Why Does Genuine SSD VPS Conquer the Blog World?

  • 5 Benefits of VPS for Bloggers
  • 8 Reasons SSD is Better for Blogging
  • Why is Speed Central to Your Blog’s Success?
  • Support for Your Speed

 

If you’re a blogger, you probably don’t want to have to think too much about hosting. However, it’s an easy way to create differentiation. If your blog has better technical performance, there will be less pressure on your content to drive traffic on its own.

 

Upgrading from low-end shared hosting to the more advanced technologies of virtual private server (VPS) and solid state drive (SSD) can be powerful. Plus, the cost is more manageable than using a dedicated server.

 

5 benefits of VPS for bloggers

 

Now, to be clear, in VPS or virtual private server environments, you are still dividing up machines – but delineation is much stricter with virtualization software, to the extent that you have your own, independent operating system.

 

“These servers… are strictly defined and managed by the virtualization software,” explained Ajeet Khurana. “Based on the hardware setup you purchase, the virtual computer will be allocated with the specified number of CPU’s, RAM, disk space and bandwidth.”

 

Why do bloggers choose VPS? Here are Khurana’s basic arguments:

 

  • Isolating yourself – The choices of other users on the infrastructure (including your physical machine) will not affect your performance. If another user crashes their server, yours won’t go down with it.
  • You’re steady – Your website service will be reliable and stable. Although the full physical machine is not dedicated to you, the resources within your VPS are dedicated solely to you.
  • You really get space – Shared hosts will sometimes offer guarantees of unlimited resources, but there is a catch. To make this claim, shared providers “shield themselves in some kind of ‘fair use’ clause,” noted Khurana, which makes the guarantee useless. To avoid these limitations, you can get a legitimate space guarantee with VPS.
  • Full root access – It is good to know that your VPS-hosted site has root access as needed for certain installations. Shared hosting never gives you that degree of control.
  • You can fly – When you’re on shared hosting, your speed will typically fluctuate based on peak times for other users. With a VPS, you get consistent performance. If you have a CPU designated for your use, that is your CPU. The RAM amount that’s stated in your VPS package is always available to you.

Khurana is a strong advocate of VPS over shared hosting. “[B]udget for a VPS plan,” he advised. “It is much cheaper than dedicated hosting, while being much more robust than shared hosting.”

 

8 Reasons SSD is Better for Blogging

 

You can see that a virtual private server is a strong choice, but how is SSD VPS (one using solid state drives) preferable? For general advice on how the SSD is preferable to an HDD (hard disk drive), let’s look at points made by Kenneth Hess in ServerWatch (with updated data as available).

 

Hess’s well-executed report, based on an industry-wide overview, lists these benefits of solid state over the mechanical HDD variety:

 

  • Durability – Hess noted that movement is problematic for HDDs, particularly when writing is occurring. In contrast, “SSDs… aren’t affected by mobility and are well-suited to such physical abuse,” he said. “SSDs can withstand up to 1,500 g during operation or 25 times that of a standard drive.” (2011 figures)
  • Backup for power loss – There is a backup protection that is built into a typical enterprise-grade SSD: it checks changes in voltage, via power failure circuits, and puts a backup voltage holdup circuit into play if the voltage goes under its pre-established limit. That means that there is enough power available to save writes to the infrastructure that haven’t yet completed.
  • Energy efficiency / sustainability – A solid state drive does not use a lot of energy. The 2011 figures for Watts used by an SSD and HDD show the wide gulf between them. “SSDs sip from 0.05 Watts to 1.3 Watts,” said Hess, “while their gluttonous counterparts gobble at a rate of 4 Watts or more.” Keep in mind that claims along these lines vary wildly; however, even those who question efficiency claims admit that energy used for a fixed amount of work will be lower with an SSD. In other words, there seems to be consensus that SSDs will help lower your power needs. (Plus, see the next point.)
  • Not getting hot – Heat hurts the performance of electronics. That’s why datacenters are so cool. The heat dissipation will be much lower with an SSD than with a mechanical disk. That means you don’t have to blast the AC quite as much. Furthermore, your fan size can be smaller. To look at the other side, incredibly, Hess said that HDDs create 70 percent of a system’s heat.
  • Longer life – Hess noted that HDDs tend to last 3-5 years but can die at any point. That is true actually. A study of 25,000 drives conducted in 2013 found that “only” 26% of HDDs die within 4 years. In contrast, Hess noted that he thinks the claims of SSD manufacturers of millions of hours should be seen as marketing hype, but that you can reasonably “[e]xpect your SSDs to last two to three times longer than mechanical drives.”
  • Hot plug/unplug – You don’t have to “spin up” an SSD. You have their capacity right away, with no delay whatsoever. The only thing you need to wait for is the operating system to acknowledge that the drive is there. The wait is shorter, and there’s no reboot.
  • Less noise pollution – Stress increases with noise pollution. Datacenters with mechanical drives are incredibly noisy. SSDs are quiescent drives. In a 100% SSD datacenter, all you would hear is central AC, cabinet fans, and system fans. Plus, as indicated above, your fans would likely be smaller, resulting in even lower noise.
  • Speed – Last but not least, these drives offer better performance. Hess mentioned that there are some independent studies that have been conducted suggesting that SSDs are 2-3 times faster than mechanical disks (although some research suggests the performance difference isn’t that extreme).

