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The Difference Between Dedicated and Shared Hosting

If you’ve looked into hosting before, you’ve probably heard about shared and dedicated hosting. Unless you’ve been using a host, you probably don’t know the difference between them, which is why I wanted to take some time to explain it.

Let’s start with shared hosting.

What Is Shared Hosting?

Shared hosting is exactly what it sounds like – you are sharing hosting with other websites. The best way to explain what this is like is to imagine going to a Chinese buffet restaurant. When there aren’t many people, you can quickly and easily get the food you want. But when a lot of people come in for dinner, it takes a bit longer for you to get to the buffet, especially to the foods you want. You won’t be able to fill your plate quickly, which means you won’t get satisfied as fast. This may make you frustrated, and if it gets busy enough, you may just leave.

In this example, you’re the user of your website. If the user arrives on your website and is able to get what he/she wants from it quickly, he/she is satisfied and happy. If he/she has to wait for your website to load because it takes longer for the server to access the files due to it being overloaded with other websites, he/she may leave feeling frustrated.

Just like in a Chinese restaurant, you may always go to it and not have to deal with a large crowd. However, there’s always a chance that you may have to do deal with it, especially in some locations. It just depends how many people are in the area that like Chinese food.

The same goes for the server. Your website might load fine on a shared server if it isn’t one that is full of other large, highly accessed websites. However, some servers are already full and over time they do become bogged down, and that is when it can become a problem.

Shared servers cost less money than dedicated ones simply because they are used by other websites. The cost of providing those servers is less, so the cost to users is low.

Dedicated hosting is the next level and of course, it costs more.

The Difference – Dedicated Hosting

Dedicated hosting is also exactly what it sounds like – you get a dedicated server. No other website is on the dedicated server. This means that your site should load as fast as it can every time it needs to be accessed.

Since you are the only one on the server, you can grow your website as large as you would like up to the size of the server. If you end up building your website bigger than the server, you can always upgrade to a bigger website.

Security is much better on a dedicated server. Since there is only one website, it is much easier to control what goes on with that site and secure it from hackers.

When to Choose a Shared Over Dedicated Server

Most startups choose a shared server because their site is small and it doesn’t take much for it to load. As their site grows, they end up switching to a dedicated server for it because it’s just more reliable and performs better.

If you’re interested in learning more about shared vs. dedicated servers, contact us. We provide exceptional hosting services for our clients.