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  1. #1
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    More $0.02 about "Holier than thou" providers

    Some more of my $0.02.....

    One of the things that irritates me the most on WHT is seeing web hosting providers with their "holier than thou" attitude towards potential, current, or past customers. Now mind you this is a very small sliver, but still enough cause problems and controversy.

    I believe a successful web hosting provider should try to make the customer happy in nearly every case. The purpose of customer care/service is to compromise with the customer over a problem, and resolve the issue. Even if you, as the provider, are 100% in the right...sometimes compromising just a bit will keep the customer happy enough to stay. And if not, maybe they will come back in the future.

    I wrote a few ideas about some "holier than thou" with attitudes:

    #1 If your the owner/CEO of the company, do yourself a favor: Don't Reply. It amazes me the complete lack of experience from some of these owners who reply to threads about their companies. I understand... it's your baby, and you love it. But this is about business, don't let your emotions get out of hand. You could be 100% right and the customer 100% wrong... don't make yourself look like a 100% fool.

    #2 Bashing a customer over the head, won't make you look better to the community. What it does is makes you look like you don't care at all, and your customers mean nothing to you. Business-Customer relationship should be like any relationship when there is a problem = Compromise the best you can. If a customer said they have a problem and your reply is something to the affect that they are stupid, you just lost that relationship. Get ready for a business divorce.

    #3 If you offer non-managed support, at least give the customer a suggestion. What... it takes a minute? If the customer has a problem, suggest a means of fixing it. By either a solution, or providing them with another service company that can help them. There are a lot of good companies that offer administration services at good prices. If a customer asks for help and you immediately turn to a "Non-Managed Service" answer, that in my book is very poor customer service.

    #4 What is so wrong with going the extra mile? Make your customer feel like you actually care. Send out a monthly newsletter, and simply ask your customers, "What can we do to make your service better?" You'll be amazed at the response you will get. And you could take some ideas to actually make your service better.

    So sum it up if you have a person opening a thread on WHT that shows your company in a negative light, there are a lot of ways to reply in a positive way. Going on the immediate attack, just shows your lack of customer understanding and business skills. The better you portray the company, the most positive affect you will have on potential customers.

    Your thoughts? P.S This is in NO reflection of any one host, nor no immediate bad experience. Just $0.02 from experience over the last 15 years.
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  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by PinkFloydWS View Post

    #3 If you offer non-managed support, at least give the customer a suggestion. What... it takes a minute? If the customer has a problem, suggest a means of fixing it. By either a solution, or providing them with another service company that can help them. There are a lot of good companies that offer administration services at good prices. If a customer asks for help and you immediately turn to a "Non-Managed Service" answer, that in my book is very poor customer service.
    I think its nice to at least make a suggestion however if non-managed really means managed then why would anyone ever pay more for managed? Also as a seasoned sysadmin I want true unmanaged and I want a discount for it. If providers have to spend all their time dealing with tickets for "managed" issues eventually they will either have to raise their prices or cease offering unmanaged. As long as the server provider makes it clear that it is "unmanaged" then I see nothing wrong with it. The customer is wrong to expect managed service when it has been an unmanaged deal all along.

    Perhaps there should be something like the five minute rule. The support person will spend up to five minutes giving suggestions but no more and will make it clear that these are only hints. If the provider has to go over 5 -15 minutes to provide help then it is basically like a managed service which they would then be providing for free. The five minutes would be just a courtesy.
    Last edited by dlm7; 07-22-2009 at 04:56 PM.

  3. #3
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    Good post up there, Floyd. Bear in mind this doesn't apply only to hosts, however. I've watched hosts, server management companies and domain resellers do much of the same. Customer service is servicing the customer, even if they are bashing you or caused their own issue. We've had clients that left, but came back years later because we treated them well even on the way out.

