Small Business Tips For Using Twitter

Social media sites are a vital part of marketing for all businesses today no matter the size of the company.  This trend is not changing, in fact, it will become more necessary for businesses to use social media in the future so if your small business is not utilizing social media, now is the time to start.  One of the top social media sites today is Twitter and if your company does not have an account then you are missing out on a great marketing opportunity.  Your company’s website’s SEO ranking is dependent upon Twitter and other sites and if you are not sure how to get started, then you need to read the tips below.

License: Creative Commons image source
License: Creative Commons image source

It’s Not Just About Business

You always want to maintain your professionalism but you also want people to see who you are and what your company is about without being too salesy.  One huge mistake that company’s make on Twitter is to only focus on the business aspect of the account without being personable in any way.  The main point of being on Twitter is to get more followers and unless you only want those that you can buy online then you have to engage people and make them want to follow you and your company.  So don’t be afraid to make your followers laugh with an anecdote from the workday or by posting photos of your employees doing their job well.  Just make sure that you are offering your followers something that is interesting and that they want to retweet.

Follow Friends and Family Members

You can start getting more followers by simply following friends and family members to help get your numbers boosted.  This can be a great strategy particularly if they are already settled into the site as they will have people they know that they can recommend for
and to you.  Once you start following these other people, they will follow you back.  The first rule of Twitter is if someone isn’t a spammer, they deserve a follow back if you are following them.  This can build up your list of followers very quickly and can make your company’s SEO efforts take off.  Just make sure that you don’t beg for followers, you can let your other followers ask for you but you should never make the request on your own or you come off as desperate.

Use Other Methods to Get Followers

Once you have become comfortable with the format of Twitter and have started following and being followed by others, it’s time use other methods to gain even more followers.  Make sure you have a Twitter widget on your website so your customers can click it to easily follow you and promote your Twitter account on Facebook and other social networking sites.  It may seem like the work is never ending and to be completely honest, it is never ending.  You have to always be working to make sure that your Twitter account stays active and positive for your followers.

It is vital for every business to have a great social media presence and this includes having a great Twitter account with many followers.

About the Author: Shannon Fouts has been helping small businesses to build up their social media presence for three years and is now writing about all social media sites.

Four Ways To Spend Much Less On Your Small Business

An essential part of running a small business is constantly finding new ways to reduce costs, keeping spending to a minimum. Initially, you may be thinking that by spending less you will have to make sacrifices, damaging your business in the process. However, reducing spending does not always have to equate to a loss. Ultimately, removing unnecessary expenses in your small business will increase your budget, freeing up money that you can invest in other parts of your business.

License: Creative Commons image source
License: Creative Commons image source

Online Marketing

More often than not, marketing costs take up a huge amount of budget, particularly for small businesses that invest in offline methods such as direct mail. However, by simply switching or concentrating more on online marketing, you could save yourself a great deal of money, while targeting a much larger market. There are various ways you can market your business online, all of which are often low-cost and very effective. Essentially, you will be paying less for a more
successful method. You can start by creating a profile for your business on one of the many social media platforms. It is free and a great way of connecting to your customers while building up a strong following. Another idea to market your small business online is to start a blog that contains content related to your products or services.

Go Green, Go Paperless

Without realising it, a lot of money can be wasted away on paper through the sheer cost of ink, supplies and postage; not to mention the endless waste of paper. By eliminating the use of paper or even just minimising you can significantly reduce spending. Going digital is said to save a great deal of money, but not only that, it also creates a more organised working environment and is a lot more secure than having a paper trail. You can make the transition by opting for digital invoices, filing information on the computer and completely replace snail mail with email. As well as cutting spending you are
also helping the environment, which is always a positive thing.

Telephone and Web Conferencing

As a small business, spending large amounts of money on conferences, presentations and meetings really will make a significant dent in your budget, as there are a great deal of expenses involved, including travel and food. To reduce the costs, opting for a teleconference or web conference service is a great idea as you will spend a lot less for a good service than you ever would with face-to-face costs. Additionally, using such a service will allow you to connect to colleagues and clients globally.

IT Managed Service

As hiring an IT guy is a luxury to many small business, using managed services is proven to be a wise decision; you have access to IT expertise at a fraction of costs.

