TL; DR: It’s a common origin story in the hosting industry: A tech-savvy entrepreneur notices a gap in services and sets out to improve the space. At least that was the case when Max Emelianov founded HostForWeb in 2001. Fed up with the industry’s inflexible hosting solutions and less-than-stellar customer support at the time, Max knew he could do things better. And, after more than 16 years in the business, he’s proven his case. Today, HostForWeb offers a full suite of services and ultra-reliable support to keep its customers’ businesses online and profitable. We recently sat down with Max, who talked to us about the company’s most popular offerings and how it heeds customer requests with the latest technologies.
Since its inception in 2001, HostForWeb has had a strong reputation for being a high-quality web host — but if it weren’t for hosts with less to offer, the company may have never been founded. As a site owner in the early days of the web, Max Emelianov found the available hosting providers greatly lacking in a number of areas.
“At that time, the industry was just beginning to advance, and I was constantly facing issues with the stability of my sites,” Max said. “Daily downtimes greatly disappointed me.”
He tried several different hosts, but none of them gave him what he wanted. Eventually, Max gave up trying to find a web host he liked. His solution? Create his own company.
“My inspiration came from my own dissatisfaction with existing hosting solutions and their instability,” Max said.
HostForWeb was born, initially offering a standard set: personal hosting, domain registration, reseller packages, and bare-metal dedicated servers. In 2017, the company completed migration out of Chicago to a new datacenter in Buffalo, NY, to deliver even better service with DDoS protection and latency to its European customers, New York financial companies, and larger up-links to the rest of the US.
Supporting More Powerful Website Performance
As the company grew and the industry progressed, HostForWeb launched new services such as virtual and cloud servers. The company added more applications to improve end-user website performance maintenance, such as CDN solutions, secure certificates, DDoS mitigation services, email filtering and delivery services, and website builders. These enhancements required that the servers receive a security boost, too.
“The more popular the service became, the more attractive it became for scammers,” Max said. “Most headaches came from credit card fraud, spam, phishing scams, hackers, DDoS attacks and crookedly written applications.”
Adapted to the current market, the company now offers a complete mix of shared, VPS, cloud, dedicated, and reseller hosting packages. Powered by cPanel and secured with Cloudflare DDoS protection and SSH, HostForWeb’s plans come with more than 300 pre-installed applications to deploy what’s most important for its customers. HostForWeb is well aware of what its clients look for and aims to provide it at every level of service.
“Most customers are looking for website performance, safety of their data, and security of personal information, and this corresponds with all of our products,” Max said.
The company’s cloud services are in the highest demand. Both managed and self-managed cloud servers are available to customers, with quick setup and full customization.
“It brings a lot of benefits, such as scalable server resources, redundant data storage environment, protection from hardware crashes, and the highest uptime and availability,” Max said.
Here to Serve: There’s No Such Thing as a “Dumb Question”
HostForWeb offers multiple options for each type of hosting service. This diversity makes it easy for customers to get precisely what they need — no more, no less.
“We try to help customers in finding a hosting solution that will fit their needs,” Max said. “This is the best way to get a reputation as a reliable host.”
The 24/7/365 support team is available via chat and phone so that customers have a way to get the answers they require at the exact time they need it. The staff helps with everything from free website migration to service upgrades. Max said that with HostForWeb’s customer service, clients should feel like they can ask anything and get the most accurate and helpful response.
“Our support team uses knowledge and possibilities to help and answer customer’s questions in time,” Max said. “There are no dumb questions, only dumb answers.”
Self-service help options include Troubleshooter wizards that provide step-by-step instructions to solve common issues. The Knowledge Base has browsable topics on all potential problems that users might encounter or questions they might have, like explanations of services and how they work.
“Guided by trustworthiness and courtesy, we try to make our clients stay with us for a long time,” Max said.
Feedback and Requests Drive Product Development and Strategy
Staying in tune with what customers want gives HostForWeb ideas about how it can improve and enhance its services. Customers are a wealth of knowledge when it comes to learning how to stay competitive in the market.
“Very often, innovations emerge after customer feedback or requests,” Max said.
The company’s response to these requests has resulted in many new options for customers, including user-friendly control panels, website builders, CDN service, PHP script auto-installers, and exploit/malware scanners.
Advances in technology and changes in the market also impact the quality of hosting services that HostForWeb is able to provide.
“The price falling on SSD drives allowed us to create SSD disk storages,” Max said. “This greatly increased processing speed for large databases and backups.”
Commitment to keeping up with the latest trends has allowed HostForWeb to provide state-of-the-art services, such as lightning-fast dedicated servers and self-healing cloud hardware.
Up Next: Hardware Upgrades and Improved Cloud Infrastructure
The latest developments at HostForWeb include upgrading hardware to flash-only storage, which will improve access speeds and give customer websites better reliability and performance.
“At this point, 80% of our existing customer base is already running on SSD storage,” Max said.
In the near future, the company will finish deployment of new cloud infrastructure based on software-defined storage.
“This allows us to dramatically increase I/O performance for existing and future cloud users,” Max said. “All SAN-based services will be replaced with SDS, flash-only.”
The company also has security upgrades in the works to further protect websites against DDoS attacks.
“We’ll be implementing more advanced DDoS filters by upgrading existing firewall hardware,” Max said. “These are our plans for the near future.”