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6 Tips for Working from Home During Quarantine

6 Tips for Working from Home During Quarantine

As we all move online, many of us are finding out how hard it is to stay focused while working from home. Your office space can have a big impact on your productivity. The last thing you want is to be searching for your mouse under a pile of paperwork, right? So, how do you focus and keep productive? 

Develop a morning routine. 

Whether you keep your morning routine the same as you would if you were going into the office, or build a whole new one. A morning routine gets you into the right headspace and helps you separate your work day from your home life. 

Separate space if possible.

It’s probably a good idea not to work from a couch or your bed (places where you typically relax) because either you won’t be as productive, or you’ll start to associate your relaxation spots with work spots and be stressed out in your own bed. And don’t let partners/roommates interrupt you when you’re in that space. If you don’t have a separate space then wear headphones to signal you’re working.

Set a schedule. 

Make sure you set a start time and an end time. Setting a time to be done working for the day is important or you might just keep churning through things. Setting a “done” time also forces you to use your waking hours more efficiently. It is equally as important to set breaks. It’s really easy to stay glued to your desk and before you know it the day is over.  Take time for lunch or if it’s nice out, sit outside or walk the block. Make sure you get up from your desk every 30-45 minutes.

Declutter your space and mind

It’s not exciting, but setting up some proper storage and ensuring your workspace is neat and tidy is key to making sure you stay productive. Keep your office space tidy: shut away clutter, and try to keep cables and wires to a minimum. Keep your phone nearby if there’s a call but out of sight so that you are not constantly looking at it when you get notifications.

Burn a candle for ambience/create a relaxing environment. 

It might not be top of your list, but this tip appeals to our sense of smell for added motivation. Every room needs a scent to complete it. Fragrances can really influence our mood, so opt for something invigorating in your work space. 

Find the right sound

Like smell, sound can help you stay focused and motivated so have the right playlist ready to tackle your to-do list. If the noise of your full house or the silence of your apartment is driving you insane, tune in to a playlist that will help get you in the zone. 

Don’t Isolate yourself. 

The most important thing missing while working from home can be human contact. Connecting on social media might be causing anxiety and stress, but there are ways to keep in contact without seeing all the news. Create a Google Hangout or a Zoom meeting to meet with friends and family. Facebook Messenger and Facetime can help you connect easily with your community. You can use slack to play games, or the Google extension Netflix Party to watch Tiger King with friends.

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Supercharge WooCommerce with HubSpot – Hostdedi Blog

Supercharge WooCommerce with HubSpot – Hostdedi Blog

As a website / store builder, you know that tracking actionable customer interactions is key to increasing conversions. HubSpot is an industry leading suite of customer relationship tools designed to help merchants stay connected with customers during every part of the customer lifecycle. It’s no wonder then, that pairing the customer relationship superpowers of HubSpot with the technological and publishing superpowers of WordPress creates a powerful solution for staying in touch with, and marketing to future and current customers.

Let’s take a look at a few integrations between HubSpot and WooCommerce and see how they can improve your client’s online store.

So What’s HubSpot Anyway?

Think of HubSpot as a customer relationship swiss army knife that helps with marketing, sales, and service. Whether you’re tracking relationships with customers, creating landing pages, communicating with site visitors, or keeping tabs on customer service inquiries, HubSpot’s suite of tools can help.

Integrating with HubSpot

What’s even better than free expertly crafted tools? Tools that are easy to integrate. Here are two ways to integrate HubSpot directly into your client’s WordPress site.

1) The HubSpot WordPress Plugin

HubSpot’s WordPress integration is pretty awesome, and they’ve made it easy to get started. In-fact, the onboarding process is so good, all you have to do is download the plugin and follow the welcome wizard. 

When you’re done you can select which tools you want to incorporate on the site.

2) Zapier Integration

The more information you have about your customer the better. When you connect WooCommerce to HubSpot via a Zapier integration, you’ll be able to add new customers to deals, add prospects to workflows based on their product interests, and more. 

