TL; DR: In just five years, HostUS has attracted more than 30,000 customers worldwide with its top-notch shared, virtual, and dedicated server hosting solutions. The company’s success is due, in large part, to its in-house approach to infrastructure, fully managed VPS packages, and custom-made control panel, which were all developed to help businesses — large and small — run more efficiently and turn profits online. Though HostUS plans for continued expansion throughout Europe, the company remains dedicated to personalized support through its close-knit team of experts.
When HostUS was getting ready to launch in 2012, it faced a hosting industry that had become highly saturated and appeared to hold little room for newcomers. The large providers that ruled the space were serving millions of businesses worldwide and overshadowed the smaller hosts trying to grab a piece of market share.
However, the small LLC operating out of Delaware was about to change the game. Alexander McNeil knew a growing number of site owners were tired of pumping money into the pockets of faceless corporate hosting entities that had little concern for customer care. So he put a team together and launched HostUS to provide webmasters with a more personable and economical hosting option.
“I started HostUS off with a vision to deliver cheaper website hosting than the larger providers,” Alexander said.
To stand out among its competitors, HostUS expanded by adding more features as time went on — all the while maintaining that original approach to simplicity and ease of use.
“We were not a fancy web host to begin with, but as we got more and more popular, we started expanding,” Alexander said. “Our main aim is to provide a solid service for a low price.”
To realize this goal, HostUS adopted a 100% in-house approach to infrastructure and customized software. The hosting space has changed considerably since HostUS was founded. While webmasters are still looking to power their websites, today’s entrepreneurs and businesses are also building applications, data mining, employing remote storage, and more, which all require robust hosting solutions. And, because of its dedication to evolving with market demand, HostUS is able to fuel these modern use cases.
Breaking Into a Saturated Market With 100% In-House Infrastructure
When HostUS hit the scene, the company managed to break into the oversaturated hosting market by architecting its own hardware and software. Initially, the company offered only reseller and shared hosting, and had to partially outsource its staff to keep up with rising demand.
Following the implementation of KVM VPS hosting and expanding its datacenter, HostUS rebranded itself as a completely in-house provider.
“As a low-budget host emerging in the market, it was difficult to gain trust on popular online forums and within the different hosting communities,” Alexander said. “A lot of consumers have had bad experiences with budget web hosts, so they choose to stick with the more expensive, larger hosting companies.”
Facing fierce competition from these larger providers, the decision to keep matters in-house and prices low helped HostUS stand out as a higher-quality host that was still easy on the wallet. Because it has full control over infrastructure, HostUS can offer customers peace of mind and personalized support.
And the reduction of outsourcing allows HostUS to keep prices low.
“Over the years, we have transformed a lot of things to in-house,” Alexander said. “Our VPS control panel (OpenVZ and KVM) is all custom and created primarily by Andrew, our lead developer for all projects.”
With its customized software and in-house server management, HostUS offers what other low-cost hosts can’t.
A Customer-Centric Approach Delivering High Customization & Support
Aside from its low prices and transparency regarding self-hosted equipment, HostUS places a strong emphasis on customer support, which shines through in its customized software and hosting packages.
“My proudest in-house technology is our Breeze Panel (VPS Control Panel), which we advertise as ‘Easy, Simple, and Intuitive,’” Alexander said. “Our main objective is to automate as many things as possible — not to reduce support interaction, but more to streamline and speed up actions for our customers.”
By offering intuitive and user-friendly software, HostUS is able to focus more on the larger issues facing its customers.
HostUS provides users with its custom control panel that boasts a variety of unique features, including a complex HTML5 console. The control panel also allows users to request IPs, mount ISO files, add or remove SSH keys, and enable or disable modules on demand.
“These are just some of the features customers have access to at their fingertips,” Alexander said. “With automation, there is less demand for support, and we can respond to tickets quicker.”
HostUS aims to address support tickets within an hour’s time, making for speedy assistance. In addition to dedicated and shared hosting, HostUS offers domain registration, fully-managed VPS hosting, and node setups that allow for more optimized performance.
Keeping Pace With Market Trends Through Internal Innovation
To stay competitive, HostUS has had to continue being an innovator. In addition to stellar customer support, easily managed hardware and software, and budget pricing, the company’s primary mission is to provide the highest quality service at the most efficient price-to-performance ratio.
“One of the most attractive selling points to our customers and potential clients is how we can deliver a low-cost service with outstanding performance,” Alexander said. “We have expanded as a business so quickly because we find that customers stay with us for years.”
One of the biggest challenges small hosts face is maintaining consistent prices while contending with a gradual drop in server performance. In addition to aging components, hardware quickly becomes obsolete, and bigger hosts with larger budgets are able to innovate more quickly than smaller companies.
Further, other providers that have limited nodes to work with frequently overload servers with too many users.
“With budget hosts, it’s common for performance to degrade over time, as these providers tend to put more customers on nodes to save money and overload them as a result,” Alexander said. “However, we always monitor our nodes and ensure to the best we can that they have solid uptime and are always performing well.”
Keeping with the spirit of innovation, HostUS plans to roll out new features in line with market demands. Alexander told us the company’s strong selling points and loyal customer base allow it to stay competitive and offer something unique to the realm of budget hosting.
“Recently, we have been working on new product lines that we plan to reveal soon,” he said. “As we try to keep as many things as possible in-house, it can take a bit longer sometimes to reveal new product lines that are in line with trends in the industry. However, when we release new services and product lines, they tend to be very liked in the market.”
Expanding Across Continents While Maintaining a Close-Knit Team
In just five short years, HostUS has managed to garner a large, loyal customer base. The company’s solutions are powered by 10 datacenters across the globe and a small but dedicated team. Due to its rapid growth, HostUS plans to expand its staff to include teams from Europe.
“Our team today is a group of four permanent staff, and we all work closely to provide 24/7, around-the-clock support,” Alexander said. “We have contacts and contractors on-demand when we require more staff for larger projects or deployments such as opening new locations.”
Staffing the company’s 10 worldwide locations is a small team of remote workers who enjoy traveling across the UK and surrounding areas, making for a particularly strong connection between its well-established US branch and its soon-to-be-expanded European division.
By building so many new locations in a short span of time, the HostUS team considers itself ready to tap into the global market.
“We are always looking to expand our datacenter presence,” Alexander said. “Recently, we have been expanding a lot within the UK and EU, and we endeavor to improve every day.”