Finding a good shared hosting is a confusing task. Usually, companies end up paying high for their website hosting or after buying, they face issues. There are lots of articles explaining how to choose a VPS or dedicated server or suggest to go directly for Cloud hosting – AWS or Google Cloud. But no proper guidance on choosing a good shared hosting.

What is Shared hosting?

It means that you are “sharing” a part of a server. Usually, these plans work well for websites serving ~15,000 visits per month. For 70% of the websites, the shared hosting will do the job well. If your website is expected to have 1000s of concurrent users, then it’s better to go for a cloud hosting due to its scaling feature so that downtime can be prevented due to over usage of the Server resource.

Literally, Shared hosting comes with all the software which a website needs. You can run WordPress on really any hosting company that offers Linux shared hosting. It can runs email. It can runs listservs, scripts, wikis – really anything you want to run online as a website. One-click installers like Softaculous can install many open source applications within a few seconds.

Just a higher price doesn’t often mean good service. Here are a few things to consider before booking a shared hosting:

1) No.of websites/domains

How many websites do you want or in future, you plan to implement? If you just want one website, then the price will be less and the extra-domain feature will not be useful to you.

2) Storage

Usually, for an average website, 10GB itself will be enough. Now several hosting companies provide unlimited storage.

3) Bandwidth

Bandwidth describes the amount of data that can be transferred between a website and computers connected to it within a specific time. Depending on the website content – like images etc, a few hundred visitors can hike the bandwidth to several GBs in a few weeks. So better to go for hosting which provides unlimited bandwidth.

4) Hard disk

SSD can read and write data with much greater efficiency. So hosting which has SSD will perform better and faster than HDD.

5) Maximum no.of inodes

An inode is a file that you save in the hosting space. It can be an image or an HTML file. If you don’t plan to keep your business mail here, then you needn’t worry about the no.of inodes. Usually, the shared hosting provides 15 to 30k inodes limit. If you’re having multiple websites and testing several applications, then the number can be reached pretty fast.

6) Customer service

Even though the hosting is good, you will definitely need a “technically” sound customer care executives who provide live support through phone or chat. Even if you’re comfortable with Googling and figuring out yourself, the hosting customer care only knows the server configurations and which will work or not work in their server.

7) User-friendly Control Panel

So far cPanel does the job well – for file management/database management etc, but few providers have other control panels which might be better.

8) Reviews and personal references

It’s always best to check the reviews from several places like their social media links before booking a hosting.