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Design

3 Important Differences Between UI and UX

If you are a User Experience (UX) design expert, chances are, you’re also expected to know some User Interface (UI) design skills. Today’s industry, both UI and UX must work together to ensure an efficient and aesthetically pleasing web design. 

If this is the first time you’ve heard of UI in a UX world or vice versa, here are some important things you need to know about UX versus UI: UX is for beauty, UI for use; UX is for connection, UI is to accomplish goals; UX is what happens after UI is working seamlessly. Both are important aspects of web design, but they need each other. Once you understand these core differences, you can better understand why knowing both is so valuable. 

  • UI for Looks, UX for Function 

Imagine a website as a building. The wireframe or basic coding behind the website forms the structure. The UX is the systems electrical wiring, lighting, plumbing, windows, climate control systems, and all of the other amenities that help ensure the building functions safely as intended. The UI would be the finished walls, paint, polished floors, artwork hanging in the lobby, building directory, and other aesthetic touches to make the building feel warm, inviting, and easy to navigate. 

From a nuts-and-bolts perspective, UI and UX work toward different ends but with the same goals in mind. 

A focus on UI must include:

  1. Layout
  2. Visual Design
  3. Branding.

While UX will focus on:

  1. User Research
  2. Personas
  3. User Stories. 

Good website design demands a marriage of function and fashion. When you focus on functionality over presentation, you may wind up with a very fast, responsive, yet bland and uninspiring website. Focus too much on aesthetics and you have a beautiful website that is troublesome for the average user to navigate; clunky UX bogs down navigation and the overall experience of browsing a site regardless of how good it looks.

If a site looks great but performs terribly, this is an example of good UI with bad UX. It’s like a corvette with a bad muffler — it looks great, but it doesn’t run like it should. If a site is functional but looks awful, this is an example of good UX with bad UI. It doesn’t matter how great the engine purrs, if it’s covered in rust and primer, no one will want to ride with you. Both UX and UI are essential for creating valuable interactions with customers, cultivating brand loyalty, and establishing credibility as a market leader. 

  • UI Helps Site Navigation, UX Forges Connections

UI design pertains to all of the navigation controls, buttons, and visual design elements of a website. UX design assesses the flow of how a user navigates the elements of the website and aims to make the experience as intuitive and enjoyable as possible. While UI focuses on the presentation of a website’s navigational and design elements for each individual page, UX is a more expansive process that determines how a user will use and interact with those elements across the site as a whole. 

A good UI design provides a user with an easy-to-navigate website and all of the tools and functions they expect to reach every piece of content on the site. Good UX requires a more in-depth look at how the customer will interact with the brand and consideration of how to forge a stronger connection with the customer. Some of the most critical elements of solid UI design include:

  1. Customer analysis: UI designers must consider their target audience’s tastes and preferences when developing website UI features. For example, a brand that caters to an older, professional market base wouldn’t want a website with an ostentatious colour palette or gimmicky navigational tools. A brand that caters to a young and hip crowd with fun-oriented products or services shouldn’t have a sterile website. It’s a little like going to a party with “over the hill” decor. People know there’s a party, but they aren’t sure about it’s theirs — nor are they sure they want it to be.
  2. Branding development: It’s essential for a company to have a consistent brand image across every point of contact with potential customers. UI designers work closely with their marketing teams to ensure consistent brand imaging across the entire website and all marketing channels to build credibility and trust with leads.
  3. Interactivity: UI designers evaluate micro-interactions very closely. One example of a simple yet effective micro-interaction is the small pop of colour that occurs after clicking to like a tweet on Twitter. Every small interaction a user has with a website influences the quality of the overall experience. Small animations in response to completed actions help users know they are interacting with the site as intended.

UX designers essentially create the building blocks of the overall customer experience with the brand, while UI designers ensure they have a pleasurable experience with every interaction with close attention to presentation, aesthetics, and ease of use.

  • UX Lays the Groundwork, UI Is the Finishing Touch

UX designers rely heavily on data. UX designers take more of a marketing-focused approach while UI designers focus on visual design. UX experts collect and analyze relevant data trends to develop user experiences that resonate with their target consumers. UX designers create wireframes and prototype pages that UI designers then build upon to create beautiful, easily navigable websites. 

UX designers generally play crucial active roles in early website development, leaning heavily on data to make informed decisions throughout the entire development process.

Some of the most important elements of the UX design process include:

  1. Competitor analysis: UX teams research their biggest competitors, browse their websites, and look for ways to offer customers better experiences.
  2. Customer research: Every customer-facing business needs to develop profiles of their ideal customers. UX designers research consumer trends, market fluctuations, and even social media trends to anticipate what consumers want the most.
  3. Product/service research and development: UX designers must know their brand’s products and services inside out so they can guide website visitors to the brand’s real value.
  4. Content development: UX teams must consider the type of content their user base expects and work with the marketing team for creating a better overall user experience. The type of content a brand produces helps inform the best website design strategies for the brand so the content has maximum impact.
     
  5. Wireframing and prototyping: Think of UX design as creating a storyboard; the UX designer envisions the customer journey with a brand through the website and creates a wireframe that UI designers build upon for a beautiful and functional finished site. 

UI designers pick up where the UX designers leave off, but UX and UI go hand-in-hand through almost every stage of website development. While the UX designers lay the foundation for the overall customer journey through a website, the UI design team focuses on individual pages, polishing them for an aesthetically pleasing journey that users can easily navigate.

UX and UI Must Work Together

UX and UI designers spend a lot of time working with and consulting one another during the website development process. Sometimes UI designers discover issues with a wireframe that require collaborative solutions. Some UX designers may require a UI designer’s input when laying the foundation for the user journey through the site, leaning heavily on both teams’ customer research. 

