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Netfirms

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Netfirms was founded in 1998 and is located in Burlington, Massachusetts. The company is one of the more than 80 hosting companies owned by industry giant, Endurance International Group (EIG). Netfirms offers comprehensive features for its shared web hosting. The company also offers unlimited storage and unmetered bandwidth.

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The Good

  • High Quality Data Center
  • Reliability
  • Customer Service Support
  • Variety of Great Features, Including Microsoft 365 and G Suite

High Quality Data Center

Netfirms shares its data center with several of more than 80 web hosting companies owned by Endurance International Group. The center is located in Burlington, Massachusetts and protects data and hardware with significant redundancies, daily server backups, and multiple layers of firewalls. The data center is rated as a Tier-One facility and maintains the highest level of security possible.

Reliability

Whenever possible, BestCompany.com uses independent testing to report the uptime statistics. Results for Netfirms are impressive, with almost 4,000 consecutive days of monitoring. During that time, thousands of random pings are sent to the servers to test for uptime. Since 2005, Netfirms has been reported at 99.868 percent. The last time that these random pings detected any downtime from Netfirms' servers was in September 2012.

Customer Service Support

Anecdotally, the quality of customer service declined after it was purchased by Endurance International Group. The company is available for customer support via phone, email ticket, and live chat, 24/7. There are several reports that suggest that the quality of Netfirms' customer service is better than many of its sister companies. Some customers have complained about waiting longer than expected for assistance, particularly with email support tickets. 

Variety of Features, Including Microsoft 365 and G Suite

Netfirms customers can build their websites with easy-to-use templates that the company advertises as "Ready-to-Go Websites." The company does not disclose how many templates it offers with this service. Customers can easily install scripts, WordPress, Joomla!, Drupal, bulletin boards, and subdomains on their accounts. Netfirms does not limit the number of email addresses that are allowed on an account and offers scalable bandwidth, customizing it to a customer's needs and average traffic.

Netfirms offers several video tutorials online to help customers with common challenges involved with website management. The company offers assistance in transferring an existing website from another hosting company to Netfirms. There is also an option to integrate with Microsoft 365 or Google G Suite, the two primary providers for office collaboration, email, and business system management.

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The Bad

  • Owned by Endurance International Group
  • Limited Hosting Options
  • Substandard Social Media Presence

Owned by Endurance International Group

There are many customers that will avoid companies that are owned by Endurance International Group. These companies have many similarities to one another that customers who have been burned by EIG's lack of pricing transparency or substandard customer service want to avoid any company that is owned by EIG. Both of these issues are present to some degree with all of the EIG companies that have been reviewed by BestCompany.com. Netfirms has had the same type of transparency issues with its pricing, but to a lesser degree than many of its sister companies.

Limited Hosting Options 

Our biggest issue with Netfirms is the lack of web hosting options. We would like to see Netfirm extend their services to include VPS, cloud, dedicated, and managed web hosting options. This provides more options and customization for customers who would benefit more from plans that included shared and VPS hosting options.

Substandard Social Media Presence

The company does not appear to maintain a consistent presence with Facebook or Twitter updates, with zero updates in 2021. The most recent update was in March 2020, and only a handful of posts per year prior to that. Given the popularity of social media use for customer service, especially by customers with deep technical skills who are the most likely demographic to use NetFirms hosting, domain, and email products, this is a huge oversight.

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The Bottom Line

Compared to other companies owned by EIG, Netfirms is slightly more transparent with its pricing. One must still look for the current pricing for renewals, which is linked at the bottom of several pages, similar to fine print, but the only plan which is purchased at a significant discount for its initial term is the Plus Plan. Those who have been the victims of deceptive practices by a subsidiary of EIG are understandably concerned and want to avoid a repeat of a negative experience. Of all the EIG companies that BestCompany.com has reviewed, Netfirms is one of the best.

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Faisalabadi

Not sure what happened there, but all of our sites and the host's own site were down all wekneed or at least unreachable. It may have been a DNS error but we're all back now and I've uploaded my site revisions. Yay!

6 years ago

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