How does PHP works

PHP is a widely used scripting language that has fashionably replaced the popularity of HTML in dynamic web development. Aside from being originally invented to create a dynamic website, PHP has it effects in increasing the loading speed of a website in the visitor’s browser as it is based on a server-side execution. But how does PHP works?

PHP codes are embedded into the HTML source document and interpreted by a PHP processing server, also known as an application server. The data flow of PHP is also different from a static page. It works when a user machine is connected to the internet and then to the application server to execute a PHP script. To compare with HTML, data that stores on web server is all pre-packaged as HTML pages even for Java script that is essentially static in a particular page.

Unlike a standard web server that will only serve what it is asked for, an application server can run a script in the application server when requested by user through the input that the user has returned to the application server. It can make dynamic more intelligent choices about the kind of content the user wants to see.

It can also work in conjunction with a database server although they can be physically together in one server machine but it works in different concept.

The common software that requires to run PHP scripts on a web server are such as Apache, Microsoft IIS, Zeus, etc and the editing software of PHP include some basic text editor such as Notepad or Textpad that is usually built in with most computers.

HTML vs CMS

Web developers and designers today are opened to more options of tools to create a website. Different tools belong to different skills and expertise of an individual. From basic design interface appearance to the traditional coding language of a website, they provide an equal versatility and effectiveness to put an idea on a website. But among such options, the use of HTML (hypertext markup language) and CMS (content management system) are more popularly used in most web development for a well known benefits.

HTML is the traditional way to create a structured document that comprised of headings, paragraph, fonts, size and other elements of forms in a regular web page. It is a predominant markup language for most web pages you see on the internet. Most programmers can use the HTML language and can create or edit the HTML of a page directly from simple software such as the Notepad on computers. With the knowledge of HTML, many things can be achieved in precision on web design.

However, this may not be the choice for many people who lack the advantage of HTML knowledge. Despite the convenience of accessibility to edit web pages easily through software such as Notepad. HTML for web design requires some cost of maintenance as not everyone has the ability to work with HTML language.

But thanks to technology industrial development, we no longer design like the way we did before. We don’t necessarily need the knowledge of HTML language, we don’t need to be involved much in the backend of the ‘wiring and microchips’ that requires long process of learning. We just need to think of the concept, content and the images to put on the website. Content management system such as WordPress has given people the power to create and manage for all levels of skills.

Software such WordPress have been designed to provide convenience, accessibility and effectiveness for people to work with their website. It’s user friendly tools summarized all complicated procedure in web development allowing the management of a website to be at ease even by a layman. CMS software such as WordPress have shorten complicated procedures of programming for any special feature in a website such as creating  feedback form and buttons through installation of plugins.

Nonetheless there are always pros and cons compare to the steady conventional system of HTML such as specific modifications of these features. As the plugins in WordPress have been pre-design with it’s copyrights’ pattern, most plugin components cannot be modified to a specific design. Or changing it would require other knowledge level of HTML or programming.

CMS such as WordPress, drupal and Joomla have been widely accepted as an industrial standard for web development and its control can be easily transferred to another person.

How to put your visitors into a hypnotic trance and make them stay or even buy your products!

A good hypnotic experience is all about the ability to focus. If you can make your content enough of relevance to them, you can get their focus. This can be done by pacing their reality of needs, addressing their specific needs and wants from you website. Step into their shoe and think from their perspective, see what they see, feel what they feel. Then address their need and lead them by giving a suggestion that makes sense. Don’t exaggerate or oversell your product because smart visitors can tell between bone and meat.

Let them experience it

Give them an imaginative experience of what it feels like to be able to enjoy the products and services through story telling. Go deep by chunking down the details to stimulate every positive imagination as you can. They are able to visualize better this way and if it feels right for them, they will most likely continue to accept your suggestion.

Belief system

Everyone has a different belief system but understanding their belief system can help you to say the right words and hit the nail that makes your visitors say ‘yes, that’s what I’m thinking, I am paying for a good price, but not able to get the quality that I actually wanted”. Then you might ask them which is more important, cost or quality? There are three interrelated process of a belief structure, the cause, effect and its meaning.  So by understanding your visitors’ values and beliefs, you can make better use of how to connect to their reality.

Metaphor and analogy

To amplify their imaginations, you can provide a metaphor or analogy to illustrate your point. For example you may ask how would you compare between ten metal rings and one diamond ring when it comes to winning the heart of a woman. That would be the same when it comes to winning the heart of your clients. It’s a weak example that I just made up, but you’ll get the idea of making a comparison between cost and quality. So in your sales page, you can use metaphor and analogy to give them a better understand of your suggestion.

Original content

Nonetheless the originality of the content plays another role in influencing a visitor. Never copy someone else’s work. Be different and offer uniqueness that matches their reality.

How to put your visitors into a hypnotic trance and make them stay or even buy your products!


