Firstly, before we go any further let’s look at the definition of ‘scaling’ in this context:
The ability to increase or decrease your website’s resources depending on its traffic.
What is the problem with increasing traffic?
You might think that an increase in website traffic is a good thing. Usually, it is, but if your resources aren’t up to the job, the website can soon become overwhelmed. This results in the website slowing down and eventually coming to a standstill. Your visitors will soon become fed up with the poor service and move elsewhere.
How do we fix the problem?
Ideally, you’d need a server all to yourself with unlimited resources. But, you’d be paying for resources that you probably wouldn’t need most of the time.
So, the solution to the problem is to sit your website on a shared server with resources that change depending on what you need. The advantage here is that you only pay for what you actually use.
Find an appropriate hosting plan from one of the many providers that offer scalable hosting and you’ll have a website that only uses the resources it needs.
Some of the most commonly used scaleable hosting providers
Whether you want a cheaper or more expensive scalable hosting plan will depend on your budget and the value of your sales.
Don’t assume, however, that just because the price is cheap the plan isn’t any good. Most affordable shared hosting packages provide whatever the majority of website owners need.
Therefore, what you should be looking for is a provider that advertises as providing ‘Unlimited Hosting’. This obviously isn’t entirely accurate, but it puts over the idea that they provide the facilities for your website to grow. The storage, memory, and bandwidth will obviously vary as your business grows. This option allows you to grow until your site is mature enough to warrant more space permanently using a Virtual Private Server (VPS) or by using the Cloud. You’ll probably find, however, that you, along with 95% of the other users will find all they need with a shared scalable server.
Sounds attractive, doesn’t it? So, let’s get started and look at a few of the best scalable hosting providers and see what they have on offer. Remember though, that the information and prices given here are only correct at the time of writing so you’ll have to check for yourself if the package is what you want.
How about scalable Cloud Hosting?
Let’s face it, Cloud Hosting will pretty much always be the favorite. A cloud platform consists of a network of servers able to share the load of your website while providing a great experience for your visitors. As traffic increases to your site, extra servers can be brought online to help cope with the demand. Conversely, when traffic reduces, so servers can be switched off.
A typical business and its website will naturally grow and shrink, so cloud hosting gives a convenient way to manage unpredictable changes. And even better, it can scale your site automatically. As you’d probably expect, this all comes at a price. But, the fluctuations will usually be billed by the hour, so you will pay more, only when you have most traffic.
Cloud Hosting is very popular because the plan provides exactly what resources the business and site owners need for their website to run smoothly. No matter what the popularity.
Scalable VPS Hosting
Virtual Private Servers are the next step after shared servers. VPS hosting divides a server’s resources among many customers like traditional shared hosting. The difference being that using VPS, more resources are shared among fewer users. But, here’s the interesting part. Site owners can configure their VPS to suit their individual requirements, with the option to add and remove various resources as needed. Unfortunately, you’ll find that VPS is usually constrained to a specific physical server. But, the provider will be glad to help you migrate to a larger server as and when your traffic demands.
So which is the best type of hosting?
The best type of hosting depends on your type of website and its size.
As a general rule, websites can be split into three categories:
Small websites, whether they are new or with visitor traffic of fewer than 30,000 visitors a month, don’t usually need scaling facilities and should be happy with hosting plans costing $2.95 a month up to $8.95 a month. Typical companies offering these plans include Bluehost, InMotion Hosting and DreamHost.
High-Traffic websites are usually eCommerce with visitor traffic of 30,000 to 250,000 per month and usually need scaling facilities. They often use Virtual Private Servers and the hosting plans cost between $29 per month and $99 per month for startups with scaling prices on average being about $260. Typical hosting companies include WPEngine, InMotion Hosting, and Pagely.
Enterprise Websites need something more complex than the others and are either cloud or dedicated server hosting plans. Companies needing maximum security servers or special custom configurations usually opt for these are pay anything from $100 per month depending on the requirements. Typical providers include WPEngine, LiquidWeb, and Pagely.
Obviously, if you want to look at these and other recommended providers, you can, of course, look at the hosting provider search tool on our website, HostingReview.com.
Figure out what resources you need for your website to work efficiently and go searching for the best hosting provider.