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  Post #16 (permalink)   03-22-2012, 05:31 PM
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We handled 300 clients fairly easy (2 of us), they came in a period of 6 months though, but everything went smooth and everyone seems to be happy, think we where lucky

We do however have more staff now..
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  Post #17 (permalink)   03-22-2012, 06:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SafeSrv View Post
We handled 300 clients fairly easy (2 of us), they came in a period of 6 months though, but everything went smooth and everyone seems to be happy, think we where lucky

We do however have more staff now..
i think what VLStream is saying is that if you are a 1 man business then you are overselling support if you have 300 clients
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  Post #18 (permalink)   03-23-2012, 01:00 AM
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If all 300 where to submit a ticket in a short period of time you would have problems yes, guaranteed. 1 extra member of staff helps heaps.
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  Post #19 (permalink)   03-23-2012, 02:21 AM
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Originally Posted by SafeSrv View Post
If all 300 where to submit a ticket in a short period of time you would have problems yes, guaranteed. 1 extra member of staff helps heaps.
yes 300 tickets in a short period would be a struggle if a one man business, but not impossible to cope with.

yes extra staff is a help.

I have had staff, but non seem to work out although i did have 1 that was a trainee from a government scheme that shows great potential to a point i let her manage one of my online stores, but one day i have to go elsewhere and asked her to man the phones etc. until i got back, but when i got back she had gone.

it turned out that when i was aware a hosting clients (now ex) phones up with an issue and become verbally abusive towards her as she could not fix his problem ( which actually was a problem he caused). she left in tears and refused to return.
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  Post #20 (permalink)   03-23-2012, 06:16 AM
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I would consider having 300 clients per month a very good start. I just acquired a hosting company, but don't have many clients for now. However, I already have an extensive knowledgebase to help my clients with most basic problems, and besides I also work online for up to 14 hours a day, so I wouldn’t have much problems replying to as many that would still go ahead to open a ticket. But, since I also offer a paid hosting service, if new clients continue to signup at that rate, then I wouldn't hesitate to hire new workers. Also, if you have good hosting software, you wouldn't have much problems managing them alone, at least for the first one month.
 
 


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  Post #21 (permalink)   03-26-2012, 11:44 PM
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For some reason there's this inverse property to price and expectations for support on unmanaged services. Cheaper it gets, the more support they think you have to provide lol.

That's why managed services are not basement prices and requires people with skill to ensure the customer is getting what they paid for.
 
 


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  Post #22 (permalink)   03-29-2012, 06:44 AM
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I have been reading the responses to this post very carefully. It is clear to me now that everyone has a very good perspective of how to manage their hosting business.
I would like to congratulate everyone who has posted such helpful responses to this topic.

I would now like to go on to add my response...

Growing too quickly is just as bad, in a way, as not growing at all. As stated already in this topic, the more customers you get the more you will have to manage.
At the early stages of a small web hosting business this could potentially be a disaster as it's quite likely they won't have the staff required to manage such a large customer base.

As for getting those first few customers you have to work as hard as you can in "selling" your business to the customer. This is not an easy task, and yes, it takes a great amount of effort from yourself and your staff. It is also time consuming and requires a lot of patience. People are not going to trust their precious websites with someone who has only been around for a month or two. Why? Well, would you? Think about it, what if the service goes down, and all your files are lost. You could have been working on that website for many months and you could lose everything overnight. At least by hosting with providers who have been around for quite some time you have more of an assurance that they won't close.

Admittedly this is tough on the new provider. Do not despair, however, it IS possible to succeed. I would suggest targetting new clients (i.e. people who are yet to make their first website). Offer them all the support they need, do your best to provide them with an excellent service, convince them to TRY you (before they buy if necessary). By targetting new clients who have little experience, but are still looking to start their online presence by making their first website (believe me, there are plenty of newcomers every day. ) then you, and the customer, can start out together. If you impress the new guys, who have not experienced the hosting services of the bigger providers, you could win yourself a customer who you can be sure will stay with you forever.

YOU WILL HAVE TO WORK HARD TO PROVIDE AN OUTSTANDING SERVICE, however. Do not let them down.
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Last edited by zrob2012 : 03-29-2012 at 06:47 AM.
 
 


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  Post #23 (permalink)   03-29-2012, 07:35 AM
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what if the service goes down, and all your files are lost. You could have been working on that website for many months and you could lose everything overnight.
No matter if the host has been going 2 days or 50 yrs servers can still go down with hardware failures and all files lost.

It IS NOT the hosts responsibility for your files, this is your responsibility to make sure you have regular backups
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  Post #24 (permalink)   03-29-2012, 07:41 AM
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True, very true.
But that, in my opinion, does not excuse the hosting provider from taking responsibility for the loss of files as a result of an issue with their service.

Admittedly, if the customer failed to keep backups then that is their problem. But it IS the hosting providers responsibility to look after any files that are stored on THEIR service.

That is my opinion anyway.
If the customer trusts you to look after their data.
Then you, as a responsible hosting provider, should do so.
That doesn't necessarily mean providing the customer with free off-shore backups. But it does mean accepting responsibility for losing any files stored on your server if they don't.
That being said, it is the customer's responsibility to ensure they have backed up their files. I agree with you there.

And the customer, when signing up, has to also accept the fact that you do not accept FULL responsibility for the loss of data, just PARTIAL responsibility.
In other words you should make sure that the customer cannot sue you for losing their files. But an apology from you to the customer is always appreciated.

And if it were me, I would do everything I could to help the customer recover any lost data. I will even help them move to another provider, depending on the circumstances.
I would not like having to help them move to another provider, but if I have let them down then I have to take the consequences for that. They may leave more positive feedback.
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Last edited by zrob2012 : 03-29-2012 at 07:45 AM.
 
 


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  Post #25 (permalink)   03-29-2012, 07:49 AM
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most hosting providers will take offsite daily/weekly backups of sites on their server, but this does not mean they will provide these to any of their clients as these are done so if their is a server issue the hosting provider has recent sites files to restore these. some hosting providers will make a charge to clients for this service which will allow the client to request a copy of thier backups if requested. but primarily it is the clients responsibilty to make backups
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  Post #26 (permalink)   04-01-2012, 02:58 PM
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Only if you have a partner, or employees, you can then provide the services.
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  Post #27 (permalink)   04-01-2012, 03:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by likeahost View Post
Only if you have a partner, or employees, you can then provide the services.
if you mean that you needed the above to provide backups then this is wrong.

1) you can get your own server and set this up so that it will take backups of all your clients sitres and even set it up to offer backups via FTP for clients.

2) find a backup server provider (many online) and order a backup solution and then ftp site backups to them
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  Post #28 (permalink)   04-17-2012, 02:44 PM
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you really do not like 300 cheap guys, if this is shared hosting you will be in some support circuit may be cheap dedicated servers is not that bad.
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