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WPMU DEV Review

WPMU DEV has come a long way since since its start as a Multisite resource site back when Multisite was even called Multiuser! These days the site is largest WordPress premium plugin and support provider on the web, with in excess of 140 plugins, over 300,000 members and a staff of 50 people. So how does a site like this grow to provide that much code and help that many members? And, more importantly how well does it do it? This WP Mayor review seeks to find out the answer to that!

WPMU DEV has come a long way since its start as a Multisite resource site back when Multisite was even called Multiuser!

These days the site is the largest WordPress premium plugin and support provider on the web, having in excess of 140 plugins, over 300,000 members and a staff of 50 people.

So how does a site like this grow to provide that much code and help that many members? And, more importantly how well does it do it? This WP Mayor review seeks to find out the answer to that!

How many Plugins?

One of the reasons WPMU DEV has so many plugins is that they have, well, just been around for the longest.

Incsub, the parent company of WPMU DEV started out as ‘Incorporated Subversion’ before WordPress itself back in 2003, Edublogs (the sister company) in 2004 and WPMU DEV in 2006, making it by far the most established WordPress premium provider on the web… and it tells in the sheer number of plugins they have.

In fact it’s 140+ and counting at this moment, ranging from eCommerce and online business to Multisite, BuddyPress and a bunch more besides.

But according to CEO & Co-Founder James Farmer, it’s not the number of plugins that count, it’s the quality:

“Because we’ve been around for so long, gone through so many WordPress releases and have so many, rightly, demanding members – we pride ourselves on quality, secure, stable and rigorously tested code… we don’t think you’ll get a better product anywhere else on the web’.

Is there a way to test this out though?

Absolutely, because WPMU DEV is also very much into the WordPress spirit, not only are all of their plugins 100% GPL but they are also all about ‘giving back’, as of the publication of this article they have 17 free plugins over at WordPress.org, with well over 1.5 million downloads!!!

So you can go and try out any of those plugins to see what users make of WPMU DEV, or even better take a look at some of their (many) 5 star reviews!

wpmu-dev-review-001

Under an hour support for any WordPress issue? Really?

One of the biggest things that WPMU DEV has become know for is their support.

Not only are they pretty much the only WordPress providers to offer multiple live support sessions per day, but they also boast under-an-hour response times and a dedicated team of full time support staff for their regular Q&A / Forum based support.

But what I find really really cool is that you don’t have to take their word for it, you don’t even have to take mine, just go and take a look at their support right now, live, and as it happens.

wpmu-dev-review-003

Yep, WPMU DEV offer all their support (except confidential or private information) all live and in public.

What’s more the WPMU DEV dashboard plugin, which ships with every install, even allows you to grant access for support staff to get into your site and fix up issues for you, there and then!

You can find out more about their support options here.

And here’s the extra crazy thing, their support isn’t even limited to WPMU DEV products, they’ll literally offer you support for any WordPress issue at all, even with competitors products. Nuts!

Well, first up let’s ask the internet what they think about WPMU DEV

Of course, any review is going to be prejudiced one way or another, so the best place to start is to look at the internet.

First up you can take a look at their Nice Reply scorecard (NiceReply allows customers to anonymously rate service or staff they are dealing with), and at the time of writing that’s looking pretty good:

wpmu-dev-review-005

Then there’s third party platforms like Web Of Trust, who rate the site based on User reviews, security levels and security. You can check out all WPMU DEV reviews on WOT here or review the snapshot below:

wpmu-dev-review-007

You can see an equally impressive set of reviews on Webutation.

And last but not least, as I mentioned before, there’s the fact that WPMU DEV does all their support in public!!!

Yep, you can go and review how well they support their members (or not) as it happens, just click here to roll over to their support area and have a browse – we did, and it was pretty incredibly busy over there.

So we asked them if they had any feedback from their users, and needless to say it turns out they do – as a member you can leave feedback rating every staff reply, here’s a weeks worth of feedback with the users obscured for privacy (and I can confirm that it’s authentic too, they said they are planning on making all of this public very soon too).

supportreport

I was truly impressed with their openness, never have I encountered a WordPress company that has been so transparent with us in telling us how things work internally.