 

Why is Speed Central to Your Blog’s Success?

 

In an informative article on site speed and its importance, Blog Tyrant founder Ramsay Taplin noted that 2 in 5 users leave a site if the load time is over 3 seconds. He suggested 4 straightforward ways in which your site is influenced by hosting speed:

 

  1. You get more email signups.
  2. You get better search engine prominence (i.e., server speed improvement is now a general SEO tactic).
  3. You garner more conversions and sales.
  4. You score better engagement, stronger readership, and improved trust.

 

To accelerate a site, one of the top specific strategies recommended by Taplin is switching from shared hosting to a VPS.

Support for Your Speed

 

Ramsay, founder of Blog Tyrant, is actually a client of ours. When we asked him for his thoughts on our hosting service, support is the first thing he mentioned.

 

“I can honestly say that [KnownHost’s] support is the best I have ever encountered,” he said. “If you’re looking to expand to a VPS and are a bit nervous about the process, I highly recommend KnownHost as the staff and culture at this company is really hard to beat.”

 

Get your own Fully Managed SSD VPS.

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What Should You Keep Private from Your Company’s Blog?

Your company’s blog is your only platform where you can literally say whatever you want to your target audience on. And that means you have to get things right when you are posting on that platform, which this guide is going to provide you with some more guidance on. There are some things you need to keep private, though.

See Also: Creating Catchy Blog Content – 10 Rules of Engagement

best blogging platform

Why Shouldn’t You Speak Freely?

The reason why you shouldn’t speak freely is because there are certain things people don’t want to hear about. Think about a blog and you think of a place where you can harbor your private feelings. A company blog is far from this. It’s about promotion.

You are Marketing a Service

You are not here to talk about your issues you are here to market your products and services. You may not be constantly trying to make every post into a sales pitch, but that doesn’t mean you should be doing anything other than marketing your services in a direct or indirect way.

Always keep that in mind.

Anything Negative

The easiest way to sum all this up is to keep anything negative off of your blog. Your target market wants to go online and browse because they want to escape negativity. They don’t want to hear about anything that makes them feel bad or depressed, and so always keep things positive.

Positivity isn’t about avoiding the big issues it’s about framing them in a way that leaves people feeling fresh and hopeful.

Your Innermost Operations

Obviously, it makes sense not to publish exactly what you are doing and exactly what’s going on in the office at all times. This can feel like an invasion of privacy for your employees, and for your target audience, they may not care in the slightest. You want to keep people interested.

But Only Sometimes…

There are exceptions to this rule. Ten years ago it would be considered unthinkable to lift up the curtain and allow people to see what’s going on in the back. Today that has changed. Today it’s become a clever marketing tool. On occasion, you will find the perfect chance to promote your products by showing people what’s going on behind the scenes.

Just make sure you only do this on occasion.

Anything Too Personal

 Keep in mind that becoming too personal will only lead to disaster. People are not there to hear about you, they are there to hear about what the company does. You always need to keep things on-point. Anything too personal should be kept exclusively for special content delivered to newsletter subscribers, for example.

Personal is Not Marketing

There’s something to say for building your brand through personal content. But personal content executed well is done with the sole purpose of marketing something. You have to keep in mind that for most companies, and in most cases, personal content will not serve the purpose of marketing, and therefore, has little point.

