Web Host Blogs

Importance of a Website and the Best Web Hosting for Small Businesses

Reseller Club Blog -

Everything starts small and then grows big, even businesses. By definition, a small business is a business that is owned independently and is limited in terms of size and revenue generated. For instance, a cake shop or a web design agency with an employee size of 10-12 can be said to be a small business. Furthermore, the upper limit to the employee count is 500. Thus, if your business falls under the bracket of 1 – 500 employees you are a small business. Moving on, irrespective of your business size in today’s competitive online trending world having a social presence is a must. Be it a Facebook business page, Twitter or Instagram to engage more users and reach a wider audience base, however, a business website is also a must and shouldn’t be overlooked. In this article, we’ll be covering the importance of a business website and the best hosting for small business websites. So let us begin! Importance of a website If we were to say, having a business website adds to a business’s credibility, wouldn’t you agree? You most likely would! In fact, it is easier to browse through a website listed on Google as it is more detailed along with your YouTube, Facebook Marketplace or Instagram. In fact, according to a report, 97% of consumers use the internet to find local businesses, whereas, another finding says, only 64% of small businesses have their own website. If we are to go by the results of these two findings, we can conclude the importance of having a business website. Chances are 64% of businesses will perform better than you in gaining an audience and broadening their outreach. Retaining the customer, however, is a secondary thing. Let us see the top 4 reasons why having a business website is important: Your website shows up in the local internet search results, resulting in more people to know about your existence. You can leverage your digital marketing strategy by running dedicated campaigns on social media and linking back to your website for more in-depth information. You can collect customer information by asking them to subscribe and keep in touch with them on a timely basis with the right email marketing. Content is king, and you can use it to sell products to your customers by attracting them with the right words and information. Your website is like a one-stop-shop for customers looking for a dedicated product, albeit, a virtual one. Thriftbooks, an online bookstore is one example of a website that is a virtual bookstore and has steadily grown over the years. Now, that we’ve seen the importance of a website for your small business. Let us move on to tackle the next big thing, the backend of your website. You may wonder, why the backend? However, you must know the technicalities while running your website. Things to look out in web hosting Imagine you finally decide to set up your website and are launching it at 11 AM local time. The invites have been mailed, the social media poster launched and bang as the clock strikes 11, your current and potential future customers click on the much-awaited link! However, to their surprise and your utter horror, the website is down because the server you hosted on crashed due to or your website loads slowly because of so much traffic. And if this is a recurring issue, instead of your website helping you gain more customers it will end up making you lose more customers. Tragic, isn’t it? Calm down, it isn’t tragic, the right web hosting can help you avoid this problem, however, what is the right web hosting? When it comes to web hosting solutions for a small business there is always a doubt which is the best hosting for small businesses? Before tackling that question, let us first understand what are the things that you need to look out for in web hosting. Managed Servers Being a small business you will have a limited number of employees to manage your business and marketing activities. Along with that if you were told that you even need to manage the technical aspect of running your website, it might complicate matters. Web hosting that provides managed services is simple and helps take care of your business website by maintaining it, upgrading the software, managing the security, backup and much more so that you can concentrate on running your business without worrying about the website. RC Advantage: We offer managed hosting services that are simple and secure along with an easy intuitive dashboard, cPanel, for free to help you navigate through your orders easily. This means you can take care of running your business while we take care of the website management. Website loading speed Website loading speed is an important factor when it comes to how your customers feel about your website. According to a survey, 40% of users abandon a site if it takes 3 mins to load. To make sure your website visitors don’t get the same experience which, in turn, can hamper your performance make sure to choose a web hosting service that offers good load speed. RC Advantage: Our web hosting services, especially Cloud Hosting comes with varnish cache and ceph storage. Varnish cache helps in boosting your website speed by 1000x that means, blazing fast website load speed, while, ceph ensures there is no single point of failure! Support System admin support is very important in case you are stuck with something and don’t know how to proceed further. A good web hosting service provider will always offer 24/7 website support. RC Advantage: We offer round-the-clock expert website support to resolve any of your technical queries to provide uninterrupted services. Resource upgradation Today you are a small business, tomorrow your performance may multiple and you will outgrow your hosting resources. At this time, it is important that your hosting provider offers resources upgradation like RAM, CPU, etc.to accommodate your growing traffic. RC Advantages: Our hosting plans are easily scalable. We offer easy single click upgradation of hosting resources like RAM, OS and CPU with our Cloud Hosting. Best web hosting for small business Having seen what are the things that your chosen web hosting should have it is time to figure out which web hosting is best for small businesses? There are several web hosting options available, however, one that we would recommend to small businesses is Cloud Hosting. In Cloud hosting your website data is stored across multiple devices, which improves redundancy and website load time. Moreover, it offers all the above features, along with, data mirroring, several 1-click application installations like WordPress, Joomla, etc. an intuitive panel to monitor your resources and much more. Above all reliability is of utmost importance and Cloud Hosting promises that and we believe it is the best hosting for small business. We hope this article helped you in understanding the importance of having your own business website, as well as, choosing the web hosting solutions for your small business. If you have any queries or comments, feel free to leave them in the comments section below. .fb_iframe_widget_fluid_desktop iframe { width: 100% !important; } The post Importance of a Website and the Best Web Hosting for Small Businesses appeared first on ResellerClub Blog.

Notice of MDS Vulnerabilities

The Rackspace Blog & Newsroom -

On 14 May 2019, Intel released information about a new group of vulnerabilities collectively called Microarchitectural Data Sampling (MDS). Left unmitigated, these vulnerabilities could potentially allow sophisticated attackers to gain access to sensitive data, secrets, and credentials that could allow for privilege escalation and unauthorized access to user data. Our highest priority is protection of […] The post Notice of MDS Vulnerabilities appeared first on The Official Rackspace Blog.

