Ecommerce in the U.S. lost out on over $500 million in 2017, all because of slow websites.
Website load times can be bogged down by poor web design, slow Internet, and incompatible devices. But the worst offenders are overloaded servers.
If you suspect your hosting server is to blame for your slow website or blog, it’s time to consider upgrading to VPS hosting.
But what is VPS hosting? And how is it different from traditional web hosting services?
Keep reading to find out how VPS hosting works, its benefits, and why you should consider upgrading your hosting service.
Web Hosting 101: A Quick Overview
Before we continue, there are some key things you should know about web hosting:
Physical servers are large computers that store digital data. Think of these like a heavy-weight version of your home computer, except instead of holding your family photos and personal documents it contains the data of one or more websites.
These servers could be anywhere in the world. The Internet is what allows website visitors to access this data from their personal devices.
An operating system is software that contains and organizes this website data. This software is similar to the Windows, Mac, or Linux operating systems that you might use on your home computer.
Physical servers can hold one operating system (and therefore hold only one website) or thousands (and therefore hold thousands of different websites).
What is VPS Hosting?
VPS hosting is a new form of web hosting that is growing in popularity.
VPS stands for virtual private server. Some tech experts also refer to this service as a virtual machine or virtual dedicated server.
VPS hosting involves having several operating systems on one physical server. The critical difference in VPS hosting is that each of these operating systems has its own allocated space on the server.
While they share the same physical server, they each have their own unique virtual server. This is where the name “virtual private server” comes from.
These virtual private servers run on the same physical server simultaneously. There are no overlaps or connections. It’s as if they are each on a different machine.
How is VPS hosting different from shared and dedicated hosting?
Besides VPS hosting, there are two other popular types of web hosting available:
Shared hosting means that one physical server hosts many websites, without the use of different operating systems.
Because of this, the same settings apply to all of the websites on this server.
Data resources on a shared server are a free-for-all. There is no organization or limit on how much data a website can use. So, in theory, one website could use all of these resources and leave none for the others on the server.
Dedicated hosting means that each website has its very own physical server. There is one operating system per physical server, no exceptions.
What Are the Benefits of VPS Hosting?
There are many benefits to VPS hosting, including:
- With VPS hosting, no other websites have access to your files. This is true even when your website is hosted on a physical server with multiple website clients.
- You can perform maintenance at any time. With shared hosting, maintenance affects every website hosted on the server. If you use VPS hosting, though, restarts and other downtimes won’t affect any website but your own.
- Your website’s RAM is exclusively yours to use. You don’t need to worry about sharing this memory and having another website hog all the RAM on your shared server.
- As your site’s data needs grow, you can increase the size of your virtual server without needing to change physical servers.
- VPS hosting gives you full control over your own operating system. Your operating system can be fully customized to meet your website’s needs. This is not possible with shared hosting.
- VPS hosting has similar benefits to dedicated hosting while being more affordable.
What Are the Downsides of VPS Hosting?
While VPS hosting is great for most blog owners, there are a couple of downsides to keep in mind:
- VPS hosting is cheaper than dedicated hosting but can be considerably more expensive than shared hosting. If you are considering upgrading to VPS hosting then make sure it is worth the additional cost.
- Some hosting providers misrepresent their server capacities and “overbook” hosting clients. You should thoroughly research your chosen server’s performance before committing to a contract.
Who Should Consider VPS Hosting?
VPS hosting is a great option for bloggers who are thinking about dedicated hosting but aren’t quite ready for the commitment.
If your blog is gaining traffic, it could be slowed down if your host doesn’t have enough storage.
Free blog websites, which typically use shared servers, often can’t handle large amounts of traffic. If you want to continue growing your blog or website, then you should consider switching to VPS hosting.
Websites that require additional security should also consider switching to VPS hosting.
If a digital intruder breaks into a shared hosting server, they can easily access every website contained within. This is not as easy with VPS hosting.
Websites that need specific operating system settings will benefit from VPS hosting. Changing these settings is usually not possible with shared hosting.
How Do I Switch to VPS Hosting?
If you’re moving your free blog to a paid host, like Bluehost, switching to VPS hosting is simple. All you need to do is opt into VPS hosting when you sign up.
If you’re currently using a paid host, they probably offer VPS hosting as well. Get in touch with your current hosting provider for more details about upgrading your service.
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