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  1. #1
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    How much to charge clients for hosting their websites?

    I want to get a reseller account with but was wondering what you guys charge your clients per monthly/yearly basic? I have already given my clients free hosting for a full year but plan on charging them as soon as the first year is up.

    I'm not sure what to charge the client. Frankly, I feel a bit guilty charging them 20-30 euros per month as i'm sure some of them will have some knowledge of the costs for hosting a website.
    Just wondering how much do you guys charge your clients? Do you guys use reseller accounts or do you make your clients pay for their own hosting?

    I was thinking it might be a good idea to charge at least 30 euros which includes maintenence of their site, updating and backing up their scripts incase it gets hacked.

  2. #2
    It's all Geek to me silver trophybronze trophy
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    I would suggest you look around to see what prices other hosts are offering for the same thing, and either charge a bit less (if you want to keep the customers with you) or charge a little more if you are offering something extra. 30 euros per month sounds pretty steep when you can get hosting for a few dollars a month elsewhere, so you need to make sure you are offering value.

  3. #3
    Non-Member Max Height's Avatar
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    I generally agree with ralph.m. I don't think offering web hosting is worth the hassle unless, of course, it is the main purpose of your business.

    You are competing against hosting providers like awardspace which offer hosting plans ranging from free to just about all bells and whistles with chocolate icing on top for just under USD6 per month. And they offer 24/7 technical support, backups etc etc etc. I have a reseller account with awardspace and so get a few dollars for each new subscriber that comes from my link on any of my web pages. If a client asks me to provide hosting as well, I normally offer to set them up an awardspace account at cost, since it takes only a few minutes. I've been using awardspace for my website for a few years now and am very happy with them.

    If you're going to charge 20-30 euros then that is way over the odds imo when compared to what is available elsewhere.

  4. #4
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    ralph.m's Avatar
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    Yes, I would be expecting 20-30 euros to be the cost you might be paying to have the reseller account—which allows you to host lots of websites. You'd only need 10 sites on your account paying 2-3 euros per month to make all that back, and any further sites would be profit.

  5. #5
    Non-Member Max Height's Avatar
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    I'm not being charged anything at all for my reseller account and why should I be? Wherever I have my link on a web page I am essentially advertising awardspace for free (using one of their logo images) and I only get paid if someone actually creates an account after clicking my link.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Max Height View Post
    I'm not being charged anything at all for my reseller account and why should I be?
    Sure, it depends on what system you are using. I was really speaking to the OP, based on some reseller accounts I was looking at recently which were all around $30 per month.

  7. #7
    Non-Member MyDomAinZ.us's Avatar
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    Frankly speaking, we charge $10/YEAR and provide quality hosting and qualified support.

    [this reply is not self-promotion BUT it is in responce of OP]

    regards.

  8. #8
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    I did not say i was going to chage 20-30 euros for hosting, i mean that as well as charging a few euros for maintaining the clients website, updating and backing up their scripts incase it gets hacked which is inluding in the monthly hosting fee. Also wasjust wondering how do you guys find the time to manage your clients websites if some don't use a CMS and how much do youcharge them for updating there site whenever they need changes done?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jk_designs View Post
    updating and backing up their scripts incase it gets hacked
    Normally the host from which you receive the reseller package does that. If you are talking about updating the client's website (which may mean updating the CMS etc.), you should quote for each job or work out an hourly rate that suits you and the market you are in.

