Starting a web hosting company can be a great way to tap into a highly lucrative industry with an expected revenue of $267 billion in 2028. With proper planning and execution, you can build a successful business that provides valuable services to customers.
Here are the basic steps you should follow:
- Perform Market Research
- Decide your Business Model
- Set Up Your Website, Billing, and Support Services
- Create a Marketing Plan For Your Brand
- Create a Network of Clients and Leads
- Choose a Web Hosting Platform
1. Perform Market Research
What Is a Web Hosting Business?
A web hosting business provides customers with the technology and services they need to get their websites up and running. The provision includes server hardware, software, security services, and network environment.
Web hosts may sometimes also provide ancillary services like website design, domain name registration, and Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) Certificates.
Web hosting is one of the most competitive industries. There are thousands of established web hosting service providers of all sizes, and to succeed, you must offer top-notch services at a competitive price. You must also be able to market your business effectively.
Begin Your Journey with Market Research
Before anything else, you need to learn everything you can about the current web hosting market and find a niche to focus on.
As a web hosting reseller starting from scratch, you will not be able to keep up with the largest web hosting companies in the world. They have thousands of servers worldwide and hundreds of staff providing 24/7 support.
Therefore, the best path to success is targeting a small base of other micro or small businesses, offering them a unique selling proposition (USP), providing highly valuable and dependable services, and quickly building a loyal following.
There are a lot of roads to success when you target a niche market. You can market your brand’s ability to meet the specific needs of entrepreneurs in that niche. And when you provide high-quality web hosting services to existing clients, word will quickly spread to others so you can expand your customer base.
2. Decide Your Business Model
There are several ways to approach creating a business model for your web hosting service. The most important thing is to ensure that your model is sustainable and meets your target market's needs.
Here are some options to consider:
If you choose this business model, your customers will only pay for the web hosting resources they use. This is a highly appealing proposition for micro and small businesses with limited budgets to create and run their websites—very little upfront investment is needed, with no long-term contracts.
Another option is a subscription-based model, where customers pay a set monthly or yearly fee for access to your web hosting resources and services. This is a highly convenient setup for customers, with an established amount that must be paid after each billing period.
Finally, you could create a hybrid model that offers pay-as-you-go and subscription services. Your clients can pay for specific or additional web hosting resources if they have a limited subscription.
This way, your customers can have a personalized experience of your web hosting service and get the most out of their investment.
3. Set Up Your Website, Billing, and Support Services
Your business website, billing system, and support channels are three essential components to provide a well-rounded web hosting service that meets your customers' needs.
Create Your Business Website
Your website is the first point of contact for your potential customers. It must be professional, easy to navigate, and optimized for audiences interested in your niche service. It should clearly outline all critical information about your services, how to sign up for a plan, and how to reach you if they need support or answers to certain questions.
Also read – Three ways to create a website
Automate Billing Systems
Establish a dependable, automated billing system to handle all customer payments accurately and efficiently.
For newbies, I highly recommend WHMCS – one of the most popular web hosting automation tools in the world. The tool combines easy integration with a control panel and can automate billing, invoicing, and account provisioning.
Setup Support Channels
Your customer support channels must be prepared to provide timely and efficient answers to all inquiries. Creating and maintaining a customer support email is a proactive way to resolve complaints. This direct line of communication shows that your company values your clients’ time and empathizes with their concerns.
Chat support is another great way to connect with customers and answer their queries. If you have a limited support team, you can program a chatbot to answer the most common questions related to billing, technical support, and marketing.
4. Create a Marketing Plan For Your Brand
Your brand is the face of your company online. It is how customers and prospects will find you, interact with you, and ultimately judge you and your services. As such, you must consider how you want to define and market your brand.
Here are things you should consider:
Your brand name should be unique and easy to remember
Choose a meaningful name that communicates an image and creates a positive connection with your target audience. It should be easy to remember and stands out from the competition, but most of all it should capture the essence of your brand.
Your brand voice should reflect your company's values
It must also suit your target market. The “voice” that you use for your brand should be reflected in your website, blog, and advertisements. Whether it’s friendly, casual, or formal, it should speak to your audience.
