Yahoo! Inc, encouraged by its recent successes with small businesses services, has revamped and relaunched its web hosting services, with three new offerings under its own brand announced this week.
The company is shuttering a $20-per-month premium Geocities hosting service in favor of three flavors of Web Hosting Business-Class services at prices ranging from $11.95 per month to $39.95 per month.
With the services, Yahoo intends to take market share from the likes of NTT/Verio and Interland Inc, both of which claim to be the market leader, and from XO Communications Inc, according to Rich Riley, VP and general manager of Yahoo Small Business.
There’s certainly no clear leader in the market, Riley said, describing it as highly fragmented. He said: If you look at the top four companies, all of them have less than 30% market share.
A recent Harris Interactive survey of 252 small business executives commissioned by Yahoo had 31% of respondents saying they would select a Yahoo branded host, compared to 20% for the aforementioned three firms combined.
Interland, which has rapidly grown by acquisition over the last two years, claims to be the leader in the US SME hosting market by paid-up accounts. Verio is believed to have the most domains under management.
Yahoo does not disclose how many domains it had under management, or how many paying hosting customers it has, but Riley said the firm is a leader in the space and that it intends to become the leader.
In Yahoo’s recent earnings announcements, it has become clear that payments from small businesses in the paid search listings business (provided by Overture Services Inc) are to a significant extent keeping its advertising and e-commerce revenue segment alive.
With hosting, Yahoo is attempting to play to these strengths. Integration with Yahoo Stores, which allows companies to sell and market their wares via Yahoo, will be a key differentiator for the hosting service, Riley said.