Dedicated, VPS, Shared, or Cloud Hosting -Which is the Best Hosting for Your WordPress Site?
Choosing the right hosting providers for your WordPress site can boost user-experience. Besides, it increases your leads/sales dramatically. There are a variety of hosting solutions available now. Thus, you have the opportunity to figure out which one might be best for you. Also, you have the option to choose the perfect fit for your business needs.
Picking the right type of hosting is crucial. Reason being, Hosting is the underlying reason behind a successful website. Often overlooked, the hosting that you choose to back up your site with, can either make it or break it. But, based on experience, people usually consider Linux server as their best bet. Nonetheless, this is no longer the best option to choose for several other reasons. However, what happens when you do not have the right expertise to build that setup? Or, if you want to go for a more accessible option?
You choose to go with a hosting plan
However, you have the following options at your disposal:
- Shared Hosting
- VPS - virtual private server
- Dedicated Hosting
- Cloud hosting or a CDN – content delivery network!
A WordPress site works with all these hosting plans, one of the reasons why WordPress is awesome. Nonetheless, it is good to keep a particular project or need in mind. Because, some may work better than the others. However, before choosing a hosting plan, ensure you know their differences. The differences should get based on their strengths and weaknesses. Besides, they should include the wholesome performance parameters. For better understanding, let us discuss each of these hosting plans in details below. As a result, you can find the option that is perfect for your site’s particular needs.
The hosting plan in which the hosting company usually sets up the server. Also, it adds an account to it (one for every customer). Besides, they try to pack a server with as many customer accounts as possible. Shared Hosting is the name of the hosting plan. In shared hosting, every customer manages all their sites on their accounts. Also, every customer gets a tiny part of the server to use. Additionally, the customer needs to share the resources and space with others. Moreover, the part you get access to get limited.
With this hosting plan, you do not need to be a technical expert regarding site. Or, system admin. Reason being, if you face any trouble on shared hosting, you can quickly get the help of the hosting plan’s professional team. Also, they are proficient enough to handle just about any problem you may face.
The strong points of choosing shared hosting include the following;
- It is highly affordable, as low as $5/month
- The server maintenance and security is already managed for you
- Majority of the required tools are already installed
- In comparison to other options, it is easier to use and quick to start with.
Shared hosting is more straightforward. But, there are still some downsides to it. These disadvantages include the following;
- You get limited access to settings: Shared hosting offers no root access. Hence, you fail to access advanced settings or view hidden files. For instance, if you wish to test the site’s performance for traffic spikes. Or, if it runs out of memory (PHP), you cannot resolve this on your own.
- The crucial resources are shared: In this hosting plan, you share the server with many customers. Also, you share the resources with all of them. This includes the bandwidth. Thus, if the traffic on all sites of the server booms, it creates a bottleneck. Further, it consumes the available bandwidth easily. As a result, it causes your site to become unavailable for the visitors intermittently.
- It is not unlimited: It offers unrestricted use of resources. But, it puts a cap on resources utilization.
This is like the situation where many friends share a single house, its space and amenities. It is excellent and affordable while you are still studying. However, at some point, you will outgrow it and would need to find your separate place.
When to Choose Shared Hosting
Shared hosting is not convincing for many WordPress site owners. This is due to its limited features. But, in some cases, you might find it to be the best option for your site. Shared hosting is your best option, if your site requires only a few plugins and pages. Also, if your site expects no heavy traffic shortly. For instance, if you have a blog and want to share updates with only family and friends.
VPS – Virtual Private Servers
When you choose to go with VPS, you share a server. Even so, the number of customers allocated to the server is very low in this plan. In other words, when you share a space or resources, everyone at the end gets a bigger slice of the pie. Thus, it is like renting an apartment for yourself, rather than living in a friend’s house. As a result, you get your private space into a building, like what you get in a VPS hosting server.
