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What Hosting Do You Need For Your WordPress Site?, WPEngine, web hosting

Estimated reading time: 6 minutes

Hosting is a critical element of any website today, and with many different types of hosting packages, it can be difficult to know where to begin. After many years of hosting my blog, I’ve happily landed at WPEngine and love it for the performance and customer service. With that in mind, in this blog post, we’re going to take a look at managed hosting for WordPress. What is it? Is it a good option?

First thing’s first, what is managed WordPress Hosting? Managed WordPress Hosting is a service whereby your web host manages the technical aspects of running your WordPress site. To be clear, it’s not a service where your web host creates your WordPress site, they simply manage things like security, back-ups, updates, speed and consistent high performance.

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Generally speaking, with most web hosts who offer managed WordPress hosting, you’ll receive exceptional premium support, where the support is provided by actual WordPress experts who know exactly what they’re doing. Managed WordPress hosting can be a little more expensive than your standard shared hosting, for example, GoDaddy’s basic plan starts at $2.99 per month (usually $5.99, with 50% off), but if you’re willing to pay the extra, then it’s certainly worth it. If you want to buy vps hosting, I would suggest opting for knownhost.com for results you have never imagined were possible in the first place.

As with most things, there are pros and cons of managed WordPress hosting, so we’ve put a list together for you to decide whether it’s right for you:

High Speeds: Because managed WordPress hosting servers are designed specifically for WordPress websites, you likely won’t be sharing your server with as many other customers as you would with shared hosting. You can check out this site and read more about servers that are best for small businesses. Higher speeds mean more traffic; if your website or blog loads within 3 seconds, which it will with WordPress hosting, then customers will stay longer on your website, and you’ll receive a higher SERP SEO with Google.

Quality Support: As we mentioned earlier, the support you’ll receive from a managed WordPress hosting plan will be top-notch. The WordPress experts at your beck and call really are experts, they know what they’re doing, so you can ditch the back and forth nonsense and be reassured that your problems and queries will get sorted straight away. As well as providing support, they can also advise you on which WordPress plugins would and wouldn’t suit your website, giving you tailor-made help whenever you need it.

Updates and Back-ups: Because the technicalities of WordPress are managed by your web host, you won’t have to worry about updating your website to the latest version of WordPress, or be concerned about daily back-ups. These features are all dealt with in-house by your web host, so you’ll receive automatic updates without any conflicts, and daily back-up runs in case anything goes wrong.

This enhances the convenience factor considerably, lessening your workload. However, you will still need to make sure you’re keeping on tops of the likes of SEO and PPC for your site. Your host won’t cover elements like this. You can view PPC data with separate tools to make sure you’re maximizing your advertising streams to full effect.

That all sounds pretty good, right? Well, it is, but there are a few downsides too, which may or may not affect you depending on why managed WordPress hosting is suitable for you:

Cost: Most managed WordPress hosting plans will set you back at least $10 per month, if you choose their unlimited options (which is advised for WordPress hosting, due to WordPress plugins, database back-ups, etc.). It may not sound like a lot, but when you compare it to shared hosting which is generally around the $2 mark, there’s quite a difference. However, if you consider how much it would cost you to pay for someone to manage your WordPress website, with the added security and speed features, it’s actually very reasonably priced.

Limited to WordPress: This may sound obvious, but it’s worth pointing out. If you choose managed WordPress hosting, the likelihood is that you’ll only be able to host a WordPress website. But, if you’re looking at WordPress hosting, then you’re probably not wanting to use another CMS, or create your own website outside of WordPress.

Limited Control: Because someone else will be managing your WordPress website, you won’t have as much control over the technical aspects, such as, security, speed, back-ups etc. Again, a moot point if the reason you’re choosing managed WordPress hosting is for someone else to run things because you can’t/don’t want to/don’t have to.

To be honest, if you’re using managed WordPress hosting for the right reasons, then there aren’t really that many cons we can think of that would put you off. If you’re a small-time blogger, or have a personal website, then this type of hosting probably isn’t for you. You can easily find a web host that offers shared hosting with 1-click installs for WordPress, with a much more affordable price tag. However, if you’re a growing business, or your website generates a lot of traffic, then managed WordPress hosting would certainly be beneficial.

If you’re looking for a stress-free option that isn’t time-consuming, or you don’t have the technical skills but are willing to pay someone else to deal with that side of things for you, choosing a managed WordPress hosting provider should be a consideration. It all comes down to weighing up whether the ‘managed’ side of things is worth paying for, dependent on the type of website you have, or the type of business you run. There are plenty of web hosting providers available that can offer managed WordPress hosting, such as, WP Engine, and SiteGround. 

A lot of people do not think their choice of host matters, but it does make a big difference when it comes to cost and site performance, so take the time to assess all of your options carefully.

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Okrut, social networking sites, Digital marketing, social media marketing

Orkut is a now-defunct social networking site, that started out as a place to find and reconnect with old schoolmates. Think of it as Google’s version of Linkedin and Classmates.com having a baby social networking site. Orkut was named after its creator, Orkut Büyükkökten, launched in 2004 and shut down in 2014 and proved to be extremely popular in Brazil, so much so, that 90% of its page view was from users in Brazil. With all the makings of success,  Orkut is a lesson in why small dreams end in failure. Just like in life, in all things, we need to dream bigger and evolve to meet the changing world.

