Managed Vs. Shared WordPress Hosting: Which One To Choose?

2017-11-10 by Catherrine Garcia

Before we delve into the topic, let us first understand the difference between managed and shared WordPress hosting.

Shared hosting is a cost-effective way of hosting a website as it caters to the common needs of several websites at a low price irrespective of whether they are made on WordPress or not. Managed WordPress hosting, on the other hand, caters to a very specific market and provides dedicated WordPress optimized servers with advanced features such as fast speed, advanced security solutions, automatic backups of your website, and personalized customer support.

While shared hosting is apt for small businesses or bloggers having a blog on WordPress, managed hosting is apt for large enterprises whose businesses rely on speed of the website and security of the customer’s data.

In this article, we are going to look at the pros and cons of Managed and Shared WordPress hosting. It will help you to review your existing web hosting services and accordingly take a decision on the hosting type that will be ideal to your business.

Let us look at Managed WordPress hosting first.

Managed WordPress Hosting

If you are running a business that is highly dependent on the website or if your website is your business, then managed WordPress is the apt option for you as it offers you a hassle-free experience. This is not to say that shared WordPress hosting is full of hassles, but what we mean is it is more advanced and better managed than shared WordPress hosting.

While you can hire an IT support team to manage your website, it is highly recommended to shell out extra amount to buy managed WordPress hosting for the following reasons:

  • Speed: A successful website is the one that does not slow down even when the traffic is heavy because a slow website implies loss of potential customers. For example, a website like Amazon.com has to load faster despite having heavy traffic during holiday season and Black Friday, as customers may go to the competitor’s website if the website loads slow. If your business depends upon the traffic that comes to your website, then you must opt for managed WordPress hosting as it has a good speed even when there is heavy traffic.
  • Security: If your business entails customers entering personal details such as credit card details then it is important to ensure that your website is hacker-proof. Managed WordPress hosting provides a tight security layer that is hacker-proof, scans for malware, and blocks all hacking attempts.
  • Personalized customer support: There are instances when your system administrator might not be aware of certain technical aspects, which could impact the functionality of your website. In such cases, managed WordPress hosting can rescue you as the customer support team has good domain knowledge and analyze your problems. They give you advice about the plugins that you must use or not use and troubleshoot your issues almost immediately.
  • Automatic updates: To ensure that your website is performing at its peak, your web server is automatically updated – right from operating system on the server to PHP, MySQL, and WordPress too. So, you need not to worry about updating your website every time. It ensures that your website is running the latest and most secure versions of every component.

However, managed hosting has its disadvantages. 

  • High cost: The first disadvantage is, of course, the high cost. A shared WordPress hosting costs as low as $3.95 per month, while the base price of managed WordPress hosting begins from $29 per month. However, with kind of benefits that managed WordPress hosting provides, this amount may seem to be reasonable.
  • Rigid infrastructure: You can only use WordPress sites on the host. So, if you have multiple sites that run on systems such as Drupal and plan to host them on your dedicated managed WordPress host, it cannot be done.
  • Plugin limitations: Managed WordPress hosting companies put restrictions on using certain plugins either due to security reasons or because the tasks such as caching is performed on the server level by the hosting companies. So, if you are planning to use a popular plugin to add features to your website, the hosting company may disable it if they find it hampering the functioning of your website.

Shared WordPress Web Hosting

As mentioned above, shared WordPress web hosting is economical, so it is apt if your business is not dependent on website or if you are a blogger. However, shared WordPress hosting has its benefits too.

  • Competitive pricing: As several websites share the maintenance fees of the server, the hosting fee is just around $3.95 to $9.95 per month.
  • Hassle-free upgrade: So, your business is growing, and you plan to make your website the main source of getting business, then you can upgrade to managed WordPress hosting with the same hosting company without any hassles.
  • Improved technology: With increased competition, most shared WordPress hosting comes with easy to use admin panel such as cPanel that helps the website owner or admin to manage their website from a web-based interface.

Some of the limitations of Shared WordPress web hosting include bandwidth issues, low storage, as the server has to be shared between so many websites. Sometimes you will come across slower server response, customer service that is friendly but not personalized, and the major disadvantage being the web hosting company that tries to sell the shared hosting by claiming unlimited disk space, unlimited bandwidth, and unlimited domains, which is far away from truth. So, if you plan to opt for shared WordPress web hosting option, it is advisable that you choose a hosting company that is reputed. Once you choose a reputed hosting company, you can be assured of not getting cheated and can focus on your business without worrying about being arm-twisted.

In conclusion

Now that you are aware of the pros and cons of both shared and managed web hosting, you can choose the option that aligns with your website objective and requirements.

If cost is the priority then shared hosting option would be apt for you. Despite its limitations, it will enable you to focus on your business without worrying about maintenance and other aspects related to hosting a website.

However, if your website is the core of your business, then you would want your website to load faster and would require faster resolution to technical issues to avoid losing potential customers. In such cases, managed WordPress hosting is recommended.

Whichever hosting service you opt for, remember to compare and study the different hosting companies to avoid being fleeced by their false claims.

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Catherrine Garcia

Catherrine Garcia is an experienced Web Developer at WPCodingDev and a passionate blogger. She loves to share her knowledge through articles on web development and WordPress related topics.

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