The hosting industry is one of the most competitive I’ve ever seen. Any shared hosting plan over $10 a month is considered way too high, and the packages that come with most hosting companies (Including Bluehost) are ridiculously generous for the price paid. What is a company to do?!!?
Bluehost has only been around since December of 2004 (About 2.5 years). Although I have been involved in other successful hosting ventures it wasn’t until we started Bluehost that I really “got it”. In an ultra competive market like web hosting you have to find a way to stand out. For mosts hosts it is all about price. It is for us as well, but there is WAY more than that too.
The way I see it, you have three things that a web hosting company needs to be highly successful. Notice I said “highly” successful. I am not about mediocrity!! If you are going to do it, then DO IT RIGHT! 1 – You have to have the right price point. In this market, that means under $10. 2 – You have to bring something technically superior to the table than what your competitors have. I believe we have done this with things like PAGE WIZARD, our domain manager, our java FTP applet, SSH (Shell access), etc. Most hosts don’t offer these, or offer something inferior (Especially when it comes to site builders). 3- You MUST have incredible support. This is excruciating to do right. The fun is building the company, not helping someone to change their name servers. That is why so many hosting companies blow it. We honestly believe we have the best support out there BAR NONE. Our average hold time is less than a minute!! When is the last time you called your cell phone company and got someone on the phone in less than a minute! I am not even done listening to their stupid menu at 1 minute!
This market is SOOO competitive and price oriented that I worry that the ultimate loser will be the consumer. To be so worried about aquiring the customer instead of keeping the customer is the mistake that many are making. Bluehost makes “enough” $$$ to take a trip here and there with the family and still give good support, and I will PROMISE to keep things that way!
Matt Heaton / Bluehost.com