January 2023 Price Increase FAQ

We understand that no one likes price increases, and we’ve done our absolute best to absorb price increases from our suppliers over the past few years, but we’ve reached a tipping point where we’re now seeing price increases from suppliers and partners who, in some cases, only increased prices a few months ago.

We’ve had to begin to pass on some of these cost increases to our customers, much as we would like not to. 

We’ve put together the below list of questions and answers that we hope are helpful. These are based mostly on what we would ask any of our suppliers and partners in the event of a price increase, but also include questions we’ve been asked by customers along with the answer so this is an evolving document.

Table of Contents

Frequency Asked Questions

When will the price increase take effect?

The price increase will be reflected in your next invoice, this, for most customers will be issued on the 1st of January 2023, with payment being collected 10 days before by Direct Debit (this is subject to change due to Bank Holidays and Christmas).

Why is a price increase necessary?

To be blunt, we have seen price increases ranging from 40% to 230% (yes, two-hundred-and-thirty percent) across all suppliers and could no longer absorb these costs. We have seen increases in everything from office rent and servers, to paper and cleaning products. With larger percentage increases being seen in the hardware and server-intensive parts of our business we have had no choice but to increase prices to maintain the level of service our customers expect and deserve.

When was the last time prices were increased?

We have held off increasing prices for as long as we possibly could, in fact, we haven’t increased prices for the majority of customers in the past five years.

We also did not apply the annual inflation-linked Consumer Price Index price increase for the past 5 years and in some cases dropped prices during the height of the Covid Pandemic and did not increase them once business trading conditions of our customers improved to a more stable level.

What has been done to keep price increases as low as possible?

While moving suppliers for things like server rental and connectivity, expanding our own self-built Midas platform to add additional features to enable us to save costs on software, and negotiating longer commitments with partners to get cheaper rates.

We have even, successfully in a few cases, been successful in getting larger partners such as Microsoft and Adobe to provide service credits and invoice reductions – this has helped us to keep prices as low as they have been for as long as we were able.

We won’t be ordering our usual seasonal printing of custom Christmas cards, and wall planners, to send out to customers. Money ordinarily spent on this has been factored into, and reduced, the price increase.

How has the price increase been calculated?

We reviewed three options:

A percentage increase was rejected immediately as, in a lot of cases, some customers have “packaged” products that may include multiple services in a single monthly payment – whereas some customers have individual services, a percentage increase would have unfairly impacted customers who have packaged products that haven’t necessarily increased in cost.

An identical pound amount increase across all customers was rejected as it would, again, would not have increased the prices of services that have increased in cost.

An individual approach was chosen, which was based on a review of each individual customer and the services they have with us. This has resulted in some services being consolidated into packages (to reduce payment processing fees and therefore reduce the price increase) and allowed us to increase prices only on the parts of the service that have increased in cost. Fairness is a core value to us and this method seemed like a fair option for all.

So how was my price change worked out?

It’s important to note that the price increase isn’t calculated by an automated process, a member of our team who is familiar with your business and its online presence looked at your account and usage and factored in what we know about your plans for 2023.

We’d encourage you to get in touch and let us know your plans for 2023 as this may have an impact on your pricing – just reply to the email we sent you or email [email protected] to start a conversation.

My website is very basic – why has my price increased so much?

We assessed each website individually and applied the lowest possible price increase that we could to each account. There are a number of factors that could contribute to a price increase that appears to be out of step with the complexity of your website. A few common scenarios are as follows:

  • Your website uses WordPress to enable you to make changes and manage the website yourself, but Plugin and WordPress updates aren’t being installed which means we need to devote more resources to hosting your site as more recent performance improvements in WordPress aren’t in place on your site, and that we have to take additional measures on our servers to protect your website from hackers that may seek to take advantage of your site running Plugin versions that are insecure.
  • Your website could be more complex than you think. You may have scheduled events in place, or your site may use our CDN (Content Delivery Network) features to improve performance.
  • Your website may use forms or have comments enabled on posts we need to take additional protective measures – which use more server resources – to limit spam comments and mitigate possible security issues.
  • You may have a website that requires more assistance from us than your website hosting package includes and you don’t have a support agreement. These tasks could be regular email account changes, intervention when plugin or WordPress updates go wrong, or any number of other support tasks, or assistance with using your website. If these tasks are small but regular we need to cover these costs.

What will not happen?

We will still take who we source from seriously and stay true to our “small business first” and “people before profit” philosophies and we will not change that philosophy. We will still primarily source locally, from small businesses whenever possible, and will never ask a small business for a discount.

No staff have been, or will be, made redundant to cut costs. We hire responsibly and while we may have to adjust the way we provide our services from time to time, we take care of our own – it’s who we are.

The quality of service we provide will not change, in fact, we have managed to improve the reliability and performance of our website hosting services by switching more services to a smaller provider who has been good to us over the past 15 years and they have rewarded that loyalty with lower prices, which have reduced the price increase we have had to apply.

What happens if business costs go down?

Simple. We will look to reduce prices to our customers as soon as possible in line with any significant reductions in cost.

What should I do if this would cause my business financial hardship?

We are keen to engage with customers on a one-to-one basis, via email, to discuss the options available and how we can accommodate and support the needs of each individual customer. Please reply to the price increase notification message or email [email protected] with details of your situation, and how you would like us to help, and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

Where can I find my service terms and conditions?

The Hosting terms and conditions can be found on the Website Hosting Service Agreement page on our website. The payment agreement is on the Payment Terms & Billing Agreement page. PDF copies can be downloaded from those pages.

A note on how we charge for support minutes

As you know, we charge for support unless the issue is with a server problem. Charges are either through support agreements, which are three-month rolling contracts in exchange for a lower hourly rate or through ad-hoc charges for minutes used which are charged at the rate in place at the time.

Effective 12th December 2022 we will no longer be billing for support minutes in 15-minute blocks. Support minutes will be billed by the minute going forward which will result in lower bills for support time and more usable time for customers with support agreements.

A note on support agreements

Support agreements for website content edits, software updates for WordPress sites, SEO, Social Media Management, and combination support agreements covering anything we can provide still offer the best value as pre-paid minutes that are part of a support agreement will remain at a discounted rate.

Further questions?

Please email your questions to [email protected] and we will be happy to provide individual advice.

Last updated byChris Grant (he/him)Chris Grant (he/him) on 22nd January 2023