What Web Hosting Works Best with MemberPress?
Picking The Right Web Host For MemberPress
We get asked this question a lot so we've decided to share what we've learned about various popular hosts and their compatibility with MemberPress. You can find these below.
The general theme is that caching which is too aggressive, just doesn't mesh well with the dynamic needs of Membership sites. And webhost's which are unwilling to work with their customer's to make some caching exclusions should certainly be avoided. We've found most decent WordPress webhost's are willing to work with caching exclusions or at least have options to disable their caching.
So -- no matter what hosting you pick, be sure to spend a little extra time investigating what form(s) of caching they use, and how configurable those features are.
WP Engine WordPress Hosting
WP Engine has been a very good host for MemberPress, and we have no problem recommending them. However, there are a few good things to do if you plan to use WP Engine and MemberPress.
- Contact their support and ask for your /register, /login, /mepr, /account and /thank-you pages to NOT be cached
- Also ask that your Stripe Webhook, PayPal IPN, or Authorize.net URLs are not cached. These are unique for each gateway, so you'll need to set up your gateway first, then provide them with the IPN or Webhook URLs from there.
- Disable their Object Caching as it can cause some unexpected issues!
- If you plan to protect static files like PDF's, you will need to have them add some code to your nginx host file to allow this to work properly with MemberPress' file protection Rules (Custom URI Rules). To learn how to do this, please see the Nginx section on this page. Or as an alternative, you can use our new Downloads add-on which is included free with MemberPress.
SiteGround WordPress/Shared Hosting
SiteGround has also been a very good host for MemberPress users. But as with WP Engine and other caching hosts, we recommend disabling their SuperCacher if you purchase a plan that has that feature. At the very least ensure your register, thank you, IPN/Webhook URLs, account, and login pages are not cached.
Bluehost Managed WordPress Hosting
We've haven't heard of many issues with Bluehost Managed WordPress hosting aside from the Varnish caching feature they have enabled by default. So be sure to turn off Varnish caching if you use MemberPress with Bluehost's Managed WordPress hosting.
Bluehost Shared Hosting
Though there shouldn't be any issues with Bluehost's shared hosting -- we've received some reports recently that if your site uses too many resources, Bluehost will force server-level varnish caching on your site which can cause unexpected issues with MemberPress.
So if your site is growing and traffic is picking up, we'd recommend moving off of shared hosting.
Kinsta Managed WordPress Hosting
Though we don't have any direct experience with Kinsta, their support has reached out to us to let us know that they've seen many MemberPress customers using their Managed WordPress Hosting without any issues.
It's important to note that they use strictly an Nginx based web-server which means you will not be able to use our Apache .htaccess rewrite Rules that are typically available to Apache based web-servers. This is not a problem if you don't plan to use our Custom URI Rules to protect any locally hosted static files like PDF's or ZIP's etc. All other content protection Rules will work just fine with Nginx. As an alternative, you can use our free Downloads add-on to manage and protect files instead.
Kinsta also uses various forms of caching so we'd make the following recommendations for our MemberPress users on their awesome platform:
- Disable their HHVM option (this will prevent object caching from being enabled which can have some unexpected results). Update: It looks like HHVM is no longer available with Kinsta. Object caching can still be enabled if you purchase their Redis add-on, which we do not recommend.
- Do not use any caching plugins like W3TC, WP Rocket, WP Super Cache, or WPFC etc. These are not necessary given the other caching options that are provided for free with your Kinsta hosting plan.
- Contact Kinsta support and ask that the following URI's matches are not cached. * below means match anything afterwards
- /register* (This may be different if you've set a different Memberships slug in your MemberPress options)
- /login* (Don't cache the login page)
- /account* (Don't cache the account page)
- /mepr* (Don't cache the IPN, Webhook, and other Notification and API endpoints)
GoDaddy / MediaTemple Managed WordPress Hosting
GoDaddy's Managed WordPress Hosting uses an aggressive form of caching which due to the dynamic nature of Membership plugins like MemberPress can cause a few unexpected behaviors.
GoDaddy support has kindly reached out to us to inform us that they may be working on some workarounds for disabling their caching in Managed WordPress environments thereby leaving it up to the customer to use a Caching Plugin of their choice like WP Rocket, WP Super Cache or W3TC etc. All of which allow selective URI caching Rules to be enabled and can function better with MemberPress. We will update this article if/when this becomes an option.
If you do use GoDaddy's or MediaTemple's Managed WordPress WordPress hosting, then be sure to add ?nocache=1 to the end of your Stripe Webhook URLs and PayPal IPN URLs. This has worked well for a number of users, but there's no guarantee it will solve all caching-related issues.
We would recommend changing to their Web Hosting plan if you don't currently expect a lot of traffic on the site. Otherwise upgrading to GoDaddy's Business Hosting may be a better option for higher traffic sites.
GoDaddy / MediaTemple Shared or Business Hosting
GoDaddy's and MediaTemple's Shared and Business Hosting plans are not subject to the aggressive caching used in their Managed WordPress plans, and works just fine with MemberPress.