Milan, 4 September 2019. According to the data published by HostAdvice, the web hosting market is highly domestic in character. For instance, in France, 8 out of the top 10 hosting providers are French, in the Czech Republic, 10 out of 10 top hosting companies are local and in Italy, 9 out of 10 biggest web hosting providers are Italian. The same trend applies to Germany, where the majority of the top web hosts are local.
Tophost, one of the web hosting companies in Italy, is slowly and steadily working its way to the top 10. Today, we sat down with the manager of Tophost, Simone Righini to talk about the company’s performance during the second quarter of 2019. He told us about the new pricing plan Tophost is following and spoke a bit about the company’s plans for the near future.
How did the Tophost perform during Q2 2019?
Simone Righini: “The biggest update from our side was that we’ve changed the price plan. Right now, we have higher prices for everyone from the public point of view. However, our old customers, in reality, got discounts – when they are renewing the service, they see the lower price in comparison to what the public price list is showing.
Moreover, during the second quarter, we’ve received positive feedback in relation to our Autofix product. Also, the attach rate for our backup product is showing great figures.
All in all, we were continuing with the strategy of not imposing a product on a customer – they are free to choose whatever they want. We also made an easy-to-use panel for upgrades – so now, our customers can install any product they like through our control panel.
Besides, we began working on the new control panel – we are working on it from the back-end as of now. The changes are still not visible to the customer, as this process will take some time – we are making changes to our legacy code.
During the second quarter, we’ve also worked very hard on the development side – this constitutes the core part of our business right now.”
When we spoke with you at the end of the first quarter, you mentioned that Tophost was still seeing a positive trend in terms of new clients. Did you observe a similar tendency this quarter?
Simone Righini: “At the moment, we are not seeing a major positive trend in the new customers, largely due to the slight decrease in traffic generated by the chosen set of keywords. I believe once we push the keywords higher in Google search results, we will see growth in new clients again.”
You’ve also told me that Tophost was working on the new pricing structure. Can you let me know if there are any updates regarding this initiative?
Simone Righini: “The price increase came as a necessary measure as market prices were getting higher and we could not maintain the same low level of prices anymore. The prices for domains and the hosting costs have gone up, so we had to match those. We also decided that can keep our margin lower not to increase the prices too much for our old customers.
Despite this big change, we are still maintaining the lowest prices on the market for each feature we offer.”
According to the latest figures from DHH, Tophost experienced an increase in gross sales (+2%) when compared to the second quarter of 2018. Can you please tell me what contributed to this result?
Simone Righini: “Aside from the regular activities that have helped us achieve this result, I believe that the introduction of innovative products such as Autofix and a backup product is what has driven the gross sales.”
How is your new product Autofix performing?
Simone Righini: “The acquisition of the Autofix product is now stable and the public is receiving it very positively. The feedback from our customers indicates that they are enjoying using the product – it allows them to block malware and viruses on their websites in a matter of clicks.”
What are the plans of Tophost for the upcoming months?
Simone Righini: “We are planning to carry on with working hard on the development side to make sure all our products are up-to-standards with our customers’ needs. We always strive to offer new and innovative products to our clients as well as we guarantee continuous improvement in our hosting service.
Earlier this year, we’ve experienced two big attacks on our hosting servers. However, we’ve managed to stay online and we’ve learned a lot through these attacks. Now, our goal is to make our infrastructure more robust and less vulnerable to hackers. Besides, we work on improving our provisioning system – we want to make it faster and more reliable.
For the upcoming months, we have in mind the development of a new product that will be a faster version of Topweb. It will include the new caching system that will be out of the box. As of now, there are two Topweb versions – Topweb and Topweb Plus. We are planning to add the third edition of Topweb that will be even better than these two.”