Worried - get advice

If you are worried about your current or future web hosting arrangements, then obviously my site is designed to help you. This help can only go so far - you may need to talk to someone else. In that case you really need someone who knows what they are talking about when it comes to web hosting. These people should be neutral. After all, it may be you that is wrong or being unreasonable for whatever reason !.

My recommendations for someone to talk to would be:

  • A lawyer: Talk to a lawyer about web hosting contract issues only as a last step and if you really have to. Can be expensive without getting a problem fixed. As soon as you mention that a lawyer is involved, you may significantly raise the stakes with a web hosting provider. This can often be completely unnecessary. The problem may be quite trivial - in which case the last thing you want to do is indicate that the matter may end up with legal proceedings.
  • Another web hosting supplier: If supplier A is giving you a concern, you can always talk to another supplier B. This can be difficult. Supplier B is probably going to quite cautious about criticizing another company in the same line of business. Or they might overstate the case in the hope of winning your business away from supplier A. I personally do not recommend this route. If you want to pursue it, keep the discussion reasonable.
  • Business advice centers: You could try these, but you are unlikely to find someone who knows enough about the web hosting business. You may get generic advice that does not really help you sort out your specific problem.
  • Someone else in same position as you: That is, another business person who has experience - good or bad - with web hosting. This can be really useful. Use personal contacts to find a few suitable people to talk to. Web hosting is very common, so it should not be too difficult to find someone who has a similar position to you. They may not be expert on computers, but can at least give you something to compare your own position to.
  • An IT (Information Technology) consultant: The best option. Web hosting is quite a small issue compared to some of the other things IT people have to deal with, so they should not be too concerned about the amount of time they have to spend on it. IT consultants often give some up-front amount of time for free - just make it clear that they should agree with you before they start running up billable time. If they can't help you, they can often recommend someone else who can. Try to find someone local so that you can meet face-to-face if initial phone/email contact is not enough. Professional organizations may recommend one of their members in your area. To find a suitable organization you could try a search in Google for something like "America IT computer professional organization membership".
  • Chambers of commerce: Can be very helpful, particularly in terms of finding some local IT person to talk to. The same thing goes for community service clubs like Rotary.
  • Somewhere on the Internet: For example you try searching in Google for "computer expert" or try to post a "Please help me" message in some online forum. Actually I don't recommend this. It can be time-consuming to find someone who really knows what they are talking about and you can get poor continuity. First try the other routes above.

October 2014.