Kansas City-based Internet Design and Publishing (IDP) was founded in 2003 to provide services including web design, web hosting, email hosting, custom web development, database programming, and search engine marketing.
In its 18+ years in business, IDP has developed hundreds of websites and has rarely lost a customer. With an experienced team and a collaborative approach, IDP effectively becomes a partner to its customers in order to maximize the potential of the internet for each respective client.
During the 2021 holiday season, Monte Persinger — President & Creative Director for IDP — heard unfortunate news: IDP’s colocation provider was shutting down their data center, and IDP needed to be out by June 1, 2022. Six months may sound like a long time, but not for a small web development and hosting business managing more than 300 websites. With uptime and risk mitigation being essential to IDP’s core business, moving the company’s entire IT environment out of its colocation home for the past 18 years was daunting.
But IDP had no choice, so the team started shopping around for a new technology partner. After narrowing down the search to two companies — LightEdge and one of the three top hyperscale cloud providers — Persinger went with LightEdge for a few reasons.
First, a trusted business consultant recommended LightEdge to Persinger. The IDP team also learned that LightEdge was a VMware shop offering a fully managed cloud environment. Persinger had been running on VMware since IDP’s early days, and partnering with one of the major cloud providers would have introduced more risk and headache in that department.
“We would’ve had to re-engineer our entire environment to be on that provider’s technology stack,” he explained. “Since LE is a VMware partner, we were able to simply drag over a lot of our servers to the new VMware instance on the LightEdge cloud. It made our migration easier and saved me money.”
Starting Dec. 31, 2021, IDP signed up for LightEdge’s Dedicated Private Cloud, tapping into the provider’s managed backup and recovery, as well as its managed firewalls.
“They needed a partner who would mitigate risk of downtime for their customers and wanted to ensure their clients would not feel any pain or performance issues with the move,” explained Grant Minson, Account Executive with LightEdge. “IDP is a small, design-focused team who needed someone to own the day-to-day tasks of managing a cloud environment.”
IDP needed 99.99% uptime, and LightEdge guaranteed 100%, with SOC 2 certification.
In April, following a particularly brutal Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, IDP added on LightEdge’s DDoS Protection to protect its entire environment.
Although moving all 300+ customer websites to a new environment was a long, arduous task, Persinger is confident that LightEdge substantially eased the transition. Even though the hyperscale cloud provider that Persinger investigated was a lower cost option compared to LightEdge, Persinger felt more confident in LightEdge’s uptime, redundancy, and the resilience baked into its network. Turns out, his instinct was right.
“Uptime has been great, and LightEdge’s infrastructure has been faster, too,” he said. “We noticed right away that our websites are faster with LightEdge. It’s all brand-new hardware, fully managed services, and redundant, backed-up software.”
He quickly realized a vast difference between LightEdge and his previous colocation provider.
“I could tell just by doing business with LightEdge and seeing their data center, just how far behind we were at my previous provider,” he said. “We had been there 18 years and they really hadn’t put any money into the facility. It was behind more than I knew. LightEdge is more professional, with better security and standards, more certifications, and more staff.”
Stellar uptime during a very stressful, massive migration was also a big win. LightEdge’s flexible contract process — which significantly streamlined the migration — only sweetened the deal. IDP had to leave two environments running at the same time, from March through June, so the team could slowly transition all 300+ websites and DNS systems, but LightEdge didn’t charge IDP for their services until June 1.
“I really did appreciate that,” Persinger said. “I couldn’t have afforded to pay for two data centers for three months. That took the pressure off. Cost is a big consideration for me as a small business owner, and LightEdge has made an effort to try to fit within my budget and get me the best bang for my buck.”
Transitioning one simple website could create a week of work to get access to the domain name and DNS info, migrate the DNS, switch the IP location, and ultimately move the website. He had his work cut out for him, but Monte felt supported by LightEdge throughout the journey.
“When I’ve had a problem, I’ve been able to communicate with the LightEdge team and have different options to choose from to solve that problem,” he said.
Cloud vs Colo:
All in all, Monte is happy he chose LightEdge and decided to make the transition to the cloud.
“For the last 18 years, I’ve managed everything myself — hardware, software, firewalls, hard drives, servers, all of that. That was a pain point,” he said, explaining that web hosting makes up about 20% of IDP’s business, but was claiming an outsized share of staff time.
“The less time I spend on web hosting means more time I can spend on sales, project management, and customer service,” he said. “It’s better for the business.”