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  • By Jerry Whitehead February 2, 2017, 8:05 PM

    VPS or Shared Hosting: Which Makes Sense for Your Business?

    In the world of hosting, unfortunately one size does not fit all. When you’re shopping around for hosting plans, you’ll notice there seems to be an endless amount of choices. Different storages sizes, system memory, bandwidth, and CPU power are confusing enough to say nothing of the type of hardware you need to choose. Where does one begin?

     

    For the vast majority of people looking to set up a website, the choice often comes down to shared hosting or VPS hosting. For some specific use cases, a dedicated server would be the best option, but the vast majority of users aren’t building a site at such a large scale that a dedicated server would be required. Typically, a highly trafficked e-commerce site or a site that delivers a tremendous volume of content like the Huffington Post would most benefit from being on its own server. If you don’t intend to go down either route with your site, you’re going to be looking at shared hosting or a VPS.

     

    But, which to choose? There are a variety of factors to consider when trying to decide between shared hosting and VPS hosting. What you’re trying to accomplish with your site and the level of traffic you anticipate are going to be two of the key factors that will push you one way or the other. Let’s break down the two choices.

     

    Informational Sites


     

    Beginning with the cheapest (and often the most initially attractive because of it) option, shared hosting is just fine for people who want to set up basic informational sites where the goal is to have people read content and provide leads. While seeing the phrase “low to average levels of traffic” doesn’t sound great to a business person focused on growth, you have to think in relative terms. If you’re getting a few thousand visits a day spread out evenly over the course of the day with no huge spikes in traffic, shared hosting will probably hold up fine. The functionality of your site is simple enough. If it’s informational, it’ll be mostly text-based with some images. You probably won’t have crazy JavaScript or PHP running. A few pages and a contact form won’t need anything more than what shared hosting offers you.

     

    Remember, with shared hosting you are sharing a finite pool of resources with every other account on the physical server you occupy. That’s why when too many visitors come to a site or the site architecture is exceptionally demanding, you see an increase in page load times and perhaps even crashing. If this happens with enough frequency, that’s when you should start looking into migrating to a VPS.

     

    High Traffic


     

    High traffic is usually the reason why a person would choose to migrate from shared hosting to VPS hosting or skip over shared hosting all together. If you know ahead of time that you’ll be getting thousands and thousands of visitors consistently with some peak traffic times, a VPS is going to be a better option for you. Even if your website itself isn’t very demanding, your traffic levels could be what cause you to reach your maximum allotment of bandwidth rather quickly on a shared plan. This is why malicious actors will often send out bots to overrun a site with traffic to take it down and keep it offline. If your analytics shows a significant increase in traffic and you’re noticing that your site’s performance is suffering, it’s time for an upgraded hosting plan.

     

    Resource Usage


     

    Demanding, resource hungry sites are another common reason why you would need to use a VPS rather than shared hosting. A few different things can contribute to a site being “heavy.” One such factor is the CMS you use, if you decide to use one. WordPress is by far the most popular content management system. It powers over a quarter of the websites online. It’s also fairly easy to overload with functionality, causing your site to require more RAM and CPU power. A CMS on its own can be a bit taxing. Once you start adding themes of various levels of PHP complexity and plugins that add seconds to load time, you can quickly start to see your site performance take a hit on lower tiered hosting plans. Complex coding, if it isn’t optimized to load efficiently, can bog down your site if your server isn’t up to the task of processing it quickly enough.

     

    Conclusion


     

    There is a hosting plan for everyone, you just may need help finding the right one for you. JaguarPC has been providing hosting solutions to businesses of all sizes for years. No matter what you’re trying to accomplish with your site, the team at JaguarPC can help you find the appropriate solution. Contact us today and we’ll have you ready to go in no time.

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