JAMES Kight isn’t the first managing director to believe that moving to cloud would make his business appear more ‘current’. He certainly won’t be the last.
Apprehensive that his £28 million turnover firm, Printerland, would be viewed as a company behind the times unless he upgraded from a dedicated solution to cloud infrastructure, he asked his current hosting provider UKFast to make the change – only to be met with a piece of advice for which he will forever be grateful.
UKFast CEO Lawrence Jones explained to Kight that such a migration would be counter-productive due to the huge amount of data on the Printerland website, which houses more than 20,000 products.
If Printerland drew up a wish list for its hosting provider, speed and trust would be joint-first – which is why Kight has upgraded his dedicated solution four times in five years and treated Jones’s advice as a much-needed eye-opener.
“Working in the technology industry, I’m constantly reminded that resources are ever-changing and updating,” said Kight.
“It can be really difficult to remain current. Whilst we aren’t totally reliant upon e-commerce, as with any business running successfully in today’s internet generation, our website is a massive part of the company.
“It’s imperative that we don’t become complacent and take our eyes off the ball. Complacency could result in our business suffering, as so many rapidly-expanding companies unfortunately do.
“Cloud is a buzzword for convenience. But what is more convenient than sticking with a tried and tested solution that runs far quicker? I was torn. I began to wonder whether not moving from our dedicated solution to cloud infrastructure was detrimental.
“Would Printerland soon be considered behind the times? It is easy to become overly comfortable. Living in the digital age as we are, I couldn’t allow this to happen. When it comes to technology, it’s essential that we remain up to date. That’s what led me to contact Lawrence Jones directly regarding a cloud solution.
“Lawrence has always been more than happy to help us out, and vice versa. We often meet up for brainstorming sessions and chat about different ways in which our businesses could be improved. It’s a great exercise and extremely beneficial to bounce ideas back and forth. A session like this always results in a pair of bursting notebooks and leaves us both feeling very inspired.
“On this particular occasion, I called Lawrence and explained that I had been considering migrating Printerland.co.uk to a dedicated cloud solution. I questioned whether the world of cloud really was the ‘Holy Grail’.”
Migration would mean Printerland spending more money on its hosting, but if necessary, Kight was pleased to provide the extra custom. However, he was taken aback when Jones dismissed the idea and recommended that for Printerland’s needs, dedicated servers were the only way to go.
Jones explained that due to the huge amount of data on Printerland’s site a cloud solution could potentially slow down the website.
“I had never considered the fact that joining the cloud could result in a slower site – we are simply too big for it,” added Kight.
“Lawrence told me he could make a lot more money by selling cloud to everyone, but he won’t do that because it isn’t always in the client’s best interests.
“It’s not often a company will pass up on the opportunity to make more money so it was extremely refreshing. We upgraded our solution to the ‘Rolls Royce’ of dedicated servers and our website is running faster than any cloud infrastructure ever could allow.”
Printerland.co.uk receives up to 1,000 orders per day, so a high-performing website is absolutely vital to Kight’s blueprint.
He continued: “We can’t allow a slow website to let us down. The average online shopper won’t wait longer than a couple of seconds for a website to load. Any longer than that and they’re likely to return to the search engine and choose an alternative site. That’s not a risk I’m willing to take.
“So, for now, we’re remaining on our dedicated solution – and still growing the business day by day – without compromising on speed.”