Should I pay my web designer for web hosting?
Probably not, but maybe – depending upon how it’s structured.
One of the ways web designers add value to their services and increase their revenues with a consistent stream of income is by offering web hosting. For a lot of small businesses that can seem really convenient and depending upon the web designer, could even be required.
The problem is that often this can result in domains being locked behind passwords and website ownership and management being at the sole mercy of the same individual that designed it. At 515Hosting, delegated web hosting is offered via a partnership with a web hosting company that eliminates this problem.
It works well until it doesn’t.
What happens if your webmaster dies?
It’s a morbid question, but it sets the stage for one of the problems that can result with your web designer also being your web host. It isn’t so much that it isn’t possible, in fact, 515Hosting offers web hosting plans, but can be depending upon how the web hosting plan is structured.
Often, it isn’t uncommon for an individual web designer to purchase a shared web hosting account at a web hosting provider like Bluehost or GoDaddy that offers unlimited bandwidth and emails and domains. Then, they’ll simply purchase domains on clients behalf, add websites to their account, and setup email addresses on this one single shared hosting account effectively sharing the resources of an already shared web hosting account with multiple clients.
The Technical Problem
While shared web hosting accounts offer unlimited bandwidth, domains, and email addresses, they are still limited by certain resources like CPU allocation and other technical resources that are shared amongst all of the websites on that server. These plans are typically $12-15 a month and they’re really designed as an economical approach for an individual that wants to have a bunch of small websites. Now, while shared hosting by design is of course shared and will always be at the mercy of other websites, typically each individual hosting account has separate limits per account.
So, if that individual is divvying up an already shared account with limitations, then your client website is going to be sharing those already limited resources so that if any other business website on the account spikes the usage, websites on the account will be affected but other websites in other accounts on the shared server will not…and it doesn’t take much for any one website to monopolize those resources.
The Financial Problem
If you’re paying a web designer $20 a month to host your website, you’re likely being pooled into a shared hosting plan that’s costing the web designer closer to $20 a month total. That means, from a cost stand point you’re not getting a very great deal. You could be buying an entire shared hosting plan all to yourself for the same cost. Let’s say a web hosting company offers each account a maximum surge of 25% of the server CPU usage for a maximum of 90 seconds. The typical individual will pay their bill and they can use up to that 25% usage once in a while if needed and not really affect any other websites and in return not really be affected by any other websites that hit that maximum. If you’re paying a web designer who has that maximum and one of the sites on the account hits the maximum and it takes down all the sites on their account temporarily, you’re not getting very good bang for the buck because you’re not getting the full 25% allowance as if you had your own account.
The Ownership Problem
Here is the big one, though. While it might seem convenient to have your web design oversee and set up everything regarding the domain and hosting, there can be some issues regarding ownership. You might feel like you own the domain because you pay for it to the web designer, but if you can’t access it on demand and change things yourself (or someone else you delegate) than you don’t really own it. Instead, it is effectively being leased back to you.
So let’s say for instance, your webmaster (web designer you’ve been paying monthly hosting bills to) suddenly dies. Now there are 100 or so domain names and websites locked behind a password that perhaps no one knows. It’s possible the web hosting account would actually have to go through probate and certificate of death be provided to the hosting company in order to release access to the account and then that person would have complete access to every website on there. It’s a security problem, an ownership problem, and an urgency problem that could destroy your business.
What happens if you desperately need to renew your domain and there’s no one there to do so? What happens if you have to transfer to a new web designer or a new host in lieu of the one that has passed away and you have no way to access the account? These might not be such a big problem for an agency with many employees, but if you’re working with an individual freelancer web designer and they have 100 business emails locked behind a password and they end up in the hospital for a week, you’re at the mercy of them getting out of the hospital to do absolutely anything with your website. That’s not a problem if you have your own web hosting account.
What if there was a way you could own your own web hosting account but also have the convenience of your web designer being able login and handle everything related to your domains, websites, and emails without having to dig up username and passwords for your account or look over their shoulder? This is where reselling comes into play and it provides 515Hosting with a delegated access to your web hosting account and even handle billing while you retain full ownership of the account.
Domains are registered in your or your business’ name, you can login and manage the server yourself, and you can even pay billing directly to the web hosting company. Suddenly, your web designer is merely an optional middle man. You can still pay for web hosting directly to the web designer for convenience and have it applied to your hosting account, the web designer can still have remote access to the account, and as an added bonus, by leveraging a larger hosting company partnership clients also get 24/7 customer support of their web hosting account.
Tired of reading articles to answer your questions to make your website work right? Let me help.
“…[my] success is 10 years in the making…I’m selling you all the times I failed, all the mistakes I made, and all the setbacks…that’s where the value lies – experience. I’m selling you on my knowledge of ranking a website with a list of SEO failures that a new webmaster is apt to make without a helping hand.”
Landon – Read More