How To Choose The Right Web Hosting Plan For Your Business

Any business, whether they're brick and mortar establishment or an online business, needs a website. A website needs a host. A web host stores all the pages of your website and makes them available to computers connected to the Internet. Like most internet services, there are a lot of options. Web hosting is no different. When it comes to choosing a web host, you have two basic options, do it yourself or choose a hosting plan.

For the small to medium-sized business, hosting your own website quite likely has too many hurdles to be worth the effort. The initial costs for purchasing, setting up and organizing all the necessary hardware, licensing the software can be overwhelming and time consuming. Not to mention the recurring costs of a stable and reliable Internet connection. For most companies, except the very largest firms, hosting your own website just does not make sense. That leaves the second alternative, finding a hosting company and choosing a plan. Let's begin by taking a look at choosing a hosting company.

Choosing Your Hosting Company

There are literally thousands of web hosting companies to choose from and evaluating them can be difficult. The first question you will want to ask is a potential hosting company is what types of hosting plans they offer. There are likely to be multiple choices from starter type packages to the platinum version with all the bells and whistles.

Here are a few basic criteria to examine:

Service and Support:

Money Back Guarantee – Finding a web host is an investment but you do not want it to be a risky one. Look for a host that offers a guarantee.

24/7 Technical Support – This is important. What happens to your business if your web host crashes? If you have an online business, you're dead in the water. Know that not all technical support is created equal and just because someone offers 24/7 customer service does not mean they're actively available. It may mean that you get to leave a voicemail or stay on hold for hours and they'll get to you when they can.

Testimonials and references can be extremely useful. Find out if other customers are happy with the hosting service and

Ease of use:

A Control Panel is your central hub of information. It is where you find all of your statistics and are able to manage all of your account features. If your host's control panel is too difficult to navigate or does not offer the tools your business needs, then it is best to look elsewhere. Your website is your business and your control panel needs to be easy for you to use. You do not have time to spend searching for the information and tools you need.

You will probably want to upload scripts for message boards, email forums, set cookies, and the like. . If this is the case, you will want a web host that allows you to install and run scripts. Most hosting companies offer CGI, Common Gateway Interface, a protocol that allows web pages to interact with scripts on a server.

You will want to have email accounts for your website. For example, admin @ yourcompany.com and [email protected] , etc … A POP (Post Office Protocol) Email Account is an email account hosted on your site and you will probably want more than one. Most hosting companies offer packages with different levels. For example, a beginner or starter package will have 1-5 email accounts, a middle of the road type account may offer up to 50 and a full business package may have unlimited email accounts available.

Website construction tools and / or Microsoft FrontPage extensions. You need to be able to design and develop your website. Many hosting companies offer templates and design tools. In addition they may offer FrontPage Extensions. FrontPage is a website design software program that is fairly easy to use and if your host allows you to upload your website onto the server.

Features:

Do you want to know who is visiting your website? What about what pages they visit or how long they stay online? What about click through rates? Any effective marketing plan or website plan needs to evaluate these statistics. This means you must find a hosting company that not only tracks this information for you but makes it easy for you to access and understand.

Marketing features like autoresponders and mailing list management are a fantastic feature but not all web hosting companies offer them. Take a good look at what your business needs before you sign on with a company. Sometimes a hosting company includes marketing features in your package and sometimes they are offered ala carte.

Security is important too. Look for a SSL, Secure Socket Layer, Secure Server. SSL is a protocol that allows for encrypted transmissions online. If you are collecting private information from your visitors, you will want this and you can include it in your privacy policy.

Some hosting plans offer shopping cart software integrated right into your account. This is not a must but it will save you a step if you offer products for purchase on your website

Members only areas require passwords but not all hosting companies offer this feature.

Choosing Your Hosting Plan

Nearly all hosting companies offer different types of hosting plans, including "shared" hosting and "dedicated" hosting. In addition, some hosts also offer a "virtual private" hosting option.
Here are the details and benefits of each.

Shared Hosting:

Shared hosting or "virtual" hosting (which is different from "virtual private" hosting described below) is when the hosting company hosts your website on its own physical servers for a monthly fee. In this type of arrangement, the hosting company will also be serving other companies' websites from the same physical server. The hosting company is responsible for the technical details relating to keeping your site up and running, including server setup, bandwidth management, backups, and security.

Price is despite the primary advantage of shared hosting. Since you're only using a portion of a single server, your costs are less than those for dedicated hosting. Also, since you are not directly responsible for management of the servers, you do not need to commit as many resources to routine maintenance of your website. This also means your hosting company will handle many of the security matters for your website; you do not need to make any direct investment in the software and hardware needed to secure the site.

However, because your website is on the same server as other clients, you have no direct control over the server as a whole, and certain site administration tasks may be more time consuming as compared to a site that is on a dedicated server.

