AccelerateWP is a WordPress optimization tool available for sysadmins and website owners. It allows users to find and troubleshoot performance issues at both the server and application levels for their WordPress websites. AccelerateWP can be enabled in CloudLinux Manager in WHM and accessed by end-users in the cPanel control panel. We’ve talked to Dennis Kittrell, VP Product – Hosting at CloudLinux, about the AccelerateWP project.
Can you tell us about AccelerateWP? What exactly is AccelerateWP used for?
AccelerateWP is a one-of-a-kind performance utility for WordPress. It’s unique because it harnesses the power of CloudLinux features such as PHP X-Ray to analyze each site. This process facilitates the generation of data-driven advice (we call SmartAdvice) to the website owner on how to improve the speed of their website. In most cases, this advice can be automatically deployed in a single click.
What are WordPress website owners’ most common mistakes that cause slower loading speeds?
The vast majority of user-caused performance issues are plugin-related – either conflicting plugins or a slow/buggy plugin. I wouldn’t necessarily call this a mistake, just a lack of information. And that’s really what sets AccelerateWP apart; we empower website owners with data about their website and help them act on that data.
CloudLinux is mostly known for its Linux distro and security products. How did you decide to create a product that focuses on WordPress?
At CloudLinux, we listen to our customers and our product direction is based on that market insight. We aim to solve the tough problems and fill the unfilled needs of the hosting community when it makes sense for us to do so. In this case, we identified an opportunity to help in a way that really no one else could. CloudLinux is in a unique position to take this data-driven, prescriptive solution approach to optimize the performance of WordPress websites, and 90% of the CMS websites running on CloudLinux are running WordPress – it just made sense.
What kind of advice can SmartAdvice provide? How accurate are the discovered issues and generated advice?
SmartAdvice is currently capable of generating advice to enable full page caching or image lazy loading, deployment of a dedicated Redis object cache instance, and much more coming soon.
Will the standard version always be free? Can you also inform us about pricing for the premium version?
Yes. The standard version will always be free (included with every CLOS Shared Pro server license). Hosting providers can offer it to their customers for free, bundle it into WordPress plans, or charge separately for it if they so choose. When the premium plan launches, it will be $1.20 per user per month, with a suggested retail price of $3.00.
What are the extra features that will be included in the premium edition?
Currently, the big value included with premium is Redis Object Cache – or more appropriately described as “dedicated Redis instance automation” because each user gets their own Redis instance. This correctly attributes resource usage to the customers who actually need and use the resources – optimizing the business model for the hosting provider..
When will the premium version be available?
The Premium edition is currently in beta, and we are expecting it to be production ready in January (though we are aiming for sooner). However, we will not be charging for premium usage until March of 2023 to give our customers time to build and properly launch their offering.
How can hosting service providers monetize the service?
The simplest (and recommended) monetization strategy would be to charge for premium services when advised and activated by end customers. Though we know many of our customers are preparing (or have already prepared) WordPress hosting plans that include our free features and others that include premium & free features, and that’s a great strategy as well. And, as mentioned above, nothing prevents a hosting provider from charging for the free features (at no cost from CloudLinux).
How can the Object Cache feature improve security for hosting service providers and website owners?
The security value really comes with the ability to deploy a unique, secure, Redis instance to each user (with the power of CageFS). Any shared Redis instance per server is a massive security risk and its one of the main reasons Redis Object Cache solutions can be so burdensome for hosting providers.
Will AccelerateWP be available as a standalone plugin in the WordPress store?
As of now, we do not have plans to publish our plugins in any official catalog as we don’t believe they would be any more valuable than many other plugins that are listed there. As mentioned above, the power of AccelerateWP is in the analysis, advice, and auto-deployment of a performance solution. Our performance enhancements, while quite powerful, are much more powerful when combined with data and automation.
Can you also tell us about AccelerateWP featured roadmap? What are your future plans?
Many great features are planned for both the free and premium editions and you can learn more about those at features.cloudlinux.com – we know many of our customers are most excited about the Critical CSS generation, Image Optimization, and Performance Analysis (before & after) utility. We have an exciting year full of rewarding work ahead of us! Stay tuned!