One of my many reluctant adventures in geekdom is having to deal with technical support for web hosting accounts (don’t ask why; you don’t want to go there).
This here’s a tale of two web hosting companies: The one my company uses for a bunch of its accounts is hostmysite.com, which I’ve had to call probably two dozen times in the last year. Pretty much every time I get someone on the phone promptly, and that person is efficient and helpful–which is about as much as one can ask for in tech support. John says, “Thumbs up.”
My company also does a little pro-bono work for a professional association, and I got dragged in because (of course) said association has a website, and (of course) it broke–actually it’s still broken, and as I blog, my head is canted to the left at a 45-degree angle while I listen to bland hold music while I wait for tech support.
I’ve had to call this company, iPowerWeb, a number of times, too. I was supposed to call them yesterday, except that their estimated wait times were 26 minutes in the morning, and 21 in the late afternoon. Riiight.
Today, they don’t have an estimated wait time (hmm … where did that go?). The corpo-voice says, “Thank you for your patience. We’ll be with you as quickly as possible.” Right now my patience is at 12 minutes, with no ETA on the horizon. Could be 10 more seconds … could be 20 more minutes.
If I pull up the two companies’ home pages, I can compare by costs, GBs of hosting, number of e-mail addresses, whether or not I need a MIVA Merchant Storefront, Google AdWords, ASP, PHP … yadda yadda. Go ahead and roll your eyes. I am.
I’m going to take a wild guess that in a marketplace with lots of information and competing vendors, the web hosting packages won’t differ very much (just as the prices of blenders at JC Penney, Target and Sears are all about the same).
But lo and behold, look what matters. Here I am, spending time in my working day getting a crick in my neck because I have to wait (now 16 minutes) for this damn company and their enormous tech support queue. Suddenly there’s a big difference in these two companies–so big that if it were up to me, I’d switch from iPowerWeb to HostMySite in a heartbeat (or 20 minutes, which is how long I’ve been waiting to get through to iPowerWeb).
So on the off-off chance you’re ever going to need your own website, I’d suggest calling tech support–just to see how long it takes to get through. To paraphrase Geico, just one call could save you … well, let’s see: 22 minutes–and counting!
Pick a caption:
a) Aren’t I pretty? Good thing, because you’re going to spend a lot of time looking at me!!
b) Sorry, I don’t do phone.