Reseller Hosting vs Shared Hosting: Which Should You Choose?

In today’s digital age, having an online presence is not just an option but a necessity.

However, the foundation of any strong online presence is built on the type of web hosting you choose.

Whether you’re launching a blog, starting an e-commerce store, or setting up a portfolio, selecting the right hosting type is crucial.

It can significantly impact your website’s performance, security, and scalability.

In this post, we compare shared and reseller hosting, helping you make an informed decision that aligns perfectly with your online aspirations.

The Short Answer

Reseller hosting allows you to buy hosting space in bulk and sell it to your clients, ideal for those looking to start their own hosting business or manage multiple sites.

Shared hosting involves renting space on a server shared with other websites, best suited for individuals or small businesses with a single site.

Reseller hosting offers more control and scalability, while shared hosting is more cost-effective and simpler to manage.

Understanding Them Both

What Is Shared Hosting?

Imagine living in an apartment building where you share amenities like the pool, gym, and laundry room with your neighbors.

Shared hosting operates on a similar principle.

Your website resides on a server alongside numerous others, sharing resources such as CPU, memory, and disk space.

Shared hosting is ideal for beginners, small businesses, bloggers, and anyone looking to launch a website without heavy traffic demands.

It’s the first step for many into the online world, thanks to its simplicity and cost-effectiveness.

Advantages of Shared Hosting

  • Cost-Efficiency: With expenses distributed across many users, shared hosting is wallet-friendly, offering a low barrier to entry for launching a website.
  • Ease of Use: Providers typically offer cPanel or a similar control panel, making website management straightforward for non-techies.
  • Maintenance-Free: Your hosting provider takes care of server maintenance, including security updates and technical support, allowing you to focus on your content or business.

Disadvantages of Shared Hosting

  • Limited Resources: Sharing server resources means your site might slow down if neighboring sites experience high traffic.
  • Less Control: The convenience comes at the cost of flexibility. You have limited ability to install custom software or tweak server settings.
  • Security Concerns: Although rare, a compromised neighbor could potentially affect your site’s security.

What Is Reseller Hosting?

Now, picture yourself as the owner of that apartment building, leasing out spaces to others.

Reseller hosting lets you purchase hosting services wholesale and then rent them out to your clients.

Essentially, you become a hosting provider without the need to manage your own data center.

You buy a bulk amount of server resources from a hosting company and divide these resources to host multiple clients’ websites.

You’re responsible for billing and technical support but with the freedom to brand your service as you see fit.

Advantages of Reseller Hosting

  • Business Opportunity: It opens up a revenue stream for web developers, designers, or anyone looking to get into the hosting business with minimal upfront investment.
  • Complete Control: You get more control over account setups, allowing you to offer customized packages to your clients.
  • Scalability: As your client base grows, you can easily upgrade your reseller plan to accommodate more websites.

Disadvantages of Reseller Hosting

  • Responsibility: You’re the first point of contact for your clients’ technical issues, which can be a double-edged sword if you’re not technically inclined.
  • Higher Costs: Starting a reseller hosting business requires a more significant initial investment compared to shared hosting.
  • Complex Management: Managing multiple clients and ensuring their websites run smoothly demands organization and technical skills.

Key Differences Between Shared and Reseller Hosting

Now that you know a bit more about each of them, let’s compare them head-to-head.

Both have their perks and quirks, tailored to different needs and aspirations.

We will focus on the key aspects that include control, scalability, performance, expertise required, and financial considerations.

Control and Customization

When it comes to control and customization, think of shared hosting as renting an apartment where the landlord decides on the amenities.

You get access to cPanel, a user-friendly control panel that lets you manage your website’s aspects like email, files, and software installations.

It’s straightforward but doesn’t allow deep server customization.

Reseller hosting, on the other hand, provides you with WHM (Web Host Manager) along with cPanel for your clients.

