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How to improve your Website Marketing?

No matter what kind of company you run, make sure your advertising and website marketing is on point. This is particularly the case if you run a roofing company; competition is strife and there are a lot of other businesses running campaigns out there to try and attract new customers. Now, there are a lot of ways to advertise but the best ways are usually online- everyone uses the internet and if you can appeal to people out there, you’ll be well on the way to getting as many on board as possible. However, getting seen on the internet isn’t an easy process. There are a lot of other websites competing for top spots and that’s why you need to make sure your marketing and tactics are on point, but how do you do this? That’s why I’m here- here are the best ways to improve your website marketing if you’re a roofing company.

Go for Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

The first thing I’d recommend doing is working on your search engine optimization. SEO is one of the most important things when it comes to getting your website higher up on the search results lists and it more or less involves improving certain things to do with your site- working on keywords, making it more in line with search engine algorithms and other things like that. You could do this yourself and there are a lot of people out there who do it on their own for their own companies.

However, I believe that hiring an SEO company could be a worthwhile option for you as well. By doing this, you’re putting your SEO in the hands of professionals who will really know what they’re doing. They know all the tricks of the trade and by simply paying them a required fee, you’ll be in really good hands. There are a lot of good SEO companies for roofers out there but if you want to check out an example, go and have a look at http://www.roofingseogeeks.com/

Ensure website design is up to date

I’d also recommend making sure your website is up to scratch in terms of design. It’s really important that your website looks good when people are using it; if it looks messy and unorganized, visitors will be much more likely to click off it and visit other sites. By having a clean and organized website that’s user-friendly and easy to use, people will be much more likely to stay on it and hire you for any work they need done. Make sure your colors all match and aren’t too in the face of users, make sure all links are easy to click on and use and ensure any contact details are easy to find as well. This will ensure all users who visit your site will have a good time.

Advertise on social media platforms

Advertising your website on different social media platforms could also be really useful. This will allow people to see your website as an option; they’ll be much more likely to visit it and more people will know it exists. No publicity is bad publicity when it comes to website visitors and this is vital if you want to be a successful roofing company.

Suggested Reading: 25+ SEO Mistakes Ruining Your Website (And How To Fix Them)

Guest Author- John Bickley
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Difference between shared hosting and reseller hosting

Among the many service plans in the website hosting field, there’s a bit of confusion between two similar-sounding names: Shared Hosting and Reseller Hosting. So let’s clear this up.

Shared Hosting

This means that the original web hosting company sells several accounts on one server. A server is a dedicated PC used to host websites and interface with the World Wide Web. The opposite is dedicated hosting – one computer, one website. On a shared hosting plan, one computer can serve for many websites. Since disk space is cheap and websites on a typical shared host plan are only going to run a WordPress blog anyway, this makes practical sense.

A shared host plan is similar to renting an apartment in a larger building with other tenants, all of you paying a share of the rent.

Reseller Hosting

By contrast, a reseller account lets you play the landlord. You still pay for server space, but like an AirBnB, you can turn around and sell portions of your server space to other clients. Effectively, you play a smaller web host inside a larger web host.

You may be asking “Why would somebody do this?” Why not just go to the direct source for your web home instead of paying a middle person? There are actually several reasons why this is a common practice. The most common reseller host is a web developer, web marketer, or other web entrepreneur. Many clients simply don’t want to run their own website – at all! A reseller plan lets someone like a web developer offer a package plan, where the customer gets their own domain but pays somebody else to maintain it for them.

Other use case scenarios include start-up owners who anticipate launching many small websites. A reseller account lets you hold multiple domains, emails, and installs of WordPress, databases, and other web software. It’s a bit of flexibility for the break-out eCommerce tycoon who may be looking to branch into full-time web hosting themselves. Many web hosts got their start back in the 1990s with a single computer which they parceled out to customers for webspace and worked their way up from there.

Suggested reading: Different Types of SSL Certificates: How to Choose the Suitable One?

Which plan is better for your business?

The typical shared hosting customer is happy with one domain, and as long as the bandwidth and resources holds up, you’ll hear no complaints. Larger web businesses, however, will start to feel the cramp, particularly when they have a traffic spike on the server that crowds out the bandwidth for the other sites on that server.

Reseller hosting is better for multiple web domains. In particular, freelance web developers typically set out on this career path where they take on maintaining WordPress installs for a couple of clients, and eventually grow their portfolio to the point where it’s simpler to preside over a cluster of web domains, each maintained for a different client. Or again, holding a group of domains as they hire a few extra hands to help maintain their growing web empire.

