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If you are searching for web hosting options, you may have compared reseller hosting vs shared hosting. Which one should you choose, if money is not an issue?
I decided to write this article because I recently helped a client to set up a script, and notice that he, as a newbie, is using a reseller hosting account. Puzzled, I asked him why. He said he had done some online research and most people said that reseller hosting is better.
Curious, I did some research too and realized that many bloggers are advocating reseller hosting. OMG.
Hence I decided to write this article, to shatter some of the myths that are going around… and to help you save some money.
I’m going to list down the arguments on why reseller hosting is better (based on what other bloggers wrote). Then I’ll share my own view point… and you’ll be the judge.
1) Reseller Hosting Saves You Money When You Have Several Domains
Most bloggers say this, “if you have ONE personal website, shared hosting will save you money. But if you run an online business with several sites, a reseller hosting will save you money, since it allows hosting of multiple domains.”
That’s not true.
Yes, some shared hosting services allow only 1 domain, and the cost is about $5/mth. But there are tons of hosting companies that offer shared hosting with unlimited domains and the cost is less than $10/mth. You can have 100 domains hosted on a shared server. No problem.
2) Reseller Hosting Makes You Money
“A reseller account allows you to sell hosting, helping you to offset the cost of your server.”
If your intention is to get into the highly competitive website hosting industry, then yes, by all means, get a reseller account. But if your intention is to offset your cost, it’s really a bad idea.
As a reseller, you have to provide your own customer support. If you are not server savvy, you will have problem serving your customers. Even if you are server savvy, your time will be better spent growing your key business, not to offset your cost.
3) Shared Hosting Is ‘Shared’
“With shared hosting, you are sharing the server with hundreds or even thousands of other users.”
That’s true, but what those bloggers didn’t say is reseller hosting is also shared!
The only difference is whether the server is shared among a few hundred people or a few people.
Other than reseller hosting and shared hosting, there are 2 more forms of hosting called virtually dedicated hosting and dedicated hosting. To put it very simply, only dedicated hosting is 1 server to 1 user. All other hosting plans are shared.
It doesn’t matter if you are sharing the server with 2 users or 200 users, you are still sharing, which means there is a limit to what you can do, and there is a risk of other users crashing the server.
Nowadays, hosting companies are giving unlimited disk space, unlimited domain and unlimited bandwidth for shared hosting (such as the baby plan in hostgator.com, which cost less than $10 a month). If you can burst their limit, it is their problem!
Even if you are on reseller hosting, all you need is one heavy user from another reseller to crash the server. Unless you are using a dedicated server, the risk of sharing is always there.
Unless you want to run your own hosting service, always go for shared hosting, until you hit some limits that force you to upgrade. Even so, you should upgrade to virtually dedicated or dedicated hosting. Don’t bother about reseller hosting.
Some Interesting Pointers
You may be curious why hosting companies can offer unlimited domain, unlimited bandwidth and unlimited disk space. If you are interested to know, here’s why:
- although they give you unlimited bandwidth, they limit the connection speed. It’s like giving you 1000 trillion dollars but you can just take out $1 a day (a little exaggerated but you get the idea).
- although they give you unlimited disk space and unlimited domain, they limit the Index Node, which is the number of files. For hostgator, the limit is 250000. Wordpress script itself has about 250 files. If you use some templates and plugins, you can easily hit 500 files. That means by the time you reach 500 domains, you would have hit the Index Node limit. (You can theoretically fail the server by uploading 250000 video files, each 1GB big. But remember, your connection speed is limited. It will be a pain to upload those files.)