READ ALSO: How Warby Parker CoVid Proofed their Business

But what is Orkut? Just like all the other social networking sites you are used to now, Orkut’s original purpose for existing was so that users could find like-minded people who shared similar interests and communities via keyword search, descriptions and other users. Orkut came to fruition at the same time as industry giants Facebook and LinkedIn and before Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest were ever even thought of.

Orkut was ahead of its time.

It grew quickly, within the first four months, Orkut had over 50,000 communities. The whole premise and strategy for the success of Orkut were built on users wanting to connect and reconnect with friends, classmates, and acquaintances from school, work and neighborhood groups. On this fact alone, Orkut garnered 20 million users by 2012. In the time it existed, we learned a lot about using social networking sites for marketing.

The community structure of Orkut (like more modern-day social networking sites) spoke to the changing role of the digital consumer because it gave consumers a place to interact and engage in communities with like-minded individuals, often of the same demographic, eager to connect and interact. Presenting the right products and services to these people would be beneficial and less commercially than traditional marketing structures.

READ ALSO: Why WeChat is a Super App

Why would consumers be more interested in participating with these messages rather than a diffusion strategy because it feels more organic for the consumer? When social networking ads target consumers by their preferences by what they like, those promotions feel more like word of mouth recommendations from a friend versus an advertisement pushed on a consumer. It’s less intrusive and more welcomed.

As a networking site, Orkut was very popular with the more tech-savvy students and workers in those industries; something for the CES and Silicon Valley crowd. It was great for connecting and engaging with friends, as well as, leaders in the industry and mentors. Many people were eager to be a part of the Orkut community as much because of its prestigious, invite-only membership as its affiliation to Google.

Belonging to Orkut held a lot clout as it inferred that members were highly connected in the technology field.

The site itself was clean, simple and sophisticated for a networking site at the time. It was also easy to use, navigate and join communities. Friends were able to rate each other on how sexy, cool and trustworthy they found each other. This was a predecessor to today’s modern-day likes system.

Okrut, social networking sites, Digital marketing, social media marketing

Orkut also allowed users to make recommendations about products and services like YELP, allowing members to point fellow members in the right direction based on experiences. This was part of its charm for Brazilians.

Why Orkut was such a hit with the Brazilians:

  • Brazilians do a lot of online shopping with one of the strongest markets for online retailers. They’ll soon reach the potential the USA online market has, which is growing day by day thanks to all those sales and discounts on websites like Raise consumers have access to.
  • They also happen to love social media.
  • Outdoor marketing isn’t allowed in Brazil, so you won’t be bombarded by billboards. However, it has made online marketing lucrative and effective.
  • In Brazil, 77% of Brazilian social media users like to shop online, most of them use social networking sites like Orkut to research products and of those, they are more likely to trust recommendations from someone they know online.
  • In Brazil, online marketing is not an option, it is the way to be successful. It’s about more than just existing online they need to actively engage via blogging, social gaming and online video that required in marketing campaigns. Online video is King and Okrut could have done a better job with the video.

Orkut proves that as technology evolves so must digital platforms to meet the needs of the user.

In the end, functionality problems killed the social networking site. Orkut had issues with its website, including blockages, limiting the number of friends and difficulties in loading and sharing photos. Once Orkut stopped meeting the needs of the culture and audiences they served, they became irrelevant and lost consumers. Eventually, they were replaced by newer sites. In the end, Orkut had all the makings of a successful networking site, however, it didn’t have a plan to evolve to meet user’s needs or the fortitude to push and grow beyond the original vision. Orkut simply got left behind by refusing to change.

Were you familiar with Orkut? What is currently your favorite social networking site? Why or why not?

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WeChat, Weixin, social media, super app

With social media and apps, as with any product made for human beings, it is common knowledge that how each individual reacts to it depends on their own life experiences. This means that the best way to succeed with the people, targeted demographic, that you want to ingratiate yourself with, personally or in business, you need to be aware and anticipate the wants and needs of those individuals. For example, you’re not going to make any friends trying to convince someone who has no legs to buy Louboutins. Read the room, bruh (as my teen likes to remind everyone).

More than just knowing your audience, you need to understand them and be willing to be flexible to accommodate changing needs. This is the same in romantic and friend relationships. I guess the part where we care enough to meet the needs of others is what makes us human; it’s the social aspect that we crave and that’s exactly what makes social media apps so appealing to extroverts and introverts alike.

READ ALSO: How to get invited to Disney’s Social Media Creator Days

For example, Weixin (pronounced “way-shin”), better known as WeChat, is a popular Chinese multi-purpose social networking app developed in 2011 by Tencent, a Chinese social media company. Within 3 years, Weixin had more than 300 million active users in China, Southeast Asia, Europe and the United States. If you think TikTok is taking off, WeChat did it first. 

WeChat is similar to WhatsApp in the United States. However, WeChat is way more comprehensive than WhatsApp allowing users to send messages, share news and pictures, access social media and even mobile payments via their cell phone. It really is an app for everything, a super app. You say, “they’ve got an app for that”, the app is WeChat. With those kinds of capabilities, it’s no wonder if has over 1 billion monthly users worldwide. It’s the closest competitor is the Weibo app, if just depends on what you’re using it for.

Aside from messaging and calling features, WeChat provides text messaging, one-to-many broadcasting, video conferencing, hold-to-talk voice messaging, video games, photo and video sharing and location sharing. Why don’t we all have WeChat? I, honestly, never heard of WeChat until I started binge-watching C-Dramas like it was my job this pandemic and I can testify that everybody in my C-Dramas uses WeChat, so much so that I’m getting FOMO from it.

