A potential customer brought an article at Web Worker Daily to my attention, as it favorably mentions our service, but the article also got me thinking, at least enough that I decided to make a blog post about it. The basic point is that the phrase "Bigger is better" simply doesn't apply to web hosting.
First of all, you can read the article here. The comments made about our services are these, "Ever heard of Steadfast Networks? Me either. But RealMetrics' Web Speed Index score for this hosting service is nearly perfect, and its score for response time from support personnel is perfect. The fee for its basic hosting plan is under $5 a month-”among the cheapest plans available." I know you have all heard of us, but otherwise, great comments.
Now, I'll actually get to my point, and what is largely the point of the article, bigger is NOT necessarily better. The article is primarily stating that the large hosts, such as GoDaddy, are simply not the best. A big host is just that, big, and it says nothing about the level of service you'll receive, except that due to the sheer size the chance of you receiving sub par service and no one caring is increased. With smaller hosts, such as ourselves, the support team is a small group who all talk to each other on a nearly daily basis. We are all aware of what is going on, what problems certain customers are having and we work together to assure that ALL customers are treated properly. Instead of spending thousands upon thousands on marketing, we put our money into server upgrades, additional staffing, network improvements, etc. We know that our biggest marketing tool is our existing customer base and that happy customers are going to bring us more happy customers.
Personally, I feel Steadfast Networks offers a great balance between the small and large host. We have a relatively small staff, a staff that has many, many years of industry experience, a staff that cares about our customers, and a staff where everyone is able to help you. You're not going to be sent between several employees to fix a single issue; you're not going to need to wait to be sent up to the next tier of support. Even with this personalized service, we provide the advantages of a large company in that we are in full control of our infrastructure. We run our own data center space, we operate our own network, we own our servers, and all of our staff is on-site. With this massive infrastructure in place and now over 7 years as a corporate entity you can be certain that we're not going to just fall off the face of the earth either.
Not only is bigger not better company-wise, but it isn't better when looking at hosting plans either. We very often get people wondering why we charge more for less in many cases; they're wondering why we do not offer 25GB and 1000GB of bandwidth for $5.95 a month. The simple fact is it is because we want to provide a higher level of service while being able to provide a level of resources people actually use, not just a level that is purely a marketing gimmick. The quote from the article spells it out nicely, "But RealMetrics' Web Speed Index score for this hosting service is nearly perfect, and its score for response time from support personnel is perfect. The fee for its basic hosting plan is under $5 a month-”among the cheapest plans available." Instead of providing you the 24 of the 25GB of disk space you're not going to use we provide you with speed and service at the top of the industry. If a host charges less for more it is easy to see that that equals less revenue for the same amount of resources, meaning there must be cuts made somewhere, and those cuts are normally made in support/staffing. The simple fact is a vast majority of web sites do not use more than 100MB of disk space or 4GB of bandwidth, all that extra space that you're paying for and never going to use is going to waste, so why not spend that money on a higher level of service instead?
I know, this all turned into a combination rant/marketing ploy, but hey, I think we're doing things right and I want to make sure people are aware of our philosophy. I guess you could say our philosophy is, "Better, not bigger."