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  • Refer a Friend (Extole) Terms & Conditions

    Tuesday, August 22, 2017 by

    Terms and Conditions

    HostGator Referral Program

    HostGator is offering you the opportunity to refer friends via a Referral Program (“Program”) offered on the web site located at
    1. Binding Agreement. By using the Site or participating in the Program, you are bound by these Terms and Conditions (“Terms”) and indicate your agreement to them. All of the Company's decisions are final and binding.
    2. Privacy. The personal information collected, processed and used as part of the Program will be used in accordance with Company’s Privacy Statement, which is available by link on the Site.
    3. How the Program Works. You must be a legal resident of the United States of America and at least 18 years old to use the Site. Next, you must visit the Site and follow the on-screen instructions to refer friends, family members or colleagues. Users may refer a maximum of 25 friends, family members or colleagues during each session and a maximum of 500 times throughout the entirety of the Program. Once an individual makes a referral, he/she becomes a “Referrer” and will be provided with a unique referral link (“Personal Link”) that allows her to receive the benefit or reward advertised on the Site. Referred friends (“Friends”) must complete the referral as described in the referral message.
    4. Restrictions. Referrers cannot refer themselves or create multiple, fictitious or fake accounts with the Company or participate in the Program as “Friends”. No user may use the Program to violate any law, infringe or violate the rights of any third party, or otherwise act in a manner that is deemed harassing, harmful, illegal, hateful, obscene or outside the spirit and intent of the Program. In addition, you may not (i) tamper with the Program, (ii) act in an unfair or disruptive manner, or (iii) use any system, bot or other device or artifice to participate or receive any benefit in the Program. CAUTION: ANY ATTEMPT TO DELIBERATELY DAMAGE OR UNDERMINE THE LEGITIMATE OPERATION OF THE PROGRAM MAY BE IN VIOLATION OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL LAWS. SHOULD SUCH AN ATTEMPT BE MADE, THE COMPANY RESERVES THE RIGHT TO SEEK REMEDIES AND DAMAGES (INCLUDING ATTORNEY FEES) TO THE FULLEST EXTENT OF THE LAW, INCLUDING CRIMINAL PROSECUTION.
    Employees of the Company or any of its or their subsidiaries, affiliates or promotional agencies are not able to participate.
    1. Rewards. By making a valid referral, you will receive a Gift Card and your Friend will receive a discount on their web hosting purchase on These rewards may be redeemed in various forms in the Company's sole discretion. Restrictions may apply. For example, there may be a limitation on the number of referrals you can make, or if the reward is in the form of a gift card, gift certificate or voucher, it may be subject to the issuer’s terms and conditions. Rewards are subject to verification. Review period is typically 60 days from the referral month. The Company may delay a reward for the purposes of investigation. The Company may also refuse to verify and process any transaction for any reason.
    Unless otherwise stated, rewards have no monetary value and may not be redeemed for cash. They are not transferable and may not be auctioned, traded, bartered or sold.
    1. Liability. YOU UNDERSTAND AND AGREE THAT THE RELEASED PARTIES (DEFINED BELOW) SHALL NOT BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, SPECIAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, OR EXEMPLARY DAMAGES, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, DAMAGES FOR LOSS OF PROFITS, GOODWILL, USE, DATA OR OTHER INTANGIBLE LOSSES (EVEN IF THE COMPANY WAS ADVISED OF THE POSSIBILITY OF SUCH DAMAGES). By participating in the Program, you agree to defend, indemnify, release and hold harmless the Company, Extole, Inc., as the provider of the referral service, and their respective parent companies, affiliates and subsidiaries, together with their respective employees, directors, officers, licensees, licensors, shareholders, attorneys and agents including, without limitation, their respective advertising and promotion entities and any person or entity associated with the production, operation or administration of the Program (collectively, the “Released Parties”), from any and all claims, actions, demands, damages, losses, liabilities, costs or expenses caused by, arising out of, in connection with, or related to the Program (including, without limitation, any property loss, damage, personal injury or death caused to any person(s)) and/or the awarding, receipt and/or use or misuse of any benefit in the Program. To be clear, the Released Parties shall not be liable for any technical errors or malfunctions, data theft or corruption, any printing or typographical error, or any damage to any computer system resulting from participating in, or accessing or downloading information in connection with the Program. The Released Parties shall not be liable to any users for failure to supply any advertised benefit, by reason of any acts of God, any action or request by any governmental or quasi-governmental entity (whether or not valid), or any other activity or action that is beyond any of the Released Parties’ control. TO THE FULLEST EXTENT POSSIBLE BY LAW, THE RELEASED PARTIES’ MAXIMUM LIABILITY ARISING OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE PROGRAM, REGARDLESS OF THE CAUSE OF ACTION (WHETHER IN CONTRACT, TORT, BREACH OF WARRANTY, OR OTHERWISE), WILL NOT EXCEED $100.
    3. Bulk Distribution (“Spam”). Each Referrer is the actual sender of the emails and must comply with applicable law. Referrals must be created and distributed in a personal manner that is appropriate and customary for communications with friends, colleagues and family members. By submitting any email address as part of the Program, the Referrer represents that he/she has the appropriate permission and consent. Bulk email distribution, distribution to strangers, or any other use of the services described herein in a manner that is not promoted is expressly prohibited and may be grounds for immediate termination and further legal action. The Company has no obligation to monitor the Program or any communications; however, the Company may choose to do so and block any email messages, remove any such content, or prohibit any use of the Program. Referrers who do not comply with the law, including anti-spam laws, are obligated to indemnify the Program Entities against any liabilities, costs and expenses it incurs as a results of such spam.
    4. Sign-In Credentials. Users are responsible for maintaining the confidentially of any sign-in credentials and are fully responsible for all activities that occur through the use of them. Users agree to notify the Company immediately if they suspect unauthorized access to their account. Users agree that the Company will not be liable for any loss or damage arising from unauthorized use of their credentials.
    5. Right to Cancel, Modify or Terminate. We reserve the right to cancel, modify or terminate the Program at any time for any reason. We reserve the right to disqualify any User (defined below) at any time from participation in the Program if he/she does not comply with any of these Terms.
  • Should You Use a Website Builder or Hire a Web Designer?