READ ALSO: C-Dramas to Save You from the Pandemic Pit of Despair

Why is WeChat so successful when there are so many apps out there? Easy, WeChat is user friendly. It is the result of caring enough to get to know the audience and enhance the quality of their lives. The developers have made sure that the app is an asset that makes life easier, more streamlined and more convenient in a world where we are all busy, overworked and exhausted. It’s so good at being useful that it’s not extraneous, it is a necessity to many. It’s as vital as the cellphone itself to most.

WeChat knows that its key demographic is young, urban smartphone owners and specifically targets them by providing them an “all-in-one-platform” app.

It offers a wide range of functions from sending a baby photo to friends, getting news, text messaging, to finding a cab on the street. WeChat is more than a combination of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and eBay. It rolls them all into one and makes those apps redundant. Why download 5 apps when you can do everything in one?

WeChat is easy to use. Everything about it from the interface to the functions are designed to be straightforward and easy to use. One feature that I love, that I use frequently on my phone, is voice messaging by just pushing 1 button, especially when you’re not in the mood to talk but you’re just too busy to type it all out. It’s the closest thing to talking to someone. If you know, you know.

WeChat also allows users to open almost everything within the app browser so you’re not constantly being rerouted to Chrome and a new tab. It’s easier, more aesthetically pleasing and less “noise” on your phone. WeChat provides so many capabilities for its users they don’t need to go anywhere else. It’s like having a really well matched and attentive partner, if all your needs are being met at home, why go out?

READ ALSO: The Last Bite a Love Story

This high rate of satisfaction keeps users in the app longer versus jumping in and out of various apps for separate functions. With all of the capabilities it has like the cab reservation function, Didi Taxi, allowing users to book taxis directly, Weixin pay features which eliminates the need to carry around your credit cards and cash and all the other social aspects, people can be highly independent and self-efficient. The best thing about WeChat is that it keeps changing to meet its user’s needs, continuously introducing new functions and features to keep up with the evolving and growing needs of its audience.

WeChat, Weixin, social media, super app, weibo

In Chinese culture, during the holidays, people give friends and family monetary gifts in red envelopes. A thoughtful feature WeChat introduced in January 2014, right before the Chinese New Year, was a Red Envelope “Qiang Hongbao” campaign.

  • It allowed WeChat users to link their bank account to their WeChat account and send or receive red envelopes virtually.
  • Just to keep things fun and exciting, Weixin allowed users to put a sum of cash in the Red Envelope and then distribute the money randomly among a group of recipients the user set up.
  • The user sets the amount of money, i.e. $100 among 6 friends and the app randomly sent each friend an envelope with a surprise amount, it could be $1 or it could be $99.
  • It was fun for the giver and receiver but more importantly, it encouraged people to use the app.
  • Nearly 5 million people participated in the Red Envelope campaign and sent out 20 million cash-filled red envelopes virtually.

By meeting their audience’s needs and wants, WeChat has made themselves indispensable in those people’s lives. The app is a part of their daily routine and way of life. The best part is WeChat is always ready and available to help, always within an arm’s reach. How many people can we say that about?

Do you have WeChat? If not, what app are you most dependent on? Is there one that you would be lost without?

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How to work with Disney as an Influencer, what is a Disney Creator

Do you love Disney? Do you have hopes and dreams of someday being able to work with Disney as an influencer? Is Walt Disney World on your brands to work with bucket list? Would you die of sheer happiness if you were invited to attend a Disney influencer event or the coveted Disney Creators Celebration? If you answered yes to any of those questions, you are not alone. There are thousands of us, if not more. But what is a Disney creator? More importantly, who knows how to work with Disney as an influencer?

READ ALSO: What is Disney Creator Days and how to get invited

I’ve been a blogger for almost 11 years. I’ve been an influencer since about a minute after that.  I’ve been a Disney creator and superfan since my first trip to the happiest place on earth for my honeymoon in 1999. I’ve been invited by Disney to collaborate and attend Disney hosted events and they are as amazing as they seem to be. Put it this way, if given the choice be any kind of influencer and attend any brand event, Disney is the one I would always say yes to. You will get the chance to experience Disney like no other. Being able to attend Disney World events with my family has been one of the highlights of my career.

What is a Disney Creator (influencer)?

In the simplest terms, an influencer is someone who has genuine influence.

  • Influence is the power to affect how your audience decides to spend their purchasing dollars. This is affected by the influencer’s perceived authority, knowledge, and relationship with the audience.
  • Influence and following in a specific niche, with whom an influencer actively engages with and builds trust, is priceless.
  • Influencers are not just marketing tools, but human beings who are social relationship assets that brands can collaborate with to reach their target audience. It’s should be about more than just numbers, it’s about real influence to change someone’s mind in one way or the other through a working relationship.
  • A Disney creator influencer is a person who uses their genuine love for Disney to inform and influence their audience about all things Disney.

 What is a Social Media Influencer?

Over the last 10 years, social media has not only been birthed it has grown in leaps and bounds in importance and influence.  3.484 billion people actively use social media. That is 45% of the population of the world. These people are looking to trusted influencers to help them decide what to buy and which products to use.

Influencers in social media are people who’ve built reputations for their knowledge and expertise on specific topics. People get to know them through their online interactions and trust is rewarded by loyalty. Consistent posting on their blog and social channels generate large followings of enthusiastic and engaged people. Influencers wield great power to create trends and promote trends.

