Industry Buzz

Surveying for Better Decisions: The Journey: Season 2, Episode 20

Social Media Examiner -

Wonder if you should survey your customers? Then watch The Journey, Social Media Examiner’s episodic video documentary that shows you what really happens inside a growing business. Watch the Journey This episode of the Journey goes behind the scenes to reveal how Social Media Examiner uses an annual survey of its customers to inform content […] The post Surveying for Better Decisions: The Journey: Season 2, Episode 20 appeared first on Social Media Marketing | Social Media Examiner.

Design and Create The Right Business Logo For Your Audience

The Blog -

What makes your business memorable? Is it your catchy slogan or witty business name? How about your logo? What’s that, you say? You don’t have a logo?! Not having a logo is detrimental to your business. Now that you have a domain name and website it’s essential you design a logo. Photo courtesy of Merriam-Webster. Stop and think about some of the biggest businesses you know: Starbucks, Walmart, Nike. They all take great care in their logos. At a glance, these logos bring the business top of mind; if golden arches against a red background make you salivate, you’re not alone. Memorable logos aren’t strictly the purview of big business — your small business or side hustle can create one too! Let’s take a look at three things to keep in mind when designing your logo. Online success starts with a great domain. Find one for your side hustle at Color influences perception Choosing the correct colors for your logo is imperative. Various colors evoke different emotions, and you can leverage those to your advantage. What are some common connotations that different colors have? Yellow is associated with happiness, green with health and nature, and purple with royalty. Not all colors work with all types of businesses. If you’ve been stressed and want a soothing, relaxing spa to while away an afternoon, which one will you visit: the spa whose logo is composed of calming greens and blues, or one whose electric, neon-colored logo looks like Rainbow Brite got sick all over it? It helps to ask your friends or family for input on your logo’s colors. How do the colors make them feel? What do they think of when seeing those colors? Use their feedback to refine your choices. You can also refer to this handy infographic courtesy of FastCompany. Size matters in logo design Your logo should always be featured on your website, marketing communications, and other advertising. Be mindful of your logo size and complexity, as not all of your advertising takes place on a giant billboard. If all your advertisements were that size it’d make sense to create an intricate, hyper-detailed logo, but that likely isn’t the case. Your logo should be distinctive and maintain clarity when displayed on small phone screens, business cards, pamphlets, or wherever else you may advertise. Choose your typography carefully Just as with color, different fonts are associated with different emotions and business types. Think about a soft, rounded, swooping script. Would you expect to find that sort of typography used by an edgy, street-wise graphic designer? Probably not. In fact, Wichita State University did a study to determine if different fonts were associated with emotions or personalities, and scripted fonts were perceived as being feminine and casual. Before you decide on a font, consider doing some sleuthing. Are your competitors all using a similar font type? It may be a good idea to choose a like font, as your audience may have already created an association between that font type and your industry. Creating a good logo takes more than a cute design When creating a logo for your new website and business, keep these tips in mind. Color, size, and type are three indispensable components of logo design. Don’t get discouraged if it takes you a little while to come up with the perfect logo! After all, it’s one of the first things people think of when they think of your business, so it’s important to take the time to iterate and create something special. Online success starts with a great domain. Find one for your side hustle at The post Design and Create The Right Business Logo For Your Audience appeared first on | Blog.

