For your business to be successful, you need a strong and successful online presence. According to a Zippia report, 75% of people decide whether a company is trustworthy based on its website. If your website doesn’t run smoothly, it’ll reflect poorly on your brand.
A well-oiled website experience begins with the right hosting solution. There are plenty of web hosting providers to choose from, but some are more popular than others. For example, WordPress powers 43.1% of websites on the internet.
But is that the best solution for you? If you’re considering WordPress hosting versus alternative web hosting options, it’s important to compare their features, performance, and pricing. Read on to learn more about these hosting solutions.
What Is WordPress Hosting?
WordPress is a content management system (CMS) that powers millions of websites worldwide. WordPress hosting is a specialized web hosting service tailored specifically for websites built on WordPress. That means that everything about it is optimized for WordPress so that websites meet its specific requirements.
You don’t have to use WordPress hosting to run a WordPress website. But doing so gives you a level of optimization you don’t get otherwise. Which optimizations you get access to depends on which type of hosting you choose. WordPress offers two options: shared hosting and managed hosting.
Shared WordPress hosting is the go-to choice if you’re just dipping your toes into the vast pool of online presence. It’s like renting an apartment in a building. You share resources like bandwidth, storage, and server space among multiple websites. Therefore, it’s an economical option for small businesses. The downside is that you may experience slower loading speed during peak traffic times.
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On the other hand, managed hosting is like the valet service of WordPress hosting. Everything gets taken care of for you, from automatic updates to daily backups, performance optimizations, and security scans. This option is perfect if you want to focus on your business without getting bogged down by technical website maintenance. It does have a higher price tag than shared WordPress hosting. But the tradeoff may be worth it if you’ve got the capital and are serious about growing your online presence.
What Is Web Hosting?
Just as every ship needs a harbor, every website needs a home. That’s essentially what web hosting is—a home for your website that enables users worldwide to easily access it online.
In web hosting, all your website data resides on hardware called web servers. Web servers are powerful computers that process user requests and deliver your website’s pages to their browsers. The web servers are housed in data centers, which use high-speed internet connections and stringent security measures to ensure uninterrupted website availability.
Not all web hosting is created equal. There are various types tailored to specific needs, including:
- Shared hosting: Multiple websites share resources on a single server
- Dedicated hosting: Gives websites their own individual private servers for more control and power
- Virtual private server (VPS) hosting: Multiple websites share one server, but each runs its own operating system
- Cloud hosting: Distributes websites across a network of interconnected virtual servers for maximum scalability and availability
- Managed hosting: Provides comprehensive support and dedicated servers for a hands-off experience
It’s important to note that WordPress hosting is a type of web hosting. The only difference is that it’s optimized specifically for WordPress websites and only comprises shared and managed hosting.
Key Features of WordPress Hosting
WordPress hosting offers features meticulously designed to enhance the WordPress website experience. They ensure smooth operation, efficiency, and a superior user experience.
Optimized Performance: Tailored for WordPress Websites
As stated above, WordPress hosting servers are designed to cater to the unique requirements and abilities of WordPress websites. That means faster response times, quicker database queries, and overall improved performance optimization.
WordPress hosting also often includes a content delivery network (CDN) — a global network of servers that delivers your website content to users based on where they live. It ensures faster load times and a seamless online experience so your users don’t bounce because of slow loading speeds. Since website users bounce up to 8.3% less with just a 0.1% site speed improvement, this feature is invaluable.
Managed Updates and Security: Keep Your Site Safe and Current
One of the great things about managed WordPress website hosting is the hands-off experience. Automatic updates reduce vulnerabilities by ensuring your WordPress core, plugins, and themes are always up-to-date. And enhanced security measures, including firewalls and malware scanning, keep your website safe from potential threats.
WordPress-Specific Support: Expert Assistance for Technical Issues
Ever had a technical glitch and wished an expert was there to make it go away? We’ve all been there. With WordPress hosting, that wish becomes a reality.
The support teams are experts in WordPress and all its issues. Therefore, when you use WordPress hosting for a WordPress website, you get quicker resolutions and less downtime.
Key Features of Web Hosting
General web hosting provides a suite of features that are adaptable to virtually any type of website on the internet. Understanding these features empowers you to scale, build, and adapt your website as your business grows.
General Hosting Flexibility: Suited for Various Website Types
Unlike WordPress hosting, general web hosting allows you to cater to various types of websites. It doesn’t matter which CMS you use. Web hosting has the flexibility to host any site, so you can switch platforms as needed.
Customization Options: Ideal for Diverse Content Management Systems
Web hosting doesn’t limit you to configurations tailored for WordPress. You have the freedom to do whatever you want, including:
- Tweaking server settings
- Installing custom software
- Optimizing your server configurations
Therefore, you can build your website from the ground up and tailor it to your unique needs and user behaviors.
Control and Versatility: Different Development Approaches
Web hosting gives you the autonomy to pick specific server configurations so your website runs exactly the way you envision. You can do anything from implementing a particular version of scripting language to diving deep into raw server logs to diagnose a problem.