    Compassion, consideration and polite responses go a long way. If not with the current customer, then with the hundreds that read the thread afterwards when looking for a provider.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by PinkFloydWS View Post
    #1 If your the owner/CEO of the company, do yourself a favor: Don't Reply. It amazes me the complete lack of experience from some of these owners who reply to threads about their companies. I understand... it's your baby, and you love it. But this is about business, don't let your emotions get out of hand. You could be 100% right and the customer 100% wrong... don't make yourself look like a 100% fool.
    Change it to "if your emotional" and this statement would be correct. There are plenty of great CEO's and higher ups out there that are more than willing to help out an unsatisfied client. Grouping CEO'es in general to a single category is grossly incorrect.

    Quote Originally Posted by PinkFloydWS View Post
    #2 Bashing a customer over the head, won't make you look better to the community. What it does is makes you look like you don't care at all, and your customers mean nothing to you. Business-Customer relationship should be like any relationship when there is a problem = Compromise the best you can. If a customer said they have a problem and your reply is something to the affect that they are stupid, you just lost that relationship. Get ready for a business divorce.
    I agree however it would also be helpful if the reverse was true for customers. Just because you don't like something you should go posting on a forum how "horrible" the company is for a single issue that you've had in a year of great service. I've seen some threads here on WHT that are beyond ridiculous.

    Quote Originally Posted by PinkFloydWS View Post
    #3 If you offer non-managed support, at least give the customer a suggestion. What... it takes a minute? If the customer has a problem, suggest a means of fixing it. By either a solution, or providing them with another service company that can help them. There are a lot of good companies that offer administration services at good prices. If a customer asks for help and you immediately turn to a "Non-Managed Service" answer, that in my book is very poor customer service.
    I would agree with dlm7. While spending some time giving a suggestion is always nice there is a reason that unmanaged service is generally cheaper than a managed product. You shouldn't expect us to suggest you all the way to the solution when our managed customers pay more for the support.
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  5. #5
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    Just going to play devil's advocate here, not that this is our situation, etc.

    What about a company that is at capacity service-wise and who has customers lined up to take any available resources? Wouldn't it be better for them, that if a customer is giving trouble, demanding things beyond the norm, to simply have them leave and let a new customer move in? What is the point of making the customer happy if that is not the type of customer the company wants in the first place? In those cases, why take on more expense or give up profit margin unless you have to?

    Not all hosts have resources to take on every customer, they'll have limited space, limited network resources, limited staffing, etc. In those cases, they may need to pick and chose their customers.

    Also, regarding the newsletter, we had tried that for a little bit, but we got more people complaining about getting "spam" even though we had an easy method to unsubscribe, than we got positive responses...

  6. #6
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    Because Karl, the next client will leave you too soon if you work in that way.
    We (all, you too) require the service and some respect, some help sometimes which the host wont cost anything (or $0.02, as the OP has stated). If we (all again, don't forget that no matter what we do, we all sell but also buy) don't get that, we wont be happy by the overall service and probably leave.
    Let's say you are a webhost company. You got end the clients and rented the hardware from some bigger company which rents their servers. If your clients don't receive good service (in every aspect, not only in uptime or performance of the server), they will eventually leave you. The same will happen with you if you don't receive the same from the DC that rents you the hardware.
    Now let's say you are a DC. You rent the hardware to other clients, you don't manage their servers... but you still buy from others service like electricity, hardware and network. So you again expect from the guys that give what you need to be respectful and helpful.
    One kind word wont harm nobody. I've had a client that left me and I told him we are sorry he decided to do that and if there is anything I can do to make him stay, but he have already decided that so there was no way I could keep him (his friend started webhosting company, not that our service was bad). I offered him to help him with the transfer, which he accepted and which I did and wished him luck in the end. After 6 months he returned to me. So I lost 30 minutes while being kind to him (although I didn't have to... I mean, he is only one client, and I have enough so one that leaves just because he wants so doesn't harm my company) but now I am hosting him for 2 years straight.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by xeno007 View Post
    Because Karl, the next client will leave you too soon if you work in that way.
    We (all, you too) require the service and some respect, some help sometimes which the host wont cost anything (or $0.02, as the OP has stated). If we (all again, don't forget that no matter what we do, we all sell but also buy) don't get that, we wont be happy by the overall service and probably leave.
    This thread is not about general service levels or showing general respect to your customers, it is specifically regarding "going above and beyond" and "going the extra mile" for a customer, etc. A vast majority of customers will be happy with the base level of service and will not need the hand holding required by those that will require you to go above and beyond. Because you do not please that very small percent of customers in no way affects the overall perception of your other customers, who are already happy with the level of service provided. Saying customers will leave because one other customer demanded service beyond what they were actually purchasing and didn't receive it seems to have absolutely no standing in reality.

