Would you leave if you were me?
I have caught my site down twice within the past two days. My host did not seem to be aware until I submitted a ticket - then it was fixed within the hour. Today I have not heard back from my ticket - I am still down.
I looked back at my ticket history and I have submitted 5 tickets (for three sites) for my site being down. The hosting is cheap - but my traffic is climbing. I am thinking it is time to move on - What do you think?
I have worked hard to get out of the sandbox and am not looking forward to the transfer of hosts. I worry that I may hurt my SERPS. Can anyone put me at ease?
Also - Should I be satisfied when shopping for a new host when a host says 99.9% uptime guarantee?
If you're upset enough to rant, you're either upset enough to move on, or just too upset and need to chill.
The one instance you gave a real time frame too was a problem that was fixed within an hour. Personally, I could live with that.
As to impacting your serps, it's doubtful, at least in my experience. I'm on host #4 since 2002 and only the changeover between host 1 and host 2 saw any impact to serp position. That impact woulda/coulda/shoulda been negated but, to say the least, I was rather clueless at the time.
In the change between h2 and h3, and later h3 and h4, I put the site up at the new host, pointed the nameservers at the new location, left the old site in place until the propagation cycle was over, and after I knew things were golden - 2-3days, I deleted the old site and wrapped up any remaining buh-bye details with the prior host.
Like Kevin said, you shouldn't have issues with SERP if you move.
That "99.9%" uptime guarantee, is claimed by many web hosts. Mathematically, it allows them a couple of days of downtime in any given year, so maybe these are you few days.
Either way, if your host is simply atrocious, it may be time to leave. If you're satisfied with server configurations, price, uptime (usually), etc., then it may not be worth leaving.
There's the "frying pan to the fire" principle to consider also :)
Sorry but I can't stop myself from pointing out that 99.9% uptime only leaves room for about 1/3 of a day down over the course of a year.
Anyway, you should try to get an explanation for the downtime. That will help you decide whether to stay put, change plans, or change hosts altogether. If you can't get an explanation for the downtime then that says a lot about the host in itself.
You're right Jomaxx. I was calculating "99%" instead of "99.9%"
I agree with KP - if you're upset enough to rant move on.
Do realize that all hosts have downtime. That is a fact. 99.9% is a great sell, but most of the time you'll never know if they go down unless you have a server monitoring script or service to notify you. All hosts have to do server maintenance, routers go out, power backups fail, and most can't honestly live up to a 99.9% guarantee. It will also be up to you to try to prove they were down if you try to get a refund.
SERPS won't be hurt for moving a host unless you totally botch the DNS transfer or delete your files from the old server before your dns is prop.
SERPS can be affected by downtime though. I had an outage for an entire saturday which is when the spider was hitting my site actively. I didn't notice until sun AM and it was all downhill from there.
My advice - move on to a host that has 24/7 techs monitoring the servers (they can see when mysql, apache, ftp, etc goes down). Don't go with a reseller that is just renting a box from EV1 or something. Go with a provider that has access to the physical box.
I used to use a small independent host with the same uptime promises. Kept catching the site down, sometimes for hours. The only way I knew was when I happened to surf into my site personally or a customer called and asked where our site was. I had to make the switch due to our PPC campaigns. Some of these independent providers who are "cheap" end up getting a lot of accounts because of the better deal. The problem is that they have to stack more people on each server thus overloading it, because they cannot afford enough servers. To compensate for the overload which can occur in spikes depending upon the time of day, the server shuts down sites at random to prevent overload and shutdown of the whole server, like a safety valve. Even worse is that I signed up for a yearly contract and could not get my money refunded which you should never do. Always pay monthly. Better to move to a reputable host like Yahoo or Verio, that way you don't have to worry about when when and if your sites is up and running.
Thanks for all of the replies. I guess if my host would occasionally apologize and let me know what they are doing to keep outages down...I would feel a little better. They have only apologized 1 time out of 5 and offered only 1 apology out of 5. The last outage I had - they sent a reply to my ticket which said "investigating now". An hour later my site was back up but they did not offer any further communication. I discovered my site was back up because I was checking it about every 5 minutes. :(
Not an apology, explanation, or anything.
Some big names were mentioned in this thread and it was implied that they were reliable hosts..is it safe to say that big names are generally reliable?