The Ultimate Guide to Google Display Banner Ad Sizes

Grow Traffic Blog -

Getting the best return on your investment is the core desire for anyone using paid advertising of any sort. You’re spending money, so you want to make as much in return as you can. Part of optimizing your ROI is knowing everything you can about how the ads system works. One crucial element of Google ads is the size of the various display ads you’re able to use. Publishers need to know this so they know how much space to assign for ads on their site. Advertisers need to know this so they know how large their images should be. Google has quite a few different ad sizes, many of which are surprisingly similar, so it’s best to get the dimensions straight from the horse’s mouth. Remember, though, that these ad formats are not for Google’s search result advertising. Those ad slots are text-only, as are several other formats for Google ads. If you want to use image ads where the dimensions matter, you need to choose that particular format of display advertising. Google divides their ad sizes into three categories. These are “top performing ad sizes”, “other supported ad sizes”, and “regional ad sizes”. Why they keep any beyond the top performers is anyone’s guess, but I suppose giving people more options allows them to test variations on ad sizing and performance. Top Performing Ad Sizes 300×250 pixels. This format is known as the Medium Rectangle in most publications and is one of the most common ad sizes Google offers. As a publisher, it’s a good option to choose because you’re always going to have something to fill in the space. Since it’s very common amongst publishers, it’s very open to advertisers, with plenty of inventory to fill. This format is available for text ads, display ads, and mobile ads. It tends to perform well when embedded within the text of articles, or when merged with a multi-column layout on a website’s feed. 336×280 pixels. This format is slightly larger than the medium rectangle format, being 36 pixels wider and 30 pixels taller. This means the aspect ratio is very slightly different, but not by enough to truly matter. This one is called the Large Rectangle in many publications and is another common ad format. Like the medium rectangle, the large rectangle is very commonly found embedded within content like an image, though obviously it stands out as an ad due to ad disclosure rules. This format is available for both text and display ads, but is not available for mobile ads. 728×90 pixels. This is the “leaderboard” ad format, but the majority of you out there probably recognize it as a typical “banner” ad. It’s very wide, not very tall, and forms a horizontal bar that is used in a wide variety of ways. You very frequently find this ad format placed above content or below it, as part of the navigation or in the footer. Sometimes you see these used in place of spacers in the middle of articles, but this can cause issues with people encountering the ad and assuming the content is concluded. Be sure to encourage further scrolling if you use this format in the middle of your content. These are available for text and display ads, but not for mobile. 300×600 pixels. This is occasionally called the Half Page ad format, though many people just think of it as “that large ad to the side of the screen.” These ads are tall and vertically oriented, which means they would fit a cell phone orientation, except they are not available on mobile. Rather, they are often used to fill in whitespace to the sides of your content, which would normally simply be a gutter for widescreen monitors to center content. Google claims this is one of the fastest growing ad sizes, and as such it is becoming increasingly available amongst both publishers and advertisers. If you want to experiment with some of the most cutting-edge ad formats, this is one to look into. As mentioned, this is not available on mobile, but works with both display and text ads. 320×100 pixels. This is known as the “large mobile banner” ad format. Unlike the other top performing ad formats, this one is available for mobile ads but not for traditional display or text advertising. It is considered a mobile alternative to the 320×50 and 300×50 ad formats, which we have not discussed yet. They are vertically quite tall compared to other mobile ad formats, offering plenty of space for mobile viewers. If you want to capture as much mobile attention as possible in content with display advertising, this is a good format to use. Other Supported Ad Sizes 320×50 pixels. This is the “mobile leaderboard” style of ads, and is only available for mobile ads, not for desktop displays. Unlike the top performing mobile ad format, this one is half the size vertically, making it very squat and very wide. They are often used the same way as banner ads for mobile browsing, used at the top of content or in the footer at the end of content. 468×60 pixels. This is the ad format Google specifically calls the “banner” ad format, not to be confused with the leaderboards. Like leaderboards, it is short but wide, but it’s not quite as wide as the leaderboards. This is to make it more accommodating to narrower website layouts that don’t have the space to plug in such a wide ad format for the leaderboards. This format is available for desktop display and text ads, but not for mobile. Additionally, Google warns that this ad format is going out of style and, as such, inventory tends to be limited. Fewer publishers are using it, fewer advertisers are paying for it, and it will eventually be deemed a legacy ad format. 234×60 pixels. Those keen with math will notice that this is exactly half as wide and exactly as tall as the banner ad format. Fittingly, it is thus labeled the Half Banner ad format. It’s designed to fit in smaller spaces than the usual banner ad, and can be a small and unobtrusive ad format. However, this means it is also prone to being overlooked, which means it tends to underperform compared to other ad formats. Ads need to be large and in charge to be successful these days; trying to slip under the radar only works if you have some inexplicably high value display ads. This format does not work for mobile, either. 120×600 pixels. The official name for this ad format is the skyscraper ad format. It is less than half as wide as the half page format, while being just as tall. It’s essentially a banner turned on its side, which is how it got its start, more or less. As a desktop-only display ad, this one allows you to take up some gutter space on the sidebar of your website, without needing to dominate it with something as large as the half-page ad. However, this is also a less popular ad format than the half page, which leads to lower ad performance. 120×240 pixels. This is the actual “vertical banner” ad which, like the similarly sized half banner, suffers from being too small to capture a ton of attention. This kind of ad format would be ideal for small slide-in or pop-in widgets, but Google doesn’t like ads that only appear in certain dynamic circumstances, responsive design notwithstanding. The small size, the fact that it is limited to desktop-only display advertising, and the strange dimensions mean it isn’t very well suited for modern web advertising outside of specific circumstances. 160×600 pixels. This format is slightly over half as wide as the half page format, and is a little wider than the skyscraper format, serving as a sort of middle of the road between the two. The wider space than the skyscraper allows more creativity in your display ads, while still being narrower than the very dominant half page format. This tends to have a lot of inventory available, and is ideal for publishers with sidebars they want to fill with advertising. It’s available for desktop advertising, but not mobile. 300×1050 pixels. This is the “portrait” advertising format. It’s not very wide, but is extremely tall. Many modern mid-range computer monitors today are only 1080 pixels tall, so this can take up most of the vertical space, accounting for the navigation bar of a browser. These are brand-centric, which means they tend to work best when run alongside specific branded content or sponsored posts. Some sites use these as a sort of pseudo-background element in the gutter space of a centered page, making it look as though the ad content is peeking out behind the page content. Again, this is not available for mobile advertising. Currently, this is a high-demand, low-supply ad format, as few publishers are equipped to run them. You can take advantage of this for exclusive positioning and always-full advertising, if your site is configured for it. 970×90 pixels. This is occasionally called the Large Leaderboard format, and is a uniquely dynamic ad format. When a user views it for the first time, it will expand downwards, sliding the content further down to reveal the full content of the ad. The fill size of the display is 970×415 pixels. Once the user has seen the ad once, it no longer automatically expands, but can expand if the user clicks on it. This format is often used to display video, animations, and app advertising that tends to be very dynamic by its nature. 970×250 pixels. This is a billboard ad, and as such, has the same basic dimensions as a billboard you would see on the side of the highway. It’s very wide and quite tall, making it a very prominent ad. It’s best to run this at the top of your page, since it will often be cut off below the fold, and if it’s embedded in your content, users will assume it signals the end of a post unless otherwise indicated. This is another format where advertiser demand has outstripped publisher supply, putting publishers in a good position to earn. 250×250 pixels. This is a square ad format, which Google helpfully calls the Square ad format. It’s good for fitting into small spaces that aren’t wide enough for banners or leaderboards, and aren’t tall enough for skyscrapers. It’s large enough that it is not entirely ignored like the other small ad formats, and it’s quite common to be seen within text. This is also one of the more prominent formats for mobile advertising, because it’s available for both desktop and mobile ads. 200×200 pixels. This is the “small square” ad format, called such because it is a square and is smaller than the base square format. Why Google doesn’t call this the square and the other one a large square is anyone’s guess. It has all of the same benefits as the square ad, except it’s smaller, which means it is often overlooked. It is also limited in supply. It too is available for both desktop and mobile ads. 180×150 pixels. This is a small rectangle and, of course, is called the Small Rectangle ad format. It can fit into small spaces, but that’s often a detriment, as explained several times before. It doesn’t tend to perform very well and is probably well on its way to being deprecated. 125×125 pixels. This is the “button” ad format, which is basically just a small square, slightly larger than what most web forums use for avatar photos. It doesn’t perform very well and is limited to desktop advertising only, so it’s at the bottom of the list where Google can try to forget it exists. Regional Ad Sizes I’m not going to go over every regional ad size variation, because there are a lot of them. Google Ads makes certain specific ad sizes available in different countries, because different regions tend to have different preferred website layouts. For example, the most popular ad size in Russia is 240×400 pixels, called the vertical rectangle. It’s smaller than a half page, but larger than many other formats. Google also provides a few specific formats exclusively for use in Poland. Your guess is as good as mine as to why. The post The Ultimate Guide to Google Display Banner Ad Sizes appeared first on Growtraffic Blog.

How to Backup a WordPress Website in 10 Minutes or Less

InMotion Hosting Blog -

One of the most common questions that new WordPress website owners ask is how to backup their WordPress website in 10 minutes or less. With the right plugin, this is actually a pretty easy task. But it is also an essential task to undertake regularly. If your site crashes or is hacked, your backup will be your last save point from which you can quickly restore your site. If you don’t have one, then you are going to have to restart from scratch without any of the data that you may have compiled over months or even years. Continue reading How to Backup a WordPress Website in 10 Minutes or Less at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

Podcast 296: [Public Sector Special Series #5] – Creating Better Educational Outcomes Using AWS | February 6, 2019

Amazon Web Services Blog -

Cesar Wedemann (QEDU) talks to Simon about how they gather Education data and provide this data to teachers and public schools to improve education in Brazil. They developed a free-access portal that offers easy visualization of brazilian Education open data. Additional Resources QEDU About the AWS Podcast The AWS Podcast is a cloud platform podcast for developers, dev ops, and cloud professionals seeking the latest news and trends in storage, security, infrastructure, serverless, and more. Join Simon Elisha and Jeff Barr for regular updates, deep dives and interviews. Whether you’re building machine learning and AI models, open source projects, or hybrid cloud solutions, the AWS Podcast has something for you. Subscribe with one of the following: Like the Podcast? Rate us on iTunes and send your suggestions, show ideas, and comments to We want to hear from you!

