Welcome to Big Moccasin Hosting .com

The open enrollment for websites on our personal server is now over.This is now a by invitation signup and you will have to find out ad where ever I post it to be able to sign up. All the other plans on other servers are still there.

I am now selling domain names and more. My prices are as competitive as the the big boys. Check them out in the Buy Cheap Domains and More  link at the top of the page.

If you do not like the hosting deals below I have many more that are with other major hosting companies but you will never get the personal touch from them. I know that personally. I have Servers, VPS, Multi-site, Single sites, Cloud hosting and more available at Big Moccasin Domains .com

Welcome to Big Moccasin Hosting .com.

We will be serving the Southwest Virginia and North East Tennessee area for all of their hosting needs.

Some of the features include cPanel, Softaculous, and Solid State Drives for storage which results in faster access times for visitors all on a Virtual Private Server.

There will only be a limited number of accounts so the service will remain fast. We think this hosting is so good that we will also be hosting our websites here.

Right now we are starting with two account types – a trial account for $1 a month and a basic plan for $5 per month.

Trial
Closed
Disk Quota (MB) 100
 
Monthly Bandwidth (MB) 500
 
Max FTP Accounts 1
 
Max Email Accounts 1
 
Max Email Lists 1
 
Max Databases 1
 
Max Sub Domains 1
 
Max Parked Domains 1
 
Max Addon Domains 1
 
Maximum Hourly Email by Domain Relayed 100
 
Maximum percentage of failed or deferred messages a domain may send per hour unlimited
 
Open enrollment is over. If you want to try this you will need to personally contact us.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Basic
$10 Per Month By Appointment
Open enrollment is over. Accounts are now by invitation only. If you are interested please email us at chrles_osborne@hotmail.com .Or watch for our ads.
 
Disk Quota (MB) 1000
 
Litespeed High Speed Server
 
Litespeed cache for Wordpress Websites
 
Monthly Bandwidth (MB) 1000
 
Max FTP Accounts 2
 
Max Email Accounts 1
 
Max Email Lists 1
 
Max Databases unlimited
 
Max Sub Domains 10
 
Max Parked Domains 5
 
Max Addon Domains 5
 
Maximum Hourly Email by Domain Relayed 500
 
Maximum percentage of failed or deferred messages a domain may send per hour unlimited
 
*This is just the base. Account size can be increased.

Top Plugins for Monetizing Your WordPress Site

Plugins are arguably one of the biggest benefits of using WordPress. These bits of modular code let WordPress users easily add new functionality to their sites, and with more than 50,000 free WordPress plugins to choose from the ecosystem of available plugins is massive.  There’s also a wide variety of use cases for plugins, including

The post Top Plugins for Monetizing Your WordPress Site appeared first on WP Engine.

Getting Ready for De{Code} 2020

Developers of all skill levels share a common trait—they’re always trying to get better at their craft and learn more. This is especially true in the WordPress community, where the open source values of collaboration, transparency, and ongoing education continue to make WordPress such a powerful tool for building amazing digital experiences. Those values were

The post Getting Ready for DeCode 2020 appeared first on WP Engine.

WindowsVPS.Host – VPS plans starting at $5.50 and Windows VPS Reseller Plans!

WindowsVPS.Host has contacted us with more offers specifically targeted for Lowendbox visitors with special discounts.
They have VPS offers starting at $5.50 a month and Windows VPS Reseller plans starting at $50 a month.
In their own words, about their packages:
“Our VPS Hosting packages are built on top of some serious hardware, with specs that deliver and give us the ability to dedicate your resources to you 100%. We don’t oversell, we don’t nickel and dime you over bandwidth, and we certainly don’t settle for average.”

Their WHOIS is public and you can find their ToS/Legal Docs here. They accept Paypal and Bitcoin as payment methods.

They have been featured on LEB before and if you decide to buy from them we are very interested in hearing your feedback/comments in the comments section below!

Here’s what they had to say about their company: 

“WindowsVPS.Host is set up with an aim to serve customers in an excellent manner by providing them quality service. We strongly believe in high quality standards and hence you’ll always find our services better than every other host in this industry. We understand the value of time and hence our ordering process is very simple. Customers can choose servers from multiple price levels to suit their budgets.”

Here are the offers: 

LEB-1

  • 2GB Dedicated RAM
  • 1x vCPU
  • 20GB SSD space
  • 3TB transfer
  • 1Gbps uplink
  • 1x IPv4
  • Hyper-V Virtualization
  • Licensed Windows Server
  • $5.50/month or $55/year
  • [ORDER HERE]

LEB-2

  • 4GB Dedicated RAM
  • 2x vCPU
  • 40GB SSD space
  • 5TB transfer
  • 1Gbps uplink
  • 1x IPv4
  • Hyper-V Virtualization
  • Licensed Windows Server
  • $9.50/month or $95/year
  • [ORDER HERE]

LEB-3

  • 8GB Dedicated RAM
  • 4x vCPU
  • 90GB SSD space
  • 5TB transfer
  • 1Gbps uplink
  • 1x IPv4
  • Hyper-V Virtualization
  • Licensed Windows Server
  • $15.00/month or $150/year
  • [ORDER HERE]

