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Redesigning Your Website in 2019   no comments

Posted at Dec 31, 2018 @ 9:00am Web hosting

website redesign

Redesigning your website might be one of the most important business moves you make as 2018 gives way to 2019. A redesigned site can mean more visitors, more sales conversions and a positive impact on your bottom line. Of course, redesigning your website may also be one of the most time- and resource-intensive tasks you undertake this year. That’s why planning ahead is essential. Creating a detailed plan for your site redesign ensures that your efforts will be both time and cost effective, and it helps to ensure that your site truly meets your business needs too. Here are seven steps to take as you develop your website redesign plan.

 

1. Evaluate Your Current Site

Taking an honest look at your current website design is the very first thing you should do if you’re planning a redesign. Start by making a list of what works on your website. Then, make a list of everything that isn’t working. You’ll want to consider basics such as site color, visual layout and your company’s logo. You’ll also need to take website functionality when it comes to navigation, contact forms and e-commerce tools into account. Ask your staff for their opinions about the current site, and be sure to take a second look at any feedback you’ve received from website users too.

Part of evaluating your current site is looking at important metrics. Be sure that you’ve considered:

  • Overall site traffic
  • The bounce rate for visitors
  • Your site’s current search engine ranking
  • Your site’s performance ranking
  • How visitors spend their time on your site
  • The conversion rate from lead to customer for your site
  • The total monthly, quarterly and yearly sales generated by your site.

 

2. Create Goals for Your New Site

Once you’ve evaluated what does and doesn’t work on your existing site, you can start setting goals for your new site. Maybe you want to attract more consumers in your local area, or perhaps you need to redesign your site so that it accommodates visitors on tablets and smartphones. Create both aesthetic and use-related goals to direct the general redesign process.

In addition to creating these general goals, you should also create specific goals based upon current website metrics. For example, you might aim to increase traffic by 50 percent or to improve the search engine ranking of your site. Creating clear goals based on metrics will make measuring the success of your site redesign much easier.

 

3. Get to Know Your Audience

You might think that you know your website audience, but there’s no room for error when it comes to investing in a redesign. Work with your internal marketing team or hire an outside consultant to do research on your target demographic. Understanding who is likely to visit your site and what tools they hope to find on your site will be invaluable during the redesign process. Be sure that you’re also looking at the keywords that visitors are using to find your site so that you can target them during the redesign process.

 

4. Take Stock of the Competition

In addition to getting to know your audience, it’s essential that you get to know your online competition too. Start by reviewing the websites of any major, brick-and-mortar competitors. How are their sites organized? What are they doing to convert visitors into customers? What kinds of resources are they offering to visitors?

Once you’ve evaluated local or real-world competitors that you know about, conduct keyword-driven searches to identify online-only businesses that might be competing with yours. Evaluate these sites using the same criteria you used to evaluate other known competitors. As you evaluate your competition, jot down ideas of how your website can set your business apart from others.

 

5. Identify Your Content Strategy

A visually striking website is important, but a redesign is useless unless you also have a strong content strategy. Decide what types of photos, graphics and text you’ll use to attract visitors to your site and engage them once they’re there. Evaluate the current content of every page of your site, and determine how it can be improved or built upon. Think about the strength of your site’s current SEO strategy and what can be done to improve it.

If your website doesn’t currently feature a blog, now is a good time to consider adding one. Ensure the success of your blog by deciding:

  • How often you’ll create new posts
  • What type of information posts will include
  • Who will write your posts or how you’ll source them

 

6. Make the Big Design Decisions

Once you’ve determined your overall website goals and have decided what type of content you’ll include, you can start making aesthetic decisions. Consider the overall layout of your website, what colors it will use and whether your logo needs to be redesigned. Remember that making your website an extension of your branded image is essential.

Of course, you’ll need to make technical decisions as you make design decisions. These include the framework on which your site will be built and how you’ll meet mobile optimization needs. Be sure to go over site security concerns with your design partner too. Preventing hackers from accessing customer information is essential to building confidence with web visitors.

 

7. Create a Project Completion Timeline

Once you’ve made major redesign decisions, you should create a timeline for your website relaunch. Your chief priority here should be to minimize site downtime and ensure that visitors can still use your site during the redesign process. As your redesign progresses, be sure that you’re meeting your timeline goals. Doing so is essential to budget control and allows you to alert website users of coming changes in a timely fashion too.

As with most big business decisions, the success or failure of a website redesign depends largely on planning. Taking the time to plan now will ensure that you get what you want from your site redesign and that you’re able to stay on budget while doing so too. Make a thorough plan now so that you can kick back and enjoy the success of your new website when it launches.

