Saturday, April 15, 2017

Your Website Infrastructure: Domains, Hosting, and Platform

Before you can begin building your website, you need to make some important decisions regarding where your site will live, how you’ll manage it, and what your site address will be.  

Choosing a Good Domain

Your domain name is your URL – it’s what you’ll tell people when they ask “What’s your website.” It’s a decision you’ll likely have to live with for a long time, so it pays to put some thought into it and not buy the first one that comes to mind.

These days, finding an available domain name can be a frustrating task that often leads new website owners to choose less-than-ideal URLs. You can save yourself a lot of trouble by following a few established “rules”:

  • Always choose .com – You might be tempted to use .net or .org if your preferred domain is taken, but please do not do that. You will lose traffic to the holder of the .com when your potential clients fail to remember that your site is .net.
  • Avoid ambiguous spelling, repeated letters, and numbers – Using might seem fun, but imagine having to explain how it’s spelled every time you tell someone what your domain name is.
  • Avoid hyphens – For the same reason as stated above. Imagine yourself on a podcast and having to say “www dot quality dash transcription dash services dot com.” It doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue.

Always give your potential domain the talk test – say it out loud – and then ask a few friends to look at it. You might just be surprised at what they’ll see that you didn’t expect.

Choosing a Good Hosting Provider

In order to have the most flexibility with your new site, it’s important that your hosting provider:

  • Is NOT the same as your domain registrar – Hosting and registering with the same company gives them far too much control over your business assets.
  • Has cPanel access – While not critical, it is much easier to find someone to help you with any technical problems you might have if your host uses this familiar format.
  • Has a great reputation – Two of the best are Hostgator and Bluehost. They’re inexpensive and well-known, and both offer excellent customer service.
  • Is NOT free – Blogger, Weebly, and other free sites might be attractive from a monetary standpoint, but they won’t convey the professional image you want.

Choosing Your Website Platform

Finally, before you can build your site, you’ll need to decide what will power it. You have a lot of choices here, from HTML you build yourself using Dreamweaver or a similar program to proprietary software offered by your hosting account. All have their good and bad points, but for most new website owners, the absolute best choice is SoloBuildIt.

It’s simple to use, offers nearly endless customization options, and with a huge community of users and developers available, it’s super easy to get help if you need it. You can customize your site with one of thousands of themes so it looks exactly the way you want it to look, and you’ll never have to dig into the code to make changes – unless you want to, that is.  And they do provide hosting as well as domain registration (the only exception to rule #1 above in my opinion) plus all the analytics you could want.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Is Your Personal Filter On/

Walk around your home and I'll bet you have plenty of filters.  Water filters to keep our water clean and pure.  Home heating and AC filters to reduce allergens.  We have all of these to protect our health and the health of our families. 

It's amazing what we'll do to protect things that are important to us.  So, then, why do we put more emphasis on protecting our possessions than the most important asset we own - our mindset?

Have you ever gotten up in the morning excited and ready to work on building your dream?  And then things happen.  Your spouse is cranky.  You stop for coffee and your waiter is rude.  Your best friend laughs at your latest plan for greatness.  You turn on the TV or radio and hear supposed adults - government leaders, religious leaders, business leaders - bickering and arguing like children.  You go shopping or out for lunch and all around you people are making hateful and hurtful comments about others.  And before you know it, you are sucked into all of THAT.  No wonder you don't feel like pursuing your goals.

Filter what goes into your mind.  If your filter is off, it's like a glaring light that affects your sight.  You CAN choose what you let into your life.  For example, in my home, we have stopped watching the evening news.  Why?  Because I don't like all the drama and negativity.  I already know the world is not as it should be.  I don't need to be reminded daily.

Another way I protect my mindset it to filter who I spend time with, especially on social media where it seems that the level of negativity and outright hatred has reached epidemic proportions. Almost every social media platform has a way to unfollow, unfriend, and block someone.  And I know how to use them all! 

It's the same with people I interact with face-to-face.  If you are always negative, judgmental, whining and complaining, chances are we won't spend much time together. 

I'm not saying that you will never have a disagreement with someone.  And I know that you can't shut out the entire world.  Sometimes you have to see the negative stuff if you are going to help change it.  And yes, even I get frustrated and angry from time to time.  But I'm talking about the consistent offenders.  Disconnect from those who constantly seek to bring you down.  They will probably never see your vision.  Why allow them to cast their shadow on it?  Seek out people who lift you up.  Look for those who have a clear vision of their own. 

Many coaches, no matter what their specialty, will encourage you to visualize your goals as a way to help reach them.  But it's not enough to just visualize what you want. You can't just create good thoughts and hope they will overwhelm the bad ones.  You have to actually ensure that you do not allow negative things to alter your vision or your goals.

So add one more filter to the filters you already use.  Protect your mindset.  Filter out negativity, anger, hatred, fear.  Release it and you just might find your path to your goals just became much clearer.