After the Amazon EC2 outage which took down Reddit and other big sites, Joyent made a funny blog post offering to host Reddit because they are much nicer than Amazon. But apparently they are not that nice, me and a ton of other internet users learned today that Joyent is being an ass to their first customers. It’s the top comment on story on HN & Reddit. Which triggered me to write a post about reputation and user perception.
Now the thing Joyent lost, is the single, most important thing you can have as a webhosting provider, your reputation. That’s everything.
When somebody wants to buy webhosting the first thing they see is your website (is it trust worthy, easy to use?) and then if they care a bit about their website staying online, they Google the provider. Your biggest nightmare as a webmaster is that your website is down, you don’t receive support when you need it the most and in the worst case, having to move to another provider. Fear..
You are in a sense buying based on a prediction that is mainly based on the reputation of the provider, on the impression you have, your gut feeling. This is important for every website trying to sell to customers online -user perception – the only thing they know about you is what they can find out about you behind that their screen. It doesn’t matter how much money you have on your bank or how big your office is.
In short, if you screwed your reputation, you’ll have a hard time recovering, especially if you are a service provider in need of a trust relationship. Even if you provide dirty cheap hosting, people will still hold your reputation against you.
Btw; if you’re looking for hosting, I think Rackspace is pretty kick-ass, especially with their cloud server thing. Muuuch easier than hosting your website on Amazon + they also have a cool guy that posts tech stuff on Facebook. If you’re looking for a cheap host for a personal blog (like this one) Versio is also pretty cool. (yeah I don’t care that much if this blog is down a bit)
PS. Don’t kill me for spelling mistakes, it’s late here in Belgium’:)