 

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Written by admin on December 31st, 2018

cPanel Security 101   no comments

Posted at Nov 8, 2018 @ 9:00am Web hosting

cPanel Security 101

cPanel provides convenient server access and a user-friendly interface for managing your website. However, like any online environment, it has several potential security problems. As a responsible webmaster, it’s up to you to recognize these vulnerabilities and take steps to close any loopholes hackers could use to access your server or site. Take charge and manage critical access points with these eight cPanel security tips.

 

Create Strong Passwords

From the main cPanel portal to individual email accounts, every login point needs a strong, secure password. Guidelines for length vary, and some sources suggest as many as 14 characters to ensure protection. Longer passwords allow for more complex combinations of numbers, symbols and upper- and lower-case letters. Use a different password for accessing cPanel, FTP, email management and other secure areas, making sure none of them contain obvious information such as phone numbers or birthdays.

If you have trouble coming up with enough different combinations, try an online password generator. A password manager is useful for keeping track of your login information for all of cPanel so that you don’t have to look up each password every time you sign on.

 

Install a Firewall

A firewall lets you access cPanel while keeping unauthorized users out. Think of it as a border patrol for your server, constantly checking to ensure only the right people get through. ConfigServer Security and Firewall (CSF) is a popular firewall application for cPanel designed to serve this purpose. It scans the system on a regular basis and checks authentication logs to keep your site safe from hackers at all times. CSF also provides feedback on how to make your server more secure overall. Since more is better when it comes to security, check these reports and make any necessary changes as soon as possible.

 

Be a “Brute”

Although a firewall can prevent hackers from gaining access to your site, it won’t stop them from trying to log in. Brute force protection is a feature of cPanel used to block IP addresses after multiple failed login attempts. Found in the Security Center section, this option is easy to enable and customize. Use the IP Deny Manager to manually input IP addresses known to be malicious so that they’re never allowed to log on.

You can customize the brute force option, known as cPHulk, by setting how many minutes the tool monitors for repeated logins, the maximum number of failed logins allowed and how long each IP ban stays in place.

 

Stop Anonymous FTP Access

With anonymous FTP, anyone can log in to your site via FTP with only a username and a generic password. This may be useful for sharing files with a large number of people, but it’s like an open door to hackers. When all users can gain access to your server through such a simple process, every file becomes subject to tampering.

Set your FTP preferences to allow only for SSL logins, and require a password to be entered each time. The setting can be found under FTP Server Configuration in cPanel.

 

Make SSH Secure

Secure shell (SSH) is a convenient way to access your site from a remote location. Unfortunately, it can also provide an entry point for hackers. Information sent through SSH is authenticated and encrypted to prevent outside manipulation, so malicious users can’t touch it unless they break through your security measures.

The default port of 22 is the most common setting for SSH access. Changing it to another available port and implementing a security key for logins minimizes the risk of being hacked. Switch the settings from SSH1 to SSH2 for additional protection.

 

Protect Against Hotlinking

Hotlinking is the practice of linking an image or file on one server directly to a page on a remote website. Some people do this in ignorance, assuming the easiest way to embed an image is to use the original link, but it’s generally considered a bad practice. Hotlinked files use bandwidth from your site every time someone accesses them, and this has the potential to overload your servers if too many requests are made.

The Security section of cPanel offers hotlinking protection. Simply enable the setting to prevent third parties from linking to your files. Add an extra layer of security by specifying certain file extensions you don’t want to be hotlinked.

 

Tweak Your Settings

While you’re taking care of the larger security issues in cPanel, make sure you don’t neglect less common settings. Open Tweak Settings under Server Configuration to access an entire list of other possible security measures. With this checklist, you can:

• Help prevent the sending of unauthorized emails, including spam
• Shut down potential email attacks
• Block malicious referrals or redirects from hijacking your site
• Stop the generation of proxy domains
• Require IP validation for cookies
• Set up an additional security token for cPanel access

Enabling these supplemental security settings helps address any remaining vulnerabilities and keep hackers at bay.

 

Stay Updated

Your web host should have automatic cPanel updates in place. If not, go to Update Preferences in the Server Configuration area and enable the setting yourself. Old versions of software, including cPanel, may contain security vulnerabilities hackers can use to access your server. Automatic updates ensure you’re always running the latest version of cPanel with any associated security patches and bug fixes. Go back and check once and a while to confirm updates are running as they should. If not, update manually and contact your web host to find out why the setting isn’t working.

 

A ‘TurnKey’ Solution

Security is one area of website management where you should never cut corners to save time or effort. The smartest thing you can do is implement proper security measures for cPanel as soon as your hosting account is set up.

