ClickHOST Simple. Honest. Safe. 2017-08-08T14:19:38Z https://www.clickhost.com/feed/atom/ WordPress Emory Rowland http://www.clickfire.com/ <![CDATA[EIG Alternatives That Don’t Leave You Profoundly Disappointed]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4558 2017-08-08T14:19:38Z 2017-08-08T10:34:40Z Let’s get this out of the way right off the bat: Endurance International Group is the Wal-Mart of web hosting companies.

And not in the cute, “let me take a trip to Wal-Mart and I’ll find everything I need” sort of way, either.

No. In this case, I mean the “giant conglomerate without a single personable face that is creating the need for viable alternatives” sort of way. To put it bluntly.

If you’ve come to this article in search of one of those viable alternatives, then there’s a good chance you agree with this central premise. That just leads us to the next question: what is the alternative? Is EIG pricing the quality guys out of the business, or are there legitimate alternatives that bear consideration?

Why People Don’t Like Big Web Hosting Conglomerates

Some people have a natural aversion to large corporations and big-time conglomerates out of loyalty to the little guy. Other people don’t care. But let’s zoom in a bit and consider why those customers with the need of effective web hosting don’t like the giant, faceless companies:

Dealing with them can be a pain in the butt.

Not specific enough? Good—let’s look at the exact reasons the “giant conglomerate web host” experience can be such a pain:

  • Slow turnaround times. When you’re running a business that depends on a change occurring with your website, you don’t want to be caught in the old corporate runaround, waiting for those changes to take place. Slow turnaround times apply to just about anything you might imagine, and make the “corporate host” experience much more frustrating than it needs to be.
  • Feeling more like a statistic than a customer. When you communicate with a company, you want a personal touch. You want to feel like your business is valued. When’s the last time you worked with a giant conglomerate and felt this way? Chances are, it’s very rare. Without good customer service, you feel more like a statistic than a paying customer.
  • Getting connected to the right people—too slowly. We’ve all shared this experience: we want to talk to a reasonable human being on the other end of the line. We want to feel like we’re not talking to some bureaucratic zombie who’s only allowed to say a certain line after you complain. We need to feel like we have access to a decision maker who can make our lives easier.
  • Borg action. Star Trek’s Borg are a cybernetic race bent on world domination through technological assimilation. Sounds kind of like a big conglomerate, right? When the big fish eat the little ones but don’t incorporate what made the little companies so successful to begin with, it ends up creating less quality for the end-user.
  • Missing out on a great web host. Designers and web masters love a great web host. They know that all of that design work needs to come packaged with fast load times and a quality platform. They want to feel like the host is an actual company on the other end of the line, not just a robo-call center. When you work with the big hosting conglomerates, that feeling is simply not there 100% of the time.

If you’re experienced with this type of web hosting company, then you know all about these pains. But let’s talk alternatives. How do you improve life for yourself and find an EIG alternative that will work for you?

Where to Find Alternatives to EIG—and Why

Now we’re left with a basic question: if not EIG, then what?

Remember the “Borg” comparison from the previous section? The problem thus far has been that there were EIG alternatives. Perfectly viable ones, in fact. But, like the Borg, EIG consumed and assimilated many of these alternatives, leaving consumers scrambling for other hosting companies.

Don’t believe me? Check out ResearchAsAHobby.com. Here you’ll see an entire list of hosting domains and companies that have been bought out in the past, including:

  • BlueHost
  • HostGator
  • UsaNetHosting
  • FatCow
  • A Small Orange
  • Site5

Any of those sound familiar? Of course, they do; they’re hosts that have been around for a long time. But with EIG moving in, the hosts you’ll find on the ResearchAsAHobby list—which uses mainstream news sources for its research—might not be the alternatives you once thought they were.

As an SEO consultant, I get a chance to work with a lot of clients running WordPress on EIG hosts. I’ve used quite a few of these hosts before and after the EIG takeover. In the case of HostGator I can especially tell a difference in the way customer support works now compared with how things were under the founder.

That leaves us in a precarious position. With EIG dominating the hosting industry, where might we turn for a better hosting experience?

In this case, don’t think big. Think small. A small host could be better—not only because it avoids the trap of being gobbled up by EIG (or, at least, has thus far), but because there’s nothing wrong with a small company if it does things the right way.

It’s difficult to find a safe, family-owned, or even independent host. Like many other companies in the world, the “mom and pop shops” tend to be eaten up.