Marketing: What It Is and How to Get Started

The Domain.com Blog -

When you open your own business, whether it be a full or part time thing, you need to know the basics of marketing. Pop Quiz: Where do you start? A)    Digital Marketing B)    Social Media Marketing C)    Cold calling D)    Direct mailers E)    TV advertising F)     All of the above Our point is that it’s hard to know where to crack the marketing nut. There’s so much information about marketing available at your fingertips that it’s overwhelming. We’re going to get down to marketing basics: what it is and how it’s done, to make life easier for you. Once we’ve covered the basics of marketing we’ll discuss different tactics that you can employ today and some that you can plan for. Marketing, a definition If you search Merriam-Webster you’ll find marketing defined as Look to Dictionary.com and you’ll see Marketing, in a nutshell, is about getting your product or services in front of people who will purchase them. It’s been around for generations. You’ve heard of the ancient Greeks, right? What do you think they were doing when they loaded their goods into their carts and brought them to the agora? It wasn’t so people had something to look at, it was to get their products in front of prospective customers. Imagine a crowded Greek marketplace with multiple people selling the same product — they’re competing for the same customers. They need to cut through the noise and get the attention of the buyers so maybe they have a catchy slogan, or brightly colored carts, or a device to amplify the volume of their voice. These could be called ancient Greek marketing tactics.* We doubt you’re pulling your goods to a crowded, hilltop market in Greece, so your marketing tactics are going to look a little different. It all starts with the right domain. Get yours today at Domain.com. An explanation of common marketing terms you’ll encounter It’s hard to walk the marketer’s walk if you can’t talk the talk. We get it. Here are some common marketing terms you should know. Analytics– The information that you get from analyzing data or statistics.B2B– Business-to-business. If you sell products or services to other businesses, you’re in the B2B category.B2C– Business-to-consumer. If you sell products or services directly to consumers (including e-commerce, or online sales), you’re in this category.Bounce Rate– This measures the number or percentage of people who land on your website, but leave it after looking at only one page.Brand– A brand is a tricky thing to define. Here’s a good summary.Buyer Persona– A representation of what your ideal customer looks like: what motivates them, what are they trying to accomplish, what are their behaviors, and their demographics.Click-through-rate (CTR)- This measures the number of times someone clicks on your advertising or marketing materials. It’s a measurement of engagement.Conversion Rate– The number or percentage of people on your site who take the action you want them to take (make a purchase, get more information, sign up for your email list, etc.)Data– The statistics and facts you collect for analysis.Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)– KPIs describe the quantifiable ways you measure success. For example, if I were to send an email newsletter, I might choose open rate and click-through-rate as two of my KPIs.Marketing– We’ve got this one covered. If you’ve forgotten, see the start of this post.Marketing Funnel– A model of the path a prospective customer takes to become a paying customer. Marketing tactics for your small business or side gig What marketing tactics are best for you? There are so many that it can be difficult knowing where to begin. Unless you have a large marketing budget, you’re not ready for national TV advertising, so let’s look at other options. Email Newsletter– Email marketing is a great way for your customers (or prospective customers) to stay connected to you. Consider providing updates on sales, coupons, or special offers for your frequent readers.Podcast– What’s your expertise or interest? Can you provide value and insight to your customers by creating podcasts? Depending on your goals your podcast can vary from an entertaining overview of a recent comic (if you’re looking to drive engagement and build a fan base) or you can provide short, actionable tips and advice for your listeners.Blog– Blogs aren’t just for stay-at-home moms who share recipes. Writing blog posts increases your subject matter authority and can help your website rank higher in search engine results.Social Media– You don’t have to be on every single social media platform, but you should be where your customers, or potential customers, are. Share tips, tricks, offers, and build a community with your followers.Website– This is your home base. Your website should be built around the end user experience. Make it easy for your website visitors to find what they’re looking for or complete a purchase. If your website stinks, your marketing can only do so much.SEO– Search Engine Optimization. There are some great resources that exist to help you understand what you can do to rank higher in search engine results. There’s a lot to learn when it comes to SEO, so don’t get down on yourself if you can’t master it all in a day. Keep in mind that no matter how you start your marketing efforts, you should go into it with an idea of what your customers look like and what motivates them; this is what allows you to cater your marketing strategy and tactics for success. It all starts with the right domain. Get yours today at Domain.com. Ready to take on your marketing? The word “marketing” shouldn’t strike fear into your heart. Marketing has been around for centuries, and whether or not you realize it, you’ve probably already started marketing your business (word-of-mouth counts, so have you told anyone about your business?) Use our definitions of common marketing terms and suggestions for small business marketing tactics to jumpstart your marketing efforts today. What else do you suggest a small business owner, or someone just starting a side business, do to start their marketing? Any advice that you’ve learned through experience? We’d love to know, so share it below in the comments. *The author is no scholar on ancient Greece or Greek civilization. These events are dramatized as an illustration. Though, if you are an expert and have some background information to share, post it in the comments. The post Marketing: What It Is and How to Get Started appeared first on Domain.com | Blog.

A Single Page Website Doesn’t Limit Your Options

InMotion Hosting Blog -

First of all, why do you need a website for your business? You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who denies the value of having an online business presence in the digital age. And yet, there is much debate about the benefits of hosting your own site, using a hosted web builder service, or just cultivating a brand on various social media channels. We think it’s best to having your own self-hosted website. Continue reading A Single Page Website Doesn’t Limit Your Options at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

9 Steps to Build an Online Store and Become Your Own Boss in 2019

DreamHost Blog -

While traditional careers have their benefits, there’s something very appealing about being your own boss. You can work whenever, however, and wherever you want to while still pursuing your passion. The tricky part is knowing how to get started. With accessible and easy-to-use tools such as WordPress and WooCommerce, setting up shop online is relatively simple. By launching an e-commerce store, you can take your product ideas to the web and access the vast pool of customers available there. This article will walk you through the steps to build your online store with WordPress and WooCommerce and become your own boss in no time. Let’s go! Your Store Deserves WooCommerce HostingSell anything, anywhere, anytime on the world's biggest eCommerce platform.See Plans 9 Steps to Build an Online Store and Become Your Own Boss The very first thing you’ll need to start an online store is a product customers will want to buy. We can’t help you with that, unfortunately — your idea has to be all your own! You’ll also need a way to manufacture your product, either by doing it yourself, hiring a company to do it, or some combination of the two. Once you’re done, you’ll be ready to set up your online store and start selling your merchandise, which is where the steps below will come in handy. Step 1: Secure Your Web Hosting and Domain Name The first two things you need to start any kind of website are a hosting provider and a domain name. Your hosting provider will store your website’s files, while your domain name provides an address where customers can find your store. If you’re building a WordPress site (which we recommend), you might also want to consider WordPress hosting. These types of plans are explicitly geared towards the platform, and the servers they run on will be optimized. Our shared WordPress hosting plans, for example, are ideal for new WordPress sites. You’ll have access to our 24/7 tech support team, and plans are cost-effective, starting at just $2.59 per month for a single site. What’s more, we can also help you register your domain name. You can quickly check the availability of your desired web address, then register it once you’ve found the perfect fit. Simply fill in some information to complete the process. Domains usually start at $11.99, but if you’re also hosting your site with a shared WordPress plan, you’ll get yours for free. Related: Why You Should Consider Keeping Domain Registration and Web Hosting Under One Roof Step 2: Set Up WordPress and WooCommerce Regardless of your current host, a WordPress hosting plan likely comes with the platform pre-installed or with a one-click installation option. In some cases, you may need to install WordPress manually. Next, you’ll need to set up WooCommerce — a premiere e-commerce solution for WordPress (we’ve compared it to other competitors and think it’s the best ecommerce platform available). The first step is to install and activate the WooCommerce plugin. Once this is complete, you’ll be prompted to configure your store using the onboarding wizard — fill in the fields as best you can now, or come back to this step later. Related: A Comprehensive Introduction to WooCommerce Step 3: Identify Your ‘Value Proposition’ Before you begin creating content for your e-commerce business, consider identifying and writing out your value proposition. This is simply a statement explaining the mission and value of your business and products. Two of the most important questions your value proposition should answer are: What problem does my product solve for customers? What makes my approach to this problem unique compared to other similar businesses? Establishing your value proposition now should help you create content later. Also, any copy, product, or long-form content (such as a blog post) should reflect the values you identified in your proposition. We’d also suggest sharing your value proposition with customers on your website. Most companies do this on an About page or as a ‘Mission Statement.’ Here’s ours as an example: Sharing your values with customers can help demonstrate why your product is relevant to them. Plus, you might win over customers who might have otherwise purchased from your competition. Step 4: Create Your Product Pages Now you’re ready to go back to setting up your online store. Navigate to Products > Add New within WordPress to start adding your first item. There are a lot of settings to consider here, but your priority should be your product photos and description. Taking Quality Product Photos Showcasing your products in their (literal) best light is crucial. Unprofessional, low-quality photos make your site seem untrustworthy, which will discourage customers from opening their wallet. As such, make sure your product photos are well-lit and taken in front of a clean background. If you can, take pictures from a variety of angles, and include some close-ups of unique details to help catch customers’ eyes. Once you have your product photos, make sure to optimize them with a plugin such as ShortPixel or Optimole before uploading them to your site. This will help prevent large media files from slowing your site down. Writing Captivating Product Descriptions You’ll also want to craft your product descriptions carefully, to help convince site visitors to become paying customers. Keep your value proposition in mind when you’re writing, and make sure to point out information about how the product will benefit customers. It’s vital to make your description easy to scan, as ‘skimming’ content has become more popular over the years. Keeping paragraphs short, while using formatting techniques such as bullet points and subheadings, can convey more information than a brutal wall of text. Specifying Product Data Finally, for this section, you’ll want to configure the settings in the Product Data section of the product editor. Here you’ll set your product’s price, add a SKU number and shipping information, specify if it comes in any variations (e.g., other colors or sizes), and more. Take your time with these, as they’re an essential aspect of your store and business. Once you have the basics down, you may want to consider setting up Linked Products to help cross-sell other store items and enable reviews to add some social proof to your site. Related: 5 Amazing WooCommerce Templates to Increase Sales on Your Website Step 5: Configure Your Tax Settings In the U.S., each state has laws regarding sales tax for internet-based retailers. It’s not a bad idea to talk with a tax attorney before your business gets up and running, but at the very least, you should familiarize yourself with the laws in your area. To set up sales tax for your products in WooCommerce, navigate to WooCommerce > Settings > General within WordPress. Make sure the Enable taxes setting is checked, then save your changes. If there wasn’t one before, you should now see a Tax setting tab at the top of your WooCommerce Settings page. Click on it, then configure the settings on the page. You can determine whether your prices will automatically include tax at checkout and what information WooCommerce should use to calculate tax for each product. It’s also possible to add Standard, Reduced, and Zero tax rates if needed. Step 6: Specify Your Shipping Methods Shipping is a make-or-break aspect of running a store. As such, in the Shipping settings tab, you can add practically as many options as you want to implement a delivery strategy. If you’re going to make your products available in a wide range of locations, you might want to create ‘shipping zones.’ They essentially let you offer different rates to customers depending on where they’re located. If you also want to charge extra for international shipping, you can do so here. Step 7: Decide Which Payment Gateway to Offer In the Payments settings tab, you can specify how customers can pay for their products. By default, WooCommerce will set up Stripe and PayPal vendors for you. However, you can add additional gateways — including popular solutions such as Square and Amazon Pay — with WooCommerce extensions. In addition, you can enable your customers to pay with a check, cash, or by bank transfer. The gateways you decide to offer are ultimately up to you, based on familiarity, ease of use, and transaction fees. However, it’s also important to consider your customers, as these criteria are also their primary concerns. As such, gateways such as PayPal are usually a given. Related: The 10 Most Popular Online Payment Gateways for Your Website, Compared Step 8: Run Through Your WooCommerce Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Checklist You’re almost ready to welcome customers to your store, but first, they need to be able to find it. SEO is the answer. By optimizing your content for search engines, you’ll make it more likely customers can find you while searching for products online. As with many site aspects, WordPress plugins can help. Yoast SEO is a highly rated and effective plugin that can help manage on-page SEO factors such as keyword usage, permalinks, and readability. If you want something a little more specialized, you can also look into the Yoast WooCommerce SEO plugin. It’s better suited to WooCommerce than the free version, and can also help promote your products on social media. At $49 per year, it’s cost-effective and may be a solid investment, especially if it helps to bring in a few more organic customers via search engine. Step 9: Publish and Promote Your E-Commerce Website While you can keep refining your site, you’ll want to publish at this point — think of it as laying down a ‘marker.’ You’ll also want to make sure customers know who you are and what you do. Promoting your site on social media and through email marketing campaigns can help get you started. Fortunately, there are a variety of WooCommerce extensions available to help. You can choose popular services such as Drip, MailChimp, and even Instagram to promote your products to followers and subscribers. Marketing will be an ongoing responsibility, so investing in some tools to help you streamline your efforts will be worth it in the long run. The extensions mentioned above range from free to $79 per year. You can also search the WordPress Plugin Directory for more free solutions, although you may find functionality lacks depending on the plugin. Building an Online Store No one said becoming your own boss was easy, and there’s a lot of work that goes into starting a brand new business. However, WordPress and WooCommerce can simplify many of the tasks required to get your e-commerce site up and running. Ready to set up an online shop? Our WooCommerce hosting packages make it easy to sell anything, anywhere, anytime on the world’s biggest eCommerce platform. The post 9 Steps to Build an Online Store and Become Your Own Boss in 2019 appeared first on Website Guides, Tips and Knowledge.

