Tech Support and My Move to Russia Last Week

ME: Yes, I need some assistance on my account
SUPPORT:  Okay, can you give me your account number?
ME: No, that’s the problem, I can’t login to my account.
SUPPORT: Ouch. You can’t login online?
ME: No. Invalid password, but I don’t remember changing it.
SUPPORT: Well, there’s no way that it could be changed unless you changed it. Did you do the “Reset My Password” option?
ME: Yes, tried that, but apparently it is set to the last email account I had before I changed internet providers.
SUPPORT: Can you get TO that email address still?
ME: NO, or I would have DONE that. I said that I believe went to the last email account BEFORE I changed internet providers.
SUPPORT: So you can’t get to it?
SUPPORT: I can change it for you if you can give me your account number.
ME: THAT’S WHY I CALLED. I can’t get in to get it. I don’t HAVE the account number because I opted for the awesome new “paperless billing” your website kept throwing up in my face every 30 seconds until I relented during signup, so I don’t have ANY record of my account number, and NOW, the password maybe has been changed – and I don’t have it.
SUPPORT: Are you sure you didn’t write it down somewhere?
ME: NO. Everyone tells you to NEVER write your passwords down. EVEN YOUR COMPANY SAID NOT TO DO THAT IN ONE OF YOUR HELPFUL SPAM EMAILS.
SUPPORT: Okay okay.
<flipping and searching through obscure emails from 5 years ago. Find account number…>
ME: Hey – I JUST FOUND IT! Here’s my account number – 2k23883482012
SUPPORT: Just a couple security questions – What was your kindergarten teacher’s parakeet’s name?
ME: WHAT?  You have got to be kidding me.
SUPPORT: No, we have that listed as a security question.  It looks like you changed it when you moved to Vorkuta, Russia last week.
SUPPORT: According to our records, you did. You changed your password and security questions.
ME: I’m calling from Raleigh North by God CAROLINA in the UNITED STATES. I have NOT moved.
SUPPORT: I’m sorry, we have you listed in Vorkuta.  I’ll be glad to change that for you if you can just provide the security answers.
ME: God help me. That last one was NOT anything I have EVER used.
SUPPORT: Want to try another one?  All we need is a correct one.
ME: God help me.  Let’s do it.
SUPPORT:  Favorite movie?
ME: Tombstone.
SUPPORT: No, we were looking for “Driving Miss Davydova”.
ME: Where do you come up with “Driving Miss Davydova”? Does that even SOUND reasonable??
SUPPORT: Sure, since you are living in Russia, it makes perfect sense.
SUPPORT: Uh Oh. I just got an alert from the credit department.
ME: An alert from the credit department? Seriously? I cant’ login. I don’t know the account number.. You can’t help me or even get me in the system until I… You DO know my account number, don’t you?
SUPPORT: Yes, sir, we actually do.  Your old phone number triggered the credit department. And it looks like we should be able to SAVE your account! While you’re on the phone sir, I’ve been instructed to go ahead and get your account back under the credit limit after all your purchases last week when you moved.
SUPPORT: Regardless, we need a payment of 32,502,114.98 rubles to get you back under your credit limit. This needs to be taken care of today or your account will be suspended.
ME: I have no clue what a ruble is or what it’s worth because I DON’T LIVE IN RUSSIA. and 32 MILLION RUBLES???
SUPPORT: Well, if you’re in or back in “North by God Carolina” as you claim sir, it would be $520,038 in American.
ME: What in GOD’S name could I have spent $520,038 ON???
SUPPORT: Sir you can check all your purchases by logging in to our easy convenient web interface to get 24/7 account information and to see ALL your purchases. Just login…
ME: <click>

A Day In The Life – of an SEO and YOUR SPECIAL WEBSITE

How does YOUR day go?

So I was up this morning at 3:17 am.  I choked on a cup of coffee – too hot.  Through the semi-wakefulness of that particular time in the morning, it’s easy to forget how hot that the carefully calibrated Keurig really DOES make that cup of coffee.

I never spend any time at all thinking about the tasks that I have lined up for the day.
  I mean, really, there’s no need to have any sort of plan of action for my websites, servers – and of course, those of clients.  Raleigh SEO – ALL of this stuff just happens, right?

I just breezed through the 38 emails waiting for me since I went to bed and last checked my email at 10:30 last night.  I’m sure that those server alerts probably don’t need checking on.  There weren’t 7 user lockouts on sites amongst those 38 emails.  I’m sure that the user from Russia that tried unsuccessfully to login with the username “admin” apparently about 10 times guessing passwords on 2 of my sites has nothing but best intentions for my sites – though of course, he has nothing to do with them.  I’m sure he was just doing some gentle “whitehat security testing” for me.  I really appreciate them.  So there is no reason to need to go check any of those sites. At all.  Whoa, at 4:09 am, it looks like he’s back at it – still trying that “admin” username. I mean seriously, if you’re going to test my security, you WANT to do a good job, right?

I didn’t need to review any of the other client SERP listings – because just putting up a client site pretty much guarantees that it will be #1 and seen everywhere and found for everything.  But I did anyway, just to ensure that your site is still #1. For everything.

