Types Of Web Hosting

Demystifying Web Hosting: Exploring the Different Types and Their Benefits

Perhaps one of the biggest challenges when setting up a website is deciding what type of web hosting plan you’ll use.

There are hundreds of web hosting companies out there, and they use technical terms such as Shared, VPS, Dedicated, Linux, Bandwidth, Cloud, Unmetered traffic, SSD, HDD, GB, DNS, Varnish, and so on to lucrative their potential customers.

Because of this jargon, it’s pretty obvious someone who is just planning to start a website gets confused, even the developers having plenty of knowledge get confused sometimes.

If you have gone through our list of best web hosting, you might still be stuck with some question marks as to which kind of hosting is the right one for you.

To help you with that, in this post, we will see the most common type of web hosting and determine which one will suit your website.

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However, First, let’s clarify what hosting is and then we will see the different types of web hosting.

Have you ever noticed any differences while browsing any website?

I am sure your answer will be “NO”.

It’s because hosting services will not change the content of a website.

So, It can’t be distinguished.

However, all the websites are not running on the same hosting platform.

Every website has its own need, and according to the requirement, web owners select the hosting services.

Certainly, the end goal is the same in all instances: to host the files that make up a website so that users may access them.

When you open a website in a browser, you are actually receiving a bunch of codes written in different languages like HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and PHP.

Your browser converts those codes into high-level languages (understandable by humans). So, we can understand the websites’ content (images, text, videos, animations, colour, buttons).

All the codes which make a website are held in a file that needs some space to live, known as a server.

A server is a computer that keeps all your files and is capable of performing operations on them.

So that your viewers can see the content of your website from their devices.

It includes a processor, memory, a hard disc, and an operating system.

In addition, the hosting company offers additional services such as malware scanning, backup, server management, support, web builder and so on.

These services depend on the hosting plan you have selected as well as it varies from company to company.

So far, everything is in order? Okay, then let’s get into more specifics.

1. Shared Hosting

Yes, you guessed it right. Shared hosting means just that. Your website is hosted on a server shared by other websites.

Shared hosting is extremely cost-effective but also not a great choice for a website having high traffic.

Let me put it this way.

Remember how your computer shared the same memory space, CPU speed, and RAM for the various tasks you perform on it?

Exactly, In a shared hosting environment, the host (Company) allocates a single server to a large number of users. Hundreds of other websites run on a single server, and your website’s performance depends on the other websites.

Assume on your server there are 100 websites, that share the server’s resources and one of them has lots of visitors, which consumes 80% of the server’s memory, then the other 99 sites will be left with only 20% of the server’s memory. This leads other websites to go down and load slowly for the visitors.

So is shared hosting really a good choice?

Absolutely YES! It can be great for housing development sites, small business websites, portfolio websites, first blogs/sites, test sites or websites where traffic is less.

If you are a beginner or are still learning, don’t hesitate to go with shared hosting services.

A lot of shared hosting plans also come with add-on services like:

  • Free domain name
  • Free SSL certificate
  • Integrated website builder
  • Security and anti-malware scans
  • User-friendly control panel (cPanel)
  • Auto-backups

Later on, you can upgrade to the other hosting plans according to your site performance and needs.

Almost every blogger, including the most well-known, began their career with a shared hosting plan.

Pros of Shared Hosting

  • Most cost-effective type of web hosting.
  • Easy to set up.
  • No technical knowledge is required.
  • Pre-configured server environment
  • Great for beginners and small websites.

Cons of Shared Hosting

  • Sharing server resources with other websites.
  • Lower loading times and lower uptime rates.
  • Bandwidth limits — you’ll pay more when you exceed a certain traffic threshold.

Best Shared Web Hosting Provider

2. VPS Hosting

VPS stands for “virtual private server.” Virtual Private Server (VPS) shares one physical server but acts like multiple separate servers. The number of users on a VPS server is normally limited to 10-20.

As a result, the website functions smoothly.

For example: If there are 10 users, 100 GB of RAM and 2000 GB of drive space on the server then each user will get 10 GB of RAM and 200 GB of drive space.