Take a deep breath, and breathe out gently. Then count from five to one and you will become more and more relax as you are reading this. You are intrigued with the title when you first read it and you will become focused on all the points here, because you want to capture your visitor’s attention and make them stay…

This is probably the impression you have in mind about hypnosis, and you are right. You are here because you want to make your website look more interesting to your visitors, so interesting that it mesmerizes them and put them into a hypnotic trance to stay longer or even buy your products as a result. While you can put your visitors into a dazed stated, you should realistically know that you can’t mind control your visitors.

But the good news is, you can create suggestions to your visitors that are influential enough to put them in a suggestible state and make them stay a little longer and perhaps if it is persuasive enough (and your products good enough) they might just buy it!

The truth based on research is that people go through a hypnotic state at least twice a day in their daily routine. But the media has exaggerated hypnosis and it is now stereotyped as something to do with taking control over people’s mind regardless of their will. Hypnosis is not about mind control, at least not unwillingly. If you have ever been driving in a long distance while you are listening to the radio or talking to the passenger only to realize you have reached the destination in a short time, then you were in a hypnotic state.

Many routine work involves getting people into an automated hypnotic state. These include driving, cooking and reading which can all create an automatic response for action. When was the last time you’ve read a book or visit website that you are so focused that you’re not even aware of someone calling you. Because you were absolutely focused on what you’re doing. You can achieve the same with effect with your web content with the following:-

Good design

Because a website is known for fast browsing, and it only has a few seconds to grasp the visitors attention the first appearance must has significant impact. And the way to do this is with good design. A good design is a clear design and a clear design is when everything is in order. You want a web design that soothe the visitor’s urge to rush to one site to another. So unless the web design is good enough, you then fail the first step.

“The web is for scanning, not deep reading. People typically spend two minutes or less on a site. Why do you think the killer app is called browser” – Josh Quittner, Fortune magazine.

Keywords are the key

You might not be aware, but you need to get the keywords right before you talk about prolonging your visitor’s stay. Because without relevant keywords targeted to your page, you will mostly attract the wrong visitors who will not stay. So getting the keywords right give your visitors more reason to stay and read your stuff, because it is relevant to them. If they reached your page correctly and find the content reflect their reality they are then more receptive with your suggestion.

To be continue… (pace and lead, belief system next)

Firefox vs Explorer

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Choosing a suitable internet browser can be more significant for your browsing experience than merely a brand. As there are probably more than 10 internet browsers available, two of the biggest name you‘ve heard areprobably the one you use to start your internet journey everyday – Firefox and IE (Internet Explorer). Both of these Internet browsers have become rivals to each other since 2004, the birth of Firefox. With constant upgrade from time to time to impress their users, this duo has lasted for about a decade. Today, their war is still ongoing to outdo each other.

While these two top guns cover the mass majority of internet users, we are not limited without other options of internet browsers that spans from Opera, Chrome, Safari, Maxthon, Flock, Avant and some others that remain in the minority. Nonetheless, just by looking at the statistic of this blog, the duo browsers remain as the victors with 45% of Firefox users, 36% of IE users and 19% to other browsers. This statistic would not mean much to a user, but it is a significant figure for web designers to ensure consistency of coding and design for the mainstream and to optimize the SEO of a website.

When considering the both, we take security, features and performance into account. As IE is a built-in browser, people tend to start off with IE as the first experience (or sometimes the last) for web browser. For that reason, hackers are also working harder on IE which makes IE more susceptible to security breach. Despite that, IE remain to perform faster than its peer due to a more compatible system that naturally fit in most computers, IE uses lesser RAM than Firefox. But then again, it doesn’t have many plugins and features such as the ones people fancy in Firefox.

With Firefox taking more RAM than the built-in browser, it however gives a cutting edge feature such as the Piclens and Youtube accessibility that attract users. Aside from the fancy plugins, Firefox are also in favor for most websites giving web designers the ease of hassle free coding. This advantage saves web designers for a shortcut to perfection with Firefox auto-adjusting of minor coding to remove the ‘fluff’ off the website’s shoulder. Unlike IE that is strict with the precision of coding, Firefox gives more leniencies to minor flaws of coding.

With both on about the equal weigh and technology advancing chronologically, I personally look forward to seeing something more standardized that requires less annoying upgrades from time to time and  more stable and faster browsing performance for everyone. But for now, we have choices to make, what would be yours?

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5 Tips for effective graphic design

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Graphic design is one of the most important factors that determine how comfortable your visitors will be browsing your site. A good design can help to promote more sales, business leads and ROI. Criteria to design a good website include having the right font choice, colour background, theme, layout and the overall consistency.

Background

As they are not as prominent as the main content it can still gives a significant impact of the overall impression. Depending on the theme and the nature of your web business, a background color must be compatible with the overall theme. But one of the safest background colour that you should consider is white. The white colour (or no colour) allows visitors to focus better on the content rather than the design. A white background is a scandalized background for most serious looking sites that can represent neutrality, clarity and spacious. A white background can also be easier to match with almost any color of the content.

