VPS, Dedicated Servers, and Colocation. Which is right for me?

Oct 28th, 2013

For any shared hosting customer that has increased traffic, content, or customized control needs, they will eventually require something more than just shared hosting. Here are the primary options available:

Virtual Private Servers are machines partitioned to allow multiple concurrent instances- though not typically as much as shared hosting. This means that you can have a number of users on the same server, all with their own resources and software. The only limits to a Virtual Private Server are the hardware, the additional load, and security limitations established by the administrators.

Dedicated Servers are more user-involved. They are physical machines in data centers managed by a staff of admins to maintain your server integrity against hardware failure, loss of data, as well as general upkeep. It’s the workhorse of web hosting. More user-intensive than Virtual Private Servers, Dedicated Servers allow you the freedom of having complete control of your website's hosting environment; users should be aware that there is a learning curve.

And then there are Colocation Centers- It's the simplest of the three. You buy a server, manage all of the software and hardware, so it's similar to having a Dedicated Server. You're in charge of everything; but you rent space inside someone else’s data center, and the data center supplies all the power, security, and bandwidth for your server.

Not sure which is a good fit for you?

If you have spent some time with a website, and you have it pretty much handled, but need more elbow space, as well as specific features not offered with a shared hosting account, but still want someone else to do the heavy lifting (you're busy running a business and fighting intergalactic criminals, we understand), then a Virtual Private Server would be something for you to consider.

Are you looking for more horsepower than a Virtual Private Server, but don't want to have to go out and buy your own server? Dedicated Servers may be in your future. You manage everything, but don't have to worry about physically doing anything.

However, if you want more of a hands-on approach, then you should consider Colocation. It's similar to having a Dedicated server, but instead of only using what we select, you literally hand-pick every component yourself, along with your server's software and settings. In some cases, you can even select your own ISP (our speeds are blazing fast, by the way) if you want.

Virtual Private Servers, Dedicated Servers, and Colocation Centers, for all their differences, have one thing in common: logistics. They employ the same basic principles in regards to, security, cooling, and power. For those not in the know, you can't just lock a few hundred servers in a closet and walk away. You have to restrict access to the location to prevent unauthorized personnel from presenting a threat to the servers, monitor their temperature so their hardware doesn't fail (they can push out a LOT of heat), and ensuring that there are reliable power sources as well as redundant power in the event of a local power grid failure.

If you're considering upgrading from shared hosting, or if you want more options and control of your website, then you should start considering Virtual Private Servers, Dedicated Servers, and Colocation Centers.

Infographics can get People to Your Site!

Sep 17th, 2013

You want great content that will convey your message to your readers. But you also don’t want that message to be boring, so how do you do it? The answer lies within an infographic.

Infographics are just that – very large graphics that contain a ton of information. That information can be in the form of hard statistics, general information points, or comparison charts within the graphic itself. Of course these are just a few examples and really, any type of information that you think would be useful and pass on a lot of information to your readers. But why do they work so well?

One of the biggest reasons infographics work so well is because Internet readers today don’t want to sort through a lot of text to get the information they need. Truth be told, while the World Wide Web is the information highway, there’s too much out there for readers to want to sort through today. A lot of them are tired of reading pages and pages of tiny print, and just want to get the info they need in a very short amount of time. Infographics allow them to do that, and allow them to look at something fun and different at the same time.

Another, perhaps even bigger way infographics can get people to your site is when you use them to submit to press release publications. These publishers of press releases know how valuable infographics are, and so they’re happy to publish a press release of yours talking about the infographic you have up on your website or blog. That press release, while still all text, can be very short and to the point. All it has to say is that you have an infographic on the site, what the infographic covers, and where people can find it. That press release will then be published online in multiple places where thousands of people can find it; but they’ll only be directed to one place – your website or blog.

Infographics are really the best thing to happen to any website, and they’re fairly new which means that not everyone is using them just yet, and you can set your website apart by creating one for your site. Give your readers what they want without having to sort through tons of text and talk before they can get it. Provide them with an infographic full of information, and reap the benefits of having many continual visitors to your website.

Getting Visitors to Your Blog isn’t Easy; here’s how to do it!

Jul 16th, 2013

When you’re looking to get more visitors to your blog, there’s only one thing you need to focus on – the content. Content is not only what will attract people to your blog, but it’s what will keep them there once they land on it. And even if you think you’ve got the best content that can be found on the web right now, you might be surprised to find out that you’re making some big mistakes. Here’s how to get even more visitors to your blog, and how to write content that will keep them there.

Use Sub-Headings or Bullet Points
No one wants to look at pages and pages of text. The chances are that, whatever the theme of your blog is, your readers want to be able to scan the page for the points they’re looking for and move on (hopefully to another one of your great posts.) For this reason, get rid of all that heavy text and organize your thoughts by using sub-headings, bullet points, or both. Your readers will easily be able to scan through the content, and they’ll be more appreciative of it too.

Have Interesting Headlines
Sometimes you want to get straight to the point, and that’s okay; but it doesn’t mean that your headline has to be boring. If it is, readers might not bother to continue on to the content to find out just how great it is. Still make sure that the headline clearly states what the post is about, but inject some personality into it to make it a little more user-friendly and a little less boring. If it’s a really great headline you’re using, that alone could be enough to get people to check out your blog.

Comment, Comment, Comment
No, you don’t want to comment on your blog (unless of course, you’re replying to a comment from a user.) But you do want to check out other blogs on similar subjects and respond to their posts with intelligent, helpful comments. Maybe you have a finance blog and find someone else’s post about happenings in the stock market, and notice that they left out a vital piece of information. Make a comment and include that info. You’ll establish yourself as an authority, and other readers of that blog will take notice and might go to the real expert’s blog – yours.

