Overselling in Web Hosting

Overselling is common situation in the web hosting industry. If all the customers in this server use full resources that the hosting providers promises, then their websites are highly possible to run slowly and even occur downtime. The reason is that the provider sell more hosting services than it actually has. That is called overselling.

You will understand clearer from the following given example.

If web hosting company has a server on the basis of 1000GB disk space, it hosts 10 websites for different customers and promises them with 200 GB disk space for each website. Then overselling happens.

Why Overselling

Overselling is a kind of market strategy that web hosts utilize. We also use the above example to explain that readers may understand easier. The Web host has a 1000 GB disk space server and according to his standard 200 GB for each site, then he can only host 5 websites. However, in general, webmasters will not used up 200 GB. Even they can but they seldom used up at the same time. So there are resources that are not used, of which  the web host choose to sell another 5 accounts on the risk to make more money.

Is Overselling Bad?

Overselling exists in almost all the industry, like telecom industry. And it is not completely bad if providers maintain the service quality signed in the service agreement. Moreover, the situation that all customers used up all resources rarely occurs. And companies will gain more profits as well.

Overselling in Web Hosting Industry

If you walks in this industry, it is not hard to find that now nearly all the web hosts oversell their hosting service to custoemrs. Some of companies, such as LiquidWeb and Inmotion Hosting, can manage the overselling very well and are able to keep up with the serivce they have promised to their customers. However, what we heard more is:

  • Server becomes unstable and websites frequently happen downtime
  • page-loading speed becomes slow
  • response of the support tickets is slow and customer service becomes very bad.

How to Know a Web Hosting Companies is in the Trouble of Overselling

Overselling is a known industry fact in web hosting. The vendor know that their customer will never use their resources. And it is safe to assume that the clients will maybe use 75% of the resource purchased. To the web host vendor, this means that they can sell more resources than what they actually have.

Overselling is safe in most case if the vendor can manage it well. But sometimes, things might be out of control, system becomes not reliable because of too many web sites are hosted in one server, or you might not be able to find someone to answer your question for too many requests is in the queue.

So, not to work with those who are in the trouble of overselling is one of the key factors in finding a reliable environment for your site. And below are 2 methods you can leverage.

1) Verify their customer service system

There are many ways to see to do it. For email support, you can send an email to them for some question to see how fast you can receive a feedback. Right now, the most companies will promise you a reply within 24hours, and for those with great customer support, usually you can get an answer very soon, probably just couple hours. And you also can give them a call to see whether their phone support really work. There are a lot of case happened that the toll-free support number are always in a busy status. I do complaints this to their support via online chatting system. And what I get is a sorry without any explanation. With this, you will know that even those supporters within their own company know it doesn’t.

2) Check out Hosting Review Site

Many web hosting review sites offer you in-deep reviews on the web hosting companies. Some might allow their customers to submit reviews (such as HostUCan.net), It would be good to spend some time to read through those reviews on your potential service providers especially when you plan to host an important web site there. Some web hosting companies use very aggressive marketing methods, they might hire people to write the good review for them, and put those review into the forum, hosting review site, etc. The latest case is for WebHostingPad, their fake reviews exist everywhere, but actually, it’s not so good as they have expected as angry customers will reveal it.

Considering most of web host will provide its customers at least 30 days trial periods, it’s important for you to act quickly and leverage this opportunity to verify the features and quality of their product so that you can get your money back if they are not appropriate.


There is no doubt that overselling can surely help companies gain more money without the same investment. But they need to keep it firmly in mind that maintaining the agreed service for customers. Thus, companies are possible to win with this marketing strategy.

Leave a Reply