The key here: finding reliability. The advantage of the large conglomerates is that they tend to bring a big degree of stability and reliability. Think of them as the giant cruise ship that’s difficult to knock off course. They move slowly, sure, but they’re also incredibly difficult to knock over with just a wave.

ClickHOST, for example, is an alternative that brings this kind of reliability to web hosting. And because you want to have confidence that your host isn’t going to go belly-up any time soon, you know that ClickHOST can offer scalable hosting for WordPress, for example, based on Amazon Web Services. That means you’ll get all of that cruise ship stability from a giant company…while still working with one of the smaller hosting companies that takes your business very seriously.

Next Steps for Finding Your Alternative

If you’re still reading this, you know you’re ready for an EIG alternative that gives you all of the options and consistency one of the larger web hosts can give you.

But where do you find the alternative?

Use ClickHOST as an example. They’re small enough to give individualized attention and it works with larger platforms like Amazon Web Services to give you the consistent, on-demand hosting you need. This results in a “best of both worlds” scenario: you get the qualities of a larger company with the attention of a smaller web hosting service.

Put it together and you have an EIG alternative that’s ready to go. The only question that remains: what are you going to do about it?

Hopefully, you won’t get assimilated.

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Carel https://www.clickhost.com <![CDATA[How to Update WordPress for SSL]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4506 2017-06-06T19:07:15Z 2017-06-07T11:15:49Z These days, shoppers turn to the internet for everything from groceries to garbage cans. And while having the goods you need delivered to your door is nothing short of terrific, customers who enter their credit card numbers online risk having their personal information fall into the hands of hackers and criminals.

That’s where SSL and HTTPS can save the day. Also known as secure sockets layer, SSL is a superhero technology that establishes a secure connection between websites for data transfers. By getting an SSL certificate for your ecommerce or lead gen WordPress site, you can protect the sensitive customer information while impeding the ability of hackers to listen in.

Just as you wouldn’t buy a new car from a shady dealer, your customers are unlikely to purchase goods from your website if it doesn’t seem secure. Installing a paid SSL certificate lends credibility to your biz while showing you care enough about your customers to keep their confidential data out of the hands of the bad guys.

So, clearly, SSL is essential to modern ecommerce business. However, setting up your WordPress site to work with SSL and HTTPS can be intimidating. I’m going to give you some steps for installing SSL on your WordPress site without the stress.

Backing Up Your Site

Before you update your site, it’s crucial to back up all your content. The last thing you want to do is lose something essential in an effort to make your site more secure. If you haven’t yet backed up your information, you can use the WordPress plugin Duplicator to do so.

Getting Your WordPress Site to Work with SSL

The first step involved in updating your site is securing an SSL certificate. While free certificates are available from Let’s Encrypt and other sources, they don’t necessarily offer the same level of protection as the paid options. Fortunately, for a small price, you can protect your customers and your reputation for the long haul.

Once you purchase an SSL certificate, you need to take steps to add SSL to your WordPress site. This involves changing your WordPress settings URL. Luckily, the Really Simple SSL plugin makes accomplishing this task a breeze. A lifesaver for web owners, this easy-to-use plugin offers automatic SSL detection and a fast mixed content fixer.

Start by downloading the plugin at wordpress.org/plugins/really-simple-ssl. Featuring minimal options, this plugin configures your website to operate over HTTPS. With one click, you can get started creating a secure shopping experience.

Here are the steps involved in updating your WordPress website:

Change the WordPress setting URL

Change the WordPress Settings URL

Go to Settings and then General. Add the “s” and save.

Install the Really Simple SSL plugin

Install the Really Simple SSL Plugin

This fixes a majority of the mixed content issues. Note: You should leave this plugin in place even after completing your updates.

The Pro version of Really Simple SSL has some extra goodies. For example: Extensive scan which enables you to detect the source of your mixed content, with a fix button. Use the special promo code: CLICKHOST_1F5YLA (affiliate link) to get 20% off the premium plugin.

Update Google Analytics URL

Update the Google Analytics SSL

Change your default URL under Properties.

Update Google search console URL

Update the Google Search Console URL

Add the new site URL; doing this ensures Google is aware of your new security measures.

Update URLs in functions.php and style.css

Update functions.php and styles.css URLs

Note: you might not have to make any changes here. However, it’s a good idea to check logos.

