6 Tips to Make Your WordPress Site More Secure

WordPress is the most popular Content Management System out there simply because it’s free, easy to use, has great documentation but, more importantly, because it’s secure. However, with that being said, it’s still not foolproof. There are still a few things you can do from your end to ensure it’s as secure as possible. Take a look at some of the following tips to keep your WordPress as secure at all times.

1. Choose a New Hosting Provider

Many hosting providers like Hosting Foundry have years of experience in securing WordPress sites – so why not opt for a similar service to ensure yours is always kept safe? A good, new hosting provider will update their software and hardware on a regular basis to ensure your website is secure.

2. Never Download Nulled Themes

It’s easy to look at nulled themes for your WordPress site, but they are illegal and have many security flaws. The themes might look brilliant and professional, and you may well get all the paid features for free – but it could cost you a lot of money in the long term if you lose customer data.

3. WordPress Security Plugins

WordPress has hundreds of free plugins available for those with an installation of WordPress on their site. Simply search the database to see what you can find – many of them are reviewed in depth so you can install multiple plugins quickly to get your site secured promptly. Take a look at some of these other security tips to add an extra layer of security to your site.

4. Stronger Passwords are Key

Strong passwords are harder to remember but that’s for good reason. It means hackers won’t be able to remember and all their automated software won’t be able to guess them (or certainly not as easily). The longer your password is with as many mixed characters as possible will ensure your password is as secure as it can be. The last thing you want is for your password to be guessed so some hacker can come along and change your site around for fun.

5. Change Your Login Directory

The WordPress admin panel is easily accessible through www.yourdomain.com/wp-admin or something similar. You can change this quite easily in the admin panel to something that’s completely different. There are, of course, ways hackers can find out this link, but it’s still an added layer of security to ensure they’re not going to have an easy ride.

6. Purchase SSL Certificate

An SSL certificate could help prevent data from falling into the wrong hands as far as URLs and processing data is concerned. Simply paying a small fee every month could give you an SSL certificate, which will add an extra layer of security to your site.

The above tips are just a few of the many things available that will help you secure WordPress properly. The more security tips you implement, the higher chance you’ll have of keeping hackers away.

How to Improve Your Website’s SEO Strategy

Search Engine Optimization is one of the best strategies you can invest in for your website. It isn’t just about making your website attractive in the eyes of Google’s algorithms. Nowadays Google has made updates that reflect user experience. What this means is that, in most cases, providing a great experience for your visitors will translate in a higher ranking on Google.

Keep Up To Date with the Latest SEO Changes

For example, a few key updates that benefit both search engines and users is site speed, site stability, and site security. Without these three pillars, your users will get frustrated, and search engine algorithms will mark you down for it.

The other fact you need to keep in mind is that even professionals in the industry don’t actually know 100% what these search algorithms look for. Google keeps this information under lock and key. Their algorithms also update regularly, which keeps the SEO industry on its toes.

You need to stay up to date with SEO changes at all times, and generally speaking aim to always provide an exceptional experience to your users. The latest changes, for example, reflect the growing use of mobile searches and mobile internet use.

Improve the Structure of Your Website

One area that we know search engines look at is the website’s structure and integrity. From a user point of view, this makes sense. Users are not likely to use a website if it takes long to load, and they won’t check out if they have reason to doubt your site’s security. In order to improve the overall structure of your website, you are going to need to invest in a great host like Onyx.io, which offers a triple-redundant 100% NVMe SSD platform for your website. This keeps it stable, fast, and secure.

What to Fix on Your Website

Once you have switched hosts, you will want to go through and clean up your website. Old SEO strategies, in particular, can actually hold you back more than you think, even if that effort at keyword stuffing is on a page that no longer links up to your website. Unless it is unpublished or deleted, Google’s bots can still find it.

 

  • Delete or Unpublish Unnecessary Pages

 

Go through and delete or unpublish all pages that are not necessary. You would need to otherwise optimize them all.

 

  • Fix Broken Links

 

Go through all your links and ensure that they work. If they don’t, either remove them or replace them.

