If you want to become a web hosting provider, you’ll face many challenges, the biggest of which is the high level of competition in the industry. You also need to bear in mind that about a quarter of all websites are hosted by the top ten companies (Web Hosting Insider). This means that your chances of getting to the top of the industry are few. However, for a small business with lots of ambition, the situation can be very favorable.
5 Considerations to Make Before Becoming a Web Hosting Provider
1. Will you lease or buy your servers?
Will you lease your servers from a top company, like DELL or buy custom devices from the manufacturers? The benefit of the latter is that you get equipment that will meet your needs perfectly. However, this option is quite expensive.
Leased equipment will be as good as you can afford, but customization options will be somewhat limited. The good thing is that it’ll be cheaper and easier to upgrade your tools as your business grows.
2. Are you sure you need servers of your own?
If you have no experience in this field or of your budget is limited, you can use the cheaper option of reselling for starting a hosting business. This means you won’t have to buy or lease expensive equipment at all. Instead, you can buy reseller service packages from one of the big well-established companies.
Preferably, go after the top ten in the industry. As they already host a quarter of the Internet, using the big name in your marketing strategy will give you a boost right away. Becoming a reseller first will allow you to get a feel for the market and determine whether investing in your own servers is right for you.
3. How will you set up a customer support service?
Becoming a web hosting provider is not only about the servers, but also providing top-quality customer service. Your clients will expect to have qualified help available 24/7. So, while you can start a web hosting company from home, you won’t be able to handle all calls personally.
To succeed in this business you need to either outsource a call center or set up your own customer support team. These people can work remotely, but you have to be sure that they are able to prioritize and solve any issues 24/7.
You’ll also have to develop protocols your support service operators must follow when interacting with customers.
4. How flexible can you make your hosting service?
Clients are looking for packages that will fit them perfectly, so being flexible is a must for you. For a beginner business with limited servers or a reseller, bound by the limits of their own package, flexibility might be impossible.
If you can’t provide custom plans for every customer, you’ll need to define your targeted audience very carefully and research their exact needs. Design your service packages based on this data.
5. How will you beat the competition?
The web hosting market is so busy today that your main goal will have to be not attracting new customers but ‘stealing’ them from competitors. This means you’ll have to make a better offer.
What will that offer be?
It’s essential that you have a detailed plan for this before you become a web hosting provider yourself. Detailed research of competition and targeted customers will help you with that.
Published by Emily Rose