If you are planning to sign up for web hosting, I would advise you to read the fine print before you confirm your order. Like any large business, web hosting companies are going to try to squeeze as much profit as they can from each customer, no matter if they are being fair or not.
As I have written about my personal experiences with FatCow before, I am not a happy customer. They suspended my websites without warning, they wouldn’t help me when I asked them why they were suspended, and now when I go to cancel my account, there’s a $35 “early cancellation fee” that I have to pay for.
Nothing Is Unlimited
When you visit FatCow’s homepage, they flash information about “unlimited” storage space, “unlimited” bandwidth, and “free” services. The main reason I chose FatCow is because they offered unlimited web hosting for about $40 a year, which is pretty cheap compared to GoDaddy, Host Gator, and some other popular web hosting companies.
The only problem with “unlimited” is when it’s not actually unlimited. If you are overloading the server that your website is hosted on, they will simply remove it from the Internet. Server overloads can be caused by corrupt programs, an influx in traffic, or many people posting on forums, blog comments, or another program that sends requests to the web server. If you truly had unlimited bandwidth, server overloads would be nonexistent.
“Free” Is The New Trial Version
Another thing that FatCow tries to sell their web hosting with is all the free “extras” you get when you sign up for a plan. The extras can vary from a 1-800 phone number to Carbonite computer backups, but none of it is truly free. If you go to sign up for a service like Carbonite, you will find that you only get a small window of time where the service is free, which is technically called a trial. After, say six months, you will have to start paying for Carbonite yourself and FatCow’s “free extra” will expire.
You’re Leaving Us? There’s a Hidden Fee For That
If you ever decide to cancel your FatCow account (like I did), you will learn that they have a $35 cancellation fee. Most services have an early cancellation fee, but I feel that FatCow’s is a bit excessive. They tell customers that they can cancel the service at any time and be refunded for the remainder of the year they paid for. This sounds great, but when you only pay $40 for an entire year of web hosting, use it for six months, and then pay a $35 cancellation fee, you don’t get refunded anything.
Avoid FatCow, They’re Greedy
Before you even think about signing up for FatCow, just ask yourself if it’s worth the hassle. I know there are many customers who are probably happy with FatCow’s services, but I know I wasn’t. It’s worth finding a web host that tells you exactly how much bandwidth and storage space you get, what their policies are for cancellation, and how they operate without having to find out the hard way.