The word 'shared' says it all, this type of hosting basically offer a common pool of hosting resources environment where more than one website is setup to host in the same server, all of the website in the same server will be sharing the server resource. Each website can be given a limit of bandwidth, web space, database creation etc. depending on the shared hosting plan signed up, but the command resources like server CPU / Memory usage are shared among all the website hosting in the same server.
Shared hosting is the most commonly available type of hosting on the internet, and the hosting fee is generally low with lots of resources given for a hosting account that charges several dollars. However, you should be careful not to fall into a marketing trap for those huge shared hosting plans with low hosting fee, there are generally some degree of usage limitations stated in their Term of Use policy, and if you think over it, basically you are unlikely to reach the usage limit given due to the restrictions, the common limitations are :-
* restriction on hosting large files (note that multimedia files are always large and bandwidth hungry)
* daily bandwidth usage limit (suspend too active websites that is taking all the server bandwidth)
* restrict usage on certain type of scripts (suspend heavy scripts that is taking too much of CPU and memory)
Be sure to read through the Acceptable Use policy of your short listed shared hosting provider before signup, or send a pre-sales enquiry to ensure your type of website is acceptable on their server. You don't want to get your website suspended after spending all your advertising budget to drive traffic in because you have not checked the acceptable use policy.
Generally, if you are not a very technical person and just starting on website development, you can consider shared hosting for the start, and slowly move up as your website requires more hosting resources. The reason being is managing a web hosting server requires technical knowledge on server management, choose a good web host for yourself and let this be done by your shared web host, free yourself out from these technical issues so that you can spend your time on building a good solid website.
Dotservant.com has been offering simple and affordable shared hosting services since 2000.