I see the question quite often. Should I choose a reseller hosting account or a VPS? The answer to the question is pretty simple – Which one do you actually need?
I see a growing and worrying trend of people opting for VPS’s as a starting point without much knowledge of what a VPS entails. Some see it as a way to become a hosting company ‘properly’. This couldn’t be further from the truth. The platform you base your business on has no impact on user perception.
A VPS involves an awful lot of work, just like a dedicated server. Actually, there is not much difference. The only difference is that with a server, you have, to some extent, responsibility over hardware issues (at least the initial diagnosis). With a VPS, you don’t. But you still get all the headaches associated with a dedicated platform.
For example, on a dedicated platform here is just a small list of things you have to be concerned about on a day in day out basis:
- Handling and troubleshooting issues
You have to handle any issues, bugs etc. that arise and you have to fix them. If you’re not clued up on server administration, then be prepared to spend hours, even days, Googling for help.
- Ensure software patches and security updates are performed
You have to pro-actively make sure you are patched against vulnerabilities and also that you secure all your services. This will involve installing additional software that will also have to be updated. Deciding on what to allow and what not to allow, as well as knowing the risks. A server has many applications so be prepared for this take up a lot of your time.
- Monitor the server
If the server is down 4am on Monday morning, be prepared to wake up and spend whatever time necessary to bring it back up. This can take you hours (assuming you know what the problem is)
- Manage and take responsibility for backups
Backups are important. They are you last line of defence in case everything goes wrong. You have to make sure you are making reliable backups on a regular basis. You have to also test those backups and pay for the offsite backup space.
- Manage and handle license fees for any extras you want to add
In a lot of cases, you will need to buy licensed products. For example if you’re a hosting company, or sell hosting accounts, then you’ll need some kind of control panel. They don’t come free so you’re going to have to pay for the license for whatever control panel you use
- You’re not immune to overselling
Your provider could be overselling the host node and allocating tiny amounts of CPU time to you. Your sites may end up running much slower than before
And so much more!
Some providers offer management, but the ones that proactively monitor your server and do whatever necessary to keep things up to date/trouble free are extremely rare & pricey. You still need some knowledge of server management even with a VPS. Otherwise, the server management company can tell you anything they want, and because you won’t know any better, you’ll just go along with what they say.
So what do you really get with a VPS? All you get is a bit of flexibility. Look at everything you have to compromise on and what you receive in return.
With reseller hosting, you receive none of the above. Everything is handled for you. Security, backups, patching, software updates, monitoring etc. All is done for you pro-actively.
The InnoHosting reseller hosting plans also come with many features such as a free whmcs license, free rapidssl certificate, free knowledgebase articles and free maxmind minfraud to name a few.
We see a growing trend of people downgrading from dedicated platforms to our reseller hosting accounts. They don’t want all the headache above. They just want hosting that works and works well. They want to concentrate on their core business, they want to sell and market their product – they don’t want to spend time worrying about their site and worrying about their server.
We have had law firms, large marketing agencies and even a certain department in a well known University all move to InnoHosting from dedicated platforms elsewhere. They like that everything just works. They like that everything is fast & reliable. They can cut costs and not have dedicated technicians dealing with all the nitty gritty details. We do it instead. We’ve been in business for almost 10 years. We’ve seen all the issues servers can have, the security problems that pose a threat and the critical nature of hosting itself. Thousands of organisations use InnoHosting reseller accounts are their core foundation which they are building their business on. They do this with confidence because they know they are in good and capable hands with knowledgeable staff available round the clock to help in any way they can.
Anyway, not to get side tracked and make this a promotional item – the answer to your question should be pretty clear.
Unless you have a high resource website, a totally unique requirement that no provider can offer and decent server administration skills – you should go with a reseller account. Buy more reseller accounts as time goes on and as you expand. Your costs will remain in control as well as low and you’ll have a lot of time to concentrate on growing your business rather than worrying about all the backend work that will build up with every passing day.