A Handy Guide To Reseller Hosting

As an independent web designer, one of the most common ideas I'm asking myself is: how to generate more recurring revenue?

An effective and potentially painless way to do this is to become a reseller of hosting for your clients.

Even though you only saw the term when you were browsing hosting plans for your clients' websites, you probably noticed it as an option.

What's a dealer?

Simply, this form of web hosting allows you to buy accommodation at a wholesale price from a vendor like GoDaddy, Bluehost, and so on. Just as a retail store gets its products at a greatly reduced price, by buying a reseller hosting plan, you get a great price for the amount of disk space and bandwidth that you receive from the vendor d & # 39; accommodation.

When you become a reseller of hosting, you have tools to partition, sell and manage the resources you buy from a web host. 19659002] If it sounds a little daunting – you're not mistaken: it can be. But, there are steps you can take to start slowly, orient yourself and make sure you do not put yourself in the head. If I can do it, with a limited understanding of how it all worked when I started, you can too!

Before diving, I want to describe the scope of the accommodation service that I propose to my clients and why I wanted to keep my accommodation offer a little more limited.

Mainly, I wanted my company to remain a web design provider. I do not advertise myself as an accommodation provider. I rather offer accommodation as a way to add value and conclude business.

I am doing my best to limit my hosting option to my smaller clients who, for the most part, will not need help after initial setup. This can reduce the amount of money I bring, but it helps me achieve balance by controlling the time I have to devote to this side of my business.

To achieve this more limited goal, I do my best to follow these simple rules:

I only offer two email addresses per account by default. And if my client needs more than 3-4 email addresses, I usually direct them to another hosting provider.
I do not offer tiered plans and do not limit disk space or client bandwidth.
I only bill every year.

Advantages of providing accommodation to your customers

There are many good reasons to sign up as a reseller and offer this to your customers. Here are some that are close to my heart after several years of offering this service:

1. Recurring Revenue: Anyone or business owning a website must purchase a package from 39; accommodation. Someone will be paid, so why not make a cut? At the time of writing these lines, a year of the most basic hosting (including specials) on GoDaddy costs $ 57.44, and on Hostgator, $ 53.88. These two prices increase after the first year.

2. Convenience (for you): Reseller hosting allows you to have immediate access to your customers' cPanel accounts without having to follow the user names and individual passwords. You need to check which version of PHP your client is running? Easy! Need to create an FTP account? Easy! You have a master control panel (Web Host Manager, or WHM) that allows you this capability.

3. Convenience (for customers): This may be a bit more controversial, but for the clients I target for my hosting solution, I can send an email with a problem that they encounter is much more convenient than calling a support technician

4. Repeat the case: Just as any which company – staying in touch with previous clients is a great way to make sure you are the one they call when they are ready to grow their business.

For example, let's say a little mom & pop shop that you built a site two years ago is ready to create a new site with an eCommerce store. Would they be more likely to contact you if they had a semi-regular contact over the last two years as a website host, or were you a distant memory?

5. You will learn (a lot): This may not be true for everyone, but whether it is to repair my car or to adjust DNS settings – I learn better by facing a problem and thinking about it. In the beginning, you will probably be on the phone with support for many problems that you and your customers will encounter. But over time – and probably faster than expected – you will learn to diagnose and solve many problems yourself.

Disadvantages of Hosting Offers to Your Customers

Do not get me wrong. Just like any solution you offer to your customers, there are negatives.

1. You will be the first level of technical support: Try to strategically target low maintenance customers, you will get emails and phone calls for support requests ranging from the modification of words from goes to broken websites. The good news is, at least in my experience, the vast majority of the problems you will encounter are easy to solve. Regardless of your level of experience, however, you will sometimes have to call the hosting provider to solve a problem.

2. You will be on call: If you have the option to turn off your phone, shut down your laptop and leave the world behind for days at a time is a priority for you – being a reseller will be difficult. Although this is not common, you receive requests for emergency assistance at any time of the day or night. I've learned to prioritize problems that are really urgent and can wait until the morning.

I had only one end of the road in three years to offer hosting services to resellers in which I had to be completely out of reach for more than one day (It was 4 days, in my case). To avoid problems, I let my clients know that I will be unreachable and that I will take care of someone I trust to take care of emergencies in my absence. Not only has there been no emergency situation, but no problem has been raised.