So, in conclusion…

It’s only fair to say that when it comes to pricing WPMU DEV isn’t the cheapest option on the planet.

If you’re looking for free plugins and support, you’re much better off using WordPres.org (hey, you can always try their stuff there too) and finding what you can through Google.

But if you’re prepared to hand over a bit of cash (right now they have a new member discount on that makes a months membership work out at less than $20 for the first year), and are looking for the Swiss Army Knife of WordPress, they are definitely worth having a good look at.

In short, we reckon WPMU DEV is an essential part of any serious WordPress site owners or developers toolkit… they’ll pay for themselves in a matter of days and give you peace of mind and security for the lifetime of your membership (and beyond!).

Find out more, and hopefully snag that 60% discount for new members (if it’s still on), here.

Jean Galea
Jean Galea
Jean Galea is an investor, entrepreneur, and blogger. He is the founder of WP Mayor, the plugins WP RSS Aggregator and Spotlight, as well as the Mastermind.fm podcast. His personal blog can be found at jeangalea.com.

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18 Responses

  1. I’d like to see a professional code auditor give a review of wordpress as a whole & all other plugins too. Do you know of any such people?

    It’s all open source, so if anyone wants to try, go ahead. I’m sure the wordpress core team & WPMU DEV team would welcome any info from professional code auditors to inspect their code & offer improvements.

    Who’s going to pay them for the auditing?

    1. That’s an excellent suggestion. My bet is that we will see plugin development companies go for code audits on a regular basis during the coming year or two. Eventually it will be standard procedure. Yoast started the trend by partnering with Sucuri, who review their code for security hardening. StudioPress (they do themes not plugins) also have their work audited by core WordPress developers.

      With regards to WordPress itself, there are already a lot of clever people working and supervising the WordPress code, some of them security experts themselves, however it’s also an interesting suggestion that’s worth looking into.

  2. The most unprofessional bunch of retards with attitudes works here,support sucks,99% plugins are buggy, their themes are not worth even displaying as a professional design layout ;we’re considering suing them over false advertisement and cost of losses that we incurred while relying on their buggy plugins and understatements

  3. We’ve been customers for several years, and have found that almost all of their plugins and themes are virtually useless. They either don’t work as advertised, are so limited in functionality as to be trivial; or are blunt-force instruments.

    Most recently, their newly unveiled “Membership 2 Pro” doesn’t work with https so members can’t log in. And their jpeg compression program (Smush) returns something around 9% compression — even with the “Super” version checked off.

    And don’t get me started on their new line of obfuscated “builder” themes. I cannot imagine turning any of these over to my users, when Divi or Make are available.

    Which ones work? Ultimate Branding, Recent Comments/Comment Indexer.

    1. Hi Tom, how come you remained a customer for several years? I’m interested in what made you stay with WPMUdev since you’re obviously unhappy with their plugins.

      1. There are a few that fulfill a need, so we keep up a subscription so that we get updates.

  4. I paid the exorbitant member price for 3 months, thinking I could build a solid membership site with their stuff. Unfortunately their software isn’t an ecosystem as much as a collection of disparate plugins that don’t play particularly well with each other. Some are in active development, some are effectively abandonware, and it’s impossible to tell which is which. Support is friendly and responds quickly at first, but when you start actually getting into the meat of the issue they either “pass the issue off to a developer” who never responds, or just abandon the thread entirely.

    I tried to cancel my subscription, and I had to go through four screens, two popups and a system dialog begging me not to cancel.

    To top it all off, I was autobilled for 3 months worth of membership the same week I tried to cancel, so I emailed (politely) to see if they could resolve the issue. Instead of just canceling my account and issuing a refund, they demanded a reason first, and got angry and defensive when I gave them one. I’m literally emailing with a guy right now who is going point by point over my entire support request history and explaining how each issue I’ve had was my fault.

    Probably the worst experience with a software company I’ve ever had.

  5. Those people at wpmu are a bunch stupids Im been almost 3 days trying to contact their support and i got no answer from them, I bought the synchronization plugin and it sucks it does not do what they promise. its been a nightmare. any one who write positive reviews must be affiliate.

