KnownHost was founded in 2006 and at the time was extremely focused on the Virtual Private Server (VPS) and server co-location business. It was only roughly two years ago that KnownHost CEO Justin Sauers embarked his company on an expansion.
This resulted in the KnownHost product line growing, and it now covers almost the entire spectrum of web hosting solutions. I spoke with Sauers briefly of late and found myself interested by his perspective on the expansion.
The Company Background
The web hosting industry has been growing (and growing) and despite the massive influx of customers there is still a great demand for quality web hosting. The challenge to the customer has always been to find the right balance of features at affordable prices.
Where some web hosting companies have slashed prices and are offering cut-throat rates to unknowing customers, I’ve always believed that nothing in life is free. If you’re paying absolute bottom dollar then it isn’t realistic to expect top-notch service.
As a long-time web hosting customer, I’ve found that it pays to look closely at what a web host offers and to do my research on how well it offers those features and services where possible. Opting for the cheapest product might be appealing to your bottom line but could end up costing untold amounts in downtime and brand or reputation damage.
The challenge is finding the right web hosting service provider to partner with. One which is focused on their customer more than simply offering the cheapest product available.
KnownHost Places the Customer First
According to this very hands-on CEO, expanding the products offered by the company was more a matter of extending on one single core value: It was vital that KnownHost kept true to the fact that it was a managed hosting company.
The reason behind this focus has always been the customer. To Sauers and his team, the sum of their technical expertise and enterprise-grade hardware is there to reduce the burden of hosting management on their clients.
We have positioned our company, along with our technical expertise to be at the disposal of our clients. It doesn't matter to us if you are a single shared hosting account, or a multi-server fortune 500 deployment. We treat each customer as a valued member of our family. – Justin Sauers, CEO, KnownHost
At this point of time, KnownHost serves customers from over 150 countries and does it very efficiently.
More than Just Shared Hosting
With more than a decade of customer experience under the belt, especially in the enterprise space, KnownHost made sure to listen. Their customers let them know what they needed, and the company crafted solutions to fit those needs.
To date, they have leveraged on superior technology OpenStack, KVM and OpenVZ, which is backed by a solid support team which is always on hand. Their administrators monitor the performance of their charges zealously with cutting-edge management tools.
The result is a successful line of products that customers not only want but are able to afford as well. The strategy worked and according to Sauers, everyone at KnownHost understands this philosophy and truly enjoys providing that rock-solid back end for their clients.
Shared hosting services at KnownHost are not your run-of-the-mill, one-size-fits-all solution. It is in this area that KnownHost has applied their enterprise strategy and included premium features normally found as add-ons in the VPS and dedicated hosting space.
Taking a Deeper Dive into KnownHost Shared Hosting
One of the first things I noticed about their shared hosting accounts was that KnownHost built it on the Cloud. This means that even shared hosting customers can benefit from increased reliability that is inherent to Cloud platform users.
Cloud platforms are better equipped to handle high volume traffic streams or temporary spikes. Although their account resources still come with resource limits, site performance is generally less affected by anomalies.
In terms of security, KnownHost has built-in similar safeguards into shared hosting accounts that are harder to find on other similarly tiered solutions. For example, Imunify360 is included with all shared hosting accounts, bringing rock-solid web server security.
Rarest of them all is the extensive developer support that KnownHost shared hosting accounts have, which include Laravel, Zend, CakePHP, Yii, and many more. This allows a great deal of flexibility for users to develop based on their favored frameworks.
They also extend the same features to other variants of standard shared hosting such as their WordPress-specific plans. Bottom-line, the policy is the same; they aim for the same level of service across the board and excellence in all areas.
Note: KnownHost operates out of four data centers – three in North America and one in Amsterdam, this gives greater flexibility to users who need to target traffic from specific areas where necessary.
KnownHost Shared Hosting is Fully Managed
Even as impressive as their feature list is, the part that makes KnownHost shared hosting truly special lies in their approach. Most shared hosting providers offer pooled resources off a standard server with a single IP address.
For KnownHost, they’ve configured their shared hosting accounts to each have their own resources and different IPv6 addresses. That is a major advantage and not one you’ll readily find in shared hosting plans.
The ultra-reliable high-performance Cloud infrastructure their service is based on places them leagues ahead of the competition. Oh, and they manage it all for you. Most things like application updates and the like are updated automatically and the product is backed up by an entirely US-based support team.
This means that your calls for help won’t get routed around the world to techs that struggle to understand you. All KnownHost packages get the same support deal – every day of the week, at any time.
Best of all, despite these superior qualities they have in their shared hosting products, KnownHost hasn’t used that to charge sky high rates. They’ve kept shared hosting prices very competitive, which is impressive given how good their equipment and software really is.
You’re paying shared hosting prices for basic Cloud hosting features. A proposition that is very hard to beat.
What’s Next for KnownHost?
Today, shared hosting makes up around 10% of their customer base since VPS was where their original strengths lay. However, Sauers feels that this may change as the web hosting industry evolves.
We're seeing web hosting truly expand out to the masses and I think that is a wonderful thing. The more we can place knowledge and technology into the users hands the better. Dynamic content and user experience are constantly evolving and along with it the methods used behind it to support that framework. – says Sauers.
The overall feel that Sauers gets is that the web hosting industry is still moving in a positive direction. There is, however, a much more urgent need for greater focus where website and server security are concerned.
Honestly, this is great for KnownHost since that focus and the evolving landscape mean that there is need for continually evolving applications that require updates and patches for optimal robustness.
Managed solutions are where KnownHost excels, and their experience in this area means that all their users, not just large companies, gain the benefit of ease of use and peace of mind. As Sauers himself notes, they take care of the boring stuff, so you don't have to worry.
Conclusion: It’s More than Ones and Zeroes
Having considered myself a geek for life, I’ve always been obsessed with the ones and zeroes – indicators of performance and focused on the minute difference in performance factors. Yet even I, in today’s environment especially, recognize the need for companies like KnownHost and leaders like Justin Sauers.
These are the visionaries that can see past the ones and zeros into the bigger benefits of the intangibles. Service, support, and most importantly, the need for companies today to build greater trust with their customer rather than milking them for every dollar they can.
As a potential web hosting customer this should concern you deeply and with so many service providers around today, it is vital you find one that you can trust to bring your web assets to the next level. Finding a web host who will treasure a multi-million-dollar customer is easy.
The challenge is in finding the right partners like Sauers and his team who will treasure your $100 website as well.
More about KnownHost
We track KnownHost shared and VPS hosting performance consistently at our sister site HostScore. Their service has been very stable since day one. The chart above shows the response time we recorded from October 20th – November 18th, 2019. For latest KnownHost speed test and uptime data – visit this page at HostScore.
About Timothy Shim
Timothy Shim is a writer, editor, and tech geek. Starting his career in the field of Information Technology, he rapidly found his way into print and has since worked with International, regional and domestic media titles including ComputerWorld, PC.com, Business Today, and The Asian Banker. His expertise lies in the field of technology from both consumer as well as enterprise points of view.