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how do they work? our reseller programmes

How Do Our Reseller Programmes Work?

You fancy yourself a hosting connoisseur without the servers to show for it? Our Reseller Program is exactly the proof your pudding will need to showcase your sysadmin and hosting skills.

Clearing the air

Right off the bat, we’d like to kill the misconception that reselling simply means becoming a middleman and taking your share of the markup. You require actual skill and some expertise in order to make it work.

It’s not a get-rich-quick scheme (or any scheme at all, for that matter). Reselling certainly isn’t something you spend a couple of hours on during the weekend. It requires a bit of time, effort, and attention, as anything worthwhile does.

If your intention was to make a quick buck, you’re in the wrong corner of the internet. But if you’re willing to learn some of the basics you can make reselling a viable financial option for yourself.

If you’ve heard the phrase in passing and figured you’d like to know a bit more, stick around. We’ll show our friendly neighbourhood beginner, and their counterpart, what our Reseller Program entails.

What is reselling and how does it work?

Reselling hosting is when a hosting company sells hosting services to a vendor for a discounted price who then provides those services to their own clients under their own business name for a profit.

HOSTAFRICA > Reseller > Customer

Basically, you rent some hardware or services from us and act as your own hosting company. You’ll have free reign to conduct your hosting business as you see fit, as long as you operate within the conditions of our hosting services, which you’ll be using.

In a sense, it’s similar to renting a house, creating different rooms within the house, and using it as an inn. Just, the inn’s customers will be staying a lot longer than a week or so.

We provide and ensure basic upkeep of the host infrastructure and resources for your hosting business to run smoothly, but the maintenance, branding, and security of your rented space/service is your responsibility.

In terms of our housing analogy, we provide the house, utilities, doors, keys to the front door etc., but furnishing, house rules, hygiene, security like locking the front door, and people using all the milk falls on you.

If you don’t run a tight ship, your brand and inn will be hurt in the long run. Disputes any of your tenants might have with each other regarding parking space and Wi-Fi usage also becomes your responsibility. If someone’s website goes down, that’s something you need to figure out.

The cost small businesses face when their sites are offline
The cost small businesses face when their sites are offline – Data Foundry

Depending on what type of hosting service you’re reselling some of your tasks may change, but not by too much.

To reiterate, you become your own hosting provider through us.

How do I become a hosting reseller?

Chant reseller thrice in the mirror and you’ll wake up with a couple of servers in your name the next day. We joke, but the process is practically that simple.

On our Reseller pages, choose the program that best suits you among:

Then, fill in the registration form with your personal information and complete the order. We’ll send you an email on what to do next. It’ll look something like this.

An example of the HOSTAFRICA reseller introductory email
An example of the HOSTAFRICA reseller introductory email

Before you become a reseller

That’s the final step and it’s pretty straight forward. Knowing what package you’re going to take and what you’ll be offering are all things you need to think about before you even get to that step, however.

Before you get there you’ll want to have everything figured out so you don’t waste time sitting on servers that could be rented while you try to navigate the market. Here’s a breakdown of how you can go about all of it:

Write a business plan

You’re going to need one of these for any venture you head into. Make clear what your model will look like, what you’ll be offering, what your mission will be, and how you’ll support your clients.

Think of every possible outcome so when you encounter it, you have template for how it should be handled. You don’t want to be caught with your trousers around your ankles two months in after you experience your first hiccup.

If you’ve ever used any kind of hosting before (we’re assuming you have), you’ll know what problems you ran into. If you’re a developer or sysadmin, ask one of your untrained friends what their experience was like the first time they hosted a website.

You’ll better empathise with your clients if you can understand their plight. We were all new to troubleshooting emails at some point.

Understand your market

Entering into the reselling domain willy-nilly is not going to go well for you. You need to know what people are willing to pay, what they expect for that amount of money, and who your competition will be.

You’ll also need to know how to market to them, where to find them, and what will retain your future clients.

The keyword here is clients, meaning these are repeat customers who you need to build rapport with, support, and try retain for as long as possible.

Research different hosting companies

After your business plan and market knowledge have been secured, you’ll want to check out different hosting companies to see which will suit what you’re looking to provide best.

Check out the graph showing what services different companies offer.

graph showing what services different companies offer
A graph showing what services hosting companies offer and which service are most popular

Naturally, we’re of the idea that we’d be able to offer you reselling packages geared towards your making a handsome profit. Our support is unrivalled, and you’ll have the option of adjusting your package as your business scales.

Our confidence aside, we recommend you browse the web and find what’ll work for you (we’ll be waiting).

Create your product and systems

Since you know what you’ll be offering, get to work on creating the necessary packages for your clients. You’ll want to know what plugins, extensions, and management software you’ll be using so you can implement it as soon as possible.

A large portion of CMS's globally are powered by WordPress
A large portion of CMS’s globally are powered by WordPress – W3Techs

From there you can work out your price and what you’ll need to make to sustain your business and turn a profit.

Remember: If you can’t address your clients’ questions with clear answers or provide assurances it’s unlikely they’ll want to host with you, so you need to think of every possible outcome and problem before they happen.

The good news is that once you’ve done that you can simply refer to your templates and business plan to see what you should be doing

Learn how to market your business online

A business is only as good as how well it markets itself. Once everything is set up, clients won’t just come pouring in. Considering it’s 2022 (a post-COVID online dominant market) and that our industry is solely online, you’ll need to learn how to market yourself on the web, and outperform competitors.

