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What is Shared Hosting?

The Shared hosting plan is a type of service where one physical server is hosting multiple websites. The server’s resources are allocated to its many users, so there is low cost when it comes to using this type of hosting. This is the most affordable way of hosting a website for small businesses, especially if it is their first time launching their page online. It allows them to make their online presence without too much hassle on server configuration. As your hosting provider, HostGator will manage your shared server for you, so you can focus on your business and your website’s contents.

Who Should Use Shared Hosting?

The Shared hosting is ideal for small to medium businesses or organizations, for personal projects (blogs or portfolios) that require less traffic, and for people who wish to create their websites but have limited time and technical skills to manage their servers. In cases when you think your site needs more resources, or if you notice or anticipate more traffic, then you may opt to consider upgrading to a more powerful hosting plan like our Dedicated hosting packages.


Does Shared Hosting Come With a Domain Registration?

HostGator offers free domain registration with our shared hosting plans provided that you register for a 12-, 24- or 36-month renewal cycle. This offer also extends to .com, .org, and .net TLDs only, and applies to both new and existing customers.


What Are the Features of Shared Hosting?

Pros

  • Low cost. Since the resources are being shared by multiple users, the operating costs are divided among them, making Shared Hosting the most affordable type of hosting. 
  • Beginner-friendly. This type of hosting is suited for newbies who wish to build their online presence but have limited knowledge or technical expertise with server maintenance.
  • Economical and practical. With shared hosting, you get to host unlimited websites on the same server as long as you comply with our Terms of Service.
  • Easy to Upgrade. If your website gets more traffic and needs more resources, you can upgrade to our next-level hosting anytime.

Cons:

  • Limited Resources. Due to the nature of how shared hosting works and with resources being distributed among multiple users in one server, websites that require intensive function and customization may experience poor performance.
  • Traffic. The shared hosting’s limited resource can handle low to medium traffic. A sudden high influx or too much traffic may result in your website crashing or experiencing slow loading time.
  • Inability to configure your server. This type of server does not have root access and supports limited custom installations.
  • No root access. A shared server being used by multiple users does not provide root access to its users.

How Do You Know Which Hosting You Need?

HostGator offers different hosting packages that you can choose from depending on your websites’ needs and purposes. If you require help selecting the type of hosting you need, please refer to this article, How Do I Choose Which Hosting Plan is Right for Me?


When Does a Business Outgrow Shared Hosting? 

It is always a good idea to prepare for growth. Soon enough, as your business grows, the needs of your website will change. When this happens, you may want to consider upgrading to a more powerful hosting plan like our Dedicated hosting servers. Here are a few things to watch out for on your website.

  • Slow loading time. If the site pages load excruciatingly slow even after optimization, you definitely would want to consider doing an upgrade.
  • Custom scripts or cron jobs not working. Your site’s features are not correctly functioning as it used to due to timeouts.
  • The influx of traffic. If you are expecting a burst of traffic on your website, more than what your shared server can handle, then it's best to upgrade to a more powerful hosting package.
  • A higher email capacity is required. Shared hosting has storage limitations. If you’re not utilizing Microsoft 365 or G Suite, then your emails utilize the same storage as your website(s).
  • Website improvements. Your business may require updates on visual content that may be resource-extensive for your shared hosting. You may also require custom installs or configuration on your server, which can only be done through VPS or Dedicated hosting.
  • IP reputation. Blacklisting of IP addresses is common on shared hosting since you’re sharing the server with many users, who may be spamming or running out-of-date software or applications. Chances are you get affected too.

For more information on how to upgrade, please visit this article, How Do I Upgrade My Account to a Better Plan?


What is the  Difference Between Shared Hosting and Dedicated Hosting?

There are several differences when it comes to shared and dedicated hosting. With Shared Hosting, the disk space and bandwidth is shared amongst multiple users. In contrast,  Dedicated Hosting resources are solely used by one user or organization. Shared hosting is also more affordable than Dedicated hosting. Aside from the resources and costs, other factors that need to be considered are performance, root access, security, and technical skills to manage these servers. For more information on each of these servers, please refer to this article, Shared Environment vs. Dedicated Environment.