Link building is an SEO process that involves having other websites to link to your own for you to increase visibility and page ranking on the SERPs. This article will explain further how link building can bring an SEO edge to your small business.
As website owners, you probably know by now that you can’t simply create a website, upload content and wait for things to happen. It’s important to have a solid understanding of how SEO works to be able to grab the attention of your target audience and thrive above the competition.
The world of SEO rarely ever stays the same. What works today, may not work tomorrow. However, what remains the same all throughout these years is creating high-quality link building strategies.
After all, links are the lifeblood of every digital assets on the Internet. So, in today’s post we’d like to share this guide on how to build quality links for a massive search engine traffic.
What is Link Building?
Link building is one of the crucial skills you need to master in SEO. It’s the process of having other websites link to your site. The focus of any link building success is quality over quantity. So, it make sense to prioritise building a few high quality links than a thousand spammy ones.
The best way to encourage more authoritative sites to link to your website is to always produce relevant, high-quality content that’s worth sharing to their own audience.
Why is Link Building Important?
One of the factors that Google considers when ranking web pages across the web is link popularity. The more your content is linked to high-quality websites, the more Google recognizes this as a vote of confidence that you have an authority website. This leads to a higher search ranking on search engine results pages (SERPs).
Essentially, link building should be treated rather as a way to build relationships over time. In theory, if someone shares a link to your content, then it’s telling others that your site is a good resource.
High authority sites will most likely not link to a website if it feels it doesn’t deserve it. In the same way, you wouldn’t recommend an inferior product to your friend, right?
What Makes a High Quality Link?
Here are some tips on to spot a high quality from bad links.
It matters that a website is not only authoritative, it should be relevant to yours, too. These authority sites should be closely related to your niche. If you’re a travel site, you would want to get linked to another travel-related website.
PageRank is a tool Google uses to evaluate the importance of web pages. While Google discontinued showing PageRank numbers publicly, they still use it to base their decision on which pages to rank.
Linked shared by authoritative sites adds credibility and authority to your site. To check out a site’s proxy Page Authority, you can use Moz Open Site Explorer.
It also matters that your links are strategically placed in a content. If it’s hidden away on sidebars or footers, then it’s pretty much useless since people might not likely see it. You would want your links injected right in the body of a web page where it’s visible and clickable to readers.
When people link to your site because they think that you create great content, your link is said to be an editorial link. According to Google, building links that aren’t editorially placed are considered unnatural and a violation of their link building guidelines.
An anchor text is a clickable text of a hypertext link. This is an example of an anchor text: Managed WordPress Hosting. It tells Google what the page is about and whether to rank it for.
Just like anything in SEO, the anchor text was long abused. Too much exact-match anchor texts might flag your web page as spammy. So, keep all your anchor texts natural and diverse.
Dofollow and Nofollow Links
Dofollow links are links allowing search engine crawlers to follow and push link juice from them, helping the linked-to site to increase its ranking in the SERPs.
On the other hand, Nofollow links do not count as a link point in the said web page’s favor and will not have any bearing in the search engine page. Nofollow links was created after a series of abuse from spammers and black-hat SEOs.
The best way to get dofollow links is to always do it the natural way: create awesome, relevant and original content that people would want to share to boost your referral traffic.
Link Building Strategies
Set Link Building Goals
Setting the right goals paves the way for you to create strategies that give you a better chance at success. Your goals should be something that aligns to your overall business goals.
Since it takes time to see positive results with your link building, it’s best to be more realistic about it. As an example, you can aim to boost organic search traffic as a way to increase sales. This focuses on a more natural method for long-term success rather than short-term wins.
List your link targets
Rather than contacting random people, target your links to those who might be interested in your content. Why? Because your response rate will be a lot higher and it’s easier to convince your link targets to take a look at your content.
Here are the possible link targets you can contact:
Search for a list of bloggers in your niche on any search engine. The great thing about this is that someone might already have curated a list for you so it should be quite easy.
To export all their blog URLs, you can use a Google Chrome plugin like Scraper. Export a CSV file of your list to a spreadsheet, scan web pages relevant to your content and list down their contact details.
- Resources Page
Use these advanced search strings to filter for websites with Resources page.
- Keyword + inurl:resources
- Keyword + inurl:links
The inurl:resources and inurl:links parts of the search string tell Google to filter its search targeting sites with the world resources and links in their URL. Make a list of potential sites with resources pages, check if it’s an authoritative domain, contact their owners and ask them to add your link as one of their resources.
- Competitor’s Link Profile
See who’s linking to your competitors by checking out their link profile. In this way, you want to see if you can replicate their link building strategies.
To do this, use Ahrefs to download all your competitors’ backlinks. Export them to a CSV file and save on an Excel spreadsheet. Sort them according the metrics you set to find the best link building opportunities.
Broken Links Page
Broken links may happen for several reasons such as:
- linked web page was removed from the destination website
- destination website moved to a new domain
- URL entered for the link was incorrect
- link was blocked by the user’s firewall.
When you look at it on a different perspective, a broken link is your chance to inform the website owner to replace the broken link with your own.
To check for broken links, first install broken link Chrome plugins such as Check My Links or LinkMiner. Run the plugin and check out all the broken links on a specific page. Chances are that the more outbound links a web page has, the more broken links it might have.
Once you’ve spotted all broken links, email the website owner about them. This is the perfect time to pitch any helpful resources from your website as a replacement.
Your Own Link Profile
Another place to build links is through your link profile. You probably have tried signing up to join a forum, membership or social networking site. Some of these sites allow members to add their website links while some might not.
For example, on Facebook Page’s About page, you can add a link to your website. Your Twitter bio also allows you to insert links but these are nofollow.
Your Website’s Search Function
This is as simple as doing a quick search on your site’s search bar for relevant web pages you can interlink with. When producing a new content, search for any mentions of similar keywords on web pages you can link to.
You might also vaguely remember another similar content created but you just don’t know the title or the URL. You can either do the step mentioned earlier or search it on Google. To do this, just type this string on the search bar: site:[website URL], or type intitle:[keyword]. This should list all the indexed web pages that has this keyword phrases.
