If you’re considering using Rocket.net to host your WordPress site(s), our hands-on Rocket.net review will help you make the right decision.
Here at the Themeisle family, we recently moved most of our sites – including the one you’re reading right now – to Rocket.net hosting, so we obviously believe in its quality as a web host.
However, just because we use Rocket.net for our own sites, that doesn’t automatically mean it’s the best fit for your sites.
In our full Rocket.net review, we’ll explain more about what makes Rocket.net unique and analyze its features, performance, and UX so that you can make the right decision for your situation.
Here’s a quick summary of what we’ll cover:
📚 Table of contents:
What Rocket.net is 🧐
In a nutshell, Rocket.net is a managed WordPress host. So far, so good! However, there’s a lot more here that makes it stand out from the competition. We’ll get into specifics later on, but the main selling point is fast, managed hosting that’s built on top of a tight integration with Cloudflare Enterprise.
Rocket.net is also a fairly new WordPress host. Its CEO – Ben Gabler – has extensive experience in the hosting industry with HostGator, GoDaddy, and StackPath among others. Since 2020, he has worked on bringing high quality managed hosting to WordPress users.
Our first impressions of Rocket.net
As such, we like the general “vibe” of Rocket.net. It offers managed WordPress hosting that (spoiler alert) performs very well – even better than some existing companies in the space. Even though this shouldn’t matter too much, the branding is “on-point” and the whole experience feels solid and robust.
Again, we’ll come to specifics later, but we also like the host’s pricing model, core feature offerings, and thoughtful extras.
Why you’d want to choose Rocket.net over other hosts (pros and cons summary)
Before we get into the nitty-gritty of our Rocket.net review, it’s a good idea to give you a look at what you have coming. Rocket.net is a fantastic host, and there are reasons to choose it over other providers.
- The host is objectively fast, especially in hard to reach areas such as Asia. A lot of this comes from how Rocket.net has integrated Cloudflare Enterprise into its tech stack, so that you’re able to cache your site’s full pages on Cloudflare’s global network.
- Its custom site control panel is easy to navigate and use. Most of your options have availability in one or two clicks. You also get some unique dashboard tools, such as WordPress activity logging and an in-browser WP-CLI terminal.
- Compared to other managed WordPress hosts, Rocket.net has a much higher monthly visit allowance. This can make it an excellent option for high-traffic sites that still want to benefit from managed WordPress hosting.
- You get all the managed WordPress hosting features that you’d expect, such as automatic backups, staging sites, expert WordPress support, and so on.
- The pricing is reasonable and competitive for the managed WordPress space. However, if you’re on a tight budget, you can find cheaper WordPress hosting with shared hosting – you just need to be ready to sacrifice some performance, features, and support quality.
- While Rocket.net’s monthly visit allowances are way above average, the other limits (mainly storage) are not as generous.
How Rocket.net compares to the competition 🤷🏻♀️
Quite often, you won’t consider a host in a vacuum. Instead, you’ll compare it to a few other hosts to gauge its standing – even if that is for your own whittling down.
Next up in this Rocket.net review, we have a quick comparison table for you, based on a few popular and similar WordPress hosting providers.
In this table, we compare the entry-level plan at three popular managed WordPress hosts, using the month-to-month rate.
|Storage||10 GB||10 GB||10 GB|
|Bandwidth||50 GB||100 GB CDN||50 GB|
On paper, you can see that Rocket.net will appeal to high-traffic sites, and potentially networks (as Rocket.net’s higher-tier plans also support more websites than those other hosts). Those traffic allowances are higher than the competition by far. In fact, they are ten times the amount that Kinsta and WP Engine offer on their entry-level plans.
If you have a high-traffic site, this can make Rocket.net a lot more affordable, without needing to sacrifice performance or features.
However, keep in mind that the limits on storage and bandwidth are much more in-line with the competition.
The nice thing, though, is that Rocket.net lets you pay overage fees for storage ($2 per GB) and bandwidth ($0.08 per GB), which means you can usually save money versus upgrading to a higher-tier plan.
Let’s dig into some of these further in the next section.
Rocket.net review: its features, performance, and cost
Let’s dig into the Rocket.net review proper. We’ll take a look at three vital areas of the managed WordPress host:
- Features and other offerings
Along the way, we’ll also talk about some other areas, such as support.
As such, you’ll have a well-rounded view of what Rocket.net provides. This will help you decide whether the host is right for you.
Key features ⚙️
One fantastic aspect of Rocket.net’s branding is how it can distill its core package down to straightforward language. We can do the same here! Note that the below list of features is available on any plan, which means your wealth (or lack thereof) doesn’t dictate what you have access to:
- You can choose from a number of pre-defined data centers, which means you can choose one closest to your core user base.
- Rocket.net fully caches your site’s pages on the global Cloudflare Enterprise network, which leads to excellent global load times. Rocket.net tries to serve 90% of pages from the Cloudflare cache whenever possible. This is called the “cache-hit ratio”.
- To speed things up further, the host gives you Brotli compression and built-in image optimization tools, also powered by Cloudflare.
