Shared or dedicated hosting? What does that mean? What are the differences and how to know which is the best for you? In this blog, I have jotted down everything that will help you to make an informed decision.
What is shared and dedicated hosting?
As the name suggests, shared hosting is where you are allotted a space in the server and you share it with others. You pay for your allotted space only. You pay extra when you exceed the allotted space limit. On the other hand, dedicated hosting plan lets you use the server only. There is no one else sharing space with you.
Which one is for me?
When it comes to opting for a hosting server, you need to understand the pros and cons of each and what is your business goal. Broadly speaking, if you have limited budget, then go for a shared hosting service and forget everything. But, if you are serious about the stability and security issues for your hosting server, then you need to consider dedicated hosting. Let’s take a deeper look into understanding the difference between dedicated and shared hosting.
What is the difference between the two?
- As mentioned above, in a shared hosting plan, you share space in the server along with other organizations while in a dedicated hosting plan, the entire server space is dedicated for your use. You don’t need to share it with anyone
- It is obvious that with shared hosting, your disk space is limited because you are sharing it. Plus, your bandwidth gets limited too. Since you are paying for a particular allotted space, you may anytime get penalized for crossing your allotted space. Some hosting providers also apply stringent usage caps to penalize the users. So, you need to be extra cautious while using it and what file types you are using. Dedicated server has no such issues as the entire space is allotted to your organization. There is no concept of sharing, limited space or penalties when you go for dedicated hosting.
- Cost is a big player when it comes to choosing between shared and dedicated hosting. In shared hosting the operational cost is shared so it becomes affordable. If you are a small organization who is just starting out, then you will find it as an effective solution to build your web presence. Dedicated server hosting is expensive, you need to bear the operational cost all by yourself. But the biggest advantage is with more cost, you get more operational efficiency. If you are a large organization then having a dedicated hosting helps to manage traffic spikes, install software and much more.
- With a dedicated server, you get full control of it. You can make small programming tweaks, run scripts, install software for better operational efficiencies. It gives you the complete freedom to control in addition to complete security. However, in shared hosting, you do not have much control, because you share it with other organizations. Hosting companies will have the master control so that all organizations who are sharing the server have similar level of operational efficiencies.
- Since you are sharing a resource, if your ‘neighbor’ gets a lot of visitors suddenly, you are stuck in a traffic jam with no where to reach. This results into slow and unresponsiveness which can turn off your customers and frustrate your employees. This is unlikely to happen in dedicated hosting because there is ample space for you to manage your traffic spikes. Server performance and server response time is hardly an issue with dedicated hosting.
- With shared server, there is always a fear of getting blacklisted by Google and other search engines. If you have a ‘bad’ neighbour who is doing illegal activities like spamming, it is highly possible that Google will blacklist the entire server. For no fault of yours, your website can get blacklisted which means you are almost invisible to your customers. With a dedicated server, there is hardly any chances of getting blacklisted unless you are practicing any illegal activities.
- Security is a big concern in shared servers. There are chances to get infected with virus and malware if your neighbour is performing some illegal activities. However, with a dedicated server, your organization’s IT team will be able to deploy and monitor all security issues.
- If your organization doesn’t have the desired skill sets of managing a server, then shared server is the best option for you. The administration, maintenance and security are all taken care of by the hosting company. To have a dedicated server, you need to have a dedicated team in place who will manage your server.
Hope these pointers will help you make an informed decision on which one to choose for your business – dedicated or shared hosting?