Here’s What You Need to Take Your Business to the Next Level

Here’s What You Need to Take Your Business to the Next Level

In just a few years, ecommerce has grown in leaps and bounds, so that transactions—in just about every industry, at that—are now mostly done online. This isn’t surprising at all, considering the ease and convenience that the internet offers its users. So as consumers become more and more dependent on the internet, it’s only natural for businesses, big and small alike, to follow suit—including yours.

Now, there is in fact, a good number of web-based adaptations that your business can benefit from. However, if you’re new in the digital arena, it can be easy to feel out of your depth. For this reason, it’s only smart to make use of the resources you can easily find and access online to start and sustain a lucrative business in the digital age. Let’s take a closer look at what’s out there and how you stand to benefit.

The apps that make your life easier

It’s a well-known fact that, in this day and age, there’s a tool, app, or software for just about any activity that anyone can conceive of. This definitely makes life a lot easier in more ways than one, especially when you run a small business that involves multiple tasks that need to be done timely and efficiently for your enterprise to remain competitive and profitable.

Needless to say, it’s more than wise to download—and in some cases, invest—in these tools where your business needs them most. This is the best way to keep your tasks and processes flowing as they should—or better yet, free up your time and energy, so you can focus on more important things. So make sure to keep an eye out for apps that allow you to automate, collaborate, stay productive, etc. as these are almost always worth your while.

Of course, there are also tools that you simply can’t do away with. As more and more business is done online at present, more and more threats arise along with them. It’s a must, therefore, to have cybersecurity measures in place to protect your and your customers’ sensitive data. Thankfully, the options for digital security are rising to the challenge of fighting these threats, so you’re sure to find solutions for your devices, website, and other systems.

The freelancers who help you get things done

Again, it can be all-too-easy to feel out of your element when you’re not used to using technology in certain ways. For instance, as you take your business to the next level, no doubt, among the most important web-based projects you’ll need is a solid online presence. Now, while you can, of course, find out how to start a blog or website easily enough, your business model will invariably demand something more professional or intuitive, which can be well out of a beginner’s skillset. It’s a good idea, therefore, to enlist an expert freelancer to get it done, which is easy enough to do with online job boards. This also applies to other tasks that you neither have the time or skill to do, as well, which can be truly invaluable help as you run your business.

Of course, it’s only prudent not to entrust sensitive tasks or information on just anyone, so a background check can be a necessary evil before you hire a freelancer or employee. However, know that there are actually FCRA rules that you need to be mindful of before you do so, so make sure to do your due diligence before you do an employee background check to keep everything above board. For one thing, many states don’t sanction criminal background checks until after you’ve made a conditional job offer. For another, some states also require you not to consider arrests without a conviction, plus there’s a seven-year limit on the information you’re allowed to gather.

Suffice it to say, taking your business to the next level means embracing tech, warts—that is, threats—and all. Thankfully, it’s tech that will also provide you with the means to get it all done, as well. It’s a great time to be an entrepreneur, indeed, so ride this wave of innovation to take your business to the next chapter.

The Difference Between Local SEO & National SEO

The Difference Between Local SEO & National SEO

If you are a business owner you know that being on the top of Google is important.

One way to get there is with SEO. In this article, we will show you the difference between national seo and local seo.

Search engine optimization is the long term for SEO. But there are two different types of SEO services today.

The first is local SEO. Local SEO is when your website is focused on local keywords that are relevant to your products and services. National SEO is the second type of SEO.

National SEO is also known as nationwide seo and focuses on keywords that are not local. National SEO usually has more competition and can be harder to rank for.

Google maps is a good way for local companies to focus on finding new customers. It has become so popular now that even big name brands are jumping on the band wagon and following the trends.

SEO is good because it can help your website connect with online shoppers who need your services and products. But if your website is not mobile responsive then this can hurt the shopping experience for your customers. You don’t want that. So make sure your web design is a responsive web design.

If you have a custom website, you want to make sure this Is also a responsive web design.

So how do you know if you need to focus on local or nationwide SEO? The answer is simple. Are you selling to local customers or all of America? This is just the first step to learning what is SEO and how to do it. If you are not sure you can always contact Tampa Bay Marketing for advice and help on your website or SEO.

Intellectual Property Issues Related to Domain Names

Intellectual Property Issues Related to Domain Names

What is intellectual property? The term is a very broad one, but in a general sense, it is the author’s personal rights to the result of his own intellectual activity: a combination of words, ideas, schemes, algorithms, structures, decisions, naming, and so on.

It is possible to consolidate intellectual property at the legislative level so that subsequent use of invented or developed will be possible only with the permission of the authors themselves – this is called copyright. Let’s learn about domain name registration and copyright infringement.

In the web world, intellectual property rights have become more relevant than in everyday life: if you suppress the creation of various products that violate copyright is still somehow possible, then it’s very difficult to control the Internet space: plagiarism of various kinds takes place, creation of similar ideas, the use of sounds and melodies written by someone else, and the borrowing of existing solutions – in any field, including domain names.

When registering a domain name, if it does not violate the existing copyright of any company or individual, the registered domain becomes an object of copyright, legally similar in law to a trademark (TM).

The difference is that TM is registered in a certain country and acts on a certain group of goods, products or services, and the domain works all over the world, since the website located by the link may include information about the company or individual and not just data about certain products.

The Difference Between Domain Registration & Copyright

What is the difference between domain registration & copyright? Can I copyright my domain name? What does copyright protect? Let’s start with understanding what copyright is. If you or your company have created a copyrighted work, other entities need your permissions to use it. But, copyright covers the form of work be it in a form of hard copy or electronic (videos, music, computer software and etc) but not cover title for books, movies, or domain name if you haven’t registered it yet.

So, you must register your domain name in order to be protected from a copyright perspective. Only by doing this, you will be able to obtain and protecting domain names that you want to legally protect.

