Online Business Necessary Startup Tools

Internet Vocabulary

Domain Name

Every domain name must be unique. DNS or Domain Naming System assigns addresses to internet web servers. What DNS assigns is a series of numbers, your IP address. The IP is invisible to most of us. What we see is the catchy, memorable and hopefully EASY TO SPELL address. Your domain is not your website. It is an address for your website.

Your domain name will have a suffix added to it which is known as the TLD (top-level domain). There used to be only 3 TLDs that you could use in registering your domain name – .COM, .NET and .ORG. In the past few years years, the number of available TLDs have expanded to more than 50 new options available. WhoIs

When you register your domain, your personal information, including your name, address and phone number is available for anyone to lookup. Many people do not want others to know that they own a domain or how to find out their personal contact details. To resolve this concern, you can add WHOIS protection to your domain name. With this addition, the company which registers your domain will act as a proxy for communication of registration details, thus protecting your privacy.

Hosting There used to be companies just dedicated to registering domain names. Once your domain was registered you would have to get another company to host it. Today almost all companies that offer domain registration will also provide website hosting. So what does that mean? The Domain name / IP address is like the street address; the hosting service is like the empty space / storefront; the website would be the organization or layout of the space (is it set up like a medical office, a store, a hairdressers, a restaurant? because each would need different layouts?); and later we'll look at themes and that might be more like the actual furnishings, shelves and filing cabinets and places to put things -- places to put the files of your website.

Shared Hosting Shared hosting allows for multiple websites to use the same server. When you host your site with Hostgator or GoDaddy or Bluehost, you are not their only customer! With the sharing of server resources it provides the lowest cost. The downside is that you are sharing the same bandwidth with hundreds of other websites. If one of them is sending/receiving lots of traffic then your website will suffer. Shared hosting is the first type of hosting people will use due to the low cost.

VPS Hosting VPS stands for Virtual Private Server. VPS hosting provides a step up from shared hosting in that you are no longer sharing server resources with hundreds of other domains. VPS hosting will carve up a servers resources – memory, disk storage and bandwidth – and will provide your website with those dedicated resources. As your website grows in size VPS is usually the next step up from shared hosting.

Dedicated Servers For the largest websites you will want to have a dedicated server. Unlike VPS hosting where it might carve up the resources of one server among 5 different VPS accounts, with a dedicated server you get access to the whole server yourself. Dedicated servers provide the fastest and greatest access to server resources. It is also the most expensive type of hosting.

Keyword Research

Keyword research is a necessary exercise for all website owners to find and research actual search terms which people enter for a search. It is one thing to know how YOU would look for YOU; it is important to know how others might look. If your site is selling knitting supplies, how do people look for you? Do they search knitting? Yarn? Wool? Knitting patterns? Knitting machines? How to knit? How to pick up a dropped stitch? Where do I buy acrylic yarn? How do I make a baby bootie? It's endless. Website owners research keywords in order to achieve better rankings in search engines.

Most websites are built upon one niche keyword. The objective of keyword research is to generate, large number of terms that are relevant yet non obvious to the niche keyword. [The niche is knitting supplies; knitting patterns, crochet patterns, baby booties could be relevant search terms.] Traffic can be generated for the website by ranking highly for the niche keyword as well as all relevant keywords.

Keyword research tools help in determining the best niche keyword as well as relevant keywords. These research tools usually tell you the number of searches for each of these words or phrases. This allows you to choose from the best words depending on the SEO goals of your site. It's best to pick keywords with little competition but high amounts of searches! to choose from the best words depending on the SEO goals of your site. It's best to pick keywords with little competition but high amounts of searches!
SEO Search Engine Optimization There are pages and pages, TONS of information on SEO, what it is and how to use it. There are experts out there who study this and can optimize your site for you. I'm no SEO expert so I won't get into all that! A simple explanation is this: SEO is the strategic use of words, your keywords and related words, phrases and content throughout your site, which make it appealing to search engines. If the search engines like your site, you will appear higher in the search listings. You should not write for search engines though. If you are simply peppering a page with strategic words, Google will slap you down! Your language and content should be relevant to your site purpose.