I know that you don’t actually pay me to do SEO work on your site, but you still feel the need to contact me and let me know that you’re not #1 for something – and that should obviously have been included in the cost of building your low dollar website.  And then I get your shining email – what a treat.  And today, you don’t rank for “herpetologists in Atlanta”?  Mmm.. okay.  You ARE such a breath of fresh air in my morning.

We have HAD such FUN!

Pump up your Business with a professional website! Just $1* per month from GoDaddy!
godaddy-logoSpeaking of your low-dollar website, it was either use me or get that awesome GoDaddy website builder for a buck a month and do it yourself.  And yes, I DO know that GoDaddy thing is only a buck a month. Sure, I KNOW you can get your own website EXACTLY the way YOU want it with that builder – as opposed to the way that will likely WORK based on OUR experience in the last 15-16 years of doing business websites.  Of COURSE I can drop my price down to be competitive with a DIY website builder.  I’d be HAPPY to do that.  I haven’t spent 15-16 years learning my craft and all the ins and outs on a huge number of required skills required to turn out a professional Raleigh website, knowing SEO like a second language and getting that site to rank, or what quirks Google has up it’s sleeve this month.  I really don’t require money – I just enjoy spending quality time with great clients – like you.

All those expenses that I have that cost me right around 3000/month – hosting servers across the US and beyond, anti-virus apps, anti-hacker apps, backup software that runs continuously, specialized software subscriptions, service subscriptions, additional help here in the office.  I just throw those numbers out, none of that actually COSTS me money. Those suppliers just like me.  And besides, it will look GREAT on my resume that I built this site for you.  After the last decade and a half of building business websites, what I REALLY REALLY REALLY need is another website like yours to “pad out my portfolio” – you were SO clever to remind me of that.  And of course, based on that great exposure I’ll get, I’ll gladly do it for almost nothing.

Obligatory Cat Picture

Obligatory Cat Picture

Back to your low cost website – Actually all you really NEEDED, according to you, was like a 1 page website and that should do it.  Everything can be put on one page, right?  And that way, you should really only have to pay for one page and that shouldn’t be more than that DIY GoDaddy thing, right?  So, we can do it for like $100?  Doesn’t matter that in your plan, that page would be about 27 and a half feet long when viewed and have embedded videos, photo galleries, and product listings from some guy in Oklahoma that apparently has cases of old “The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas” lunchboxes, notepads, binders, and all sorts of cool stuff that any kid would be TICKLED to take to school with them today.  About 250 unique items that somehow are associated with the Flintstones. And their 1000 item online product catalog for custom order Flintstones materials. And of course, your life story which is completely unrelated to ANYTHING on your proposed website. The blit about having had a Flintstones lunchbox though when you were a kid is a nice touch. And the cat picture.

My mind keeps going back to that herpetologists thing… I didn’t realize necessarily that you might expect to be found for “herpetologists in Atlanta” and of course, you’re actually a quasi-flintstones school supply ecomm site in Raleigh, but now that I know…  Oh, hold it, Dino is a dinosaur.  And since they don’t have “dinosaurologists”, you want to be found for the next best thing?  Okay!  I can be SOOO  dense at times.  I’ll go ahead and work on that whole herpetologists thing.  That way it will save people time – they shouldn’t need to qualify their search term by typing in something applicable like “flintstones lunchboxes” or something – they can just tap in “herpetologist” and your site will be #1.  That’s a lot of characters though. Search engines are supposed to be smart, yes?  Maybe I can even get some other similar terms and misspellings in there to make your low dollar site just rocket to the top. Of everything.

Make it eCommerce

Now that we’ve got THAT cleared up, back to your website yet again. Oh, and you want those product listings to actually be available for online sales too?  SURE, no problem.  Of COURSE, that doesn’t cost extra.  And you want it to spit out tax reports for you on a daily basis? For every state. Because of all the sales you’ll have. And we can go ahead and add in the piece about you shipping it to a seasonal office in downtown NYC for local delivery and adding on pricing specifically for that option – but only if it’s between September 15th and March 15th – because that’s when your cousin Gretchen is there to do the deliveries. I’m sure there’s a plugin for that.  Just NOT a problem.

More helpful Whitehat Assistance

Whoop – 4:33 am – looks like I have a new whitehat hacker probing my server directly.  I love these guys. How ELSE would I know my WordPress website security is working??? Germany this time.  It’s like there must be a whole NETWORK of these people out there trying to help me out. Looks like 20 failed attempts – I’m sure that didn’t use up any server resources.

We are SOOOO Dense!


What an AWESOME Business Plan You Came Up With

I know it was grudgingly that you stretched yourself to come up just a bit on your price and allow us to maybe break that site up into a few pages and not just 1. It’s all our fault that your well-laid plans are not workable.  We’re just not smart enough to know how to put everything on one page.  If we were more giving, and REALLY understood the brilliance that is/was your marketing plan you drew up on a cocktail napkin over 12 beers last Friday, surely your original plan would work just fine.  We obviously just don’t understand anything about the web.

