 weeks. This trend continued across Weeks 11-30 in Canada & UK, initially 3rd fastest, but falling to slowest or 2nd slowest with the addition of WP Rocket. The latest results in India & Australia have been the worst for WP Engine, recording just the 2nd slowest without WP Rocket, then the slowest with.
- WP Engine is currently in 4th place, while SiteGround is 6th in our Speed Rankings.
2019 Results – USA Server
2019 Results – Canada Server
2019 Results – UK Server
2019 Results – India Server
2019 Results – Australia Server
Test #2: Uptime
The Pingdom Uptime Test confirms that the website is actually accessible to visitors. This test is then repeated every minute throughout the week (60,480 times).
- The uptime results for SiteGround have been very impressive across the 1st 30 weeks of testing. The last 20 weeks have seen a bit of an increase in downtime. But having only recorded 58 minutes of downtime places them above some premium hosts and well above their budget host competitor in Lightning Base.
- WP Engine performed extremely well when it comes to Uptime across the first 40 weeks of testing, recording only 13 minutes of downtime. The landscape changed dramatically in the last 10 weeks of testing, with a very disappointing 111 minutes of downtime.
- SiteGround is sitting in 3rd place, with WP Engine 4th in our Uptime Rankings.
SiteGround vs WP Engine – Overall ranking
The Overall Ranking accumulates the results from the speed & uptime tests to determine the #1 Host.
- SiteGround’s uptime performance has been impressive, while some improvement is needed to their speed to move up the rankings. They are ahead of Lightning Base in the preferred budget host category, and not far off the performance of some of the premium hosts, especially when their speed with WP Rocket results are isolated.
- WP Engine’s performance across the first 40 weeks was very impressive when it comes to uptime. However the last 10 weeks were horrendous, with multiple weeks of disappointing outages. When this is combined with the continued dropoff in speed, WP Engine has plummeted down the rankings.
- SiteGround is currently 4th and WP Engine is 5th in our Overall Rankings.