Shared vs Managed WordPress Hosting: Which Is Best

Shared vs managed WordPress hosting: which one should you pick?

Shared vs Managed WordPress Hosting

Choosing the right web hosting solution for your WordPress website is pivotal to its performance and success. Two common options often spark deliberation are Shared WordPress Hosting and Managed WordPress Hosting. While both serve as viable choices, they cater to distinct needs and preferences. This article highlights the difference between Shared and Managed WordPress Hosting, helping you decide on the hosting solution that best aligns with your website’s requirements and overall online objectives.

What is shared hosting?

Shared Hosting involves sharing a web server among multiple customers. While each customer’s sites are kept separate and reside in their dedicated space, a single server typically hosts numerous sites for different customers. The primary advantage of shared hosting lies in its affordability, with plans often starting as low as $2.75 per month. This makes it a popular choice for beginners, low-traffic websites, personal sites, bloggers, and small businesses.

However, the main drawback is that the majority of account management falls on the user. Unlike Virtual Private Servers (VPS), where users have to actively oversee server operations, shared hosting users are responsible for ensuring site security, updating plugins, and utilizing cPanel for email address management.

What is WordPress hosting?

Managed WordPress hosting shares similarities with shared hosting, but it comes with inclusive management services. In this scenario, the hosting provider’s support team assumes responsibility for tasks such as updates, backups, and security measures.

Furthermore, users can usually expect a higher level of support with a managed hosting plan. The support team is more readily available to assist users with any issues or queries they may encounter.

However, it’s important to note that this convenience comes at a higher cost. The pricing for a managed WordPress hosting plan typically starts at around $16.95 per month.

Shared hosting vs. WordPress hosting: A full comparison

To summarize, shared hosting stands out as an affordable and user-friendly hosting option, while WordPress hosting, though often pricier, comes with dedicated management services tailored for WordPress-specific needs, offering customization, automation, and optimization.

Performance

Shared hosting can result in variable performance due to shared resources and potential slowdowns during peak traffic. It may lack advanced customization features. In contrast, WordPress hosting maximizes website capabilities with advanced features like plugins, caching, and configuration, enhancing speed, performance, and security. Regardless of the hosting type, please make sure your provider offers a content delivery network (CDN) and solid-state drive (SSD) storage for smooth website operation.

Security

Shared hosting, there are generally common security features applicable to all types of websites. These features lack specialization for WordPress, requiring users to take on the bulk of site security responsibilities independently.

On the other hand, Managed WordPress hosting excels in the security department. It offers advanced measures such as routine malware scans, automated backups, WordPress-specific firewalls, and proactive monitoring. With Managed WordPress hosting, the hosting provider proactively maintains site security, ensuring it stays protected and updated through tools specifically designed for WordPress.

Ease of Use

Shared hosting is lauded for its user-friendly control panel, such as cPanel, making tasks like file uploads, domain management, and email account setups straightforward. It proves especially advantageous for beginners and those less tech-savvy. On the other hand, WordPress hosting takes user-friendliness a step further, offering one-click installations, auto-updates, and built-in optimizations, making it suitable for users of all experience levels.

Website Management

Shared hosting, with its control panel, centralizes tasks like domain management, applications, and basic web administration. However, it lacks specificity for any platform, potentially impacting website optimization, performance, and security. In contrast, WordPress hosting operates in a specialized environment, utilizing the WordPress dashboard for centralized data management. Opting for managed hosting is akin to having a team of WordPress experts at your disposal, handling tasks like updates, security patches, and optimizations.

Customer Support

The level of customer support varies between shared hosting and WordPress hosting. Shared hosting support may offer general advice, while WordPress hosting support tends to be more comprehensive, specifically addressing WordPress CMS issues. Providers like Bluehost offer 24/7 support for both shared and WordPress hosting, ensuring assistance when needed.

Pricing

Shared hosting plans start at a few dollars per month, catering to new website owners or those with low-traffic websites. WordPress hosting plans are slightly pricier but offer enhanced features, specific optimizations, robust customer support, and automatic WordPress updates. Bluehost, for instance, provides shared and WordPress hosting packages starting at $2.95/month for a 12-month plan, offering a balance between affordability and advanced features.

Pros of Shared Hosting

1. Affordability

Shared hosting is budget-friendly, making it an excellent choice for those seeking cost-effective hosting solutions, often starting at a few dollars per month.

2. A Range of Options

Shared hosting providers offer a variety of plans, allowing users to choose a package that aligns with their specific needs and requirements.

3. Suitable for Low to Moderate Traffic

Ideal for websites with low to moderate traffic levels, shared hosting provides ample resources for smaller-scale online endeavors.

4. Flexibility

Shared hosting plans often come with user-friendly interfaces and flexible features, making them suitable for beginners and those who prioritize ease of use.