However, one way you can save time and effort is with TurnKey Internet’s all-inclusive and fully managed cPanel solution. We monitor and take care of your server so you can focus on running your business – leave the infrastructure, software updates, security, backups, and uptime to us.

The Best Value cPanel Web Hosting Dedicated Server from TurnKey Internet provides the perfect combination of security, performance, features and cost for the ultimate cPanel/WHM Web Hosting Server. This package offers a complete all-inclusive fully managed service including software licensing for cPanel/WHM, enterprise-grade server backups, and the premium high capacity DEDICATED server with RAID and SSD ultra fast disks. For more information, click here.

 

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8 Tips to Get Your Website Ready for the Holidays   no comments

Posted at Oct 30, 2018 @ 9:00am Holidays,Web hosting

holiday-ready

As the holiday season draws near, it’s time to start thinking about updating your website to capitalize on the increased traffic that often accompanies this time of year. Satisfied customers and a successful holiday season will make any business owner smile, and your website can play a big role in making that happen. Taking extra time to prepare now is a good way to avoid technical problems and other issues during the holidays.

 

1. Optimize for Mobile Devices

Thanks to the growth of smartphones and other mobile digital devices, online shoppers don’t have to be chained to their computer desks to check off purchases from their holiday shopping lists. Developing a simple and functional theme specifically for your mobile users can increase your potential customer base. The easiest way to do this is to make use of responsive designs. With a responsive design, your website will modify itself automatically to create the optimal layout for the customer’s mobile device; these designs can accommodate both smartphones and tablets. Due to the smaller screen size typical of mobile devices you probably won’t be able to maintain the exact same design from your desktop version, but you can still use the same branding and color scheme.

 

2. Improve Your Website’s Loading Time

You may want a website with all the latest bells and whistles, but consider your website’s performance before you load it up with high-resolution graphics and elaborate scripts. Sluggish loading times on your website frustrate your customers and may encourage them to shop elsewhere. Before the holidays start, have your technical support team run tests on your website to see how fast each page loads for the average user. Changes to your design, such as reducing large images and eliminating complex coding scripts, can help your website perform better. You can also opt for a better cloud solution or web hosting server for your website to see even more improvement in loading speeds.

 

3. Secure Customer Data

Shopping online is always risky; some websites don’t safeguard customers’ data properly, putting these individuals at risk for identity theft and other issues. Investing in robust security software is a good way to protect your customers’ important data. Your technical support staff should keep apprised of the latest developments in online security to help your customers stay safe. To help alleviate your customers’ concerns, you can include information on your website about the security protocols that you use and offer tips on how your customers can shop online safely.

 

4. Offer Friendly Customer Support

Browser problems, incorrect stock levels and missing orders are just some of the common customer issues your staff will need to work through. Having enough staff on hand is an essential ingredient to helping your website survive the holidays. If possible, offer a live chat support option to those who are currently browsing your website. Keep an eye on your social media profiles in case a customer tries to reach you through those networks. Some customers may prefer to use email to get in touch with you; using a ticket system to handle incoming customer emails is a good way to keep track of issues. Help your staff to cultivate a customer-centric attitude, and try to anticipate common problems so that you can develop solutions ahead of time.

 

5. Boost Your Search Engine Presence

Improving your search engine rankings before the holidays begin can help fuel your success during the holiday rush. There are many ways to help boost your search engine rankings, starting with updating older pages on your website; offering fresh information to your visitors is a good way to impress search engines and show that your website is active. Adding special features, such as a blog, can also help. If your blog content is particularly noteworthy, you can expect more traffic to head your way. Your blog content should offer something useful to readers, such as tips for using your products.

 

6. Prepare a Festive Look

A festive design for your website encourages your customers to start thinking about the holidays. You don’t need to spend excessive money on a festive look; changing some pictures and making some cosmetic changes, such as altering the font color, can help dress up your website. Your holiday look should also include banners displaying any specials you plan to run, including discount codes.

 

7. Brush Up Your Social Media Presence

Social media networks offer an excellent way to connect with individual customers, generate buzz about your products and direct traffic to your website. Don’t let your social media networks sit unused with only a link to your website; update them frequently and interact with your customers. Make sure your profile on each platform matches so that you have cohesive branding. As the holidays draw near, using social media to announce your specials will help you get more interest from potential customers.

 

8. Beef Up Your Website’s Server

If your website is unable to handle massive amounts of traffic at once, a crowd of shoppers on big sales days could lead to sluggish performance or an outright crash. Major server problems are not something to be taken lightly; investing in the right server infrastructure for your expected traffic is a good way to avoid these issues. If your customer base is larger, you might need a dedicated server to keep your website afloat during the holidays. Dedicated Servers may cost more than basic shared or cloud hosting, but your website won’t be at the mercy of problems caused by other websites/users on the server.

