I'm writing after a long time, so I took this general topic which helps you to evaluate whether you're spending the right amount for your hosting or not.
Also, if you have any of the following questions in mind! Read further.
- Is Shared hosting secure?
- Should I start blogging with shared or managed WordPress hosting?
- Is shared hosting good for e-commerce?
- Whether shared hosting is suitable for high traffic sites?
What's the buzz about shared web hosting in 2021! Continue reading further.
Everyone site owner looks for the best when it comes to Web Hosting!
They look for best in performance, support.
Most do stuff like getting a self-managed server for $5 and optimizing with the best configuration, launching a site.
On the other hand, people go for costly managed WordPress hosting when they don't need it.
Being a user of many Shared, VPS and Managed WordPress hosting and spending over $3000+ every year, I calculated the ROI for the money spent on Web hosting servers. Based on it,
All I can say, Shared hosting still matters the most in 2021.
I accept every site has its own requirement, and shared hosting is not suitable for all. This post is targeted towards site owners who runs single or multiple sites and make income through AdSense, affiliate, or any other similar ways.
Since the majority of people come under this category, I shared my ideas and thoughts on how to stay on shared hosting and still get the experience the Best Web hosting in terms of performance, support and pricing.
Note: Not all shared hosting is good and none of the below pros of shared hosting won't be valid if you are choosing a poorly optimized shared hosting company at a cheaper price. Rather you need to pick a great shared hosting that equals the power of managed WordPress hosting.
Here are the few best things about shared hosting.
1. Shared Hosting still offers better performance.
Here is my Amazon affiliate site hosted on FastComet Extra plan of $5.95/month (signed up for straight 36 months for better savings) since the renewals will be like $19.95/month.
By graph, you can see the site is crossing over 1000+ visits every day. During peak hours, there will be 20 – 25 concurrent visitors on the site. Let's look at the performance (uptime & speed). Its 100% uptime and 403 ms response time.
Here is the historical uptime data for the last three months. The only downtime is recorded while I'm updating the WordPress backend. Since it took more than 30 seconds, the tool recorded it as downtime.
Now, I'm comparing the result with my competitor who is ranking in top 5 with me and hosted on $30/month managed WordPress hosting.
You can see the performance is so closer with respect to speed and uptime but there is a big difference in pricing.
At the same time, I'm not validating all shared hosts are good, and here is the site hosted on a popular host which is ranking along with us.
As you can see, my site offers similar performance with sites hosted on managed WordPress hosting. While managed host allows only 1-3 domains and got a traffic limit ranges from 5k to 30k monthly, the shared hosting plan allows unlimited site hosting and 100,000 visits per month.
Likewise if you choose the perfect shared hosting, you can save a lot of money. Once your site traffic grows, shared host space will face load time issues since they are not auto-scalable. And that's the right time, one needs to move for managed WordPress hosting or VPS.
If you don't know how to test your existing host, here is the guide.
The performance of any web hosting can be checked by following methods.
- Monitoring uptime and response time
- Checking speed test from multiple locations
- Checking TTFB of a URL
- Load testing
There are tools like Uptime Robot to monitor monthly average uptime and response time. This is the most efficient method of checking the performance since the tools monitor the servers 24×7.
The speed test from multiple locations can be checked from many online tools like GtMetrix. It helps us to determine how fast the given URL is loading from multiple locations across the globe.
Third, TTFB (Time to First Byte) is the most important factor rather than full loading time. TTFB is the factor that determines how fast the server responses to the given request, Gtmetrix perform the job (check under Timing tab)
Load testing is the concept of sending bot traffic to sites and analyze how good the server is handling multiple concurrent requests. This test is mainly done for sites with high traffic and ecommerce sites.
You can perform above tasks for free and analyze your servers.
My site hosted on ChemiCloud Turbo plan powered by Litespeed server + Railgun Optimization which usually costs $20/month while free at ChemiCloud.
