What is the difference between shared hosting and VPS hosting?

Shared hosting is a simple option to spin up a site and start accepting visitors ASAP. Unfortunately, it quickly backfires when websites grow in popularity because more resources are consumed and more sessions are delivered each moment. To a point where things can come crashing down or slow to a crawl at any moment.

A Virtual Private Server, or VPS, is the next best option. It’s a single server split into individual virtual machines, running their own operating systems handling custom configurations. Unlike shared hosting, VPS has dedicated resources (RAM and CPU) and is independent from all the other websites on the server.

In short, VPS is perfect if you need the benefits of your own dedicated server, but don’t want to pay a lot.

Upgrading to a single or cloud-based VPS will provide instant deployment, low startup costs because you will  be paying only for services that you use and easy upgrades.

There are many  Virtual Private Server companies out there. We have analysed the most popular ones.

1.A2 Hosting Fastest Dedicated Host ($25.00 per month)

Background Information

A2 Hosting is a web hosting company founded by Bryan Muthig in 2001 under the original name of Iniquinet.

It was originally designed to handle a small number of clients. However, by 2003, the company had gained a lot more clients than anticipated.

VPS Features and Pricing

Their VPS Hosting offers to it’s customers the best of both worlds; fully managed hosting by 24/7/365 Guru Crew Support team combined with root access so every customer get’s complete server control. When combining these features with  up to 20X faster Turbo Boost option along with the cPanel control for free and we could say, that A2Hosting is one of the strongest players in the VPS Hosting market.

There are two options for the A2Hosting VPS hosting service: Managed or unmanaged VPS servers.

The managed servers come with a management and security update plan, so website owners can focus on the business itself, and leave the complicated matter of site management to the service provider.

Their pricing starts at $22.67 per month which is not the cheapest, but you have to keep in mind that you get one of the fastest performing servers on the market.

Managed VPS service is by far the most popular option, as the majority of website owners are not computer experts.

Unmanaged VPS servers cost less but act mostly as a “blank slate,” allowing website owners to manage the site themselves.

All A2 Hosting VPS services are covered by a Anytime Money Back Guarantee and include 24/7/365 Guru Crew customer support.

2. Bluehost – Most Popular Dedicated Host ($19.99 per month)

Background Information

Bluehost is known industry-wide for average-cost shared hosting. They also offer VPS, dedicated, and cloud-based options, too.

Bluehost has a long history and it was founded in 2003 by Matt Heaton and Danny Ashworth in Provo, Utah. Today Bluehost provides hosting service for over two million website. They have a team of over 750 professionals, working 24/7.

VPS Features and Pricing

Bluehost claims that its VPS services are both flexible and powerful. In real life this means, that they allow multi-server management, hence users can add more space to their account at any time, or even a couple VPS with shared or dedicated servers.

They also use all SSD disks which provides a fast and reliable experience. Provisioning occurs instantly, so there is no downtime prior to VPS launch. They use KM hypervisor to assure 100% access to all resources for users.

Unfortunately they don’t yet provide additional CPU and RAM, but Bluehost’s enhanced cPanel gives all the customers the ability to add additional storage at a moment’s notice.

Bluehost pricing starts at $17.28 per month, which is one of the lowest we’ve seen in this business. Keep in mind that the listed prices are a promotional offering that is for the first subscription (36 month) period only.

All Bluehosts VPS services are covered by a 30-day money back guarantee and include 24/7 customer support.

In sum, for a good price Bluehost offers a great amount of SSD disk space and RAM, terabytes of bandwidth, premium support, and excellent uptime compared to other VPS services.

3. HostGator – Most Unlimited ($29.96 per month)

Background Information

HostGator was created in 2002 in a Florida college dorm room by a man named Bren Oxley. Since then, it has become one of the most well known hosting companies in the world.

They offer shared hosting, dedicated servers, and VPS. But they also handle search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising, and web design. This is another company with a live chat function and a 24/7 customer support availability.

VPS Features and Pricing

HostGator VPS service gives users complete control and their customized installations and a configuration geared toward personal preferences make them one of the most versatile ones.

Their servers are all completely autonomous, adding further security to your site. They ensure maximum reliability thanks to a multi-layered security network, which uses multiple bandwidth providers. Data is protected constantly using a RAID 10 disk configuration.