What Does Copyright Protect from domain name perspective

Domain Name As an Intellectual Property

Is a domain name subject to copyright law? A domain is a display of an individual or company to whom the name belongs. To create a correct, concise, and successful domain can require a lot of imagination: to make a short, readable, memorable and at the same time reflecting the essence of the name of the site. It is very important to create a name that will individualize the field of activity, represent the brand, and select it from the list of resources in a similar direction.

To prove your copyright ownership, and obtaining and protecting domain names, the domain name must meet the following points:

  • The domain name must be registered in the name of a real person who can confirm this with documents.
  • The combination of words and/or numbers in the domain is unique.
  • The owner has a corresponding agreement on the right to the address, as well as the possibility to confirm this if such a need arises.
  • No one other than the sole owner has transferred the right to use the domain.
  • The registered domain has a market value paid by the owner and has the appropriate checks/receipts for this.

The contract between the domain registrar and the company registering the domain can be further used by the owner to protect his rights.

Now, it’s important to say that the domain name is your property for a paid period. As you know, each domain name has a registration period of 1 year or more, some domains can be registered for 10 years (like the unique .inc domains). If after the expiration of the registration period the domain is not renewed, it will go into the Redemption Period status (recovery period), and after that – into free access. Without renewing the domain, you will lose all rights to it, both intellectual and legal, and the name will be available to anyone.

Knowing your rights, you can easily protect your domain name and your right to it, if necessary. The main thing is to register domains with trusted registrar service providers so that from a legal point of view, you can always get the necessary documents from your registrar confirming the ownership of the domain.

Protecting the Intellectual Rights of a Domain Name

Now, we need to remember that only 1% of website owners register a domain name as a trademark. This number leads to numerous violations, in particular, to the illegal copying of domains with a slight change in name.
Often, site owners are faced with copying and other violations, they can’t even make a complaint to the fraudster.

In a situation where an extremely small number of site and domain name owners register their verbal designation as a trademark, it becomes possible to illegally copy domains and other violation of the rights of their owners.

However, even if the domain name has not been separately registered as a trademark, the company will still be able to protect its rights. To date, there has already been some jurisprudence regarding the protection of the rights to a domain name (or a company name), therefore it is realistic to defend your right to personalization tools and prohibit their use in domain names in court.

It is important to consider a number of points that the court will pay attention to when making a decision:

  • Identity of the domain name and means of individualization (company name, commercial designation, trademark, that is, everything that defines a company in the market). They do not have to coincide completely, as a rule, a linguistic examination is carried out, on the basis of which a decision is made on graphic and phonetic similarities.
  • The types of activities of the domain owner and holder of exclusive rights to the means of individualization. If the site is used to advertise goods or services similar to those sold by the exclusive rights holder, this will be an important argument for prohibiting the use of a domain name.
  • What was previously registered – a domain name or a trademark (a legal entity with the corresponding company name)? The issue with a commercial designation is somewhat more difficult to prove in court, which is due to the peculiarities of its legal nature.
  • Does the domain owner have legal rights to use such a name (for example, a company with the same name)?
  • In general, we recommend separating domain registrar from the hosting.

What to Do If a Domain Is Purchased That Matches a Trademark?

First of all, it should be noted that the domain name is not bought from an accredited registrar (this is a common misconception), the domain name is registered by the user with the registrar, provided that the word used as the domain name and coined by the user is not yet registered in the domain registry.

Placement of a trademark on the Internet is officially recognized as a way to use it. The fact of registration of a domain name similar to a trademark and registered for homogeneous goods and services is most often recognized as a violation of exclusive rights.

According to statistics, in legal disputes, priority is given to copyright holders – more than 80% of domain disputes are resolved in their favor. However, 20% of the disputes are still resolved in favor of domain administrators. For an interesting case, you can read about Uzi Nissan, the man who fought Nissan Motors for years, over a domain name, and won.

In accordance with the rules for registering domain names, the user (domain administrator) is solely responsible for choosing a domain name and for possible violations of the rights of third parties related to the selection and registration of a domain name, and also bears the risk of losses associated with such violations.

There are resources over the web, that allows the person who wants to register the domain to verify that there are no matches with protected trademarks before registering a domain name. So that’s what can help you to avoid trademark infringement when you choose a domain name.

IP Issues Related to Internet Domain Names
VeeroTech Review : Hosting Plans, Pros & Cons (2020 Updated)

VeeroTech Review : Hosting Plans, Pros & Cons (2020 Updated)

VeeroTech Systems is a US-based independent and privately owned web hosting provider founded in 2010. Its web hosting solutions which include shared hosting, semi-dedicated hosting, reseller hosting, managed WordPress hosting, and managed virtual private server hosting caters to both businesses and individuals.

The provider works with a team of highly competent professionals drawn from various fields in the IT industry. The entire team is based at its headquarters in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Despite being a young company in the industry, VeeroTech is already muscling its way to the top against established providers. In this review, we will look at the features it offers, pricing and support, and what customers are saying about the provider.

Veerotech affordable and reliable webhosting provider and solutions

An Overview of VeeroTech

As a provider, VeeroTech packs a lot of features that go a long way into making its web hosting services truly outstanding. More than 50% of its customers and site traffic comes from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Poland and Taiwan.

Founded and owned by Brent Hartzell, VeeroTech has gone through transformations in both its product portfolio and identity. The provider started as VopaHost, then changed its name to LiquiLayer in 2012 and finally VeeroTech in 2013.

Over time, VeeroTech has developed solid partnerships with top brands such as HP, SuperMicro, Areca, Western Digital, Intel, LSI Technologies, among others. Its extensive knowledge base, informative and updated blog, and 24/7 live support are invaluable to its customers.

Product Features and Pricing

The web hosting provider has put together impressive infrastructure, proprietary storage systems and an assembly of network equipment. Here is a breakdown of its product offering.

VeeroTech Shared Hosting

With unmetered bandwidth, daily backups, free migration, and DDoS Protection, the SSD Shared Hosting packages give customers a perfect start. Below is a summary of the different types of shared hosting options available.

