TL; DR: WPX Hosting, founded in December 2013, was built to empower small business owners to focus on high-priority missions rather than technical intricacies. The company’s Managed WordPress solutions are centered on the customer experience, pairing lightning-fast server performance with supercharged support. Customers can feel good knowing that WPX Hosting CEO Terry Kyle is using his success to improve the lives of homeless and shelter dogs and cats in Eastern Europe.
You’re driving down a cold, dark road in the middle of the night when your car starts clattering and knocking. You call for roadside assistance, but instead of fixing the problem for you, the mechanic hands you a thick manual and says, “Read Chapter 7 to learn how to fix your car.”
This approach wouldn’t fly in the auto world, but WPX Hosting CEO Terry Kyle knows from experience that it’s quite common with hosting support.
“I have worked with nearly every hosting company since 1998 — some twice over,” he said. “I find it very frustrating that the typical hosting practice, in the past and still today, will just send you to a knowledge base article. They expect you to read it, understand it, apply the relevant solution, and fix the problem yourself.”
Taking matters into his own hands, Terry founded WPX Hosting in December 2013 with a focus on managed WordPress services and revolutionized customer support. Today, the WPX Hosting Fixed for You (FFY) Guarantee ensures that when customers run into technical issues that cause downtime or affect performance, the WPX Support Team will respond, check the issue, explain the problem, and fix it as soon as possible — for free.
“If anything happens to take your site offline, we will provide support via live chat in approximately 30 seconds,” he said. “Then, the team will go in, diagnose the problem, and just fix it and get you up and running, rather than trying to educate you on every aspect of running a website.”
Focus on Your Business, Not the Intricacies of Hosting
WPX Hosting does offer knowledge base articles and associated resources, but Terry said his customers rarely want them.
“They just want someone with experience to step in, diagnose the problem, and get the site back up and running as soon as possible,” he said. “If I’m, for example, a cooking blogger or solopreneur, I don’t necessarily want to have to learn all about SSL certificates and .htaccess files — I want to run my business.”
To that end, the company strives to ensure jargon-free simplicity within the customer experience, whether interacting with the support team or the company’s custom user admin panel. It’s no secret that poor customer service experiences lead to increased customer churn. After just one negative support experience, 50% of customers vow never to use the offending company again.
On the flip side, positive customer interactions increase loyalty and encourage customers to spend more. You only need to glance at WPX Hosting’s five-star ratings on both Trustpilot and G2 to see that the company shines in this regard. Many happy customers reference the company’s FFY Guarantee, even if not directly by name.
“I love the fact that you’re never left alone with WPX,” said G2 reviewer Stéphane V. “As soon as I’ve got a question or an issue, I click on the chat button, and they are here in less than 10 seconds (not a joke, that’s real). I’m really impressed as I had to wait hours, if not days, to solve a problem with my previous hosting providers.”
WPX Hosting also strives to provide top-notch performance by leveraging SSD servers that are intentionally underloaded with accounts and sites, so they operate well under heavy traffic loads. The company also designed a customized content delivery network (CDN) from the group up to improve speed.
“Budget hosts tend to overload the servers used for their shared plans with a ton of hosting accounts — that’s really the only way they can be profitable,” Terry said. “The problem is, if a customer does a big email promotion and gets a spike in traffic, it’s going to be a terrible experience for the visitor.”
Ultimately, Terry said WPX Hosting is in the customer experience business, not the hosting business. “It’s not a glamorous thing, but it’s fundamental,” he said. “When we step in and help people get their sites to go live again, the relationship strengthens a lot because they see how much we do for them.”
Helping Feed More Than 500 Shelter Dogs and Cats a Day
Terry told us that it’s easy for entrepreneurs in the startup world to become obsessed with growth and personal gains.
But his motivation comes in the form of EveryDogMatters.eu, WPX Hosting’s non-governmental organization (NGO), which is designed to improve the lives of thousands of Eastern Europe’s homeless and sheltered dogs and cats. Every Dog Matters does not receive donations and is entirely funded by WPX Hosting.
“I want WPX Hosting to succeed so I can funnel more resources into my foundation,” he said. “The goal is to build huge no-cage shelters wide across the country. I’m not just interested in growth — there’s a clear purpose behind it.”
To date, the NGO has successfully implemented several initiatives. For example, WPX Hosting has been funding daily feeding for hundreds of homeless dogs living in an abandoned Communist-era industrial wasteland in Bulgaria since 2016.
The company also funds the sole private animal shelter in Veliki Preslav, Bulgaria, a town of about 12,500 people located approximately 500 kilometers from the WPX headquarters. Terry has also committed to building a new no-cage shelter just outside the town that will be used from January 2020 onward.
But his efforts do not stop there: Since May 2019, WPX has employed a full-time National Dog Adoption Manager, who is responsible for professionalizing the dog adoption process at several shelters across the country. By the end of 2019, the goal is to complete at least 100 successful adoptions per month.
Unlike some corporate social responsibility initiatives that focus on a range of issues, Every Dog Matters is committed to making a real difference by supporting one fundamental cause. “The scale of the homeless dog population here is massive, and we’re trying to eliminate the problem completely,” Terry said.
Ten years down the road, Terry’s ultimate goal is to step away from the day to day operations within WPX and devote his time entirely to Every Dog Matters.
Coming Up: An Expansion into Software Products
WPX Hosting, which has grown to include 60 staff members, four office dogs, and seven stay-at-home cats, is completely bootstrapped, with no outside venture capital or investments whatsoever. Terry said he’s always been reluctant to take money from investors, who could then influence the company’s direction and charitable efforts.
“I love the entrepreneurial freedom,” he said. “We’re quite proud of the fact that we’ve come all this way without any help.”
The WPX Hosting team is always brainstorming ideas for improvement, both in terms of what the company can do better and opportunities for innovation. Soon, the company will add online business-related software to the mix, but the details are tightly under wraps.
“In the future, I think we’ll become more of a software company of which hosting is a part,” he said.