Update Genesis Simple Hooks

Update Genesis Hooks

Using the Genesis Simple Hooks plugin? Check code snippets and widgets carefully.

Run the Velvet Blues Update

Run Velvet Blues Plugin

Update your URL in the fields. Be careful, as this step is hard to undo. In most cases, you will want to skip the bottom check box.

Update ManageWP

Update ManageWP

Using ManageWP? Change to ‘s’.

Update Other Embedded ScriptsUpdate Embedded Scripts

Check old form plugins.

And that’s all you have to do. See how easy that was?

Credit and thanks to Mickey Mellen of GreenMellen Media.

Contact ClickHOST Today for Web Services

Want to learn more about SSL or domain hosting? Don’t hesitate to check out the ClickHOST blog or call to speak to one of our web experts. We look forward to serving you.

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Carel https://www.clickhost.com <![CDATA[The How, What, and Why of SSL’s]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4493 2017-04-02T02:30:01Z 2017-04-04T08:55:22Z From books to cleaning supplies, furniture to frying pans, these days consumers buy just about everything online. However, if web shoppers find out your site is less than secure, the odds are good they’ll take their credit cards elsewhere.

Do you want to know how to keep your site running securely and draw buyers away from the competition? Are you interested in learning how to protect your customers’ credit card information and your own company’s reputation?

Here are a few of my tips on understanding the how, what, and why of SSL’s:

How Do SSL Certificates Work?

SSL, or Secure Sockets Layer, is used to protect websites by encrypting confidential info traveling between senders and receivers. With SSL, random characters are inserted into messages containing data like usernames, passwords, and credit card information. Sites that have SSL certificates are identifiable by the letters HTTPS at the start of the URL.

Also, browsers will see a green padlock (Chrome and Firefox) or a gray padlock (Safari) when they visit your site. This symbol tells shoppers they can use your site with confidence, knowing their credit card data and passwords won’t fall into the wrong hands.

Additionally, purchasing an SSL certificate for your site ensures that information is sent to the right server rather than one belonging to a hacker.

Why Do You Need SSL?

With hackers targeting small businesses in greater numbers, SSL is a crucial part of keeping your business and its reputation safe. Here are some reasons why you need SSL for your website:

  • Protect your customers’ credit card data
  • Avoid sending data to imposters
  • Safely use a third-party payment processing
  • Keep user log-ins and member info safe
  • Inspire confidence in current and potential buyers

What Should SSL Cost?

 As a website owner, you have numerous options when it comes to choosing the right SSL for your business.  Unfortunately, not all types of SSL offer the same protection for your company and its customers. When you opt for a free SSL service like Let’s Encrypt, you might find that site owners are not verified. As a result, the site could be securely downloading malware.

Additionally, web owners should know that Let’s Encrypt uses a simpler, less secure domain validation. Unfortunately, this means that it’s easier for hackers and criminals to abuse free certificates. Researchers at Trend Micro recently discovered a malvertising campaign that focuses its efforts on free Let’s Encrypt certificates.

The price of SSL varies based on the type of service and your website’s needs. However, you should be aware of the fact that choosing a free SSL option could put your customer information in a risky position.

Trust ClickHOST With Your SSL Needs

A family owned business since 2000, ClickHOST is more than a web-hosting company. We are also your source for SSL certificates. You can trust us to handle your single domain SSL installation job, which includes 2048 bit encryption and a $10,000 warranty. Our goal is to keep your customers safe and your business running smoothly, now and into the future.

Order your SSL today!

To learn more about our services, check out our hosting plans today!

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Carel https://www.clickhost.com <![CDATA[How to install WordPress on AWS EC2 in 5 (fairly) easy steps]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4440 2017-03-17T17:13:48Z 2017-03-17T17:12:15Z Do you feel adventurous? Time to try something new, … like installing WordPress on your own Amazon Web Services (AWS) EC2 server (or in AWS vernacular, an instance). You’ve come to the right place. In this blog post I’ll guide you step-by-step on how to do this. Here are the high level steps:

  1. Launch EC2 instance with Amazon Linux
  2. Update Linux
  3. Launch Apache server
  4. Install, config & launch PHP & MySQL
  5. Install, config & launch WordPress

Step 1: Launch EC2 instance with Amazon Linux

It is very easy to launch an EC2 instance (or server) in AWS. You’ll need an Amazon account. Then goto aws.amazon.com.  See here for a detailed step-by-step guide to launch an EC2 instance. And below is a quick visual flow of how you launch an EC2 instance. Remember to Auto-Assign a Public IP, to download your pem key and also to open ports 80 (HTTP), and 443 (HTTPS) in your security group.

