Tag Archives: Web Hosting

Is Your Website Ready for Holiday Traffic?

superb-blackfriday-bootcamp

Today’s Black Friday Bootcamp Checklist is all about speed.

Slow pages =  lower conversions (lost $$).

Is your website built for speed this shopping season?

If not, it’s OK.

We’ll get your hosting ready with today’s checklist item.

You’ll learn what you can do to welcome traffic surges and prevent high-latency and bottlenecks.

High amounts of traffic can cause the “Shark Tank Effect” resulting in slow downs, bottlenecks and outages… and pages that won’t load.

An Aberdeen Group study showed that a 1 second delay in page load time equals 11% drop in page views and a 7% loss in conversions.

Internet retailers discovered when load time is reduced from 8 seconds to 2 seconds, conversions went up by a staggering 74%.

Outages can occur when your hosting plan has limitations on traffic or processing power.

Luckily, you can easily do a few things to reduce the “load” on your server… ensuring that it will work fast and deliver your web pages, even when your site is busy.

Check #1: Content Delivery Network

The first thing you need to do is setup a Content Delivery Network… or CDN for short.

A CDN is a collection of servers placed in diverse locations around the World. The CDN works by storing images, large files, videos, and audio files.

When a visitor hits your website, the CDN decides which location is closest to the site visitor and then sends the files for download from that location. The closer the server sending the images and data, the faster the end user experience.

Here’s some research on how site speed affects user experience:

  • Conversion rate increases 74% when load time decreases from 8 to 2 seconds (real-user monitoring data from 33 major retailers)
  • Aberdeen Group study showed that a one second delay in page load time equals 11% fewer page views, a 16% decrease in customer satisfaction, and 7% loss in conversions.
  • One marketer got an 8.47% conversion rate improvement by moving his landing page onto a faster host.
  • Shopzilla sped up their site by 5 seconds and increased the conversion rate 7-12%.
  • Shaving 2.2 seconds off Mozilla’s landing pages increased download conversions by 15.4%, which they estimate will result in 60 million more Firefox downloads per year.
  • Amazon reported way back in 2006 that they got 1% revenue increase for every 100ms of improvement.

The faster your website loads, the higher your conversions.

=> Click Here to Try the Superb Internet CDN for FREE

A CDN is easy to use and easy to setup. In fact, you can be up and running in just minutes.

The Superb Internet CDN has 172 Points of Presence in 113 cities across 43 countries. Your content will be delivered fast – no matter where your website visitors are located.

Next up: Check #2: Choosing the right hosting plan.

We’ll dig deeper next week to get you ready for the 2016 holiday shopping season.

Black Friday Bootcamp (Are You Ready?)

superb-blackfriday-series

For the next two weeks, I will show you how to prepare for Black Friday so you can increase your traffic and conversions.

I’ll also show you how to create an annual marketing plan, enabling you to increase your revenue throughout the year.

We’ll release articles every few days with actionable steps so you aren’t overwhelmed. This will make it quick and easy for you to prepare for Black Friday and the holiday shopping season.

But first, let’s look at some numbers before we dive into this “Black Friday Bootcamp” series.

Online shoppers spent a record $4.45 BILLION dollars during Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday sales last year.

And according to IBM statistics, consumers cashed in on Black Friday deals:

The average order value for the mobile and desktop shopper combined for Black Friday 2015 was $127.84, down slightly from 2014($129.37)

That’s a lot of money, and you can grab your chunk of it with the proper preparation.

Interestingly, over one-third of ALL sales transactions were completed using mobile devices. Smartphones accounted for 44.7% of all online traffic, 3 and a half times that of tablets at 12.5%.

In addition, I was surprised to learn 40% of customers begin researching their holiday shopping before Halloween (according to the National Retail Federation).

The NRF expects retail sales in November and December to increase 3.6% (to $655.8 BILLION). Online sales are forecasted to grow between 7 and 10% over 2015, by as much as $117 billion dollars.

The good thing is, you have plenty of time to prepare for the holiday sales season.

My sincere hope is that you implement all that you can to improve your sales process. This alone will ensure more profitability throughout the year.

By the end of this series, you will be prepared and ready to maximize revenue this holiday season and throughout the year.

