Cheap Web Hosting Can Grow Your Handyman Business

Handyman Business

You are starting up a handyman business, and although you've had a few jobs here and there, all word-of-mouth referrals, you want more exposure. What better way than a website?  Cheap web Hosting Handyman Business

Let's take a look at the reasons you should be considering cheap web hosting, and the important decisions you need to make during the process.

Handyman Business: Why A Website?

A MODERN PHONEBOOK

Let's face it: no one is opening up the Yellow Pages to look for a handyman these days, and a newspaper ad will only get you so much business. Even the physical newspaper is becoming less and less relevant. People are switching over to all digital, whether searching for a handyman or looking at the advertisements in the newspaper. It can all be done online!

EASY EXPOSURE

Are you nervous, thinking that the task of building a website is too much for you to handle? You have nothing to worry about! Creating a website is simpler than you think if you go about it right, and your website can be live to customers in a matter of hours, bringing in customers you weren't able to reach out to before! People tend to turn to the Internet first when searching for a tradesman.

SALES TEAM

With your website bringing in new leads 24 hours a day, it saves you money! How? You don't have to hire a sales team. Your website is your sales team!

CUSTOMER TRUST

It is proven that people will typically not consider a business if they do not have a website. These days, having a website complete with a few customer testimonials builds a level of trust you just can't get anywhere else. It makes you look professional and established. With this trust comes more money!

But I Have No Experience Building A Website!

That's ok! You don't have to know one bit about code. In fact, you don't have to do it at all. For a little extra money, you can hire someone else to build it for you! If you are thinking of getting someone else to do the dirty work, know that you get what you pay for. Just because you are trying to save money doesn't mean you should choose the cheapest option on the block. Rather, choosing a company that might cost a bit more than you are willing to spend could bring you in more business, meaning more money, resulting in the website paying for itself.

If you want to tackle it on your own, here are the steps you should take:

1. Choose a domain. This is the first, and often most important, step. While the content is important, your domain name should be sticking in people's heads. When they think “handyman,” your website should be the first thing they think of. Using your business name is a good place to start, but if this isn't an option, include a good keyword. Ultimately, you should really consider making your business name the domain. Customers trust this more, and makes you look very professional. Once you've chosen your domain name, register it. If possible, choose a cheap hosting company that offers a free or cheap domain. For example, Bluehost offers free domain with the purchase of a hosting package.

2. Choose your hosting provider. You want to stay away from the free options as they are often too limited. You want to find a reliable yet affordable company with amazing tech support. This is important! Will customers want to hire a handyman whose site is always broken? Probably not.

3. Install WordPress. WordPress, a blogging CMS, is hugely popular and for good reason. It's more than just a blog: you can use it to build your entire site! You'll have access to many themes to customize your site, and plugins to do just about anything you can imagine, like including a form for customers to request a quote for your services. Most of your good cheap web hosting companies, like Bluehost or Hostgator, will offer one-click installation of WordPress. Once you follow a few very simple steps, your website is ready to go!

4. Consider blogging. A great way to draw customers to your site is through blogging. If you offer even a blog post each week dealing with some news or interesting information for your customers, you will see your site showing up in a Google search more often. It doesn't have to be anything fancy, just a simple article related to the industry. Use keywords to make your site rank even higher!

Thinking of creating a website for your handyman business? Is there more you'd like to know? Ask us! We can address it in a future article.

Rogers Is Getting Into the Cloud Game

Guess what, Canada? Rogers Corp is about to become part of the growing cloud. Rogers just purchased a data center operations called Blackiron Data from Primus Telecommunications Group. What was the going price? A cool $200 million!

RogersWhat does Rogers plan to do with the new acquisition? The company could be setting up cheap web hosting of the cloud-type very soon. So far, Rogers representatives have made some statements regarding the purchase.

Rogers Future Plans

A Rogers spokesperson had this to say: “Rogers has clearly paid close attention to Bell Canada and Cogeco Cable’s moves in the space with the purchases of Q9 Networks and PEER1 Hosting. There is only a handful of independent hosting and cloud providers in Canada that could serve as a platform to get into the infrastructure services game and Blackiron fit the bill.”

