- 7 min read
How Much Does Cheap WordPress Hosting Really Cost Your Agency?
Nobody likes being called cheap. So to keep things civil here for the sake of this post at least, we’re referring to cheap WordPress hosting as $3 hosting instead.
Three-dollar hosting costs your agency peace of mind. There. That’s the article. You can stop reading now. Just kidding. Well, not really… The reality is that inexpensive hosting is costing you in many ways that you might not have considered before.
We’re thinking that if you found this article and experiencing problems with your current web hosting situation, the web intent is here and looking for answers. Let’s talk about what $3 really costs your agency.
“Unfortunately, price perception and expectations early in the hosting years was fixed by $3 hosting, which shouldn’t exist, frankly. Your business – and that of your client portfolio – needs to have a website. How much is that revenue-generating machine worth a month? Only $3? Or $30?”Ben Gabler – CEO Rocket.net
$3 Hosting Costs Your Agency Time
We’ve written about this before. If you manage a portfolio of clients and they all have different web hosts – HostGator to Pagely – then there’s a lot of time wasted in understanding the workflow for each host. We think that’s a waste of time. We’re pretty sure you agree. If you don’t, then run a simple test. Track your time. Run the numbers. We’ll be here when you finish.
$3 Hosting Costs Your Agency Good Clients
Honestly, if your client is only willing to spend $3/month to host their website, are they going to pay for the $15,000 – $25,000 update they really need to succeed? We don’t think so. Choose a Managed WordPress host – hopefully, one without hidden price increases – and start building a portfolio of clients that understand it takes money to make money. Nickel and dime clients nickel and dime you to death. Start a plan. Rewrite your web copy. Better yet, pick a niche for your agency.
$3 Hosting Costs Your Agency Productivity
Be honest. How many times did you lose sleep on launch day? How about migration day? Do you miss out on family events because you’re physically or mentally not there? Are you missing birthdays, forgetting anniversaries, and not exercising enough? When was the last time you read a paper book, went for a bike ride, or noticed what was going on outside?
What does that have to do with productivity? If you’re not present you can’t be productive. And being present is a key indicator of the state of your mental health. A decline in mental health is a decline in productivity. Is $3 hosting worth that loss for your business?
Not a Web Agency? No Problem.
If you’re a small business reading this article and not a web development agency, we’d like you to think about the following:
- What can you buy for $36 in the real world?
- How much money do you spend on coffee?
- Can you actually hurt your business by being cheap on hosting?
What Can You Buy for 36 Dollars?
You can buy a lot of cool things for $36. Headphones, about 10 gallons of gas, 2 movie tickets and some snacks, 3 hand-tossed medium pizzas. It goes a long way if you’re creative. However, for $36 you won’t be able to afford Netflix, Amazon Music or Prime, or pretty much any other annual service.
So if most things are out of your $36 annual budget, why are you only willing to pay $36 a year for your website’s hosting? It sounds like a great deal, but is it? And why are you so cheap? Don’t you like your website? Doesn’t your website work for you around the clock? Isn’t it worth some love? And, how come you have no problem paying $1400 a year on lattes to go?* We’re trying to find the logic.
What does your tall latte do for you, compared to your website? Sure, it makes you feel good, gives you a necessary break, allows you to walk a bit, and catch up with people. We get it. That daily take-out latte is important. But it probably doesn’t bring you much revenue. You might score an Instagram moment, or you could run into someone who turns into a client.
Let’s Compare Takeout Lattes to Your Website
Website: People can find you from anywhere in the world.
Lattes: They need to be in the vicinity of you and your latte.
Website: People can buy things from your website 24/7.
Lattes: Maybe you have merch on you, maybe not. Let’s say not.
Website: People can connect with you over social media.
Lattes: That’s one for your coffee house visit, too!
Website: If your site goes down you may lose a lot of money!
Lattes: If you don’t buy a coffee, you’ll still be fine, and so will the coffee house.
We totally get why that latte is important – it’s completely valid. However, we’re talking about your business here. Your well-supported website is available 24/7 for anyone who wants to do business with you, anywhere in the world. Even when you’re out getting that latte.
*The math: A Starbucks Caffe Latte, Tall, costs $2.95. You probably have one a day. That’s $60 a month or twice what you pay for a year of cheap hosting! $36 vs $1400 annually.
Why Saving Money on Your Web Hosting Actually Hurts Your Business
When it comes to websites, and access to the internet, it’s important that no one is priced out of the market. We get it. Cheap hosting is important so that everyone can have a website and participate, and that’s something we support 110%.
“The more people that have access to tech is a good thing. The upside to reducing prices and encouraging interchangeability is that tech becomes accessible.”Rocket.net
However, your agency – and the websites of your clients – is a business. You can save money on free candy for staff perhaps, but saving money on what powers your business is like using vegetable oil instead of gas in your car. It might work, but you’re probably just going to end up buying a new car.
Saving money is great, so why not save money on web hosting, you ask? There are service providers who offer cheap web hosting, which sounds interesting in principle, but is it really good advice?
Think about it. With the help of a web hosting service, you’re able to make a website accessible on the internet – to the entire world! Hosting provides storage space, bandwidth, and a technical platform. It gives you a domain name, email, and customer support when you’re in trouble. These are services that can’t be provided without some cost.
If you’re saving money, it’s either on hardware, software, or customer support. So ask yourself, how good are the cheap host’s servers? How safe is their software? How good is their support? In essence – what are you willing to give up?
“The quality of providers is not always the best because web space has become a commodity item. There are too many providers trying to accommodate as many customers as possible on one server. The result in many cases: is slow loading websites, too many customers sharing the same server, or server failures where your site is not accessible at all.”Ben Gabler
6 Hidden Costs of Cheap WordPress Hosting on Your Business
- Cheap is often expensive
- Insufficient or very little bandwidth
- Very slow loading times
- Poor search engine rankings
- Low storage space for images & emails
- Lack of support or service
We’re All Feeling the Pinch — So We Priced Ourselves Into Your Budget
Hey, we’ve just come out of three years of a global pandemic. Inflation means sometimes butter is a luxury, FTX tanked, and then SVB folded. Money is tight, right? At Rocket.net we pride ourselves on our customer support. We wouldn’t be supporting our customers if we priced ourselves at the low end of your annual latte consumption, would we? (We say low-end because we know some of you have two a day which jacks up your latte investment to slightly south of $3,000 a year – by the way).
We offer a variety of hosting plans, but $3 a month isn’t one of them. Why? Because we value your website too much. We’ve been in the industry for many years, and we’ve seen a lot of things. What we know is this: a website can’t convert if it isn’t online all the time. It needs to be safe. It needs to be fast!
“I think the first thing is at Rocket, our entry level is $30 a site because of the economics of scale for human beings.”Ben Gabler
It’s Time to Start Investing in Your Agency. Ready for a Change?
You can actually have all three things — fast, cheap, and good — you just can’t have them for $3 a month. You can have them for $30 a month, and if you compare that to the price of your coffee, it actually is pretty darn cheap.
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