Wealthy Affiliate Hosting Review: Pros, Cons, and Alternatives

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Are you considering whether Wealthy Affiliate hosting is a good option for you? Maybe you’ve tried Bluehost, Godaddy, Hostgator, or others before. You might be new to the entire world of internet marketing, and you’re simply trying to do your research. Kudos for that. In this Wealthy Affiliate hosting review, I plan to share with you pros, cons, and alternatives so you can make the right choice about which web host is for you.

When you decide to start an online business, there’s so many choices to make like:

  • What web host to use?
  • How to monetize?
  • and, how to get the support and questions you have answered?

It can be tough to decide what solutions are best to solve all of your needs, which is why I’m writing this article. I have firsthand experience with multiple web hosts (including Wealthy Affiliate), and I’d like to share with you pros and cons, in effort to help you make the best choice for you.

Disclaimer: Many web hosts offer high-paying affiliate programs and sometimes, this skews the advice you’ll hear. In this review, my goal isn’t to tell you what would make me the most money, but instead to give you the best experience–that’s what keeps you coming back to visit, right?

What is Wealthy Affiliate?

Starting in 2005, two college students named Kyle Loudon and Carson Lim decided to start an online business that would make them “extra” money. They sold keyword lists that small businesses could use to rank their websites in Google–this service took off.

They built a strong customer based, and decided to add on a forum. The forum turned into a community, and they continued adding proprietary features into the platform. Today, Wealthy Affiliate looks nothing like it did when it started.

What once was a keyword list company has turned into a networking, website hosting, market research, coaching, and training platform.

What Services do they offer?

There are so many ways a Wealthy Affiliate membership can be beneficial, it can be a challenge to grasp. It fits as a solution in several different verticals: web hosting, small business networking, stock image library, website content writing tools, keyword research tools, coaching, and training. Some people join and think they need to use every feature or benefit, and that’s not the case at all. You can enjoy the hosting, but prefer an alternative keyword tool. You can enjoy the training and still like others. There’s no exclusivity required.

The cool thing is Wealthy Affiliate has lots of features, so you can start there with little overhead, and upgrade things as you decide, and grow your business to best suit you. Some people use all of the features, and don’t use much else. Others, like to network and train there, and use other services for other things.

It’s entirely up to you.

WordPress Managed Web Hosting

Wealthy Affiliate offers website hosting for up to 10 websites as a premium member. Included with the WordPress Managed hosting is:

Custom Control Panel

Wealthy Affiliate offers managed WordPress hosting, which means that you don’t have to deal with CPanel or other control panel options. They have a custom control panel that tells you things like:

  • Your site health (which includes the age of your website, how often you’re publishing, how many comments you get on your website, and how often you get feedback)
  • Your site speed
  • The # of plugins you have
  • The domains you own
  • and more

It’s a great option for affiliates because most affiliate sites won’t require much more access to features in the control panel other than this.

Site Content – A Content Writing Platform

Aside from a custom control panel, you also get a content writing tool called “Site Content”. You can use Site Content as an alternative to writing directly into WordPress. It autosaves as you’re writing, it’s connected to over 1 million royalty free images, and it will publish content to any of the sites you host at Wealthy Affiliate from the user interface (without copying and pasting or anything like that).

Some cool features about Site Content include:

  • A grammar and spelling checker
  • A plagiarism checker
  • Content goal setting features
  • and the ability to save Templates (which massively improves content writing efficiency!)

1-on-1 Private Message Coaching

Depending on which affiliate you’re referred by, you can land gold when you join Wealthy Affiliate. Some affiliates are very engaged and run the coaching they offer thru the platform like it’s a business. I know I do.

If you have questions or concerns as you’re building your online business, an involved referrer will ensure to help you out. I help my referrals find:

  • Good affiliate programs
  • Plan their businesses
  • Help them make tough decisions
  • and share my experiences

Having an advisor to reach out to when you need to can be invaluable, and that’s what my referrals tend to say.