While UX designers consider all of the interactions a potential user could have with the brand on and off the website, UI design is a digital sphere that focuses on the interactions and navigation tools available to users on the website. UX essentially aims to develop high-quality interactions with users and improve upon them across all facets of a brand, while UI strives to use good visual design to make the user experience as enjoyable and aesthetically pleasing as possible.

These three primary differences between UX and UI illustrate how closely linked these two design processes are for any web development project. UX may come before UI, but neither is more important than the other and any modern development professional should have a firm understanding of the fundamentals of both UX and UI design.

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Reseller in Focus: Varial Hosting

We at ResellerClub believe in providing the best quality service and excellence to you, our resellers. At ResellerClub, we’ve partnered with over 2,00,000 resellers all around the world to enable them to flourish in their businesses through our products and services. Over the past few years, we’ve published stories of our resellers in their own words to let you, the readers know about them, as well as, help budding businesses gain insights from their experience. Today we want to introduce you to one of our resellers who has been with us for a long time, and who we’re proud to do business with – Ryan Smith of Varial Hosting.

Launched in 2002, Varial Hosting has grown from a simple domain and hosting business catering to local bands, to a full-fledged reselling business.

Here is Ryan Smith’s story about his journey and his business Varial Hosting in his own words!

Company Name: Varial Hosting

We at ResellerClub believe in providing the best quality service and excellence to you Reseller in Focus: Varial Hosting

We spoke to: Ryan Smith

Website Link:  https://varialhosting.com/

Favourite Control Panel Feature: ResellerClub API

I Chose Resellerclub Because of:  Approachability and Pricing 

Q1. When did you enter the Web Services Industry and where do see your business going?

I launched my very first website in 2002, a discussion forum for local musicians. It became wildly popular, leading me to learn a lot about hosting technologies to keep up with its growth. I began to offer domain and hosting services to local bands and businesses in 2003, which sparked a 16-year career in the web services industry. Recently, Varial Hosting launched our next-generation hosting platform and optimized WordPress Hosting plans, and with it, a new data centre located in our hometown of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. This shift in our business strategy to become a Managed WordPress service provider has been very successful, and we are now focused on expansion and continuing to improve our services.

Q2. What do you think is your secret to success and why do Customers prefer Varial Hosting?

Customers often tell us that the quality of our support is the reason why they host with us. Our support staff is expertly trained, and our business has grown primarily from the word of mouth of our satisfied customers. We have brought high quality Managed WordPress Hosting services to the Canadian market at competitive pricing, which has attracted a lot of new customers since launching this service.

Q3. Tell us a little about doing business in Canada. What are the most unique aspects of the market?

While we do have customers in nearly all parts of the world, most of our business comes from our Canadian client base. In fact, we sell just as many .CA domains as we do .COMs! Having our data centre located in the Canadian prairies is an advantage as it’s a location that is safe from natural disasters, allowing us to maintain great uptime. We also accept payment in both Canadian and US dollars, making it easy for both our local and international customers to purchase our services.

Q4. Is there any advice that you’d like to give others that are still learning the ropes in the Industry?

Try to keep your expenses low when you are first starting your company. Things like an expensive office space are not always needed until you are truly ready to afford them. If you want to avoid working from home or out of coffee shops, consider co-working spaces where you can book meeting rooms and have a mailbox for a fraction of the cost of an office. Hosting is also a very challenging industry and keeping up with security can be stressful and time-demanding. We often see web design agencies trying to do it all, building beautiful websites while also trying to manage their servers. If you do not have the expertise to manage a server, you may want to seek a hosting provider to do this for you, so you can focus on what you do best. We’ve acquired the hosting customers of several web design agencies because managing their servers became too much of a challenge for them.

Q5.  You have been with ResellerClub since 2010. What do you think has changed over the years?

Since starting my company 16 years ago, ResellerClub has grown from a simple domain reselling business, to offering many other products like hosting, servers, email solutions, website themes and plugins, etc. They have also been very hands-on in helping me migrate my domain name business from another provider to ResellerClub, not only allowing me to offer better rates to my customers but keeping me informed about promotions and suggesting ways to help me continue to grow my business.

Q6. Could you tell us some interesting stories or anecdotes about your company? How has having ResellerClub as a partner helped your business?

When the domain reselling partner we had previously worked with for several years substantially increased their rates, we approached ResellerClub to see what they could do for us to try to avoid increasing domain rates for our customers. Not only were they able to offer more competitive rates, but they were also able to beat the pricing we originally had on our best selling domains, allowing us to keep pricing the same for our customers while making more profit for ourselves.

Fun fact: Varial Hosting is named after the best trick I could do on a skateboard when I first started the company. Our original data centre was even located across the street from a skate park. Being in a band in my early twenties and building my first music-related website in 2002 led to this unexpected career in web services. Sometimes you never know where life will take you. I’m proud to have followed my passions and built a successful business that keeps me interested every day.

Favourite Control Panel Feature

We have deeply integrated the WHMCS billing software into our website, so we can easily register domains for customers using ResellerClub’s API. As we offer hundreds of top-level domains for sale, we frequently visit the Domains Pricing Overview page of our ResellerClub control panel to view our costs for new domains we wish to sell and to plan promotional offers for our customers.

A big thanks to Ryan for taking the time out to answer these questions, we wish you all the best with your future endeavours!

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Design

Usability 101: Building User-friendly Websites and Applications

Can you tell the difference between these two images?

Can you tell the difference between these two images Usability 101: Building User-friendly Websites and Applications

The answer is not very hard to guess, is it? 

Usability lies at the nucleus of all ideas. No matter what form these ideas may be translated into – objects, products, software, etc., the significance that they deserve is directly proportional to their usability quotient. Ideas that aren’t usable can only be passed off as good stories. Same goes for websites and applications.