WINDOWS VPS RESELLER 1

  • Up to 5 VPS
  • 5 vCPU Cores
  • 10GB RAM
  • 100GB SSD STORAGE
  • Unmetered Transfer
  • 5 IPs
  • 1000mbit PORT
  • Windows license INCLUDED
  • VPS Control Panel for You & Your Customer
  • Fully white label VPS
  • $50/mo
  • [ORDER HERE]

WINDOWS VPS RESELLER 2

  • Up to 10 VPS
  • 10 vCPU Cores
  • 20GB RAM
  • 200GB SSD STORAGE
  • Unmetered Transfer
  • 10 IPs
  • 1000mbit PORT
  • Windows license INCLUDED
  • VPS Control Panel for You & Your Customer
  • Fully white label VPS
  • $80/mo
  • [ORDER HERE]

WINDOWS VPS RESELLER 3

  • Up to 25 VPS
  • 35 vCPU Cores
  • 54GB RAM
  • 600GB SSD STORAGE
  • Unmetered Transfer
  • 25 IPs
  • 1000mbit PORT
  • Windows license INCLUDED
  • VPS Control Panel for You & Your Customer
  • Fully white label VPS
  • $150/mo
  • [ORDER HERE]
NETWORK INFO:

Los Angeles, CA, USA

Test IPv4: 107.175.180.6

Test file: http://107.175.180.6/100MB.test

Kansas City, MO, USA

Test IPv4: 192.187.107.154

Test file: http://192.187.107.154/100MB-TEST.img


Host Node Specifications:

– 2x Intel Xeon E5

– 256GB RAM

– 4x 2TB SSDs

– Hardware RAID10

– 1Gbps uplink

Please let us know if you have any questions/comments and enjoy!

The post WindowsVPS.Host – VPS plans starting at $5.50 and Windows VPS Reseller Plans! appeared first on Low End Box.

Featured partner program expands to France with Be API

WordPress VIP has added Be API to our exclusive Featured Partner program. Be API (as in, don’t worry, Be API) is one of only 30 partners in this group, and the first partner agency in France.

Since its creation, the agency has been a pioneer in industrialized WordPress projects and worked hard to democratize the professional use of WordPress in France. As active core contributors, the Be API team has created several plugins (Simple Tags, Simple Image Sizes) and helped co-translate WordPress into French.

As developers, technical architects, DevOps, sysadmins, project managers, SEO consultants, web analysts, and UI and UX designers, Be API’s expertise is rooted in 4 key areas:

Strategy & Design: audits, personas, tests and UX/UI design
Development: WordPress themes & plugins, page builder & Gutenberg
Industrialization: architecture, cloud, devops & interoperability
Run: maintenance, performance monitoring & customer support

Our experience and our expertise in the WordPress ecosystem are unique in France and allow our customers to gain considerable time in their projects by making the right choices.

-Amaury Balmer, CEO of Be API

Be API is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year: since 2009, the agency has helped more than 200 clients and created more than 250 WordPress implementations. Over the last decade, the agency has created some of France’s most ambitious WordPress projects, such as site factories for BNP Paribas, a security-focused project for Dassault Aviation, and high traffic platforms with Free.fr.

Joining the WordPress VIP program allows the agency to offer a unique platform, meeting the most demanding business needs while maintaining strong agility and creativity.”

-Amaury Balmer, CEO of Be API

For more information about Be API’s partnership with WordPress VIP, please visit https://wpvip.com/partners/agency-partners/

The post Featured partner program expands to France with Be API appeared first on Enterprise WordPress hosting, support, and consulting – WordPress VIP.

The 30 Best Apps for Small Businesses in 2020

Mobile applications are changing the face of business. They’re becoming more prevalent and more powerful, and most importantly, they can help your business run more smoothly. Want to improve daily operations? Organize your ideas? Manage travel expenses? There’s literally an app for that.

As a small business owner, the more you can automate tasks, stay organized, and streamline your processes, the more efficient and productive your business will become. Thankfully, there are a ton of tools on the market to help — in addition to DreamHost’s managed hosting plans, of course.

Here are the 30 best apps for small businesses in 2020.

Cloud Computing Apps

Running a small business usually requires delegating tasks to several talented people — think designers, copywriters, project managers, your significant other. If you don’t have the right tools to keep everyone on the same page, it’s easy to miscommunicate. The following apps will help you share files, organize ideas, and stay up-to-date on your team’s to-do lists.

1. G Suite

G Suite lets you port files among PCs, tablets, and smartphones. The standard package comes with 30 GB of online storage per user with options to upgrade to unlimited. And it allows you to create docs, spreadsheets, presentations, drawings, and more.

Key Features:

  • Offers a popular set of intelligent business apps
  • Stops the need to use different apps for basic business functions
  • Provides professional and free business email

Price: Freemium

2. ShipStation

Best Small Business Apps DreamHost

If you sell and ship products online, you need a time-saving e-commerce solution to streamline your shipping. Cloud-based ShipStation is simple to use and allows you to process online orders, get order alerts, print shipping labels, track shipments, and more.

Key Features:

  • Works with most e-commerce platforms, including WooCommerce and Shopify
  • Streamline the order processing system to fit your business’s needs
  • Create custom shipping labels that show off your brand

Price: Plans start at $9 per month

Your Store Deserves WooCommerce Hosting

Sell anything, anywhere, anytime on the world’s biggest e-commerce platform.