Reverse Image Search
There might be sites that use your images without any attribution. Don’t be mad and use this instead to further your link building goals. To search for images and their image files without any keywords, you can use a Reverse Image Search tool like Small SEO Tools.
A Reverse Image Search allows you to search for web pages using the same images. You can search by uploading an image from your desktop or entering its image URL. This is useful for link building if you want to search your images and have them linked to your website.
Reach out to site owners through an email and politely ask them to link back to your site. Some might oblige but for those who don’t, inform them that this could be a case for copyright infringement.
How long does it take to see any positive impact from your link building effort?
The length of time before you can get any success with your link building strategy will depend on these factors:
- Competitiveness of your keywords
- Competitiveness of your Niche or Industry
- Your competitor’s link building strategies
- Your Domain authority and history
This may mean that it could take weeks or months to achieve an increase in page ranking. You should include them whenever you set goals and make sure that all your team members are aware that positive results might not occur immediately.
A more realistic goal would be to see an increase in web traffic as you work on improving your link building strategies. Don’t’ treat link building as a one-time thing; it should be something that you do constantly together with content creation, keyword research, social media marketing and others. All of these activities can help you move effectively towards your online marketing goals.
We hope that you have found this guide helpful with your own link building strategy. If you want to share any tips on your own, please feel free to comment below.
Want to start your own website? Here at Webvisions, we offer premium-grade web hosting that’s supercharged with 99.9% uptime reliability, unmetered bandwidth, faster speeds and secure spam controls.
As our technology gets more advanced over time, we expect immediate access to online information. Based on the study by Akamai, it shows that web users have shorter attention spans as they expect web page speed to load within 2 seconds. Anything longer, will likely lead them to abandon the site and find information elsewhere.
If you want to convert a random visitor into a customer, you need to give them a reason to stay and engage with your website. Website speed is just as important as creating beautiful web design and useful content.
In today’s article, we’re going to share with you the importance of fast site speed as well as actionable tips to boost your website speed.
Top 2 Reasons of Having a Fast Website Load Time
- Rank on top of Google’s SERPs.
In 2010, Google announced that they consider page speed as one of their ranking factors. Therefore, websites with slow page speed will have a harder time ranking on top results. It may not be the strongest factor of them all, but it’s still very important when ranking against your competitors in search engines.
When your web page is slow, web crawlers can only crawl just a few pages using their allocated resources. This may lower your chances of having all your web pages indexed. To increase your page ranking, it’s a must to optimize your website speed.
- Increases Conversion Rate
Since visitors are more likely to abandon a slow-loading website and move on to the next, this will definitely lead to poor conversion rate, and eventually, your profit. According to Amazon, for every 1 second delay, their conversion rate dives by 7%.
Here is an example of how an organization increases their website load time. After revamping Wal-Mart’s website speed, they enjoy a 2% increase in conversion rate. It shows the reaped benefits of an increase in profit by simply improving their website speed.
Factors that Cause Slow Web Page Load and How to Counter Them
Uploading High-res Images
Uploading unoptimised images is one of the common causes of slow websites. Compared to smaller-sized images, huge, high-resolution image takes longer to upload and render when viewed on web pages.
TIP: Before uploading any form of media on your site, resize them using any photo editing software such as Photoshop or a image compression plugin such as WP Smush plugin.
Use these formats for these types of images: .jpeg for vibrant photos, .png for graphic images and .gif for animated images.
Minifying gets rid of redundant bytes such as indentation, line breaks or white spaces from the code. Its aim is to lessen source codes to boost web page load.
Plugins and Themes
Adding plugins and themes can further improve your site’s look and functionality. However, some of them might have unnecessary codes or features that don’t do anything to improve user experience or worse, weigh down your site.
TIP: Choose plugins and themes that are not heavy on codes or themes that use too many resources. Uninstall those that are not updated regularly or those that you don’t use anymore.
Not using GZip Compression
Gzip compression is the process of compressing files transmitted between browsers and servers. The goal here is to shaves off the file sizes and reduces the time loading a web page.
TIP: Read this article for more details steps on how speed your site using GZIP compression.
It’s understandable that you want to earn money through your site (and isn’t that the whole point of having a commercial website?). However, too many ads may also slow down your site.
TIP: Use it sparingly and avoid overcrowding it with too many ads.
High Volume of HTTP Requests
Page load time is also affected by the amount of requests sent to the server when loading the website. The more HTTP requests the browser makes, the longer it takes to render the elements. These HTTP request includes: loading images, media, HTML, scripts and CSS stylesheets.
TIP: To trim down HTTP requests, use CSS Sprites, a group of images fused as one. So when you want to render two version of the same button, you can optimise it to be more efficient by combining them. This allows you one HTTP request to retrieve the entire CSS Sprite and show the image depending on the situation.
Not Updating Content Management System
Every now and then, CMS platforms roll out the latest updates once it’s available. They do this in order to upgrade the platform with better security updates and design.
TIP: Before updating anything, we strongly advise you to create a backup first. Once the latest version is available, update it ASAP.
Not Using Browser Caching
Fixed elements like stylesheets and images are “cached” or stored in the visitor’s browsers cache so they can access it without any problem the next time. These website elements typically remains the same across all web pages and don’t change often.
TIP: Add “expire” headers to signal browsers not to request the files again for certain period of time. Many servers have infinite expiration dates depending on the time the file was accessed or edited on the server.
Most people are now browsing from their smart devices so it only makes sense to consider optimising your mobile site, as well.
TIP: Choose a mobile responsive web design for your website that loads fast and performs extremely well on smart devices. You can choose to either have a separate mobile version, upgrade to a responsive web design or a native application.
Not Using CDN
The visitor’s proximity to your web server will also have a huge impact on how fast or slow a visitor can access your website. Content Delivery Network or CDN can quickly delivers content to a user using cached files from locations closest to the user.
TIP: For high-volume websites, you might want to check out with your hosting provider if they offer CDN on top of your hosting service. You may also try out the free CDN services first before moving on premium options.
Choosing Cheap Web Hosting
Going for cheap web host may save you money but it could cost you more in the future. Some might have lacking features like backup or their customer support is virtually nonexistent.
