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Three Types Of Data You Should Never Store In A Public Cloud

safeLet’s put one thing to rest right away – the cloud is not any more or less secure than more traditional methods of data storage and transfer.

There are security risks associated with using the cloud, of course; that’s true of virtually any platform or service.

In the case of the cloud, it simply has its own unique crop of security problems that some businesses haven’t yet adapted to.

Right, now that we’ve got that out of the way…

As I’ve said, cloud storage isn’t less secure than a traditional server. With that in mind, there’s still certain information that you should generally avoid storing online. The data we’re about to go over is stuff that could easily land you in legal hot water – or even destroy your business – if its compromised. Continue Reading →

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What’s Twitter Buzzing About this October in the World of Startups, Hosting, & Web Development?

We know that it can be a little overwhelming at times trying to stay on top of the latest news on Twitter, so this month we thought we’d make it easy for you. We’ve gathered some of the most tweeted, re-tweeted, and debated stories we’ve come across and put them in one spot for you. From great advice from successful entrepreneurs like Richard Branson, to discussions on the future of Linux, to how video games are teaching kids, we’ve got you covered on what’s happened this month. And did you know that it’s National Cyber Security Awareness month? Read up on all of this and more below. If you enjoy this collection of industry news, feel free to follow us over on Facebook and Twitter too. Enjoy!

Small Business and Startup

Forbes advice to startups: “Fake it until you make it.”

Matt Wilson, co-founder of Under 30 CEO, tells the story about the best advice he ever received.

Michelle Goodman gives advice to new businesses on when to spend that hard earned money and where you can save.

We’re sure you know the basics of marketing, but we think you might not have heard of these 5 marketing tactics.

Kimanzi Constable, author and editor, gives advice from his own experience on common mistakes many startups make.

Do you know the number one reason why most startups fail? Annie Pilon says she does.

Richard Branson has 3 questions he would like to ask you. Want to know what they are?

Web Design and Devlopment

Have you seen the latest release from Moodle? Here’s a short video on version 2.8.

Lindsey Kolowich wrote a great beginner’s guide to HTML, CSS & JavaScript.

We know how stressful it can be choosing a domain name, so we’ve offered up some helpful suggestions for you.

A really helpful video from Entrepreneur Magazine on what you need to know before launching your website.

We’re interested to see how this plays out: Google and Netflix to provide a case study on how cloud services will be taxed.

Intel’s Chief Linux and Open Source Technologist, Dirk Hohndel and Linux creator Linus Torvalds discuss the state of the platform and expectations for the next 12 months in Düsseldorf.

Hosting & General Tech

Who knew all those video games we played would actually teach us something?

October is National Cyber Security Awareness month.

Google recently announced they would be giving a rankings boost to websites using HTTPS.

This is one creative mom!

And finally, the always humorous George Takei has a little fun with the latest news about Minecraft.

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What Makes Mobile So Vital For Small Businesses?

Smartphone-Audience_Mueller_MSC2014You’ve heard it all before – how mobile has changed the way we work, communicate, and live.

How the advent of the smartphone has allowed employees to be more connected than ever before.

How, if your business is doing nothing to implement mobile tech, you’re going to end up eating the dust of the competition.

Many of you have heard all this, but haven’t really received an adequate explanation as to why this is the case. What is it about mobile that makes it such a powerful tool for business? And why, specifically, is it so important to your organization in particular?

There are a few reasons for that. Continue Reading →

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Five Facts You Need To Understand About Fault Tolerance

national archive server roomBy now, you’ve likely heard the term ‘fault tolerance’ at least once.

For those of you unfamiliar with its meaning, it refers to a computer system’s capacity to continue functioning in the event of hardware or software failure.

In essence, the system ‘tolerates’ a fault that would drive other systems to their knees. Sounds pretty simple…right?

Not exactly.

There’s actually a lot more to fault tolerance than meets the eye – and it’s considerably more important than one might expect at first glance. Let’s talk about that. We’re going to go over a few of the facts you need to understand about fault tolerance. Continue Reading →

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5 Small Business Marketing Tactics You’ve Likely Never Heard

Garry Moore Johnny Carson Ive Got a Secret 1959There’s no getting around it – marketing is absolutely vital to one’s success in the business world. If you ever want to see your small business going anywhere, you need to be able to market it effectively. You already know this, of course – and you probably know all the basics, as well.

You’re aware that you need to know your customers and speak to them on a personal level; you understand the importance of being open and transparent. You’re aware of how important content marketing is, and you know your website needs to be optimized for mobile. What’s more, you’ve at least a basic grasp of how a website should be tweaked to play nice with Google – and you know that getting your community to share knowledge of your business is one of the best things you can do.

You know a great deal – but you don’t quite know everything. There are still plenty of marketing secrets you’ve not yet been made party to – and I’ll be the first to admit that there’s plenty I don’t know, as well. In today’s piece, I’m going to share just a few of those secrets with you.