Dedicated Hosting:

Dedicated hosting means your Web server is sitting on its own box, owned and managed by the service provider. Dedicated hosting means you will have more direct access to make different types of changes to your site compared to a shared hosting plan. The degree of host management depends on what exactly is offered by the service provider. Most providers offer special managed dedicated server programs that ensure continuous monitoring of server performance as well as routine tasks like data backups.

When you have a dedicated hosting solution, your website resides on its own server. This means that your company can directly control the machine and determine which Web applications are running on it. This also means that it is less likely that activities of other websites on the same physical server will negatively impact yours.

In addition, because the server only responds to client requests for information from your own website, there is likely to be a faster response time for the same amount of traffic across the server. If your server has a dedicated IP address, it will likely be easier to handle certain anonymous FTP and SSL encryption activities. Dedicated hosting arrangements are generally favored for high-traffic businesses. Because your website is the only one on the server, however, dedicated hosting costs are generally higher than with a shared hosting plan.

Virtual Private Hosting:

Virtual private hosting means that the server software is "virtualized" to permit the hosting of multiple websites on a single physical server (as with shared hosting), but each has its own copy of the operating system and permits greater customer access to the server ( as with dedicated hosting). Virtual Private Hosting is generally available at a lower overall cost than traditional dedicated hosting, but provides the customer with much greater control and access to the website.

SEO 7 Key Steps to Make Money With SEO

Search Engine Optimization has been proven to be one of the best techniques any webmaster can use in order to drive quality organic traffic to his or her site and eventually convert this traffic to instant money. Here are some key steps on how you can do exactly that:

1. Fill your content with relevant keywords. Make your site crawl by using appropriate keywords or keyphrases so search engine can easily find you. Sprinkle these keywords on your articles without sounding too unnatural. Remember you have to make your content both search engine and user-friendly.

2. Build links. To get optimum result, build links to websites which are already indexed by search engines. These websites usually have enormous traffic and good search engine ranking that can drive quality traffic to your webpage.

3. Submit your webpage to SEO directories. This is the best way to create a quality one way link to your site.

4. Write and submit quality articles to ezine sites. Make your website crawl through internet marketing. Write quality articles and distribute them over the internet. Each submission grants you a one way link.

5. Do a keyword research regularly. The needs and wants of your readers dramatically change everyday. Identify the new keywords that they might use in searching for your products and service. Optimize your webpage by using these keywords naturally.

6. Update your webpage regularly. Keep your website active by posting new content, images, reviews or commentaries whenever appropriate to give you readers a reason to check out your site over and over again.

7. Utilize link popularity. This can easily be done by getting at least 2 quality inbound links to your site. This is the most powerful SEO technique there is in the World Wide Web today so learn its ropes and take advantage of it.

IB Physics – 7 Ways to Get a 7

IB Physics, especially at the Higher Level, is one of the most difficult subjects in the IB Diploma. Nonetheless, it is still very possible to attain a 7. In fact, according to the IB Statistical Report in November 2009, 31% of Standard Level Candidates and 20% of Higher Level Candidates received a 7. This means that on average, in a class of 20 HL students, 4 will get a 7.

So how do you get into that top 20%?

To find out, I’ve asked many successful past IB Physics students regarding their techniques, as well as IB Physics teachers, one of whom used to mark IB Papers. Combining this with my own experiences, I’ve found 7 key things that successful students are doing in terms of learning the course and IB Revision.

1) Know Your IB Physics Syllabus

One of the best aspects of IB Science subjects is the Syllabus. The Syllabus contains all the possible concepts that could possibly be examined. I know a teacher who actually writes IB Papers and he told me that every question that is written is closely checked according to the Syllabus and if it’s not relevant, it is removed. This means that if you can do every point in the Syllabus, then there is nothing that can surprise you in your final examination. So if you still have plenty of time before your final exams, make sure you have you syllabus next to you as you revise.

2) Annotate Your IB Physics Syllabus

We can go one step further. What I strongly recommend is printing out a copy of all of the relevant sections of the Syllabus. As you learn/revise, don’t just write down notes in your notebook, write your notes on your printed version of the syllabus! That way, as you learn, you’re cross-referencing to your syllabus. When you do this, you’ll be well aware of all the topics you’ve covered, the topics you’ve missed and importantly, the topics that you’re not yet familiar with.

3) Maximize Your IB Physics Internal Assessment (IA) Scores

Whilst the IB Physics exam may be difficult, the Internal Assessment is much easier. This is because you can do them without any time pressure whatsoever. Also, most teachers give you plenty of opportunities to maximise your IA scores. And most importantly, scoring high in your IAs means that you can score lower in your final exam and still get a 7. What I recommend is to look at your Physics Guide very closely and look at what is required of you for the IAs. If there is anything you’re unsure about, make sure you ask your teacher about it. If you don’t do as well as you’d hoped, find out why you lost marks. There should be no excuse for not scoring 40+ in your IAs.

