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Many clients are in general tech-phobic so that they may see you, a web designer, as the answer to everything technology-related. Since you’re designing and creating their websites, it would seem to make sense that you host their websites.

However, just because you can, doesn’t necessarily mean that you should.

So Should You?

The first reaction that most web designers would have would be to say no, and that just might be correct. Web designing and web hosting are two succinctly different and separate scopes. Therefore, it wouldn’t make sense to do so.

That said, some offer all-inclusive web design packages that include web hosting services as well. Whatever it is, you’ll need to explain the basics to your client to help them make a more well-informed decision.

web designer

Online Education Platform by Madhu Mia

Your client would need to know that web hosting is a third-party service, separate scope, web hosting types available (shared hosting, cloud hosting, dedicated hosting, reseller hosting, etc.), the costs involved, among others.

So, before you agree to add web hosting to your services offering, think about the following:

They’re Different

As a web designer, the amount of stuff you need to know and be good at is enormous. The same applies to managing web hosting solutions too. Albeit there are some parts that overlap and are related, in reality, both jobs are different.

So, taking web hosting on while juggling your core job at web designing are both long-term commitments, each with its own set of trials and tribulations. Just remember that should you decide to take up the task of web hosting as well, you add a significant extra layer of responsibility to your work.

Web Hosting

Should you decide to include web hosting into your package, you’ll need to be responsible for proposing to your client the best way to go about hosting the website. Should you use your server or lease one from a third-party provider?

The former can prove stressful as everything web-hosting-related falls in your hands to ensure that all is hunky-dory. To do so, you require a certain level of expertise, and this can be very time-consuming. As a result, your core job, which is web designing, will suffer.

It is best to opt for the latter and go for a third-party provider specialized in web hosting. That said, there are risks involved in doing so. You’re trusting the company to keep things in good shape. That is why you’ll need to do your due diligence properly before proposing the right web host to your client.

There are several web hosting options you can look into:

Use a Reseller Account

You can refer your client to a good web hosting company, but you need to help them get set up. Although your client may have access to the reseller account, you are responsible for all technical support. So, if everything is fine, you’ll be fine.

You’ll be able to concentrate on the design work you love. But if not, then it may be nightmarish for you to handle alone. Then, it would be best to hire a support team to help manage this portion. However, please ensure that the extra income justifies the additional cost you’ll need to bear when hiring this support team.

Refer the Client to a Web Hosting Company

You earn a one-off commission, and you help your client with the onboarding process, after which you hand off any other issues to the web hosting company’s support team. This way, you’ll be able to fully focus on what you’re really good at - web designing. Remember, not all web hosts are created equal. So, recommend a reputable and trusted web hosting provider.

Do You Have the Resources for This?

I know I have dwelt somewhat on this above, but because this point is so salient, I cannot help but discuss more on this. If you decide to take web hosting on, remember that supporting a web hosting service is no joke as you’ll need to be available 24/7.

This is because clients will see you as the ONLY person of contact, and web hosting companies will only support the person who is the account owner - YOU. So, when there’s an issue or anything at all, you are the one who has to act as the go-between.

This back-and-forth communication between your client and the web hosts’ staff can be very frustrating and is what can ultimately break your decision to offer web hosting in the first place. The client will be very frustrated as well, seeing this whole arrangement becoming terribly inefficient due to a bottleneck - YOU.

However, if you don’t include web hosting into your services lineup, your client can directly contact the web host. Most web hosting companies provide 24/7 support—food for thought.

More in Control

If you do decide to include web hosting in your package offering, you'll know exactly what kind of server environment your client would be in. Since the web hosting solution is in your hands, this makes it easier for you to decide how best to optimize your coding, run your preferred CMS, plugins, among others, in your web designing tasks.

This type of continuity can lead to a better and more efficient workflow. Simply put, you are in control.

Extra Income

To your client, letting you handle everything is awesome as you’ll remain the one and only contact person, which keeps things simple. For you, offering web hosting is another great stream of making some extra income. This, in turn, puts you on a more stable financial ground.

Also, taking on web hosting could help increase the chances to retain your client. So, it becomes a win-win for both parties. The question would be - ‘Is this worth the extra trouble?’

The Inevitable Losses

Remember this - clients seldom stay forever. When they do leave, this can pose a problem when you provide web hosting. Since your client has moved on to another web designer, there’ll be questions regarding the web hosting continuity plan.

If you wish to hold onto the web hosting revenue, bear in mind that the amount you make usually isn’t worth the awkwardness in dealing with the client and the new designer. But, if you still insist on offering web hosting to your client in the first place, it is best to have a policy in place to ensure you set the right expectations from the get-go in the event the client leaves.

Something Happens to Your Business

Life is unpredictable. Your life may unexpectedly take a turn, or your business may not last. Nobody wants this, but things happen. If you have included web hosting as part of your package, this could further complicate the situation.

web design

Food Delivery Web UI Concept by Madhu Mia

If your clients don’t have access to their data, which means you have always been dealing directly with the data and server, you’ll need to have a plan in place to not be left out in the cold should such a situation arise. Consider having documentation in place so that your client can refer to and move on.

Conclusion

Web designers are typically specialists in a rapidly changing field. You are a designer, not a web hosting expert. Your cup is already full as it is. If you take on web hosting of your client’s sites, you’d be opening yourself up to being pressured into spending a significant amount of time on technical support that you may loathe.

Yes, the income is good. But at the end of the day, is it worth it? Is this what you want to spend most of your time doing?

The above are some of the considerations you need to consider if you are considering including web hosting in your services lineup. Maybe it would be in your best interests to look into the web host solutions separately and refer your clients to a good web hosting company. You then earn an affiliate commission, and that’s it. Focus on being a good web designer, then.

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