Examining every aspect of your website before the holidays arrive can help you prepare a strategy to improve customer satisfaction and your own business success. A good website requires many things, including fast loading times, quality customer service and security. Working on these elements early can ensure that your website is ready long before your customers even start to think about tackling their holiday shopping lists with your business.

 

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Written by David Maurer on October 30th, 2018

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How Website Speed Affects Your Business   no comments

Posted at May 15, 2018 @ 9:57am Web hosting

Website Speed Affects Business

If you’ve ever waited for a slow website to load, you know how frustrating it is. It only takes a few seconds – if that – for you to start getting impatient and considering going to another site.

Visitors to your site feel the exact same way. People have grown increasingly accustomed to instant results, and most web users expect web pages to show up on their screen right after clicking or tapping. A slow website can directly, and negatively, impact your sales and ability to draw in new clients.

However, it’s not just sales that take a hit when your website is crawling. Slow load times can result in reduced search engine rankings and depressed conversion rates. Additionally, a slow website is often the sign of a design problem, which may mean that you’re using more bandwidth to do less.

 

The Five Second Rule

According to a recent study, one-third of online shoppers will leave your site if it takes more than five seconds to load. Along with the fact that five seconds is a very short amount of time to work with, the study found that people are getting more impatient; a previous study showed that you had six seconds before people left.

If that weren’t bad enough, a study done by Google that specifically looked at mobile users found that these individuals are even more impatient. More than half of those involved in the study will leave a mobile website if it doesn’t load in three seconds.

What this means is that your website design needs to focus on speed instead of design elements. To ensure that people will go to your website – and stay – your site needs to be fast and streamlined.

 

Load Time Affects Sales

If you’ve got your website loading under five seconds, you may get visitors to stick around, but it won’t necessarily net you a sale. The study that found many people will leave after five seconds also determined that a 2.4 second load time led to the highest conversion rates. This is backed up by data collected by Kissmetrics, which showed that a one second delay in website response time can lead to a seven percent conversion rate drop.

The collected data also showed that people who made purchases from a site but were unhappy with the site’s performance were less likely to buy from the site again. In other words, the bare minimum to get someone to stay may be five seconds, but if you want to make a sale, and keep making sales, your site may need to load even faster.

 

Google Is Impatient Too

Load times don’t just affect whether or not a potential customer stays on your website. They may also play a part in determining if someone ever arrives at your site. This is because Google looks at user experience when calculating search engine rankings.

There are a number of factors that go into user experience, but load time is a significant one. Search engine ranking is very competitive since it determines where your site shows up in search results and if it shows up on the first page. With less than 80 percent of people clicking to the second page of search results, it’s essential that you’re doing everything you can to be on page one.

Google offers a website to check your site’s performance, and according to the search engine, a score of 85 or higher out of 100 means that your site is doing well. Anything below that likely spells trouble when it comes to your search engine rankings.

It’s also important to note that Google has started to give websites that are mobile friendly higher rankings when people do a search from a mobile device. If you have a desktop site that loads quickly but don’t create an equivalent mobile site, you could see a drop in your mobile search rankings.

 

Slow Load Times Could Mean Back End Problems

There are a variety of reasons that your website may be running slowly or simply not loading as quickly as visitors would like. Many common reasons relate to design, such as running too many scripts or filling up the page with large media files.

These problems can be resolved easily by streamlining a website and cutting down on files and scripts that bog the loading process down. Doing this may help to improve the performance of your web server as well. If the media files on your site that are taking up enormous amounts of bandwidth are compressed or if you reduce the number that load on your site, you could see a lot of resources freed up.

 

It May Be Time To Upgrade

However, slow load times, especially if you have optimized your website, may indicate that there’s a larger problem with your server or the network you’re running on. If you are hosting on a Shared Server, it could be that you need more power and system resources. To resolve this, it is recommended that you upgrade to a VPS/Cloud Server or Dedicated Server solution. If your business is utilizing a Colocation solution but still experiencing bandwidth and network issues, it may be time to change your Data Center and/or Cloud provider.

While attractive and innovative website designs may be appealing, if you’re in the business of selling, your focus should be on a website that loads quickly and is easy to navigate. Shaving just a second off of the load time of your site and pages within it could mean a dramatic difference in conversion rates and sales, and it could also improve your search engine rankings.