We’re Overpriced

And I’m sure that my initial quote was just way too much overall. I mean, seriously, you’re JUST a startup company with no track record whatsoever and that shouldn’t be an impediment to you starting off with only the absolute BEST site you can possibly have.  This is the way Amazon started off, right?  And you need EVERY bell and whistle that Amazon has.  And of course, I can do all this work for you on the serious cheap, cause, like I said earlier, I don’t need money. And I don’t have any OTHER responsibilities other than to you and your low dollar site.

It’s not like you demanded special graphics or pretty much demanded we bring in a graphics person to create them for your special site. And again, after we pushed you grudgingly into maybe having more than one page, you decided that each page should be completely different with different layouts and the menu would randomly appear all around the page. SO fresh and cool! I’m sure the website visitors won’t be asking themselves “WTF?”, they’ll just revel in that coolness that is YOUR special site. I’m sure they’ll be impressed with each and every page as we had to rework each and every page at LEAST 12 times to meet your exacting knowledgeable specifications, so I’m absolutely certain that it’s the best that it can be!

Only The BEST!

My Staff - ALWAYS at YOUR Disposal

My Staff – ALWAYS at YOUR Disposal

And of COURSE, you wanted it to look better than the OTHER ecomm sites out there. Coincidentally, I know another dev that just built a site similar to what you want – and that was 8300.  But I know I will be happy to do your site for $500 with all those bells and whistles.  And of course, take all your phone calls and respond to all your emails pronto. And STILL get it done.  Sure, I have staff that can do all that and CERTAINLY, I can tie THEM up too for that two week period devoted completely to you to the exclusion of all other customers. It’s all about YOU!

No-Cost Business Startup Financing

Did I mention that I also offer no-cost business startup financing? I didn’t?  I mean, if you’d just asked me, I could have just arranged to do the whole thing as a free business startup thing for you and we wouldn’t have had to worry about the peskiness that is a nagging invoice!  Beside running our own business, we’re TICKLED to finance YOUR operations for YOU! FREE.  If you’d just told us that you don’t make any money, don’t have any money to put into a site, or pay us for our work, and all that…

We Understand You Hate Paying For Our Work

Pesky Invoices - We're SOOO Sorry to Bother You

Pesky Invoices – We’re SOOO Sorry to Bother You

But not knowing that we had that no-cost option, we DO hate it for you… Maybe that’s why it took you 4 months to pay after demanding 2 weeks of my time exclusively with incessant phone calls and non-stop emails. So, yeah, that 4 months to get payment was not a problem – we’re just SO glad you’re happy with your site. That should almost be payment enough, shouldn’t it?  I mean, after I called two months ago to see when you might grace us with payment for our work, and you telling me that the check had been sent the week before, but you felt like the site was just too expensive and we were just charging too much.  Would I be willing to accept half of that $500 because you felt like you had already “paid enough”? (But the check was already sent, wasn’t it??)

Oh and BTW, could I change just one more thing for you? Sure, what?  Just because we haven’t received any money at all, and are not sure we ever will, that shouldn’t stop me from wanting to do MORE on your site, should it??  You want to change ALL the prices on your 250 products? Of COURSE!  Surely we can go through the complex screens – 5 of them for each product – to change all those prices for you.

Again, We are SOOO STUPID!

We are SOOO Stupid

We are SOOO Stupid

That should be a no-brainer. I mean any TIME something needs doing, please call me or send an email – which you actually seem to have little problem with – about what else should be included for your one-time payment of $500. Obviously lifetime changes should be included and it’s just obtuse of us to not realize that. Even if it means we have to REBUILD THE WHOLE THING!  By golly, once you’ve gotten a website from us and paid us once, you should NEVER be expected to pay for ANYTHING again!!!  Even if new technologies come out – like responsive design, new browsers that react completely different… Even if it was built either perfect or near-perfectly according to all best practices at the time of build, it’s a given that we’ll go back and make your website work perfectly for that at no extra charge!

Seriously, like whenever Ford releases a new car model, they always call you and ask you to bring your vintage car in so they can replace the body and swap out that tired old interior – at no charge, right?  Upgrade the onboard computer – even put a new computer IN if your car didn’t originally come equipped with one!  We are SOOO stupid.

Herpetologist – Just too many characters

Trying to be even more forward thinking, it seems like people just shouldn’t have to be bothered with the whole “herpetologist” thing.  I mean, if they’re looking for Flintstones stuff and all.   You just seriously need to be THE site that comes up when anyone types in anything, right?

Told Google You Need to Be #1

Told Google You Need to Be #1

Told Google You Need to Be #1

I went ahead and just called Google and told them that YOUR site needs to come up #1 for all Flintstone stuff and the herpetologist thing and any other related terms.  Geez, the more I think about it, even if someone just types pretty much anything in – it really should be YOUR site that comes up.  They were only too eager and happy to comply.  That’s the hallmark of Google – always happy to just shove your site where YOU think it should be in relation to the other 946,980,173 websites out there as of this writing.

I guess they also decided to get your special site to come up for other associated or similar terms and they took the herpet.. how DO you spell it?? So many misspellings out there.  Oh – they’ve got it covered.  You are now ALSO number 1 for “herpes” – how appropriate.  The gift that keeps on giving. And keeps coming back just often enough to remind someone that it’s still around – just like you! That’s just how we feel about having a great customer such as you – such a gift.