Bringing eCommerce to Life with WP Engine

WP Engine -

UK-based Bamboo Clothing has been providing customers with reasonably-priced, bamboo-infused clothing since 2006. As the company has continued to grow, its eCommerce team has increasingly had to make changes to the company website, in an effort to keep up with growing demand. As that workload got larger over the years, the team found that the custom-built, legacy system they… The post Bringing eCommerce to Life with WP Engine appeared first on WP Engine.

5 VPS Hosting Nightmares That Will Surprise You (And How To Fix Them)

InMotion Hosting Blog -

Halloween is long past, but your worst VPS hosting nightmares may be unfolding today. And what is your host doing to help out? There’s a horde of cheap hosting companies that are keen on selling you a VPS without making you aware of a few simple maintenance tasks you should perform regularly. Fear not, this is how Managed Hosting can save you. If you’re concerned about any of the points mentioned in this article, take note and ask a managed hosting expert for more information. Continue reading 5 VPS Hosting Nightmares That Will Surprise You (And How To Fix Them) at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.

Better business results from faster web applications - Cloudflare is the fastest

CloudFlare Blog -

Web performance encompasses a lot of things: page load time, responsiveness for web and mobile applications. But overall, the key element is response times. How quickly can the origin server or the cache fulfill a user request? How quickly can a DNS response reach the client device?The Cloudflare mission is to help build a better Internet to everyone, and we offer multiple services for boosting the speed and performance of our customers and users. Cloudflare is faster than the competition when it comes to accelerating performance.How site speed impacts the bottom lineThere is a lot of research out there that confirms what many businesses and web developers already know: speed affects revenue. Better web performance means better user engagement and more conversions. Better performance also results in better SEO, driving up overall traffic numbers and increasing lead generation, sales, or ad revenue.One study by Google and Bing concluded that on average, a two-second delay in a website's page rendering led to a 4.3% loss in revenue per visitor. Another independent study has shown that 1 additional second of load time reduces conversions by 7%.How does using Cloudflare affect performance?According to testing from Cedexis (a company that evaluates CDN performance):Cloudflare is over 50 milliseconds or 23% faster than the nearest competitor over HTTPS for the 95th percentileCloudflare performs better than all competitors over HTTPS at both the 50th and 95th percentileCloudflare performs better than all competitors over HTTP at both the 50th and 95th percentileHTTPS performance at 95th percentileHTTP performance at 95th percentileTranslating domain names into IP addresses quickly and with authority needs an enterprise-ready DNS.  Each webpage requires multiple requests and responses in order to load, so an improvement of even a few milliseconds in how DNS queries are answered adds up quickly.  That's why it's so important to us that our DNS resolvers are the fastest available. According to DNSPerf (a DNS performance benchmarking service):Cloudflare is the fastest authoritative DNS provider, 30% faster globally than the next-fastest competitorCloudflare is the fastest public resolver, almost 30% faster globally than the next-fastest public DNS resolverDNS performanceWe've seen this in action; customers have reported large performance gains as a result of implementing Cloudflare. Zendesk, for example, improved their response times by 10x, and OKCupid was able to cut their page load times by up to 50% by implementing Cloudflare.How Cloudflare technology boosts business resultsCloudflare has a wide range of customers, from small businesses to large enterprises, but across all of them there's a similar story: Users engage more, convert more, and bounce less when content renders quickly. For instance, improving page load speed resulted in 62% more conversions for U.S. Xpress. Bidu grew leads by 30% year over year by reducing average full page load times from 13 seconds to 2.3 seconds.Our innovative products and services help speed up applications and websites:Argo: Cloudflare Argo uses smart routing to find the fastest, least congested path across the Cloudflare network.CDN: The Cloudflare globally distributed CDN caches web content across 165+ global data centers to supercharge web performance.DNS: Cloudflare DNS services shave crucial milliseconds off requests for a DNS lookup.Load Balancing: Cloudflare balances traffic across multiple servers or regions and uses health checks to identify offline servers.Web Optimizations: Cloudflare optimizes web content delivery by bundling JavaScript files, leveraging local storage, adjusting cache headers automatically, and more.Improving page speed and performance results in higher conversion rates, better user engagement. Cloudflare provides the fastest performance for web applications.Sign up here or speak to one of our experts to get started.

