Go Daddy Launches Cloud Solutions for SMBs

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As more small businesses look to build and fortify their online presence, the work is piling up for web developers, designers, IT professionals, and others in the web tech space. In an effort to service and empower this workforce, Go Daddy on Monday announced the global release of two new products: Cloud Servers and Cloud Applications, both of which are engineered to help a web professional quickly build, test and scale cloud solutions.

Cloud Services looks to give developers control over their virtual instances and concise in-app documentation. The products also features snapshots so that users can save their configurations and launch new servers using the saved, rather than starting over. This platform can be used in a “pay as you go” fashion, with developers billed hourly up to a monthly limit.

Integrated with GoDaddy Domains and DNS, Cloud Applications is a catalog of prepackaged applications from Bitnami that enables one-click optimized installations for over 120 applications or stacks like Magento, Ruby or Drupal and other CMS, CRM and eCommerce applications. Users have access to multiple, public-facing APIs, and upon launch it is available in 26 languages, 44 countries/territories, and 53 markets.

Both products fall under the GoDaddy Pro brand, a program engineered for the growing sector of the varied group GoDaddy’s Jeff King, SVP & GM hosting, security refers to as “web pros,” and a “huge market” for GoDaddy.

“We estimate there are about 6 million of these ‘web pros’ in the U.S. who build websites for small businesses, and another 20 million when you look globally,” King told Street Fight. “This is a huge market. The domestic product has been used by a few thousand beta customers for some time, but we are launching GoDaddy Cloud Servers and Cloud Applications globally [today].”

Many of these web pros work on a freelance basis, and King estimates that they serve “between one and dozens of clients a year.” Often these clients are small businesses who have high demands. GoDaddy’s goal with these new pair of products is to provide the web pros with better workflows and tools so as to better serve their clients and ultimately give the small businesses better results.

It’s truly in the hands of the web pros to create excellent web work for small businesses, as in most cases, small businesses are hiring these people because they don’t have the skills or finesse to make a great website on their own.

“Millions of new small businesses are established each year by entrepreneurs passionate about their vision, but many of them don’t know the first thing about building and designing a website,” said King. “Half of all SMB owners want to outsource their web presence to a web pro in the same way they’d outsource taxes to an accountant, and these web pros are our target audience for Cloud Servers. This product is about making pros’ lives easier, providing fast, easy access to servers and the applications they use every day to deliver for their clients.”

King cited a RedShift Research study co-authored by Go Daddy that found 59% of very small businesses around the world still don’t have a website.

The need for a website, as GoDaddy sees it, cannot be overstated, “According to a study done by Search Engine Land, 91% of consumers now use the web to research their purchases and 85% go online to find local businesses. Without an online presence, eight or nine out of every 10 potential customers will never even know a small business exists. They are effectively invisible.”

If web developers are doing the best work they can in the least stressful way, they can benefit their small business and clients, and ideally appeal to those small business owners who have been reluctant to invest in a web presence.  Web pros, particularly those that are freelance and bill multiple clients by the hour, should be attracted to GoDaddy’s model of charging only for the time they were doing the developing and/or testing of their work in a cloud environment.

“We’ve had the chance to receive lots of user feedback from a few thousand developers who received early access to tailor the product further and give this market exactly what it needs,” said King.