Differences between Complex Managed Hosting and Unmanaged Hosting

ManagerToday, most web hosting companies offer both unmanaged and managed hosting. Unmanaged hosting is hands-off and generally cheaper than managed. In general, it’s also synonymous with shared hosting, meaning webmasters share an individual server with others. You’re in charge of keeping on top of software security updates, data backups, and troubleshooting everyday problems. With complex managed hosting, the hosting provider takes responsibility for these tasks and more. Managed hosting is typically synonymous with dedicated hosting, where one server is dedicated to a sole customer.

Benefits of Managed Web Hosting

Although complex managed hosting can be pricy, it has a plethora of benefits, including allowing website owners to devote their time to tasks they deem more important. In the past, individuals and businesses alike hired third parties to manage their websites, or they had an on-site team to do the dirty work. This still happens, of course, but more people have moved to accepting help directly from the web host.

Benefits can include:

  • Support and advice when building a website
  • Managed daily backups
  • Updates tested for stability and security prior to installation
  • Antivirus scans with removal of malware
  • Priority customer service

Today, complex managed web hosting is common for WordPress, Joomla, and Magento. However, the managed hosting services for content management systems like this rarely come with dedicated servers automatically. This is especially true if they’re priced very low like GoDaddy’s WordPress hosting for $1 per month or SiteGround’s Joomla hosting for $4 per month.

Benefits of Unmanaged Web Hosting

Unmanaged hosting is ideal for experienced webmasters whose websites receive minimal traffic. If you can set up everything without a problem, and don’t need anyone to help with daily maintenance, signing up for managed hosting may be purely out of convenience rather than any necessity to manage large traffic spikes or unfamiliar territory.

Benefits can include:

  • More freedom to install software and configure backend settings
  • Faster updates to plugins
  • Less reliance on second parties
  • Intimate knowledge on how your website works
  • Cheaper hosting options

Of course, complex managed hosting and unmanaged hosting sometimes have overlapping benefits. For example, some web hosts prioritize all support, overstaffing their support center so you can talk to someone immediately. In addition, the amount of freedom someone has with their website depends entirely on the host. Lastly, complex managed hosting and unmanaged hosting are fairly technical terms, and the same services are occasionally sold under different terms.


Not everyone needs managed hosting. In fact, some people are better off without it. But each kind of hosting has advantages and disadvantages, so look closely at what a web hosting provider offers to best determine if the service is right for your individual or business needs.

Lynn is the founder and chief editor at ReVUEzzle.com. She is responsible for strategy and business development. Her background is in software development, marketing, and project management. She loves camping, traveling, and all things soccer related. She has been married for over 30 years to one great guy and has two adult children. Lynn is also the human companion to two cats - Jynx and Spanky. She is based in Minnesota, USA.

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