Our Highest Performance Servers To Date

Upgrade server

We’re introducing a waiting list for our upcoming server upgrades. Clients can change over their existing annual hosting arrangements for an upgraded monthly arrangement on brand-new high-performance servers.

We’ve made some comparisons of single sites on both server specifications and found that the upgraded servers are clocking in at over twice the speed of standard hosting. The cost of owning and managing these systems is substantial so we’re preparing a waiting list to kickstart this service upgrade.

Performance and value are always our priority. The best prices are available from hosting multiple sites. However, the price is not always our client’s priority. If you are ready for a step up in speed and security, then transferring to a high-performance server is the next step you need to take.

How To Upgrade Your Hosting

If you’re interested in this upgrade and would like to be added to the waiting list, please contact us.

Ecommerce – Moving Lincolnshire Magento 1 Sites to Magento 2

magento2 update lincolnshire

Switching to Magento 2

If you’re running an ecommerce website in Lincolnshire, it might be time to check with your hosts that you are future proof. We regularly have new clients in Spalding approach us with older ecommerce systems, unaware that their business and their customers are at risk. If they stay on an old system without receiving security patches, hackers will be more capable of gaining access to the hosting and website. The most prominent example we are seeing now is businesses running on Magento 1 systems. Now is the time to abandon Magento 1. The Magento 1 platform will reach ‘End of Life’ in June 2020. This means that all updates will cease, and your system will be considered expired. We advise you to invest effort in the migration to a newer platform, sooner rather than later.

Whether you’re working from a market town like Spalding or a city like Peterborough, Magento 2 is a costly build for lots of companies and this may be a big barrier to taking the next step. It’s not the only option. Magento is a very good platform but it’s often overkill. There are alternative platforms that offer security and stability long term. If you’re unsure where to look next then give us a call.

We use a variety of systems depending on their intended purpose. This includes using Magento on larger ecommerce sites or scalable sites with larger intentions. The countdown to 2020 can be an opportunity to explore the features, performance and security enhancements provided by the range of future proof platforms, including Magento 2.

For more information on how to get moving, contact us on 01775 761512 or email [email protected]

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Newsletter: We’re Here to Help – Hosting & Support

website support service
We’re sending out this latest mailshot as a reminder that we’re here to help all year round. Our hosting and support will cover most of your website update requirements but if it doesn’t we’ll never surprise you with unexpected costs. The last thing we want is for our clients to leave their websites idol while their business is active.

Website Update Ideas

  • Expand on an existing page or write a new page. Just a couple of hundred words can go a very long way to optomising your website for search engines like Google.
  • Update your website photos. This doesn’t make a lot of difference in Google but it does help convert your website visitors into customers. Out of date photos make a big difference to the impression your website gives.
  • Rebranding is a great way to reignite momentum in a business. Design trends change contantly and the best brands keep up to date with them. Your website can do exactly the same without needing a whole new website every time.
  • GDPR updates have become very common since the new regulations came in. This could mean adding a cookies notice, privacy policy or even adding an SSL certificate.
  • Re-engage with your social media followers. We recently decided to re-engage our social media followers and gained over 30 extra facebook followers in one week with very little effort. We also recently launched an instagram page and managed to attract over 100 followers in one week.
  • Direct customers reviews to your Google listing to demonstrate your service quality.
  • Expand into new technologies. We recently announced we were beginning to work with cryptocurrencies on our clients websites. We also made some predictions about what’s next for website technology for anyone that wants to get ahead of the curve.
So remember, we’re here to help. These are just some ideas to get the ball rolling. If you want anything updating on your website, contact us on 01775 761512.

Is Someone Reading Your Gmail Emails?

Google Hosting

Unfortunately, most businesses are unaware they may have unknowingly compromised their customers data (and their own). Believe it or not, all of your Gmail messages could be read human third parties. Furthermore, they could be moved, deleted or even sent!

Following the Facebook data controversy, Google has now confirmed that your private emails on the Gmail system can potentially be read by third parties. The third parties are given permission using app access or plugins for the gmail console. People who have used gmail to create accounts or manage apps are at risk of their emails being read by those companies.

Securing Your Emails

It’s important to note, nothing illegal is happening. Permission is given by users without attention given to the small print. It’s a very common problem that’s being exposed more every day.  With 1.4 billion users on gmail it’s likely that this story will unfold further as more people become aware of the risks. 

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Never allow any apps access to read, send, delete and manage your email. 
  2. Use the Security Check-up tool to assess and secure your account:  https://myaccount.google.com/security-checkup/3

We host emails for many of our clients. If you’re currently using Gmail but would prefer a safer local solution, we would be happy to help. We protect your data at the same high standard that we secure our own. Contact us for more information.