The usability of a website helps users find their way on the website and helps them complete their goals in the best possible way. But how can one ensure that they are hitting the nail on its head when it comes to making websites and applications perfectly usable? The answer is – ALWAYS start with the user-first approach!

Before getting started with any design project, it is vital to answer two questions –

  1. Who is my user?
  2. With what intention is he/she coming to my website?

Creating a user profile will help you answer both these questions.  This knowledge not only helps in understanding and predicting user behaviour, but also helps in meeting two of the most crucial goals of UI/UX design –

Goal #1: Helping the user find what he/she is looking for as quickly as possible

Goal #2: Reducing cognitive load i.e. eliminating questions from the user’s mind

Even though these goals sound a bit complex, they are, in fact, achievable. Let’s learn about the rules of usability that give direction and guide us towards meeting these goals.

Rule #1: Design an overarching structure of your website

Users often tend to get lost between all the text that web pages are filled with. In order to prevent this from happening, it is important to guide the user to help him/her take the right direction. The key to achieving this is to organize the contents of the web pages.

  • Break the content into logical sections in a way that it tells the same story despite being a part of different content blocks. 

  • Emphasize important pieces of content by using typography. 

  • Organize the content based on its degree of importance.

  • Identify common elements that you want all your web pages to contain in order to maintain repetition and consistency.

Rule #2: Create effective visual hierarchies

Studies suggest that users don’t really read web pages; they scan them to find only those words that closely resemble what they are looking for. Most website visitors only read 20% of the website content because they don’t read web pages the same way as they would while reading a book or a newspaper. Web-users visit websites to get quick answers. This is exactly why prominence, grouping, and nesting are essential concepts:

  • Prominence: Using font styles, sizes, and colours to establish a content hierarchy

  • Grouping: Using proximity to create a visual closeness between related content
  • Nesting: Segregating and classifying content under a parent line to display what is part of what

Rule #3: Use conventions

You don’t have to reinvent the wheel. After years of usage and exposure to specific kinds of icons, colours, shapes, placements, etc. used to convey any given idea, humans have been subconsciously trained to associate the same icons, colours, shapes, placements, etc. with specific meanings. For example, we all know that a logo always sits on the header of the website, we all know that the magnifying glass denotes the search box, we all know that a green button is most likely to convey the affirmative option, so on and so forth. These are tried and tested methods and they have been working fine. So try and stick to these conventional means of representation.

Rule #4: Make your clickable items obvious

Design for mindless clicks. In other words, do not leave any space for confusion when it comes to prompting your users to click on your CTA (call to action) buttons. Make your buttons discoverable by using conventional formats in terms of shape, size, colour, placement, and text. We’ve spoken about designing better buttons at length in this article

Rule #5: Eliminate distractions

Reduce clutter wherever and as much as you can. Focus on what is important so that even your visitors follow suite. Designers and content writers, alike, find themselves walking a tightrope when it comes to deciding the length of content that needs to go on any given web page, and the amount of design elements that need to be flaunted. Steer clear of unnecessary elements on the web page so as to prevent your website visitors from getting distracted from the main goal that you want them to achieve.

Rule #6: Reduce your content

Get rid of half of your content, and then get rid of half of what’s left. Use a combination of a handful of text and a bunch of lively graphics to say what you initially wanted to say with buckets full of text. Practise minimalism and only keep what is necessary. Your website visitors only read 20% of your content, remember?

In conclusion, we have one thing to say – when your ultimate aim is to convince your users to buy into your idea or even buy your product, you must do whatever you can to help your users find what they are looking for quickly and effortlessly. Try your best, and then try a little more, to eliminate any question marks from popping in the minds of your users. It only takes one positive website surfing experience to pave the way for repeated user interactions in the future; so make sure that you nail it in the first go!

(Originally published as part of our TechTalks series.)

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How Small Businesses Can Ensure Consumer Privacy Using Digital Technology

When your company collects user data, you pit convenience against protecting people’s privacy. 

As people purchase and use technologies that rely on personal data to function, this challenge will intensify. For example, 71% of Americans expect to have at least one smart-home device by 2025. 

According to Consumer Reports, 65% of Americans are either slightly or not at all confident that their personal data is private and not distributed without their knowledge. 

Research from the Global Web Index indicates across the globe, over 60% of people are worried about how companies use their data

As public distrust mounts due to recent privacy scandals, protections for personal data becomes an increasingly pressing issue for consumers and businesses to address. 

Small businesses often rely on customer service to establish an edge against larger competitors. To provide top-notch customer service, your small business needs to balance data collection efforts with protecting user privacy. 

Recent Examples Underscore Privacy Concerns 

Recent privacy scandals at two of the largest companies in the world – Google and Amazon – highlight the importance of personal data protection for all businesses.   

Last year, the Associated Press found that Google continued to store users’ time-stamped location data through mobile devices, even if users opted out of location sharing features. Similarly, Amazon employs thousands of individuals around the world to listen to voice recordings captured by their smart devices, regardless of whether the device is activated or not.  

The workers transcribe, annotate, and feed the data back into the software in order to eliminate gaps in the voice assistant’s human language skills, according to Bloomberg.

Consumers Value Curated Technology

Despite privacy concerns, many people want devices with location tracking enabled. 

Personal data can be used to curate digital content including services and ads to an individuals’ interests. For example, voice assistant users value the immediate access to information. Approximately half of the people who own a voice assistant value their device the most for its immediate answers to questions

This information, while adjusted to the user, sometimes limits the number of apps they use – i.e., they get in a pattern of using the same few things over and over. 

As a result, small businesses need to work to establish their product as part of people’s routines if they want to retain users on new technologies. 

To ensure this happens, your small business needs to collect and analyze user data to improve the chances you have to earn that level of use from customers. 