Just a breath of fresh air this morning. Thanks for your email!

Why Do I Want SEO For My Website?

laptop-repair-raleighAs a business owner, most likely you have invested the time to ensure your company runs smoothly, hiring employees you may trust to assist you. The issue for many businesses is the fact that they do not invest much time in what’s most important to keep their company afloat, which is marketing. Part of a great Search Engine Optimization marketing strategy is assuring you have an online presence where you could direct customers to visit even before they ever step foot in your store.

Exactly why is Top Area On Google So Highly Sought After?

Everyone gets it that being found online in the most effective spots because of the ranking of their KEY terms can result in increased sales since web visitors trust these positions. The number drops dramatically for each successive position with results to the second page getting practically no clicks whatsoever. The standard reaction to get a net visitor is to type in a different key word in the search bar in the hope of finding what they want.

That Is Where We Come In

What this signifies for you as a small business person could it be is predominant to do your best to procure the top standing for each one of your desirable keywords for the sector. The top spot gets the most business. It is not advocate since as a company owner you should be centered on the entire operation of your company to squander your time, while it’s highly possible to educate yourself on the strategies needed to be successful in online marketing and specifically Search Engine Optimization. Hiring out to specialists is highly recommended for all specialized services and SEO undoubtedly falls into this group.

No Guarantees – Just Results

In case you were not conscious of it, there are hundreds of SEO companies and individual search engine specialists in major cities across the US.  All of them most likely clamoring for your company – so more than likely you have been pitched by a few of them over recent years.  Here locally, you can find a great Raleigh search engine optimization company at The promises of top standings and lots of business perhaps turned you off from even entertaining these unwanted offers, but now that you’ve been prepared a bit on why you really DO need these seo services, it is time to figure out how you can actually choose the best one for you. A competent consultant is going to be updated on all current procedures and technologies, which makes it fairly impossible for you as a small business owner without past experience, to compete on exactly the same level as them if you attempted this on your own.

Proof Of Standings Is Gold

1-1216221367ByEeBe aware that a web designer who asserts to be an expert is frequently not being fully true. That plays just a minor role in the actual position of your website, although they might be able to optimize a web site properly so that you can attract the search engines. External factors like getting good quality links and on-page variables account for virtually 90% of attaining high standings. An uneducated web designer may believe they know that but they will be easily trounced by even an average SEO any day. For any SEO’s that you will be contemplating, make sure to require they demonstrate their knowledge with proof of prior rankings which can be checked on google in real time – not results from 12 months ago that have evaporated!

Only Use The Best

Work with a company that has a proven history in achieving high positions in the major search engines. You wouldn’t work with a lawyer that won’t win any cases, so just why could you use an internet search engine pro without history and expertise in getting rated on page one?

Setup Custom Nameservers with WHM and GoDaddy

Your WHM Config - after changes

Your WHM Config – after changes

So yesterday’s task was to setup private nameservers for a site or two. Why setup private nameservers? Because you don’t always want everyone knowing where it is that you are hosting your stuff. I guess if you’re a reseller of some sort and trying to do branding that would be one reason to do private stuff too. That way, you can have hosting customer just slap on a “ns1” and “ns2” to their domain names whenever they need to enter nameservers. Most of my clients really don’t give a hoot over that and I end up setting this kind of stuff for them anyway.

When you work with this kind of stuff day in and day out, they’re just words and it doesn’t really matter what they are as long as they get into the right places, right? They are all going to resolve to the proper IP addresses, so whatever name they have, most of the time, we just care that they work.

Anyway… I found a lot of “instructions” on how to do this. I guess with repetition these things become routine and people don’t think about all the options that need to be included in a “dummies” version. And today, I fell into needing the dummy version for this. It has been something I’ve been meaning to get around to for months and today was finally the day to take a few hours and figure it out. And the details were somewhat lacking. There were instructions specific for various hosts and registrars but nothing was quite what I needed. Since GoDaddy recently changed their interface again, anything with GoDaddy was ALSO incorrect. I was personally working with trying to setup a custom nameserver on a WHM account with GoDaddy as the registrar.

What follows is the results of about 2-3 hours worth of digging, trial and error, and testing. Additionally, because I normally am using these things for SEO purposes, I didn’t want any “IP bleed” – I use specific IPs for sites and really don’t want to be using multiple IPs that are associated with different domains in my nameserver setup. This particular domain is setup on the servers and uses their particular WHM configuration but this IS a pretty standard setup.

Setup Private Nameservers

Setup Your WHM Host Domain

Get started

DNS Functions => Edit DNS Zone
Select the domain you wish to manage – “Edit”

Create A Entries for your NS1 and NS2

Go to the “Add New Entries Below this Line” area at the bottom of this screen. Add “ns1” and select the “A” record and then pop in the IP that is assigned to this site. Do the exact same for “ns2”. Yes, use the same IP twice*. Save.

Now use your new NS1 and NS2 Entries

Enter your new nameserver info in the upper part
You will now see the ns1 and ns2 entries just above the “Add New Entries…” line.

