The ITPDX Strategy
How can you compete with Big Data? Don't. Use them as a tool but you can't compete on volume, or their shipping prices, or their convenience. You have to gather your loyal customers and convert them into relationships with a long term value to your business.
Of course, there are alternatives to the big dogs in Software As A Service (SaaS) offerings like Shopify, and Squarespace. But eventually you'll find your business at an inflection point. Can you make your business fit into their inflexible platform OR do you finally give in and start hiring your own IT department? It's a HUGE step towards freedom and that's where we come in!
When we say we have worked long-term with our clients, we're talking decades in some cases.
We don't entertain relationships unless they have the opportunity to grow into longer-term solutions. That's best for both of us. We advise, propose, estimate, scope tasks and ideas with our clients. Then, when or if we build them, that includes long-term support and maintenance.
We've been with most of our existing clients long enough to feel their growth pains. A popular long-term problem is knowledge transfer as their own employees change jobs and leave them in the "knowledge void" about how their sites operate. It's just something that happens when you're running a business over the long-term and we understand all of the needs you will have. That's one of the reasons we came up with our strategy.
The ITPDX Strategy is this: We become an augmentation to your IT needs and an extension of your on-call team. We take your business objectives and make their success part of our own daily thoughts. The Strategy is using us to help you grow from that start-up plan to a full-fledged growing business. Here are many of the services we provide as our day-to-day operation while internalizing your business needs 24/7.
We build a server environment that fits your needs and your growth plans. We'll take the risk on you for the hardware; you commit to an affordable multi-month hosting fee. As a development team, we'll build your server and commerce or web presence site to suit your needs for the future. Over the months that follow with our hosting platform, we'll walk-the-fenceline for you on security with some of our cutting edge real-time monitoring tools and good old fashioned human attention.
On our watch, we respond to dips in PERFORMANCE, not downtime. We've found that when a DDoS attack comes, the server being "down" means it's too late to stem the tide. We've built our own logic-based real-time tools for analyzing your web and server traffic. We also share troublesome IP addresses (confirmed attackers) between all our hosting customers' firewall protection, so joining us means putting your website and online presence inside our collective security perimeter.
We can build flat-sites or turn-key your site on a prepped Magento Community Edition installation and have you online and developing content and catalogs within hours. You get our complete attention to your unique business needs. In addition to installing our proprietary security measures and tools, we fine-tune your server configuration for speed and efficiency. Our deployments stack up side-by-side with comparable sites we've seen and monitored on AWS or VHOST environments.
We develop code and databases with a loose-grip but when it comes to security and system operations we rule with an iron fist. We have very specific and very restrictive use policies about your server and we will not waiver on them, for your own good. Every time you or your staff want to use the server for a purpose outside of the standard protocols (we only allow SSH, HTTP and HTTPS) or allow access to 3rd party organizations to the operating system level we will say a very firm: "no". You will be required to hire us for labor to due-diligence your application requirements and any customizations required will cost you labor. Don't worry, we'll be fair, but we prefer to chat about what you're trying to accomplish first collaboratively to make sure it's actually the best course of action from a technological and security standpoint. All this advice and most of the chat sessions we have about your plans are free as long as it doesn't require extensive research. There may be ways to accomplish the same thing you want to accomplish without putting a new hole in the security fence and we'll be able to tell you how.
You see, we understand ALL of the technologies involved and have engineered a hosting solution that starts at baremetal servers and scales with you over time. We have developed platforms very similar to Shopify and Squarespace -- for individual clients -- customized to their unique business logic so they can keep their competitive edge.
Ultimately, businesses and technology march forward and they leave those platforms behind. A business needs a platform they can control and they need access to the expertise that gives them the flexibility to keep the platform following their business logic -- and not the other way around.
Everything we build for you is designed for portability and flexibility. We develop with a loose-grip in mind from the start. We'd prefer to build you a site, train your staff to operate it and then be your second level support if things get interesting. All of our code and database designs are developed so they can be packaged up and moved to any other hosting environment that meets the requirements of the code. You'll never be "stuck" with us. Sometimes when you grow you have to switch support vendors and we fully understand that. As long as you are prospering we're happy!
KEEP THESE SIMPLE TRUTHS IN MIND:
1) You will never find a one-size-fits-all web presence solution for your business. It's a pipe-dream. You WILL need software coders and system engineers to help at some point in your future.
2) If you even slightly suspect that someday your business operations will need to entail e-commerce, fulfillment integration, or ANY kind of business logic beyond "a shopping cart", you are WASTING your money and labor without building your own operation. You need expertise at your fingertips. That's where we come in and that's why we've created a business entity that can provide that for you without requiring you to build-up an internal IT department. Start with us, grow with us, and when you're ready to move on it's all organized with your freedom in mind from the ground up.
3) Hardware is cheap. Expertise is becoming rare and expensive. You'll want to pick a hosting offering and service group that can internalize your business plans so that they can make your success part of their goals. Service and availability is what you should be paying for -- not licenses and support trouble tickets.
Also, our modus operandi is to educate you and your staff over time. You'll learn from us as much as you're willing to take in. We enjoy teaching as much as we like to write code.
WHY would I choose ITPDX? We know hardware and operating systems from the kernel to the application layer. We know web servers and databases inside and out. When we build you a server to suit your specific needs and optimize the configuration and hardware to fit your performance requirements. You know we're going to be able to answer just about any question you have about it all. We've designed, built, and deployed systems serving up 90,000 Transactions Per Second... if you want to grow with us we can handle it.
WHY did ITPDX choose Magento? We searched far and wide for the most flexible, powerful, configurable, customizable framework we could find for e-commerce. At the time we searched, Magento was brand new and clearly was designed to meet these challenges from the bottom up. The very way that the code operates, using an MVC code-model backed by an EAV database-model, makes it the most extremely flexible platform available today, short of writing your own from scratch. Since writing your own from scratch requires thousands of man-hours of labor and dozens if not hundreds of programmers, project managers and support technicians, you can see why Magento is a no-brainer decision. We can start where they left off and spend just dozens of man-hours instead, customizing the site to fit your business model.
WHY then is ITPDX NOT a Magento Partner? Experience has shown us again and again - clear back to the beginning of the certification craze (Novell Network Engineer Certification) - that partnerships and certifications come with an agenda, and that agenda may or may not be aligned with what's best for our clients. We are well aware of what's going on with Magento code roadmaps and corporate vectors...
If Magento ever becomes LESS than promised and our clients are affected we'll be the first ones to offer our clients an alternative.
That can't be said TRUTHFULLY if we had tied our future into a "partnership" with Magento now could it? We work for YOUR agenda. In the meantime, as of this writing, Magento remains the BEST starting point for every small and medium sized business.
For example, not many people know that Magento was bought by eBay a few years ago. Since then, it's spun off in an even better direction on it's own. Sources and References on this page: WIKI ON MAGENTO
WHAT about WordPress and Woo-Commerce? We have technical, security, and performance concerns about WordPress. We'd be happy to discuss them with you in a conversation. We are hopeful they will evolve and grow into a more secure platform but short of a complete rewrite it doesn't seem possible. We've chosen the SAFE path for a business to start out online and grow there. If you are ready to migrate off of a WordPress+WooCommerce platform to Magento please do contact us and we can help.
All this said, we ARE always looking for what's better for our clients. We watch the March of Technology with piqued interest on your behalf so CONTACT US and we can help you steer your business in the right direction.
Please contact us for a conversation!