Last week we launched Reseller Hosting 101 – a new series of articles on reseller hosting for beginners.
The last article looked into the top seven benefits of reselling.
This week we turn our attention to how to get started as a reseller.
You may be surprised to find out that it only takes five steps…
Your five-step guide to setting up as a reseller
STEP 1: Decide on your niche
While the major players in the hosting industry compete with each other over price, resellers can make themselves competitive by finding a niche or USP.
Think about building hosting packages around a select group of people, a particular application, or a certain type of industry.
Ideas for niche hosting packages could include eCommerce hosting, small business hosting, blogger hosting or WordPress hosting.
Spend some time on some web hosting forums and discussion boards to see what sort of questions people are asking. And be prepared to be fluid – adding new themed packages and tweaking old ones as people’s needs and trends change.
STEP 2: Choose a reseller partner
This is arguably the most important step in the journey to becoming a reseller. Don’t be tempted to go with the company that offers the cheapest reseller hosting bundles, unless they satisfy further requirements we’ll cover these next week.
STEP 3: Decide on your branding
The rules for naming a reseller hosting business are the same as those for naming any new business.
First of all, you’ll need to research your competitors to ensure your name is as distinct from them as possible.
Next, you’ll need to find a business name that’s:
Easy to remember: A study commissioned by the Society of Personnel and Social Psychology discovered that stocks from companies with easy to pronounce names performed 33 per cent better over the course of a year than those from companies with harder to pronounce names.
Simple: A study by The Department of Psychology at Michigan University found that people associated hard-to-pronounce business names with risk.
Evergreen: No-one is going to buy from reseller1999 in 2020, for example.
STEP 4: Start selling
While your long-term ambitions may be global, the best way to start selling is locally. Google Trends shows that searches for terms that include the words ‘near me’ have been on an upwards trajectory for the lion’s share of the past five years.
You might begin with a few friend referrals. Then, once you have testimonials from these first few customers, you can look to attract more customers in your local area. Ensure all your local business information is up to date in Google My Business and local directories. Month by month you should see your business expand.
STEP 5: Market your business
As mentioned earlier, it’s best to start small with marketing, especially if you’re setting up your business on a budget. So, old fashioned advertising in a local newsletter or on a community notice board could be the key to landing your first 10 or so sales.
After that, you can add digital marketing to your efforts. Add a blog to your website to improve your chances or ranking for organic search terms and/or invest a little in social media advertising – making sure you showcase your USP to set yourself apart from the bigger companies that will usually have the monopoly on generic web hosting keywords. You may also want to look for Facebook groups and forums that you can join where you can participate in discussions and get your name known.
Want to find out more?
We’ll be answering more burning questions about reseller hosting over the coming weeks, but to get an idea of what Heart Internet offers on the reseller hosting front, jump to our reseller hosting pages.