Are you wondering whether to choose shared or managed WordPress hosting for your website? A web hosting account is a must-have if you want to create a website. A web hosting account is where your website will live on the internet and is what makes it possible for users to visit your site. So, it’s important to choose a web hosting service that fits your needs.
In this article, we’ll compare shared vs. managed WordPress hosting to help you decide which is the best choice for you.
Let’s get started.
What is Web Hosting?
If you’re still wondering, “what is web hosting?”, let us explain a little further.
The 2 most important things you need to build a website are a web hosting account and a domain name.
As we mentioned earlier, web hosting is where your website will “live” on the internet. This basically means that web hosting is a space on the internet where your website is stored so that users are able to access it. A web hosting account and a domain name makes it possible for users to type in your site URL into the address bar of their browser and view your website.
But, there are a number of different web hosting services on the market. As a beginner, it can be difficult to figure out which one is the best choice for your site.
So, let’s take a look at the difference between shared hosting and managed WordPress hosting.
What is Shared Hosting?
Shared hosting is when you share a single server (space on the internet) and the resources associated with it with a number of different websites. So, your website is stored in the same location as many other websites and you have to share memory, disk space, data, and CPU (processing) time.
Shared hosting is a popular choice mainly because it’s one of the most affordable options, with some shared hosting services costing as low as $2.75 per month.
But because you’re sharing server resources with other websites, those other sites can sometimes slow down your own site if they’re using up a lot of the resources. Most of the time though, you won’t notice this type of issue. Especially if you have a low traffic site, personal website, blog, or small business site.
With shared hosting, you’re also typically responsible for maintaining your website yourself. This can include security, backups, performance, and so on.
What is Managed WordPress Hosting?
Managed WordPress hosting is like having a concierge for your website. With managed WordPress hosting you get extra services and the best managed WordPress hosting companies basically maintain your website for you. They’ll take care of hosting related issues such as security, backups, updating WordPress, etc. so that you can focus on other areas of your business.
Managed WordPress hosting services also tend to offer premium customer support to get your issues solved as quickly and as easily as possible.
Because of these extra services, managed WordPress hosting is much more expensive than shared hosting.
Now that you know the basics of shared vs. managed WordPress hosting, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each.
Pros and Cons of Shared Hosting
As with any service, there are pros and cons to shared hosting. Let’s take a look at them.
Pros of Shared Hosting
- Affordable – Shared hosting services are the most affordable on the market. It’s easy to keep costs down when choosing shared hosting, some shared web hosting costs as little as $2.75/month.
- Easy Setup – Many shared hosting services offer 1-click WordPress installation, so you can get started on building your site easily.
- cPanel – With shared hosting, you get access to a cPanel which makes it easy to manage your website.
- Email Accounts – Many shared hosting services offer free email accounts. So, you can get a professional business email such as firstname.lastname@example.org without spending extra money.
Cons of Shared Hosting
- Maintenance – Choosing shared web hosting means that you’re responsible for the maintenance of your website such as security, WordPress updates, backups, and more.
- Slow Response Time and Downtime – Sharing the server and resources with other websites means that your site is more likely to experience slower load times and frequent downtime.
- Only for Low Traffic Sites – Shared web hosting is most suited for websites that don’t get high traffic such as small business websites, personal sites, blogs, etc.
Pros and Cons of Managed WordPress Hosting
Now, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of managed WordPress hosting.
Pros of Managed WordPress Hosting
- Higher Speeds – Managed WordPress hosting services are able to offer blazing fast speeds because their hardware and software is optimized for WordPress.
- Security and Backups – Security and backups are handled for you by the managed WordPress hosting company so that you don’t have to worry that your site isn’t secure.
- Automatic Updates – Many WordPress hosting services will handle core WordPress updates for you and even automatically update WordPress themes and plugins, which helps to keep your site secure.
- Priority Support – With managed WordPress hosting you’ll get the best customer support and your issues will be resolved by WordPress experts quickly.
Cons of Managed WordPress Hosting
- Expensive – Due to the extra services managed WordPress hosting companies provide, you’ll be paying much more money each month compared to shared hosting.
- Plugin Restrictions – Because managed WordPress hosting services want to ensure top performance, they won’t allow you to use certain plugins that could slow down your site.
- Strict Limits – Some managed WordPress hosts impose strict website limits and/or visitor caps.
- For WordPress Sites Only – With managed WordPress hosting, you can only host WordPress sites.
What to Look for in Shared or Managed WordPress Hosting?
When trying to choose the best shared or managed WordPress hosting for your website, it’s important to look at a number of factors before making your decision. You don’t want to quickly choose a web host, build your website, and then later find out you made the wrong choice.
So, here’s what to look out for when looking at both shared and managed WordPress hosting:
- Cost– Choose a web host that’s affordable to you and will give you what you’re looking for at a reasonable price.
- Uptime – It’s important to choose a web host that can offer a good uptime guarantee so that your website is available to users at all times.
- Features – Make sure to choose a web host that offers all of the features you need for your website. For instance, 1-click WordPress installation, email accounts, free domain name, etc.