SSD ONE

SSD pricing starts at $3.95 per month. Apart from the common features, SSD ONE packs the following specifications.

  • 5GB SSD storage
  • 512MB DDR4 RAM
  • 150,000 iNodes to accommodate all your folders and other web objects
  • Can handle up to 15 entry processes meaning support for lots of users on the site
  • SSD ONE hosting only handles a single website

SSD Micro

Startup websites looking for more storage and inodes should consider this package. It is priced at $5.95 per month. Here is what it offers.

  • 15 GB SSD storage
  • Can accommodate up to 6 websites
  • 1GB DDR4 RAM
  • 300,000 iNodes to handle bulkier web resources
  • 20 entry processes for busier traffic

SSD Starter

This is the second most powerful shared hosting option. Its price begins at $5.95 per month offers the following features.

  • 25GB SSD storage
  • 2GB DDR4 RAM
  • Can accommodate unlimited domains
  • 20 entry processes to handle busy visitor traffic
  • 300,000 iNodes to handle larger files and folders

SSD Business

This option is tailormade for businesses especially those at the startup stage. Beginning at $15.95 per month, you get to enjoy the following features.

  • 50GB SSD storage
  • Accommodates unlimited domains
  • 4GB DDR4 RAM
  • 20 entry processes to run concurrent sessions for website visitors
  • 350,000 iNodes to process larger files and other web resources

Apart from the 99.9% uptime, you also get a 30-day money-back guarantee. The shared hosting packages also come with a free SSL certificate and Cloudflare CDN integration for improved website performance.

Start with VeeroTech shared hosting solution >>>

Veerotech Shared Hosting

VeeroTech Reseller Hosting

Web designers and developers offering extended web hosting services to their clients can leverage VeeroTech’s multi-cPanel SSD reseller hosting resources. This hosting solution has 4 sub plans as summarized below.

RS 0

This beginner reseller package starts at $7.95 per month and comes with the following features.

  • 10 GB SSD Storage
  • 10 cPanel accounts

RS 1

In this $15.95 per month package, expect to find the following specifications

  • 40 GB SSD storage
  • 40 cPanel accounts

RS 2

This is the most popular package among VeeroTech’s customers. It starts from $22.95 per month and is packed with the following features.

  • 60 GB SSD disk space
  • 100 cPanel accounts

RS 3

This is the ultimate reseller package costing $41.95 per month. It has the following outstanding features:

  • 120 GB SSD storage
  • Supports up to 200 cPanel accounts
  • WHMCS license to handle an array of hosting related services including client billing

Other features packed into the reseller hosting include flash SSD Storage, Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) for increased cPanel security and account-wide backups, 99.9% uptime guarantee among other specifications.

Start with VeeroTech reseller hosting solution >>>

Veerotech reseller hosting

VeeroTech Managed SSD WordPress Hosting

WordPress is the most prominent content management system (CMS) and website builder in the industry. VeeroTech managed WordPress hosting solutions are uniquely configured and backed by professional technical support. Here are the options to expect.

Startup

This package is for beginner WordPress customers and starts at $29.95 per month. It has the following specifications.

  • 15GB SSD storage
  • Can host a single website
  • 2GB DDR4 RAM
  • 25 entry processes to support busy websites

Pro

This package befits a growing business. At a monthly budget of $49.95 per month, it packs more storage and RAM. Here is a summary of its features.

  • 35GB SSD storage
  • Hosts up to 5 websites
  • 4GB DDR4 RAM and CPU boost
  • 35 entry processes to sustain increased web traffic

ScaleUP

The ScaleUP managed WordPress solution is designed for busy websites. At much fairer pricing of $89.95 per month, customers get to enjoy the following.

  • 75GB SSD storage
  • It can host up to 7 managed sites
  • It has 8GB DDR4 RAM that comes with a CPU boost
  • 50 entry processes to handle huge visitor loads

Start with VeeroTech managed SSD WordPress hosting solution >>>

VeeroTech High Resource Semi-Dedicated Hosting

This hosting plan is designed as an alternative to managed VPS hosting. It has 3 options with a few variations in features.

SSD SD-50

This package begins at $29.95 per month and has the following features.

  • 50 GB SSD storage
  • 4GB DDR4 RAM and CPU boost
  • 25 entry processes
  • 600,000 iNodes for vibrant file handling and folder storage solutions

SSD SD-75

This option begins at $44.95 per month and comes with the following features.

  • 75 GB SSD storage
  • GB DDR4 RAM and CPU boost
  • 40 entry processes
  • 600,000 iNodes for huge file storage demands

SSD SD-100

This is the most powerful yet inexpensive package. It starts at $59.95 per month and has the following features.

  • 100 GB SSD storage
  • 8GB DDR4 RAM and CPU boost
  • 50 entry processes
  • 600,000 iNodes for large files and other web resources.

Start with VeeroTech semi-dedicated hosting solution >>>

veerotech Semi Dedicated Hosting

VeeroTech Managed VPS

Customers who want to have a complete web hosting control and exclusivity should think about a managed Virtual Private Server (VPS) solution. VeeroTech managed VPS comes with 6 sub plans varying in SSD storage, RAM, vCPU, bandwidth and of course price. Here is a summary of the various packages.

2G-SSD-VPS

This package begins at $39.99 per month and has the following specifications

  • 40GB RAID10 SSD storage
  • 2GB DDR4 RAM
  • One virtual CPU
  • 1 TB bandwidth

4G-SSD-VPS

This is a more advanced package and is loaded with the following features at a beginning price of just $69.99 per month.

  • 80GB RAID10 SSD storage
  • 4GB DDR4 RAM
  • Two virtual CPU
  • 2 TB bandwidth

6G-SSD-VPS

This managed VPS solution is targeted at busier websites with more bandwidth and storage space. Pricing starts from $169.99 per month. Here is a summary of its features.

  • 120GB RAID10 SSD storage
  • 6GB DDR4 RAM
  • Two virtual CPU
  • 2 TB bandwidth

8G-SSD-VPS

This $269.99 per month package is loaded with more powerful storage and bandwidth space. Below is a breakdown of its specifications.