3. SurveyMonkey

Small Business Apps DreamHost

Stop guessing what your customers want, and ask them yourself. With SurveyMonkey, you can create surveys to measure user engagement and get anonymous customer feedback on your products, pricing, website, and any unmet needs of your target market. Build simple or more complex surveys, and find tips on the SurveyMonkey website about question types and how to word them. Survey creation is collaborative, and results and reports can be viewed by different team members without sharing login information.

Key Features:

  • Create surveys from a template and brand with your own business colors and logos
  • Review survey results as they come in from any device
  • Send your surveys out into the world via your website, email, social media accounts, and more

Price: Freemium, with advanced packages starting at $32 per month (there are discounts for students and educators)

4. FreshBooks

Best Small Business Apps DreamHost

This cloud accounting software will make your invoicing (and more!) quick and simple. With FreshBooks, you can create and personalize invoices, and set up automatic billing. You can also track business expenses — and create a minute-by-minute record of how you spend your time for a real eye-opening accounting of your productivity.

Key Features:

  • Accessible from any and all of your screens
  • Accept credit cards on your mobile device
  • Converts estimates into invoices

Price: $15/month for five clients; Free Invoice Template downloads

5. Dropbox Business

Dropbox Business is a cloud computing app that allows you to sync files and folders across various platforms. The mobile app gives you access to all your files on the go and offers plans for really small businesses — we’re talking just three users.

Key Features:

  • Offers cloud storage of all important files
  • Prevents lost files
  • Provides flexible storage plans

Price: Starts at $12.50/month for 3 users

6. Microsoft OneDrive

Microsoft OneDrive allows cloud storage and file sharing through synced folders. You can view and edit OneDrive files from any smartphone or tablet with the OneDrive mobile app. Though it works for both Macs and PCs, additional services like settings backup and automatic photo upload are reserved for Windows 8 and Windows Phone users.

Key Features:

  • Offers convenient file sharing
  • Stops lost folders and files
  • Provides easy collaboration tools

Price: Starts at $5/month per user

7. Unifyle

Unifyle is a cloud storage management solution that pairs with other storage services like DropBox, SugarSync, Access Box, and more. It also organizes email from different providers, allowing you to view, send, and search across accounts.

Key Features:

  • Pairs with top-of-the-line apps
  • Stops security breaches
  • Provides virtual file management

Price: Free

8. Evernote

Evernote can help you capture and remember all the brilliant ideas you come up with while on the move. It’s available on multiple platforms and allows you to store your ideas by voice, text, or photo. You can search your notes by keywords and tags.

Key Features:

  • Offers quick Google sign-in
  • Stops you from losing your best ideas
  • Provides on-the-go note taking

Price: Free for basic plan; upgrade to a business account for $14.99 per month

9. DocuSign

DocuSign allows you to easily collect signatures online or via a mobile device. This is the perfect tool for collecting necessary information from clients and remote employees.

Key Features:

  • Offers rapid app development
  • Stops inconvenience of collecting signatures in person
  • Provides powerful integrations with Salesforce, Google, Microsoft, and more

Price: Starts at $10/month

10. Polaris Office

Polaris Office is a good mobile alternative to Apple’s iWork suite or Microsoft’s Office Suite for spreadsheets and docs. It allows you to read and edit docs via the mobile app.

Key Features:

  • Offers outstanding compatibility to view and edit all documents
  • Stops increase on costs related to purchasing an office suite
  • Provides mobile and desktop access

Price: Pro plans start at $5/month

11. SOS Online Backup

SOS Online Backup automatically backs up your files online and provides military-grade encryption.

Key Features:

  • Offers secure online backup
  • Stops loss of files
  • Provides 100 percent privacy

Price: Starting at $4.99/month

Cloud Computing apps truly are the way of the future when it comes to making sure your team has secure access to the right information.

Communication Apps

Whether you’ve got a team of part-time workers or remote freelancers,  it’s vital to have a way to stay connected. Here are some of the top tools to make virtual communication easy.

12. Slack

Slack is one of the most popular communication apps on the market. With Slack, you can create different communication channels, send group messages, and even break off into one-off meetings within a slack channel.

Key Features:

  • Offers easy communication between teams
  • Stops confusion among team members
  • Provides targeted channel communications

Price: Freemium

13. Fuze

Fuze is a great app for times when a simple chat isn’t enough. Fuze is a video conferencing tool that works across all platforms and devices. No matter where anyone is on your team, they can hop on Fuze and make it to your meeting on time.

Key Features:

  • Offers user training and materials
  • Stops remote employees from missing meetings
  • Provides “go-live” transition support

Price: Contact Fuze for more information

14. Skype

Skype group call

Skype is a trusty app for simplifying team communication. Skype allows you to chat with team members from any location. And since the app is so popular, you can rest assured that your team members and clients will know how to use it.

Key Features:

  • Offers trustworthy calling, chatting, and video conferencing
  • Stops loss of easy collaboration
  • Provides free calls to friends

Price: Freemium

Of course, you could just pick up the phone to sync with your team members and clients, but if you really want to stay connected, these platforms make it easy to build open communication right into your workflow.

Finance Apps

As a small business, the last thing you want to do come tax time is scramble around looking for crumpled receipts. Make sure you invest in one of the following finance apps. You’ll be glad you did come April 15.