As data streams into HubSpot, you’ll be able to make manual and automated decisions on how to follow up with customers to close more sales.

The Zapier integration helps you get more data about your customers from WooCommerce into HubSpot so you can act on that data. But this integration doesn’t help you pull HubSpot features onto your site.

Incorporating HubSpot’s Free Tools

Once you have your website connected to HubSpot it’s time to pull in some of their great features.

Robust Form Builder

Building and integrating a form to generate leads should only take a few minutes with HubSpot. First, create a form in HubSpot using their drag & drop form builder. Then, embed the form on any page in your client’s WordPress site with a simple shortcode or Gutenberg block.

Live Chat

A great way to add additional value to a store is to give customers an easy way to communicate back and forth with the store owner. In fact, some studies indicate that conversion rate increases with the use of live chat. Hubspot’s Live Chat feature is a perfect way to quickly and easily integrate and test this valuable feature on your client’s website. 

In your HubSpot account enable live chat, choose a theme, and away you go. The best part is that the chat functionality integrates directly with your client’s HubSpot account to keep track of visitor interactions as they move through the funnel and become customers. 

In terms of extra setup there is none. The HubSpot for WordPress plugin takes care of the entire implementation for you.

Managing HubSpot Contacts

Finally, it’s nice to know that you can manage HubSpot contacts right within the WordPress dashboard. Keep track of online and offline interactions with contacts by using this simple yet powerful dashboard right inside the WordPress admin.

If you think the these free integrations are great, the premium integration by MakeWebBetter connects even more HubSpot functionality directly to WooCommerce like:

  • Syncing WooCommerce users, orders and products in realtime.
  • Syncing historical customer data with a click.
  • Quickly incorporating HubSpot workflows.

Hubspot is a well respected & incredibly powerful tool for any store or website owner. Their tools help store owners maintain great relationships with their customers to keep them coming back again and again.

Interested in integrating with HubSpot? Follow their documentation on how to integrate with WordPress.

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Magento 1 Migration: How to Save Your Budget and Stay Secure

Magento 1 Migration: How to Save Your Budget and Stay Secure



COVID-19 is actively changing our world, but before this global pandemic many online stores were already facing a massive change. Our Magento Product Expert, Miguel Balparda was recently a guest on MageCloud’s Webinar “Magento 1 Migration: How to Save Your Budget and Stay Secure” to show how Hostdedi Safe Harbor can extend your Magento 1 site’s life during this pandemic and beyond. Watch the video below. 

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Link Building for eCommerce Businesses

Link Building for eCommerce Businesses

In my previous two posts here on Liquid Web, I talked about technical SEO and keyword research for eCommerce companies. Both of these form the base of a great SEO strategy. Without a crawlable website or pages on your site targeting keywords with search volume that are relevant to your business, you will never rank.

But once you have that in place, or are working towards it with a combination of your SEO company and internal resources, then you need to take your organic traffic to the next level.

To take your organic traffic to the next level, you need to build links. Links are the currency of SEO, and without them, you will not rank well for the terms that can drive that sweet “free” organic traffic to your website.

So how do you think about this, and even more importantly, how do you do it?

Let’s dig in.

All Links Are Not Created Equal

If you’ve been building businesses online for a while, you’ve probably heard about SEO and probably heard about link building.

Your reaction may range from “I heard we weren’t supposed to do that” to “Where can I buy some of these?” There’s so much misunderstanding out there around link building that either of these reactions and any in the middle, are entirely understandable.

In SEO we always walk a tightrope when it comes to link building. If you are too aggressive with building new links back to your website (especially with commercial anchor text), then you can land in trouble with the search engines either through a manual penalty or an algorithm shift that renders those links at best ineffective and at worst with them negatively affecting your site.

On the other side, if you don’t have links pointing to your site you will almost certainly not rank for your target commercial keywords. There are different ways to get organic traffic, such as with editorial content meant to target those more informational searches, but that traffic has less conversion intent and thus will not directly turn into revenue as easily as traffic to your category or product pages.

