When first starting out you just need to get your website online, so you most likely opt for a cheap shared hosting package and don’t look back.
After some time when you’ve grown successful and you have an audience you ought to upgrade to a managed solution as you may not realise but your website is probably slow and annoying for your visitors. Not only that but it may be directly hurting your bottom line.
Seeming as most people leave a website after it has taken more than 3 seconds to load and do not return, it would make sense to review your hosting to ensure that your website has a better chance of being seen, allowing it to grow and give you a better return on your investment.
Choosing the right WordPress hosting is quite a challenging task yet a crucial component to achieving success with your WordPress website.
For beginners, web hosting is a service that allows organisations and individuals to publish their websites on the web. And true enough, a lot of web developers get lost in this process due to a lot of factors to weigh in.
However, when planned properly, having the best WordPress hosting that suits your needs can help you get better visibility on the web, and ultimately, help you reach your online goals.
In this post, we will review and compare the different types of hosting platforms – shared, reseller, managed, VPS, cloud, and dedicated – to help identify which will work best for your business needs and at the same time provide a quality experience for your visitors.
Its cheap price and no-frills packages offered by providers make shared hosting the most popular option for those who wants to deploy their website almost immediately. Despite that, it might not be the best option if you are after security and performance for your website. Why?
Shared hosting works by allowing many users to run their websites on a single server- hence the name.
Because all websites share the same resources of a single server – hard drive space, memory, processor speed and bandwidth – there is a high probability that the websites under this hosting platform will load slowly and potentially jeopardise each other from a security perspective.
- Security – There is no assurance that all the users occupying the same server as yours are implementing proper security measures on their websites. If someone breaches one of these websites, then your own website can also be put at risk.
- Moreover, since you all share the same IP address, if these websites do something that is unethical or illegal then your website can get penalised as well.
- Limited Resources – When these websites start experiencing issues or receive a massive spike in traffic, they will start taking up more resources, which can immensely affect the performance of your website and can lead to the loss of your audience and clients.
- Restricted Customisation – You are limited to running WordPress through its default configuration, and often are not allowed to modify the system files to tweak the performance of your hosting account.
- Price Range: £5 – £15/month.
That said, aside from being a great option for those who are on a tight budget, shared hosting works best for housing sites that are still under development, websites where the loading time will not be a huge issue, and personal websites that are just for fun, or for when you’re only just starting out.
Basically, reseller hosting is a type of hosting platform that allows you to resell your hosting space to other companies on behalf of your provider.
This is becoming a popular option for web developers who want to have an additional source of income aside from managing their own websites.
Compared to shared hosting, this option provides greater control over your hosting account (via a Web Host Manager control panel) and often comes with billing software to help you invoice clients, as well as other bonuses like free website templates, technical support for your clients, and private name servers.
- It provides more control and other perks than shared hosting.
- You can earn more revenue from your reseller hosting clients
- You can save more if you purchase from a highly recommended reseller-hosting provider.
- A customisable control panel for you and your clients.
- Price Range: £10 – £30/month depending on features and resource limits.
On the flip side, having a reseller hosting account means that your services are limited. If anything goes wrong with your upstream provider, you will also suffer the same thing as well as your clients.
3. VPS – Virtual Private Server
This type of hosting platform is still a shared hosting environment, but the ways things are shared are extremely different.
Like with shared hosting, there is only one physical server that you have to share with other users. However, a VPS is divided into multiple sections that each user has exclusive access to.
Since VPS’ are offered at a much higher price, there will not be as many customers compared to shared hosting.
Under this platform, you are given a portion of all server resources. For instance, if you will use 10% of the resources, then you will be given 10% of the RAM, 10% of the available hard drive space, 10% of the processor capability, etc.
- Less expensive than dedicated server
- Plans are scalable to match your changing business needs
- Provides more control over your virtual server than you get with shared hosting
- Same level of technical support as with shared hosting
- Price Range: £25 – £50/month depending on the guaranteed resources you get.
Cloud hosting is a new kind of hosting technology that allows you to utilise the resources of a network of servers. This network is composed of individual servers that are connected with each other, making it one giant server that can be augmented further if the demand increases.
The major advantage of using cloud hosting is that it can handle a huge amount of website traffic without sacrificing the performance of your website.
- Many hosting plans are flexible to suit your website’s needs
- More control over the environment such as the operating system and configuration
- Easy to adjust resources or duplicate an image to other instances
- Price Range: Almost all providers follow a pay-for-what-you-use pricing structure.