As for being a client of a domain reseller provider, this is fine for very small businesses or sole entrepreneurs. It’s all well and good to manage your own website when you’re in a tech field, but for non-tech professionals, it’s a needless hassle they’re more than happy to pay somebody else to worry about. It is quite liberating to simply appoint a helping hand as your designated Internet marketer and have them handle everything from site maintenance to branding to blogging to social media promotion.  Hosting resellers typically don’t mark up the resold web space by that much, since their profit is mainly in selling their services.

Advanced eCommerce entrepreneurs might want to also explore VPS (Virtual Private Servers) or a whole dedicated server. Everybody wants a part of the web in the modern business world, so we had to come up with lots of ways to parcel out an Internet homestead for everyone.

Guest Author: Dan Kaplan
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Redefining email solutions; communication and collaboration simplified – Pramod Sharda, CEO – IceWarp India & Middle East

Technology today has shifted from what it was a few years ago. Most things that are technology-enabled in this present era were once pure fantasy, but as technology has evolved, many things are now a part of the modern conveniences people expect on a daily basis. One of the leading contributors that helped technology flourish so effervescently was Globalization, and since then it has been bringing the world closer by the hour.

Once a famous visionary of modern era quoted, “We should keep on going along the path of globalization. Globalization is good… when trade stops, war comes.”It is thus, Globalization that pushes maximum organizations and individuals to go beyond their threshold and connect to their partners, users or consumers not only in their own country but across the globe. Now, the question arises, how do the organizations associate with their counterparts and share their ideas and ideologies without letting distance be a barrier.

Internet acts as the acting force, more quantitative than traditional media could ever be. There existed a time when emails were sufficient to send and receive data. In 2019, the same cannot be held true, emails have now become the spine for effective communication in leading organizations. Communication and collaboration have become integral to working with teams large or small. The ability to co-exist with other email solutions help an organization to get the best solution deployed for its employees with the best TCO in place.

Email solutions boost businesses, not only does it make the business very professional, but it also makes it easily recognizable. There exist numerous benefits of using professional email solutions:

Professional: First and the foremost, email solutions provide a very professional image of any business. Generates a good reputation amongst the customers such that they are at ease to do business with the company, as they would be aware that they are dealing with professionals.

More Credibility: A professional email account offers businesses the much-required credibility. As the customers can visit the website, and know about the company this provides them with a sense of credibility against the organizations.

Builds Brand Value: A professional email account is associated with a recognizable and unique domain address, it allows the customers to visit the website. This in a way lets the customer associate with the brand, thus increasing the brand value.

Greater Control: A professional email offers greater control and more features than any free email account. One can easily choose the space they require and customize it conditionally. It further enables organizations to select advanced features like monitoring, grouping, privacy & security (anti-spam & anti-virus) and much more.

Highly Cost-Effective: Business email solutions cost very minimal as compared to the benefits they provide. They act as a smart and valuable investment for any business across the globe.

Having a local datacenter setup addresses the concern of data regulations laid by the government and other governing bodies. Even today, there happens to exist a good number of Banking and Financial Institutions which have a mandate to keep the data within their organization not in a public place, therefore there occurs the requirement of an on-premises solution or a private cloud option for the same.

Since having a flexible plan for the customer is also a very crucial aspect, most organizations select the required solution with utmost priority. The way businesses are shaping themselves today with the effective usage of the Internet, proves that the market is evolving, always changing and never remaining the same. Utilization of collaborative platforms that expand beyond the offices of individual companies may promote global productivity, help reduce costs and allow businesses to be aware of synergistic developments to potentially get in on.

No matter however we may try to portray, the future looks progressively collaborative and it will be further interesting to appreciate how new company partnerships grow. If we can accommodate this trend today, it might conclude that working apart can bring us nearer and, more prominently, closer to our business goals.

Suggested reading: Top 3 time-consuming IT tasks and how to automate them

Guest Author: Pramod Sharda

Pramod Sharda is the CEO of IceWarp India & Middle East. IceWarp is an internationally renowned company for developing a complex solution for communication and collaboration; has been operating in the market since 2001. 
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Top 6 reasons free website hosting is a mistake

While it might not be at the forefront of your mind, web hosting services play an important part in your website’s success. When it comes to the website development, every little thing matters. While we all know that design and usability of a website directly affect user experience, website hosting is an important component in building a successful online presence too. Of course, it’s a pleasure to save some money but, sometimes, the result is quite the opposite.

The best way to save your budget while building a website is to save on its development. Sure thing, it’s not easy to find an affordable and at the same time professional services. Then again, remote is, probably, the future of work and there’s outstaffing model that is more reliable and efficient. Thus, it’s no longer a surprise that hiring web designers in Ukraine or any other popular outsourcing directions will save some cash. Actually, this is a common way to reduce the price when building a website but, of course, nothing is without flaws.