 

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Written by David Maurer on May 15th, 2018

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Cloud VPS: 4 Reasons to Upgrade   no comments

Posted at Mar 15, 2018 @ 10:53am Web hosting

Cloud VPS

If you are in the market for business web hosting, you probably already know how many options are out there. While large, established businesses may need a dedicated server to meet their needs, most small to medium-sized businesses may find that a Cloud Hosted VPS or virtual private server is the best match. A Cloud VPS is a sub-section of a dedicated server. It’s a guaranteed amount of space that is completely isolated from the rest of the server. This means you get a private, guaranteed portion of a server without the risks of shared hosting (in which potentially hundreds of people are using the same machine) and without the expense of a dedicated server. Lets discuss the various reasons why Cloud VPS technology is a good choice for your business.

 

1. Potential for Growth

When you’re shopping for a cloud or hosting solution for your business, it is essential that you consider your business’ potential for growth. You don’t want to buy server space, get your website up and running and start selling only to exceed your server’s capacity. If that happens your site goes down. If your site goes down, you lose money! A Cloud VPS offers the instant capability of allocating a large amount of space and resources so your business can grow unfettered.

 

2. Support

Good VPS Hosting comes with robust support. This means you always have a resource if you run into problems. If your site goes down, you have a real person to call. Make sure your VPS Host or Cloud provider has online chat support, a phone number and a ticketing system (TurnKey has all three). There are many hosts out there that do not offer 24x7x365 support. Often these hosts don’t own their hardware and are not always reliable. Do some research before choosing a host to make sure you will get the kind of customer service your business deserves.

 

3. Security

Cloud VPS hosting offers unique IP addresses alongside password protection, firewalls and security software managed by your hosting company (if you choose the right host). This means your data is secure, regularly backed-up and protected from potential attacks. A Cloud VPS is an excellent choice if you are concerned about data security.

 

4. Value

If you are concerned about controlling business expenses (and who isn’t!?) a Cloud VPS is an extremely economical choice. You get nearly all of the benefits of a dedicated machine without the large monthly bill. Of course, if your business grows quickly and you find you need more resources, you can easily upgrade from a Cloud VPS at that time.

Our TurnKey Cloud-Hosted Virtual Servers (VPS) offer the highest level of service and the ultimate combination of performance, value, security and ease of use for your hosting needs. Our VPS’s are far more flexible than other hosting options giving your organization full control over the security settings, choice of operating system, control panels, software configuration, and applications. For more information, visit turnkeyinternet.net/cloud-hosted-virtual-servers-vps

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Written by David Maurer on March 15th, 2018

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3 Ways to Speed Up Your Website   no comments

Posted at Mar 6, 2018 @ 10:06am Web hosting

Website Speed Loading

Many online business owners make the mistake of overlooking the importance of having a fast website. When you want to get the most from your online presence, the loading speed of your content is one of the most important factors to your success. Your prospects have a lot of distractions fighting for their attention, and you must compete with their friends, family and other advertisers if you want to make any progress.

Web users don’t have much tolerance for slow websites, and most will navigate away if your content takes longer than a few seconds to appear on the screen. So every step that you take to increase your website’s performance will help you attract and retain customers, and you are about to learn how to get moving down the right path.

 

1. Content Delivery Network (CDN)

One of the benefits of working online is that you can reach a worldwide audience, and doing so is one of the best ways to enhance your profitability. But when someone downloads your content or accesses your website, the speed at which the content loads will depend on that person’s location. For example, if your hosting server is located in New York, someone who lives in China will encounter delays when trying to access your website.

If your prospects are forced to wait too long, they will often opt to find a local business that can offer them efficient download speeds. You can overcome that problem by using a content delivery network, or CDN. When you have a CDN, your content is stored on several servers around the world. When someone accesses your website or tries to download a file, the CDN will send the files to them from the server that is closest to that person’s location.

 

2. Check Your Plugins

You can find many plugins or scripts that will help you captivate and engage your audience, but using too many of them can decrease the loading speed of your website. If you want to speed it up, take a look at each plugin to determine if you need it and how much it is impacting your site. Disable one plugin at a time to determine if the changes make a difference in the amount of time that it takes for your content to load. If one of your plugins is causing a lot of harm, consider removing it, but you can also check to see if the developer has released any updates.

 

3. Upgrade Your Cloud or Web Hosting

If you have tried everything of which you can think to improve your loading speed, then you might want to take a look at your cloud or web hosting provider. If you have a basic plan, then you might not have access to the amount of bandwidth and resources that you need to improve the speed with which your audience can access your content.

If your web hosting plan is the source of the problem, then you might want to upgrade to a better provider. Although you likely wish to avoid spending more money than needed, the enhanced speed of an effective hosting plan is an investment that will pay for itself over time.