Now that we’ve established that you need links, let’s talk about the links that will help you rank and are safe from negatively affecting your site in the future.

These links are:

  • Naturally given (eg not purchased or required by you for a service);
  • From relevant websites (such as partners and news sites);
  • Meant for users to click and come to your site, not just for search engines.

Links are meaningful to SEO because they are hard to acquire. The more authoritative the linking website is, and thus the more significant it is for SEO, the harder it will be to obtain.

There are many ways to acquire links back to your eCommerce website, but keep all of the above in mind as you build and execute on your link building (or as I prefer to refer to it, link acquisition) plan.

Check Mark Hostdedi’ Managed WooCommerce Hosting helps optimize SEO with keyword indexing, so you can focus on building links to authoritative sources.

How Many Links Do I Need?

I get asked two questions quite frequently about link building:

  • How many links do I need to rank?
  • Where are my competitors getting their links?

Luckily both of these questions are answered by looking at the other ranking sites for the search terms you are targeting.

Let’s use the search term [iphone skins 7 plus], which according to Keywords Everywhere (a free Chrome extension) has 5,400 searches per month:

link building test on iphone 7 skins

I like to use Moz’s Mozbar, which is another Chrome extension you can use to get information from their link index of the web about the specific pages that are ranking.

In this example, you can see the metrics for the top 4 sites below:

link building test on iphone 7 skins site examples

If you read my technical SEO for eCommerce post then you will probably notice that they are all doing good on-page SEO which is undoubtedly helping them rank.

If we look deeper than their on-page SEO elements, then we see the following:

  • The ranking pages are category pages, not individual product pages or homepages;
  • Most have a domain authority above 50 (except for #4);
  • All four have at least a few, if not more, linking root domains and links pointing to the ranking page.

No rubric exists to know the tradeoff between Domain Authority and the number of links needed to rank, but from just the above we can understand that to rank for this term you will need:

  • A Domain Authority of at least 28, and likely much higher;
  • At least a few hundred if not a few thousand linking root domains pointing to your site overall;
  • A page dedicated to this term with perfect on-page SEO elements;
  • At minimum 2, but likely more than 15 linking root domains pointing to the page you want to rank for this term.

If you don’t have an authoritative site, then ranking for this term is a long-term goal that requires a long-term view of link acquisition.

How Are My Competitors Ranking?

The next question I get asked is “What is (competitor) doing to rank?”

To show you how you can find this data, let’s use the second example which is Dbrand. I have zero affiliation with this site and no connection to the industry at all, so it’s a great candidate for dissecting their link acquisition strategy.

To do this, I am going to use Moz’s Link Explorer as it is a standard tool used by SMBs and other companies to do link analysis. Other tools out there do a great job as well, such as SEMrush and Ahrefs, so if you have a subscription to one of those tools, then you should take the process outlined here and apply it to the tool of your choice.

We’re going to do two things:

  1. Look at the specific ranking page to see how they are acquiring links;
  2. Look at the domain overall to see if we can determine how they are acquiring links as a business.

To find the page’s specific links, input the full URL into Link Explorer and hit Enter, then navigate to the Inbound Links section in the left sidebar:

link building mozpro link explorer

When we scroll down, we see these links:

links in mozpro link building

According to this, they have acquired followed links (links that will help you rank) from a few authoritative sites and lists of gifts ideas. Technology sites have listed them as great gifts to buy, which are resulting in direct followed links back to their page. This is a big win!

Dbrand has also mostly stayed away from sites that have a high spam score. They’re doing it well and being rewarded with high rankings (though have some other opportunities they could leverage to improve to #1).

Overall Site Link Acquisition

After looking at the individual page, it is helpful to understand how the site became so authoritative in the first place. How did they get 3,500+ individual sites to link to them?

We go back to Link Explorer and look at their linking domains:

link building link explorer linking domains

There’s nothing crazy here, and they have a lot of authoritative sites linking to them, though we know that links from specific sites like Youtube and Wikipedia are nofollowed (and officially don’t count towards rankings directly as a result).

