So, you want to host your website, but you have no knowledge regarding website hosting. Worry not because you can start hosting your website in five easy steps, which I’ll explain later on. You don’t need any technical knowledge to be able to start creating your website.
According to Hostinger.com, you can get a web hosting plan for as low as $0.99/month. It includes the basic things you need to run a website as a beginner. So besides being easy to use, web hosting is also cheap, if you look at the right hosting provider. Meanwhile, an SSL certificate can be obtained for free, from providers like Cloudflare.
Now I’ll give you a brief explanation of the simple terms that you need to know when creating a website. Then I’ll dive into the five simple steps.
How to Host a Website: Overview
Hosting a website means that you place your website that you’ve created on a particular computer called a server. The server allows your website to be viewed by other people on the internet, so that means anyone can visit it. For the server to make your website visible, it needs web server software.
There are two general ways to host a website, using a hosted platform or a self-hosted one. Here we’ll focus on self-hosting as it is the more common option for people who want to have a custom, or WordPress website, which is the most popular option.
Self-hosted means that you create your website from scratch, then you buy space on a hosting provider’s server to place your website for the public. Everything is customizable, and you can do anything you want with your website, thus requiring you to know about website building and coding.
Now some alternatives types of hosting other than the two mentioned above are:
Reseller hosting – sell hosting services to other sites.
Colocation hosting – have your physical server but uses a hosting provider’s resources.
1. Choose a Reputable Hosting Provider
When you search online for hosting providers, you’ll find an endless list of them, and you can’t possibly look at every one of them. To make it easier for you, there are some factors you should consider when you are looking for a hosting provider. Those are:
Know how much guidance you need from the hosting provider – There are a few hosting providers provide in-depth guidance when hosting your website. Some even have the tools to make the process of creating your website more accessible. By knowing how much help you need, you can eliminate a few hosting providers.
Estimate how big you want your website to be – hosting providers have different plans based on the resources you need. Some of them will be cheaper than others, and some will be more expensive.
Know which type of hosting you need – Do you want a shared hosting or a virtual space just for yourself or an entire server for yourself?
Know how the pricing works – as mentioned before, hosting providers charge based on the resources you need, they have different pricing plans, and some are even free. But free isn’t always the best option as perhaps it has extra costs inside that you need to buy if you want your website to run correctly.
Look at the “2019 best hosting provider” list – If you’re still confused, take a look at last year”s best hosting provider. Usually, the rank won’t differ that much, and those hosting providers are most likely still at the top.
2. Choose a Hosting Plan That’s Appropriate for Your Project
After you found the hosting provider of your choice, you now have another hosting plan options laid out for you, each having their benefits. Those hosting plans differ by the type of web hosting and a website you are creating. Here are a few examples of hosting plans:
Shared hosting – the most affordable option for hosting where your website is stored on the same server with other websites, and the server’s resources are shared. Suitable for beginners, bloggers & small business owners.
Virtual private server hosting – your website is still on a shared server, but you get your dedicated resources. Useful for more experienced users and businesses who have outgrown their shared hosting resources.
Dedicated hosting – You rent an entire physical server for yourself, thus also getting the whole resources. Suitable for experts and businesses with very high traffic and needs excellent uptime.
eCommerce hosting – Optimized for you who want to set up an online store
There are many more hosting plans which hosting providers give. You should take your time and pick the right one for you before proceeding to the next step.
3. Link Your Domain Name to Your Hosting Account
Now you should get your domain name. Usually, hosting providers have services to help you with this, such as a domain name checker where you can check if your domain name is available, give you creative alternatives, and purchase the domain name through the hosting provider.
The general idea on how to link your domain name to your hosting account is as follows:
Login to your hosting provider’s control panel
Find the domain manager
Assign a domain to your account
Input your domain name and point the records required
Confirm the domain assignment
4. Enable SSL Encryption (HTTPS)
Generally, hosting providers will provide you with the option to include an SSL certificate as you’re choosing your hosting plan. It may be free or comes at an extra cost; it depends on the hosting provider. SSL certificates are essentially data files that encrypt the session between your website with the browser. A small but necessary step to add extra security to your site.
