2020 has indeed been economically rough as the coronavirus continues to ravage many businesses. There are some businesses though that have been seeing more profits despite the economic downturn. As our economy changes from a primarily brick and mortar environment to a virtual one, more businesses are looking to restructure for the online consumer. It has created a wealth of opportunities for developers, designers, administrators, advertisers, agencies, and web hosts.
“Running a web hosting business is complicated, though!” Not necessarily, but you need to know your options. If you want a more in-depth technical guide on how to start a hosting business, click the link.
What’s Your Niche?
If you try to target a general audience, you are likely to get overlooked by customers for more prominent, older companies. That is why it is best to start small by targeting a niche audience that you know very well.
Finding your niche audience is easier than it sounds: identify the type of people you know the best. If you have a hobby, your niche audience will be with other enthusiasts. If there is an organization, group, or forum you visit with frequently, that can start as being your niche audience, as well.
What is the Competition?
Once you have figured out who your niche audience will be, it is time to see if there is any competition. If there is competition, you want to know who and what you are up against! So, research, research, research. Get to know your competitors almost as well as you know yourself. Create a list of their strengths and weaknesses. Brainstorm ideas to top them in areas where they show a need for improvement. Learn how you can match them in their strengths, or even surpass them. Then, build a business plan for your new web host.
What Kind of Hosting Will You Sell?
Whether you go the easy route with reseller hosting or plan on obtaining and maintaining a server or data center, you still need to determine what kind of web hosting you want to sell.
Dedicated Servers – If you plan on supporting large organizations, you will need to make dedicated servers a service option in your hosting plan lineup. While organizations do often make use of smaller forms of hosting like cloud and VPS, they often require so many of these containers that a dedicated server may offer more value and convenience.
VPS – Virtual private servers currently are the de-facto standard in the corporate IT world as well as with many medium to large-sized websites and networks. No matter which technologies you choose to offer, VPS or cloud hosting should be an option in your lineup, especially if you are not offering dedicated servers.
Cloud – Cloud containers the rage now, and they are quickly overtaking the popularity of VPS. If you want to offer some cutting-edge plans, try offering cloud hosting.
Shared – Shared hosting is where beginners start, and they are the best fit for small to medium-sized websites. If you want to offer plans that are low priced and practical, shared hosting should be one of the options that you provide.
What’s Your Business Like?
Now it is time for the fun part: developing the brand or personality of your new web hosting business. It will include a logo, a company name, and a tagline. Make sure that your web hosting company’s new name is available as a website domain and, if possible, SEO friendly. Most importantly, the name of your business should be catchy and easy to memorize.
The pricing of your web hosting plans should be thought about, as well. Ideally, the prices will cover the cost of hosting while remaining low enough for clients to be willing to pay for it. If you would like to give your competition a run for their money, try undercutting their prices.
Once all this information is together, you can start designing the business website. Remember that this is your storefront, so you will want to make it as appealing as possible to visitors. Spare no expense on creating the best-looking website possible. We want visitors to be impressed by how professional looking and fast your website is.
The final step in this process will be establishing a support team and ticketing system for customers to call for help and receive one-on-one assistance with their websites. This step is vital to the success of your business, so make sure you can deliver. If you are tech-savvy, you can try building your support system. If you are not so tech-savvy, you will want to use reseller hosting and establish some baseline communication methods with customers so they can contact you when things go wrong. You, in turn, can contact the web hosting provider to receive assistance in resolving their issues.
In either scenario, it will be your response speed, soft skills, and resolution time, which defines the satisfaction of customers. And who knows? Maybe you will be the next prominent web hosting provider!