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IAMGaurav

Gaurav

Freelance Web Developer

An In-Depth Look at WHMCS Billing Software

Reseller hosting and online businesses, in general, require a lot of work from the service provider, even when the main service is given. This is where WHMCS comes in. It provides solutions in terms of all you need to run your hosting business. It is a WHM (Web Host Manager) plugin that provides billing and general support mechanisms. It is a one stop shop client management system.

WHMCS can be used for many purposes namely, web hosting, ISP billing, software development, cloud hosting, web designing and domain registration.

It is a self-hosted platform that provides you with control over customer data and installation, which is easy to customize and merge into your website. It is able to perform its functions by setting up hosting packages, domain registration, server provisioning APIs, fraud protection services, billing and payment gateways.

Why WHMCS is popular

For one it offers a complete solution to billing. Tracking hours, invoicing customers for services and products and other expenses related to your business are easily handled by its software, giving you time to concentrate on your work, and worry less about everything else.

  • It can handle domain registration, so you will not have to find ways of doing it yourself, something that can be hectic.
  • Development of websites is made easier because it is integrated with web hosting control panels.
  • It gives you a seamless way for the creation of packages and setting up a cart for your website.
  • It is created with domain registrars which enable automatic provisioning and management.
  • It is able to manage your support requests, products, clients and invoices among others.
  • With its fraud protection services and other safety measures, it provides security to all its users.
  • By performing tasks which would otherwise be time-consuming if done by the person, it helps with time management.
  • It is associated with a client portal which is a support tool for its users.
  • With one centralized login, you are provided with an extensive list of services.
  • It is completely automated.

Installation requirements

WHMCS has different installation requirements for PHP and Database.

For PHP, you will need version 5.6.0, memory limit of 64M, PDO data extension and the following extensions: curl with SSL, image library, JSON support, XML, GD2 and MB string.

For database you will need to have the strict mode disabled, my SQL version 5.1.0 and the following ion cube loaders: 5.0.21 for PHP 5.6 and 6.0.2 for PHP 7.

Advantages of WHMCS

  • Can be used with every major payment gateway.
  • Makes statistical reports and tracks payments.
  • Has a wide range of languages for the control panel and email.
  • Provides different templates for customization of your control panel.
  • Deals with account creation and dissolution automatically.
  • Automated billing.
  • Provides client support.

 

When dealing with web hosting, work can be overbearing and time will almost never be adequate enough to handle the excess of your work. Hosting websites is not an easy job, even if it is yours alone, it requires time and dedication in order to grow in terms of traffic, which is the whole point of websites in the first place. A website is only as good as its uptime and traffic. So having divided attention, might hinder success in one field or the other. It would be impossible to succeed if a part of the whole service is compromised. So it is always possible to hire a WHMCS Expert to help you out.

Hosting websites on behalf of third parties needs a certain level of concentration which cannot be available with distractions. Again, selling hosting services, which is the main part of reseller hosting will mean that a lot of time needs to be dedicated to concentration on finances. With WHMCS all this will be made easier for online businesses. Its offers are great too. It has low entry commit with 5 license keys, it’s tiring pricing is 55% off of retail prices and you get API automation. Clearly, this is at the top of the game and partaking in reseller hosting will require you to have this. Clearly, web hosting is made easier with this management system, so you won’t have to look further for your needs.

5 Highly recommended billing tools for web-hosting today

Congratulations on your new online business venture!! I bet you are now looking for the best tools to use to ensure great quality as well as handle bill management for your clients. I know you have set up your goals and you are looking for the most hassle-free billing panel integration for your site. I have done just that and decided to take your mind away from a headache by finding 5 of the most efficient billing platforms to help manage your businesses online.

The following are both commercial and open source billing systems: –

  1. WHMCS
  2. HostBill app
  3. Ubersmith
  4. Blesta
  5. ClientExec

I bet you that these are the hot 2017 billing web hosting tools; below l will go ahead and show you what your return on investment will be.

