theboredone said: "My only regret is I found out about the promo codes after I paid."
That bothers me somewhat because it turns customers into salesmen - customers who may stretch the truth for a kickback. If a service is good then a fee to push or attract new customers shouldn't be necessary. The best salesman is a satisfied customer who will promote his web hosting service because it is good without getting a handful of cash passed to him.
We're looking for a good web hosting service, reasonable fees are a plus but they can also ring some alarm bells. If we wanted low rates we'd jump for GoDaddy, 1and1 or APlus - all of whom offer just as much disk space (if not more) at half the price, two of whom offer 24/7 telephone support and hold high rankngs at Netcraft.com (the site who monitors all web hosts for speed, new customers and reports the number customers who flee each day) for speed of display, services offered, and tech support availability.
And all offer a long list of standard amenities, open source free and easy install programs like OSCommerce - something we could have opted for from our present host but chose to pay $500 for a custom template and many addons like IPN - instant payment notification. Why? Because we wanted an online store that blended in so well with our custom website design that it doesn't look like an addon but an integrated part of our whole site.
DH offers ZenCart, a commercialized version of OSCommerce that, if used, requires you the user to buy addons or customization from the ZenCart people. No option to find your own free addons or custom designers. It's things like that to ring bells in the head of a seasoned webmaster.
But I'll add that the promo thing can also be helpful coming from satsified customers.
We've often paid extra bucks or additional bonuses for fine work - work that goes the extra mile, not because the hiree had any idea we'd award them but because they took pride in their own work.
A quick example. We wanted our blog moved to our front page and modified to blend in as though it always belonged there. It was originally the fourth tab down our menu. We advertised for a programmer from Freelancer.com and estimated the job to be from $30 to $100. Eight programmers put in bids, 7 of them for $100 the 8th for $30. The 7 programmers had low rated resumes while the 8th had higher ratings then any of them. For $30 we figured we coudn't lose much and we had a backup of our site even if the guy screwed up. We took a chance and hired him.
Ten minutes later he IM'd me - and that caught me by surprise. He asked for a full explanation of what we wanted, access codes and had me wait online while he 'took a look'. 4-5 minutes later he came back and announced "all done". I thought he was kidding so I checked it out. There it was, our blog with everything we had ever written, our archives, our list of links and ads melted into our front page as though it was originally designed to be there. I was floored. We had hired programmers for four times the money who took weeks to do such things and this guy did it in less than 10 minutes.
I still wasn't a complete believer, paid him the $30 and promised to provide a bonus if after 24 hours we were entirely satisfied. It didn't take 24 hours at all, it took maybe two hours. I ran the blog through all of its paces and the thing worked perfectly. I went back to the guy and paid him an additional $70. I also made a new friend. We use this guy often now because he is a pro, takes enormous pride in his work and has exceptional web skills.
So that's why I'm here and thankful DH has this "pre-purchase" forum for potential customers, like me, who want to ask some serious questions and evaluate the service offered.