Business Cards and What They Can Do for Your Business

It has been said that advertising is vital in order for any business to survive. With that said, most people will tell you that this is because advertising brings in the customers and customers are the lifeblood of any business since they are the ones that keep the business going by bringing in business. One way that you keep bringing in customers is when you advertise and that is why you have to use every means at your disposal so that you get to grab more customers. That certainly makes sense doesn’t it?

Also, if you have customers, they can also be a form of advertisement since people like to talk. But one way that you can really get cheap advertisements is through the use of business cards and some roller banners. You might scoff and say that those are such old fashioned ways to do advertisements for your business. See, advertising does not have to cost you too much money for it to be effective and bring you the kind of business that will bring you big money. The thing there is these business cards may be old fashioned but that does not always have to mean that they no longer do the job because believe it or not, a lot of businesses still make use of business cards for advertisements.

It is all a matter of innovating; taking something old fashioned and making it into something that can still catch the eye of most people. That is what you need to make people come to you. Just get something that may be old fashioned, and modernize it. Once people see what you have done with a business card, they will love your idea and will surely get interested.

You see, advertisements need not be too fancy; sure those huge wide screens can be eye catching but sometimes, some things as little as business cards and roller banners can also be eye caching if displayed and designed the right way. People will always go for clever advertising and that is why you need business cards that are cleverly made.

If you already have some designs in mind, you can most certainly make your own business cards. But if you do not trust yourself how to do it, then you can contact a company that will make and your business cards for you. All you have to do is give them some input and you are good to go. They will do the designing and the printing and they will even send it to you for free. You do not have to pay for the shipping just the business cards that you can use for advertisements.

The same deal goes for the roller banner and you will even get a stand to go with it. You cannot use a roller banner without a stand right? And a stand is perfect if you want to use your roller banner outside your store. So there is no such thing as old fashioned media for advertising, juts old fashioned thoughts.

How to Grow Your Lawn Care Business During Cold Months, Beyond Adding the Obvious Services

It’s cold in many areas of the country. Temperatures are steadily falling in many states, but that does not mean your business profits have to go down as a lawn maintenance company. One of the most effective ways to grow your lawn care business during the fall and winter months is to add new services.

Goal: Healthy Bottom Line

During the winter months, many lawn maintenance companies market the obvious services such as blowing leaves, mulching, aerating, pruning, and similar services. These are needed services that most lawn care companies tout and bank on to assist in a healthier bottom line.

Grow Your Lawn Maintenance Business by Working with Foreclosures

But to exponentially grow your lawn maintenance business during slower months, you can capitalize off a needed service that has cropped up as a result of the astronomical number of foreclosures on the market: foreclosure cleanup. Foreclosure cleanup businesses generally handle a plethora of services which can include the following: debris removal, interior and exterior cleaning, lawn mowing, trimming, tree removal, roof repair, gutter cleaning, pressure washing, window boarding, door boarding, lock changing, inspections, carpet cleaning, laying and carpet removal, painting, minor repairs, and the like.

Work On HUD Homes

In many scenarios, the homes needing foreclosure cleanup services are HUD homes and often the work is given to smaller companies by foreclosure realtors or larger property preservation companies working as an extension of HUD’s M&M Contractors (“Management and Marketing” Contractors).

Choose Services that Work with Your Business

Though foreclosure cleaning businesses can offer a plethora of services, as a lawn maintenance business, you can choose to add foreclosure cleanup services that fall in line with the services you already offer in your business. For example, you can offer lawn and exterior debris removal such as the removal of limbs, fallen trees and piled up junk such as bicycles, swing sets, grills, etc., from homes that have been abandoned or are in the foreclosure or pre-foreclosure state.

Put Truck and Trailer to Work

As a lawn maintenance company, you likely already have a truck and/or a trailer you can use to pick up exterior debris and haul to the junk yard. You probably already have a saw, large bags, needed gloves and face masks and a small crew. Use them to get a foot in the foreclosure cleanup industry in your area.

You can also choose to offer drive way and exterior pressure washing. If you don’t have a pressure washer, you can easily rent one at The Home Depot or a similar rental outlet. Throw it on your truck and offer this service as part of your foreclosure cleanup cache of services during the cold months so you can profit during what is traditionally a slow time for lawn care businesses.

If you are equipped, you can also offer snow removal (consider partnering with a like company) and interior trash-outs. Remember, you likely already have a truck and you are familiar with the real estate contracting industry as a lawn maintenance company; so why not buy some cleaning supplies, hire qualified interior cleaners and put some miles on that truck in the winter months by offering foreclosure cleanup services.

Using Equipment You Already Have On-hand

The trick in adding basic foreclosure cleanup services to your lawn care business is to keep in mind the equipment you already have on hand. Take inventory of the tools, equipment and supplies you already have, research the foreclosure cleanup industry, and get creative on how you can maximum equipment inventory in your area in the fall and winter months.

Check Your Business Insurance and Licensing

You will want to contact your insurance agent to make sure your existing coverage is ample to cover the new foreclosure cleanup services you want to add to your lawn maintenance business. Also, give a quick call to your governing business license office (i.e., in some areas, the County Clerk) to make sure your current business license is ample to offer foreclosure cleanup services.

Get a Quick Start

To get started quickly, pick up some new car magnets from your local print shop or online printer (less than $30 bucks in most cases!), order some new business cards (you can find free business cards online), find a list of Realtors in your area (go to your multiple listing service) and start contacting them announcing the new aspect you’ve added to your lawn maintenance company’s cache of business services.

