The pandemic gave me lots of hours to revisit projects that I had put on hold for a long time. I spent some time focused on building or updating the various personal web-sites, including this one, that I have built over the years. Many of my web projects, over the last 10 years were mostly about keeping my web development skills from getting rusty. But, I still have over 20 awesome domains in my portfolio waiting for cool sites and apps to be built. One such domain was AdvantageHosting.ca and my plan for that domain was to essentially rebrand and retire my, now, 26 year old development/hosting site, Elginbiz.com.
Elginbiz.com was a web development and hosting company that I started back in 1995 when I lived in St. Thomas, Ontario. The domain name made sense when I lived in Elgin County, but less so when I moved to London, Ontario. My priority for growing the company also somewhat faded into the background, around 2012, as my career focus shifted from web development to product management. Still, I had a vision for a future iteration of the hosting site and kept the business going to support existing client web-sites as well as my many private side web projects.
With the pandemic, the timing was right to pull the trigger and finally rebuild my hosting site for my clients. I started working on re-branding, creating new design elements, writing site content, setting up licensing arrangements, and dramatically extending the functionality of the site. I saw Advantage Hosting as an ideal project to take me into my retirement years. The research into what the next generation of my hosting website would be began in August 2020.
I can tell you that it wasn’t an easy or an inexpensive process to create this new site. The site, in my mind’s eye, needed to be a more automated, more client focused, and more scalable. It needed to support a wide variety of competitive products. That meant weeks of research, much trial and error, and several aborted website builds. Around mid-November, 2020, I had a finalized the website platform, design concept, preliminary products, pricing strategy, and a marketing plan. Throughout the process, I was also relieved to see that my earlier web development skills had not completely abandoned me. Building the site was now consuming much of my free time and I began looking toward a soft launch by year’s end.
I soft-launched the new site in December 2020. By mid January, I started actively marketing the website. To me, AdvantageHosting.ca is now scalable, cleaner, more broadly branded, and a more purposeful website than my original website. The early feedback from clients and early sales have been positive. More importantly, the site and products are built on a robust and scalable back-end that can meet my client’s needs for the foreseeable future. I look forward to watching this new site grow.
To my friends, family, and clients, thank you for your support! I want to thank to my brother-in-law, Trevor Nelson, for his valuable design input on the site and for my new logo.
Let me introduce you to Advantagehosting.ca! Now that we are launched, please help me spread the word to anyone you know looking to start or move their website.