Milan, 28 May 2019. The first quarter of 2019 has come to an end and we already entered the Q2 of 2019. This implies that global businesses are refining and polishing their marketing, sales, and development strategies to maximize the efforts and achieve the best possible results.
Tophost is not an exclusion. According to Simone Righini, the manager of Tophost, the company has a lot planned for the upcoming months. Let’s dive into the details.
How did the Tophost perform during Q1 2019?
Simone Righini: “In my opinion, Tophost performed very well – we are continuing to earn new customers. In fact, our balance for transfer-ins is good. For instance, there are a lot of web hosting companies on the market with a bigger amount of clients than us, but then they lose a lot of clients after the first year.
At the moment, we are working on the new price structure. It is very interesting and is not like what we usually do. Normally, the standard for the hosting sector is having the low price for the first year of usage, and then, increasing the price drastically for the second year and the upcoming years.
We decided to go the other way. While we have the lowest price on the market in Italy, we still think we could decrease the price for the second year of service for our customers. We believe this can significantly improve our churn rate.
As our company is now present on the market for 15 years, the vast majority of bookings are coming from old customers. So, this is a very bold move that we are making right now and I am sure that it will bring amazing results.
Besides, we believe we can compare our services to the ones provided by those companies that offer hosting with wordpress.com. We have the .org version of WordPress and it is an open source version. Thus, we are able to offer the best budget version of the solution for hosting that is also great performance-wise.”
Can you tell me more about the growth in terms of new customers? Are you still experiencing a positive trend in this sense?
Simone Righini: “We still register positive results for the new customers. According to our internal data, we are still up by the number of products sold. During December of 2018, a lot of our customers renewed their service packages in advance, which skewed the numbers for the upcoming months.
However, in reality, all the figures are growing steadily. For example, our customer acquisition number is 6% up in comparison to the last year.
In addition, I believe that the new price structure will help us reduce customer churn even more.”
According to the latest figures from the DHH, Tophost experienced a slight decrease in gross sales (-4%) when compared to the first quarter of 2018. What caused this result?
Simone Righini: “The decrease in gross sales is due to a small shift in the renewal process. Some of our clients renewed their services back in December of the last year instead of renewing this January. So, the figure came as a result of a shift in the renewal process.
In addition, we decreased the price of manual operations for Tophost. There is a significant part of operations that are managed manually. We decided to decrease this price in order to benefit our customers that need this kind of services. So, this is another reason for a decrease in gross sales figures.
Speaking differently, the number of customers and sales is still growing, but the final number representing the gross sales is lower because we decided to decrease the pricing for certain products in order to keep our clients.”
I know about Tophost’s project related to security and new power features. You’ve mentioned that there are still some formal moments to be sorted out. Is there any update regarding this project?
Simone Righini: “We are now online with the new product called Autofix – each and every customer of ours can buy it.
Autofix is checking all your hosting-related files with all the public versions of malware detection programs. If it senses some issues, it automatically fixes them. This program also provides a backup for all your files – this is very useful for our clients in times they want to revert the changes made by Autofix.
As of the moment, the customers are happy with this addition. The attach rate is on the rise.”
What are the plans of Tophost for the near future?
Simone Righini: “We are planning to keep adding new features and products for our customers, but I think the biggest change that will affect our company in the future is the new price structure we adopted.
Aside from this, we are still working on investing in infrastructure, and there are some internal processes we have to take care of. Investing in quality and research is another focus for the upcoming months.”