WordPress Hosting Performance Benchmarks 2020

WordPress Hosting Performance Benchmarks (2020) – $51-100/Month

The full company list, product list, methodology, and notes can be found here.

This post focuses only on the results of the testing in the $51-100/month price bracket for WordPress Hosting.

Hosting Plan Details

Load Storm Testing Results

Load Storm is designed to simulate real users visiting the site, logging in and browsing. It tests uncached performance.

Results Table

Company Name Total Requests Total Errors Peak RPS Average RPS Peak Response Time(ms) Average Response Time (ms) Total Data Transferred (GB) Peak Throughput (MB/s)
Average Throughput (MB/s)
1&1 IONOS SE 487,409 3 (0%) 353 271 6,141 391.00 32.34 24 18
A2 Hosting 456,282 1,145 (0.25%) 341 253 15,113 1,042.00 23.44 18 13
Cloudways 544,009 0 (0%) 404 302.23 14,085.00 609.00 32 23.97 17.58
DreamHost 394,437 0 (0%) 267 219 10,116 1,470.00 21.91 15 12
highavailability.io 573,080 0 (0%) 442 318 4,266 478.00 31.41 25 17
Jelastic, Inc 689,246 1,183 (0.17%) 521 383 14,074 188.00 36.80 28 20
Lightning Base 564,227 7 (0%) 440 313 2,283.00 407.00 34 27 19
Nestify 379,415 1 (0%) 310.63 210.79 15,094.00 441 22.6 18.83 13
Pressable 699,169 149 (0.02%) 566 388 15,016 99.00 35.82 30 20
Servebolt.com 798,420 31 (0%) 592 444 15,099 95.00 28.85 22 16
WPX Hosting 652,294 72 (0.01%) 489 362 3,069.00 137.00 36 27 20

Full interactive results can be referenced here.


1&1 IONOS [Reviews], Cloudways [Reviews], HighAvailability, Jelastic, LightningBase, Nestify, Pressable, Servebolt and WPX Hosting didn't have any issues.

A2 Hosting [Reviews] started slowing down around 1600 users and average response times went up substantially. DreamHost [Reviews] started slowing down around 1300 users but didn't have a single error.

Load Impact Testing Results

Load Impact is designed to test cached performance by repeatedly requesting the homepage.

Results Table

Company Name Requests Errors Data Transferred (GB) Peak Average Load Time (ms) Peak Average Bandwidth (Mbps) Peak Average Requests/Sec
1&1 IONOS SE 411084 849 22.68 2470 271.27 602
A2 Hosting 30471 994 1.57 48430 15.6 38
Cloudways 631710 0 35.61 561 577.83 1220
DreamHost 527517 0 29.41 1250 420.73 921
highavailability.io 587143 0 32.07 672 510.64 1110
Jelastic, Inc 865397 7 46.82 916 771.14 1700
Lightning Base 601856 0 34.16 603 576.75 1210
Nestify 588944 0 32.9 674 494.83 1060
Pressable 898589 0 50.59 86 836.94 1770
Servebolt.com 784185 4 43.41 201 640.2 1410
WPX Hosting 849983 11 47.52 113 787.11 1680

Full interactive results can be referenced here.


Cloudways, High Availability, Jelastic, LightningBase, Nestify, Pressable, Servebolt and WPX Hosting didn't have any issues.

1&1 IONOS slowed down around 1050 users. A2 Hosting collapsed with an average response time spiking to over 48 seconds. DreamHost started slowing down around 1400 users but didn't error out.

Uptime Monitoring Results

Uptime is monitored by two companies: Uptime Robot and StatusCake. A self hosted monitor was also run in case there was a major discrepancy between the two third party monitors.

Results Table

Company Name UptimeRobot StatusCake StatusCake Avg Response Time Custom Uptime Monitor
1&1 IONOS SE 100 100 0.47
A2 Hosting 99.993 99.99 0.78
Cloudways 99.982 99.92 0.26
DreamHost 100 100 0.74
highavailability.io 99.997 100 0.46
Jelastic, Inc 99.99 99.99 0.13
Lightning Base 100 100 0.36
Nestify 100 100 0.31
Pressable 100 100 0.34
Servebolt.com 99.583 99.99 0.33 99.99
WPX Hosting 100 99.99 0.2


Every company did well maintaining above 99.9% uptime. The only issue was a strange discrepancy between UptimeRobot and StatusCake on Servebolt's uptime. One showed a very low 99.583 and the other 99.99. The third monitor I setup showed 99.99%, so the issue appears to be with Uptime Robot.

WebPageTest.org Results

WebPageTest fully loads the homepage and records how long it takes from 11 different locations around the world.

Results Table

Results table can be referenced here. The radar chart does an excellent job without hiding any information.