Fill in your SOA

Now we will use the ns1 record in our SOA entry. Make SURE that you put a period after your domain name WHENEVER you use it in BIND (which is what this is based on). There are actually two entries up there – leave the second one. Mine is in the second slot. No idea what it actually indicates, but it seems to be fine as it is.

Put your new ns records in your NS entries

Then go down to your NS entries and pop in the ns1.domainname.tld and ns2.domainname.tld. Much as I am loathe to share this information directly on the internet – frickin’ hackers – this domain is not one I really care about and I likely will be killing it off at some point anyway. I’m including a screenshot of the way this will look in action below.

And save. Your screen should now look like the one pictured – with your domain names in there of course.

Setup Your GoDaddy records

GoDaddy - Add Hosts

GoDaddy – Add Hosts

Go to “Manage Your Domains” – don’t think I need to explain this one. Go to your domain and click the domain name. That will bring up the “Domain Details” page.

Your “Glue” records

Near the bottom, you will see a “Host Names” title on the left and a link just to the right for “Manage”. Click the “Manage” link. Add your hostname – just the ns1 part – and then tap in the IP of your site. It says IPv4 and IPv6 are acceptable. I use IPv4 still so that’s what you’ll see here. Click “Add”. Now add in your NS2 hostname WITH THE SAME IP. And “Save”. Give it a minute to kick in.

And finally your nameservers

To the right of the “Nameservers” title, click on “Manage”. If you haven’t changed these before, they may still be set to GoDaddy nameservers. You will need to select the “Custom” radio button. Now, click “Add Nameserver”, tap in ns1.domainname.tld (whatever you set above). Click “Add Nameserver” again on this form and enter the ns2.domainname.tld entry and click “OK”. You should now see your two new custom nameservers sitting there below the original two. Click the little “x” to delete the first two original nameservers leaving just your two new nameservers in place. Click “Save”.

Done setting up things

Boom. You should be done. This will take a few minutes to propogate. I personally use an “ipconfig /flushdns” to clear out my local records prior to testing. If you have visited the site within the last hour or so (depends on your settings, provider and all that) you will likely have the ip information cached up. This will remove it so you can verify your settings are working.

Test and verify

But let’s take it a step further. Head over to – specifically and enter your domain name. As mentioned elsewhere, I AM using only one IP on this kind of setup which is not exactly correct. For my purposes though it will work. My thought is that IF there is a problem getting to my domain name server, then almost surely, there is going to be a problem bringing it up anyway. Not like I have a cloud or anything on these or some massive bank of failover servers. So, that said, enter your domain name. It will take about a minute to verify your records and they should come up like this below. It took me a few tests here to get the right settings everywhere.

Troubleshooting – Things to look out for

  • If you don’t have your “glue” records – the ones from the “Host Names” on GoDaddy, you will come up with “consistency” errors on your Pingdom test.
  • If you only have one nameserver – you’ll be alerted. Passes FINE with two nameservers both using the same IP, but you do want two.
  • If you don’t change the top entry on your WHM setup in your SOA record there, it will work, but you’ll see your nameservers as not coming up as “authoritative”.

You should be good to go at this point. Continued testing shows everything working properly on this end. Questions? Feel free to post them here or comment!

* – using the same IP twice. Technically this is NOT correct, but as I am using these domains for SEO purposes, I do NOT want this site associated with any OTHER site/IP config. This will display as an error on testing, but it works.


I often use GoDaddy and they actually had the closest to what I actually needed as far as directions to base things on. Here are the instructions from GoDaddy.

Setting Nameservers for Your Domain Names –

Setting up Nameserver DNS using cPanel/WHM –

How Do I Get More People To My Website?

There’s always a lot of hullabaloo about SEO or Search Engine Optimization going on with most people that own a website. If you have a website, the trick is to get people to it. A friend of mine and I got into a conversation about it the other day. I have always preferred to get people to the site via just being on top of the rankings. She had some different ideas. And the synopsis of our conversation is below. How do you do it?

Marketing Methods to Get People In

There are a lot of different ways that people can be brought into a website. The methods range from old school to “new school” methods.

Old School – Print Campaigns

You can always run print campaigns. It’s important to find a medium that actually reaches your target demographic. And makes it easy to GET to your website. This is effective if you have a couple of things going for you. The first would be to make sure you are getting to the right people in the publication. Understand the demographics of your clients and be able to understand what target audience any print advertising is in. For example, if your business relies on older customers – those over 60 – that demographic still DOES use the phone book. Phone book advertising for that group – maybe not so bad. If you have a product that appeals to homeowners, a new homes magazine may be useful to you.

Now, once you have a print publication targeted, you need to make sure that they can get to you. IF YOU HAVE a domain that’s more than about 10 characters or a few words long, the odds of someone typing in a long URL go down in relation to the length of the domain name. And if they can’t type it, they’re NOT visiting it.

How long can a domain name be?
020311_1369_0006_osmsDomain names can actually be up to 67 characters. HOWEVER, if you ever chose a domain name length of 67 characters, you better hope you come up well in the search engines as someone typing all 67 characters in correctly are small.