It also allows for a broader range of software installations and script executions. You’re not confined to predefined settings or software, so you can test out a new CMS or integrate a custom-built tool as you please. This freedom is especially beneficial if you have a lot of tech knowledge or a strong IT team.
Performance Comparison: WordPress Hosting vs Web Hosting
Your website’s level of performance — its efficiency and speed — can make or break the user experience. It’s an important consideration when you’re trying to choose a hosting provider.
So how does WordPress hosting perform?
Due to its highly specialized nature, it often has faster loading times for WordPress-centric content. And with the features mentioned above, like automatic updates and WordPress-specific security measures, all the backend processes run seamlessly.
What about general web hosting?
Its flexibility is one of its top strengths. But that can also be its Achilles heel when it comes to performance. It doesn’t have the tailored optimizations that WordPress hosting does. Therefore, you might have to take a more hands-on approach to achieve peak performance.
Choosing your hosting solution really boils down to one question: Which is more important to you, convenience or control?
Do you prefer a pre-optimized hosting solution so you get ultimate performance from the get-go? Or do you prefer versatility, even if it means you must fine-tune the performance yourself? Grasping your priorities, needs, and technical strength can guide you in choosing the perfect website host for your business.
Pricing Considerations for WordPress Hosting and Web Hosting
Pricing is another decisive factor in choosing which hosting solution is best for your business. After all, you want to make sure that you’re getting a good return on your investment.
WordPress offers several plans so you can choose what’s best for your business, with shared and managed options. For businesses already earning revenue like yours, prices may range from $2.75 per month to $45 per month. For large enterprises, they also have an enterprise plan that starts at $25,000 per year.
General web hosting’s pricing range is as versatile as its hosting capabilities. It can generally offer more competitive pricing, especially for basic plans. Some basic plans may even be free. However, prices can increase as you scale and require more resources or dedicated long-term web hosting.
So what should you consider when it comes to pricing? We know it’s tempting to simply opt for the cheapest plan. However, the cost of a hosting package is intertwined with its features and value. It’s not just about the price tag — you need to get the best bang for your buck.
Some key considerations to keep in mind include:
- Basic features: Does the plan include features like CDN integration, SSL certificates, or automatic backups? Some hosting providers may offer these as standard, while others might charge you more for them.
- Resource limits: Look at the allocated server resources like storage, bandwidth, and memory (RAM). Cheaper plans often have strict limits, which could affect website performance if you exceed them.
- Scalability: Look at how easy and costly it is to upgrade your hosting plan. You need a hosting solution that can grow as your business grows without breaking the bank.
- Support: Check to see if 24/7 support is included in the pricing or not.
- Renewal rates: Some hosting providers offer promotional discounted rates for the first term and increase the price upon contract renewal.
- Additional services: Some hosting plans might include value-added services. Perks like free domain registration, website migration, or marketing credits can really increase the value of the overall package.
- Contract length: Some providers offer discounts for longer contract terms. It can save money on your initial investment, but make sure you’re comfortable with committing to the same provider for the duration.
- Hidden fees: Look at the fine print to see if there are any hidden fees for setup, exceeding certain limits, or additional features.
When To Choose WordPress Hosting or Web Hosting
Choosing between WordPress hosting and general web hosting requires you to consider your vision, goals, and the technical demands of your website. While both options have unique advantages, you want a solution that will nurture and boost your online presence. So how do you know when to choose?
Match Hosting Options to Specific Project Requirements
First, consider the nature of your project. Are you creating a WordPress blog to expand your content strategy? Maybe you’re trying to build a robust e-commerce website. WordPress hosting might be your best option for these projects.
But suppose you’re trying to create a custom-coded site for a unique product. Or sometimes you may just want to use a non-WordPress CMS. In these cases, alternative web hosting options might be the best choice for you.
Factors Influencing Your Hosting Choice
Several factors influence your hosting choice, including:
- Your technical expertise
- The level of support you need
- Your budget
- Future scalability
- The size of your website files
Considering these factors can help you make an informed decision about which solution aligns with your business needs and goals.
Fast and Affordable WordPress Hosting
Selecting the right hosting solution boils down to understanding your website’s unique needs and aligning them with the right hosting option. Whichever you choose, the goal is to provide a seamless user experience and build a strong, reliable online presence.
Choosing the right hosting option doesn’t just impact your website’s performance today. It also sets the stage for future growth. Making sure your website is in the right hands is a cornerstone for long-term success.
As an award-winning digital marketing agency, White Peak knows exactly what business owners need to build their online presence. We provide lightning-fast WordPress hosting at a fair price without skimping on the features you need for success. Check out our WordPress hosting solution to begin your journey to an optimized WordPress website.
Tim Woda is the CEO and founder of White Peak Marketing. He has been on the founding team of five successful start-ups and his digital marketing campaigns have acquired more than 800 million customers for his start-ups and White Peak’s client companies. Tim has been featured by The New York Times, Fox News, Forbes, The Huffington Post, and more. Under Tim’s direction, White Peak was selected as one of America’s Top Digital Marketing Agencies for 2021 by MarTech Outlook magazine.