Please explain web hosting- which plan should I choose?

Hello, my lovelies!

I received a pretty desperate email today from a young lady that is experiencing what I like to call, ‘research overload’.  She wants to start her own blog and has found more information than she can EVER consume.  She begged me to PLEASE explain web hosting and help her decide which plan to choose.  I feel her pain.


In the early stages of my blogging research, I spent many 24 hour periods where I didn’t sleep.  I was caught in a research and reading loop.  I could have gone on like that for months, and probably would have too if my husband hadn’t intervened.

My husband basically told me to just jump in.  I could continue learning and have nothing to show for it, (other than the ability to talk for endless hours about what I’d learned) or I could take my current knowledge (fairly extensive at this point) and put it into practice, essentially laying the foundation to my future online empire.  I went with the second option.  I’m very happy that I did!

Everywhere you look there’s a blogger telling you to go ‘self-hosted’ and that you should sign up with a specific company…

What does that mean exactly?  It’s taking your blog and your future revenue options into your own hands.  Instead of going the ‘free website’ route, you pay for your domain and hosting and build your own blog/website.  I know that sounds scary, but I assure you that it’s much easier than it sounds.  By hosting your own blog, you own it… you control the advertising, the information and everything in between.

Other questions I’ve received in email that pertain to hosting:

There’s more than one option when I click on the hosting you recommend.  What’s up with that?

There are different packages for different needs.

There are so many different companies!  How do you know what’s best?

Well, before you worry about which company to choose, you need a better understanding of what’s being offered.  Not all hosting is created equal.  There are three main types of hosting that you need to know about-  Shared hosting, VPS (Virtual Private Server) and dedicated hosting.

The hosting recommended by most bloggers is Shared hosting.

What is Shared hosting?  

Shared hosting is the cheapest way to host your website/blog.  You share the server with other websites so your cost is low, but so is your disk space and bandwidth.  Each user on the server is only allotted X amount of disk space and bandwidth.  The amount is predetermined and specified in the hosting package before you buy.

Think of Shared hosting like flying coach.  You’re all crammed in together with a tiny bathroom and one lonely flight attendant to take care of everyone’s needs.

Shared hosting Pros:

*Super low costs- You can purchase your domain name and get one year of shared hosting for about $25.00.  Each provider is different and has many packages to choose from.  Price varies by company and most offer packages ranging from beginner to more established.

*Perfect for the start-up blog or website that won’t see huge traffic numbers.

*You don’t need much skill in the tech department.  Maintenance and security are taken care of for you.

Shared hosting Cons:

*You are limited on space.  It may seem like plenty of space at first, but using pictures and videos can fill it up fast.  You will be charged extra if you go over your plan allotment.

*You may have to migrate to a different server when you grow.  That spells a lot of work for you or added expense if you don’t know how to do it yourself.

*You run the risk of being Blacklisted- On a shared server, you run the risk of being blacklisted because someone else on the server was spamming or unethical in practice.  An entire IP address can be blacklisted by search engines based on just one bad user.  It happens… but not very frequently.

*Slow loading time.  If a few sites experience a surge in traffic, your site’s loading and navigation speed can suffer.

My thoughts:

It’s great when you’re just getting started, but if you plan to grow and profit, you will eventually need to upgrade.  Shared hosting is great for the DIY enthusiast.  If you’re a total noob, but can do a google search and follow instructions, you can self-host quickly and super cheap.  It’s really not difficult.Funny-Star-Wars363-630x419

Buy your domain and hosting, then install WordPress.  You’ll be up and running in no time.  If you are starting a brand new blog, the least expensive shared hosting package will get you through your first year.  Depending on how fast you grow… you may or may not need to upgrade.

I use Namecheap to buy my domains and I’m also an affiliate!  So if you click through my link and purchase, I’ll make a small commission.  They offer a great price on your first year of shared hosting.  You can get your domain and 1 year of hosting today for under $25.00!  That includes Whois guard!   (whois guard protects your personal information so that scammers can’t get your address and phone number)  Namecheap has the market cornered for the best deal.  Check them out for yourself!

(-Just a side note here… don’t put off starting your blog any longer.  Every blogger will tell you the same thing.  It takes some time to build a following and make money, so just get started.  You WILL regret not getting started sooner.  I thought about blogging for years before jumping in.  I wish someone would have told me to just do it back then!)

Namecheap has a special offer right now- get a FREE .website domain when you purchase your hosting package.  You could be on your way to building your online empire for just $9.88 for your first year!

Now, about that VPS hosting.

What is VPS hosting?

VPS hosting is Virtual Private Server hosting.  You still share the vast majority of the resources, but you are allowed more space, and there are fewer people taking up space.  Portions of the shared resources are dedicated to only you, so you have more flexibility and power when you need it.