3. You are at the mercy of your host: Choosing the right hosting provider is vital. If you choose badly, it can give you a bad image and make you have more requests for support from your customers. Even worse, if you decide to make a change, moving into a new hosting company as a reseller is a painful process that can cost you money.

Choosing the Right Web Host

There are many factors to consider when browsing to find the right reseller hosting provider. You will find that many price points and features are very similar. For example, most include essential tools like WHM, one-click installations, billing solutions, and availability guarantees.

But there are also fairly drastic variations between the offers, and I wanted to explore some different being:

1. Technical Support: Choosing a Hosting Provider With excellent technical support you will save a ton of headaches on the road. You will want to be sure that the company you choose offers 24/7 telephone support, has a competent and pleasant support staff and will not leave you waiting more than 20 minutes each time that you call.

technical assistance from the hosting provider, and even go up to call them multiple times at different times of the day (and night) to assess how long you will have to wait waiting when you have to ask for help. 19659002] 2. Server response time: As search engines put more emphasis on the speed of the site for their rankings, have a host that gives priority to the short response times of the server. server can be much more important than you think. For a fantastic breakdown of the web host server speeds, check out this blog .

3. Free SSL Certificates: Soon, Google will make changes that will be very detrimental to websites that are not encrypted. While many web hosts are licking their budget with all the money that they will earn, others offer reseller packages that include free website encryption.

The ability to offer SSL certificates to your customers at no cost could be the added value an agreement. Or, charging them could be a way to earn a little money with no upfront cost.

4. Free cPanel Migration: Even if you do not have clients lined up to host before launching your reseller hosting offer, you probably have your own website and account to migrate. You should not have to do it yourself!

Some hosting providers offer limited, if not unlimited, migrations from a previous hosting provider to them. Be on the lookout for the number of migrations that a host will provide to a new reseller. If this number is limited or even nil, ask how much they load by migration.

Pulling the Trigger

Once you have done your research and you have registered as a reseller of accommodation, you must act on a few items before you offer your new service. Reseller hosting to your customers.

1. Migrate Your Own Website and Email: A great first step in the world of reseller hosting is to use you as a pig from India. Most reseller hosting accounts include at least a few account transfers at no additional charge. The transfer request processes vary by host, but in most cases you will find a form in the hosting console after logging into your reseller account.

In my case, I provide FTP information and cPanel connections. the hosting provider does the rest – usually in less than an hour or two.

After receiving confirmation that the account has been migrated, you can login to WHM (more information about the following) to see the new account, change bandwidth The final step will consist to log in to your domain registrar and replace the name servers with your new hosting provider, to ensure that the domain points to the newly migrated website. Changing the name server can take up to 24 hours to take effect, but it's usually less than that. Here is a nice tool to check and see if name servers have been updated, and the URL points to the migrated account.

Another important note: things get a bit more risky if the account is not migrated to an account based on cPanel. In this case, you will need to either migrate WordPress manually and export / import your existing emails to the new hosting account. It's a pretty rare event, though. It's only been twice now, in the years that I've suggested it, that this issue has come up – and both times I've been able to pay a fee to my web host to do the migration for me

The website and e-mail will give you a good introduction to the migration of future client accounts.

2. Decide Prices: This part should not be as difficult as it may seem. For my website design business, providing hosting has always been an added value for my clients and creating convenience for me.

To achieve this, I offer free accommodation and 2 e-mail addresses for a year, then. This accomplishes the two goals that I have stated above, and because there is no initial cost, the majority of my web design clients agree to host their sites. Web with me.

3. Learn more about WHM (Web Host Manager): The vast majority of reseller hosting packages offer WHM as a way to manage your customers' hosting accounts. This may seem daunting when you log in for the first time, but it's not as difficult as it may seem at first glance.

Check back tomorrow for a detailed overview of your reseller account setup with WHM!

4. Selling your first hosting account: My best advice would be to start small. Wait for a customer who you think will require little maintenance, who will not need more than one or two email accounts and with whom you have a good relationship. You can even consider offering them free accommodation for a given period, in exchange for being your guinea pig.

As you feel more comfortable with reseller hosting, offering your service to larger customers can be a great way to generate even more

In Closing

your price level, it may take a few months to start making money in your new service. But soon, you will have a reliable source of recurring income, you will learn more than you would have ever thought possible on the accommodation, and you will have access to more information. a new way to stay ahead of previous customers. 19659002] Happy accommodation!

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