Industry Buzz

The Unconventional Way to Grow a Facebook Group With Facebook Ads

Social Media Examiner -

Want to grow your Facebook group membership? Looking for a strategy that works? In this article, you’ll discover how to use an underutilized Facebook ad campaign type to attract new members to your Facebook group. Why Use a Facebook Page Likes Ad Campaign to Grow Your Facebook Group? Attracting new group members with Facebook ads […] The post The Unconventional Way to Grow a Facebook Group With Facebook Ads appeared first on Social Media Marketing | Social Media Examiner.

New Instagram Scheduling and Messaging Tools: What Marketers Need to Know

Social Media Examiner -

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Social Media Marketing Talk Show, a news show for marketers who want to stay on the leading edge of social media. On this week’s Social Media Marketing Talk Show, we explore Instagram scheduling and messaging tools with special guest, Alex Beadon. Tune In to the Social Media Marketing […] The post New Instagram Scheduling and Messaging Tools: What Marketers Need to Know appeared first on Social Media Marketing | Social Media Examiner.

Now Available – EC2 Instances (G4) with NVIDIA T4 Tensor Core GPUs

Amazon Web Services Blog -

The NVIDIA-powered G4 instances that I promised you earlier this year are available now and you can start using them today in eight AWS regions in six sizes! You can use them for machine learning training & inferencing, video transcoding, game streaming, and remote graphics workstations applications. The instances are equipped with up to four NVIDIA T4 Tensor Core GPUs, each with 320 Turing Tensor cores, 2,560 CUDA cores, and 16 GB of memory. The T4 GPUs are ideal for machine learning inferencing, computer vision, video processing, and real-time speech & natural language processing. The T4 GPUs also offer RT cores for efficient, hardware-powered ray tracing. The NVIDIA Quadro Virtual Workstation (Quadro vWS) is available in AWS Marketplace. It supports real-time ray-traced rendering and can speed creative workflows often found in media & entertainment, architecture, and oil & gas applications. G4 instances are powered by AWS-custom Second Generation Intel® Xeon® Scalable (Cascade Lake) processors with up to 64 vCPUs, and are built on the AWS Nitro system. Nitro’s local NVMe storage building block provides direct access to up to 1.8 TB of fast, local NVMe storage. Nitro’s network building block delivers high-speed ENA networking. The Intel AVX512-Deep Learning Boost feature extends AVX-512 with a new set of Vector Neural Network Instructions (VNNI for short). These instructions accelerate the low-precision multiply & add operations that reside in the inner loop of many inferencing algorithms. Here are the instance sizes: Instance Name NVIDIA T4 Tensor Core GPUs vCPUs RAM Local Storage EBS Bandwidth Network Bandwidth g4dn.xlarge 1 4 16 GiB 1 x 125 GB Up to 3.5 Gbps Up to 25 Gbps g4dn.2xlarge 1 8 32 GiB 1 x 225 GB Up to 3.5 Gbps Up to 25 Gbps g4dn.4xlarge 1 16 64 GiB 1 x 225 GB Up to 3.5 Gbps Up to 25 Gbps g4dn.8xlarge 1 32 128 GiB 1 x 900 GB 7 Gbps 50 Gbps g4dn.12xlarge 4 48 192 GiB 1 x 900 GB 7 Gbps 50 Gbps g4dn.16xlarge 1 64 256 GiB 1 x 900 GB 7 Gbps 50 Gbps We are also working on a bare metal instance that will be available in the coming months: Instance Name NVIDIA T4 Tensor Core GPUs vCPUs RAM Local Storage EBS Bandwidth Network Bandwidth g4dn.metal 8 96 384 GiB 2 x 900 GB 14 Gbps 100 Gbps If you want to run graphics workloads on G4 instances, be sure to use the latest version of the NVIDIA AMIs (available in AWS Marketplace) so that you have access to the requisite GRID and Graphics drivers, along with an NVIDIA Quadro Workstation image that contains the latest optimizations and patches. Here’s where you can find them: NVIDIA Gaming – Windows Server 2016 NVIDIA Gaming – Windows Server 2019 NVIDIA Gaming – Ubuntu 18.04 The newest AWS Deep Learning AMIs include support for G4 instances. The team that produces the AMIs benchmarked a g3.16xlarge instance against a g4dn.12xlarge instance and shared the results with me. Here are some highlights: MxNet Inference (resnet50v2, forward pass without MMS) – 2.03 times faster. MxNet Inference (with MMS) – 1.45 times faster. MxNet Training (resnet50_v1b, 1 GPU) – 2.19 times faster. Tensorflow Inference (resnet50v1.5, forward pass) – 2.00 times faster. Tensorflow Inference with Tensorflow Service (resnet50v2) – 1.72 times faster. Tensorflow Training (resnet50_v1.5) – 2.00 times faster. The benchmarks used FP32 numeric precision; you can expect an even larger boost if you use mixed precision (FP16) or low precision (INT8). You can launch G4 instances today in the US East (N. Virginia), US East (Ohio), US West (Oregon), US West (N. California), Europe (Frankfurt), Europe (Ireland), Europe (London), Asia Pacific (Seoul), and Asia Pacific (Tokyo) Regions. We are also working to make them accessible in Amazon SageMaker and in Amazon EKS clusters. — Jeff;