They’re acquiring links at scale through:

  1. Being listed in “cool gadget roundups,” which I must assume is either being produced by them, or Dbrand is doing outreach to be listed;
  2. Reviews on gadget sites;
  3. When new phones launch, having skins ready to go to ride the wave of the press;
  4. Doing press effectively around new product launches.

If we review their link acquisition over the last few months, they are still acquiring links more quickly than they are losing them:

link building link acquisition over a few months

They’ve ridden the wave of a few big pieces of content (Galaxy 8 launch, Nintendo Switch controversy) and supplement that with more manual link building. Overall, they’re doing an excellent job.

Taking Action

Turn your research into actionable items. The next step is to create your link acquisition strategy based off of what you know works for your competitors as well as what they are not doing.

A caveat. Sometimes you will come across competitors doing things that are outside of search engine guidelines. At this point, you need to decide how much risk you are willing to take on. While doing things outside of search engine guidelines is not illegal, they do have their terms of service that they can use to remove or severely diminish the traffic coming to your site through their platform. If you have a company building links for you, then you should know what they are doing and what the risks are.

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What’s New in WooCommerce 4.0

What’s New in WooCommerce 4.0

WooCommerce 4.0 was recently released, and brings with it some huge improvements to the way store owners can keep track of their sales and manage their stores. We’ll give you the lowdown on these changes, and how they will improve the experience for you and your clients.

The WooCommerce 4.0 Back Story

In April 2019, the WooCommerce team released WooCommerce Admin. The plugin was originally developed as a feature plugin which allows users to test new functionality as it’s in development. The WooCommerce Admin feature plugin has over 1+ million active installs, so it provided engineers the opportunity to troubleshoot and test features, accept feedback, and iterate in order to create a solid release. After lots of testing with real stores WooCommerce admin has been merged into WooCommerce itself.

Why We Need These Changes

The old reporting interface in WooCommerce was very basic. This made it hard for store owners to understand where their customers were coming from, what products they were buying, and what they could do to get more sales. 

On some large sites users experienced less-than-stellar performance processing orders and other analytics data. The new WooCommerce Admin experience is built on code in WordPress 5.3 to improve reporting within WooCommerce, and make it more efficient.

Legacy reporting in WooCommerce prior to WooCommerce 4.0
Existing reporting in WooCommerce

The New WooCommerce Analytics

The new WooCommerce Analytics includes advanced filters so that you can filter by order status or by products in the analytics results.

Advanced Filters in WooCommerce

Advanced filtering which lets you filter all sorts of data as well as compare a range to previous ranges. So it’s very easy to see how you did Spring of 2020 against Spring 2019 or whatever date you want to look into.

Filtering orders in WooCommerce

Products reports you can compare products and then compare their sales on the site. This feature used to only be available through a plugin, but now store owners have more data at their fingertips. By having the option to compare products and sales, owners can make actionable marketing decisions to increase revenue. 

Compare products

Action Scheduler Improvements

The action scheduler is a background task runner which WooCommerce uses to execute background processes and database updates. WooCommerce 4.0 includes a new action scheduler with custom database tables for storage instead of using posts and comments. This new storage method greatly improves the performance making it faster & more reliable. 

Fun fact: the scheduler is also used by plugins like WooCommerce Subscriptions, so this will not only improve WooCommerce but a few extensions as well.

For the technical reader the Action Scheduler uses the following custom database tables:

  • wp_actionscheduler_actions
  • wp_actionscheduler_claims
  • wp_actionscheduler_groups  
  • wp_actionscheduler_logs

Other updates and changes

As always, there are minor enhancements that go along with this release. 

What to do Before Updating

Before updating, remember that this is a major release, and not everything in the release is backwards compatible. We recommend taking the following actions when upgrading to WooCommerce 4.0.