 

  • Update Old Information

 

Rather than making a new post, guide, or page, update it. Updated content is more valuable to you than posting again.

How to Improve SEO From There

There are a few more ways that you can improve your SEO. To help you get started follow these steps:

  1. Commit to Keyword Research
  2. Optimize Your Site’s Content
  3. Keep a Valued Blog
  4. Optimize Site for Mobile
  5. Optimize Site for Voice Search

The most important thing you need to remember about SEO is that it keeps changing, and therefore you need to continuously update and improve your site.

 

How to Use Your Social Media Accounts to Bring in Traffic to Your Website

Social media has certainly changed since its first arrived. What first started as a means for people to share their lives has turned into a platform where everyone and their dog can become a celebrity. In fact, most people act like they are their own personal brand. This can make growing a business account difficult. Even new followers can just turn out to be people who want you to follow them back and nothing more.

That is where community building comes into play, because anything else on social media does not mean a thing. You can have 100,000 followers and not receive an uptick in organic traffic to your site.

With this guide you can learn how to use social media successfully to bring traffic to your site and achieve all your goals:

Know Which Channels Your Target Audience Use

Know what channels your target audience uses most often and stick with them. In some cases this will be Instagram, in others it will be Facebook or even Reddit. Most use a mixture of channels.

Know How to Use These Channels

The next step is to become familiar with two to three of the most popular channels.

Know Social Media Basics

Before you get ahead of yourself, it is important to know a few social media basics. How to use the app, but more importantly what the social etiquette is. You don’t want to harass someone online in a bit to try to get them to buy from you. If anything, this will result in you getting blocked. If you want to learn how you can tell if you were blocked by another user, then you can visit HTTP-COM on the subject. You never want to overstep online, and instead follow the social niceties that will get users to trust you and like your brand.

Know How to Use Business Features Most Effectively

Most social media platforms offer business features. These features can be powerful, but only if you know how to make the most out of them. For example, you can tag products on Instagram, but only if you have gone through the steps of linking products on your Facebook Page and applying for the privilege first.

Integrate into Their Communities

Once you have your social media accounts set up, it’s time to integrate into your target market’s community. For the time being, just make note of:

  • What They Like
  • What and How They Comment
  • What They Post
  • What Content They Create
  • Their Marketing Strategies

Create Valuable Content On Your Website

If you want users to visit your website, then you need to offer great content and a reason to keep returning. Sales, products, and blog articles are all great incentives to convince a user to go from a social media to your website.

How to Use Your Social Media Profiles to Send Traffic to This Content

Once you have a good understanding of social media and a site that has great content users will want to delve in, you will want to create a posting strategy. Great photos on Instagram with an informative caption, a snippet of a statistic on Twitter, or even being engaged on Reddit’s AMA thread on a subject you are knowledgeable in.

To get users to visit your site you need to offer them a hint of value, and fulfill on that promise once they visit.

 

We’re Updating Our Servers

We’re always looking for ways to improve our clients’ experience with us. We understand the digital landscape and our goal is to always be a step ahead of any potential issues. To that end, we’ve made improvements to our hosting services and now our hosting is better than ever as we continue to take care of the problems that we anticipate before they’re an issue. We continue to see a high demand for domain management and are preparing a service specifically to alleviate that. What’s a brand really worth if Google doesn’t know it’s there and customers can’t find it?

We upgraded our server and the switchover happened on April 24th at 7 pm. While there will be a lag as all the SSLs (Secure Sockets Layers) get regenerated the end result will be an improved web experience for you and your site visitors. You will receive warnings like this as a result.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Or like this:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Or perhaps this:

 

 

 

 

We expect no downtime or data loss in the process but if you still see this type of warning in the near future, please let us know. It’s almost certainly a local issue at that point but our goal was to reduce those as much as possible and have as seamless a migration as possible.

Everything will be synced up by the evening of April 25th but DNS can take a day or 2 to propagate. Please reboot your internet router if your local network has issues connecting.