Those who don’t take steps to optimize their website’s loading speed are likely losing more customers than they realize, and you don’t want to repeat the same mistake. Putting in a little effort can go a long way when it comes to keeping your prospects engaged and focused on what you have to say. Optimizing your website is a good place to start when you want to make your content load with enhanced efficiency. But if that step does not help, then upgrading your hosting plan is sure to get the job done.

When your website loads quickly, your customers’ experience will not be interrupted, and they will be that much more likely to make a purchase as a result. The speed with which your content loads is also a reflection of you and your products. When you prevent delays, you are also showing your customers that you care about your reputation, and you will start to earn their respect.

 

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Written by David Maurer on March 6th, 2018

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4 Benefits of Web Hosting on a Dedicated Server   no comments

Posted at Jan 23, 2018 @ 9:17am dedicated servers,Web hosting

Benefits of Dedicated Servers

Both large and small businesses are faced with a wide variety of choices and options when it comes to finding a web hosting solution for their website, company email and data. One option is shared hosting, in which a single server’s resources are shared by a number of different websites and users.

However, if you’re looking for more power, control, and flexibility, the solution for you may be a dedicated server. With a dedicated server, you and your business have exclusive use of that server’s resources. You also have the flexibility of customizing the server’s CPU, RAM, and disk space based on the needs of your website and business.

Let’s take a look at 4 specific advantages of choosing a dedicated server:

 

1. No Shared Resources

When using a dedicated server, every bit of power, storage, and bandwidth is exclusive to you and no one else. Not only will this give your business more room to work with and expand, it will also prevent issues with your site caused by other websites. For example, if you’re site is hosted on a shared server where there is another website that is being attacked or hogging up resources, this can affect the performance of your company’s site.

 

2. Flexibility & Customization

A dedicated server allows your business to customize the hardware and software based on your company’s unique needs. Things like CPU, Memory, Hard Drive, even the speed of the server’s network port, can all be customized and upgraded on dedicated servers. With shared hosting, you are limited to the software already installed on the server, and sometimes it may lack a requirement or feature your business needs. But with a dedicated server, you have full flexibility over which software the server runs, even down to the Operating System.

 

3. Administrative / Root Access

Another downside of shared hosting is the lack of Administrative or root access to the server. This limitation affects what software you can install as well as the settings and options that you can configure on the server. This can greatly impact the potential of what you are able to do with your website. Another advantage of administrative/root access is the ability to better monitor and troubleshoot your website, with full access to the server’s logs.

 

4. Dedicated IP Address

Each dedicated server comes with its own dedicated IP address. With shared hosting, your site may be sharing an IP address with multiple websites. If your website happens to share an IP with a site that spams or contains malware, this can cause multiple problems. Your website can end up getting blocked, your email rejected as spam, even your search results can be affected. Another thing to consider is whether or not you’ll be running an e-commerce or selling things on your site. If so, you will need to have an SSL for your site, which in turn requires a unique dedicated IP.

 

Now if you’re worried that you’re not tech savvy enough to run your own dedicated server, consider the option of going with a Managed Dedicated Server solution, which will provide many additional benefits on top of what’s listed above. Also if cost is a concern, check out TurnKey Internet’s ‘Best Value’ Dedicated Servers. There are countless other advantages to using a dedicated server, however the 4 above are some of the most notable. So before you decide to host your website on a shared server, consider the added flexibility, reliability, and performance that only a dedicated server can provide.

 

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Written by David Maurer on January 23rd, 2018

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Is Your Website Ready For The Holidays?   no comments

Posted at Nov 7, 2017 @ 10:00am Holidays,Web hosting

Is Your Website Ready For The Holidays?

It’s getting colder outside. It’s getting darker sooner. The time has been rolled back an hour, for those of us living in the United States. Winter is right around the corner and with winter, comes holidays. Thanksgiving is a few weeks away with Christmas coming in a close second and finally New Years. Now, why am I telling you all this? Matter of fact, why am I reminding you of these holidays? Isn’t this supposed to be a blog based on technology and not holiday seasons?

 

Well, I’m glad you asked. This part of the season is busy for us, due to the holiday specials we run. All the way from Black Friday to Cyber Monday. Everything is on sale for a fraction of the price. Everything from Virtual Private Servers (VPS) to top-of-the-line Dedicated Servers. During this time, traffic nearly quadruples to our main site, TurnKey Internet. Everyone wants to get in on the sales. Everyone wants to setup a website for their business. People are just shopping around for hosting providers if you will. Well, with that increased traffic comes increased strain on your servers which brings me to reason I’m writing this article.