10 Last-Minute Social Campaigns You Can Push Now to Drive Holiday Sales

HostGator Blog -

The post 10 Last-Minute Social Campaigns You Can Push Now to Drive Holiday Sales appeared first on HostGator Blog. For online business owners, it’s never too soon to work on your winter holiday social media campaigns. After all, 40% of shoppers start their seasonal sprees before November each year. But what if you’ve cut things a little too close and now you’re scrambling to create a holiday social marketing plan for your business? Don’t panic. We’ve pulled together a few ideas you can put into play fast, to help you drive traffic from social channels to your website and earn as many holiday sales as possible. Ready? Let’s get to work.  Try These Holiday Social Media Campaigns to Drive Sales Everyone loves a bargain. In 2018, Deloitte found that 67% of holiday shoppers who made $50,000/year or less were more likely to buy gifts from whichever retailer offered the best price. But 60% of holiday shoppers with incomes of $100K and more said they also shop for the best price. Whoever your target customers are, show up in their social feeds with some price breaks this holiday season. Check out the most popular categories in the NRF survey from the 2018 holiday season below. You can use them to prioritize your social media promos if you’re trying to beat the calendar.  For example, based on popularity, gift cards should be your top priority. To make gift cards a deal and not simply a convenience, you might offer a bundle deal that gives shoppers one free gift card for buying five (or whatever quantity makes sense for your business) at the regular price.  1. The gift card campaign If there’s anything most people love more than getting a gift, it’s getting a gift that lets us treat ourselves. Gift cards are the most sought-after gift option during the holidays, with 60% of consumers saying that’s what they want. Make sure your followers know you offer them. Dress up your gift card or gift certificate images with some holiday flair so they’ll catch shoppers’ attention on social media. Talk about how convenient to buy and easy to give your gift cards are, whether shoppers are buying ahead of time or slamming through their gift list at the last minute.  Hashtag ideas: #holidaygiftcards #lastminutegifts #giftcards 2. Deals on your most popular gift categories Does your online shop sell fashion accessories and jewelry? Maybe roll out holiday deals for your accessories first and then for jewelry if you have time. Do you sell electronics and tools? Focus on electronics promos first, then tools.  Hashtag ideas: Base them on the products you’re offering, like #giftcarddeals plus some seasonal tags like #christmasdeals 3. Special offers on your bestsellers Even if your business doesn’t sell anything in the top retail gift categories, the holidays are a good time to offer deals on your bestselling items. And if you do sell products in the popular gift categories, it’s a great time to offer deals on your top-selling items. Just make sure you have enough inventory available to meet the demand your promo may generate. Or, like specialty food retailer Harry & David, you can simply remind customers that the holidays are a good time to order their favorite items. Hashtag ideas: #bestsellers #[yourbrand]favorites  4. Exclusive offers for holiday shoppers Do you have products no one else has? Deals that no one else can beat? Promote them as exclusives to appeal to shoppers who are on the lookout for one-of-a-kind gifts and the best prices.  Hashtag ideas: #exclusiveoffer #exclusivedeal 5. Sweet deals on seasonal items A lot of Christmas shoppers are looking for Christmas-themed gear, in addition to everything else on their lists. If you have holiday-themed sweaters, socks, jewelry or tableware, start promoting it on social now so your customers can get what they need for their holiday parties.  Hashtag ideas: #[holiday][yourproduct] like #diwalidecorations #chanukahcookies #christmassocks 6. Treat-yourself deals Remember that most people want to treat themselves, too. Fifty-one percent of last year’s holiday shoppers told Deloitte they were picking up a few things for themselves. Food and liquor was the most popular treat-yourself category.  Pick a few products that you know customers like to buy for themselves and share them as self-gifting options for the holidays. Hashtag ideas: #treatyourself #selfgifting 7. Holiday flash sales Want to boost sales on a typically slow day during the holiday season? Run a flash sale, like this cycle shop did on Dec. 25. Just make sure you’ve got someone available to monitor orders and customer service during your flash sale, even if it’s on a holiday.  Hashtag ideas: #christmasoffers #flashsale 8. The holiday-themed content campaign Like deals campaigns, a holiday-themed content campaign can take several forms. All you need is a holiday blog post and some time to promote the things you talk about in that post. Here are a few examples of ways you can turn a holiday post into a social campaign. Gift guides. Make a post about each of the products in your latest holiday gift guide. Hashtag ideas: #giftguide2019 #giftguideforkids #christmasgiftguideHoliday style trends. Break down your holiday fashion, beauty, food and décor tips into posts. Hashtag ideas: #holidayfashions #holidaydecor #holidayfoodHoliday recipes. This is a great fit for shops that sell food, tableware, kitchen items and other housewares. Hashtag ideas: #holidaytreats #holidayrecipes   9. The best-of campaign Like holiday-themed blog post social campaigns, you can create best-of campaigns that draw on your top-selling or top-reviewed products. For example: This year’s top-selling tech. Pick your top 5 or 10 bestselling tech items and feature each one in a social post explaining why they’re so popular. Hashtag ideas: #besttech #bestsellers #techgiftsBest tools of 2019. If you sell tools, craft supplies, kitchen items or hobby gear, check your customers reviews to see which products got the most love. Then feature each item in a social post. Hashtag idea: #besttools  Best Practices for Last-Minute Holiday Social Campaigns Whichever campaigns you run with, remember to research your hashtags and make your offer terms (like purchase limits and expiration dates) clear. Include Shop Now buttons or product page links where you can so that busy shoppers can move from social browsing to buying in the moment. Finally, make sure your checkout, fraud screening, fulfillment and hosting service are all ready to handle your holiday shopping traffic. Need to upgrade your hosting plan for the holidays? Talk to the experts at HostGator today! Find the post on the HostGator Blog

Local Business Facebook Ads: What Marketers Need to Know

Social Media Examiner -

Do you want more foot traffic for your local business? Wondering how Facebook ads can help? To explore what local businesses need to know about Facebook ads, I interview Allie Bloyd on the Social Media Marketing Podcast. Allie is a Facebook ads expert who specializes in helping local businesses. She’s the founder of Allie Bloyd […] The post Local Business Facebook Ads: What Marketers Need to Know appeared first on Social Media Marketing | Social Media Examiner.

Server Virtualization and its Benefits

HostGator India Blog -

Virtualization is the buzzword in the hosting industry, and although we’ve heard a lot of terms like ‘virtual servers’ or ‘virtual machines’, the idea behind virtual has always been blurred. Well, virtual is the absence of physical but it doesn’t mean it is not real. The aim of this blog post is to help you […] The post Server Virtualization and its Benefits appeared first on HostGator India Blog.

WP Engine Named a Great Place to Work for Women

WP Engine -

For the first time ever, WP Engine has been named a Great Place to Work for Women. Great Place to Work, an organization that surveys more than 100 million global employees each year in order to recognize outstanding workplaces, released its annual list of workplaces that rank highest among females employees. We are proud to… The post WP Engine Named a Great Place to Work for Women appeared first on WP Engine.