  1. Take a look at all currently active plugins that interact with WooCommerce. Make sure that all plugins have been tested with WooCommerce 4.0 and marked as compatible. The plugins that might have issues will be shown in the plugin list page on the site.
    Compatibility with WooCommerce 4.0
  2. Create a staging environment, upgrade WooCommerce 4.0 and all plugins, and test purchase flows and backend management tools. It’s always a good idea to thoroughly test major updates.
  3. If you already have the WooCommerce Admin feature plugin: uninstall it via WP-CLI or through your admin.
    WooCommerce Admin Feature Plugin
    1. The following WP-CLI command can be used to deactivate and delete the plugin.
      wp plugin uninstall woocommerce-admin –deactivate
    2. You can also deactivate and delete the WooCommerce Admin plugin from wp-admin.

What to do After Updating

Once you upgrade to WooCommerce 4.0 you’ll be prompted to update the database. 

WooCommerce database update notice
The WooCommerce database update notice in the WordPress admin

You can do this in one of two ways:

  1. Via the admin of your site
  2. Via the WP-CLI

1) WooCommerce Admin

From the admin of your site you’ll see a prompt to update (above). You can start the process by clicking “Update WooCommerce Database”.

If you have a large number of customers and orders, the historical data import for the WooCommerce Admin might take some time. 

WooCommerce Updating Product Data
Notice in the admin that WooCommerce is processing data in the background

You do not have to keep the setting page visible as the process will keep running in the background. 

WooCommerce Import Historical Data

Note: To speed things up, select a shorter time frame to import (between 30 – 90 days).

2) WP-CLI

If you have a larger site in terms of the database then the other option you can consider is using WP-CLI to update the site. Here’s the WP-CLI command:

wp wc update

Using the WP-CLI command to update the WooCommerce database will be a much faster way to update the database to the current version.

Either way – once you’re done you can browse your data in the new admin reports. 📊

New WooCommerce Database tables

For the technically minded you’ll notice that WooCommerce 4.0 adds a few new tables to support the new admin functionality:

  • wp_wc_admin_notes
  • wp_wc_admin_note_actions
  • wp_wc_category_lookup
  • wp_wc_customer_lookup
  • wp_wc_order_coupon_lookup
  • wp_wc_order_product_lookup
  • wp_wc_order_stats
  • wp_wc_order_tax_lookup

Disabling WooCommerce Admin

For many store owners this WooCommerce admin will be incredibly helpful. However, if you already use an external solution for reporting such as Glew.io then you may want to disable the WooCommerce Admin which will speed up your admin load times.

The WooCommerce admin can be disabled using a code snippet on your site:

add_filter( 'woocommerce_admin_disabled', '__return_true' );

If that code snippet is active in a site specific plugin or in a code snippet plugin before WooCommerce is updated to version 4.0 then the WooCommerce Admin related database tables will not be created.

We’re here to help

Have questions about the update? Need help creating a staging environment? Just want to talk about WooCommerce? We’re here to help, 24/7. We have WooCommerce experts on staff ready to advise on new releases, backwards compatibility, and more. That’s the unique value and peace of mind you get by hosting your WooCommerce store with us. Give us a shout!

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Coronavirus Preparedness – Hostdedi Blog

Coronavirus Preparedness – Hostdedi Blog



Hostdedi has been closely monitoring the ongoing outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and guidance as issued by government and health authorities. As of yesterday, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared a global pandemic with regards to the coronavirus.  While our infrastructure and planning is always ready for these types of scenarios we wanted to let you know that we have activated a Virtual Command Center to take additional precautionary measures for our employees so that they can continue to provide the high level of support you’ve come to expect.

Operations are our lifeblood and we are committed to our customers to keep your business online while also keeping our employees safe.

While our offices and data center locations are secure, we’ve implemented several precautionary measures to focus on the health and safety of our customers and employees:

  • We have increased the timing of our cleaning protocols for all facilities and are disinfecting high traffic areas daily.
  • Hand sanitizer stations have been placed along with high traffic areas for use by both customers and employees.
  • Employees have been briefed on the importance of maintaining a clean and safe environment and on our communication and action plans regarding COVID-19.
  • We have restricted employee travel.
  • In addition we have engaged with our suppliers to understand their Pandemic Response plans.