    Also, your example gives no concern to the scenario I proposed. If the customer leaves, and later changes their mind and wants to return, they will be declined, as the provider is out of resources to offer them.
    Last edited by KarlZimmer; 07-22-2009 at 09:17 PM.

  8. #8
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    Customers are always right!

    I strongly believe in this statement. It's because of customers that we are in business. It's because of customer's that our business grows. It's customers that pay our salary. Sure, not everyone is tech savvy and may need that additional hand walking, so what? If we aren't willing to assist people then we shouldn't be in business.

    With that being said, there are limitations (i.e. the whole controversy between unmanaged and managed services). I think the first and foremost thing to do is to explain your service offering so the end user can understand it. Most of the time clients go with the unmanaged service because it is cheaper, not knowing that if they do need Managed services later on it will cost more. However on the other side, recommending a solution to an unmanaged client shouldn't be a huge task. At the end of the day we're not all GURUS, we may need assistance with certain things as well and it would be nice if we can get options on how to resolve it. But by just stating, sorry we can't help because you have an unmanaged product and/or service isn't going to help.

    Whether it be web hosting or a local convenience store, there will always be problems/issues. Nobody is perfect, or I haven't come across anyone who is till date. The important thing is to lend a hand and/or fix issues when they occur.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by KarlZimmer View Post
    This thread is not about general service levels, it is specifically regarding "going above and beyond" for a customer, etc.
    Strange, but I thought that this thread is rather simply to be understood. The OP is very clear:

    Quote Originally Posted by PinkFloydWS View Post
    #2 Bashing a customer over the head, won't make you look better to the community.

    #3 If you offer non-managed support, at least give the customer a suggestion.

    #4 What is so wrong with going the extra mile?
    Basically, is very simply. Not going above and beyond, just taking the extra mile, dedicate to the client 1 more minute of your time to give him a advice how he may solve the issue although the service is unmanaged. Just one more extra mile, not above and beyond

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason_Slominski View Post
    Customers are always right!

    I strongly believe in this statement. It's because of customers that we are in business. It's because of customer's that our business grows. It's customers that pay our salary. Sure, not everyone is tech savvy and may need that additional hand walking, so what? If we aren't willing to assist people then we shouldn't be in business.

    With that being said, there are limitations (i.e. the whole controversy between unmanaged and managed services). I think the first and foremost thing to do is to explain your service offering so the end user can understand it. Most of the time clients go with the unmanaged service because it is cheaper, not knowing that if they do need Managed services later on it will cost more. However on the other side, recommending a solution to an unmanaged client shouldn't be a huge task. At the end of the day we're not all GURUS, we may need assistance with certain things as well and it would be nice if we can get options on how to resolve it. But by just stating, sorry we can't help because you have an unmanaged product and/or service isn't going to help.

    Whether it be web hosting or a local convenience store, there will always be problems/issues. Nobody is perfect, or I haven't come across anyone who is till date. The important thing is to lend a hand and/or fix issues when they occur.
    That seems to be basically accurate. You can't always please everyone, and even if what you offer is fair, it won't please everyone, though you should certainly make an attempt to please all customers.

