There are a lot of times that most hosting services will have some extra hosting space available on their servers or are just interested in increasing their sales. If this should occur they will offer hosting bundles to resellers who may end up selling the service alone or who may bundle it up with other services, for instance website programming or design, to enhance the perceived value of their services.
There could be a few benefits to both the original hosting service and the reseller. The original hosting service will save time because they are interested in selling hosting to larger groups people and not just to individuals. As for the reseller, They will sell to individuals and can help them with other services they might need.
When customers are looking at hosting plans, they will discover there are many options. There will be some web customers who will want a shared hosting plan that will allow them to put multiple domains online. They might be webmasters or web designers that have several sites online or even just a business that will want to seperate their different brands. Normally they would need a dedicated server or multiple hosting accounts and they would make the perfect customer for the original hosting service, which is usually more focused on bulk accounts and corporate businesses and not just individual clients.
Those customers that have smaller needs will be able to find the perfect solution with a reseller that might be more responsive to questions and simpler needs. The customers will benefit from the cheaper hosting fees on shared hosting accounts. For those startup businesses this would be perfect, even if they do have more than one website to put online.
These days you will not find many anonymous sellers with no real, personal contact with their clients. Most customers expect to have a relationship with the people they are doing business with, either offline or online. Those entrepreneurs that are offering reseller hosting services to customers and are paying closer attention to building those relationships, and eventually trust, are the successful resellers online.
This may sound all good on the surface, but operating a reseller account online can have its downside that can cause you headaches you may not have thought of yet and could actually ruin your business. If there should be trouble with the company you are selling the hosting with, you will be the one your customers will be sending the untold numbers of emails to.
Now it may be true you are not the one responsible for the trouble, like downtime on the servers at the original hosting services, but you will be the target of your customer’s angst. It is also true that you have no control over what may happen at the hosting company you are using for your business. If they are not making their phone number public, you don’t have any way to contact them either when those servers are down.
So, before you get hooked up with any hosting company, be sure to check out their reputation online. Check out a few related forums and ask about the company’s service. If they are not providing good service or if there is a problem, you will find out in a heartbeat. Get a list of references from the hosting company you want to deal with and make sure you check them out. If you are not getting a list of happy customers, find yourself another hosting company.
As you are checking those references or their reputation through forums, be sure to ask how often they went down and then how fast they got back up. Everyone knows that all servers will go down every once in a while. That can be caused by many different things, bad weather, lightning strikes, floods, balckouts, a bad sensor, to name a few.
But the real consideration should be just how fast they get back online and if they are notifying their customers and resellers about what is happening and the expected return to service. If you have a host with one support option, like filling out endless support tickets and leave you waiting for a canned answer, that won’t do your business any good.
Look your options over carefully, like actual bandwidth, enough space, quick support and whether or not they even answer their phones. Your business will depend on the reliablity of their business. Make sure you make that choice carefully. After all, this is your business and reputation.