In the struggle to maintain your online platform’s health and presence, sometimes it helps to take a step away and look back at the basics for your WordPress.
How are the loading speeds for your blog?
Are there are any broken links or pages that require reformatting?
Is your website up-to-date with the newest plug-ins and security software?
Should you switch to another hosting service or keep your current one?
While all website owners may get caught up with the struggle of increasing their conversion rates or incorporating data from Google Analytics into actual changes to their website, the questions above are essential ones to ask yourself once in a while. After all, just because something isn’t broken doesn’t mean it can’t be improved.
The same can go for website hosting—one of the necessities for having an online platform, website hosting can affect a variety of important factors, such as how much traffic your website can sustain and how large your website is. Some examples of the leading traditional web hosting platforms are Siteground and Bluehost.
In recent years, technological developments have led to the rise of cloud hosting, which may leave some to wonder: what is cloud hosting? What makes it different from your standard website hosting, and what are its benefits given its higher average price tag?
In this article, we cover its history, the details as to what WordPress cloud hosting is, its history, its advantages, and things to take into account before you choose a WordPress cloud host.
A Brief History
Everyone is familiar now with terms such as cloud storage, but how did cloud technology come about and what lead to its relevance today?
The term cloud computing arose in the 1960s and is accredited to J. C. R. Licklider, who is considered a pioneer in the development of the Internet. The first form of cloud computing technology to evolve into a commercial feature was ATu0026T’s PersonaLink Services, which was the first service to be an entirely web-based storage enterprise.
Cloud storage allowed for a wide range of practical benefits, such as cheaper costs for business owners, more environment-friendly usage of energy, more back-up options, and less direct management of storage maintenance.
Given this sample of benefits, it’s no surprise that cloud technology would eventually be integrated into hosting websites. Many companies like WPEngine have jumped to combining a cloud platform such as Google Cloud with website hosting.
What is WordPress Cloud Hosting?
So what exactly is WordPress cloud hosting? One of the primary functions all website owners need to consider is how their website will be hosted. Without a host, your website wouldn’t even be able to receive visitors on the Internet, much less be online in the first place.
When it comes to standard website hosting, multiple websites take a specific amount of bandwidth from one server. However, because some clients may have thousands and thousands of websites, this means that a specific portion of the bandwidth may be skewed towards one website or several websites depending on their activity and their size. Typically, it’s up to the server’s host to alleviate any unbalance in the bandwidth taken up in a sever.
However, with cloud hosting, this strain is less likely to occur because websites use multiple servers. If your website ends up accidentally taking all the resources from one server, there are other servers to back up your website as well as the other ones that need the servers.
Benefits of WordPress Cloud Hosting
Beyond freeing up more servers, and therefore more resources, for more websites, what are the benefits of WordPress cloud hosting in that case? Below we list the top advantages WordPress owners have when switching over to cloud hosting:
- Costs Dependent on Use
Because you have multiple servers to pull resources from, most clients of cloud hosting services only pay for the resources their website uses. This means that instead of a fixed price every month, the amount users of cloud hosting services pay differs and depends on how much traffic their website receives for the month, which could potentially lead to fewer expenses in the long run.
- Surge Resistance
Regardless of the industry or the type of service/product your online platform is trying to sell, there are cases when the stream of traffic to your website rapidly grows. This could be because your website appeared in the news lately or you’re about to launch a new hot product that the World Wide Web has gone abuzz for. Due to the multiple servers in use at a cloud hosting service’s data center, your website has more resources such as bandwidth to fall back on when it comes to accommodating the sudden increase in the flow of traffic-less downtime, which also means more conversion rates and return-on-investment for your website.
- Improved Scalability
Especially for growing and ambitious businesses, flexibility and scalability are exceptionally important. Without scalability, your online platform is left to the same share of resources, even in the face of rapid expansion or increased website traffic. Multiple servers give your website not only backup resources but also the space to grow and expand—a factor especially important for those who anticipate more customers or website visitors in the future.
Cons of WordPress Cloud Hosting
All good things come at a cost, and just as it’s important to go over the benefits of using WordPress cloud hosting, it’s also necessary to consider the cons as well in order to make an informed decision. For WordPress cloud hosting, these are the only two visible cons that we’ve seen so far:
- Security Risks
While sharing servers for your website traffic provides the boon of not having to worry about maximizing the sources of one specific server, one large con to cloud hosting is that if one website gets compromised, this also puts the other websites sharing the same server in jeopardy. Especially in WordPress’s case, using their non-cloud hosting option may provide better long-term security measures as they provide extra services such as backups and frequent software updates to keep your website with the latest in security developments.
- Internet Necessary
In order to access the servers on the cloud host’s end, the internet is required. A downed modem on your end may mean that you might have to take a series of measures to get your internet restored, such as resetting your modem or calling in a professional to help get your internet back up. Otherwise, you’re offline and can’t access the cloud host’s services.
Things to Consider Before Choosing a WordPress Cloud Host
If you’ve found yourself interested in choosing a WordPress cloud hosting service, you might be wondering how to choose between the competition as this up-and-coming technological development is bound to skyrocket. Make sure to consider these factors before settling for a specific company:
- Scope of Customer Support
If you find reviews for a specific company, what do they say about their services? Is there support or data centers provided specifically for your region? Do they have 24/7 customer service or are they only available for hours local to their region? Whether you have questions, concerns, or if something happens to your website, it’s important to weigh in mind as to how you can get support when you need it.
Another way to choose a cloud hosting company for your WordPress site is through determining its overall value by the speeds it provides, how much traffic it can support, and what type of tech is incorporated in their system.
For example, with WPEngine, users can have the advantage of the latest in cloud computing technology as that cloud hosting service specifically uses Google’s Cloud Platform, giving it a 40% boost in loading speeds compared to its competitors.
- Managed Web Hosting
Just like there are different ways to manage your online platform, there are also a variety of ways your website hosting can be delegated as well. Especially for the website owner who has other pressing priorities to handle, managed web hosting may be useful since you’re leaving the management of the server entirely with the third-party company, particularly with the hardware specs. This way you can focus more on adjusting your online platform without having to figure out the hardware aspects on your own. When searching for a decent managed web hosting, besides a customer support schedule that syncs up with your local region, you want to keep an eye out for good bandwidth, generous email accounts, and well-kept security measures.
Cloud hosting isn’t necessarily a new innovation as it debuted almost 50 years ago, but its commonplace significance and understanding is a more recent phenomenon. Like all forms and advancements in technology, cloud hosting is just one factor that can boost your website’s performance but is liable to be overshadowed by another development in the industry—if anything, relevant aspects such as your website’s content, usability, and user-friendliness are also just as important, and are all down to its design and the choices you make as a business owner.