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  1. #1

    How to know when a customer switches web hosts?

    I just learned a customer stiffed me with some past due invoices and switched web hosts instead of paying.

    Is there a way to know when a customer switches web hosts without manually having to check their DNS via whois?

    I'd really like to know when a customer swtiches as soon as they do.

    Any advice/tips/suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you!

  2. #2
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    Why worry about it? Customers will switch hosts constantly, some do every month. You'll get customers and lose customers, it's the nature of web hosting.

    If it's about invoicing, set a date you wish to cancel invoices if they are x days overdue and stick with it.

  3. #3
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    http://www.dailychanges.com/hostgator.com

    It updates once every 24 hours and will show accordingly any DNS changes.
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  4. #4
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  5. #5
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    write a script to list all domains in the server and to verify the name servers of those domains. Script to email if they are not using your name servers.
    Sam
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  6. #6
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    Write a script that ping the domain everyday, and let it tell you if the ip change one day.
    It could be a sign if they are backing up 2-4 days before the due date or they ask you a lot of questions about backing up.

  7. #7
    If you're using WHMCS, rather than making a separate script, I suggest you to hire a developer and add a hook to your installation. This hook can daily ping active domains, and generate an alert / support ticket if their hosting is changed.

  8. #8
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    You can use "WHM Account DNS Plugin".

    I use this plugin and suspend inactive domains but some of customers return after 1 - 2 month and ask me to unsuspend account.
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  9. #9
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    We had an employee that was wanting to implement some sort of monitoring for this sort of thing. At the end of the day hosting, by and large, is pre-pay meaning that if they don't pay they don't get the service. There is very little risk to this unless you're keeping services online that are seriously delinquent.

    Ultimately if you're providing services long enough after the payment was due and you're allowing that service to stay active you have little choice but to accept the loss if a customer skips out on you and doesn't pay.

    Sure - they're likely obligated to pay but unless we're talking hundreds of dollars you're never going to take them to court and turning them over to a debt collector isn't likely going to be a good option.

    I have, on occasion, given a long-term customer an extension on payment without suspension and I have yet for that to come around and bite me because we have very specific policies in place as to when a customer can or cannot get an extension.

    There are far too many factors we use to determine whether an extension is allowed for me to elaborate here and we use a fairly complex algorithm to determine the decision.

    Sure - sometimes people don't get extensions that want it and aren't happy with the policy but at the end of the day if you don't pay for something you don't get to use it.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by stablehost View Post
    Why worry about it? Customers will switch hosts constantly, some do every month. You'll get customers and lose customers, it's the nature of web hosting.

    If it's about invoicing, set a date you wish to cancel invoices if they are x days overdue and stick with it.




    It's human nature....online or offline. Some will stay for years (if you provide them good service), and some will change month to month.

    If you set up the automated/cron features in WHMCS properly, or hire someone to do so, it will send them reminders and consequences. If they don't pay or respond by a certain date...auto-close of ticket, auto-suspension, termination.



    Quote Originally Posted by PlatinumVPS View Post
    If you're using WHMCS, rather than making a separate script, I suggest you to hire a developer and add a hook to your installation. This hook can daily ping active domains, and generate an alert / support ticket if their hosting is changed.
    WHMCS already has that feature with the exception of creating a ticket once the report is generated.

  11. #11
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    It's ADD.
    Or the "grass is always greener" effect.
    Or refusal to realize their sites issues are from PEBKAC errors. (Stubbornness.)

    I've been with the same primary host for almost 8 years now (EuroVPS), and hope to be with them for 8 more. Why? I can spend time working, not moving around**. Researching new hosts and moving wastes so much time. (Namecheap is also an excellent host I rely now.)

    I understand needing to get away from bad choices (ie, newbies using EIG), but when a person bounces from host to host (good hosts like Stablehost), they're just [email protected] These are not the kind of customers you want anyway, and them moving is just somebody else's problem now. Just look at it this way.

    **Note: Granted, "wasting" this time is a large part of what I do, voluntarily, but not for my main two sites.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by kpmedia View Post
    It's ADD.
    Or the "grass is always greener" effect.
    Or refusal to realize their sites issues are from PEBKAC errors. (Stubbornness.)

    I've been with the same primary host for almost 8 years now (EuroVPS), and hope to be with them for 8 more. Why? I can spend time working, not moving around**. Researching new hosts and moving wastes so much time. (Namecheap is also an excellent host I rely now.)

    I understand needing to get away from bad choices (ie, newbies using EIG), but when a person bounces from host to host (good hosts like Stablehost), they're just [email protected] These are not the kind of customers you want anyway, and them moving is just somebody else's problem now. Just look at it this way.

    **Note: Granted, "wasting" this time is a large part of what I do, voluntarily, but not for my main two sites.
    I came across this once and they were extremely upset to listen to good advice and moved on.

    Moving through all the bad hosts...they were convinced the issue was the host...host after host. Turns out they were averaging 9,000 visits a day and trying to stay on a shared account. Every host shut them down for over-using resources. Host 1...2...5...7...14....all of them, the cheapest hosts they can find, going down the usual suspect 10 list. Who knows how long they will stay on that road before they upgrade or move to a better host.

  13. #13
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    When my sites were going slow -- this was years and years ago -- I asked the host what was wrong. The answer? The site was getting more popular! Yay, me! My choice in software was also resource-hungry. They told me to move, and I did. Back then, that meant a dedicated server. It cost more, sure, but the popular site was also making more and covered itself.

    It always floors me how people get up in arms over being told it's time to upgrade.