DreamHost did shockingly well being the fastest in 5/12 locations and the second fastest in 3/12. Servebolt was the fastest in 2 locations and second in 6 more. Jelastic had a confusing performance of being the fastest in 1 location and slowest in 3 and second slowest in an additional 3 more. Nestify didn't stand out in a good way being the slowest in 6/12 locales.

WPPerformanceTester Results

WPPerformanceTester performs two benchmarks. One is a WordPress (WP Bench) and the other a PHP benchmark. WP Bench measures how many WP queries per second and higher tends to be better (varies considerably by architecture). PHP Bench performs a lot of computational and some database operations which are measured in seconds to complete. Lower PHP Bench is better. WP Bench is blue in the chart, PHP Bench is red.

Results Table

Company Name PHP Bench WP Bench
1&1 IONOS SE 10.755 523.5602094
A2 Hosting 11.458 953.2888465
Cloudways 7.948 722.5433526
DreamHost 7.654 1013.171226
highavailability.io 10.23 29.64719834
Jelastic, Inc 7.715 1503.759398
Lightning Base 6.383 871.0801394
Nestify 7.481 808.4074373
Pressable 7.904 877.9631255
Servebolt.com 3.298 2155.172414
WPX Hosting 8.407 713.7758744


Servebolt stole the show here with completing the PHP bench in nearly half the time of the next fastest competitor. Servebolt also had the fastest WP bench by over 40% and almost two orders of magnitude faster than the slowest WP bench. But both the slowest and fastest WP bench scores were able to handle the load tests without issue showing that different architectures with different trade offs can both perform well.

Qualsys SSL Report Grade

The tool is available at https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/

Results Table

Company Name Qualys SSL Report
A2 Hosting A
Cloudways B
DreamHost B
highavailability.io B
Jelastic, Inc A
Lightning Base A
Nestify B
Pressable A
Servebolt.com B
WPX Hosting A


No company scored an A+. Every single B grade was for the following reason according to Qualsys: "This server supports TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1. Grade capped to B."


Top Tier

Cloudways [Reviews], HighAvailability, Jelastic, LightningBase, Nestify, Pressable, Servebolt and WPX Hosting all earned Top Tier status.

Honorable Mention


Individual Host Analysis

1&1 IONOS [Reviews]

Perfect uptime and an almost perfect Load Storm test were a great start. Unfortunately, the Load Impact test proved to be a bit too much. Hopefully next year improvements in the static caching will let them earn Top Tier status.

A2 Hosting [Reviews]

The good news was A2 Hosting had over 99.99% uptime on both monitors. The bad news is they failed both load tests with response times rising significantly. Not sure what happened this year but hopefully they make some improvements next year and do much better.

Cloudways [Reviews] (Vultr 8GB)

Zero errors on both load tests and no impact on response times, one of only two companies in this price tier that managed to pull off the perfect load tests. Congrats on earning Top Tier status.

DreamHost [Reviews]

DreamHost managed perfect uptime and zero load testing errors. DreamHost also had the fastest average load speed on WebPageTest. The problem was keeping the response times down during load testing, the servers slowed on both tests causing response times to rise substantially. DreamHost manages to do well, but just not well enough, I hope to see them do a little bit better next year and earn some more recognition.


High Availability managed the perfect load tests with zero errors. Near perfect uptime of 99.997% and 100% cap off a Top Tier performance.


This first time participant put up 99.99% uptime and solid performances on the load test. A Top Tier performance.


Consistency seems to define Lightning Base. Perfect uptime. Only 7 errors total on load testing. For the sixth year in a row across every tier they've participated in, Lightning Base has earned Top Tier status. This year is no exception, consistently excellent performance that doesn't get enough recognition.


Perfect uptime. 1 error during the load tests. The only thing I'd like to see improved is the global response times which are a non impacting measurement. Nestify definitely earned their Top Tier status this year. congratulations.


Shaky uptime was an issue in the past, but perfect uptime this year shows Pressable has really stepped it up. The load tests went well, especially having the fastest Load Impact response times. It's nice seeing positive improvements leading to Pressable earning Top Tier status again.


Servebolt's second year was kind to them. Their new servers blew away the competition on WPPerformanceTester and it wasn't even close. Servebolt also managed the fastest average response time on Load Storm and the second fastest average response time on WebPageTest. Servebolt is really pushing hard on the speed button and it earned them another Top Tier performance.

WPX Hosting

WPX had near perfect uptime and did excellent on both load tests. It wasn't flashy but they were the third fastest average response on Load Storm and second fastest on Load Impact. A consistently great performance which got them another Top Tier award this year.

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Kevin Ohashi is the geek-in-charge at Review Signal. He is passionate about making data meaningful for consumers. Kevin is based in Washington, DC.

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