Any business owner knows things don’t always go as planned. You probably have a “Plan B” to quickly change gears in your business operations when necessary—think of weather emergencies—but what about your website? Do you have all the information you need to keep your website up and running? If you know the answers to the key questions listed below, you can relax and know that no matter what happens, your website will be protected.
My analogy: Your domain name is similar to the street address of your business. When someone comes to your office for a meeting, that address helps them find you. Your domain name serves this same purpose. It helps someone find your business in the online space.
What is it? A domain name is a unique name that identifies a website. For example, my domain name is ctkaupp.com. Each website in the world has a domain name and this serves as the address to access it.
My recommendation: You want to make sure it’s easy to remember and type in.
My analogy: Website hosting is similar to owning a piece of real estate (let’s say a house for example). It’s where you store all of your important information and you live on the block with other houses. You could think of that house as your website and the block that you live on as your website’s server.
What is it? Your website hosting company houses all of the files that make up your website. Without this, your website would not be accessible on the WWW (World Wide Web). There are hundreds (maybe thousands?) of hosting companies out there today but my experience has always been you get what you pay for.
My recommendation: I have used many of the cheap, “big box” providers and they all leave something to be desired. I highly recommend BigScoots (BigScoots.com). They are a US-based company with impeccable service and support.
My analogy: You can think of email hosting similar to package delivery providers in the United States. There are many different ways to send/receive your email messages, just as there are many different delivery carriers (IE – USPS, UPS, FedEx, DHL etc).
What is it? The same principles can be said about email hosting, as website hosting above, but it pertains strictly to email communication.
My recommendation: I recommend G-Suite (by Google) and Office 365 (by Microsoft). G-Suite and O365 provide a suite of programs and applications, far greater than just email alone. They have tools and programs ready to help run your business more efficiently. I also recommend those two in particular because they have dedicated support teams for any issues that arise. They are built to serve your business now and as it grows into the future.
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If you’re paying a company to manage all of this for you, that’s great (I advise my clients to do so) but that doesn’t mean you can forget about it altogether. Now that you know what you need, you need to take responsibility for it. You need to have this information accessible at all times. If you are unsure and/or need help tracking down any of this information, I’m happy to help! I have more than a decade doing so and would love to help! It’s part of my Website Analysis package which you can read more about here.