15. Quickbooks

Best Small Business Apps DreamHost

Quickbooks connects to your business bank account, PayPal, and Square (plus thousands more) and uploads real-time data to help you keep tabs on your company’s financial well-being. You can even use it to track expenses and upload pictures of receipts from your phone — a definite boon when tax season rolls around.

Key Features:

  • View profit and loss reports
  • Track unpaid invoices
  • Pay employees

Price: Starts at $7/month for freelancer plan

16. Expensify

There are plenty of expense trackers out there, and Expensify is one of the simplest. It keeps track of expenses and mileage via multiple platforms. Receipts can be scanned and uploaded. Expenses can be submitted to employers by a click of a button. It can also read and import expenses from a linked bank account or credit card.

Key Features:

  • Offers top-notch integrations
  • Stops confusion at tax time
  • Provides help with expense tracking across several industries

Price: Contact Expensify for more information

17. Abukai Expense

With Abukai Expenses, you just snap a photo of your receipts with a smartphone, and the info gets entered into the tracking app’s interface. You can also take a photo of a map or itinerary to calculate and report mileage.

Key Features:

  • Offers easy record-keeping of receipts
  • Stops messy receipt tracking
  • Provides multiple expense tracking at one time

Price: Freemium

18. InDinero

InDinero syncs with bank accounts and credit cards to predict future cash flow based on current trends and past expenses.

Key Features:

  • Offers excellent bookkeeping services
  • Stops the need to invest big in bookkeepers
  • Provides tax services for small businesses

Price: Starts at $300/month

19. Time Doctor

This time tracking app records billable hours, workers’ time on the clock and on projects. The app estimates that it can increase your workplace productivity by 22 percent.

Key Features:

  • Offers screenshot monitoring
  • Stops payroll confusions
  • Provides powerful reporting tools

Price: $10/user per month

If it’s your goal to get your finances in order before Uncle Sam comes calling next April, these apps can help.

Travel and On-the-Go Networking Apps

As a small business owner, chances are you find yourself on the road (or up in the air) more often than you imagined when you first started your business. Travel is expensive, and it can be difficult to stay on top of all the details. Unless you have the right apps to help you, that is.

20. TripIt

TripIt allows travelers to keep business trip arrangements, itineraries, and information together all in one location, including meeting times and flights details. It also corrals weather forecasts, maps, and directions.

Key Features:

  • Offers a master itinerary for every trip
  • Stops travel hiccups
  • Provides access plans from anywhere on any device

Price: Freemium

21. Inigo

No more carrying stacks of business cards. Inigo is a networking app that allows you to create and share a virtual business card by tapping your smartphone with someone else’s.

Key Features:

  • Offers easy sharing of business cards
  • Stops business cards from getting lost
  • Provides a real-time networking solution

Price: Freemium

When it comes to business travel and networking on-the-go, you can either fly by the seat of your pants or download these apps. We know which option we’d prefer.

Operations Apps

Do you find you need help with daily business operations? You’ll be happy to know there are several apps on the market to help automate your processes and stay organized.

22. Upward

Upward app for hiring

As a small business owner, you’ve got your hands full with a long to-do list — and Upward sets out to make one of those tasks less painless: hiring. Whether your hiring needs are constant or sporadic, this app makes it quick and easy to post job listings, sort through applicants, and save and search resumes.

Key Features:

  • Post your listings on 100+ job platforms with a single click
  • Communicate directly with applicants via Upward’s messaging platform
  • Manage and rate candidates all in one place

Price: Starts at $50/job listing

23. Vivial

Vivial is a business marketing app. Vivial allows users to build online branding through social media, websites, local directories, and email newsletters. The service also automatically updates the Google Places listings for brick-and-mortar business users.

Key Features:

Price: Contact Vivial for more information

24. Asana

Asana is a collaborative information manager that’s way easier to use than the standard — and more complex — project management tool. It allows users to manage both work and personal projects in one intuitive interface.

Key Features:

  • Offers easy collaboration
  • Stops miscommunication on task due dates
  • Provides project management tools

Price: Freemium

25. Square

Square allows businesses to take credit card payments through mobile devices and charges no start-up or monthly fees. Instead, it simply takes a percentage of each transaction.

Key Features:

  • Offers credit card processing from anywhere
  • Stops the need for cash-only
  • Provides free card reader

Price: Starts at 2.6% + 10¢ per transaction

26. LogMeIn Pro

LogMeIn Pro is an Android app that allows you to log in remotely to perform administrative functions on other PCs. There’s also a Mac version: LogMeIn for iOS.

Key Features:

  • Offers 1 TB file storage
  • Stops loss of administrative functions
  • Provides remote printing

Price: $30/month for two computers

27. KoolSpan TrustCall

KoolSpan TrustCall is a smartphone app that encrypts phone calls and text messages without the need to buy custom devices.

Key Features:

  • Offers encrypted phone calls
  • Stops security breaches
  • Provides encrypted messaging

Price: Contact KoolSpan for more information

28. Podium

Podium is a marketing tool that can help you collect online reviews and testimonials through text messaging. After all, the more people who are talking positively about your business, the more customers will come your way.

Key Features:

  • Offers easy Google review collection tool
  • Stops disruptions in review collection methods
  • Provides access to leaving reviews through text messaging

Price: Contact Podium for more information

Don’t let your operations slip through the cracks. Instead, invest in the right tools to keep your business on the track.