    There's so many choices now, be it VPS or semi-dedi, so it's not like it a HUGE investment to upgrade anymore. "Oh no! $50 whole dollars!" Meanwhile, the sites makes $100 without sneezing, and the moron owner thinks $10 hosting is "expensive".

    They just need education. Some will listen, some go head-in-sand.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by 48-14 View Post
    WHMCS already has that feature with the exception of creating a ticket once the report is generated.
    Which feature is that, please? Not seeing anything in the stock reports section that does this, at least obviously.
    Having problems, or maybe questions about WHT? Head over to the help desk!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear View Post
    Which feature is that, please? Not seeing anything in the stock reports section that does this, at least obviously.
    In the WHMCS menu;

    Utilities -> Domain Resolver.

    The description on that page
    This utility allows you to check the IP address each domain in your WHMCS system is pointing to. This allows you to easily see which domains are no longer pointing at your servers and therefore identify clients that may no longer be using your service in order to free up resources.
    It has the option to check all servers or a specific server...if WHMCS is setup properly.

    It shows a list of Domain, IP Address, Package, Status, Client

    Under each title heading is the domain/site info, but the important column is the IP. That column will show the active IP of each domain which should match the IP of the server...with the exception of someone using cloudflare or similar.

    There is a send message and terminate button on the same page for any accounts that do not match that servers IP.

  16. #16
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    In all the time I've been using this, I never once clicked on that menu item.
    Thanks, handy thing, that.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear View Post
    In all the time I've been using this, I never once clicked on that menu item.
    Thanks, handy thing, that.
    You're Welcome


    I find many things like that too. 500 functions with dozens of custom features...only to use about 15-20 of them.

  18. #18
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    That's incredibly narrow minded of you, though I am not surprised.

    It's not always as cut and dry with a host saying your site is growing popular and you need to upgrade. I know forpersonal experience that a host who i won't name told me i needed to upgrade to a higher and expensive plan and come to find, there was really no need to. They were essentially upselling for no apparent reason other than trying to help find a solution that didn't involve going up to an unnecessary plan.

    A lot of people don't make money off their sites(I am one of those included), however, and some of these people may have a set/fixed budget so yes to these customers...these "Morons" as you call them, $50 more a month or whatever IS a big deal, hence the confusion people have when they come to WHT and unnecessary replies like yours don't do much to help.

    Now i will agree with you, people who expect the world for $10 are being highly unreasonable. Not morons, just unreasonable.

    Quote Originally Posted by kpmedia View Post
    When my sites were going slow -- this was years and years ago -- I asked the host what was wrong. The answer? The site was getting more popular! Yay, me! My choice in software was also resource-hungry. They told me to move, and I did. Back then, that meant a dedicated server. It cost more, sure, but the popular site was also making more and covered itself.

    It always floors me how people get up in arms over being told it's time to upgrade.

    There's so many choices now, be it VPS or semi-dedi, so it's not like it a HUGE investment to upgrade anymore. "Oh no! $50 whole dollars!" Meanwhile, the sites makes $100 without sneezing, and the moron owner thinks $10 hosting is "expensive".

    They just need education. Some will listen, some go head-in-sand.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hayden Forever View Post
    That's incredibly narrow minded of you, though I am not surprised.

    It's not always as cut and dry with a host saying your site is growing popular and you need to upgrade. I know forpersonal experience that a host who i won't name told me i needed to upgrade to a higher and expensive plan and come to find, there was really no need to. They were essentially upselling for no apparent reason other than trying to help find a solution that didn't involve going up to an unnecessary plan.

    A lot of people don't make money off their sites(I am one of those included), however, and some of these people may have a set/fixed budget so yes to these customers...these "Morons" as you call them, $50 more a month or whatever IS a big deal, hence the confusion people have when they come to WHT and unnecessary replies like yours don't do much to help.

    Now i will agree with you, people who expect the world for $10 are being highly unreasonable. Not morons, just unreasonable.


    It's funny since I've seen so many of such stories.

    Customer with $5 account needs an upgrade, so the host upsells the $200 a month option, completely skipping everything in between.

    OR

    "My $5 account is suspended, I losing thousands every hour it's down".


    Personally I find the statement Mission Critical somewhat odd....aren't all sites mission critical in some form?!?!? If it goes down there's some type of consequence for it going down...unless it's a family album site.

    Almost all the sites I've dealt with are related to the owners business, so any downtime is not acceptable, BUT it may happen due to maintenance, but they don't start claiming to lose $$$$$$$$$$$ by the minute. If these were true....one client....retire.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by stablehost View Post
    Why worry about it? Customers will switch hosts constantly, some do every month. You'll get customers and lose customers, it's the nature of web hosting.

    If it's about invoicing, set a date you wish to cancel invoices if they are x days overdue and stick with it.
    Indeed, and even if you are small, don't sweat it. Maybe see if they were unhappy so you can improve if need be, but if there were no issues, just close the account when due to.

    It's a part of the industry

  21. #21
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    You can install in WHM: Account DNS Check WHM Plugin!
    So, you will see websites DNS, others than yours.

  22. #22
    Wonderful tips! Thank you so much!

    Selene

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear View Post
    In all the time I've been using this, I never once clicked on that menu item.
    Thanks, handy thing, that.
    It worked well enough before services like CloudFlare and Incapsula and other such caching proxies.

    The domain will resolve to an external IP even though they are still using your services.

    The WHMCS tool was great before the advent of these new services. A custom solution would really be the best option at this point - one that can take into account CloudFlare and other such services.
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by 48-14 View Post
    "My $5 account is suspended, I losing thousands every hour it's down"..
    Yep, I see this all the time.
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