One of the first choices you’ll have to make for your website is what kind of hosting you want to use. For those just starting out, on a limited budget, or looking for the most simple platform, shared hosting is your best option.

Creating your own website can be the first step for any business or individual looking to reach a larger audience, brand, and cultivate a successful online presence. For business and companies, your own website is a necessity.

Right away, though, you are faced with choices that the not-so-technologically-inclined might find overwhelming and confusing, such as choosing a web hosting plan for your website.

But what web hosting service is best?

Shared hosting, VPS hosting, or dedicated hosting?

What is shared hosting anyways?

Let’s break it down.

All websites must be housed, or hosted, on a server. Servers do all of the technical work that allow us to deliver our websites and reach our audience. With shared hosting, multiple websites utilize a single server, sharing its functional capacity, memory, and bandwidth. With most shared hosting platforms, users can even set up multiple sites under a single account.

Advantages of Shared Hosting

There are many advantages to shared hosting, not least of which is its cost. For just a few dollars a month, you can:

  • get your website up and running
  • customize your site
  • gain site traffic

Since you are simply leasing a share of the server, you don’t have to worry about updates, safety protocols, software malfunction, and other aspects of server and website upkeep. With shared hosting, server uptime is the responsibility of the hosting company.

Shared Hosting 1-Click CMS Install

What is shared hosting used for? Who can benefit from the advantages of shared hosting?

One of the most important features of shared hosting plans is the ease of CMS installation.

Popular Content Management Systems (CMS) like WordPress or Blogspot offer users the ability to publish a site in minutes with extremely user friendly customizations. They do the leg work for you and all you have to do is choose a header, a font, and a theme. It truly couldn’t get more simple.

These CMS platforms are fantastic for blogs, entry level businesses, and low traffic forums. They are simple, cheap, and easily accessible. Your access to technical support if you need it is also a major bonus, since most people at this level don’t start out knowing everything about running a website!

A Few Faults with Shared Hosting

There are some downsides to shared hosting, however.

Safety and security of your website might sometimes be called into question as you don’t always know your “neighbors” on the server. Although not common, especially seeing as hosting platforms do everything they can to prevent it, security may be breached more easily on a shared server.

The second downfall to shared hosting is that once your website starts to receive significant traffic, your website will begin to perform more slowly. Since each website is allocated a certain amount of memory, space, and bandwidth, a website exceeding this allotment just isn’t supported to handle such traffic.

The last significant disadvantage is the limits placed on customization for your website. There usually are templates and limitations as to what your website on a shared hosting server can have, and this may be frustrating for users with a very specific vision or need.

Don’t get lured in too easily to platforms boasting unlimited hosting, though. While the name itself suggests infinite amount of bandwidth and storage, it is highly misleading. Many unlimited plans include caveats for the data that can be stored, for example. This is because there just simply isn’t an “unlimited” amount of resources for unlimited hosting. Remember, hosting is connected to very real servers and very real technicians running them.

Is Shared Hosting Right for Me?

Shared hosting, for all its strengths, is the first entry point for website publication. This being said, many of the disadvantages can be thwarted for an upgrade- often with the same hosting company and with website migration at a minimum.

Regardless, shared hosting is a phenomenal option for those just starting out with their websites. It’s cheap, user friendly, and just customizable enough to make it your own- with upgrades always available.

Planning to launch your own website? Compare Shared Hosting plans with our easy, side by side hosting comparisons.