I spent some time earlier this week talking to GoDaddy about the company’s forthcoming (now in beta) GoDaddy Pro product suite. It’s a set of tools and services adapted for small web design and developer shops. These folks in turn service mostly small businesses.
This product line is partly built on top of GoDaddy’s earlier acquisition of hosting provider Media Temple. (But see postscript below.)
GoDaddy Pro is currently focused most on site development but ultimately will include marketing tools and services that can be offered by “web pros,” as GoDaddy calls them, to their small business customers. The company told me that it has sized the market at roughly six million: three million paid professionals and an equivalent number of mostly unpaid hobbyists (somebody’s brother or niece, etc.).
We didn’t dive into their calculations so I don’t know how rigorous they are. But let’s assume they’re accurate.
Putting aside the hobbyists, who probably are a legitimate market for the company, the three million paid web pros represent a massive market opportunity and potential reseller channel for GoDaddy.
The company is really smart about how it’s cultivating this market — largely through community building, enhanced support and responsiveness to their needs. I was very impressed by GoDaddy’s sincere, grass roots effort to understand and build or adapt products and services to the requirements of this group.
It’s an example of not only taking service/customer service very seriously but letting the customer drive product development. In contrast to many organizations, which develop products and push them to the market with mixed results, GoDaddy is really listening to its customers and potential customers. As a consequence it will not only gain adoption and loyalty, it will turn these web pros into passionate advocates for GoDaddy and its services.
Execution in any market is always challenging. But if the company is successful with its strategy it will have built a massive reseller channel that could eventually be much larger than anything we know of with established local media field sales forces.
What do you think about this approach and GoDaddy’s prospects?
Postscript: The following is a correction from GoDaddy about the extent to which the GoDaddy Pro product is built on top of Media Temple:
[The] characterization of “much of this product line is built on top of GoDaddy’s earlier acquisition of hosting provider Media Temple” is incorrect. The GoDaddy Pro product and experience was built by a dedicated GoDaddy team and didn’t have [Media Temple] involvement.