Let’s get back to choosing a reliable website hosting provider that follows your business needs. Since there are many ways the web host you choose can impact your website (business), you should educate yourself on well-known mistakes you’ll want to stay away from. Wondering what’s at the top of the list? Choosing free web hosting is the most common mistake most businesses make when developing their online presence.

Why hosting matters when you build a website?

There’s a lot of work you need to do to plan a website. There are many ways different ways to create your perfect online image, but one fact remains the same regardless of what route you take. Finding a reliable web hosting company is an important step in delivering the best user experience to your customers. And this is something free web hosting services don’t offer.

After you decide on a website design, the development process begins. To successfully deliver your content to viewers, you’ll need a place to store your files. That’s where hosting comes in. Remote computer servers serve as a source of storage for your information. Your host keeps your files safe and accessible, so your website can deliver the information you want viewers to see when someone opens your website.

Business success is often measured by profit margins and a company’s ability to maximize their profits. This being the case, many businesses avoid anything that can negatively impact their overall profit gain. Because most businesses today are competing for the most effective, most well-liked online presence, choosing the right hosting solution for your business is important. When you do not take the time to research the right fit for your web hosting needs, you run the risk of losing revenue, negatively affecting your SEO ranking, and facing potential security issues and malware attacks. So, how can you ensure you are making the right decision for your web hosting while still making a sound financial decision?

Top reasons free website hosting is a mistake

Free sure is tempting. With all the expenses businesses face today, it may seem like a breath of fresh air to see that you can get a web hosting service for your website for free. The problem with falling for the temptation of choosing a free website host is that it ends up costing you more money in the long run. You also risk the integrity of your website, can ruin your online reputation and can lose revenue and customers while facing these negative repercussions of choosing “free.”

One of the major problems with free web hosting is the amazing marketing tactics hosting companies use to draw you in. It’s almost as if you can’t say no! The great news is that you can turn down free offers and you don’t have to spend an inordinate amount of money to get what you need. There are many managed and shared hosting options available that offer affordable premium hosting. These companies can save you money long-term, but they can also save you a headache and mess of making the mistake of choosing a free website hosting service in the first place.

So, what is it exactly about free website hosting that has created such a fuss throughout the world of internet and online business? Here’s what you really get when you choose a free website hosting and the top reasons for making that decision is a mistake for your business.

1. Is anything REALLY free?

Think about it. Anytime you have signed up for something “free” in your lifetime, has it truly been free without a surprise gimmick or some way of paying down the road? When you ask if something is really free, you should also consider the other end of that question. What about limitations?

The problem with free website hosting is that there are often serious limitations that come with it. Once you discover these limitations and realize you need to reach beyond them, you are left with one of two scenarios to face. You either need to pay an excessive service fee to get what you need, or you are stuck with what you have and hinder your business’ success.

Most free web hosting services limit the amount of storage available to your website, the bandwidth of your service, and do not allow FTP access. Since you probably signed a contract that says you are locked into a long-term commitment, you will be forced to upgrade your services for a much higher fee than most premium hosting providers offer. And if you failed to read the tiny, tiny print in the terms of services, it’ll be near impossible for you to safely get out of your contract with your website in tow and intact.

2. You forfeit reliability

Many of the most highly marketing free web hosting providers are new companies themselves. The offer free web hosting to try to draw in customers to pay for their other services. Since premium hosting can easily be offered at an affordable rate, these new companies draw you in by giving it away and focusing on charging you for some of their most expensive services.

The major risk you face when you choose to host with a new company is that you forfeit reliability. So, what happens if that company is unsuccessful and ultimately folds? You will lose everything. If they shut down, so does your entire website. Everything you have worked so hard to create can be lost for good. You will likely have no backups of your website. If you purchased, or renewed, your domain through the company you will lose your domain as well. And this will hit your SEO ranking right where it hurts. All the time and money you put into your website services will be permanently lost.

3. You can’t transfer your website

Most free hosting solutions have a way of working some tricky wording into their terms of service. So, while you think you own your website and your domain, you don’t. In addition, your hosting provider will likely own all your content. That means you can’t sell your website, you can’t sell your content, and you can’t republish any of your works. Just think about being a photographer or artist who publishes their images on their website to show their customers their work. Once you put that up, your “free” web hosting services go to work and you no longer own rights to that content.

To make matters worse, once you realize you need better services, it’s nearly impossible to transfer providers. So, if you can’t afford the upgrades needed from your free hosting provider, forget looking for a more affordable, reliable company. Since you don’t actually own your website, your content, or even your domain, you can’t transfer to a better provider. It’s that simple.

4. You have no server control.

Free website hosting means you get what you pay for, and since you didn’t pay, you are limited to what you get. Chances are your website is not scalable. This means if your business grows, your website can’t grow with you. Most free hosting services cannot handle lots of traffic, so if business starts booming, your website can’t handle the influx of visitors. This translates to slow website speeds and lots of downtimes. When it comes to business, downtime means you’ll lose readers, visitors, and customers. Loss of customers obviously means you’re going to be losing money.

