What is Managed Hosting, What are the Benefits and Do You Need It?

7 min. read

Have you ever heard of terms like Dedicated, Shared, and Managed hosting and wondered what they mean? 


Shared hosting is the most wallet-friendly type of hosting that most businesses start with. Just like you would share an apartment with several other people, you share the hosting server with other users. Shared hosting is recommended for new sites or beginners as it's the most economical. However, there are a few downsides to this type of hosting. As you're sharing the hardware/software and bandwidth of the server with thousands of other users, the service will be slower and unpredictable. 


VPS stands for Virtual Private Server. In a nutshell, VPS is an advanced version of shared hosting. Think of it as instead of sharing an apartment with four roommates you now have a condo. You still share a few facilities with a few other people, but you're mostly living alone. With VPS hosting, you're still sharing the server with other websites, but your site has its own "partition" on the web server. With dedicated hosting, you have the entire web server to yourself. There are no roommates, and you're not sharing any facilities with other people. You own your own home. Dedicated hosting is recommended for websites that get a lot of traffic, and that need better security. The downside of this hosting is the cost. Because you don't share the server with other users, you alone are responsible for the cost of running the servers. 


In managed hosting, a service provider will lease web servers and associated hardware to you and manage those systems on your behalf. It's like having a property manager that's taking care of everything for you. Companies that offer managed hosting provide an excellent hosting environment, excellent features, and employ staff with expertise and experience. 


Let's discuss managed hosting in more detail.  

How managed hosting works?

Many business owners would say that managed hosting is the best type of hosting. You have a team of experts watching over your website at all times. Their job is to make sure your site is always optimized, backed up, and protected. 


Managed hosting is a combination of technology and support. It's entrusting your website, the applications that run your business to a third-party supplier. That third-party supplier manages the administration, management, and support of your site's infrastructure that is housed in a data center owned by the provider. The company employs a skilled team of professionals who will be taking care of your site for you. 


A hosting provider will help you perform the essential IT tasks that you can't or don't have the time to complete. Or maybe you lack the resources to perform this complex work in-house. Whatever your reason, the provider will continually manage and optimize your site's infrastructure.

Your options are: 
  • Your website to be hosted on dedicated servers: your site will be hosted on a physical server that is rented for your business needs. 
  • Your website to be hosted on cloud servers: instead of being hosted on physical hardware, your website will reside in a shared “virtualized” environment that’s managed by your cloud hosting provider.

What is the difference between managed and unmanaged hosting?

The main choice you'll have to make when shopping for a new hosting plan is to choose between managed and unmanaged hosting. 


Many people go for the do-it-yourself unmanaged hosting as it's dramatically cheaper. It's less pricey as there's no management, i.e. no routine support. Your hosting provider will reboot servers, maintain the network, and replace failed parts. However, it won't support your software or install any functionalities for you. The work will be on you to install SSL certificates, fix error messages, and install new features. 


On the other hand, managed hosting does all the work for you. Whether you have issues with security or installing updates, the host will offer support for every problem or emergency. In most cases, managed hosting services include automated backups, monitoring, server setup, malware scanning and removal, security sweeps, and more. These additional features are the "manage" part of the term "managed hosting".  

What is the cost of managed hosting?

The cost of managed hosting can cost you anywhere from $30/month to more than $500 per month. The price varies and depends on: 

  • The type of managed hosting (VPS, dedicated server, or cloud). 
  • The company that offers the hosting services. 
  • How much support you will need. 

When you opt for managed hosting services, you will receive all the basic features that you would usually get with an unmanaged hosting plan. Some features you can add include: 

  • installation of SSL certificates 
  • email archiving and log checking 
  • keeping your server and OS updated to ensure 
  • it’s secure automated website backup 
  • HTML website updates basic script debugging 
  • help to migrate your site, store, or application
  • management of databases 
  • 24/7 customer service 

What are the benefits of managed hosting services?

Peace of mind

The #1 benefit of managed hosting services is that you get peace of mind. You can focus on your core business without worrying about downtimes or security breaches. There will be no waking up in the morning, realizing that your site is down and not knowing where to turn to get it resolved. You won't have to stress out about your developer being away on vacation or busy working on another project. 

Continual support

You'll also get continual support from customer service. There will always be a team of experts to turn to and ask for help if you have any concerns. The team behind your hosting services will always be taking care of website maintenance and website updates, and making sure your site is rock-stable. 

Fast load times

In 2019, people like fast sites. And so does Google. As website performance aka ‘Site Speed’ is a ranking factor, your business needs to focus on delivering the fastest desktop and mobile-friendly experience to customers. If you fail to provide the best experience to your users, they'll likely go to your competition. What's more, Google will rank your competition's websites above your own. 

A fast site means good user experience, and good user experience leads to higher conversions. Many business owners are highly concerned with aesthetic website design, adding new functionality, or adding more content to web pages. However, visitors seem to be more concerned with loading times.  

Here are a few statistics you might want to hear: 
  • 47% of people expect a page load time to be 2 seconds or less. 
  • If a website takes more than 3 seconds to load, 40% of people will abandon that website. 
  • Even a 1-second delay in page load time can reduce your conversions by 7%. 
  • Nearly 73% of mobile internet users say that they’ve come across a website that took too long to load. 

Backups

Have you ever thought you had lost a valuable piece of information and started to panic? Whether it's a report from work or family photos, every one of us has data on our computer's hard drive that's too valuable to lose. 

Data loss can have serious consequences for any business. Despite this, a large number of businesses don’t even have a backup plan in place. 

  • 22% of small businesses close their business after a cyber attack. 
  • 96% of businesses with a backup plan in place fully recover their operations. 
  • By 2020, 78% of small businesses will back up their data on the cloud. 

With managed hosting, you don't have to worry about losing your data. It's secured and backed up automatically. Your hosting company has processes and procedures in place to deal with such scenarios. 

Reduced operating costs

There are many hidden costs when you opt for unmanaged hosting services. You'll need to hire system admins, database admins, developers, and other staff to manage your servers. However, managed hosting companies are equipped with people who have the skills to handle any type of issue. You won't have to pay for additional costs and can invest the money you save in customer relationship.

Do I need managed hosting?

What’s more important to you: low cost or fewer maintenance tasks? 


If your answer is fewer maintenance tasks, then managed hosting should be your choice!


Managed hosting is an option for busy professionals that don't have the time but have the extra money for someone else to keep their website hosting in order. 

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