If your design agency works online in any capacity, then there is a good chance that you have had at least a few clients come to you with questions about web hosting options.
After all, now that you have designed something for them, they need a place to host it, right? There is an equally high chance that, when they approached you, you were uncertain what to tell them.
So why become a hosting reseller?
Becoming a hosting reseller helps provide you with a source of recurring revenue, and will also enhance your reputation in the eyes of your clients. Not only can they go to you for all their design needs, they can also trust you to host their site for them, as well.
Sounds like a win/win, right?
It can be. But finding the right host to partner is critical to your success as a reseller. You may want to consider fully managed reseller hosting.
When evaluating hosts to resell, consider the following factors:
Fully Managed Hosting
Even if you have a systems administrator on-staff, you will want to go with a hosting provider that manages security, operating system updates, patches, and monitoring. Such hosts often refer to their service as “Fully Managed.”
Fully Managed reseller hosting helps take the strain off your organization by taking care of the nitty gritty technical details. In essence, Managed Hosting frees up your time to design, develop, and market your business.”
This way, you don’t have to worry about keeping system up-to-date, managing network security, and monitoring for attacks. Even though a fully managed reseller host does not do everything, the amount of work and time they will save you is tremendous and should not be taken for granted.
Ability to Handle Your Projects
Clients come in different sizes, and so do their projects.
To avoid using numerous hosts, select one that can accommodate your projects, big or small. Having a hosting provider that offers services from small, shared hosts, to large managed dedicated servers is paramount in providing excellent services to your organization.
Finding a host that offers scalable solutions that can be upgraded quickly is advantageous for you and your clients, as you can provide larger and smaller services based on your needs, saving you time and money from strenuous upgrade processes.
Securing Your Reseller Infrastructure
While you can rely on your reseller host to keep your clients’ websites secure, you also need to make sure your own infrastructure is secure. Would you trust a creative agency with your website if they were not capable of protecting their own?
Certainly not. You cannot afford to skimp on security.
To ensure you maintain a positive reputation with your clients, and to protect the data that is most critical to your business, here are a few things you (or your host) will need to do:
Maintain secure backups of all critical data.
Do not update or modify these backups manually, as this both defeats the purpose of having automatic backup services and ensures you will (at some point in the future) miss backing up some information.
Also, set a good, low-traffic time each day when backups will be uploaded.
Backups are your final protection against irretrievable data loss if your server does become compromised. Even with every security practice in place, attacks and malware can still find their way to your server, usually in the form of phishing attacks.
Having strong backups in place will allow you to revert to a good, uncompromised restore point in the event your server is attacked and data is being altered or held for extortion.”
Install an antivirus/antispam solution, conduct regular scans, and pair this with a monitoring solution that will allow you to keep track of suspicious traffic.
When other security solutions may miss a suspicious application, a good antivirus solution will detect and prevent a suspicious executable from ever opening or being downloaded to your server.
Having strong monitoring in place can help detect these attacks before they happen and can identify regular attackers or exploits being targeted to your system.
Your Clients are Only as Secure as You and Your Host
While your reseller provider will go to great lengths to keep their services secure, especially with fully managed hosting, it is still up to you to take the extra time and provide secure services to your client.
A fully managed web host will go to great lengths to secure networks and systems, but preventing malicious executables from running or creating secure backups is up to you as the reseller to provide to your clients.
Without a fully-managed service provider, you would be responsible for a much larger portion of the security pie.
Combining a fully managed host with strong security practices goes a long way in protecting your clients and their businesses. This gives both you and your clients the peace of mind that they have a good long-term solution for their hosting needs.”
Reseller hosting is an excellent way to enhance your value in the eyes of prospective clients, and turn a tidy profit in the process. But becoming a reseller arguably makes your own security measures more critical than ever.
Before you start selling hosting solutions to your clients, you need to make sure your own data is safe.