What are the types of influencers that can become Disney Creators?

Influencers can be categorized in many different ways; by followers, types of content and level of influence. You don’t have to produce content just in the Walt Disney World niche to be considered to be a Disney Creator but it does help to be passionate about Disney and share that passion with your audience in an authentic and engaging way.

Mega-Influencers

Mega influencers are the people with the largest numbers of followers on their social networks. A Mega-influencer is quantified as having more than 1 million followers on at least one social media platform.

Macro-Influencers

Macro-influencers are a step below the mega-influencers in terms of influence numbers, and may actually be more accessible as influencer marketers. Influencers with an audience between the range of 40,000 to 1 million followers on a social media network are macro-influencers.

Micro-Influencers

Micro-Influencers are ordinary everyday people (like you and I) who have become known for their knowledge about a specific niche. Through this, they’ve grown a large social media following amongst loyal fans of the niche. It’s not just the number of followers that indicates a level of influence; it is the relationship and interaction that a micro-influencer has with their audience. Are they trusted? Are they engaging? Is their content relevant? Are their followers loyal?

Generally, micro-influencers have between 1,000 and 40,000 followers on a single social platform. Micro-influencers have built up specialist followings, and they are very discriminate when it comes to brands they will partner with. They won’t want to appear salesy to their audience. This requirement to develop a relationship with a  brand that is must align with target audiences means that micro-influencers are often picky about with whom they work.

Nano-Influencers

The latest influencer-type to is the nano-influencer. Nano-influencers only have a very small number of followers, but they tend to be experts in an obscure or highly specialized field i.e. best places to eat gluten-free on Disney World property and have high influence with their audience.  Most nano-influencers have less than 1,000 followers but those followers are loyal, devoted and trust the nano influencers opinions.

It isn’t all about the size of your traffic, it has more to do with what you do with your audience. Are you engaging them? Is your content strong and interesting? Are you an expert on all things Disney? Is your opinion valued by your audience? Do they trust you? Are you influential on the topic of Disney parks and resorts? Do you know all of the best rollercoasters? Best restrooms?

Types of Content Disney Creators Create

Most influencing happens in social media, micro-influencers are awesome and I’m not just saying that because I am one, and blogging. With a growing interest in video, YouTubers are quickly becoming very valuable assets as well.

Bloggers

Bloggers and influencers in social media have the most authentic and active relationships with their fans

YouTubers

Another favorite type of content is video. In this case, rather than each video maker having their own site, most create a channel on YouTube.

Podcasters

Podcasts are growing in popularity and so their influence is growing as well.

Social Posts Influencers

Bloggers, podcasters, and YouTubers cannot exist in a vacuum, every influencer promotes new posts or videos on social media – which makes most of these bloggers and content creators micro-influencers.

But how the heck does one get invited to be a Disney creator? Point blank, you have to make yourself seen, create good content (whether it is written, video or podcast) and a genuine love for Disney is a definite advantage. But love for Disney World alone is not enough.

How to work with Disney as an Influencer, what is a Disney Creator

The next question on everyone’s mind is how do I get invited to Disney Creators Celebration? How to work with Disney as an Influencer?

Unfortunately, those invited are hand-selected but that doesn’t mean you can’t get the Disney Creators invite.

Here are the tips that I have gathered over the years from Disney on how to be considered for any Disney press event as a Disney Creator.

Go to conferences where Disney will be at and connect/network with Disney PR. Write strong, engaging content about Disney and send the links to the WDW PR department.

What qualities does Disney look for in the influencers they work with?

It really depends on the initiative that they have going on. But it is helpful if bloggers have an up-to-date blog, have great social reach and engagement across the different social platforms, Disney-friendly content on social and their blogs, and a good Travel section.

How does Disney choose who to partner with for press events? Do bloggers need a certain amount of traffic to be invited to hosted events? How important is the audience fit?

Disney does not host very many influencer events so they have to be super selective with invitations. A lot of it is based on a variety of things such as brand fit, reach, audience, specialty, engagement, niche, diversity, quality of followers and whatever product Disney is promoting, etc.

The bottom line is don’t give up your dream of working with Disney and being invited to Disney Creators Celebration. Keep posting quality content. Keep sharing your love for Disney World. The most important thing is that you believe in and love what you are creating; let who you are shine through your content.

There are more ways to work with Disney than just being invited to Disney Creators Celebration.

Different ways to work with Disney

Request Disney Media Tickets

It’s that easy. You can email Disney World PR and request tickets if you are active and established media. You can get up to 2 1-day park hopper passes throughout one calendar year. Check the PR policy page for instructions.

How to get invited to Disney Creator Media Events and how to work with Disney as an influencer

My suggestion would to be to get on Disney PR’s radar. Once you request media tickets, you should be on the list but if you really want to make yourself stand out, interact with Disney PR on social media and in Disney groups and attend conferences where they will be and introduce yourself. Also, if you write about Disney send them your links or tag them on social media.

