Bringing India Online – An Interview With the Cofounders of MilesWeb.com
The 3 young cofounders of MilesWeb.com are having an effect on the hosting market in India and they now have their sites set even further beyond their home borders. Read on to find out how they got started, what are their core values, and where they see themselves going.
HostAdvice: Tell us about how MilesWeb came to be? You’re 3 cofounders. What started it all?
Using pseudo profile, we worked in the web hosting industry for many years. We always wanted to start our own company and it happened when we came together with this thought in 2012. I would like to share the incident how we got the MilesWeb.com domain. We were sitting in the car late at night, it was around 2 am, and we only had 1% or 2% battery left on our laptop. We were bidding for the domain MilesWeb.com and we luckily managed to acquire the domain just before the laptop was shutdown.
HostAdvice: What were some of the challenges you faced in starting your company and growing it?
All three of us contributed Rs. 6K each and started this company with Rs. 18K. That’s the only investment we made – to date we haven’t borrowed any money from banks, friends or family. The company was profitable and we kept investing the profits back into the business – that is how we keep growing.
We were aware of the fact that it takes time to establish and grow a web hosting company. We always believed in ourselves and kept moving by putting in a lot of hard work and keeping our cool. We faced lot of challenges right from the beginning, including: being available 24×7 for our clients, enabling payment gateways, and offering toll free phone support. One by one we conquered all of the obstacles and kept moving forward.
HostAdvice: Where is the company today? How many employees do you have? How many offices? Where are you based?
MilesWeb is headquartered in Nashik, Maharashtra. We are a bunch of 25 experienced and talented professionals responsible for driving MilesWeb 24×7.
HostAdvice: Tell us a bit about the services offered by your company.
We offer the full range of fully managed web hosting services like shared hosting, reseller hosting, email hosting, VPS hosting, cloud hosting, dedicated servers, WordPress hosting, ecommerce hosting, SSL certificates, backup solution, email spam protection, domain name etc. All the web hosting services are offered across multiple datacenters in India, UK, US and Romania. We are available around the clock to assist our customers through live chat, help desk and phone.
HostAdvice: You have VPS, cloud, and dedicated servers. What are your most popular offerings? Why do you think that is?
At MilesWeb, if I have to rate the products popularity wise then I would rate VPS first, Dedicated second and then Cloud. We have more number of VPS users than Cloud or Dedicated. We offer managed and self-managed OpenVZ and KVM based VPS in multiple locations at an affordable cost. If we sum up all the Linux and Windows VPS plans than it comes to 24. With 24 standard VPS plans, we also offer customize plans as per the specific requirements of the end user. We are flexible when it comes to VPS specification, billing cycle, price, support and service. Our team is always ready to go extra mile to give a “wow” feeling to the clients.
HostAdvice: Do you ever see concerns about overselling? How do you address that?
Overselling available bandwidth or disk space is a lousy feature that could make or break your business. We believe in offering only what we have and can definitely support. We are very strict about not following the practice of overselling. It takes lot of time to build a company and we don’t want our efforts to be in vain by starting to oversell. We often receive inquiries from resellers demanding for the overselling feature and we try our best to educate them about overselling and its adverse effects. We cannot risk our business to fulfill the requirements of such resellers.
HostAdvice: Your hosting costs are really low. How do you do that?
The combined experience of all the three co-founders is over 25 years in the web hosting industry. We know very well how to cut expenses and we then pass the savings on to our clients. India is currently our primary target and we have to offer affordable solutions in order to help people get online. Our experience has helped us immensely to optimize the overall hosting costs.
HostAdvice: Are most of your customers from India? What types of customers are they? How many customers do you currently serve?
61% of our clients are from India and remaining 39% are from outside India. Our client base includes startups, SMB’s, schools, colleges, eCommerce sites, professionals, NGOs, and enterprise users. Presently we are serving over a few thousand customers globally.
HostAdvice: What are the best marketing tactics employed by MilesWeb for client acquisition?
Our marketing tactics always kept changing, what has worked for us in last quarter may not work today. We keep trying multiple options like content marketing, social media and much more to keep the client acquisition machine working each and every day.
HostAdvice: What have you observed in the marketplace, and how are you evolving with these industry changes?
Unlimited hosting plans are the tried and tested formula. Early on, we thought we would offer plans with fixed resources so that customers would get (only) what they actually needed instead of getting into unlimited hosting. We were actually quite successful in acquiring customers but at the same time we were losing a huge number of clients who were only interested in unlimited hosting. We realized that there is no point in reinventing the wheel and we decided to stick to the industry trend. We then optimized our plans and launched unlimited hosting plans with features like Free SSL, Free SpamExperts, Free CDN and much more.
HostAdvice: What else would you like HostAdvice readers to know?
We are big supporter of OpenSource technologies. We recently sponsored DrupalCon Asia and WordCamp in India. We are the part of organizing team that is responsible for organizing WordCamp event in Nashik.
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