Shared Hosting vs. VPS Hosting
We know about the paradox of choice. When there are lots of options, making a decision can be difficult and overwhelming. This is certainly the case with web hosting - there are so many providers, and so many kinds of hosting. You’ll need to look at several factors: expected traffic and resources needed, performance, security, server administration, scalability and pricing. That’s why we’ve compiled this post with information about shared hosting and hosting on virtual private servers (VPS) to ease the process and help you make the best decision for your needs and budget.
Shared hosting means that your site will share a server with other sites. This means you’ll have limited bandwidth, performance and administrative authority - but shared servers are typically more budget-friendly. A VPS is the next tier in hosting. More expensive than a shared server, a VPS still technically exists within a shared server, but the server is divided into virtual servers, which creates the effect of a dedicated server. This kind of hosting offers better performance and security, and greater ability for customization and control.
We’ll compare three key elements to help you choose between the two: performance, security and pricing.
Customers are used to fast-loading pages. If your site doesn’t load quickly enough, they might abandon ship, causing you to lose sales and clients. We can’t stress the importance of a high performing website. We already know that a VPS is a higher-performing server offering more bandwidth, but it might be unnecessary if your site is small or doesn’t use many resources, and if you don’t anticipate needing to scale up. Shared hosting has better, more reliable performance when your host offers technologies like SSDs, caching software or a CDN to speed things up. But other sites sharing the server could slow down your site’s performance. So if you don’t have significant performance demands and prefer doing minimal server maintenance, shared hosting makes more sense for your site and for your budget.
If you anticipate having heavy traffic on your site and prefer to have greater flexibility and control over your server, VPS is probably the way to go. VPS servers are also good for users managing multiple sites. Hire a dedicated system administrator to ensure your server runs smoothly, minimize downtime and manage traffic and general performance.
Without a decent security setup, websites could be exposed daily to a wide range of threats and malware that endanger users’ work and private information as well as that of their sites’ visitors and customers. Minimize the threat of an attack by choosing a hosting provider that prioritizes security.
As a more customizable server at a higher price point, there’s no comparison between VPS and shared servers - VPS servers simply provide more security features. Shared servers are significantly more budget-friendly, but more vulnerable simply because they are home to many websites. If one site suffers a security breach, it’s likely to have an impact on other sites that are housed in that server. This is where the hosting provider comes in. Some providers invest more resources, both in features and customer service, than others in ensuring that shared servers have high quality protection. A cheap plan might offer customer service to resolve basic issues like downtime, but not more complicated security problems. Or you may find shared plans without basic security features like an SSL certificate. Since VPS is a more premium server, clients who go this route tend to get access to specialized customer service and higher quality security capacities.
While VPS beats out shared hosting in security and performance, as expected, shared is the more economical of the two. Just like living in an apartment with roommates is cheaper than renting your own place, a shared server splits the costs of running and maintaining a server amongst everyone who uses it. For premium features and better performance at a higher price, VPS is your pick.
Choosing a type of hosting is about finding the best fit. Consider your needs and your budget - if they’re both limited, you’ll likely find that shared hosting is more than sufficient. So when should you choose shared hosting?
-You have a relatively small website or blog that doesn’t generate that much traffic
-You’re trying out hosting for the first time and don’t want to spend that much
-You are a small business owner not planning on any major expansions
-You’d like to launch a startup but are still in the planning phase
-You have a limited budget and can’t afford VPS
If you have a larger/expanding business that needs more capacity, bandwidth and scalability, VPS is a good fit. Choose VPS if:
-You already run a well-established, mid- to large-scale business.
-You have plans to expand your business significantly
-You want total control and prefer to manage the fine details of your server
-Your site generates a lot of traffic and has significant bandwidth and disk space needs
-You have sensitive information on your site and need maximum security
-You can afford VPS hosting!