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purple wall , #DisneyCreatorDays #DisneySMMC Walt Disney creator, Disney social media moms celebration, Disney Creator Days, What is Disney Creator Days, Walt Disney World, Disney Corporation, castaway cay, Disney Creators Celebration, What is Disney Creators Celebration, #DisneyCreators

.Looks like Disney’s Social Media Mom Celebration may be gone forever. It’s time to say tootles mouseketeers. Well, not gone (never forgotten) but refreshed. Disney World is not just for moms and neither should it’s creator celebration be limited to just mothers (though I did love the idea since I am a mom). Enter Disney Creators Celebration for all Disney loving content creators and influencers. Hey, what do you know, I still qualify because I am one of the most Disney loving creators there are. But what is Disney Creators Celebration? Here’s all you need to know including how you can get invited yourself.

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gift guide, tech for parents, girl's gift guide, Christmas, tech, travel, fashion, chooze, xdoria, kid's fit, American Girl, MaryEllen Larkin

Do you love tech? I’ve been a tech junkie since I can remember. Ever since they put me in front of that first Mac. It was love at first sight. These days, there is so much tech out there and so many new gadgets coming out every day, that it’s hard to keep up and know which of these things is really capable of making your life easier and which are an overhyped waste of time and money. However, there are plenty of tech options you can take advantage of that can make your life both easier and better for you. And those things shouldn’t be ignored.

READ ALSO: Gift Guide for Smart Women who Love Tech

We all lead hectic, busy lives and it makes sense to take advantage of the things that make our lives easier. Those little things that save you time and effort are the things you’ll appreciate most when it comes to spending time with those people in your life who mean the most, especially this time of the year.

I did some research and I’ve got a full list of examples that you should consider using in your home and when you’re out and about to make life easier. Some are simple tech upgrades while others are entirely new gadgets.

Use Smart Lighting in Your Home

Smart technology is starting to become a big thing in the home. If you haven’t yet installed a smart lighting system, now is the time to do it. It’s one of those little things that make a difference.

For example, when you’re lying in bed reading a book and then you want to go to sleep, with a smart light system, you can simply command your lights to turn off with your voice. You don’t have to get up and physically turn them off.

A Smart Thermostat for Your Heating System

As well as smart lights, you also think about using a smart thermostat. This allows you to remotely control your heating system and the temperature of your home using your smartphone or other devices.

It means you can turn the heating on before you get home so it’s nice and warm for when you get there. It’s a luxury that you’ll soon come to wonder how you ever lived without. And that’s no exaggeration.

Maximize Your Data

If you’re still using an old plan and an old smartphone, you’re making your day to day life harder than it needs to be. If you choose something like one of the SMARTY SIM-only deals, you’ll have so much more data at your disposal and that can only be a good thing.

By maximizing your data, you’ll be able to ensure that you’re always able to fire off that email or make a quick edit to a shared work document, no matter where you are or what you’re doing.

Install a Doorbell Camera

For enhanced home security and safety, you should think about having a doorbell camera installed. That way, you can see exactly who is outside your home and at your door before you open it up. And the great thing about these cameras is that they can connect directly to your phone.

You can even speak through your phone to the person by your door. And you can do this remotely, so if there’s someone delivering a package and you’re not home, you can just tell them where to leave it. It makes things so much easier in a wide range of scenarios.

Consider Self-Watering Plant Pots

Everyone loves the idea of having plant life in their homes. But the actual process of keeping your plants healthy and hydrated often falls down your list of priorities pretty quickly. Your home looks great with luscious plants around the place, but not so much when they’re dead and dying.

READ ALSO: Best Tech to Get Your Healthy 

Self-watering plant pots are now a thing that exists, even if you thought you’d never hear that sentence. It might not be a hoverboard but they feel kind of futuristic nonetheless. It certainly makes your life easier because you won’t have to worry about remembering to water the plants.

Use a Robotic Vacuum

Of all the tasks you need to do around the house to keep it clean and functional, the one people seem to hate most of all is vacuum cleaning. It’s noisy, cumbersome and time-consuming, especially if you haven’t got a high spec vacuum cleaner at your disposal.

That’s why you should consider using a robotic vacuum cleaner with hoover vacuum parts. They do exactly what the name suggests. They do the basics of vacuum cleaning for you and they move around the floor by themselves. There’s no real input from you, so you can sit back and put your feet up.

Buy a Universal Remote

These days, it can seem like your collection of remotes for all the many devices you have is too much to handle. It’s not sustainable to have 5 or 6 remotes lying around and in use all the time. That’s why you should simply buy a universal remote and make it the only remote you use.

They work like magic. You simply sync it with all the different devices you want to control and then start using it like normal. It really couldn’t be much simpler; you’ll wonder why you didn’t invest in one sooner.

Use an Automatic Pet Feeder

When you’re always on the go and out of the house, it can be hard to ensure your pet gets everything they need when they need it. No responsible pet owner will let their pets go hungry or without all the things they need, so they end up disrupting their day in order to accommodate their pets.

But that doesn’t have to be the case anymore because you can simply make use of an automatic pet feeder. These devices release the food for your pet as and when they need it. You simply need to load it up and program the timer to make sure the food releases at the right time.

Fix Your Sleeping Problems with a White Noise Machine

If you’re someone who has always had problems sleeping, it might help to invest in a white noise machine. Having a machine making noises might not sound like the best way to get you off to sleep, but it really does work and many people rely on these devices to get a good night’s sleep.

If nothing else has worked and you haven’t tried this solution yet, it’s definitely a good idea to give it a try and see how it goes for you. The white noise encourages you to sleep and the consistent sound keeps you sleeping for longer. There’s a lot of science behind it.

Invest in a Simple Portable Charger

This is another small thing that makes life so much easier and can get you out of all kinds of frustrating situations. Investing in a small and simple portable charger will enable you to charge your phone when it unexpectedly runs out of battery life, no matter where you are.

