When Microsoft announced a partnership with hosting provider, GoDaddy for Office 365 services it seemed it would offer a huge advantage for SMBs.
Billed as a “strategic partnership” between the two, it allowed GoDaddy to sell three of Microsoft’s Office 365 plans to its customers. Being a web hosting provider to over 17 million users, GoDaddy for Office 365 offered an exclusive email and productivity service to its customers, who are predominantly small business owners.
GoDaddy for Office 365 also offered bonus elements such as:
- One-click setup, across all plans.
- Domain selection & registration, with email address suggestion.
- Access to a full suite of Microsoft productivity solutions via a custom admin panel.
Another bonus was that purchasing a multi-year subscription to Office 365 Business Premium through GoDaddy instead of Microsoft costs less. This made purchasing the bundle seem like a great deal for businesses that wanted to save money.
The partnership seemed great on paper, but soon after rolling out the service, customers began to experience several issues with integration that made using the software quite complex.
One major problem is that GoDaddy’s Office 365 application requires users to sign in through GoDaddy’s Office 365 UI. When you access the application like this there are issues with token-based authentication which conflicts with other Microsoft apps or services.
Users also find that apps like Office 365, Bing, Outlook would require re-authentication and consistently prompt users to login again, and again.
Other issues include:
- Inability to protect accounts using 2-step or multi-factor authentication – GoDaddy for Office 365 only offers a password reset for security, which opens up businesses to phishing and other cyber-attacks.
- Potential to reset the wrong password – Using the reset password option takes you out of your Office 365 dashboard and back to the GoDaddy portal. This makes it easy to reset the wrong password.
- GoDaddy’s poor tech support – One would expect GoDaddy to be able to troubleshoot and resolve these problems quickly, but users claim they couldn’t get good support or helpful answers from GoDaddy. Some claimed they were even referred to call Microsoft or a third-party vendor to troubleshoot these problems.
If It Seems Too Good To Be True….
Taking a step back to examine the situation, it’s obvious who benefited the most from the “strategic partnership”.
GoDaddy is an internet domain registrar and web hosting company, with a large customer base of small businesses. By allowing these businesses buy Office 365 and cloud storage under their own domain name, SMB customers seemed to be getting the best of both worlds.
But were they really getting that?
When contacted for further clarification, GoDaddy eventually admitted that the only reason they can sell Office 365 at a cheaper price is by offering less of the Office 365 product. Yes, GoDaddy for Office 365 is a light version of Office 365, with less features and functionality but still more complex to use.
Now you’d think the logical step of migrating off the platform would be easy, right?
But it isn’t.
It’s a complex procedure that can take up to 2 whole days. And that’s when it’s done by an actual IT technician. For people that have a business to run, this is too much hassle. As an end user who has a business to run, poking around in the registry looking for a fix is not the best use of your time.
Yes, rooting around in Outlook to find client information or not having emails sync with phones and the shared company calendar leading to missed appointments can be frustrating.
But using a solution like GoDaddy for Office 365 simply isn’t an efficient business practice. While the ‘low’ upfront cost may seem attractive, remember it’s only available via a multi-year subscription, you’re getting less service and the whole ecosystem is riddled with extra complexities.
So, is that really worth the hassle?
If you experience any of the issues above and must pay for a tech to sort things out, doesn’t that work out to be more expensive in the long run?
At Admiral Consulting Group, we encourage businesses to stick to the knitting. We know our clients would rather focus on business growth and increasing profits than waste time pretending to be IT experts.
You know what they say, “to do two things at once is to do neither.”
The ‘simplicity’ of an Office 365 one-click install via GoDaddy isn’t worth the hassle; businesses should get Office 365 direct from an accredited supplier.
The potential downtime can lead to a chain reaction of negative events, everything from decreased employee productivity to lost revenue.
Speak to one of the experts at Admiral Consulting Group today and let us show you how Office 365 can help keep your business running with zero downtime.