Introducing Codero’s New Proactive Managed Hosting Service

proactiveManagedCustomer feedback shapes everything we do at Codero. Delivering the best possible solutions to the web based businesses that depend on us is our team’s top priority- always. It’s what drives us every day, and every hour. That’s why we’re excited to unveil Codero’s Proactive Managed Hosting Service, the newest addition to our portfolio. Proactive Managed Hosting is a full-service IT infrastructure administration and management service. It’s unlike other Managed Hosting services on the market, because of its high level of support, the proactive nature of the support and service, as well as the unbeatable value it provides. Here are some of the specifics that make Codero’s Proactive Managed different and better than what you may have experienced in the past:

  • Extensive scope of support: The Codero Proactive Managed Service features an expanded scope of support from both our previous offering, and the other leading offerings in the market. Everything is on the IT infrastructure side is taken care of. The only thing you have to worry about is your application and content.
  • Direct access to named, expert support: You never have to play the “Who are you?” game when you contact support for help. Codero Proactive Managed Service offers simplified and expedited support available 24×7 via ticket, chat, phone and email. You’ll know the names of each of your Codero support team members that are assigned to your account, and they’ll know your business inside and out.
  • Extensive Support of Technologies: 

    Public CloudPrivate CloudDedicated Servers
    Bare Metal
    Elastic SSD
    Block Storage
    Windows® /
    Linux OS
    Remote Server ManagementSAN and NAS StorageSecurity /
    Networking
    Backup ServicesDisaster RecoveryPCI Compliance EnvironmentHybrid Hosting

  • Robust, brand name hardware standards: Enterprise-level firewall. Top of the line Dell servers. With Proactive Managed hosting as with all our services, we only will ever use the best servers, storage, and networking for the best protection for your business.
  • Improved monitoring tools for proactive problem-solving. Whether processes are running slowly or there’s a network issue that hasn’t affected your business yet, your Codero Proactive expert support team will identify and fix it before anything happens. Peace of mind is completely yours.
  • More flexibility. Unlike other Managed Hosting services in the market, Codero Proactive Managed allows you to have a mixed hosting environment to best fit your needs.  You can have servers being proactively managed, and still have servers you manage yourself.
  • Unbeatable value. For most organizations, Codero’s Proactive Managed Hosting is more cost-effective than their current on-premise deployments because we take care of the technology, monitoring, staffing, and security, meaning you’ll have more money to invest back into your organization.

Some customers have already gotten the chance to experience Codero’s Proactive Managed Hosting Service, and their feedback has been music to our ears. For example, Director of Mobile Platforms at Vertamin Inc said the following:

“Vertamin’s livelihood depends on uptime and high performance. Codero Proactive Managed Hosting has proven to be a great improvement from what we’ve experienced with other hosting providers. The service is unparalleled, and gives us access to true experts 24×7. We’ve been so happy that we’ve left other hosting providers and consolidated our entire infrastructure at Codero.”

This is exactly what The Proactive Managed Service is meant to do, and we couldn’t be more honored to now make it available to all businesses worldwide. In conjunction with the launch of Codero Proactive Managed, we’re also excited to introduce an improved, and highly expanded scope of Support for dedicated hosting, or Codero Essential Server Support. To learn more, check out the updated Scope of Support document. If you would like to learn more about Codero Proactive Managed, or Essential Server Support we would love to speak to you. Either leave us a comment below or chat with us.

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Do You Have A Cloud Plan?

cloudPlanWe’re well into 2014 and it’s amazing to me that more organizations don’t have a clear cloud plan. Too many people are still confused or afraid of the “C” word.  But here’s the thing: There are real dangers in not having a cloud strategy, AKA a well-known cloud plan for your IT environment.  Every company should use cloud for something, but not necessarily everything!  The various general use cases for cloud computing are hopefully well-known by now.

 

End of the Hype Cycle

hybrid-logoThe hype surrounding cloud is, in many ways, over and done with. The individual business case should be obvious: Cloud computing is more than just a platform; it’s a path to enablement. It’s become a delivery model of apps and data, and it may actually be the most significant difference maker for an organization trying to stand apart in a fiercely competitive and evolving marketplace. You just have to find where to settle in for your situation.  Whether it’s faster app performance, rapid scalability, significant cost savings, better IT operations, or whatever makes the difference for you, the cloud is a powerful tool in the big picture. That’s why a strategic plan should be made and communicated regardless of how much cloud technology integration you anticipate for the organization.

Looking at one of the classic pillars of cloud computing – by pushing mass capital spending to one side –  countless organizations across the world have been able to use the cloud to quickly spin up services and have gained tremendous agility through this strategy.  That’s not everyone, however, and perhaps not enough to compel some to make this move.  There is, of course, huge potential cost savings from freeing up capital, using compute and storage resources only on-demand, from having streamlined management of services, just to name a few.  Still, that may not be enough for all to take that leap of cloud faith.  They have too much invested in their high-price architecture or they don’t have the engineering to integrate this just yet (or ever), or maybe they have security concerns.