TIP: Even where you’re still a beginner, it makes business sense to invest on high-performing hosting plans from the start. You won’t only get fast and reliable features, you can count on their customer support staff to assist you should issues arise. Don’t be afraid to shop around. Find one that offers better bandwidth allocation, storage and most of all, faster speed.
Optimising your website for speed is one of the best approach you can do to grow your online presence. We’re hoping that you don’t put your website speed on the back seat and prioritise it to ensure a seamless browsing experience for your visitors and customers.
If you’re looking for web hosting plan that truly delivers, you can get one from Webvisions for as little as 120S$ per year. You get 10 GB of file storage, 10 email boxes (perfect for a small team, unmetered bandwidth and user-friendly control panel to manage and edit your website settings.
Feel free to call our Web Hosting Specialist at +65 6572 4892 or send us an email at email@example.com to get started with your web hosting plan today.
In our last article, we wrote a comprehensive guide to choosing WordPress plugins to enhance your site’s features. In our quest to help beginners get their site up and running, we decided to continue this series and write this article about WordPress themes.
If you’re still on the fence on what theme to use for your website, we encourage you to take the time to read these tips when shopping around for themes.
What is a WordPress Theme?
A WordPress theme is a collection of files that transforms the overall design and layout of your WordPress site. It’s the first thing that your visitors see when they browse your site on the Internet.
It incorporates all the site’s visual elements such as font styling, colors, typography, page layout, widgets and other specific design details. It primarily consists of two files: PHP (the main template file) and CSS (main style file).
WordPress has several default themes which are free to download. But, if you want better options, styles, and layouts, then it’s better to purchase a premium WordPress theme.
Why It’s a Must to Choose the Right Theme
WordPress is known the world over for its versatility when customizing a site’s look and feel. Since it comes with a wide selection of customization options, there’s bound to be a theme for all types of niches—whether you’re starting a blog or an ecommerce site.
If your theme is riddled with poor coding, chances are that it will be hard for you to modify it or add plugins in the future. When that happens, you might need to hire a web developer to help you fix this issue or switch to another theme. It should allow you to change themes without losing its functionality of the site.
You’ll find that most themes on WordPress look great, but some of these might be loaded with tons of files to compensate for its beautiful design. These files are often the culprits of why web pages are slow to load.
This post from Copyblogger explains how important it is to have fast-loading websites as it improves user experience and increases your chances of ranking in the top search engine results.
Since a theme is the proverbial face of a website, here are some steps you can take to ensure that you choose the best theme.
Relevant to Niche
While some theme options look incredibly stunning, it might not have the functionality and niche focus that you’re looking for. Only you will know what works best with your niche.
So, say you want to start a photo blog, a theme we recommend is something that showcases your photo portfolio front and center with minimal text layout.
If you have a fashion blog, an elegant magazine theme will be more appropriate than a corporate theme. Make sure to choose a theme that’s niche-specific so you won’t miss out on the audience you are targeting.
We can all agree that nothing beats a website that exudes a modern, elegant design. It should be something that you can live with for a long time without the need of any major overhauls. Take note of these design elements the next time you’re shopping for a WordPress theme.
- Excellent font settings
- Clean and uncluttered layout
- Intuitive interface
- Good color combination
- Modern but simple design
All these elements combined should bring consistency to your branding which your users can easily recognize and appreciate.
You may have come across themes that dazzle you with all the flashy colors, animations, extended layouts and more. But do you really need all of these? See if your theme choice do not compromise usability for aesthetics. Make it is simple for users to find the information they need and navigate around the site.
To fully grasp what your site will look like, take advantage of the theme’s demo function and review other sections like the home page, single post, and blog section. All these sections should remain consistent with its design.
Security and Performance
More theme features don’t equate better security and performance. In fact, adding a lot of heavy elements on your theme might cause web page slow-down and other performance issues.
So, how do you ensure that you choose a high-quality theme? 1.) Buy premium themes from reputable theme developers, 2.) Read their reviews and support forums and, 3.) and try out their demo sites to know what it looks like when it goes live.
Some of the most recommended theme vendors you might want to try:
They provide well-coded and beautiful themes, regular updates and stellar customer support.
Optimized for SEO
Beyond the aesthetic aspect of web design, themes play an important part to your site’s SEO. If your website is slow, it means that it will be harder for search engine spiders to crawl all your web pages. This may have a negative impact on your indexation, as well as user experience.
Go for a WordPress theme that’s already SEO-friendly. This means that the codes are up-to-date, compatible with popular browsers, faster load time, well-structured navigation, has social media integration and optimized for schema markup.
A schema markup is a method that enhances your site’s code to ensure that your content is not only visible, it is also understandable by search spiders.
A theme is said to be responsive when it automatically adjusts the layout depending on the size of the screen or device used. According to a study done by We are Social, there are about 4.92 billion global mobile users in 2017. So, it makes sense to optimize your website for mobile to cater to the growing web traffic from mobile users.
Most of the WordPress themes available are, by default, responsive. However, there are theme vendors who still offer themes with fixed-width layout. Avoid them at all cost and stick with vendors that offer mobile-friendly themes so that your website will render well on any screen size.
To check if a certain theme is mobile-responsive, copy and paste the theme’s demo page to this site – Google Mobile-Friendly Test.
One aspect to consider when going for free WordPress theme is the fact that they don’t offer customer support. So, if you mess up your theme, you would have to fix it on your own. Or, you may have to pay for a website specialist to help you fix these issues.
If you have the budget for it, we recommend you choose premium WordPress themes because they will most likely offer detailed documentation and customer support.
Theme That’s Built for Success
Choosing a WordPress theme can prove to be challenging at first, especially if you have many options at your fingertips. By following the tips outlined in this article, you will have an idea what type of theme will be more suited to your website.
We encourage you to look around and play with as many theme demos as you can until you find the right one for you. What’s important is that you can seamlessly change themes without disrupting your website’s basic functions.
If you have any questions or if you want to share your experience about any WordPress themes, let us know in the comments below.
The great thing about WordPress is its flexibility in terms of customising the look and feel of your site. With more than 40,000 plugins in its repository, WordPress users are definitely spoilt for choice for just about anything they want done on their site.
The downside though with having too many choices is that you don’t know which is the right one to install. Since WordPress is open source, chances are that some of them are not optimised for performance and security so taking extra caution when choosing one is expected.
