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Website hosting. Good idea?

Idea threads

Jbrow327

New Contributor
Dec 22, 2022
13
2
What do you guys think of website hosting only as a business idea? I know I'd have to depend on another company to resell the servers through, but other than that, it seems like the best form of passive income. I'm not talking about designing websites, just hosting itself as a business. What would be the best way to get clients?

Thanks guys.
 
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Jbrow327

New Contributor
Dec 22, 2022
13
2
Why would anyone choose your hosting services over established providers like GoDaddy, Bluehost, Hostinger, and Namecheap?

If you can answer this, you might be onto something.
I will offer it cheaper than the bigger companies. To rent a server for reselling services costs anywhere from 25 to 75 dollars per month. For a customer to buy directly from those websites it costs anywhere from 15 to 60 dollars, depending on the level of program they are buying. I can offer it cheaper and make money by getting lots of clients.
 
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Skroob

Entrepreneur // Mobile Application Developer
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I will offer it cheaper than the bigger companies. To rent a server for reselling services costs anywhere from 25 to 75 dollars per month. For a customer to buy directly from those websites it costs anywhere from 15 to 60 dollars, depending on the level of program they are buying. I can offer it cheaper and make money by getting lots of clients.
Price isn't enough to compete. What's to stop someone from doing the exact same thing and pricing their service 10% cheaper than yours?

Webhosting is a commodity. I can name 15 hosting services off the top of my head and they're all basically the same. What can you add to the space that would make people want to use your service, regardless of price?
 

Jbrow327

New Contributor
Dec 22, 2022
13
2
Price isn't enough to compete. What's to stop someone from doing the exact same thing and pricing their service 10% cheaper than yours?

Webhosting is a commodity. I can name 15 hosting services off the top of my head and they're all basically the same. What can you add to the space that would make people want to use your service, regardless of price?
I guess I can make them a website too.

Do the 15 companies you mentioned offer just hosting?
 

Skroob

Entrepreneur // Mobile Application Developer
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Feb 18, 2022
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I guess I can make them a website too.

Do the 15 companies you mentioned offer just hosting?
15 was a random number I picked. There's thousands of them. Tens of thousands, maybe. This is a commoditized industry, which means that it's very widespread and there's very little difference between each offering. How are you going to take business that would otherwise go to GoDaddy, Namecheap, Bluehost, Wordpress.com, Hostgator, Dreamhost, A2, 1&1, or the thousands of others out there? What makes you different? "I could make them a website" and "cheaper" just isn't going to cut it.

I know you're looking for something, but anything worth doing is going to be hard, because if it wasn't, everyone would be doing it. Spinning up Yet Another Web Host isn't hard. Finding an under-served niche somewhere, finding a skill or a perspective that only you have, finding a group of people saying "if only ____ existed!" and begging for a form to enter their credit card numbers into. That's hard! And that's where you find a business.
 
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LateStarter

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I know you're looking for something, but anything worth doing is going to be hard, because if it wasn't, everyone would be doing it.
This is the difference between 'finding' an opportunity and 'forcing' one. Competing only on price is 'forcing' one. When you race to the bottom with a commodity, no one wins. You drive down your margins and your competitors which usually results is crappier service across the industry and the customer loses along with you.

'Finding' one would be leveraging the faults of competitors to fill a market need. This may include things like better customer service because of known gaps with the competitors. More transparent billing, bundling hosting with domains, etc. Whatever gaps you see where the customers feel pain, figure out how you can be better and deliver a service specifically built to remove this pain for them.
 

heavy_industry

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Apr 17, 2022
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it seems like the best form of passive income
This entire thread screams "money chasing" and event-oriented thinking.

There are no bad ideas. Only bad implementations.
Everything works if there is a market for it and you know how to do things.

But if the goal is to achieve "passive income" (whatever that means), you're much better off getting a job and flipping stocks.
 

Devilery

Bronze Contributor
Speedway Pass
Feb 11, 2019
152
293
I will offer it cheaper than the bigger companies. To rent a server for reselling services costs anywhere from 25 to 75 dollars per month. For a customer to buy directly from those websites it costs anywhere from 15 to 60 dollars, depending on the level of program they are buying. I can offer it cheaper and make money by getting lots of clients.
It costs $9 a month on GoDaddy. I personally wouldn't consider moving hosting to a company I've never heard about to save $2 a month when GoDaddy is serving more than 20 million customers and have always solved whatever issues I've had. Saving $2 is not worth it when a customer is risking having his site go down (and possibly lose thousands during the downtime).

