Hosting is an absolutely essential part of any online business. Without hosting there would be no way to actually access your site. However, choosing the right WordPress hosting can actually be a little daunting.
There are so many hosts to choose from and so many different hosting environments and packages. Plus, your host needs to be reliable, secure, fast, and can grow with your website. That’s no small order.
Two of the most common types of hosting you’ll find are shared and managed WordPress hosting. Below you’ll find a comparison of these two kinds of hosting, so you can make the best decision for you and your online business.
Overview of Shared and Managed WordPress Hosting
Two of the main hosting services you’ll come across are shared and managed hosting. Shared hosting will generally be the cheapest hosting option available to you, but with the low price there will be certain restrictions and drawbacks.
Managed WordPress hosting caters to website owners whose sites run on WordPress, and are looking for the highest performing host possible. This style of hosting is perfectly tailored and optimized to help you get the most juice out of your WordPress site.
Technically speaking, managed WordPress hosting is a superior hosting setup. But, both have their place, as you’ll see below.
What is Shared Hosting?
When you’re on a shared hosting plan your website is on the same server as dozens, and potentially hundreds, of other websites. Your site is using a partition of the server space.
Shared hosting accounts are generally the cheapest options, but that doesn’t mean it’ll be the best course choice for your business.
Sure, you’ll pay next to nothing to have your website live. But, there are a lot of risks that come with hosting your site on a cheap shared hosting plan and you could be setting your website up for failure.
For example, one well know issue with shared hosting is the “bad neighbor” effect. Since your site will be sharing resources with so many other websites, if one of those sites uses more than its share of server resources, then all the other sites on that server will take a hit, including your own.
Every aspect of your hosting, from bandwidth, to memory, to storage, and processing power, are all shared with these other sites. Shared hosting companies can attempt to delete the offending site, but this is a rarity, as there can be hundreds, even thousands, of sites sharing a single server.
If you’re a total beginner with a low budget for hosting, then shared hosting can be a great place to start. However, it’s a good idea to upgrade to managed WordPress hosting as soon as your budget allows.
What Is Managed WordPress Hosting?
Managed WordPress hosting caters to a very specific kind of website owner. It’s a style of hosting that offers highly-optimized WordPress servers, so you can get the best performance out of your site as possible. There are a number of advanced features that generally come equipped with managed WordPress servers too.
WordPress site owners who have high-traffic, resource-heavy website, need to utilize the power of a managed server if you want your site to perform properly. A shared hosting environment simply won’t cut it.
A lot of website owners decide to switch up to a WordPress managed hosting account due to the benefits we highlight below.
- Incredibly Fast Speeds
Image having a server environment that’s completely custom tailored to your specific website. Managed WordPress servers are optimized to run WordPress. This will help to reduce your page load time as low as possible.
Fast loading websites are better for your user experience and will rank higher in the search engines. Slow loading speeds can actually cost you business and cause your visitors to turn elsewhere.
- Can Grow With Your Site
If you’ve been on a shared hosting plan in the past and the traffic your site is receiving continues to grow, then you might have noticed a drop in performance. This is all too common.
Managed WordPress hosts are much better at server allocation, and will be able to determine if and when your site will need to upgrade to a better package. Plus, when your site does require greater server resources there will be no need to switch hosts or migrate your site. It can all be handled in house.
- Improved Site Security
Most shared hosts do perform certain security measures, but sometimes these broad sweeps aren’t enough. Managed WordPress hosting takes security measures to another level.
With managed WordPress hosting you’ll have you’ll have daily security and virus scans, plus increased protection from DDoS attacks, which can bring your website offline. Plus, most managed WordPress hosts have higher security protocols, as their hosting is built to fend off “WordPress only” vulnerabilities.
However, even if the unfortunate does occur and your site is attacked you’re much better off with a team of dedicated WordPress specialists on your side.
Are There Any Drawbacks to WordPress Managed Hosting?
Okay, so WordPress managed hosting sounds great. But, surely there have to be some drawbacks, right?
Like we alluded to above, managed hosting isn’t for everyone. For starters, it will be much more expensive than traditional shared hosting. The added value this kind of hosting provides does come with a cost.
Some managed WordPress hosting companies also limit the use of certain plugins. So, if your site requires a certain plugin to run, then you’ll need to find a working and supported alternative.
Which Type of Hosting Is Best for You?
It’s difficult to make a blanket recommendation about which kind of hosting is best for your website. It all depends upon the nature of your site, how large you’re looking to grow your site, and the performance you demand of it.
You have to ask yourself if the additional support, security, and performance are worth the added costs for your business at this time.
If you’re just getting started online and want to learn the ins and outs of hosting on your own, then a shared hosting package will be a good place to start. But, if you’re running a WordPress website and have the budget to upgrade your hosting package, then it’s a worthwhile investment to make.