The reasons to choose a VPS hosting plan include the following;
- You get sufficient allocated resources: This is because you rent a significant portion of the server. So, you eventually get access to more server resources than you would get with shared hosting.
- access to settings: in most cases, you get root access. therefore, you can view the hidden files and get access to the settings. However, if you do not get access to something, your hosting company adjusts to OFFER support.
- It is more scalable: Most of the times, you can just upgrade the plan if you require additional resources. Too, without actually migrating the site to a new server. On the other hand, this is not possible on hosting plans which offer a set limit.
- VPS hosting is quite affordable: It is not as inexpensive as shared hosting. But, you can see a plan for about $100/month on an average.
You get a lot more freedom of choice with VPS hosting. However, there are some necessary steps that you must consider before directly jumping in. These factors include;
- You are nevertheless sharing a server: You are now sharing the server with far fewer people. But, you still share. So, you might not get access to all the resources you need. For example, the extra bandwidth.
- Not enough technical support: In this hosting plan, you will not be getting enough technical support. More so, when you choose an un-managed plan.
Mainly, there are two types of VPS hosting;
Managed VPS hosting allows you to stay care free. Because, the hosting company looks after a lot of the tasks that come with server maintenance. For example, security concerns. Or, setting up other services or tools that you need to keep your site running. But, in un-managed VPS hosting, you are the one who manages all these areas. Hence, you do not get any possible help from the technical support of the hosting site, in case you run into trouble.
When to Choose VPS Hosting
VPS hosting is your best bet when you aim to run more than one site. Also, if your website has many pages and installed plugins. Moreover, choose VPS when you plan to get massive traffic on your site. Reason being, VPS offers more magnificent room for multi-site.
Here are a few examples of WordPress sites that you can easily set up with VPS hosting
- Company that needs a complicated site. But, one that has no expectation for rapid growth.
- Blog or site related to photography which will be posting tons of pictures daily
- A site that must run plugins or custom scripts.
Nonetheless, VPS is the best option if a handful of people are coming to your site. Because, it tends to handle much more traffic than shared hosting plans.
Signing up for a dedicated server means renting a whole server for yourself. Thus, you do not share it, and you get complete access to all the resources of the server. Moreover, you can make as many changes to the server as you like. Thus, this is like living in a house alone and decorating it as per your choice. Yet, when it comes to repairs, you are responsible alone.
However, like VPS, some hosting companies offer both managed and un-managed dedicated servers.
Following are the reasons for you to choose dedicated servers.
- No sharing of the server: All the resources are for you. Therefore, you may let any number of people be the admins of your server. Or, you may create a re-seller account, and ask others to host their sites on your server.
- All settings accessible: You get full control over the server and website, and nothing holds you back. You get the root access and can view and access the hidden files and advanced settings respectively.
- A lot more secured: You cannot completely guarantee security. But, you remain stress-free as your site cannot be compromised by the acts of some other customer sharing the server. Hence, you can run a tight ship and implement all security measures. Not unless the security gets compromised due to some uncontrollable external influence.
You get complete freedom to a dedicated server. Even so, there are a few things to consider before choosing this hosting plan.
- The responsibility of the server: You have the sole responsibility of the server. Thus, if something happens, it is on you, and you will have to fix it.
- Not scalable: Unless you migrate the site to a more significant server, your resources remain the same. To clarify, you cannot suddenly create more bandwidth, space or other resources.
- It Is not an inexpensive option: Unlike VPS, dedicated servers are not inexpensive. Therefore, you should prepare yourself to spend a lot more than $100/month. Besides, this can go up to $500/month in the case of larger servers.
When to choose dedicated servers
Choose dedicated server for sites which need more security. Besides, sites that are complex with many plugins and pages. For instance, if you run a social media site, with bbPress or BuddyPress. Moreover, you can run Multi-site with ease too. Finally, everything depends on the server size. While they are pretty large, if the price is low, you might get the resources and space like that of VPS.
