How Much Does it Really Cost to Host a Website?
How much does web hosting cost in 2021?
Web Hosting can cost as little as 80p per month for shared hosting, from the likes of Hostinger. Alternatively, if you need web hosting on a large scale, dedicated hosting can cost upwards of £50 per month.
Although that’s the answer, in a nutshell, I want to discuss the different types of web hosting, when you might need each type of hosting, and how much it costs to host a website in 2020. To do this, I need to go into a lot more detail. I have the upper hand to be able to do this; I’ve signed up to lots of web hosts over the years to give you a truly representative example of what to expect.
1. Different Types of Web Hosting
As I briefly touched on already, there are a few different types of web hosting that you can choose from. Although there can be even more variations than this, generally speaking, the main types of hosting are shared hosting, cloud hosting, VPS hosting, and dedicated hosting.
Shared hosting is considered the beginner level of web hosting. If you have a small website or blog, or a website that generates low traffic volumes, this is the cheapest and best option for you. The reason why shared hosting is much cheaper than it’s alternatives is that you are sharing resources from a single server. That single server is delivering a service to multiple customers (not just you).
Have you heard of ‘the cloud’ before? It’s often used to describe cloud services like OneDrive or Dropbox. It’s essentially lots of servers working together to provide a continuous level of service. If one server were to go down, another one would kick start in its place. It’s considered extremely reliable and for this reason, it’s slightly more expensive than shared hosting.
VPS is the term used for Virtual Private Server hosting. It’s better than shared hosting because it will appear as though you have control of your own server. However, although you may have more control compared to shared hosting, you are still sharing a single server with other customers. The main difference is that the number of customers is a lot smaller than shared hosting. You should, therefore, notice a difference in performance between shared and VPS hosting.
Dedicated web hosting means business! You’ll rent and pay for your own dedicated server. Therefore you are not sharing your resources with anyone. Dedicated servers often come with a managed and unmanaged option; this is the difference between you managing your server (including security updates), or the web host managing the server. If you don’t have the time to or haven’t run your own server before, I suggest choosing the managed option, to begin with. However, this can be substantially more expensive compared to unmanaged dedicated server hosting.
How much does it really cost to host a website in 2020…
I hope I’ve now been able to give you an overview of what each type of web hosting offers. I will, of course, go into the specifics of each in terms of pricing, but I wanted to mention something quickly before we continue.
This may seem obvious, but the more features you opt for (or want) in your web hosting plan, the more expensive it’s likely to be. For example, a web host’s basic plan may offer hosting for one website, 10GB storage space, and include a single domain. The next tier may offer unlimited websites to be hosted, include free SSL, and offer tools for analytics. This is going to cost you more, but it may offer you more of what you actually want.
Before choosing your hosting type, you may want to consider reading our guides below. These will give you a good idea of what’s suitable for your needs:
2. Website Hosting costs
We’re now going to take a look at the real cost of the different types of web hosting. I’m going to show you some comparisons of different companies who I personally recommend in each category. Hopefully, this will give you enough information so you can make an informed choice.
Shared hosting cost
£0.80 – £11.47 per month
Shared hosting tends to be where people begin. Shared hosting is usually the cheapest type of hosting as you’re sharing a portion of a larger server. From my recommendations, Hosting is the cheapest option at only 80p per month!
|Host||Budget Plan||Mid-Tier||Pro/Business||Sign Up|
Cloud hosting cost
£3.80 – £48.00 per month
Cloud hosting is a good choice if reliability is one of your priorities. If one server fails, another is ready to ensure you don’t have any downtime. However, cloud hosting can be slightly more costly than shared hosting, but not by much. HostGator offers cloud hosting from as little as £3.80 per month, followed closely by A2 Hosting.