Data Drives Results 

While companies highlight procedures for limiting their access to personal data, it is difficult to ultimately stop its collection because it supports success. 

Data-driven decisions resulted in a 6% increase in productivity and output according to a Sloan School of Business study

The same study found that nearly 50% of Fortune 1000 executives stated that their companies were producing significant results from investments in big data; about 81% characterized their investments as successful.  

Investment in data collection, though, risks straining the trust between consumers and businesses as most data is distributed and sold. 

As more individuals realize that certain services come at the price of privacy, more people are reassessing their relationship with businesses that partake in data collection. 

Whether a consumer decides to keep using a service depends on their level of trust with the provider.

Privacy is therefore not only a concern for consumers but also businesses. Establishing trust means providing privacy protection.

Consumer Actions Small Businesses Should Be Aware Of

The simplest way for users to limit data collection is to stop using the services of online companies.  In reality, though, services such as Google or Amazon are indispensable in an increasingly digital world Users, however, have multiple avenues by which they can restrict the data they share: 

Android and Apple users, for example, have the option to limit access to certain apps. Similarly, Google has a menu where you can review all of the services you’ve connected to with your account. 

 you pit convenience against protecting people How Small Businesses Can Ensure Consumer Privacy Using Digital Technology
Source: Intego

By logging out of websites, users also can restrict companies’ access to their data that’s collected as you browse. Incognito or private modes also restrict tracking, but not much more than your browser history. 

Your businesses need to understand the steps users can take and engage with customers about how you protect their data. 

For example, you should ask upon download if users are comfortable sharing location data with your company. This establishes trust and produces a positive impression that you respect their information.  

How to Balance Privacy With Usability

To engage and retain users through new digital technologies, your small business needs to leverage user data. 

Using user data, you can provide the optimal, personal experience for customers. 

Many users, though, resent some data collection. To ensure you respect and provide top-notch customer service, your company needs to balance user privacy with its data collection efforts. 

Finding the right balance can help customers benefit from your services and trust your company with their data. 

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Hosting

Benefits of Integrating ResellerClub Mods with WHMCS

Domains and ResellerClub are synonymous with each other, however, ResellerClub has a host of different products for you to set up, resell and run your online business smoothly. While there are several ways to resell our services, WHMCS or WebHost Manager Complete Solution has proved to be one of the most popular mediums used by our resellers because of its ease of use and highly customisable nature. 

This article aims to introduce you to ResellerClub modules that will help take you a step further into simplified provisioning and management of ResellerClub products like never before. 

If you are already using WHMCS then you are probably already using our Default WHMCS module that offers a select set of functions to manage your domain orders. 

They are as follows:

  • Register, Transfer & Renew 
  • Register/Update Nameservers
  • Update WHOIS
  • Get EPP Code
  • DNS Record Management
  • Place Registrar Lock
  • Domain Sync Script 

However, for more nuanced features like handling GDPR or IRTP or even for reselling other products, you would have had to build your own modules to use with WHMCS. You could also use a 3rd party WHMCS plugin but we recommend using modules offered by our preferred partner, Group Informática Ferraro for a seamless experience. 

Launched 8 years ago, Group Informática Ferraro offers WHMCS Modules for all ResellerClub products called ResellerClub Mods. These are currently the most widely used 3rd party modules in ResellerClub’s trusted reseller base and one of the most popular ones sold on WHMCS’ marketplace. ResellerClub Mods offer over 20 tailor-made modules for ResellerClub’s products, services and OrderBox’s unique features. The most popular of these, however, has been their Registrar module. 

Here are a few of their features that make them so widely consumed by our resellers: 

  • Enable/Disable GDPR Domain Contact Protection from Admin and Client Area
  • Resend Email for RAA / IRTP Verification and GDPR Authorisation from Admin and Client Area
  • Change “Active” domain status to “Transferred Away” once the domain transfer has been completed at the registrar (domain sync and manual sync)
  • Automated domain restore in redemption period
  • Full support for selling new gTLD premium domains
  • Pro-rata charge for domain addons
  • Domain Register Pre GA Support
  • Suggest Domains in domain checker and shopping cart
  • Selling Afternic Premium Domains with Premium Domain lookup shopping cart
  • Automated language handling with fallback to English if selected language does not exist
  • Language Override ready
  • Multilingual Support with English and Spanish translations. You can add your own languages by simply translating the main English file
  • Extended Domain Status Information Section in the Admin Area
  • 100% Support for ALL gTLD’s and ccTLD’s 
  • 100% IDN Support and much more.

They also have a dedicated module to take care of your advance DNS needs. All the features that you’ve used on Orderbox but find it difficult to replicate via WHMCS can be bridged by this revolutionary module i.e Advanced Dns Interface

ResellerClub modules also offer a variety of fully customisable modules for all our Addon & Hosting products which take care of everything right from provisioning, billing and even management of your customer’s order. Additionally, their email hosting module for Business & Enterprise email has made it easy for several of our web hosts to bundle with their hosting and is a major hit amongst the web hosts.

In a nutshell, if you are a web host then integrating ResellerClub to your WHMCS panel will definitely simplify your work in the long run! So what are you waiting for? Integrate today and get 25% off on all modules!

If you have any queries about integrating WHMCS with your ResellerClub account, visit our website or get in touch with us by leaving a comment below and we’d be happy to help you!

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Hosting

Simplifying Your Website Management With 5 Simple cPanel Tips

When it comes to website management cPanel is the preferred choice for most hosting types viz. Shared Hosting, VPS Hosting, Cloud Hosting to name a few. cPanel, a web-based interface, is a management system that lets you manage all your website and hosting related orders with ease. 

In this article, we’ll walk you through cPanel and share 5 tips to manage your website using cPanel. So without further ado, let us begin.