 

With the holiday season rapidly approaching, you may decide to run a special on your products and services. The number one item that always occurs when running specials is an increased awareness of your product. That means you may have bandwidth spikes from potential customers viewing your website. You may have your products selling like hotcakes, but the question becomes, are you prepared for this? Are you prepared from the increased amount of traffic to your site? If you’re not sure, then you should continue reading.

 

As mentioned previously in this post, you will more than likely have a spike in traffic to your website which brings me to bandwidth. Do you have enough bandwidth ready to accommodate the spike in traffic your site may experience? If not, you should speak with your hosting provider about pricing plans for bandwidth.

 

Next, what about disk space? If you’re selling products online, more than likely you have a database storing the products with the customer information that is purchasing said products. Well if you’re running a special and have a higher than normal amount of people purchasing from you, you would want to ensure that you have enough disk space to accommodate said orders.  The last thing you want is your website to freeze or go off-line due to you running out of space because your database has tripled in size. You should speak with your hosting provider to ensure that you have enough adequate disk space.

 

This brings me to last point. You’ve checked your bandwidth and your disk space and they are more than adequate for your special. What’s next? Well, is your current environment sufficient to handle your increased sales? Let’s say your website is on a basic hosting account and receives a large spike of traffic during your holiday sales. Will your host throttle your account as it could be consuming too many resources? If your account is on a basic shared server, this is very high probability as the server will throttle your account for consuming too many resources. You should be aware of these limitations and speak with your hosting provider to see if they can handle your increased traffic. The last thing you want is a user who can’t place an order because when they view your site, they are seeing Resources Exceeded instead of your website.

 

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Written by David Maurer on November 7th, 2017

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What is Colocation?   1 comment

Posted at Oct 10, 2017 @ 9:00am colocation,Web hosting

Colocation POD

Colocation or ‘Colo’ is a solution offered by major data centers that provides businesses and organizations a place to host their servers and other IT hardware in a secure, high-tech facility. Whether it’s a small business that doesn’t want to hire an entire tech department, a large company that wants the stability and security of a data center, or somewhere in between, Colocation offers benefits to all types of businesses.

 

Security & Protection

Most data centers that offer colocation have high levels of physical security. Features such as security cameras, 24×7 on-site staff, individual cages or cabinets have locks, as well as biometric scanning at all access points and more! If the proper security is in place, a data center may also be SSAE-16 certified. This allows businesses to colocate their equipment and benefit from the SSAE-16 compliance already in place to avoid costly and time-consuming auditing of your company’s office or facility.

With Colocation, businesses own their equipment. Since they own the equipment, only their staff has access to it and the data it holds. Unlike typical web hosting solutions, where data may me stored on a shared server, they will be the only ones with access to their data.

 

Uptime

Most businesses run 24×7. Even after ‘store hours’ a business needs to be online and connected, especially if they operate an online store or website. Being down for minutes or an hour can spell disaster. Imagine an organization’s IT infrastructure down for a day or a week while the power’s down due to a storm.  This disrupts potential clients from accessing their servers! In a colocation facility like TurnKey Internet’s datacenter, your company’s IT infrastructure is housed in our redundant, high-speed Internet-connected facility, with continuous power provided by industrial UPS battery systems and on-site diesel generators for emergency backups.

 

Room To Grow

In a typical office IT environment, if a company quickly needs to increase bandwidth or add physical space to the office, they could wait weeks or even months. When their infrastructure is located in a colocation facility, they can provide huge amounts of additional bandwidth within minutes or hours. A typical data center can have a bandwidth capacity 10,000 times that of a typical office cable Internet connection.

 

Cost Savings

Businesses that build their own on-site IT infrastructure can spend hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not millions, to have the same bandwidth capabilities and enterprise grade power and cooling systems featured at a colocation facility. Fiber optic lines, connecting to major internet hubs across the world are not purchased for pennies either! Add in redundancy to their office, and businesses are paying tens of thousands of dollars a year. On the other hand, if they instead chose to utilize a colocation facility, it might have cost them less than $100 a month.

 

Colocation is the ideal solution for companies, service providers, small businesses and IT resellers who want a stable environment in which to completely control their assets. It provides complete control of your hardware, software and networking to match your needs without worrying about the supporting infrastructure. By colocating with TurnKey Internet, you are able to focus on your business and not on office networking, power or server issues that plague localized installations and office infrastructure. We provide redundant networking, power and cooling to ensure your services remain online and accessible at all time.

