When you talk to a hosting provider such as ourselves, you may see the words ‘Shared’ and ‘VPS’ tossed around. Don’t let these words scare you. It’s simple tech-talk for figuring out how your websites and information should be housed. Starting a hosting account should be as easy and seamless as possible, so I’m here to simplify the process and give you the deets on those two common words so you can decide which hosting option is best for you.

Before we get too far, though, if you haven’t already familiarized yourself with what hosting actually is, I recommend reading our blog post, Hosting for Beginners: What is it and Why Do I Need it?  This will give you the backbones you need before you dive into the differences between the two hosting options. Not to mention, there’s a restaurant analogy that will help you better understand how hosting works.

Here at Vivio, Shared and VPS are the most popular hosting options. While we offer hosting for WordPress, ColdFusion, Lucee, PHP, Mura, and email systems, mostly everything comes down to Shared and VPS.

Let’s compare:

Shared Hosting is defined as a service where the hosting company houses several websites with their own domain names on a single server.

  • Often referred to as Virtual Hosting
  • Preferred option for first-time hosting clients
  • Great for new businesses and blogs
  • More economic
  • Analogy: living in an apartment complex

VPS Hosting is defined as a virtual machine that runs its own operating system, providing clients with more advanced access to install software and make changes as needed.

  • Stands for Virtual Private Server
  • Higher control
  • Higher reliability
  • Analogy: owning a condo

Which hosting option should I go with?

When choosing a hosting option, it usually comes down to two things: cost and control. If you are new to hosting, we highly recommend Shared. Our Shared hosting has several support options and starts at as little as $10 per month. VPS hosting, on the other hand, is a great option for web developers, digital media firms, and more tech-savvy clients. Our pricing starts at $15 per month for that service.

While Shared hosting costs less, you do have less control. VPS costs a bit more, but give you more control over your environment. If you want and like having less control, Shared is for you since it’s less for you to worry about. Otherwise, VPS is a great way to maintain control with your sites.

Suggestions for Choosing a Web Hosting Provider

Finding a hosting provider that meets your needs shouldn’t be difficult. Try not to spend too much time writing down every question you can think of regarding hosting. Instead, taking some time to educate yourself and find a hosting solution that matches may be more efficient for you. Think about your goals with your website. Most people consider these major categories when choosing a provider:

  • Reliability and uptime
    • Question for the provider: What is your uptime guarantee?
  • Price
    • Question for the provider: How much will it cost for the standard package?
  • Ability to upgrade
    • Question for the provider: What are my options for upgrading?
  • Features
    • Question for the provider: What features are included in the standard package? 
  • No contract
    • Question for the provider: Am I locked into a contract?

When choosing a hosting provider, keep things simple. There’s no need to over-complicate things. The provider can always make recommendations, but it’s nice to come in having an idea of what you are looking for.

To learn more about hosting with Vivio, please visit our website.

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