WHM enables you to create and manage multiple cPanel accounts, offering a higher degree of control over server settings and the ability to tailor hosting environments to your clients’ needs.

Number of Sites and Scalability

Scalability is another critical factor.

Shared hosting is suitable for hosting one or a few websites, but as your needs grow, you might find the resources limiting.

Scaling up often means migrating to a higher-tier plan or switching to a different hosting type.

Reseller hosting shines in scalability.

It’s designed to manage multiple websites effortlessly, making it ideal for those looking to expand their portfolio or start a hosting business.

You can allocate resources as needed, adjust plans, and add new clients without hitting the same constraints as shared hosting.

Performance and Security

When we talk about performance and security, both hosting types share the responsibility of providing a safe and efficient online environment.

Shared hosting is generally secure and performs well for small to medium-sized websites.

However, since you’re sharing resources with others, there’s a slight chance of experiencing slowdowns or vulnerabilities if another site on the server is compromised.

Reseller hosting offers a bit more control over security and performance since you can implement additional measures tailored to each client’s site.

However, the underlying security and performance still depend on the provider’s infrastructure.

Technical Expertise Required

Technical expertise is a significant differentiator.

Shared hosting is perfect for beginners or those who prefer a hands-off approach.

The hosting provider handles the technical side, including server maintenance and security updates.

Reseller hosting, while not requiring you to be a tech wizard, does demand a higher level of knowledge.

You’ll need to understand how to configure and manage multiple accounts, address client queries, and sometimes troubleshoot issues before escalating them to the provider.

Price and Budget Considerations

Finally, price and budget considerations play a crucial role.

Shared hosting is the more cost-effective option, offering a low entry price point for individuals and small businesses.

It’s an economical choice for getting online with minimal financial commitment.

Reseller hosting involves a higher upfront cost, as you’re essentially starting a hosting business.

However, it also presents an opportunity for revenue generation.

By offering hosting services to clients, you can cover your costs and potentially earn a profit.

Factors to Consider

Business Needs

The first step in choosing the right hosting is understanding what your project aims to achieve.

Are you looking to launch a small blog, or do you have ambitions for a bustling online store? Your hosting needs to align with the purpose of your project.

Technical Requirements

Different projects have varying technical demands.

A simple portfolio website might not need the robust features that an e-commerce site does.

Consider the software, applications, and technical support you’ll need to run your website smoothly.

Growth Potential

Think about where you see your project in the next few years.

If you anticipate rapid growth, opting for a hosting plan that offers scalability will save you a lot of headaches down the line.

It’s about striking a balance between meeting your current needs and allowing room for expansion.

With these factors in mind, let’s dive into some recommendations based on common use cases.

Who Uses Each Type of Hosting

To help you navigate these choices, let’s explore who typically finds shared and reseller hosting most beneficial.

Ideal Users for Shared Hosting

Shared hosting is the go-to option for those stepping into the digital world for the first time.

It’s the perfect choice for beginners who have never built or owned a website before and are starting their first online business.

Bloggers and Personal Websites

Individuals looking to share their thoughts, portfolios, or personal stories online will find that shared hosting matches their needs.

It provides a straightforward, cost-effective way to reach the world without unnecessary bells and whistles.

Small Businesses and Startups

For small enterprises and budding entrepreneurs, keeping overheads low while establishing an online presence is crucial.

Shared hosting allows these businesses to have a professional-looking site with minimal investment, which can be pivotal during the early stages of growth.

Non-Profit Organizations

Charities and non-profit organizations often operate under tight budget constraints.

Shared hosting offers a reliable way to spread their message and engage with the community without diverting funds away from their core mission.

In essence, shared hosting serves those who need a simple, affordable, and efficient way to host a website.

It’s the practical choice for getting online quickly, allowing users to focus on their content or business rather than the intricacies of web hosting.

Ideal Users for Reseller Hosting

Reseller hosting, with its ability to host multiple websites under individual accounts, is tailored for entrepreneurs and businesses looking to dive deeper into the web hosting world or add hosting to their suite of services.