Rackspace and Telos Team Up to Accelerate the FedRAMP Journey

The Rackspace Blog & Newsroom -

SAN ANTONIO – May 14, 2019 – Rackspace today announced a new program that provides affordable FedRAMP compliance for SaaS providers, Rackspace Inheritable Security Controls (RISC), powered by Telos® Corporation’s Xacta. Leveraging the power of FedRAMP inheritance and Rackspace’s existing Joint Authorization Board (JAB)-authorized platform-as-a-service, RISC significantly shortens the time and reduces the cost required […] The post Rackspace and Telos Team Up to Accelerate the FedRAMP Journey appeared first on The Official Rackspace Blog.

Choosing Between Cloud VPS and Cloud Dedicated: What’s Right for Me?

Liquid Web Official Blog -

There are many options when it comes to hosting, and you have scoured all of them. You have finally narrowed your search down to cloud servers, but you notice there are still two different options to choose from: a Cloud Virtual Private Server (VPS) and a Cloud Dedicated Server. What’s the difference? What would be the best use case for either of the two? Not to worry. We have put together a helpful guide that will help even the most indecisive business owner choose between Cloud VPS and Cloud Dedicated servers. What are the Basic Similarities Between a Cloud Dedicated Server Vs VPS? To start, let’s look at how these servers are the same. Both the Cloud VPS and Cloud Dedicated exist as a piece of software running on a parent server with the hypervisor managing them. The virtual servers are clustered together under Liquid Web’s Cloud Platform. Users can move server instances between parent servers without needing to migrate data or reconfigure the server settings. The single-tenant nature of these offerings is what makes them so attractive. Both servers have resources specific to the user, unlike shared hosting which shares resources across users. You get your own isolated environment where you can host your sites and applications without other users encroaching on your server and its resources. Depending on the operating system you choose, you will have root or admin level access to the servers. You will be able to interface with the operating system and the server software for more control over how it interacts with your sites and apps. Each also comes with our Unmanaged, Core Managed, and Fully Managed server image options depending on your server management expertise.  Subscribe to the Liquid Web weekly newsletter to get insight into cloud technologies sent to your inbox. What are the Basic Differences? While there are many similarities in these server options, there are also differences that will impact which will be the right fit for you. How are CPU Resources Allocated on a Cloud Dedicated Server Vs VPS? The Cloud VPS offers you dedicated resources with a shared CPU. What that means is that the parent server that houses your server instance is sharing the cores of the CPU among the child instances of the server. And while this may be true, it is also worth noting that your allocated CPU cores are only yours. The Cloud Dedicated server, on the other hand, is the only instance on the parent. A unique situation such as this affords 100% of the CPU to that instance. It is truly dedicated and isolated from any other server instances. Other Resources To Consider: RAM and Storage Along the same line as the CPU, RAM and storage limits differ for each server as well. The Liquid Web Cloud VPS will give you 2GB, 4GB, 8GB, or 16GB of RAM and 40GB, 100GB, 150GB, and 200GB of SSD storage respectively. Because the instances share these resources on the parent servers they reside on, the offerings need to be somewhat restrictive. By contrast, dedicated servers offer a bit more flexibility in resources. Cloud Dedicated servers provided by Liquid Web offer between 8GB and approximately 96GB of RAM and between 220GB and 3.7TB of storage in both SATA HDD and SSD formats. The amounts and types are designated on each instance. What is the Cost Difference Between a Cloud Dedicated Server Vs VPS? One of the most significant differences that almost make the buying decision for most customers is cost. For Liquid Web’s Cloud VPS, the price ranges from $59/mo to $189/mo for Fully Managed servers with a control panel. While it would be a jump for customers coming from Shared Hosting environments, this still provides a low-cost, fully managed server with scalability when you need more “oomph” out of your server. The Cloud Dedicated server, on the other hand, ranges in price from $189/mo to $519/mo for Fully Managed servers with a control panel. The cost can also vary when dealing with the potential of custom built instances for those that need other configurations. It makes for the best choice for customers that want the resources of a Dedicated Server without the cost. Typical Customers for VPS Let’s take a look at some of the most common uses for our Cloud VPS platform. Customers Developing Their Sites and Applications If you are in the development stages of your site or application, the Cloud VPS is an excellent environment for getting started. For those that are unsure of the resources they are going to need, they can start out small and resize to other server instances as needed. Once you have a clear framework for your project, you can then determine the resources you need. Customers Hosting Small Sites and Applications The Cloud VPS is plenty of server for small sites and applications. Whether you have static websites, low traffic sites, landing pages, or sites and apps with databases that have few requests, you can effectively run those projects without needing a large environment. It’s a fast and adequate solution that doesn’t break the bank. Customers Needing File Storage in the Cloud Not only can you use a VPS for hosting sites and apps, but files as well. Some businesses can’t host on-site servers for their employees to access files. A VPS is a great way to have the files in a centralized location where employees can access data as needed. Customers Looking for a Centralized Environment for Document Sharing and Collaboration As in the example of file storage, you can also create infrastructure via the cloud to allow for sharing and collaboration. Once your data is stored off-site with a hosting provider, you can create secure connectivity for your employees to be able to collaborate, share, store, and access data effortlessly. And with a managed provider, you can ensure that your environment is secure and easy to recover in a disaster. Typical Customers for Cloud Dedicated Here are a few of the typical ways that our Cloud Dedicated customers are using our platform. Customers Hosting Resource Intensive Sites and Applications For those whose sites require more out of their server, the Cloud Dedicated server gives you the resources you need while leveraging the flexibility the Cloud platform gives. You can use the dedicated CPU cores of a single or dual processor server to feed that resource hungry project. Resize to other Cloud Dedicated server offerings as needed to give you the required specifications. Customers Hosting Multiple Sites and Applications There are also developers, creatives, and agencies that host multiple sites and applications. Having many projects with a diverse assortment of needs requires a server that is up to the task. Having a truly dedicated server with the storage and processing power to do the heavy lifting can save you time and money. Customers Hosting Databases The Cloud Dedicated server is the right choice for those that need to collect, store, and transmit data quickly and efficiently. If your server is being bogged down by frequent requests and queries, you need the single threaded performance a dedicated CPU gives you. And having more storage than a VPS only ensures that you have enough room without having to make frequent changes to your configuration. Resellers Who Need Easy Scalability Resellers can also benefit from Cloud Dedicated servers. In most cases, they need the ability to host tons of sites as well as the flexibility to expand as they take on more clients and projects. And with Liquid Web’s Reseller Partner program you can take advantage of other benefits to not just resell a portion of your server, but resell our cloud servers as well. Should I Buy Cloud VPS? Strongly consider purchasing Cloud VPS if you are: On a tight budget and don’t have a large project Not needing a ton of processing power and storage Just starting out developing your website or application Hosting small sites or apps Requiring file storage in the cloud In need of a centralized environment for document sharing and collaboration Should I Buy Cloud Dedicated Server? Strongly consider purchasing Cloud Dedicated if you are: Requiring more resources than a VPS In need more processing power and storage than a VPS Beyond the development stage or know that your development needs exceed a VPS Hosting resource intensive sites or apps Hosting multiple websites and apps Hosting databases Reselling hosting and need a scalable solution Start Hosting in the Cloud Today! Visit our Help Me Choose page if you are still undecided about Cloud Dedicated Server vs VPS for your business or application, or download our Hosting Buyer’s Guide. The post Choosing Between Cloud VPS and Cloud Dedicated: What’s Right for Me? appeared first on Liquid Web.

