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  Post #1 (permalink)   03-03-2006, 02:56 AM
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How did you get in to the hosting business? and which part of the business do you enjoy most... is it the running of "a" business or do you enjoy the hosting side most and the tech support, dealing with clients etc...

I started up back in 2001 as a reseller and steadily built a client base on a group of free accounts which at the time got the popularity of the site quite high. After that promotion finished after just a few months and the interest being there I opened up full price accounts and squashed the free account signups. The current free users could carry on as free, but I took no more free clients on. Things started rolling and I remember the first larger account sign up He is still a client now. I sold the business in 2003 to a great individual and was asked to stay on which I accepted. That helped great with the transition and things are practically the same now as before the transition.

Things are still going good and now we have 7 dedicated servers (adding 4 more in the next month hopefully).

The side I love most is the difficult tech support side of things. I like biting in to a new problem that requires a lot of thinking. It's a great feeling when something starts to work.

I also enjoy the business side and helping out running the day to day tasks of the business.

Overall I enjoy the business... it's great, flexible and I talk with many people.

How about you guys?
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  Post #2 (permalink)   03-03-2006, 05:11 AM
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I'm not a host myself, but the thing that gets me is how do you guys find the time? As far as I'm aware, most hosts have full time jobs yet still manage to offer 24x7 support.

The competition is huge and isn't retention of customers very difficult? (IE: you take 2 days to reply to an urgent problem and you can consider that customer as good as gone!)
 
 
 


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  Post #3 (permalink)   03-03-2006, 05:20 AM
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I have managed to balance things well. I am not sure of a % of who does and who does not work a full time job also. I was offered full time for hosting but decided against it as the money wasnt as good I was expecting at the time the offer was made.

Retention increases the quicker and better the responses are. We try to get fast detailed responses out. It's about building a relationship of trust. There is a lot of commitment involved but it's still enjoyable and a very good learning experience.
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  Post #4 (permalink)   03-03-2006, 06:12 PM
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24/7 is easy, I've done support via my PDA & GPRS phone sat on holiday in my tent I forgot to pre-pay one of my servers on that holiday so paid it again via the PDA whilst sitting in a Tesco car park in the middle of Norfolk. As I stated in another thread, support is more about managing customer expectation than doing support. The technical bits can be resolved by careful monitoring and keeping the system clean & tidy.

I actually got into hosting as an extension of my consultancy business, my site needed hosting as did a few others, I ran a small reseller and got messed about so much that I simply decided as I was a long time SysAdmin, I might just as well run my own server as I'd make a better job of it than the 3 previous providers I'd had. The rest as they say is history. I still host my first web hosting customer
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  Post #5 (permalink)   03-03-2006, 06:34 PM
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I think the most obscure place I have provided support was on a farm on Bonfire night a few years back. I got out the PDA after a text came through to warn me of something and a few minutes later the customer got an email with the problem sorted

I am wanting to try Wifi out on a plane when it becomes more popular. Flying can be boring after a while and support would keep me occupied.
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  Post #6 (permalink)   03-04-2006, 01:51 AM
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That's the way to do it
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  Post #7 (permalink)   04-07-2006, 12:49 AM
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While entering into hosting business it is important to give good service to customers. In hosting business main important point is to give 24/7 support. Also to offer best plans for customers. Last & most important point is reliability, offer reliable service to customers.
 
 
 


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  Post #8 (permalink)   04-07-2006, 01:03 AM
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Personally I don't see why everyone is so hung up on 24/7 support. For the low prices people expect to pay for hosting these days, there's no way that the average small host can provide real 24/7 instant response when they start. I've found that it's only the kiddies who seem to expect 24/7 (but the're mum's send them to bed so they're not up during the night anyway!), all my other customers sleep at night and the non UK ones know they are dealing with a UK company.

Someone who's genuinely needing 24/7 support is most unlikely to host with one of us small guys anyway
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  Post #9 (permalink)   02-14-2008, 09:27 PM
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I think what excites me most is the uniqueness of the day to day operation. You can never get bored like working in an office, each day there always be a new thing you have to solve. Or new program you can try out. Let it be in tech support or how you can manage your customer relationship better.
 
 
 


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  Post #10 (permalink)   04-17-2008, 06:30 PM
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We started off as web design freelancers and our company did not provide hosting services at that time. Most of our clients were made up of friends and family that wanted either a website built or a website revamped. Local markets are gold mines.
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  Post #11 (permalink)   04-18-2008, 03:27 PM
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I started out looking for a host for a friend's website. They needed something small and friendly, and since I was in the market for a host myself, I looked for both of us. Found someone whose support was...kind of spotty. I thought to myself, "*I* could do a better job..!"

So I did.

I like teaching clients how to use the tools, demystifying the process, helping people who have just (for example) gotten off of GeoCities learn how to set up a web site...including installing an application themself. I'm able to teach them so that they're amazed at how easy it is.

I started while unemployed (good old dot-com blahs), and wrote up a good support/knowledgebase/FAQ section. When I got a "regular" job I hired a stay-at-home friend to monitor the support queues while I was at work. I'd check in a few times each day. Then I got a telecommuting job, added a freelancing gig, dropped the telecommuting job and just went with freelancing, and now do hosting + freelancing out of my house. I still have "corporate" jobs and benefits, but the hours are flexible, and my commute is measured in feet.
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  Post #12 (permalink)   07-12-2008, 01:20 PM
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I got into web hosting by being hosted myself once. I looked into web hosting, done my research into the market and I have come very successful in the past in my projects.

I'll let you into a secret, I am releasing my newest project very soon - the name is Pastima Group but it'll be HostPastima which is the actual project as you could of guessed.
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  Post #13 (permalink)   07-21-2008, 12:42 PM
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We were a web design and development company first and most of our customers wanted us to host for them. We had a reseller account. Then one day we realized we had too many customers for a reseller account and decided to get our own servers and migrated all our customers to our new improved servers. Since then there is no turning back.
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