Networking Better than a Forum (like Social Media)

The networking is one component that makes Wealthy Affiliate truly stand out. The platform is proprietary, and it’s much more engaged than Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. When you post on Wealthy Affiliate, there’s likely to be people who engage with your content.

The benefit of being able to network at Wealthy Affiliate is you have even more people to go to to ask questions, to learn from, and to encourage one another. Issues like work-life balance, insecurities, and self-doubt creep up for entrepreneurs of all stages, so it’s nice to have somewhere to go that’s encouraging, and can help to build you up.

Live Weekly Video Training

Every Friday, Wealthy Affiliate has live training. They cover a plethora of topics related to internet marketing: Facebook ads, Instagram ads, Pinterest marketing, writing reviews, keyword research, Local SEO, and so many more.

During the training, you get the chance to hear the best practices, to ask questions you might have, and to hear the responses to other people’s questions. All of the live training courses are recorded, so when you become a premium member, you immediately have access to a goldmine of 100’s of hours of live training that’s been done over the last 15 years. Some of it was based on trends, but there’s lots of evergreen nuggets there.

Two Online Training Programs: Online Entrepreneur Certification and WA Bootcamp

Wealthy Affiliate offers two core training programs that are used to train you in WordPress technical skills, keyword research, copywriting, ad management, and affiliate marketing: the Online Entrepreneur Certification and the Wealthy Affiliate Bootcamp.

The Online Entrepreneur Certification – For all niches

The Online Entrepreneur Certification teaches you how to successfully start a website and build it to generate affiliate commissions in any niche. Even though the main monetization method is focused on Affiliate marketing, the search engine optimization, website building, WordPress technical skills, and copywriting can be helpful for online businesses of all types.

The Wealthy Affiliate Bootcamp – Training to be an Affiliate of Wealthy Affiliate

As an affiliate marketing training platform, it only makes sense that they’d have a good affiliate program, right? How can they teach people to become affiliates, and not have an affiliate program of their own?

The Wealthy Affiliate Bootcamp teaches people who want to be affiliates of Wealthy Affiliate, methods they’ve found that work to sell the platform to others.

Jaaxy – Keyword and Market Research Tool

Seasoned marketers know that it’s important to create content and pair it with solutions that are in demand, but how do you know what’s in demand? Jaaxy is a keyword research tool and alternative to popular solutions like SEMRush, AHRefs, and others, but it’s much less expensive when you consider how it’s included in the membership with everything else!

Jaaxy helps you to identify good keywords, brainstorm keywords, track website rankings, analyze search results (to see word count, Alexa score, and other details about sites that rank), and analyze market trends.

What other Web Hosts Does Wealthy Affiliate Web Hosting Compare to?

While Wealthy Affiliate doesn’t have a direct competitor that offers the wide range of things they do, they do have competitors that offer a similar experience with hosting. Some of the hosts I’ve tried that have offered a similar experience include:

Kinsta

Kinsta hosts major websites like Intuit Quickbooks, TurboTax, Freshbooks, and others with millions of monthly website visitors. I knew they were very reliable, so when I wanted to do more e-commerce things that moved away from the primary wheelhouse of Wealthy Affiliate hosting, I decided to try it out.

I hosted How to Entrepreneur with Kinsta for almost one year, and actually moved from Wealthy Affiliate to do that. I moved because I wanted access to my DNS settings, and in order to do that with Wealthy Affiliate hosting, you have to submit tickets to Site Support. Added to that, I was having problems with my website speed, and I thought maybe switching hosting could solve that problem.

For me, switching to Kinsta didn’t solve the speed issue, but it did give me access to my DNS settings to create my online course site on my subdomain. If you’d like to see a full review of Kinsta, check out my full Kinsta review here.

