Is it time to break up with your hosting service?
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Using a web hosting service is a lot like being in a relationship.
Things usually start out great. You might have bad days sometimes, but if the issues aren’t too serious, you can work them out, and if all goes well, you’ll be happy together for a very long time.
But when the bad days start to outnumber the good, it saps your energy and prevents you from living your best life. As Neil Sedaka said, “breaking up is hard to do,” so you hang in there anyway.
One of the hardest things is knowing when it’s time to call it quits.
It’s the same with web hosting! You might be unhappy with your service, but you stick with them anyway, because it’s easier than switching… until you just can’t take it anymore.
I’m not a relationship expert, but I’ve worked with more hosting companies over the past 20 years than I can count on my fingers.
In this article, I’m going to share three signs it’s time to break up with your hosting company.
#1 – Your website loads very slowly
Have you ever been in a relationship with someone who was totally insensitive to your needs? How long would you put up with that before you call it quits?
Your website visitors are no different. If they can’t get the information they need in three seconds or less, you risk losing business. So when it comes to page speed, time is money!
I manage a large number of sites through my Website Care Plans and was getting frustrated that some of them were sluggish no matter what measures I took to speed them up.
Once I suspected that the issue was with the hosting service, I found a better one and voilà! Sites that were taking up to 10 seconds to load on the old hosting now load in under 2 seconds. Watch my video to see why this is so important.
If your website isn’t performing as well as it should, there’s a fairly good chance it’s your shared hosting. You might be well within the disk space and number of visits allowed by your plan, but the server can only handle so many processes at one time. I don’t want to get too technical here, but if there’s a lot going on with your site, the system is set to slow things down to prevent it from affecting other sites on the server.
If this is happening to your site, it may be time to break up with your hosting provider.
#2 – They sell you services you don’t need
It’s really hard to stay in a relationship with someone you don’t trust. This is true whether it’s a romantic partner or a web hosting service.
One of my clients received an invoice to renew her SSL certificate and asked me if she should pay it. I checked, and her hosting plan included a free SSL certificate. There are websites that need the higher level of security provided by a paid SSL certificate, but hers is a simple site with no ecommerce, so a free one is adequate. As a result, she has lost trust in that company.
Not long afterwards, I noticed that another client’s site was down, and I wasn’t able to access her hosting account. I knew they wouldn’t speak to me for security reasons, so I told her she needed to contact the company herself. After she spoke to them, she let me know they had upgraded her hosting plan. That would have been fine, but their salesperson disguised as a tech support rep also managed to sell her hundreds of dollars worth of SEO services, totally outside the scope of the problem she contacted them about.
Both of these incidents involve the same hosting provider. I already had a low opinion of them for various reasons, but their obvious ploys to take advantage of clients who don’t know any better makes me want to use language my mother would not approve of.
Before you send your hosting service any more of your hard-earned money, make sure you understand what you’re paying for and that you actually need what they’re billing you for.
If they’ve been deceiving you, it’s time to break up.
#3 – They provide poor tech support
How long would you stay in a relationship with someone who doesn’t listen to you, won’t let you call or text them, and makes you feel like you don’t matter?
Not long, I suspect. You’re important and you deserve better!
Then why would you stick with a hosting service that treats you that way?
Does any of this sound familiar?
- You describe your problem in detail to the tech support person using live chat. They reply by asking for information you’ve already supplied, or by copying and pasting text, not even related to your issue, from a manual. When you respond, it’s another 10 minutes before they say anything else.
- Your site loads slowly and goes down a lot, but they can’t or won’t provide any assistance.
- You have an urgent problem with your website, but they don’t offer live chat or phone support. All you can do is submit a support ticket and wait. Maybe for days. You were already stressed out about your website; now you’re angry too.
Sometimes we stay in a bad relationship because ending it will be too difficult. I put up with less than ideal tech support from my old hosting provider for longer than I probably should have.
In contrast, my new provider treats me like a valued customer and colleague.
When I need support, I can usually connect with someone right away, so I don’t have to leave my clients hanging.
I’m quickly alerted to issues so I can take any needed action, and my clients are delighted that they don’t have to worry about any of it. They also love how much faster their sites load now!
As a result of the change, my Website Care Plans now include hosting, allowing me to care for your WordPress website as if it were my own.
If it’s time to break up with your hosting company, let’s talk!
Making a change is never easy, but it’s definitely not as hard as ending a personal relationship.
I’m curious: Did the Neil Sedaka reference at the beginning make you nostalgic, or leave you going “Who?” Either way, you might want to spend two minutes watching the video before you move on to the next thing on your list.
Image by rawpixel.com
I love the comparison you make between our tolerance of web hosting companies and the relationships we have. If we wouldn’t tolerate the negatives in relationships, why are we so tolerant of the hosting companies? I think you nailed it, which is the convenience factor. It can get complicated with the various vendors needed to run everything properly with your site. Over the years, I’ve shifted things as needed. But honestly, it’s always with some trepidation. Something goes wonky as you move platforms. But ultimately, the changes have always been positive. They’ve taken some tweaking. And that’s true of all good relationships. They don’t just happen but need time and energy invested in them.
By the way, I love the Branded Video that Alison made for you. Nice job!
When I read “But ultimately, the changes have always been positive. They’ve taken some tweaking. And that’s true of all good…” I wasn’t expecting to see the word “relationships.” Your words make me think of other changes that have required adjustments but were ultimately an improvement. Interestingly, all the examples that come to mind are related to technology. No wonder we get so stressed out about software updates!
I had forgotten that it was your involvement with Executive Mom Nest that led to me having the video created! I love it. You can see the other one Alison made for me on my Website Care Plans page.
My first hosting company was tiny and responsive — until they weren’t. One day, they just went out of business with no warning. My next hosting company is massive, which has its own advantages and disadvantages. They’re available 24/7 (and I usually get incredibly helpful care, though sometimes I have to be asked to be passed to someone a little higher up the chain of command) and the price is right, they don’t try to pressure me to buy what I don’t need, and I *think* my loading speed is OK. But there’s something that gnaws at me to be consider being a runaway bride.
i really appreciate you spelling out the guideposts for recognizing when your hosting company is a bad boyfriend!
I’m glad it was helpful, Julie.
“Sometimes we stay in a bad relationship because ending it will be too difficult.”
Yes! I stay with the convenience of my all-in-one business plan because for the most part, I’m happy with it. I’m used to it, it includes support and so far, nothing has really gone wrong. But if I’m honest, it’s also because I dread the idea of starting over anywhere else. So glad I know about your services in case anything tips me over the edge!
If it ain’t broke…
And you know where to find me!
Well, you know that this got me thinking about hosting, and now I’m with a new company! So far, so good, I’m happy to report. 🙂
I’m glad my recommendation worked out, although I’d have loved to host your site! 🙂
I have always been with Janet and she has arranged my hosting. I am glad it is something I don’t need to worry about. When I think something is wrong with my site I talk to her about it. I trust her.
Thank you so much, Julie! It means a lot that you’ve stayed with me all these years.
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