    Monday, August 21, 2017 by

    Website Builders vs Web Design

    Website Builders vs Web Design Services

    When the time comes to build out your website you have a lot of options to choose from. One of those choices is deciding between a website builder and hiring a web designer to build your site for you. The trick is to know when you should build your site yourself and when to hire out the work. Which route you decide to pursue will depend upon your overall budget, what kind of site you’re trying to build, and how quickly you want to have your site online. Below we look at the differences between the two and when you should consider using one over the other.  

    Benefits of a DIY Website Builder

    DIY website builders can help beginners build out nice-looking websites in the shortest amount of time possible. For people who need to build small websites and launch in a day or less, they can be a great choice. Below we look at a few benefits of using a DIY website builder for your next project. HostGator Website Builder

    1. Very User-Friendly

    DIY website builders make it incredibly easy to build out your site. They’re built with beginners in mind, so the learning curve is virtually zero. All you have to do is select your theme, rearrange it to your liking, and add your content.  

    2. Drag and Drop Building

    Most DIY website builders have a drag and drop interface. This allows you to rearrange the visual elements of your site without any existing programming skills. Just choose the features you want to add, drag them to your desired location, and you’re all set. Building out a website can’t get any easier.

    3. Built-In Tech Support

    Website builders know who their customers are: total beginners. For that reason, they typically have very helpful support staff that can help you with any issues that might arise. Their dedicated support staff and educational resources will help you avoid any roadblocks that could prevent you from getting your site online quickly and easily.   Although using a website builder seems like the perfect solution, it isn’t always the best route to take. Below we look at a few reasons to consider hiring a web designer instead of building out your own site.  