If you have a long domain name, you may consider using a scannable QR code to get them there. This of course depends on them having a smart phone. You can get a free QR code here at

Old School – Signs / Yard Signs

Put your business online! Save 50%* on Hosting Plans!
Any type of sign can be great. If it’s a read it while driving sign placement though and not a sign on the front of a business, you have a very short time to get the point across and as well pick up the domain name to type in when they get home. Add that to likely not having a pen in their hand. The long domain name becomes ever more difficult to overcome in these situations. Need to buy a good domain name?

Enough of this old school – let’s get to the meat of this – just wanted to present a rounded view of the situation.

Getting traffic to your website – New School

SEO – Search Engine Optimization

You can be clocking down up to 40% of searches to your website when you are ranked #1 for a particular search term. If you can get that kind of ranking, you will find traffic is a lot easier to get. The trick is to find what you want to rank for. Remember that Google pays attention to the traffic you get and how long they stay among other things. If your site requires a lot of traffic to work properly for your needs – say a local service – you may want to not knock yourself out trying to get huge numbers, but very targeted traffic. I’d personally rather have 10 targeted visitors on my service websites than 100 looking for something that I really don’t have. Important to this is likely going to be learning to understand Google Adwords and the keyword tool specifically.

Need HIGH Traffic?

search-engines-website-raleighThen you need to start building a bigger website that has a lot of content OR rank a term that has a lot of searches that you can capitalize on. If you have a local website, the search traffic is only going to be so much – think of Cityname HVAC. The people that visit your site will likely be local and looking for HVAC. How about if you are actually trying to make money on clickthrough traffic – maybe you’re shipping candy for Valentine’s Day as a clickthrough. You obviously don’t need them to be in your local area. Now, can you RANK for something like Valentine’s Day candy shipping? Don’t know. But you might be able to rank for something like “ship gourmet chocolate valentines day” – the more specific you can be, the odds of competition go down. When you need a good company to talk to about stuff like this, you can call Eric over at OutsideRaleigh SEO – he’s usually pretty helpful on these kinds of things!

The trick is to find something, probably more of an informational search than a buying search. The odds of people fighting over informational traffic is a lot less than the odds of getting in the middle of an SEO war on some highly paid and SEO’d traffic words – like “Valentines Day candy.” You very well may be able to rank for “how do I pack chocolate for shipping?” and be at the top. If you then have affiliate content on there such as maybe Harry and David products, you might get some good traffic. You can also ping them over at – they usually have a few good suggestions!

New School – Social Media

Enjoy dealing with people? social media!

Enjoy dealing with people? social media!

If you are one of those people that just love interacting on social media, then this may be perfect for you. Some people just thrive on social networks – I’m not among them. My partner in this conversation is though and she fully believes in the power of social. We both feel that it is important to make sure your website has the necessary social signals from G+, Facebook, Twitter and perhaps LinkedIn – and Pinterest is great if you have a visual product.

You need to be chattering about corollary items
– I think her rule is 80/20 – eighty percent misc stuff with some corollary info in there and only about 20% of your chatter directly about your product or service. This gives you the best chance of creating community and not just a page that reads “Buy our product” over and over and over again. Once you’ve built up your community, you have an audience that will continue to see your carefully thrown “buy our product/visit our website” messages.

There was more to this conversation, but I’ll save it for another time.  Happy marketing!

Transfer Old Computer to New Computer

Yes, it’s that time of year – Christmas. There will be a lot of people getting computers for the holidays. There are always are. While we are Raleigh computer tech experts at Lizardwebs Raleigh Computer Repair, we understand that a lot of people getting these computers are not. This leads to a number of common questions for most people. Let’s examine a few of these questions.

How do I get all my data from my old computer to the new one?

There are a number of ways to transfer data from your old computer to your new computer. The most common by far is the “Windows Easy Transfer” wizard. If you are running any kind of recent operating system, this option should be available to you courtesy of the folks at Microsoft. Go to the Start and go to the “Search” area – the little area at the bottom of the menu where you can type things in to either search or to launch. Just type in “Transfer”. You will see a few things come up and one of those will be the “Windows Easy Transfer”. This will give you the transfer wizard interface. You can just go through this wizard and transfer all settings from the old PC to your new PC with a minimum of fuss.

This particular method uses 3 different modes of data transfer. You will be able to select from a transfer cable, a network, or an external hard drive or USB Flash drive. Your best option will depend on the things available to you.

Windows Easy Transfer Cable

If you have the Windows transfer cable – a USB driven method – all you need to do is get the two computers close enough to use the cable. Cables are usually about 3 feet long. Position your computers accordingly. This method works pretty well if you can get your computers close enough. Cables are usually in the 20 dollar range. They can be found at computer stores usually. If you have some advance notice that you will be doing data transfer (you KNEW about your Christmas present), you can order them online and save a few bucks.

Network Transfer

This method of data transfer can work fairly well, though it can be slower than other methods depending on your setup. If you are running a wireless network for example, your data transfer speeds will be pretty slow in comparison to one of the other methods. If you have computers on either end of your house, and don’t feel like moving them close enough for the Cable transfer method, it can work nicely. Just slow.