These portable chargers come in all shapes sizes. Some of them have less battery power, but they’re much smaller, making them great for that extra little boost of power you need when you’re on the go. But there are bigger ones available that you can rely on for the power you need too.

Why make your day to day life any harder than it already is? With these tech advances and options out there at your fingertips, it doesn’t make sense not to use them. By using these tech gadgets, you’ll have more time and energy to focus on the really important things in your life like family, your health and happiness and that’s what matters most.

What is your favorite piece of tech that makes your life easier?

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jetson electric scooter

Back to school is upon us and the Jetson Quest Electric Scooter is here to take you for ride. Want to give your student an easy way to get to and around high school or their college campus? Look no further.

 

Disclosure: I’ve been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free but all opinions are my own.

I don’t know about you but the only thing worse than back-to-school shopping is BTS pick-up and drop off traffic. It’s frustrating and, let’s be honest, not great for the environment or your sanity. It’s not even great for your health so why not do something that gets you out into the fresh air?

 

Beat the traffic with this Jetson Quest Electric Scooter. The 250W hub motor lets you travel up to 18 miles at 15mph, while the bright LED headlight and deck lights support nighttime travel. Use the easy-fold system to conveniently stow away this Jetson Quest electric scooter in your car’s trunk or underneath a desk.  It’s perfect for getting around your neighborhood, to school or any college campus.

 

The no flat, solid tires are engineered to absorb shock along with a concealed premium lithium-ion battery that offers a smooth 18-mile range. The Quest can reach an exhilarating top speed of 15 mph with its powerful 250W hub motor. It’s equipped with an ultra-bright LED headlight and taillight, improving visibility and safety for when you’re riding on roads and sidewalks at night.

 

We live in a large community subdivision and there are parks, clubhouses, pools, golf and even schools right within our vast neighborhood. Bikes are great and we have lots of walking paths. I should know, I use them every morning for my daily workout, as many of you know from my daily Insta Stories. But, sometimes you need to get around quicker or you just don’t feel like walking and this is when the Jetson Quest Electric Scooter comes in handy.

Shop this and more electric scooters plus electric bikes and boards at Best Buy.

Make sure that you ride responsibly if you do ride an electric scooter. The purchaser and rider of this product are responsible for knowing and obeying all state and local regulations regarding the use of this product. It is highly encouraged that you read and follow the product instructions including all safety precautions and use protective gear. Protective gear can be found at http://www.bestbuy.com/protectivegear.

 

Have you ever ridden an electric scooter around the neighborhood? Campus? Maybe on vacation in a foreign city? What was your favorite thing about it?

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Mompreneur, momtrepeneur, work-from-hom, mom, stay-at-home

If you’ve recently had a baby, work is probably the last thing on your mind. And that’s not just because you’ve… y’know… just had a baby! Parenthood changes you fundamentally. They don’t say it changes “everything” for nothing. The struggle is real. Motherhood literally alters your brain chemistry and definitely realigns your perspective. Suddenly all the things about the world at work that used to worry and intimidate you now seem like no biggie at all.

The truth is motherhood can actually be incredibly empowering and make a woman realize just how strong she really is. It can make you realize that you deserve better than you’ve been getting from your job and career and maybe your talents and passion were wasted in that old job all along. As such, while there are many women who are happy to return to their old jobs and their old careers, there are some who set their sights in a very different direction. You know who you are. It takes balls to forge a new way but many moms do just that.

READ ALSO: How Blogging Changed My Life

In the digital age, more and more women are realizing that they have the tools at their disposal to start their very own businesses, nurturing potentially thriving enterprises even as they nurture their little ones. Some of us become professional bloggers or copywriters, others use e-commerce to sell products that they make themselves. I love Etsy. Some moms become consultants while others become freelance illustrators. The sky’s the limit. We are moms hear us roar!

If you want to make your mark as a mompreneur, here are some things you’ll need…

Did you know that you can also use a different postal address for your business? It means that you get far more privacy if you run your business from home so it can be an essential service to use, see this wonderful virtual office service in Glasgow as it is what we use and it’s just brilliant.

A USP

Unfortunately, if you want to establish yourself in business (no matter what the nature of your business) a good idea just isn’t enough anymore. People start businesses based on good ideas all the time, but it doesn’t automatically guarantee success. In order to find success (and your audience). An easy way to find winning products using Ecomhunt will help you to have a clearly defined Unique Selling Proposition (USP),
Your USP will be what makes you different from all the other businesses out there doing what you’re doing and builds value in the brand you’re trying to develop. Don’t worry if you don’t come up with your USP overnight. Take the time to carry out extensive market research and competitor analysis. If you want to take a different direction then it’s a good idea for you to look into opening a franchise, as you won’t have to do a lot of the groundwork, like finding a USP.

READ ALSO: What Ever Blogger should Know about Blogging

Find the people who will buy your products or invest in your services. See what other businesses like yours are doing well and why customers are happy with them. Then try and identify things that they aren’t doing as well or gaps in the market that they’re currently failing to accommodate.

A strong presence on social media

Personality goes a long way in business. This was actually one of the first pieces of advice I was given when I started blogging as the mom of two toddlers. Embarrassingly enough, I had no idea what a “social media presence” was. In my defense, I had been pregnant and having babies for the previous 3 years. But I figured out quickly, people don’t like to buy from faceless, profit-hungry corporations. They like to buy from honest, genuine people who have decided to take their livelihoods and careers into their own hands. These people remind us that the dream works. 