 

Meet the next Gen Cloud: The Hybrid Cloud

That’s where hybrid cloud solutions come in – with ease of integration, better control and security, and the extension of existing architecture and systems, many of those concerns are easily remedied.

Getting down to the truth of the matter, whether you know it or not, cloud services are creeping into the enterprise.  Because the term cloud has become so vague and, in many cases, overused or misused, this may not be all that clear. But it’s something that companies need to recognize, plan and definitely make some statements about.  Think about this: It could be users that self-backup to a cloud service. It could be applications are finding their way to easily implemented infrastructure services. Whatever it is, it needs recognition and a corporate vision with security and productivity at the tip of the many concerns.

Hybrid_Dedicated_Cloud_ImageLeading opinions have emerged on transforming enterprise roles at the C-Level and throughout companies.  A murky cloud plan is just the kind of thing that can impact that transformation in a bad way.  Sensitive corporate data should be in the control of the organization, and it should be available to throughout the organization, and it should be executed at a consistent high-performance level, so a proper cloud strategy that covers all those matters is critical.   Part of that cloud planning also infers a transformation of roles within information technology.  When communicated through a strategic cloud plan, opportunities for transforming IT roles can be communicated throughout the organization.  High communications will also help minimize resistance to cloud integration technology.  You see when the entire organization follows along with leadership on a cloud path, the answers produce themselves.   Put your hybrid cloud plan together or better yet, call us and we can help you out.

 

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How You Can Reduce Shopping Cart Abandonment by 45%

If you could eliminate 45% of your abandoned carts by making one simple change, would you do it?

It depends. If the “one simple change” is a cheap, pop-up gimmick, scamming your customers or breaking your competition’s legs, probably not. But what if it’s as simple as finding better hosting?

CartAbandonment

Statista conducted a study to determine the top reasons why customers abandon their carts, and according to their findings:

  • 24% of shoppers abandon their carts because the website crashed
  • 21% of shoppers abandon their carts because it took too long to checkout

That means unreliable hosting is causing 45% of your abandoned carts. With estimates that shoppers abandon 67% of all carts, low performance hosting could be costing you over 30% of your business.

Let’s put this in perspective real quick. Say your store makes $20,000/month. If you were able to capture even just half of those abandoned carts, you’d see around $38,000 in extra income that year. The conclusion is clear: High quality hosting can drastically reduce your abandoned carts, making your store even more profitable. There are several reasons why, but here are two of the major ones:

1. Customers are quick to judge. Really quick.

We live in an on-demand society. With so many things vying for our focus, our attention spans are shorter than ever. If your site takes longer than three seconds to load, 57% of your shoppers will bounce, 80% of them never to return. To say that today’s customers’ lack the load time tolerance of their dial-up predecessors is an understatement. Once you miss that three-second window, you’ve missed those customers. Period.

2. Shoppers need to feel safe

safeShopperFraud on the internet is on the rise. Javelin’s 2014 Identity Fraud Report found that 13.1 million consumers’ identities and funds were compromised in 2013, a 50,000-person increase since 2012. Knowing all this, how do you think a slow-loading site makes customers feel? Personally, I get a little uncomfortable if it takes an online store a long time to load, especially if I’m trying to check out. And if your site crashes? Well, you can kiss your new customers goodbye.

So stop leaving money on the table. Make sure you have the most reliable hosting for your online store. It’ll benefit you, it’ll benefit your customers and as you’ve seen, it’ll benefit your business. If you’re interested in seeing how Codero Hosting stacks up, chat with one of our hosting experts today.

 

 

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To Manage or Not to Manage? That Is the $1 Million Question

It is time! - It’s time for IT professionals to come to grips with the fact that managing your own servers comes at too high a price. Once you add up costs such as server maintenance, data security, physical security, downtime prevention and backup, it’s far more expensive than what you’d expect. And if you think that’s bad, don’t forget to factor in the most expensive part: Distraction from your core mission of growing your company and business. Every minute spent on managing your IT is taking time away from growing your company and business.

Managed hosting was born as answer to these very costs while delivering other operational business benefits.  At the very heart of modern IT infrastructures is the need to scale with business at the speed of business, by the most efficient means possible.  That means businesses need a solid platform that’s always up to date, worry-free, and supported 24×7.

Reduce RiskTo ensure you have that kind of infrastructure when running you own servers, your business has to manage around-the-clock staffing (and the associated training), network costs, equipment costs, multiple contracts and so on. But what will it really cost you in the run? And how can you tell if managed service would be a better solution?

 

The Three Questions - Here are three questions you should ask to determine whether you’re paying the real cost of managing your own servers.

 

1. What does your peace of mind cost?

Peace of MindThis “peace of mind” cost is very subjective, and we won’t try to quantify it, because it’s all about your business. But we do know that most websites and business applications are the mission-critical core of businesses.  That means IT systems need to be well-maintained, with available expert technical support, and regular maintenance.