Lincolnshire Hosting – Safety and Security

Hosting Lincolnshire

Our Lincolnshire hosting service is something we are very proud of. A large proportion of our client base is hosted after we have undertaken their initial website development. However, we also offer a full transfer to our servers along with one year of hosting and support for clients that just need a fresh host. 

Website Hosting Transfers in Lincolnshire

Many hosting transfers require some work beyond just moving the website. For a start, we have to do a full security check. Even when we don’t find a threat we still have to implement our high standard of protection to new websites before we can fully integrate them. Ongoing, we also have to ensure system updates are made as fast as possible. One of the main reasons that people transfer their websites to us is because their site has been unsupported, leading to missing updates and patches. We regularly set up auto-updates on new websites to ensure this is resolved immediately. 

Content Updates

Content updates are another common service required by new clients. This is often because they have been ignored by their last host or not given sufficient training. These updates managed as support, included in our standard hosting and support package. 

Fast and Stable Hosting

Speed and stability is another issue. Our hosting is built on FreeBSD, widely regarded as one of the most stable and high performance operating systems of the whole Unix lineage. If you’re interested in how this compares with other industry systems we’ve created some comparisons on our hosting page. 

Loyal, Local and Trusted

We don’t reserve extra space and limit your website potential. We provide a powerful, fully managed service for all of our customers. If you are interested in hearing more about how we can help you with hosting, please feel free to call us on 01775 761512. 

Drive By Websites Ltd is based in Spalding, Lincolnshire. We work with clients all over the county including in Holbeach, Bourne, Grantham, Stamford, Boston, Long Sutton, Lincoln and Sleaford.

SSL Certificates – Safer Websites and Higher Rankings

ssl spalding

After installing hundreds of SSL certificates on websites, we decided it’s probably time we did on our own website! Although we don’t exactly need an SSL certificate just yet, it’s actually helping to improve our Google Ranking for very little time and effort. The immediate impact is quite minimal but as companies move towards a safer web browsing experience, it’s highly likely that the importance of SSL certificates will increase drastically. 

An SSL certificate is visible on websites with the padlock next to the web address. These addresses technically start with https:// instead of the more common http://. SSL sends encrypted information over the web so only the intended recipient can understand it. It’s most valuable when sending sensitive information, such as payment details over the internet. It also instills a lot of extra trust in customers. 

This is already becoming a ‘must-have’ with payment gateways like PayPal and Stripe. It’s a fairly good sign of what’s to come in the website development industry. Google Chrome is also putting a lot more emphasis on highlighting websites that aren’t using SSL certificates. Even if you’re just looking to evidence your GDPR compliance, this can also go some way to securing your customers data even further. 

We can set up your website with a security certificate at a very low cost and with very fast turnaround time. Even if, like ours, you don’t exactly need it. We’re recommending it to all of our clients now, but especially to those dealing with customer data or payments. You might feel like it’s unnecessary but technology moves at such a rapid pace and we see it as our job to ensure your website is up to date with these changes.

It is practically inevitable that with enough time your website will suffer without a SSL Certificate. Give us a call on 01775 761512 to discuss setting up an SSL certificate on your website. 

How does a Page Builder stack up to a Web Developer?

Free Website Builder

Almost all our clients come to us knowing exactly what they are looking for. Generally, it’s something like this:

  • They want someone to build a website
  • They want someone they know and can trust to build a website
  • They want to be able to drop in and see their chosen web developers when it suits them
  • They want something bespoke for their business, and not a generic template
  • They want to be able to discuss web development options and choose what’s right for them
  • They want the development to continue for years to come and not stop once the website is live

All our clients fit into this list somewhere, but there continues to be new customers that need to be convinced of these benefits first. We don’t push our services on anyone and often I’ll just direct people to where to research the benefits of real web development over a cheap page builder. In some cases, I’ll even recommend that they use a page builder at first and come back to Drive By Websites once they have outgrown it. These cheap page builders on Wix, Godaddy or 123-Reg have their benefits. They’re easy to work on and they aren’t much on the pocket either. But that’s as much as you can expect, the benefits end there.

Website Builder (cheap/free) vs Drive By Websites In Spalding

Our services include optimising websites. From as early as the initial design stage we’re implementing ideas and trying to focus on SEO strategies to enhance the potential reach of the site. Further still, we implement the tools to allow our clients to take SEO into their own hands. Now, there is some training and a learning curve involved but we aren’t working by the hour and we’ll take as much time as it takes to get our clients geared up to make continuous improvements to their websites.

We also put all our website design costs up front. This is where the page builders have gained a very bad reputation. Suppose you’ve got a nice simple website to get you going, you then want to go live. Already you’ll incur costs as they want to throw in a domain cost and a connection cost. Then you’ll find it’s not high enough in Google, so they offer you an SSL certificate for even more cost. Over time these issues will arise and leave you wondering why you had started with the page builder in the first place. It is likely still cheaper in the end, but you’ll certainly not be trusting your host like you should.

