Hosting Battles – Cloud Hosting Vs. Shared Hosting

With so many hosting types already existing, and new ones emerging like Cloud Hosting, one can get overwhelmed with choices and the decision to select the right Web Hosting. What’s important to understand is that, it’s not that one type of hosting is better than the other, it all boils down to the type of hosting that satisfies your website’s current and future needs. If you do not evaluate the hosting types diligently, you may end up under-resourced making your website slow. Or you may alternatively end up paying for a lot more resources that you need leading to unnecessary cost.

In this post, we will understand the differences between one of the most widely used hosting – Shared Hosting and comparatively  new hosting type, Cloud Hosting. Perhaps we should begin with the three things that the two have in common: the web hosting provider, servers, and websites. Unfortunately, this is as far as the similarity goes.

To understand the differences, let us summarize them in a table with each of the attributes of these two hosting types against each other. Again, the whole objective of clearing up the differentiation is to enable you as a customer to understand what works well for your website.

 Shared HostingCloud Hosting
DefinitionIn Shared Hosting, multiple websites are hosted on the same server and all the resources are shared across the board, thus reducing cost for everyone. In Cloud Hosting, all the resources required for maintaining the websites is distributed across multiple servers grouped into a cluster called ‘Cloud‘. This reduces the chances of server downtime due to lack of single point failure.
UptimeOverall Uptime is not an issue. But in a Shared Hosting environment, in case your website receives a huge traffic spike, it could lead to downtime as the allocated shared resources will fall short.Uptime on Cloud Hosting can be better as compared to Shared Hosting, even under the circumstances where your website receives ad-hoc and unexpected traffic spikes. This is because on the cloud, the load can be distributed across the server network and it will also be easy to add more resources to the overall Server Cloud.
PerformanceIn case of Shared Hosting the resources are shared. Essentially the CPU, RAM, Storage etc. are all shared across all the sites on the same server. This will work well for smaller sites but if you have specific performance requirements, you may not prefer the Shared Hosting Environment. Unlike Shared Hosting, in Cloud Hosting the website resources are spread across multiple serves on the Cloud. This will have the potential to allocate as many resources required for your website at any given point. This is especially useful for sites that receive a lot of traffic and the traffic may increase at any point.
SecurityThis mostly depends on the Hosting providers. Good Hosting Providers will definitely provide better security for Shared hosting, but in theory, Shared Hosting, security is based on databases and applications which make them vulnerable to hackers. This is because once one has access to one website on the Shared Hosting server, it is easier to access the other websites on it.Security is a bit more comprehensive in Cloud Hosting. Cloud Hosting makes use of 4 major controls on the Cloud architecture; Deterrent controls, Preventive controls, Detective controls, Corrective controls. That being said, the threats that can happen on Shared Hosting, can also happen on Cloud Hosting such as network eavesdropping and illegal invasion. So apart from local security procedures, also it is necessary to choose a Cloud Hosting Provider that provides additional security.
ScalabilityComparatively it is difficult to scale up Shared Hosting because essentially everyone uses the same resources on a single server. But this does not mean one cannot scale up Shared Hosting.Scalability can be instantaneous. The very nature of Cloud Hosting allows you to add and remove resources very easily based on your website’s need.
SpeedShared Hosting means the resources, both hardware and software are shared for each site. This could affect the overall speed of the website especially when the website is experiencing surge of traffic. As all the data and resources are distributed across the cloud, it will be faster to retrieve the requested information from multiple sources. Also, at times the node that is geographically closest to the client can significantly reduce latency, thus improving speed.
SupportSupport is simpleCloud Hosting is complex. Here the Support needs to be top notch. It may require certain technical finesse from both the customer’s side and the support representative’s side.
Primary USPReduction of cost because of shared resources.Higher reliability because of not having a single point of failure.
Pricing$4.0 – $7.0 Per Month$7.0 – $15.0 Per Month


The Verdict

So our Cloud Hosting vs Shared Hosting battle ends there and in conclusion, Shared Hosting gets an edge over Cloud Hosting in terms of pricing. It is ideal for those on a budget or small business owners who have small websites with moderate traffic. With Shared Hosting they can have access to all the basic features they need to get started and do so affordably. Cloud Hosting, on the other hand, takes the throne when it comes to reliability, scalability and performance. All the features packed into this plan making it ideal for medium to large sized business or generally those websites that tend to receive huge traffic.

Hope this helps you understand what kind of hosting suits you best when you are mulling over Cloud Hosting or Shared Hosting. If you have any more thoughts or questions, please feel free to write them in the comments section below, we would love to address them!

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