Managing Your Team

As your business develops so will your team, but it is essential that you manage this process carefully if you want to save money. Within a small business you need to ensure that you are regularly assessing your team’s productivity, making sure that most of your employees’ time is spent on value creating activities. Also, there are way
s that you can get the job done without having to hire an extra employee, including using interns and freelancers.

5 Most Important Legal Issues To Consider When Setting Up A Business

Setting up your own business will take a lot of hard work and determination. You need to ensure your finances are in order and there is a lot of paperwork to take care of as well.

License: Creative Commons image source
License: Creative Commons image source

To make this process easier here are five of the most important legal issues you need to consider when you are setting up a business.

1. Choosing Your Business Structure

The most important thing you decide when setting up your business involves your business structure. There are many different structures to choose from and picking out one will have legal and financial implications.

You can get to know all of your options at the comprehensive guide by the Entrepreneur. It is really important to understand the implications of each of these options and thus talking them through with a professional is a really good idea.

2. Protecting Your Ideas And Products

You also need to consider taking care of patents and copyrights. These are really important in order to keep your products and ideas safe from copycats. If you have really good and innovative products you want to make sure you will have the market advantage of not having to worry about other businesses copying your products directly.

This also means you need to look into trademarking your business name. It might not be possible in some cases but if you can, trademarking is a really viable option to consider. Make sure your business name is also not already in use to ensure you don’t get any problems later on.

3. Ensuring You Are Licenced

Depending on the area your business works in it is really important to make sure your business is appropriately licenced. This can save you from a lot of hassle later on and is also very important to keep your business up and running.

Having legal certificates can also increase your credibility among your customers and thus you should look into this area as early as possible.

4. Non-Disclosure Agreements And Contracts

When you are setting up a business you will start hiring staff as well as drawing up business contracts with other companies. Thus it is essential to take care of non-disclosure agreements to guarantee you are protected in case someone would give away important business information.

It is really important to have these ready so that whenever you are getting a new client or hiring a new person you can quickly get these issues out of the way. When you make a legal agreement and a contract it is essential to get it professionally photocopied to ensure you all have the document in multiple copies. Look at Silver Fox Legal and their colour photocopying services.

5. Getting A Solicitor

Hiring your own solicitor won’t be a viable option for small businesses but it is a good idea to get an outside company to help you out when you are setting up, as well as being available in the future. Build a good relationship with the company to ensure you have a reliable legal advisor you can turn to if you ever have any issues.

About the Author: Peter in interested in corporate law and wants to make all the legal hurdles seem a little bit easier for small business owners. When he needs to get his mind away from legal issues he likes to enjoy some time with his family and is especially keen on playing board games with them.

How To Promote Your Business With Calendar Printing

Despite the fact that we live in an age of technology, many people still like to have a calendar on their desk or wall so that they can keep track of appointments. It’s much easier to just pencil something in as it comes up than it is to boot up a computer, open a program, and make a note. So, it’s not surprising that printed calendars are still popular. If you are a business owner, you should take advantage of that popularity. So, here’s how to promote your business with calendar printing.

Image Source
Image Source

Pick a Printing Company:

There are many professional printing companies available. A quick search of the Internet will give you dozens, or even hundreds, of results. However, not all printing companies offer the same options, features, or prices. So, you need to pick one according to your needs and your budget.

Start by determining how many calendars you need. Some printing companies will give discounts on larger orders. So, if you are ordering your calendars in bulk, choose a company that has that sort of offer. Some companies also offer free shipping on larger orders. You should watch for those deals as well, if you want to get the most advertising for the least possible investment.

It’s also important to pick a printing company that offers the type of calendar that you want. Are you looking for a small desk calendar, or a large wall calendar? Would you like some of each? Those are all good questions to ask yourself, as you are choosing a calendar printing company.

Consider Your Calendar Images:

?You also need to consider your calendar images. You should try to customize your calendar to appeal to the majority of your clients. So, ask yourself whether your clients are business executives, or more casual. Are your calendars going to primarily wind up in offices or homes? What ages and genders are you trying to appeal to? Once you have those answers, you can choose a theme and photographs for your calendar. Your chosen printing company may offer such images, or you may have to supply them.