How SiteLock Security Protects and Guards Your Website

The Blog -

The Internet is big, like, really big. Besides that, it can be an intimidating and scary space. Lately, news of online hacks and data breaches abound. You wouldn’t think that hopping online to buy a new sheet set from a major retailer could jeopardize your private and financial information, but for many of us, it’s happened and it’s a hassle. So what can you do to reassure your website visitors and prospective customers that your site is a safe place to transact? Wouldn’t it be helpful if there was some kind of visual indicator? Rest easy, because there is! SiteLock Security is a website must-have It’s called the SiteLock Security Seal and you can proudly display it on your website with any purchase of SiteLock Security. That’s not the only benefit SiteLock Security provides. In fact, by the time you’re done with this article you’ll wonder how you ever published a site without it. SiteLock Security can be purchased through Let’s take a look at why you need SiteLock Security on your site. Malware Scanning – What is malware? It’s a portmanteau, created from the words malicious and software, and it strikes fear into the hearts of Internet users the world over. Ever heard of viruses or Trojans? How about ransomware or spyware? These are a sampling of different types of malware. Viruses spread from infected files to clean files and can cause extreme damage to websites. Trojans, a lá their namesake, are discreet — they create “backdoors” that allow other viruses into your computer, server, and security. Ransomware and spyware are what they sound like — one can hold your computer and its contents hostage while the other spies on your every action. Depending on the SiteLock Security plan you choose we offer both daily and continuous malware scanning so you can relax in the knowledge and comfort that we have your, and your website’s, backs. Automatic Malware Removal – All those nasty types of malware we just discussed?— yeah, we’ll automatically get rid of those for you if they’re detected by SiteLock Security. If you don’t have the time to manually scan and remove malware yourself (and who does?), don’t fret because we’ve got you covered. Blacklist Monitoring – There are a lot of good lists out there that you want your name on, like the VIP list for that fantastic new eatery opening up around the corner. But a blacklist? Not so much. If you find yourself on a blacklist your bottom line will feel the negative impact. So what is a blacklist and why is appearing on them detrimental to your site and business? We’re betting SEO and where your website shows up in Google search results is important to you. (If not, it should be.) SiteLock’s Blacklist Monitoring will help ensure you don’t get put on one of Google’s blacklists, which would damage your domain and site reputation, and keep your site out of search results.  Block Automated Bot Attacks – Bots, also known as Internet Robots, come in a variety of forms and perform numerous functions. Some bots are good, like the spiders and crawlers Google uses to search websites and determine the best results for people’s search queries. These are not the bots to worry about, and not what SiteLock protects against. SiteLock Security protects your site from bad bot attacks. Bad bots exploit issues on your site and aggravate the effects of any malware on your site. Put simply, bad bots do bad things. Their functions run the gamut from logging keystrokes (that means they track and record the keystrokes your site visitors make — including when they enter sensitive and financial information and login credentials) to sending spam that can land you on blacklists. Not all bots are as nice as Wall-E. DDoS Protection – What’s DDoS? It stands for Distributed Denial of Service. DDoS Protection prevents your site from succumbing to a DDoS attack, which can render your site unusable for the duration of the attack. DDoS attacks are a particularly ugly form of bot attacks. What happens during a DDoS attack? It’s when multiple compromised computer systems (usually ones that have fallen prey to a Trojan virus) maliciously band together to flood your website and server — rendering your site unreachable because it’s overwhelmed. Sometimes DDoS attacks can last a few minutes, or in particularly bad cases, they can last for days. What would happen to your revenue if your e-commerce site was rendered unusable and unreachable for days on end? Nothing good, that’s for sure. Advanced Web Application Firewall – You’ve probably heard of firewalls before as they’ve been around for a long time. Basically, firewalls are another way your site and server are protected from bad actors trying to infiltrate them. Think of a firewall as a bouncer, and an advanced web application firewall (WAF) as the biggest, baddest bouncer around. When bots and other malicious entities try to reach your site and server to wreak havoc, your WAF won’t let them through the door. Keep your website up and running with SiteLock Security When it comes to Internet security, it pays to be safe. Running an unsecured website is like playing Russian roulette with your digital livelihood. Don’t become a victim, unable to use or monetize your site due to DDoS attacks or Trojan viruses; instead, use SiteLock Security. SiteLock Security is the guardian your website needs — never sleeping, always on, and always working in your best interest. If anything malicious is detected on your site you’ll receive email and account alerts, and you’re guaranteed a quick response time should we at need to jump in and help with anything happening on your site. So what are you waiting for? Safeguard your site today!  The post How SiteLock Security Protects and Guards Your Website appeared first on | Blog.

How to Create a Restaurant Website (In 5 Steps)