    When to Hire a Web Designer

    Hiring a web designer to build out your site isn’t for everyone. If you don’t have a large budget set aside for your website, then you’ll probably want to spend time building it yourself. Choosing to hire a low-budget designer will only leave you with a site that doesn’t meet your end goals. That being said, hiring a web designer can be a great choice for a variety of circumstances. For example, a web designer will spend time understanding your business and build you a website that’s perfectly custom-tailored to your needs. It will be more pricey right out of the gate, but if you want a website that stands out from the crowd and has a series of custom features, then there’s no way around it. Or, if you’re planning on using your website to build out a huge platform, then you’ll probably require a custom platform to do just that. You’ll have a hard time building out a massive site just by using a DIY website builder.  

    Which One Should I Choose?

    If all you require is a simple website and you want to have a site online in a few hours, then using a DIY website builder is a great choice. But, if you have the budget and are looking for a custom site that helps your business stand out from the sea of competition, then hiring a web designer can be a great route to take. If you’re unsure about which route to take it can be helpful to try out a website builder first to see if the site your building will work for your goals. Plus, even this basic experience can help you get a better idea of what you want to build and can help with hiring a web designer if you choose to take that approach. Overall, there is no wrong choice, but instead, it’s a decision that needs to be based on your own existing needs. Have a small budget and only require a simple site? Then go with a DIY builder. But, if you want a totally custom site and have the budget for it, then hire a web designer.
  • 15 of the Best SEO Blogs You Should Be Reading

    Monday, August 21, 2017 by
    Best SEO Blogs

    The Best SEO Blogs to Follow

    Every business with a website (which should be all businesses by now, really) needs to be thinking about search engine optimization. If you’re new to the concept, search engine optimization, usually shortened as SEO, describes any work a website owner or professional consultant undertakes to increase a website’s ranking in the search engines. Think about your own online habits. When you turn to Google looking for something, how often do you click to the second page to see the results there? How often do you even look beyond the top two or three results on the page? Data shows about a third of people go for the first link, and click-through rates drop considerably from there down to only 2% for those at the bottom of page one. Recommended WordPress Hosting SEO is competitive and therefore complicated, but nonetheless it’s worth it for every business to understand as much as possible and do what they can to increase their visibility online. If you’re a business owner or you run a website of any kind, you should make learning about SEO a top priority. Here are a few of the best blogs online that will help you do so.

    1.   Moz

    Moz is arguably the most trusted site for all things SEO. If you’re new, their Beginner’s Guide to SEO is invaluable. If you already know the basics, their blog is full of up-to-date educational resources, SEO tips, and experiments into what works best. Many of the most experienced SEO professionals contribute posts to the Moz blog and the editors are picky about the quality of the content they take, so you can count on any information you find there being high quality and useful.

    2.   Search Engine Journal

    Search Engine Journal goes a little broader than just covering SEO, with content on social media and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising as well, but SEO is still their main focus. They have a mix of blog posts that are good for beginners, as well as important updates and tips for more experienced SEOs to be aware of as well.

    3.   Search Engine Land

    Search Engine Land provides content on any topic related to search engines, with a primary emphasis on SEO. They cover updates to search engines and any search engine related product, provide tips on doing different aspects of SEO well, and generally provide educational information useful to anyone that practices search engine marketing.

    4.   Search Engine Watch

    Search Engine Watch covers general trends in marketing and advertising, but as the name suggests, the site is concerned first and foremost with providing information related to search engine marketing. With a lot of content focused on helping marketers with recent and future trends (like mobile and voice search), it’s a good blog for helping you stay up to date on the fast-moving world of SEO.

    5.   SEO Book

    While most of the blogs listed above have a broader focus that goes beyond just SEO, SEO Book is more directly focused on SEO issues specifically. They sometimes go a bit deeper into the technical side of things as a result, so this site is best for website owners that have already learned the basics of SEO.

    6.   Search Engine Roundtable

    Search Engine Roundtable is another respected resource on news related to the search engines. A lot of their content focuses on announcements and updates made by the companies that dominate the search engine space (especially Google). It’s a good spot to check in for the search engine news likely to influence your SEO strategy.

    7.   SEMRush

    SEMRush sells a product that helps businesses do keyword and ranking research to help with SEO, so it makes sense that their blog would focus on the practice of performing SEO well. Their posts tackle tips for doing SEO effectively, ways to avoid penalties, and case studies to help readers learn from companies that have pulled off traffic and ranking improvements.