While we are always on the lookout for ways to improve we also love to get feedback from you. Let us know what you’re business needs are and how we can better support all your web design and digital marketing efforts.

How A Work-Life Balance Will Benefit Your Company

It’s very easy to get caught up with late night hours at the office. However, this isn’t healthy, and you shouldn’t get into the habit of doing it by any means. A work-life balance will not only benefit your health, but the work you create in the company as well. What’s more, it will help you establish familial connections that may have been overlooked.

If you take breaks and don’t treat yourself like a robot that can work around the clock, your creativity can flourish. You will feel more productive if you have given your brain enough time to recharge, and it will also create a healthy work environment. Of course, your health will improve in the process, and you can also spend more quality time with your family now!

Your creative mindset

It is thanks to your creativity that you are able to set yourself apart from your coworkers in the office. Creativity will benefit you at all stages of your career, but you won’t be able to tap into this skill if you don’t give yourself a breather. If you are consistently working, you will feel exhausted and you are more likely to burnout as well.

Productivity levels

No one is able to be productive during all hours of the day. You are not a robot, and you can’t treat yourself like one. If you spend your evening participating in activities that you enjoy, rather than focusing on work, you will notice that you will be able to complete certain tasks much better the following day.

Healthy work environment

A healthy and happy work environment is one where people feel valued and appreciated. It is moreover a place where you don’t feel pressured to spend most of your day working, well into the evening hours, and the work you do produce will be of much higher quality.

Your health will improve

Your mental and physical health alike will improve if you take more time for yourself.

Remember, if you make a habit of working late nights, you will likely develop anxiety, depression, among other health problems. You can also look after your own family’s health.

Spending quality time with your family

Spending time with your family is one of the most important things you can do. Your loved ones are the people you go to when you need to vent after a long day, and you will seek their support if you are ever in a tough situation. You need to provide this same level of support back, and you need to do so at every stage of life.

It can be easy to disregard family time if you make a habit of working late. It’s important that you don’t do this, especially if your family members are older. Did you notice that it has become harder for them to remember certain things, such as when they have to take their medication? Did you even notice that they couldn’t drive as well as they used to be able to? Of course, in situations such as these, you can seek help from In Home Care, who provide caregivers for senior living needs. If you were never home, you may not even realize that this is something that you need to do.

It’s important that you are mindful of your surroundings, and in taking care of yourself; you can also take care of others better.

A work-life balance is something that you need to maintain no matter how busy your work gets. If there is a looming deadline and you have to get a lot done in a short amount of time, it’s important that you learn how to properly manage your time, rather than working those late night hours on a daily basis.

 

 

Awesome Cyber Security Facts 2019

Security Awareness Training Could Save Your Business

Regularly updated security awareness training could save your organization from a serious data breach. Why? Because the best defense against cybercriminals is being prepared for an attack. With around 48% of breaches being as a result of human error or system failure, your employees might just be the weakest link here.

Do they know what to look out for? What do they consider a strong password? How careful are they about how they access the system? Are they using an unsecured private device? How do they deal with outsiders needing to work in your officers?

It can take seconds for a criminal to plant a key-logger or other malware on your system. And, as any good hacker will tell you, there is nothing better than direct access to the system if you want to exploit it. So that repairman coming in to fix the aircon could well pose a risk to the security of your data.

Of course, it’s not only outsiders that you need to be wary of. What if an enterprising employee decides to sell client information? Now, while it’s true that you cannot always have complete control over what they do, you can limit the potential damage.

You can put processes in place to limit their access to the system to only critical items that they need for work. You could also put measures in place to sniff out suspicious access to key systems.

As you’ll see from the EveryCloud infographic that we’ve published below, security awareness training is one of the first line defense measures that every company should be employing. And, truthfully, a lot of the tips can be applied to protect your own personal data as well.

A good attitude to adopt is that it is only a matter of time before someone tries to hack the system. It’s not the nicest way to think, but it should keep you on your toes when it comes to cybersecurity.