10 Reasons It’s Important to Perform a Website Backup

DreamHost Blog -

There are a lot of things you can do to keep your website safe, from choosing a top-notch web host to using strong passwords. However, the single most important step you can take is to perform website backups — early and often. Having a recent backup of your site can help you in many situations. If you lose crucial data or your website gets hacked, having a backup readily available can solve your problems. Plus, it often doesn’t take more than a few minutes to get that backup file ready. In this article, we’ll walk you through 10 reasons why you should back up your website right away. Let’s get to work! 1. Guard Against Human Error Everyone makes mistakes from time to time. You might delete an important file on your website, make a change that breaks some of its functionality, and so on. There are ways to fix these kinds of errors, but in our experience, few are as efficient as restoring a previous backup. To put this into perspective, imagine that a significant part of your website ceases to work. You have two options: Identify the problem and look for a way to solve it. Restore your website’s most recent backup and move on. The first method can be quick or take a lot of time, depending on how serious the problem is. However, with the second approach, you can have your site up and running quickly. All you need is a recent enough backup that you won’t lose any valuable data. The primary takeaway is that backups can save you in situations where you or someone else makes a mistake on your site. To be as safe as possible, you’ll want to create those backups frequently — even on a daily basis (keep reading to find out how DreamHost makes this process simple). 2. Reverse Problems During Updates Updates are necessary to keep your site functioning smoothly. At the same time, it’s not uncommon to perform an update to your site, only to see something unexpectedly go wrong. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make changes — you just have to go about them safely. Ideally, you’ll have an automatic backup system set up for your site. That way, if you update any of its key components, you’ll have a recent restore point available just in case. It’s also smart to make a manual backup before you start tinkering with your website. It might take you a few minutes or longer to get that backup ready. However, you’ll be happy you made the time if anything goes wrong during the update process. 3. Prevent Loss of Data Imagine that you have a blog with hundreds of posts, and someone on your team deletes one (or more) of them by mistake. In the past, we’ve seen people delete entire libraries of content because they didn’t know what they were doing or they gave certain users too many privileges. One of the primary reasons to maintain a backup system is to ensure that your data will be safe, even in situations like the one described above. That means you need to have a full backup of your site in place, and the same goes for your personal data as well. What’s more, data loss can occur even if there’s no human error involved. That means having backups is essential, even if you and your team know what you’re doing. If you’re worried about losing important data, we recommend you take things one step further. Not only should you have multiple backups available, but you should also avoid keeping them all stored in the same location. We recommend uploading your latest backups to the cloud, as well as keeping a copy on your server for redundancy’s sake. 4. Handle Compatibility Issues After New Installations If you use WordPress or any other Content Management System (CMS), then you probably rely a lot on add-ons, such as themes and plugins. Both types of tools can be incredibly handy. However, each time you install a new add-on, you’re introducing an element that might not play nicely with the rest of the site’s ecosystem. Just as with updates, this doesn’t mean you should avoid plugins and themes. Instead, what you need to do is be careful about the ones you install. Make sure they have good reviews and ratings, and that the developers update them frequently. You’ll also want to back up your website before you activate a new theme or WordPress plugin, just to be safe. With this approach, if a compatibility issue pops up, all you have to do is revert to a previous backup. Then, you’re free to install an alternative tool. 5. Resolve Malware Infections A lot of people think of malware as something that can only affect personal computers. However, a surprising number of websites are infected with some kind of malware, and a lot more of them are vulnerable to it. Even if you’re proactive about website security, attackers have highly-sophisticated techniques in their arsenals. Also, keep in mind that not even smaller, lesser-known websites are safe from attacks. WordPress users, for example, often face threats from bots looking for vulnerabilities they can exploit. Troubleshooting malware can be particularly tricky since it’s hard to know when your site is fully clean. Even then, if you don’t identify and patch the security ‘hole’ that led to the infection, you’ll remain vulnerable. Having a backup ready to go will help you get your website clean faster. 6. Provide Protection Against Hackers There may also be times when attackers try to access your site directly to deface it or steal important information. If someone manages to breach an account with administrative privileges, for example, they might change its credentials to lock you out of your site. This shouldn’t happen if you take the right security precautions. It’s especially critical to have Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) enabled on your site. If there is a hack, however, there are three ways you can proceed: Try to recover access to your account through your email. Contact your web hosting provider to ask for their assistance. Restore a backup from your hosting panel. The first option might not always work since attackers will probably change the email associated with the account right away. If you’re using a reputable web host, the company should be able to help you — but that can take time. Restoring a backup, on the other hand, can help you regain control of your site quickly. Once you do, you can update your credentials to ensure that attackers are locked out once more. 7. Simplify the Process of Migrating Web Hosts In a perfect world, you wouldn’t need to switch web hosts. However, a lot of people make the mistake of choosing the first provider they run into that looks decent. That usually ends up about as well as an episode of 90 Day Fiancé and often leads to messy separations. This means you may need to migrate from one web host to another at some point. The process involves moving all of your site’s files from one server to another. The good news is that if you’ve taken our advice to heart, you already have multiple full copies of your website ready to go. There are a lot of ways you can use backups to migrate your website. You can copy files manually, use dedicated tools, or ask your new provider to do it for you. In any case, having a backup ready means that you can switch web hosts at a moment’s notice if you need to, which gives you a lot of freedom. 8. Make It Easy to Create a Testing Version of Your Website Whenever you want to make a significant change to your site, the safest way to do so is by using a testing environment. That way, if something goes wrong during or after the update, you can keep it from affecting your live website. To do this, you’ll need what’s called a staging site. There are several ways you can go about creating one, and they’re all pretty straightforward. What’s more, having a recent backup of your site in place means you can be ready to set up a staging copy in minutes. 9. Ensure an Uninterrupted Revenue Stream If you make money from your website, then you need to ensure that it’s always accessible. Every minute that it isn’t working can cost you money. Just to give you an idea of the stakes, Amazon estimated that a little downtime during its Prime Day event cost it anywhere between $72–99 million. If you run a small business, you’re probably not working with those kinds of numbers. However, that means it’s even more important not to lose out on any potential earnings due to problems with your website. An hour’s (or a day’s!) lost income can be a significant blow to any business. Troubleshooting unexpected problems from scratch can take a lot of time, as we mentioned before. On the other hand, if you can restore a backup, you’ll get your website back online and earning money quickly. Then you can take your time to find out what went wrong in the first place and keep it from happening again. 10. Foster Strong Security Practices If we had a dollar for every time we recommended that website owners back up their data, we’d be millionaires. However, if you took a dollar away for every time someone ignored that advice, we might break even. The fact is that backups are about as versatile as sliced bread. Plus, you have so many options for how to back up your site that there’s no excuse not to do it. Backing up your data, in general, is the cornerstone of good digital security. If you take your website seriously, you’ll also want to read up on the other best security practices you can implement. However, the first step is to create a backup right away and repeat the process often. Sooner or later, it will save your site so now’s the perfect moment to start. How to Perform a Website Backup As we’ve mentioned, there are a lot of ways you can back up your website. Some web hosts will do it for you and others enable you to create backups on demand from your control panel. If you prefer a more manual approach, you can copy your files using File Transfer Protocol (FTP) or set up a backup plugin. Whatever strategy you use is fine as long as you have multiple backups and you create them often. For maximum security, we recommend keeping several duplicate backups in different locations. That way, even if you lose one, you’ll have a backup of your backup. That’s about as safe as you can get. If you’re a DreamPress user, then you’re in good hands! We back up your website automatically for you daily. Plus, thanks to a recent update you can now create backups on demand via your control panel, whenever you like. You can also restore your backups just as quickly, in case you encounter any of the situations we’ve described in this post. Always Be Prepared “Make a backup” is one of the most often heard pieces of advice when it comes to digital security. If you back up your site regularly, you’ll have a quick fix in case anything goes wrong. For example, having a backup can save you a lot of headaches if you have to perform troubleshooting or recover lost data. Do you have any questions about how to perform website backups? Join the DreamHost Community today, and let’s discuss! The post 10 Reasons It’s Important to Perform a Website Backup appeared first on Welcome to the Official DreamHost Blog.

Five Must-Have Tools For WordPress Theme Developers

Nexcess Blog -

The WordPress theme development scene is as vibrant as it ever has been. As WordPress and WooCommerce continue to grow in popularity, the market for themes grows too. Professional theme developers can build a business creating custom themes for clients or selling themes in the many theme marketplaces. And, even if you don’t want to… Continue reading →