The great news is that premium hosting is not that expensive. When you invest in hosting, you invest in security for your website and you invest in your business’ future. If you exceed your limits with a premium hosting provider, you can easily upgrade your services at a fair and affordable price. And you don’t run the risk of slow website speeds that can turn away visitors or even downtime that can result in the loss of customers!

5. Your website won’t look professional.

I think by now we have established that nothing is free! Free hosting means you are only able to use basic themes for your design. You may be able to make small changes, but you won’t’ be able to customize your website or make improvements as your budget allows. You will also be dealing with unprofessional domain names because you will likely be using a subdomain.

WordPress hosting is a great example of a free hosting provider that limits your capabilities and prevents you from looking as professional as possible. Clients who use the free WordPress hosting services often have a domain like biz.wordpress.com. A professional hosting provider can get you a top-level domain at a low cost and you can implement professional .com emails that enhance your business.

Since many functions require plugins, and free hosting excludes plugins, your website won’t be capable of executing common, important website functions. Just think, no selling and no mailing list. In addition to limitations, you will likely have to deal with forced ads that are placed on your website and have no relevance to your business. After all, your free hosting provider needs to make their money somewhere.

6. Your SEO ranking will suffer.

Since we’ve now established that your webpage can face slow site speed, increased downtime, and look unprofessional, there’s a more serious impact this can have on your business. SEO is a science. If you have invested in SEO, you’ll understand that it takes time to build a solid online presence. You can not only lose all you’ve worked for if your free hosting provider takes down your website, you can face many negative impacts on your ability to rank in the first place.

Google has created high standards to allow websites to rank at the top. All the negative impacts listed above regarding free hosting make your website harder to rank because of its low quality when it comes to Google Standards. You won’t be able to get your business on the map when it comes to search engine results. This is a major preventative of growth for your business.

If you want to create an online presence that can bring your business growth and success, free hosting is not the way to go. While it may look like a way to save money as you start out, it will cost you customers and revenue in the end. Your business website should be professional.

Professional, premium hosting providers offer you full control over your website, better SEO, a real, professional domain, and a scalable website that will grow with your business. When you choose a reliable web hosting company, you contribute to your brand. And this means a greater chance of success as you continually exceed your limits and grow to your full potential through your professional online presence and your supportive, premium web hosting services.

 

Guest Author:  Alka Parti, Digital Marketing Consultant

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Making Money: 5 Reasons Why Digitalization is a Must for Your Business

The changing consumer demands, continuous technological advancement, and growth of competitive businesses are challenging to the entrepreneurs. Newer businesses have the advantage of innovative business models and approaches to make money and find their niche. While more established businesses are faced with the challenge to adapt to these changes. To address such challenge, the digital transformation of the business processes and operations is now among the new technologies’ trends. Such an endeavor may include organizational and internal improvements as well as employing an offshore development center to apply the needed changes.

What is digital business transformation?

AgileElephant sees the digitalization of a business as the transition from a traditional business approach to the adoption of existing and emerging social, mobile, and digital technologies. This adoption leads to the improvement and enhancement of business processes and operations. While Greg Verdino views digital transformation as a bridge between consumer demand and the product and services delivered by businesses.

Digital business transformation is when businesses use digital tools and methods for business operations and processes. The efficiency of fundamental business processes and the quality of service delivery to consumers are impacted by it. This also means that businesses grow from traditional operations and experimenting with relatively new technology.

New Technologies Trends in Digital Business Transformation

1.     Data-Driven Decision Making

The large amounts of data that are collected through devices and various technological gizmos and tools enable businesses to improve business strategies, provide better products and services, and make better business decisions overall. Going forward, there will be an increase in incorporating such data science and data-driven decision-making technologies in businesses and the products and services that they provide.

Businesses are also able to collate and better understand their business and target market. With continuous improvements to Machine Learning and AI integration into common tools and devices, technologies such as data visualization and data science enable businesses to acquire real-time information and feedback on the performance of their business and their team as a whole.

2.    Mainstreaming Cloud Technologies

Businesses have been transitioning to cloud technologies for their various business processes, which are a more cost-efficient and accessible option for businesses. They have been and will continue to explore various derivatives of cloud technologies, such as Hybrid, Private, Public, and Connected Cloud. Businesses would find that, depending on their needs, using a combination of cloud technologies to optimize and enhance their business processes is an option.

3.    Enhanced Customer Experience

With tools such as business analytics, machine learning, data science, and AI, more in-depth information can be collected and used to improve overall customer experience. One of the major ways that businesses grow is through learning about their chosen market and target audience and aligning their business strategy to suit their consumer needs. With the developments in AI, ML, and data science, as well as their integration into the various digital platforms and devices out in the market, businesses are able to collect and process even better information. This ensures that they are provided with the right information to improve their businesses and the quality of products and services that they provide.