DreamHost Blog -

Running a restaurant can be both exciting and challenging. It also means you might not have a lot of time to put towards creating an online presence for your establishment. With lots of options for creating social media accounts and websites, we understand that it can be challenging to pick the right approach. Fortunately, Content Management Systems (CMSs) like WordPress can make it easier to combine all of your options into one beautifully-designed online space. For example, WordPress plugins and themes — think website templates — give you the flexibility to incorporate social media accounts and menus on your site, while not draining your energy and resources in the process. In this article, we’ll cover five steps for creating a restaurant website with WordPress. We’ll also discuss why WordPress is the best option, and how website builder tools created for the platform can take your site to the next level. Let’s jump right in! Make a Reservation for WordPress HostingOur automatic updates and strong security defenses take server management off your hands so you can focus on dining experiences, not website details.Check Out Plans Why You Should Consider WordPress for Your Restaurant Website Small business owners can benefit from launching their online presence with a social media platform or restaurant app, as there are many widely-available and free options. There is no denying that social media is vital to your marketing strategy but going with a third-party platform can have downsides as well. Three critical factors to think about when deciding whether to create a dedicated website for your restaurant include: Return on Investment (ROI). While websites can be pricey, there are plans available for a broad spectrum of budgets. Once you invest the initial time required to set up a fully-functional website, it can be less of a time drain than social media in the long run. Functionality and Control. You’ll want to weigh the functionality you need against the features social media platforms have to offer. While you can usually string together multiple applications, a website is more likely to provide the functionality you’ll need to create a compelling experience. Plus, you won’t be hemmed in by a third-party design; you’ll get complete control of the look and feel of your website. Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Social profiles do show up in search engines, but they are a more powerful tool when used to promote content from your website. Google can’t determine the authority of a social profile, but linking back to your site can increase your overall search rankings. That’s why we recommend WordPress as the best CMS and website platform for your needs. Not only is it the most widely-used CMS, but it’s also a free and open-source platform. This means that the variety and diversity of plugin and theme options are nearly endless (which we’ll demonstrate shortly). WordPress also offers restaurant owners a lot of flexibility over who can use the website to help maintain the business’ public-facing experience. You can adjust user roles to fit your staffing structure, for example, or create content for future events and menu changes. With this platform, the sky’s the limit. How to Create Your Restaurant Website With WordPress (In 5 Steps) The best part is that getting started with WordPress is pretty simple. Often, you can install WordPress with just one click through your web host and be ready to welcome website visitors the same day. In the next few sections, we’re going to look at five essential steps to help you get your restaurant site online. Step 1: Choose Your Domain Name and Web Host Choosing a web host is the first crucial step in getting your restaurant website up and running. Your host is where all your site’s data, files, and media will be stored and maintained. There are a few things to consider when choosing your host, however. You’ll want to compare what each provider is offering with what you think you’ll need over the first year of running your site. This includes: Security. A website crash on a Friday night can mean a loss of business if your customers expect to see your new menu each week. Reviewing potential web hosts to understand the security features they offer is key to keeping your site up and running. Backup and restoration options are a good place to start. Software. If you need to get your restaurant site online fast, partnering with a host that offers easy software options can be a big help. Be sure to find out whether your host offers one-click options for additional software or provides features for speed and optimization. Support. Web hosts typically offer increasing levels of support as you upgrade to higher-tier plans. You’ll want to decide if you need 24/7 expert support or if you can wait for a ticket to be answered. Extras. You might find it hard to choose between several high-quality web hosts. If that’s the case, you can take a close look at what extras each host offers. If you know you could benefit from premium themes, pre-installed eCommerce options, or site builders, for example, reviewing these options might be a good way to break a tie. No matter what type of hosting you ultimately decide you need, here at DreamHost we offer a wide range of WordPress plans. Once you have a host picked out, you get to decide on a name for your new website. Some best practices might be helpful in this process. While a .com is still the most recognized and respected top-level domain out there, there are plenty of other options. The most important thing is to make sure your domain is short and memorable. Another factor to keep in mind is the extra goodies that might come with your hosting plan. Some hosts offer free add-ons, for example. Here at DreamHost, we’re excited to be able to provide access to a handy site builder tool. To get started, you’ll need to select “WP Website Builder” as an option during checkout of your DreamHost plan purchase. Then, we’ll automatically install WordPress and premium website builder plugins for WordPress — Inspirations and Page & Post Builder — built by our friends at BoldGrid. Step 2: Install a Dedicated Restaurant Theme Once you choose a host and set up your site at its domain name, you can start thinking about website design. WP Website Builder brings easy drag-and-drop page building to your WordPress site, along with plenty of theme options to choose from. To select one, you’ll navigate to the Inspirations menu. There, you can easily select a new theme by clicking on Start Over with New Inspiration. If you’re new to WordPress, this is the first page you’ll see when you visit your dashboard. You’ll then be led through several steps that will get you started with your new theme. First, you’ll select the category of themes you want to browse. We’ll pick Restaurant, naturally. You’ll see that there are many options to choose from. For this demonstration, we’ll try out the Florentine theme. After you select your theme, the next page will provide some options for testing its responsiveness on various screen sizes. You can also select how many pre-set pages you want to start with. We’ve chosen the Kitchen Sink option with blog functionality, so we can experiment with everything. Once you make your changes here, you’ll click on the Next button. Your final step in the setup process will be to fill out some optional but helpful information. This is found in the Essentials tab. You can edit this information later, but it will be used throughout your website to pre-populate your contact and social media information. Be sure to select Finish and Install when you’re done. After that, WP Website Builder will automatically install additional plugins to help support the theme you chose. Once that’s complete, you can add your restaurant logo and really start cooking. Related: Here’s Why Responsive Design is a Must for Small Business Owners Step 3: Select Plugins to Expand Your Site’s Feature Set While WP Website Builder includes several plugins that offer enhanced functionality for creating your restaurant site, you might want to explore a few other tools as well. Plugins, true to their name, plug right into your WordPress site and theme to extend their existing options. Whether you plan on offering new menu items every week, only on holidays, or whenever you feel like it, plugins can help you manage those changes. Additionally, other plugins can help you develop an online reservation system or organize in-house events. One plugin to check out is Five Star Restaurant Reservations. This solution is packed with features to help you manage all aspects of taking online reservations and table bookings. You can accept, reject, or block reservations as needed. Additionally, you can set up specific user roles for your staff and send notifications to customers. Step 4: Create Engaging Content Once you have your design in place, you’ll want to solidify the content strategy for your restaurant. Whether you choose to feature blog content, exciting menus, or just pictures of your tasty-looking food, WordPress has you covered. Even the rotisserie giant, Boston Market, uses WordPress for its restaurant website. There are several ways to do this, including various options within the WordPress Edit Post area. Additionally, you can check out a plugin like WP Scheduled Posts. This tool can help you create an editorial calendar to keep your blog fresh and up-to-date. That way, you won’t have to worry about forgetting to post a timely article or showcasing outdated content. Once you establish your approach to content, you might want to turn to social media channels to spread the news about your new website. Related: 7 Steps to Identify a Target Audience for Your Online Business Step 5: Build an Email List Building up a loyal clientele can take some time. Creating the opportunity for potential customers to sign up to an email list can be a smart strategy. Using and maintaining an email list for your restaurant gives you a direct link to your customers. You can send menu announcements, hours of operation updates, and discount offers. There are a lot of great marketing tools available. MailChimp is a popular email newsletter and list management service. You’ll need to create a free account, and then there’s a plugin available that can connect your site up to this service instantly. With MailChimp, you can fully integrate your WordPress site with your email marketing campaigns. That way, you can bring in as many new patrons as possible. Be Awesome on the InternetJoin our monthly newsletter for tips and tricks to build your dream website!Sign Me Up Growing and Promoting Your Restaurant Website At this point, your site is all set up. So, how do you get the word out about it? Here’s where your WordPress site and social media can combine to create a powerful team. There are several key items to keep in mind that can help you promote your new website on social media, including: Micro-influencers. This might be easier if your business operates in a more metropolitan area. Social media influencers can promote your site for you, and expose it to a new audience. Additionally, inviting food bloggers to your restaurant can also pay off. Reviews. Opening up review options online and collecting testimonials from social media comments or in-restaurant surveys is one of the best techniques available to you. Posting these reviews to your website can be an effective marketing tool. Social media management apps. Keeping track of several social media accounts can be a time sink. Fortunately, there are plenty of management techniques and applications for social media that can help. We recommend checking out Hootsuite first, as it connects to all the major social media channels. Tapping into the power of word-of-mouth marketing through online social channels, hashtags, and lots of linking back to your new website may seem daunting at first, but should pay off in the long run. The Last Bite The restaurant business can be competitive. Along with tasty food and creative dishes, customers are looking for an experience that often goes beyond the time they spend in your physical establishment. Creating a standout restaurant website design can help them feel more connected to your business and keep them coming back for more. Here at DreamHost, we want you to be able to put your energy into making delicious meals, and not worry about whether your website maintenance and support is taken care of. That’s why we offer complete WordPress hosting solutions, now served with a side of our premium website builder tools, so you can focus on making Instagram-worthy food! The post How to Create a Restaurant Website (In 5 Steps) appeared first on Website Guides, Tips and Knowledge.

