When you're a freelance website designer, how do you handle hosting and domain name registration?

7 replies
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I want to start designing websites for small businesses. The thing I'm confused about is how to handle the issue of website hosting and domain name registration?

I've never had to deal with this issue before because I was employed as a web designer at a large company -- all I did was the design work. Other people took care of everything else.

Here are my questions:

1) Should I have the client go online and register their own domain name?

2) Should they get their own hosting account and set it up so all I have to do is give them the code to upload?

3) Or... should I register the domain name for them and get a reseller account to host it on?

4) What if they already have a domain, but no website? Can (or should) I just have them set their nameservers to point to the hosting server?

It seems like it would be best for the customer to own their domain name, but I don't want access to their account (because I don't want access to their credit card info).

How is this situation usually handled?

Thanks for the help,

#designer #domain #freelance #handle #hosting #registration #website
  • Profile picture of the author primuskannan
    Usually having a reseller account is trouble free, you allot an account for each customer with

    their own cpanel and the works or if you dont want the hassle ask your clients to sign up for

    hosting under your hosting affiliate link so you can snag the affiliate income.Then all they

    have to do is give you their ftp details.

    Clients can register their domain names themselves at your recommended registrars. You can

    guide them through the process especially at godaddy where you have to jump through

    several hoops.

    My 2 cents :-)


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    • Profile picture of the author Barbara Eyre
      I have the clients do their own registering of domain and hosting. It's their private details (financial and such).

      But since I have my own server, I don't worry to much about that ... unless I'm working in a new client's site that is established elsewhere ... then I just have FTP access.

      You can do it on a case by case basis - ask the client what they want to do. Some want to register on their own ... some want you to handle it all.
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      • Profile picture of the author Jim M
        I've been building websites for clients for several years.

        The best options are for you to keep control - they keep ownership - let me explain.

        You don't want to wait for your customers to organize things like changing nameservers etc.

        You should register their domain - to them - ie you do the work - they retain ownership - I use a company called 123-reg - they're not the cheapest, but you can set up a free account there and have easy access to all the domains and thus change nameservers etc quickly - stress the benefit to your client as this means their domain is not held to ransom by some cowboy outfit.

        Set up a reseller account (ie aluminum with hostgator) - you can then easily set up new accounts as you need them - although they are 'unlimited domains' I tend not to put too many domains in the one pot - you'll be getting a monthly fee for hosting from your client to cover the cost anyhow.

        However - if you just want to build the sites and then take a hands off approach - then you should get (or sit down and do it with them and do it) them to register domains / set up hosting accounts using their credit card details - then you take the access details to upload site etc when ready.

        Hope this helps...
        Jim Montgomery www.thepublishing.press
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  • Profile picture of the author Ralf Skirr
    It depends on the customer.

    1) In some cases they already have a domain registered and a hosting account and they intend to keep it that way. In those cases I simply ftp upload the sites we created to their server. I never had a client who was not happy to give me access to their servers. They actually pay you so that they don't have to deal with the technical stuff.

    2) In other cases they don't have anything ready and then I offer to register the domain for them and host their site on my server.

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    • Profile picture of the author ryanstreet
      You should use hostgator's reseller account for your situation. They could go onto your site, signup with a domain name that would be registered in their name, they would have their own control panel, domain, hosting, bandwidth allotment, etc. All of this is hands off so you don't have to worry about it and hostgator takes care of the rest!

      I hope this helps!
      Ryan Street
      PHP Developer Specializing in WordPress and Magento
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  • Profile picture of the author Johnny12345
    Thank you for the tips, everyone!

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  • Profile picture of the author Amsterdam
    I would recommend getting a reseller account. That way you start to make passive income from hosting your customer's sites

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