Q.
What is a domain name?

A domain name is the text name corresponding to the numeric IP address of a computer on the Internet. Each computer that is on the internet is assigned an IP address, which is essentially numeric address for the computer on the Internet. So where your home may have an address of 5487 Mockingbird Lane Chicago Illinois, the address for a computer on the Internet would look more like this 100.57.10.65. Just like the address for your home, no two computers on the Internet can have the same IP address.

Remembering the IP Address for a company would be very difficult, so instead accessing the computer or website via a set of numbers, you can instead access the computer by entering in a domain name such as www.myspace.com or www.paypal.com.


Q. What domain name should I use?

There is no true answer to this question. The key to picking a domain name is to get something that

Represents a your business, product, or services – If the name of your business is Chicago Web Design, then a good domain name would be www.chicagowebdesign.com

Is easy to remember – As with any other form of advertising (and a domain name is a form of online advertising), it is important to find a name that sticks in someone’s head or is easy for them to look up. So if you were running a graphics design firm, then you might try to register the domain name: www.firmgraphics.com.

Is available – Only one person may own any one domain name, and the domain name you use must be unique (Ex: I could not register the domain name www.microsoft.com because this name is already taken). Considering the vast number of websites that are online, many of the more obvious domain names have been taken, but there are still some great names available. So when considering a domain name for your business, event, or organization make sure to write down about 7-10 different choices, and search to see if they are available.


Q. How do I register a domain name?

A domain name is the address for your business on the Internet. In order to have ownership and control over a domain name you must first register it. Domain name registration involves the following steps:

Locate a company that offers domain name registrations
Find an available domain name
Pay the fee to have the domain name registered
Update the domain name contact information so that you are listed as the Registrant

Q. Can you register my domain name for me?

Yes we can register your domain name for you. It is part of our list of services. We would just require you to either provide us with a list of your desired domain names, or for information about your business so that we can suggest some possible domain name choices.


Q. What is the difference between domain names that end with .com, .net, .org, and .biz?

Domain names are assigned a 3 or 4 letter extension (the portion of the domain name that comes after the final period). These extensions are used to help indicate the type of business or organization for which the website operates.

For instance .com, .net, and .biz are commonly used for businesses and profitable organizations. The extension .edu is reserved for educational institutions, .org is for not for profit organizations, and .mobi is for websites that will be accessed using mobile devices.


Q. Should I make my domain name registration public or private?

This is more a matter of preference on your part. Registering your domain name as public is less expensive, but it does it means that the contact details that you enter when the domain name is registered are visible to the public.

If you decide on private domain name registration, then you're the contact information submitted at the time of registration will be hidden to the public, but there will be an additional fee charged for the registration.

Q.
How long should I register my domain name for?

The length of time your domain is registered for should be dictated by the purpose for the domain name. If you are registering the domain because you are creating a website for a one time event, such as a company party or charity auction then we suggest only registering the domain name for a period of one year.

If you are registering the domain for a business or an ongoing event, then we suggest registering the domain name for a period of 3-5 years. Once the domain name registration is approaching expiration, you will be notified and given the option to renew before anyone else can register the domain.
 



Q.
How much does a website cost?

This is the question that we are asked most frequently, and as you might guess this is also one of the hardest questions to give a specific answer for. The best comparison for a question like this in the non technology world would be if someone asked you "How much does a car cost?" And as with that question the response would be, "It depends". Just as with a car, there are 100s of factors that go into the price of a website. It would be tedious to list out every factor that determines the price of a website, but as a general rule the following factors will have the greatest influence on the amount that is charged for a website?

Quality - As a general rule, higher quality websites tend to cost more because the individuals that create the websites tend to charge more on an hourly or per project basis. Once again using the car comparison, a new BMW will cost more than a brand new Hyundai, even with no options. This is primarily because a BMW is perceived to be a higher quality automobile.

Number of Pages - A website can contain 1 to an almost unlimited number of pages. As a general rule as the number of pages on the website increases, so does the cost.

Complexity - The more complex the programming a website is, the more expensive it will be to program. To get a better understanding of complexity, think about a 5 page website that is created for a charity 5K run. It may have event details, some pictures, and possibly even a page to register. Now think about a large website that supports hundreds of thousands of user such as www.ebay.com or www.amazom.com. Obviously either of these websites would be much more expensive to design than the website for the 5K charity run. As the complexity of a website increases, so to does the cost of the site. Factors which increase the complexity of a website include: eCommerce, security, FLASH programming, database interaction, content management, and administrative areas.


Q. What is the difference between static and dynamic website?

A static web page looks the same each time you visit the web page. No matter what links you click on, or what information you enter to a form, the web page looks the same each time.

Dynamic web pages have content that changes based on a selection or data entered by the user. An example of a website that is made up of primarily static pages would be:

An example of a website that is made up of primarily static pages would be: www.universalconstruction.biz.  An example of a website made up of primarily dynamic pages would be www.go4rent.com.


