Why the best shared hosting isn’t quite what you think

Choosing a home for your website can seem like a tricky proposition, especially when it comes to shared hosting providers. With so many options out there, it can be challenging to distinguish them from one another.

Even if you think you know the basics, many don’t know the precise features that you should be looking out for. Plus, there are hidden benefits in looking beyond the service and onto the overall service provider — giving your search for the best shared hosting a whole new dimension.

Whether you want more affordable shared hosting or have a bigger budget, there are some core basics you must have, no matter the price point. These include:

  1. Speed and reliability
  2. Strong security
  3. Next-level hosting management 

Let’s explore each one in more detail, before finally taking a look at how the right overall provider and platform can make the true difference — which isn’t discussed nearly enough.

1. Speed and reliability

Whether you have an established business or are launching your first website, you want it to be fast and always available to users. So, a reliable shared hosting provider is key. A site with slow-loading pages is off-putting to users. Nowadays, a web page should load in 1-2 seconds — anything more, and you may lose a potential customer. And if your site doesn’t load at all, you’ve got bigger problems. 99.99% uptime is the standard Internet users have come to expect from their online experience. 

The best shared hosting services prevent such issues by using cloud-based storage. Cloud hosting is designed to distribute data across various servers, particularly during periods of high demand, so websites don’t suffer downtime. Cloud hosting is also built to handle a multitude of hardware and software stack failures, so websites aren’t impacted if anything goes wrong. As a result, shared hosting with cloud-based storage provides websites with: 

  • Increased performance
  • Greater reliability
  • Zero downtime

Before committing to a shared hosting service, you should also check that its servers are set for speed, using something like LiteSpeed Web Server, for example. The efficient event-based design of LiteSpeed Web Server enables it to manage numerous simultaneous clients while using very little memory and CPU resources, ramping up your speed. Its server-level caching also helps speed up page load times, while the optimized PHP performance can benefit users with PHP-based websites and CMS, like WordPress.

2. Strong security

It’s also crucial to choose a shared hosting service with built-in security. Good hosting security will protect your site from all manner of malicious attacks, from malware to malicious traffic. Top features you should look for include:

Distributed storage

We mentioned this in the last point in relation to uptime and reliability, but the distributed nature of cloud storage also has security benefits. It brings an extra layer of protection to website and application data compared to centralized systems. For central systems, it's easier to attack and destroy data, while with distributed systems, the data is replicated, building resilience and protecting from data loss.

Free SSL certificate

SSL security is a must for every website. An SSL is a small digital certificate that is installed on the server to implement an encrypted connection for anyone accessing your site via a web browser. This ensures data sent via the connection cannot be intercepted by malicious actors. Make things simple for yourself by choosing a host that provides free SSL certificates to its customers. 

Automatic backups

Regular website backups ensure a site is back up and running in almost no time should the worst happen and it's taken offline. Performing such backups manually is inconvenient, so a tool that automates the process to occur regularly is vital. Find a shared hosting service that provides a tool to periodically back up your website's data, account files, databases, email accounts, and settings so they’ll never be lost. 

Other protections a shared hosting service should provide as standard include:

  • Brute force protection: prevents ‘bad actors’ from gaining unauthorized access to your website.
  • Virus and malware scanning: continually checks your site’s server for malicious activity.
  • Firewalls: monitors incoming and outgoing traffic based on specific rules, blocking cyber threats.

3. Next-level hosting management

Your hosting platform should make managing everything as easy as possible. Whether you need to manage content, monitor performance, or keep an eye on hosting use, files, and backups, everything should be provided to you as part of your plan, without the need to connect to any external managers. 

While access to advanced tools, sometimes through portals like cPanel, is a necessity for many users, you may prefer simpler hosting management tools built into the platform for more straightforward things. The best shared hosting provider offers access to both. It will allow you to host unlimited websites and install top website platforms like WordPress in just a few seconds, and still get more technical when you need to — such as accessing and applying the best web development tools like PHP and Python. 

Now that you're familiar with three of the core fundamentals of website hosting, let’s take a look at the shared hosting must-have you didn’t know you needed. 

A platform integrated with everything you’ll ever need

Many domain owners cherry-pick products from different providers, making connecting and keeping track of everything a lot more hassle than it needs to be. So give serious consideration to making life easier by choosing a shared hosting service built into a wider connected platform. One that’s designed to provide you with everything you need to create and expand your digital world. 

This kind of simple and connected ecosystem puts you in control while making website management more straightforward. Look for platforms with innovative, easy solutions to connect your domain to shared hosting, email, and more without hassle. That way, you don’t have to sweat the technical stuff and can focus on launching your online future. 

Spaceship, with its revolutionary Unbox™ technology, is a great example of such a solution. It helps you mix and manage the tools and products you need to grow your site, both now and later, connecting and configuring everything to your needs in a few clicks. 

After you’re all set up, you can manage, upgrade, build, and find even more tools in your Launchpad control center. Everything is displayed in app form, providing a clear overview of your features, tools, and products so you can easily access them anytime. As an example of the kind of apps available, our “Hosting Manager” app is a more user-friendly alternative to cPanel — while still also giving you cPanel access should you need it.

How to choose a shared hosting platform

While we’ve provided an extensive list of what everyone should seek in a shared business hosting platform, it’s up to you to weigh up your needs and preferences and go from there. 

If you value convenience and a platform that provides everything you need in one place, Spaceship Shared Hosting may be for you. If you already have a site hosted elsewhere, that’s no problem. Unbox™ lets you run your own migration in just a few minutes, so you can set up your site in no time.


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