The main issue, above all else, is these page builders are missing all the fundamentals named at the top of the page. All the priorities for almost all our clients are missing from the page builder offering. I would still go as far as to say it’s just scratching the surface because the technical advantages of our systems over these page builders are endless. Nonetheless, that isn’t often what matters most for our clients.

For more information on what we offer or the technical benefits of our systems, give us a call on 01775 761512.

Startup Website – Things To Consider

STARTUP WEBSITE

If you’re currently considering a new business start up or are looking for a new startup website, we have outlined a few considerations.

  1. Domain Name Significance. If you have to introduce your startup into competitive online search results, you’ll need every small advantage. Using a domain name that relates directly to your ideal search keyword can do exactly that. For example – instead of just using a company name – try to include things such as the main service or location.
  2. Jumping the Queue. Website videos are a great way to cut through the search results on your startup website. Unlike organic google website rankings, they’re often listed instantly! Google and Youtube are both linked in a way that other video platforms are not. This leads to much more attractive Google listings. Many would be tempted to watch a video in search results over web links because the listing features a thumbnail image from the video. Click here to read more about website videos.
  3. Google Maps. Configuring a pin on Google Maps with a link to your startup website will massively improve your ranking and can get you on the first page. Localised searching also means that people can stumble on your business map without even having entered a location in their search!
  4. Blogging. Perhaps the most important considerations long term is blogging. If you start now, you’ll see the results a lot quicker. Blogging is undoubtedly a chore but it comes at only the cost of spare time and the results are unparalleled. Continuous fresh content will mean Google needs to regularly index your site. It is also used when Google decides how to rank your website. Click here to read more about website blogs.
  5. Future Proof Hosting. While we do try to pride ourselves on our nonsense services, this jargon is worth a read. Future proof hosting refers to servers that are continually being kept updated with new and innovative performance and security enhancements. Our UK hosting service offers excellent security, speed, safety and support. This is mainly because we run FreeBSD systems, generally considered to be one of – if not – the most stable and high performance operating systems. Click here to see how other hosting server operating systems stack up. Can your startup afford to find that your website has run out of bandwidth, or isn’t functioning as expected? All too often new businesses find themselves in similar situations. A good startup website needs to be prepared for what’s to come as your business expands.

Need help with your new business startup website?

If you would like more information or a quote to get set up with a new business startup website, give us a call on 01775 761512.

Google’s been busy. Has your hosting provider?

Google Hosting

Google has been busy in the last year with:

  • 1,653 new search changes
  • 9,800 live traffic experiments
  • 18,015 side-by-side experiments
  • 130,336 search quality tests

What we don’t know is how many of those 1,653 new search changes are algorithmic or ranking changes. Those would be the changes that impact you and your business. There is believed to be over 200 ranking factors working to compare your site with your competitors. When changes are made to these many factors, webmasters are rarely quick to act. In fact, nearly all of the clients that move their website to our hosting servers are out of date in some form.

While you are keeping your content fresh and relevant, we are working all the time on making the most of that content. Upgrades to our systems take place on a weekly basis and allow your site to remain as relevant in two years as it was the day it went live.

Contact us regarding website transfers for a free quote and helpful advice.

A Fresh Site For Blast Off!! Services – Responsive Website Design

homepage blastoff services

It's that time again when we pick one of our nice new sites and show them off to demonstrate what we can offer. Today we are proud to reveal the complete overhaul of the website for Blast Off!! Services (Spalding) LtdThe process of developing this website was a great example of how easy it can be to offer and develop new ideas when communication is prioritised. As a result, the design features a number of unique elements, such as the responsive homepage layout that would have likely left most responsive developers scratching their heads. So, as always the question is how do we go from an inventive idea such as the image on the left (desktop view), and make it a mobile friendly page of code. Our chosen solution was to order a new layout of the same elements one after the other, as demonstrated in the image on the right (tablet view).

Click the thumbnail below:
homepage blastoff services

Click the thumbnail below:

Mobile View

While this will no doubt reiterate the quality of responsive design we offer, this is not where the need for a revamp had come from. As it turned out, the Blast Off!! Services (Spalding) website had been in need of a refresh for a while and sometimes a fresh pair of eyes can make all the difference. Having a dedicated in house designer has allowed us to provide this exact service straight away and proceed to development with the assuring of a fresh, modern design. 

This website was a pleasure to produce and we are looking forward to hosting and supporting the site on behalf of our new client in future.

If you would like to get in touch to discuss refreshing your website, give us a call on 01775 761512 or contact us

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