    That is of course assuming a standard business model, and I will certainly never demand that someone else run their company in the same manner.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by xeno007 View Post
    Basically, is very simply. Not going above and beyond, just taking the extra mile, dedicate to the client 1 more minute of your time to give him a advice how he may solve the issue although the service is unmanaged. Just one more extra mile, not above and beyond
    To me, "above and beyond" and "going the extra mile" mean the same thing, doing more than what is required. How do you define them so that they are different?
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  12. #12
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    If you go two miles out of the way for a client, next week they'll ask you to go five. There's a balance between going out of your way for a client and going out of business because of a client's requests.
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  13. #13
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    Just to expand on that a tad further before I'm burned at the stake -- understand that even most dedicated providers are working on extremely slim margins in the first place. When you rent an unmanaged dedicated server from a provider, consider that on top of the actual cost of the hardware they've got space, power & a significant number of costs. When you toss employees on top of that @ $45-100+ an hour per employee for capable team members and your system which is bringing them a mere $60 a month after all of the other expenses: Quite frankly, they're not going to be able to financially dedicate anyone to you for even an hour and still reap a profit.

    Yes, it's in their best interest to keep you satisfied while you're a profitable client or someone who will potentially bring them other clients but the moment you turn unprofitable, there's a decision to be made whether or not you're worth it if you're potentially taking time away from the other several thousand clients who are profitable or close to it.

    Anywhom. It's a very fine line. All companies inherently want to keep their clients satisfied, having the means and team to do so in an extremely 'price competitive' market makes it unfeasible for a lot of providers following certain pricing models. 'Unmanaged' needs to remain unmanaged, if you need the help: Google, or pay more.

    (And no, bashing clients or being condescending won't help. Not sure why that's even part of the equation.)
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by David View Post
    If you go two miles out of the way for a client, next week they'll ask you to go five. There's a balance between going out of your way for a client and going out of business because of a client's requests.
    Getting up from computer and walking to kitchen...

    Quote Originally Posted by David View Post
    Just to expand on that a tad further before I'm burned at the stake
    Good save... I was going into the kitchen to get some matches.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear View Post
    We've had clients that left, but came back years later because we treated them well even on the way out.

    Compassion, consideration and polite responses go a long way. If not with the current customer, then with the hundreds that read the thread afterwards when looking for a provider.
    Ditto. We have plenty of returned customers too because of this.
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  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by PinkFloydWS View Post
    Some more of my $0.02.....

    One of the things that irritates me the most on WHT is seeing web hosting providers with their "holier than thou" attitude towards potential, current, or past customers. Now mind you this is a very small sliver, but still enough cause problems and controversy.

    I believe a successful web hosting provider should try to make the customer happy in nearly every case. The purpose of customer care/service is to compromise with the customer over a problem, and resolve the issue. Even if you, as the provider, are 100% in the right...sometimes compromising just a bit will keep the customer happy enough to stay. And if not, maybe they will come back in the future.

    I wrote a few ideas about some "holier than thou" with attitudes:

    #1 If your the owner/CEO of the company, do yourself a favor: Don't Reply. It amazes me the complete lack of experience from some of these owners who reply to threads about their companies. I understand... it's your baby, and you love it. But this is about business, don't let your emotions get out of hand. You could be 100% right and the customer 100% wrong... don't make yourself look like a 100% fool.

    #2 Bashing a customer over the head, won't make you look better to the community. What it does is makes you look like you don't care at all, and your customers mean nothing to you. Business-Customer relationship should be like any relationship when there is a problem = Compromise the best you can. If a customer said they have a problem and your reply is something to the affect that they are stupid, you just lost that relationship. Get ready for a business divorce.

    #3 If you offer non-managed support, at least give the customer a suggestion. What... it takes a minute? If the customer has a problem, suggest a means of fixing it. By either a solution, or providing them with another service company that can help them. There are a lot of good companies that offer administration services at good prices. If a customer asks for help and you immediately turn to a "Non-Managed Service" answer, that in my book is very poor customer service.