However, should the hosting provider you choose don’t have SSL encryption enabled, that means you’ll need to purchase it online and tell your hosting provider that you have SSL encryption.
Usually, they will help you with integrating it on your site. SSL certificates have expiry dates, usually one to two years. Since you’re buying manually, make sure to check whether your certification is still valid or not regularly.
5. Create, Install or Transfer Your Website
Once everything is set up, now you can start creating your website. There are many methods to do this. You can use Content Management Systems like WordPress to build your website or transfer your website’s files and database from another server.
If you’re a beginner, I would recommend using a website builder first, since it is straightforward and easy to understand. Website builders usually have pre-made templates that you can customize its elements to your liking. Some website builders even have tools to help you with your content.
CMS is for those who have more experience as it requires necessary web design skills to get the best out of it.
Now that you know how to host a website. All that’s left for you to do is to start doing it. Remember to take the time to go through each step.
A solid digital marketing strategy is essential for increasing brand awareness, customers, and sales. SEO, for instance, has an impressive conversion rate of 14.6% while traditional print and mail methods have a low average comparative rate of 1.7%. By finding ways to improve your digital marketing strategy, you can better stand out against the competition and attract and convert your target customers.
Almost 60% of customers are put off brands who post superficial and salesy content online. By making sure your content is authentic (rather than solely focused on selling), you can better attract and build trust with your target customers. For example, try posting informative, educational content that offers value to your readers. This way, you’ll build a reputation as an expert in your industry and you’ll be the first your audience thinks of when it’s time to buy. Even simply responding to your customers’ comments in a friendly, helpful, and timely manner works to build genuine relationships.
Use PPC Ads
PPC (pay-per-click) advertising is a cost-effective way to reach your target audience, explains Neon Ambition, an Austin PPC management company. With PPC ads, your business appears in front of your target customers at the exact moment they search for relevant keywords. Rather than wasting your budget on estimated impressions, PPC ads are paid for only if the user clicks through and generates traffic to your site. It gives you complete control over budget, ad placement, and targeting, so you can increase your chances of attracting high-quality visitors interested in your products or services to your site — where you can then convert them into paying customers. Although Microsoft Advertising and Facebook ads are popular platforms, Google ads are most useful for PPC campaigns due to the high volume of searches received.
Try Guest Blogging
Guest posting helps generate three times as many leads as paid search advertising. By inviting industry thought leaders to contribute to your site via blog posts or interviews, you can strengthen brand awareness and credibility. In addition to presenting your readers with interesting, engaging, and educational information, you’ll also likely receive backlinks on other websites, therefore improving your SEO ranking. Digital marketing plays a key role in business success. Authentic content, PPC ads, and guest blogging are powerful methods you can use to boost sales and take your business to the next level.
Employees are the main backbone for both small and large businesses. You can see an increase in productivity when employees are satisfied and happy about their work. So, one of the best ways to grow your business is keeping employees happy.
By making certain small changes, you can easily enhance the levels of office efficiency and productivity in your business by time management. It helps you in receiving more quality work in a short time as well as limit the time spent on unimportant tasks. We have listed eight important tips that will help you in getting the best efforts from your employees and also obtain maximum productivity.
1. Be Efficient
Think about how you are currently operating your business and check how you can change the way you are working. It is important to make long term and short term lists so as to prioritize tasks in a small-sized business.
Ask questions to yourself like- Is there is any way where staff members could organize their day to day tasks to accomplish their goals? Offer each of your staff members with a strategy and motivate them to make a list to do activities. Also, ensure the employees prioritize duties on time and complete tasks every day, which results in efficient working.
2. Reduce Distractions
One of the biggest productivity killers in the present scenario is social media. It is not possible to follow no phone policy but you can motivate employees to remain engaged and focused. You can allow them to take breaks once in two to three hours for better engagement.
Request your employees to switch off mobile phones. During break hours, they can check their phones and remain active in social media as they wish. This way, they will be more productive when they are at their desk.
