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Your website is at the core of your business. Without a strong online foundation by way of your website, it can be difficult attracting and landing new customers. Moreover, behind each website is a hosting provider and server. That’s why it’s so important to choose the right server.
However, it’s surprising how many business owners don’t understand the different types of servers and the specific type of server they need for optimal business practices.
The four main types of servers are:
- Cloud servers
- Shared servers
- Virtual private servers
- Dedicated servers
If you are unsure of what type of server you have, or you don’t know when to upgrade your hosting plan for greater server performance, the following should help. Let’s take a closer look so you can choose the right server for you.
Understanding Cloud Servers
One of the most popular server types is cloud servers. As the name implies, these are servers on the cloud. In fact, there are hundreds of websites on a single cloud server. However, a cloud server acts like a private server in some ways.
The best business aspect about having your website parked on a cloud server is that you can scale up or down whenever you need to. For instance, if your business is scaling fast, you can easily bump up your cloud server’s performance power with a quick phone call to your hosting provider. This makes things pretty simple, so a cloud server could be the right server for you.
Knowing Shared Servers
Shared servers are the most common of all servers. They are commonly the type of server a new business owner will initially get with their hosting plan. Then the business will upgrade later when the time is right. This is good for most. However, knowing more about shared servers is important if you really want to pick the right server.
For starters, your website will be parked on a single server with many other websites. This makes it affordable for you to launch a website. But prices are low for a reason. Let’s say a website on your shared server is getting a lot of traffic. That website can take over much of the server disk space and bandwidth, thus slowing your site down.
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However, if you have a small, single-page website, you probably won’t be affected all that much when you park your site on a shared server. And when you need to scale, simply contact your hosting provider and make a switch to a cloud server or virtual private server.
Virtual Private Server (VPS)
If a shared server isn’t enough for your business website, you can take the next step up with a virtual private server, also called a VPS. A VPS is like having a number of servers at your disposal. It is one step down from dedicated server, which is a big step for any business.
So how does a virtual private server work, exactly? And is a VPS the right server for you? A VPS does share hardware with other websites, just like a shared server would. However, a virtual private server has dedicated server space just for your business site.
That’s what makes a VPS so unique. They are a bit more costly, running about $50-$150 per month. However, when you need a high-performing, lightning-fast site, the extra money you’ll be spending will be worth it.
Upgrading to a Dedicated Server
This is a big step, because dedicated servers are quite costly. Plus, they require more maintaining than shared, cloud, or virtual private servers. A dedicated server is a server just for your business website. There is no sharing of anything with this server type. This means you will have the highest performance levels and fewer uptime issues than any other server option.
So if you run a fast-paced, quickly scaling organization, a dedicated server could be right for you. This is because you will have total control over root permissions, and you can use your dedicated server for any other website you may want to develop in the future. For example, you could use it for starting a sister company that complements your primary business.
A dedicated server can cost upwards of $100 a month in the beginning. You will also need to ensure you have someone to manage the server and perform regular security updates. The last thing you want is a security breach or cyberattack on your dedicated server.
Choosing the Right Server for Your Business
Knowing a bit more about the different types of servers is critical to ensuring optimal growth and future success of your business. Your website is your backbone, so be sure it is performing as it should be. This is even more important in today’s digital era, since user experience plays a major role in customer acquisition and engagement.
If your website is slow to load and having a lot of uptime issues, your potential customers could be lost forever. They will abandon your website and visit a competitor’s site instead. This is one of the main reasons server type and performance is important. What type of server is right for your business?