It’s probably safe to say few small business owners want to be bogged down trying to keep their e-commerce sites running. If they want to drive more revenue, they need to focus on meeting their customers’ needs — not testing HTML code. The trouble, however, is that growing an e-commerce business requires building up a website’s capabilities.
To address this issue, GoDaddy today is releasing a new Web hosting product that the company says makes it easier for anyone, regardless of their technical proficiency, to run high-traffic, e-commerce sites. It is also a way for small businesses to gain access to more management and security options for their websites while sticking to a budget.
GoDaddy Business Hosting is geared to simplify navigating and controlling sites, the company says. The new service is available in three tiers, with plans that start at $29.99 per month. The first level includes one gigabyte of memory, 60 gigabytes of storage, one CPU, and unmetered bandwidth. More memory and storage capacity is available at higher tiers.
Demetrius Comes, vice president of engineering for hosting at GoDaddy, says the new service is meant to fill a niche with customers who are ready to expand their online prowess, but do not want the headache of tinkering around under the hood. “It’s the bridge from shared hosting to a VPS to a dedicated [server],” he says.
While shared hosting is typically a lower-cost way to get a website up and live, it comes with limited options for customization and scaling up. Also, it literally means sharing resources on a server with possibly several hundred other users. That comes with some tight constraints intend to make capacity and usage fair for everyone. By comparison, a virtual private server (VPS) can offer more security options, data storage, and customization features — but it still means sharing some resources with others.
Naturally a dedicated server commits all of its resources to one website and its related data, often at a higher price point. As more features, customization, and capacity become available, the complexity of running an e-commerce site also increases, which may be more than what a business owner wants.
Comes says GoDaddy thinks it has found a way to deal with this dilemma, particularly as customers who use shared hosting servers scale up their businesses and need more features. The demand for more dedicated resources led to an effort to move the clientele to a VPS, he says, but that flung the businesses into unfamiliar territory. “The problem is you go into an environment where you have administrative access and all the technical baggage that comes with it,” Comes says. “That was jarring to our customers.”
The new service is intended to allay those customers’ worries as they move up to more robust servers with more resources.
This falls in line with a growing trend among businesses that need more Web hosting services, want to maintain focus on running their sites or e-commerce apps, and not worry about technical matters, Comes says. That means hosting companies such as GoDaddy must provide more solutions and not just rent infrastructure and space on servers. “As we move forward, you’ll see us come out with more products along the lines of taking care of all the hassles for you,” he says.
In December, GoDaddy started to introduce some customers to the new platform, Comes says, with the majority of them being e-commerce businesses. “They were mostly customers who wanted to run something like the Magento e-commerce platform, but didn’t have the ability before,” he says.
Now that GoDaddy Business Hosting is out in the open, Comes says the company plans to offer more resources that keep things simple, yet let businesses scale up features for their websites. “In the future, I think you’ll see GoDaddy announce the ability to grow past what we consider a dedicated server today,” he says, “giving a customer the ability to have a worldwide presence and worldwide scalability.”
Joao-Pierre Ruth is a Street Fight contributor.