Email Apps

Email marketing yields the highest return on investment of any other marketing effort. In fact, some reports indicate a $44 return for every $1 spent on email marketing. As such, it’s important to make sure you have the right tools for the job.

29. Campaign Monitor

Campaign Monitor is an email marketing tool that will help you build your subscriber list, create beautiful email templates, and automate your marketing messages. Campaign Monitor also integrates with other business software like SalesForce and GetFeedback.

Key Features:

  • Offers email automation
  • Stops gaps in data collection with excellent reporting
  • Provides proven template design

Price: Freemium

30. MailChimp

MailChimp is similar to Campaign Monitor in that it helps you easily boost your subscriber list, send out messages, automate your email campaigns, and create beautiful newsletters. MailChimp also has excellent e-commerce platform integrations like Shopify, WooCommerce, Magento, and more.

Key Features:

  • Offers drag-and-drop email building
  • Stops companies from losing touch with subscribers
  • Provides email marketing automation

Price: Freemium

If your email marketing game is tired, use one of these apps to start growing your subscriber list with a regular newsletter.

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Join our monthly newsletter for tips and tricks to build your dream website!

The Ultimate Small-Biz Helper

As you invest in products that will help you operate your business more effectively, don’t forget our DreamPress plans, fully-managed WordPress hosting solutions that will keep your website running with a 100% uptime guarantee.

The post The 30 Best Apps for Small Businesses in 2020 appeared first on Website Guides, Tips and Knowledge.

Performance at Scale: How We Improved for You in 2019

Performance is a product that’s never finished at WP Engine, and in 2019, we focused on this mantra with increased intensity. Throughout the year, we made numerous improvements to the backend software of our platform, which speeds up response-time for any page that isn’t already fully cached. This gives our customers the best platform for

The post Performance at Scale: How We Improved for You in 2019 appeared first on WP Engine.

Getting Ready for Web Week 2019

Are you ready for 2020? More importantly, is your website?  While the holiday season is a good time to reflect on the year that’s passed and plan for the year ahead, it’s also a great opportunity to make needed changes to your website and try out new ideas that will set you up for success

The post Getting Ready for Web Week 2019 appeared first on WP Engine.

Want to Build a Website in 2020? Here’s Your Game Plan

Feeling committed to making this year better than the last? You’ve probably got your personal goals all set for the new year: read more books, call your mom, eat less pizza, walk off that holiday pie.

How’s this for a New Year’s Resolution: Build a successful website from the ground up. Sounds like a lofty goal, but trust us, kid — you’ve got the makings of a champion.

via GIPHY

Building an online presence is like running a marathon. Those exhausting 26.2 miles require long-time endurance built over months of training. Marathoners train one step at a time and complete one mile at a time.

This guide is your training plan. 

As your trusty web host and coach, we’re here to keep you on track as you build, grow, secure, and promote your new site. We’ve broken this website workout plan into goals and tasks to complete each quarter throughout 2020, but feel free to work at your own pace. You do the sweating, and we’ll be right beside you with step-by-step instructions, water cups, and cheese-tastic motivational signs.
  1. Build Your Website 
  2. Grow Your Website
  3. Secure Your Website
  4. Promote Your Website

Sound good? Then tie up your Nikes, pull on your gym shorts, and let’s get to work.

First Quarter: Build Your Website

Step 1: Decide on Your Mission

Ready to race right off the starting block into building your website? We love the enthusiasm. But before even reaching the starting line, you need to get in some warm-ups and conditioning to establish a solid foundation. Every good website begins with a thoughtful plan. Open a fresh new digital doc (or grab a pen and paper if you’d prefer to go old school) and complete the following exercises.

Find Your Purpose

Why do you want a website in the first place? What do you hope it will accomplish? Ask yourself, “What is the purpose of this website?”

The possibilities are endless — but you need to spell out what you want and who your target audience is. Write down what you decide; you’ll use this purpose to guide everything else you do this year.

Set Goals

Time to dive deeper into the reflecting and set some specific goals for your website. Grab your pen (or ready your typing fingers) and, below your website’s purpose, jot down a few goals. There are lots of options.

  • Site revenue
  • Site Traffic
  • More customers in your physical store
  • More followers on social media platforms
  • Number of business contacts or leads from your site

These goals should accomplish your website’s purpose and drive the rest of your plans.

Don’t lose sight of your finish line — and don’t be afraid to adjust your goals over the coming months.

Outline Your Content

You probably shouldn’t bake a cake without a recipe. Likewise, you can’t build your website until you know what components you need to make it a success. So go ahead and outline your content to make sure you hit your goals. Consider these components:

  • Start with your website’s menu. What should its offerings include? And in what order? Rank what’s most important to you — and your goals — at the top.
  • Do you want to include a blog? This will be helpful for search engine optimization (SEO) — more on that in a minute — encourage engagement and community, build your reputation,  and establish you as an expert. If the blog is the cornerstone of your site, take some time to outline (or, for overachievers, write) your first few posts and plan some topics you might write about over the next year.
  • The “About Me” page is your place to tell your story and describe your business. Don’t skip out on this chance to connect with your customers.
  • Do you need a spot to describe the products or services you’re selling, either online or in your physical store? If your objective is to drum up business directly from the web page, this is essential. Think about categories and subcategories of products, and consider how you might describe or sell them to your website visitors.
  • What is included on the homepage? Your contact information? Maybe, although that could easily be its own page. A memorable photo? Definitely. Another homepage must-have? A call to action (CTA). Your CTA should invite visitors to do something: check out your offerings, sign up for your newsletter, or delve into your blog.