The stakes are high here, especially for businesses who hold a lot of client data. Can you imagine having to go to your clients and let them know that their private information has been exposed? Can you imagine the potential fallout of that happening?

Don’t take the chance – shore up your defenses now.

You can find more awesome facts and useful tips in the infographic called “Awesome Cyber Security Facts (2019)”, compiled by EveryCloud

Underrated Tips for Someone Thinking of Starting a Small Business

Starting a new business can be an incredibly rewarding venture, but there are lots of different elements to consider. There are all kinds of tips out there on how to raise funds for your business, and the best ways to build a business plan. In fact, there are so many different sources of information available to you, that it can all get a little bit confusing. Despite that, there are still many essential tips which get overlooked. With that in mind, here is a compiled list of four of the most basic tips you should consider if you are thinking of starting up your own business.

Utilize the best resources

When you’re first starting out, it can be easy to think that you can just try your hand at everything and it will all work out for the best. However, there are some elements of business which you are better off outsourcing to reputable companies who have a lot of experience in their own field. For example, marketing is a niche which can be tricky to master, as can accounting. You should also shop around for the best tools to use online, from website builders to VPS hosts such as Krystal.co.uk, who can provide a fast and high bandwidth platform from which to operate your website, making life easier both your customers and you.

Don’t overcomplicate things

Normally, when it comes to developing a business idea, it is best to keep your design as close to your initial idea as possible; a lot of people have a tendency to run with an idea until it snowballs into something expensive and unnecessarily elaborate. Remember, the aim of your product is to create a solution to a problem or to fill a gap in the market which will entice consumers, not to create the most imaginative product you can think of. Keep it simple, and streamline your ideas so that you are creating a product which customers actually want to invest their money into.

Be responsible

A lot of people think that the only way to enter the world of business is to throw caution to the wind, give up everything and put all of their hopes into their one business idea, but this isn’t the most sensible of routes for someone just starting out. For now, don’t quit your day job, or alternatively, find part-time work which can easily fit around your busy schedule while you’re building your company up. It is important to always have an income, as this will keep you afloat during hard times.

Promote your business well

You don’t need fancy and expensive marketing strategies to promote your business, all you really need is word of mouth and a good reputation as a reliable businessperson. Go to networking events for small businesses, or go out into your local community with business cards in hand, and you’ll find that you can create a good customer base through nothing more than some hard work and basic promotional materials.

Top 5 Methods to Improve Your Company

There are several ways to run a company efficiently, and if you turn to the Internet, you’ll be graced with many articles explaining how to do so. While you may be tempted to cut corners, such as getting away with older, and therefore cheaper, software, doing so will only cause issues later on down the line. The older software, for instance, can cause frustration for your employees, plus it may not have the latest safety features.

There are certain areas you should never cut corners, but that doesn’t mean your business model has to be slow and clunky. You can make it fast and efficient, and you can make it safe, but only if you use these top five methods:

1. Ensure Your Company Has Strong Leaders

Strong leaders are the ones that inspire those who work under them to be their best. They
also come up with innovative ways to improve business operations from the ground up. You
need to be critical of who you put in such positions. A bully will not help your company. You
need someone who inspires, who thinks outside the box, and who loves your company as
much as you do. When you have people like this working for you, you have a team that will
work towards making your company more cost effective and efficient.

2. Improve Your Own Qualifications

Improving your own qualifications is a great way to lead your company into a new age. Yes,
there is a lot that you can learn on the job, but if you are attempting to expand globally, for
example, you will want more formal education to back you up.

  • Online University
    One of the best ways to gain the experience you need to run your company more
    efficiently and with a face towards the future, is to go back to school. This doesn’t
    mean you need to take time off. It doesn’t even mean you need to move. Online
    education has come far, and by clicking here, you can also start your degree and
    earn an MS in supply chain management in no time.
  • Night School
    Brushing up on your skills and even learning new ones, like how to manage an
    effective social media account or how to automate email marketing, means you can
    apply your newfound knowledge to your business models. Night school and courses
    similar to it are very useful in expanding your basic knowledge. You can then use this
    knowledge directly, or learn how to better communicate with different members of
    your team.
  • Books and News
    Sign up to leading journals in your field, read books appertaining to your business,
    and try to always stay up to date with the news. In doing so, you will benefit from
    always learning and being on top of the newest trends and technologies.

