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Pantheon.io Wants to 10x Our Cost
6 points by jhabdas 4 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 10 comments
I built a website for a friend a few years ago called chicagoganghistory.com and hosted it on Pantheon. During that time they increased hosting costs once from $25 to $40 which – okay – but today I learned they want to bump his website from $40 to $450 per month or about 4x the ad revenue. I'm noting this here because I'm curious what alternatives people might suggest for hosting a one-man WordPress site with traffic in the 70-80K range. Suggestions?

It looks it could be served pretty easily as a static site for very little cost. I try to use WP2Static whenever possible. It's a plugin that crawls the WordPress site and deploys a static version to a server of your choice, like S3/CloudFront or Netlify.

If you're the only person who accesses it, you can run the WordPress instance locally in Docker via https://lokl.dev/ and pay only for the static site costs, which are usually laughably small. If you want managed hosting, there are proprietary options like HardyPess and Strattic. Or you can use any commodity host and install WP2Static. I'm developing a low-cost ($10-15/mo) WP2Static-based hosting service at https://app.staticweb.io that should be very easy to get started with, but we haven't quite gotten ready to launch yet. The servers work great, but we don't yet have a support ticket system set up. If you want to try it and need support, you can just email me at john@app.staticweb.io without the "app.". Even if you don't try it, feel free to email with any questions about WP2Static.

The only hitch is that the site seems very large. Some people report slowness with WP2Static crawls, but all the sites I've tried have been fine, so YMMV. I've done some work in an addon[0] to support incremental crawling, but it needs a bit more love to make sure it's reliable. I lack a slow site to test it on and fine-tune it.

[0] https://github.com/leonstafford/wp2static-addon-advanced-cra...

TIL Lokl. Only ten stars yet but a nice concept for sure. Thanks for the knowledge drop John. If moving back to static is in the cards, I may take you up on your offer. Cheers.

you said " I'm developing a low-cost ($10-15/mo)" but on your website below the cost is insane.

from your website

$250 Per Month 1 Website Weekly Blog Posts Weekly Social Posts SEC Compliance Accessibility Compliance Privacy Compliance Annual Website Facelift 24/7 Support

alternative to your website would be just to use HTTrack, and copy your site and host on skynet or pinata.cloud for completely $free

That $250 plan is specifically for Registered Investment Advisor websites which are heavily regulated and have special requirements. We haven't officially launched yet and haven't published the final plans, but the basic plan for normal websites will be around $10-15/mo.

You can certainly use HTTrack or just set up WP2Static yourself. https://statically.io/ is very nice too. If the website is managed by only a single person who has technical skills, then I would recommend WP2Static on https://lokl.dev. You can probably deploy for free to Netlify or AWS free tier. But if you need access by multiple people, convenience, or any kind of support, then our service can be very valuable.

I would really like to have a stupidly low cost plan that would just be a no-brainer to use all the time, but unfortunately the way WordPress is designed makes it extraordinarily difficult to bring costs down enough. Each site has to be a separate WordPress instance, and we can't host WordPress instances for free. We are considering having a free deployment option for people that just want to run WordPress locally.

If I were in your shoes, I'd move to Kinsta[0], Pressable[1], or some other reputable managed WordPress host. Most hosting providers should have pricing between $50 and $100/month for a site with that amount of traffic.

If you want to save some money, you might go with SpinupWP[2] and hook that up to a VPS. It's a bit more sysadmin-ish than managed hosting, but performs very well.

[0] https://kinsta.com/

[1] https://pressable.com/ Disclosure: I work for their parent company, Automattic.

[2] https://spinupwp.com/

I'll check these out but I disagree visitor count should have much bearing on cost for a mostly presentational site. Pantheon took away the Redis object cache I installed on that site when they bumped it from $25 to $40—like planned obsolescence. I'd rather self-host with Plesk or on K8s before ever paying $50–100 for something I know I could probably run myself on a $5–10 VPS.[0]

[0]: https://habd.as/talk/screaming-fast-wordpress-sites/

> I disagree visitor count should have much bearing on cost for a mostly presentational site.

Well, yes, I didn't say that it should. :) I just mentioned it because a lot of WordPress hosts (including Kinsta and Pressable) use monthly visitor count as a sort of proxy for resource usage, and therefore as a basis for your plan's monthly cost.

If you want something super cheap and don't mind putting some time into the setup, I'd follow SpinupWP's setup guide[0]. It basically shows you how to manually do what their paid service does for you: configure a bare VPS to be a high-performance WordPress server.

Your total cost would whatever VPS you need, plus additional time for maintenance, updates, etc. that a managed host would normally take care of. You might also need to pay for an external email service, e.g. Postmark or Amazon SES.

[0] https://spinupwp.com/hosting-wordpress-setup-secure-virtual-...

that is really greedy of Pantheon, how to escape Pantheon.

i would run it like this, WP2static, generate the blog,

upload to a free ipfs, unlimited bandwidth , these days they provide upto 2gb free hosting, for static files this is lots of power. upload and hook the ipfs hash to your domain.

ipfs could be used with many public gateways, so you could make a forward the user to another cdn.yourdomain.com easily

alternatives is to use, the sia > skynet hosting which is free. and is extremely fast

Thanks for the creative solve. The first iteration of this site was static and the issue there was CloudCannon not scaling for his gang history media gallery, which has grown to 15GB. Regardless I'll keep this in consideration as an escape hatch as Dec 1 is coming up quick and we were just notified by Pantheon.

You can host with Wordpress.com?

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