4.    Data Security and Data Privacy Policies

The numerous reports of data breaches, hacks, private information sold without knowledge and approval of owners, and compromised digital data have led to data privacy policies becoming necessary in the incoming years. The GDPR is one of the most notable initiatives for data privacy to be established in recent years.  Because of technology and communication, individuals are providing more and more personal and important information in the various digital tools and platforms that they have.

Businesses need to secure and protect the consumer information that they collect, process, and store.  Data Privacy policies are established to protect consumer and user information online or in any digital platform. More such policies are expected to be drafted and put into action in the following years. Any breach or instance of misuse is a negative reflection of the business and impacts its reputation and operations.

5.    Chatbots

Chatbots are great tools for customers, but there are a lot of instances that they have been more of an annoyance. This shows that there is a lot of room to improve when it comes to chatbots. With technologies such as natural language processing (NLP) and sentiment analytics tools improving leaps and bounds over the recent years, chatbots are continuing to grow and improve.

Chatbots are great for feedback, communication, and customer service. Improving such tools will be an advantage for businesses with online and digital platforms. With more technologies incorporated into chatbots, businesses are sure to grow in favor of using these helpful tools.

Why we need digitalization of businesses?

Digital business transformation is a lengthy and costly endeavor for a business, with its impact only felt after a long period of time.  Why should businesses invest in digitization company processes and operations?

We are in a time where anyone and everyone can put up a business and carve out their niche in the global market. Businesses, especially long-established institutions or enterprises, need digital business transformation to ensure the survival and sustainability of their business. Businesses need to grow and adapt in order to compete with ever-growing and diversifying global businesses.

Technology drives society and the global market.  (IDC)  Worldwide Semiannual Digital Transformation Spending Guide, estimates that the global spending of technologies for digital transformations will hit around 2 million USD by 2022. IDC also forecasts the continuous increase of DBT spending in the coming years and estimating a 16.7% annual growth rate between 2017 and 2022. And in order to continue and succeed in the global market, businesses need to learn and adapt technology into their business strategies. Failing to evolve with society and the times more often than not lead to stagnation and eventual loss, which is a situation that no business ever wants to be in.

How can businesses implement digital transformation?

Investing time and resources in finding the best strategy and tools to implement digital business transformation is necessary for success. This helps businesses be more cost-efficient and cost-effective when they undertake such an endeavor. There are many ways to go about this. Businesses mainly choose between applying change in-house, slowly and process by process, or employing third-party services to identify and implement the necessary changes.

An offshore development center or offshore software development company can provide the services that you need. Through these services, businesses address the demand for change and still be able to work on the business. With the right strategy and tools, businesses get the best possible outcome possible and reap great rewards in the long run.

Suggested Reading: Digital core and edge computing technologies can help in building the data center of tomorrow

Guest Author- Alka Parti, Digital Marketing Consultant
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What help is available when using PCB software?

The changes that have been made in PCB software has been significant in recent years.  This has made the once competent, trained designers question their ability to use some of the recent software to its full capability.  If the end user does not use the software to its maximum, then they could be making life a lot more difficult for themselves as a lot of the updates are around making life easier for the end user.

There are many different options to get help which include some of the following:

Face to Face Training

Even the best PCB designers in the world may require some face to face training from time to time in order to refresh their knowledge of the software package.  It is far too easy for individuals to get caught up in their niche and way of working and as a result not then use the full capability of the technology.

Face to face sessions can be set up with the correct level of notice and demand of people to attend.  It is probably very much recommended that if you have individuals who have not used the specific PCB design software you have in your company before that this is the most effective way of getting real training.  This way, you are able to hear it face to face from the experts and ask whatever questions you have to them.

Video Library

There may be some occasions that a video library can play an important role in training people.  If there has been say one specific update to the software and this requires to be communicated, the video library could be a really effective way of releasing this information to the users. Here, the end user can watch this as many times as they want and pause at key areas if they are wanting to follow through the step by step guidance in real terms.  If the outcome of the video library is that there are further queries or clarification points, this can always be followed up by contacting the company directly or even posting in one of the forums.

Webinar

Companies will run live webinars from time to time where you can hear the guidance and training from the company experts.  These webinars are normally free to attend and something that can be not only attended by the owners of the best product but by the people within the company who would maybe benefit from attending this.

You will normally find that the best PCB layout software companies like Altium will make changes to their software packages quite frequently and because of that, they will then need to run these webinars. This may seem like a drain, but the reason they are updating the software is usually due to the voice of the customer and certain innovations are included.

