Going Viral: How Nexcess Saved Adoption Site During Unexpected Traffic Surge

Growing Traffic, Growing Problems

Christine Clauder wasn’t expecting to be on television when she created a website to help Hank, a rescue dog, get adopted. All she was thinking about was finding him a home. Having designed and maintained websites for years, spinning up a site wasn’t difficult for her at all.
What was difficult, she soon found, was keeping her site live while using an “unlimited” plan from her existing provider, GoDaddy.
PleaseAdoptHank.com running smoothly, thanks to Nexcess fully managed hosting.Source: pleaseadopthank.com
Clauder originally had between 20 and 50 unique website visitors per day. However, once word spread of her brutally honest, hilarious adoption website, traffic soon spiked.
It was only when HuffPost picked up her story that the site troubles began. The first time her site crashed, she called GoDaddy to upgrade. It cost her $200, yet 15 minutes later her site went down again — this time for TWENTY EIGHT hours.
Knowing DNS propagation can take a while, she held off before inquiring. When she called back, she found out they had “forgot to flip a switch on their end,” and in two minutes it was back up. Fortunately for rescue dog Hank, but unfortunately for Clauder’s stress levels, more and more sites began to pick up the story.
Clauder’s adoption website for Hank ended up appearing in Scary Mommy, Yahoo, Today Show, Daily Mail, Daily Paws, NY Post, I Heart Dogs, BetterMarketing, BestFriends.org, and more — the publicity just kept coming.
More traffic required another upgrade from GoDaddy. The second upgrade cost $500 and went relatively smoothly, but watching her CPU resources climb every time kept her on edge. Then Sinclair Networks contacted her.
Traffic grew 99,900% on Clauder’s adoption website.Source: SEMrush
A television station in Lynchburg, VA had shared the story and it went national. She ended up on Inside Edition, both digital and broadcast. Unfortunately, this surge of traffic caused Clauder’s site to go down almost daily. She made another call to GoDaddy.
Her final call was to upgrade a third time, at the cost of $1,500. That’s more than some Nexcess clients pay annually for hosting.
GoDaddy informed her that there were no further upgrades and her next option would be to move to a dedicated server — which seemed like an extreme expense for a site that could very well be obsolete when Hank got adopted.

Migrating to Fully Managed WordPress Hosting By Nexcess

Every time a news source released more content about Hank, Clauder’s site resources hit 96%. At one point, her site was getting around 80,000 visitors over a two week period.
With daily crashes, costly increases, and GoDaddy support asking if she worked in WordPress because of the advanced familiarity they lacked — it quickly became evident that Clauder needed a new solution.
After experiencing so many outages, Clauder decided to switch to fully managed WordPress hosting by Nexcess.
Clauder was able to get her site up and running on Nexcess in virtually no time using the migration request in her customer portal.
From the time she created her account to the completion of her migration, approximately 12 minutes had elapsed. This freed up a lot of time and energy while relieving much of her anxiety — let’s not forget she’s fostering a dog with the horsepower of a Bugatti.
"I have had a significantly better experience with Nexcess. I have over 10 domains right now, and when the rest of my domains start expiring, I’d like to consolidate everything over to Nexcess. GoDaddy cannot handle what I’m going to need."
- Christine Clauder, creator of PleaseAdoptHank.com

Results With Nexcess

Once Clauder moved over to Nexcess, she was able to experience their award-winning support services first hand. In fact, they were able to solve problems for her that GoDaddy had not.
When Clauder encountered some slight issues, Nexcess support was able to nail down precisely what was wrong. As soon as she heard it was a script visitors were waiting on, a lightbulb went on.
She had tried disabling plugins when she was with GoDaddy to improve performance, but it didn’t seem to have any impact. That was due to both the quality of the plugin and the heavy flow of incoming traffic.
Being able to identify issues and handle heavy traffic with ease are both essential for hosting providers. As the kids say, “Get you a host that can do both.”

Experience Fully Managed Nexcess Hosting

Nexcess not only provides Instant Auto Scaling, it’s upfront about pricing after you’ve hit your free 24 hours, included monthly with every plan. Should you run into any trouble, there are talented subject matter experts on-hand 24/7/365.
From instant scalability to seamless migrations, quality support representatives to upfront pricing, a great hosting provider will never leave you in the dust during your big moments.
You can rely on Nexcess to work with you through the toughest situations, understand your priorities, and help get the job done. Better is Built In with Nexcess, and that means making every part of your site development experience better.
Ready to see results? Learn more about how Nexcess can help get your site traffic-ready for any and all situations.
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