Additionally, you must consider that you cannot add extra resources later on. Thus, in case your traffic grows and become more popular, it will finally cause your site to go down. Likewise, if you upload great plugins and content, you will have to delete it. Or, shift to another hosting service to meet the space requirements. Indeed, dedicated servers are an excellent option for developers. Especially those aiming to host their personal client’s site. Also, it is good for sites and companies which have outgrown VPS hosting. Similarly, it is the best option if you will host thousands of blogs through Multi-site. Or, if you have the same number of followers on a social media site through BuddyPress.
CDN and Cloud Solutions
Cloud hosting is a cluster of servers. Hence, it is different from all the above-discussed hosting plans. Moreover, the content gets stored in excess. This, means that if you need more resources, the site will migrate automatic. Hence, it allows the extra resources. Likewise, in case of a spike in traffic, the site remains stable. Reason being, it automatically receives the necessary resources. Or, a CDN uses the servers located around the globe to store your site’s cached versions. As a result, its quick to load for everyone around the world. This get opposed to a single server, which gets optimized to support the site in the best manner. However, it supports the site in some specific country, in which the server gets located.
Both uses many servers. However, cloud hosting stores and serves up the most dynamic version of the site. While you may need to share the resources like in shared or VPS hosting, cloud hosting has many servers. Hence, a lot more resources for everyone around. This is like living in a house but visiting the summer home occasionally for a break. But, CDN is like having your house’s photo album in the summer home so you can peruse it in your free time.
CDNs and cloud hosting are becoming the norm for many reasons such as;
- Scalable – You can automatically get more access to bandwidth and resources when needed.
- Flexible Pricing – In cloud hosting, you pay for the usage only. Likewise, a lot of CDN companies work in the same way.
- Rapid Deployment and Redundancy – The site loads much faster and is least likely to go down.This is because it automatically migrates in need of additional resources. Moreover, in cloud hosting, you can avail the redundancy feature by cloning your site on different environments to further reduce downtime.
While it may vary, most companies grant full access to server settings. However, it depends on your provided plan. For instance, CDN, firewall and several other security features are included to enhance the overall security of SSL certificates.
The commonly observed downsides of CDN and cloud hosting include the following;
- CDNs display static sites only – Many WordPress sites are usually dynamic. So, a CDN cannot help much in speeding up the front end of your site. However, the back end’s speed is commonly improved up to a significant level.
- Learning curve – Cloud hosting can be difficult to handle even for technically-gifted developers, especially beginners. However, CDN is commonly easy to set up. Even so, the navigation of options may be a bit more challenging to get a fine balance for dynamic WordPress sites.
When to choose CDN and Cloud Hosting
Every WordPress site can enjoy using a CDN hosting, other than the sites with fewer audiences. Check the best CDN services for WordPress. However, larger networks of WordPress sites get great benefits from using cloud hosting. To be precise, when they are capable of boasting tons of traffic and content. Examples include institutions and companies like Airbnb, NASDAQ and Netflix use cloud hosting. Thus, if you too are as big as any of these companies, then cloud hosting is the best option to go for.
Do you have a small site, which will remain small indefinitely? You must choose VPS hosting for your small business or startup. However, cloud hosting suits larger networks, companies and social media sites. Or, dedicated server is the better fit for such. If you have started your site, do not consider the most prominent or smallest option. Also, if you go with low servers, you will face trouble in upgrading it later. But, if you go with the most significant choice, you might get stuck with the resources’ hefty bill. Which in most cases will not get used for some time.
Irrespective of what you choose, the better approach is to plan a scalability route. As your blog or site grows, prepare a scalability plan. A scalability plan is how to avail the extra resources. Hence, the transition will be much easier, without facing any downtime. Do you must know that every CDN and hosting company may offer their customized hosting plans? Thus, the best option is to check with your hosting company. Besides, ensure you completely explore the one you are getting, at the time of signing up.