How to Create Product Categories for Your Online Store

HostGator Blog -

The post How to Create Product Categories for Your Online Store appeared first on HostGator Blog. There are so many things to get excited about when you’re setting up an online store—your website design, your cool product videos, your social media marketing plans, your product categories. Yes, your product categories. What may seem at first glance like boring labels are a tool that can help you get found in searches and guide your customers through your site to buy what they’re looking for. Here’s how to make those labels work harder and smarter. 1. Create Categories that Make Sense for Your Customers Set up your categories based on how your customers shop. This seems obvious, but you’d be surprised. For example, if your store sells clothing for everyone, customers will expect your main categories to be women’s, men’s, and children’s clothing, each with subcategories like tops, pants, skirts, dresses, shoes, and outerwear. But if you have certain subcategories that your store sells a lot of, you can not only have them as subcategories, you can also elevate them to top-level categories of their own to boost visibility and help customers find those popular items faster. Here’s an example. Lands’ End sells clothing for women, men, and kids, along with home goods and bags, and all of those are top-level categories on its homepage navigation bar. Within the clothing categories, the brand has a solid reputation among its target market for swimwear and school uniforms. The site design could force customers to drill into the clothing categories to find those items, but it saves them time by including them as their own main categories in the nav bar. What if you’re selling something that’s a little harder to sort through? If you sell parts or supplies of any kind, you may have a lot more main categories and subcategories than the average clothing retailer—and that’s okay. Again, the key is to think like a customer as you group your items. Here are a couple of ways to do that. Online needlecraft supplier KnitPicks organizes its nav bar categories to match the way crafts shop. These customers go looking for yarn or needles or patterns or maybe a kit. All those main categories are above the fold. But sometimes yarn shoppers need yarn that’s a specific color, weight, or fiber content. Setting each of those variables up as subcategories would make the menus enormously long and not very useful. So, the site gives shoppers two options. Scroll down the homepage and click on the icon for the color, weight, or fiber they need. “See more” under the yarn tab and use the sidebar navigation tools. Dropdown filters for weight and fiber keep the other subcategory options visible above the fold. Another retailer with a lot of products takes a different approach. AutoZone categorizes its inventory by parts, accessories, tools, and other top-level categories that make sense for the DIY auto maintenance customer. But “auto parts” is a huge category on its own and could quickly become unnavigable. AutoZone has done something like Lands’ End. When customers mouse over “auto parts” they get a pop up subcategory menu that features the most popular subcategories (with their most popular subgroups) on one side and an alphabetized list of all the subcategories on the other side.   2. Use Keywords to Name Your Product Categories Once you’ve got a handle on how to set up your categories, name them with care. Use keyword research to see which terms people search for the most before you commit to anything. Why? You want your categories to appear higher in those searches. Knowing how many people each month search for, say, “handknit baby hats” versus “hand knit baby hats” can help you choose more popular category names. It almost goes without saying that category names are not the place to get wacky and creative. Naming your baby hat category “lids for tiny kids” is cute, but it won’t help customers or search engines find your store, and it won’t help you make sales.   3. Make Your Category Pages Pop Shoppers who are truly browsing through your store—like someone who’s buying a gift—and people who aren’t sure exactly what they need will appreciate it if your category pages include useful or fun information. Target, for example, creates an online browsing experience for its patio furniture category by segmenting its products into collections, followed by links to each subcategory—all enhanced with product photos. Meanwhile, REI includes “helpful advice and inspiration” on its camping and hiking product category page to help new outdoorspeople and gift shoppers decide what they need. If you include relevant keywords in your category page content, it can also help with your store’s SEO.   4. Be Consistent When You Categorize Your Products Category filters (to refine category results by color, size, or something else) help customers find what they want quickly, if you’re consistent about tagging every product in your store with the proper categories and attributes like color and size. Otherwise, when customers use category filters to search for a “women’s brown leather belt,” all your relevant products might not show up, and you might miss out on a sale. And if your store offers dozens or hundreds of women’s brown leather belts, add more filters (size, width, hardware color) to help shoppers narrow their results to a manageable list.     Analyze Your Product Categories for Success Featuring popular product subcategories is a great tactic if you know what they are. If your store is new, or if you regularly add new types of products, you may not know exactly what’s hot. You can (and should) regularly review your sales to see which categories are strong sellers. It’s also a good idea to set up Google Analytics to get insights about how your visitors move around your site. Are they following your category trees from homepage to product, or do they bail out halfway through? Are they using your elevated navigation tabs for popular subcategories? Do their clicks lead to conversions, or do they leave without buying anything? You can use all this data to refine your subcategories, decide which ones to make into top-level categories, and make other improvements. Ready to set up your store? Gator Website Builder helps you get started quickly and easily, with drag-and-drop site design tools, e-commerce functionality, analytics, and more than 200 mobile-friendly, customizable templates. Be sure to add an SSL certificate to protect your customers’ data, keep your site safe from attacks, and get better SEO. Find the post on the HostGator Blog

Which Intel Xeon Dedicated Server Should You Choose for Your Business?

Liquid Web Official Blog -

The industry is growing, your business is growing, and Liquid Web’s hardware offerings are changing to keep up. Liquid Web is happy to announce new offerings under our standard US Zone Dedicated packages featuring the Intel Xeon E3-1230 V6, Intel Xeon Silver 4108, and Intel Xeon Gold 6130, all coupled with fully integrated motherboards. Intel Xeon E3-1230 Dedicated Server The E3 line has been around for several years now and has continued to outrank the other processors in its class, both in performance and value. Even though this chipset is currently the smallest of Intel’s product offerings to boast hyperthreading, the performance is exceptional. Even with only four cores, the eight threads offer processing power to maintain great computational performance across your production environment. Intel also removed the integrated graphics unit from this product, unnecessary in a server environment, which allows us to keep the price point very competitive. The Intel Xeon E3-1230 V6 is an ideal offering for our clients with a business model focused on incoming traffic. The 1230 package, featuring 16GB of RAM and 2x 240GB of SSD storage, all coupled with the seamlessly integrated motherboard and processor combination, allows for enough processing power to handle high-traffic websites, small application processing, or multiple website platforms — which makes this package great for resellers. Intel Xeon Silver 4108 Dedicated Server The Intel Xeon Silver 4108 showcases a fully hyperthreaded, eight-core processor with 16 logical threads, which is perfect for database read/writes and application hosting or setups which require more processing than the average website. Coupling this processor with 32GB of RAM and 2x 480GB SSD drives makes this offering perfect for a reseller looking to maximize capacity across a single device. And, if the processing power wasn’t enough (thanks to the motherboard integration) the package can be ordered with dual sockets effectively leveraging two Xeon Silver 4108 processors simultaneously and doubling the processing capacity. Further, the 4108 sports Intel’s Turbo Boost technology, which dynamically increases processor capacity to the utmost of the immediate environmental tolerances. Intel Xeon Gold 6130 Dedicated Server Intel’s Xeon Gold 6130 offers all the benefits and perks of the 4108 and the 1230, including hyperthreading, Turbo Boost technology, a fully integrated motherboard with dual socket options, and a great price point; but the 6130 defaults to 16 cores, a total of 32 threads. This processor is the top-tier offering across the industry and packs a benchmark that blows away your standard packages in hosting. That type of processing power, along with two 480GB SSD drives and 32GB of RAM, makes this precisely what our clients need who focus on large databases, multi-user applications, and virtualization: speed, efficiency, and processing power strong enough to eliminate the necessity for multi-server modules and reduce complexity with many applications. As always, all our offerings come standard with 5/8/8TB bandwidth packages, respectively, and a backup disk to offer peace of mind in the case of a catastrophic event. Finally, all these offerings can be fully customized to match your personal management preference and can include matching off-site backups and our polished Server Protection and Malware Remediation products, keeping your server secure and running smoothly. To learn more about our new upgrades, visit: The post Which Intel Xeon Dedicated Server Should You Choose for Your Business? appeared first on Liquid Web.

How to Get the Most Out of Your Enterprise Health Cloud

The Rackspace Blog & Newsroom -

“Cloud-based data insights and digital experience creation will dictate which healthcare firms will thrive.” – Forrester Wave Report If you’re a healthcare CIO looking to implement patient-centric solutions, you likely know that means starting with a great digital experience. You’re not alone. Recent market data underscores just how important a patient-centric approach has become; interventional medical care is […] The post How to Get the Most Out of Your Enterprise Health Cloud appeared first on The Official Rackspace Blog.