Good luck with your lawn maintenance business as you venture into the world of foreclosure cleanup!

Web Load Balancing and Caching 101

What is Load Balancing?

Load balancing is the process by which inbound internet protocol (IP) traffic can be distributed across multiple servers. Load balancing enhances the performance of the servers, leads to their optimal utilization and ensures that no single server is overwhelmed. Load balancing is particularly important for busy networks, where it is difficult to predict the number of requests that will be issued to a server.

Typically, two or more web servers are employed in a load balancing scheme. In case one of the servers begins to get overloaded, the requests are forwarded to another server. Load balancing brings down the service time by allowing multiple servers to handle the requests. This service time is reduced by using a load balancer to identify which server has the appropriate availability to receive the traffic.

The process, very generally, is straightforward. A webpage request is sent to the load balancer, which forwards the request to one of the servers. That server responds back to the load balancer, which in turn sends the request on to the end user.

What is Session Persistence and Why is It Important?

An important issue when operating a load-balanced service is how to handle information that must be kept across the multiple requests in a user’s session. If this information is stored locally on one backend server, then subsequent requests going to different backend servers would not be able to find it. This might be cached information that can be recomputed, in which case load-balancing a request to a different backend server just introduces a performance issue.

Load Balancing Algorithms

A variety of scheduling algorithms are used by load balancers to determine which backend server to send a request to. Simple algorithms include random choice or round robin. More sophisticated load balancers may take into account additional factors, such as a server’s reported load, recent response times, up/down status (determined by a monitoring poll of some kind), number of active connections, geographic location, capabilities, or how much traffic it has recently been assigned. High-performance systems may use multiple layers of load balancing.

Load balancing of servers by an IP sprayer can be implemented in different ways. These methods of load balancing can be set up in the load balancer based on available load balancing types. There are various algorithms used to distribute the load among the available servers.

Weighted Round-Robin Allocation

Weighted Round-Robin is an advanced version of the round-robin that eliminates the deficiencies of the plain round robin algorithm. In case of a weighted round-robin, one can assign a weight to each server in the group so that if one server is capable of handling twice as much load as the other, the powerful server gets a weight of 2. In such cases, the IP sprayer will assign two requests to the powerful server for each request assigned to the weaker one.

What is Web Caching?

A Web cache is a temporary storage place for files requested from the Internet. After an original request for data has been successfully fulfilled, and that data has been stored in the cache, further requests for those files (a Web page complete with images, for example) results in the information being returned from the cache rather than the original location.

Types of Web Caches

Forward/transparent proxy servers, reverse proxy servers (which are actually what the cache appliances are running internally) and web servers mostly have web caches. The caches in web servers are RAM caches as they already have the resources served locally. The caches on proxy servers could be RAM & DISK, usually both. It is highly recommended to install a 15k RPM or SSD HDD as proxy server DISK cache.

SSL Offloading

Secure socket layer (SSL) certificates provide authentication between a server and a client computer in a Web application. Companies or businesses with a dedicated SSL certificate must host that certificate on a Web server. Heavy use of the certificate can put a strain on the machine and slow down the application.

SSL offloading takes all the processing of SSL encryption and decryption off the main Web server and moves it to a separate device designed specifically for the task. This allows the performance of the main Web server to increase and it handles the SSL certificate efficiently.

HTTP Compression

There’s a finite amount of bandwidth on most Internet connections, and anything administrators can do to speed up the process is worthwhile. One way to do this is via HTTP compression, a capability built into both browsers and servers that can dramatically improve site performance by reducing the amount of time required to transfer data between the server and the client. The principles are nothing new – the data is simply compressed. What is unique is that compression is done on the fly, straight from the server to the client, and often without users knowing.

Suitable File Types

Sites that have a lot of plain text content, including the main HTML files, XML, CSS, and RSS, may benefit from the compression. It will still depend largely on the content of the file; most standard HTML text files will compress by about a half, sometimes more. Heavily formatted pages, for example those that make heavy use of tables (and therefore repetitive formatting content) may compress even further, sometime to as little as one-third of the original size.

URL Translation & URL Rewrite

URL translation is translation from externally known URLs to the internal locations

URL Rewriting is a server-side technique for mapping URL requests to request handlers.

Typically there is a direct mapping between request URL and the handler for that request. All requests that end in .php will be handled by a PHP script with the given name. Similarly, request paths that end in.html will typically be handled by a static file handler. The mapping between URL and handler is typically static, and depends solely on the “extension” of the URL Request.

Why Rewrite URLs?

There are many of reasons to rewrite URLs:

* Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO is a broad topic, but the main goal is to assist search engines in finding content on a web site. One aspect of that is optimizing the URLs themselves.

* Making user-friendly URLs
Similar in effect to SEO, this allows the use of friendly public URLs where they are observed by users in links and browser bars. Elements within URLs that are meaningful only to server-side technology, including the extension of the server-side script or web app platform, can be obscured from the public.

* Server-side technology migrations
When migrating from one technology to another in stages, URL rewriting can be used to keep the URL space stable while things change on the server back-end. URL Rewriting can also be used to support migration of “old” or stale URLs to the new URL namespace, when those changes occur.

ServeTrue IQProxy supports all of the above with support at a reasonable cost for Windows