Make sure to get the help you need when you are using the PCB software.

Suggested reading: Defend your business from modern-day cyber attacks with these 3 tips

Guest Author: Zoe Price 

Zoe Price is a young, aspiring writer and computer science graduate who spends as much of her free time as possible on the web. When she's not writing, she's reading. She's always trying to learn and digest new information so that she can stay on top of whatever stories she wishes to write about.
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Top 3 time-consuming IT tasks and how to automate them

In our hyper-connected digital age, there has never been more pressure on IT departments to ensure the smooth, cohesive and successful running of their organization’s internal infrastructure.

Regardless of your sector or industry, in many ways, your IT department is the backbone of your entire operation. If your IT department is inefficient, every element of your business will suffer.

As digital technologies evolve, opportunities to automate key aspects of your IT department’s daily initiatives continue to emerge.

IT automation has the power to make your organization more secure, more productive and more time efficient than ever before. Here we explore the three most time-consuming tasks facing today’s IT departments and how it’s possible to automate them to your advantage.

Distribution

Fundamentally, software distribution encompasses each of the aforementioned areas and more.

As contemporary IT systems become increasingly complex, not only do they consume colossal levels of bandwidth, but they take an incredibly large amount of time to manage. That said (you might be spotting a theme at this point), automating key elements of your software distribution strategy is the way forward.

How? Concerning the automation and general improvement of your internal software distribution processes, the route to success is stripping down your physical assets by basing the majority of your system’s key components in the cloud. In turn, this will eliminate the need to invest in expensive infrastructure or become hindered by time-consuming processes.

By examining your current infrastructure and identifying what you can trade for the cloud, you’ll foster efficiency while creating a clear-cut path for distribution-based automation.

Cloud-based IT software distribution solutions serve to automate these most intricate of processes while increasing operational efficiency and consuming far less bandwidth – the key ingredients to operational success.

 

“Every once in a while, a new technology, an old problem, and a big idea turn into an innovation.”  – Dean Kamen

Across the board, software deployment can drain a huge amount of time, money and resources. But, by automating your IT department’s most frequent or critical processes, you will save tons of time and free up your department’s schedule to take care of other tasks in the pipeline.

Maintenance

Regular IT maintenance is integral to the ongoing health and success of your organization.

Ensuring that every component of your infrastructure is operational, updated and working to its optimum capacity is incredibly time-consuming.

But, while performing system maintenance was once a primarily manual task, IT automation solutions have made it possible to deploy tailored maintenance plans at predetermined times and frequencies, making the whole process secure, controlled and fluid from start to finish. A time-saving innovation with an endless stream of organizational benefits.

How? On an individual basis, installing automated disk check or cleanup software and scheduling periodical updates on each computer within your company’s system will ensure the ongoing performance and health of each cog in the wheel, so to speak.

Moreover, using your operating software’s in-built system backup automation, programming it to operate on a regular basis, you will keep on top of your maintenance duties with minimal intervention.

On a wider scale, utilizing a cloud-based software solution powered by micro-agents will help you perform such tasks on larger, more complex systems while ensuring all of your files, assets and efforts are securely backed up in the cloud, thus ensuring security, while saving you energy to apply on other aspects of the business.

Security

In the age of information, cybersecurity is of paramount importance. On an average, there are over 130 large-scale, targeted breaches in the US alone every year, a number that is growing by 27% every 12 months.

Any form of a cyber breach can prove devastating to your business and it’s the responsibility of your IT department to fortify the organization against any potential attacks.

System troubleshooting, updates, security software installation and patch management activities are not only incredibly time-consuming but as a regular task, they present an ongoing challenge for over-stretched IT departments.

By automating all of these vital processes, you will ensure the ongoing protection of your business empire while empowering your IT operatives to focus on more strategic initiatives that further benefit the organization.

How? As cybersecurity is so integral to your company’s future, it’s important to note that while getting autonomous tech to do most of the heavy lifting will prove incredibly effective – you must work collaboratively with your IT department to ensure that your automated initiatives are working to the best of their abilities to avoid any unforeseen breaches.

When looking at autonomous security solutions, it’s important to consider your existing platforms as well as the size of your company and choose your tools accordingly. To really win in the battle against corporate targeting cyber criminals, you will need to look for the following qualities in potential protection-based automated solutions:

  • The ability to detect existing weaknesses in your infrastructure or system.
  • The ability to run regular routine security checks and software updates.
  • The ability to scale seamlessly with the growth of your organization.
  • The ability to record all of your patching activity for security data and auditing processes.

For more IT-enhancing insights for your business, read about the top five collaboration tools for DevOps teams.

