The best agency advice for 2021 (based on what we learned in 2020)

*This post originally appeared Dec. 18, 2020 on the Media Temple blog.

Here at the end of 2020, agencies resoundingly have a positive outlook for 2021. And agency leaders we’ve talked to have voiced a strong sense of the path forward. There’s good reason for it, too.

The distribution of COVID-19 vaccines obviously provides a great deal of hope in itself. And even though the global scale of that rollout may be slow, the shared wisdom developed over 2020 adds a clearer perspective for how to continue through the pandemic and beyond. What’s been learned from these hard times can be applied to the good times as well.

So in that spirit, we’re looking back at what’s been shared with us, and sharing it with you. From interviews, panels, and surveys conducted over the course of the year, we assembled these five key pieces of advice for agencies looking … Read more

7 resolutions for eCommerce businesses in 2021

2020 has been… shall we say… an interesting year. It’s certainly been a year of surprises in the eCommerce industry. (All those people who mocked you back in 2016 for starting a store that only sold toilet paper and banana bread baking supplies—now who’s laughing?)

Customer spending has been transitioning steadily away from in-person shopping and toward eCommerce for more than a decade—but the pandemic hit that transition with a blast of Fast and Furious NOS. An IBM study this summer found the pandemic accelerated the shift to eCommerce by five entire years; the eCommerce industry wasn’t projected to be where it is today until 2025. And while the numbers aren’t final yet, online spending during this year’s holiday season is projected to grow by a record 30 percent.

Click-and-collect is projected to finish the year up 60 percent, far above any expectations before the year began. And eCommerce … Read more

4 steps to increase sales in 2021

To call 2020 a turbulent year for business would be a severe understatement. With an evolving set of rules by various state and local governments, businesses are having to think on their feet and take drastic steps to increase sales to stay afloat.

By August 2020, 29 prominent U.S. retailers filed for Chapter 11. At this speed, the final number for 2020 may rival retailers’ bankruptcies following the financial crisis, which set a record with a final score of 48 in 2010.

That is just the tip of the iceberg since the statistic is showing just the big retailers. You also have hotels, gyms, cinemas, barbershops, and many other businesses that were hit hard.

On the other hand, ecommerce is booming. The pandemic of 2020 accelerated the growth of ecommerce by five years. This is also just a tip of an iceberg, but a much more “positive” one.… Read more

SV3 Designs: Expert WordPress help

Saras Venkatram runs SV3 Designs, an agency specializing in WordPress websites for small businesses, startups, individuals and non-profit organizations. You can find Saras on Facebook.

Tell us about yourself. Who are you? Where are you based?

My name is Saraswati Venkatram (Saras for short). I am a freelance web designer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. My company, SV3 Designs, specializes in WordPress websites for small businesses, startups, individuals, and non-profit organizations.

What’s the elevator pitch for your business? Describe what you do.

Over the past 15 years, I have had the pleasure and privilege of designing and launching over 200 websites for clients all over the world. I have worked with small businesses, startup-tech companies, schools, organizations, and an array of fabulous non-profits, just to name a few. I have a master’s degree in Computer Science and a certificate in web design. I find that … Read more

5 things to look for in the best VPS provider

Finding the best VPS provider is clutch because a website communicates with clients far more than we ever could. That’s why it demands such a significant share of business resources. Still, cost is always a key concern, especially when we’re just getting started. It’s common to initially go with less-expensive shared hosting, and then continue building on the platform as we grow.

But then success happens. Visitors increase. And along with that may come slower load times, incompatible software and those dreaded 509 errors. The limitations of shared hosting are now painfully apparent. For the prudent, it’s time to begin shopping for the best VPS provider to enable long-term growth.

Managed vs. unmanaged VPS

The first place to start is who’s going to manage the server. Many VPS providers offer managed hosting and take care of limited duties as the server admin. With unmanaged VPS, Providers hand … Read more