When you run your own systems, it takes time away from running your business, starting new ventures, enjoying your vacations, spending time with loved ones, etc. There’s no such thing as a sick day or a week off. Even if you’re on vacation, your systems won’t be. And what if something goes wrong while you’re away? If you’re at an event receiving a big award for your business and servers go down, what happens then? Do you forego the ceremony and run to get your systems back up?  There are so many start-ups we meet that try to do IT themselves, and most of them have had the unfortunate experience of their infrastructure going down while they’re doing a demo to key investors.  How do you put a price on that?

 

2. Are you aware of the real financial burden?

This is a much easier point to prove. You know running your own server systems costs money. But are you really aware of how much? Here we look at a very simple example that illustrates how the costs truly add up if you want to do it right and not cut corners.  The table below clearly shows  how much a business can save by switching to Managed Hosting.

Item DIY upfront costs Managed Hosting
Firewall $2,500 included
Web Server $2,500  $139.40/mo – $1672.80 per year
Backup Server $2,500  Included
Backup, disaster recovery $2,000  Included
Switch $1,000  Included
Cabinet $1,000  Included
Implementation, consulting $1,500  $1,500
Space, power, bandwidth $1,500  Included
24×7 IT support/employees $150,000  Included
Total $164,500 first year  $3,472per year

Even if you were to take away the things that you already paid for (ex: Server, Firewall, etc), you can see how you still need a couple of employees around the clock, you still have additional bandwidth costs, other gear to manage like firewalls, switches and so on, at the very least.

If you have an IT staff, their time can be better utilized with functions other than managing servers. You can make the most of your talented assets and unchain them from the tasks of server management.  Critical server issues are better left to the expert knowledge available through managed services personnel who solve these types of issues daily, and around the clock.  Issues can be resolved quicker by putting your IT staff onto other more core tasks while companies like Codero take care of managing your IT infrastructure.  Time is money and running your own servers costs both time and money.  In the event you scale up your infrastructure, you must still scale resources for proper management-which means again, more money!

 

Extend Your Team

3. Do you want proactive, technical expertise on your side 24×7?

If you value 24×7 expertise on your side when running your own systems, you’ll have to search for, hire, train and pay each one of those experts yourself.  Then you have to manage them and retain them! No small feat in today’s high turnover rate environment. With managed services it’s all done for you, so you’ll procure better value in every case.

Secondly, support needs to be proactive, and not reactive. This means it needs to be ahead of your needs, through communication, through great technology and through expert dedication to making sure your systems are the best they can be and that you are getting everything you expect from them by proactively anticipating issues, and solving them BEFORE they occur.

 

While the advantages of using managed services still apply to any provider you select, Codero’s managed services proudly lead the pack and have taken managed services to a new level.   We go further than anyone else in providing real value to our customers with outstanding personalized and named account managers, and a tech support team dedicated to you.  We pride ourselves on acting proactively, and named our Managed Services as such.   If you’re looking to learn more about Codero’s Proactive Managed Hosting services, visit our Managed Service page or chat with one of our hosting experts.

 

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APIs 101: What You Need to Know about the Keys to the Kingdom

API Check box v2APIs have been making the news lately, especially with Apple’s release of Metal API for iOS. But APIs themselves have been around for a long time. They’re a necessity in today’s ever-changing tech landscape, which is why understanding them is key to providing users with the interoperability they now require.

What is an API?
An API (short for “Application Programming Interface”) is a set of requirements that determine how one application can talk to another.

Why do APIs matter?
The short answer: APIs help make your life easier by making things more efficient. Say you have an application that checks the weather forecast for rain and, if there’s a chance of rain, it’ll display an umbrella icon on your home screen. The app does this by pulling the day’s forecast from weather.com.

Here’s the difference an API would make in our example app: 

Without an API:
The app checks the current weekly forecast by opening http://www.weather.com/ and reading the webpage much like a human user would, interpreting the content as it goes. The app knows to look for the weekly forecast in one specific area of the site. However, if the site changes its layout, the app won’t work anymore.

PWith an API:
The app will call the message listed in weather.com’s API that returns the weekly forecast. Regardless of what the website looks like, the app will get the data it needs and will function as it should.

As you can see, APIs not only make interoperability possible, but offer a host of other benefits like improving functionality and streamlining processes.

How APIs work
APIs themselves are a series of different XML messages, each XML message corresponding to a different function. For example, a cloud hosting API may have an XML message that corresponds with creating a cloud server and one that will reboot a cloud server.

To tap into this functionality, a developer will write code that generates the right XML messages to either create or reboot a server and voila! The servers will be created or rebooted in real time, all without needing to log into a portal.

Advantages of using an API
Part of the reason why releasing APIs has become so popular is because of how much they benefit users. Some of the main benefits are:

  • Easy integration. With an API available, developers can easily integrate other services into their existing software.
  • Processes are streamlined. Back to our cloud hosting example, developers could integrate cloud hosting functionality into existing applications so companies wouldn’t need to train IT staff and employees on how to administer and use new software.
  • It empowers users. APIs enable users to better access and customize a service in a way that suits their needs directly.

Thus, companies who release APIs allow their customers to access their services in newer, more efficient ways. If you’re interested in learning more about APIs and what they can do for you from a cloud perspective, check out our API here. We’d love to get your feedback on it, and know how you’re using it to power your business.

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