Serverless vs. Traditional Website Hosting

The Internet has revolutionised the way we communicate, shop, and do business. As a result, websites have become an essential part of any business’s digital presence.

With so many website hosting options available, it can be difficult to decide which one is best for your website. In this article, I will explain and compare serverless website hosting and traditional website hosting to help you make an informed decision.

What option is best will depend on your requirements and budget constraints. If you need help workout out what hosting option you should consider, you can contact me for a paid consultation.

What is Serverless Website Hosting?

Serverless website hosting is a cloud-based hosting solution that eliminates the need for a physical server. Instead, the website is hosted on a virtual server that is managed by the hosting provider.

This type of hosting is often referred to as “serverless” because the hosting provider takes care of all the server maintenance and management.

Serverless computing allows you to build and run applications and services without thinking about servers. With serverless computing, your application still runs on servers, but all the server management is done by AWS.

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Advantages of Serverless Website Hosting

  • Cost Managenent: Serverless hosting eliminates the need for a physical server, which can be expensive to maintain. This can result in significant cost savings for businesses.
  • Scalability: Serverless hosting is highly scalable, meaning it can easily accommodate spikes in traffic. This makes it ideal for businesses that experience seasonal or unexpected spikes in website traffic.
  • Flexibility: Serverless hosting is highly flexible, allowing businesses to quickly and easily deploy new features and updates to their website.
  • Security: Serverless hosting is more secure than traditional hosting solutions, as the hosting provider is responsible for managing and maintaining the server.

Common Serverless Hosting Terms Explained

Platform as a Service (PaaS)

Imaging you’re a chef and you want to open a new restaurant. Instead of building the entire restaurant from scratch, including the foundation, walls, plumbing, and electrical systems, you decide to rent a fully-equipped space. This space already has a kitchen, dining area, and all the necessary equipment. All you need to do is come in, prepare your dishes, and serve your customers.In the world of technology,

Platform as a Service (PaaS) is similar to that fully-equipped restaurant space. It provides businesses with a ready-to-use environment where you can develop, run, and manage your applications without worrying about the underlying infrastructure (like building the restaurant). You can focus solely on creating your website application (or “cooking your dishes”) and let the PaaS provider handle all the technical details behind the scenes.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

Let’s imagine you have a big event coming up, and you want to set up a lemonade stand in your local park. Instead of buying all the equipment and materials yourself, you decide to rent them.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) is like renting that equipment for your lemonade stand. Instead of you buying, setting up, and managing everything, a company provides you with the necessary infrastructure like the stand, cups, and juicers. You just focus on making and selling the lemonade.

Function as a Service (FaaS)

Imagine you run a bakery. Every time a customer walks in and orders a cake, you have two options:

Traditional Way: You have a dedicated kitchen space where you bake cakes all day long, whether customers come in or not. This means you’re paying for the kitchen’s rent, electricity, and ingredients, even if no one orders a cake that day.

Function as a Service (FaaS): Imagine if every time a customer orders a cake, a magical kitchen appears out of nowhere, bakes the cake, and then disappears. You only pay for the ingredients and the time the magical kitchen was there. No customer? No kitchen. Another customer walks in? A new kitchen appears.

In the tech world, this magical kitchen is like FaaS. Instead of having a server running all the time, with FaaS, the server only appears when it’s needed. This can save money and resources because you only pay for what you use.

Backend as a Service (BaaS)

Imagine you own a toy store. You have a variety of toys, and you want to set up a system where customers can come in, browse the toys, and make a purchase. In a traditional setup, you’d need to hire staff (backend developers) to manage the inventory, handle sales, and assist customers.

You’d also need to rent a space (servers) to display the toys and store them. But what if there was a magical service that took care of all the backend stuff for you? This service would handle the inventory, sales, and even assist customers without you having to worry about hiring staff or renting space.

Backend as a service is like having a magical service that handles all the backend operations of your app or business, so you can focus on what you do best – providing great content or products to your customers. You don’t need to worry about the technical stuff; BaaS takes care of it for you.

Serverless Website Hosting Providers

AWS Lambda

A popular serverless platform that allows you to run code without provisioning or managing servers, automatically scaling with your usage.

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AWS CloudFront

A fast content delivery network (CDN) service that securely delivers data, videos, applications, and APIs to customers globally with low latency Android high transfer speeds.

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Google App Engine

A platform for building scalable web applications and mobile backends, offering features like automatic scaling, built-in security, and robust APIs.

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A platform designed to provide the best developer experience with an obsessive focus on end-user performance, supporting front-end web technologies like React, Vue, and Angular.

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Microsoft Azure DevOps Server

A set of collaborative software development tools, hosted on-premises, integrating with your existing Integrated Development Environment (IDE) or website code editor.

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Allows you to automate workflows by connecting your apps and moving information between them automatically.

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A content platform that helps digital teams combine the best of content management with the best of digital experiences.

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What is Traditional Website Hosting?

Traditional website hosting is a hosting solution that requires a physical server. The server is typically located in a data center and is managed by the hosting provider. This type of hosting is often referred to as shared hosting because multiple websites are hosted on the same server.

Advantages of Traditional Website Hosting

Traditional website hosting offers several advantages over serverless hosting solutions. Here are some of the key benefits:

Control: With traditional hosting, businesses have more control over their website. This includes the ability to customise the server configuration and install custom software.