3. Audit Your Company

Once you have a team of professionals on your side and you personally are geared with all
the knowledge and know-how on how to improve your company and lead it into the future,
the next task on your plate will be an audit. Audit your company so that you know where the
problem areas lie. Once you know the issues at hand, you can work towards improving
them. In most cases, you will probably find a lot of time wasted in improper data storage and
admin processes, though there are plenty of ways you can make your company more
efficient.

4. Install Time-Saving Programs

One area these audits will likely flag is how much time is spent on admin work. Manual
communication between different offices or suppliers takes time and cuts down on
productivity. Have your inventory automatically synced to a program that will send out a
notice to your supplier when you need more raw materials, for example. By instead installing
programs that automate many of these tasks, you can set your employees to work on more
challenging tasks that require the human touch.

5. Adapt Your Business Model

Cutting corners is not an option in the information-rich world that we are in today. You
cannot operate hoping that your customers or the media don’t find out about your
partnership with a warehouse in Bangladesh that are brutalizing their workers for daring to
form a union. Instead, you need to be a leader. Adapt your business model if you need to so
that you can absorb the cost – offer repair services, extended warranty, and even workshops
at your stores to bring more money in, but try to keep everything clean.

How to Become a Marketing Manager

Every business needs a highly efficient and talented Marketing Manager on their payroll. Without one, their advertising campaigns will always lack direction, which ultimately means they’ll constantly struggle to draw custom

If you think you’ve got what it takes to be a business’s Marketing Manager, then why not go for it? You should know, however, that, in order to follow this particular career path, you’re going to have put a lot of hard work in. You’re going to have to devote your time and efforts to honing your craft and becoming the best marketer you can possibly be.

To see what you need to do specifically to become a Marketing Manager, read on.

Get an education

The first step you need to take if you’re serious about one day becoming a Marketing Manager is to get yourself an education in the field. First and foremost, this means taking a Bachelor’s degree course in either business, marketing, advertising, or communications. A good route to take in this instance is a course that will not only teach you about your subject matter but also about what it takes to lead and manage in the world of business. For instance, Walsh University’s BBA Management program helps to develop leaders so that you can apply for the correct jobs in confidence.

If you want to speed up the process of you making it to a management position in the field, you should also consider taking a postgraduate course in marketing specifically. Having an MBA on your resume will help you to stand out from your competition when it comes to landing that all-important entry-level role.

Take an internship role

To be able to truly understand the restraints and pressures that Marketing Managers are always seeking to mitigate, you need to shadow somebody who already holds such a position. Before you start working in the field yourself, then, you should take an internship in which you can work closely with a manager, as doing that is the only way you are going to know if this is the career for you.

To take full advantage of your marketing internship and your manager-shadowing opportunity, you should get as much hands-on experience as you can. This should involve you:

  • Making copies
  • Answering client phone calls
  • Sitting in on meetings and brainstorms
  • Working on both online and real-world campaigns
  • Being as creative as you can

Get an entry-level job… and work hard when you do

Everybody has to start somewhere, so you should have no qualms in getting yourself an entry-level job. The pay might not be so good to start off with but, if you work hard enough, you’ll prove to your bosses just how committed you are to your craft. That’ll put you in better stead going forward when internal-promotions become available.

Market yourself

You might be good at marketing and advertising other things, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you will be good at marketing yourself. You may struggle when it comes to showing off your own credentials, and you shouldn’t let this doubt your advertising your abilities. You’re going to have to work on your ability to market yourself, however, if you want to grab the brass ring and really accelerate your career.

When aforementioned internal-promotions become available, you need to point out how much you contributed to your department. You need to prove what impact you’ve made, and you need to show a willingness to bring about more change going forward.

