Hugely successful publisher, Friday-Ad, now has 32 publications hosted on line with Rackspace. They need secure and reliable hosting to support very active e-commerce and online ad-booking applications.
Friday-ad is one of the UK’s leading publishers of national and local classified advertisement publications with a variety of local and specialist online and paper based titles featuring many diverse subjects including aviation, boats, horses, and local recruitment.
Friday Ad has been involved in publishing for over 30 years with some very successful printed publications, but in the last 5 years it has made the transition to the internet, where major growth and success is now being experienced. Through diversification and growth by acquisition, the company has expanded considerably to offer 32 different websites, many of which represent a new breed of publication by being solely online.
www.friday-ad.co.uk, www.boatsandoutboards.co.uk, www.horsemart.co.uk, www.localjobsearch.co.uk, and www.aviationjobsearch.co.uk,
are just a few of the websites run by Friday Ad. Paper publications still matter to readers, but the reliance on them as the mainstay of the business has diminished considerably.
Nick Taylor runs the online operations at Friday Ad, and revealed, “Our online business has grown dramatically. Gone are the days when a website would provide secondary support to the paper based offline version. Modern readers demand up to date information, instant access and rapid transactions. This is why the online activities are far outstripping paper based alternatives. In fact the majority of our most recently launched brands are solely online.”
Nick added, “Of course Web has its advantages and disadvantages. High traffic and constantly changing data means a big support team and more essentially, reliable hosting. If any of our sites can’t be accessed by our readers or advertisers then we lose money – simple as that!”
Nick went on to say, “When we started we were hosting with a variety of companies – some of which were inherited through acquisition. The key issue has always been support. We tended to appoint one hosting supplier then a year later fire them and appoint another simply because the levels of service and the guarantees of uptime were not being met. This approach was clearly unsatisfactory and we needed to find a reliable managed hosting partner that could provide everything we demanded. Glancing through one of the computer mags I noticed an ad for Rackspace®. Their claim was for Fanatical Support® and this, at least, seemed a good starting point for our negotiations to commence.”
Nick revealed, “We have now been with Rackspace for 18 months and I have just signed another 18-month contract with the company as I am delighted with their attention to detail and genuinely fanatical levels of support. I have been impressed with their ability to handle changes in configuration and highlight potential issues often before they arise. Rackspace has taken away a lot of the headaches associated with multiple-site hosting, and it’s good to know that I have experts on hand for specific issues with Linux or Windows applications. I can honestly say that I have never found a better hosting company, and I would thoroughly recommend them to anyone whose website is crucial to their business. Rackspace are not the cheapest managed hosting company in the world but, as with many things, there is no doubt that you certainly get what you pay for.”
32 Sites and Growing
“I am now running 32 sites through multiple servers at Rackspace and our customers are flocking to these sites at a rate of 2.5 million per month. New business opportunities are being assessed and developed all the time and some of our sites are currently experimenting with key words and phrases as a commodity - something along the lines of Google Adwords®. To be successful this requires a stable platform and regular advertisers that trust us to deliver. I think we’ll be with Rackspace for a long time!”
Brian Thomson, MD at Rackspace said, “We have deliberately geared our services to meet the needs of very demanding customers. The publishing industry is a case in point. Friday-Ad is a superb example of how we have coped with multiple operating systems and varying site requirements. Fanatical Support has been the key to our success and will always be the foundation of our approach to business.”
For more details of the publications offered by Friday-ad take a look at www.friday-ad.co.uk.
For further information on Rackspace call 0800 988 0100 or visit the website at www.rackspace.co.uk.