Guest Author- Jeff Broth

Jeff Broth is a business writer, mentor, and cybersecurity advisor. He has been consulting both enterprises and SMBs for the past seven years.
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Articles

Fun Magento Facts for an Aspiring Retailer

Online retail is on the rise. More and more people prefer to order goods or software online rather than buy them in a traditional store. Consequently, more retailers choose to make their products available online.

Now:

To do this, you either have to sell your product on an e-marketplace like Amazon or create your own e-commerce site. If you choose the latter option, you can either code a site from scratch or use a content management system.

This is where Magento comes into play. It is one of the most popular e-commerce CMSs worldwide. Magento helps you easily set up and maintain your own e-commerce website.

You might ask:

Just how easily?

To be fair, to launch a Magento website, you usually need to hire a Magento developer. The software is very flexible, which makes it somewhat complicated. What’s more, it gets frequent updates, so you’ll need a professional to do regular maintenance.

But don’t let that discourage you.

Here’s the thing:

Magento has certain big advantages over other CMSs. For one, Magento specializes in online stores, so the checkout process and all integrations like PayPal payment work extremely well. Moreover, Magento websites are SEO and mobile-friendly and have high performance.

Also read: Adobe acquires Magento to add e-commerce support to its cloud

In brief:

Setting up a Magento website isn’t free. Launching a good Magento website could cost you upwards of $15,000. The upside is that you’ll likely get a full return on this investment fairly quickly.

Retailers who switch to Magento usually report triple the growth rate and recover the initial investment within 5.2 months. After that, it’s pure profit.

Here’s the bottom line:

If you’d like to make your product available online, you should give Magento a try. And if you already have an online store, you should seriously consider switching to Magento. Either way, the move to Magento is likely to pay off handsomely.

And if you’d like to learn more about Magento itself, check out the graphic resource below for more interesting Magento facts.

This post has been written by Nick Galov, Community Manager, Hosting Tribunal.

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Infographics

25+ SEO Mistakes Ruining Your Website (And How To Fix Them)

Besides getting the domain name right, picking a user-friendly website building platform and choosing a quality web host, SEO is one of the other essential factors that aid in growing your online business. As an internet marketing technique, implementing the best SEO practices on your website, with the help of SEO experts, helps to not only improve your ranking but also aids in increasing the organic traffic. It also makes it easier for your target audience to find you online and makes it simpler for search engine robots to index your website.

Thus, with all these benefits that SEO provide, one needs to ensure the implementation is done right. However, newbie marketers often end up making silly SEO mistakes that can ruin their website. One of the reasons for this is because of the many on-page and off-page SEO factors that are available. This makes it harder to determine which SEO techniques are important and which are redundant. SEO is an evolving technique and if you are not aware of the latest changes, then you are bound to make SEO mistakes.

As such, in order to ensure that this doesn’t happen, here is a list of SEO mistakes you can check out. The below infographic covers 25+ SEO mistakes that are hurting your site’s ranking and traffic. Fixing them post-haste is important if you want to avoid high bounce rate or worse yet a penalty from Google.

The benefits you can garner from SEO are many. But, it is not possible to obtain them if the SEO factors are not implemented in the right way. Thus, take a look at the SEO mistakes’ infographic and get started with correcting your errors. By doing this, you’ll slowly but steadily see improvement in the performance of your website. Also, check out this guide to know how to fix these SEO mistakes effectively.

25+ Common SEO Mistakes That Are Killing Your Website- An Infographic by the team at Hosting Clues

Sudhir Bhushan is a Tech & Social enthusiast. He is also a Web Entrepreneur by Profession and loves to write about latest trends on Social Media & SEO. You may also follow him on Twitter 

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Articles

Achieve extreme productivity with this five-point secret formula

In today’s competitive world, organisations feel the need to achieve higher and higher levels of productivity all the time. Examine how modern app development platforms can help them in their quest.


Strict compliances, severe competition and fast-changing business environment make it mandatory for every organisation to be extremely productive. A well chalked out enterprise mobility strategy can be one suitable solution to help companies achieve the high productivity levels they need. However, a mobile app rollout, which resides at the foundation of any enterprise mobility programme today, is ridden with a few obstacles.

A range of issues such as shortage of specialised app development and testing talent, DevOps hassles, user adoption challenges, decision-making hierarchies causing delays, and the high costs involved in app development, may threaten to adversely impact an organisation’s productivity goals.

The issues associated with app development are not confined to in-house development only. Even the outsourced arrangements suffer from similar issues such as scope creep due to continuously changing business requirements and DevOps and support challenges—besides the questionable returns on investment (RoI) when projects take longer than initially estimated.

An ideal approach

Given this scenario, a few forward-thinking organisations have started adopting a new approach to app development. Instead of developing mobile apps from scratch—either in-house or through outsourced contracts—these companies can be seen investing in some leading app development platform products. These platform products not only help organisations squarely address the common app development challenges but also enable them to achieve extreme productivity levels in everything they do.

