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Net Presence (net prez'ns) n. the state or fact of playing a significant role in enhancing the Internet. More than simply connecting to the Internet, establishing a net.presence is accomplished through activities such as publishing quality information of interest to others, establishing appropriate links between your information and other relevant items on the net, and participating in a constructive role in on-line forums such as Internet newsgroups.

How would you like to increase your business without spending a lot of money? Establish a net presence with a web site created and built by the staff at Parker Information Resources.

Sell Or Tell? Can the Web evolve into a viable forum for selling products and services? Or will it act primarily as an information resource? "I'm confident this will become another place where business happens," says Steve Painter, electronic commerce marketing manager for Digital Equipment Corp. in Marlboro, Mass. "In the last two years, we've watched the typically upward slope curve for selling electronically go almost vertical."

What works on the Web, and what doesn't? "People come to the Internet for information, so companies that post a lot about their products are going to succeed," says Bill Parker, a Houston consultancy that helps companies establish a Web presence.

Speed Feed The need for high information content, while true of all online selling, is intensified on the Web because of hypertext links that allow users to access related topics through graphical browsers like Mosaic, Netscape, and Internet Explorer--and enable "tie-in" sales. An online listing of a tax preparation software program, for example, could contain links that would allow the user to order books on tax-free investments or general financial planning.

In public appearances, Microsoft Corp. chairman and CEO Bill Gates likes to screen futuristic videos in which computers are harnessed to assist all kinds of everyday activities. But for his next speech, Gates might consider the car-buying experience of Cory Van Arsdale, a Microsoft staff attorney who recently purchased a new Volvo 850. Every phase of the sale--excepting Van Arsdale's test drive--was handled on the Internet's World Wide Web.

'Cool Thing To Do' As they would be with any new technology, companies considering selling on the Web should be wary of the hype, experts say. "A lot of people are putting up Web sites just because they can; it's the cool thing to do," says Lynn Bolger, VP of corporate media at ad agency Foote Cone &Belding (FCB) in New York. "At many sites the execution isn't very good, especially with fancy graphics that take forever to download. In the long run, the Web has to save the customer money and add value."

The Web is becoming very crowded very fast. That's because companies recognize that "the potential market is huge, given the installed base of computers," says Bolger of FCB. "But there are a lot of channels on that frequency called the Internet."

That said, a company's Web site had better be well-planned and well-executed. Because changing channels on the Web is almost as easy for potential customers as clicking the TV remote. Stay tuned.

The staff at Parker Information Resources will design an attractive and attention-grabbing Web Site, place it on the World Wide Web and index it so folks looking for your products or services can find you. Every day around the world, companies like yours are establishing a presence on the Web. For small one-man organizations to multinational corporations, businesses can benefit from exposure on this rapidly emerging medium.

Services of A Good Webhost

Here are some services offered by most hosting services. Comparison shop to find the best deals. Many hosts lean towards Microsoft technology although some of the biggest and most stable websites are hosted on Unix and Sun Sparc Stations. Unix is preferred. However most of the new website owners do host on an NT/2000/2003 environment.

  • Disk Storage Space for Your Website
  • Data Transfer between Users and Your Website
  • POP Emails
  • Active Server Pages
  • Frontpage Support
  • Frontpage Subwebs
  • VB Script Support
  • Personal CGI Bin
  • MS Access Database
  • Single Page Shop Cart
  • Pre-installed CGI Scripts
  • Pre-installed ASP Scripts
  • AutoResponders
  • Email Lists
  • Email Alias's
  • Email System
  • Referral Logs
  • Real Audio/Video
  • Majordomo List
  • Graphical Counter
  • Search Engine Submissions
  • Traffic Statistics
  • Name Registration
  • <> SSAhost.Com (this is the one we use)

    http://www.ssahost.com/

    SSAhost.Com offers web hosting plans to fit virtually all business needs on the web. Starting at $10.00 per month you get:

  • Domain name mapping and maintainence included.
  • 50 MB of space
  • 2000 MB/Month transfer rate
  • 10 POP3 Email accounts
  • 10 Email Forwarding/Aliases
  • Unlimited (24 hrs/day) FTP to your space
  • Daily (Unix) or Weekly (FrontPage) statistical hit analysis
  • Access to raw log files
  • Full Custom CGI execution capability
  • Online disk space usage check
  • Free web hosting or paid -- which should I choose?