Work on a number of your skills

Alongside the skill of being able to market yourself, there are a number of others that you need to equip yourself with if you want your bid to become a Marketing Manager to be a successful one. One of these skills is the ability to keep your finger on the pulse of the latest trends. Another is that you have to be able to communicate your work and your marketing plans with strength and coherence. You’re also going to need to be highly efficient when it comes to the use of the Internet and computer devices, whether you go down the digital marketing route or not.

Join marketing associations

Joining a marketing association may not directly impact your quest to reach the level of Marketing Manager, but it will benefit you throughout your journey. For one, being a part of such an association will help you to stay informed with regards to the very latest developments, strategies, and technologies that are being used and deployed in the industry.

As well as this, by spending your spare time immersing yourself in the world of marketing, you’ll also find yourself living in a way that facilitates career growth. By living the life you wish to live tomorrow, today, you’ll take one step closer to being the perfect version of yourself.

When you make it, carry on growing

If you land yourself a job as a Marketing Manager, first and foremost, congratulations. Your celebrations should be short-lived, though, as you’ve still got work to do. Alongside the various marketing campaigns that you have to run and oversee, you also have the task of continuing your personal and professional growth. In the instance of containing your growth, you should:

  • Continue to market yourself and your abilities
  • Keep track of what your customers want and expect
  • Carry on analyzing your competition to see where you can get better
  • Remain well-read when it comes to the latest marketing advancements of the day

Oh, and make sure you don’t let the power go to your head. You were an intern once, remember!

To become a Marketing Manager, you’re going to have to devote a lot of your time and a lot of your effort to the field. More to the point, you’re going to have to get an education in the field, pick up an internship, get an entry-level job, market yourself, work on a number of your skills, join marketing associations, and, last but not least, carry on your growth even when you’ve made it.

How to Protect Your Business with Digital Forensics

Those with business have to be able to trust their employees. They give them access to computers and other digital devices and even set them up with internet access so that they can do their jobs. But blind trust isn’t an option, no matter who you have working for you. So, if there is something going on at your company and you aren’t getting the truth, digital forensics is the best way to protect yourself as well as your staff. Here is how to keep your business growing with the help of digital forensics.

Examining Digital Devices for Signs of Tampering

Some of the people hired at a company may able to make repairs and minor changes to network configurations in an effort to help their employers. Perhaps they have been hired to work in the IT department or they are simply rank and file employees who don’t want to put in a support ticket. Employers have a right to know whether or not their equipment has been tampered with or altered in any manner. It is best to have that kind of investigation done off-site, by a team of digital forensic experts.

Seeing What Your Employees Have Been Doing on Company Computers

After being offered a position and going through a background check, the majority of new hires are required to sign a contract of sorts. They might promise to always represent their employers in a positive and professional manner and to act morally, even in their personal time. These new employees are usually required to only use company equipment, including computers, in a very specific manner. The SecureForensics.com team give business owners the power to do their own thorough internal investigations. Digital forensics is used to confirm suspicions about unsavory behaviors when using business equipment. This type of computer science is only reserved for business owners who believe that something nefarious may be going on in their ranks.

Locating Deleted and Hidden Data

Most of the time, when a person is up to something that they shouldn’t be, they will at least make an attempt at covering their tracks. In the case of employees who might be surfing the web and accessing their personal social media accounts while they are on the clock, they will undoubtedly try to clear their search history as well as delete cookies. While that is a very small-scale example of what digital forensic analysts are capable of finding and recovering, business owners should know that recovering deleted and hidden data on their company computers is possible.

In the event that you believe a member of your staff is using company computers to put your business at risk, you have to act right away. Your own IT professionals may be able to find traces of information, but sometimes a clean hard drive wipe can make it hard for employers to get solid concrete proof. Realize that embezzling money or even sharing trade secrets are potentially serious offenses, and you as an employer cannot make meritless accusations. Use digital forensics to protect the future of your company and get the answers needed so that the decisions you make are smart.