Shared Web Hosting is the most popular type of web hosting. It allows multiple users to share a single server with same resources. You have access to your account only and do not really know how many users are sharing the server. That totally depends on the web host. The features and resources you avail depend upon the hosting package you choose. Below you may view a short video that explains what shared hosting is.
Shared Web Hosting operates as an apple pie where each user gets a piece of a server and is almost equally divided among all the users if you have chosen a reputable hosting provider. Being the most straight forward and cheapest type of web hosting, it has some advantages and disadvantages that you need to know before going ahead with shared web hosting.
Advantages of Shared Web Hosting
- Cost Effectiveness – The biggest advantage of shared web hosting is that it is economical and cost-effective. As shared hosting is sharing a host server with other users, the cost is also divided among all the users. This is good for individuals or businesses that are new in the tech world or are just starting off with a project. Shared web hosting packages may start at a very low $3 per month. On average, shared web hosting packages from more reputable companies average between $5 to $10 per month. That said, many companies offer first time customers special pricing when prepaying for web hosting for a full year or longer.
- Ease of use – Shared web hosting is known for its simplicity. As shared hosting is managed by a data center, you do not need to worry about server maintenance and hardware linked to it. Also, it comes with a built-in control panel with which you may easily manage your site. This factor is a great benefit for individuals that don’t have the technical expertise or funds to hire someone to manage and maintain the server.
- Features – Different packages come with different features and options. Most shared hosting packages boast all the features anyone may need and even more. Whilst different packages come with different disk space and bandwidth allotments they will all have plenty of additional features. To mention a few, shared web hosting packages will allow you to easily created custom emails using your domain, install in one click a wide range of scripts such as wordpress, free SSL intergration and much more.
- Scalability – Whilst shared web hosting is ideal for individuals and businesses when they are starting off, it is possible to upgrade to more expensive and resource intensive web hosting packages any time required. Nowadays web hosting providers provide different levels of web hosting such as shared, VPS and dedicated. This means that you may start small and grow your web hosting package and costs as your website grows.
Disadvantages of Shared Web Hosting
- Bad neighbours – Due to the fact that many users are depending upon the same server, if one of them is processing all the power and increased traffic, it leads to the downtime of others. This may cause performance problems. This phenomenon is usually known as ‘bad neighbour effect’. However, this entirely depends on your host the level of performance it is willing to maintain. If the components in shared web hosting are equally shared, the up-time of one would not lead to downtime of others and the performance will not get reduced, and vice versa.
- System reliability – As mentioned above, if the load and traffic is increased and server is used by increased number of sites at the same time, the system may collapse. This is the biggest drawback of shared web hosting. However, for newbies and new websites, this is not really an issue as such websites would be driving a low number of visitors.
- Security issues – There are a number of security issues that come with shared web hosting services. Whilst shared web hosting does come with security and protection there is always the concern on how other customers using the same server are making use of the service.
- File & resource restriction – As the host wants to assure up-time and security across all of its customers on a server, there might be some files such as applications and functions that are restricted. There would also be various restrictions imposed in the case of exceeding the bandwidth limit. In such occurrences you will need to upgrade your web hosting package. Choosing the right web hosting provider is important as not all providers have the same restrictions. Reading web hosting reviews is helpful to know what the strengths and weaknesses of a provider are.
Who Should Use Shared Hosting
Shared Web Hosting is a good option for individuals that want to launch their personal websites. It is also ideal for small and medium business startups such as running a small bakery or a digital company. Shared Hosting works great for sites who need moderate traffic such as static brochure sites, mini sites, test sites and much more. Moreover, it is the best option for starting and running a blog, be it food, fashion or anything else. Being the most economical type of web hosting, it is a great option for those who are low on budget or those who do not have much experience in e-commerce. It allows you to easily have a web presence even if you are not technically capable to do so.
Therefore, now you have a complete idea of what shared web hosting is, its advantages and disadvantages, and whether it is a suitable option for your site or business. Almost all the service providers offer the same amount of space, storage and features. It is a great option to just getting started online if you have little tech skills. As your budget and experience grows, you can upgrade your level of hosting or change the hosting environment.
The remaining task is to choose the service provider which satisfies all your needs and requirements, and also provides security guarantee. With the hosting packages for shared web hosting ranging from $3 to $10 per month, make sure you choose the one that benefits you best.