    #4 What is so wrong with going the extra mile? Make your customer feel like you actually care. Send out a monthly newsletter, and simply ask your customers, "What can we do to make your service better?" You'll be amazed at the response you will get. And you could take some ideas to actually make your service better.

    So sum it up if you have a person opening a thread on WHT that shows your company in a negative light, there are a lot of ways to reply in a positive way. Going on the immediate attack, just shows your lack of customer understanding and business skills. The better you portray the company, the most positive affect you will have on potential customers.

    Your thoughts? P.S This is in NO reflection of any one host, nor no immediate bad experience. Just $0.02 from experience over the last 15 years.
    very nice post.. unfortunately, the real world does not always work this way.. there are customers that maliciously act in a specific manner in which to receive free services and other monetary gains..

    I try to be fair with all customers - our staff are under a mandate to bend over backwards to help customers - but, sometimes, at some point - the president or CEO needs to step in and draw a line in the sand.. its a tough business running a company that is based on service, managing expectations and very aggressive uptime SLA's... reality is simple here.. there are a lot of questionable providers in this industry, which fuels consumer anger - and rightfully so - but, there are also a fair number of customers that play on this weakness in the industry and attempt to leverage it for their own gains...

    A "good" CEO will accommodate clients when necessary - and will stand up to clients when necessary.. it is all part and parcel for this industry - and certainly not a position for those with a sensitive digestive system...

    the customer is not always right - and the customer cannot always be accommodated.. most providers will try their best - but, to assume a customer is always right and to put the onus of responsibility on a provider to make things right is not always the right solution - with ANY reasonable or semi-reasonable customer - I would agree - but, things are not always that clear cut.. ultimately, it is a providers perogative to decide who they want to do business with and it is sometimes in a providers best interest, and most importantly - the best interest of their other customers - to not back down....

    If this makes us one of your "holier then though" providers - so be it...
    Last edited by cartika-andrew; 07-22-2009 at 11:53 PM.

  17. #17
    I have to back up Andrew on this one 100%.

    Sometimes you have no choice but to tell a client "No".

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by PinkFloydWS View Post
    Some more of my $0.02.....

    One of the things that irritates me the most on WHT is seeing web hosting providers with their "holier than thou" attitude towards potential, current, or past customers. Now mind you this is a very small sliver, but still enough cause problems and controversy.

    I believe a successful web hosting provider should try to make the customer happy in nearly every case. The purpose of customer care/service is to compromise with the customer over a problem, and resolve the issue. Even if you, as the provider, are 100% in the right...sometimes compromising just a bit will keep the customer happy enough to stay. And if not, maybe they will come back in the future.

    I wrote a few ideas about some "holier than thou" with attitudes:

    #1 If your the owner/CEO of the company, do yourself a favor: Don't Reply. It amazes me the complete lack of experience from some of these owners who reply to threads about their companies. I understand... it's your baby, and you love it. But this is about business, don't let your emotions get out of hand. You could be 100% right and the customer 100% wrong... don't make yourself look like a 100% fool.

    #2 Bashing a customer over the head, won't make you look better to the community. What it does is makes you look like you don't care at all, and your customers mean nothing to you. Business-Customer relationship should be like any relationship when there is a problem = Compromise the best you can. If a customer said they have a problem and your reply is something to the affect that they are stupid, you just lost that relationship. Get ready for a business divorce.

    #3 If you offer non-managed support, at least give the customer a suggestion. What... it takes a minute? If the customer has a problem, suggest a means of fixing it. By either a solution, or providing them with another service company that can help them. There are a lot of good companies that offer administration services at good prices. If a customer asks for help and you immediately turn to a "Non-Managed Service" answer, that in my book is very poor customer service.

    #4 What is so wrong with going the extra mile? Make your customer feel like you actually care. Send out a monthly newsletter, and simply ask your customers, "What can we do to make your service better?" You'll be amazed at the response you will get. And you could take some ideas to actually make your service better.

    So sum it up if you have a person opening a thread on WHT that shows your company in a negative light, there are a lot of ways to reply in a positive way. Going on the immediate attack, just shows your lack of customer understanding and business skills. The better you portray the company, the most positive affect you will have on potential customers.

