Can you run your own WordPress website without a managed hosting service? What are the benefits of managed WordPress hosting?
Running a website takes time and some special knowledge. WordPress has made website building a simpler process for the masses. This doesn’t change the reality that complexities remain for website development. The truth is, your website needs somewhere to be. That’s where hosting comes in. Hosting is essentially online real estate. It’s the service that websites run on and it includes elements like storage for website content. The bare minimum for web hosting is a domain name (address) and a host (property and house). From there, you can install WordPress and start building a website without managed hosting.
So what are the benefits of managed WordPress hosting if it’s not required for a website to run?
To continue with the housing analogy, managed WordPress hosting is the deciding factor between a lean-to slapped together with plywood and nails and a fully customized, two-story home with care taken to make every detail right. A website running on the bare hosting necessities can still provide for your website needs but it will require a lot more maintenance. With managed WordPress hosting, the technical details are taken care of and the possibilities for an impressive, customized website are high.
Here are four other considerations to keep in mind when thinking about managed hosting.
Play the Long Game
While managed hosting may cost more upfront than simply a domain and a monthly charge from a basic hosting service like SiteGround, it’s usually worth it in the long run. A well-maintained website is cheaper over time than a website that isn’t well-managed. Just like any other DIY project, running without a managed hosting service can work for some time but there is the potential for things to go wrong down the road due to insufficient management. There are a lot of things that if left unattended, could cause serious problems for your website.
Storage Is Key
For churches in particular, storage space is an important factor. Sermon mp3 files can fill up your site’s storage capacity rather quickly. The solution for this is cloud hosting for mp3 files which requires special expertise to set up. Sermon audio recordings can be easily uploaded but the framework that holds your files requires a more in-depth solution. Leaving these solutions to a managed hosting service takes the burden off church administrative persons. This will give your church leadership team the freedom to invest their time in other ministry.
We Can’t Forget Security
Choosing to invest in managed hosting is like hiring a groundskeeper for your site. Managed hosting services can take care of security and site updates. WordPress runs at its best when the proper updates are completed and not all of these updates are automatic. An updated site enjoys improved security. Keeping your website’s themes and plugins updated contributes to the overall health of your website. If there’s any chance that these important updates might get neglected in the midst of other church administration duties, you should seriously consider enlisting the support of a managed hosting service.
Managed hosting provides the benefit of bundling your website costs in one convenient location. Rather than dealing with multiple (sometimes monthly) charges from hosting platforms, plugin purchases, and domain renewal, a managed hosting services can bill you once and take care of all the other costs associated with running your website. For example, Five More Talents’ managed hosting service includes the ability to build web forms, backup website data, increased security, and other premium plugin options. These would all be separate costs without the bundling that comes with a managed WordPress hosting service.
What Could You Do?
What could you do with the freedom afforded by enlisting a managed WordPress hosting service to properly manage the details of your website? With a managed hosting service you’ll have better peace of mind and concentration on the things that matter most in your ministry. You’ll have a dedicated team to help keep your website updated and adapt to changing industry standards and requirements from Google. You’ll have support when you need it. A managed hosting service can do wonders for your website by helping bring it from ‘good’ to ‘great’!
Five More Talents has been serving churches with our managed WordPress hosting service since 2009. Our services help church leaders focus on their ministry by taking care of the website details. Learn more about Managed WordPress Hosting.