Podcast E113 – The reason I switched hosting

kswp-e113This week I share my where I host my sites, and why I left Hostgator.

Upcoming Events

Segment 1: In the News

Segment 2:  Why I left HostGator and where I went…

Segment 3: Tool of the Week

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This is the KitchenSinkWP podcast, episode 113. [opening music sequence]
Why hello there everybody. This is Adam Silver, the host of the KitchenSinkWP podcast. Thanks for being here. Let's get started. All right, first and foremost, upcoming events. Work Camp Chicago is coming up April 30th through May 1st. It's Saturday and Sunday. I will actually be there so I'm looking forward to that and speaking at Work Camp Chicago. If you are coming, let me know. I'd love to meet with you and do a high five, fist pump, hug. I'm a hugger. I like hugs, just to let you know. So WordCamp Chicago.

Work camp Vernon, BC, April 30th. Work camp Albuquerque, New Mexico April 30th also. Work camp Buffalo, April 30th. Four work camps next weekend. That's awesome. And I say next weekend, by the time you hear this, because I did this all on Monday. [to recording early this week because I am travelling on my way to Work Camp San Diego. I'm also speaking there and I don't want to miss an episode. I want to share something with you guys today, which I think is kind of important. It's timely actually. You'll see in a second. And it's a little early so it's kind of a shorter episode, possibly. We'll see how this goes.

So anyway, so next weekend, by the time you hear this, Work Camp Chicago; Vernon, British Columbia; Albuquerque, New Mexico and Buffalo, New York. So four work camps to hit up, to go to… And hope you can make it to one. Okay? So, that's it for upcoming events.

Segment 1: In the news. A WordPress 4.6 has already kicked off with developer, Dominic Shilling, taking the lead. There's a link in the show notes about that. If you want to participate, you can add to the wishlist of what you're looking for in WordPress 4.6. And by the time this podcast comes out, I believe WordPress 4.5.1 will have shipped out. Rumor had it that it would be earlier this week, some time. I'm recording this Thursday, instead of Saturday or Sunday, so today is the 21st of the of April, 2016. Heard it might actually be today. I'm assuming it came out by the time you hear this. Probably some patches, security patches, and who knows what any bugs squashed… So check that out as well. Make sure you have a nice backup. The second dots, the 4.5.1, those .1, .2's, are normally automatic updates. So it's always good to have a backup though so check that out. All right, what else is going on in the news? That's it for the “In the News” because it's early. I didn't do… Not a lot going on. You know, since I recorded this 5:30 in the morning, my time, Pacific Standard.

All right, so moving right along here. Segment 2. And this is based off of something I mentioned last week. The topic here is the hosting landscape and my reasons for leaving … Why I left. Because I mentioned something last week, that I was leaving EIG-owned hosting. Like I said, there has been some discussion about the issue in other, by others in the space as well. Even Chris Lama wrote a piece on his blog, and I'll link in the show notes, about his take on hosting and Matt commeth, I commeth there and it's just kind of a perfect storm if you will.

People are like, “Oh my gosh, hosting. Which company is good? Which company is bad?” So I wanted to answer the listeners who asked, “Who I had left, why I had left them and where I'm hosting now. And whats my setup. How do I go about when I get a host or buy a domain? What is it that I do? So, I am for full transparency and to share what I've learned to help the best I can. Here are the facts so that I can be completely transparent: I was with Host Gator for a 4 and a half years. Before that, I was on a friend's server, my buddy Troy. He resold hosting as a “hobby.” My reason for leaving him was simple. One day, one of my sites was gone. I woke one morning. I was going to do a blog post. It was gone. It was just the white screen. I'm not sure if I either emailed him or texted him. I think I might have texted him. Or maybe it was on Skype? Maybe Skype,

I said, “Hey! Did you do anything to the server last night?” He was running Plesk and he was always modifying and tweaking with his server. Maybe he did something by accident and knocked it off. I said, “So did you do anything?” He wrote back immediate, “Nope”. Just the word “nope.” Okay. That's when I knew I had to move on from him. You see, you know, he didn't check. He didn't look into my issue, my concern. He just wrote back, “no.” And luckly it wans't a client site. It was my own little lonely blog about me about to turn 40. Here I am paying 45, 50 bucks a month. Maybe, actually a little less. I think it was between 35 or 40 bucks a month, honestly. I didn't have any support. He gave me “unlimited everything” but I clearly valued support. Even if he had said, “Let me check” and reported back to me with some info, I might still be with him. Who knows where I'd be, I don't know. He didn't lie to me, he just didn't care. As WordPress hosting and a re-selling hosting, wasn't his main thing doing video production, some other technology stuff – which he's doing great with now, by the way.

So I started looking for a new host. I took a few weeks, did some research, and I migrated all my sites a couple of my client sites off of his server and sent him an email, as such, when I was done. I told him to please stop billing my credit card. He said, “okay.” Didn't ask me questions. He just did it and our friendship was slightly strained. You know, whenever there was a need to discuss something, it was awkward. I'll come back to that in a moment. At the end of this, I'll tell you what happened there.