  • 250 GB RAID10 SSD storage
  • 8GB DDR4 RAM
  • Four virtual CPU
  • 4 TB bandwidth

10G-SSD-VPS

This is the second most powerful managed solution under the VeeroTech managed VPS family. Starting from $369.99 per month, it packs the following features.

  • 375 GB RAID10 SSD storage
  • 10GB DDR4 RAM
  • Six virtual CPU
  • 4 TB bandwidth

12G-SSD-VPS

Very few solutions in the industry match this package. It is designed to handle the most powerful website demands from a multitude of websites all at once. Starting from $469.99 per month, you get to experience the following.

  • 500GB RAID10 SSD storage
  • 12GB DDR4 RAM
  • Eight virtual CPU
  • 4 TB bandwidth

Start with VeeroTech managed VPS hosting solution >>>

Veerotech Managed VPS SSD Hosting

Customer support

Irrespective of the time of day, you can always reach out to VeeroTech’s 24/7/365 customer support team on phone, email and live chat. The help desk is manned by a knowledgeable team that is ready to help. There is also a regularly updated blog and an extensive knowledge base that customers can use.

Pros and Cons of VeeroTech

Whether you are a techie or a non-techie user, you will always find a plan that suits your budget and level of sophistication. Here are some VeeroTech pros and cons to help you make the right decision.

Pros of VeeroTech

  • It is packed with solutions such as Cloudflare CDN integration for superior web performance
  • A simplified drag and drop website builder for beginners
  • Advanced developer tools such as PHP, Python, SSH, WP-cli, FTP, and Drush to help you create a high level of web infrastructure.
  • A 30-day money-back guarantee if VeeroTech does not meet your expectations

Cons of VeeroTech

  • Some plans are costly for beginners
  • Domain registration comes at an additional cost to the customer

What Customers are Saying

The provider is rated highly by users online. Here is a breakdown of what customers are highlighting.

  • Excellent 24/7 customers support
  • Guaranteed uptime, always above 99%
  • Excellent pricing for the value they offer

Bottom line

VeeroTech is an outstanding web hosting partner for both individuals and corporates. Its offerings are inexpensive but feature-rich. Their 99.9% uptime and a host of advanced technologies make them attractive to businesses and individuals that are scaling up their operations.

It’s worth mentioning that VeeroTech is highly recommended on Reddit web hosting communities, who are very-well informed and critical about hosting services. It’s an additional, great sign, for the quality of the provided hosting services.

With an offering as diverse as VeeroTech’s shared hosting, semi-dedicated hosting, reseller hosting, WordPress hosting, and VPS hosting, customers are spoilt for choice. Based on online reviews, the product offering, and our independent assessment, VeeroTech is worth considering your web hosting needs.

Start VeeroTech hosting with 30 days of free trial >>>

Alternatives to VeeroTech

VeeroTech a reliable hosting choice for pretty much everyone. However, in case you want to host your site on VeeroTech alternative, there are other hosting options you can check out.

From the available alternatives, our favorites are SiteGround which is an experienced hosting provider with more than 2,000,000 customers and DreamHost who offers reliable and SSD based hosting that’s pretty affordable for everyone.

What Is Linux Hosting?

What Is Linux Hosting?

So, you are ready to publish your first website on the Internet and the first task for you need to solve is to find a reliable hosting service for your project, be it a blog, online shop. In the process, it is difficult not to notice that most of the hosting services on their web servers are using Unix or Linux operating systems. But why exactly is the Linux OS? Let’s discuss the features of Linux hosting and when should you go with one.

One of the main reasons for choosing this operating system is free distribution. The content of such a server is cheaper than the content of a similar server on a Windows Server. This is a repeatedly confirmed fact. Also worth noting is the fact that Linux is an open-source OS that has a huge community and tons of documentation. Based on this, by choosing Linux hosting you do not overpay for software, the costs are only hardware.

If you use scripting languages ​​for your sites, such as PHP, Perl, or Java, Linux hosting will be the most reliable and correct solution. You will also receive support for the most common and used types of databases, such as mSQL, MySQL, and PostgreSQL. They will improve the optimization of interaction with content and data processing on your Linux server hosting

We must not forget the fact that Linux hosting offers more reliability and security than Windows hosting. And therefore, it is more popular among Web designers and programmers that value security and uptime.

But not everything is as good as it seems. The main disadvantage is incompatibility with projects that use different Microsoft technologies. If you need to connect an Access database or MS SQL, you will have to choose a hosting with Windows Server OS. Linux server hosting is not able to work with these databases. You will also have to forget about Linux if your site uses Microsoft.NET technologies. Given this, many services provide the ability to easily convert your site into a Windows project.

Linux hosting is suitable for most users who want to have an online presence with a site of any type and complexity. It supports various popular CMS: Joomla, Drupal, WordPress. If you are not sure that your site will work on the selected hosting, you can always consult with the technical support of the host before buying.

So, we can say that most of the recommended hosting providers such as DreamHost hosting service or the hosting offering by SiteGround, are Linux server hosts that will provide you high reliability, security, and uptime.

It’s also worth mentioning that Linux server hosting can come in different configurations such as a Linux VPS hosting offering or a Linux dedicated server hosting machine. In general, the difference between them is that in a dedicated Linux hosting, all the server resources would be provided for your site, while in a VPS Linux hosting, they will be shared between a number of sites with an isolated manner.

Another flavor is the economy Linux hosting with cPanel. Usually, it’s just another name for a shared hosting service that is most famously offered by GoDaddy. It’s pretty much suitable to host one website and it comes with 100 GB storage, unlimited bandwidth, and a free domain name with a yearly subscription. While Linux hosting with cPanel GoDaddy may sound like an interesting option, we would suggest you stick with the two webhosting providers above, and in general, a non EIG hosting service.

