What is Shared Hosting?
About Hosting, Passion Digital Singapore
A website is a collection of web pages –text, images, audio and video files. These web pages or files need to be stored (or hosted) on computers called servers or hosts. These servers are internet-connected computers running software that allows them to serve up information. Anyone with a computer and an internet connection will be able to access the web pages;
When a server stores your files and allows others to access them, it is said to be hosting your website. The company that owns the servers is your hosting company. Hence, deciding where to host your website’s files is the first and foremost important decision you have to make when building a website.
Shared hosting is where multipe websites share the same server and resources.
Most hosting companies provide various hosting options to suit the needs of website owners. Common web hosting options are:
- Shared Hosting
- Managed WordPress hosting
- Virtual Private Servers
- Dedicated Servers
- Cloud Hosting
In this article, we shall focus on Shared Hosting.
Shared hosting is good enough for bloggers who are starting their blogs and are yet to receive many site visitors. If you are building a website for business, you will need to carefully select the right hosting company.
Very simply, shared hosting is when many websites share the same server and resources. This is usually the lowest cost hosting options provided by web hosting companies. The usual price for shared hosting range from US$2.95 to US$10.
The key advantage of shared hosting is the low price and it allows many freelance web designers, developers and bloggers to start their website. However shared hosting comes with several limitations and as the site visitors and web contents increases, website owners would have to upgrade their hosting plans to provide for higher security, more storage space and speed.
The key disadvantages of shared hosting are:
- You’ll have no idea who or what websites are hosted on the same server as your website. In the event that any of the website is hacked, it may affect your website;
- The speed performance of your website will usually be slower compared to other hosting options.
Shared hosting is good enough for bloggers who are starting their blogs and are yet to receive many site visitors.
If you are building a website for business, you will need to carefully select the right hosting company. Lower-end shared hosting providers often fit many websites on a single server, and have limited security protocols between the accounts, increasing security risks and cross contamination from other websites on the server.
Higher-end shared hosting providers limit the number of websites on a server, and ensure that there is spare bandwidth and failover capabilities in case one website on the server has a traffic spike, or starts to hog the server’s resources. They also include improved security measures and limitations to protect against cross contamination.
If you want to ensure speed and security for your business website but are concerned about costs at the startup stage and if your website is built on WordPress, then a good option to consider would be Managed WordPress Hosting. Hosting companies usually include daily backups, and security protocols into such hosting plans. A good hosting company that we use is WP Engine that specializes in Managed WordPress Hosting.
Credit: WP Engine
Shared, Dedicated Standalone, Dedicated Clusters
Why WP Engine?
WPEngine hosting solution caters for small businesses to large multinationals. They provide four types of Managed Shared WordPress Hosting oplans — Startup, Professional, Growth and Scale plans.
These Shared Plans are best suited for startup or small businesses. The plans offer 24/7/365 support and includes the following:
- Automatic updates and upgrades to the server operating system
- Automatic Platform Updates and Maintenance
- Managed upgrades to WordPress core
- Daily automatic backups
- PHP Test Driver
- Free and Managed CDN
Developers have access to:
- WP Engine API
- Local development / Staging / Production Environment
WP Engine offers three kinds of cloud infrastructure. Shared Virtual Machines (VMs), Dedicated VMs, and Dedicated 3-tier Clusters. In fact, many WordPress providers offer limited types of infrastructure due to a gap in expertise. WP Engine solution is architected to meet business needs through continuous improvements, and by working with partners like Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud Platform.
WP Engine partnerships with Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) provide businesses with a range of enterprise-grade solutions that deliver lightning-fast, scalable, highly available and secure experiences. They optimize AWS and GCP for WordPress. Very few hosting companies provide such scalability.
If you are a startups and you have plans to scale your business big in future but your company do not have the technical expertise to go onto AWS at this time and do not want to incur unnecessary costs at a time when your site traffic is not yet high, then beginning with WP Engine would be the right choice. You can start with a WordPress website and scale as you grow.
Credit: WP Engine
WP Engine’s partnership with AWS and Google Cloud Platform