Step 2: Choose a Domain and Platform

Ready. Get set. We are inching closer to launching your website, but before we can get going, it first needs a name and a place to live.

Pick a Domain Name

Basically, a domain is what you type into the bar at the top of your browser to point to a specific website. For example, to find us a DreamHost, you type in dreamhost.com. A domain consists of two parts:

  1. The top-level domain (TLD) — In dreamhost.com, the “.com” part is our TLD. The more common TLDs include .com, .net, .org, .info. You can even choose something jazzier, like one of the new TLDs: .party, .site, .pizza, .limo, .store, and more. At least for now, though, .com is still the most common TLD.
  2. The second-level domain (SLD) — In our domain name, that’s “dreamhost.” This is the keyword that will serve as the address for your website. Make sure it is specific, descriptive, and memorable so that customers can easily find and remember it.

Jot down a dream domain and see if it is available for purchase. If you can’t find (or afford) your first-choice domain name, we’ll help you find other great options.

Pick a Hosting Plan

If your domain name is your website’s address, hosting is the physical space (spoiler: a server) where your website lives. The hosting plan you choose for your website will impact many things — like how fast your site loads and what kind of maintenance you have to do.

DreamHost offers several great options to cover a variety of web hosting needs (not that we are biased about this at all, ahem).

For beginners, we recommend shared hosting. It is affordable, fast, and meets the needs of any basic website (and includes a free domain registration!). You can always upgrade as your website grows.

Shared Hosting That Powers Your Purpose

We make sure your website is fast, secure and always up so your visitors trust you. Plans start at $2.59/mo.

Choose a Platform

To build your website, you’ll need to pick a platform — and there’s no content management system (CMS) better, in our opinion, than WordPress. And 75 million websites agree with us. Like any powerful tool, there is a learning curve to WordPress, but the open-source software is free to use and pretty beginner-friendly.

Step 3: Design and Launch

OK — with a set of goals, a content outline, a domain, web hosting, and a platform picked for your new website, it is finally time to get building!

Build Your WordPress Website

Head over to DreamHost’s WordPress hosting page, pick the plan that’s right for you, install WordPress, configure your settings, and start building your website. Pull out the list of goals and content outline you made in step one, and use it to guide you in choosing a theme that matches your brand.

Learn About Web Design Trends and Best Practices

No, you don’t need to become an expert overnight. And never fear: those WordPress themes we just mentioned are beautiful and will save you from major design blunders. But here are a few basic pointers to keep in mind as you get started in designing your site.

    1. Keep things quick and straightforward — From homepage copy to navigation options, think short and sweet.
    2. Don’t fear the blank space — Don’t feel the need to fill every nook and cranny; elegant emptiness can go a long way.
    3. Keep your menu front and center — Keep it easy to find or risk losing visitors.
    4. Mind your typographyWhat you say matters as much as how you say it — and what it looks like.
    5. Pick a color scheme that matches your brand — Color communicates, so pick ones that fit the ethos of your website.
    6. Make it accessible — Expand your audience by making sure your website is usable by everyone, including individuals with disabilities.
    7. Use templates — When you sign up for a DreamHost plan, you’ll have the option to include WP Website Builder with your account. This tool makes it easy to use customizable and professional templates to design a beautiful, fully functional WordPress website. To prove just how versatile this tool is, we put together a tutorial series that demonstrates how you can use WP Website Builder templates to start fitness blogs, food blogs, photography blogs, real estate websites, and restaurant sites (to name a few)!

If you lack the skills (or time to learn the skills) to design a website — and have some wiggle room in your budget — consider hiring a professional designer to help you customize your site’s look.

Launch!

Go ahead. Send your website out into the world. Take a quick victory lap — you’ve earned it! But don’t lose your momentum; the work has only started.

Second Quarter: Grow Your Website

So now you have a website. Yay!

Time to beef it up with some strength training. That’s right. Once your site is up and running, turn your attention to attracting more visitors and bringing in some income.

Step 4: Monetize Your Site

Ready to bring in the big bucks with a blog or online store? Let’s get you set up.

  • Review your offerings — Take a look at the products and services you are selling. Is there anything else you can add, especially to entice back past customers? Have you thought about adding an online course or premium for-pay content to your blog?
  • Add some ads — Include a bit of subtle, tasteful advertising on your WordPress blog to bring in some additional revenue.

  • Affiliate marketing — Incorporating affiliate links on your blog or website is another way to add to your revenue stream. Basically, you’ll promote another brand’s product and provide links to their site. If your readers click and make a purchase, you’ll get a cut of the sale in thanks for your referral.
  • Investigate e-commerce solutions — How are you planning to sell and accept payment on your website? You’ll need to get that squared away before promoting your online store. If you’re using WordPress, we recommend Woocommerce (so much so, that we’ve even got hosting just for Woocommerce users). Study up on the world of e-commerce and pick an online payment gateway (watch out for sneaky transaction fees).