What is cPanel?

cPanel is a web-based control panel that allows you to manage your website and hosting orders easily. It has a graphic and visual appearance that helps you navigate seamlessly from one function to another. 

If you’re a beginner and want to understand how cPanel works you can read this post. However, if you’ve already gone through the process of configuring your cPanel, then it’s time to learn how to manage your website without worrying too much. 

5 Tips To Manage Your Website Using Cpanel

  • Easy App Installation

Auto-installers are a quick and hassle-free way of installing apps on your website or hosting account. There are various auto-installers available like Softaculous, Installatron, QuickInstall, etc. With our Cloud Hosting, we offer QuickInstall, a popular auto-installer that comes pre-integrated with cPanel. It supports multiple apps, themes and services to make your website look professional. 

When it comes to website management cPanel is the preferred choice for most hosting types  Simplifying Your Website Management With 5 Simple cPanel Tips

As a website owner, your work of installing applications is simplified due to the auto-installer. 

  • Update your PHP Version

The PHP version your website works on has an impact when it loads on your visitor’s browser. If your PHP version is not compatible with the visitors PHP version, it might pose a problem, for example, there might be performance issues, security vulnerabilities etc. Thus, it is important to keep your PHP updated. The current version of PHP 7.3 is said to be the best ever as it improves website loading speed immensely. 

If you’re confused about how to update your PHP version in cPanel, worry not, it is a simple process. Follow the steps listed in this article and your PHP version will be up-to-date in a matter of minutes.

When it comes to website management cPanel is the preferred choice for most hosting types  Simplifying Your Website Management With 5 Simple cPanel Tips

As a website owner, if you have a WordPress website make sure it is updated to 7.3 and if not that at least 5.6.20+, although this is not recommended by WordPress. 

  • Check Server Performance

Making sure that your server has adequate space for your website resources to run properly is extremely important. Also, checking the performance of your server from time to time, helps you analyse if you need to upgrade your hosting as well. 

In cPanel click on ‘Server Information,’ and you can check your CPU memory, file and disk usage, resource management, etc.

When it comes to website management cPanel is the preferred choice for most hosting types  Simplifying Your Website Management With 5 Simple cPanel Tips

For instance, if you’re currently using Shared Hosting, chances are you might notice that most of the space is being taken by other users, especially with this being a shared space. Or another scenario, your website is growing and the server space falls short. In this case, the most obvious solution is to upgrade your hosting plan to some other hosting say, Cloud Hosting to accommodate the rise in website traffic. 

As a website owner, this switch was possible because you analysed the server performance. This eventually will lead to happier customers as your website performance will improve. 

  • Built-in Analytics 

There are plenty of Analytical tools available in the market today viz. Google Analytics, KISSmetrics, CrazyEgg, etc. and although these are great, not everyone is keen on setting up analytics from scratch. However, having analytics in place is a good option and you can start with a built-in analytics system. 

AWStats (Advanced Web Statistics) is an open-source analytics tool that comes with cPanel and offers data on traffic source, volume and even type of traffic, the operating system of the visitor, browser information, HTTP codes and a lot more. 

When it comes to website management cPanel is the preferred choice for most hosting types  Simplifying Your Website Management With 5 Simple cPanel Tips

As a website owner, analysing your website traffic can give you great insights on how well your business is performing and AWStats is one of the best tools for a beginner.

  • Files Management 

Managing website files can be tricky, especially if you’re new to it. With cPanel’s File Manager you can easily upload your files to your server. You can either upload your files individually or zip multiple files together and upload. 

When it comes to website management cPanel is the preferred choice for most hosting types  Simplifying Your Website Management With 5 Simple cPanel Tips

As a website owner, you now don’t have to go through the hassles of uploading your files via FTP. 

Conclusion 

With these 5 cPanel tips for website management, we hope your website management is simplified and you can concentrate on your business without worrying much about the technicalities. If you have any suggestions on the kind of tutorials you would like to read, please feel free to comment below!

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Design

How to Design Better Buttons

The sole purpose of any promotional copy – be it the copy of an ad, an email, or a website, is to lead the reader towards that shiny, interactive, and most often, a rectangular clickable UI element i.e., the button. Call-to-action (CTA) buttons not only hold every marketer’s hopes of winning at conversion techniques, but also a psychological effect that has the potential of reflecting your brand’s image. How can a mere button do that, you ask? Well, CTA buttons being one of the most crucial elements of any user interface can convey sophistication and class through its intelligent design.

Long story short – the most basic purpose of an effective CTA button is to be click-worthy. CTA buttons vary in shapes, sizes and also messaging basis the end goal associated with them. Read on further to learn about some simple design tricks to get the most out of these click magnets!

#1: Make them discoverable

The sole purpose of any promotional copy  How to Design Better Buttons

As a result of long exposure to specific shapes that are associated with specific colours, our minds tend to get used to reacting to them in specific ways. Our perception of colours and shapes have the capacity to affect our moods and emotions. A traditional CTA button would ideally be a horizontal rectangle. While it may be a little too ambitious to experiment with abstract shapes to denote a button, it shouldn’t mean that you stick to the good old rectangle. 

When it comes to colours, it is recommended that designers use contrasting colours for the buttons, and stick to shapes that can be easily identified as buttons. Having said that, tweaking them to a safe extent so as to make them look contemporary is definitely a safe path to tread. For example, designers can try softening the corners or curving the sides of a rectangle to make the button look sleeker.