- Security and Speed – Choose a web host that’s secure and optimized for speed so that your website is safe and performs well for your website visitors.
- Customer Support – The web hosting service you pick should offer 24/7 support so that you can get any issues with your website fixed as soon as possible.
Next, we’ll share with your our top choices for the best shared hosting companies as well as the best managed WordPress hosting companies.
The Best Shared Hosting Companies
If you want to choose a shared hosting service, here are our top picks for the best shared web hosting services.
Bluehost is the most popular web hosting service on the market. It’s officially recommended by WordPress.org and it powers over 2 million websites worldwide.
Bluehost offers 1-click WordPress installation, unmetered bandwidth, 24/7 support, daily automatic backups, and more. They also offer resource protection. This technology identifies other websites that are using up too many resources and temporarily moves them to isolated systems. This ensures that your website performance is unaffected, which is a great feature for shared hosting.
For more details, check out our Bluehost review.
Plus, IsItWP users get an awesome deal on shared hosting with WordPress. You can get 60% off on web hosting along with a free domain name and SSL certificate. That means you can get shared web hosting for only $2.75/month!
SiteGround is another one of the best shared web hosting services that’s trusted by the owners of 2 million domains. Like Bluehost, it’s also recommended by WordPress.org.
Some of SiteGround’s outstanding features include free SSL and HTTPS, free email accounts, daily backups, unmetered traffic, 24/7 support, and much more. They even offer free CloudFlare CDN (content delivery network) in all of their plans to ensure your site is speedy and secure.
You can get started with SiteGround for only $3.95/month and they offer a 30-day money back guarantee.
HostGator makes shared web hosting easy and affordable. HostGator offers the option of creating a website with their own website builder, which comes with over 100 templates and an image library. Or, you can create a WordPress site using their 1-click WordPress installation.
They also offer features such as a flexible, easy-to-use control panel to help you manage your website, unmetered bandwidth, SSL certification, 99.9% uptime guarantee, free website transfer, 24/7/365 support via phone and live chat, and more.
Pricing for HostGator starts at only $2.75/month and they offer a 45-day money back guarantee.
iPage is one of the most affordable shared web hosting services on the market. iPage is also an eco-friendly web hosting company; their data centers and web servers are powered by wind energy.
Some of the features that come with their web hosting plans include a free website builder, free email addresses, free ad credits for Google and Bing, website analytics, and more.
You can get started with iPage for only $1.99/month, that includes a free domain name and SSL certificate. They also offer a 30-day money back guarantee so that you can their web hosting services out risk-free.
The Best Managed WordPress Hosting Companies
Now, let’s take a look at our recommendations for the best managed WordPress hosting companies on the market.
WP Engine is one of the best managed WordPress hosting companies on the market powering 500,000 websites on the internet. WP Engine is created with speed, performance, and security in mind.
WP Engine offers uptime protection, fully managed global CDN, automatic WordPress updates, threat detection and blocking, daily automated backups, automatic caching, and more.
Other features include over 35 premium StudioPress themes, free SSL certificates, and expert customer support.
WP Engine pricing starts at $35/month, but you can get 4 months for free with our special IsItWP deal.
SiteGround is a great shared hosting service, but SiteGround also provides affordable managed WordPress hosting as well.
Their managed hosting plans include WordPress installation, automated updates, expert WordPress support, advanced WordPress security, and more. Plus, your site will load super fast with free CDN with each account, customized server setup, and SSD storage.
You can get started with SiteGround Managed WordPress hosting for only $3.95/month, which is much less costly than many other managed WordPress hosting services.
The most popular shared web hosting service Bluehost also offers managed WordPress hosting with their WP Pro plan.
Growing your website is easy with Bluehost Managed WordPress hosting. They offer a wide range of features including an all-in-one marketing center and dashboard, SEO, email marketing and social media tools, a staging environment that allows you to test your site before it goes live, and more.
Plus, Bluehost’s WP Pro plan is optimized for speed, featuring SSD (solid state drives) and a lower server density (fewer customers per server).
The Bluehost WP Pro plan starts at $19.95/month.
Liquid Web is one of the leaders in managed WordPress hosting. With Liquid Web you can enjoy no overage fees, traffic limits, or metered pageviews, worry-free automatic plugin updates, and an image optimization plugin is included.
Other features include full server access, staging site, automatic SSL, automatic daily backups, 24 hour support, and more.
You can get started with Liquid Web for only $29/month for 1 website.
Shared vs. Managed WordPress Hosting: What Should You Choose?
Now that you know the difference between shared and managed WordPress hosting, it’s time to figure out which option is the best choice for you.
If you’re just starting a blog or small website, we recommend that you choose shared hosting. Shared hosting is much more affordable and it’s best suited for small websites with little traffic.
On the other hand, if you have a high traffic website, you’d be better off choosing a managed WordPress hosting provider such as WP Engine. Managed WordPress hosting will ensure your website is optimized for speed, performance, and security.
Plus, since managed WordPress hosting services handle the maintenance of your website for you, you can focus on other areas of your business.
We hope you enjoyed this article on shared vs. managed WordPress hosting. If you liked this post, check out our guide on How to Host a Website (Step by Step).