At the time, I had no idea that the difference of hosting, or the value proposition, I would look… I wound up at Host Gator because it seemed affordable. It would do that job. For the first two or three years it was fine. I looked across the board. I remember looking at WPEngine even, I looked at Media Temple. Go daddy was, of course, an option. I ended up at Host Gator, read some good reviews and that's where I went. You know, from that point… How do I want to word this? So, but then the EIG, Like I said, first two or three years it was great. But then EIG purchased Host Gator. You know, Endurance International Group. The fact he server would go down a few times a year, and which would affect my email because I would also take advantage of all the free unlimited email accounts would also go down. That always annoyed me. I'm pretty patient but anyway…

So the next few years I started the meet up. I started this Podcast. I started meeting people and different companies at the conferences, like the Work camps, just different things around town. And I got to know the people at these at these companies. And people is important here . I met Jason in at In Motion Hosting. I know Levan at Siteground, Corey and Ben at A2 hosting. I realized the business, any business, is a about relationships. I didn't know anyone at Host Gator. I wasn't feeling all that good when something was a miss. You know, honestly, it wasn't the support person's fault directly when I would go out on the que. Things got resolved, but the overall feeling in the whole time to get longer and longer and longer. And like I said, I'm a fairly patient man but eventually someone's gotta change. I deserve support. I believe I’m paying something. I'm paying money, sure maybe not a ton, but I kept upgrading. I became a reseller and I would do some hosting but also on Host Gator.

Yes I get answers but it just became longer and longer to get that done. So something had to change. So where does that put me today? Well like I said, it's about relationships. So I currently use three companies for hosting for different services. All 3 are great. I split up my, where I register my sites now as well. I know longer use GoDaddy to register sites because they change some of their policies and the renewals rates and what not. I want privacy. So now I register at hover.com and I knew that because if I want to move hosting later it just that's me. I like to split things out. I register place A, which is hover.com. I host a place B, or C or D, or, you know, 1, 2, 3…

Also I started recently hosting my email at hover.com. It's all they do. Hover.dom, it's not a commercial for them. They do registration and email. That's it. I do have email here for $20 a year for my needs, no brainer. I just wanted it to not, it's not our best practice anyways. It's not the best practice anyways to have your email on your webhost. We get used to having things cheap or free. Or you're cheap and all inclusive. There's a price to be paid for all of that.

So, there you have it. I'm registered at Hover. I host at one of three locations. It's that simple. And my emails now means a little way from all the hosting. So I know longer, I mean slowly but surely, I have two accounts now on Hover. I'm going to be adding a couple of others. So that way, they're just not tied to getting. It gives me a more piece of mind. And it's an investment, you know. I mean it's money to be spent. It's not an expense. I Look at all this is an investment. And you get the hosting in the level you want, based on what you need for your time. You have to start somewhere. If all you can afford is 3, 4, 5 of a month. Then do that. But keep in mind, sometimes the support won't be there for you, okay?

I like the relationships. I've like the people we've met. I trust them. They're smaller companies, a little bit more personal. And I had a feeling that's good for me.

So there you have it, simple. Oh, and my friend, Troy, who used to host my site… He no longer does hosting at all. He's completely out of business. I can't blame him. It's stressful, I'm sure. About 2 years ago he was in my neighborhood and he invited me to lunch.

Over that awkward silence of what wasn't being discussed, and the beers came to the table, I said “hey, do you want to know why?” And he says, “yeah.” I said, “Because you said nope.” He's like “I understand and I'm sorry.' He paid for lunch. Simple, we're still friends. It was a moment, a blip of a friendship, a business relationship, that was just awkward. He realized it wasn't what he did full time. He didn't care about hosting. He just did it because he knew that some of the servers says he had a few people. He was trying to make some extra money not realizing the stress that it caused him and some friendships. He's out of that business.

We're still good friends. And the valuable lesson here is that business is built on friendships but they're separate. You got to keep them separate. Keep that in mind, okay? So, that's my opinion. So anyway, I hope that helps you. You know, people who wanted to know, that's what I did. I LEFT. I didn't know what I wanted at EIG so I can't I hate the, I don't know them. you know, same thing, I just felt like it was time for me to move on, and I love where I'm at in life now.

KitchensinkWP is a over at A2 hosting, Concierge is on InMotion and psych ground uses Inmotion. Siteground being used for development and testing. So, there you go! That's what I do. I hope that answers the questions for those who emailed and sent a few tweets to me, directly. I just want to be transparent, let you guys know how I set up my current Word press workflow or where I put things. Okay, that's it for this week for that.

Segway 3: Tip and Tool week. This one's cool. It kinda goes with hosting. It's Let's Encrypt. Let's Encrypt is a website. It's free SSL. It's free, automated and open. They got some more fun names. They came out of beta April 2nd. Get has some new sponsors. And if you go to a Encryption, you can open a link and show its getting started page. Getting the SSL certificate started can be a pain in the butt. You need if it you want to be secure and I think, if I'm not mistaken, Google is now also giving a higher ranking if it is encrypted. This will do it for free for you. They give out only so many per day. You sign up, you get the approval, etc. I have one site encrypted already. I'm going to start adding to it the rest of my sites, Makes clients feel better, etc. So Letsencrypt.org is the tip and tool of the week.

Okay! Nive and short episode this week. Actually, not bad. Thanks for listening! If you have any questions, go ahead sent it in via email or the speakpipe function of that website. Adam@kitchensinkwp.com. Thanks again for listening! Have a great week! We'll talk to you next week when I get back from WordCamp San Diego then I'm off to Chicago. Go out and do some awesome things this week with WordPress.

All right, buh-bye.

This episode is sponsored by ConciergeWP.com


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