Amazon affiliate site hosted on SiteGround Growbig plan, WP Rocket cached.
Amazon affiliate site hosted on A2 Hosting Turbo plan, A2 own caching optimization.
Shared Hosting Selection Guidelines
Here are top things to consider before choosing a shared host.
- Always go for a top-tier plan or if you are low budget, go for the mid-tier plan. Plan 3 > Plan 2 > Plan 1.
- Check Resource limits of each shared host available on the sales page.
- Pay for 36 months in advance for better benefits. FastComet Top tier plan offers 6GB RAM & 6 CPU cores & 100% Dedicated CPU for $5.95/month while it would cost around $75/month if bought from any VPS hosting.
- Choose some random time and raise a ticket or do a live chat with your preferred companies. check how fast the support responds.
- Check for new companies that look promising. That's how I found ChemiCloud which offers great ROI.
2. Shared Hosting now got many managed hosting features.
Staging sites. First launched on managed WordPress hosting and none of the shared hosting ever had this awesome feature. Now, shared hosting companies like ChemiCloud, A2 Hosting offers staging sites through cPanel. You can create unlimited staging sites for testing purposes.
Global Data Center. Back then, when it comes to hosting, it's all about US location. Thanks to the cloud revolution, there is some aggressive growth in the industry and now FastComet offers its service from 11 data centers from five different continents.
ChemiCloud got 8 datacenters, TMDHosting with 7 data centers and SiteGround got five data center locations.
Free Backups and Restore. Each company offers up to 30 days of free backup and restores with no additional cost. You can even manually create an unlimited number of backups based on plan disk space.
SSH, WP-CLI, etc. These developer-friendly tools are available on shared hosting plans too for free.
Free SSL & CDN: The Free SSL thing & CDN is common among all hosts, thanks to Let's Encrypt and Cloudflare. In some cases, ChemiCloud & A2 Hosting offers Cloudflare Railgun optimization for free, while it costs $20/month if bought from Cloudflare.com.
3. Guaranteed Resources just like VPS Hosting
If your shared host got good tech stacks (Web Server, Caching layers) and more the CPU/ RAM, you will get faster performance.
In 2021, shared host offers guaranteed RAM and CPU cores just like on managed hosts.
A2 Hosting offers up to 4GB RAM and 4CPU Core guaranteed resources.
FastComet on a high offer 6GB RAM AND 6 CPU Cores
4. Shared Companies still offers best support
Shared hosting doesn't mean poor support as portrayed by managed WordPress hosts.
FastComet responds to ticket as fast as possible. Here is the recent one.
FastComet comes with live chat support but I'm kind of guy who loves ticket-based support, so I used to raise tickets always.
A2 Hosting offers live chat all times and who complaints about SiteGround support? they're best in industry.
5. Runs Ecommerce Sites Flawlessly
If you're on WooCommerce or running a digital agency managing client ecommerce sites, here is what SiteGround offers which you don't even find on $100 hosts.
WooCommerce team itself recommends shared hosting initially and then recommends to upgrade to VPS hosting.
Cons of Shared Hosting
While concluding Share host is great for beginners, it also comes with traditional cons which you should bear with.
- Not Autoscalable: One of the major downfall. If your server crosses the limit, your site will be down and then you need to manually upgrade to VPS host. While in the case of a managed host, this process is automated and your site will be scaled up automatically to manage any number of traffic.
- Requires upfront money: To get some good discounts, you need to pay upfront amount while Cloudways like Cloud hosting charges monthly fees for less than $10/month.
- cPanel Control Panel: It's good and bad at the same time. With managed host custom panel, you can perform any task within clicks while it would take at least 3-5 clicks to perform actions. Update: SiteGround has its own custom control panel on a shared host.
If you are just starting out, shared hosting is still a great choice in 2021.
- Upgrade to Managed WordPress Host, if you've outgrown shared hosting environment.