It may be summer in southwest Florida, but Bradenton small-business owners work year-round. If you own your own company in Sarasota-Manatee, then you know what I’m talking about.
As with small business owners everywhere, either we’re busy just trying to keep up with customer demand, or we’re busy trying to put our own company in a great position for the next busy season.
And nowadays, our southwest Florida “busy season” isn’t as clear-cut as before. Plus, when your small business serves other small businesses—like mine does—we’ve got to work around what works best for them.
So summer often means optimizing our clients’ websites and doing all that maintenance and hands-on stuff that they don’t have time for come winter.
So What’s Keeping My Business Busy Right Now?
This summer, we decided to undertake a full web-hosting server migration for all of our 50-plus website hosting clients. That was…a lot.
A web hosting server is where we keep all of our clients’ website files. Managing a web hosting server means making sure all those files are all configured nicely so that they’re accessible—both to me, when I’m working on them, and to the internet, when other people visit my clients’ sites.
We also want our hosting servers to be secure. So I want to be able to get all up in there, but I certainly don’t want anyone else gaining access to those files. Accessibility and security are the twin goals of a good hosting server.
Well, that and storage space. And that’s where we needed an upgrade this year.
Why Migrate Hosting Servers Now?
While there’s a lot of things that can go wrong with a hosting server, like anything technology-related, the issue we were running into was storage. I now have so many client websites with so many files that our old Deckard & Company hosting server was running out of space.
So what happens when a web hosting server runs out of space? Well, it runs really slowly. Ever been to a website that takes forever to load? That could very well be a hosting server issue.
And while we could try to move things around and reconfigure files to save as much space as possible, that’s really only a stopgap. We’d still be busy doing that now, and we’d still have to migrate servers in the near future. So why not do it in June, during our Bradenton clients’ slow-er season?
It’s kind of like walking into a giant stock room that’s overflowing with stuff, and trying to find the one item you came in there for. It’s going to take a while, right? We didn’t want our clients’ stock rooms getting out of control.
What Does a Server Migration Mean for a Website Manager?
So this migration project basically meant prepping all my clients’ sites’ files, making sure all of them—and I mean all of them—were properly configured for the new site. Then I had to schedule times when the sites would be down while the files were moved from the old server to the new one. I got everything ready so I could do that over the weekend, when website traffic is lower and fewer people would be inconvenienced if the site happened to be down.
And before I started any of this, I had to communicate with each and every one of my clients to let them know what was happening, why it was happening, when it was happening, and then answer their questions about it all.
Fortunately, it’s not my first server-migration rodeo, so everything went really smoothly in the end. It was a lot of work, but I’m happy to do it, and I’m happy I did it in the right time of year for my clients. Offering really great service always feels better than the alternative.