We wrote this article aimed at beginners who are looking to educate themselves about WordPress plugins before installing one. Here goes.
Why WordPress Plugins?
If you still have doubts about installing plugins, these reasons should convince you otherwise:
- Simple and painless to set up – It’s so easy to set up that you can do it in just a few seconds and we’ll guide you in the later part of this article.
- Jazz up your site with just about any features you like – The key here is that you have several options for almost any types of features or purpose.
Plugins and Themes: Are they the Same?
Short answer is NO, they’re not. If you’re new to anything WordPress (or any CMS for that matter), they seem to come across as similar. But, you can easily pinpoint their differences as you work with them along the way. Here’s how to tell them apart:
- Plugins – these are add-ons or extensions used to supplement or tweak the features and functionality of a website
- Themes – it’s the primary design template that controls the visual appearance of website. It’s a software that allow you to change and control the layout, design, tone, fonts, color, etcs.
As an example, since WordPress by itself does not have a its own functionality to add visitors to your email list, you need to add a custom code for that. Plugins like Mailchimp can do this function easily without coding on your part.
Themes unify all the visual aspect of your site and manages how they are presented to your visitors. You probably have seen these already: logo, headers, footers, widgets, sidebars and others. They form part of what a theme is.
This is not to say, that plugins and themes may not cross over. Sometimes, there are plugins that can modify the appearance of a site while there are themes that can manipulate the functionality.
Types of Plugins
Again, there’s one for just about any purpose. Here’s a short list of WordPress plugins you might want to add to boost your site’s look and performance.
Google search results is fraught with blogs and articles preaching you the importance of speeding up your site. Why is that? According to Crazy Egg, every second delay in page load time translates to 11% fewer page views, 7% conversion loss and 16% reduction in customer satisfaction.
If you’re serious about creating a passive income with your website, you need to optimise it for speed. We recommend these two plugins to enhance the speed and performance:
It’s hard for us to say this but we have clients who often contact us because their website was breached and they don’t have a backup copy in place. Losing your entire website is a nightmare we don’t want you to experience which is why it’s important to save a full website backup regularly.
Make sure to choose a full website backup instead of just a database backup because the latter won’t allow you to restore everything. One of the best options to perform a backup is through a plugin and these are the top WordPress plugins we recommend:
Website security should not be considered as an afterthought. As soon as you set up your website, go straight ahead and install security plugins to ensure your peace of mind against malwares, viruses, and brute force attacks. Check out these two most-downloaded security plugins:
Spams are everywhere and they’re not about to go away anytime soon. While it’s easy to filter all spam comments and delete them in one go, such task is time-consuming especially when dealing with comments by the thousands.
So, to save your energy for more productive causes, these spam block plugins will help you filter out and moderate common spams before they can even reach your site:
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
To bring more traffic for your website on search engines, you need to optimise it through organic SEO strategies.
You can optimise your branded keywords on meta data, image alt attributes and tag web pages as “noindex” if you don’t want search engines to index them. Just add any of these two SEO plugins to ensure that your web pages are always SEO-optimised.
Adding a social sharing plugin makes it effortless for readers to share your content to their friends on their social media accounts. Most of these social plugins already comes with free analytics so you track the performance and social media marketing efforts.
Marketing tools may come and go but one thing that never goes out of style is – emails. Millions of people still rely on traditional emails to communicate and get updates from their favorite brands.
If you want to diversify your marketing strategies and attract your target audience, we strongly recommend you set up and grow your email list. Try any of these email list building plugins so you can easily capture email addresses and turn casual visitors to loyal customers.
Where to Find WordPress Plugins
You can either go to any of these options to find the right plugins for your site:
- WordPress Dashboard
Go to your main menu on the left side, hover over “Plugins” submenu, click “Add New”. On top right, enter the plugin name or any search keyword.
Same thing, just enter the name or keyword for the plugins on the search field.
- Independent Plugins Developer
Most of the plugins on WordPress are typically free to download but you have option to buy from an independent source. Make sure that you do a thorough research and verify if these plugin developers are endorsed by WordPress before installing them.
When screening WordPress plugins, it’s a must to check every detail you can gather from them. A poor quality plugin can cause some serious damage to your site.
- Version – see if the plugin author/developer updated it to its current version.
- Author – name of the author, their social media profiles and website.
- Last Updated – the date it was last updated. Do not download a plugin that was updated years ago as this could have been abandoned by the author.
- No. of Active Installs (or downloads) – the more users downloading it, the better.
- Compatibility – informs you if this plugin is compatible with your WordPress version or not.
- Average Ratings – users can leave their star-rating, from one to five stars.
- Reviews – read reviews objectively as some might be helpful and others might come from troll accounts.
Before installing any plugins, it’s important to do have a full website backup. Generally, plugins don’t impair websites after installation or software updates. However, just to be on the safe side, keep a backup copy in case some features might get disabled after installing or updating any plugin.
Related Post: Why You Need a Backup for your Website?
To install a plugin, you can either install through the WordPress Plugins directory or via zip file.
- WordPress Plugins Directory
- Go to ‘Plugins’ submenu on WordPress dashboard.
- click ‘Add New’.
- enter plugin name or keyword.
- Click ‘Install Now’ button.
- After installing, click on ‘Activate’.
- Go back to ‘Plugins’ submenu, click ‘Installed Plugins’ and check if it was successfully installed.
- Zip File – this method is available if you purchase your plugins outside of WordPress.
- Go to the download age.
- Download plugin in a .zip format.
- After a complete download, save and move the file to your computer folder.
- Go to WordPress Dashboard, hover to ‘Plugins’.
- Click ‘Add New’, then ‘Upload Plugin’ button on top and ‘Choose File’ button.
- Choose the .zip plugin file, then download.
- Click ‘Install Now’ button and ‘Activate’ to complete the installation.
Viewing and Managing Plugins
You can view all your installed plugins by going to the ‘Installed Plugin’ menu. It lists down all your plugins including active and inactive plugins.
- Settings – this is where you modify plugin settings.
- Deactivate – choose this if you want to remove plugins from the list permanently.
- View details – a window will pop up and shows you a complete summary about the plugin.