Their prices range from $29.95 to $49.95 per month and their prices are comparable with many other VPS companies on this list.

4. InMotion Hosting – Best for More Resources ($29.19 per month)

Background Information

InMotion hosting is one of the players who has specialized in VPS services and of course they area lot more than just that. On top of VPS, InMotion also offer shared and dedicated servers.  They even provide web design, so they can help you make a site, host it, and provide you with the tools needed to maintain it.

Their customer support is in high level, where each support-based staff member receive more than 150 hours of training at a minimum, before interacting with customers. InMotions customer support is the best of the best.

VPS Features and Pricing

There are two options for the InMotion VPS hosting service: Managed or self-managed VPS servers.

The managed servers come with a management and security update plan, so website owners can focus on the business itself, and leave the complicated matter of site management to the service provider.

Managed VPS service is by far the most popular option, as the majority of website owners are not computer experts.

Self-managed VPS servers cost less but act mostly as a “blank slate,” allowing website owners to manage the site themselves.

The managed VPS servers have three different tiers to choose from.

All the prices are broken down by RAM, storage, and bandwidth and shown prices above are only available with a two-year commitment.

Monthly prices for the 4GB tier are:

  • $41.64 for one month
  • $36.49 for six months
  • $31.34 for one year
  • $29.19 for two years

Monthly Prices for the 6GB tier are:

  • $72.84 for one month
  • $62.69 for six months
  • $52.54 for one year
  • $47.39 for two years

Monthly Prices for the 8GB tier are:

  • $95.24 for one month
  • $84.94 for six months
  • $79.64 for one year
  • $69.34 for two years

As other competitors, also InMotion plans come with a 90-day money back guarantee and 24/7 live chat support.

5. iPage – Low-Cost VPS Hosting ($19.99 per month)

Background Information

Established in 1998, iPage has hosted over one million websites on its platform in the last 20 years.

iPage offer VPS services, along with shared hosting, dedicated servers, and WordPress hosting. They specifically focus to small businesses, operating on tight budgets and lack of skills. Their customer support is on-hand 24/7 to provide their support.

VPS Service and Pricing

iPage VPS service comes with advanced customization through optional root access. Hosting environments are completely customizable, supporting proprietary software and applications.

iPage also offers a flexible, cloud-based VPS service. Website migration options are integrated smoothly, along with instant provisioning. This gives the website owners the ability to scale their site forward or back as business rises or falls.

Plans vary in size from 1GB of RAM up to 8GB, where prices start from $19.99 per month and could rise up to $79.99 per month. Remember, that all plans come with a free domain, pre-installed scripts, and 24/7  customer support.

6. Liquid Web – Most Expensive Option ($69/mo+)

Background Information

Liquid Web has established more than 20 years ago. On top of VPS services, they also offer dedicated hosting as well as managed WordPress and WooCommerce-based websites.

Liquid Web offers fully managed service, where they take care on all server administration tasks:

  • Managing hardware
  • Managing the network
  • Support for operating system and pre-installed software
  • Security updates and patches
  • Proactive service monitoring
  • Restoration of services

VPS Features and Pricing

Liquid Web offers different fully-managed, cloud-based VPS plans, broken down by RAM and disk space. The amount of management Liquid Web provides is customizable and varies based on your chosen plan.

Their VPS platform will not work with custom systems, but they support seven different operating systems. All software is customizable according to user’s preferences, and all customers have 24/7 access to Liquid Web’s Heroic Support Team.

Liquid Web prices start from $69 per month and can grow up to $189, depending on RAM and disk space. Most plans work on the Linux or Windows operating systems, except for the 2GB tier which only operates on Linux. All VPS plans can be easily upgraded.

They also offer a 16GB plan, which many other services do not.

7. Hostwinds – Cheapest VPS Hosting ($5.17 per month)

Background Information

Hostwinds offer shared hosting, business hosting, and dedicated servers, along with domain names.They are an award-winning hosting company founded in 2010.

Their business concept is that affordable pricing and superior service aren’t mutually exclusive. Their customer support offers live chat function and is available 24/7.

VPS Features and Pricing

Hostwinds VPS features come in managed and unmanaged varieties. Users can choose from either a Linux or Windows-based product (either one doesn’t work on both systems).

