WE’RE CALLED UPTIME BUT WE DON’T HAVE AN UPTIME GUARANTEE. WHAT’S WITH THAT?
Just about every website hosting company has an Uptime Guarantee. Most will tell you its 99%. So why don’t we have one? Sadly, it’s an underhanded marketing gimmick that is quite misleading.
WHY UPTIME GUARANTEES DON’T MATTER
Let’s say we offered a 99% uptime guarantee as part of our service. Over 30 days, if we add up the time, that equates to 43,200 minutes of service. 1% of that is 432 minutes which is over 7 hours.
That means your website could stay offline for over 7 hours and we wouldn’t have broken the guarantee.
CAN YOU AFFORD TO HAVE YOUR WEBSITE OFFLINE FOR 7 HOURS? HOW ABOUT 3 DAYS?
The acceptable allowed time can actually be a lot more. If the guarantee is calculated quarterly, almost a whole day is acceptable (1314 minutes = 21 hours). Some hosts calculate it annualy which gives them a window of over 3 three days of allowed offline time.
CAN YOU ACTUALLY BE COMPENSATED FOR DOWNTIME?
Even if you did argue (and win) that you were owed compensation for your website being offline. How much are you entitled to receive? Different hosts have different policies and at most you might get a months worth of credit. If you’re only paying a few dollars a month then this is all you will get back. It’s not really going to cover the lost sales or missed opportunities your website may have had while it was offline.
WHAT’S THE ALTERNATIVE TO UPTIME GUARANTEES?
At least some web hosts are honest and will say that they strive for a 99% up time but then go on to say that they don’t compensate if they don’t reach that target.
If the guarantees offered by web hosts don’t really matter then what is the alternative? The only choice you have is to use a host that is upfront, honest and does everything they can to keep your website online.
You’ve probably heard the saying that it’s easier to keep a customer than get a new one. How do we keep you as our customer? We keep your service online, provide you with great support and bill you competitive pricing.
If your web host doesn’t do everything in their power to keep your website online all the time then switch. It’s not as hard as it sounds and most hosts (depending upon your website set up) will even transfer your site to their servers for free. We also offer this service and we also know that if we don’t provide a good service you can just leave. Every web hosting account is important to us. We want to build our business with more clients, not lose them.
WHAT SORT OF UPTIME CAN YOU EXPECT FROM ANY WEB HOST COMPANY?
The fact is servers need maintenance and this sometimes requires a reboot.
In some rare cases, hardware may fail or even worse the server becomes compromised in some fashion. In these scenerios your web hosts management of the disaster recovery process sets them apart from other providers.
There’s also a dependancy for any web host company on their upstream provider. This is completely out of their control.
Lastly, there’s also user error. If you’ve configured your website incorrectly, the web host isn’t really responsible. In saying that though a good web host will do all they can to help or at least point you in the right direction.
In summary, service level agreements or uptime guarantees don’t really matter. Choosing a web host that makes it their mission to keep your website online the best they possibly can is a more honest and realistic approach.