Also – your team must be consistent in its messaging, content, and voice across all marketing channels and collateral to reflect company's value.
Outline your marketing strategy
You can set a sales objective or a goal for the year or the month, marking what milestones need to be achieved at a specific time.
Set your marketing budget
Specify how much you can spend on certain marketing strategies and monitor which methods are the most efficient and generate ROI quickly.
Always update your marketing plans
You can review which strategies are working and which aren’t delivering results. You can analyze marketing trends and adapt your plans to meet new goals. Analytics tools like Google Trends, Synthesio, and others can quantify these metrics for you.
5. Create a Network of Clients and Leads
There are several ways to find clients for your web hosting company. You can contact them directly by sending emails, making phone calls, or meeting with potential clients in person.
You can generate leads via your website. Post about web hosting on your blog and provide resources to help business owners realize that they need top-notch web hosting services for their websites. Create content that centers on your services and how you can help your target market. This will help you attract organic traffic—people interested in learning more about web hosting and what you can offer.
You can also use social media to reach out to potential clients. Online businesses likely have at least one account on Instagram, Facebook, or LinkedIn—connect with those who might be interested in your web hosting services. You can use your own accounts to share blog posts, articles, or special offers to appeal to your target audience.
6. Choose a Web Hosting Platform
Reseller Hosting is an excellent option for aspiring web hosting entrepreneurs who do not have the resources to purchase or rent their servers.
With reseller hosting, you partner with a larger, more established web hosting service provider and choose one of two options:
- Sign up for a reseller account and offer shared hosting services to your customers under your partner company.
- Rent or purchase a dedicated server as a reseller.
As a reseller, you piggyback off your partner company’s resources and technical expertise. You can start with a basic reselling hosting package to establish your business and then expand your resources to support the customers you take on.
Once your business is up and running, you must provide top-notch customer service to maintain a good reputation and generate consistent revenue. Many resources and techniques are available to set your brand up for success.
If you're up for the challenge, reseller hosting can be a great way to start your own small hosting business, establish your brand, and succeed in web hosting.
Establish your services based on your reseller company’s application programming interface (API). You can integrate your billing systems and then choose the services you want to offer.
Best Reseller Hosting Providers for Your Web Hosting Business
Here are some top-notch web hosting service providers that offer reseller packages:
A2 Reseller Hosting Features
- 99.9% uptime commitment
- White label reseller hosting accounts (100% rebrandable)
- Easy scalability
- User-friendly Web Host Manager
- 24/7/365 customer support
- Kickstart plan starts at $18.99 for the first 36 months ($34.99 for monthly billing)
- Learn more in our full A2 Hosting review
GreenGeeks Reseller Hosting Features
- 24/7 security monitoring
- Developer tools
- Flexible reseller plans
- White label control panel
- 24/7/365 managed support
- GreenGeeks RH-25 plan starts at $19.95/month
- Learn more in our full GreenGeeks Hosting review
InMotion Reseller Hosting Features
- On-demand scaling
- Brandable client panel
- 99.99% uptime
- Free advertising credits
- Customer management tools
- InMotion's R-1000S plan starts at $16.99/month for the first 24 months ($35.99 for monthly billing)
LiquidWeb Reseller Hosting Features
- 100% uptime service level agreement
- Free DDoS protection
- Free WHMCS license
- Discount on all Liquid Web products
- Choice of VPS, dedicated, or private cloud hosting
- Bronze plan starts at $99/month
ScalaHosting Reseller Hosting Features
- Private white-label hosting
- 99.9% uptime guarantee
- Award-winning 24/7 customer support
- Easily scalable plans
- Unlimited website migrations
- Scala1 plan starts at $14.95/month
Web Hosting Is a Thriving Industry
Web hosting services are a highly competitive industry. It can be difficult to differentiate one provider from another, and customers can quickly transfer to a competitor if they're not satisfied. So how can you set your web hosting service apart from the rest and ensure customers stay with you for the long run?
The key is to find your niche and offer the best possible web hosting service. Nurture client connections to build a thriving base to create a web hosting business that will be successful for years to come. Best of luck!