All Your Hosting Options for a WordPress WebsiteJune 28, 2019
Shared Hosting plans for WordPress
Shared hosting is the most popular hosting plan because it’s cheap. It’s the go-to choice for first-time web owners who have a low budget. On a shared server, multiple users ranging from ten to a hundred share a single server.
None of the users knows who else they’re sharing the server’s resources with. A shared server distributes resources among all the websites on the server. Each website’s space or partition is created on the web server upon signup. There are other websites that simultaneously share resources such as IP address, computing power, storage and other server resources.
Shared hosting is recommended for small WordPress websites that don’t have a lot of traffic and considerably lower security concerns.
Features to look for in shared hosting
Disk space and traffic
The primary features to look for in WordPress web hosting are disk space for your media, databases and code files. You also need bandwidth that allows visitors to access your WordPress website. Look for shared hosting plans that offer high speed.
This is the time your WordPress website stays active and online, during which visitors can access your website without issues. It is measured in percentages of the total expected uptime of 24 hours a day and 168 hours a week.
No web host company can guarantee 100% uptime but they can guarantee 99.5%-99.9% uptime. However, such a server might not be available on a shared plan. A 98% uptime should suffice for a shared hosting plan.
Look for plans that offer extra features such as server backup, RAID, advanced network architecture and manual server restart.
There is a lot of competition in the shared hosting market. To get your attention, web hosting providers offer free bonuses to attract clients. Some offer free website transfer, free domain names, site building tools and more.
However, be on the lookout for the renewal fees and read the fine print thoroughly to determine what is guaranteed after the first year. Look for the priority features your WordPress website must have and non-essentials you can live without. Reliability and pricing should be at the forefront.
Easy-to-use control panel
A control panel helps you manage your server. Plex and cPanel are industry standard options. However, some web hosting companies have developed their own unique control panel. It might be difficult to navigate when compared to cPanel. Read online reviews to hear from others who have used the feature.
Differences between shared hosting and other hosting packages
When compared with VPS hosting, shared hosting offers fewer dedicated resources. They have a similar server structure but it’s pre-allocated rather than shared on a VPS. A VPS also offers more freedom, customisation and control.
Cloud hosting is decentralised while shared hosting is on a single server. Cloud hosting is charged according to your consumption but shared hosting prices are agreed before use.
A dedicated server is leased by a single user. You enjoy all the resources on the server without worrying about overreaching your allotted resources.
A VPS is a portioned server where each website has its own bandwidth, disk space, operating system and server resources. Many WordPress website owners prefer VPS because it gives them more control and hosting resources than a shared server.
It’s a good starting point for small and mid-sized brands which are just getting their feet wet. VPS hosting is used for running high traffic websites that require more resources than a shared server can provide. You know your resource allocation irrespective of the other accounts on the server.
A VPS server is both virtual and private because accounts on the server have full control. Many business websites and WordPress blogs switch once they hit 25,000-30,000 visitors per month or 10,000 visitors for e-commerce sites.
Features to look for in a VPS hosting package
Location – It is advisable to choose a host where most of your customers are located. For customers in New Zealand, a local host would be more preferable to a hosting company in China or the United States.
Reliability – Hardware of your VPS is crucial to reliable service delivery. Traditional virtual servers use a dedicated server with dual CPUs, multiple hard drives, RAID and RAM. It allows for improved performance and reliability.
Managed or unmanaged VPS hosting–The major difference between the two is that a managed VPS plan allows you to focus on running your business while your hosting company takes care of the hosting requirements. They update software, monitor your server, prevent malware and keep your site running efficiently.
Differences between VPS hosting and other hosting packages
While shared hosting is the preferred option for small websites that don’t have an online web presence, a VPS is perfect for WordPress websites that are starting to hit the mark. You’re sharing resources on a shared server. With a VPN, the only thing that is shared is the physical server machine but resources are fully partitioned.
With dedicated hosting, you lease the entire server. It is the fastest, most reliable web hosting plan that is fully customisable. Dedicated hosting also lets you configure hardware, not just the server. You can also run the server in your business premises.
Dedicated hosting is a hosting plan where a single user leases an entire server and all its resources. You can optimise the server to your specific requirements including security and performance. The hosting company provides the environment, physical server, technical support and associated services.
Dedicated hosting is ideal for large organisations and WordPress websites that enjoy heavy traffic. The client can configure the server to meet his needs. You can choose from managed or unmanaged dedicated hosting.
Managed dedicated servers are more expensive because the web host company takes care of the server behind the scenes and allows your business to channel its personnel towards creating products and services for your customers.
Features to look for in a dedicated hosting plan
24/7 technical support
Your website and its apps increase your brand recognition, revenue and engage your customer. It should be working 24/7. The dedicated host should provide around the clock live support to ensure that you have support to minimise downtime.
Choice of hardware
It’s important to look for a hosting company that offers many hardware options. This ensures that you get a hardware setup that has the performance capabilities you need. It should include options such as a number of cores and speed, CPU model, size and type of RAM, hard disk type and capacity, RAID and bandwidth.
Scalability of your application
How well does your application scale? It should be easy to add servers without affecting the number of end users you can serve.
Load balancing across multiple dedicated servers
A form of load balancing is necessary if your application scales across servers. The end users are divided across the servers. Incoming requests are sent to different servers to ensure that when traffic rises, the network can meet the demand.
Other features include
- Self-service and remote management
- Predictability of bandwidth usage
- Performance requirements of the server include CPU, RAM and hard drives
- Control panel options
- Premium security features including DDoS protection, anti-virus software, server monitoring and more.
- Backup and data redundancy
Differences between dedicated hosting and other options
When compared to shared hosting, the difference is in the server. A shared host leases a single server to multiple users that share computing resources. A dedicated hosting user leases the server. A website on a dedicated hosting plan enjoys more bandwidth, computing power and storage.
When compared with VPS hosting, a dedicated host and a VPS are quite similar. They both have unique IP addresses, computing resources and privacy. However, a dedicated server has more robust hardware and enjoys greater customisation than a VPS.
The biggest difference between cloud computing and dedicated hosting is in reliability. WordPress websites on a cloud server never go down. When one server crashes, another server executes tasks. Both have similar performance but a dedicated server offers more control and flexibility.
Cloud hosting is the procurement of computing resources from a facility or cloud host provider to host services, data and solutions. It is an Infrastructure as a Service model delivered via virtual servers. Instead of a single server, the entire computing resources are distributed and delivered simultaneously. It is the most flexible and scalable hosting plan where you only pay for the resources you consume.
Features to look for in a cloud hosting plan
- Security – The provider must offer reliable security because the cloud will hold the most sensitive data of your company
- Intuitive services that are easy to learn, understand and implement
- Full-service hosting and maintenance
- Site monitoring
- Customisable solutions
- Disaster recovery
- The high quality of service
- On-demand self service
Differences between cloud hosting and web hosting
With a standard web hosting plan, your web files and computing resources are housed on a single physical server. Users download files from your server. The type of physical server depends on your hosting needs, technical expertise and cost of hosting.
With cloud hosting, you’re not renting a physical server because server hardware is virtual. It provides unlimited hosting resources to ensure your WordPress website always has the resources to meet demands.
The price for web hosting is fixed but cloud computing operates a pay-as-you-go model. It has incredible performance and uptime when compared to other hosting plans.
With the plethora of options available, you might be confused. The right hosting option for your WordPress website depends on the price, the current value of your website and the number of computing resources you need to deliver an excellent user experience. Small blogs should begin with a shared hosting plan. New business should start out with a VPS and scale up to a dedicated or cloud hosting plan as their hosting need grows.