How to Improve Your Pinterest Reach: 4 Tips

Social Media Examiner -

Has your Pinterest traffic dropped off? Wondering how to encourage more pinners to interact with your content? In this article, you’ll discover four tips to develop pins and boards that spark engagement from your audience on Pinterest. Pinterest Can Work for Your Business Many businesses struggle with how to successfully establish themselves on Pinterest, especially […] The post How to Improve Your Pinterest Reach: 4 Tips appeared first on Social Media Marketing | Social Media Examiner.

Helping To Build Cloudflare, Part 6: What does Cloudflare's CTO do?

CloudFlare Blog -

This is the final part of a six part series based on a talk I gave in Trento, Italy. To start from the beginning go here.If you are still awake there’s really one final question that you might want to know the answer to: What does the CTO do? The reality is that it means different things in different companies. But I can tell you a little about what I do.The longest temporary jobI didn’t join Cloudflare as CTO. My original job title was Programmer and for the first couple of years I did just that. I wrote a piece of technology called Railgun (a differential compression program used to speed up the connection between Cloudflare and origin web servers) and then I went on to write our WAF. After that I worked on our Go-based DNS server and other parts of the stack.At some point Lee Holloway decided he didn’t want to manage Cloudflare’s growing staff and Michelle Zatlyn (one of Cloudflare’s founders) asked me if I would ‘temporarily’ manage engineering. This is now the longest temporary job I’ve ever had!Initially a lot of what I did was manage the team and help interview people. But I was still writing code. But more and more what I did was encourage others to do stuff. One day a bright engineer I’d been working with on DNS told me that he thought he could ‘solve DDoS’ if he could be left alone to work on an idea he had.This was one of those situations where the engineer had shown they were very capable, and it was worth taking a risk. So, I said “OK” go do that, I’ll write the code you were meant to write, assign all your bugs to me. That turned out to be a good decision because he built our entire DDoS mitigation system (known internally as gatebot) which has fended off some of the largest DDoS attacks out there.Of course, like everything else Cloudflare does, things outgrow an individual and need a team. Today gatebot and DDoS in general is managed by a team of engineers in London and Austin and the original engineer has moved onto other things. So, encouraging people is an important part of the job.Slowly my temporary job got more and more things added to it. I was running Cloudflare’s IT department, SRE and technical operations, the network, infosec and engineering. Some temporary job. Slowly I got rid of some of those things. IT is now its own department as is infosec. Those things are far better run by other people than me!The challenge of managing a team split around the entire globe (I had staff in San Francisco, London and Singapore) meant that new leadership was needed and so I recruited a head of engineering and SRE/ops had its own leader. Today more than 250 people sit in my overall team.Along the way I stopped writing code and I did less and less day to day management as the leaders were able to do that. But something else became more important: things like this talk and sales.It's not enough to build, you have to sellRobert Metcalfe, who invented Ethernet while at Xerox PARC, said “I didn’t get rich by inventing Ethernet, I got rich by selling it”. This is an important point. It’s not enough to have good technology, you have to get people to hear about it and you have to sell it.One way Cloudflare markets is through our blog. You may not realize it, but we have a very, very strong brand because we write those super technical blog posts. They don’t look like marketing, but they are. And another way we market is by doing this sort of thing: going places and talking.But frequently, what I do is talk directly to customers. On Monday afternoon and evening, I was on two long video conferences with big potential customers in the US.  Yesterday, I was on a call about our partnership with IBM. This morning I did a call with a potential client in Germany before flying to Verona. So… one thing the CTO does is a lot of sales!NudgeOne thing I am not is the source of all technical wisdom in the company. I was once introduced by a law school friend of Matthew Prince’s as “the brain behind Cloudflare”. That’s so far from the truth. There are many jobs in engineering at Cloudflare that I am incapable of doing today without an enormous amount of learning. And teams are much stronger than individuals.I do, on occasion, use experience to push the company in a certain direction. Or simply encourage something that I think is the right technology (I did this with our adoption of Clickhouse as a column-oriented database, with Go and recently with Rust). With Rust I decided to learn the language myself and make a little project and put it on GitHub. That’s enough in my position to make people realize it’s OK to use Rust.FinallySo, in concluding here are some things to learn from my experience and the creation of Cloudflare. Be audacious, share widely, be open, work hard, spend a lot of time finding the right people and helping them, create teams, rewrite code, panic early! And above all, while doing this remain humble. Life comes at you fast, problems will arise, the wheel of karma spins around, you’ll need the help of others. Build something great and be humble about your creation.Helping to Build CloudflarePart 1: How I came to work herePart 2: The Most Difficult FortnightPart 3: Audacity, Diversity and ChangePart 4: Public EngagementPart 5: People: Finding, Nurturing and Learning to Let GoPart 6: What does Cloudflare's CTO do? (you are here)

