Why I’ve switched (mostly) from ManageWP to InfiniteWP

Managing a lot of different WordPress sites can be a daunting prospect. I don’t have nearly as many sites as lots of marketers and yet I still always used to struggle with keeping up to date with WordPress, Plugin and Theme updates.

managewp vs infinitewp

 

InfiniteWP and ManageWP [affiliate link] are both applications that take away a lot of the hard work of managing your WordPress sites.  You don’t have to log in to each admin to check for updates; with each service they’re all managed from central control panel.

In this article I’m going to discuss the similarities and differences between the 2 services and tell you why, while I’m signed up to both services, InfiniteWP is now my “go to” WordPress utility.

Free features

Both services offer a range of features for free.  This table gives a summary of what each service offers.

ManageWP InfiniteWP
Number of sites 5 Infinite
Location On ManageWP servers Installed locally
Manage Comments Yes No
Create Backups No Yes
Manage table overhead Yes No
Manage Post Revisions Yes No
Page View Stats Yes No

As you can see, ManageWP has the greater range of features available on the free service, though InfiniteWP offer backups (a key feature) for free.

Premium Features

Both services have a wide range of premium features:

ManageWP InfiniteWP
Manage Comments In free version Yes
Create Backups Standard In free version
Manage table overhead In free version Yes
Manage Post Revisions In free version Yes
Uptime Monitor Business Yes
Malware / security Scanner In free version Yes
Scheduled Backups Professional Yes
Manage Users Professional Yes
Google Analytics Professional Yes
Mobile access Standard via mobile browser not app
Client Branding Professional Yes

 

Pricing Model

In general these two WordPress management systems offer similar features.  So the pricing of the premium features becomes important in your decision.

Infinite WP

You can manage as many sites as you want to for free using the basic free features.

When you need access to a premium function you purchase the plugin for between $49 and $99.  It is then available for every site you manage. As examples, at the time of writing the following prices applied to some desirable plugins:

  • WP Maintenance (remove spam comments, post revisions and table overheads) – £49
  • Manage Comments (View, approve, trash, mark as spam) – $49
  • Publish pages, posts and links – $69

Manage WP

With ManageWP you pay on a monthly or annual basis to use the premium features.  The amount you pay depends on which features you use (there are Standard, Professional or Business packages offering different levels of service) and on the number of sites you wish to manage.

As examples:

  • Standard package, 10 websites costs $75.60 for 1 year
  • Standard package, 25 websites costs $162.00 for 1 year
  • Professional Package, 25 websites costs $486.00 for 1 year
  • Business Package, 25 websites costs $972.00 for 1 year

As you go into the higher levels of service, or start adding more websites the costs go up and up.

Other factors

Security

I trust both are pretty secure.  They use API keys to access your sites via a worker plugin.

But you have to bear in mind that both services are providing an alternative access  point to your WordPress admin.  This clearly introduces an extra security vulnerability to your websites.  In fact by having a single access point to all of your websites covered by one password you have a security concern.

Certainly for this situation you must be wary of the risks and take steps to lower the chance of your sites being compromised.

In this, as in many online services I would recommend using a very secure password for your dashboard, containing 12 random characters including alphanumeric and symbols.

Usability/Interface

Having used both services, ManageWP probably just edges it in terms of style and usability.  Their dashboard is pretty clear, and after a short while you get used to where to find the functions.

managewp screenshot

To be fair, InfiniteWP is also easy to use and reasonably intuitive. I just think ManageWP is a little bit ….nicer…. to use. But not so much to make it a factor in deciding which to choose.

infinitewp screenshot

Ingenuity/Credit where it’s due

As far as I understand, ManageWP came first and was responsible for a lot of the development of this type of program.  For this they should be given a lot of credit.

They also seem to be at the forefront of developing new modules and features for multi-site WordPress management.

Conclusions

When it comes down to it, which of these great services is best for you depends on the number of sites you need to monitor and which of the premium services you will use.

It’s fair to say that everyone wants to get as much as possible for free and you can get a lot of what you need without paying for either service.

My current setup is that I use the free version of Infinite WP for all my sites.  If I decide I need plugins upgrades they are cheap to install and will cover all my sites.

I also use the free version of ManageWP for my busier sites where there are more comments that I can handle direct from the ManageWP dashboard but I don’t really log in to ManageWP very often now.

And when I get  to the stage I need to use this feature for more than 5 sites I will probably purchase the InfiniteWP plugin rather than pay for more sites in ManageWP.

But that’s just me. If you have any better insight into these great tools please comment below.

 

About Tim Elliott

Been working in the online world for well over a decade. Still learning.

8 Responses to Why I’ve switched (mostly) from ManageWP to InfiniteWP

  1. James Mowery 13/09/2013 at 4:30 am #

    Hi Tim,

    I’m James Mowery, CEO of ManageWP. I wanted to thank you for writing this excellent and well-written review.

    First thing I wanted to address was this comment: “As you go into the higher levels of service, or start adding more websites the costs go up and up.” I wanted to counteract that with the fact that the more sites you add, the cost-per-website amount actually goes down.

