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E-commerce site search – understanding customer behaviour

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As someone who dabbles in online shopping more often than I should, I can say first hand that a pleasant user experience can easily turn a one time buyer into a regular, cart-filling devotee. An important part of this experience is being able to find what you’re looking for quickly and easily. With major online retail events like Click Frenzy around the corner, you don’t want to have shoppers logging on to your site to make a purchase, only to be frustrated when they can’t find what they want. From experience, I can assure you the next tab opened will be one of your competitors. Most of us associate online search with Google, which sets the bar pretty high for online retailers. Thanks Google! Regardless of your ecommerce platform—whether it’s Magento, WooCommerce or any of…

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5 steps to prevent your website getting hacked

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I want to clear this up right from the start. No matter how security conscious you are, your website can always be hacked. In fact, if security isn’t really on your radar and you’re not already taking steps to keep your website (and the underlying application stack) patched and up to date, then it is almost certain that your site will get hacked—and soon. The thing is, it’s not just your data at risk if your site is hacked. You also run the risk of Google dropping it like a hot potato (meaning you’ll be removed from Google’s search index) if the hackers use it to distribute malware; a common tactic the bad guys will use to harvest credit card and personal data from people. In today’s digital world, getting…

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Is Your Website Ready for Click Frenzy 2015?

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With Click Frenzy happening again on November 17th, and online sales trends continuing to climb, it is once more predicted to break online sales records—as well as any participating websites that aren’t prepared. Last year’s Click Frenzy event saw a 27.7% rise in online sales over the previous year, with the average customer order increasing 15.2% to $151.021. Any sudden rise in online activity, particularly when compressed into a single 24-hour period, can trigger a frenzy of technical issues for some retailers. According to IBM research, the first Click Frenzy in November 2012 saw 37% more online sales than even the Boxing Day sales. This unprecedented flurry of online transactions in such a short period of time saw many retailers crash under the pressure, losing sales and frustrating customers2. That…

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Secrets from Leading Magento Experts: 5 Tips for Choosing the Right Magento Agency

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Choosing an agency for your ecommerce store is an important process that deserves a well thought-out approach. Remember, the right Magento agency for your site may not be the same for another company and its specific personality and needs. Choosing the perfect agency has to do with aligning your company’s unique qualities and objectives with the agency’s qualifications and capabilities. Making a calculated, informed decision when choosing an agency to work with is of paramount importance. This is why we’ve collaborated with leading Magento agencies to compile this guide to walk you through the process! Read more.  

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Rebuilding An OpenStack Instance and Keeping the Same Fixed IP

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OpenStack and in particular the compute service, Nova, has a useful rebuild function that allows you to rebuild an instance from a fresh image while maintaining the same fixed and floating IP addresses, amongst other metadata. However if you have a shared storage back end, such as Ceph, you’re out of luck as this function is not for you. Fortunately, there is another way. Prepare for the Rebuild: Note the fixed IP address of the instance that you wish to rebuild and the network ID: $ nova show demoinstance0 | grep network | DemoTutorial network | 192.168.24.14, 216.58.220.133 | $ export FIXED_IP=192.168.24.14 $ neutron floatingip-list | grep 216.58.220.133 | ee7ecd21-bd93-4f89-a220-b00b04ef6753 | | 216.58.220.133 | $ export FLOATIP_ID=ee7ecd21-bd93-4f89-a220-b00b04ef6753 $ neutron net-show DemoTutorial | grep ” id ” | id | 9068dff2-9f7e-4a72-9607-0e1421a78d0d…

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Anchor Launches Fleet: Magento as a Service

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New automated hosting platform takes the challenge out of continuous delivery for e-commerce Sydney, Australia, 11th March 2015 – Anchor, the Australian managed hosting provider behind some of the biggest online retailers, has launched a fully automated hosting platform designed to eliminate many of the hosting headaches faced by digital agencies and e-commerce businesses. The first of its kind anywhere in the world, Fleet simplifies and turbocharges development workflows by eliminating the most common causes of downtime and code deployment issues.Fleet is such a shift from traditional hosting services that Anchor has released a specially produced four minute video to explain how it works—voiced by last week’s star panellist on the ABC’s Q&A program, Miriam Margolyes (Harry Potter, Babe, Blackadder). https://www.anchorfleet.com/#Video Anchor is the first hosting provider in Australia to…

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A Year of OpenStack

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In late 2013 we looked around the company and asked ourselves the questions any management team has to ask: what are we doing, where do we need to be, and what’s holding us back from getting there? Because Anchor had grown organically across many years, our internal procedures for infrastructure management were spread across a number of tools that weren’t scalable and efficient enough to keep up with the demands of new sales. Furthermore, they weren’t compatible with a product-based self-serve future. There are a number of pieces to addressing that, but certainly it would be tremendously useful to have API-driven software defined infrastructure. The recommendation, universally, was that we needed to consider OpenStack. We were astonished at the degree of rigour and testing that had gone into vetting changes (since the beginning, there have been no un-gated…

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Magento Fleet Explainer

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Over the past few months, we have been developing, tinkering and perfecting a brand new platform that will completely change the way you approach managing a website – Fleet. But what is Fleet? How does it work? We’ve asked Miriam Margolyes to help us explain it. Here’s a sneak peak at the script – stay tuned for the full, animated video! The problem for many online retailers is that web hosting has become far too complicated. It’s easy to see why. If your website goes down, sales go down with it, as well as your brand’s reputation. So, most big websites take a ‘belts and braces’ approach by adding extra everything — just in case. But all of these bits and bobs and extra everythings cost extra money — and get in…

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Merry Christmas from all of us at Anchor!

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2014 has been another amazing twelve months for Anchor, as well as our partners and customers. As you can see, there are now more heads than ever in our seasonal cartoon — and that’s before you count the half-dozen wonderful SysAdmins on our US support team! Anchor continues to grow rapidly to support our exciting future plans, and stand ready for an even stronger 2015. We’re continually looking for new ways to improve our services, so I’m pleased to say we have plenty of exciting developments due to launch in early next year, designed to make working with Anchor even more frictionless and rewarding. These include the full release of our OpenStack cloud and the launch of a new automated infrastructure service called Fleet that promises to change forever how…

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AnchorCloud: Thoughts on Pricing Models

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The Engineering group has spent much of the last six months developing Anchor Cloud, an infrastructure-as-a-service platform built on OpenStack to offer our customers access to public cloud services in addition to our traditional managed VPS hosting. Instant, on-demand API access to instance provisioning, storage allocation and network management deserves an equally flexible and high-resolution pricing model, and a metering system to support it. Something we’ve been thinking extensively about is how we can best help users assess their infrastructure costs. We think that an invoice detailing (and demanding payment for) your usage over the last month as 256 hours of instance type x and 100 hours of instance type y, while technically accurate, often isn’t the best way of helping users understand where their cost-centres are and how they…

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