4) Make Sure You Understand Each Point Before You Move On

This is crucial. As your teacher explains each point, make sure that you really understand it before they move on to the next point. First of all, most subsequent points will depend on an understanding of the first few points, so if you miss a concept, you may get lost. Secondly, it saves you a lot of time. It means that you won’t fall behind and need to catch up on concepts that you didn’t understand previously.

5) Effective Time Management

If you manage your time well, you can do in one day what would normally take another student three days. In fact, I believe that one of the key differences between a 7 candidate and a 5 candidate is their ability to use their time well. The most important thing is to remove distractions. When you’re studying from a text book, or doing past paper questions, make sure you’re not on Facebook! And try to keep things that you tend to fidget with or get easily distracted by out of sight. But I admit, it can often be fun to go Facebook. So what I suggest is to allocate times where you allow yourself to be distracted. Personally, I give myself ten minutes before my first block of work to look at Facebook, grab some snacks etc. before working. If possible, put yourself under some sort of time pressure. Parkinson’s Law states that the time taken to complete a task is proportional to the time allocated to it. If you’ve given yourself a whole day to write up a full practical, chances are, it’ll take you a day. But for those of you doing IB English A1, you’ll notice that you can write up 1500 word essays in 90 minutes. This is because you’ve set a time a limit and your brain will automatically focus on completing the task in that time. One way around this is to focus on past papers for revision and time yourself!

6) Do IB Physics Past Paper Questions

I know a new Syllabus has just been released and there aren’t many past papers on the new Syllabus. However, you’ll notice that there’s still quite a lot of overlap with the old Syllabus, so there’s no excuse for not doing lots of past papers. If you come across a question that’s not in your course, just skip it. Doing past paper questions, especially under timed conditions is very useful. It helps for you to sink in the knowledge from the theory – doing questions and actually writing things down helps in retention of knowledge. Also, it reveals holes in your understanding. If there are questions, or groups of questions that you can’t do, go back to the Syllabus and see what it is that you need revising.

7) Scrutinise IB Physics Mark Schemes One of the reasons why IB Physics is so hard, I’ve found, is because what is written in the text book often doesn’t match what’s required of you in your exam. In fact, when I compared the definitions of Deep Inelastic Scattering (Particle Physics Option) in the Hamper Text Book to that in the mark scheme, I found that they did not match (The text book definition would have gotten 0). Now this would be horrible, especially if the student memorised the text book definition and ended up getting no marks for it in the exam. The only things the examiners have in front of them are your paper and the mark scheme.

So make sure you have a good understanding of those mark schemes! So there you have it, the 7 key strategies that, I can guarantee, will be of enormous help to you in attaining that 7 in IB Physics!

Best Wishes,

Owen Yang

Founder – IB Blueprint

Executive Tutor – Australian IB Tuition

How to Plan a Worry Free Vacation

I've always done the Griswold family vacation. My dad, an amazingly competent person, always tried to control his vacations to the point that he knew what meals would have served each time we ate at a restaurant. After this, we always had to deal with the unexpected. This might be a 10 'extension cord when we turned out to need 12', or a car recall for possible shorts in the electric door locks we heard right after we stopped because the doors were on fire.

I've spent a few decades trying to foresee the next disaster and prevent it from happening. Perhaps, as a
reaction, I tend to be less structured in my vacations. I know where I'm going, and when I'll be there, but I tend to presume that I can deal with whatever comes up when the time comes. Thankfully, I've pretty much been able to manage without encountering major problems.

Either method can work for a good, enjoyable vacation. Knowing what kind of person you are, and what you want out of the vacation is required. Whichever plan you embrace, some preparation is required. You have to know what budget you can use. This is money and time at least. If you intend to fly, you will need to have tickets far enough ahead of time to get the best price. If you drive, the car needs to be serviced to limit the opportunities of something breaking at an inopportune time. A car should be stocked with an emergency kit, with first aid supplies, water, a blanket and possibly some survival rations of some sort. You should always keep an atlas and local map in the car.

Even when simply going somewhere reasonably close to your home town, you should always do your research. There are many little treasures you can find that are not normally considered tourist destinations. I've been able to visit places from movies, books and history that were not on any guided tour. Whenever possible, I ask people I know in person or through the internet about the places I intend to visit. This has worked both ways, with both the person living there and me, the visitor, likely to learn about the place.

One of the lessons I've learned from my father is that a spontaneous vacation, where you go to a city and then explore instead of following an itinerary, can benefit from planning. Like my father, I keep a folder with every document and message relating to the vacation. It greatly helps when the time comes to deal with troubles. The folder includes places that might be useful, like an embassy, ‚Äč‚Äčtourist center, welcome center or other such site.

The most important thing to remember about a vacation is to enjoy it. Bring what you need for comfort, plan for multiple things you might want to do, so you have available options in case something does not work. Do not be afraid to follow your nose if you find something exciting. Just do not break the budget you set when you started.