A shared hosting plan is best known for its affordability and user-friendliness. Hence, making it an excellent starting point for many small business owners and beginners. That said, a shared hosting plan has a limited resource allocation that can restrict you from growing your website.
Luckily, you can always go with another hosting plan – a great solution is to opt for a VPS (Virtual Private Server) plan. A VPS hosting splits one physical server into multiple virtual servers, each isolated from the other.
With VPS hosting, you will get greater flexibility, guaranteed security, and a dedicated IP address, allowing you to have a fast-performing website. Additionally, it gives you complete server control without having to run your own physical server.
Now you’re probably wondering when is the right time to contact your web host and upgrade your hosting. Not to worry – this article will describe the eight indications that show when you need to scale up.
1. Slow Loading Time
Speed is undeniably one of the most crucial factors that determine website performance. In fact, one in every four visitors will abandon a site that loads for longer than four seconds. Not to mention the new Google Core Web Vitalsupdate strongly emphasizes speed and timing.
When you’re in a shared hosting environment, you’re essentially competing with other sites for bandwidth and disk space. Thus, if your website doesn’t get the sufficient resources it requires, it might be struggling to load in a timely manner.
Use tools like Pingdom or GTMetrix to get a clear idea of how well your site performs. If you notice your site speed is suffering, upgrading it to VPS hosting might be the best decision.
VPS hosting can provide up to 16GB RAM dedicated solely for your hosting account – this guarantees a faster loading time and an optimized user experience.
2. You’re Getting More Traffic
As your website gains popularity, it will receive more traffic and require a greater amount of bandwidth. This is because the more visitors access your website, the more requests your server will have to process.
Data will flow more swiftly whenever the amount of traffic is still within the limit of the server capacity. Otherwise, the website speed will start to plummet down. In some cases, it might even result in server overload.
That being said, a shared hosting plan doesn’t give you reserved resources. Whenever two websites are experiencing sudden traffic spikes, one of them will have to sacrifice its performance.
On the other hand, VPS hosting gives you a dedicated virtual server, also known as a container. It consists of guaranteed resources, from memory to CPU cores, that you don’t share with other users, preventing sluggish performance during traffic surges.
3. Frequent Downtime
Downtime refers to the amount of time a website is inaccessible or unable to process specific requests. It can result in significant revenue loss and increase the risk of losing clients and prospective customers.
When your website is experiencing frequent downtime, it will create negative impressions for your visitors, affecting your brand’s reputation.
If left unresolved, website downtime can also mean permanent abandonment. A study reports that nine percent of visitors never return to the same website after finding out the site is down.
Additionally, frequent website downtime directly correlates to SEO and page ranking. Google bots act similarly to human visitors – they will immediately leave your site as soon as they find it unavailable. This prevents them from crawling and indexing your site for the search result pages.
Fortunately, this issue can be prevented by using a VPS solution from a reliable hosting provider. A good rule of thumb is to go with a provider that guarantees a 99.9% uptime guarantee to ensure 24/7 availability.
4. Your Business is Growing
When your business is growing, it is only natural that your site takes up more resources compared to when it first started. This is because you need more space to store more data and pages, especially if you have downloadable files, such as videos or images.
With shared hosting, you have a limited amount of resources that you share with other users on the same server. Alternatively, you can upgrade your hosting plan to VPS and get your own allocated resources.
A VPS hosting service is easily scalable, you can regulate resources as per your needs without having to worry about other users. Its dedicated environment gives users the benefit of a dedicated server at a more affordable price, making it an excellent solution for growing businesses.
5. Needing Bandwidth for Apps and Data
Previously, we have talked briefly about the importance of bandwidth in determining a website’s performance. Bandwidth affects how a web server responds to a request – the higher the bandwidth, the faster the process.
In addition to processing on-site requests, bandwidth also plays an important role in transferring network data. Hence, if you have a content-heavy website that includes streaming media or high-resolution images, a higher bandwidth limit is essential to ensure smooth performance.
The same rule applies if you want to develop a web-based application. With a higher bandwidth capacity, visitors can seamlessly use features on your website without any distractions, increasing engagement and conversions.
For these reasons, hosting on a virtual private server might be the most practical option. Besides providing scalable resources, VPS hosting also gives you a root-access. This allows you to configure server applications as per your needs.
6. Enhance Your Security
Although a shared hosting plan comes with enough protection, the shared environment can potentially put you at risk of malicious attacks. Shared hosting comes with a shared IP address. Therefore, every action done by your neighboring websites can have consequences.
If your neighboring website performs a suspicious or illegal activity, firewall systems will blacklist the IP address and block visitors from accessing the sites. Additionally, search engines will also remove your website from the SERPs and mark it as unsecured.
The best and most practical solution to prevent these problems is by upgrading your hosting plan to VPS. It allows you to modify your server configuration and implement effective security practices.
For instance, you can set up internal firewalls, configure SSH ports, as well as control user access and file permissions. This way, it is easier to monitor root-level access and ensure your site’s security.
When your website needs more resources to store your content and top-notch security to protect your website data – shared hosting might not be the most viable option. This is when VPS hosting provides a more stable and secure alternative.
VPS hosting imitates the concept of a dedicated server by providing dedicated resources while still being in a shared environment. This gives you the best of both worlds and makes it an affordable solution to grow your business.
Note that hosting your website with VPS might require more technical knowledge. However, this also gives you more control over your hosting security and environment.
All in all, we hope this article has helped you pinpoint the signs of when it’s time to upgrade your web hosting plan. Remember to always consult with your hosting provider to ensure the best outcome. Good luck!