That's not too far off base. The number of independent cheap web hosting cloud companies in Canada is, indeed, on the low side. With the purchase of Blackiron, Rogers has also purchased a complete customer base, and all the technology that goes with the recent purchase. In short, Rogers made a good deal.

What Blackiron Consists Of

The Blackiron data center currently includes 8 data centers that bring cloud services to more than 4,000 people throughout Canada. Rogers will, in turn, spread this even further, it seems. Not getting into the cheap web hosting cloud game would have been a mistake for the growing Canadian company. Clearly, this is a mistake that Rogers did not intend on making.

“This presence, along with its skilled and passionate team will ensure our collective sales teams are armed with the latest managed/hosted service offerings to meet the needs of current and prospective customers. We enthusiastically welcome Blackiron Data customers and employees to Rogers Communications.” If you're a Blackiron data customer, you have a new company to seek out when finding information or needing help, it seems.

Changes Being Made

So far, Rogers hasn't noted any real changes that will happen with Blackiron . But, you can expect the company to make some changes in the future. For now, Rogers is simply going along with the current Blackiron flow, and that means business as usual for Blackiron customers and Rogers alike.

Will this purchase impact your life? Not right now. In fact, it will create more cheap web hosting competition within Canada, and that's a good thing. Right now, the competition is really between a handful of companies that tend to control most of the cloud options. Rogers is a welcome addition. Any thoughts on this acquisition news?

Is Data Stored in the Cloud Above the Law?

Cloud Data

Sending data to a cloud seems safe. After all, that data is probably stored thousands of miles away from your home or business. Psychologically, storing data in cloud hosting companies seems really harmless. Data is sent, stored, and you wipe your hands clean of the whole mess. But, don't make the mistake of thinking that your cloud data is above the law.

Cloud Data: Data Information Requests Rising

The image is an interesting one: the government or authorities peeking in on a cloud stuffed with data. It's also a very real one. In 2012, Microsoft went public with some alarming numbers. The company was asked more than 11,000 times for cloud stored data. Who was asking? The U.S. Government. Why? For a whole bunch of reasons.  cloud hosting Cloud Data

That quoted 11,000 number is for U.S. Government requests only — it pales in comparison to the 70,000 plus requests the company received from other governments. But, cloud hosting companies like Microsoft would never comply with such requests, right? Your data is safe with companies like this one, right? Not so. Microsoft told press that the company complied with these requests more often than not. Cloud hosting companies aren't above the law either.

Cloud Data: Is A Separate Server Safe?

Companies like Microsoft, Amazon, Google, and others usually have no choice but to disclose user information. When the feds come knocking, these companies are legally bound to comply. What's the lesson here? The cloud isn't a completely safe place. Sure, you are storing your information on someone else's servers, but that information is not above the law.

More often than not, data store in clouds is harmless. Then again, if you are committing some kind of fraud or trying to bury some paperwork, the cloud is not your friend. Don't be fooled by the pseudo-safety of the cloud. The cloud is simply not a completely safe place, no matter how cushy it seems to be. But, there might be a catch.

Cloud Data: Location, Location, Location

As realtors are fond of saying: location, location, location! That is, the location of cloud hosting companies matters. You see, that information you send to a cloud (any cloud) is stored somewhere. Where the company you have chosen to use is located matters. Since different countries have different laws, the location of your data is important, kind of.

Under the U.S. Patriot Act, any U.S. company must comply with data requests from the U.S. Government — regardless of where that cloud stored data. What about companies from other countries that want to store data with a cloud company in the U.S.? Well, those companies are subject to U.S. law too. But, if you happen to live in a country outside of the U.S., and you want to store data in a cloud in your country, know the laws.

Cloud Data: Use Common Sense

Very few legal systems will put up with certain types of data. Regardless of where you decide to store your data, be aware of what you are sending to a cloud. Also, be aware of laws governing data storage in your country. In most cases, U.S. cloud storage companies own most of the cloud storage marketplace in other countries (as is the case across Europe), so keep this in mind too.

No matter where you decide to store your cloud data, there's one other thing that you should implement: always keep a hard copy of vital data. This way, you have a backup in case the cloud hosting companies you're dealing with go bust, or are temporarily shut down due to legal matters.