How HostPress Became Leading Managed WordPress Company with Plesk

Finding the right WordPress hosting solution isn’t easy. So Marcus Krämer decided to build his own. To do it, he needed a hosting business management solution that would run fast and function safely. Today he runs HostPress, a managed WordPress company based on Plesk that powers the websites of many leading brands.

WordPress Hosting “Made in Germany”

My name is Marcus Krämer. I am the Managing Director of HostPress.

HostPress started out as a small team in Saarland, Western Germany. Today, the loyal Plesk customer is a managed WordPress hosting company that has grown to become, according to a global market analysis by Cloud Spectator, the number one WordPress hosting company among German providers.

With both its server location and company headquarters in the country, the company proudly bares the “Made in Germany” stamp. This renowned reliability of German engineering plus the over 10 years of web hosting experience of the team no doubt has much to do with its international success.

But as you probably know, the arena of managed WordPress hosting isn’t such a simple nut to crack. Powering over a third of the websites on the web, there’s no shortage of providers offering their specialized solutions, each with supposedly unique features and benefits.

Marcus Krämer, the founder and Managing Director of HostPress, knew a thing or two about the standard of the managed WordPress hosting market. Despite the wide range of solutions on offer, he couldn’t find one that suited the performance he needed:

We were in the meantime on another solution, with another managed hoster, but the performance did not suit us.

And yet, to build his own that did, he would need to first find a web hosting platform that was fit for the job.

Seeking A High Performance Web Hosting Platform

Managing a web server without a control panel is a task that requires a lot of time and expertise. Not only that, but it runs the risk of being unsafe for customers and affecting their performance.

HostPress’s challenge was, therefore, pretty simple: to find a software solution for its server management that was both safe and efficient.

We did not want to program it ourselves, we wanted to have a safe, tested solution.

The good news for HostPress was there are many web based interfaces and control panels for managing servers to choose from. Problem solved. Well, it would be, apart from one small detail. While each control panel offers the same fundamental features — domain management, email, FTP, app installs, etc. — the specific feature set, layout, performance, and level of control offered by each varies widely.

For HostPress, the key was finding a robust control panel that was safe and tested. They also wanted a high level of performance, and ideally something they were already familiar with. This brought the options down from dozens to very few.

Finding A New Solution With a Familiar Platform

We chose Plesk.

Marcus had known Plesk for 14 years, having used it since 2005 with another managed hosting company. So he knew the Plesk control panel was easy to install and set up — not least thanks to nearly two decades of experience and development.

When it came to choosing a solution for his server management, Plesk was the obvious choice:

We noticed OK, we need a base, one platform with which we will for sure be able to deliver hosting.

With his team, Marcus set up cloud infrastructure, installed Plesk on it, and almost instantly began reaping the benefits of the leading WebOps platform.

As a web-based control panel, Plesk allowed Marcus to get his business set up and running immediately.

We performed the migration manually, but it was simple, because Plesk is very easy to install and to set up.

It also allows everything to be managed for the day-to-day operation of a website from one place. His customers particularly like how the interface is clear to do everything from setting up a website and email account to managing databases and backups — no matter how many websites you have.

One particular feature of Plesk that provides a lot of benefit for HostPress is the WP Toolkit. With many clients with high performing websites like Mister Spex and FoodSpring, HostPress need to manage multiple WordPress instances easily. From Plesk’s easy-to-use dashboard, Marcus can manage many sites in one click, from making updates for various plugins, seeing which templates are installed, selecting SEO indexing, and activating maintenance mode and debugging.

In Marcus’s words,

You can do everything from the interface!

Becoming The Best in Managed WordPress Hosting

The market analysis by Cloud Spectator analysed 17 specialised WordPress hosting providers based on criteria such as general support and documented experiences to developer features and its own standardized tests.

Among the tested providers, HostPress came out third overall — receiving a bronze medal and the title of Germany’s best WordPress hosting provider. 

Going from success to success, HostPress know that with Plesk, they have a platform they can rely on when it matters most. Marcus does admit that Plesk isn’t perfect:

Nothing is annoying with Plesk. There are certainly things one might still improve for the sake of optimizing usability.

Fortunately, Marcus makes full use of the Plesk dev team. Whenever he feels the need for improving a certain feature or optimising usability, he speaks to them, they listen, and they solve the issue often there and then.

This reliable support has no doubt been a lifeline for Marcus in setting up his own managed WordPress hosting company and growing it to such great heights. Marcus has now been running HostPress for over a decade and continues today to offer an impeccable service for his many customers around the world.

In encouraging others who are just entering the market, Marcus has a few words of advice to offer. As you may expect, this advice is chiefly practical: use the support of Plesk, don’t install all the extensions right away, only those you need.

But perhaps the biggest lesson to takeaway from Marcus and HostPress is that, when you notice something lacking in the market or a product/service you can improve, take the leap and find the right ones to collaborate with. The risk will pay off.

And now over to you! Have you had trouble finding the right WordPress hosting solution, and been inspired by the HostPress story? Let us know in the comments below.

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