How to Create Services Pages that Showcase Your Work and Win You Clients

HostGator Blog -

The post How to Create Services Pages that Showcase Your Work and Win You Clients appeared first on HostGator Blog. Every kind of service business has the same basic challenge: You need to let your target customers know what you offer, why you’re the right person for the job, and how to contact you. That’s why it’s so important to have a well-written, well-designed services page on your website. 5 Tips for Building a Service Page that Wins Clients Here are our top five tips for building a services page that works. 1. Know the ideal audience for your services. Who is your services page for? A good services page speaks directly to the needs of your best customers—or, if your business is brand-new, the customers you hope to have. Think about your customer personas, if you’ve developed them. If you haven’t yet developed customer personas for your marketing, do that before you create your services page. 2. Decide whether you want one services page or a page for each service. If you already know you’re going with a single-page website, then your services section will be part of that single page. Otherwise, you need to choose to have one or multiple service pages. When you should have one Services page Putting all your information on one page makes it easier for visitors to scroll through your offerings on a phone. Some SEO experts and theme developers also say putting all the information on one page moves visitors through the conversion funnel faster, so they’re more likely to subscribe or contact you. One services page may be best: Your business is new and you don’t have a big portfolio yet.You offer a small range of easy-to-understand services.Most of your customers find your site through mobile search. When you should have multiple Services pages You can also have a services overview page that links to individual pages for each service. This gives you more places to use focus keywords to boost your SEO. The trick here is to limit the number of subcategories, so your site remains easy to navigate. Multiple services pages may be your best bet if: You have portfolio examples and testimonials to show for each type of service.You offer a large range of services or services that require explanation.You’re in a competitive niche or location and want to raise your SEO game. 3. Create content for your services page Every service page needs your unique selling proposition, service descriptions, social proof, and calls to action. Your USP You don’t have to write a novel, but this is the place to brag on yourself. Do you have years of experience? Thousands of positive customer reviews? Case studies showing how your services helped clients reduce costs or increase revenue? Link to or embed that information here. Service descriptions Go into some depth on each service, because longer copy with relevant long-tail keywords can help your page rank better in search results. Does your premium dog grooming package include a canine massage? Do your birthday party packages include gluten-free cupcake options? People searching for this level of detail are often ready to buy. Help them find you! Social proof If you have them, include or link to portfolio samples, reviews, testimonials, or case studies somewhere on your services page—either in your USP at the top or in each service description. A call to action Put your call to action (“call us now” or “request a quote”) at the top and bottom of your page. Signup content To stay in contact with undecided visitors, offer free content in exchange for their email address. It can be general, like “A guide to choosing a home renovation contractor.” You can also create several pieces of content tied to individual services, like “How to decide between wood and vinyl siding” and “Which replacement windows are right for your home?” You can segment customers who sign up by the types of content they request and nurture those leads via email. 4. Make your services page easy to navigate. Now that you have the information you want to include on your services page, make that information easy for potential customers to use. Scan-friendly copy Organize your text so it’s easy to scan. Subheadings, short paragraphs, and bulleted lists are easier to read on small screens than long paragraphs. Consistent style Keep your headings consistent. On a single services page, use the same heading level (H1 or H2) for each service you offer, with descriptions underneath. This helps readers grasp your services at a glance, and it’s better for SEO, too. If you make separate pages for each service, keep descriptions, heading usage, and page formats consistent across those pages. Consider turning on breadcrumbs, so users can easily see where they are. Appealing design You can design your services page with the Gutenberg drag-and-drop editor when you choose one of HostGator’s managed WordPress hosting plans. These plans come with more than 100 free template options to help you design a great-looking site fast. You can also install other WordPress themes to get the look you want. Some of the free themes we like for small businesses and solopreneurs are Experon, Life Coach, Ryan Grid, Astra, and Schema Lite. Want to have a pro design your services page? You can save time and get great results with HostGator’s Website Design Services. In addition to a professionally designed site, you also get expert SEO guidance, individual training, and monthly marketing help. 5. Monitor your services page metrics. After you debut your services page, watch your metrics in Google Search Console. When you click the Performance tab, you’ll see a list of the search queries visitors have used to find your site, the click-through rate from search results, and the pages they visited. Over time, you’ll see whether your services page keywords match the keywords your visitors use to find your page. You’ll also see whether they’re sticking around, signing up for your free content, and more. You can adjust your keywords, calls to action, and other page elements if you need to, based on your Search Console data. Ready to get started? Check out the services pages for HostGator’s managed WordPress hosting plans and Website Design Services today. Find the post on the HostGator Blog

