Hosting down time - message to list or not?

25 replies
Hi, my hosting with Hostgator has just gone down for the third time in two weeks - it was down for approximately two hours this time. I'm looking at changing hosting company. In the meantime, I have a new list which has attracted a few hundred subscribers in the last two weeks - people subscribe to watch a series of videos, so some of the subscribers will have inevitably been to the site to watch the next video in the series and been inconvenienced by the down-time and will have seen the message "server is not responding". My question is, how would you deal with this so far as these new members of the list are concerned (to avoid loss of confidence caused by the server not responding). As I see it the main options are:

1. Do nothing - there would probably only be a small part of the list visiting during the down-time. When they receive the next regular email, they will know all is OK anyway.
2. Send an email to the list apologising for the inconvenience of the downtime and leave it at that - anyone that was inconvenienced has received an appropriate apology and will know it's ok - the rest of the list is alerted to the server issue.
3. Send an email to the list apologising for the inconvenience of the downtime and offering a free bonus.

I'm tending towards one of these options. However, I don't want to influence any ideas or vote, and I'd be very grateful for your thoughts on which of the above you think is the best course, or whether you think that there is another better course of action to take. Thanks in advance for your ideas.
#hosting #list #message #time
  • Profile picture of the author CynthiaC
    Considering the subject "Sorry" has a very high open rate - an email could be a great thing.

    If it were me I would send the email with a bonus inside
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    • Profile picture of the author RichEmmett
      Originally Posted by CynthiaC View Post

      If it were me I would send the email with a bonus inside
      Thanks Cynthia - with or without an OTO relevant to a new subscriber after the bonus is claimed
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      • Profile picture of the author CynthiaC
        Originally Posted by RichEmmett View Post

        with or without an OTO relevant to a new subscriber after the bonus is claimed
        I can't say for certain without knowing all the details.

        BUT

        My general thought is; if they are on your list because of a freebee optin AND haven't recently paid you for something already - then I would say an OTO might be another good idea!

        Maybe something that will put your video series results on steroids
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        • Profile picture of the author RichEmmett
          Originally Posted by CynthiaC View Post

          I can't say for certain without knowing all the details.

          BUT

          My general thought is; if they are on your list because of a freebee optin AND haven't recently paid you for something already - then I would say an OTO might be another good idea!

          Maybe something that will put your video series results on steroids
          Brilliant! Thanks very much for that Cynthia - very helpful
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    • Profile picture of the author RichEmmett
      Originally Posted by ron200 View Post

      Are they being hacked? why do they keep going down?
      The first time I was advised that Hostgator were updating cPanel and there was a new firmware issue that needed to be resolved. The second time I was told that it was related to the same issue. Today, I was told by Hostgator that there was an "emergency maintenance issue" affecting the server - I know this last one is fairly general - I tried to find out more and was told that the technical details were not available to customer support. Fortunately, all my sites are back up now. 3 times in 2 weeks seems a lot though - they're doing an audit to see how much downtime there has been for the guarantee.
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      • Profile picture of the author Kingfish85
        Originally Posted by RichEmmett View Post

        The first time I was advised that Hostgator were updating cPanel and there was a new firmware issue that needed to be resolved. The second time I was told that it was related to the same issue. Today, I was told by Hostgator that there was an "emergency maintenance issue" affecting the server - I know this last one is fairly general - I tried to find out more and was told that the technical details were not available to customer support. Fortunately, all my sites are back up now. 3 times in 2 weeks seems a lot though - they're doing an audit to see how much downtime there has been for the guarantee.
        This has been going on for over a year, on a regular basis. It started with the so called "upgrade" when EIG started moving everything out of SoftLayer in Dallas & into their own datacenter in Utah.

        I'd recommend finding yourself a better web host.
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  • Profile picture of the author Anne Laidlaw
    My vote is for option 3 and the oto after they get their bonus.

    Anne L
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  • Profile picture of the author Omarkenawy
    I prefer to send an apologizing message to your list but after you discuss this issue with the hosting company or in case your upline sent you a message then forward it to your subscriber
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  • Profile picture of the author mojojuju
    Originally Posted by RichEmmett View Post

    Hi, my hosting with Hostgator has just gone down for the third time in two weeks - it was down for approximately two hours this time. I'm looking at changing hosting company. In the meantime, I have a new list which has attracted a few hundred subscribers in the last two weeks
    In the meantime? How much time are you going to wait to get a new host?

