When it comes to web hosting, choosing the right deal can be a minefield, as there are so many different packages available to suit every budget and various sets of requirements. In the past, many businesses new to the world of web hosting made the choice of going with a shared web-hosting package. However, these days that option is no longer in favour. Could it be that the benefits of a cheaper hosting method just aren’t enough for businesses that are now more technologically literate?
Advantages of Shared Hosting
Shared web hosting proved to be very popular until recently, with the obvious benefit of a competitively priced package being the biggest attraction. Shared web hosting means that a company’s website will share its base on a computer server with other websites. Because the hosting costs are spread wider, this option is very cheap, especially for smaller sites that are just starting out.
Each site is given an IP address and a set amount of disk space and bandwidth as part of their package, so each site sits neatly with the others on the designated server. However, many customers have discovered that there are drawbacks to choosing this simple package and are choosing to look elsewhere.
What are the Disadvantages of Shared Hosting?
One of the biggest drawbacks lies within the whole idea of sharing in the first place. When you share a web-hosting server, you can literally be using the same space as dozens, maybe even hundreds, of other sites. As a rule, the latest technology used in hosting is pretty reliable, but you might find that your site could be affected by problems on other sites. For example, if another website experiences a sudden influx of traffic, it could cause a reaction that affects your own site.
You have no control over who you share with, so sites with high traffic or who take advantage of more than their share of bandwidth will have an impact on your site. In the worst cases, a very busy site could cause the server to go down, taking your site down with it.
Packages may be limiting, because you could be penalised for exceeding your bandwidth allowance, even having your site taken down as a result. The packages offered are quite rigid and rarely have room for expansion or upgrades. If you are looking to customise your account, make changes to your site or want to introduce new features or software, it often just isn’t possible.
Viruses can also be a problem, as with so many websites sharing the same space they can spread quickly and easily. Of course, hosting services are ready for these kinds of events and can generally counteract any problems, but if one site gets a virus the others are quite likely to as well.
Is Shared Hosting All Bad?
There are, however, still some advantages to shared hosting. In fact, shared web hosting can be a good option for some businesses, especially those looking for a simple hosting package that is cheap. But before you make the final choice on how to host your site, make sure you look at the overall picture. If you think you will want to expand your site significantly in the future, shared hosting is probably not the best option for you.