Photo by Tom Raftery
For those wanting to start an Internet business, reseller web hosting is a great way to begin. It has a low start up cost and is profitable for those who are dedicated to making it work. A reseller is an individual who purchases bulk web space, packages it and sells it to others who are seeking to establish a presence on the web.
A reseller web hosting setup should be taken seriously as it is essentially the same as an offline business. It requires planning and financial management in order to thrive. The following list outlines important points to consider when going into the reselling business.
Research the Market
The first and most vital step is to conduct research. Valuable information and advice can be gained by speaking with people who are already running a reseller web hosting business. Looking into how the direct competition does things can provide valuable insight as well, especially in niche markets.
The information gathered in this step can be helpful with choosing the business and domain name.
Setup the Business
An Internet business is just as serious as a brick and mortar one. The domain name should be easy to remember and the company name should complement it. The company name should also be properly registered with a county clerk, and a bank account opened under the name of the business.
Some people may wish to incorporate a business or form an LLC. As there are a number of different structures and legal issues at stake, getting a tax accountant or attorney involved in the process may be helpful. Anyone starting a company should always familiarize themselves with local business laws.
Find a Provider
A search for web hosts that offer reseller packages should be done and narrowed down by reputation and reliability. Packages and cost can differ quite a bit from one host to another, so it pays to shop around. The right host will offer a balance of desired features with affordable cost. HostNine, for example, offers an array of reseller packages for a reasonable price.
Entry level reseller packages are usually offered at the shared hosting level, which is suitable for beginners. There should be options for future upgrades to VPS or dedicated server environments, to allow for growth.
A good way to test a potential host’s reliability is to live chat or make a forum post to the sales department and see how fast the response is. A good host will not mind answering presales questions.
Build a Site
The reseller hosting website is what potential clients see first, so it is a worthy investment to have it professionally designed. It should load fast and clearly explain what services are being offered, along with price. The signup process should be easy to find and execute, and the entire site should have effective navigation.
Utilizing a billing software platform to run in tandem with the website can be a big timesaver and a great organizational tool. It can automatically keep track of invoices and payments, and send alerts when action needs to be taken.
Good search engine optimization, or SEO, is necessary for a high search engine placement. Consulting with an SEO expert can give the reseller business an extra step up, especially at the beginning.
Running a reseller webhosting business has the benefit of being relatively low cost while bringing in a steady stream of profit. It also does not require an extensive knowledge of servers and hardware, as this apsect is the responsibility of the hosting provider. Not having to worry about the technical side allows the reseller to concentrate on bringing in clients and focusing on quality, first level service to them.
While a reseller business is relatively easy to start up, it does require dedication and hard work to be successful, just like any other company. Customers and revenue are not guaranteed, so the reseller must commit to an excellent standard of service in order to build a solid reputation. A good website and solid SEO are necessary tools but nothing beats word of mouth, or a great online review.
With the ongoing economic crisis and high unemployment, many people are looking for ways to generate extra income. Starting a reseller webhosting business may be a good option without a lot of upfront cost.