In addition to the above, we’re closely monitoring the health of our employees on a daily basis. If an employee shows any signs of illness, we are encouraging them to seek a medical diagnosis and work from home until cleared by a medical professional or until the symptoms pass. Access to any Hostdedi facility will be closely monitored, and anyone showing symptoms or anyone who has traveled to an area with known high-transmission of COVID-19 may have restricted access.

In the event an outbreak occurs in the area of one of our facilities, we’re prepared to activate our Pandemic Response Plan and do the following:

  • Ensure regular digital communication with our customers and employees, including the possibility of increased access restrictions to our facilities.
  • Activate minimum on-site staffing levels to provide continuity of our services at a 24/7/365 level and allow non-essential employees to work from home.
  • Ensure sufficient resources are available for our on-site employees to continue to safely operate.
  • Continue to review guidance from local, state and federal government agencies and implement updated action plans as needed.

At Hostdedi our high level of support and ensuring your business is supported at all times is of the utmost importance to us. The health and safety of our employees is a priority as well, and these plans will help us ensure we’re doing our best to keep both in mind.

As you monitor the situation and consider your own continuity plans, Hostdedi is prepared to help in any capacity needed.

More information on the coronavirus is available here:

World Health Organization: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

Center for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

If you have any questions, please contact us at 1-866-639-2377 or submit a ticket via the portal.

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Hostdedi Safe Harbor Don’t Settle for Just Any Port in the Storm –

Hostdedi Safe Harbor Don’t Settle for Just Any Port in the Storm –



Hostdedi Safe Harbor is the Haven Magento Stores Need

The currents and undercurrents of Magento’s strategy are ever changing. One day it’s smooth sailing with technology that simply performs, propelling sales and service; the next day they are raising the anchor, and creating a wake of disruption that the entire ecosystem must brace themselves to withstand.  Every ecommerce based solution relies on understanding what lies beneath the surface, so it’s vital that your platform delivers the speed, security, scalability and service demanded by today’s pace of online business. These tenets are the four points of our operational compass here at Hostdedi – relied upon and trusted by our customers as they navigate their best paths forward. 

Recognizing that Magento’s (M1) platform end of life (EOL) is now just a few months away, we’re excited to offer Hostdedi Safe Harbor designed especially for those who can’t afford to – or need more time to strategize – or don’t wish to migrate to M2. As the leading hosting provider for M1 stores for more than ten years, we come to this changing tide with deep experience to accommodate whichever direction keeps you afloat  and ensures your online stores remain uninterrupted. All buoyed by the expertise that is embodied in every single one of our amazing people who stand by ready to assist you today and support you tomorrow. 

Hostdedi Safe Harbor is designed to align with your long-term growth plans because it’s optimized by open source efficiencies – to include costs and community-based expertise. This is a stark differentiator for us compared to closed (SaaS) platforms like Shopify which can cost you more time and money, while limiting your options and future innovation  opportunities. 

 There are three core options to consider over the coming weeks: 

  • Stay the course on M1 with Hostdedi Safe Harbor via a simple dev supported free migration that comes with regular updates, patches, scans, modules, and extensions;
  • Migrate from M1 to M2 with support from us at every turn as you implement your migration plan to a new platform that will accommodate your increase in customers and inventories. 
  • Connect with us about alternative platforms that can meet the needs of ecommerce enterprises large and small, from high-paced to mid-level to newly launched. You are never without resources and expertise when working with the Hostdedi team.

As you explore what steps to take in the coming months, I hope you will call on our team to help answer any questions you have to make the most informed decision for your business. We can show you the pros and cons of a particular path, and help you decide which platform best meets your needs for near and long-term growth.

Your business journey is never-ending and ideally always enjoys smooth sailing. But we know that rough waters are unavoidable – so don’t settle for just any port. Your livelihood relies on keeping a vigilant eye on the horizon, and Hostdedi Safe Harbor will see you through the storm. 

