For starting a new website or blog, you need a web hosting service to host your website. However, when the time comes to choose a web hosting service, you will find that there are several types of hosting services available. Shared web hosting is one of them. If you don’t have any clear idea of what is shared hosting, don’t skip this article. In this article, you are going to learn everything you need to know about shared web hosting like what is shared hosting, how it works, what are the advantages and disadvantages of shared hosting. Also, here, some frequently questions on shared hosting are answered. If you are a beginner, this article going to be very useful for you.
What is Shared Hosting? – Definition of Shared Hosting
Shared web hosting is one of the most popular hosting solutions. It can be defined as one type of web hosting service where a single server hosts multiple websites and the server resources (CPU, RAM, Bandwidth, etc) of that single server are also shared by multiple websites.
Many hosting companies offer shared hosting and shared hosting plans usually come within affordable prices as the overall cost is divided over many customers.
If you are starting a new website or blog, shared hosting is an appropriate solution for you as you don’t need lots of server resources for a new website or blog. However, if you already have a website running with high traffic, shared hosting may not be appropriate for you as it has limitation on server resources. In that case, the best alternative hosting solutions are VPS hosting, dedicated server hosting.
How Does Shared Hosting Work?
In the shared hosting, a single server is shared by a few hundred to several thousand websites. Therefore, when you buy a shared hosting plan from any web hosting company, you will get a part of a server to store your website files. For example, if one hundred users share a single server, each user will get a separate section of the server to store their website files. In addition to this, each user will have a separate control panel, access to their databases, email accounts, FTP accounts, and more. Note that one user can not get access to other user’s website files. In fact, in shared hosting, you’ll have no idea what other websites are shared by your server. However, shared hosting will allow you to share your server resources (CPU, RAM, Bandwidth) with other users.
Advantages of Shared Hosting
There are many benefits (pros) of using shared hosting.
1. Less Expensive and Affordable
Shared hosting is less expensive as multiple users use server resources of a single server, which divides the overall cost within multiple users and keeps the cost low. The basic plan of shared web hosting usually comes within $5/month. It is affordable for everyone. However, a good VPS hosting comes within 20$ to 70$ per month, and a dedicated web server comes within $100 to $200/month. So, shared hosting is much cheaper and affordable as compared to VPS and dedicated server hosting. Also, it is not worth spending thousands of dollars per year when you are starting a site.
2. User-Friendly Control Panel
Generally shared hosting offers easy and straightforward cPanel. You can easily manage your web hosting without any technical knowledge.
3. Zero Maintenance for Server
In shared hosting, the hosting provider maintains the server and you don’t have to maintain the server from your end. It is a great advantage for beginners those who don’t have any technical expertise to handle the web hosting server.
4. Easy to Upgrade Hosting Plan
Most of the hosting providers offer different types of shared hosting plans. When you need to upgrade your hosting plan, you can easily upgrade it without losing anything. You can either upgrade one starting shared hosting plan to another premium shared hosting plan or you may move your site from shared hosting to VPS hosting or dedicated server.
A premium shared hosting usually comes with unmetered storage, unlimited bandwidth, unlimited websites, free domain, free SSL, and more. Note that the premium shared hostings plans are also less expensive than the VPS hosting or dedicated server.
Disadvantages of Shared Hosting
Although shared hosting is affordable and cost-effective, there are few disadvantages of using shared hosting. Let’s take a look one by one.
1. Server Response Times
If you compare the shared hosting with VPS hosting or dedicated server hosting, you will find the server response time for shared hosting relatively slower than both the VPS and dedicated server. It may cause of slow down of your site. However, when you start a new site with zero traffic, you do not need large bandwidth and server resources. Therefore, shared hosting is perfect for starting a new site.
2. Not Good for High Traffic Site
When your site traffic grows over time, your site performance will go down. Now the question is how much traffic a shared can handle? According to our experience, it is ok to use a shared hosting until your site visitors exceed 3,000 to 5,000 visitors/day.
As you don’t know with whom you are sharing your site. It may be possible that the other site on your server may create a risk to your own site. However, it is rare. Therefore, to avoid any kind of security issue, you have to choose a very reliable web hosting service provider.
FAQ on Shared Hosting
In this section, we have answered some frequently asked questions on shared hosting.
Is Shared Hosting Good?
Yes, shared hosting is good and secure. However, make sure you have chosen the right hosting company. We use and also recommend SiteGround shared hosting for beginners.
Shared hosting is good for you if you:
- Are starting a new site, small business,
- Don’t large budget to make your business online
- Don’t have any technical knowledge to manage to the web hosting server
Who Should Use Shared Hosting?
As we have already discussed, shared hosting is an excellent hosting solution when you are just starting a website or blog as you don’t need a lot of bandwidth, server space or other resources to run a new site successfully.
How Much Traffic Can a Shared Hosting Handle?
It depends upon which hosting company and which shared hosting plan you are using. According to our experience, if you choose a good shared hosting plan from the right web hosting company, it will handle up to 3000-5000 visitors/day.
When do you switch from shared hosting to VPS hosting/Dedicated Server?
There are many alternatives to a shared hosting like VPS hosting, dedicated server, cloud hosting. Only it is important to know when to switch from shared hosting.
You need to consider the following points before you move your site from shared hosting to other hosting solutions like VPS hosting, dedicated server.
1. High Traffic
If your site starts receiving a large amount of traffic and if your traffic level exceeds the limit of the shared hosting resources, then you have to move your site from shared hosting to either VPS hosting or other hosting like a dedicated server, cloud hosting. It is better to contact the supporting team of your hosting provider. They will help you to choose the next hosting plan according to your website needs.
2. Security Issue
In shared hosting, you may get a security issue as server resources are shared among multiple websites. However, it is very rare. In case, if you find any security issue in your site, it is better to move your site to better hosting solutions (VPS hosting, dedicated server, cloud hosting).
3. Traffic Fluctuates
If your website traffic fluctuates (sometimes very high and sometimes very low), the best alternative solution for you is cloud Hosting.
Conclusion and Decision:
Now, we hope that you have a clear idea on what is exactly the shared web hosting, how it works, and what are the advantages and disadvantages of shared hosting.
The major advantages of shared hosting are low price, and you do not need any technical expertise to handle your site.
Although shared hosting has some limitations, it is perfect for smaller websites and blogs. In particular, if you want to start a new site or blog, shared hosting is a perfect solution for you.
Once you make your decision to host your site with shared web hosting, next you have to make two important decisions. One is choosing a hosting company and another is selecting a shared hosting plan.
If you consider security, reliability, customer support, server speed, SiteGround is the best hosting provider for beginners. We are using and recommend GrowBig hosting plan from SiteGround.
So, what are you waiting for? Start your first web site or blog today.
We hope that you have learned everything you need to know about shared hosting as a beginner. If you have any further questions on shared hosting, put your first comment in the comment section below.