#2: Add some shadow 

The sole purpose of any promotional copy  How to Design Better Buttons

Buttons have existed in different types of design – three-dimensional design, skeuomorphic design, flat design and drop shadows, to name a few. The interplay of light and shadow has inspired several streams of design, making them look more alive. Adding a soft, blurred drop shadow to a button gives it more depth and prominence. However (and this is a pretty big ‘however’), it is much too easy to overdo these light-shadow effects. Designers tend to add one effect after the other without pausing to think whether these effects are simply good-looking or truly necessary. So, add your shadows, but keep them subtle. The best practice is to match the colour of the shadow to that of the button, keep the opacity under 40%, and let the shadow be smaller than the button

#3: Lay emphasis where it’s required

The sole purpose of any promotional copy  How to Design Better Buttons

People typically follow the Z-pattern while scanning website content as they scroll down. Same goes for buttons that are placed adjacent to each other. The button that you want your website visitors to click must be placed towards the right-hand side. That’s where the user’s gaze ends and stays. For buttons that are vertically stacked, it makes more sense to place the high priority button at the bottom, for the same reason stated in the previous sentence. 

When these high priority buttons are placed at the left-hand side or at the top, it can disturb the readers’ natural scanning direction, and ultimately, the flow of their attention. Designers also generally use ghost buttons to deter users from clicking those.

#4: Let the icons help a little

The sole purpose of any promotional copy  How to Design Better Buttons

Buttons don’t have to be an arrangement of two words written on a solid coloured rectangle. Much like pictures, icons too can speak a thousand words. It is completely okay for text buttons to make use of icons in addition to text. No, it doesn’t mean that you are adding too much in too little space. It simply means that you are making your message more emphatic. However, make sure that you don’t go overboard with the colours. It is necessary to ensure that the colour of the icon matches the colour of the text. Also, it may be safe to stray from icons that have a colour fill or too many details. Again, the key is to keep it simple and stick to outline icons.

#5: Remember the 8-point rule

The sole purpose of any promotional copy  How to Design Better Buttons

Leave your buttons some breathing space. Avoid leaving too much or too little blank space around your buttons. The ideal way to go about this is to follow the 8-point rule. Essentially, the 8-point rule states that all the elements in a design, including the height, width as well as the space around, follow multiples of 8. You may be wondering why 8 specifically? The explanation is that the average screen size of a majority of popular devices is easily divisible by 8. Hence, scaling the design (size and spacing) by increments of 8 helps in maintaining a consistent rhythm across all the design elements. This, in turn, ensures consistency across all your website pages. You can read more about this concept here. For buttons that are placed adjacently or stacked vertically, maintain the same 8-point distance on all sides of the button.

Since we are talking about space, designers must also remember to pay close attention to the letter-spacing. Maintain optimum spacing between each letter of your text, depending on the density of the letters, to ensure ease of reading.

#6: Buttons exist in different states 

The sole purpose of any promotional copy  How to Design Better Buttons

No, we don’t mean geographically, of course! But it is important to remember that any CTA button goes through different states of appearance – idle, hover, and clicked. Making use of visual effects such as adding a drop shadow, a glow effect, a change of colour, etc. can help achieve a distinction between each of these states. A lot of brands are pushing the envelope with this aspect of UI button design and it is going to be amazing to see where this goes. 

These are just a few of the many ways of making the button really shine on your website pages. But no matter how well-designed your buttons may be, it all comes down to two ultimate requirements – placement and messaging. If your copy has brought your website visitor to a point where he/she is ready to make a decision, but the button is spaced too far away from reach, or worse, it doesn’t speak just the right words for making him/her click, then you’ve lost your deal right there.

There are a hundred things that can go wrong with poorly designed buttons. However, designers can only learn through trial and error. To make this learning journey easier for you, we will continue to write more of these UI design-specific articles. We hope that you keep reading!

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Design

Understanding Service Design and its Principles

Design is an amalgamation of several things as it draws inspiration from varied fields and areas. In today’s day and age, apart from emotions, intelligence and aesthetics, technology too plays a vital role. Service design is one such modern-day design influenced by marketing, project management and user experience to enhance services. Let us see what service design is and its principles in detail. 

What is Service Design?

The term ‘Service Design’ originated in the year 1991 as a design discipline by Professors Michael Erlhoff and Brigit Mager at Köln International School of Design. Service design is an evolving field with no strict definition. However, in practice, service design can be defined as – ‘The process in which the designer focuses on creating optimal service experiences.’

It can thus be said that service design is a customer-first design that takes into account the needs of the customer, so that the design is user-friendly, competitive in the market, as well as, relevant to the customer. 

For example, imagine a Food Delivery App where the primary idea is to connect the restaurant to the client (the one ordering food). Here, there are a host of employees ranging from the delivery agent, head of the delivery app, manager of the restaurant, and waiter. Service design focuses on how the Food Delivery App connects to the restaurant and delivers it to the customer on time. This includes placing the order to the restaurant on behalf of the customer, to onboarding new delivery agents, communication between the delivery agent and the restaurant manager, as well as, manager and the waiter. Each segment plays an important role in the food that is delivered to the customer, even though it is not directly a part of the customer experience. 

You can map service design using a service blueprint. Service blueprint helps to visualise processes to optimise how a business delivers the user experience.

The 5 Principles of Service Design

We’ve covered the definition of service design, let us now move on to understanding the practical application of the design and its principles. We’ll also see, what it is that differentiates service design from UX. 

‘This is Service Design Thinking’, by Marc Stickdorn and Jakob Schneider, is one of the foremost books outlining the five basic principles that dominate service design.