    Pricing, with biennial pre-payment on our Standard plan, starts at $0.56 per site per month, and the more sites you add, the lower that price drops — all the way down to $0.11 per site (admittedly, this is for high-end customers, but I just wanted to emphasize that our pricing model is built to scale). I understand that you were saying that the overall cost increases with more sites, but I also wanted to emphasize that the value the user is receiving is also increasing to reflect this.

    The other thing I’d like to point out is that ManageWP employees nearly two dozen full-time, hard working, fully dedicated employees that provides the absolutely highest level of support to every customer — regardless of whether you have 5 sites or 5,000 WordPress sites. We respond to inquiries, on average, within 30 minutes, and we have an incredible group of knowledgable WordPress experts, in a centralized office, ready to go to handle any issues that come up. We employee full-time, 24/7, support, so that our customers know that any potential issue will be addressed. I’m happy to say that our customers constantly rave about our support team on Twitter, so we take pride in this, and it’s something I feel you should have hit on in this review, because that’s a huge part of the ManageWP experience.

    Furthermore, ManageWP utilizes a business model that ensures that our service will be around for a very long time. We provide an excellent level of support while also constantly building out our feature set. This allows us to innovate in ways that other companies cannot and will not.

    I very much appreciate the fact that you acknowledged that ManageWP was the first to enter and create this market. We take pride in this, and we want to take care to not only keep WordPress management stable and easy — we also want to push the limits, and take it to the next level. The money that our customers entrusts us with goes towards funding the salaries of full-time developers, full-time support staff, and towards the development and improvement of WordPress management.

    We also do our part to support the WordPress community. We love WordPress, and we’re always contributing back — whether it be from our well-respected community blog, our sponsorships at WordCamps, WordPress Community Summit, and even stepping a bit outside of the realm and sponsoring PressNomics.

    We hope ManageWP provides an incredible experience, and I just wanted to share the aforementioned with your readers, as we work really hard to provide an experience like no other, and we really do take pride in our work. And if there’s ever any suggestions you might have, please feel free to send those to me directly.

    Tim: thanks so much again for writing this review. We hope that for anyone who desires a solid user experience and who appreciate a dedicated development and support staff, which is also driven to help our customers achieve happiness in automating their WordPress management, will give ManageWP a try. We offer a no-questions-asked money-back guarantee, so there’s absolutely no risk on the users’ part.

    Thanks!

    • Tim Elliott 17/09/2013 at 10:16 pm #

      Hi James
      Thanks for your reply. It’s great to hear from you and the reasoning behind your business model. I think ManageWP is a great piece of software and I fully understand the need to keep the money coming in; so you can continue to pay your employees to innovate and keep the software ahead of the competition.

      For someone like me running a few (but more than 5) hobby sites that aren’t really there to make money I still think Infinite WP is the sensible option. On the other hand I can certainly see that someone running several WordPress sites as a way to make their main income, whether their own sites or clients’ sites, would probably choose Manage WP. It’s all down to budget and preference.

      It’s great to have your input though so thanks for commenting.

  2. Anthony 17/09/2013 at 2:19 pm #

    I’m in the process of evaluating InfiniteWP right now. So far I can tell this has been a justified comparison.

    One point though: ManageWP was not, in fact, the 1st to “create” the market for central management of distributed WordPress websites. At least 2 years before the ManageWP even existed (in public), there were several payed services of this type within the Internet Marketing community. ManageWP may be a better solution than those (it is), but not by far the fist of its kind.

    • Tim Elliott 17/09/2013 at 10:23 pm #

      Hi Anthony,
      Thanks for commenting. Yes, I’m sure there were some front runners that entered the market earlier than ManageWP. I’m not sure which though so it would be interesting to hear which ones were there first, and whether they are still around.

  3. JHouse 26/10/2013 at 3:14 am #

    First of all, thanks for the detailed review, I specifically was looking for a ManageWP vs InfiniteWP article.

    My biggest question/concern now is usability. I have a client that wants to launch 3 similar sites (from the original), is this something they can do themselves simply (cloning sites) with either solution, or does it require more of a web head? I’m all about keeping it super simple for the client, so again, usability is ultra important. Your thoughts?

    Thanks again for the solid article and to James for the detailed response.

    Peace.

    • Tim Elliott 27/10/2013 at 7:06 pm #

      Hello,
      You can certainly clone plugins and themes between sites with both services. I’m not sure you can actually clone the settings across the sites though. The best thing to do is to install both and have a play…

  4. Have you had any issues with InfiniteWP becoming unresponsive?

    I passed about 40 sites and the software will no longer work unless I manually clear out the history and site_stats tables.

    To keep it working, I can only refresh one website at a time or everything stops working.

    Their support has been TERRIBLE. I started talking to them over a month ago and they have responded every 4 or 5 days.

    Twice they have told me the issue was fixed and nothing had changed.

    How many sites do you manage on your instance of IWP?

    • Tim Elliott 10/12/2013 at 10:58 pm #

      Hi Ellis

      Thanks for your comment. I don’t run that many WordPress sites through ManageWP. Closer to 30 I’d say. I’ve never had any trouble myself, but would be interested to hear if anyone else has similar issues.

      Maybe if you’re running 40 sites you do need to make that investment to run them on ManageWP instead.

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