A Contentious Topic

Contentious topics are those that could potentially inflame tensions. Some companies will use them in order to gain some form of notoriety. It’s a form of real-time marketing, and there are situations where it has worked for the better. Unfortunately, for the majority of companies it nearly always comes back to bite them.

What is Controversial and What Isn’t?

You need to make an educated decision on what could potentially upset someone since everything will upset someone sooner or later. There’s no way that you can please everyone, but at the same time, you need to make sure that you are not offending your target market.

Try to put yourself in someone else’s shoes before posting something on the company blog.

Keep Redundancy Minimum

Redundant topics are those topics that you have either talked about before or those topics that are not worth a blog. You know when a company blog is scraping the bottom of the barrel when these topics come up. They believe that they have to stick to a strict posting schedule, and so they will use these topics.

They only serve to bore and irritate your target audience.

Defeating the Posting Frequency Myth

A lot of people believe that you have to post a certain number of times every week to keep your blog active. This couldn’t be further from truth. People would much rather have a detailed blog than something that you have come up with just to fulfill a piece of criteria.

See Also: The Bulletproof Guide for Making One Article Work 5xs Harder

Conclusion

Posting on your company blog is about marketing your products and services. It’s about making your target audience fall in love with your brand. Think carefully about the type of content you are posting before you hit the ‘Publish’ button. Consider whether it’s something your target audience really wants to hear about.

What is the most successful piece of content you have ever posted on your company blog?

 

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Creating Catchy Blog Content – 10 Rules of Engagement

Catchy blog content will keep your target audience engaged and encourage them to keep coming back for more. Actually creating catchy blog content is another matter entirely. This guide is going to show you some of the key rules of successful engagement.

See Also: Best Blogging Platforms for Beginners

1.      Make it Simple

To begin with, you have to keep your writing simple. If you are used to complex sentences, you are going to be forced to dig yourself out of a hole. Expand your target audience by making your writing available to all. Simple and clear writing sends a message.

2.      Have Purpose

Every post must have some sort of purpose. Yes, the key purpose of any blog is to engage the reader and encourage them to do something, but every individual post has to have a firm goal in mind.

why wordpress

What Does this Mean?

There must be an end point, and it must be delivered through a call to action. It may be to click on something, to subscribe to your list, or to simply find out more about a subject.

3.      The Headline 

You can’t underestimate the importance of a headline. It’s the first thing people see and they are going to make a split second judgement on whether to click on that blog. This is the first level of engagement and the chances are people are not going to click if your title doesn’t stand out from the other headlines.

If the post doesn’t get read, it doesn’t get shared.

4.      Telling a Story

Your goal is to encourage readers to go through your blog from start to finish. Even if someone reads part of the way, there’s no guarantee they are going to get to the end, especially when it comes to longer posts.

Find Inspiration

This is where you have to get creative. Relate the message you are trying to send to something that you have experienced. Consider how your life relates to what you are attempting to say.

5.      Reading Level

Consider the reading level of the piece. It’s useless writing a complex post if your target audience has a comparatively low reading level. This is where understanding your target audience is crucial. It takes time to accomplish, but through proper research you are going to reap the rewards.

6.      Grammar

The grammar of a blog should always be as simple as possible. Forget everything you have learned about grammar in school. Writing an academic paper will make things seem dull and dry. Just make sure that it’s legible and readable. Try reading it aloud.

See Also: 10 Rules to Follow When Writing Blog Content

The Danger of Bad Grammar

Keep in mind that grammar can destroy your credibility and make it next to impossible to engage your customers. Many blog owners have been ridiculed simply because they failed to correct that misspelled word or take out that series of unnecessary commas.

7.      Formatting

Proper formatting allows the reader to pace themselves. Don’t overwhelm readers with a long paragraph of text. You need to make sure readers have a clear introduction, body, and conclusion. Take a look at the most popular blogs for inspiration on how to get this done right.

8.      Tone

The tone of your blog should be casual and informal. Imagine that you are speaking to a friend sitting in the room with you. It’s easy to go overboard, though. Even if you are being casual, this doesn’t mean that you should bring in offensive phrases or slurs.

9.      Good Visuals

Another rule of engagement is to bring in great visuals. Image marketing and video marketing have taken off in recent years. Make sure you are using high-quality images to really get people engaged.

Why Does it Work So Well?

The reason why visuals are so important is because most people are viewing content on mobile devices. Images help to break up the writing and lend credibility to what you are saying. They clarify meaning and they avoid misunderstandings.