Differences

  • Wealthy Affiliate has the content writing tool
  • Wealthy Affiliate has a website feedback platform
  • Wealthy Affiliate has networking and coaching
  • Wealthy Affiliate has training and support
  • Kinsta has a blog and help desk for training
  • KInsta doesn’t offer any networking opportunity among users
  • Kinsta gives you access to DNS settings
  • Kinsta uses Intercom for support so you know which tech support personnel you’re working with
  • Kinsta includes traffic and server usage analytics inside of your control panel
  • Kinsta offers more features (like PhP worker upgrades) that would be helpful for WordPress websites using e-commerce
  • Kinsta is much more expensive than Wealthy Affiliate hosting

Similarities

  • They both have custom control panels
  • They both offer WordPress hosting plans
  • They both have fast and responsive support
  • They both have fast servers but if you have issues with images or site optimization for speed (that’s not the servers fault), the support is limited on that
  • Recurring commission affiliate programs that’s very formal, consistent payout, high retention on customers, etc.

Kinsta Prices

The Kinsta pricing plans start at $34.95/mo for 20,000 pageviews/mo and go up as you’re pageviews goes up. You can see more of the Kinsta pricing by visiting them here.

Bigscoots

After having overages at Kinsta on the $40/mo plan and the $60/mo plan, I had to make a choice. My traffic was continuing to climb, but I wasn’t at the point where I wanted to use such a large percentage of my business revenue on hosting, so I started to reconsider whether Kinsta was the best option for most hosting needs.

I decided to switch to Bigscoots managed WordPress hosting, and that’s been an amazing decision for me! For a full review of Bluehost (including a glimpse at their shared hosting interfact –not their managed hosting), you can see my full Bigscoots review here.

Differences

  • Amazing support (even hands-on help with speed)
  • Use of intercom for support so you see who is helping you
  • Access to DNS settings
  • No Site Content tool
  • No online business training
  • No community
  • Very manual affiliate program
  • Bigscoots can host any content management system
  • Bigscoots offers month-to-month hosting plans
  • Lower affiliate commissions than most other hosts
  • Bigscoots has Analytics and usage stats inside the control panel
  • Bigscoots is only cheaper than Wealthy Affiliate if you don’t need training, networking, or support from elsewhere

Similarities

  • Custom control panel
  • Responsive support
  • High customer satisfaction ratings

Bigscoots Pricing

Shared hosting plans start at $5.95/mo for unlimited websites, but their managed WordPress hosting (which is most similar to Wealthy Affiliate hosting) starts at $34.95 and goes up to 250,000 monthly visitors. You can see more of the Bigscoots pricing when you visit their website here.

Bluehost

Bluehost is probably the most well-known in the hosting industry. EIG, the company that owns Bluehost also owns many other well-known companies as well including Hostgator and Constant Contact.

When I first started online, I followed the advice on many well-known influencers who promoted Bluehost, and I created an account. While many people seem to genuinely have a good experience with Bluehost, it was by far my worst experience with web hosting. I remember having long wait times, and being upsold for many services I didn’t need.

Even though their plans start at $2.95/mo for shared hosting, I was paying $30+ per month for one site with approximately 150 articles because the lower tier plans were having lots of speed issues. If you’d like to hear more positive and negative experiences from Bluehost users, be sure to check out my comparison between Bluehost and Wealthy Affiliate here.

Differences

  • Bliehost does not offer training. The affiliates usually augment that charging $200+ for training programs
  • Bluehost has mixed reviews about their customer service. From my experience, they had extremely long hold times, and varied experience levels when someone was reached, but others say they have good experiences with support.
  • Bluehost uses Cpanel rather than a custom control panel
  • Bluehost has very low introductory prices when you pay annually
  • Bluehost is promoted by major influencers (including WordPress.com)
  • Bluehost can host WordPress and other content management systems (like Joomla, Magento, and others)
  • Bluehost offers shared hosting plans meaning that several website owners share the same server, Wealthy Affiliate doesn’t offer as many websites on one server, and they’ve customized the servers to best suit WordPress sites which is why it’s called “managed WordPress hosting”
  • Bluehost is cheaper than Wealthy Affiliate if you’re solely looking for hosting, and you don’t need training, coaching, software, or anything else

Similarities

  • They’re both hosting plans, that’s about it…Hahahaha

Bluehost Pricing

Bluehost pricing starts at $2.95/mo for shared hosting. Their plans that are most similar to Wealthy Affiliate hosting are their VPS hosting plans that start at $18.99/mo. See more of the Bluehost pricing here.