  1. User-centred – users are the centre of consideration and are to be analysed through qualitative research. Here ‘Users’ are both, the organisation’s employees, as well as customers. Thus, service design considers not just the user/customer experience but also the interest of all the relevant people involved in the process.
  2. Co-creative – co-creative is essentially a combination of ‘Collaboration’ and ‘Iteration’. ‘Collaboration’ signifies the process of creation by all the contributors from different backgrounds. Whereas, ‘Iteration’ is used to define that service design is an iterative (continuous) process that’s ever-evolving to keep in-line with the changes in a business.
  3. Sequencing – dividing complex services of a customers journey into independent processes. This division of service is usually done logically, visually and rhythmically. Sequencing helps determine the timeline of a project, as it is important for the customer and helps in determining the outcome.
    For instance, if you have an e-commerce website selling products only in a particular region, it is important to highlight that the deliveries won’t ship internationally right at the start. This saves the customer’s time, and they won’t browse your website, as well as, you would also not need to analyse the journey of the customer who won’t purchase your product. 
  4. Evidencing – visualising the service experiences and making them real. Simply put, what this means is that service is usually invisible or intangible whereas the products are tangible items. The idea of service design is to bind the tangible and intangible together so that the invisible becomes real.
    For example, if you run an organic cafe with all the ingredients being local produce, how would your customer know it is organic? The answer is easy, you let them know. Until you inform your customers about the source of your ingredients, it remains an intangible service for them because they have no idea what’s on their plate or how it differs from another cafe. Evidencing ensures that you’re providing your customers with a quality experience. Which, in turn, helps you build your brand image as an ‘organic’ cafe.
  5. Holistic – service design rests on the principle of combining tangible and intangible services. Here the context is important, as well as, taking the entire experience of the service into account. What this means is, every customer is different and as such, would take a different route to complete their journey. As a service designer, it is imperative to think about each aspect, and every perspective to make sure there are no loop-holes. That whichever path the customer takes the end goal remains the same.

Tools you can use

Now, that we’ve seen what service design is and its principles. Let us move on to finding the right tools to map your customer journey. That being said, service design is still in its nascent stages, and it may take a while to discover specific tools. Nevertheless, the good news is that several UX and marketing tools overlap with service design.

Here are our top 3 picks of the tools you can use: 

  • Customer Journey Map:

A customer journey map helps you visualise and plot the best and worst parts of a customer’s experiences. The idea is to put the customer’s perspective to paper right from the time they came to your service, to the point where they’ve decided to use your service and reach the end goal. 

For example, you have an e-commerce website, and the journey in simple can be divided into – customer browsing your website, adding products to the cart, either abandoning them or purchasing them.  

‘This is Service Design Thinking’ offer a customer journey canvas for you in your design service. In fact, you can collaborate with your stakeholders and customers to ensure your map is co-creative. This is free and available in 7 different languages viz. English, Spanish, Korean, Portuguese, Polish, German, and French. 

  • smaply: 

Smaply is a popular web-based software tool that enables you to visualise Personas, Customer Journey Maps, and Stakeholder Maps. With smaply, you can digitise, customise, share, comment, standardise and present your results with the team in an easy and quick manner. 

This is a freemium tool i.e. you can sign up and test it for free for a period of 14 days and later if you like, you can upgrade to a paid version!

  • experiencefellow:

Experiencefellow is a tool that uses mobile ethnography to research and collect customer experiences in a digital environment. Ethnography is essentially observing your customers in their natural environment to gain better insights into their overall experience. 

With experiencefellow, this research is digitised as it enables customers to document their experiences with a simple smartphone app. As a business, you can then view and analyse your customers’ journey based on the data provided by them on your browser.

Even though service design is in a developing phase, there are several tools out there in the market to help businesses cater to their customers better by understanding their journey. Service design is thus, not just for designers but for anyone who wishes to integrate services for a more powerful and effective approach to drive businesses, as it focuses on how customer touchpoints are connected in their journey. In a nutshell, service design aims to understand and visualise the user and their experience to improve the service experience of the user.

On an endnote, you can even checkout, Service Design Toolkit and Service Design Tools Website to learn more about implementing service design.

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Categories
Domains

New gTLD – August 2019

With .TOP still retaining its No. 1 position, the month of August saw a 12% hike in the overall registrations. Apart from this, a 260% jump in the registrations of .LIVE in comparison to July helped it secure a spot in the top 5 along with .SITE, .ONLINE, .XYZ, .ICU is back in the list and the new entrant .BEST made it to the list with impressive numbers. 

Let’s take a sneak peek to find out which new gTLDs were trending during the month of August and made it to the top 15!

New gTLD Report – August 2019
Infogram

*Registration Numbers Facilitated by ResellerClub

It is worth noting that the top 4 new gTLDs have managed to retain their positions from July and continued to top the charts.

.TOP: With a total registration share of 33% .TOP continues to outshine its performance in the month of August. This new gTLD was running at a promo price of $ 0.99 and the increase in the number of registrations can be attributed to the China market. 

.SITE: .SITE was able to hold onto the second spot in the month of August, as this new gTLD witnessed a 40% spike in its registrations. Even though .SITE was running at a promo price of $4.99, it managed to occupy a 20% share of the total new gTLDs registered.

.ONLINE: Following the trend with .TOP and .SITE, is .ONLINE that has been consistent in holding onto a spot in the top 5 of the new gTLDs registered this month. Despite the promo price of $6.99 this new gTLD managed to shine in the Global market* with a share of 11% of the total registrations for the month of August.

.XYZ: With an impressive promo price of $0.99, .XYZ was able to hold onto its fourth spot in the top 5 this month. Overall, this new gTLD contributed 9% to the total registration count. 

.LIVE: With a 260% spike in its registration numbers as compared to July, .LIVE was able to move up the rank and acquire a place in the top 5 new gTLDs. The whopping popularity of this new gTLD can be attributed to the promo price of $2.99 and China markets. 

Apart from the top 5, there have been remarkable changes among the new gTLDs that made it to the top 15. New gTLDs like .FUN, .STORE, .LIFE and, .WEBSITE were successful in retaining their spot at 8th, 9th, 10th, and 11th respectively during August. At the same time, there were new entrants like .ICU and .BEST. In fact, .ICU made it to the top 15 with a 133% jump in its registrations from the previous month. 