Guest Post
Commenting on the posts of others is a great way to get your name out there, but what if those users could actually see your writing on the blogs of others? It’s possible, when you become a guest blogger for other sites. Contact the webmasters of those blogs and ask if you’d be able to write a guest post for them. You’ll be able to reach more readers, and they’ll get a link on your website that will also bring readers to their blog.

There are many ways to get visitors to your blog, and some of them don’t even involve working on your actual blog. But that’s sort of the point. You need to be able to get creative with it and find ways to send people straight to your blog, or bring them over from other blogs that they’re visiting.

How to Blog Better for you Website

May 21st, 2013

Blogging can be a great way to increase content for your website. Maybe you don’t have a blog yet and are thinking of starting one up. Or maybe you do already have a blog, but you’re just not getting the traffic yet to justify spending your time (and your money) on it. So how do you make a better blog than what’s already out there? Or how do you, as a blogger, blog better? By following these tips.

Have a Purpose
Even when you’re writing a personal blog about your daily life and activities, you should never go into a blog post not knowing what you want to write about. The blog in general should always have a very specific purpose, and each blog post should support that purpose. To do this, write yourself a mission statement that may or may not be posted onto the actual blog itself. Then when it comes time to write any blog post, check back with that mission statement and ensure that the post will support your mission statement and that the two make sense together.

Consistency is Key
We would all love it if we could just blog whenever we felt like it. But truth be told, unless running your blog is all you do, you won’t feel like it very often (and maybe not even then.) Because of that, you need to make sure you’re blogging every day or at least every other day – whether you want to or not. To help you do this, set aside a large portion of time to write several blog posts, publish one of them when you’re done, and then save the others as drafts. Depending on the software you’re using, you can either post-date them to publish automatically on specific days, or you can simply go into your blog and hit “Publish” when it’s time to get a new blog post up.

Make it Interesting to Look At
Sure, content may be king, but your readers will only get to that content if they like the first impression they get from your blog; and they get that from the design. Make sure, firstly, that the design of your blog conveys the type of business you’re trying to promote on your blog, and that visitors will get the concept as soon as they land on it. Then make sure the design is not stuffed with anything and everything you could find. This means cleaning up photos by putting them into a photo gallery, and that you don’t have large banners or tons of ads that will distract your visitors, and detract from the overall appearance.

Have great Content
With your design exactly the way you want it, you can then start to focus on your content. This means more than just getting it up on a regular basis, and making sure it keeps in theme with the idea of your blog. It also means being creative with your topics, and also being timely with your topics. After all, if you’re running a sports website you don’t want to recap a game an entire week after it happened. To help you with this, set up Google Alerts that will come right to your email and keep you in the loop about what’s happening; or visit blogs on similar topics and check the comments section. There you can see what people most want to know about, and then write content that will help them out with it.

Blogging better can seem like a difficult thing to do when you’re just starting out, or when it seems as though you’ve tried everything and just can’t seem to get visitors to your site. Use these tips and find just how much they can help you achieve your blogging goals!

Why Proper Keyword Research is Key

Apr 09th, 2013

If you’re simply publishing pages to your website or posts to your blog and not going any further than that, the chances are good that you’re not getting huge amounts of traffic to that content. Until now. Because after reading this post, you’ll realize the importance of using the proper keywords to help not only bring in traffic, but to bring in the right kind of traffic that will be noticed by even more visitors. So how do you perform proper keyword research? You have two main choices: you can either do it for free, or you can purchase a Google AdWords campaign that will do it for you.

The Google AdWords Way
If you don’t mind spending a few bucks on finding the best keywords for your website or your blog, then Google AdWords is the best way to do it. To start you have to set up a Google AdWords account, which involves using a Google or Gmail email address. Once your account is set up you can then log into your account and use the Keyword Tool you’ll find located in there. Within this tool you can type in any keywords that you’d like to know more about. For example, if you’re running an e-commerce site that sells baby products, you might want to learn more about the keywords “baby products,” “baby diapers,” “baby toys,” and “baby sleepers,” along with the many others you’re undoubtedly thinking about.

Once you’ve submitted these, Google will almost always suggest a better term, and you should use their suggestions. They are after all, the biggest search engine you’re trying to get results from, so it doesn’t hurt to see what they have to offer. Look over the suggestions and think about which keywords would most easily fit within your blog posts, remembering that you want the flow of keywords to be natural so they don’t seem like they’ve just been stuffed in there. You will be penalized for that by the search engines if they think that’s what’s happening. For those that you think would be a good fit, then check those off so Google AdWords can give you further results on them. Those results will tell you how often people search for them (both globally and locally) and if many people have purchased those keywords (which is actually more relevant for writing ads than it is for writing content.)

Remember that the keywords that are most often used or most often purchased aren’t necessarily the best keywords for you. Those keywords will also have the most competition, for both ads and search engine rankings, and so higher results could mean that you have to work even harder to get your site noticed. To ensure that you’re using the best ones, set up a test ad that will cost a few dollars, but will also tell you just how effective those keywords are. You can then use these for online ads, as well as your content.

The Free Way
This way is much simpler and it’s free, but it might not give you the detailed results you’re looking for. Simply type different keywords into Google and hit “Enter” after typing each one. Once the results have generated, look along the sides and the top of the page. Are there a lot of ads located here? If so, the chances are good that you’ve hit on a keyword that a lot of people search for and are using, which means there’s a good chance it will give you those good conversion rates you’re looking for.

The way you research your keywords is up to you. But remember that you have to be doing at least some kind of research on these highly important words if you want your blog to be able to compete among the rest.
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