Q. How long does it take to have a website designed?

The length of time it takes to design a website depends primarily on the complexity and availability of content for the website. As the complexity of a website increases, so does the amount of time it takes to design the website. The availability of content also increase or decrease the amount of time it takes to create a website.

A website is made up of images and text. If the text for the website has already been written, and the digital images for the website have been provided, then the timeline for development of the website will be shorter.

Q. What is Flash and should I use it on my website?

Flash is a software tool developed by Macromedia, which is used for creating animated and interactive website content. Flash is excellent for creating websites that display information in presentation style format, having moving images, or for having content on the website which users interact with directly.

An example of a website that uses FLASH for presentation of images and user interaction is: www.harleyconstructionconsulting.com.

Q. What should I put on my website?

This is a question that is difficult to answer in a few sentences. When it comes to what content to place on a website you can ask yourself these questions:

    Does it answer a question that a potential customer would ask me directly?
    Does it give the website visitors additional insight into my business?
    Will this information encourage individuals to come back to my website?
    Does the information demonstrate that I or my business have an in depth - knowledge related to a specific topic? 
    Will it increase the chances for a customer to contact me or to purchase my product?
Q. Why is website maintenance so important?

Often time's people think of a website as something that is purchased once and never updated unless information changes such as the phone number, address, or price of services.

While it is true the website will function without maintenance, an effective website continues to grow as the company grows. Just as repeat customers are vital to the success of your business, repeat visitors are vital to the success of your website. You want to have your customers continue to visit your website so you can market to them, distribute additional information, or have them refer your business to other people.

Consider it in these terms. If you owed a business that marketed made the majority of its sales via a catalog that was mailed to a list of contacts, would you mail the person the same catalog over and over again, or would you want to make changes to the catalog to keep the product offerings fresh and spark additional interest from customers. The same is true for your website. Like a catalog, a website is a marketing tool, and hence you should try and ensure that the content on the website is frequently updated.


Q. How do I choose the company to design my website?

Although many factors go into choosing a web design firm, here are some important points to consider:

Understanding of business concepts - A website can be used to increase sales, increase awareness, distribute information, and to raise awareness. Therefore to build the most effective website possible, a company should understand how to tailor a website to perform these tasks for your business. While it may not be necessary to have an in depth understanding of a particular industry, the web designer or design firm should understand the concepts of increasing revenue, cutting costs, marketing, and promotion.

Previous work - This is where a portfolio comes in. Before choosing a company to design you website, you should take a look at some of the past work they have done and evaluate if you are comfortable with the quality.

Service offering - You should determine if the company or individual offers all of the services that you require so that you don't have to deal with multiple businesses. These services may include web design, web hosting, domain name registration, search engine marketing, and graphic design.

Comfort level - This is something that can not be defined. Before working with anyone, you should speak to the individual or the project manager from the company to determine if you will be comfortable working together.
 





Q.
What makes a website and eCommerce website?

eCommerce is defined as the selling products or services on the web. A website becomes an eCommerce website when it is developed to allow for the sale of products and services online and to accept payments for those products and services.


Q. How do I accept payments for products on my website?

In order to accept payments on a website you will need to have a merchant account. A merchant account is a bank account, that when used in combination with a payment gateway allows your business to accept credit card, debit card, and check payments online.


Q. Does VierO Solutions provide merchant accounts?

Yes we do provide merchant accounts, and can assist you with filling out the application. We offer merchant account setup as part of our service offerings for eCommerce websites.


Q. What is PayPal?

PayPal is an account-based system that allows individuals with an email address to send and receive payments online using their credit card or bank account. PayPal is used primarily with eBay auctions, but can also be implemented on an eCommerce site as an alternative payment method accepted.

Q. Does my website need a database?

Your website needs a database if it needs to collect information that will be stored and retrieved at a later time. Although not absolutely required, we recommend that all eCommerce websites have a database implemented.


Q. What are the different types of databases?

Although there are many different database programs on the market, the primary database programs that are used in eCommerce are: MSSQL, mySQL, Oracle, and DB2. Oracle and DB2 are usually used for large enterprise type websites.


Q. What are the most important factors to consider with website security?

These factors are important to consider when implementing security on a website:

Transfer information back and forth with customers securely – This involves encrypted data that is transmitted to and d from the customer

Protect customer’s credit card numbers – Protecting customer credit card numbers from being accessed by possibly malicious third parties

Gain confidence with your customers – Present customers with a web site that is professional looking and well formatted to improve customer confidence. If the customer thinks that you have put a lot of thought into your website they will naturally also think that you have put thought into security measures for the website. The website privacy policy should also be displayed so that customers can read the policy and procedures that are in place to protect information submitted on the website.
 



Q.
What type of graphic design services do you provide?

VierO Solutions is a full services graphic services firm offering services such as:

Logo Design
Banner Design
Business Card Design
Photo Editing
Brochures
Stationery
Advertising
3D Images
Photo Retouching
Package Design


Q. How involved should I be in the graphic design process?

You should be as involved as necessary to communicate the desired result. When it comes to customer involvement it is important to balance customer requirements with allowing the graphic artist some level of creative freedom.