    8.   SEO Nick

    SEO Nick covers a lot of the beginner topics that website owners should know about doing SEO.  From understanding the basics of conversion optimization to performing keyword research, if you find the more technical and expert level blogs a bit intimidating, it’s a good resource to fill in your 101 level information.

    9.   Backlinko

    The Backlinko blog provides in depth guides and example-driven research to help readers strengthen their SEO strategy. All the site’s posts are SEO focused and dive deep into the topic covered. The blog is especially well regarded for providing actionable tips for link building, one of the hardest parts of SEO.

    10. SearchMetrics

    The SearchMetrics blog looks at trends and useful updates in online marketing in general and SEO in particular. Their posts often dive into more specific SEO topics, like SEO for certain industries or geographic regions.

    11. Ahrefs

    The Ahrefs blog primarily covers SEO topics, but occasionally branches into other fields of online marketing. They often include case studies, guides, and in-depth research to help businesses gain a thorough understanding of different aspects of SEO and marketing.

    12. Brightedge

    The Brightedge SEO blog is yet another site website owners can turn to for general education and tips on various SEO issues. They cover search engine updates, and look at topics like guest posting and performing SEO in other countries. They’re another good site to keep your eye on for up-to-date information and a wide variety of SEO tips.

    13. SEO by the Sea

    SEO By the Sea is a blog focused on analyzing how the search engines work. By focusing on things like patents search engine companies file and other information they release directly, the blog is able to dive deep into the workings of the often mysterious search engine algorithms to help SEO experts better understand how search ranking works and what they can do to improve theirs.

    14. QuickSprout

    The QuickSprout blog is focused on ways websites can grow their traffic. The posts there consistently include in depth research and examples to help readers better take actionable insights away from their reading. While the blog goes broader into online marketing than just SEO, many of the blog posts focus on tips and techniques important to improving SEO.

    15. Raven Tools

    The Raven Tools blog covers a lot of SEO tips and technical topics that are important to doing SEO well. The brand behind the blog provides tools that help customers create marketing reports, so a common theme in their topics is figuring out how to incorporate data and analysis into your strategy. SEO isn’t something you can learn once and feel like you have it down. It’s a practice that continually evolves as search engines make updates and try out new things. If you care about how well your website performs, then keeping an eye on SEO tips, tricks, and updates like those covered in the blogs listed here is well worth your time.
  • How Do I Set Up a PPC Account?

    Monday, August 21, 2017 by

    How to set up PPC account

    Beginner’s Guide to Google AdWords

    Pay-per-click marketing, frequently shortened to PPC, is an important part of any online marketing mix. As brands work feverishly to try to get onto the first page of Google via SEO, the only genuine shortcut to achieving that goal is paying for it with Google AdWords. And there are a lot of benefits to PPC advertising beyond that coveted spot in Google:
    • AdWords provides a lot of targeting options so you can get your ads in front of the right audience, at the moment they’re searching for a relevant term.
    • You only pay per click (hence the name), so you know the funds you’re putting in are resulting in getting someone to your website.
    • The cost-per-click is often relatively low, as long as you don’t try to compete for the most popular and expensive keywords.
    • Google ads have an average conversion rate of 2.7%, which isn’t bad. And in some industries, the average goes up to more than 5%.
    PPC was already lucrative years ago, but Google has increasingly made moves to give more of the search results display over to ads – especially for the types of searches that indicate a person is looking to buy something. Just look at how far down you have to go to get to organic search results in these examples. Google organic vs paid results Google organic results vs paid Google organic results buried While getting high up in the organic search results is still really valuable (organic still gets more of the clicks), PPC ads are a great way to gain more visibility online and reach a larger, targeted audience. Note: Our post is primarily on Google, because the platform remains the dominant search engine that the vast majority of users turn to. It doesn’t hurt to also look into the ad platforms on Bing and Yahoo though. You can see instructions on getting an account set up for Bing Ads here, and Yahoo Gemini here.  