Calendar Printing

Make Your Calendar Handy

You should also make your calendar handy. For example, be sure that there are big enough blocks that each of your clients can write in their appointments. Clients won’t look twice at a calendar that has no room for them to write in their schedule. Large blocks will encourage use. The more your clients use the calendar, the more they will look at your company’s name, logo, and contact information.

Make Your Information Memorable:

The most important thing to remember about custom calendar printing is to make your company’s information memorable. Be sure that the company’s name, logo, and contact information are prominently displayed. You may also want to include a catchy saying that will make your clients think of you. Many people will also display their calendars in such a way that their friends, family members, and business associates will see them. So, the more memorable your calendar is, the more clients it will bring to you.

Calendar Design

Featured images:
  •  License: Image author owned
  •  License: Image author owned
  •  License: Image author owned

About the Author: Guest post by David Dobson – Using my 30 years of experience in the printing indusrty to pass on business marketing

What Does Your Domain Name Say About You

Designing and publishing a website for your business is an important way to enter the world-wide market and choosing a domain is a critical step to that process. Experts agree that choosing the right name can help the success of your business when it’s to the point and describes what your business does.

What is a Domain Name?

A domain name is the way consumers look for a particular business by typing it into the browser. It can also lead to an individual website via your business link. This small line of text can aid users in navigating the Internet with ease. Imagine if the Internet didn’t use domain names, and you were required to utilize a string of numbers instead to search for a company. Domain names are registered daily and can cost the user between a minimal fee and thousands of dollars depending on the level and value of your search engine. There are many domain names for sale that can be purchased through a Domain Broker.

domainFinding and Being Found

The name that you choose is important and can help you reach your consumer base. Many businesses think up catchy names that have nothing to do with the services or products that they offer. As a business strategy, this makes zero sense and will only lead to confusion and aggravation. Setting up your domain name and website are important steps to a successful business, and you don’t want to change it later on. This could cause you to lose loyal customers and make your company look unprofessional and scattered.

Choosing the Right Name

Select something that showcases your business in the best light and tells them exactly what you do. If your company handles myriad services, focus on the one thing for your domain that you do best. You can easily add additional pages that will outline your other services or products.

Building a Solid Reputation

To ensure your business has a solid business reputation, you’ll want to choose the perfect domain name. In case your business grows and expands in the future, you may want to find something broad based. This allows you to add things down the road. It also gives you a bit more creativity with the actual name. Some well-known online retail establishments have found success with a particular domain, and the name has had nothing to do with the products that they offer. They also offer more than just books and may include DVDs, electronic gear and much more. You can also find success with something specific that targets exactly what you do or sell. Choosing something synonymous with what you do can generate greater search engine optimism and promotes the exact name in the URL window.

Selecting the right domain name is important from the beginning and can help consumers find the goods or services that you offer with ease, and the right amount of accessibility. It’s also imperative that it sends the right message to your customer base, and the image that you want to portray to them. Not only will it help your business achieve success, it will make you stand out from the rest of the competition.

Author Anthony Joseph enjoys writing about new business subjects to help offer information to start up companies. Toby Clements, a self made Domain Broker, is one of the top dealers in the world – creating millions of dollars in sales on a consistent basis. Buying and selling of these names are happening everyday, and knowing which one is best can have a significant impact on how well your business succeeds.

Why Your Internet Business Needs a Human Voice On the Line

office voice for internet businesses

The Internet has brought about many changes to the way a company can conduct business. One of the most significant changes is the change from brick and mortar to laptop offices. A business no longer needs to have a physical presence to conduct business. They can purchase from suppliers, contact remote employees, interact with their customers and ship their products all from their virtual location.

“This seems like the ultimate way to conduct a business!”

In most ways, this statement is true. You have reduced operating expenses, you can work from anywhere and you can produce a product or service with little effort.

However, consumers are starting to grow tired of computer generated customer service. They want to “connect” with a real person when they have a question or an issue. They want to know that the company they are dealing with is “real.” They are becoming disenchanted with live chat options and want to talk to a human being.

Is This The End For Internet Based Businesses?

Of course not, internet businesses are here to stay, they only need to adapt to their consumers. Any business that wishes to meet the needs of their clients will prosper, and Internet based companies can meet this need by investing in a virtual office.

An online solution like a virtual office from  ring central(dot)com provides that personal touch that laptop businesses often lack. They have “real” receptionists to take your calls and interact with your clients. The receptionist will be assigned to your company and you can interact with them as you would an answering service.