WHMCS (Web Host Manager Complete Solution)

This is the most commonly used and most raved about platform credited to its flexibility, compatible application (3rd party mostly) integrations, and extendibility. WHMCS recently changed it’s all time pricing fee of 15.95$ ( No limitations ) to 18.95$ ( up to 250 clients ).

What can it do? 

It’s billing options to include credit card processing, handling any recurring bills, tax support, invoice generating capabilities. Again, it has over 10 language translations available, ability to print reports in different formats- extensive reports. Very well integrated with most of the common hosting technologies including cPanel, Virtualizor, SolusVM and a bunch of payment gateways such as PayPal, 2Checkout, Skrill and Authorize.net just to name a few.

My take:

WHMCS is the current market leader for hosts, domain registrars, and other similar industry business entities.

HostBill App

HostBill, when compared to the other billing platforms, is known for its great design to support large institutions and hosting business enterprises manage all matters billing. These include cloud service providers, hosting service providers among others. Hostbill is fairly cheaper on the long run since the license fees is a one time fee starting at 999$. With no limitations in regards to a number of users/orders.

What can it do?

HostBill is best known for its updating- the easiest there is. Its core role is to ensure that all the billing services are automated.

My take:

HostBill is a powerful billing system however, I personally feel it be superior in terms of WHMCS IF you plan to provide Cloud Services ( Cloud VPS etc ) or Sell Dedicated Servers. For the price tag, it isn’t worth just selling shared hosting services.

Ubersmith

Ubersmith is a well-known billing application great for online enterprises with the need for online support (ticketing) and infrastructure management. It can support 3rd party integrations, supports SSL providers, is a great support to merchant providers and can handle electronic payments. Ubersmith license starts at 200$ per month for 50 devices and clients. It is the costliest billing system in comparison to all the ones mentioned in this post.

What can it do?

It has some amazing features like the ability to manage all your hardware/infrastructure including your IP blocks as well as your routers present in the datacenter. Built in integration for KVM/ILO and MTRG graph generations.

My take:

I totally love Ubersmith for its seamless API and customizations features. Used by the most elite web hosting companies mainly because of its scalability, good performance and the ability the customize it inside out.

Blesta

Blesta is also a fairly popular Billing system for web hosting companies in mind. They start at 12.95$ Monthly or 250$ Owned One-time License Fee.

My take:

Blesta has no support for neither colocation services nor dedicated servers but the best thing is the developers are always listening (great!).It is a simple billing platform which can help you grow your hosting business. Integrates well with cPanel and has a bunch of popular payment gateways.

ClientExec

Clientexec is the most accommodating management platform for hosting providers. Comes with a clean UI and easy to use administrative end. Nothing new compared to Blesta. They start at 12.00$ Monthly or 499$ Owned One-time License Fee.

What can it do?

It has live-chat, and revenue growth features as well as the ability to integrate 3rd party applications. Its API enables third party applications to streamline everything smoothly for you especially handling plugins like ISP managers and web panels like cPanel.

My Take:

It is a personal choice, to be honest. Blesta and Clientexec are pretty much the same.

Feel free to choose from any of these 5 amazing and responsive billing platforms for your web hosting needs. If you plan to only sell shared hosting or VPS services I would highly suggest sticking with WHMCS. I have been working with WHMCS, HostBill, and Ubersmith for a couple of years now. Both as a developer and as a consumer for each product. Based on my experience WHMCS is the most user-friendly and easy to use billing system without losing major functionality. In the long run, however, I would choose Ubersmith mainly because of it isn’t just a simple billing system when compared to WHMCS or HostBill, Ubersmith is a mammoth for IT related infrastructure management and billing with an option to provide support as well. Web Hosting is just a small functionality that Ubersmith incorporates.

HostBill, on the other hand, is a more locked up solution. You need to spend forever feature it can provide. I never liked their pricing model, however, in the long run, it is certainly the cheapest of them all. HostBill has an extremely good user-friendly frontend can’t say the same for their administrative end.  So you have 3 options based on your requirements, affordability, and technical understanding.

You can always contact me for consultation related to your company. I have a combined experience of around 6 years in the Web Hosting market.

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