WPEngine

WPEngine is a market leader when you’re looking for managed WordPress hosting, which is why I’ve decided to include them in this comparison. I haven’t personally used them, but many people looking for Kinsta alternatives, Bigscoots alternatives, Flywheel alternatives, or other alternatives to other managed WordPress hosting services tend to look at WP Engine also.

Differences

  • WPEngine plans include Studiopress themes
  • WPEngine has a custom control panel
  • WPEngine has special accommodations for marketing agencies and developers
  • WPEngine is more expensive than Wealthy Affiliate (even solely as a web host)

Similarities

  • Both WordPress managed hosting
  • Both offer hosting and software upgrades

WPEngine Pricing

WPEngine pricing starts at $30/mo for up to 25,000 website visits. The next plan up is $115/mo. You can see more of the WPEngine pricing when you go here.

Who is Wealthy Affiliate Hosting Best for?

Wealthy Affiliate hosting is best for:

  • Affiliates just starting out
  • Intermediate to advanced level affiliates with less than 500,000 website visitors monthly
  • Someone who doesn’t want lots of tech features (DNS settings, PhP access, etc.) only used if you’re a developer or you want to run Shopify, online course platforms, etc.
  • Someone who would appreciate a hosting package that has so many extra addons

Who Probably Shouldn’t Host Sites at Wealthy Affiliate?

I wouldn’t recommend you to host your sites at Wealthy Affiliate if:

  • You have traffic coming to an e-commerce website and you’re switching from an existing host
  • You have traffic to an online learning site and you’re planning to switch hosts
  • You run a membership site or forum and you need a web host
  • Or, if you have more than 500,000 website visitors monthly

My Opinion and Experience

Overall, I had a great experience with Wealthy Affiliate website hosting. Although they were willing to modify the DNS settings for me, I decided to switch hosts when I wanted to create my online course site with Podia, and I needed to modify the DNS.

I personally didn’t like putting in support tickets for that because it seemed inefficient to me.

For majority of my websites that don’t have any e-commerce component, Wealthy Affiliate hosting works perfectly fine, and I’d recommend the hosting platform especially for startup affiliate websites.

If you fit into the group of people who I say shouldn’t host at Wealthy Affiliate, I think Bigscoots is the best alternative.

Popular Alternatives to Wealthy Affiliate Hosting

BigScoots (#1 Recommended Alternative)

If you're looking for outstanding service, but you need DNS access, PhP access, or you want an alternative web host for other reasons, Bigscoots is a great option.

Kinsta

If you want to follow major e-commerce heavy hitters to a reliable web hosting platform, then Kinsta could be a good option for you.

Bluehost

If you're on a very tight budget and you don't want a free website, alternative web hosts, or the training included with Wealthy Affiliate, Bluehost could be the budget option for you.

Wealthy Affiliate Web Hosting

9.7

Reliability

10.0/10

Ease of Use

9.8/10

Customer Support

9.8/10

Features

9.0/10

Pricing

10.0/10

Pros

  • Very clean user interface
  • Lots of features aside from hosting including networking, coaching, training, and software
  • You can try out the website builder and some hosting features with a free website
  • Much simpler website setup and UI than Cpanel
  • Website registration capabilities

Cons

  • No DNS or Php access
  • Only goes up to 500,000 visitors per month (which is okay for most sites)
  • Hosts up to 10 websites
  • Only hosts WordPress sites (not Joomla, Drupal, etc.)
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