Once a user hits the limit provided to him, the site may go down, but the other sites will remain stable.

VPS hosting is highly flexible and configurable, which is not there with shared hosting. VPS hosting is contained within a virtual machine. So you can modify it as per your need without affecting others.

Hypervisor technology is responsible for managing the virtual machine that creates this separation within the server.

However, in shared hosting, any changes you make will affect everyone else as well.

On average, VPS will cost you around $50 a month.

Pro Tips: A high-end VPS server can be more powerful and cost-effective as compared to a low-end dedicated server.

Pros of VPS Hosting

  • Dedicated server resources.
  • Ability to make custom configurations to your server.
  • Higher uptime rates and faster loading speeds.
  • More cost-effective than a dedicated server.

Cons of VPS Hosting

  • Sharing the main server with other websites.
  • Not as easy to set up as a shared server.
  • Still has limitations in terms of what you can control.

Best VPS Web Hosting Provider

3. Dedicated Hosting

So far, we’ve only talked about hosting plans where you share servers with other users. Servers are expensive, and if you desire a private server all to yourself, you’ll need to pay a premium for it.

A dedicated server means you are renting one physical server from a hosting company and having full control over it.

You won’t have to worry about a terrible neighbour sucking up your resources and slowing down your website if you have a dedicated server.

Because you are renting the entire server, hosting firms allow you to modify it to your specifications.

You may be able to select the Operating System, RAM type, storage space, and other hardware and software components that work together to keep your websites running properly.

To complete all the setups, you’ll need some expertise in server technologies and computer languages to install the operating system along with other tools like a web server, security scanning, malware scanning and so on.

However, the biggest cons of the dedicated server are hardware or software failure.

In the Shared server or VPS if something goes wrong (software or hardware failure) another module might take place automatically pretty quickly and keep your website upstream.

With the dedicated server, you need to wait until the issue is resolved.

If you are renting an unmanaged dedicated server, you’ll be responsible for:

  • Installing the operating system (e.g. Windows or Linux)
  • Adding the necessary tools for running your operations
  • Building a security perimeter to protect your infrastructure.

From a security point of view, the Dedicated server is best for your data privacy.

It keeps all your data safe and secure since your server is not shared with others and you have full control over it.

Pros of Dedicated Hosting

  • Complete control over the server.
  • Not sharing resources with any other websites.
  • High security.
  • Fast load times, high uptimes, and optimal performance.

Cons of Dedicated Hosting

  • Very expensive
  • Requires technical knowledge.
  • You are responsible for everything.

Best Dedicated Web Hosting Provider

4. Cloud Hosting

Cloud Hosting is an entirely different type of hosting.

Instead of one physical server, your site will be a part of the whole network from which it can pull the resources and power it needs dynamically.

Here, each server carries a particular set of tasks. In case of failure of any of the servers in the cloud hosting, another server will temporarily take place and render the required resources.

The best example of cloud hosting is Google itself.

Its resources are spread over thousands of servers on the cloud. No wonder we have never seen any downtime on Google.com. However, planned maintenance is a different thing.

Other benefits of cloud-based hosting include:

  • Instant scalability
  • Higher uptime
  • Access to the latest hardware
  • Greater security
  • Value-added cloud services

Cloud hosting is by far the most scalable and efficient server. With cloud hosting, you only pay for what you use.

Pros of Cloud Hosting

  • Flexible
  • Most scalable
  • Only pay what you use
  • Best performance

Cons of Cloud Hosting

  • Pricing isn’t always fixed.
  • Unpredictable traffic can increase costs.
  • Limited customization.

Best Cloud Web Hosting Provider

5. WordPress Hosting

WordPress hosting is designed specifically for WordPress users. This form of web hosting is recommended if you want your hosting to be optimised for your WordPress site.

WordPress hosting typically includes additional security that is tailored to WordPress-powered websites.

Because WordPress is the most widely used content management system (CMS) on the internet, those websites are more vulnerable to cybercrime.

As a result, the extra security is unquestionably beneficial.

