First of all: oh how I wish I googled before giving away my credit card details. But I guess we all learn from our experiences.
Some history: I've been a customer of The Planet (now SoftLayer) for almost 3 years now. And I've been a happy customer with them. There were some problems immediately after joining with the data center my server was hosted in having a huge explosion but I, and every customer involved, was compensated with 2 months of free hosting. Plus during the outage there was constant communication and updates - my server even got physically moved from one Houston data center to another. And if I ever had any questions these 3 years they were answered in a couple of minutes even if I'm in Europe and I happened to ask them in the morning which is middle of the night in Dallas.
But as my server is slowly aging I thought of looking for a refresh. I got my server from The Planet through a so called Server Special which offered discounted prices for some of the servers and as much as I saw the deal I got back then wasn't repeated since. That means that I could get a similar server with Softlayer but it would be pricier, even if 3 years passed since, which I find sort of dumb. So I started looking for alternatives and one friend recommended Serverloft. I wish he didn't.
I checked their page and it was sort of a too good to be true scenario - seeing all those features which were lightyears ahead of my current server offered at such great prices, but I thought that since I haven't really been in the business of looking after a new server I probably missed a great deal of progress. So I eyed their "PerfectServer L 2.5 Xeon (EU)" offering and hit the live chat button only to be greeted by a "leave a message" screen. I've asked them if the free setup is still available and they answered favorably, asked them about the upgrade of Plesk from 10 to 100 domains and then I asked them if they offer a DNS service which was also answered favorably. I'd like to mention that both these inquires were answered in a reasonable amount of time.
So after some consideration (damn, why didn't I google!?) I made an order using my credit card (why-oh-why didn't I use PayPal!?). Let me chronologically list what happened next:
1. Automated mail comes in that I have to confirm the email address. I click the link.
2. Automated welcome message comes.
3. About an hour later I receive a message that my order is incomplete and that this might delay the delivery of my server and that I should write my phone number because it wasn't in the order. I write them that I'm 100% sure I wrote my phone number (their form wouldn't submit otherwise) but I repeat it in the mail.
4. Almost immediately another e-mail comes that I have to send them scans of my ID and the credit card I've made the order with. Since I'm from Romania this happens pretty often so I have these scans at hand with all the sensitive info blurred out. I send them the scans immediately.
5. A few hours of silence later I get an e-mail stating that I have to repeat my order because it was incomplete. WTF? I send them a response stating that I've just sent in scans of my credit card and ID and I won't pass another order to get myself double charged - and that all this is very confusing for me. I was beginning to have serious doubts about them at this point.
6. More silence and I inquire if they received my scans.
7. During the night I get a response to my inquire about the scans that I have to repeat my order because it's incomplete. I get nervous about this and do not respond.
8. During the next day after some unbearable silence I write them an e-mail inquiring about the state of my order.
A day passed since then all I got was deep silence.
Is this the way to treat a customer? By ignoring his inquiries and leaving him in the dark wondering what the hell is happening behind the scenes? I had some experience with other hosting companies in the past by helping different clients to order servers but as soon as you passed an order you were immediately granted access to you control panel where you could track your order - inquiries were assigned a ticket number so the customer had a reference - plus a link on the web to see the state of your ticket. Nothing of this sort here, answers to my inquiries came in mile long emails filled mostly with white space and in the longer conversations it took me a while to identify where their actual response was.
Everything just screams incompetence.
Today I sent them an e-mail to cancel my order but I'm having a hunch that I'll still be charged sometime in the future and, judging from what I read around here on Web Hosting Talk maybe I'll even get my server in about a half a year or so.
So very disappointed.
[ I'll keep updating this thread as news emerge. ]
Sorry to hear you have had such a bad experience with them.
Better luck next time, hopefully you have learned your lesson and check some reviews about the company before actually doing business with them
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yeh sorry to hear about it man, ive recently started my own company and i joined Webhostingtalk to research into customers troubles with other companies so i dont make the mistake myself, hope you get it all sorted