This one feature alone can set you apart from other online businesses that only provide online contact. It will also give your company live support for any time of the day, meeting the needs of your clients in different time zones.

Can You Still Keep Operating Expenses Low?

The additional benefits of using a virtual office are that you do not have to rent office space, pay for electricity, or pay employee related expenses. You will not be obligated to pay payroll tax, carry workers compensation insurance, or worry about someone calling off from work. Your virtual office will always be there and operating, increasing your business and profit margin.

The Internet has become a large part of everyday life. More people turn to the Internet now for information, advice, and shopping than ever before. It has become a tool that helps people find what they want, regardless of distance, and make connections with people all over the world.

As much as this technology has helped advance the world, the desire to communicate with a real human still remains. People want to place a voice behind their transaction to make sure that it is real. They want to hear sympathy when they are upset with a product or service, and they want to hear a calm voice when they are angry. By providing a point-of-contact for your clients by using a virtual office, you are providing them with that voice they desire to hear. This will increase your business while still giving you the freedom to operate your Internet based business on your own terms.

A small business operator, Ann Bailey presents these tips for new ways to save and succeed in the office. Having a virtual office from is an easy way to provide all of the old fashioned charm of a typical store front office while only paying for the sleek, new streamlined business model of internet enterprises.

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The Top 4 Most Effective Ways To Improve Your Facebook Advertising Results

License: Creative Commons image source
License: Creative Commons image source

Looking to improve your Facebook page and become more popular? If you are, this article will get you going. Read on!

There’s one simple reason why Facebook is one of the best online mediums for advertising: its wide spectrum of active users (just over 960 million as of March 2013). From all corners of the earth, people long on to Facebook daily to socialize and for various other reasons, and more and more marketers realize how powerful the world’s largest social network can become when used to its fullest.

If you want to take your Facebook presence to the next level, here are 4 tips you can use to improve your advertising results:
• Improve your SEO. Facebook is very SEO-friendly, giving you all the features needed to turn your page into a traffic driving machine and reap the benefits directly. Use these 3 SEO ‘secrets’ for Facebook to beef up your efforts:
1. Choose the best name for your Facebook Page and stick with it. Changing the name will cost you SEO points, especially if you give in to the temptation to stuff the title with keywords. Avoid doing this!
2. Choose the best URL. Facebook offers the ability to select a custom URL for your page, which is an important SEO opportunity for Facebook you can explore. Make the URL simple and relevant to your business.
3. Place your keywords in the “About” text-box. It’s always a good idea SEO-wise to place keyword-dense content as close to the top as possible, and Facebook allows you to do this in the “About” section.

• Get professional designed graphics. This is optional, but remember: Facebook is a place where potential clients come to interact with your business — just like every other place on the Internet where your brand is attached. If you want your Facebook page to look professional, have it designed by a professional.

• Create interaction. Facebook users seldom find a page with no activity to report on. Facebook also uses an algorithm to determine what’s newsworthy based on interaction (i.e. the number of likes an updates that a page receives). Be likable, ask questions to start up conversations and you will be more and more visible each day.

• Buy Facebook likes. Here’s why buying Facebook likes is important: it makes the hard job of getting likes easy. Have you ever wondered why many Facebook marketers give up? In most cases, it’s because growing a Facebook page naturally is time consuming and hard work. Do it right and there’s no downside to buying traffic. If you’re not sure how to buy Facebook fans, there’s no absolute guide to follow, but it’s important to buy them from a company that gives you real users.

So, to recap, what you need to do to improve your Facebook advertising results is: (1) work on your SEO, (2) look professional (use a high quality design), (3) create interaction and engagement on your page, and (4) scale up your business with quality traffic. Add these tips to your arsenal if you don’t want to miss out. If done right, your advertising efforts will help you tap into a powerful source of traffic and an opportunity with serious potential for business.

About the Author: Roman Sahakov is the co-founder of Followershop, a company which provides Twitter followers and other social media metrics to musicians, entrepreneurs, businessmen and others for the growth of their campaign. Followershop agency is notorious for its duly delivery and professionalism in fulfilling the orders. The company also provides the opportunity to buy twitter followers.

Your Business Website: Will Clients Like What They Find?