How to Add Captions to Videos [and Why Your Business Needs Them]

HostGator Blog -

The post How to Add Captions to Videos [and Why Your Business Needs Them] appeared first on HostGator Blog. We live in the golden age of online video, but it’s also the age of silent film. Why? Many people watch videos on mute. That means to get the most impact from your brand and product videos, you need to add captions.  Captioning your videos can generate more views, more conversions and better SEO. Here’s why captions matter and which tools you can use to create captions for your videos. Video Captions Matter for Views and Engagement Up to 85% of the videos people watch on Facebook are on mute. That’s because a lot of us watch videos in shared spaces like open-plan offices, waiting rooms and public transportation where blaring audio is rude.  The silent approach works if there are captions. Digiday reported that agency research shows intent to buy and other key performance indicators aren’t reduced for muted videos. However, Facebook found that adding captions to videos increased average video view time by 12%, which means more engagement with your brand and message.  Video Captions Matter for Accessibility About 15% of adults in the U.S. have some form of hearing loss, according to the National Institutes of Health. Videos without captions exclude these millions of people from your audience. If you’re producing videos for a public-service organization, like a state agency, city program, school or a television outlet, you’re almost certainly required by law to include captions. Video Captions Matter for SEO, but… To get SEO benefits, you need to use closed captions. This requires creating an SRT file that contains your video’s captions and uploading it to your social media videos.  The SRT file works like a transcript of your video that search engine bots can analyze, which helps your video get found. Closed captions may display differently on different platforms, depending on the video display format. Open captions, on the other hand, are embedded in the video so they’re not visible to search engine crawlers. But they do look consistent across video platforms because, like the images and sound, they’re part of the video itself.  In-Platform Auto-Generated Video Caption Tools to Try Facebook and YouTube can auto-generate captions for your videos, but they’re not closed captions, and users say the quality is uneven. You may want to try them out to see if they work for you. Facebook’s auto-generate tool is only available for Page owners, so if you want to caption videos on your personal profile, you’ll need to upload an SRT file to your video–or upload a video you’ve already open-captioned.  Free Tools You Can Use to Caption Your Videos for Any Platform If you’re producing marketing videos for your website and multiple social media channels, it’s more efficient to use apps and tools that aren’t tied to one platform. Make one video, edit one set of captions, and you’re ready to share. Here are a few to try out.  1. AutoCap  Platform: AndroidCaption type: OpenLanguages: English, French, German, Hebrew, Portuguese, Spanish, Turkish Pros: Free, easy to use interface, font and caption placement options. Recognized my speech more accurately than my phone’s voice-to-text function.Cons: Like other tools, AutoCap doesn’t transcribe perfectly. In my test, it omitted a couple of sentences, which I had to type in.Time to upload, analyze, caption and save a 12-second video: Three minutes. AutoCap generates open captions quickly for videos on your phone. I tried it on my phone and found that the simple interface makes it easy to preview the captions AutoCap generates, edit the text, and add words or sentences that are missing. You’ll have to type in notes like [laughter], [music], and [chickens clucking].  2. Apple Clips  Platform: iOS 11.1 and laterCaption type: OpenLanguages: English, Catalan, Chinese (Hong Kong), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Slovak, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Traditional Chinese, Turkish, Ukrainian, VietnamesePros: Free. Clips’ Live Titles tool generates real-time captions as you record, which you can edit before you save your video. CNet called the feature “fantastic.” PC Magazine called it “truly impressive.”Cons: Only available for iOS users. As an Android/PC user, I couldn’t try Apple Clips’ Live Titles tools for myself. Based on the number of positive reviews by Apple users, it’s worth exploring if you shoot your videos on iOS devices. 3. Kapwing Platform: web browser on desktop and mobileCaption type: open (auto-generated) or closed (user-uploaded SRT file)Languages: Kapwing’s subtitle supports dozens of languages and different character sets.Pros: More language options than Apple Clips and AutoCap. More captioning options, as well. Excellent voice-to-text recognition, and the app lets you edit the auto-generated captions while the video is playing in the editor, so you can fix errors as you hear them.Cons: Slower to process videos than AutoCap. Time to upload, analyze, open-caption and save a 12-second video: Six minutes. Kapwing is a browser-based suite of AV tools that, among other things, lets you upload videos so you can add captions by hand, use the auto-generate tool, or upload an SRT file (on the desktop site) with your captions. Once your video is processed, you can remove the Kapwing watermark by signing in with your Google or Facebook account. 4. Closed Caption Creator Platform: web browser on desktop and mobileCaption type: open or closed Languages: English and other Latin alphabet languages; other options unclear.Pros: Free. This is an easy way to generate files for open and closed captions without formatting the file content yourself.Cons: You can’t export captioned videos, only caption files.Time to upload, analyze, caption and save a 12-second video caption file: Three and a half minutes. This free tool lets you upload your video and type in your captions to create SRT and other types of caption files. There are also tools to format captions and adjust their timing.  After you save a project, you can export and download your captions as an SRT file. Then you can upload your SRT file to videos you upload to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other platforms.  There’s a learning curve to adding captions to your business videos, but it’s not steep. And the payoff is getting more audience engagement with your videos, even with the sound off. Find the post on the HostGator Blog

