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Resellers

Much of the activity in the hosting and domain-registration business occurs through the reselling of services. This has its pros and cons. In the domain-registration business it's almost a necessity for the smaller companies, as the fees and resources required to become an ICANN-accredited registrar can be onerous until you're in a position to meet both. Several of the larger domain registrars offer reseller programmes so that smaller hosts can buy domains at a wholesale price, mark them up and sell them at a retail price. This works well for all concerned, otherwise (experience has shown) it can be difficult to get things done in a timely manner when the host needs to make DNS changes.

On the other hand, if you're dealing with a reseller in the hosting business, it can make things more difficult simply because you have another middleman between you and the resolution of potential problems. A reseller likely doesn't have access to the nuts and bolts of the hosting system (called "root" or "administrator" access), and so when you go to them with a problem, they sometimes have to go to someone else, who will hopefully fix the problem, get back to the reseller, who then gets back to you. You can see that this would cause problems if time is of the essence, or if -- more likely when -- there is miscommunication in some step. Additionally, if a reseller has chosen to be a reseller rather than run their own (or leased) servers, it's most likely because they lack the depth of technical knowledge necessary to have a good overview of their own business. Again, this is not a situation in which you want to find yourself.


Relevant links:
NinerNet Communications™: Web and email hosting, domain registration, SSL certificates.



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