- You have malware protection and two web application firewalls (WAF) to help lock up your site, security-wise. There’s one firewall at the network edge powered by Cloudflare and another on your origin server.
- Rocket.net automatically backs up your site’s data every day to keep it safe, and you can also manually create on-demand backups when needed.
- There’s full staging functionality that you can access with one click.
When it comes to managing sites, you have a sparse control panel that shows you only the elements you need to carry out crucial actions:
We found it straightforward to navigate around these pages. This is due to having quick ways to see the most relevant screens using the horizontal navigation bar.
For instance, you can see what themes and plugins your site runs without the need to log into your WordPress dashboard. You can even install new ones from the control panel:
There is also a possibility to access all of your security and advanced options in a minimal number of clicks:
The interface and layout helps you to jump into your site, make some administrative changes, then get out again. This is crucial if you run a site and have limited time to make those changes. On the whole, Rocket.net is fantastic here. None of that matters though if it can’t perform for end users.
Performance (including how it compares to others) 📈
We mention speed a lot during this Rocket.net review, as does the host itself in its branding messages. As such, you’d expect the host to basically be The Flash ⚡ in hosting form.
Fortunately, we have tests that will objectively place Rocket.net alongside the competition. We regularly test the best hosts from a number of locations and share the results with our readers.
Here’s a quick overview of how Rocket.net performs alongside Kinsta and WP Engine:
|US Load Time||0.43 s||0.95 s||1.16 s|
|EU Load Time||0.44 s||1.14 s||1.73 s|
|Asia Load Time||0.73 s||2.59 s||2.31 s|
As you can see, Rocket.net offers excellent global performance, with similarly fast response times in the USA, Europe, and Asia.
Again, Rocket.net is able to achieve this consistently fast global performance by caching your site’s full pages on the global Cloudflare Enterprise network.
Even for visits that Rocket.net isn’t able to serve from the cache, you’re still getting powerful origin hosting on Rocket.net’s custom cloud. You can also add your own caching plugin to ensure that any pages being served from the origin server are still benefiting from caching.
Rocket.net aims to achieve a cache-hit ratio of 90%, which means that 90% of your site’s visits will be served from Cloudflare whenever possible (a great thing for global performance!).
One aspect we want to touch on in this Rocket.net review is its pricing. For the end user, it’s clear, easy to understand, and consistent. By the last point, we mean that the host doesn’t partake in second-year price hikes and introductory pricing schemes.
This is good news, because you can budget for the long-term and know that the cost will stay the same over the contract period. There are four plans to choose from here:
- Starter ($30 per month). For your money, you get a single WordPress install, 10 GB of storage, 50 GB of bandwidth, and the capacity to serve 250,000 visitors per month.
- Pro ($60 per month). This nets you three WordPress installs, double the storage and bandwidth, and capacity for one million visitors.
- Business ($100 per month). Another ramp to your capacity here: 2.5 million visitors per month, 40 GB of storage, 300 GB bandwidth, and ten WordPress installs.
- Expert ($200 per month). The top tier gives you 25 WordPress installs to play with. You also get 50 GB of storage, 500 GB of bandwidth, and capacity for five million visitors.
So, while these prices seem large out of the gate, they’re competitive when it comes to other hosts’ renewal prices. Even better, you can trial any plan for $1 for the first month and take advantage of a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Note that there are also Agency and Enterprise tiers here, but the prices will be out of reach for most users. Plus, they scale up in the same way that the managed hosting tiers do.
We think Rocket.net has the right idea when it comes to capturing new users and retaining them with this model. Even for a single WordPress site, you have plenty of grunt under the hood.
Rocket.net review recap: Should you use it? 🤔
So, should you choose Rocket.net as your next WordPress host? In a bubble, the answer is a resounding: “Yes!” However, in reality, this decision has more nuance.
For instance, while the plans provide excellent value for the managed WordPress hosting space, none of that matters if $30 per month is already out of your budget. Instead, you’d be better off finding a cheaper host that still offers a sound set of features and functionality.
With a strong budget and only a handful of WordPress sites to host though, Rocket.net provides excellent value, muscular technology, zippy speed, and valuable extra functionality. It’s a winner in our book, and even features on our list of best web hosts available today.
Again, we moved most of our own sites to Rocket.net, so we’re putting our money where our mouth is, so to speak.
Try Rocket.net today 🚀
On the whole, Rocket.net is a fantastic host if you care about speed. It performs well, and comes with robust technical specifications. User feedback is top too, which makes Rocket.net a complete package.
While price might edge out some users, for those with the budget, you get immense value for money. The host regularly offers the first month for $1 too, so there’s almost no risk in trying out one of the most performant WordPress hosts around.
👉 If you want to compare our Rocket.net review to other options, check out some of our other hosting analyses:
Do you agree with our Rocket.net review, or is there a gap you can enlighten us about? Let us know in the comments section below!
4 Essential Steps to Speed Up
Your WordPress Website
Follow the simple steps in our 4-part mini series
and reduce your loading times by 50-80%. 🚀
Unique Cloudflare Enterprise integration
Above-average visitor limits
Pricing might rule out some users
Storage and bandwidth limits are average (not high like the visitor limit)