The platform constituents

The leading app development platforms available today consist of a range of tools that organisations can utilize to build the apps they want the way they want. It goes without saying that a reputed app development platform should have a software development kit (SDK) to facilitate secure offline storage, data synchronisation, and push notifications, etc. Such SDKs usually support a host of device APIs including for camera, file, file transfer, and in-app browser.

However, besides the basic development-specific components, a platform also constitutes a range of additional essential utilities. Let’s explore some of these components that a world-class platform product has which help an organisation accomplish extreme productivity.

1. DevOps and integrations:

The platform products from reputed vendors help streamline DevOps allowing developers, IT operations, and business teams to build, modify, ship, test and deploy apps collaboratively. Streamlined DevOps also results in improved business-IT alignment (BITA), cost reduction due to the speedy development and enhanced productivity levels. The built-in support for back-end integrations allows organisations to seamlessly connect the new apps with core enterprise applications such as CRM and ERP or the third-party applications running in the organisation.

A caveat here is to select a platform product that helps ensure that the new apps developed can co-exist with current apps as well as third-party management tools such as MDM and EMM without any glitches. The role of platform products for DevOps is on the rise. According to estimates released by Technavio Research, the global DevOps platform market is growing at a CAGR of 20% or greater from its year 2017 revenues of $4,318 million.

2. Visual Studio:

Great platform products also come with complete visual studio suites to accomplish cross-platform design and development of modern apps. A visual studio comprises a range of utilities such as Colour Palettes, Prototypes, Design Libraries with predesigned components and UI elements. Besides simplifying the design process, these suites also allow you to design once and deploy it multiple times—anywhere.

3. Unified app approach:

A mark of a modern-day platform product, a unified app is a container app approach that helps you successfully address the mobile app user adoption challenge. By deploying a single, customised native container app on user-devices, a unified app holds together all the modern apps launched by the organisation. Every time your organisation launches a new app, it automatically displays inside a user’s container, eliminating the app discovery and visibility challenges faced by users.

As all the relevant business apps are brought under one roof (housed inside the container), it saves time for users, thus improving the organisation’s productivity.

As per the data published by statista.com, the global software application container market revenues are expected to reach $3446 million, growing from $759 million in 2016.

By facilitating the issuance of hot-code updates, upgrades and bug-fixes, a unified app approach eliminates the rigour from app support function, thus improving an organisation’s productivity. A good platform product incorporates features such as data leak protection with oAuth 2.0 or SAML while enabling single-sign-on (SSO) for users.

4. Built-in UX support:

This must be regarded as one of the key features of a platform as UI/UX consumes up to 40 per cent of the time that organisation invests in app development. Standardised and reusable components such as prototype, palette, code, sync, library, and templates can help reduce the time required to create aesthetically appealing and intuitive user interfaces. As UI can be developed with minimal effort and time, it further results in enhanced productivity for the organisation’s developers as well as users.

5. Ready templates:

Last, but not least, a good platform comes with a host of ready templates that allow you to build high productivity apps in a short time. For instance, the service support chief may want a chatbot to be created to reduce the strain on the help desk and to provide additional touchpoint for customer contact.

Similarly, there is a range of commonly needed business apps that managers of various departments find useful. Ready templates can help them build apps such as for Sales Management, Project Monitoring, Bill of Material (BoM), Order Logging, Expense Tracking and Reimbursements, Reporting and Dashboards, etc. to name a few.

Suggested reading: Accelerate digital transformation—with low code, or no code

A caveat

One of the key productivity enhancement features to look for in a platform product is its low-code development capability. Low-code is not just a nice to have feature but a serious business requirement. According to a MarketsandMarkets report, the low-code development platform market is expected to be $27.23 billion by 2022.

While a platform can minimize the time and pain involved in development for developers and testers, a low-code platform can turn business users into dependable citizen developers who can build best-in-class apps without training or involvement of developers in the project.

In all, a platform product which packs all these features can help your organisation achieve extreme productivity. By allowing citizen developers to build dozens of apps can provide a gigantic boost to an organisation’s productivity through the pervasive use of mobility-led automation in everything it does.


Guest Author: Jinen Dedhia, Co-founder & MD, DronaHQ

Jinen heads Sales, Finance and Operations at DronaHQ.  He is a passionate techie and is constantly evolving DronaHQ features and solutions to address enterprise customer needs. Prior to co-founding DronaHQ, Jinen was with Wipro Technologies where he worked on wireless VOIP technologies, VOIP switches, IVRs, anti-phishing solutions and m-ticketing among other technologies. Jinen is a computer engineer from Sardar Patel College of Engineering, Mumbai. He enjoys playing chess and table tennis.

Linkedin profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jinendedhia/

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