Managed VPS Hosting and its Advantages

Reseller Club Blog -

Virtual Private Server Hosting (VPS Hosting) is one of the most sought-after options when businesses outgrow their Shared Hosting space. The reason being your business now has a large customer base and the traffic count too has increased significantly. These two reasons impact your website by improving the visibility and revenue of your business but also, resulting in slower website loading speed. And while the former is a positive impact, the latter can affect your business and its brand value. It is thus important to switch to a hosting plan that accommodates your growing traffic, as well as, improves the website loading speed, and VPS Hosting fits the bill. First off, let us understand what a Virtual Private Server is. In Virtual Private Server, there are several servers sharing the same server space, however, all are isolated from each other. To understand this better let us consider an example of an apartment building. Say you have a 4-floor apartment building, and each floor has 3 flats. The residents of the building share some common resources like water supply, staircase and elevator, however, they each live separate isolated lives each having a different number of people staying, interiors and consumption of resources and other such things, with no interference to the other flat owners. Here, the apartment building will be the main VPS server and, whereas, the apartments are the isolated server space each user is allocated. Now, that we’ve seen what is a Virtual Private Server, let us move on to understand its type. There are two types of VPS Hosting available, namely, Managed VPS Hosting and Unmanaged VPS Hosting. In this article, we’ll help you understand what Managed VPS Hosting is and how it helps your business. What is Managed VPS Hosting? As the name suggests, Managed VPS Hosting is a managed service where you need not worry about anything related to server management. In Managed VPS Hosting, your service provider takes care of server maintenance like updating the core, software installation, backup, security and more. Thus, as a business owner, you need not worry about server management and can invest your time and concentration on growing your business further. Managed VPS Hosting can be chosen by any business owner, irrespective of you having any technical experience or not, as it eases your work. Advantages of Managed VPS Hosting Full root access VPS Hosting is a combination of Shared and Dedicated Server Hosting, thus, providing the ease and advantage of both. Since your managed server is isolated from other servers you can modify it based on your needs and having full root access allows you to do so. Ease of managementWith your server management and maintenance being taken care of by your web hosting provider, you can now easily concentrate on building your business and managing the brand side of it, whereas, the technical aspect is taken care of by the web host. Instant resource provisioningServer resources like OS, RAM and CPU are instantly allocated as soon as your server is set up. Moreover, as your traffic grows you can easily scale these resources depending on your needs. Cost SavingSince the maintenance of your website’s backend is taken care of by your web hosting provider, you need not hire an additional technical administrator to manage your website. Even though Managed VPS Hosting may seem costly to you at the start, however, when you compare it with paying a dedicated resource it is economical and cost saving to invest in a managed virtual server. Performance The performance of your server depends on the hard drive used. There are two types of drives viz. SSD and HDD. And most businesses these days opt for SSD based VPS Hosting as it is better as compared to HDD in terms of performance. One of the most important advantages of SSD is that it improves the website load speed thus, improving the Google search ranking and performance. Still confused about SSD and HDD? Read all about SSD vs HDD VPS Hosting here! Security Website security is of utmost importance. With managed virtual server hosting even though all the websites share the same physical space, the IP addresses are unique to each server owing to the Dedicated Hosting feature of isolation. Should you go for it? If you are a growing business whose goal is to increase your customer base and incoming traffic, then it is implied that you would be spending your resources and time planning the marketing and development activities to engage your customers better. At such a time, it would be a wise decision to choose Managed VPS Hosting, as it allows you to concentrate on the business aspect while the service provider takes care of the technical aspects of running your business website. We at ResellerClub understand the importance of time and resource management and offer fully Managed VPS Hosting with top-notch infrastructure, 24/7 system admin support, 99.9% uptime guarantee, easy upgrade, an intuitive dashboard and much more so that you can focus on running your business. I hope this article helped you gain a better understanding of what managed VPS hosting is and its advantages, and if you as a business owner should opt for it. If you have any questions or queries, feel free to leave them in the comments section below. .fb_iframe_widget_fluid_desktop iframe { width: 100% !important; } The post Managed VPS Hosting and its Advantages appeared first on ResellerClub Blog.

What’s the Big Difference Between ‘Hosting’ and ‘WordPress Hosting’?

InMotion Hosting Blog -

If you have a WordPress website, do you need to get special WordPress hosting? Not necessarily. In theory, any hosting service will offer the tools needed to run your site. But choosing the best hosting plan for your website can help ensure that it works well, stays secure, and offers the best user experience possible – and WordPress hosting offers many features and functions specially designed to make your website run at peak performance, while other services typically do not. Continue reading What’s the Big Difference Between ‘Hosting’ and ‘WordPress Hosting’? at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

Dedicated vs. VPS Hosting

InMotion Hosting Blog -

Choosing a hosting provider is hard enough, but choosing the right hosting plan can add to that frustration, especially if you don’t know the differences between them. For this guide, we are going to discuss two of the more secure options for hosting plans, VPS and Dedicated. What is a VPS and Dedicated Plan? Before we discuss the differences, let’s talk about the plans themselves and what makes them unique. VPS. Continue reading Dedicated vs. VPS Hosting at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

What to Look for in a Web Host

HostGator Blog -

The post What to Look for in a Web Host appeared first on HostGator Blog. In those exciting early stages of launching a new website, you have a lot of decisions you need to make. You need to clarify your brand, choose your domain, and plan out your website’s design. On the long to-do list of getting a new website up and running on the web, one of the most important choices you need to make is what plan and provider to choose for web hosting. Luckily, this step is easier than a lot of the other items on your list. Designing your website and promoting it once it’s live are much harder and more time consuming tasks than selecting a good web hosting service provider. But nonetheless, you do want to take a little time to consider your options and make sure you choose the best web hosting plan for your needs. If you choose the right web hosting service provider from day one, you’ll save yourself the headache of having to migrate your site to a different company later. But if this is your first website, then how are you supposed to know what to look for? Especially if you don’t entirely understand what website hosting really is. We explain. What Is a Web Host? Before we can choose a web host, it’s important you first understand the web hosting basics. Web hosting is essentially the physical side of the web. Every website you see online is made up of various images, media, apps, and other files that take up storage space. While we tend to think of the internet as something that exists outside of physical space, all those files have to be stored in a physical server somewhere. In order to contain all the files that make up your website and serve them up to every person that visits it, a physical server must have a lot of power. For most website owners, owning and maintaining a server that powerful isn’t practical. That’s where website hosting companies come in. Web hosts own a large number of servers that have the power required to provide consistent, reliable service for thousands of websites. When you sign up for a hosting plan, you rent some of the space on their servers. A good web host isn’t just selling that space, they’re also selling their expertise in keeping their technology running smoothly, efficiently, and securely—so that your website runs consistently without problems. Do I Really Need a Web Host? If you want your website published online where anyone can find it, the short answer is yes. Every website needs web hosting because it’s the mechanism that takes the pages you’ve designed on your personal device and makes them accessible to people on other devices across the world. But in addition to making it possible for people to access your site, web hosting companies also offer some important additional value. They invest in the proper firewalls and other security precautions that make your website less likely to get hacked. And they keep experts on staff to provide any maintenance needed to ensure your website stays up consistently. By investing in the right tools and talent to keep web hosting servers functional all day every day, they make sure that your website is available and loads quickly and without problem whenever your visitors want it.   10 Things to Look for in a Web Host To get all the best benefits of web hosting, you need to find the right web host. With so many options out there, a newbie will understandably struggle to figure out how the different providers compare and which criteria are really the most valuable to judge each option by. No matter what type of website you’re launching, these are ten of the most important features to look for in a web host. 1. They have a strong reputation in the industry. One of the best measures of a business in any industry is their overall reputation. When a business consistently serves customers well for years, word gets around. But how do you find out what a company’s reputation is? Look for evidence from third-party sources. Have they earned any web hosting awards from reputable organizations or websites? Can you find reviews of them from tech publications? If so, what do they say? Just as importantly, what do reviews from their actual customers say? A little bit of sleuthing on Google will uncover a lot of information about what people have to say about the web hosting company you’re considering. If it’s generally positive, then you can trust you’ll be in good hands. 2. They promise at least 99% uptime. If your website is for a business, any time it’s not available loses you money. Even if this is a website you’re starting for fun, you risk providing a disappointing experience to visitors and losing followers if they can’t access your website each time they try to visit. The main job a web hosting company has is to keep your website up and accessible online. Every web hosting company will have to do occasional maintenance that will temporarily take your website offline. And if servers aren’t properly maintained, they could overheat or break down, which means more time your website is inaccessible. One of the big differentiating factors in the quality of web hosting providers is how well they manage the types of issues that can take your website offline. In industry parlance, the amount of time a web hosting company guarantees that your website will be available is called uptime, and reputable web hosting companies routinely promise at least 99% uptime. The best web hosting companies go even further, offering 99.9% uptime with a money-back guarantee. 3.  They offer a variety of plans. Today, you’re looking for a hosting package that delivers what you need right now. But you have big dreams for your new website. You hope that in the coming years, the number of people that find your website and become regular visitors will grow. Maybe you hope to continually create new content to add to your site as well. In either case, you need room to grow. Most new websites get everything they need with an affordable shared web hosting plan, but as a website grows in size and popularity, at some point you’ll want to upgrade to a cloud hosting, VPS hosting, or possibly even a dedicated hosting plan. When that time comes, you’ll have a much easier time making the transition if you can stick with the company you choose from day one. An upgrade is simpler than a full migration to a new company. So before you choose the right hosting package for today, take some time to think about what you’ll need tomorrow and beyond and see if your provider has plans to match your future needs as well. 4. They provide 24/7 customer service. When you’re up late at night working on those website fixes you’ve finally gotten around to, the last thing you want is to hit an issue you need customer support to resolve and realize you have to wait until the morning to get an answer. Any time your website has a problem, you want it fixed fast. And you should be able to work on your website on your own schedule, without having to wait on the business hours of your web hosting company’s support reps. So make sure your web host offers top-notch customer support at all hours of the day. Bonus points if they offer a number of ways you can get in touch, so you can choose between phone, email, or live chat based on what works best for you.   5. The price is right. Web hosting is a necessary cost if you want to have a website, but that doesn’t mean it has to be expensive. Simple shared web hosting plans start at less than $3 a month. When deciding on the right hosting plan for your site, keep in mind that web hosting isn’t a one-time cost. Web hosts use a subscription model for billing. Make sure that the cost is something you’re comfortable with moving forward, and that it seems in line with what the plan is worth. While many new websites will manage just fine with the cheapest type of hosting plan, some will find it well worth spending more for additional features and higher bandwidth. Sometimes spending more is worth it, just make sure the value matches the price. 6. Their account interface is intuitive. While the main service web hosts provide is keeping your website published and accessible, they also provide an interface that allows you to do a number of important web management tasks, such as: Domain name managementSetting up redirectsManaging your SSLManaging your domain email addressesAdding new applications or databases to your websiteManaging your backupsUpgrading or renewing your hosting solutions You don’t want to spend a lot of time learning how to do some of the basic, but important work involved in running your website. Look for a web hosting provider that makes it all intuitive with a good interface and simple processes. 7. They provide ample resources for getting started. Even if the overall design is intuitive, you’re still likely to have questions about how to do certain things with your website. Before choosing your web hosting provider, look into the type of resources they provide to help you learn how to use their products. They should have comprehensive support materials such as tutorials and how-to articles. What’s even better is also having an active support community where you can turn to other people who use the web hosting provider for help with your questions. See if the company has an active forum, in addition to their other support resources and customer service team. 8. If you have a site already, migration is supported. The idea is to find the right web hosting platform from day one, but not everyone meets that ideal. If you’re on the search for web hosting solutions because you’re not happy with your current web hosting company, then you want to find a provider that will help you with the process of transferring your website over. Look into what the migration process is like. Consider talking to a support person there for details, so you know what you’re getting into. If they can make the process relatively simple and painless, then you’ll be able to switch over quickly and get back to focusing on the work of running your website. 9. They support domain name management as well. Web hosting is one of the necessary elements all websites need, a domain name is another. One of the most important steps in starting a new website is finding and registering your domain. And it’s just as important to keep your domain name registration current for as long as you keep your website. While it’s entirely possible to register your domain with a different service than the web hosting provider you choose, you’ll have a much easier time staying on top of domain name management if you keep it all in one place. Make sure your web hosting provider allows you to manage your domain registration and renewals in the same interface you use for managing your web hosting. 10.  They offer satisfactory security options. Hackers and data breaches are an unfortunate part of the online world today.  Every website owner ought to prioritize security. While there are a number of steps you can take to make your websites more secure, one of the best things you can do for website security is choosing a web host that treats it as a priority. A good web hosting company invests in powerful firewalls, includes SSL certificates as part of their plans, and offers affordable security software or other add-ons to enhance your website security. Research the company’s reputation for security to make sure you’ll be in good hands. Bonus Feature to Consider: A Website Builder If you already have a great professional web designer in mind for your website, or have the skills to do it all yourself, then this feature won’t be necessary. But for anyone wanting a quick and affordable way to build a website, in spite of lacking programming skills, an intuitive website builder will make your life much easier. And opting for a website builder from a web hosting provider means you keep all your website management tasks in one place. It’s one less log in to remember and account to keep up with. Choose Your Web Host Today If you’re ready to make your decision and get started with a web host now, consider one of HostGator’s plans. We offer a range of options, so there’s plenty of room to grow. We have a money-back guarantee of 99.9% uptime. We also provide 24/7 customer support and lots of helpful resources to help you get started. And we’re one of the most respected web hosts in the industry, as evidenced by third-party reviews and awards. Ready to learn how to build a website? Give our experts at HostGator a call today and we’ll help you find the best hosting plan for you and your needs. Find the post on the HostGator Blog