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Caching in WooCommerce – Hostdedi Blog

Caching in WooCommerce – Hostdedi Blog

Fundamentals and Implementation of WooCommerce Cache

Speed is paramount when it comes to eCommerce. Whether you’re chasing down better search rankings or attempting to curb cart abandonment, the speed at which a store loads can determine how many customers convert. Caching in WooCommerce is an essential performance tuning tool that can dramatically decrease page load time. In this article you’ll learn about two techniques to help you cache your WooCommerce store and how it can increase the performance & speed of your store.

A quick note before getting started: Underlying code and database performance issues should be addressed before implementing a caching layer.

What slows a website down?

On a web server, complex computer processes are most often triggered by code (ex. PHP for WordPress and WooCommerce) and database queries (ex. MySQL).Submitting commands (whether PHP, MySQL or another programming language) for a computer to process generally happens quickly. 

What takes precious time is waiting for the computer to process the information and deliver the results to the potential customer waiting in front of their computer screen. When requests become complex or there are too many requests for a server to process then you’ll want to look into three methods to speed the interaction up: caching, concurrency (increasing PHP workers), and reducing complexity (making code more efficient).

What is caching?

When a user requests a web page (like a homepage) that isn’t cached, every time the page is requested, database queries are executed, PHP code runs, and the resulting page is displayed in the customer’s web browser. The entire process can happen pretty quickly. 

If many database queries are required, the logic to draw a page is complex, or you have a high volume of traffic, the process of outputting the page to the visitor can slow considerably, which means longer than normal wait times.

Caching is the process of converting a piece of dynamic data into a static resource. Or put another way, caching is the process of saving the results of a request from a complex computer process and re-routing future identical requests directly to the result, skipping the computer processing.

Output caching, also called full page caching

When it comes to pages that don’t change very often (like content pages such as an About Us page), output caching is a great technique to create a fast experience for potential customers. Here’s how it works:

 

  1. A web page (for instance a product category page) is requested by a potential customer.
  2. When the page is requested, WooCommerce interacts with the database to determine which products to show along with the pricing, description, images etc.
  3. After WooCommerce has completed the interaction with the database, the results are saved in HTML and JavaScript on the web server. 
  4. This cached HTML is served every time someone visits the same page. 

 

There are a ton of full page / output caching plugins on the market. My favorite is WP Rocket because it has a slick user interface that makes configuration a snap. A great free option is Cache Enabler, and it’s available in the WordPress.org repository.

Object caching, and speeding up database access

In some common eCommerce use cases, we might not want to cache the entire page of the website. For instance, we might not want to cache order status, shopping cart, or product pages with customer specific pricing as these pages might change more often than an output cache is refreshed.

So, if we can’t cache the entire page, and the database is the bottleneck, caching queries to the database is a great way to speed things up — that’s exactly what object caching is all about. 

Consider for a moment that a customer might switch between a product page with customer specific pricing, shopping cart, and order status pages multiple times during their logged in session. On a site not integrated with an object cache, the database would receive a request to process a search every time a user switched between these dynamic pages. 

Here’s how object caching works to make database interactions quicker:

  1. A query is presented to the database server via PHP code.
  2. When query results are requested, the database searches to find the result.
  3. After the database finds the results, they’re saved in a cache on the database server. 
  4. This cached result is served every time a piece of code requests the same query. 

When object caching is enabled, dynamic parts of a WooCommerce website will load quicker and put less strain on the database server leading to a better experience for the end user.

Setting Up Redis

Redis a popular object caching tool and can be difficult to set up depending on your skill level and the level of server access that’s provided by your host.

For a simple setup, Redis comes automatically set up for all Managed WooCommerce plans at Hostdedi.

Or if you want, you can set it up yourself.

A quick note on troubleshooting

While implementing caching can lead to awesome performance gains, it can also make it more difficult to troubleshoot output issues. Remember to disable caching when trying to uncover an output issue. 

Caching in WooCommerce is an essential tool for dramatically improving the performance of your store. Have caching questions? Feel free to give us a shout day or night. We’re here for you.