Since search engines are your main portal to clients, you’ll have to learn or outsource SEO, website design for a good user experience (a new priority for Google and a huge factor for converting clicks to sales), establishing an online presence outside of your own site, nurturing a great online reputation, and other digital marketing skills.

The proper process for becoming a hosting reseller

We’ve encountered quite a few resellers who, after purchasing a package with us, find their domains going into server hold status. This is because they followed the wrong procedure. Again, after you decide on your reseller plan, we’ll send you an email to guide you through the necessary steps.

In a nutshell, this is how things should go after you sign up:

  1. You’ll receive your WHM (Web Host Manager) login details.
  2. From there, you’ll create the relevant packages for your clients (which you will already have set out)
  3. After that, create cPanel accounts for your domains – this can be for existing domain names as well as new domains you plan on registering.
    1. Note: this only applies to new domain name registrations. Existing domain names can transfer the domains and create the cPanel accounts afterward. It is, however, best to create the cPanel account first whatever the case.
  4. Once that’s done, register the domains and they will automatically link with the proper cPanels.

What skills do I need to be a reseller?

Hosting reselling is not the equivalent of flipping houses – it’s more akin to our inn analogy. With that said, buying a reseller package does require some basic HTML, security, and systems management skills, at the least.

WordPress-powered websites account for 90% of hacked CMS sites
WordPress-powered websites account for 90% of hacked CMS sites – ZDNet

Here’s some of what you’ll need to know and how it’ll help you become a great host (like us).

Basic website and hosting jargon.

Topping the list is the general hosting speak. You want to know what terms mean, and which technology accomplishes which task. For example, you wouldn’t be too keen on buying from a hardware store if they couldn’t tell you why you need certain nails for a specific type of wood. You expect a level of expertise, and your clients will expect the same from you.

Email setups

You can be sure one of the tasks you’ll do hundreds of times is setting up your clients’ emails. This will also include troubleshooting should any issues arise.

Basic understanding of databases for CMS’s

You need to know your way around the various admin areas you’ll be monitoring. If you’re familiar with phpMyAdmin you shouldn’t have too much to worry about.

Navigating your client area and understanding all the functions

Your client area is a powerful tool. You should know how to log in without the need for a username, unblock your client’s IP address if they get blocked by the firewall, update domain name servers, initiate domain name transfers, and more. If you’re not that familiar fiddle around and read up. You don’t want to be caught unawares when an issue does pop up.

Read our Knowledgebase

We’ve amassed an extensive Knowledgebase which can answer and solve most of the issues you’ll encounter. Be sure to check it and make use of this wonderful resource.

A graph showing programming languages with the most users world wide
A graph showing programming languages with the most users world wide – HostingAdvice

What are the benefits of reselling with us?

We’re glad you asked. We look to make reselling as viable an option for you as it is for us. Allow us to entice you with some of the benefits you’ll have if reselling.

You save plenty of cash

First, and probably the most important on any list. Saving much needed capital is a win for any business, which is why we make it available at a cost-effective rate. Starting your own hosting company will take a ton of resources and time.

With us you can fix all of that up in less than 10 minutes at a fraction of the required resources.

White-labelled products

Customize your brand to your heart’s desire as your clients won’t know your reseller business is hosted by us. You’ll manage your own brand and sell our products as your own.

Options, Choices, alternatives

Take your pick of the various offerings we have available and tailor the subscriptions to closely match what you’re prepared to offer. Of course, buying a bigger portion of resources is usually cheaper than buying lots of smaller packages, so keep that in mind when deciding how to tailor your products.

Premium support

If you run into any technical issues during your venture, we’ll gladly walk you through fixing it. We’ll also offer guidance on how to rectify it in future, so you won’t need us to help you should the issue pop up again. It likely will as many people will make the same mistakes, particularly if they aren’t working from the office where IT staff may be at hand.

Note: We support you, you support your clients. Your reselling venture is self-managed. That means your customers are your responsibility. Any issues they encounter will have to be addressed by you, as they technically don’t have accounts with us. This is why reselling requires some basic skills. If the problem is beyond you, you’ll have to drop us a ticket personally and we’ll reach out to you within the hour.

Majority of IT professionals doubt the safety of remote work
Majority of IT professionals doubt the safety of remote work – Continuity Central

Tons of features

You (and by extension your clients) will have plenty of packages to choose from. You’ll be able to accommodate them if they’re looking for a business website, a cloud server, a simple WordPress blog, domains, a WooCommerce store, LiteSpeed web hosting, cloud backups, and more.

Whatever you decide, know that it’ll be lightning fast with 99,9% uptime because of our superior hardware, well-maintained and secured infrastructure, fast networks, and speed optimisations.

HOSTAFRICA resller programme features

Wrap up

If you thought reselling hosting was going to be a quick fix to making extra cash, you must’ve had a not-so-pleasant awakening.

Does it require some work? Sure.

Is it a viable way to make money and create cash flow? Definitely!

You can bet the vast majority of things worth doing require you to put your back into it. If it doesn’t but the pay-out is big it’s likely a scam or gamble. Reselling done the right way falls into the former category.

With us, a good work ethic, and some basic skills on your side, there’s no reason why reselling hosting couldn’t be your next big gig.

The Author

Ashwin S.

Alphabets are a random collection of symbols that, when put in a certain order, convey a specific meaning. We use our senses to understand this meaning. When we become immersed in the symbols' meaning, we're under the illusion that it's real - we hallucinate after looking at the symbols. Thus, I create hallucinations, using arbitrary symbols. In other words, I'm a writer. I've been a part of the Marketing Team since 2021 and am responsible for much of the text content HOSTAFRICA produces.

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