If people like you, they’ll buy/read/engage with you. Let your personality shine on social media. Find out more about where your target audience spends their time online and approach them on the platforms they use most. Combine your professionalism and commitment to quality with the fact that you’re a real person and mom trying to take care of your target audience in ways that your competitors won’t or can’t. 

Maintain an active presence on your social platforms. Engage. Don’t be the person only sharing links. Nobody likes that person. Talk to people about things other than your business. Like what they post. Retweet them. It’s a little thing that goes a long way towards building the kind of personal relationship which is invaluable for small businesses. Other than social media, you should also be sociable in real life by talking to people and making new friends. You can instantly build connections with the help of metal business cards.

A strong brand identity

Your brand is what people say about your business when you’re not in the room. In order for your business to resonate, it needs a strong brand identity. Again, this is what will differentiate you from your competitors and help people to develop a personal relationship and trust you. You also have to make sure that the invoices you are sending your customers have the right template, like an InDesign invoice template, for a more professional-looking bill.

You may be reticent to incorporate your motherhood into your brand. I wasn’t. I embraced it. I know who I am. I know my education, my skills and strengths but I also fully embraced that motherhood was a big part of who I am now. Being a mom doesn’t take away from who you were as a career woman before, it adds skills to it. You should see my organization and multipurpose skills now.

You may want people to see you as a businesswoman first, and a mother second, but don’t underestimate the brand appeal of your motherhood. People like Moms. We’re relatable. Everyone has one. People see moms as nurturing, reliable, dependable and compassionate because… that’s exactly what we are.

Online security

The beauty of being an entrepreneur in the (nearly) 2020s is that digital technology has made the world your office. You can check your emails while changing diapers ( though I certainly would not recommend it) and take conference calls in Whole Foods ( been there done that). You can make e-commerce listings sitting in your favorite coffee shop or keep in touch with your social following while breastfeeding.

And while that’s incredible, it can also make you and your business more vulnerable. Businesses of all shapes and sizes have a target painted on their back and cybercriminals may try and target your business and its data if they see a vulnerability. That’s why it’s important to ensure that not only does your laptop have robust antivirus software but all of your devices use a mobile-ready VPN while on the go. Cybersecurity is an important consideration when starting up your own business. 

The biggest challenge when juggling your duties as a CEO (because that’s what you are, honey!) with your duties as a mother is time management. Why are there not more hours in the day? As much as possible you need to compartmentalize your time between “entrepreneur mode” and “Mom mode”. This is way easier to do when you have a dedicated working space either in your own home or a rented office. I have a home office but I am loving the new shared spaces available in my town and it may be something I look to soon. Of course, there will be some bleed between the two but the very act of moving into different functional spaces will help you to better organize your thoughts. 

A blog

A blog is an extremely important business tool. It is my business. Whatever the nature of your business, it can almost certainly be assisted by having a blog. Remember what we were saying before about the importance of personality? A blog can give your following insight into your personality, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg. It can also establish your knowledge, expertise and dedication to being the best there is at what you do. And that’s a big deal!

What’s more, your blog will also give you a boost in Search Engine Optimization and improve your visibility in search results.

Passion

Finally, the most important thing you can have as a Mompreneur is passion. Passion will propel you through those days where you’ve had 2 and a half hours’ sleep and it all seems a little too much. It’ll keep you going where others falter and keep building value in your brand that will set you on the path to success.

What is your tip for succeeding as a mompreneur?

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How to keep your children safe online from toddler to teen, online safety

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

Children and teens love being online. The older they get, the more they love it. Whether it’s watching videos on YouTube, playing Fortnite or interacting with friends from school on SnapChat and Instagram, our kids spend a lot of time online. The thing is, do we really know who they’re hanging out within the online world? We can’t even be sure that we know who we’re dealing with in this world of online personas and filters. Is anyone who they seem to be? I’ve spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to keep my children safe online from the toddler age through to their teens.

Maybe it would be easier if our kids were just playing outside. But that’s not the real world. It’s only part of it and our kids need to learn how to navigate safely through the digital world. It’s not like when we were kids. There’s a whole online world connecting our children to people all over the world. All the hoping and wishing is not going to unring that bell.

READ ALSO: Online Persona who’s real and who isn’t? How to know the difference.

There may be those that argue that digital technology makes children unhealthy from the lack of fresh air and physical activity. People will tell you that this generation of kids will be awkward and develop poor social skills but I think that’s an alarmist attitude. Our children need to have their bearings in both worlds because currently, the future is living in one and experiencing life in the other.

There are solid arguments in defense of having exposure to technology from a young age. Many games involve complex problems that need solving. Schools use online classrooms and apps to teach our kids. These same games can improve hand-eye coordination and children learn very quickly how to use technology in great depth, in a very natural and intuitive way.

A bigger concern though is how safe our children are online. With access to so much, often unrestricted content, how do we know that our children are not going to come into contact with things that they’re not old enough to deal with? We have parental controls on our daughters’ computers and phones. They are only allowed the apps we give them permission to use and we check often. But even the most vigilant parent can’t be everywhere all the time. We need to teach our children, from an early age, how to be safe and smart online.