VPS hosting is like flying First class.  The seats are bigger and there are roomier bathrooms.  There aren’t as many people and they also have more flight attendants so you feel a bit more warm and fuzzy.

VPS hosting Pros:

*The cost is still reasonable.

*Gives you more room and flexibility.  Once you’ve grown enough that shared hosting is no longer an option, VPS can give you the added space you need and more options than you had in the shared version.

*VPS may be all the upgrade a mid-sized business will ever need.  VPS hosting allows you to host an unlimited number of websites… as long as you stay within your usage parameters.

*There are far more options available on VPS vs. Shared hosting.

VPS hosting Cons:

*With greater power comes greater responsibility.  You will need to tend to your maintenance and security needs.  If you are not skilled in this area, there are managing programs available for an additional cost.

*More flexibility also means more chances for a script to go rogue and cause trouble for not just you, but your neighbors as well.

*You’re still on a shared server.

My thoughts:

VPS hosting is great for an established business that will get immediate traffic, or a growing business that has outgrown Shared hosting.  Check out Namecheap for awesome VPS packages with an excellent price point.

Finally, what is Dedicated Hosting?

Dedicated hosting is just like it sounds… it’s dedicated to YOU.  Only you get to use it.  Nobody else can access its resources.  The power is always there when you need it because nobody else is around to drag it down.  There are blogs that have grown big enough to need this type of hosting.

Dedicated hosting is like flying in a private jet.  The seats are very roomy and have luxurious comfort.  You have a private bathroom and the only other people around are those you invite along.

Dedicated hosting Pros:

*You have room to roam.  You are the only one on the server.  This is great for a mid sized business that continues to grow.

*It’s hard to outgrow it.  You have a large amount of resources available to just you… and if you do outgrow it, you can add another 500gig for an additional fee.  So your growth is limitless.

*Nobody else can cause you issues.

Dedicated hosting Cons:

*It’s gonna cost you.  This is the priciest way to go.

*You are completely responsible for all of that roomy goodness.  If you have a problem, it’s on you.  You can add management for a sizeable fee…

My thoughts:

Dedicated hosting is expensive, it’s also necessary for a bigger business with a large website.  If you need dedicated hosting, Namecheap is the way to go.

Namecheap also offers incredible pricing on reseller hosting packages.  Stop in at Namecheap and see what they have to offer you today.

So, now you know why all of those bloggers send you to buy the shared hosting packages.  It’s the least expensive way to get started.  Hosting packages vary in cost from company to company.  I recommend Namecheap not just because they are the least expensive to get started.  I am also a customer!:)  Check them out today.han_solo_funny

Now, for those of you that want to get started online, but still need quite a bit of hand-holding, or would like someone to break the entire process down, from start to finish, step by step…  I have just the program for you.  Click HERE to sign up for a free account.  Take the free classes.  Build the 2 free websites.  Learn and grow in the best environment possible.  Don’t just take my word for it.  Sign up, fill out your profile and talk to the other members now.  Everything you need to get started is waiting for you HERE.

Questions?  Hit me up!  Nicki@licensetoblog.com or show me some love in the comments:)


*Those of you that read my blog know that I’m a Stars Wars LOVER, so I don’t need to explain my pictures:) for everyone else… I love Star Wars.  Now you know.





  1. Hi Nicki,

    Thanks for this great information on hosting. I had never understood much about the different types but you helped me a lot. I think if you are serious in building a long term business, the dedicated host is is the way to go. Is that your opinion too?
    I am curious to know about your recommended program. You said they offer the possibility to build 2 websites, which kind of hosting they provide inside?
    Thank you for your help


    • Thanks for visiting, Stefan!

      If you can afford to go dedicated hosting right away, that’s great… for most, that option is not financially possible. When I think about my journey online and all the things I tried, it’s easy to put some good advice out. I’d say that if you want to make a living online, then commit to doing so. It doesn’t happen overnight. Be prepared to build for a few months before you see some money. (just like building any business) What’s the point in chasing your dream if you only plan to chase it for a month?

      I do recommend the hand-holding option I mentioned at the very end of my article. Mostly because you need a lot of support when you start something new that can potentially change your life. You need that sense of community… I’m writing an article about it now:)


  2. I also went with namecheap and there were many affordable options for domains and so far everything is working fine.

    I chose to have mine hosted at WA since it’s easier and is one less thing to worry about.

    I think Wealthy Affiliate is the way to go if you’re serious about helping others and making money is a secondary goal for many there.

    • Hi, Ian!

      I think WA is a fantastic blogging host. I’m working on an article right now that explains why:)

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