Web hosting is where a website “lives” on the internet. A website is securely stored on a special computer called a server, and visitors can access it if they type the web address of said site into a browser or web client. The web host has a significant impact on a website’s speed and security, so it’s an important decision. And there is a big variety of web hosting providers and hosting types out there, which complicates the decision-making process to a degree. As is often the case, the choice ultimately depends on a website’s needs and available resources.
The particular needs of your website will dictate the tech stack – the package of tools, languages, and companies – that enables your web hosting. That tech stack is made up of the hardware resources (CPU, RAM, storage etc.) + operating system (OS) + the web server + the database (DB) + programming language + any additional services offered. For example, a hosting may use Linux, Apache, Oracle database, Google Compute Engine hardware resources, and PHP as a programming language.
Here are the types of web hosting suitable for WordPress websites:
Types of web hosting suitable for WordPress sites
Shared hosting is the first option most online businesses consider when they’re just starting out. It is thought to be the cheapest option, website owners expect to switch to better hosting when their website gains traction. The reason why shared hosting is not ideal is its architecture: Your website is sharing resources with a bunch of other sites. This means that if one of the websites is hacked, uses up a lot of resources or is up to something illegal, your website will be affected. So, shared hosting slows down your website and negatively affects your site speed. Given the wide availability of cheap alternatives, it is safe to say the era of shared hosting is over.
Managed/Automated WordPress hosting
WordPress powers around 43% of all existing websites, and the CMS’s popularity has given rise to a number of WordPress-specific web hosts. While you don’t necessarily need WordPress hosting, you may want to go with it given the WP-tailored server configuration and WP-optimized resources. Besides, WordPress hosting typically includes various additional services, such as WP performance optimization, automated updates of plugins and themes, enhanced security, and so much more. WordPress hosting is extremely beginner-friendly and makes setup as easy for users as possible.
VPS (virtual private server) hosting is when you share a server with other websites, but still have your own operating system and full root access. The reason why sharing a server doesn’t hinder your website’s high speed and efficiency is that your website is isolated from its neighbors. With VPS hosting, your site gets unlimited bandwidth, dedicated storage, powerful CPU, and scalable RAM. VPS is significantly better than shared hosting but worse than dedicated. It’s best fitted for high-traffic websites that value their visitors’ smooth experience.
If shared hosting is like living in a communal space, dedicated hosting is like having a separate villa. Dedicated hosting means your website has a whole physical server to itself. The vast resources dedicated hosting offers guarantee the ultimate reliability, flexibility, and control of your online presence. The only downsides of dedicated hosting are its high cost and the extensive knowledge required for managing a server.
Cloud hosting is when the web hosting provider keeps all of the data of a website on multiple virtual servers, which may be deployed on different physical servers. This is quite different from the more traditional style of web hosting, which stores data on a single physical server. This network of virtual servers can pull necessary information more dynamically. The cloud hosting system is more reliable, as it does not depend on a physical server. It allows a lot of administrative flexibility and independence, thanks to containerization. Cloud hosting is quite affordable and has been gaining popularity at a fast pace. Now cloud hosting may be managed or self-managed, WP-specific or not. It depends on a website’s requirements.