What is a Managed Hosting and How Does It Work?
Managed hosting is like any other hosting service, but those renting the server space do not need to support or optimize it, nor do they need to share it with any of the provider’s other clients. Usually provided via dedicated physical CPU servers, the provider is merely the one safekeeping, optimizing, and maintaining this hardware for the individual or company using it.
The renter of managed hosting space also has exclusive usage over it, which cannot be said of basic and VPS plans that share resources with other users to varying degrees. While you can also have a managed VPS server, for example, managed hosting usually refers to dedicated servers and their ability to grant ownership-level exclusivity and control, without the managerial costs.
When Should I Choose Managed Hosting?
You should choose managed hosting if you want zero questions about your hardware’s capabilities in any circumstance, for example how far you can push it in terms of bandwidth or storage. Those who doubt the theoretically unlimited data transfer and storage offered by shared or VPS plans are justified, as it would be impossible for all slices of any shared hosting environment to max their capacity without dragging down the others.
Another good reason to consider managed hosting is if you want the control of your own private physical server but want to skip out on the costs or efforts involved in updating, testing, optimization, or regular maintenance. Those who prefer managed hosting like to have the best hardware and want to make sure it’s maintained, but they also want a third-party to be responsible for things like correct software versions, patching, backups, and monitoring.
Main Benefits of Managed Hosting
Managed hosting is essentially the outsourcing of your own personal server to a third-party, so it saves immense time spent by internal IT teams who need to setup, configure, and manage this crucial hardware. The opportunity cost of configuring multiple cPanels and connecting the services your business requires is time spent doing more profitable things.
Time translates directly into costs when it comes to IT resources, especially when this team oversees non-managed hosting and is being paid to fiddle with server nuances instead of resolving tickets or working on a potentially profitable new project. The physical cost of server hardware is also avoided with a managed server.
Can you guarantee that your website has 100% uptime? Many managed hosting providers can get close, and many of them operate their own private data centers, and are therefore intimately familiar with the servers you’ve rented. This equates to extremely fast experience on the back and front ends.
Those who have ever operated their own server know that they’re far from “set it and forget it”, and so putting this responsibility on an outside team can be a relief. Maintenance to keep servers running is involved and costly, and includes things like regular backups, operating system and application updates, checking error logs and server utilization, and much more.
What to Look for When Considering Managed Hosting
A benefit to operating one’s own dedicated server in-house is direct responsibility and control over security standards. By offloading this to the hosting provider, you want to be sure they’re as thorough as you would be, so look for a provider with 24/7 monitoring and support, daily backups, virus and malware protection, OS updates and patching for known vulnerabilities, and around-the-clock remediation if necessary.
Many hosting providers offer free migration, but the price is less important than their commitment to full compatibility and follow-through. Managed hosting is useless unless the host offers optimization for CRM platforms and other tools your business model relies upon, so that after the transition nothing has been adversely changed.
Given that managed hosting requires a more significant investment of time from the provider and also that one is renting an entire server, these plans can get very pricey month-to-month. You don’t want to pay $700 monthly unless it can satisfy every expectation, so compare providers on price but also look for ones with a money-back guarantee.