First off, I want to apologise to our esteemed editor and to you, the reader, for missing the last issue. When you are doing articles as a volunteer and your time constraints become strained then something gives and I'm afraid that this article was one of the items that got dropped. I'm back this issue with a short article on a requested topic. It's not a long read but I think it may be helpful.
So, you've got this great site on Chebucto Community Net that you've spent hundreds of hours developing and you notice that you don't get many visitors. Your use of the statistics pages has told you that there just aren't that many people visiting. Why aren't they? Well, there could be lots of reasons.
One reason might be that when they try to remember your address they get lost in its complexity. Visitors have tried to get to your site but typing the long and hard to remember URL incorrectly has caused them to miss the target.
My main site, for instance, is http://www.chebucto.ns.ca/ SportFit/AKC/ which is long and a little complicated and even if they do remember it they might forget that Unix machines are case sensitive and the s, f, and akc must be upper case. If they don't realise this, which is highly possible, they'll never get to my site with just the name.
Wouldn't life be better if I could have sent them to http://www.akc.ns.ca/? No upper/lower case woes and it's much easier to remember. With CCN's VDN feature I can do just that. VDN stands for Virtual Domain Name, which is just a fancy way of saying that CCN has the ability to map web address or URL directly to your site.
Now you might think that this service doesn't come free and you'd be right. If you want to make use of this service you first need to obtain the IP Premium Package which will run you $100/year. For more details see the Information Provider Fees and Services page on Doug McCann's site.
Once you're set up with the premium package you need to register a domain name, which may or may not cost you more money depending upon what domain space you wish to join. If you want a .CA domain name, they are currently free and you can register your .CA domain name at the CA Domain registry. The other domains .COM, .ORG, etc., will set you back $70 every 2 years and if you don't pay them they will take the name away. Some information pages have already been laid out for this process.
Whether you have gone for the custom domain name or not you may still find that people can't find your site. Most people today head for the nearest search engine when looking for information so you should make sure you are registered with them.
You can do this one at a time yourself by visiting some of the following pages and registering your site with them to get your page in the search engine's database faster or you can pay a service such as WorldSubmit to put it in a whole bunch at once. It's a matter of priorities.
I hope this article makes your site easier to find on the web and, hopefully, I'll be back next issue with another useful article for the IP's on CCN. Anyone have any suggestions??
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