Step 5: Adopt SEO Best Practices

Once your site is built and prepped to be monetized, you are ready to reel in the traffic with SEO.

SEO is a group of strategies website owners can (and should!) use to appear closer to the top of the results on search engines.

Think about it: when you search for something on Google, you probably only scan the first few entries before clicking — and so will your clients. Since Google bases its results ranking on a variety of factors, it’s essential to do the following:

  • Brainstorm keywords relevant to your site — What search phrases do you think (or hope) would most likely lead readers to your website? Use Google’s Keyword Planner to research and discover new keywords.
  • Optimize your blog posts — Plan content around these keywords and make sure to use them in your posts and headings — but be careful and creative with your placement to avoid creating content that sounds forced. If you need help getting started, check out these SEO tools.
  • Keep it fresh — Regular updates and new content will give you a search-ranking boost. But don’t be afraid to freshen up and repurpose old content.
  • Create a sitemap — Sitemaps, which are basically a hierarchical list of all the pages and content on your site, help Google’s search engine crawlers see and connect the pages on your site, making it easier to present relevant information in search results.

Step 6: Take Care of the Details

Now that your site has been up and running for a while, it’s time for some spring cleaning. Let’s make sure your website is up to par and easy to access for all your potential customers.

Clean and Polish

Start with a few routine upkeep tasks, and set reminders to do them again in another six months:

  • Check for broken links.
  • Review and edit website copy and high-traffic blog posts.
  • Update contact information and your “About Me” section.
  • Test functionality of forms and checkout.
  • Think about your user experience. How can you make it better?
  • Review your hosting plan — are you ready for an upgrade?

Go Mobile

Take a look at how your site looks on the small screen. If your website isn’t optimized for mobile — that is, if it doesn’t look as good and load as fast on mobile devices as it does on a computer — you’re missing out. Responsive design matters in 2020.

Many potential customers use phones or tablets in place of a home computer, and some shop on the go. Plus, your Google search rankings could hurt if your website isn’t mobile-friendly. Pull your website up on your smartphone, and make any necessary changes.

Review Your Traffic

If you haven’t already, install Google Analytics onto your WordPress website. Google Analytics is a plugin that tracks and analyzes key data about your website, including:

  • Page views — At a glance, this stat will reveal your most popular pages and posts in the past day, month, and year.
  • Unique visitors — Using IP addresses, Google Analytics will track how many unique visitors your site attracts.
  • Bounce rate — Sometimes visitors will click away from your site after viewing only one page; this stat will let you know how often that dreaded “bounce” happens.
  • Session duration — When someone visits your site, how long do they stick around? Check this number for the answer.
  • Traffic source — You might suddenly see an increase in traffic to a particular page, and Google Analytics will help you pinpoint what link is sending the visitors.

Studying these statistics will help you find changes to make to draw more visitors and encourage them to stay longer (and hopefully make a purchase).

Third Quarter: Secure Your Website

Time to work on endurance: You want your website to stick around for the long haul. Now it’s time to beef up your security practices and protect your data.

Step 7: Tighten Website Security

When it comes to security, you can rest easy at night: you’re already on the right track to keeping your information and customer’s data safe with WordPress and DreamHost. But there are a few additional steps you can take to tighten up security.

  • Switch to HTTPS — The “S” in HTTPS stands for “secure,” and it is (surprise) the more secure version of HTTP, encrypting your data as it is transferred from your website to a user’s browser. Add that all-important “S” by getting an SSL/TLS certificate (offered for free with all DreamHost hosting plans).
  • Enable a firewall — You probably have a firewall on your computer, protecting you from unwanted attacks. And, if you’re one of our customers, lucky you: DreamHost includes a built-in Web Application Firewall (WAF) to offer your website similar protection.
  • Use two-factor authentication — This will require you to sign in to your site with a code that’s first sent to your mobile phone. While it can be a bit of a hassle on your end, this step goes a long way in keeping your site secure. Use a WordPress plugin like Two-Factor Authentication.
  • Add an SSL security certificate — At DreamHost, we want you and your website’s users to feel confident about their data and financial transactions. We also want you to be able to focus on building your website’s following — that’s why we offer SSL/TLS certificates free with all of our hosting plans!
  • Backup your site — Hackers gonna hack. Even with all your efforts to secure your site, security breaches and other disasters are still a possibility. So make sure to regularly backup your website. That way, if the unthinkable happens, you won’t lose all of your digital property.
  • Scan for malware — Hackers can really mess things up for your website by installing malware, which can mess with the code and steal secure data. Scan your site regularly to make sure it’s clean. DreamHost customers can sign up for DreamShield, an add-on that will automatically scan your site for malware.
  • Pick a strong password — Don’t make it easy for just anyone to walk into your digital front door; choose a password that is long, uncommon, and used only for your website.

Step 8: Speed Things Up

Nothing is more of a drag than a sluggish website. Keep your website up to speed by:

  • Installing a caching plugin for faster load times — The “cache” is where your computer stores recently used information, such as the files of a recently visited website. A caching WordPress plugin pulls data from the local cache instead of reloading it fully every time, thus speeding things up.
  • Optimizing your images — High-res photos can take an extra-long hot second to load, but there’s no need to sacrifice quality.
  • Testing your speed — Even if it seems like your page is loading normally, get in the habit of regularly testing your speed. Simply type your URL into Google’s PageSpeed insights for a quick analysis and tips to get a faster score.