    Get yourself to a more reliable host ASAP so you won't have to waste another minute coming up with ways to apologize for your hosts downtime.
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    :)

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    • Profile picture of the author heavysm
      Originally Posted by mojojuju View Post

      In the meantime? How much time are you going to wait to get a new host?

      Get yourself to a more reliable host ASAP so you won't have to waste another minute coming up with ways to apologize for your hosts downtime.
      Honestly, I think moving to a new non-EIG host would be best right now.

      Just go over to webhostingtalk to see some nice shared hosting plans as there are a TON of quality companies there willing to serve you.

      Hawkhost has probably one of the cheapest plans I know of for like 3 gigs of space, 250 g bandwidth...$10 for like 3 months.

      I'm just saying that picking almost any host that isn't EIG based would be an improvement for you.

      There are so many things to manage about when maintaining and growing a business online. The least of your worries, at least most of the time, should be server down time.
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  • Profile picture of the author Stuart Walker
    Just had this problem with HG too.

    Site down multiple times in the space of 2 weeks.

    I kept my list updated throughout and delayed any scheduled broadcast and follow up messages so they weren't getting messages linking to things they could not access.

    In that time I moved from HG to WPEngine as I wasn't willing to continue with those problems.

    I've since found out WPEngine might not be as good as I was initially led to believe. Suddenly I'm hearing lots of problems with them too but so far so good for me.

    I suggest you email your list and move to a dedicated and more reliable host. Shared hosting with HG (and probably most other companies) is no use for an online business.

    I never had any problems with HG for years but recently I and many others have had non stop problems so it's not worth the risk of staying with them IMO.
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    • Profile picture of the author mojojuju
      Originally Posted by Stuart Walker View Post


      I suggest you email your list and move to a dedicated and more reliable host. Shared hosting with HG (and probably most other companies) is no use for an online business.

      Shared hosting can be fine as long as you don't go with a candy-ass host that tries to stuff as many accounts as possible on a server. Also, dedicated servers can be bad if they're on poor hardware and poor networks.
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      :)

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  • Profile picture of the author kpmedia
    Here's an idea: Use a better host!
    No apologies necessary thereafter.
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  • Profile picture of the author bwh1
    I'm having a similar problem with my EIG hosting provider, while biggest issue is slow loading speed (some up to 6 seconds to load my homepage) what's the reason for my high bounce rate.

    Look out for a new host, I'm in the process and for me it's most probably one of those

    A2Hosting or Site5

    There are a few ones I had a look at which seams very good like Hawkhost, Veerotech (running a WSO special), D9Hosting, Stablehost (running a WSO special), Arvixe, Namecheap

    Just a matter of personal preference to pick one of the 2 I mentioned, guess all the others are a better option then EIG - Hostmonster in my case.

    G.
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  • Profile picture of the author James9vs
    Best solution for you open the internet browser and search with Google hope you will find out a better web host.
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  • Profile picture of the author vishwa
    First of all send a apology email with a bonus inside to your subscriber and work on to move to another web host. Mine blog was also on hostgator servers and facing frequent downtime. So, I moved to another hosting and quite Happy with them.
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  • Profile picture of the author Brent Stangel
    Arvixe,
    I moved all my sites to Arvixe quite some time ago. I'm happy with them.
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  • Profile picture of the author talfighel
    Hey Rich,

    If I was on your list, that would make me mad to get this message over and over again. If this keeps happening all the time in the near future, I would actually look for another web hoster.

    If it happens again, it's time to move on buddy.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joe Mobley
      Hosting down time - message to list or not?

      No. It may be possible that most of your visitors did not know that there was any downtime. No need to advertise blemishes.

      Those that did notice will contact you, believe me. You can handle them on an individual bases.

      Joe Mobley
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      .

      Follow Me on Twitter: @daVinciJoe
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  • Profile picture of the author LuckyIMer
    I would send an email informing users that we are switching to new web host with better performance and infrastructure, I would avoid mentioning anything about downtime. By doing this you are informing the users who experienced downtown that you are taking action to solve the issue and you wouldn't be letting the other users know about the downtime that occurred.

    Make it like a good news without an apology.

    For hosting, I recommend HostNurse , they have cheap hosting plans, but great services and support.
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  • Profile picture of the author xIllumination
    Hey,

    have you considered setting up a failover server ?

    What you would essentially do is have a second server with a different hosting company and then use a service like dnsmadeeasy to setup a failoverflow if you server goes does. You can set a TTL of 180 seconds and it will check to see if your server is online every 180 seconds if not, switch to the backup.
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