When it comes to having your own website, you have likely heard of hosting it yourself. You may have seen it listed as running a self hosting website or self hosting WordPress. On the surface, it might make sense. Your website needs to run from somewhere. Someone has to host it. Since it is your website, why shouldn’t you host it yourself? Before simply diving into the concept, you should take a look at your options. Many people do go this route, but it is not right for everyone. In reality, there a lot of problems with taking on the burden of hosting yourself.
First, it is best to start with the basics. Before knowing which path to take, we should have an understanding of website hosting itself. If you know where you are at in your website hosting journey, please use the table of contents below to jump to the section you need.
Table of Contents
Questions to Ask Before Hosting Your Website
Before we get into what it means to host your own website (or self host), we should talk about the basic definition of website hosting. A website host is exactly what it sounds like. It is the actual host and facilitator of the website. Hosting a website means giving it a physical location where it lives. It also means being responsible for many of the defining aspects of the website. This includes monitoring and applying relevant updates. The host is also in charge of keeping the website secure. And there are many other features that a host takes care of, like backups, and reports for plugins and site performance.
It is fair to say that a lot more goes into hosting a website. It is more than just a place to store a website’s resources. Even the best designed website can suffer if even one of these responsibilities lags behind. Hosting can be an overwhelming task, so many companies have sprung up offering hosting options. These services can accommodate sites from blogging your thoughts all the way to supporting the eCommerce site of a large enterprise.
Initially, you will see two primary options: self hosting vs web hosting.
What Does it Mean to Host Your Own Site?
What does self hosting mean? Self hosting website and website data is exactly what it sounds like. All of the responsibility of hosting your own website falls to yourself. You supply the location and resources needed to store and run the site. Accommodating the bandwidth you need to support your simultaneous users falls to you. You implement and maintain the security of the website and the data the goes through the site. Your equipment runs the website, so it will need consistent maintenance. You are also in charge of all updates and monitoring, from plugins to site performance. Hosting your own website server is a job by itself.
Many people choose to self host, but below are two common kinds of people who might not struggle much in choosing self hosting vs web hosting server companies.
Companies with a dedicated hosting team
Even with this, the company has to make a choice of diverting employees and resources toward the task of hosting the website. Often, there are more crucial infrastructure tasks that should take the focus first.
If someone is interested in entering the field of website hosting, they might experiment with hosting their own website. This is not the only way to learn about web hosting, and it only works well when website performance is not important.
Traditional Web Hosting Vs Self Hosting
The first difference when choosing to go with an outside host for your website is a price tag. Professional hosting services come with a subscription fee. It is true that there are free hosting services available, but it is dangerous to trust your business to those. If you are not paying for the hosting, then someone else is paying the host. This means you cannot trust free hosts to have your best interest in mind. Anyway, although a web hosting service gives you a price, that does not mean that there is no cost of hosting your own website.
Costs of web hosting services and doing it yourself
The most attractive aspect of hosting your own site is not having to pay another company a subscription. This does put you in more control of the hosting options, but this also puts the responsibility on you too. You do not have a monthly or annual bill when self hosting WordPress sites, but you will have to pay for the equipment. You will also need to pay for any quality software that can help you host your own website. Then, you will either need to pay someone to maintain and monitor the website. Of course, you could do it yourself, but then you are spending your own valuable time doing that. Even if this is a personal website instead of a business one, it is likely that you will spend more in equipment, software, and hours than you would have paid for traditional web hosting vs self hosting.
Part of this reason is that dedicated website hosting services are experienced. They know what they are doing, and they do it well. The are able to maximize efficiency, and they pass on that efficiency as savings to their customers. One of the other disadvantages of hosting your own website is that you will have to buy the replacement parts when something breaks or you need to update. When using a hosting company, you do not ever have to worry about footing that bill. Not only that, but many of the costs of self hosting sites can hit you by surprise. Going with a service locks you in at a predictable and consistent rate that you can budget for every month.
Pitfalls with doing your own hosting
The first pitfall dealing with self hosting WordPress sites is the initial cost. This includes the hardware you need to run the server and any software you need to manage it. Many people discount this cost by telling themselves that they will save in the long run by avoiding a subscription. However, this is when the pitfalls get sneaky. The hidden costs can be difficult to keep track of. Often, they do not come with an exact dollar figure. Website downtime due to a power outage can damage your SEO. Security breaches cost time to fix. The time spent maintaining the server takes attention from other things. Not paying attention to these costs does not make them go away. This does not even cover the cost of stressing over managing it.
The sunk cost of a self hosting
One of the nastiest parts of running your own website server is the fallacy of the “sunk cost.” This is the idea we get where we need to stick with something because we have already spent money on it. It is why it is common for people to keep repairing a breaking vehicle instead of replacing it. It is part of what makes gambling addicting. In our minds, we consider the money we spent as some kind of investment. We feel like we will have lost that investment by giving up and moving on. In reality, this is entirely untrue. In this case, the money spent on the server and in hosting your own site is already spent. Continuing to spend more doesn’t help the matter. The money spent is already spent.
It is difficult to push past that feeling. However, if you have been doing this, now is the time to re-evaluate your situation. You do not need to keep sinking your own resources into keeping up your own hosting. Many professional hosts make it extremely easy to migrate your data to their servers. Do not be fooled into spending even more money on this.
Best Alternative For Self Hosting
You likely have an idea as to why people choose to host their own sites. More importantly, you know why that is not the best option. So, you have probably reached the conclusion that managed WordPress hosting through WP Super Host is the best hosting solution. When it comes to hosting your website, we have everything you need at fair and affordable costs. We have the resources and support to take the burden of hosting off of your shoulders. Be sure to browse our hosting options to find the right one for you. Are you not sure what package you should look for? Reach out to us, and we will help get you exactly what you need.
For most situations, self hosting your own website is never a smart idea. There are too many variables to track. And while it may seem like you would save money, that cannot be further from the truth. Trusting your website to a professional hosting service keeps your website and data safe at affordable prices. There is no reason to take the heavy burden of hosting your own website. You should be able to do what you do best while trusting professionals to take care of your website hosting needs for you.