The purpose of a business website is to promote a company in some fashion. Whether a company is selling products or providing services, the site needs to incorporate all of the technical aspects that make it both web-visitor and search-engine friendly. The ability to do this is no small feat. That’s why serious businesses utilize professional web builder and SEO services to ensure that they can receive the best possible results.
Customer Friendly Website Design
Everyone has heard, time and again, that the customer is always right. The way that this is applied to web design is that when people arrive at the site, they need to feel welcomed. If not, just like in a brick and mortar store, they will leave. Added to the challenge is that web visitors are impatient – they simply are not going to stick around if there is nothing worth looking at on the site. Because there is so little time to engage them, every second counts when visitors arrive at a website.

What are Customers Expecting?

First, what are they not expecting? There is nothing more annoying to a web visitor than a poorly designed website. An ugly or outdated site is not fun and it wastes time. Therefore, your website simply must be designed properly – and that is best done by an expert web builder. Secondly, the site must be user friendly. The layout should be clean and simple, with links that make sense and work properly.

Who’s Looking Anyway?

There are generally three types of people who could arrive at a website for any given reason:

1) Random strangers – People who know nothing about the business have landed on the page due to a related search. Theoretically, they could still be converted to customers or refer the site to others they believe would find it useful. Therefore, the site should contain something of value to the average person, if possible, such as current and relevant articles that solve a problem.

2) Friends of Yours – They like your cause or business. These are people who probably know your URL and may visit on a regular basis. To keep these people engaged, there should always be fresh content to lure them in. One great way to accomplish this is by encouraging people to visit the site through a newsletter or membership.

3) Fans – These are more avid web visitors who regularly come to the site for — you guessed it – the same thing that friends come there for and more. These are often consumers who make regular purchases, so it is very important to ensure that they stay loyal.

Do You Have Fresh Content?

The one thing that all three of these types of web visitors have in common is that they want great, fresh content to be inspired for repeat visits. One added bonus about fresh content is that it also makes the website more search engine friendly. So it’s a win-win for everyone! Customers get something of value, the site stays at the top of the search engines and you have far more potential to:
-Keep customers engaged
-Engage new prospects
-Attract new customers
-Make more sales

Because websites are on the Internet and available for most everyone to see, it is important for serious business owners to ensure that their sites present the most accurate and relevant picture of their offerings possible. When a site is is visually appealing and constructed well by a professional SEO company, such as, it is more likely to attract, and keep, all kinds of visitors.

Since there is only one chance to make a first impression – a site really must make those clicks count! Professional web design is the only way that businesses can ensure that their sites will include both technical and marketing best practice techniques. This is absolutely critical in order to consistently gain and keep a loyal following and attract target markets.

As a writer in the arts and business fields, Ann Bailey sees the beneficial effects of good web design daily. The professional web and SEO builders at put every client’s web design on the cutting edge of internet business presence.

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Expanding Your Business Online

The invention and eventual widespread use of the Internet has forced businesses to recognize the necessity of having a little corner of their own on the World Wide Web. Keeping these websites active requires a website hosting service, and there are many types to choose from. More and more individuals, however, are realizing that dedicated servers are the way to go. Different servers will benefit separate companies, but after fully understanding hosting services and specific dedicated servers, many business owners opt for the dedicated server route.

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Important Aspects of a Website

There are several factors that can make or break a website hosting service. Some of the most important considerations when choosing a type of hosting service are uptime, security, speed and reliability. Free hosting companies are cheap, but all of the aforementioned important factors are seriously lacking in these free options. Shared servers are better than free servers, but since the server in question is being used by multiple companies, the speed and reliability can often be compromised.

Some business owners also opt to host their own servers, but this leaves them susceptible to huge drawbacks if their server crashes. The sad fact of the matter is that a business owner will have to be a full-on computer and networking expert to run their own server. Luckily, dedicated servers avoid many of the issues related to self-hosting and the gamut of other server types.

Benefits of Dedicated Servers

As already mentioned, dedicated servers solve many of the issues that other server types leave wide open. Dedicated servers, for instance, have only one website on them. This means that lax security on another website that shares the same server will never affect the website on a dedicated server.

In addition, dedicated hosting services ensure that all space on a server is dedicated to that one site. This means that large amounts of traffic visiting another website on the server won’t cause any downtime issues for the website. Also, shared servers have an inherent constraint on space. Dedicated servers, on the other hand, have plenty of space for the website that it’s hosting. This means that if a business owner decides to expand their website, it’s extremely simple.

