If you are a new business owner or a newbie blogger or an entry-level startup, looking for a hosting platform for your website, then you must have come across Shared Hosting – the most affordable hosting service.
Shared Web Hosting is one of the most popular, cost-effective and basic web hosting solutions. It provides an easy-to-manage platform for new or small businesses, wherein most critical server responsibilities and management are taken care of by the hosting provider. These advantages of Shared Hosting, especially the Shared Hosting price, makes it popular with new businesses.
Moreover, with reliable web hosting providers, site owners are assured of fair usage practices, secure hosting and high uptime. But how can you as a business owner find and choose the right Shared Hosting Plan?
Let us find out!
But before that, let us understand what Shared Hosting is.
What is Shared Hosting?
Shared Hosting is a type of hosting where multiple websites use the resources of a single server. There’s no isolation of servers or dedicated resources that are allocated to any website. Instead, there’s a single pool of resources (the server), and all the websites housed in that server use resources from that pool.
Resource sharing brings down the cost of owning a website for everyone and provides a perfect platform for new websites. While websites with a lot of traffic may need more powerful forms of hosting, Shared Hosting offers excellent performance to new websites with low to medium traffic.
This balance between cost and performance makes Shared Hosting the most popular form of web hosting. However, not all Shared Hosting plans are created equal. This article focuses on what to look for when you’re planning to buy a Shared Hosting plan.
Things to Look for When Purchasing a Shared Hosting Plan
Uptime is the measure of the reliability of a website. It’s the duration (expressed in percentage) for which the web hosting company’s server stayed online before going down. The duration of the down time and the cause bear no relevance.
Uptime is crucial for your website. People obviously won’t shop or visit a website if it is unavailable often, and additionally, search engines don’t recommend websites with low uptime.
Uptime of at least 99.9% is crucial. Lots of companies do advertise this. However, few will assure it. When looking for a Shared Hosting plan, ask the web hosting company if they can give a guarantee for the same.
Unmetered bandwidth is better than ‘unlimited’
Bandwidth is simply a measure of the speed at which a server (or any computer connected to a network) can transfer data in a given frame of time. So, a bandwidth of 500Mbps means that the server can transfer 500 Megabits in one second.
Unmetered bandwidth means that there’s no cap on how much data you can transfer. It’s important to note that speed is limited. If the bandwidth of a server is 1Gbps, for example, that speed won’t go up. It’s just that you can transfer as much data as you want at that speed.
Unlimited bandwidth, on the other hand, is a marketing gimmick. There’s no such thing called unlimited bandwidth. If you look closely at the fine print, you’ll see that there’s always some limitation that’s been placed.
Compatibility and one-click installation support
Compatibility is a crucial part of hosting. The type of hosting plan you choose will, very realistically, shape the website that you end up with. There are hosting plans that don’t support famous CMS software, for example. If a hosting plan doesn’t support WordPress, for example, you’re losing out.
Similarly, there are a lot of companies that offer Shared Hosting plans that have serious compatibility hindrances. Ensure that your hosting company is compatible with most of the popular and important applications and software you intend to use.
If you choose Linux hosting and are not an expert on hosting or Linux, get a Shared Hosting plan that offers one-click application installers. Softaculous is a popular example. These are software that allows you to skip entering commands in the Linux terminal.
Instead, they work like Windows or Mac applications. There’s a button called ‘install’; you click on it, and the software does everything else. Each of these script installers has a whole range of applications that they support.
So, if you’re new and inexperienced, get a Shared Hosting plan that’s compatible with a wide variety of applications and comes with one-click installers like Softaculous.
Check what’s bundled with the hosting plan
Leading web hosting companies not only offer great hosting plans, but they also add a few addons to make life easier. These usually include a leading website management tool like cPanel, an SSL certificate so that your website is more secure, and you can use HTTPS/2 for better speeds, etc.
While these are optional, and you can always buy them later, the fact is that most of these added benefits are usually fundamental in running your website, meaning you’ll most probably end up buying them anyway.
Some hosting companies offer some applications for free or at steep discounts. When looking to buy a Shared Hosting plan, enquire what your web hosting company offers.
Ease of scaling
As your website grows, you’ll need more and more resources to cater to a growing audience. Some web hosting companies cram their servers full of websites in a bid to maximise profits. This leaves no headroom for a growing website.
When looking for a Shared Hosting plan, check if customers using the service of a company have seen huge dips in performance with their website growth. If the dip in performance is considerable, then maybe it’s best to look at some other vendor.
As a thumb rule, Shared Hosting plans must easily handle sites with low to medium traffic flow.
Shared Hosting is the perfect way to start a website. It offers all the performance that you need while not burning a hole in your pocket. Of course, when your website grows and needs considerably more resources, you can move to something like VPS or Dedicated Hosting solutions. However, in the beginning, Shared Hosting is ideal.
However, not all companies offer the same Shared Hosting plans. Some are way too expensive, while other companies simply cannot offer decent performance. With website hosting, it’s usually a good idea to stick to the industry leaders that satisfy all of the conditions mentioned in this article.
If you are looking for reliable Shared Web Hosting plans in India for your new website, check out secure plans from HostGator India. With our Shared Hosting plans, we offer an in-built control panel, one-click installs with Softaculous, free SSL, unmetered bandwidth and unmetered SSD disk space. What’s more, we provide a platform that nails the basics of website hosting — speed, reliability, and security.
With strong foundations, you can stop worrying about hosting problems and completely concentrate on growing your website.