When buying local isn’t really buying local…

hmm.. some people don’t really know what they’re being sold… a long term customer’s business was sold, and the new owner called us to announce that they’re moving hosting to ‘someone local’. We are 16 miles away and I personally buy items at his store which probably total the amount he spends with us as a web host on an annual basis. I’ve been his store customer for years and his store is our business customer.

So his ‘tech guy’ decides to move the site on the weekend, and when he isn’t able to get it working, he opts to put up a holding page – on the 3-day weekend. The customer calls me and accuses me of messing with his site. At this point, we’re a host – not a web developer for this client, so I inform him that not only did we not touch the site, but that we would not touch it without his permission or knowledge, as we’re just a host.

His developer is contacted and he declares that it was not them, and that I must be misleading him. I drive home to work on this immediately, as I’m perturbed.

After some investigation, I determine that a plugin was uploaded to his site while I was in Loveland – I don’t check the logs, but as I’m out of keyboard range, it wasn’t me. So we’re being blamed for breaking his site on the weekend… hmm. I lock out the ‘tech guy’, and call the customer – the site is restored, but we won’t let the source of the problem back in – call us Tuesday after we have had the 3 day weekend and we’ll get the site moved to his new host forthwith.

Monday rolls around – the new host contacts us, and the DNS is moved. The site moves smoothly and I let them sort out the rest between site owner and new local ‘host’.

Well a week is almost up and I have a few spare minutes… let’s see how the host is doing…

Well this new ‘local hosting company’ we can see that it’s an IT company 4 miles from him, who host the site on Pressidium (a UK company) – and they host on Linode (a NJ company) – so while he might be paying the ‘local company’, he’s also paying a UK and an east-coast provider. He’s buying hosting from a reseller of a reseller type arrangement and he’s paying more than he pays us!

Yes, we get that we use other people’s data-centers + providers in Phoenix, Chicago, Salt Lake etc, but we’re not resellers of resellers. We’re just resellers and we run our own servers, not just mark up someone else’s service and call ourselves a web host. 😀

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