- Publisher Name – click this if you want to know more about who created this plugin.
Fixing a Broken Plugin
A drawback to free plugins is that it doesn’t come with customer support. So, if you experience errors or you need assistance when using it, you’re basically on your own. Premium plugins, however, already comes with customer support as part of the package.
When a plugin ceases to function or disables other features on WordPress, then it’s time to investigate to see what could be done. Try to deactivate plugins (not delete), then activate your WordPress theme.
If that won’t work, here’s what you can do:
- Go to WordPress.org.
- On the search field, enter the plugin name in question.
- Click on ‘Support’ tab.
- Check if there’s an existing thread about your issue. If there’s none, create a new one.
- Wait for a reply from the author or WordPress users.
Keep in mind, there’s no assurance that your thread will be answered because: a) the plugin developer could be busy, b) if it’s a free plugin, then they’re not really obligated to assist you.
However, anyone in the WordPress may help you in any way they can so please be patient and wait for someone to answer.
When it comes to seamless customisation, WordPress reigns supreme as it features a wide selection of themes and plugins. We hope you find this article very helpful when installing and managing your WordPress plugins.For any questions about plugins on your website, feel free to contact our award-winning customer support specialist.
According to eMarketer, global online retail sales are estimated to grow roughly at $27.72 trillion in 2020. This shows that more consumers turn to ecommerce stores to purchase products than from a physical store.
As online sales continue to rise at an exponential rate, now would be the best time to get started with launching your own ecommerce store.
Starting an ecommerce business might sound like an uphill battle to some, but it’s not actually as hard as they make it to be. In this article, we’ll show you the steps when launching an ecommerce site that you’ve always been dreaming of.
Just like in any profitable venture, you need a great dose of hard work, commitment and willingness to learn to be successful in this type of business.
1. Choose a Niche.
When promoting and selling products, it’s important to choose something that you’re knowledgeable and passionate about. It would be difficult to penetrate an industry where you have no knowledge of so stick somewhere where your expertise will shine.
So, make a list of all your hobbies, side projects, and things you like to buy. As an example, if you’re into mobile gadgets, then you might want to center your ecommerce store around this niche. You can sell smartphones, laptops, tablets, portable WIFI, power banks, phone accessories and more.
Another great idea for a niche is creating solutions to problems experienced by your friends or other customers. If you often hear people complaining about something, then perhaps it could be your lightbulb moment to provide a product or service that answers their problem.
Do a research and ask the right people these questions:
- What are your biggest challenges when performing activities at home, school, work, when commuting or anywhere?
- What product or service are you willing to buy in order to ease your situation?
- What are the things that your current brand is not offering?
- Are there any challenges when buying your products online?
Their answers will shed some light on what most people’s major pain points are and what they’re willing to buy in order to solve those problems.
To find out where people are sharing their complaints, these popular sites are a goldmine of ideas:
- Social Media channels: Facebook, Twitter, Google+
- Forum site: Reddit
- Online communities: Quora, LinkedIn groups, Google+ communities
- Current events: both print and online media
Your objective is to drill down the common problems people face in your chosen niche so that you know which products to target on your ecommerce site.
2. Find out if your niche is profitable
If you have identified a potential product to sell, check out whether there is a strong demand for it in the long term. You don’t want to sell products that there isn’t a huge market for. To check for any viable market opportunity, here are some tools you can use:
- Keyword Planner – Using this tool, filter your search with your product keywords. When there’s a high volume of searches, it means that there’s a huge market for that product. You’re on the right track if you have thousands of average month searches for your specific search term.
- Google Trends – enter your search term and it will show you the average search volume. This is a good way to find out if there’s a strong interest in your niche over time.
- Google Shopping – it’s similar to the basic Google search engine except it focuses on online products. It also shows who your suppliers and competitors are. It’s easier to scope out your competition with this tool.
3. Understand who your target customers are.
It’s impossible to sell to everyone. You might be offering the best product or service but not everyone will be interested enough to buy them. Instead, target the right people who will have a real need for your product or service.
To do this, you need to create buyer personas for your target customers. Buyer persona is a made-up representation of your ideal customer based on market research and other customer data. It helps you to simplify a general niche and target only specific customers who will want to buy your product.
Here are possible questions when creating your buyer personas:
- What’s your target demographic? (Define their gender, age, location, etc.)
- What are their greatest motivations and goals in life?
- What are the biggest challenges they face in your specific niche?
- What are their behavior patterns in the environment they are in?
Hubspot shares what great buyer personas look like: What Does a Great Buyer Persona Look Like? Dissecting 3 Real-Life Examples.
4. Create a structure for your business.
When creating a structure for ecommerce business, these are different routes you can take:
With sole proprietorship, a single person owns, controls and manages the business. It’s ideal for entrepreneurs with limited capital since it’s very simple and inexpensive to set up.
The drawback is, you and your business are considered legally as one, so your company’s liabilities are your personal obligations which open up to greater risks.
Halfway between sole proprietorship and corporation is a partnership. It’s a type of business structure where two or more people can combine their capital, skills, time and other resources to share in profits or losses of their business venture.
A corporation is a legal entity that is separate from its owners. It enjoys rights and obligations that individuals possess such as enter contracts, borrow funds, hire employees, pay taxes and buy and sell assets.
Make sure to fill out the paperwork for the right business structure with your respective government or you can hire an accountant to assist you on this.
5. Process other business requirements.
Check with your city for all sorts of business permits or licenses you need before you can operate your business and make it official.
6. Build your ecommerce website
Now for the fun part. For you to start an online business, you will need to build your own ecommerce website. Here’s what you need:
A domain name is a unique name for your website. Generally, it will be your business name. But if it’s not available, this article will give you some tips on how to create a domain name that best represents your brand. Check out from our Webvisions domain tool if your domain name is available.
Keep in mind, that a domain name is the first thing that visitors will notice from your site so make sure that your domain name is well-thought out in order to stand above the competition.
Web hosting service allows you to store all website files on your web host’s servers and publish your website on the Internet.
For ecommerce websites, we recommend you choose Dedicated Hosting or Virtual Private Server Hosting because they offer more storage, bandwidth and other robust features than a shared hosting.
