If you own a website or have a smartphone, you’ve probably heard about cloud hosting. It is important that you understand all of the hosting options available to you so that you can choose the one that is best for your business. According to the Aberdeen Group, the average cost of website downtime is $163,674 per hour! This can be avoided if you choose the right hosting service for your needs.

What is Cloud Hosting?

Cloud hosting refers to hosting services that use multiple connected services, also called a “cloud’, unlike other methods which use a single server. There are many benefits to using cloud hosting and it has become more popular in recent years due to the increased accessibility and cost efficiency that it offers.

Other Types of Hosting Methods

Before you start to decide what hosting method is best for you, get to know the different types of hosting services available to you.

Shared Hosting

This is considered one of the traditional hosting methods, and refers to one physical server that is shared by multiple users. Each user will have their own allocated disk space, maximum monthly traffic, email accounts, databases, etc., so that is never affected by how many users there are. However, the server makes use of performance resources, and all users are sharing these resources, which can lead to lower performance. The advantages of shared hosting is its low cost, since you’re sharing the server with many other users. The disadvantage is the limited resources available to you and the potential decrease in performance if other users have a lot of traffic and activity.

Dedicated Hosting

This is also considered a traditional hosting method. In this case, a physical server is devoted completely to your business. This means that you can completely control how it is customized and it can be tailored to your business needs. Uptime is usually much higher and if you add backup facilities, you can be sure your website will be available to your users at all times. Since you’re the only one using the server, you can make sure that it suits your needs in terms of traffic, CPU, and disk space to avoid congestion. Being able to completely control your own server means that you can add security measures to prevent hacking and malware.

While the advantages are great, the disadvantages are also very significant. Dedicated hosting is much more expensive and it requires that you have a professional managing it. Many businesses prefer other hosting methods due to the resources involved in having a dedicated server.

VPS Hosting

VPS stands for Virtual Private Server, and it can be looked at as a combination of shared and dedicated hosting. In this case, you get a virtual server with its own operating system, bandwidth, and disk space. A physical server is divided into multiple spaces, each of which is a “virtual server” that a user can see as its own independent environment. You can reboot it and work on it like a dedicated server without affecting the other virtual servers on the same physical machine.

The advantages and disadvantages are the same: this is a solution somewhere between shared and dedicated hosting. It is more expensive than shared servers but cheaper than a dedicated server, and while it provides much more customization and control capabilities than shared hosting, it is not as good as a dedicated solution.

Cloud Hosting vs. Traditional Hosting

Cloud hosting is a very reliable solution that is considered by many the preferred hosting method.

Cloud vs. Shared Hosting

The main advantage of shared hosting is the price, though the disadvantages include overloaded servers, low speeds, and downtime. When using cloud hosting, you can use many different servers connected together, so if one is overloaded or stops working, your website is still live.

Cloud vs. Dedicated Hosting

While you have full control of your server with dedicated hosting, it also means that you have to take care of the support, security, and costs. With cloud hosting, you’ll save money on electricity and you’ll be able to benefit from the security patches and support provided to you.

Cloud vs. VPS Hosting

Virtual servers are less efficient because they can only allocate a guaranteed amount of resources to each user without rerouting. This means that one client can have a lot of free resources, while another is overloaded. A cloud infrastructure prevents this by allocating the required resources to each user and ensuring maximum efficiency.

David Gibson
David has always been a computer geek. With a bachelor's degree in Computer Science and five years of building websites from scratch, he’s ready to master his new position as a web developing manager. David recently combined his love for technology with writing, and provides his input in the form of regular articles on Top 5 Hosting.
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