We have already discussed the use of reseller contracts in the hosting industry, but have not entirely explored how the relationships work; whether good or bad.
Good relationships circle around freedom of operation. Oppressive partnerships will often run aground early, normally down to issues with flexibility. I am always stunned to see companys that pride themselves on offering flexible hosting solutions to direct customers, yet choke resellers with fixed plans that remove all credibility from the product-line as a whole.
It is also incredibly important to have a solid interpersonal relationship with your resellers. Resellers are also customers after all, even considering the fact that they earn your business greater revenue. I have seen many resellers left wanting for more when they find they are treated as a low-ranking employee of the large hosting firms in question, as opposed to valued customers.
Bad relationships often stem from poor communication and lack of client management. Communication is central to a successful partnership. Without it, neither party is aware of the others current operations, and so efficiency will drop sharply at both ends of the spectrum. Not only will this upset the reseller and your own business operations, but also upset the end customer. If the end customer even gets the slightest hint that you are tied to their poor service, your reputation will be tarnished. Communication can be aided greatly through the integration of reseller software, which keeps tabs on all the activity from both parties automatically – 24 hours a day 7 days a week. This also helps maintain flexibility, which as mentioned is key in forming a good relationship.
Resellers unable to meet the demands of solid client management can also pass their stresses and strains onto your business. End-user errors and problems are to be dealt with by the reseller (assuming this is the method of reselling employed – visit the Netwise Hosting website here for more information on different methods of reselling) which requires some level of client management. Hosting providers can become frustrated when resellers are unable to handle client-side problems alone, and require constant attention from the network administrators and support staff. These problems can quickly sour a relationship and lead to slower development and lacking revenue streams.
Reseller relationships get really ugly when all elements of good, reliable business practice break down. Money is lost and stress increases as faults arise in every aspect of the resales process. Avoiding a truly ugly reseller program requires a robust system able to handle the demands of operating a reseller model of sales. This does not mean that the entire weight of the relationship is on the hosting provider, but it does mean that the hosting provider should be able to meet the demands of both direct and resales conversion traffic. However it also requires that resellers manage clients effectively and secure reliable customers.
In summary, ensuring you get the most from your experiences either as a reseller or as a reselling agent requires the harmony of operations between both parties. Although each end of the reseller circle operate in different ways, the two unique forms of business operations come together in the combination of a solid product, reliable service and productive middle-men. Ensure you keep your relationships tight, and success will follow.
Netwise Hostings reseller plan is in full swing, and we will be accepting new registrations to our reseller program very soon. Enjoy an excellent reselling experience with Netwise Hosting, and use our world-class products to earn yourself big bucks. Check the website for more information.