Is your site or business growing in popularity? Has your online presence become such an integral part of your business that any interruption to your service will slow your operations down? If so, it may be time to upgrade your server level.
There are three primary server levels, Shared Servers, Virtual Private Servers (VPS), and Dedicated Servers. Prioritizing your site’s requirements will help you decide which level of server to purchase. You may choose to start with a shared hosting package initially. However, as your company grows and your site becomes more successful and critical, you will want to consider moving up to a VPS or even a dedicated hosting package to continue the success of your website.
- Reasons to Upgrade Your Web Hosting Plan or Server
- When You Should Upgrade Your Server
- How to Upgrade Your Server or Plan
Reasons to Upgrade Your Web Hosting Plan or Server
There are a multitude of reasons to upgrade your server.
Many of the most common reasons include:
In a shared hosting environment, your site lives on a computer with other sites. You share space and resources. When you use too many resources or get too many visitors, your website uses up shared disk space and bandwidth. This can impact the other sites on your shared server and degrade your visitors’ experiences, as well.
If you want or need more resources, upgrading your server level is a logical step.
Resources and performance go hand in hand. Typically, the more resources you have, the better your performance will be.
When you upgrade your server, you can reduce load times on your website and speed up your time to first byte (TTFB), which is a measurement used as an indication of the responsiveness of a web server or other network resource.
At InMotion Hosting, we have an uptime percentage of 99.99%, so while being on a shared server means you are more likely to experience small instances of downtime, it does not mean it is guaranteed to happen.
From a business perspective, more stability on your email services and website is often worth the expense of a VPS or Dedicated account. You must balance the importance of the price of the package against the value of increased stability.
Sharing a server with other users opens your website up to more security risks such as malware and attacks from hackers.
When you upgrade to a VPS or Dedicated server, you eliminate the security risks associated with a shared server. That means more protection for your website and your clients’ valuable data.
Root access gives you control over your server and allows you to perform just about any action on a server. However, it is only available on VPS and dedicated servers.
The root user can perform various tasks that other users cannot, such as:
- Install server-wide applications
- Configure server-wide applications, such as Apache or MySQL
- Edit any file on the server
If you need root access, upgrading to a VPS or dedicated server is the way to go.
When You Should Upgrade Your Server
If you have been thinking about upgrading your hosting level, it is probably the right call.
It’s not normal for your website to be slow or perform poorly. That’s an indicator that something is wrong – and more often than not, the issue is that you have to upgrade your website hosting.
Let’s take a look at some of the telltale signs it might be time to do so:
- Your site is experiencing too much downtime. The industry standard today for uptimes is well over 99% and anything less than that is unacceptable. If you find that your website is down any more than that, it may be that it is using more resources than your server can handle.
- Your site is too slow. Consumers today expect a website to load in less than three seconds. If yours takes any longer, you risk those visitors leaving and never coming back. Much like too much downtime, sluggish performance might be a sign that your server doesn’t offer the bandwidth or RAM that your site needs to function properly.
- You can’t customize like you need to. Shared hosting plans often come with little to no customization options that might not align with your business or compliance needs. If your business is one that requires specialized software or custom apps, and you’re on a shared plan, you might just be out of luck. Unfortunately, cloud hosting plans are similarly limited in customization options – but VPS and dedicated servers both offer plenty of options.
- You’re concerned about security. Web security is a huge deal – especially if your website stores clients’ personal information, like address or birthdate. To have that data breached would not only damage your business’ reputation, but it might leave you open to costly litigation. What to do? Upgrade to VPS or a dedicated plan, where your website is inherently less likely to get infected by a virus or attacked by a malicious web user.
- You aren’t happy with your current host. If you are having issues with your current provider, it might be time to switch hosts. Sometimes upgrading doesn’t require paying for a better server as much as just finding a reliable hosting provider. If you feel like your current host hasn’t innovated its products enough, has poor customer service and support, or just isn’t worth the price you are paying for hosting, find one that has the resources and support you need.
How to Upgrade Your Server or Plan
If you are on the fence about upgrading your server or hosting plan, the good news is that you’re not alone.
Whether or not you are an existing customer, the InMotion Hosting sales team provides free consultations to help you figure out what plan or server best works for you. They will help you assess your business and website then match you up with hosting that fits your individual needs.
For customers coming to InMotion Hosting from another hosting provider, they can help you upgrade your server and transfer your website at the same time.
If you already know you want to upgrade your server or plan but would rather take care of it yourself online, you can do so by upgrading your account in AMP.
Businesses grow, and that’s a good thing. But there may come a time when you feel that you have outgrown your server or current hosting plan.
If you find that any of the above applies to you, it’s likely time to upgrade your website hosting.
If you’d like to learn more about your upgrade options, reach out today.