10.  Curating Great Content

Sometimes your success or failure relies entirely on bringing together great content in the first place. Finding out what people actually want to hear and discovering what’s shareable right now on social media will ultimately get more people engaged.

This is less of a writing skill and more of a management skill.

How to Do it Right

To do this right, you should have your finger on the pulse of social media at all times. It should be clear what people are talking about and, therefore, what you need to talk about.

Conclusion

These ten rules of engagement will ensure that you get the right response from your target audience. Successful blogging takes time and effort, but when you get it right there’s nothing that’s more powerful.

How will you engage readers today?

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10 Beginner Website Mistakes You’re Probably Making Right Now

Businesses online and offline should know about the importance of having a website. Nevertheless, the chances are you are making mistakes right now and you don’t even know about them. We are going to show you what mistakes you may be making and how to correct them.

No technical expertise necessary!

1.     Lack of Vision

A lack of vision is dangerous. It’s not enough to simply have an online presence. Just because you build a website it does not mean that it is going to be a successful one. You need to build an online presence and have a firm purpose in mind for what you want to do with it.

What’s in a Vision?

A vision can be anything. It can be to inform, to sell, to educate, and to interact. Everything on your website should be directed towards this one goal. You want a user to arrive on your website and immediately know what it’s about.

See Also: Why Do Local Businesses Need a Website?

2.     Rushing to Market

You don’t want to rush to market. It’s tempting to zip through the process so you can get started, but what you really need to do is hold back for a moment. Take time to research. Look at your competitors and study what they are doing.

Being the first to market offers no real advantages here.

3.     Complex Design

A successful website must be simple. It doesn’t have to be flashy. In fact, the more complex it is the more likely it will lead to confusion. Your design goal should be to enhance the user experience and nothing more.

How to Enhance the User Experience

  • Focus on simplicity.
  • Ask your users what they would like to change.
  • Put yourself in the position of a user.
  • Use color in the right way. Color should never blind or make it hard to read something.
  • Look at the navigation. Is it easy to pull information from your website?

See Also: Is it Time to Do a Website Redesign?

4.     Trendy Designs

The problem with following too many design trends is that they come and go like the wind. What’s popular now won’t necessarily be popular in a year from now. You can use specific design trends, but if you rely on them, they are going to quickly become outdated.

5.     Outdated Content

It’s tempting to write lots of content and assume that’s the end of the process. This is not the case at all. Content should be updated on a regular basis in order to stay current with the latest in design. Older content sends the message that you are out of business or you lack innovation.

The same goes for your blog. Keep it updated!

6.     Low Quality Images

Images should always be in HD. It’s the minimum people are going to expect in this day and age. Don’t leave yourself looking amateurish by not investing in the highest quality images you can.

Getting Top Quality Images

  • Use stock images.
  • Purchase a better camera.
  • Hire a professional who can both take and edit original pictures.

7.     Broken Links/Elements

Broken links and other elements simply isn’t acceptable A 404 page is essentially a message that you’re an amateur and you’re not keeping your website updated and ready to go. It’s a bad sign.

404 page example

Check your internal links on a regular basis to make sure your customers aren’t hitting a brick wall.

8.     Badly Designed Logos

Your logo is your badge. It’s what will go on everything from your website to your product labelling. So why do so many companies think they can get away with a badly designed logo?

  • Don’t get your logo designed by an amateur, or worse, yourself.
  • Ask for feedback from real people.
  • Take time to think about it. This is a long-term decision.

9.     Incorrect Font Choice

Determining the right font for your website isn’t difficult. It needs to compliment your design and be as clear as possible. The readability of your content relies on it.

Should You Employ a Professional?

We are not saying you need to consult a professional designer to create a font that is unique to you. However, looking at competitors and asking for feedback from a select number of customers should help with finding the right font for you.

10.Where’s Your Call to Action?

You need a call to action because you, presumably, want your visitors to do something. Websites without a call to action make your website nothing more than a business card. They have to get in touch with you to find out what you want them to do.

Tell them what you want them to do on every page. Make it clear!

Last Word

Our last word is that these ten points are the basis of what any good website should be built on. There’s nothing advanced or groundbreaking on this list, but it explains why so many businesses fail. They don’t get their website in order and they are shocked when customers don’t respond well to them.

Employ a professional web designer today to look your website over and see where you can improve!

 

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