In the year 2013 and development of a ton of WordPress website I have seen a constant issue with typical hosting providers. I am talking about those really cheap providers that are all the same BlueHost, Hostmonster, JustHost, GoDaddy, DreamHost, etc. There are a couple issue that I find are kind of big issues with these companies and what they offer.
Hosting Package Issues
What hosting package do you have with your host? Most people that I know have a shared hosting account. What does shared hosting really mean? Well for most cases that means that you are on a group of servers with a bunch of other websites. How does this harm your website? Well because you are on the same server with all of these other website you are vulnerable to what happens to these other website. Do you have a unlimited* shared hosting account? No that was not a miss type I did put a asterisk next to unlimited. Most people don’t know but it really isn’t unlimited. Go ahead and load up your server with files once you get to around 40,000-50,000 you will probably see a warning and a disclaimer about not using your hosting account to store files. I don’t know about you guys but I blog a ton and own quite a few websites, that means a ton of files. So why don’t hosting companies add something to their packages like up to 40,000 files. What it boils down to is the word UNLIMITED. That just sounds really good right?
Hosting Up-Time 99.999%
What is your hosting companies up time? Now what is the actual up time? Most of the hosts that I have worked with in the list above don’t keep to there promise. Do you know what 99.999% of a year is? Well I am going to make is simple for you 365.238546 days. What does this mean for time that a website can be down? Well for a year that works out to about 5 minutes and for a month it works out to about 25 seconds. Everyone that has a website that has only been down for 5 minutes or less stand up. If your website has been down for 5 minutes or less I want to talk to you so please leave me a comment. I want in on whatever hosting company you use.
Quick Install Scripts
Most hosting providers have some kind of quick install of some of the most popular scripts like WordPress and other scripts. Well lets do some digging into WordPress since right now March 2014 WordPress makes up around 21-22% of all website in the world. So how many WordPress website can you put on your unlimited domain, unlimited website, unlimited email hosting account. Well a default WordPress installation of version 3.8 has a total file count of 1162 files and 389 folders. So lets see that works out to around 48-50 WordPress installation on your 50,000 file unlimited hosting account. Seems great but you forgot to install the theme that you wanted, all of those amazing plugins that you have to have and the 2-3 images that you upload for every blog article. Now lets say that you really use your site and are posting 1-3 times a week. You would be looking at around 10-15 WordPress installations now. Still pretty great but oh crap you just forgot that you have a Email account setup on your server for each website. Now you are looking at something like 5 WordPress installations. So how is your unlimited hosting account doing?
VPS, Dedicated, Cloud
You have hit your limit in files and your shared server is getting slower and slower. But every time you contact your host and mention “hey my site is slow” they tell you “well you have a ton of files”. But isn’t my account unlimited. Do you think you need to upgrade your hosting to something better? Something like a VPS, Dedicated, or Cloud solution. You might need to if you are hitting your unlimited 50,000 file limit. I would recommend changing to a company that works more with VPS, Dedicated, and Cloud servers. Most of your common shared hosting providers do not do a great job when it comes to things other than shared.
Minimize WordPress File Count
You don’t have the money to upgrade to a dedicated/VPS hosting account. Okay well what can you do. There are a couple options for you to get rid of some of the overhead your site has. First off I would go in and get rid of all the junk you have sitting in your website. What do I mean by this? Most people have at least 3-5 WordPress themes installed and you are only using 1. You can go in there and delete the default themes like TwentyFourteen, TwentyThirteen, TwentyTwelve, and so on. If you are not using it get rid of it. Same goes for plugins. Did you try out a couple plugins but not like them and they are just sitting on you server taking up space. DELETE.
Now if you really want to save some server space setup a Cloud solution for your uploads. There are a ton of services out there that are cheap and great. Has anyone heard of Amazon S3, what about DropBox, how about Google Cloud Storage. Most of these places are great because you either pay a yearly subscription or a pay for what you use model. This make storing your files cheap and it also makes your website faster and search engines love faster.
What should you take away from this article? Well really take what you think you need or if you are not sure go ahead and ask. If you are having issues with your Hosting company it isn’t like you are married to them or something. Go ahead and check into some other choices to see what you could get that would be better.