Here’s a quick peek into the exciting domain promos we’ve got lined up for the month of September

  • Resell  .TOP at a low price of $0.99 and make your profits.
  • Help boost your customers’ business with .SPACE at just $1.99
  • Expand your customers business to cater across the globe with .WORLD at $2.99

That’s all folks!

Check out all our leading domain promos here and help your customer’s get the right one for their online business.

You can also head to our Facebook or Twitter pages to get all the updates about our trending domain promos. Just look out for the posts with #domainpromos. See you there! 

*Global market – US, Australia, Canada, Sri Lanka, Thailand and others fall under the global markets.

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Uncategorized

Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integration for Shopify? For some context, as we mentioned in the previous article, Shopify and Mailchimp have stopped the first-party support for each other’s users. You’ll need to build a new workflow for your emails to revive the operations (and improve it while you’re at it) to keep your store’s most important marketing channel at its pace.

Zapier delivers smart workflows in the form of conditional workflows that are termed as ‘Paths.’ You can set conditions that will be applied by your Apps to take different paths for different conditions.

Now, let us look at the process for bringing in the Zapier integration:

Bringing Zapier between Mailchimp and Shopify

In case you’re unaware of how Zapier works – you create a ‘Zap’ which consists of two or more apps wherein one of the apps’ actions acts as a trigger and the other is used to run a preset function triggered by the first app. For example, between Google Forms and Gmail, you could set up a ‘Zap’ on Zapier to send a confirmation email to all the people who RSVP’d ‘Yes’ to an event participation form and more still, we could add as my steps as you like with all the supported integrations Zapier has. 

We’re going to walk you through how this works for connecting Mailchimp with Shopify, both of which are integrations supported by Zapier. 

Setting up Shopify Triggers

To automate Mailchimp operations on Shopify, we’ll have to set the events that trigger an action on Mailchimp – For example, if we want every newly registered user on your Shopify store to be automatically added to a specific list on Mailchimp, ‘New Customer’ will be a trigger on Shopify. Let’s see how to complete setting up the same function.

Step 1

Create an account and log in to Zapier. 

  • Once you’ve logged in, you’ll be greeted by the Zapier dashboard. 
  • Once you’re in there, click on  ‘Make a Zap’ button on the top right side of the page. 
  • You’ll be asked to input the trigger app for the Zap. In our case, we’ll keep ‘Shopify’ as the trigger app as we want the automation to be based on events happening on your Shopify store. 

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

Start typing Shopify in the search bar below and you’ll see Shopify appear in the suggestions below – click on ‘Shopify’ to proceed.

Step 2

You’ll be asked to select the trigger event, i.e. what event/activity do you want on your Shopify store to trigger the action on Mailchimp. There’s a rather long list of triggers on Shopify – we’ll use the ‘New Customer’ trigger.

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

After selecting the trigger event, we’ll continue to a page that asks to log into your Shopify Store to be able to link your store with the Zap. Continue by clicking ‘Connect an Account’ 

Step 3

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

You’ll be redirected to Shopify’s sign-in page, where once you’ve signed in, you’ll be redirected back to Zapier showing your connected store. 

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

Click on ‘Save + Continue’ to proceed. You’ll have to select a sample customer to continue setting up the Zap. Click on a ‘customer’ to proceed.

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

After selecting a Sample customer, you’ll be asked to go to the next step and set an action for the trigger, in another app – in our case, Mailchimp.

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

Step 4

On the next screen, you’ll be asked to add an action step. Click on ‘Your Zap currently lacks…’ to proceed to add Mailchimp as the action App.

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

On the screen that proceeds, you’ll see a search box where you need to start typing in Mailchimp. Click on ‘Mailchimp’ in the suggestions as it appears while typing. 

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

You’ll be presented with the options for actions that need to be performed on the trigger we just set on Shopify. For this tutorial, we’ll select Add/Update subscriber as the action to be performed. So the Zap once set up, will add/update a new user who just registered on your Shopify store to a setlist on Mailchimp – so you don’t need to do this manually.

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

Step 5

On the next screen, you’ll be asked to connect your Mailchimp account. Once you click on ‘Connect an Account’ – you’ll see a Mailchimp sign-in page open up in a new window. Once you’ve signed in, you’ll see your account listed on the next page. Click on ‘Save + Continue’.

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

In the next step, you’ll need to provide specifics with respect to the email list you want to add/update a new user with, along with opt-in, replace and update options.

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

Note – Only two fields are required here (Audience & Subscriber Email) and the rest aren’t – we can totally skip these unless you want the Zap to function any other way. To proceed, click on ‘Continue’.

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

You’ll see a summary of the options you’ve set for Mailchimp, and once you’ve confirmed all of it, you can go ahead and test your settings to see if everything works. Click on ‘Send Test To Mailchimp’

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

You’ll see the above screen once the test is successful. Once you’re here, click on ‘Finish’

Have you been running flawless email operations on Mailchimp by using the Mailchimp integr Getting Mailchimp to Work with Shopify again: Part 2 – Using Zapier

Your Zap is now completely set and will automatically add a new subscriber to your set Mailchimp list when a new user ‘Signs Up’ on your Shopify store. This can be repeated for all the available triggers available on Shopify along with the supported actions on Mailchimp – including sending emails, using ‘Send Campaign’ and ‘Add subscriber to tag’ action steps, depending on how you want to send it. In case you face any problems during the setup process, you can always get the help of Zapier’s awesome customer support.

In the next article, we’ll go through the steps to link your Shopify store to Mailchimp using Automate.io – stay tuned! Meanwhile – check out the first article in the series with instructions to integrate Mailchimp with Shopify using Shopsync.

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