How to Start Your First Business Without Taking Huge Risks

How to Start Your First Business Without Taking Huge Risks

Becoming your own boss can be a dream come true, but it can also be a little terrifying. That fear can hold would-be entrepreneurs back from ever starting a new business, but this doesn’t have to be the case. Especially when you have this guide to getting started with minimal risk. 

Potential Businesses for First-Time Entrepreneurs

Finding the right business opportunity can provide the confidence boost novice entrepreneurs need and these gigs could be a perfect fit.

Dog-Sitting 

What could be better than hanging out with pups for your very first small business? Plus, you can get started sitting after you have taken the proper steps to secure your home against those furry invaders. Be sure to lock up any cabinets, secure all garbage cans, and remove any hazardous items that could choke dogs or puppies. Being aware of houseplants that can be dangerous for dogs is also important, so be sure to remove these toxic plants from your home or at least keep them well out of reach of curious paws and noses. 

Freelancing 

Are you great at building websites for people? Chances are you can find freelance web design work through sites like Upwork or Fiverr. They make it easy to get started as a website designer, writer, or any other professional service that is in demand by other entrepreneurs and small businesses. You can create a profile and start pitching to potential clients in a matter of minutes, which makes freelancing easy for folks who are looking for a side gig. It’s also pretty easy to start with one, for example, on how to start on Fiverr.

Dropshipping 

If you want to open an e-commerce shop but aren’t sure what to stock, then dropshipping could be a perfect first-time business venture. Unlike other inventory-based small businesses, a dropshipping business does not require you to store any of the products you sell. Simply create your website, list your products, and take care of customers — your dropshipping service will take care of everything else. Now the tricky part of operating a dropshipping business is keeping up with product trends but with a little online research, you can make it less of a challenge. 

Set-Up Steps for New Small Businesses

Once you know what sort of small business you would like to try out, you can start getting your idea up and running. These crucial steps will help keep you from feeling overwhelmed. 

Write a Business Plan 

Staying organized is important in ensuring success with any new business. So, even if you don’t plan on looking for investors, writing a business plan can provide a framework for setting up and running your new business. You can find business plan templates and guides online to help you get started, but be sure to leave some flexibility so you can make changes in the future. 

Set Up a Home Office Space 

Plan on working from home? You should avoid working from your couch if you want to be productive. Instead, build a home office space where you can focus and help your new business thrive. All you need is a small corner or a closet and you can create the home office of your dreams. Also, be sure to pick up some organizing tools, a desk, and a supportive office chair

Set Aside Savings to Pay Taxes 

If you have always worked for a company or organization, then you are used to having your state and federal taxes automatically deducted from your paycheck. When you own a small business, those taxes are not taken out automatically anymore, so it’s up to you to ensure that you have paid enough each year. The IRS allows self-employed taxpayers to prepay taxes, which tends to work best for first-time business owners, but you can also take it upon yourself to save up and pay before the annual tax deadline. You can even use apps to boost your savings

Taking on your first business can feel like taking a huge risk. By using the tips above to just get your feet a bit wet, you can feel more secure about trying your hand at entrepreneurship. 

GoDaddy Confirms Data Breach – 28000 Customers Affected

GoDaddy Confirms Data Breach – 28000 Customers Affected

GoDaddy, one of the most famous domain registrar and hosting companies out there, have notified it’s customers about security issues and data leakage they have experienced:

The media have reported that the problem affected all 19 million customers of the company, and the incident took place in the fall of 2019. However, The Register reports that this is not quite the case. According to the publication, what happened in October 2019 has nothing to do with the current incident, while other media reports that the initial compromise took place eight months ago. So, it could be an absolutely new security breach the affected GoDaddy servers.

Back to the facts, on April 23, 2020, GoDaddy employees discovered suspicious activity: usernames and passwords were compromised, as attackers made changes to the SSH file in GoDaddy infrastructure. In total, this problem affected approximately 28,000 customers (not 19,000,000, as some have suggested). But it was easy to make this mistake because not all the data breach-related facts have been released yet.

Troy Hunt from haveibeenpwned.com

GoDaddy experts claim that they have already reset all affected usernames and passwords, got rid of the deliberately damaged SSH file, and have not yet found any traces that the attackers used the “leaked” credentials and changed anything. The company emphasized that it did not find evidence that during the incident any files were added or changed (however, nothing was said about viewing and downloading files).

It is emphasized that the attackers did not have access to the main customer accounts on GoDaddy.com, the incident affected only hosting accounts, however, experts still recommend that victims change their passwords everywhere. And if you still need a domain name, check out Namecheap, one of the more reliable registrars out there.

How to Start a Blog (in 2020): The Free Beginner’s Guide

How to Start a Blog (in 2020): The Free Beginner’s Guide

If you’ve been planning to make a blog but didn’t know where to begin, then you’ve come to the right place!

A SIMPLE BEGINNERS GUIDE ON HOW YOU CAN CREATE YOUR OWN BLOG IN AROUND 30 MINUTES.

Blogging is one of the proven ways you can use to reach millions of people through the power of the internet. Whether you want to promote your business or your personal brand, blogging will help you attract the right audience. Also, an additional thing about blogging that you’ll appreciate over time is that it shapes your life and elevates your perspective. However, the question many people are asking is how do you start and run a blog successfully?

Well, unlike many things in life where no clear-cut answer exists, blogging has a best practice. In this tutorial, I will show you how to start and run a blog in just about 30 minutes.

A lot of the tutorials out there are written in a prescriptive style telling you what to do and what not to do if you want to succeed in blogging. This guide is a little different because it takes you through a personal journey. I have written it from my personal experience creating blogs in different niches and selling many of them. Here, you will learn how to start a successful blog.

Look, it doesn’t really matter if you are a novice, an 18 or 80-year-old, blogging is an art and a science. This means that you too can learn and achieve great success in it. I have simplified the guide so you can understand it without struggling. However, just in case you get to a point and feel that you are stuck, don’t hesitate to contact me. Just leave a comment here and will get back to you, I promise!

Starting a blog can be summarized in a 4-step process. Here is what you need to know as we set off on this exhilarating journey.

