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Shared vs Managed WordPress Hosting: The Key Differences

Are you trying to decide between Shared vs. Managed WordPress Hosting? In this post, we will cover the differences between the two.

Shared vs Managed WordPress Hosting

Shared vs. Managed WordPress Hosting has been a warm topic in the WordPress community for a long time. And we’re no strangers to the topic either – in our numerous hosting tests, comparisons, and surveys, we’ve come across many exciting viewpoints and opinions from both sides of the barricade time and time again.

However, pitting Shared and Managed Hosting against each other is not as easy as it seems at first glance.

This article will explore what developers and everyday users mean when talking about Shared and Managed WordPress hosting.

Then I’ll go over the specific differences between the two and recommend which option is better in a given scenario.

Shared vs Managed WordPress Hosting in a nutshell

The argument between Shared and Managed WordPress hosting revolves around the additional WordPress-specific services and performance improvements you get with Managed WordPress Hosting.

Managed WordPress Hosting resembles an attendant service for your WordPress site, whereas regular Shared Hosting leaves much work to you regarding backups, WordPress optimization, and more.

However, Shared Hosting and Managed WordPress Hosting are not inherently different. When talking about Shared Hosting, the term is usually equated with “general low-cost hosting.”

But here’s the thing:

Many shared hosts offer a “managed platform” or “managed services”. These hosts are often counted among the list of WordPress-Managed Hosts.

  • Shared Hosting is just a hosting plan where your website “shares” resources with other websites on the same server.
  • Managed WordPress Hosting is a collection of additional services and performance enhancements offered in addition to regular hosting.

Despite this caveat, we will stick to common usage in this article and treat Shared and Managed WordPress hosting as distinct entities. Even though this is not technically correct, it is correct considering how most people use the two terms.

The main differences between shared vs Managed WordPress Hosting

Shared Hosting in a nutshell

Shared Hosting is about hosters trying to keep their costs down by putting many different websites on a single server. That sounds negative – but it’s not. Shared Hosting serves a purpose.

If shared hosts didn’t do that, none of us would certainly have the ability to host unlimited websites for the same amount we spend at Starbucks every month.

Shared Hosting is an excellent solution for a proof-of-concept site, for example, or a hobby site. And perhaps even for a small business site, as long as it’s a simple “online business card.”

If you were to opt for a professionally Managed WordPress Hosting setup for each of these projects, you wouldn’t be able to test more than 1-2 websites at a time. With Shared Hosting, you can run ten such sites on one server.

Also, you’ll be sharing your server’s resources with dozens or hundreds of other websites, which might slow your website down because something is happening on another website.

Quality shared hosts avoid overloading their servers to prevent this – ultra-budget shared hosts usually offer too much space.

In addition, you usually use a generic cPanel dashboard to manage your website(s).

While cPanel has some WordPress-specific features – such as an installation tool – it’s not explicitly designed to make your life with WordPress easier, as Managed WordPress Hosts dashboards are.

Managed WordPress Hosting in a nutshell

Managed WordPress Hosting consists of several services, performance optimizations, and other add-ons. These additional features:

  • Make sure that your website loads faster, as each configuration is optimized specifically for WordPress.
  • You’ll get tools that simplify WordPress installation and management, as well as tools like staging sites that help you make changes to your WordPress site safely. You’ll get assistance with maintaining your site.
  • Better secure your WordPress site with security rules and features specific to WordPress

In addition to these features, you can usually manage your site through a customized dashboard (although this is not always the case with low-cost WordPress hosts).

Pros and cons of Shared Hosting

Pros of Shared Hosting

  • You often pay a significantly reduced monthly fee.
  • With many shared hosts, you can host unlimited websites for a flat fee.
  • While there is no such point as an “unlimited number of visitors,” most shared hosts advertise an unlimited number and have no set cap on the number of visits to your site.

Cons of Shared Hosting

  • Your website will usually load a little slower because the focus is often on cost reductions rather than performance improvements.
  • Because you share resources, your website load times can also be affected by the activity of other websites on the shared server.
  • You lack value-added features such as automatic updates and automatic backups.
  • They do not always have WordPress-specific performance and security enhancements.

Pros and cons of Managed WordPress Hosting

The pros and cons of Managed WordPress Hosting are a bit more varied…

Pros of Managed WordPress Hosting

  • A server architecture designed specifically for WordPress, which usually means better performance.
  • Built-in caching at the server level, which also means better performance
  • Automatic WordPress updates to maintain your website secure and functional
  • Automatic backups to ensure the security of your WordPress website data
  • WordPress-specific security measures such as firewalls, login hardening, and malware scans
  • A convenient dashboard for website management (though not with all Managed WordPress Hosts).
  • All customer support staff are WordPress experts

Cons of Managed WordPress Hosting

  • Managed WordPress Hosts are frequently more expensive than shared hosts, although you can find a middle ground.
  • They can usually only host WordPress websites (of course).
  • To ensure performance, some Managed WordPress Hosts restrict the plugins you can use. Managed WordPress also hosts usually impose stricter website limits and visitor caps.

Read More: 25 ways to increase website traffic

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