INTERVIEW – Recently, a new ‘Page Performance’ WordPress hosting solution came out of WP Engine’s R&D lab. Hostingjournalist.com sat down with Adam Prishtina, Sr. Director of Product Management at WP Engine, to talk about their WordPress hosting innovations while also touching the topic of upholding an integrated approach towards building WordPress-based web infrastructure.
“Savvy website owners understand the correlation between the speed of their websites and profit building conversion rates, whether that be advertisement clicks, cart checkouts or something else. When it comes to website speed, selecting a great hosting platform is only half the battle. While a host that’s finely tuned for speed is important, it is just as important to use the latest techniques for website development.”
“WP Engine’s new integrated performance tool, called Page Performance, was built with the nuances of WordPress in mind. Over time we’ll be applying more and more learnings from our ongoing research in this field to continually improve Page Performance.”
Can you provide us with some examples of negative results related to a not-so integrated approach towards building WordPress-based web infrastructure?
“As an example, we’ve seen tools that recommend installing WordPress plugins to solve detected issues without recommending any plugin in particular. Because quality can vary from one to the next, it’s important to prescribe tried-and-true plugins that don’t have adverse side effects on your website.”
WordPress is an easy to implement software solution that is often associated with do-it-yourself websites. What characteristics cater to the needs of enterprise users?
“We’ve seen that WordPress is gaining momentum in the enterprise space. Enterprise users demand security, scalability, speed and service, and a great host delivers on all of those fronts.”
“The power of WordPress comes from its ability to customize. Enterprises don’t want a one-size-fits-all approach; they want the power to make the website look and feel exactly the way they want. That’s where WordPress excels. Enterprise customers also require a different level of technical support and customer service, and we at WP Engine have developed a white glove approach for enterprise customers that drives high customer satisfaction and helps showcase the benefits of WordPress all the more.”
“Through our efforts, WP Engine has contributed significantly to establishing WordPress itself as a platform that can be reliably deployed in a range of enterprise scenarios.”
Enterprises are reluctant to a situation of vendor lock-in. How ‘open’ is the WP Engine platform, and how easy would it be to flexibly make a website transfer from the WP Engine platform to another hosting platform?
“We understand that vendor lock isn’t appealing. Since WordPress is so widely adopted – 26% of today’s websites use it – migrating from one WordPress hosting solution to another is relatively simple. And because it’s open source, customers have a plethora of theme and plugin providers to choose from in order to implement business solutions such as e-commerce, SEO, contact forms and comment spam detection.”
“Furthermore, because we provide the ability to create a backup (ed., to learn more about WordPress backups, read this) within our user portal – and also do one automatically every night – it’s easy to upload the Zip backup file to any other WordPress environment just as easily as it is to migrate (ed., to learn more about WordPress migration, read this) hassle-free from another WordPress environment to the WP Engine platform.”
WP Engine has its own ‘Labs.’ Which approach is being used, and what are the most innovative solutions that came out of it lately?
“WP Engine takes pride in providing WordPress thought leadership, and our lab spearheads these efforts. It’s run by a team within R&D that runs experiments to answer top of mind questions. As I said, WP Engine’s new integrated performance tool, called Page Performance, came out of our lac recently. Stay tuned for an upcoming relaunch of the WP Engine Labs website with more details!”
What are the effects of utilizing the new WordPress Page Performance solution?
“Page Performance doesn’t just tell you how fast your page is running. It gives you concrete and actionable recommendations to increase speed, with rich and relevant context. During launch we had a group of customers test the product and implement our recommendations, and all were impressed by the results – some saw over 16% improvement in page speed.”
What kind of users would be able to benefit from it?
“Speed is top of mind for all our customers, large and small, which is why we’ve made Page Performance free and available to all our plans. This performance intelligence area will be a focus of future investment for the company.”
About Adam Prishtina, WP Engine
As Sr. Director of Product Management at WP Engine, Adam Prishtina has a passion for building world-class teams and products. Mr. Prishtina has a bachelor’s in Computer Science from California State University and an MBA from Berkely-Haas. While his background blends engineering and business, Adam Prishtina has over 15 years of Silicon Valley product experience in companies large and small, among which Netscape, Yahoo!, PayPal, and Bigcommerce.
WP Engine powers digital experiences for websites and applications built on WordPress. Companies of all sizes rely on WP Engine’s managed hosting platform and its customer service team for solving technical problems. Founded in 2010, WP Engine is headquartered in Austin, Texas and has offices in San Francisco, California, San Antonio, Texas, and London, England.
To learn more about WP Engine, visit: wpengine.com.