  1. Choose a platform to blog on
  2. Get a domain name and a hosting provider
  3. Install WordPress on your web hosting solution
  4. Pick an appropriate theme, develop and launch your blog

The content management system we shall use to build your blog is WordPress, which is the leading blogging platform today. Just follow through as we begin.

STEP ONE


Choosing Your Blogging Platform

When I talk about a blogging platform, I mean the software you need to build and manage your blog. The platform allows you to do quite a lot of things including creating blog pages, adding content, editing content, and even deleting pages and posts.

The commonly used term for a blogging platform is the Content Management System (CMS), so from now on, when we saying CMS, it’s the same as a blog. There are lots of platforms out there that you could use. Most of them have both free and paid packages. The main platforms you could consider include:

  • WordPress – More than 30% of all websites online use WordPress. It is by far the most popular CMS in the world. Starting a WordPress blog is the right choice.
  • Drupal – This is an open-source CMS that supports about 1.7 million websites online including the official White House website.
  • Joomla – This CMS has thousands of features and designs you can use to build your website. Currently, it supports 2.5 million websites online. However, it has a steep learning curve.
  • Blogger – This platform is owned by Google and currently supports 448,831 websites. In terms of market share, it claims about 1.4% of the industry.
  • Squarespace – This content management system comes with pre-built website templates and uses drag and drop elements to build a blog. There are about 2 million blogs out there that run on Squarespace.

Should You Run Your Blog on a Free Platform?

While it looks enticing, starting your blog on a free platform can give you a wrong footing. The fact that you don’t pay a cent to use the platform shouldn’t be celebrated much because these platforms expose you to a host of undesirable issues. Below are some of the demerits of free blogging platforms.

Denies You Real Ownership

The free version of WordPress or Blogger gives you the privilege to use their platform but not the right to ownership. Your account can be shut down at any time without notice to you. If you have content uploaded on the blog, it may be lost never to be recovered.

Limited Customization

In as much as you’ll have access to free plugins and other design features, their use is limited. For your blog to attract the right audience, its design must stand out from the rest. Free content management platforms do not give you the luxury of customizing your blog. You’ll only get the basic features.

Lacks Custom Domain

Free blogging platforms may use your account to advertise their products. For example, the free domain you get will have a structure like this – yoursitename.wordpress.com. The wordpress.com bit is called a subdomain and the only way to get rid of it is to switch to the paid version of the CMS. When you starting a new blog, to succeed online, you need a unique custom domain and not a site name linked to a web host subdomain.

Difficult to Monetize

To make money from your blog, you need a proper domain and hosting platform that will allow you to place affiliate links and ads. Most free content management platforms do not allow you to put links and ads on your website. Therefore, you stand no chance to make money from your blog.

Limited Bandwidth

As you upload content including videos and images to your blog, you’ll need a web host that can accommodate all that without running out of space. Free blogging platforms limit the pace they assign you. For instance, WordPress gives you a storage limit of 3GB for media. It’s important to consider when you create a blog.

Poor Search Engine Optimization Performance

Hosting your blog on a free platform means that loading speeds will be slower and search engines will not assign as much weight to your URL as it does to custom domains. Normally thousands of free websites are assigned the same server hence the slugging load speed. This affects user experience and ultimately your SEO ranking.

The bottom line is you should stay away from free blogging platforms if you really want to reap the benefits of running a proper and profitable blog. You could be thinking of starting small on a free platform and later shift to a paid platform. The tricky aspect with this strategy is that moving your content across platforms or from free to paid can be time-consuming and quite technical.

The Best Approach for Creating a Reputable Blog

From my experience, building your blog on a WordPress platform has lots of benefits. My website, onlinetoolsexpert.com, is built on WordPress as well. At the basic level, you’ll have a professional, custom domain and your content will be hosted on a space that you own 100%.

As for a WordPress blog webhosting that you will need, getting a reliable web host means that your site is always backed up. If for any reason something happens to your website, you’ll be able to recover all your content.

And why WordPress is a great platform to launch your blog? In terms of market share, WordPress is at position 1 with almost 60% of a market share, followed in a distant second by Joomla at less than 7%. The platform runs over 27 million live websites with the United States accounting for over 30% of them. WordPress also has excellent community support and it is simple to use.

Simple to Set Up

WordPress is one of the simplest content management systems to set up. It works almost the same way as you would set up your Facebook page or Instagram account. In fact, even a 10-year old can quickly put up and run her own kiddy blog.

Easy to Manage

Blog management is the bulk of the work that follows a blog set up. Tasks like adding content, videos, images, and other features comprise the day-to-day blog management. WordPress has simplified that through an intuitive interface. You can quickly add a page, post or plugin and get your site running.

Customized for Blogging

WordPress was designed with blogging at the heart of it. All the functionalities and capabilities that bloggers need are built-in and readily available on the platform. With a simple plugin, you can set up an email subscription to your blog. In a few minutes, your first blog can be up.

Gives You Control

Most websites are designed, developed, and managed by professional designers. This means if you want to change anything including a line of text, you have to call the developer. WordPress changes all that by giving you control to make amendments through the dashboard as you wish.

Privacy and Security

WordPress constantly updates its plugins to ensure the version running is always up to date. As long as you adhere to the best practices in areas such as password protection and installing only recommended features, the CMS assures you of privacy and security.

Support

WordPress is backed by a vast community of vibrant contributors. Some of them are developers, top WordPress owners, and volunteer enthusiasts. Through the forums, you can get all the support you need from people who have walked the path you are in.

As yoou see, once you start a wordpress blog, it’s the right pick. WordPress is the best blogging platform today.

STEP TWO


Get a Domain Name and Hosting Provider

First things first, for you to set up a blog, you must have a domain name and a hosting space. For beginners, it makes things simpler if the domain and hosting service are all bought from the same company.

What is a Domain Name?