Performance: Traditional hosting is often more reliable and offers better performance than serverless hosting. This is because the server is dedicated to a single website, which eliminates the need to share resources with other websites.

Pricing: Traditional hosting is often more cost-effective than serverless hosting, especially for businesses with smaller websites.

Common Traditional Hosting Terms Explained

Virtual Private Servers (VPS)

A Virtual Private Server (VPS) is a virtualised container that allows you to manage it like it was your own dedicated server. Virtual Private Servers are often run on a series of large, high-spec physical servers.

Using a VPS for your website is a good middle-ground option between shared hosting and dedicated hosting in terms of pricing, speed, resources and responsibilities for server management.

  • Virtualisation: A VPS is created by partitioning a physical server into multiple virtual servers using virtualization software. Each VPS runs its own operating system and has dedicated resources.
  • Benefits: VPS hosting provides more control and customisation compared to shared hosting. You get root access, which means you can install and configure software as you wish. It’s also more scalable, allowing you to adjust resources as your website grows.
  • Use Cases: Ideal for businesses or websites that need more control, security, and flexibility but don’t want to invest in a full dedicated server.

Shared Hosting

Shared hosting is often recognized as the most basic and cost-effective web hosting solution, making it an ideal choice for beginners, small businesses, and individuals with budget constraints.

This form of hosting involves multiple websites sharing the same server and its resources, such as storage space and bandwidth. The cost of maintaining the server is divided among all the users, which makes it significantly less expensive than other hosting options.

The shared nature of the server means that if one website experiences high traffic or has technical issues, it could potentially affect the performance of other websites on the same server.

  • Shared Resources: Multiple websites are hosted on a single server, sharing the server’s resources like RAM, CPU, and storage.
  • Benefits: It’s affordable and user-friendly, making it perfect for beginners or small websites. Most shared hosting providers offer a control panel for easy management.
  • Limitations: Since resources are shared, if one website experiences a traffic spike, it might affect the performance of other sites on the same server. There’s also less control and customisation compared to VPS or dedicated hosting.
  • Use Cases: Best for personal blogs, small businesses, or websites with low to moderate traffic.

Dedicated Hosting

Dedicated hosting is a premium web hosting solution where an entire server is allocated exclusively to a single website or application. Unlike shared or VPS hosting, where resources are divided among multiple users, dedicated hosting ensures that all the server’s resources, such as RAM, CPU, and storage, are solely dedicated to one user.

With dedicated hosting, businesses have full control over the server, including root access, allowing them to configure and optimise it according to their specific needs. While it provides maximum uptime and reliability, dedicated hosting is typically the most expensive hosting option and may require a certain level of technical expertise to manage and maintain the server efficiently.

  • Dedicated Resources: Unlike shared or VPS hosting, all the server’s resources (RAM, CPU, storage) are dedicated to a single website or application.
  • Benefits: It offers maximum performance, security, and customization. You get full control over the server, including root access.
  • Considerations: It’s the most expensive hosting option and may require technical expertise to manage and maintain the server.
  • Use Cases: Ideal for large businesses, e-commerce sites, or high-traffic websites that require optimal performance and security.

Traditional Website Hosting Providers


Hostinger offers web hosting, WordPress hosting, and cloud hosting with server locations in the USA, UK, France, India, Singapore, Brazil, Lithuania, and the Netherlands. They provide 24/7 live chat support, video walkthroughs, and an extensive knowledgebase of tutorials.

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SiteGround is renowned for its excellent customer service and its focus on security. They provide various hosting options, including shared, cloud, and dedicated hosting, and they also have a reputation for fast speeds and uptime.

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GoDaddy is one of the largest domain registrars that also offers hosting services. They provide various hosting options, including shared, VPS, and dedicated hosting, and they are known for their reliable uptime and robust performance.

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HostGator is a user-friendly hosting provider that offers a range of services, from domain registration to various hosting options like shared, VPS, and dedicated hosting, making it a great option for beginners.

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A2 Hosting

A2 Hosting is known for its speed and reliability. They offer a range of hosting options, including shared, VPS, and dedicated hosting, and they have a strong reputation for their customer service and reliability.

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InMotion Hosting

InMotion Hosting offers a variety of hosting services, including shared, VPS, and dedicated hosting. They are known for their reliable hosting, great customer service, and a range of plans suitable for different website needs.

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Bluehost is a widely used web hosting provider, known for its robust security, great customer service, and great uptime rates. They offer various hosting plans including shared hosting, VPS hosting, and dedicated hosting to cater to different website needs.

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Serverless and traditional website hosting both have their advantages and disadvantages. Ultimately, the best hosting solution for your website will depend on your specific needs and budget. If you’re looking for a cost-effective solution with Scalability and flexibility, serverless hosting may be the right choice.

However, if you need more control over your website and better performance, traditional hosting may be the better option. No matter which hosting solution you choose, it’s important to do your research and make sure you’re getting the best value for your money. With the right hosting provider, you can ensure your website is secure, reliable, and optimized for success.

Serverless vs traditional website hosting both have their advantages and disadvantages. It’s important to do your research and choose the hosting solution that best meets your needs and budget. With the right hosting provider, you can ensure your website is secure, reliable, and optimised for success.

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