AWS EC2 launch visual flow

Step 2: Update your Amazon Linux installation

First you need to log into your EC2 instance. From your console, you can click on the Connect Button and you’ll see a screen that looks like this. Your key, public DNS, etc. will obviously be different.

AWS Connect to your EC2 instance

Then open a terminal window (I’m assuming you’re using a Mac). Find where you downloaded your .pem file. It is usually in your “Downloads” directory.

Then run the following commands:

chmod 400 your-private-key.pem
SSH -i "your-private-key.pem" ec2-user@public_dns_name

This will log you into your EC2 instance.

Now you can update all your Linux packages using the following command:
sudo yum update

Step 3: Launch Apache server

After you updated all the Linux packages it is time to install Apache or the httpd package:
yum install httpd
and finally start the Apache (or httpd) service using the following command:
service httpd start

If you now open your browser and enter the public IP provided by AWS, you’ll see the typical Apache splash screen. This lets you know that Apache has been installed and is running on your instance.

Amazon Linux Apache splash screen

Step 4: Install, config & launch PHP & MySQL

OK, it is time to complete the setup of your LAMP stack (Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP). Now it is time to install and configure PHP and MySQL. Here are the commands. Btw, you can also configure your EC2 installation with a bash script to run these commands on startup.

Install MySQL and PHP:
yum install php php-mysql
yum install mysql-server

Start the MySQL database service:
service mysqld start

Create your WordPress database. Use your own username and database name. Make a note of these. You’ll need it later to install WordPress.
mysqladmin -uroot create wcatl-blog

Now secure your MySQL installation. Again, use your own password instead of “wcatl-password”. Also, enter [y]es at each of the security question prompts.
mysql_secure_installation
wcatl-password, y,y,y,y

Step 5: Install, config & launch WordPress

You are almost there. Now comes the fun part. Downloading WordPress, configuring it and then launching WordPress. Here are the commands:

First you need to navigate to Lunix’s root document folder. The location where Apache will look for your WordPress installation:
cd /var/www/html

Then download the latest version of WordPress:
wget http://wordpress.org/latest.tar.gz

Now extract the WordPress archive:
tar -xzvf latest.tar.gz

Rename the default directory from wordpress to your blog name, “wcatl-blog” in this example. Then navigate to your new WordPress directory:
mv wordpress wcatl-blog
cd wcatl-blog

Make a copy of the default WordPress config file using this command:
mv wp-config-sample.php wp-config.php

Now it is time to update your WordPress config file. I like the nano editor. Fairly friendly editor for Linux. Update each of the config file fields as noted below. Remember to use the values you used previously.
nano wp-config.php
DB_NAME: wcatl-blog
DB_USER: root
DB_PASSWORD: wcatl-password

Restart the Apache service:
service httpd restart

Now enter your server IP address/wcatl-blog and you’ll see the following WordPress installation screen. If you do, then, great job! If you don’t see a screen like this, then you may want to re-check the steps you followed. Remember your server IP address and AWS DNS server name will be different.

Final touches

Great job installing WordPress on EC2! Here are a few more final touches. Be sure to setup your DNS & zone records in Route 53. Be sure to setup a backup schedule to create snapshots (backups) in S3. You can also use Cloudfront and a WordPress caching plugin to improve the load time of your website.
Then later you can move your local MySQL database to RDS, the AWS Managed Database service. Amazon Aurora is especial fast. You may also want to create an auto-scaling group to allow your website to automatically scale based on a specific metric, e.g., CPU load. We’ll discuss these topics in future blog posts.

Below you’ll find my 2016 WordCamp Atlanta presentation entitled: AWS and WordPress Hosting – A Beginner’s Guide.

 

Interested in AWS Hosting. We offer AWS Managed Hosting for WordPress, Magento and cPanel.

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Carel https://www.clickhost.com <![CDATA[Let’s Get To Know “Let’s Encrypt”]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4457 2017-04-02T02:29:10Z 2017-03-14T15:00:48Z If you own or operate a website, you’re probably familiar with the concept of SSL, or Secure Sockets Layer. A form of security technology, SSL creates an encrypted link between web browser and web server. The end result is that businesses can protect their customers’ payment information – and thus their own reputations – during transactions.