|Host||Cheapest Cloud Plan||Sign Up|
|IONOS||£5.00||Visit IONOS (1&1)|
|A2||£3.84||Visit a2 Hosting|
VPS hosting cost
£1.00 – £19.21 per month
VPS hosting is when shared hosting isn’t quite cutting the mustard, but you’re not ready to splash out too much cash. VPS hosting servers range in price quite a lot depending on features. You can get VPS hosting from IONOS (1&1) from just £1 per month.
|Host||Cheapest VPS Plan||Sign Up|
|IONOS||£1.00||Visit IONOS (1&1)|
|Alibaba||£1.84||Visit Alibaba Cloud|
|A2 Hosting||£19.21||Visit a2 Hosting|
Dedicated hosting cost
£65.76 – £525.00 per month
Paying for your own server is a big step. However, it grants a lot of control and means that you won’t have to share your server resources with anyone else. Dedicated hosting is expensive, ranging from £65.76 per month with BlueHost’s entry plan and reaching £525 per month with SiteGround’s expert plan.
|Host||Entry Plan||Mid Plan||Expert Plan||Sign Up|
|A2 Hosting||£76.53||£127.56||£191.35||Visit A2 Hosting|
|Liquid Web||£114.51||£229.78||£383.48||Visit Liquid Web|
3. Additional costs (and extras)
Once you’ve got the actual web hosting part of your hosting sorted, you may want to know about additional costs. These are optional, however, some may be required for your website to go live. For example, a domain name is essential. Some web hosts may include this as part of your hosting, whereas others won’t.
Let’s take a look at some of the additional costs you may want to consider…
A domain name is your website address. It allows people to visit your website on the internet. It’s also kind of a brand name. If you have business cards or use advertising/marketing, your domain name will often be part of this.
There are a variety of extensions (or TLDs) you can choose. If your website solely targets U.K. customers, you may want to consider a .co.uk extension. However, if your target market is global, a .com would be my recommendation.
Just to confuse things a little, when you purchase a domain name, this also has extras you can pay for. For example, privacy protection will ensure your website’s WHOIS listing doesn’t display public information about yourself.
An SSL certificate will not only protect your website visitors and customers, but it also promotes trust in your website. When you have an SSL installed, your website address will have a small padlock icon next to it. If you’re selling products or services on your website, this is an absolute must-have.
Most web hosts will include an SSL for free via Let’s Encrypt and many website builders can generate them, too. However, for those that don’t, an SSL can be quite costly.
123reg sell SSL certificates at an affordable cost if you need to buy one separately. There are of course other providers like GoDaddy, but they’re slightly more expensive.
A CDN (Content Delivery Network) can help speed up your website, as well as offering additional security.
A content delivery network (CDN) refers to a geographically distributed group of servers which work together to provide fast delivery of Internet content.
Some web hosting providers will include a free copy of CloudFlare CDN within their hosting package. Alternatively, if you want to upgrade your CloudFlare CDN plan or purchase one separately, this can be done on CloudFlare’s website.
4. The cost of hosting a website (summary)
By now I hope that I have been able to give you an overview of how much web hosting costs. We know that it’s often dependent on what type of hosting you choose. We also know that web hosting pricing can vary by company quite a lot.
Web hosting can cost as little as 80p or as much as £500+. Most web hosts will offer three or more tiers of pricing plans, offering flexibility and scalability. A lot of them will also offer a money-back guarantee, so if you think you’ve chosen the wrong hosting, you should be able to find a way out.
In summary, this is how much it costs to a host a website in 2020:
Shared Hosting: 80p – £11.47 per month
Cloud Hosting: £3.80 – £48.00 per month
VPS Hosting: £1.00 – £19.21 per month
Dedicated Hosting: £65.76 – £525.00 per month
My recommendation would always be to check out a web host’s reviews before you purchase. Places like TrustPilot are good to get a feel for a company based on customer’s experiences. Alternatively, you can read my reviews which are always 100% honest and unbiased. I sign up for each company with my own credit card and report back on my findings.