Most people start with a shared hosting plan for a start-up website. However, at some point, you may start to wonder whether it’s time for you to choose your own hosting.
Sometimes you want more control than is possible with shared hosting. Other times, your traffic is exceeding the capacity of your host. However, private hosting from a dedicated server can be extremely expensive. What’s the solution? For many site owners, it is VPS hosting.
What is VPS Hosting?
A VPS, or a virtual private server, offers the best of both worlds of shared hosting and private hosting in many ways. You have lots of customization options the way you would with a dedicated server.
However, when deciding on shared vs. VPS hosting, there are many factors to consider. While VPS hosting has many advantages, it also comes with increased responsibilities which can be a downside, and it isn’t right for every situation.
If you’re doing fine with shared hosting, it may not be in your best interest to take on the additional responsibility of VPS hosting yet. However, if you are outgrowing your shared hosting platform, VPS may be right for you. Here is how to know when it’s time to make the switch:
If You Want a Space for Testing and Experimenting
A VPS is the perfect place for a developer to try out some new ideas, test various options, and generally get your website how you want it before going live. You can make all the changes that you want and take the time that you need without extensive expenses before you publish your site to the world.
If You Want More Customization Options
Shared hosting is awesome for many reasons, including how much is taken care of for you. However, having many aspects of your website handled by your host also means that you can’t necessarily customize them the way you want to.
A VPS is the perfect way to get more customization options at a reasonable expense. If you find that you’re butting your head against restrictions on your host sharing, it may be time to upgrade to VPS.
If You Need More Resources, a VPS May Not be the Right Answer for Your Needs
While VPS hosting is a great option for increased customization, testing, and experimentation, it doesn’t necessarily come with significantly more RAM. If you’ve outgrown your host site because you have more traffic than your host can handle, you may find that the resources of a VPS don’t give you many more CPU resources. In fact, some VPS plans actually have fewer CPU resources.
On the other hand, if your site is exceeding resources because it isn’t optimized, switching to a VPS may give you the flexibility to optimize your site appropriately so that you consume fewer resources.
Choosing VPS Hosting
Once you’ve decided that you’re ready for the move to VPS hosting, the next step is determining what to look for in a quality VPS hosting package that will meet your needs:
- Ram. How much RAM you need depends entirely on your specific website goals. If you have lots of projects running at the same time or your sites are jam-packed with media, you’ll need more RAM than if you’re running a single site that is media-light and well-optimized.
- CPU. The last thing that you want is for your site(s) to crash at high-traffic times. Therefore, you want to choose a host that has multiple cores and sufficient CPU to get the job done for you.
- A solid-state drive. This kind of hard disk will come at an additional cost over the traditional option, but they reboot faster, perform better, and are resilient to power failures.
Are You Ready to Make The Move to VPS?
It can be intimidating to leave the security and relative ease of shared hosting, but if you are outgrowing your current hosting, a VPS may be the right solution for you. Take advantage of VPS free trials. Be sure that the package you choose has the RAM, CPU, and drive that you need and make sure that you are making the move for the right reasons, and you will likely be very happy that you have made the switch to a VPS host.