External Hard drive / USB Flash drive

This method works very well. You will essentially bring the data off your old computer to a hard drive or USB thumb drive that you will then use the “sneakernet” (walk it over to your new computer) to get to your new machine. USB transfer can be pretty speedy, plus you will have a copy of the data on the thumb or external hard drive as a backup in case anything bad happens. The downside is that it is two steps – get data from old machine and then connect to new machine and transfer the data to the new machine. The other two methods do it all as one step really.

How about all my old PC applications?

The one shortcoming of the data transfer wizard is that you still have to install all your old applications onto the new computer. Ideally, you need to do this BEFORE you transfer the data from the old PC. In some cases, you will be upgrading those applications. In still other cases, you very well may decide that particular applications have outlived their usefulness and it’s time to just let them go. We always find a few of those when we do our internal machines here. Use this as an opportunity to do a little housekeeping and get rid of the dead weight. If you have PC problems find out more about repair at

Can’t EVERYTHING be moved at one time? Data AND applications?

We did do some checking and there are some data transfer utilities that promise exactly that. We have seen one called LapLink PC Mover that promises a simpler experience by moving the applications and data in one shot. We have read reviews indicating that it’s NOT as easy as all that, however, knowing what we have to go through using standard transfer methods, it STILL sounds a whole lot easier. One comment when we reviewed the software was that one individual still had to put in registration keys. Bearing in mind that hours upon hours can be spent installing all these applications, the time required to input a serial number is trivial. Still we can’t necessarily throw our support behind this until we’ve seen it in action. It is out there though.

The biggest issue we see with it is that there are so many variables in every computer setup. As we’ve always said – take two identical PCs, add the same software and you will STILL end up with two PCs with different operational characteristics. We can’t tell you exactly why, but we’ve seen it many MANY times. If you need help with this in our service area, find out more about our new computer setup services – Transfer data from old pc to new computer.

OS Tiger

mac-mini-repair-raleighTiger was initially accessible a PowerPC variant, with the Intel edition launched starting at 10.4.4. There is no worldwide model of your client operating-system, although Tiger Server was offered on an universal DVD from version 10.4.7. While Apple sent the PowerPC variation bundled with PowerPC-based Macs and additionally sold it as an independent retail carton, the singular way to find the Intel variant was bundled with the Intel-centered Mac. Yet, it had been possible to buy the ‘restore’ DVDs featuring the Intel variation through unofficial channels including, and officially through Apple in the event that you could supply proof of acquisition of the proper Intel Mac. These grey coloured ‘restore’ DVDs provided with new Macs, are designed to just restore on the version of Mac that they are intended for. The PPC -only DVD can be used on any PPC-based Mac supported by Tiger.

The system necessities of the PowerPC version are:[12]

A PowerPC G3, G4, or G5 processor operating at 300 MHz or faster
Built-in FireWire
At least three GB of available hard drive space; 4 GB of disk space for instance, Xcode 2 Tools, 2 GB for the minimal install
DVD-ROM drive (CD ROM trade was accessible; offer ended on March 20, 2007)

To get fast and friendly Raleigh PC Repair, check out If you have issues with network problems, general computer issues, virus problems or more, they are the place to go for computer repairs in Raleigh.

Tiger eliminated help for older New World ROM Macs like the original iMacs and iBooks that have been supported in Panther; nonetheless it is possible to set up Tiger on these Apples using third party applications (such as XPostFacto) that over-rides the checks produced on the first day of the setup process. Likewise, machines including beige Power Mac G3s and ‘Wall Street’ PowerBook G3s that were dropped by Panther can also be got to operate both Panther and Tiger within this way. Also, Tiger may be installed on unsupported ” New World ” ROM Macs by installing it on a supported Mac, then swapping hard disk drives. Old World ROM Macs demand using XPostFacto to install Tiger.

Tiger was the last variant of Mac OS X that supported the PowerPC G3 chip.

Jobs You Could Get With An Information Technology Degree

Many wonder what exactly does someone with an information technology degree do in the real world. Despite the fact that many of us regularly work with information technology specialists, a significant number of people don’t really know what this job is all about. They just know that they need to call the IT guy when something goes wrong with the computer.

But having a degree in information technology provides you with more skills than just being the computer fixer-upper. With this degree, you could work in areas of the computer business as diverse as technology engineering, database specialization and consulting. Alternatively, you could opt to stick with the traditional IT job of maintaining and repairing computer systems for businesses of all sizes.

One of the most common jobs for someone with an information technology degree to get is an engineering job. There are engineers for both software and hardware, allowing people with interests in different aspects of computers to find their niche. Engineers assist in the development and design of software applications or hardware systems. This is a highly creative position, which lets people explore innovative technologies while making use of their specialized compter knowledge.

One of the greatest rewards for engineers is to see something they’ve created gain widespread use among average computer users. To hear people talking about how great your new software program works is an ego boost to any engineer. The best of them will not be satisfied with this alone, though; they’ll continue to push the boundaries of their work to create better systems.