Step 9: Prepare for Trolls

By the time you’ve reached this step, you’ve probably got fans. But as your site builds a community, it will also attract some of the slimier creatures lurking in the anonymity of the web: spammers, trolls, and cruel commentators. Keep these thoughts in mind as you deal with the underbelly of the web:

  • Don’t feed the trolls — This is rule No. 1 when it comes to trolls. Don’t engage; it will just feed the fire.
  • Understand the difference between trolling and disagreement — Not everyone who disagrees with you is a troll; usually, they are legitimate readers with a different viewpoint. Feel free to defend yourself and your arguments, and be open to changing your mind — and reminding aggressive commenters to play nice.
  • Establish a commenting policy — Spell out for your readers how you expect them to behave, what the consequences are for violations, and make clear that trolls are not invited to the party.
  • Block or delete — If a trolling post gets too out of hand, don’t be afraid to step in and shut it down.

Fourth Quarter: Promote Your Website

Congratulations! You’re officially three-quarters of the way through this marathon [splashes water on face]. Don’t lose that momentum; continue strong and steady to the finish line. Think of all the orange slices awaiting you. To get there, your next task is promotion.

Step 10: Advertise

You’ve got a great thing going, and it’s time to tell the world. Advertising, even for the beginner website owner, is a no-brainer that can be simple, effective, and affordable. Try your hand at two basic types of targeted advertising:

Pay-Per-Click Advertising

A good SEO strategy will organically move you to the top of the search results. With Pay-Per-Click (PPC) ads, you’ll take matters more into your own hands by paying to land atop the search engine result pages (SERPs). The best part? You only have to pay for premium placement if someone clicks on your link. You choose the keywords you want to bring up your ad, and you can set and limit your own budget.

Social Media Advertising

Facebook is a well-oiled, data-collecting machine, and you can use its power to target advertising directly to your ideal audience. You can create a Facebook ad that reaches users based on specific info such as age, gender, interests, etc. As with Google Adwords, you’ll set a budget and pay for clicks. Get on Instagram and leverage your feed and stories for some great free advertising for your brand. Follow this guide to narrow down which social media platform you should use for your business.

Step 11: Market with Email

Email is one of the best tools your e-commerce site has for finding new customers, bringing back previous ones, and maintaining relationships.

Learn the Basics

Study up on email marketing, a tried-and-true marketing method that involves collecting email addresses as a way to share content and build relationships with current and potential customers.

Collect Email Addresses

You can’t send any mail if you don’t know where it’s going. But don’t be spammy and shady about it; create opt-in forms directly on your site inviting visitors to subscribe. Try offering something in exchange for an email address, such as a discount off a first purchase or access to a free ebook.

Create an Email Newsletter

Email newsletters remain one of the best ways to connect with your customers, so create one and make it the center of your email marketing strategy. Use it as a way to showcase your voice and your brand, share news and upcoming events for your business, and introduce new products (but don’t be too pushy). Send it out regularly, loaded with fresh content, and then solicit feedback.

Be Awesome on the Internet

Join our monthly newsletter for tips and tricks to build your dream website!

Bring Your Customers Back

Beyond a newsletter, what other types of emails will engage your customers? Always send purchase receipts and make sure to welcome new subscribers. Consider reaching out to past customers to announce sales, share discounts, and invite them back to the fold.

Step 12: Get Creative

Now that you’ve covered your bases with advertising and email marketing, dig deeper and get a little creative in extending your website’s reach. Try out these promotion ideas:

You’ve made it to the finish line! You’ve worked hard, and your website is certainly one to be proud of. Now, hit the showers, champ.

And if you haven’t launched your site yet, we’re here for you. Start off on the right foot with DreamHost’s shared hosting plan. It’s the most affordable way to make all your website dreams come true — seriously, plans start at just $2.59/month — without sacrificing quality and performance. Create your website today!

The post Want to Build a Website in 2020? Here’s Your Game Plan appeared first on Website Guides, Tips and Knowledge.

The platform of record for USA TODAY’s Sports Media Group

The USA TODAY Sports Media Group’s portfolio was splintered across sites, brands, and platforms. So WordPress VIP helped build a common framework for all of its sites. Now, the Sports Media Group can optimize their content delivery without the headache of DevOps.

“By  moving to WordPress VIP, we were able to not worry about downtime… Things like security we no longer have to think about. So this allows our team to focus on building awesome stuff.”

— David Parsons, Software engineer, USA TODAY

To learn more about our work with USA TODAY, including detailed results, download the executive summary.

This post is part of a series providing executive summaries of WordPress VIP case studies. For a complete list of these executive summaries, click here

The post The platform of record for USA TODAY’s Sports Media Group appeared first on Enterprise WordPress hosting, support, and consulting – WordPress VIP.

A “Movember” Focus on Men’s Health at WP Engine

If you felt like you saw an influx of mustaches throughout the month of  November, you weren’t going crazy—chances are it had something to do with Movember. Founded in 2003, Movember is an annual fundraiser that encourages men to “change the face of men’s health” by ditching their razors for 30 days to raise money

The post A “Movember” Focus on Men’s Health at WP Engine appeared first on WP Engine.


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