Web Designers and Developers

Professionals who build and manage websites for clients can offer a one-stop-shop experience by including web hosting.

This not only adds value for their clients but also opens an additional revenue stream for the designers or developers.

Tech Entrepreneurs

Individuals looking to start a business in the tech space can use reseller hosting as a stepping stone.

It allows them to learn the ropes of web hosting with a relatively low barrier to entry, setting the stage for more ambitious ventures down the line.

Digital Agencies

Agencies that offer a range of digital services, from marketing to web development, find reseller hosting a perfect fit.

It enables them to provide comprehensive packages to their clients, ensuring a cohesive and seamless online presence.

IT Consultants

Those who advise businesses on their IT strategy often recommend web solutions that align with their clients’ objectives.

With reseller hosting, they can go a step further, offering customized hosting solutions that perfectly fit the recommended strategies.

Reseller hosting is for those who see web hosting not just as a necessity but as an opportunity.

Whether it’s to bundle hosting with web services, launch a hosting business, or simply have more control and flexibility, reseller hosting offers the tools and potential for growth and profitability.

Best Hosting Services

Below, we spotlight the top contenders in the shared and reseller hosting spaces, known for their exceptional performance, customer service, and feature sets.

3 Best Shared Hosting Services

InMotion Hosting has long been a favorite for its reliable performance and excellent customer support.

Ideal for small to medium-sized businesses and personal sites, InMotion offers a range of shared hosting plans that come packed with free SSL, unlimited bandwidth, and a suite of security features to keep your site safe.

Their commitment to uptime and a 90-day money-back guarantee makes them a top choice for those seeking peace of mind with their hosting provider.

Known for its budget-friendly hosting options, HostGator is perfect for beginners and those looking to start their online journey without breaking the bank.

Their shared hosting plans are easy to scale, come with a free website builder, and provide one-click installs for popular CMS platforms like WordPress.

With 24/7/365 support and a 45-day money-back guarantee, HostGator ensures you’re supported every step of the way.

Praised for its superior customer service and high-performance hosting solutions, SiteGround is a go-to for both newbies and tech-savvy users.

They offer unique in-house performance optimization and security, ensuring your website is fast and secure.

With features like daily backups, free CDN, and managed WordPress hosting on all plans, SiteGround is a robust option for those who prioritize reliability and speed.

3 Best Reseller Hosting Services

Doubling down on its reputation for reliability, InMotion Hosting also shines in the reseller hosting arena.

They offer a variety of reseller plans that cater to different needs, including free WHMCS, which is a crucial tool for managing billing and support.

Their reseller packages also include SSD storage for all plans, ensuring high-speed performance for your clients’ sites.

A2 Hosting is renowned for its speed and reliability, making it an excellent choice for reseller hosting.

Their plans come with a free WHMCS or Blesta, white-labeled service for a professional look, and free SSDs for blazing-fast site performance.

A2 Hosting stands out with its commitment to high-speed solutions and offers a turbo option for sites that need even faster loading times.

HostGator brings its user-friendly approach and affordability to the reseller market, making it an attractive option for those new to hosting reselling.

Their plans include a range of scalable options, unlimited domains, and an easy-to-use control panel.

With added perks like free SSL certificates for all hosted websites and 24/7/365 support, HostGator is a solid choice for aspiring web hosting entrepreneurs.

Reseller Hosting Vs. Affiliate Programs

As mentioned earlier, Reseller Hosting is like renting an office space, subdividing it, and then leasing it out to individual businesses.

You purchase hosting services in bulk and then sell them under your brand.

This approach requires a more hands-on role in managing your clients’ hosting needs, including billing, support, and potentially offering additional services like web design or maintenance.

It’s an excellent option if you’re looking to build a business around web hosting or add it as a service to your existing portfolio.