  10. #10
    Non-Member MyDomAinZ.us's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jk_designs View Post
    as well as charging a few euros for maintaining the clients website, updating and backing up their scripts incase it gets hacked
    we do not charge anything.
    how do you guys find the time to manage your clients websites if some don't use a CMS
    Our system is automated and our support ticket ratio is as less as one ticket a month because we keep our system and servicesin perfect order
    and how much do youcharge them for updating there site whenever they need changes done?
    Updating is free. Upgradation (moving from lower package to higher) is charges as per prevailing package rates - we have an exclusive website for support and billing, so no problems at all. We devote only 10-15 minutes in the morning to check our support site for tickets, if any (90% no ticket), check invoices paid - if any payment issue, resolve it. That's it.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jk_designs View Post
    I feel a bit guilty charging them 20-30 euros per month
    What other hosts charge doesn't matter. Your time is in finite supply so make sure you charge what it's worth, and charge for the clients expected level of performance, resilience and service. I've never found it worthwhile to charge pocket money, because for every 'hands free' client that might go years without needing any hosting intervention, there'll be another that'll need a constant stream of assistance setting up email, losing ftp passwords, mangling databases. Make sure you're making worthwhile profit on the time and resources you're likely to expend.

    Also worth considering is that if a client is only willing to pay bus-fare amounts for hosting, and has little concept of the value of time and support, then I'd generally feel it's better to have them phoning somebody else on the rare occasion something goes wrong.

  12. #12
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy ldcdc's Avatar
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    If you are talking about updating the client's website (which may mean updating the CMS etc.), you should quote for each job or work out an hourly rate that suits you and the market you are in.
    I don't think there's any requirement of him doing so. If he prefers to charge a fixed monthly sum, and he's confident that will cover his costs while providing good service for all customers, there's not problem with that. It may be wise for him to specify a certain limit of working hours that a customer is entitled to in a month.

    includes maintenence of their site, updating and backing up their scripts incase it gets hacked.
    That should give you an edge over regular hosting, where the site's management is the customer's problem. Be careful with the terms regarding those backups though. Backups can go missing themselves, or turn out to be corrupted. Data can be very valuable, which is why hosts generally don't assume any responsibility regarding its availability.
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  13. #13
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    Well rather than keep a fixed charge of Euro 20-30 you should really be transparent and give a breakup to the client between fixed charges and recurring charges

    Like Euro 3-5 / month for hosting would be a recurring charge every month

    Other Charges (if services utilized - hence would be one time charges as and when the client asks for these services)
    Updating scripts - Euro X
    Backup of files - Euro X
    Updating site would have different functions
    like adding new content / post etc would be - Euro X
    modification to design / functions would be - - Euro X / hour

    Hence my suggestion would be to provide a realistic pricing to the client because sooner or later in the open market they will know the real prices and they might feel cheated even though you are not 100% wrong charging a fixed rate for hosting + maintenance.
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  14. #14
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    I always advise resellers to look at their closest 5 competitors. Who are you competing with? Set your prices around what they are charging. If you want to undercut their pricing, lower your pricing and increase client intake. If you want to charge higher, realize you won't have a lot of clients.

  15. #15
    SitePoint Member WebMonkeyOttawa's Avatar
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    At our design studio, we do not get involved with hosting. There is too much risk involved. If the website is down and your client lost potential revenue, they can sue you. We develop and design websites, we can make a "personal" suggestion on what hosts we've used and what we prefer, but we do not make legal claims as to what is the best choice. We can't - because: 1) we don't have a networking specialist working with us, 2) because we do not run our own servers, 3) because it's not our speciality.

    The client must provide their own hosting and then we go ahead and setup their website. If the host goes down, it's not our fault, and we don't owe them any free consultation to get that website back up. If the host gets hacked and our client losses data (happened just a month ago), it's not our fault - we weren't responsible for securing the server. In those instances, the client will come to you asking for free support to remedy the situation because "you took on the legal responsibility of suggesting a reliable host". And we say "as we pointed out from the beginning, and as-is stated in our contract, we are not responsible for hosting".

    And also, if you are going to provide the hosting, everytime the client has a hosting problem they will contact you for help. They will expect it to be covered in the cost of the hosting. So if you're going to be setting a price, ask yourself - how much support can you include in your package, what is it guaranteed to cover (back-ups, monitoring, security, etc), and how much is that time spent talking to clients worth to you? Once you see how much you are liable for in risk, you will charge at least $120/mo.

  16. #16
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    Hosting is such a saturated market - you need to keep the shared hosting prices pretty reasonable unless you have something unique to offer along the side of your products.
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