    Your thoughts? P.S This is in NO reflection of any one host, nor no immediate bad experience. Just $0.02 from experience over the last 15 years.
    I agree 110%. Although you can't give everything with unmanaged, it doesn't look good when you throw up the hand and quote the "unmanaged hosting bible" either.
    I was raised in an ISP environment where we bent over backwards to help customers, and at the end of the day, you have customers singing your praises and, even more important, *referring customers* because of your efforts.

    Nothing works like word-of-mouth. So, is going the extra mile in your adversiting budget? Should be. This aspect alone grew us to giant perportions in 1 years time. We went from a 1 room shop to our own DC in time measured in months. And we started when dialup 2800 baud was considered "blazing".
    Granted, there are always those that take advantage of your willingness to help, but they are really far and few between. We just drew the line the first time it was crossed, and usually were fine with that customer from then on.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by mugo View Post
    Granted, there are always those that take advantage of your willingness to help, but they are really far and few between. We just drew the line the first time it was crossed, and usually were fine with that customer from then on.
    The problem with the webhostingtalk crowd is they don't accept the limitations. They come here posting about how x provider is horrible they would not help them. There are users who have their servers hacked and get angry when their unmanaged provider suggests doing an OS restore or paying $80/hr for someone to attempt to clean the system.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by TonyB View Post
    The problem with the webhostingtalk crowd is they don't accept the limitations. They come here posting about how x provider is horrible they would not help them. There are users who have their servers hacked and get angry when their unmanaged provider suggests doing an OS restore or paying $80/hr for someone to attempt to clean the system.
    This is, sadly, very true. WHT is way too often used as a "I'll get back at YOU" weapon. Billy-bob breaks the TOS, get's kicked out, then comes and makes up 1/2 truths about their former provider, usually with "Horrible!" and "Stay away" and the like in the titles along w/ the company name. Those that are blatantly askewed in their attack, I think WHT should have recourse to eleminate them (but only those that are positively slandered and untrue).

    One silver lining, the truth often comes out in the end. Luckily, the known good established (and with WHT representitives) hosts have little to worry about, but for unknown good new companies, it can be very bad publicity that they really don't deserve.
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  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by mugo View Post
    Those that are blatantly askewed in their attack, I think WHT should have recourse to eleminate them (but only those that are positively slandered and untrue).
    They do - I have been hard on WHT myself over the years - but, when push came to shove - they have done the right thing.. they just need the proper proof and ammunition .. I give FULL credit to WHT for how they handle a very difficult job..

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by cartika-andrew View Post
    They do - I have been hard on WHT myself over the years - but, when push came to shove - they have done the right thing.. they just need the proper proof and ammunition .. I give FULL credit to WHT for how they handle a very difficult job..
    I agree, it's a very hard aspect of admining, especially this board. They may well do this, I need to note some of the bad ones I've seen and check if they are still around. I'm good at noticing them, but not so great at checking later to see if WHT killed the threads. Good to hear they've been doing this more than I (obviously) thought.
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  23. #23
    Well, I'm not a webhost, but I do run an e-commerce. Customer service is important for all businesses, and this would inklude webhosting businesses too.

    As a online store I go pretty far to give customers and potential customers the best service I can provide, and this is a major part of my marketing. I hardly do any marketing, but happy customers do. I sell Mac and iPod accessories, and so far (since 2007) I haven't had a single return of a product nor a single complain. And I'm pretty proud of myself for this.

    So what do I do? Well, when somebody calls me or send me an e-mail with a question, I will answer it. Even though I might have to do some googling or read up on it. In these cases I will usually either call back or send the person an e-mail. Several times I've had customers and potential customers send me an e-mail where they tell me how satisfied they are with the customer service. And in most cases it just took me a few minutes of work to give them an answer.
    Too different to be awesome.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    NYC
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    1,446
    Quote Originally Posted by cartika-andrew View Post
    very nice post.. unfortunately, the real world does not always work this way.. there are customers that maliciously act in a specific manner in which to receive free services and other monetary gains..