Though it is slightly risky, delegation is helpful for enhancing job satisfaction and morale of your staff. It is almost like giving additional responsibilities to your employees. It is recommended to give duties only to qualified employees who have a good track record, experience and success in your field. By giving tasks to employees who are skilled, you can remain in the peace of mind as they do the tasks as per your expectations.
4. Have The Right Equipment And Tools
It is important to offer the right equipment and tools to employees. This way, they can do their duties on time and efficiently. In the present scenario, there are a lot of advanced equipment and gadgets that help in doing work in quick time. For instance, when you do not have a printing device, the employees have to wait for long hours to print their paperwork. It affects your entire productivity.
High quality, modern equipment, and programs make an excellent difference to the workforce and also the way the company perceives. So, save effort and time by utilizing equipment like MFP that functions as scanner, fax machine, copier, and printer.
5. Set Realistic Goals And Provide Real-time Support
Most managers experience this issue, they will not have a clear or strong idea of whether their staff members are performing well or not. Help your staffs by offering some achievable goals. Give clear direction to employees and supervisors to assist clarify expectations. It helps in increasing your productivity and also they will have clear goals and clear focus.
6. Enhance Workplace Conditions
The work environment should be comfortable with good furniture and interiors. A workspace that is comfortable should maintain temperature from 68 degrees to 70 degrees F that is between 20 and 21 C. If the workspace is too cold or too hot, it can distract the employees and affects their concentration. Due to this, the employees will be just walking with an electric fan or adjusting their coats around the office. It is necessary to make sure both the air conditioning and heating systems are in good working condition according to the relevant season.
7. Make Sure Employees Are Happy
If the workplace is stressful, you cannot expect good results. The employees who are continuously functioning under stressful situations are said to have levels of absenteeism and disengagement and be less productive. Remember, employees have to be happy. The company has to appreciate, value and respect on a personal level. It is called as gratification. It should never be missed when you want a productive workforce.
8. Practice Positive Strengths
Encourage ,motivate and reward. When your employees are performing well, tell them they are performing a good job and offer constructive criticism. Another important part is providing personal incentives when you find them doing the task perfectly. You can take them for dinner, a free coffee or offer a free holiday trip for performing tasks beyond their rules. It is recommended to share positiveness of employee to another so as to cultivate a feeling of fulfillment and also encourage others. When employees are motivated and given rewards for their hard work, they will start to put more productivity on their daily task list.
9. Get Employees Feedback
Employees give feedback on a different angle, which you can think about and implement. When you ask their feedback, you can learn lot of things from their viewpoint. You would not even think about certain things but they would have expressed in form of feedback. It is best to discuss with employees who directly interact with clients. They will know more about client’s expectations. They tell clearly what can be done to improve workplace productivity.
10. Offer Training To Employees
It is necessary to update your employees with the latest tools and technologies for better productivity. As they learn new applications and programs and implement on own, you will find a lot of change in your productivity. It will also help in increasing your productivity at a great rate. Proper training leads to greater productivity and efficiency.
Hope you find these ideas helpful for increasing your workplace productivity. Encourage remote work? Do you want to increase productivity? Do you concentrate on engagement? Share your tips and suggestions in the comment box below!
Niall Kennedy is the Creative Director at ”Preferred training networks ”. He has over 20 years of experience in Professional Development Industry. He has published 4 business books – “All Aboard the Brain Train,” “Healthy Leadership,” “Errant Workplace Behaviours,” and “Hidden Observations”.
Making your small business stand out in a sea of larger companies is no small feat. Small companies, by definition, have a more modest marketing budget. This budget has to stretch considerably to make the brand’s voice heard.
There is no magical path to achieving the best marketing strategy. Any number of people in the business of marketing will tell you that an effective campaign is a combination of various methods and factors. At its very core, your marketing should present your business to the right customer base.
Fortunately, certain proven strategies give the most reward for your investment. These strategies have been used by small businesses, like yours, time and time again. Here are the best ways to leverage effective ads for your brand.
