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1&1 climbing to the top?

According to hosting industry researcher, WebHosting.Info, 1&1 is now the 4th largest web host in the U.S. It has shoved Yahoo! out of the way as the more prolific web host of the two. In my estimation, it’s not a big feat to overtake Yahoo! as a web host. Yahoo! regularly practices bait and switch, luring customers in with a solid brand name and cheap prices and then, at renewal time, tripling the prices. It’s no surprise that disgruntled customers from Yahoo! (and other hosts) would migrate to 1&1. After all, 1&1 offers a solid brand name, cheap prices, and no noticeable rate hike when renewal time comes around. Sounds like a winner, right?

You may change your mind when you take a look at the huge community of displeased former customers of 1&1. Now, sure, every popular hosting company will have a fringe of customers who hate one thing or another. Some margin of customer unhappiness can’t be totally avoided, especially with one of the biggest web hosts in the world. The problem isn’t the fact that customers are unhappy, it’s what they’re unhappy about. Although some web hosts are riddled with complaints about lack of services or unfriendly control panels, 1&1 consistently receives bad reviews on its customer service. One of the last things a customer wants to hear, aside from their website being inaccessible, is that the web host is inaccessible. The horror doesn’t stop there. Once you reach customer service, you may or may not receive competent answers to your questions.

1&1 hosts 10 million domains and serves almost 8 million customers, but it troubles me that they’re continuing to acquire more customers when they haven’t perfected their customer service model. Having millions of customers does not equal happy customers, it just shows genius marketing ability. It’s a common tactic for web hosts to submit sensationalized press releases to the unwashed masses, as a way of gaining more customers through its perceived popularity. To me, a company is only successful if its customers recommend it. Unfortunately for 1&1, it cannot rely on the referral of its customers, only on its massive advertisements and shiny press releases.

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2 comments for “1&1 climbing to the top?”

  1. I’ve never tried 1&1. I’m of a mind to give them a try. Thanks for the referral.

    Posted by scrooge | Monday, February 23, 2009, 6:48 pm
  2. As I am new to this industry so first time I am hearing about 1&1, by reading your post I got overview of hosting industry……. I would request you to keep posting this type of blog…….. and please als advise to those who are trying to earn some money from internet and they are new………as I am also one of them……….

    Posted by Evia Issabela | Saturday, February 28, 2009, 1:09 pm

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