Font type

The font plays a role in determining the theme of your site. A good font is when a reader can read smoothly and clearly throughout all the texts. The two main type of fonts are serif and san serif. Fonts like Verdana and Arial are san serif that look sharp and rigid and serif fonts are words like Times New Roman where there are curvy edges pointing out. San Serif fonts can be rather serious looking than Serif, but may not be as readable as serif. Site with lengthy text should consider the use of serif fonts for better readability.

Layout

The layout is the positioning of all the visual elements on the site. A good design is a clear design and a clear design is when everything is in order. There must be a standardization of how the text and images are composed together. This involves preparing the basic structure of the page with grids that guides the layout for the placement of text and images. By having a good layout the focus of the content will be in better order for visitors to read.

Theme

Every design has a theme. A theme is like the heart where the design evolves. A theme can be abstract or simple but it must exist in order to do a good and consistent design for the entire site. A good theme will tie up the design together.

Consistency

The last and probably the most important aspect in graphic design that we all talk about is consistency. A consistent theme and design for all pages will gives the visitors one solid impression. Consistent design gives a harmonious visual that makes visitors understand your site better. So make sure there are a consistency in theme, colour and design.


Graphic design and web hosting

graphic_designA design of a website resembles the first impression of what people perceive about a company. Every color and graphic represents a corporate identity of a website and its company. The perception a site creates will determine if the visitor will continue to stay or leave the site.  As the old saying goes, first impression is the last impression. From the color of the logo, to the size of the font and the overall layout of a website can trigger different feelings for visitors and it is the designer’s job to ensure visitors will get the most positive effect to stay longer. Designing a website is an art and requires a lot of creativity. To a website, the design is also associated with promoting more sales, business leads and ROI. With that objective in mind, designers are trained to be visually sensitive with the psychology of what a visitor sees, as modern people now have a built-in ability to filter suspicious looking websites. They can instinctively tell if a website is just merely pushing for a desperate sale or they really have something good to offer.

Thanks to thousands of spammy website that bombard visitors daily, a stereotype of a good and bad website has been created in their mind. Visitors have developed the “spider-sense” radar. As a designer, the job is to make sure that a website would not fall within this radar by ensuring good quality of design. If you are not a designer and don’t have the designing skills, it is recommended that you outsource the job to the professionals. Most companies building a website only have one thing in common, to create more sales. Of course, nothing is wrong with that. But it is also because of the sales mindset that makes aggressive looking website that visitors try to avoid. This is because visitors have seen so many hundred of websites that does the same thing by asking them to buy things without even introducing itself properly. Credibility plays an important role in a website. Although companies have sales objective to meet, it is usually unwise to instruct a designer to maximize the use of every space available for some consent as it would kill the design. If you want your website to look good and has credibility, it is best to just pass the content to the designer and let them advise you with the appropriate design. Never argue with the designer about space, because they know what negative space is and they know what is best for your site’s appearance.

Now with some practical tips of web design, a website should always maximize its content with rich keywords for all topics in all pages. This includes applying appropriate meta tags of keyword, title and description on all pages. Be as precise as possible with all keywords. The more precise and narrow your keywords are, the more closer it bring you to your target audience. It is recommended that a meta title be kept within 70 characters, meta keywords to be within 10 and meta description within 150. If you have different topic of contents, putting it on different pages and keywords would improve the precision of your page being indexed for the right topic. Images are also an important component of a website as it conveys messages faster than words. But it is important to ensure that a page does not have too many images as it can slow the page’s load time. To be safe, always expect your visitors to have the lowest connection speed.

You’ll also need to make sure that images are of acceptable size and format. The labeling of images are also important as search engines will also crawl onto it and index pictures in search results. A sitemap is not only useful for a site with heavy content, but also for search engine friendly. Browsing compatibility must be ensured with all browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox Mozilla, Opera, etc). Last but not least is to create a conversion page to evaluate your site’s goal. Conversion page include RSS, form page and also a ‘thank you’ page for people who made purchase on your site. All of these are useful to evaluate the conversion rate of your website.

With all design in once piece, it is time for you to host your masterpiece on a server. Different sites may have different requirement of a server (click here to find out your need) If you want to run an ecommerce or a mission critical site, you may want to get a dedicated server, which could exceed your budget or you may opt to get a VPS (find out more about VPS here). But one thing that cannot be excluded from your criteria is the reliability of a web server.

webhostingThis quality is so important that without a RELIABLE WEB HOSTING, it would be worthless for all your efforts to create a successful website.

Without a reliable web hosting to provide you a consistent uptime, your visitors would be disappointed with your website disappeared. Your rankings in search engines would eventually drop and more importantly, you lose the reputation of your company. A reliable web hosting gives you a consistent uptime and allows your effort for the site to flourish to the fullest. Webserver and some other hosting company provide a last-mile application support which is very useful for clients who face many technical issues with applications on their sites. However, be extra careful when choosing a web hosting company, as many are not clear with the charges of the extra technical service, so be sure to read their pocilies.