This article unveiles the web hosting lies that're promoted by lots of providers. It covers both hosting features and the actual experience in using the service. We would not like to mention the exact company name but we did experienced from multiple providers. We post our experience here just want to put a reference for our readers in case you're evaluating a service plan. Honesty is virtue for all business but it does not always apply on this full competition market.
We Guarantee 99.99% uptime
The biggest lie among all. Have you ever calculated the exact downtime for this guarantee? Less than 3 hours. How much per day? Almost none! Such guarantee requires very powerful server and data center system configuration. On hosting company end, there's no explanation for any possible case such as regular daily maintenance or network outage etc. But once problem occurs, they will give out various excuses such as backup operation, urgent maintenance etc. Why they can provide such brave guarantee? Because they know how good we are and won't blame them for small issues. Once there's really serious problem, such guarantee is nothing but words.
Any time money back guarantee
More and more hosting service support any time money back guarantee to make people believe your money is safe with them. But actually it's worse than specific period full money back guarantee service. The term "any time" simply tells us we can close account then claim pro-rated refund. For almost every company people will be charged for minimum one month. But for those 30 or 60 days full money back service, we loose nothing in case we want to leave them within this period. Don't be confused by the marketing trick.
Another lie. Not to mention everything has a limit, it's a joke to provide unlimited service for server hosting. Firstly, no people will really need unlimited stuff. Secondly, everything is actually limited by server admin. Some essential features like CPU/RAM usage is strictly limited per account. Once you reach the limitation you will receive warning notice to ask you delete something.
Another trick for those unlimited service is the fuzzy explanation. We worked with a popular hosting service who provides "unlimited domains to site". They actuall support up to 5 sites per account and when we need to add more, it prompts up billing notice. After contacted support, they explained it's "piont unlimited domains to existing website". Why should I point unlimited domains to existing site?
Free domain is not free! It's not a joke but truth. Normally, hosting company will provides a free domain for one year, but when it's due for renewal, the price will be more expensive comparing to certified domain registrar service. For example the regular registration fee is around $10/yr from godaddy, but when we renew from hosting provider, the price is always higher than that. Another problem is many hosting providers do not tell you where you registered the domain from, thus if you want to transfer out, they might not cooperate with us at all and simply tell us to contact the registrar directly.
Is cheap hosting service really cheap? Not really. Many cheap hosting service are trying to sell you addon products after account setup. Those service like scheduled backup, ssl and security scan etc are not cheap at all. They not only want to be profitable by selling those products but also want to link your business with them so you can renew year and year again. Because we have purchased those products in hosting account, we may not wish to reconfigure everything again from other providers. Also, many cheap service will be renewed at expensive "regular price".
We're working on your ticket
When your hosting support tell you somebody is working on your ticket, the technician in charge might be sleeping instead fixing problems. Normally, when a ticket is created, it will be auto assigned to according technicians and be queued in their schedules. Because technicians have lots of tickets to work with so we can't expect instant response like live communication. Live support can only view the ticket status but not sure if somebody is really working on it unless he contact that technician. However, most of the time live support just want to end the communication as fast as possible so they will not contact technician.
You need hosting from different countries? It might be great idea if the hosting company provides server service in multiple countries. But please keep in mind, not too many groups can really do that since it's a costly setup. Lots of hosting service setup support branch from oversea areas but don't manage servers in that country. If you really need service from the specific area, search a local service provider directly.
We never keep customer data
There's no way to verify if our data is copied anywhere or not because we don't have access to their system. Especially for those account backups, even the hosting company itself can not tecll how its stored. There's no government policy/laws to guide how should server companies handle those data so everything is actually operated by human virtues. Because we can not verify this, any guarantee is not trustable.