Learn about AWS Services & Solutions – February 2019 AWS Online Tech Talks

Amazon Web Services Blog -

Join us this February to learn about AWS services and solutions. The AWS Online Tech Talks are live, online presentations that cover a broad range of topics at varying technical levels. These tech talks, led by AWS solutions architects and engineers, feature technical deep dives, live demonstrations, customer examples, and Q&A with AWS experts. Register Now! Note – All sessions are free and in Pacific Time. Tech talks this month: Application Integration February 20, 2019 | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT – Customer Showcase: Migration & Messaging for Mission Critical Apps with S&P Global Ratings – Learn how S&P Global Ratings meets the high availability and fault tolerance requirements of their mission critical applications using the Amazon MQ. AR/VR February 28, 2019 | 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM PT – Build AR/VR Apps with AWS: Creating a Multiplayer Game with Amazon Sumerian – Learn how to build real-world augmented reality, virtual reality and 3D applications with Amazon Sumerian. Blockchain February 18, 2019 | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT – Deep Dive on Amazon Managed Blockchain – Explore the components of blockchain technology, discuss use cases, and do a deep dive into capabilities, performance, and key innovations in Amazon Managed Blockchain. Compute February 25, 2019 | 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PT – What’s New in Amazon EC2 – Learn about the latest innovations in Amazon EC2, including new instances types, related technologies, and consumption options that help you optimize running your workloads for performance and cost. February 27, 2019 | 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM PT – Deploy and Scale Your First Cloud Application with Amazon Lightsail – Learn how to quickly deploy and scale your first multi-tier cloud application using Amazon Lightsail. Containers February 19, 2019 | 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PT – Securing Container Workloads on AWS Fargate – Explore the security controls and best practices for securing containers running on AWS Fargate. Data Lakes & Analytics February 18, 2019 | 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM PT – Amazon Redshift Tips & Tricks: Scaling Storage and Compute Resources – Learn about the tools and best practices Amazon Redshift customers can use to scale storage and compute resources on-demand and automatically to handle growing data volume and analytical demand. Databases February 18, 2019 | 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PT – Building Real-Time Applications with Redis – Learn about Amazon’s fully managed Redis service and how it makes it easier, simpler, and faster to build real-time applications. February 21, 2019 | 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM PT – – Introduction to Amazon DocumentDB (with MongoDB Compatibility) – Get an introduction to Amazon DocumentDB (with MongoDB compatibility), a fast, scalable, and highly available document database that makes it easy to run, manage & scale MongoDB-workloads. DevOps February 20, 2019 | 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM PT – Fireside Chat: DevOps at Amazon with Ken Exner, GM of AWS Developer Tools – Join our fireside chat with Ken Exner, GM of Developer Tools, to learn about Amazon’s DevOps transformation journey and latest practices and tools that support the current DevOps model. End-User Computing February 28, 2019 | 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PT – Enable Your Remote and Mobile Workforce with Amazon WorkLink – Learn about Amazon WorkLink, a new, fully-managed service that provides your employees secure, one-click access to internal corporate websites and web apps using their mobile phones. Enterprise & Hybrid February 26, 2019 | 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM PT – The Amazon S3 Storage Classes – For cloud ops professionals, by cloud ops professionals. Wallace and Orion will tackle your toughest AWS hybrid cloud operations questions in this live Office Hours tech talk. IoT February 26, 2019 | 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PT – Bring IoT and AI Together – Learn how to bring intelligence to your devices with the intersection of IoT and AI. Machine Learning February 19, 2019 | 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM PT – Getting Started with AWS DeepRacer – Learn about the basics of reinforcement learning, what’s under the hood and opportunities to get hands on with AWS DeepRacer and how to participate in the AWS DeepRacer League. February 20, 2019 | 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PT – Build and Train Reinforcement Models with Amazon SageMaker RL – Learn about Amazon SageMaker RL to use reinforcement learning and build intelligent applications for your businesses. February 21, 2019 | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT – Train ML Models Once, Run Anywhere in the Cloud & at the Edge with Amazon SageMaker Neo – Learn about Amazon SageMaker Neo where you can train ML models once and run them anywhere in the cloud and at the edge. February 28, 2019 | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT – Build your Machine Learning Datasets with Amazon SageMaker Ground Truth – Learn how customers are using Amazon SageMaker Ground Truth to build highly accurate training datasets for machine learning quickly and reduce data labeling costs by up to 70%. Migration February 27, 2019 | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT – Maximize the Benefits of Migrating to the Cloud – Learn how to group and rationalize applications and plan migration waves in order to realize the full set of benefits that cloud migration offers. Networking February 27, 2019 | 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM PT – Simplifying DNS for Hybrid Cloud with Route 53 Resolver – Learn how to enable DNS resolution in hybrid cloud environments using Amazon Route 53 Resolver. Productivity & Business Solutions February 26, 2019 | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT – Transform the Modern Contact Center Using Machine Learning and Analytics – Learn how to integrate Amazon Connect and AWS machine learning services, such Amazon Lex, Amazon Transcribe, and Amazon Comprehend, to quickly process and analyze thousands of customer conversations and gain valuable insights. Serverless February 19, 2019 | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT – Best Practices for Serverless Queue Processing – Learn the best practices of serverless queue processing, using Amazon SQS as an event source for AWS Lambda. Storage February 25, 2019 | 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT – Introducing AWS Backup: Automate and Centralize Data Protection in the AWS Cloud – Learn about this new, fully managed backup service that makes it easy to centralize and automate the backup of data across AWS services in the cloud as well as on-premises.

What is a Content Management System?