READ ALSO: How to keep your family safe online

The other aspect of this is also a concern over who they might come into contact with. There is always a worry with social media or games that have chat functions, that children may come into contact with strangers who prey on the young. My biggest fear is a pedophile posing as another child, gaining my daughters’ trust and violating them in some way.

So how do we deal with this challenge? Nobody wants to cut their children off entirely from enjoying something they love, and with technology being a bigger and bigger part of our lives, the children of today will have even more of a relationship with technology.  As parents, we have to keep them informed, tech-savvy and safe by doing a few simple things.

Take An Interest In What Your Child Is Doing Online

Make online activities a family experience where you can. Get involved with their gaming, and spend time understanding what they’re doing when they are online. My girls only game online when their dad is playing with them. Keeping a healthy, positive interest will mean that your children will be less likely to hide activity from you. If you know the games, they’re playing, and the sites that they’re visiting, you’ll have a better idea of what any specific risks are. This will help you put things in place to minimize these risks.

Teach your children about passwords by sitting with them when they sign up to their first sites. Make sure they learn early on how important passwords are, and that they should use different passwords on different websites and use a healthy mix of letters (upper and lowercase), numbers and special characters.

Having Straight, Honest Conversations

Be honest with your children about the dangers of strangers online, and the kind of content on there, but try not to scare them too much. They do have to live and work online. Encourage them to be cautious. Encourage your children to talk to you about anything that they see so that if something ever happens, they go to you immediately.

Parental Controls

Make sure you know how to access any master parental controls from your home router, as well on every device your children might have access to. This is so important. Find out about the best apps and devices for monitoring your kids safe online activity. Make sure that these are installed and working.

“Friend” Your Children

If your children are using social media, befriend or follow them online. Your children need to learn that anything they post online has the potential to be viewed by anyone and that once it’s posted, even if it gets deleted, it could come back and cause them damage. I taught my girls from the beginning to not post anything that they wouldn’t want their grandpa seeing. I’ve also shown them how screenshot works and the reality that nothing is temporary on the internet. The Internet is forever.

How to keep your children safe online from toddler to teen, online safetyThese are just a few tips for keeping your children safe online. What’s your best tip?

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mobile apps, mobile app, does your business need a mobile app, does your website need a mobile app

Does your website have an app? Mine doesn’t yet but lately, I’ve been wondering, should I? Mobile app developers are in high demand because more and more business owners are realizing just how beneficial having an app can be for their company. If you have an e-commerce business and you’re considering app development services visit indexsy.com to find top website designers that can help you with this project.

We all know that it is imperative that our websites are mobile friendly. Google has made no bones about that. However, do you realize that users actually prefer to shop using their mobile devices? There are several studies that show that users prefer to shop via a mobile app versus a mobile browser. Apps make the shopping experience more enjoyable and faster, and users don’t need to worry about logging in each time or remembering a URL. Bottom line is that an app makes their life easier.

READ ALSO: How to Write a Media Kit for Your Blog

In a world of instant gratification, where convenience is everything, mobile apps are the future and the future is now. That’s why mobile app development is more important than ever for e-commerce businesses. It helps build brand loyalty. Having a mobile app for your business will give your brand an advantage over the competition in the digital world.

Apps are also a great way of nurturing and building loyal customers because you’ll engage with them more often, simply because its easier. Remember when Twitter was all about building relationships and interacting with people? Well, apps are the new Twitter. With push notifications on mobile apps, you can deliver personalized and streamlined experiences for each user. Push notifications can be location-based, which means you can offer customers special deals if they are close to one of your brick and mortar stores. If that wasn’t enough, mobile apps encourage social sharing, and they make payments faster, easier and more secure.

Top App Developers Provide A Lifelong Service

Top app developers provide a service that never truly ends, whether it’s an e-commerce app or custom Android firmware development services. This is the difference between good and bad app developers. You may think that your experience with the firm ends once the app has been delivered and launched, but that shouldn’t be the case. We don’t stop taking our kids to the pediatrician once they are born. There’s a lot more involved than just that first slap and tickle when they enter the world.

The digital world is ever changing. Just think about the advancements and developments that have happened over the past few years. There are always new trends and technologies emerging. I can barely keep up with all the changes in SEO, Google best practices and algorithms. Sometimes, keeping up feels like a full-time job of its own. If your app remains stagnant, you will only get left behind and your competition will leave you in their dust. This is why your relationship with your app developers should be long-lasting and ongoing. With the additional help of importers data, you can verify what’s in and out of the digital world if you want to achieve business success.

READ ALSO: How to Start a Blog

Consider looking for an app development company like Xamarin native app design Company to really give you the outcome you are expecting for your business. Once your app developer builds your app, they’ll need to continually test it and analyze data to make sure that it’s effective and current. Tech is changing constantly, to stay relevant your app needs to be updated. When new iPhone and Android updates are released, your app will need to be tweaked to make sure that it is suitable for the new software and that it still performs like it’s supposed to. Can you imagine it not working and you not knowing? Your app developer will keep up to date with recent trends and changes in the way apps are used. By constantly looking for new features to add to your app, you can continue to deliver the best service and value to your users.

So are you convinced? Does your website need an app to make life easier, more convenient and engaging for your users? Google wants us to be mobile friendly, we know this for a fact. Maybe having an app means our site is super mobile friendly, or at least, user easy and, in today’s world, everyone’s always looking for the easy button.

If you were having a mobile app built for your website, what would be its best feature? What would you want it to do to make your user’s experience better? If you already have an app for your business, what do you love most about it?

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