Managed vs. Unmanaged Dedicated Servers

Many business owners are left with the tough decision of choosing between managed and unmanaged dedicated servers. They both have their own advantages, but for companies that are still growing, unmanaged hosting services are likely their best option. Managed dedicated servers come prepackaged with certain attributes. Security capabilities, for instance, are chosen by the company hosting a managed server. Unfortunately, these can sometimes provide too much or too little security for a website, but this problem doesn’t exist for unmanaged servers.

Unmanaged servers still have the basic infrastructure support that managed hosting services provide, but business owners with unmanaged servers can pick and choose exactly what they need and only pay for those features. They can expand these features at any time, but while waiting for this need to arise, they can definitely save money. Businesses can even choose their own easy to manage control panel and companies like sell full cPanel licenses at a cheaper price than they can get when buying direct from the manufacturer.

In addition, business owners can use the exact programs and procedures that they want on unmanaged servers. This means that they can upload their own control panels or the exact right amount of security. The options are almost limitless, and the unmanaged tag keeps the price reasonable.

Selecting the right type of server is absolutely essential for any business owner who hopes to run a successful online campaign. In fact, the lack of a great Internet presence can sometimes be detrimental enough to cause a company to fail. Luckily, dedicated servers allow individuals to get reliable service for their website, and unmanaged servers give them incredible leeway over how their website operates and how much it costs. Understanding all of these things is essential for every company, group or organization out there.

About the Author: Researcher Shelby Warden writes articles to help businesses compete in a digital world. is an authorized cPanel partner that sells the full range of external cPanel licenses at low prices and backs them up with their friendly customer service and support. cPanel/WebHostManager is the leading web hosting control panel used by Web Hosting companies and Internet Service Providers.

Hosting Your New Business: How to Buy More for Less

When it comes to starting a business, your online presence is a key factor in determining your success. While there are a variety of options available to business owners to have presences on the web, one of the most important is having a dedicated website. Unfortunately, many business owners who are starting out don’t understand what it takes to create and keep a website in cyberspace. Many think that they can simply build a site and then it will magically appear on the Internet. The truth is, however, that after a site is built, it must be hosted.

Web Building


What is Hosting?
Hosting is the process of placing and keeping a website online. A hosting company is one that offers storage space on a server, and the business owner’s website is then hosted from that space. Anytime a visitor accesses the business’ website, a connection is made to the server, and the visitor pulls data from it. These central companies are generally the route that most business owners take when getting their websites online, and most hosting companies offer a variety of options regarding different types of service.


Shared Hosting vs. Dedicated Hosting
When choosing an online service, business owners must also decide whether to go with shared or dedicated options. Shared service allows a business owner’s website to be on a server along with other people’s websites. This type of plan is generally less expensive than other options, but it also has its drawbacks. Because someone using shared hosting is sharing a server with other websites, loading speeds may be affected, especially if another site on the server is bringing in a lot of traffic. Dedicated hosting, on the other hand, allows a website to be stored on its own server. This type of function is generally more expensive than shared, but it also allows websites to have faster loading times, quicker download speeds and less down time.


Costs to Control
No matter what hosting option you choose to use, it’s important to consider the costs involved. Some plans may start out a few dollars per month, while others may cost hundreds of dollars per month or more. Generally, the cost will be determined by the amount of space your site needs, the amount of visitors your site attracts and the amount of bandwidth your site uses. If you’re concerned about Internet costs for your new business site, you might want to do some research about coupons.


Discounts are available through a variety of avenues like, and they can ensure savings on all kinds of web services. In fact, many business owners who are just starting out on the web use coupons to try out various hosting solutions until they find the one that’s right for their business.


When looking for a server solution, it’s also important to find one that will be able to grow with your business. As your business expands, the hope is that you will have more consumers visiting your website over time, and this may mean that you will need to change your web plan in the middle of a contract period. As a precaution, always look for a web provider that is willing to allow you to add on services with time and growth.


Ann Bailey has a small business website and shares these tips to help new site owners make decisions about hosting plans. Coupons available at can assist smaller web-based businesses with start-up costs, adding to bottom line savings and business survival rates.