How We’re Knocking Down Silos at Rackspace  

The Rackspace Blog & Newsroom -

I’ve spent most of my career in tech — Hewlett Packard, HPE, Dell, DXC — and for much of that time, I’ve been aware of Rackspace’s famed culture: the all-hands-on-deck customer service, the deeply embedded service ethos, the servant leadership. So it’s been one of the highlights of my career to be asked to lead […] The post How We’re Knocking Down Silos at Rackspace   appeared first on The Official Rackspace Blog.

Build a Custom Store Frontpage with the new WooCommerce Blocks

Liquid Web Official Blog -

While we covered the blocks that WooCommerce has available in Gutenberg not that long ago, much has changed in a short amount of time. My initial look at the WooCommerce blocks only covered two, and one of them duplicated a specific feature of the main useful block. Today we’re going to look at the new Gutenberg blocks that WooCommerce provides for your WordPress site. In the past, I’ve built shortcodes that would accomplish many of the functions that are found in these blocks. The thing about shortcodes is that they were never user-friendly. My clients would have to figure out category IDs or product IDs, and then put them into the shortcode to get it working without getting any of the brackets wrong. Plus they’d have to remember the parameters available or look up in my documentation. Luckily, that is no longer the case. We now have eight wonderful blocks for Gutenberg-enabled WooCommerce stores that will help to create a much smoother user experience for a Gutenberg frontpage. Handpicking WooCommerce Products with Gutenberg Let’s start with the new handpicked block available for WooCommerce. Once you select the block, you can start typing in the name of the product that you want to have displayed on your page. When you find the product you want, click done underneath the product selector and your chosen products will show up on your post. You could use this to build a custom clothing set on a fashion site so that users can get the exact look that you’re talking about. From the right-hand side, you can also choose what you want to display with your handpicked products. To remove ratings, simply click the toggle to turn off the display of ratings from your selected products. In fact, these display options are available for all of the blocks that WooCommerce provides in Gutenberg. For your handpicked product block you also have the option of changing how the products are ordered on your page and how many columns are used to display the products. While the default is three columns, you could change it to four to make sure that you don’t have a straggling product when you handpick four WooCommerce products. Get industry-leading tips on growing your store. Subscribe to the Liquid Web eCommerce newsletter and get content like this sent straight to your inbox. Choosing Products by Attribute Another interesting block is the Products By Attribute one available by default. A camera site could use this to show all the lenses that are compatible with the new camera they’re reviewing or a fashion site could use it to show all the products of a certain color in their current inventory. The only drawback currently in the product attribute block is that it doesn’t let you choose two attributes to filter your products by. In clothing, that would mean you can’t choose to filter by both size and color. You’ll have to stick with a single attribute, though you could choose to show products across many different colors in the block. In addition to the display customization options that you have with handpicked products, this block allows you to set the number of rows that are displayed. By choosing two rows as your setting you’d display six products with the out of the box block. A very similar block to this is the Products by Category block. It provides the same option but allows you to display products based on the category they’re in. I’d love to see a block that allows filtering by product category and by product attribute to give the user maximum control. Feature a Single Product The Featured Product block is one that many of my clients have asked for in the past. This block allows you to find a specific product and give it a unique visual display to highlight it. Aside from the large thumbnail, you can change the color of the overlay, and choose the alignment of the text on your featured product. You can also choose to display the price and the description if you want or remove them with the toggle on the right side of your product. Other WooCommerce Blocks in Gutenberg The other blocks that are available by default with WooCommerce share the same theme, they’re preset filters based on different product metadata that WooCommerce applies to products. You can choose from: Best Selling Products Newest Products On Sale Products Top-Rated Products All of these blocks can be changed quickly between each other. To change these blocks, click the arrow beside the block icon and you’ll get a drop-down with the other options available. Each of these blocks allows you to adjust the column or row settings. Choose to display the title, price, rating, and add to cart button. Finally, you can filter the products that display by category, if you want to only display products that are on sale in a particular category. Building Your Gutenberg WooCommerce Frontpage While all these blocks are great, what can you do with them? For many stores, the addition of all these blocks means that to get a custom front page, you no longer have to have your template customized by a developer to achieve a good look. I’ll show you how to build a custom Gutenberg frontpage using the Twenty Nineteen theme. Start by adding a new page to your site and titling it ‘Home’. Then we need to go to Settings->Reading and change our homepage display to a static page. Then choose our new ‘Home’ page as the Gutenberg frontpage to our site. If you also have a blog on your site, you’ll need to have a page set aside for your blog. Under the setting for your homepage, you’ll see a similar setting to set the location of your blog. Now, we can head back to our new custom home page and start adding content. Let’s start by adding a section for the most popular products in our store. Use the heading block to add a heading to the page. Next, choose the Best Selling block and use it’s display settings to make the block full width. See the arrow below for which setting to use. You should end up with something like this. Now let’s get a bit fancier and add some text and an email opt-in form to entice our site users to join our email list. Start by choosing the Column Block, which can be found by searching or inside the layout block types. This block will give you two different columns by default, but you can adjust the number of columns to suit your needs. Each of these columns can have a different block inside if that’s what your site design calls for. Today we’ll put our email opt-in form on the right side and our text on the left side. I’m using WP Forms Lite, which includes a widget that works inside a block. As you can see above, I made the text a dark background so that it draws the eye towards the content on our mostly white default page. This will increase the chance that your users will notice your form and then join your email list. Make sure you set your column block to be full width on your page to keep the look consistent. Next, let’s feature another single product. We’ll use the Featured Products block and put it inside a column block again so that we can write some custom sales text for the product we want to feature. I’ve also used the settings inside the Featured Product block to remove the description so that it doesn’t distract from my custom sales text. Remember to set it to full width so our blocks match up. With Twenty Nineteen, our last two blocks feel like they’re crowded together, so let’s take a moment to break them up with a quote from a happy customer. Go to our email block and use the Insert After option to add a block after our email opt-in. Now choose a Pullquote block and add our text from the happy user. Make sure you choose the display option to make the quote full width on your page. With that done, we’ve got a fairly respectable custom home page for our WooCommerce site. We didn’t need to talk to a developer or figure out specific product IDs that would then need to be copied and pasted into a shortcode. We didn’t have to hunt for a special plugin that would let us build a custom page, or invest in a theme with a page builder built in. With only the available blocks in WooCommerce and the Twenty Nineteen theme, we were able to achieve this look. Clearly, there is some styling to clean up the page. Specifically, our featured product is on sale and in this design, you can’t really read the sale price of the product due to the yellow color overlay. Twenty Nineteen also leaves our products just a bit close to the left edge of the screen by default, so we’d need to fix that before launch. The point is that these changes are minor items that we could use a service like Fiverr or Upwork to fix, instead of hiring a developer to build us a custom homepage from scratch. The addition of these awesome WooCommerce blocks to Gutenberg has put much more power in the hands of store owners and lets developers spend their time on other parts of a store build, instead of typing out lots of PHP code to produce the same result with less flexibility for the end user. Build a High-Performing WooCommerce Store Create a store that converts traffic with Liquid Web’s Managed WooCommerce Hosting solution. It comes standard with Jilt to help you recover abandoned carts, performance tests whenever you need them, and the platform reduces query loads by 95%, leading to a faster store. The post Build a Custom Store Frontpage with the new WooCommerce Blocks appeared first on Liquid Web.