While SSL is a crucial aspect of web security in the modern age, not all traffic encryption options are created equal. Understanding all the services at your disposal – including Let’s Encrypt Free SSL/TLS certificates – is key to protecting your website, your e-commerce shoppers, and your livelihood moving forward.

SSL Connections and HTTPS

To form an SSL connection, you will need an SSL certificate, which contains a cryptographic key of your company’s private data. After you install an SSL certificate, web traffic between your site and the server will be secure. Doing this effectively changes your site from HTTP to HTTPS (hyper text transfer protocol secure).

When customers visit your secure website, they will see a green padlock (Chrome and Firefox) or a gray padlock (Safari). This symbol lets shoppers know they can use their credit cards with confidence, resting assured that their sensitive data is safe.

Additionally, having an SSL certificate can help your SEO endeavors. According to Google, transitioning to HTTPS will provide your site with a small ranking boost. The end result is more eyes on your products.

Choosing the Right SSL for Your Business

These days, e-commerce shops have numerous options when it comes to achieving web security. In an effort to cut costs, web sellers are often tempted to go with a free SSL rather than a paid service. A newer product, Let’s Encrypt, is a free, automated, open certificate authority that allows companies to set up an HTTPS server and secure a certificate without human involvement. Although convenient and free, this SSL option is not without its drawbacks.

No-cost SSL’s from Cloudflare, and Let’s Encrypt are supported by ClickHOST. And while these services do encrypt traffic, it’s important to realize that the website owner is not verified. This means that your visitors have no way of knowing that they’re on the site they intended to be on as opposed to an imposter.

Moreover, studies found that malvertisers had developed subdomains under the authentic ones. In this way, Let’s Encrypt enables certain malware subdomains to achieve legitimacy online. As the owner of a web-based company, you should know that Let’s Encrypt gives out DV certificates, but does not monitor them moving forward. So, even if Google flags a domain down the line, Let’s Encrypt won’t take away its certificate.

On the other hand, paid SSL services offer a number of advantages. While free SSL certificates are often shared among multiple businesses, paid ones belong to you and you alone. Additionally, paid certificates are less likely to set off security alarms or be compromised. After all, if a hacker gets hold of the private keys for a shared SSL, all the websites that use it are at risk. Finally, paid SSL tends to provide superior customer support compared to the free options available.

The moral of the story is that website operators need to take steps to protect their domains and make sure subdomains aren’t being developed against their will. Hiring a reputable hosting company can assure you’re using the right SSL option, and taking precautions where necessary.

Contact ClickHOST for Your Web Hosting Needs

ClickHOST was founded with a belief that domain services should be uncomplicated. Our goal is to provide customers with improved customer service, lower prices, and increased uptime. To find out more about what we can do for your business, compare our hosting plans.

 

 

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Carel https://www.clickhost.com <![CDATA[WordCamp Atlanta 2017 – March 18-19, 2017]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4444 2017-03-07T21:02:41Z 2017-03-09T14:00:55Z This will be the 6th year in a row that we will be at WordCamp in Atlanta!  This year we again expect 500+ attendees over 3 days at the Loudermilk Conference Center in downtown Atlanta.

Carel, our owner, will be presenting on Who needs a Server? Setting up WordPress in AWS without a server. Come and say hi and have some fun with us as we learn to use how to host WordPress on AWS (Amazon Web Services) without a server.

Carel will also be on a Website Hosting Companies Panel moderated by Aaron Reimann. Sunday, 10am.

WordCamp Atlanta 2017

WordCamp Atlanta 2017 Event details

Where: The Loudermilk Center is located at 40 Courtland Street NE in Downtown, Atlanta
When: March 18-19, 2017
Schedule: WordCamp ATL 2017 conference schedule.
Cost: $40 for 2 days (includes a t-shirt and lunches). $20 extra for the Friday workshops. You can get tickets here: WordCamp Atlanta 2017 tickets.
Ride: WordCampers get a free rides from Lyft. Use this link: http://lyft.com/invited/WCATL16 to get $50 in ride savings.

Will we see you at WordCamp Atlanta this year?

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Emory Rowland http://www.clickfire.com/ <![CDATA[5 Web Hosting Services You Shouldn’t Touch with a 10 Foot Pole]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4435 2017-04-01T04:07:39Z 2017-03-07T06:30:49Z There are some things in life that you don’t want an intimate connection with. They can be dangerous or immoral or just uncool. Get close and their negative qualities may rub off on you or your business. Then people start associating you with the bad guys.

