Shared Hosting vs. Reseller Hosting - Which Is Right for You?

Written by Web Hosting Expert

Reviewed by Technical Editor

Updated May 5, 2023
Shared Hosting vs. Reseller Hosting - Which Is Right for You?

When choosing a web hosting plan, it's essential to understand the differences between shared hosting and reseller hosting. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages, and the right choice depends on your needs, technical expertise, and budget.

This article will highlight the key differences between shared hosting and reseller hosting to help you make an informed decision.

Reseller hosting concept


what is reseller hosting

Basically, reseller hosting lets you manage multiple websites at once.

You rent server space from a large hosting platform, and then have the option to resell that space to other clients, while you act as the host.

You don’t always need to sell the space on though, and you can utilize this method to host multiple websites that you own.
Gain valuable insights into the world of reseller hosting through our in-depth article, "What is Reseller Hosting?" Explore the technical aspects, key features, and benefits of this versatile hosting solution.

Shared hosting defined


Shared hosting is a widely-used web hosting solution, particularly among small and medium-sized businesses looking to host their website.

In this setup, your website is stored on a shared server, which also hosts multiple other businesses' websites.

The hosting provider distributes resources to each site as required, ensuring efficient use of server capacity. With shared hosting, there is one owner who manages the website using a single cPanel account, along with a unique username and login credentials.

Comparing Shared and Reseller Hosting: 8 Key Differences Rundown


At first glance, both hosting methods can appear to have a number of similarities. For example, both ultimately utilize a shared server space used by multiple clients, but there are some critical differences between the two that could make all the difference when it comes to your business success.


1. Number of Websites and Control Panels


One of the main differences between shared hosting and reseller hosting lies in the number of websites and control panels that can be managed.

Shared hosting

Shared hosting solutions enable users to manage multiple websites, but they must be managed under a single administration dashboard, typically using just one cPanel login. It makes shared hosting suitable for individuals or small businesses with only a few websites to manage.

Reseller hosting

Reseller hosting, on the other hand, is designed for managing multiple websites with separate control panels for each client. This feature is ideal for web developers, designers, or entrepreneurs who need to manage their clients' websites independently and provide them with individual access to their respective control panels.

2. Hosting Performance


Shared hosting

In shared hosting, the performance of your website can be affected by the resource usage of other websites on the same server, as all users share the server's resources. This could result in slower loading times or even downtime during peak usage periods.

Reseller hosting

Reseller hosting, however, generally offers better performance, as it often allocates more resources to each account and provides greater control over server configurations. This allows resellers to optimize performance based on their clients' needs, resulting in improved loading speeds and overall website performance.

3. Security Differences


Shared Hosting

Shared hosting plans generally offer a standard set of security tools and features, such as two-factor authentication for admin dashboard access, DDoS protection, and SSL certificates included with most platforms.

Reseller Hosting

Reseller hosting packages often come with more robust security offerings, including daily data backups for all sites under your management, regular security scans provided by the hosting platform, and advanced web application firewall options.

4. Technical Expertise


Shared Hosting:

With shared hosting, limited technical expertise is required. The hosting provider manages server maintenance, security, and software updates, allowing users to focus on their website content and design. Shared hosting is an excellent option for beginners, small businesses, or those with basic website needs.

Shared Hosting

Reseller hosting requires a higher level of technical expertise. As a reseller, you'll be responsible for managing multiple clients and their individual hosting accounts. This involves setting up and maintaining hosting plans, providing customer support, handling billing. Reseller hosting is best suited for web developers, designers, or those looking to start their own web hosting business.

5. Target Audience


Shared Hosting

Shared hosting is ideal for beginners, small businesses, and personal websites that do not require extensive customization or high resource allocations.

Reseller Hosting

Reseller hosting is suitable for web developers, designers, and entrepreneurs looking to start a web hosting business or provide hosting services to their clients alongside their primary services.

6. Control and Customization


Shared Hosting

With shared hosting, you have limited control over server configuration and may face restrictions on software and applications.This can be a disadvantage if you require more customization or need to install specific software for your website.

Reseller Hosting

Reseller hosting provides increased control over server settings and customization. As a reseller, you can offer tailored solutions to your clients, catering to their unique needs and preferences.

7. Scalability and Flexibility


Shared Hosting

Scalability can be limited with shared hosting due to the shared resources. If your website experiences rapid growth or requires more resources, you may need to upgrade to a more powerful hosting plan, such as a VPS or dedicated hosting. Migrating to a new hosting plan can be time-consuming and complicated

Reseller Hosting

Reseller hosting offers more scalability because you can create customized hosting plans for your clients. As your clients' websites grow, you can easily adjust their hosting plans to accommodate their needs. This flexibility makes reseller hosting an attractive option for businesses that expect growth or have fluctuating resource requirements.

8. Budget and Cost


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Shared Hosting

One of the primary advantages of shared hosting is its affordability. Since resources are shared among multiple users, the cost per user is lower. This makes shared hosting an ideal choice for startups or small businesses with limited budgets.