Q. What makes a good logo?

A good logo should be readily identifiable by potential customers. It should also establish credibility for your business. A poorly designed or logo that looks like it was created by an amateur designer can reflect poorly upon the business it represents. A good logo should also be able to be used in multiple mediums including internet, print, and billboards.


Q. Do I own the copyright of the design?

VierO Solutions transfers the copyright for all designs once the final payment is received.


 



Q.
What is web hosting?

Web hosting is a service that provides Internet users with online systems for storing information, images, video, or any content accessible via the web.


Q. What is the difference between UNIX and Windows Hosting?

Websites are stored and run on large powerful computers called servers. Web servers have software called an operating system which allows them to among other things host websites. UNIX and Windows are both operating systems. Windows was created by Microsoft and UNIX was created by Sun Microsystems.

Q. Can I host my own website?

It would be possible, but why would you want to. In order to host your own website you would have to make a large investment in hardware and software. You would also have to have some knowledge of system administration. You would also have to figure out how others would access the website considering many Internet Service Providers have systems in place which prevent individuals from hosting their own websites. With many low cost hosting options available, it is much less expensive and less of a headache to pay someone to host your website for you.

Q. What is uptime?

Uptime refers to the amount of time the computers on which a website runs, stay up and running without failure. If the server or computer on which your website runs fails, then your website will be unavailable. Uptime is calculated by the amount of time a computer is stays available, divided by the total amount of time the computer has been in operation. So if a server functions properly for 3000 hours, and the server has been online for 3005 hours, then the uptime percentage is 3000/3005 or 99.8%. In order for you to even consider a hosting company they should have at least 99% uptime.


Q. What makes one website hosting provider different from another?

The following factors help to differentiate one web hosting provider from another:

Uptime – What is the hosting company’s percentage of uptime?

Customer Service – Is support 24/7 or are there certain hours that support is available. What can you do and whom do you contact if your website is suddenly unavailable

Cost – How much does the company charge for their hosting package.

Services Offered – What hosting related services does the company offer?  Do they offer both UNIX and Windows hosting or just one or the other? What are their database offerings? How many email accounts are provided and how large are the accounts.


Q.
Why shouldn’t I use free website hosting?

Some companies will allow you to host your website for free. These companies will usually place their logos and a sentence or two about their company at the bottom of your website and all emails you send out. This can be a problem for two reasons.  First, you will invest time, money, and effort into getting your website developed. Your website should be used to promote your business not to market the product or service of a third party. Secondly it sends a bad message to customers. Instead of communicating the quality of your product or service, you are communicating that your business is focused on providing that product or service with as little as possible invested.
 



Q.
What is a search engine?

A program which acts as a card catalog for the Internet. Search engines attempt to index and locate desired information by searching for keywords in which a user specifies. The method for finding this information is usually done by maintaining indices of Web resources that can be queried for the keywords entered by the user.


Q. What are some of the major search engines?

There are thousands of search engines on the Internet, but the major search engines include Google, MSN, and ASK. Google has the most traffic of all the major search engines. Some publications estimate that almost 40% of all Internet searches are performed on Google.
 

Q. How do I get my website on Google?

Getting listed on Google use to be a 7 day process, and be as simple as just submitting your website for indexing by Google. Google now has over 8 billion websites in its database so indexing can take as much as 4-6 weeks. Getting listed on Google faster tan this 4-6 week time frame requires some deeper understanding of how search engines work and can include techniques such as link building,  xml sitemaps, and direct submissions. We strongly suggest that you work with a professional that has an in depth understanding of search engines in order to get optimal results.


Q. What is Search Engine Optimizations?

Search engine optimization or SEO refers to techniques that are used to improve the number and/or quality of visitors to a website.


Q. What is meant by search engine friendly?

Search engine friendly refers to websites that are created so that they can easily be located and indexed by search engines. Websites are made search engine friendly by a process known as search engine optimization.
 

Q.
How do I get more search engine traffic?

There a numerous ways for increasing traffic to a website. Some of the more popular methods include:
  • Purchasing traffic – paying to have traffic sent to your website
  • Link building – creating additional inbound links to your website
  • Link swapping – Placing links to some else’s website on your site in exchange for them posting your link on their website.


Q.
What is PPC or Pay per Click?

Pay Per Click is method for generating additional traffic to a website. PPC marketing involves the owner of a website creating an advertisement with a link back to their website. The advertisement is then posted on an Internet Search engine or on another website. If a visitor to the website or a person using the search engine clicks on the advertisement, the owner of the website pays a set fee to the company which posted the advertisement.  


Q.
Are all search engines the same?

The majority of search engines fall into two categories. These two categories are search engines and search directories. The main difference between the two is that search engines such as Google create their list of websites and keywords by automated programs called robots or spiders which search the Internet for new websites and information. Search directories such as Yahoo, are constructed by humans performing searches in order to catalog the websites.

 

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