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cPanel Pricing Changes: A Powerful Alternative

cPanel Pricing Changes: A Powerful Alternative

2020 has seen a big change for hosting clients. cPanel, a hosting admin panel that allows site owners to make changes to their hosting plans, has changed its pricing structure. As a result, the cost of hosting will likely increase for most hosting clients. 

But it doesn’t need to. There are a number of cPanel alternatives available to site owners that are just as powerful (if not more powerful). Here, we’ll talk through one of those alternatives.

What Is cPanel?

When you host a site with any hosting provider, you’re able to make a number of changes to your hosting infrastructure. cPanel is a graphical interface that allows you to do this without having to work through the command line. 

cPanel is a powerful tool for site administrators. It not only allows you to make changes to your hosting plan, it also allows you to:

  • Add and change SSL certificates
  • Create backups
  • View access logs
  • Access database administration
  • Configure FTP settings
  • Manage files

Unfortunately, cPanel is not owned by your hosting provider. As a result, cPanel manages its own pricing structure. As of January 1, 2020, they have adopted an account-based pricing structure. 

What Does the cPanel Pricing Change Mean for You?

The new cost for users depends on the server and plan types they use. However, on average the cost for end-users (you) will increase by 25%-50%. Since the cost is calculated on a per-account basis, in some cases you may see costs rise by more than 100%. 

This price change has come as a shock to much of the hosting community, with many users unsure of how to now keep costs low. 

Luckily, we offer an alternative to cPanel, one which is just as powerful and that comes bundled with all of our hosting plans: The Hostdedi Client Portal. 

The Hostdedi Client Portal is a custom hosting admin panel created for use by Hostdedi customers. As it stands, The Hostdedi Client Portal has thousands of licenses in production and as we continue to grow with our clients, we expect to increase that number by thousands more in the coming months. 

cPanel Alternatives

The Hostdedi Client Portal is similar to cPanel. It offers all the same features your find with cPanel in a slightly different interface. In addition, you’ll be able to access and configure the technology options you find with Hostdedi that you won’t find anywhere else. This includes Hostdedi Auto Scaling, Elasticsearch, and the Cloud Accelerator. 

The Nexess Control Panel

The Hostdedi Client Portal makes site management easy. 

You’ll immediately be given access to the Hostdedi Client Portal as soon as you sign up for an account. The screenshot above provides a basic overview of the Client Portal for Managed WooCommerce plans. 

Depending on the application you choose for your hosting service, you’ll have access to different features. Each of these is tailored to your specific setup and is designed to make developing your site as simple as possible. 

A number of tutorials for how to use the Hostdedi Client Portal can be found in the Knowledge Base

Moving to the Hostdedi Client Portal

If you’re not a Hostdedi client yet and are interested in making the move to Hostdedi services, you can get started by visiting our cloud hosting page and selecting the right plan for your requirements. 

Alternatively, get in touch with a Hostdedi support team member to discuss your options and how the Hostdedi Client Portal can help you. 

The post cPanel Pricing Changes: A Powerful Alternative appeared first on Hostdedi Blog.

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Welcome Our Newest Expert, Patrick Rauland

Welcome Our Newest Expert, Patrick Rauland

Hostdedi is pleased to welcome Patrick Rauland as our new Product Marketing Manager for managed WooCommerce. Patrick is a known WooCommerce expert with experience in development, configuration, and client-based consulting. 

Before joining Hostdedi, Patrick was a Woo Product Manager at WooThemes and Automattic, as well as an industry trainer and author. Patrick has experience developing core functionality in WooCommerce itself, leading technology releases, and helping run ecommerce conferences.

In his new role, Patrick will focus on increasing Hostdedi’s WooCommerce presence in the market.

“I’m excited to join Hostdedi. They have the hands-down best plan for WooCommerce customers and I’m excited to articulate exactly why that is and what you can get out of it.”

Patrick will work out of Denver, and we can’t wait to see his impact on the WooCommerce market and our own Hostdedi team. 

The post Welcome Our Newest Expert, Patrick Rauland appeared first on Hostdedi Blog.

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