Perhaps you’re a website client that’s wondering which one you would prefer since you don’t know the terms. Or maybe you’re a freelancer or agency, curious about the pros and cons of each. Regardless of the reason you want to read about this topic, it’s a great topic to know. Knowing what you can do with each will help level your project expectations to match reasonable standards.

Both reseller hosting and agency hosting are excellent routes to take in managing your web hosting. Which one is best for you? It depends on the reason you’re seeking web hosting. The differences lie in how much direct access you will have to your system administrator for the end-user. The differences lie in how much of your client’s accounts you’ll manage for the agency.

Pros And Cons Of Agency Hosting

Agency hosting typically means a shallow level of interaction with the web hosting account. The critical difference between agency hosting and reseller hosting for a client lies in whether the server will be built and maintained directly by the agency, or if it will be managed remotely by a dedicated web host. There are pros and cons to each, but the essential thing to remember about agency hosting is that it offers a much more intimate relationship with the web hosting provider.

Web developers and agencies may find that providing agency-designed web hosting alleviates many of the headaches that can come with requesting a client manage their web hosting services. Clients need not get confused about technical details they don’t understand; agencies need not wait on web hosting support agents to fix the server in case something goes wrong. Web designers can directly access any part of a client’s account, including billing, without having to hassle the client for login details or trying to walk them through providing an API key.

Best Use Case Examples

The client:
needs more space than a shared hosting account can offer
needs live monitoring and maintenance with minimal client participation
requires a custom hosting platform for other networking needs like phone systems

The agent or agency:
needs to consolidate client accounts together under one server
needs to create a completely hands-off experience for the client
needs to frequently scale the size of the client’s web hosting account

Reseller Hosting Pros And Cons

Reseller hosting straddles the line between a shared hosting account with limited resources, bandwidth, and a dedicated virtual server. Like shared hosting, clients will have their user account for billing and management. Unlike shared hosting, though, clients may be able to access a higher degree of flexibility in plan coverage by directly contacting their web administrator.

Developers and agencies may prefer reseller hosting to self-provisioned web hosting if they are unable to dedicate time to monitoring and maintaining a server, or want to provide a more streamlined and well-integrated web hosting and billing platform to their clients. Additionally, a web dev agency may wish to give a client a reseller hosting account in situations where the client requires additional shared hosting accounts.

Best Use Case Examples

The client:
needs other web hosting accounts listed under their account
wants to have back-end access to the server or their web hosting account
needs shared web hosting because private hosting would be overkill

The agency or agent:
needs more hands-off web hosting options for clients without losing administrative functions
needs to manage multiple client accounts from one access point
needs assistance with building, monitoring, or maintaining the server
wants to provide clients with a more fluid UI experience comparable to dedicated web hosting provider platforms

How Do You Know If A Web Hosting Agency Is Any Good?

Many factors go into determining how well a web host provider performs. There is a handful of factors, though, that can make or break the customer experience. Some of these include average speed, average uptime, monitoring, backup, redundancy, and availability.

An ideal web host will offer a 99%+ uptime guarantee, including a partial refund for any failure to meet that goal. They also will provide 24/7 monitoring and support with automated backups in multiple data centers. If those basic standards are not met, it is unlikely that the agency will be able to supply an acceptable level of service.

If you go with a full service, mature web host like GreenGeeks, you will gain access to a full selection of agency and reseller services. You’ll also have personalized assistance in selecting the best service for your needs. Best of all, well-seasoned web hosting providers typically have the experience and knowledge needed to provide the smoothest running and best performing data centers.

Owning a data center is a pretty big deal for a web hosting provider. They like to brag about it, and they like to be able to boast that they keep their customers more secure than larger farms through being able to provide better monitoring services. It’s a lot easier to watch 3,000 accounts for issues than it is to watch 30,000. It also grants the web host greater control over how the data center is run in comparison to a web host that rents their data centers.