Ecommerce Platform (Content Management System)
You need a publishing platform designed for online retail businesses. It should have a shopping cart features that allow buyers to view, select and save all their chosen products in a virtual “shopping basket” before checkout.
Most of the ecommerce solutions are easy to set up even without any coding background. Examples of these ecommerce software are: Shopify, osCommerce, Magento, and Prestashop. If you need something beyond the basic features, you need to hire a web developer to customize it for you.
Secure Socket Layer Certificate (SSL)
People won’t likely trust you with their money if they have reasons to believe your website is hosted on an insecure network. To give them peace of mind that their payments are safe, you need to install an SSL.
SSL works by encrypting the connection whenever a customer enters their personal information such as credit card number and password. This is to ensure no hackers can snoop and steal their information, keeping their transactions safe and private. To know more about SSL certificate, you can check out more about this here.
Having a visually-appealing web design can extend a company’s branding and improve the browsing experience for the customer. You have the option to do it yourself with pre-made themes and templates or hire a professional web designer.
If you want to lower your start-up cost, you might want to buy website themes from providers like ThemeForest. Most of their themes are clean, elegantly-designed and work with most eCommerce platforms. You can also get your logo design made on the cheap from crowdsourcing sites like 99Designs.
If you’ve already signed for an all-in ecommerce solution, then it will most likely include a payment gateway. If not, then you need to get one separately from payment solutions provider like PayPal.
A payment gateway works by connecting to the merchant’s bank to validate the payment. The bank will process the payment and transfer the funds to the merchant’s bank account.
Banks rely on third-party payment solutions providers because banks offer limited access to their servers for security reasons. Payment gateways are trusted and approved by merchant banks when communicating and processing transactions between their servers.
7. Launch a Marketing Campaign
After setting up the nuts and bolts of your new eCommerce site, it’s time to promote it to your target customers. It’s a great idea to set up have your website’s social media channels ready and create an SEO and PPC (pay-per-click) campaign to boost your website traffic.
What Happens Next?
These steps are only good when you put it into practice and take action. As you can see, creating an Ecommerce website is not only sidelined for the experts. Anyone with a dream, grit, and passion can start one.
To summarize this article, here are the steps to remember:
- Find a profitable niche that you love
- Know your target customers
- Create a business structure
- Process Business requirements
- Build your website
- Launch a marketing campaign
Are you currently starting your own ecommerce website? We hope this guide will help get started today.
For a fast and reliable domain and web hosting solutions, we here at Webvisions offers premium features customized to fit every type of user. Each of our bespoke hosting plans comes with unmetered bandwidth, user-friendly control panel, security filters, and best of all, 24/7 Customer Support. Click on the link below to speak with our Web hosting specialist to discuss the right hosting plan for you.
When shopping around for a web hosting provider, often the challenging part is knowing how much bandwidth your website will need.
You might not want to pay more than what you actually use but you also don’t want your website to underperform if you go beyond your allocated bandwidth.
It requires calculating your site’s current bandwidth usage and estimating its future consumption. Before we explain further, let’s first discuss what a bandwidth is and what it means for your website.
What is Bandwidth?
Bandwidth is the volume of data transmitted between your website and users per unit of time, measured per second. Depending on the plan chosen, web hosting provider will provide its customers their maximum amount of bandwidth.
Essentially, the more bandwidth a web host can offer, the faster and better your website will load information.
To give you a clear picture of what it’s like, think of bandwidth as the number of dining tables in a restaurant. The customers will be the web traffic. So, the more number of tables a restaurant has, the more customers it can serve at any given time.
Disk Space and Hosting Bandwidth: Are They the Same?
While these two are important when gauging the performance of a web hosting company, they are not the same.
Disk space refers to the amount of data or files you can store on your server. The amount of space will vary depending on the website’s size. Files may include HTML, images, videos, audio, databases, flash, programs and scripts.
If your site mostly features texts, then it would not occupy that much space. Images and videos are far more heavy and will need more disk space.
Ecommerce websites will definitely take a considerable amount of space since they usually display high-resolution images of their products compared to blogs with lots of texts and few graphics.
As for your bandwidth usage, it depends on your site’s volume of visitors (traffic), web page size and the number of pages visited.
If you’ve just launched your website, there’s good chance you won’t need that much space or bandwidth. Unless, you have some stats to support that your website can invite tons of traffic in the long term.
Your website needs an average 50 KB web page size, 20K visitors a month and 5 page visits per visitor in order to consume 5GB bandwidth per month. Most large websites find it difficult to reach that many visitors each month.
When choosing a web host, choose someone that allows you to upgrade your bandwidth and disk space allowance in the future.
Evaluating your Hosting Bandwidth
To estimate how much bandwidth you need, check out your website’s activity for the past few months. Then, find out what your actual monthly bandwidth usage is and create a plan suitable for that. Here are some tips:
- Check out your website’s average web page size measured in kilobytes. You can do a test using Pingdom Website Speed Test.
- Multiply your average page size with your average number of visitors per month from any website analytics tool such as Google Analytics or Hubspot.
- Then multiply result on no. 2 with your average pageviews per visitor.
Your estimate includes all websites hosted on the same web server. So, if your web hosting account has multiple domains, combine the page sizes, average no. of visitors and pageviews per visitors for all domains.
Unlimited Bandwidth vs. Unmetered Bandwidth
You will often come across hosting providers that wow you with ‘unlimited bandwidth’ as part of their hosting package. This means that you can transfer data as much as you can without any limit.
But, it’s actually a myth because everything cost money. For the extra bandwidth used, the web host will shoulder the cost.
Oftentimes, web hosts market offer unlimited bandwidth assuming that most websites are well within their average bandwidth usage. ‘Unlimited’ means that you can distribute the bandwidth appropriately for each client.
But, in reality, there is a limit to how much web hosting plan can offer a bandwidth. When bandwidth usage increases, the web host might charge their clients for any hidden costs.
Unmetered bandwidth is more reasonable because it means that the web host does not measure your bandwidth usage. You use what you need and pay only whatever is the agreed rate. It’s simple to understand and does not mislead the client.
Be Smart about Your Web Hosting Choice
Now that you’ve learned some tips on how to estimate your hosting bandwidth, we hope that you’re not misled with unlimited offerings that may sound impractical to you.