Some people prefer to work on areas of computer technology that apply more to businesses than individuals. Although engineers can do this, a more common area of work for someone with this desire is to use their information technology degree to work in database specialization. Through this position, the individual creates and re-designs database systems to assist businesses in running more smoothly.

This area of information technology is highly specialized and tends to be favored by people with an information technology degree who don’t ever want to be bored with their work. They can spend hours each day tinkering with the merging of different systems and the design of new database applications, allowing them to create a product uniquely suited to the development of a client’s business.

Of course, not all people who get an information technology degree want to work just with computers. Some want to do more work with people than they do with machines. Whereas engineers and database specialists primarily work alone with their equipment, computer consultants work primarily with people. They explore some of the same aspects of those people in other IT positions but instead of doing the actual work of designing and developing systems and software, they assist others in understanding the utilization of that software. They may make suggestions to companies for systems that could make operations run more smoothly or consult on large purchases made by small businesses.

The Internet is expanding rapidly. As it does, the information technology degree becomes applicable to an increasing number of jobs. However, some folks like to keep things simple. If you’d like to just be the person who fixes computer problems as they arise, you can still use your information technology degree to get that type of job. Generally known as a network administrator, this job is usually a full-time position, which involves fixing daily computer problems, checking the system for errors and assisting with regular updates to the technology. As important as computer function is to most businesses, this remains one of the most important positions available to information technology specialists.

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Beat The Competition With Better SEO Results

Search engine optimization could be very confusing for a newbie, but it is really significant for anyone running a site that is trying to earn money on the internet. Utilizing the proper tools can help enhance your own page ranking considerably.

To improve your search engine optimization, find out which keywords are mostly used to describe your website or business. This will mean that people looking for information or services associated with your business, are likely to locate it, as it’s going to be using words which are most significant to them.

The more content that is free, the better chances you have of folks linking to your website for them to share the tips. Free things are always alluring to people. You can include free hints, software, samples, tutorials, e books, coupons or even have a competition with prizes.

One of the finest ways to optimize your website is by getting inbound links. You will get links from the websites of family as well as friends, you can join online link sharing groups or you can become affiliates with similar sites. Not all backlinks are made equal, so concentrate on getting quality links from highly rated websites.

Remain ethical. Many websites use what is called “Black Hat” strategies, meaning they use unethical practices to hop their sites up on search lists. Included in these are keyword stuffing, “Doorway pages”, and several others. Because if an internet search engine comprehends you’re using them, avoid these, they’ll likely ban your website from their pages.

When you are attempting to achieve optimal SEO results, do not forget the value of the description meta-tag. This implies you must have excellent grammar and no typo’s in the meta-tag.

Vary your content. You’ll discover that search engines place sites with dynamic content higher on search results pages; many websites make the error of thinking links are the sole important factor in increasing their positions.

You need to get focus and do the thing you must do to get your fair share of the good things in life. In order to turn your business successful, use these basic SEO tips. If you need some professional help for your local business in the Triangle area, you can find several Raleigh SEO experts that can help you achieve your goals.

Getting The Most Affordable Auto Repair For Your Vehicle

Dealing with auto repairs isn’t easy, but it can much easier with the tips and advice you’re about to read. No one wants to find out that their car needs work done. However, it doesn’t have to break your bank or make you want to rip your hair out in the moment.

Do not assume you have been ripped-off by your mechanic because of the high price of your bill. Some parts are very expensive to replace, including engines, transmission systems or dashboard computers. You should ask your mechanic about the cost of the parts he had to put in your car.

If you are having work done on your car, make sure you get a written estimate beforehand. The estimate should include what is being repaired, the parts that will be needed and the anticipated cost for labor. It should also say that they will call for your approval before doing any additional work which exceeds the amount or time specified.

When hiring a mechanic to repair to automobile, always seek referrals and opinions from friends, family and colleagues you trust. Doing so will ensure that you can find someone who has provided reliable, quality service in the past and provided good value to customers. In this way, you can greatly improve the likelihood that your car will be in good hands, and you will ultimately be satisfied with the work done.

Make sure your auto technician is qualified to work on your specific car. Motor vehicles are complex machines and each brand has unique characteristics. Some brands require special tools, parts, and procedures. Many standard auto technicians either lack these items or don;t have them easily available. Without these items, they can’t fix your vehicle. Make sure you get a signed copy of the estimate for the repairs. You also need to make sure that the contract contains a clause that the shop must contact you before exceeding the total on the estimate. This will protect you from getting a surprise bill once work is completed.

Contact your local Better Business Bureau if you need more information on a mechanic or a garage. If some complaints have been filed against them, your Better Business Bureau will tell you. Ask your friends and family about the different mechanics they have dealt with in the past to get some recommendations. Auto repair does not have to be as mysterious a subject as many mechanics make it sound. Once you understand some of the basics, you can make your own repairs at home without the inconvenience of taking your car into the shop. Use the tips you have just read to keep your car in good condition.

Does your car often fail you on the road? Then it’s a great idea to have an emergency roadside assistance you can trust. If you live in Florida and is looking for towing Brandon FL services, check out Jones Auto Towing. They provide reliable tow services at reasonable costs.

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