Hosting could be a tiny add-on you could offer to something else. Like building a website and upselling hosting, or developing a website builder and including hosting in the monthly membership.

No one cares that you want to make passive income. Solve actual problems. I'm not saying this to bring you down but to shift your perspective toward helping people not helping yourself.
 
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Xeon

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I will offer it cheaper than the bigger companies. To rent a server for reselling services costs anywhere from 25 to 75 dollars per month. For a customer to buy directly from those websites it costs anywhere from 15 to 60 dollars, depending on the level of program they are buying. I can offer it cheaper and make money by getting lots of clients.

Do you think you can beat the big companies? LOL
Look at the prices here: 11 Cheap Web Hosting Services (January 2023)

I believe there's even cheaper ones besides these. And besides just pricing, they can throw in tons of features because of their size. Can you match that?

One company that stood out to me was Rocket.net. They're very new, in business for only 1 - 2 years, but their USP ("fastest web hosting") is backed up with real specs and not just marketing talk: 32 CPU + 128GB RAM + NVMe + CloudFlare Enterprise for only $30/month. Insane. Unless you can do something like this, don't waste your time.
 

EncryptersWolf

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Market hyper local to small businesses. The problem with the larger corporations is that they are well... large corporations. A lot of small business owners like working with other small businesses, they like the idea of being able to call someone and not having to be on hold for 30 minutes before they get connected with a foreigner. Find local web designers to partner with and see if you can handle their hosting for them.
 

Skroob

Entrepreneur // Mobile Application Developer
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Feb 18, 2022
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Jacksonville, FL
Market hyper local to small businesses. The problem with the larger corporations is that they are well... large corporations. A lot of small business owners like working with other small businesses, they like the idea of being able to call someone and not having to be on hold for 30 minutes before they get connected with a foreigner. Find local web designers to partner with and see if you can handle their hosting for them.
Best idea I've seen so far. Keep your prices competitive with the large players, offer personal support, and position yourself as "Jbrow-ville's own local web company" and that's something you can make a go of. Sure isn't gonna be passive income though, you'd have to really hustle.
 
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Patryk.

Contributor
Apr 21, 2022
53
78
Poland
My experience with hostings (I tested 4 of them all polish).

1. The cheapest
- they use cpanel (good if you use different hosting brands as everything looks almost the same)
- no ssh (very insecure)
- too easy to overload
- good support
- fast parking for new domains
- bad experience with buying new domains
- second in popularity

2. The most expensive and biggest one
- they use their own panel (not bad but far from "good")
- they have ssh
- the prices of usual things are ridiculously high
- often prices are different (when you want to buy something you will get higher prices in the cart lol)
- often buggy
- slow parking time
- very good support
- best if you want to buy a domain
- most popular

3. The ugliest
- they use their own panel (the design is terrible a'la 2000's - impossible to look at it)
- terrible name (sounds like a scam)
- they have ssh
- cheap
- can't buy a domain here
- good support

4. The greatest (seems like they are growing rapidly - I love them)
- price in the middle
- they use their own the most awesome panel what I ever seen
- the customer support is very good
- the hosting cpu, ram, disk is scalable (auto)
- the most fastest server that I ever seen (best for apps)
- slow parking time for domains
- can't buy a domain here

Personally, I use mainly 1 for tests/learning and 4 for an end products.

Yeah, hosting seems like a commodity (like almost everything nowadays) but the last one on the list is different. It isn't a commodity. It's likes comparing a MacBook to an Acer.

If you take a look at the avarage hosting website they all looks the same. Can you be cheaper than $9/year? Thats the price for the cheapest one. Thats a race to the bottom.

Wolf have a good point here. Smaller businesses likes to work with smaller businesses.
 

Choate

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No point in getting into your own website hosting unless you have years of experience with it already along with a healthy competence/mastery of something like AWS, DigitalOcean, etc and are ok to take on the risk associated with that.

Still want to give it a try? SiteGround's GoGeek plan is ~$95 to sign up, $480/year after that. Complete white label for your clients, 400k visitors per month with unlimited websites and plenty of space means you can reasonably fit 10-20 basic static websites with low traffic, and charge as little as $100/year to make a reasonable profit while having fully managed hosting.
 

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