Reseller Hosting:

Reseller hosting plans are generally more expensive than shared hosting plans. However, the potential to generate income by reselling hosting services to clients can offset the cost. Keep in mind that managing a reseller hosting business also requires an investment in time and effort

Benefits and Drawbacks Of Shared Hosting


Benefits

- Great value for money - There are so many hosting providers to choose from these days, that anyone looking to start a business can get a website up and running for just a few dollars per month. Sharing server space with other business owners and entrepreneurs means you all benefit from cost savings
- It’s easy to get to grips with - Your hosting provider will provide all of the technical support, set up instructions and administration of servers. You just need to worry about perfecting the style of your website
- Impressive customization tools - A lot of platforms these days offer intuitive website building tools and a comprehensive range of add-ons. These are made easy to understand for beginners, and they enable you to create some pretty awesome-looking websites. Simply choose your template, make some tweaks and you can have a site up and running in hours
- Easy to scale - Since your data isn’t stuck on just one server, it’s really easy to scale up your business when you grow. If you need more memory and bandwidth, the hosting provider can simply allocate you more in another shared server for an additional cost
- Compatible with content management systems - Most shared options can be used easily with the likes of WordPress, Joomla and Drupa
Drawbacks

- More vulnerable to security issues - While hacks of major hosting platforms are certainly rare, being in a shared server solution presents greater security risks. If one website comes under attack, there’s a chance every other site sharing that space could be at risk
- Fewer customer support options - Being the cheapest package offered by most platforms, you’ll often find that support channels are often more restricted. You could find you’re missing access to a phone line or live chat, and will just be limited to email tickets only
- Limited modification tools - You’ll usually have quite a strict set of applications you’re allowed to install on the server. This cuts down on the sort of advanced modification options sought after by many web developers

Interested in learning more about the advantages and disadvantages of shared hosting? Check out our in-depth article, "Pros and Cons of Shared Hosting," for a comprehensive analysis

Upsides and Limitations of Reseller Hosting


Upsides

- It can be used as an additional revenue stream - This is one of the most common reasons people will go for the reseller option. By selling on hosting space you can create the perfect complementary sideline for your business, or even use it as a full business model
- White label hosting - You get full control over the branding of any services you sell on. Your customers won’t know you’re selling on space from another provider
- Personalized control panels - While shared hosting is restricted to just on management account, reselling allows you to create tailor-made web hosting solutions for your clients
- Your host will cover any technical issues - Your chosen platform should resolve any back-end issues, and will be responsible for the uptime of your sites. This gives you more time to focus on the important stuff, like perfecting your customer service skills and site customizations
- Increased feature-set - You’ll usually find far more features in a reseller package than you would with a simple shared hosting option
Limitations

- You’re dependent on your web host - If your host is having server issues or technical issues, then this will have a knock-on effect on all of your own customers. Choosing the right platform can make or break your business
- It can be expensive - Costs can quickly mount when reselling, and we’re not just talking about the price of server space. You’ll also need to consider a marketing budget, potential staff hires as you grow, and paying for additional customer service channels

Those that might not have the time and resources to put into reselling might want to opt for an affiliate program as an alternative.

Here, you won’t be selling a service under your own brand name, but will instead be driving customers to your chosen affiliate in exchange for a percentage of the sale.

Summary


Now that you’ve got a clearer understanding of how each type of hosting works, it should hopefully make it easier for you to come to a decision that’s best for your business model.

Those just starting out on their business adventure, like bloggers, freelancers and hobbyists would be better off going for a shared hosting plan. While those looking to start their own web hosting business, that wants to add an additional revenue stream, or simply have a lot of sites to manage, should get signed up as a reseller.

These are, of course, just general rules to follow, and everyone’s personal situation will be a little different. Always make sure you do thorough research and due diligence before signing on the dotted line with whichever hosting contract you end up going for. Luckily, most providers offer a 30 or 60-day money-back guarantee, so it’s never been a better time to give it a try.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is shared hosting?

Shared hosting is the most basic type of hosting plan, and it is called shared because several websites use the same server, which makes it very cost-efficient.

What is reseller hosting?

Reseller hosting is essentially a way for you to purchase hosting resources from us in bulk and then to re-sell those resources directly to your clients. You can set limitations on disk space, bandwidth, email usage, and other features on a per-package or per-site basis. We provide a completely managed service from a technical perspective - the server space, hosting resources and support come from us and you are responsible for supporting your end-user clients. You can even brand your clients' cPanels with your own logo for a super professional image.

But reseller hosting isn’t just for web designers, agencies and start-up hosting companies - it’s also a great option if you run a lot of websites personally. Because you have access to WHM, you can create each site with its own separate cPanel. This means each site or client gets their own login to manage their own hosting settings, isolating them completely from other users on the same server or under your account. This improves site performance and resiliency from malware attacks.

We have a lot more information on what is reseller hosting on our blog.

Can you migrate my existing website over?

Yes, and without issue. Regardless of how many websites you’re managing, we’ll bring all of them under the Verpex wing free of charge. Just send us the details of your websites when you’ve signed up to get started.

How much traffic can shared hosting handle?

Shared hosting serves multiple sites on a single server. The costs of this type of web hosting are low since the users utilize the resources on a single server.

Which method is right for my business?

Generally speaking, small businesses, and those managing just one website, will want to try shared hosting. While entrepreneurs looking to build their own hosting business should sign up as resellers

Is it easy to switch between the two hosting methods?

Yes. Most hosting partners make it quite easy to switch between different tiers and packages

Which one is more expensive?

Reseller hosting is more expensive, averaging between $10 and $20 per month for basic tiers. Simple shared hosting will set you back between $2 and $10 per month.

Are all reseller hosting plans cloud-based?

Our servers are in the cloud. So yes, all our reseller hosting plans are cloud-based

Can you make money with reseller hosting?

You definitely can. There are countless success stories from entrepreneurs that have managed to take on hundreds, even thousands of clients, just be aware of the work you’ll need to put in.

Read our article to learn more about web hosting business income.

Julia Raznik
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Julia Raznik
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