Start on your blog now and you will feel more compelled to get your website up and running!  Go now! 

Social Media

Even if you have been determined to stay under a rock thus far, as soon as you make the decision to do business online, you simply have to become familiar with Social Media.

Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram etc. are the ways that people search for products and services nowadays.  If you are not participating, you will not be found.  It's that simple.

Social media can be that simple too, folks.  It's a matter of setting up some accounts and spending a few minutes monitoring them.  YOU CAN DO THIS!

10,000 Fans has a program I would highly recommend.  It explains Facebook marketing so well, makes it simple and once you buy it, you will get updates forever.  Inexpensive and worth 10 times the price! 

You can check it out here:  Get10,000 Fans

Road Construction Ahead

A couple of things to keep in mind when registering a domain.  How will people search for you?  You want people to be able to find you and to easily remember you so be sure to make your name something that is Easy to Spell.  

When you register a domain, it is typically good for ONE YEAR.   After the year is up, you will have to pay to renew your domain.

You CAN register for more than one year.

Many companies offer both domain registration and hosting.  It can be appealing to deal with just one company.  Often they offer deals for combination services for one year etc.

Free Domains - some hosting companies will provide a free domain name when you sign up for their hosting service.

Be aware that the free domain is only free for 1 or 2 years and after that you will have to pay the annual fee to continue.

Some places to look for domain names:

Namecheap is a very reliable source for registering domain names.  Namecheap provides Whois guard free for the first year.

Netfirms is another solid site for registering domain names.  They frequently run sales so you can get names here for less than anywhere else

LuckyRegister - Cheap Domain Names.

Hostgator is internet marketer friendly.  It is a hosting service with great customer service.

BlueHost is known for stable and reliable hosting but also provides domain registration.

GoDaddy has become a household word.  People who don't even go online know about goDaddy!  It's a one-stop shop, where you can get domain, hosting, a quick website, or build your own website, get email service and much more.

Other Hosting services include:




You will want an auto-responder.  This is simply an automated email program that will respond for you so that you don't have to monitor and answer emails 24/7. 

You preload information so that visitors to your site or blog will get an immediate response.  This could be as simple as an email telling them that someone will respond within 24 hours, to a requested ebook or series of informative reports or a newletter ... or all of the above!  They are simply wonderful gadgets!  People can opt-in and opt-out at any time without you having to worry if you missed someone.  This is your personal secretary! 

I use Aweber.  It dovetailed perfectly with my blogging system and I didn't have to think about it.  They have so much free, helpful information and the system is intuitive and easy to use.  Love, love Aweber!

Constant Contact or MailChimp are other options.
Blogging Platforms are everywhere, multiplying like rabbits BECAUSE it's recognized that every business simply has to have a blog and create an online presence if they don't want to be left behind.

I went with Empower Network because it's a great platform, plus you get the support of a team AND the extensive, comprehensive education programs on how to market online AND the opportunity to market the products as well! Jump in!  I've listened to SEO experts who have chosen Empower Network because of it's Google ranking ability.  If the search engines see it as an 'authority site,' your rankings are helped simply by being on that platform!

Postagon is an option for the minimalists.  Touted as the the 'Zen' of blogging!

Blogger is a free platform powered by Google. Google offers so many helpful tools, from free email to free phone numbers (yes, you can advertise a phone number on the internet, answer it at any number you choose and callers will see the Google number.  As I said great stuff.  But the next minute they are telling you what to say and when to say it and who to say it to ... so Google with caution!

In short there are MANY options available.  They are NOT created equal!
SEO or search engine optimization is a HUGE topic and you won't expect to be an expert but you should have a basic knowledge of what is it is if only so that you can know some language when hiring a professional to help you out with it! 

Check out: SEO Tips to Improve Rankings  

or Screaming Frog's SEO Spider

or of course, Google's Webmaster Tools has an SEO tool!
Affiliate Disclaimer: I am disclosing that I will earn an affiliate commission for any purchases you make. Please note that I have not been given any free products, services or anything else by these companies in exchange for mentioning them on this site. The only consideration is in the form of affiliate commissions.I
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