  6. When i first started with wpmudev i found thier google maps plugin to be flexible and matched my needs. Their team was helpful in addressing some bugs and a couple of their programmers are very skilled.

    A year later and after trying a number of thier plugins and having a difficult time with finding value i do not beleive i will renew with their black friday offer.

    I wanted a community to help me become a better wp dev but too often their core support team just panders to users hoping the issue will just go away. I am sure its difficult keeping so many customers happy, so i respect their plight, but if i have a technical question about a plugin i am developing and their response is “it’s difficult so we dont recommend it.” i am thinking what?

    They better do something to improve their reputation because getting new customers i harder than keeping existing. Eventually they will run out of newbs to woo…or will they?

    Previous customer.

  7. I must say that I am extremely displeased with WPMU. Here are the problems I’ve had:

    1. MANY plugins are loaded with bugs, so DO NOT TRUST the features list unless you install the plugin and test EVERY FEATURE YOU NEED.

    2. When you find bugs, they put them on a list and then tell you that they will fix the bug when they get around to it, based on THEIR priorities. On thing I can guarantee: If you have a project with a deadline, the bugs will NOT be fixed in time for you to meet it. You are far better off abandoning the WPMU plugin and finding another one elsewhere.

    3. They are good at giving simple support such as some CSS or JavaScript to do something, but if you submit a technical support “question” they will respond very quickly with an off the cuff answer that won’t solve your problem, or they will ask you a question and throw it back to you. The problem is that no matter how quickly you respond to their request, more often then not, you will wait for days or weeks to get a follow-up response and even then, you may have to open another support question or go to their live support to beg them to follow up.

    I don’t think they’re bad people. I think they simply have poor management and do not test their plugins properly before releasing them.

    The problem is that it really makes no difference whether they are incompetent, poorly managed, lazy, or just plain old scam artists – in the end, you cannot rely on WPMU if you have work that need to get done in a timely fashion.

  8. I have used WPMUDEV Professional for one year and I have been left exasperated by their incredibly bad service.

    They have a couple of great plugins, they also offer themes which for me look awful, but that’s not a compliant, because I wasn’t after themes from them.

    The main reason to subscribe to their services, in my opinion, is the prospect and promise of a support facility for when your WordPress website goes wrong. But unfortunately, that’s where they really go wrong too because the service they offer is truly awful.

    I’ve had several instances where I’ve required assistance including two emergency situations where they really let me down.

    To explain further, imagine you have a really important fault with your website that needs to be fixed fast because your website users are really affected and complaining to you constantly via email. You raise a support issue with WPMUDEV and you hear nothing for 24 hours. After that 24 hours someone comes back to you with a question – you answer it immediately but it’s another 24 hours before they respond with another question.

    If this is what you are looking for in a paid support service, then you will be happy, otherwise, you would get almost the same support from the WordPress Support forums for free. The only and important difference I should point out is WPMU DEV can log in to your website to investigate problems, they’ll just take as long as they like to get around to it.

    The concept of what they proffer is compelling from the support perspective but the service level they provide is simply dire. They offer you no turnaround times, no guarantee by when someone will respond to you.

    My hosting company @Siteground’ (whom I couldn’t recommend enough) resolved all of the issues that WPMUDEV didn’t promptly.

    I really recommend not using this company.

  9. A very informative article , it helped me in clearing my doubts about wpmu-dev . Bloggers like you help hundreds of new and budding bloggers like me to understand things and move ahead . Thank you very much for this useful article .

  10. Just wanted to add my voice and say this company is terrible. If you look through their own blogs at times when they pat themselves on the back for the level of support they offer, you’ll see in every single one a person putting a reality check on them.

    I’d say I was “biased” against them, but I’m pretty sure anyone who had a $600/yr membership cancelled for telling them that it’s unacceptable to blame customers for raising multiple questions on the same topic when they don’t provide a search feature for their support center would feel the same way.

  11. Horribly difficult to navigate their Hummingbird plugin. All sorts of problems. Would not recommend. Lots of cheerful Superheros cartoons images and graphics mask the fact that it is hard to understand or use easily.

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