Your instinct?

Put as much distance between you and such things as possible.

While you might assume that all web hosts are created equally, the truth is that the service you select can have a profound effect on how people perceive your business. Here are 5 types of hosting services that you shouldn’t touch with a 10-foot pole.

1. Companies That Post Fake Reviews

These days, people use online reviews to assess everything from restaurants to doctors, and plenty of business owners consult them before choosing web services, as well. Review sites, even the big reputable ones like Yelp, get criticized when inauthentic reviews slip through. Amazon even banned incentivized reviews that were seen as fake. If the web host you’re considering posts fake reviews about its services, move on.

Luckily, there are a few ways to spot a company that falsifies reviews. Fake reviews tend to be vague, filled with glowing language and few specifics. Are you suspicious of companies who suddenly have all five-star reviews from unknown users? You should be, says PC World. Over time, even good companies will score three or four stars due to a dissatisfied customer.

2. Hosts That Are Overcrowded

Few things will turn potential customers away faster than a slow-loading website. If your web host is overcrowded, expect slower load times for users. Page speed is even a Google ranking factor. Albeit one that you shouldn’t obsess over.

Lower-quality web hosting companies may oversell their resources and bandwidth at the expense of customer need. Processors become overwhelmed, slowing and degrading user experience. This problem is particularly relevant if your site uses a CMS and database instead of a few basic static HTML pages.

If your site runs off WordPress or Joomla, you might want to avoid overcrowded hosts that force massive numbers of sites to share a single server.

3. Companies That Make It Difficult to Cancel

If you accidentally choose a web host that’s overcrowded, it might be hard to cancel your membership. In the worst cases, companies actively avoid canceling customers’ accounts so they can keep collecting the cash each month. They might also send you tips and special offers in an effort to keep you on board while actively ignoring your requests to bail. In other circumstances, it takes multiple emails to get a customer service provider to confirm that your account has actually been closed. When in doubt, check your credit card bill to make sure you aren’t still being charged.

4. Companies with Low Uptime

Well maybe a 20-foot pole. If it’s the case that you have a very mission uncritical or expendable website, perhaps a prank or joke site, sure, go ahead and use a free service. You won’t complain or care when, not if, it goes offline.

No web hosting service can promise you that your site will be up all the time. Internet issues happen, and just about every web business experiences some downtime. Still, web hosts have different ways of compensating businesses for down hours.

Along with providing speedy customer service, the best web hosts compensate their clients with free hosting time when sites are down for prolonged periods. Additionally, you can use tools like UptimeRobot and Pingdom to evaluate your uptime and determine whether you’re being overcharged.

5. Companies That Host “Undesirable” Businesses

Did you know that your web host’s reputation could affect your own reputation? Before signing up for a new web host, take a moment to evaluate its terms of service. If the service also hosts businesses that raise eyebrows with the search engines – like porn sites, bulk-email services, or pages offering stolen software – your website might be judged for the company it keeps.

Choose the Right Web Host for Your Needs

Don’t get too close to these five types of hosting services. Even touching them with a 10-foot pole may give them an opportunity they don’t deserve. To learn more about web hosting services that you can touch, start here or reach out!

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Carel https://www.clickhost.com <![CDATA[Great Hosting, Slack Customer Service? Run!]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4415 2016-12-18T15:52:27Z 2016-12-20T12:15:34Z Let’s be real for just a second. Your business’ website is important. Period. End of story.

But, if it’s so important, why is it so difficult to find a reliable web host who understands your business, how important your web presence is, and wants to help you, the customer, at all times?

The short answer is, it shouldn’t be. In a perfect world, finding a reliable web host who focuses on customers and their needs should be the easiest thing in the world. And it’s not.

What’s even worse is that a lot of web hosting services have great sales teams who will tell you exactly what you want to hear to get you to sign the dotted line, and then shrug their shoulders when customer service falls short. Sometimes, this is genuinely a miscommunication between sales and customer service. However, at other times, it’s legitimately because the web host is more concerned with getting your business than keeping your business.

So, how can you find the right web host who will deliver on their promises and understands that the success of your business is just as important to them as it is to you? Here a few things to look for.

They Listen.

If the salesperson or customer service rep does more talking than you do, that’s probably a bad sign. They should listen and provide constructive, substantive feedback to your questions and concerns.