    Set Up Your Google AdWords Account

    Setting up a Google AdWords account is easy and won’t even take you all that long. First, navigate to, and click on the big green Start Now button. set up Google AdWords account AdWords conveniently walks you through the next steps. Fill in your email address and website. Google AdWords get started If your email address is a Gmail address, then you’ll be prompted to provide your password to sign in. If not, then you’ll need to create a Google account by selecting More Options and Create Account before moving forward. Create Google AdWords account Once you agree to the terms of service, you’ll get to a page where you can start filling in information for your first campaign. But before you create your campaign, there are a few things it’s good to know.  

    How to Get Started with Google AdWords

    AdWords makes it easy to start filling in the information for your first campaign, but you need to take some time to make sure you know what you’re doing first.  

    1. Learn the basics.

    Read up on PPC 101. You need to understand best practices for writing a PPC text ad, such as:
    •      The best keywords to use and avoid
    •      The way to structure a CTA to get clicks
    •      How to make sure your ads stand out from those of your competitors
    •      How to say what you need within the limited space available.
    But text is just one part of the equation these days. You also need to understand the Google Display Ad network and Google’s Shopping campaigns. For some of your ads, finding the right image will matter more than getting the copy right. Hopefully you’ve already developed personas in order to understand your target audience, but if not, that’s a step you’ll want to take before setting up your first campaign as well. Google’s targeting options give you the power to deliver ads to people in the specific demographics you most want to reach based on age, geography, gender, parental status, and household income. And you’ll also want to strategize where your ads will send users when they click. A click alone isn’t worth much if the user doesn’t like what they see on the other side of it. You need well designed landing pages that will drive them to take the action you want them to. In short, there’s a lot you need to know in order to get started with Google AdWords and it’s worth taking the time to explore Google’s support resources and other PPC educational materials you find online.  

    2. Do keyword research.

    The success of any PPC campaign hinges on choosing the right keywords. You need to figure out which search terms the people interested in your products and services are likely to use. And you need to work out the different variations that people commonly use on them and determine which ones you can afford to compete on. Google’s Keyword Planner is designed specifically with AdWords clients in mind. Google Keyword Planner You can get keyword suggestions based on an initial keyword or by providing your website. Google Keyword Planner targeting And you can access data on traffic and estimated cost-per-click for a list of relevant keywords for your business. That information will help you figure out the keywords to base your ad campaigns around. Google Keyword Planner traffic volume Depending on the size of your business and the amount of money you have to spend on PPC, you may want to avoid trying to compete for some of the most high-cost keywords. You could find your budget eaten up before you’re able to get much traction. See if there are more specific, long-tail variations of the more competitive keywords that still get traffic and might be worth considering. For example, focusing on something specific like “birthday flowers” is more affordable than going after the broader term “flower delivery.”  

    3. Figure out what you can afford.

    One nice thing about Google AdWords is that you can decide exactly how much you’re willing to spend. You can set a maximum daily amount and AdWords will stop displaying your ads once it’s been met. If you set your budget too low to start though, you may not be able to get enough displays and clicks to start to see results or, just as importantly, start to collect data on what works. PPC advertising, at least when done well, is more data driven than many other forms of marketing. You can continually tweak your campaigns to perform better based on the data Google provides on clicks and conversions. But you may have to spend more in your first few months to get the data you’ll need to spend less for a higher ROI later on.  

    4. Make use of ad groups.

    At this point, you’ll have the knowledge you need to start filling in the information Google requests to start creating a campaign. If you have multiple audiences, products, and keyword types you’re targeting, then keeping your campaigns organized can quickly get complicated. You can manage everything more easily and tell AdWords how to prioritize your different ads by using  ad groups. Best practices for ad groups can get a little complicated and vary based on the particulars of your campaigns, so this is a topic area it’s worth reading up on and doing some experimentation in. But they’re useful for better directing your budget spend toward your priorities so you can get better results for your money. For most businesses, PPC advertising shouldn’t be treated as a replacement for other marketing tactics like SEO and content marketing, but rather as a way to help promote your other efforts and help you get more out of them. As long as Google remains an important part of how people shop and research brands online, Google AdWords will remain a smart investment for businesses of all types and sizes.
  • 5 Best WordPress Themes for Pet Business Websites