This is the address your blog is assigned on the internet. Therefore, anyone looking for your blog will use this name to find it. Your domain name should be one that is easy to remember, catchy, and short. If possible, you could stick in a target keyword for SEO purposes. Top level domains (TLD) like .com are easy to recognize.

Where Should You Host Your Blog?

A web host is a company you choose to buy hosting space from. There are over 330,000 hosting providers in the world each offering a set of packages to its target market. WordPress packages usually begin from around $5 per month, a fee that includes both hosting service and with some of the hosting providers, a domain name registration.

The company I recommend for the best hosting plans is DreamHost. Its packages include managed WordPress hosting, SSD hosting, cloud hosting, and shared website hosting that goes as little as $2.59 a month. The company also offers a 97-day money-back guarantee just in case you are dissatisfied with their services within this period.

They’re also recommended by WordPress.org as a top WordPress host since 2006.

Additionally, if you sign up to DreamHost, you will get high quality hosting from just $2.59 per month, as well as a FREE domain name for the first 12 months for your new blog too!

Use this link to get a free domain with your hosting.

Remember: If you’re unhappy with your DreamHost purchase within 97 days, they will give you your money back.

Starting A WordPress Blog On DreamHost

You can get high quality hosting from DreamHost a crazy cheap price of just  $2.59 per month (+ free domain name as well).

But, for new bloggers looking to grow their sites, I recommend going for the DreamHost $5.95 WordPress Unlimited plan, as you get a lot more unlimited features. This is ideal if you plan to scale up your blog in the future or host more than one website on it.

Yearly plans save you 50% of your cost and provide you a free domain, so it’s highly recommended to go with those.

Remember that you can always start off with the basic plan and upgrade whenever you feel you need more features.

Here’s what you get for $5.95 per month with the DreamHost WordPress Unlimited Plan:

  • Unlimited Websites
  • A FREE domain name (worth $15)
  • Unmetered website space
  • Unmetered bandwidth
  • Unlimited email accounts
  • Unmetered email storage
  • Unlimited site hosting on your account
  • Free SSL Certificate (by Let’s Encrypt!)
  • One-click WordPress Install and 24/7 support
  • Host unlimited numbers of websites on your account

Click on the “Get Started” button to start the process of creating your very own blog.

Starting a blog with wordpress on a wordpress hosting

At the next step, you will have to pick the hosting plan for your new blog. As suggested previously, go with the DreamHost WordPress Unlimited plan, or, if you want something more luxury, the DreamPress plan (I think it’s better to start with the unlimited one).

Once you picked your blog hosting plan, the next page will come up. Here, you can register a free domain, in case you picked a yearly hosting plan before.

In case you registered a domain previously, from a different domain name register, you can content it in the ‘I already have a domain’ option. For a new one, just click on the ‘Register a new domain’ and follow the instruction to registered it. It should be pretty straightforward – you just type in the domain name that you want in the search box, and it will show you if the domain name is available or not.

Keep on doing that until you find an available one. DreamHost domain search is also smart and will always try to help you with different domain name suggestions and ideas.

After that, a payment window will load. Pick you favourite payment method and set the configurations as below. Submit order.

After that, you should receive an email from DreamHost with all your new account information (it could also arrive to spam, check it as well).

Keep the login information in a known place, you might need it.

The next thing that will happen is the creation of a password for your WordPress dashboard login. Make it a hard one, use more than 10 characters with special signs and upper ad lower case letters. You probably heard about that, but there a lot of site hackers out there. A strong password is really helpful in these cases.

STEP THREE


Install WordPress on Your Site

Once you have bought your domain name and hosting package, the next step is to install your WordPress blog. Every web host has its own unique ways of doing an installation. On DreamHost, you will benefit from a 1-click WordPress install service that gets your blog up and running in minutes.

So at first, you need to go to your DreamHost dashboard, and from there to Domains -> Once Click Install:

DreamHost WordPress installer in one click

There will be a bunch of options, just go and pick WordPress installation. Here, choose your domain and leave the database installation as on the screenshot below. That’s it. Just click on Install it for me now!

DreamHost WordPress installer in one click

Now, go to your email inbox which you registred on DreamHost. There, you will have an email with the username and the password to connect to your site. Now, you can access your site! Go to www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin and with the username and login you received. You will land on your new blog site WordPress dashboard. One step forward in starting your blog.

Starting a blog with WordPress

Your site is in the air! What could you do now? Don’t worry, WordPress is really easy to pick up.

Start by looking into posts and pages which will allow you to add new content to your new blog. Write some example text and publish it to your blog. Pretty exciting, huh?

Now, let’s learn how to change the appearance of your blog with a theme, in the next step.

STEP FOUR


Pick an Appropriate Theme

Since your blog is built on the WordPress content management system, you will need a WordPress theme to crown it all. The theme comes as a pre-designed template that also gives you the ability to tweak and customize. The best places to find beautiful and full-featured themes for your blog include:

  • Themeforest – Here, you can get themes and templates for anything from $2. The themes are of high quality and are backed by a strong support team.
  • StudioPress – The WordPress themes developed by StuidoPress don’t require as much maintenance and they are all mobile responsive.
  • Mythemeshop – Developers at mythemeshop emphasize greater user experience, optimum performance, and clean code for all their themes.
  • WordPress Theme Library – WordPress has a host of themes in its library that you can choose and upload almost instantly. This is the one we recommend to start with.

Whatever theme you choose, your priority should be that it fits with your goals. A professional blog, fits well with a formal clean design whereas an art or entertainment blog stands out with a creative theme.

Installing Your Theme

Let’s install our first theme from the WordPress theme library. Hover the cursor on the Appearance tab located on the sidebar and click on Themes. This will lead you to the themes page on the dashboard.

Adding a theme to a WordPress blog

At this point, you have the option to Activate one of the themes listed or do a Live Preview to see how a particular theme will look like on your blog.

Otherwise, in case you are not happy with the new theme, you can switch back to your old theme or search for a new one from the dashboard. There are thousands of free WordPress themes that you can download and use.