By following these tips, you now have an idea how much hosting resources you need. Once you have an estimate of your average hosting bandwidth usage, use that as a basis when choosing your hosting provider.
If you still have questions about bandwidth, our Customer Support team here at Webvisions will be more than happy to answer. Just click on the link below and our dedicated support will discuss what web hosting plan will suit your needs.
Is it possible to run your own web server from home using your broadband connection? Perhaps, you came across this post hoping to get an answer to this question.
So, yes, it’s possible to run your servers at home. This is if you have the drive and patience of learning how to do it, or you are in an Internet-related business.
It may not be practical if you’re trying to cut cost or you don’t have enough time to managing them. Today’s article will explain further why.
Things to Consider when Running a Home Server
ISP (Internet Service Provider)
Keep in mind, you might not get the same level of reliability and performance from a home broadband. Your current broadband service might disappoint you from time to time with poor connection and data capping. And when that happens, your website will be offline for some time.
Most home broadband service have a slower upload speed than download speed. What this means is that even with any type of traffic, your site hosted from home will be extremely slow. This is even bigger problem for popular popular websites.
Additionally, some ISPs don’t allow customers to run their own servers using their broadband connection. We suggest that you check with your ISP first if they allow such arrangement.
Compared to Google which runs on thousands of servers to support billions of search requests every second, this may not be the case for home servers. It’s because the latter has less power than Google’s advanced computers.
You can actually use an old, unused computers since any computer machine can handle small websites using a low-power system. However, popular websites need to be on stable and reliable hard drives.
Again, any low-volume websites will work on home servers just fine. Expect some problems to trickle in when 50 or more visitors are accessing your site simultaneously. When visitors transfer gigabytes of files, it takes time to complete and might use up your bandwidth and speed.
Your broadband service might not be at par with a professional hosting provider in terms of reliability. Remember, your website will go offline when power and broadband connection is cut off.
When your computer breaks down and you fail to backup all your files, then it would be hard to retrieve them when these files are deleted.
Another issue you have to take note of is dealing with the possibilities of fire, natural disasters, electrical surges, theft and kids messing around with your servers. Aside from maintaining web servers in mint condition, always have a proper backup in place.
Since home web server are not immune to breakdowns, you have to include future maintenance cost. Make sure you know what your computer specs are and how much its average power consumption.
You have the option to let a technician fix it or buy a new one instead. Either way, the time and effort spent going to a computer store may result in extended downtime and money.
Most hosting provider offers robust hosting features and free customer support, which gives you substantial savings than if you were to do everything yourself.
If you plan to self-host your website, choose a static IP address; not those that changes each time you renew your Internet subscription.
You can set up your web server with Linux, Microsoft Windows and Mac. If you have a spare Mac with Mac OS X 10.3 or the latest update, then it already comes with an Apache server.
We recommend you don’t use your work PC as your web server due to issues with downtime and security threats. If you need to restart your computer for whatever reason, your website will also go offline.
Go with the Pros
If you’re really serious about building a robust website that your visitors will love, we say, go with a professional web hosting provider. The significant time, effort and cost savings you’ll get from them far outweighs if you were to run your own web server.
You can still use home servers to store and process personal files but for money-making websites, you should probably let the hosting experts handle it. Most of the web hosting plans are really affordable and there should be one for everyone.
Here at Webvisions, you can get powerful and hassle-free hosting with free customer support. Easily set up your website in just minutes. Click on the link below to contact our Web Hosting Specialist to start your hosting plan today.
To some people, creating a website may seem effortless and simple. But, for those who can’t code, building a website from scratch can be daunting. If you’re wondering if it’s possible to build a site without a coding background, short answer is, ‘Yes, absolutely!’
Don’t worry if you think you’re not confident enough to start your own site. Even the most knowledgeable webmaster starts from somewhere! Our goal here in Webvisions is to help our newbie readers create their own WordPress website seamlessly by the end of this article. So, let’s start.
Steps in Creating a WordPress Website from Scratch
Basic Things to Prepare when Creating a Website
- Domain Name
- Web Hosting
- Content Management System (preferably WordPress)
- Website Design
- Plugins and Themes
These are just the basic things you need to start a WordPress website. The list is by no means exhaustive, and you can broaden it as you go along the way.
While the technical terms you’re about to learn may seem intimidating at first, with a great dose of patience and creativity, you’re on your way to having that website you’ve been dreaming of in no time.
Register a Domain Name
Find Your Niche
Before choosing any domain name, be clear on what niche you’d like to focus on and what purpose your website will serve. A niche can be any product, service or idea that will serve as your main topic for the entire site.
So, if you’re passionate about food, you can target a food recipe niche on your site. Find something that you genuinely like and have considerable expertise in this niche.
Choosing a Domain Name
A domain name is the name of the website you type in the browser’s address bar to visit a website. Think of it as an easy-to-remember web address for websites.
As an example, the domain name for this site is webvisions.com. When choosing domain names, here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Keep it short – people find shorter domain names easier to remember and type on address bars.
- Make it brandable – it’s not just an ordinary web address; domain name runs on your brand, too.
- It’s easy to type – Forget weird spellings (you instead of u) and don’t include punctuation marks (companyname.com instead of company-name) if you want people to remember you well.
- Legal – check with our domain name tool if no one has used that name yet. Using other site’s domain name (knowingly or unknowingly) might lead to some legal repercussions.
- Use keywords – this is optional but adding your keywords can help boost your site’s SEO capabilities.
Related article: How to Choose the Right Domain Name for your Website
Domain Name Extensions
A Domain extension is a 2-3 letter notation at the end of a web address. It indicates what the Internet or country category it belongs. Example of domain extensions under Internet category is .com (stands for commercial), .gov (government), .org (organization), .edu (education), and many more.
Additionally a country code domain extension stands for the country it pertains to such as .sg (Singapore), .us (United States), .uk (United Kingdom), etc.
Just about any niche will work on a .com domain extension just fine as this is the most popular of them all. If you plan to target your site on specific countries, then choosing a country top level domain will be more suitable for you.
Some new web domain extensions are now available (.pizza, .guru) but we recommend you to avoid it unless doing so can boost your branding.