To learn more and receive a FREE consultation, visit www.TurnKeyInternet.net/myplan

 

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Written by David Maurer on October 10th, 2017

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RAID: The Upgrade Your Server Deserves   no comments

Posted at Aug 22, 2017 @ 9:46am Web hosting

RAID: The UPGRADE Your Server Deserves

A Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks (RAID) is a system that utilizes multiple hard drives simultaneously to act as a single storage volume. Using a controller that manages the operation of the hard drives, you can configure a RAID array to do the following:

  • Stripe data across multiple drives, reading and writing data across all drives simultaneously for double the performance — or more — when reading or writing large blocks of data
  • Mirror data across multiple drives so that each drive in the array contains an exact copy of the same data
  • Create Parity blocks on each drive in the array, making it possible to recover the lost information if a drive fails — and to keep the array running while rebuilding the failed drive

RAID has several implementations — or “levels” — that utilize striping, mirroring, parity or a combination of the three. We’ll explain those more fully later in the article, but for now there’s one thing you need to know: If you have a home or business server, you need RAID. RAID is the one solution that can make your server faster, do a better job of protecting your data and continue operating while you rebuild data after disk failure.

Although an exhaustive list of all RAID levels is outside the scope of this article, this brief list should help to explain the features and benefits of RAID in greater detail:

 

RAID 0

A RAID 0 array requires at least two hard drives. In RAID 0, the controller splits all data equally across all hard drives. Each drive works simultaneously during read and write operations, increasing the speed of the volume to far greater than that of a single hard drive.

Strengths and Weaknesses: A RAID 0 array excels in increasing a server’s storage performance. However, all data in a RAID 0 array is lost if one drive fails. You can add additional drives to a RAID 0 array to increase its performance further, but adding more drives further increases the risk of failure.

 

RAID 1

In a RAID 1 array, every hard drive contains the same data and the controller writes to all drives simultaneously. A RAID 1 array provides excellent data redundancy because all of the data survives unless every drive in the array fails.

Strengths and Weaknesses: In addition to data redundancy, RAID 1 can slightly increase a server’s read performance. When the controller requests data, the drive that can access the data most quickly will retrieve it. However, RAID 1 provides no increase in storage capacity past that of the smallest hard drive in the array because each drive contains the same data. In addition, the slowest hard drive determines the write speed of the entire array.

 

RAID 5

A RAID 5 array stripes the data across multiple drives like RAID 0. However, every hard drive also carries parity data for each block written. Using the parity data, the controller can rebuild the entire array if one drive fails — and the array can continue working during the rebuild process.

Strengths and Weaknesses: The greatest strength of RAID 5 is that it offers increased reliability without sacrificing a great deal of storage capacity. Unlike RAID 1, the total capacity of a RAID 5 array increases each time you add a hard drive. However, parity data does take up some space. A RAID 5 array with four 1 TB hard drives will have a total capacity of about 3 TB.

RAID 5 offers better read performance than a single drive because the striping allows multiple drives to read simultaneously. However, the write performance of RAID 5 is relatively poor because of the extra time required to write parity data.

 

RAID 6

RAID 6 is similar to RAID 5 in design, but it devotes an amount of storage equal to that of two hard drives — rather than one — to parity so it can tolerate the failure of two drives without losing data.

Strengths and Weaknesses: A RAID 5 array can tolerate the loss of any one drive. However, hard drive manufacturers state that about once every 12.5 TB, a hard drive will encounter an unrecoverable read error. If you have a RAID 5 array with four 4 TB drives and one drive fails, the remaining capacity of the array is about 12 TB. If one of the remaining three drives experiences a read error when rebuilding the array, the rebuild operation will fail. If you use more hard drives — or larger hard drives — the chance of failure is greater. So, RAID 6 is far more reliable than RAID 5 for very large RAID arrays. However, because RAID 6 doubles the amount of parity data, write operations are slower.

 

RAID 10

RAID 10, or RAID 1+0, is essentially the combination of RAID 1 and RAID 0. It combines disk striping and disk mirroring to provide redundancy and performance. Due to it’s incredible performance benefits, RAID 10 is one of the most ideal solutions, especially for intense applications and databases.

Strengths and Weaknesses: The greatest strength of RAID 10 is that it offers maximum performance while also maintaining redundancy. The only disadvantages of RAID 10 are that it requires a minimum of four disks and only 50% of the disk space is usable due to mirroring.

 

RAID has become a vital necessity for any business looking for safety and performance when it comes to their website and/or critical company data. If your business is currently running on a server without RAID, you risk not only data loss, but also the added performance that can separate you from your competitors. Now is the time to upgrade your business to a RAID solution.

At TurnKey Internet, RAID upgrades are available on all of our Dedicated Servers. Best of all, our latest Best Value Dedicated Server already includes RAID 10, making your upgrade even easier! Start enjoying the added performance and safety of RAID today.

 

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Written by David Maurer on August 22nd, 2017

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