Click on Add New and you will be transferred to the main theme search window. Here you can customize your search by applying filters or just look around from the Latest, Popular, Featured, and Favorites categories. As you see, it’s all very visual and straightforward. Just play with it.

Uploading Your Purchased Theme

In case you don’t want to install a theme from the library and have your own one, it comes in a zipped folder as a downloadable file. If you so wish, you can upload it straight away onto your WordPress dashboard. This is as simple as logging onto your WordPress blog.

Remember your theme is in a zipped folder. To upload it onto WordPress, go to Appearance then click on Themes. On the dashboard that opens up, click on Add New then Add Themes and upload your theme.

Installing a zipped theme on your new WordPress blog

Ideally, the theme should be somewhere in your download folder or wherever you have saved it on your computer. At this point, the theme is still blank waiting for customization. You can begin by filling out some basics like social media links, logo, and uploading some plugins.

FAQ’s About Starting A Blog

1. Is Blogging Dead?

Blogging is not dead. In fact, it is one of the fastest-growing platforms for communicating and spreading information across the web. Instead of procrastinating, start your today and impact the web with knowledge.

Through blogging, you will be able to connect with others, share your ideas, and improve your writing. Many people have become thought leaders through niche blogging. But, you should do it right and learn how to start a successful blog.

2. Can You Earn Money from a Blog?

Yes, you can make money from blogging. The many people out there who are making tons of money from blogging have two main secrets: they never give up and have selected their niche wisely. To sustain your blogging discipline, you must start with a niche that you are passionate with. Other ideas on how to monetize your blog include selling ebooks, posting ads, and affiliate links.

3. Does It Take Long to Write a Blog?

Depending on the type of post you are writing, you can take anything between 1 to 3 hours to write a good blog. The process includes drafting the article, proofreading, adding images, uploading on your site, and promoting it on social media. You can also do guest blogging and link back to your website.

4. In what niches can I start a new blog?

It’s don’t really matter. Blogs suite pretty much every niche out there be it fashion, photography, books, or sports. If you ever wondered on how to start a beauty blog or traveling one, this guide will lead you in the right direction.

5. Do I Have to Pay to Start a Blog?

No – you can begin from a free platform such as WordPress.com or Blogger.com when you create a blog. However, my personal advice is that you should get a paid blogging platform even if it is at the basic level. This will set you up for a successful journey ahead and increase your chances of earning from it.

6. Can I Start a Blog Without Deep Technical Knowledge?

Yes, in recent years, starting a blog becomes much easier. When you start a WordPress blog, it’s basically a 30 minutes process that at the end of it, you can have a new and shiny blog in the air. This guide was created with ease of use in mind, so refer to it (or leave a comment) for every question that you have.

Amazon Cuts Affiliate Commission Fees for Some Product Categories

Amazon Cuts Affiliate Commission Fees for Some Product Categories

On April 14, 2020, Amazon sent messages to its partners (affiliate marketers through Amazon Associates) in which it announced a decrease in affiliate payments. The changes take effect on April 21, 2020.

Amazon reduces payouts for the following product categories:

  • Furniture, home improvement, garden, pet products – the commission will fall from 8% to 3%.
  • Beauty, musical instruments, headphones, industrial goods – the commission will decrease from 6% to 3%.
  • Tools, goods for tourism and walking – reduction in commission from 5.5% to 3%.
  • Groceries – decrease from 5% to 1%.
  • Sports – decrease from 4.5% to 3%.
  • Goods for children – decrease from 4.5% to 3%.
  • Health and care – decrease from 4.5% to 1%.
Amazon affiliate program fee change

The changes did not affect the categories of Luxury Beauty, Amazon Coins, PC, DVD & Blu-Ray, toys, Amazon Kindle devices, Amazon Echo, watches, jewelry, luggage, shoes, bags and accessories, and several others.

Amazon affiliate program participants negatively perceived the news, saying that reduced payouts would hit their business a lot.

In situations like this, remember, you must control your sales channel better. It’s always safer to have a personal website or a WordPress based online store and not rely on 3-rd party service to make or break your business.

The additional lesson here is to always diversify your income streams. Be it by different low investment businesses, create an online business, sharing a room on Airbnb, start selling on Fiverr, podcasting, trading domains, and many more. Share with us your thoughts in the comments.

EDIT: Walmart is cutting its affiliate rate commissions as well from 4% to 1% on most of its categories.

What Is the Main Purpose of FTP Protocol

What Is the Main Purpose of FTP Protocol

File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is use literally for what it’s name stands for – to transfer files. FTP protocol allows you to connect to an FTP server to view it’s contents (basically, information and data).

Sharing data via FTP is much faster than connecting with HTTP protocol, which is why it is advantageous to use it for downloading huge files (games, movies, programs). Also, FTP is actively used by Webmasters to upload information to FTP servers by using different FTP programs such as the regular web browser or dedicated programs like CuteFTP, FAR and many others. Some HTML editors have an embedded FTP client, such as Home Site and Adobe Dreamweaver.

FTP protocol was created on the client-server architecture using various network connections when exchanging information and client data with the server. When connecting to the FTP server, users are provided with authentication (login and password). Data is exchanged over TCP / IP network protocols, but for this, an FTP server must be started and waiting for external requests.

Many people think that FTP is just for downloading movies and music, but it can also be used for other file types as well. The main purpose of FTP in practice is only for downloading information to a remote server, since downloading files is much more convenient with the browser. In cases where FTP server is not responding, you need to check the FireWall properties of the server. In this case, you need to choose a hosting that allows you to upload files not only via FTP, but also with other options, such as email or a special form. Servers of this type, as a rule, have a guide for downloading files for FTP specifications.

If you want to work with the FTP protocol, the first step is to choose a reliable and high-quality FTP server that allows you to fully manage the necessary file types. Shared files, if any, must be provided with anonymous FTP access. The administrator must have full access to all information available on the server.

Pay attention to the fact that providers like SiteGround hosting and DreamHost hosting are offering reliable hosting for business owners with FTP access.