    I try to be fair with all customers - our staff are under a mandate to bend over backwards to help customers - but, sometimes, at some point - the president or CEO needs to step in and draw a line in the sand.. its a tough business running a company that is based on service, managing expectations and very aggressive uptime SLA's... reality is simple here.. there are a lot of questionable providers in this industry, which fuels consumer anger - and rightfully so - but, there are also a fair number of customers that play on this weakness in the industry and attempt to leverage it for their own gains...

    A "good" CEO will accommodate clients when necessary - and will stand up to clients when necessary.. it is all part and parcel for this industry - and certainly not a position for those with a sensitive digestive system...

    the customer is not always right - and the customer cannot always be accommodated.. most providers will try their best - but, to assume a customer is always right and to put the onus of responsibility on a provider to make things right is not always the right solution - with ANY reasonable or semi-reasonable customer - I would agree - but, things are not always that clear cut.. ultimately, it is a providers perogative to decide who they want to do business with and it is sometimes in a providers best interest, and most importantly - the best interest of their other customers - to not back down....

    If this makes us one of your "holier then though" providers - so be it...
    Completely agree.

    I think far too often providers are seen in a bad light because they do respond when publicly attacked.

    The bottom line is that many customers who are unhappy about something, are ruthless. They have intentions on damaging the reputation of the business and/or damaging the reputation of the owner to feel accomplished at getting what they paid for.

    I can't count the amount of times we've been told, "I'll go to WHT and post how horrible you are if you can't help get this fixed asap!". I just got one recently because we were sold out of a product and the rep offered an immediate refund or if they'd like us to fill the order in 24 hours. They told us we had deceptive marketing because we didn't have the product available. People complain about things being oversold but can't understand the reality of being sold out.

    This is just an example of how quickly many consumers are to twist a story and work the system to get what they want. My guess is this technique has worked for them before.

    Additionally, many of us have served a high-risk customer base for a long time. (IRC, High-Risk Sites, etc)

    Everyone see the thread about how 'dangerous' IRC is? Whatever... Anyway, it is true that the high-risk business is called that for a reason. High fraud rates, script kiddies, and DDoS attacks are an every day situation. It is VERY common for owners to become a little tough. When you see your bottom line fall because of fraud or twisted reviews/threads which misrepresent the business that you have poured your heart and soul into, it becomes a bit personal.

    I think I speak for most owners when I say that we're only human. Noone wants to see us succeed more than ourselves and we will defend our business. On the other hand, most of us will normally be the first ones to assist in getting something fixed if we're in the wrong. The problem is that many times we aren't given the option. We're publicly attacked and defamed with twisted comments and thread topics which mislead the masses.

    A good example is the well-known 'DDoS-protected company (Not listing the name)' incident recently. The provider corrected the issue. In fact, they took a loss. Half of the responders from WHT turned against the provider who has a stellar reputation for nearly 10 years. Even when the customer had no real proof of an outage ever occurring, the provider was attacked. I can guarantee that half of the people that chimed in to throw rocks at the provider, if they'd been on the receiving end, they'd felt the same way as the owner did. Possibly even respond with the same manner as he did.
    Last edited by FiberPeer; 07-23-2009 at 08:47 AM.
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  25. #25
    I believe most of the people who threw rocks on that host did it because of the way he responded. It was a very good example of how you shouldn't respond. You should never accuse anybody without providing the proof, which he never did.
    Too different to be awesome.

  26. #26
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX
    Posts
    2,585
    (And no, bashing clients or being condescending won't help. Not sure why that's even part of the equation.)
    I've seen this numerous times from small to larger hosts, and I shake my head every time while I say, "You gotta be crazy!"

    I've enjoyed the discussion, some very good points. Especially from the providers point of view, and I appreciate your thoughts as a consumer.
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