Cons of Shared Hosting

1. Performance Limitations

Shared hosting may experience performance limitations, especially during peak traffic periods, as resources are shared among multiple users.

2. Security Vulnerabilities

Due to shared resources, security vulnerabilities may arise, posing potential risks to website data and sensitive information.

3. Lack of Specialized Support

Shared hosting may lack specialized support for platform-specific issues, potentially leading to challenges for users with specific content management systems.

Pros of Managed WordPress Hosting

1. Enhanced Performance

Managed WordPress hosting offers optimized performance, utilizing advanced features like caching and configurations tailored for WordPress websites.

2. Better Security

With measures such as regular malware scans and WordPress-specific firewalls, managed WordPress hosting enhances site security, reducing the risk of vulnerabilities.

3. Automatic Updates and Backups

Providers of managed WordPress hosting often include automated updates and backups, ensuring the website stays current and secure without user intervention.

4. Expert Support

Managed WordPress hosting comes with expert support, providing specialized assistance for WordPress-related issues and ensuring a smoother user experience.

Cons of Managed WordPress Hosting

1. Higher Cost

The enhanced features and specialized support of managed WordPress hosting come at a higher cost compared to shared hosting plans.

2. Limited Customization

Managed WordPress hosting may have limitations on customization, restricting certain advanced configurations for users seeking highly tailored solutions.

3. Not Suitable for All Websites

While ideal for WordPress-based sites, managed WordPress hosting may not be the best fit for all types of websites, particularly those with unique hosting requirements.

4. Dependency on the Hosting Provider

Users of managed WordPress hosting depend on the hosting provider for updates, security measures, and support, potentially limiting autonomy in certain aspects of website management.

How to choose between shared and managed WordPress hosting

Selecting the ideal hosting solution for your WordPress site is a pivotal decision, and there’s no universal solution that fits every scenario. To guide you through this process, here’s a straightforward three-step approach to assist you in making an informed decision:

1. Assess Your Needs

Begin by evaluating your website’s requirements. Identify the tools you intend to use, gauge the level of support necessary, and determine if you have team members available to handle maintenance tasks or if these responsibilities will fall solely on you.

2. Evaluate Your Technical Skills

Consider your technical proficiency and comfort level in managing a website. If you possess technical expertise and can allocate time for site management tasks, shared hosting may be a suitable choice. Alternatively, if you prefer concentrating on your business and entrusting technical aspects to experts, the additional investment in managed WordPress hosting could be justified.

3. Consider Your Budget

Examine your budgetary constraints. Shared hosting is more cost-effective, but it’s essential to bear in mind the adage that you get what you pay for. While managed WordPress hosting comes at a higher cost, it provides superior value in terms of performance, security, and support.

Remember, it’s not about what’s good or bad, cheap or expensive; it’s about selecting the option that aligns with your unique circumstances.

In summary, the decision between shared and managed WordPress hosting demands thoughtful consideration. Weigh your site’s needs, your technical proficiency, and your budget to make the most appropriate choice. Regardless of your hosting selection, prioritize the security of your site as a fundamental aspect of your decision-making process.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)

What is the main difference between shared and managed WordPress hosting?

The primary distinction lies in the level of management and customization. Shared hosting involves sharing server resources with multiple users, offering a cost-effective solution but with limited customization. In contrast, managed WordPress hosting is tailored for WordPress sites, providing specialized features, optimizations, and expert management.

Shared hosting vs. managed WordPress hosting — which is best for my website?

The choice depends on your specific needs, Smart Web Ninja is using Siteground. Shared hosting is suitable for budget-conscious users with simpler websites, while managed WordPress hosting is ideal for those seeking optimized performance, security, and expert support for their WordPress-based sites.

Is shared hosting suitable for high-traffic WordPress websites?

While shared hosting can accommodate low to moderate traffic, high-traffic WordPress sites may experience performance limitations due to shared resources. For substantial traffic, managed WordPress hosting is recommended for its optimized performance and dedicated resources.

Are there any SEO advantages to using managed WordPress hosting?

Yes, managed WordPress hosting can offer SEO advantages. Its optimized performance, faster loading times, and enhanced security contribute to a positive user experience, which can positively impact SEO rankings. Additionally, managed hosting often includes features like automatic updates, benefiting overall site health.

Can I upgrade from shared hosting to managed WordPress hosting?

Yes, many hosting providers offer seamless upgrades. However, the process may involve migrating your website to a new server. Check with your hosting provider for specific details on the upgrade process and any potential impact on your site.

Is managed WordPress hosting more secure than shared hosting?

Yes, managed WordPress hosting tends to be more secure. It often includes features like regular malware scans, WordPress-specific firewalls, and proactive monitoring, providing a higher security level than shared hosting. However, the overall security also depends on the hosting provider’s specific offerings and practices.