Here’s your Black Friday Bootcamp Checklist:

  • Get your hosting ready. How to welcome traffic surges and prevent high-latency and bottlenecks
  • How to make it rain – steps to plan and organize sales for Black Friday so your sales don’t evaporate
  • Change their mind and increase your profits – the best methods for reducing abandoned shopping carts
  • Copywriting basics you can use to create stunning and convincing banners and text ads for Black Friday
  • Borrow Amazon’s ‘teaser method’ to create buzz in advance for any marketplace
  • Turning the old to new again – using pixels on your site to bring back old traffic and customers for cheap
  • 5 tweaks to your Facebook page that will boost Black Friday sales immediately
  • This method drove 27% of last year’s holiday sales and it can work for you too
  • Do this now and you’ll turn one-time shoppers into year-round customers
  • Watch your competition closely with this technique to remain ahead of the game
  • Surefire way to create a blazing email campaign for Black Friday that’ll lure anyone

I’m really excited about this new marketing series.

As you can see above, we will cover a lot of topics. Don’t worry though, each lesson on our checklist will be easily actionable… taking only a few minutes out of your day.

The end result will be a streamlined process for boosting sales not just for Thanksgiving and Black Friday, but year-round.

Be sure to check tomorrow for the first check to perform so you can be ready for Black Friday.

Source(s):
National Retail Federation: https://nrf.com/sites/default/files/Documents/NRF%202014%20Holiday%20Survival%20Kit%20REV.pdf
https://nrf.com/resources/consumer-data/holiday-headquarters
IBM: http://www-01.ibm.com/software/marketing-solutions/benchmark-reports/black-friday-2015.html

Marketing 101 – The ABCs of a Homepage

What is a Homepage?

Before we dive into the marketing strategies involved with creating an effective homepage, it’s crucial that everyone understands what a homepage is. In essence, a homepage is the introductory, or default page, of a website that typically highlights the site’s table of contents.

Sleek chrome & blue number website buttons.

There’s a good reason for why it’s called a homepage – it closely resembles that of a physical house and the only real difference is that it’s online. Think of it like this. Your website’s homepage is where people come to visit you. It’s the family room of your website where everyone meets to hang out, get comfortable, before they actually move further inside to see the remaining parts of the website.

Why is a Homepage Important?

Everyone who owns an ecommerce business understands that their website’s homepage is inevitably the most important page of the entire site.

Like they say, you never get a second chance to make a good first impression. Therefore, you want to ensure that your homepage is clean, tidy, and clutter-free so that visitors can easily navigate to see what your website is all about – similar to how you want to keep your house clean when having visitors.

The main goal of any ecommerce homepage is to make a great first impression. Reason being is that you want to turn your visitors into leads, and your leads into customers by driving them down your sales funnel.

Always Remember the ABCs of a Homepage

Since your website’s homepage receives most of your site’s traffic, it’s vital that your homepage is optimized to “Always Be Converting (ABC)” visitors into customers. If you’re failing to convert visitors into clients, it probably means that your homepage is missing some critical elements.

abc-blocks-1424477-639x564

To help you achieve this never-ending feat, here are five helpful tips to elevate your homepage to the next level for maximum conversions:

  1. Headline:
  • Within 3-5 seconds, visitors should know exactly what your site is about, what it has to offer, and how you can help customers. Leave out the fluff and do your best to keep things clear and simple.
  1. Subheadline:
  • This section should state a brief summary of what you can offer and your competitive advantages. Don’t brag about yourself, avoid jargon by speaking the language of your target audience, and do your best to zero in on the problems of your customers and how you can help to alleviate their pain points.
  1. Call-to-Action (CTA):
  • Every homepage should have call-to-actions (CTAs) since the goal is to always turn your leads into customers by not only having them stay on your website longer but also to move them through your sales funnel. We recommend having a minimum of 3 CTAs above the fold to direct visitors to the different stages of the buying cycle.
  1. Eye Candy:
  • Make sure that you use images / videos to support your main points. Since most people are visual by nature, it helps to draw out their emotions so that they can connect with you better. Remember, the visual images must support what you have to offer, along with highlighting how you can help your visitors resolve their concerns.
  1. Copy / Content:
  • Ensure that the copy and content on your homepage highlights the benefits and competitive advantages of your business. Describe what you do, what you offer, how you can help, and make sure that your copy is lightweight, simple, and avoid jargon by speaking the language of your customers.

By following the guidelines listed above, ecommerce sites can improve their odds of converting visitors into customers. And since every business is dynamic, you must continually optimize your homepage as your business needs change.

Only then will you have a successfully dynamic homepage that truly engages your target audience to not only show them what your business is about, along with your competitive advantages but also how you’re able to help them troubleshoot their problems and improve their lives.