HostGator Blog -

The post What is a Content Management System? appeared first on HostGator Blog. To be a successful business owner, one of the important skills you need is the ability to identify the right tools that enable you to run your business effectively. For many businesses, that will include using a content management system (CMS).   What is a Content Management System? A web content management system is software expressly designed to help you create, edit, organize, and publish your content online. It provides an intuitive interface for editing your web pages that saves you from having to deal with coding directly, or call your developer each time you need to make an update. And it makes it easy to provide the right level of access to every person in your company that contributes or makes changes to the website. Within a CMS, you can store all the content you’ve already created and any media you want to include on your website. You can easily keep track of which content is published, which is scheduled, and which is in draft form. And many CMSs allow you to track changes to pieces of content, so you can see how versions differ and revert to an earlier one if needed. Does My Business Need a Content Management System? For small businesses, “need” might be too strong a word here, but most businesses will benefit from having a CMS. A CMS will particularly be useful for any business where: Anyone in charge of making updates to the website lacks coding skills. Whether you have a one-person business or over 100 employees, if anyone in a position to add content to the website or make tweaks to the pages already there isn’t skilled at coding, they’ll struggle to do their job without a CMS. And since small coding errors can sometimes bring down a whole site, you don’t want to take that risk. Multiple people have access to the site, each of them for different tasks. A CMS lets you set up accounts for the different people in your company that need some level of access to the website, but you can define what level of access they have with WordPress user roles to improve security. If you hire a blogger to write and publish blog posts, you don’t have to give them the ability to make changes to your home page. A CMS gives you control over who can change what, and helps you protect your website from accidental errors and malicious changes alike. You already have or plan to create a lot of content. If your business is doing a content marketing strategy, a CMS provides a centralized location for you to store and manage all the different pieces of content you have. Everyone involved in content creation, editing, and scheduling can easily access everything they need and keep track of its status. A good web content management system will make managing your website a lot easier—both for you and anyone else you employ to help out. And it will help you keep your content and web pages organized and looking the way you want them to.   How Much Do Content Management Systems Cost? As a business owner, it sometimes feels like you can’t go a whole day without hearing about some new product or service you need. You only have so much money to spend, so even if the argument is persuasive, learning that there’s one more product you should invest in is often dispiriting. So here’s the good news: almost all of the most popular content management systems are free. They have add-ons and plug-ins that cost more, if you want additional features. And in some cases, hiring a web developer or someone to help you get your CMS set up or get more out of it is worth it. But a good CMS in and of itself doesn’t have to cost you anything. Even with a CMS though, you will still need to invest in web hosting and register a domain name, if you haven’t already. And a CMS isn’t usually the best tool for doing web design—you’ll want a professional web designer or a good website builder for that part. But once you have those basics covered, a CMS enables you to maintain and update your website over time without any added cost.   What to Look for in a Content Management System Every business is different, so what your business will value most in a CMS depends on your particular goals and needs. Even so, there are a few main features most businesses will want to consider when deciding which CMS to go with. Look for a CMS that: Is within your budget. This may seem strange to mention when we just told you that most content management systems are free, but there are potential costs involved you need to consider. To start, a couple of CMS options that provide specialized features or functionality do have a price, so there’s a small chance your best option won’t be free. Secondly, even with free CMS tools, you’ll likely want to use some plugins or extensions to get the full functionality you need. So before you make a decision, research the cost of the additional tools you expect to invest in, so you get a more accurate picture of the full cost of your choice.   Is intuitive. Some content management systems are more user friendly for beginners than others. Sometimes that means a tradeoff: a CMS that’s harder to learn and work with could provide more options for customization, if you know what you’re doing. If you value ease of use over being able to realize a very specific vision, then you want to look for a CMS that you’ll be able to start using without having to spend a lot of time learning the ropes. Lets you define permissions and roles. If more than one person will be involved with updating the website, you want the power to control who has access and what kind of access they have. A CMS that makes it easy to set up other users and define their level of permissions reduces the risk of letting people into the backend of your website by making sure each one can only make the kinds of changes you’ve assigned. Makes it easy to apply proper formatting. Strong copywriting can improve your website tremendously. Generally speaking, good writing for the web includes using headings and formatting to organize your content for readability. Applying that formatting with HTML can be confusing, so a good CMS should provide easy options for doing so within its interface. Adding headings, italics, bolding, and list options should be a simple as clicking on a button. Helps you organize your content and media. The more web content you create, the more important it will be to have a good method for keeping it all organized. Consider if your CMS provides options for categorizing the content, blog posts,and media you upload, and easily finding the specific piece you need at the moment you need it. Provides support. Technology is complicated and you’ll inevitably hit up against questions or challenges when using your CMS. Choose an option that has plenty of online resources for helping you find the answers you need and/or customer support staff you can reach out to. Because the most popular content management systems have huge communities of users, you can usually find good support resources in spite of not paying for the software. Is compatible with your other software. If you already have software you use for things like e-commerce, website analytics, or customer relationship management (CRM), then you want to make sure your CMS will play nice with the tools you have. Provides on-site optimization features. You want people to find your website, so SEO should be a top priority. A CMS can simplify optimizing your web pages for SEO with features that allow you to customize page URLs, title tags, headings, and alt tags—all without having to touch the page’s code. Has an extensive library of plugins. The CMS will provide the basic functionality you need, but most businesses will want access to an array of different features that don’t come with the CMS itself. For that, you’ll need plugins or extensions. The most popular content management systems have huge libraries of plugins made by hundreds of developers that you can use to add functionality to your website. Offers security options. The flip side of choosing a CMS that’s popular is that it could become the target of hackers. But you can protect yourself from that risk by making sure the CMS provides basic security options such as two-factor authentication, security software and plugins, and regular updates to fix any security vulnerabilities they find. You may not need every one of these features, but consider which ones you’d like your CMS to have and how much of a priority each one is. Once you get set up with a CMS, it’s easier to stick with it than to switch to a new new one, so making the right decision to start will make your life a lot easier.   5 Most Popular Content Management Systems When starting your search for the right CMS for your business, there’s a good chance one of the most popular content management systems out there will satisfy your needs. Here are the main ones to check out.   1. WordPress Easily the most popular CMS, with well over half of the market share, WordPress is a great choice for many websites. There are endless benefits of WordPress as a content management system. Because of its popularity, there are loads of experts and developers working to provide a vast library of resources for the CMS. That includes over 50,000 popular WordPress plugins, thousands of themes to choose from, dozens of thorough WordPress blogs, and a huge community of users who can help with any questions you have. WordPress itself is free. Many of the plugins and themes will cost you, although often the cost is reasonable. And you can even find WordPress web hosting plans specifically designed to work well with this content management system. For lots of small businesses, WordPress will provide just what you need.   2. Joomla Joomla is one of the other most popular content management systems out there. While its community isn’t nearly as large as that of WordPress, it still boasts over 2 million sites and 1,400 volunteers who help keep the CMS running smoothly and improving over time. Joomla has a reputation for being a little harder to learn than WordPress, but it’s still pretty easy for beginners and advanced users alike. And they provide a comprehensive library of resources to help users learn how to get started with Joomla and get the most out of it. Like WordPress, Joomla is free, but you can invest in extensions that add functionality at a cost.   3. Drupal Drupal is the third most popular CMS option, with over 1 million websites using it. They have a reputation for being better suited for developers with some skill than for beginners, and for providing more options for customizing your site and powering more complex solutions. Like the others, Drupal itself is free, and there are many integrated modules you can use to customize your website that are also free. But since taking advantage of the CMS’s flexibility to do more with your website requires skill, you may need to spend money on a developer to get your site where you want it to be.   4. Magento Magento is a CMS that’s specifically designed for ecommerce websites. Magento has both a free open source version and paid versions that pack greater functionality. The free version includes ecommerce features like mobile shopping and integrated checkout, payment, and shipping functionality. The paid version includes additional analytics and marketing features. For ecommerce businesses, it’s worth looking into.   5. Blogger Blogger is a simple and straightforward CMS for anyone primarily interested in learning how to start a blog. It’s free and easy to use, but somewhat limited in its functionality in comparison to the other content management systems on this list. It’s not an open source CMS, which means there’s less flexibility and fewer plugins or other add-ons you can use to customize your website or add functionality. For simple websites, it can be a good enough choice. For many businesses, it won’t offer enough features for your needs.   Choosing a Content Management System for Your Website The easier it is to update your website, the more power you have to improve how well it works over time. The right CMS will put control of your website into your hands, without having to learn complicated programming languages. Determine which of these solutions makes the most sense for your business and get started. HostGator supports all of the most popular content management systems with our web hosting plans, including WordPress, Magento, Drupal, and Joomla. Find the post on the HostGator Blog

Free Webinars You Don’t Want to Miss in February

HostGator Blog -

The post Free Webinars You Don’t Want to Miss in February appeared first on HostGator Blog. The HostGator team is pleased to announce not one, but two, FREE webinars we’re hosting this month to help you get more out of your website and web hosting! Learn more and RSVP at the links below: February 13: Build Your Website with the Gator Website Builder! It’s now easier than ever to build a professionally-designed, reliable website without needing a ton of technical skills – thanks to the new Gator Website Builder from HostGator! Join us February 13th for a FREE webinar as the product team from demos the powerful new Gator Website Builder.It’s time to make your website dreams a reality. Register now. February 20: Live Demo: HostGator’s New Customer Portal The updated HostGator Customer Portal arrives March 2019, with an intuitive new look designed to make your life easier, so you can get back to focusing on what matters – creating great content for your website and managing your business. Join us February 20th for a FREE webinar where we’ll share an exclusive sneak peek and guided demo of the new customer portal. Register now. Find the post on the HostGator Blog

How Apple’s Simple Marketing is Successful

InMotion Hosting Blog -

It’s hard to believe, but Apple was once the underdog. Back in the day, they lived in the shadow of Microsoft, struggling to make a name for themselves. Luckily, Steve Jobs was a master of marketing. With his skill, the company was able to move up from the bottom of the pile to become the hundred-billion-dollar giant they are today. Now, marketing managers from industries across the board study Apple to figure out what makes them so successful. Continue reading How Apple’s Simple Marketing is Successful at The Official InMotion Hosting Blog.


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