Surefaze - Case Study

How Cloudways Helped Surefaze Design in Setting up and Managing Multiple WordPress Websites for Its Clients


In Conversation With

Daniel Dukes
Owner – Surefaze

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About Surefaze

Surefaze Design is an agency that helps people in improving their brands’ online presence through effective design and marketing strategies. They have worked on hundreds of projects since 2017 and are still growing faster. The growth rate became a challenge for them with their previous hosting provider. They started looking for a solution to help them scale up and meet their clients’ requirements. Read this case study to learn about Surefaze Design and how Cloudways came to the rescue!

Cloudways: Thank you for joining us today. Let’s start by knowing about your agency, designation, and core responsibilities.

Daniel: Our agency name is Surefaze, and we’re headquartered in Alaska, USA. I own, sell, and direct the activities of the business. We’re growing, which means taking on new things and passing them off when possible. We work hard to offer marketing services that move the needle forward for businesses. Usually, that means taking a fresh look at what they’re doing right now and fixing what’s broken. Often upgrading their website is one of the first steps we take.

Cloudways: What services does your agency provide, and how many clients do you currently have? Your team size, which market do you serve? Your USP, etc.

Daniel: We offer websites, reputation management, ads, and SEO. The core service has always been websites, and it’s what we enjoy doing most. Surefaze comprises two full-time employees and a small number of independent freelancers who help complete work well. We serve about 25 clients regularly. We serve all kinds of clients but often find ourselves working in the legal services space. The one thing we hear most from our clients that they appreciate is our integrity and drive to get results.

Cloudways: How did you first hear about Cloudways? Name one major problem you were facing that made you switch to Cloudways. Something that was the tipping point and how Cloudways fixed that for you.

Daniel: I first heard about cloudways from a Facebook web developement group. Our biggest problem was our growth punishing us on our current hosting platform.

Cloudways: What was your experience with Cloudways when you first signed up? Please tell us about your first impressions.

Daniel: Like anything, there can be a bit of a learning curve. Thankfully this one was short and easy. I reached out for help twice and both times received prompt replies that were extremely helpful.

Cloudways: In your opinion, what sets us apart from other hosting providers? How has our in-built support for PHP-based apps made matters easier for you?

Daniel: We only use wordpress. Having a fast setup is key to getting projects started on time, and cloudways makes that just a few clicks.

Cloudways: How do you use Cloudways to solve your client’s problem(s)?

Daniel: Cloudways is a crucial part of our setup because every site is developed and maintained there. We’ve had two clients whose sites needed a specific PHP version, and cloudways made it easy to spin up a server for just them until we could get their wordpress upgraded smoothly.

Of course, all of our clients need reliable email alerts from their websites, SSL, and caching we depend on Cloudways for all of that as well. Nearly every site in Surefaze Design’s portfolio is hosted on Cloudways.

Cloudways: How has Cloudways contributed to the success of your agency? Tell us about how Cloudways’ features align with your needs.

Daniel: One of our biggest needs as an agency is a smooth, reliable workflow. Cloudways is the core part of our website developement workflow. Beyond that, with pricing, speed, and usability all matching up perfectly, we found that making Cloudways a central piece of our infrastructure is a no-brainer.

Cloudways: Out of five cloud providers (DO, Vultr, Linode, AWS, GCP) available on Cloudways, which one(s) do you prefer to use and why?

Daniel: I use Vultr because it’s what was recommended to me by other users initially, but in truth, I’ve not tried the others.

Cloudways: How do you resell Cloudways to your clients?

Daniel: We offer a monthly bundle of hosting + website maintenance, and limited content updates. Cloudways is the hosting/backup side of this and delivers well!

Cloudways: If you could briefly describe the values you perceive from Cloudways?

Daniel: Consistency and care are an important part of the infrastructure. From the support I’ve experienced, I can also say they care about our success. When I came from another platform, I had a few questions, and they were quick to answer each one and pointed me toward the best way to set things up. They value service.

Cloudways: How do you feel about participating in the Cloudways Agency Partnership Program? What additional value does the program provide to you? Do you think this program will help your agency grow long-term?

Daniel: It’s helped. It pays to have great support ready at a moment’s notice. The agency partnership is great because it takes an already great product and makes it better for agencies. We’ve only had to use Cloudway’s application support a few times (plugins/themes/etc.), but the peace of mind knowing we have expert-level people ready to go is appreciated.

Cloudways: Do you think that by switching to Cloudways, you were able to free up resources at your end? If yes, how were you able to utilize those?

Daniel: Yes. The biggest one is that now we have no fear about deploying more sites. The prices are reasonable, and the support is there when we need it. Time and money are great resources to have!

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Cloudways: What features or improvements do you want to see in the future at Cloudways?

Daniel: I want to see a smoother email setup for new sites. We use the Cloudways Elastic Email add-on. It’s great but takes a bit of know-how to set up and requires multiple DNS edits.

Cloudways: Please share a few images of your team/office space for our readers.

Daniel: I don’t have an office or in-person team, but here’s a drone shot we did of the area in Alaska where I’m based.


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