Monday, August 12, 2019
This announcement should be read 'after' the context of the first part is read here. Thank you!
Our team have been extensively looking at the alternative options for moving away from cPanel and the 'per user' costs their recent venture capital takeover is enforcing on the web hosting industry worldwide. We have looked at alternative branded control panels including open source options and panels designed by others trying to desperately mitigate the impact on their web hosting businesses. Sadly some (which have been implemented already) have been quite disastrous for some companies - as is detailed in the web hosting talk article linked in the previous post.....and also here.
A BRIEF RECAP:
cPanel is the number one for power, reliability and it's user interface - as well as integrated support for addons and plugins. We (along with the industry worldwide) expected a slight increase in price, but not to the extent they are imposing. The cost to us (GodsWeb) is in the thousands of pounds per year increase.
We use cPanel extensively and exclusively across our platforms. It is integrated with website builders, SSL integrations, mailchannels, Acronis backup systems, spam experts, DNS controllers, billing, domain registrars, support systems, staff training / certification as well as many other unseen features on the backend.
The potential for disruption for moving to new servers (required) and all that this entails, as well as the loss of key components and core features, along with staff retraining, and user (you) disruption to learn new (lesser) systems was - to be blunt - potentially catastrophic.
Our conclusion therefore:
To move to any other 'lesser' control panel would be a backwards and retrospective step.
That said: we do know that many other hosting companies are in the process of taking (what we define as) a 'backwards' step to mitigate their own costs with cPanel because of their own business models being unable to sustain it. That however means the bigger picture for us is we are therefore also preparing for the sideways move that many hosting customers will want to make as they look for web hosts that will still provide cPanel. All of this has been taken into account in our deliberations and discussions over the last few months.
OUR OWN UNIQUE SITUATION AT GODSWEB COMPOUNDED
This year - (2019) we have just completed a major investment of many thousands of pounds into our new servers and infrastructure to make our service one of, if not the highest spec hosting available in the UK. Our upgrades in May 2019 were completed at absolute zero cost to customers - with a projection of recouping that investment over the course of the next 5 years - offset also by benefactors who contribute to the GodsWeb platform to ensure customers pay lower costs than they should . The unexpected cPanel announcement (the bombshell) came out of the blue to us and the entire industry, right in the middle of those upgrades.
Compounding the impact further on us - the costs to us are immediate from 1st September. ie, if someone has just renewed their hosting recently for 1 year, we have to pay the increased licensing immediately, even though that customer would not see any cost impact (if imposed) until their next renewal. Further eating into our running costs.
Some customers have also paid for hosting - for many years forward - on special offer deals. We stand to lose significantly (and in some cases) will fall into a minus situation on some of these accounts - due to these significant and unforeseen changes imposed on us by cPanel.
The impact on us and the industry is compounded incredibly.
SO WHAT ABOUT YOU - HOW ARE YOU AFFECTED?
As we announced in the previous article, we have found cPanels approach to be unethical and one which sat uneasy with us. We did and do however concede that their product was underpriced and was the best available. We (along with the industry) just did not expect the greed of the 'per user' model announced.
So, we want to announce the following as being applicable to ALL existing customers.
1) We will be making no changes to our structures and will continue using cPanel.
2) Unlike cPanel, and to differentiate ourselves from their marketing tactics - we will NOT be passing on enforced costs to our customers.
3) Had we passed the costs on - they would have been as follows - at least:
All monthly accounts: 90p increase per month
All quarterly accounts: £2.50 increase per quarter
All annual accounts: £9.00 increase per year
OUR UNIQUE ASK / APPROACH
If you understand and even slightly comprehend our situation after reading these articles, we hope that you see how we are trying to be 'honourable', 'upfront' and 'transparent' with you, and still provide you with the absolute best without being seen as 'profiteering' in the way that cPanel have done.
Let us repeat, no existing GodsWeb customer will have their fees increased. However, IF you would like to voluntarily accept a full or partial increase to help offset our costs, for one or multiple hosting account(s) we would be very appreciative of that gesture.
This unique approach is entirely optional and no customer will be treated differently should they not subscribe to the additional charge. Our approach on this is simply to find a common ground ethically and morally and to ensure that no customer of GodsWeb feels pressured or backed into a corner as cPanel have done with us and the industry as a whole.
ONE OFF DONATIONS: Once off or regular donations to GodsWeb can be made here
PRICES FOR NEW HOSTING ACCOUNTS GOING FORWARD
From the 1st September - our prices for new hosting accounts will have to reflect the enforced cPanel changes.
We trust this announcement comes as a welcome, early and positive relief for all customers who have been anxious about the changes being forced upon the entire industry.