My SiteLock Review: It’s About Trust

 In Business, Business Advice, Technology

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Have you heard of SiteLock? Well if your website has ever been hacked or infected you probably have. Our company operates about 20, business and marketing, WordPress sites. Over the years we have had our sites infected a few times, usually one site per year.  One year we had three become infected. As you can imagine, it’s a real pain in the butt.

Sitelock is a subscription service that protects your site from malware and viruses.  Believe it or not some of the biggest hosting companies like Godaddy and Ipower , which I find extremely difficult to comprehend. Why would you allow your customers to use your servers and yet not protect them? To make matters more interesting some of these hosting companies are affiliates of SiteLock so they have an incentive not to fully protect their clients.  Anyway one of my sites is infected . . .

So What Happens Next

So what happens when your site gets infected? It’s not “if” but “when”. First, your hosting company blocks your site or temporarily takes it down until the matter can be resolved. 2. They notify you via email. In my case, my rep showed me how to access a technical report in weak attempt to help us out. Eventually, my Goddady rep informed that they recommend using SiteLock.

The Sales Consultation

The SiteLock rep I spoke with understood my situation, was very pleasant, took his time to explain their offerings. Of course, Sitelock must understand that their clients are already scared and under tremendous pressure to resolve their problem NOW, so they don’t use high-pressure sales tactics to get you to buy.  You are already desperate, or at least I was. Overall, the sale consultation was a good experience, you know, like when go to the ER for a gunshot wound. “No hurry Mr. Martinez, take your time, think about it, we here to help.” says my SiteLock rep. Really? My website is on life support! What is there to think about? I felt I had no real choice and time is money, so I purchased their $49.99 per month service.  $49.99 isn’t a lot of money but I felt a disturbance in the Force, something just doesn’t feel right. It felt like a conspiracy, like the art gallery unwittingly retains the services of the forger to authenticate her own forgery.

The Real Problem With SiteLock

I want to be very clear. All of my interaction with the SiteLock were average or above-average. The real problem  is I simply don’t trust them. And I just cannot continue to pay somebody or some company I don’t fully trust, does that make sense? All relationships are centered on trust! If a customer trust you as a person, trust that your company will solve their problem, they will give you their money.  As part of SiteLock’s value proposition they send you daily emails notifying you that they didn’t find any malware or infections on your site today. Their emails must have a huge open rate, I’m not sure if they’re design to relieve your worries or scare you into buying their next level of protection. Personally, I don’t need that constant reminder, just handle it!

Bottom-line, I can’t not articulate my mistrust of SiteLock and thankfully, I don’t have to. Remember this, how you feel is more important then what you know. So, if doesn’t feel right, get rid of it fast. Your emotions are there for a reason.

The Force Is With Me

Actually, my admin more than the Force. Once that infection issue was handled, I assigned my admin to find us a company that can handle our hosting needs and protected our websites from malware. He did, in a matter of an hour he had found several. After interviewing several candidates we decided to go with Flywheel,  I liked them for their all inclusive service, Malware Protection, Automatic Backup, Automatic WordPress Updates, SSL Certificates and like me, they’re small and hungry. Jessica, our new rep was great, she even went so far as to call me back several times.  After testing them out for a few months with one site we migrated ALL our sites over to them. BTW, they handle the migration too,  for FREE! We recommend them to our clients and we finally became affiliates. 

SiteLock Reviews – The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

The Good.
We found many good reviews about SiteLock on their website – duh!
ConsumerAffiars.com has both good and bad reviews, however they seem to disparage bad reviews by listing them AFTER all the good reviews, instead of in real time. ConsumerAffairs also places “Factual basis uncertain” disclaimer on the bad reviews. It seems that disclaimer would be valid on all reviews – right?

Just FYI : SiteLock pays a monthly fee to participate in the ConsumerAffairs accreditation program and may also pay a referral fee for links on our site.

The Bad
There are hundreds if not thousands of bad reviews.
Please don’t just take my word, Google “SiteLock Review”.

The Ugly
Lawyer and Marketing consultant Jennifer Ellis, had this to say
“SiteLock wanted to charge me $199 to remove a link from a blog post. My site didn’t actually need any cleaning.
There was nothing wrong with it.”

Consumer Michelle of Henderson, NV. (Original review: April 16, 2018: ConsumerAffairs)
“This company told me it was 15.99 for a yearly subscription so I agreed – then when I checked my bank account it was actually $1599 – HUGE difference!!!”

My Prediction

Hosting companies that don’t offer malware protection will eventually lose out to those who will. I also see a future where Sitelock and or it’s affiliates  will have to defend itself against a class action lawsuit or two.
I believe sooner or later your site will be infected by some type of virus or malware. Especially, the more popular your site becomes the more visitors it will attract and therefore it will attract a hacker who enjoys wrecking websites.
Update
In the almost two years we have been with Flywheel we have no malware infections. ZERO. And the best part is I don’t have to receive daily emails designed to scare into submission.

Tips

Backup your site every day or every week depending on how active it is. If you’re currently paying for SiteLock consider switching over to Flywheel, that way you’ll save money and give you more peace of mind. Plus you’ll also have the satisfaction of knowing that the tiny commission that Flywheel pays us will help sustain our children. Just click here to get your free trail at Flywheel and let them know that I sent you.
Finally, please share this article with everyone you know that has a website, let’s help as many people as we can!
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