How Small Businesses Can Ensure Consumer Privacy Using Digital Technology

Reseller Club Blog -

When your company collects user data, you pit convenience against protecting people’s privacy.  As people purchase and use technologies that rely on personal data to function, this challenge will intensify. For example, 71% of Americans expect to have at least one smart-home device by 2025.  According to Consumer Reports, 65% of Americans are either slightly or not at all confident that their personal data is private and not distributed without their knowledge.  Research from the Global Web Index indicates across the globe, over 60% of people are worried about how companies use their data.  As public distrust mounts due to recent privacy scandals, protections for personal data becomes an increasingly pressing issue for consumers and businesses to address.  Small businesses often rely on customer service to establish an edge against larger competitors. To provide top-notch customer service, your small business needs to balance data collection efforts with protecting user privacy.  Recent Examples Underscore Privacy Concerns  Recent privacy scandals at two of the largest companies in the world – Google and Amazon – highlight the importance of personal data protection for all businesses.    Last year, the Associated Press found that Google continued to store users’ time-stamped location data through mobile devices, even if users opted out of location sharing features. Similarly, Amazon employs thousands of individuals around the world to listen to voice recordings captured by their smart devices, regardless of whether the device is activated or not.   The workers transcribe, annotate, and feed the data back into the software in order to eliminate gaps in the voice assistant’s human language skills, according to Bloomberg. Consumers Value Curated Technology Despite privacy concerns, many people want devices with location tracking enabled.  Personal data can be used to curate digital content including services and ads to an individuals’ interests. For example, voice assistant users value the immediate access to information. Approximately half of the people who own a voice assistant value their device the most for its immediate answers to questions.  This information, while adjusted to the user, sometimes limits the number of apps they use – i.e., they get in a pattern of using the same few things over and over.  As a result, small businesses need to work to establish their product as part of people’s routines if they want to retain users on new technologies.  To ensure this happens, your small business needs to collect and analyze user data to improve the chances you have to earn that level of use from customers.  Data Drives Results  While companies highlight procedures for limiting their access to personal data, it is difficult to ultimately stop its collection because it supports success.  Data-driven decisions resulted in a 6% increase in productivity and output according to a Sloan School of Business study.  The same study found that nearly 50% of Fortune 1000 executives stated that their companies were producing significant results from investments in big data; about 81% characterized their investments as successful.   Investment in data collection, though, risks straining the trust between consumers and businesses as most data is distributed and sold.  As more individuals realize that certain services come at the price of privacy, more people are reassessing their relationship with businesses that partake in data collection.  Whether a consumer decides to keep using a service depends on their level of trust with the provider. Privacy is therefore not only a concern for consumers but also businesses. Establishing trust means providing privacy protection. Consumer Actions Small Businesses Should Be Aware Of The simplest way for users to limit data collection is to stop using the services of online companies.  In reality, though, services such as Google or Amazon are indispensable in an increasingly digital world Users, however, have multiple avenues by which they can restrict the data they share:  Android and Apple users, for example, have the option to limit access to certain apps. Similarly, Google has a menu where you can review all of the services you’ve connected to with your account.  Source: Intego By logging out of websites, users also can restrict companies’ access to their data that’s collected as you browse. Incognito or private modes also restrict tracking, but not much more than your browser history.  Your businesses need to understand the steps users can take and engage with customers about how you protect their data.  For example, you should ask upon download if users are comfortable sharing location data with your company. This establishes trust and produces a positive impression that you respect their information.   How to Balance Privacy With Usability To engage and retain users through new digital technologies, your small business needs to leverage user data.  Using user data, you can provide the optimal, personal experience for customers.  Many users, though, resent some data collection. To ensure you respect and provide top-notch customer service, your company needs to balance user privacy with its data collection efforts.  Finding the right balance can help customers benefit from your services and trust your company with their data.  .fb_iframe_widget_fluid_desktop iframe { width: 100% !important; } The post How Small Businesses Can Ensure Consumer Privacy Using Digital Technology appeared first on ResellerClub Blog.

How to Enable SSH on Ubuntu

HostGator India Blog -

SSH or Secure Shell is a simple networking protocol that enables secure data communication. It allows safe remote shell services, command execution and ensures security between two connected devices. These devices can be connected over a secured or an unsecured network running SSH client programs. Generally, SSH enables users to remotely connect to a server. […] The post How to Enable SSH on Ubuntu appeared first on HostGator India Blog.

