Having worked inside of the Web hosting industry for a number of years, I have learned that there are some topics that are just too taboo to mention. They are not to be talked about because mainly the marketing teams at any Web host say that it is bad business. You don’t want to tell the truth, because then the Web host down the street might look a little better in the consumers’ eyes.
The Word Unlimited – There is no such thing as unlimited anything in Web hosting. Everything has it’s boundaries and that is something the Web hosting clients must understand. Does your personal computer hold an unlimited amount of data? No. So why would your hosting disk space? If somebody does say they offer unlimited this, that or the other ask them how the support it.
More times than not the good hosts will say, “Well, we have this, this and this on the back end that lets us support this type of unlimited feature”. The bad hosts will say, “Its unlimited! That’s it! If you move fast though we can upgrade you to our super unlimited plan with even more unlimited goodness!”. Don’t laugh, it does happen.
24/7 365 Support – Is there any Web host out there that offers real 24/7 support. Sure, there are a lot out there that do. Customers get this topic confused more so than the Web hosts do. Yes, I am saying it is your fault. Just because you have support 24/7 doesn’t mean you get instant fixes for your problems.
Some problems take longer to fix and address than others do. Changing your domain name will take a shorter amount of time than moving your account to a new server. Just sit back and let the professionals do their job.
99.9 Percent Uptime – There is no doubt that “uptime” is important to all of us. Nobody likes having the Web site that can not be reached. Thinking like a Web hosting marketer – saying 100% uptime sounds like too much of a lie. Let’s make it 99.9% – that’s a more reasonable number. Customers buy into it hook, line and sinker though.
I am telling you that you will never be able to tell the difference between a 99.9% uptime host and a 99.5% uptime host. Just stop trying. Nine times out of ten this is just a marketing term thrown onto the hosting account to build up your confidence in the Web host’s abilities.
Overstuffing Servers with Clients – One of the complaints I hear a lot from Web hosting customers is that they don’t want to be on an over-stuffed server. What does that mean? It means you have a shared hosting account and you are packed onto a server with so many other customers it is hard to get anything done on the Web site. The performance is slow and you don’t have many server resources to work with.
No Web host is going to tell you how many clients they put on a machine, because that would scare you away. The only true way you can see how the hosting account’s performance works is to try it out for yourself – or read options on how well it has worked for other people.
So Why Are These Topics Taboo?
It all comes down to marketing and sales. If Web host number one is saying he’s got 99.9 percent uptime and Web host number two says he has 99.5 percent uptimes – most people would say go with Web host number one. If these numbers were real would you ever notice the difference?
The Web hosting industry has got so caught up in trying to look better than the next guy though it is hard to figure out who is really better than who. There is no overseeing power to check these numbers so you either have to be able to read the fine print pretty well or get caught up in the marketing jargon and sales talk.
Related Podcast Link: Listen to Episode 109!