Dedicated hosting works exactly as its name implies: you own your own machine or rent a single server from a hosting company, which you can have full control over if you want to. You can also lease a portion of your server to other companies if you want to generate other income.
With a dedicated server, you have full control of all the resources, so you don’t have to worry about other websites which can slow down your website.
- Less expensive to lease than managed hosting
- You have more freedom and control over the server
- Provides a smooth, fast and reliable service to your visitors
- Price Range: £100 – £500/month and up
When using this platform, you should also consider the cost of hiring a system administrator to take care of the technical details. Another downside is when there is a hardware failure. Unlike Cloud, which has other memory modules that take over in case of a system failure, it might take a while before you can get back up and running.
Managed hosting is basically an extension of vps, cloud or dedicated hosting but is targeted to companies who want to delegate the day-to-day management and maintenance of the servers to the hosting provider rather than by themselves.
Aside from managing the servers, the hosting provider will also keep the WordPress installation up-to-date, which helps protect the website against any security threats that could potentially steal important information and damage the business and its clients.
- Active server monitoring to spot any potential failures
- Security often includes virus scanning, spam filtering, firewall configuration and operating system updates
- WordPress will always be up-to-date thus improving the overall WordPress experience.
- Various speed optimisation tools like caching plugins and content delivery networks will be implemented by the hosting provider.
- Many hosting providers conduct a daily backup service.
Choosing a managed service requires additional investment on your part, but it also brings numerous advantages to your business such as a reduced cost of operation and more effective use of your business resources.
Selecting the Right Hosting for Your Website
These web-hosting platforms all have their own pros and cons, which you must weigh carefully to pick the one, that works best for your needs and your clients. In the end, picking the right web hosting platform is just one of the crucial steps to achieve success in your journey within today’s digital age.
Other factors that can cause a website to lack in performance such as using an off-the-shelf theme or having an image-heavy website, however ensuring that your website has good hosting foundations would be the first place to start when wanting to optimise it.
A lot of people don’t even realise, or they choose to ignore the fact that there are different types of hosting – this is all rather technical so it tends to be something that gets put to the back of the to-do list never to resurface again.
Developers may want to host clients’ websites to make extra income, or perhaps they just want to ensure that their clients have the best possible hosting to provide a better chance of succeeding with their online investment.
Developers can either outsource it to enable them to focus on new projects, or they can host themselves with a reseller account or their own servers – hosting your own servers comes with a learning curve of ensuring everything is up to spec and maintained for security and performance reasons.
Knowing how to set up and maintain servers is valuable knowledge to have but you must ensure that it is the path you want to follow as it is no easy task – say if your business is built around providing new websites then having to look after servers could distract and take your time away from where it’s really needed.
For businesses that have an internal IT department with sound knowledge in hosting WordPress websites, they will either want to have a server they can access but with another company looking after the day-to-day maintenance, or they will want to do everything in-house – either way it would be good to have at least a VPS or even a dedicated solution depending on the size and number of websites they have and how important the performance is to them – whether that is a managed solution or not.
These are just some of the scenarios we have encountered. Like most, we started out many years ago with a cheap and nasty shared hosting service, but then we upgraded to a VPS with a control panel in order to host our clients websites alongside our own website.
As our business and our experience grew we started to provide dedicated cloud servers and fine-tune them for WordPress. We now use cloud servers specifically for hosting WordPress websites with security and performance in mind.
In our opinion typical shared hosting should only be used when testing out an idea, once proved successful it should move on to a cloud or dedicated solution – either of these will host multiple or large websites and can be configured to do a really good job.
Unless you have a business that provides hosting we would recommend a managed solution so you can focus on your business and leave the tedious technical tasks to the professionals that do it day-in, day-out (the sort of people that enjoy setting up, configuring, and maintaining hosting for others).
At Newt Labs we host our website and our client’s websites using state-of-the-art cloud servers, which are configured for the security and performance of WordPress websites. The flexibility of the cloud allows us to easily scale and migrate as needed and the level of control allows us to provide the best environment for fast and reliable websites, which can handle traffic spikes and more.
Different Types of Hosting for Your WordPress Website (Infographic)
In order for you to see what’s best suited for your business, we’ve put together the below infographic which gives you an overview of the different kinds of hosting alongside the pros and cons surrounding them.
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