    Monday, August 21, 2017 by

    Best WordPress Themes Plugins for Pet Businesses Websites

    Best WordPress Plugins and Themes for Pet Businesses

    Whether you run a pet store, vet clinic, shelter, or a pet-sitting or breeding business, you're going to need a website that aligns with your company and helps further your message. If you’re looking to get a beautiful website live in as little time as possible, then WordPress can help you get there. There are a lot of themes to choose from and it can be difficult to sort through them all to find the right one. Luckily, we’ve done the heavy lifting for you. Below you’ll find five of our favorite pet business themes and a few plugin recommendations to help extend the functionality of your site. Recommended WordPress Hosting  

    Our Favorite Pet Business WordPress Themes

    The choices below don’t cover every single pet business theme on the market, but they are well-positioned to help you build a beautiful website that furthers the needs of your business.  

    1. Dawg

    Dawg WordPress Theme Dawg is a WordPress theme that’s built for dog breeders. It can be customized to suit any style of breed. This theme is responsive, easy to customize and a must have for kennels and serious dog breeders. This theme is built using the Layers page builder plugin, which makes it very easy to build out custom pages. You’ll have four different homepage layouts to choose from along with extensive documentation to help you build your site.  

    2. PetCare

    Petcare WordPress theme PetCare is a great theme if you’re looking for one that’s geared towards your vet clinic or pet care center. It has a beautiful design and integrates with WooCommerce (a nice feature if you’re looking to sell your own products). It offers both single page layouts and has multiple blog and shop layouts, so you can customize your site to your liking. PetCare also offers six different homepage layouts and multiple customization options.  

    3. Rescue

    Rescue WordPress Theme Rescue is the perfect theme for those looking to create a great website for your animal shelter. This theme is built around the purpose of finding homes for your animals. It’s even integrated with the plugin PetFinder. This theme doesn’t allow for an insane amount of customization, but it suits its purpose nicely. You’ll be able to choose from 2 different content layouts, customize your slider, and much more. If you’re looking for a theme that’ll showcase your animals and help them find homes, then this theme is worth trying.  

    4. Pet Store

    Pet Store WordPress Theme If you run a pet shop and you’re looking for a way to also sell your products online, then this is a great theme. It has built in product functionality and lets you beautifully showcase your entire inventory. Plus, it’s built to work with WooCommerce. This theme is loaded with page customizers, custom widgets, sliders, and much more. Best of all, it’s incredibly easy to setup and use, and there’s a plethora of video tutorials to help you quickly build out your site.  

    5. Happy Pets

    Happy Pets WordPress Theme Happy Pets is a very versatile theme that can be used for virtually any pet related business. Unlike the themes above, there is no specific focus, just pets! This theme is responsive, very fast, and can be easily customized with the help of the Visual Composer plugin. No matter your style of pet website, you can make it look good with this theme. Happy Pets is also equipped with Typekit and Google fonts, so you can choose the right typography for your site. Finally, there’s solid blogging integration, so you can easily create a pet-related blog for your site.  

    Our Favorite Pet Business WordPress Plugins

    When it comes to choosing the right WordPress plugins for your pet business site, there aren’t a ton of pet-specific plugins to choose from. Most of the themes we highlighted above have built-in functionality to handle all of your pressing needs. Still, there are a few plugins worth using if you’re seeking additional functionality and features from your site.  

    Pet Manager

    Pet Manager WordPress plugin Pet Manager lets you easily keep track of and create custom posts for every single pet at your shelter. You can customize things like breed into, and even let your users post updates about their own animals. If your site doesn’t offer enough customization for managing your pets, then consider using this plugin.  


    Breedr WordPress Plugin If you’re an animal breeder, then this is a must-have plugin. This full-featured plugin lets you easily manage litters, showcase animal health screenings, and add pictures, videos and more. If you’re looking to extend the features of your animal breeding website, then give this plugin a try.  

    Do you have any pet-related WordPress plugins or themes you can’t live without? Please share from the comments below.