Starting a blog with WordPress or Blogger is easy. But if you want to take the next step and to turn your blog into a business then you will need to get your own domain name and to become self-hosted. Self-hosting your own blog means you are using a web host that you pay to host your website as opposed to using a free website service like wordpress.com. However, before you purchase web hosting, it’s important you understand the differences between the three different types of blog servers most commonly used for self-hosted blogs and websites.
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The good news is that there are a number of companies out there that can make self-hosting your blog as easy as paying your monthly phone bill. To make sure you’re getting the best deal, and the best service for your money, it’s important to have at least a basic understanding of the types of servers that these companies use to host your site, along with the pros and cons of each type of self-hosted blog server.
1. Shared servers
When it comes to website and blog servers, shared servers are often the most economical option. But, they also come with their drawbacks. It’s often easiest to think of a server like accommodation for your website, with a shared server being like a hotel. Shared servers are so cheap because they host hundreds if not thousands of blogs and websites side by side. Hosting many sites means that the companies can offer their services very cheap, but it also means that your site will be sharing resources with all the other sites on the server. And if the server goes down, or if another website attempts to hog all of the server resources, then all of the hosted sites will be affected.
Verdict: Using a shared server to host your blog is the cheapest option but your website’s performance could be affected by websites outside of your control.
2. Virtual Private Servers
Virtual Private Servers, VPS, are similar to shared servers but with one very important difference. VPS are set up to give you a private portion of the server to ensure that resources are split equally, essentially giving you a better hosting experience. VPS servers host far fewer people than shared servers, and so are a little more expensive. However, you can still get very cheap VPS hosting thanks to the Cloud, and the additional resources will come in handy for your site. Think of VPS servers like apartments, with everything you need in one self-contained package. Many VPS hosting providers also make it easy to increase your allocated server resources as your blog grows. It’s an economical option for those that want something a little better than shared hosting.
Verdict: While not as affordable a shared hosting, a VPS provides allocated server resources for each site for more reliability and stable performance.
3. Dedicated servers
Dedicated servers sit at the premium end of the self-hosting spectrum, providing your site with a server all to itself. Being hosted on a dedicated server offers many advantages such as the ability to customize your hosting environment. However, for most bloggers, this is far more than they will ever need. Also, the hefty price-tag is enough to put even experienced bloggers off.
Verdict: Dedicated servers give you the most control, features, and reliable performance. However, it’s also the most expensive option of the different types of blog servers,
So which should you choose?
When it comes to self-hosting servers, it’s typically a two-horse race between shared hosting and VPS. Many bloggers use shared hosting because it is the cheapest option and they never have a problem. But for those who want the capability to easily scale their site and the peace of mind that there will always be resources there for them when they need them, then it’s always worth paying that little bit extra for a Virtual Private Server.
So there you have it – the three main types of website servers that you could use to self-host your blog. Which one would you choose? Let us know in the comments.