Pros of WordPress Hosting

  • Optimized for WordPress.
  • WordPress pre-installed or one-click installations.
  • Enhanced security for WordPress sites.

Cons of WordPress Hosting

  • It’s only of use to WordPress users.
  • Limits your ability to use other platforms.

Best WordPress Web Hosting Provider

6. Reseller Hosting

If you run a business that revolves around building websites, such as a development or design agency, you’ll probably have to deal with hosting.

You can make it easy on your clients by allowing them to get all of their website needs in one place, as opposed to finding a web hosting plan on their own.

In a nutshell, you get access to an account that enables you to provide hosting to your clients. Those clients pay you directly, and you’re responsible for managing their accounts.

Taking control of client hosting also enables you to take care of their websites’ maintenance, so you can make sure everything’s working as it should.

Pros of Reseller Hosting

  • Set uncapped prices for your clients.
  • Get recurring and sustainable income.
  • Improve your existing services.

Cons of Reseller Hosting

  • Need lots of clients to make it worth your time and effort.
  • If something goes wrong, your clients will turn to you.

Best Reseller Web Hosting Provider

So basically you have 6 choices. It’s up to you to decide what your needs are.

If you intend to launch a large website that will receive thousands of visitors each day, dedicated hosting should be considered.

However, if you are planning to start a blogging website or a small website then shared or VPS hosting will be the best option for you.

I believe this article helped you in understanding different types of web hosting.

Frequently Asked Questions on Different Types of Web Hosting

Yes, shared hosting is perfectly fine for any small and medium-size website. If you are new, you should always start with shared hosting plans. The typical shared hosting customer is:

  • Running a blog or website using a popular PHP content management system like WordPress or Drupal
  • Launching a website for their personal use, portfolio website, for small business.

If you fit all those points, you will find shared hosting to be the easiest and most economical way to get online quickly.


Because of its popularity, most shared hosting providers are well-equipped to handle a WordPress website.

You can refer to our beginner-friendly guide on creating a WordPress website from scratch. 

In theory, yes. In real life, usually not.

Although shared hosting providers claim to support Ruby on Rails and have it available to be installed. But that doesn’t mean it will actually work well.

Ruby on Rails depends on a complex automated dependency management system called the Ruby Gems system. This system contains lots of libraries, scripts, and third-party modules.

Another problem with Ruby on Rails and shared hosting is that Rails consumes a lot of resources, compared with other apps, like WordPress or Drupal.

Actually, Rails was designed and is primarily used, to build SaaS (software as a service) applications. Shared hosting is designed to put up personal blogs and small business websites.

The biggest problem is the lack of computing resources — memory, storage, bandwidth, and processing cycles.

If your site traffic gets too high, or if there is a large volume of concurrent requests, page load times can slow to a crawl.

  • Use a Content Delivery Network – Like Cloudflare
  • Use a caching plugin 
  • Minify and combine resources
  • Compress files
  • Don’t host your own media – Use YouTube or Vimeo to host your videos. Use Soundcloud, iTunes, or another service for audio.

That depends on what you mean by “better.”

VPS  is more customizable, has faster performance, and can handle more traffic than a shared hosting plan.

In simple words, VPS is a better choice for a website having high traffic volume.


WordPress Multisite works best on a VPS, where the site administrator has full control over web server configuration and other environmental factors.

Probably not, but maybe.

If you are familiar with server technology then you can choose a dedicated server.

The most likely reasons to need a dedicated server plan have to do with security and regulatory compliance.

Since you rent the whole server, you have to customize it from the scratch as per your requirement.

To do all setup, you need to know about server technology with computing and a little knowledge of programming languages.

Is a dedicated server the best?

Only if you need it.

A web server is a software application that communicates between your computer or server and the internet at large.

Apache is the most common web server. It is free and Open Source.

The vast majority of commonly-used web content management systems (like WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla) and other similar applications are written primarily with Apache.

The other popular alternative is Nginx. Nginx is faster than Apache, especially when serving static files or cached files, and can be made to be as fast (or faster) than Apache for interpreting PHP and other languages.

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