New – Step Functions Support for Dynamic Parallelism

Amazon Web Services Blog -

Microservices make applications easier to scale and faster to develop, but coordinating the components of a distributed application can be a daunting task. AWS Step Functions is a fully managed service that makes coordinating tasks easier by letting you design and run workflows that are made of steps, each step receiving as input the output of the previous step. For example, Novartis Institutes for Biomedical Research is using Step Functions to empower scientists to run image analysis without depending on cluster experts. Step Functions added some very interesting capabilities recently, such as callback patterns, to simplify the integration of human activities and third-party services, and nested workflows, to assemble together modular, reusable workflows. Today, we are adding support for dynamic parallelism within a workflow! How Dynamic Parallelism Works States machines are defined using the Amazon States Language, a JSON-based structured language. The Parallel state can be used to execute in parallel a fixed number of branches defined in the state machine. Now, Step Functions supports a new Map state type for dynamic parallelism. To configure a Map state, you define an Iterator, which is a complete sub-workflow. When a Step Functions execution enters a Map state, it will iterate over a JSON array in the state input. For each item, the Map state will execute one sub-workflow, potentially in parallel. When all sub-workflow executions complete, the Map state will return an array containing the output for each item processed by the Iterator. You can configure an upper bound on how many concurrent sub-workflows Map executes by adding the MaxConcurrency field. The default value is 0, which places no limit on parallelism and iterations are invoked as concurrently as possible. A MaxConcurrency value of 1 has the effect to invoke the Iterator one element at a time, in the order of their appearance in the input state, and will not start an iteration until the previous iteration has completed execution. One way to use the new Map state is to leverage fan-out or scatter-gather messaging patterns in your workflows: Fan-out is applied when delivering a message to multiple destinations, and can be useful in workflows such as order processing or batch data processing. For example, you can retrieve arrays of messages from Amazon SQS and Map will send each message to a separate AWS Lambda function. Scatter-gather broadcasts a single message to multiple destinations (scatter) and then aggregates the responses back for the next steps (gather). This can be useful in file processing and test automation. For example, you can transcode ten 500 MB media files in parallel and then join to create a 5 GB file. Like Parallel and Task states, Map supports Retry and Catch fields to handle service and custom exceptions. You can also apply Retry and Catch to states inside your Iterator to handle exceptions. If any Iterator execution fails because of an unhandled error or by transitioning to a Fail state, the entire Map state is considered to have failed and all its iterations are stopped. If the error is not handled by the Map state itself, Step Functions stops the workflow execution with an error. Using the Map State Let’s build a workflow to process an order and, by using the Map state, work on the items in the order in parallel. The tasks executed as part of this workflow are all Lambda functions, but with Step Functions you can use other AWS service integrations and have code running on EC2 instances, containers or on-premises infrastructure. Here’s our sample order, expressed as a JSON document, for a few books, plus some coffee to drink while reading them. The order has a detail section where there is a list of items that are part of the order. { "orderId": "12345678", "orderDate": "20190820101213", "detail": { "customerId": "1234", "deliveryAddress": "123, Seattle, WA", "deliverySpeed": "1-day", "paymentMethod": "aCreditCard", "items": [ { "productName": "Agile Software Development", "category": "book", "price": 60.0, "quantity": 1 }, { "productName": "Domain-Driven Design", "category": "book", "price": 32.0, "quantity": 1 }, { "productName": "The Mythical Man Month", "category": "book", "price": 18.0, "quantity": 1 }, { "productName": "The Art of Computer Programming", "category": "book", "price": 180.0, "quantity": 1 }, { "productName": "Ground Coffee, Dark Roast", "category": "grocery", "price": 8.0, "quantity": 6 } ] } } To process this order, I am using a state machine defining how the different tasks should be executed. The Step Functions console creates a visual representation of the workflow I am building: First, I validate and check the payment. Then, I process the items in the order, potentially in parallel, to check their availability, prepare for delivery and start the delivery process. At the end, a summary of the order is sent to the customer. In case the payment check fails, I intercept that, for example to send a notification to the customer.   Here is the same state machine definition expressed as a JSON document. The ProcessAllItems state is using Map to process items in the order in parallel. In this case, I limit concurrency to 3 using the MaxConcurrency field. Inside the Iterator, I can put a sub-workflow of arbitrary complexity. In this case, I have three steps, to CheckAvailability, PrepareForDelivery, and StartDelivery of the item. Each of this step can Retry and Catch errors to make the sub-workflow execution more reliable, for example in case of integrations with external services. { "StartAt": "ValidatePayment", "States": { "ValidatePayment": { "Type": "Task", "Resource": "arn:aws:lambda:us-west-2:123456789012:function:validatePayment", "Next": "CheckPayment" }, "CheckPayment": { "Type": "Choice", "Choices": [ { "Not": { "Variable": "$.payment", "StringEquals": "Ok" }, "Next": "PaymentFailed" } ], "Default": "ProcessAllItems" }, "PaymentFailed": { "Type": "Task", "Resource": "arn:aws:lambda:us-west-2:123456789012:function:paymentFailed", "End": true }, "ProcessAllItems": { "Type": "Map", "InputPath": "$.detail", "ItemsPath": "$.items", "MaxConcurrency": 3, "Iterator": { "StartAt": "CheckAvailability", "States": { "CheckAvailability": { "Type": "Task", "Resource": "arn:aws:lambda:us-west-2:123456789012:function:checkAvailability", "Retry": [ { "ErrorEquals": [ "TimeOut" ], "IntervalSeconds": 1, "BackoffRate": 2, "MaxAttempts": 3 } ], "Next": "PrepareForDelivery" }, "PrepareForDelivery": { "Type": "Task", "Resource": "arn:aws:lambda:us-west-2:123456789012:function:prepareForDelivery", "Next": "StartDelivery" }, "StartDelivery": { "Type": "Task", "Resource": "arn:aws:lambda:us-west-2:123456789012:function:startDelivery", "End": true } } }, "ResultPath": "$.detail.processedItems", "Next": "SendOrderSummary" }, "SendOrderSummary": { "Type": "Task", "InputPath": "$.detail.processedItems", "Resource": "arn:aws:lambda:us-west-2:123456789012:function:sendOrderSummary", "ResultPath": "$.detail.summary", "End": true } } } The Lambda functions used by this workflow are not aware of the overall structure of the order JSON document. They just need to know the part of the input state they are going to process. This is a best practice to make those functions easily reusable in multiple workflows. The state machine definition is manipulating the path used for the input and the output of the functions using JsonPath syntax via the InputPath, ItemsPath, ResultPath, and OutputPath fields: InputPath is used to filter the data in the input state, for example to only pass the detail of the order to the Iterator. ItemsPath is specific to the Map state and is used to identify where, in the input, the array field to process is found, for example to process the items inside the detail of the order. ResultPath makes it possible to add the output of a task to the input state, and not overwrite it completely, for example to add a summary to the detail of the order. I am not using OutputPath this time, but it could be useful to filter out unwanted information and pass only the portion of JSON that you care about to the next state. For example, to send as output only the detail of the order. Optionally, the Parameters field may be used to customize the raw input used for each iteration. For example, the deliveryAddress is in the detail of the order, but not in each item. To have the Iterator have an index of the items, and access the deliveryAddress, I can add this to a Map state: "Parameters": { "index.$": "$$.Map.Item.Index", "item.$": "$$.Map.Item.Value", "deliveryAddress.$": "$.deliveryAddress" } Available Now This new feature is available today in all regions where Step Functions is offered. Dynamic parallelism was probably the most requested feature for Step Functions. It unblocks the implementation of new use cases and can help optimize existing ones. Let us know what are you going to use it for!