Affiliate Programs, on the other hand, are more like referring friends to your favorite restaurant and getting a thank-you voucher each time someone dines there based on your recommendation.

As an affiliate, you promote a hosting company’s services, and in return, you receive a commission for every customer who signs up through your referral link.

This path is less hands-on than reseller hosting and doesn’t require you to manage the hosting services directly, making it a good fit if you prefer focusing on content creation or marketing.

Choosing the Right Program depends on your business model, skills, and how involved you want to be with the hosting services.

If you enjoy customer service and have a knack for technical details, reseller hosting could be a rewarding venture.

However, if you prefer a more hands-off approach and excel at marketing, then participating in an affiliate program might be your best bet.


Shared hosting, with its simplicity and cost-effectiveness, serves as the ideal starting point for individuals and small businesses stepping into the online world.

Reseller hosting, on the other hand, offers a pathway for entrepreneurial spirits looking to carve out their niche in the hosting industry or add value to their web services.

Choosing the best hosting type for your needs boils down to understanding your project’s scope, your technical proficiency, and your long-term goals.


What is the main difference between reseller hosting and shared hosting?

The main difference lies in the target audience and the level of control offered.

With Shared Hosting, you get space on a server shared with others, ideal for individuals and small businesses with modest needs.

Reseller hosting, however, is designed for those who wish to sell hosting services under their brand, offering more control and the ability to manage multiple clients.

Which is better: dedicated server or reseller hosting?

A dedicated server offers the utmost in performance, security, and control, ideal for large businesses with high traffic volumes and specific technical requirements.

Reseller hosting, while providing significant control and the ability to generate revenue by hosting websites for others, doesn’t match the performance and exclusivity of a dedicated server.

If your focus is on starting your hosting service with moderate investment, reseller hosting is your go-to.

For high-end, enterprise-level performance and control, a dedicated server is unmatched.

How much money can you make with reseller hosting?

The potential revenue from reseller hosting varies widely and depends on factors like your pricing strategy, the value-added services you offer, and your marketing efforts.

Some resellers generate a few hundred dollars a month, while others build successful businesses that generate thousands.

The key to maximizing profit is providing excellent service, support, and potentially bundling other services such as web design or SEO to create more value for your clients.

How does reseller hosting work?

Reseller hosting involves purchasing bulk hosting resources from a provider and then selling hosting services to your clients under your brand.

You’re responsible for setting the price, providing customer support, and managing the backend, while the original host takes care of the server maintenance and infrastructure.

It’s a great way to start a hosting business without the need for significant infrastructure investments.

How do I choose a good reseller hosting?

Choosing a good reseller hosting provider involves considering several factors:

  • Reliability and uptime: Your host should guarantee high availability to ensure your clients’ websites are always online.
  • Support: Look for providers that offer excellent 24/7 support to you and, ideally, to your clients directly.
  • Customization: Your host should offer customizable plans that allow you to tailor packages to your clients’ needs.
  • Scalability: Choose a provider that makes it easy to upgrade resources as your business grows.
  • Price: Competitive pricing is essential, but so is value. Weigh the cost against the features and support offered.

How many websites can be hosted in shared hosting?

The number of websites you can host on a shared hosting account varies by provider and plan.

Some plans allow only one domain, while others offer unlimited domains.

It’s important to read the fine print, as “unlimited” often has limitations based on server resources and usage policies.

How many users can shared hosting handle?

The number of users a shared hosting plan can handle depends on the resources allocated to your account and the complexity of your website.

For simple websites with optimized content, shared hosting can support a significant amount of traffic.

However, for resource-intensive sites, you might hit resource limits with hundreds or a few thousand visitors per day, necessitating an upgrade to more robust hosting options.

Can you migrate my existing website over?

Yes, most hosting providers offer website migration services, and some even provide this service for free as part of their hosting package.

It’s essential to check with your prospective host about their migration services, including any fees, the process involved, and the support they offer during the transition to ensure a smooth migration of your website.

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