They Plan.

Your web host should have a contingency plan in place for down time, which will inevitably happen, including how they will alert you that there is a problem, as well as explain the ways they will compensate you if it lasts for longer than anticipated. You should know upfront who will call or email you to tell you your website is down. You should then be assured that the company has a plan for getting your site back up and running as quickly as possible.

They Understand.

As a customer, your success is the web host’s success. Without you, their company doesn’t turn a profit. They should understand this dichotomy and want to do the right thing by you, the customer, at all times. And if they can’t resolve an issue exactly the way you want, they should be able to articulate why and offer an alternative that both parties can agree on.

They Collaborate.

As a designer or agency, you have small business clients who need hosting services, and having reliable, collaborative partner makes you look good too. Find a web host who is willing to collaborate with you. What are the best ways you can work together to give the client the best experience and present a united front that communicates to your clients that you’re part of their team? How they work with you is just as important as how they work with clients directly.

I built ClickHOST on these principles. Listening, planning, understanding and collaborating are just as important to me as being honest, keeping things simple, and making sure everyone’s information is safe. If you’re interested in working with a company built on these values, and one that understands how important your business is, ClickHOST would love to hear from you. If you want to learn more about us and how we’re helping businesses make the most of their online presence, consider subscribing to our newsletter. We hope to hear from you soon.

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Carel https://www.clickhost.com <![CDATA[Ready for AWS re:Invent 2016!]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4407 2016-11-11T22:43:51Z 2016-11-11T22:43:51Z I’m very excited to attend my first AWS re:Invent conference in Las Vegas. This year the event is even larger than last year’s blow out AWS event.  Unfortunately AWS re:Invent 2016 is now Sold out. Maybe you can still get a ticket from an AWS partner or from one of your AWS friends. One way to get in is to sign up as a sponsor, however they only have a wait list at the moment — AWS re:invent 2016 sponsor waitlist.

AWS re:Invent 2016 Keynotes

If you cannot attend the event live, then you have the option to register for the live stream of the keynotes. Here is the list of the keynotes and how to register:

Tuesday night live with James Hamilton, VP and Distinguished Engineer
Amazon Web Services

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Carel https://www.clickhost.com <![CDATA[How to install AWS CLI on a Mac in 3 easy steps]]> https://www.clickhost.com/?p=4387 2017-08-03T02:18:25Z 2016-09-14T22:11:27Z If you have EC2 instances and other services running in AWS (Amazon Web Services) then at some point you may want to use a command line interface (CLI) instead of the AWS console.

I have a Mac and was excited to see that the AWS CLI is also available for OS X (or MacOS).

To start be sure you open a OS X Terminal window and then follow the following easy steps.

Here are 3 easy steps to install AWS CLI on your Mac

Step 1: Install AWS CLI using the OS X Bundled Installer.

First make sure that you have the correct version of Python installed.
python --version

Python version on Mac

If you don’t already have Python installed, then using the following link to Install Python.

Now download the AWSCLI installer using the following command:
curl "https://s3.amazonaws.com/aws-cli/awscli-bundle.zip" -o "awscli-bundle.zip"

Step 2: Unzip the package

Next you want to unzip the downloaded AWSCLI package using the following command:
unzip awscli-bundle.zip

Unzip AWS CLI bundle on Mac

Step 3: Run the install executable and test the AWS CLI installation

The final step is to run the install executable and to test the AWS CLI command. This is a sudo command and you will be prompted for your password to continue. This is you Mac Administrator User Password. This step may take a few minutes to run, so be patient.

sudo ./awscli-bundle/install -i /usr/local/aws -b /usr/local/bin/aws

Now you can test if you correctly installed the AWS CLI using the AWS command:

aws help

You should now see the AWS Help screen. Success!

And then finally you can connect to your AWS environment using the following command (note you’ll have to set your own Key ID, Secret, Region and output format):

$ aws configure
AWS Access Key ID [None]: AKIAIOSFODNN7EXAMPLE
AWS Secret Access Key [None]: wJalrXUtnFEMI/K7MDENG/bPxRfiCYEXAMPLEKEY
Default region name [None]: us-west-2
Default output format [None]: json

You can find more detailed information and trouble shooting info here: Installing the AWS Command Line Interface.

Check out our AWS Managed Hosting Services

Have fun using AWS CLI on your Mac. Do you have any cool tips to share?

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