Got a side hustle? Enter the Side Hustle Stars Awards

HostGator Blog -

The post Got a side hustle? Enter the Side Hustle Stars Awards appeared first on HostGator Blog. Do you have a side hustle? A “Side Hustle” is a venture created in addition to an individual’s primary income source, created with the intent to gain money, credibility, community, or even a career. Maybe your “day job” wasn’t fulfilling your creative needs. Maybe you needed supplemental income to support your hobbies.  Maybe you wanted to jump on the blog wave to share your ideas, make money, or simply get your creative juices flowing. Or maybe you wanted to create a community of like-minded individuals to support something you’re passionate about. Whatever reason led you to create a “side hustle,” we know the hustle and grind can be tough. And there’s truth in the name – the hustle often means late nights, early morning ‘jam sessions,’ and to-do lists before you ever get to your day job. It’s dreaming up your perfect life, and then hustling to make it happen. At HostGator, we love the side hustlers because our company was founded the same way – in a college dorm room where a single college student had big ideas to make money. His big ideas sky rocketed into an international company with millions of websites launched to date. Who knows if your side hustle will turn into something like HostGator one day, but the first step to building your dream starts with the hustle. We want to hear your story, and how you’ve used a HostGator website to support your side hustle goals! About the Competition HostGator’s Side Hustle Awards competition celebrates side hustlers like you who are working hard to make the big dream happen. A “Side Hustle” is a venture created in addition to an individual’s primary income source, created with the intent to gain money, credibility, community, or even a career. The side hustle can now be full-time employment, but should have originally been created as a supplementary activity.   You’re hustling. It’s time to celebrate your hard work! Tell us about your side hustle and what makes it successful! Complete the entry form below for a chance to win cash prizes and free hosting for 1 year*! Get your entries in NOW because the first 100 qualified entries will receive a special Side Hustle Fuel Pack – a Starbucks gift card, Yeti tumbler, and limited-edition Snappy stress ball!    The contest is only open to current customers of HostGator with a live and active website hosted with HostGator. The Prizes 1st Prize – $1000 plus free website hosting for 1 year* 2nd Prize – $500 plus free website hosting for 1 year*3rd Prize – $250 plus free website hosting for 1 year*First 100 qualified entries get Side Hustle Fuel Kits! An entry is considered “qualified” once all elements of entry form have been completed and the website is verified as hosted with HostGator. Note: *free hosting package does not include dedicated servers and VPS. Earnings for hosting credit will be applied to individual’s HostGator account. The Details Entrants must be current customers (hosted with HostGator), with a website created prior to award announcement. Applicant must enter on their own behalf (no freelancers submitting for client).Entrant’s side hustle website must be hosted with HostGator.Entrant must be 18 years of age and older.Entrant must reside in the United States.No HostGator Affiliates, EIG employees, or their immediate family members.Entry must be submitted in written English language. Must approve HostGator to use your story in marketing materials and promotions. Click to review complete details, including [Official Rules of this contest]. If you have questions about this contest, please contact hgcontests@hostgator.com. Side Hustle Stars Entry Form [contact-form]Find the post on the HostGator Blog

Who Has the Best Deal on Dedicated Server Hosting?

InMotion Hosting Blog -

Choosing the right dedicated server hosting plan for your business can be a daunting prospect – If you choose the wrong plan, you may end up with poor website performance or unneeded features that can affect your overall success. Often, though, website owners choose a hosting plan based on price alone, without considering any of the other benefits. While budget is a large concern, it shouldn’t be your only concern. That being said, when you’re spending top dollar on a premium hosting service, you do need to be sure that they can guarantee the best performance possible. Continue reading Who Has the Best Deal on Dedicated Server Hosting? at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

How to Safely Test Changes on My WordPress Website

InMotion Hosting Blog -

There are a lot of different tools and plugins that you can add to your WordPress site—a website backup tool, a two-factor authentication plugin, even a plugin to add extra animation to your website for the holidays. But it’s hard to know, when you make changes to a website, whether or not those changes will work when you roll them out. It’s the nightmare of many website owners: you spend hours to put together a massive update to your site and when you push it out and go live, the site crashes because one little thing doesn’t work. Continue reading How to Safely Test Changes on My WordPress Website at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

Why Paying Extra for Dedicated Hosting Might Not Be Wise

InMotion Hosting Blog -

If you’re looking for the absolute best in web hosting platforms, then dedicated hosting is definitely the “five-star luxury suite” of the hosting world. But is it really worth the price? For many businesses, the answer is “no” as there are other, cheaper alternatives that work just as well. For the purposes of our analysis, let’s examine what you get with dedicated hosting as opposed to another alternative – cloud hosting – and look at which one will benefit your business the most. Continue reading Why Paying Extra for Dedicated Hosting Might Not Be Wise at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

How to Set Up 2-Factor Authentication for WordPress

InMotion Hosting Blog -

There are several things that you can do to secure your website, like creating a backup WordPress site and setting up two-factor authentication. With the nature of the internet, it’s no longer a matter of if you will be the victim of a hack, but more a matter of when. It’s prudent to prepare yourself with these security features. First Check Your Backup WordPress Site The first feature you really need is a backup WordPress site. Continue reading How to Set Up 2-Factor Authentication for WordPress at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

