As we quickly approach the end of 2023, I’d like to take a few minutes to share some notable accomplishments from this past year and some insight into what’s coming in 2024.
2023 – Review
Service uptime averaged across all of our servers for the past year was 99.972% with the lowest being 99.96%. That’s quite an accomplishment especially when I think back to how much less-stable the hosting space was over 20 years ago when I started Charlottezweb. If you frequent as many hosting-related forums and places online where hosting is discussed, you’ve likely seen (or perhaps experienced yourself) how unstable some providers’ services can be. Consistent uptime allows all of us to focus on the things that make our sites and businesses successful without needless worry over whether my site will be offline when it shouldn’t.
No price increases to our customers. I’ve always done everything within my power to maintain my pricing despite the reality that costs everywhere in our lives continue to rise. There are ways to approach this through cost negotiations, migration to newer, more cost-effective solutions and (worst-case), simply absorbing these costs without passing along my increases to my customers.
A few good examples, just to be transparent are related to cPanel and domains. I’ve been using cPanel as our hosting control panel for probably close to 20 years and still love all it has to offer. That being said, they have been aggressively increasing their prices almost annually for the last several years. Many hosting companies have switched to offering cheaper solutions or switching to free options. I think the cPanel product itself is still the best out there and that’s why I continue to stand behind it despite it costing significantly more. The same thing has happened with domain names over the years. Typically every few years (or sometimes more frequently) these costs are increased at the top levels and cascaded down to everyone globally. I’ve not raised pricing to Charlottezweb customers that I can ever recall. This could change in the future if the loss becomes too heavy but it’s not on my immediate roadmap.
Acronis cloud backups were launched near the end of 2022 and continue to offer great benefit in multiple ways. I’d encourage you to read this post from awhile back for details about this topic if you’re interested. As always, I like to give the recommendation that all customers should be running their own backups and saving them “offline” at some some sort of regular frequency but automated backups are a very healthy insurance policy for unplanned issues.
WordPress as a platform continues to explode in terms of adoption and use web-wide. It’s by far the biggest platform used by our customers. We manage quite a few sites as part of our Maintenance offering. More information is available here — Please feel free to reach out if you have questions or have interest in these services.
2024 – What’s coming for Charlottezweb?
New servers for all
I’m very excited to announce that we will be migrating all of our existing servers to brand new ones during the first half of 2024. Whereas I’m extremely happy with the performance (and uptime) of our current servers, the time has come to replace them with newer hardware and software. There will be a lot more to share in the coming weeks/months but I wanted to announce the news that this activity will be arriving soon. From a customer perspective, there should be very little (if anything) required from you as part of this change but we’ll have all the details to share well in advance. While it sounds like a complicated process, it’s something we’ve done probably 25+ times over the years and have down to a science. As in the past, there will be no cost or pricing changes to our customers as part of this exercise. Stay tuned for news to come!
As I wrap up this post, I’d like to take the opportunity to thank everyone for your business and support as we approach our 23rd year of Charlottezweb. As I’ve mentioned before, Charlottezweb doesn’t pay for advertising in any form – ads, mass email campaigns by commercial providers, etc. All of our business has been built from the ground up by our loyal (and appreciated!) customers spreading the word. We wouldn’t exist without you and for that I’m beyond grateful. If you or anyone you know is looking for hosting, please continue to recommend us. Our 2023 Holiday Promotions are now live — Please click here to read more including details on our referral program that can earn you 10% on the purchases made by those you send our way.
Thank you for an amazing 2023 and here’s to 2024!