Here are a few more tips, tricks, and tactics that’ll help you bring word of your business to more people than ever before. Continue Reading →

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Choosing The Right Domain Name For Your Small Business

urlIf you haven’t already, it’s time to start thinking about setting up a website for your small business. After all, unless you’re primarily serving a community of technophobes, it’s more or less a guarantee that your target demographic uses the Internet. If you don’t have a website, you’re potentially missing out on a whole lot of prospective customers (and a whole lot of revenue).

Of course, simply having a website isn’t enough if no one’s able to find it.  For that reason, it’s absolutely vital you ensure your site is properly optimized for both search and browsing. The selection of your domain name may well be the most important choice you’ll ever make online.

See, much the same as your brand name is your business’s identity in the offline world, your domain name is your identity on the Internet. Choose one that’s ill-fitting or inappropriate, and your traffic will suffer along with your online reputation. If you go with the right one and market it effectively, though?

Your brand could well become known across the net.

So how does one go about selecting an effective domain name? How can one tell whether a particular domain name will work? Most importantly, how can one avoid selecting a dud?

Let’s talk about that. Continue Reading →

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September’s Roundup of the Best Startup, Hosting, & Web Development Content

small biz saturdayIn the month or so since our last roundup, there’s been a lot going on in the world of small business, web hosting, and development. There have been a number of new web tools that are allowing for a new user experience, and we look at how you can take advantage of a couple of these new technologies. We offer advice on which hosting solution is best from you and gather advice from different CEOs on how they made their little startup into a big success. In news of general interest, the web passed one billion websites recently, Microsoft purchased a “game” for $2.5 billion, and there’s a new security flaw that has a lot of people worried. To catch up on all the rest of the major happenings from September, check out the rest of the roundup below. If you enjoy this collection of industry news, feel free to follow us over on Facebook and Twitter. Enjoy!

Small Business and Startup

Statistics From Inc. 500 CEOs on Their Companies’ First Year

A by the numbers look at what inspired CEOs of the fastest-growing private companies to take the leap, where they made mistakes, and where they were able to get startup funding.

What Happens After You Reach Your Crowdfuning Goal?

Now you’ve raised the funds – now you have to make sure your backers are happy with the investment. Entrepreneur Andrew Thomas suggests 4 ways to keep your newly funded project successful and accountable to the many people who pumped money into your startup. Continue Reading →

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5 Ways You Can Make Your IT Department Leaner

IT guyIt’s an unfortunate truth of the business world — most organizations overspend on IT. Whether through simple ignorance or poor planning, far too many CIOs manage departments so fat it’s a wonder they can function at all. Worse, no one really seems to have any idea what they should do about it. They just keep chugging along, tossing more and more capital into the pit.

Ask yourself honestly — is your business among them?

It’s alright if the answer was yes. You aren’t alone in that — nor are you alone in wanting to cut down how much you spend. That’s the topic of today’s piece — how can you force your IT department to tone up and trim down?

Outsource With The Cloud

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Is Crowdfunding The Right Route For Your Startup?

Kickstarter_logoBy now, I’m certain you’ve heard of crowdfunding and how it has changed the face of business. Thanks to websites like Kickstarter, angel investors and VC firms are no longer the only means of securing funding for a startup. With a good enough pitch and the right marketing, a brand can fund itself directly through its future customers.

In theory, that seems like a dream come true for consumers and businesses alike. In addition to funding, startups get a ton of (theoretically) free marketing, and the opportunity to connect with customers. On the other side of the coin, the consumer gets to feel like they’ve a personal stake in the brand, making them significantly more loyal.

But is it really all it’s cracked up to be? Can a business really fund itself solely through platforms like Kickstarter? More importantly…can your business do so? Continue Reading →

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6 Tactics To Make Your Small Business Grow Up Big And Strong

childCultivating a business is in many ways like raising a child. For one, there’s a certain element of pride in witnessing its success – and knowing that you were at least partially responsible. For another, what you do in its formative years will determine pretty much everything it becomes when it grows to maturity.

In other words, if you mess up when your business is young, it’s probably going to be messed up when it grows older.

All analogies aside, the early years of a startup or small business are pretty much what makes or breaks it for the future. Larger corporations can survive a bit of mismanagement – companies like Facebook, and Microsoft, that have reached the ‘too big to fail’ stage. Small businesses, though?

They can’t. Not really.

Now that we’ve hammered in a bit of doom and gloom, let’s focus on actually giving you folks something of value, shall we?  Today, we’re going to talk about how you as a small business owner can successfully foster growth for your organization. In short, we’re going to go over how you can ensure your business grows up into a strong, successful syndicate and not a failing, dysfunctional firm.

Let’s begin.   Continue Reading →

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