Related Article: List of Top-Level Domains
Purchase that Domain
You can purchase your domain name as a stand-alone or together with your web hosting registration from the same hosting provider. If your domain name is available, you can go ahead and register it with our Web hosting specialist.
A web hosting is a service that allows anyone to publish their website on the Internet. A web hosting provider stores all of the website’s files like images, videos, texts, codes, plugins, themes, and others through high-powered computer machines called web servers.
So, say a visitor enters your domain name or web address (example: yourcompany.com) on their web browser. This action will prompt the visitor’s’ web browser to connect to the web server where the website files are stored.
The web server then transfers the website files requested back to the visitor’s web browser and computer. The website you’re viewing this blog post from is made viewable through a reliable web hosting service.
Web Hosting Features
When it comes to web hosting, we recommend that find these features from your web host:
- Reliability and Performance – every visitor expects to visit a website that loads fast without any major issues.
- Disk storage – find one that has a generous disk space to store all your files.
- Bandwidth – it’s the volume of data your website is allowed to transfer over a certain period of time. The higher the bandwidth, the better.
- 24/7 Customer Support – when things go south, you want to be able to talk to someone with your hosting service who can help fix issues no matter what time or day it is.
- Control Panel – most hosting provider already has this free together with the hosting plan. Check if your web host has one.
- Security protection – Check if your web hosting plan has some security protection installed to thwart all types of viruses and cyber hacking.
Types of Web Hosting
Whether you plan on starting a personal blog or an e-commerce shop, there’s a specific web hosting service for all types of users.
It offers ready-made themes and web designs to modify the look and feel of a website. It already comes with free subdomain and hosting service, albeit limited. This is great for newbies who don’t have the time and patience to learn how to customize a website.
It’s the cheapest and the most widely used. Essentially, website owners on shared hosting are sharing hosting resources with other customers on the same server. For website newbies, we highly recommend you start with shared hosting and only upgrade as your traffic picks up.
As opposed to shared hosting, dedicated hosting lets you have your own server for your own use. This gives you more freedom to choose which type of server to use and you are assured of better performance and security since hosting resources are not shared. We recommend this for high-traffic and high-value entities like banks, large corporations, and others.
Virtual Private Server Hosting (VPS)
VPS combines the cost advantages of shared hosting while giving you more dedicated hosting resources. With VPS hosting, you are assured of better server resources, get full control of your operating system to install your software. Only choose this when you have the technical expertise to manage it.
Register your Web Hosting Plan
Click here to check out different Webvisions web hosting plans that we offer. You can also speak with any web hosting specialist to help you process your order and set up your hosting account for free.
Content Management System
A Content Management System (CMS) is basically a digital publishing platform where you can create, edit and manage content on your website. It’s a software that lets you upload images, videos, edit texts, install themes and plugins, and edit your site’s functionality and design.
Choices for CMS
There are different choices to choose from. Majority of the websites you see online are on WordPress. It’s very popular on almost all types of niche because it’s so easy to use and it hosts thousands of plugins and themes in its repository. TED and Time Magazine are just a few of the big-time websites that use WordPress.
We usually recommend Webvisions customers who are not so tech-savvy to choose WordPress because it’s so painstakingly simple and straightforward to use and boasts of thousands of active users who can help you manually manage your site. Other great choices for CMS are: Drupal, Joomla, Magento, and SugarCRM.
Here are some steps to follow when installing WordPress with just one click through Softaculous.
- Go to your cPanel account. You can login by including /cpanel after the domain address.
- Under Software and Services, find the WordPress application.
- Then click Install.
- Once it’s installed, customize your WordPress settings to suit your needs.
Configuring your WordPress Dashboard Settings
We’re almost done. If you have successfully installed WordPress, it’s time to configure the admin settings. To go to your admin settings, just type: yourwebsitedomainname.com/wp-admin. Enter username and password you use during the installation process.
On the left side of the screen, there’s a list of admin menu. Hover your mouse pointer on any of the main menu and then click on the desired submenu. Edit each menu you see fit. These are the main menu on your WordPress admin settings:
- Dashboard – shows you an overview of all your stats and recent updates about your WordPress website in a glance.
- Posts – when you want to create, edit, delete and manage posts, categories and tags.
- Media – all your uploaded videos and images are stored here.
- Links – a list of all URLs in your site.
- Pages – Check out all your main menu content in this menu.
- Comments – View and filter comments before publishing them.
- Appearance – Customise your site’s web design with a specific theme or edit the CSS.
- Plugins – place to manage existing plugins and find new ones.
- Users – lists all the users and assign specific roles for each user.
- Tools – other tools you can use to enhance your website.
- Settings – Change your settings here.
And that’s about it. We hope that you were able to create your WordPress website by yourself through this blog post. As you can see, creating a website is not only limited to tech savvies out there. Anyone can do it.
If you’re confident enough with your current website skills, you can brush up on some higher coding skills in the future. This isn’t necessary but it would help a lot if you want to bring more styles and functionality; more than what basic coding skills can offer.
When choosing a web hosting plan, go with someone that’s proven to offer a hosting service that’s reliable and fast. Here at Webvisions, we cater to all types of hosting needs, be it for a personal blog or an ecommerce store.
With unmetered bandwidth, disk storage, spam controls and 24/7 Customer support, we guarantee an optimal experience for our customers. To know how to get started with your own WordPress website, with our Web hosting Specialist at +65 6572 4892 or send them an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whether you’re a startup or an established company, you will need massive web traffic in order to generate more sales.
In this article, we are going to share the most effective strategies that complement your marketing plan and drive your web traffic. If done right, this may result in attracting high-quality leads and increased sales. Here is the round down of 7 strategies to help you get started in boosting your web traffic.
No matter how technology advances, it’s still far from perfect. The prospects of data loss and cyber hacking loom largely for anyone maintaining a presence on the web.
It’s for this reason that all website owners are strongly encouraged to keep a full backup of their website. It serves as your cushion against uncertainties like server breakdowns, accidental file deletions, disasters and cyber attacks, which could happen anytime.
Should these unfortunate things happen, you can easily restore your website using the full backup. Today’s post will discuss in great detail on having a backup to help your business against uncertainties.