Birthday Cake

For those unaware, our 20th birthday is tomorrow and we’re pulling out all the stops by giving away all of our BEST promotions for this rare one day event on Saturday (July 23, 2016). Choose one, or take advantage of all our birthday specials and see for yourself why we’re the host with the most. Switch from the rest to the best today!!!

 

 

What is VPS?


The best explanation of VPS I have ever been given was through an analogy. It should help you understand the basics.

Shared Hosting


 

Shared Hosting (also known as Web Hosting) is the Public Bus of the hosting industry. You will get to where you need to go, but the selected route might not be your ideal path. Plus, you will have to make all the stops along the way to pick up other riders. Shared Hosting has you share the overall resource of a server with a large number of clients. Since you share the server, you share the costs. Shared Hosting is ideal for low maintenance sites that don’t except high unmanageable traffic.

Dedicated HostingDedicated Hosting would be equivalent owning your own Car. You are able to get to Point A to Point B at your convenience. However, you are also responsible for gas and maintenance. Dedicated servers provide you all the resources of a server to use at your discretion. However, you are also responsible for all the maintenance and cost associated with ownership. Dedicated Hosting is ideal for businesses that need to be able to control and fully customize their servers to meet the demands of this company.

VPS Hosting

Virtual Private Servers (VPS) would be the Vanpool in this analogy. With a vanpool, a select number of participants share all the resource and cost of the van. This allows for efficient transportation without the inconvenience of a method like a bus. VPS is often the step between Shared and Dedicated Hosting because it offers many of the benefits of Dedicated without the limitations of Shared Hosting.

Uptime SLA versus Downtime

Is there really a difference?

In the world of hosting, uptime is widely promoted to potential customers, and rightfully so.  If you are about to make an entrance into the online community, investing in a company that promises high uptime is paramount. Lost time equates to potentially losing sales, and no one likes losing money.

So the question is how do you compare between various uptime guarantees? A quick search reveals that Company A offers 99.5% Uptime Guarantee, Company B offers 99.9% Uptime Guarantee and Company C offers 100% Uptime Guarantee. It is important to know the differences behind these claims and the specifics behind a company’s Service Level Agreements (SLA).

To fully understand SLA, it is important to note the numbers that formulate the uptime percentage.    There are 8,760 hours in a calendar year.  Therefore, if Company A offers 99.5% Uptime SLA, the company can have roughly 44 hours of network downtime before you, the customer, is compensated. That is roughly two days, which would be horrible if Murphy’s Law kicked in (anything that can go wrong, does). Now with Company B, 99.9% seems great because you are looking at only about nine hours of downtime. A full business day; however, it could be still be quite costly. No one can predict every possible event that will impact one’s network; therefore, these companies make guarantees that provide a little “breathing” room for these unplanned events.

We are left with Company C, who offered a 100% Uptime Guarantee.  The company does recognize that unplanned events happen and that there are circumstances outside of everyone’s control.  The company does, however, promises that if the network does go down that there will be immediate compensation for the downtime period.  This is the very focus behind a company’s commitment to customer service. Company C recognizes your uptime is crucial to your business, and is ready to provide the support you need to be successful.

So when selecting a company to host your site or manage your servers, make sure you select a company that values you, the customer.

 


 

The Whir Gets Down With Curtis

interview.jpgThe Whir has contacted some of the speakers presenting at the HostingCon 2008 conference taking place this week in Chicago and who should they have contacted but our favorite SVP of SuperbHosting.net himself, Curtis R. Curtis! This year, Curtis is moderating a session, titled “Search Marketing Tools for the Hosting Industry”, in which a panel of experts discuss search marketing tips, tools and advice for the purpose of improving marketing strategies, increasing ROIs from online spend and boosting revenues. You can check out his interview at The Whir as well as a number of other interviews with presenters at this years’ HostingCon conference.

As online advertising continues to grow into a multi-billion dollar industry, search engine optimization and marketing will continue to be lucrative fields for both web hosts, domain registrars and resellers alike.

In a session entitled “Search Marketing Tools for the Hosting Industry”, moderator Curtis R. Curtis, SVP of Superb Internet (superbhosting.net) and CEO of Sharksfly Marketing Solutions, will lead a panel of industry experts to discuss a range of effective search marketing tools and resources available for web hosts and their customers.

The panel — comprised of Nemedia (nemedia.ca) president Hamlet Batista, NVI (nvisolutions.com) CEO Guillaume Bouchard, Epiar (epiar.com) president Ken Jurina, and SEOmoz (seomoz.org) president Gillian Muessig — will discuss search marketing tools and tips on improving search marketing strategies, increasing ROIs from online spend and increasing revenues.

Click here for the full article.