5 Successful Email Marketing Campaigns and Why They Worked

Liquid Web Official Blog -

Email generates $38 billion in retail sales annually. If you want to get a piece of that pie, you’ll want to maximize your email performance. One of the best ways is to learn from what has already been proven to work. Specifically, diving into the email marketing strategies of other brands so you can discover what makes them successful. In this post, we will look at examples of popular email marketing campaigns and point out key takeaways that can be used to inspire your next campaign. We’ll be looking at email marketing campaign examples from the following five companies to see how they write captivating subject lines, onboard new users, engage their customers and more: Uber Bonobos BuzzFeed Headspace Patagonia We’ll also see what makes an effective email campaign: voice, frequency, and simplicity. Ready? Let’s go. #1 Uber Uber’s email campaigns are simple and to the point — kind of like their service. Design-wise, the text is usually pretty brief but with a clear CTA which is great for skim readers (more on that later). For users wanting to learn more, a link to follow is usually easily found somewhere in the email Uber sends subscribers deals and promotions like this one on rates. This is perfect for subscribers who are quickly skimming the email because “Cheaper Than Ever” really stands out as a CTA and is further emphasized with the “dropping prices by 30%” deal. And it’s not just limited to promotions. Check out how Uber uses simple but effective copywriting paired with a clean email design to show off new features. A consistently clean email design perfectly lines up with Uber’s brand image across its app, website, and social media. This kind of consistency helps to bolster communication and marketing leading to a strong and loyal customer base. Get industry-leading tips on email marketing campaigns for your store. Subscribe to the Liquid Web eCommerce newsletter and get content like this sent straight to your inbox. Summary Voice This email is simple and straight to the point, yet personable and friendly. Frequency Again, they keep it simple. A welcome email, promotions, and summaries of your rides are enough to keep users engaged. Simplicity A+ on simplicity. Uber limits emails to just one CTA to make it simple for their audience to understand what they need to do. #2 Bonobos Menswear retailer Bonobos also does a great job of engaging their audience with their emails. How? By giving users a reason to interact. Emails are clean and minimalistic with a clear CTA that encourages readers to take action. This email doesn’t have much copy, but what is there is playful — turning what could be a boring product into something you’d want. It’s also perfectly targeted at who would buy this shirt and for what reason (to wear at industry parties). The structure of this email is pretty clear too. The aim is to target those who don’t want to waste time scrolling through products they don’t want. How does Bonobos know this? Well, there is a lot going on behind the scenes here. According to Internet Retailer, they use an algorithm to target consumers who are most likely to buy a particular item. This data is pulled from previous buyers by color, size, location, how recent the purchase, and other factors. Bonobos then segments these groups so it can target specific audiences with specific products. Nice. Summary Voice Bonobos knows its audience (young working professional men) and do a good job of using an appropriate voice injected with humor: Frequency One of Bonobos’ biggest strengths with email marketing is knowing when to send emails, whether for new sign-ups who need some help or to re-engage older users. Simplicity Bonobos knows how to use whitespace and clear messaging so the next steps after reading one of their emails are clear. For example, even an abandoned shopping cart email is simple. Instead of showing the forgotten item like most eCommerce stores, Bonobos keeps it vague to create some curiosity about what was left behind. #3 BuzzFeed BuzzFeed is the king of subject lines. Just look at these and tell me you wouldn’t click to read at least a few of them (if not all): BuzzFeed’s newsletter became one of their top sources of traffic. Why? Because they write engaging content with equally engaging subject lines, they make you want to click and open that email right away. The subject lines and preview text are usually short. Often, the preview text answers a question posed in the subject line. Good copywriting doesn’t end at the subject line either. it continues when you open the email. BuzzFeed is great at sending emails that make their audience engage. This email gives enough information to pique your interest and makes you want to click through and visit the articles. This is no accident. Every email BuzzFeed sends is designed to get users to click through to the site and read the full article. It’s for this reason email is one of their strongest growth channels, accounting for 20 percent of their traffic. Summary Voice BuzzFeed segments their lists into people with different interests so they can serve them tailored content all wrapped up in BuzzFeed’s laidback and lighthearted brand voice. Frequency What’s great here is the user can choose how many emails they receive by heading over the subscription page and choosing interests. While the principle is important, it won’t work for all business models so do what’s right for your audience. BuzzFeed can get away with sending two emails a day on average because the content is less invasive than a sales email. People are more likely to read emails like this every day than they are to make a purchase from an eCommerce store. Be sure not to bombard your mailing list. Simplicity Of course, BuzzFeed understands simplicity too. You want cats, you got cats. The important thing here is that BuzzFeed allows users to subscribe based on their interests. They took this a stage further by breaking down topic categories into subcategories (animals >>> cats). The takeaway here is segmenting subscribers and serving them content they are interested in reading. #4 Headspace Headspace is an app for guided meditation. What sets their emails apart is the design. They feature playful characters and beautiful relaxing colors. Using this welcome in their onboarding emails is a masterstroke. Their email does lots of things well, but to pick out a few: It sets a clear goal – it’s obvious what a new user is expected to do here — start meditating. It focuses on benefits – Headspace makes the email about the benefits their app will give users — a happier and healthier life. It’s fun – the soft colors and quirky character designs help to create positive customer emotions about the app. Why bother with onboarding emails? Effective onboarding leads to higher retention rates, higher revenues, and an increase in customer lifetime value. Summary Voice Headspace is skilled at aligning their voice with what they offer. Frequency A gentle number of emails to calm onboarding new users and provide useful little reminders for existing ones. According to Mailcharts, this works out at roughly 14 per year. Simplicity An example of simplicity at its finest. Not only is this a simple email, but it is also in keeping with Headspace’s core offering to simplify your life through guided meditation. #5 Patagonia Outdoor clothing retailer Patagonia send a variety of emails featuring blog posts, interviews, promotions as well as information on social issues they are raising awareness for. Sending a mixture of content gives users a reason to open their emails, even if they don’t want to buy something. Patagonia maximizes engagement with a mix of eye-catching email content. This email is very easy to read and clearly lays out the products on offer. On the flip-side, the next email isn’t trying to sell any Patagonia products. Its purpose is to raise awareness and grab your attention. Summary Voice Patagonia has really honed in on a simple and lighthearted voice to gently push their audience into buying products. Frequency Not only does Patagonia send emails every couple of days, but they also send them at personalized times, tailored to when individual users are more likely to read, click, and interact with them. Simplicity Although there may be a lot going on in some Patagonia emails, they are always easy to read. Instead of following a more standard promotional product email, this image lets the product do the talking with some supporting copy to highlight durability. Successful Email Marketing Campaign Takeaways When it comes to a successful email marketing campaign, there is no one thing needed in order to stand out. However, there are a few common elements found in the best emails. Voice All of the email marketing examples have a well-established brand voice. This unique voice helps them stand out and is carried across all communication channels, not just email. Users and readers of the emails benefit from a more personalized, friendly approach which in turn, creates a stronger sense of brand loyalty as customers feel less like numbers on a list and more like people. Frequency It doesn’t matter if it’s daily or weekly, having an email schedule that works for your customers is key. All of the best email marketing campaigns listed had a clearly defined schedule, whether for updates, promotions, or onboarding emails. You should do the same for your email subscribers. Simplicity Simplicity refers to both writing style and email design. Both are both equally important. Writing-wise, you want to use simple and commonly shared language (for your user audience). Design-wise, less is more. Whitespace and small banner images go a long way. The aim of both writing and design is to make it as easy as possible for your audience to digest your email. Wrapping Up These are just a few of our favorite email marketing campaigns examples. Every day our inboxes are flooded with newsletters and promotional emails. The best thing we can do is follow the best practices in these examples and put them to use for your business. Managed WooCommerce Can Help With Liquid Web’s Managed WooCommerce Hosting platform, you can expect a reduction in query loads up to 95% on your store. The platform also comes standard with cart abandonment technology from Jilt, enabling your store to easily segment customers and increase email opens, engagement, and sales. The post 5 Successful Email Marketing Campaigns and Why They Worked appeared first on Liquid Web.

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