    When looking for a web hosting solution the first choice the user often has to make is whether to choose one of the varieties of free hosting available, or to pay a web hosting company. There are several factors that may weigh your decision one way or another -- let's look at some of them.

    The biggest advantage of free web hosting is that it's, well, free. There, choice made, now what? Not so fast -- not only is that the biggest advantage, it is also just about the only advantage, and you may find that the disadvantages of free web hosting will make it a bad choice.

    What are these disadvantages? Firstly, let's look at the domain name, the name by which your web site is found. By choosing a free web host, your name may be, for example "www.geocities.com/yourname". This would be fine for some users, for instance if all that was needed was a page for a small club, but for most companies seeking to establish a Web presence the ability to be able to use a domain name in the style of "yourname.com" is essential.

    Free web hosting will also limit the amount of hard disk space you will be able to use. Again, not necessarily a problem for a small site, but for the user that needs more space, maybe for a large number of pages, or pages with high graphics content, the amount of space available may not be sufficient.

    Also restricted will be the amount of bandwidth, or transfer, that your visitors will be able to use. It's no use trying to run a business on the Web if all your customers see towards the end of the month is a page saying that "This site has exceeded its bandwidth allowance, please try again next month". That is not something that would inspire your customers to have faith in your products.

    You may find that some of the more sophisticated services, such as Perl, CGI or PHP that are being used more and more nowadays on the Internet are not available if you choose to use a free service. You may also find that shopping carts are not available, or that the service is not set up to allow the secure use of credit card transactions to make purchases.

    Finally, advertising revenue. A free web hosting service is paid for by the advertisements and pop-ups which appear on the pages hosted by them. Not only will you have no control over which advertisements appear on your site, but also you will receive no revenue from them.

    So, think carefully before you opt for a free service. For an individual or small group, the cost factor may outweigh the disadvantages above. A company will probably find that the choice of free hosting will put limits on their growth that are unacceptable.

    What is web hosting?

    Web hosting is the act of housing, maintaining and serving files for a website. The role of a web hosting company is to provide 24/7 connection to the Internet by maintaining a network of complicated, high-end and expensive servers. Today, there are probably hundreds or even thousands of web hosting packages to choose from, so always make a comparison of the features, rates and quality of service to get the best value for your money.

    Do I need web hosting?

    If you want to have a website which can be accessed by an online user from any computer around the world with an Internet connection, then you need web hosting. It takes a complicated and expensive network of servers to host any website so the expense of subscribing to a web hosting company is definitely worth it. Take the time to check and compare the top 10 web hosting companies to see which one suits your needs best.

    How do I compare web hosting packages?

    When choosing the best web hosting provider to go with, make a comparison of the monthly fee, reliability, features, quality of customer support and the ease of use of the control panel. Today, there are hundreds of web hosting companies in operation so comparing these aspects of the web hosting package is a must. Our top 10 comparison chart was created so it is easy for you to compare and choose the best web hosting provider.

    What is disk space?

    In the web hosting industry, disk space refers to the physical space that a website occupies on the server -- which holds all the files that your site is composed of. Every web hosting package has a maximum limit for the amount of disk space that you can use. For example if you have a site with a lot of images or videos you will need a lot more disk space, so this is something which should be considered.

    What is bandwidth?

    Simply put, bandwidth is the amount of traffic which your website is allowed to handle. Bandwidth is typically measured in Gigabytes. For example, one normal-sized letter in a web page will take up one byte. A typical photo can take up about one kilobyte and videos or other multimedia files can take millions of bytes. Make sure that your web hosting provider can support the traffic and the amount of data passing through your network.

    Parker Information Resources
    Houston, Texas
    E-mail: bparker@parkerinfo.com
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