Their fully-managed VPS plans come with all the bells and whistles and are backed up nightly. They use solid state drives, which are physical pieces of hardware that store user information. This ensures that all of your most valuable information is safely kept off the network.

They offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee and free website transfers. Their uptime is 99.99999%, meaning that your website will be always available.

Their extensive cloud control panel allows users to control their server from anywhere in the world.

Hostwinds’ prices start from $5.50 per month, which is incredibly low, but it is also for only 1GB of RAM. Their highest package is 6GB with $25.50 per month.

Hostwinds also offer some super power, number of add-on tiers are shown below.

8. FatCow ($19.99 per month)

Background Features

FatCow is another with long history. They first opened their doors in 1998. They offer everything from standard hosting services, like VPS, shared hosting, dedicated servers, and WordPress management.

VPS Features and Pricing

FatCow’s VPS service comes in with three different plans.

All of them include optional root access, a user-friendly control panel, easy scalability to coincide with growth, 24/7 customer support, and guaranteed memory.

All plans are fully managed.

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Prices start from $19.99 to can grow up to $79.99 for your first term. After that, they go up starting with $24.99 to $99.99. In our opinion these prices are rather expensive.

FatCow offers a money-back guarantee, so there is no harm if you decide to try them.

9. JustHost ($19.99/mo)

Background Information

JustHost hosts over one million websites and they offer both hosting and VPS services. They try to benchmark many of their other competitors, offering everything from a free domain name for new customers to simple site migrations, email addresses, and e-commerce functionality.

VPS Features and Pricing

All the JustHost VPS plans comes fully managed, meaning that the website owner doesn’t have to worry about constant maintenance.

Their VPS services are all cloud-based, a specially enhanced control panel environment has proven to be very user-friendly. Users can also have multiple accounts under one umbrella, making it easy to switch between them.

Prices start from $19.99 per month (2GB) up to $59.99 per month (8GB). This is another of those services that have promotional pricing for the first period of service. After that, the prices will grow up to $29.99 per month for 2GB and a whopping $119.99 per month for 8GB.

JustHost provides 30-day money back guarantee.

10. InterServer – Windows & Linux VPS Servers ($6.00/mo+)

Background Information

InterServer is another service provider with a 20 years of history. They are a hosting service company that specializes in shared hosting, dedicated servers, and VPS .

As a unique feature offered by InterServer include a price lock guarantee, meaning that whatever price you have when you sign up is the price you’ll keep. They also provide a 30-day money back guarantee, and 24/7 customer support.

VPS Features and Pricing

InterServer offers 16 different levels of VPS service on the Linux and Windows operating systems. Almost any customer can find something that works with their demands.

This VPS allows users to deploy hundreds of different apps throughout their cloud-based service and offers free migration to help bring new clients over from their previous host. And they’re confident about their uptime, which they guarantee as a 99.9%.

Plans start at 1GB and go all the way up to 16GB.

Prices start really low at just $6 per month but rise quickly as you add more RAM and disk space, reaching up to $160 per month.

In Sum

VPS hosting options are a clear step-up from overcrowded shared hosts for serious site owners. VPS Hosting offers more flexibility than dedicated servers, without all the maintenance challenges.

All the listed VPS service providers are solid high quality performers and it is really up to you which one to choose. You have to consider your budget and you expectations to your websites and traffic.

Here we have listed the main strengths of the service providers: :

  • A2Hosting is fastest service provider with the best in class uptime and a unique Anytime Money Back Guarantee.
  • Bluehost is infinitely scalable, offering rock-bottom hosting plans on up to multi-server VPS management for more space and servers.
  • HostGator offers autonomous hosting for security-minded consumers.
  • InMotion’s team of experts will manage everything from the domain, to site design and ongoing performance.
  • iPage offers completely customizable hosting configurations that support proprietary apps.
  • Liquid Web offers up to a monster 16GB plan for some of the biggest sites on the internet.
  • Hostwinds is one of the lowest priced, with a small plan clocking in at only $8.24 per month. Perfect for those dipping their toes into VPS waters for the first time.
  • FatCow provides three, all-in, fully-managed VPS options.
  • JustHost is ideal for those managing multiple client or project setups from one single account.
  • InterServer has over 16 different VPS configurations to choose from, across both Linux and Windows operating systems..

Hopefully this review was useful and we would really like to thank you for reading.