The Future of WordPress Is Still In Containers
About a year ago I wrote an article called, “The Future of WordPress Is In Containers”. Since then, I’ve given several dozen presentations to WordPress developers, and brought many of them onto our platform to assist them in launching their own WordPress service businesses. I even launched one of my own proof of concept over at CloudPanda.co.
To put it simply, WPdocker is an automation platform to sell customized WordPress on any major cloud provider. Using a software as a service business model, our platform enables developers to sell WordPress with plugins and themes pre-configured to prospective customers by automating the hosting, free trial and upsell process.
WordPress + WPdocker = WordPress As A Service
For those of you who are not familiar with Docker, it is essentially a software wrapper that goes around WordPress, or any application, that includes the tech stack the application requires to operate. What this means is we can take any application and put it on our platform on any cloud provider without the need to change a single line of application code.
In the case of WordPress, you’re essentially wrapping everything from the WordPress application itself, to all the various components that power WordPress including most of the LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP). This allows for full configuration and customization of whatever stack components a developer desires including a range of caching options. By packaging WordPress into a container it enables a developer to easily expand the capabilities of a typical WordPress install including the ability to save an entire WordPress install with its stack, clone it, back it up, and potentially move it between providers (at least when using our platform). These capabilities alone set the foundation for our automation platform.
The Value Proposition
Container technology is unique in that it solves a number of problems for any software business including improved cost efficiency, data isolation, improved data portability, and versatility.
Almost every WordPress hosting company currently suffers from at least one of these problems, if not all of them. Meanwhile, none of them offer software as a service automation or revenue sharing business models.
The WPdocker Solution:
Build and Configure.
To get started simply signup at for free at WPdocker.com, and login to your account. Once in your account go to Packages, then select + New Package. From there select WordPress, name your package, select your default memory allocation (I recommend 256 or 512 to start), and select “Yes, Create This Package”.
Once your package is created, it should load to show you the interface for the container, or you can view it again under Packages.
From here simply select Login to automatically login to the WordPress install you just created.
Once logged into your WordPress install, you’re now free to install any plugins or themes you want. Once you’re done building the site you want customers to receive when they sign up for a free trial, simply return to the Stratus5 dashboard, and select the green Publish button.
This will save all your changes to your WordPress install.
What we’re doing here is creating a master WordPress install, which our automation platform clones into a new container every time a customer signs up.
Note: To make future changes simply login to your WordPress install, make changes, go back to your Stratus5 Dashboard, select Snapshot, then Publish to push your latest changes to future customers.
Once your WordPress website is configured, and published you need to create a pricing plan, customize your sign up page, and then start driving traffic.
From the Container Template page select “Pricing” on the left, and then + Add New Pricing Plan. Define your recurring pricing, trial period, enter a lowercase single word plan code, memory allowance, amount of sites included, description, and then select Add Pricing Plan.
From there you will be provided with a sign up page URL that you can send to your customers to sign up for free trials.
Additional settings can be found in our Settings tab, including the ability to white label our solution, use custom domains, and customize marketing automation e-mails.
Each customer gets their own container with each trial, so they’re separate from your other customers. Once they become a paying customer we keep the container active, and the customer pays monthly. If someone does not pay monthly we simply deactivate and eventually delete their container.
From a business standpoint, all you have to do is build a WordPress install that creates value, drive traffic to your sign up link, find new customers, support your existing customers, and collect a monthly payment without having to worry about hosting bills, payment processing or anything else. We take care of everything for you at a fixed cost per WordPress install typically between $2–$5 per container (depending on the size and complexity of your ideal WordPress install).
Everything else is simply profit.