Build A Great Website
Most people are now moving towards buying online rather than having to face the hassle of visiting physical stores. Small businesses, in particular, can benefit from a well-designed website with thoughtful landing pages.
A good website not only showcases your brand but also works as a great way to capture new leads, provide relevant information to your customers, and drive people to your social media pages.
Setting up a brand new website for your business is not too difficult. You will need to buy and register your domain name and sign up for web hosting. Use content management software (CMS) to manage your content and update it over time.
If you are still a bit jittery about creating your website, then do not hesitate to invest in a professional. They will be able to walk you through the many options available and should build you a beautiful and fully customised website.
Google My Business
A local business that targets local customers needs to rank high on Google My Business listing. It pulls data from several platforms under the Google umbrella including your Google Maps profile, Google reviews, Google Insights, and Google Analytics.
Google presents an advertised listing followed by Google My Business listings for local searches. Having a high ranking will get more eyes on your business, increasing your conversion rates. To rank high, optimize your business profile, collect Google reviews, and encourage citations.
A majority of marketers report that the leads generated from email marketing campaigns are more than any other marketing channel. Small businesses thrive when they nurture their clients. Since most people do not make a transaction the first time they visit a business’s website, collecting leads is imperative for your success.
Your website needs to create an email marketing funnel that collects leads for you to nurture at a later date. This is when you offer something of value to your potential customer such that they are compelled to provide their information. This could be a coupon code, a discount, a free download, or a free trial.
Email marketing is a low cost, easy to automate, and has a global reach. You can segment your leads to get the maximum effect for future campaigns. This can be easily tracked and recalibrated depending on the results.
Engage with pay-per-click (PPC) advertising since you pay only when a customer clicks on your advertisement. Google Ads is one of the most popular PPC platforms. No matter where you are located, chances are that a majority of your customers use Google’s search engine. Harnessing its vast reach to place your business front and center can result in a huge pay-off.
Google uses keywords relevant to determine the rankings of ads on its search engine results. This is why you must conduct accurate keyword research. Another important aspect is to develop a compelling landing page when the ad is clicked. This landing page should tell the customer exactly what they need to know most directly.
Facebook ads are considered to be one of the more inexpensive marketing strategies and can target virtually any audience. Around two million small and medium businesses use Facebook ads to drive their sales.
Facebook ads offer advanced targeting where you can directly put your ad in front of the right demographic. You can target your ad based on age, gender, location, online behavior, interests, and more.
While it is pretty easy to run a Facebook ad, many newbies find that the ROI isn’t what they expected. Luckily, many third-party tools can help you run your campaign by tracking and analyzing its performance and providing actionable insights.
Instagram adsalso use the same targeting techniques like Facebook. This isn’t surprising since Facebook owns them. If your business is visually appealing, then consider using Instagram as a way to advertise your business.
Content marketing is no longer limited to blog posts. You should have a diverse range of pieces like videos, podcasts, and online courses. Your content should be valuable to the customer while staying relevant and consistent.
Content marketing is more of a long-term plan than something like Google Ads. It sets up your business to build a brand based on customer engagement. It consists of high-quality pieces that are optimized for SEO.
If you are just starting out on developing a content marketing strategy, then take the time to conduct the right research. A great strategy that never fails is to try to have your content answer what your audience needs.
Consistent content with regular and diverse uploads is key to garnering a broad audience. You can dabble in creating videos using a promo video maker for your brand and track the engagement you receive for the same across different platforms.
Drum Up Referrals
A key factor many small businesses tend to overlook is their existing customer base. Sure, they understand the importance of word-of-mouth advertising, but they fall short on leveraging their community to drive up sales.
Potential customers are going to trust existing customers over any message that a business puts out, no matter how compelling the ad. Use this dynamic by offering referral programs to your most loyal customers. They are now going to be incentivized to spread the word about your business.
The referral program can offer discounts, codes, gifts, or even free products. If the rewards from the program are working in your favor, then build a tier-system for your customers.