AI and the Path to a More Human Web [Webinar]

WP Engine -

There’s never been a better time for companies to capitalize on the promise of AI. Technologies that enable AI, like development platforms and data storage capabilities, are advancing rapidly and becoming more affordable. In turn, practical applications of AI are springing up in a number of industries, from agriculture to banking. Still, efforts to implement… The post AI and the Path to a More Human Web [Webinar] appeared first on WP Engine.

#WebProsSummit19 Guest Blog: Halon Security

cPanel Blog -

Halon Security, a Swedish company with offices overlooking the beautiful city of Gothenburg, Sweden, is proud to be sponsoring the WebPros Summit 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia! While we’ve partnered with cPanel and sponsored conferences in the past, this year has special significance for us; taking part in the very first WebPros Summit in Atlanta, Georgia! Regardless if you are a hosting provider or managed service provider, secure email is undoubtedly an integral part of your ...

ElasticSearch Makes Magento Search Faster and More Accurate

Nexcess Blog -

Search is an essential feature of an ecommerce store. And for any store with more than a handful of products, it’s one of a handful of ways that customers can narrow product selection to a manageable number. So finding the right search engine for your store is vital. For Magento merchants and developers, that search engine is Elasticsearch.  Despite the advantages of Elasticsearch, many Magento merchants still run their stores on obsolete and outdated search software. In fact, 42% of companies don’t try to optimize search as all. Originally developed in 2010, Elasticsearch has grown to become one of the biggest players in search offerings. It has largely replaced rivals SOLR and Sphinx. For Magento sites, it’s now become the default search option, replacing MySQL which has been deprecated.    Improve your Magento search with the Nexcess Elasticsearch Container. How Elasticsearch Works for Ecommerce Magento includes built-in search functionality that previously, by default,  used a MySQL database. MySQL and its variants are powerful, but they aren’t the ideal back-end for a search engine. We use search engines every day and we are accustomed to a sophisticated search interface that can turn our vague and often badly spelled queries into useful results. MySQL isn’t well-optimized for that use case, which is why Magento previously would – on occasion – return less-than-useful search results. ElasticSearch, on the other hand, is highly optimized for fast and accurate search. As a Java-based document store – what used to be called a NoSQL database – it’s engineered to store huge numbers of JSON documents and retrieve them according to criteria supplied by the user.  Imagine wanting to find a specific set of headphones which have something to do with Master Class about them, but it’s not their name. You type it in and you’re given a large selection of products you really aren’t interested in. Customers frustrated with their Magento search experiences? Don’t worry, Elasticsearch is here! ES allows for a merchant to specify different criteria the user may be searching for – beyond just the name. This may include the description, the manufacturer, the release date, and more.  In short, it makes an ideal search engine back-end for ecommerce stores and many other types of website. It also makes the ecommerce search experience just that much better.   And when combined with Magento, ElasticSearch’s built-in functionality augments ecommerce search with a host of useful improvements.   Extremely Fast Search ElasticSearch is much faster than Magento’s default search, especially when searching through large product catalogs. It can run searches over millions of products without breaking a sweat, and it’s a rare ecommerce store that approaches that number of products. The speed at which ElasticSearch returns results can be used for features such as continuously updating results: as the user types their query, the search results update immediately because ElasticSearch searches faster than users can type.   More Accurate Results Shoppers don’t want to have to carefully craft search queries. They want to enter a vaguely appropriate query and have the search engine to figure out what they mean. ElasticSearch is packed with features that help match queries to relevant results, even when the queries aren’t especially well-formed. Among the features is fuzzy searching, which matches products similar to the query but not exactly the same with a technique called the Damerau-Levenshtein distance formula. Fuzzy searching helps stores to surface and rank the right products from their catalog even when the shopper mistypes or searches for a related product that isn’t in the catalog.   Easy to Use Given the complexity of what ElasticSearch does, you might expect that it would be difficult to use. In fact, it couldn’t be easier. Once you hook ElasticSearch up to Magento, search is immediately improved without any complicated configuration. ElasticSearch ships with sensible indexing defaults and can begin returning better results in no time at all.   Improves UX The average user spends just 8 seconds looking at a search results page. That’s 8 seconds to provide them with the right answers – in this case, products. Miss that time frame and you’re at risk of them looking somewhere else. After all, would you stay in a store if the attendant kept trying to sell you something you didn’t want? It’s for this reason that product search is so vital. And with that browsing time only decreasing, the benefits of Elasticsearch give merchants less to worry about.  Elasticsearch improves Magento UX by combining all of the features mentioned above. Faster speed means customers are able to find products faster. More accurate results mean they’re able to find the right products. And ease of use means merchants are able to enable it without too much extra work.    Get Started with Elasticsearch for Magento the Easy Way With Nexcess ElasticSearch cloud hosting, Magento retailers can deploy a scalable and secure ElasticSearch instance in minutes.  We’re happy to help Magento hosting customers to integrate their ElasticSearch instance with Magento. Get in touch today to learn more about Magento and ElasticSearch. The post ElasticSearch Makes Magento Search Faster and More Accurate appeared first on Nexcess Blog.


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