Shared, VPS, or Dedicated: Which web hosting type is best for your business?

Web hosting is one of the most important aspects of any internet business. However, it’s commonly misunderstood. There are so many web hosting companies, and each one offers different types and plans. It gets confusing, and shopping for the best one can take days or even weeks. Since 1999, I’ve used over a dozen web hosts, and each one is different. However, most reputable web hosting companies now offer three types of hosting: shared, VPS (virtual private server), and dedicated. Regardless of the hosting company you choose, you should understand these three types of hosting before signing up for a plan. Continue reading

Cuddle up to your design partner and watch Helvetica

Love it or hate it, you can’t escape the typeface Helvetica. Logos for major brands such as 3M, Microsoft, Toyota, Staples, and American Airlines are set in Helvetica. You’ll also find this popular sans-serif typeface on IRS forms, street signs, and in word processing software. Last summer marked Helvetica’s 50th anniversary and the release of Helvetica, a feature-length independent film by Gary Hustwit about typography and graphic design. I missed the screening in Orlando last fall, so I was happy when it became available on Netflix. Continue reading

Use a unique dedicated phone number from Skype to improve website conversion tracking

How many phone calls do you get from your website? It’s difficult to quantify unless the person answering your phone asks every caller, “How did you find us?” It’s much easier to track leads from a website contact form. But to determine internet marketing ROI, it’s important to track inbound e-mail and phone calls.
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The best free apps for creating website content

A website without fresh content is like a sushi bar without fresh tuna. Customers might visit once, but they probably won’t be back. Whether you operate a simple corporate site or complex eCommerce storefront, new content is a valuable asset. But professional content creation software can be expensive. I work with some small businesses who simply don’t have $650 for Adobe Photoshop, $300 for Sony Sound Forge, or $350 for Microsoft Office.
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Reboot your creativity with a collaborative art project

Sitting in front of a computer can be a drag. Some days I feel like the screen sucks the life out of me and my creativity. TV and computer screens are everywhere: at the gas pump, hanging from the ceiling at big box stores, attached to the treadmills at my gym, in waiting rooms, and in most minivans. Continue reading