IAMGaurav

Gaurav

Freelance Web Developer

Custom Application Development – New Opportunities for Businesses

What is Custom Software Development?

The IT industry offers the latest technologies including web/software applications to be utilized by various businesses. Most of the organizations today rely on the power of technology to smoothly conduct their daily activities. In addition to the cut-throat competition in the market, businesses face various challenges that can be overcome using custom software development services. It offers a great opportunity for any business to distinguish itself from competitors in the quality of services that it offers. A competitive edge will go a long way in pushing your annual profit margins. According to most economic experts, custom software development has become a necessity in the modern world of business.

Each and every business out there is unique in its own ways. There are no two businesses that are exactly the same in how they conduct their operations. The various unique requirements of a business are what makes it different and this is why they need custom software developer. However, as a business owner, you will require the assistance of an expert to be able to come up with a tailor-made software for your business. The good news is that there are numerous companies that have software developers and programmers ready to work with clients to meet certain objectives. The development team will first study the existing systems and identify the gaps that need to be closed. This way they will, later on, integrate a custom software into the client’s system. The focus on the software or web application being developed should always be on functionality and precision. This way it will be able to serve the purpose for which it was created and save valuable resources for the business.

What to Consider When Hiring Custom Application Development Experts

As a business owner, you need to ensure that you get the right person for custom software development. To do this, you have to investigate and do some background research on the potential candidates. This means that you have to go into their history, check their profiles and read testimonials from previous clients. It is also important that you verify their technical expertise which will be a direct indication of their capability to deliver as per your expectations. If you go through all that information and are confident enough, then you can proceed and finalize the deal with that specific company.

You should know that custom software development services will cost more than packaged software. This is because the latter is readily available in the market and is not designed to meet any specific client’s needs. However, outsourcing the application development will have a high ROI for your business. The service provider is the one who will deal with the installation and maintenance which will effectively reduce your running costs. In cases of breakdowns, you will still get prompt attention from your service provider. In the long run, you will have reduced your downtime and improved your productivity. You will be able to overcome challenges that your business faces and increase your revenues.

Features of Custom Software Development

There have been numerous developments undertaken in the application development sector over the past few years. There is more focus on developing applications that can offer robust salient features. These applications are user-friendly and allow ease in the execution of profitable business operations. The new technology, that keeps improving almost on a daily basis, has had an impact on the current level of business. Businesses rely more on tailor-made applications to ensure that they are able to compete with others in the market. The applications are being updated and integrated with the latest technologies as new concepts and tools are added. There has been an increase in the demand for custom software because of the competitive advantage it offers to businesses using them. As earlier mentioned, the history of the software development company that you hire will go a long way in giving you an idea of what to expect. You will be able to know exactly what you will get before committing to their services. There are several companies that offer custom software development to businesses in health, travel, e-commerce, portals, banking and many others. The choice of who to hire should be based on the reliance of these companies on up to date technologies and solutions. When you get the right software for your business, it will be of great market value that will enhance your scope of business.

As you search for the best companies in the market for custom software development, there are several factors that you should always put into consideration. You need to ensure that you get a company that has the right infrastructure. It should be equipped with the latest technologies that aid the entire process. In addition to that, the employees need to be well versed with custom application development. You should check whether they undergo continuous certification to keep them current with developing trends and shifting client demands. There should also be a high level of transparency when you are considering a company to hire a technology partner. This means that they should be able to inform you at every stage of the development life cycle. This way the application is most likely to meet all your demands at the end of the development phase.

The salient features of custom software application development are what will make your business run without any hiccups. To ensure that you always have the best on your side, you should have a pool of specialist programmers and developers who will offer their great services whenever you need them. Some of the most favored technologies include Microsoft, ASP.NET, PHP, Python, WordPress, Laravel and Django. These are extensively used when it comes to building custom applications because of the powerful and dynamic nature. The developed applications will ensure that you are able to meet your business goals and shift your focus to other areas that are core to the development of your business.

An In-Depth Look at WHMCS Billing Software

Reseller hosting and online businesses, in general, require a lot of work from the service provider, even when the main service is given. This is where WHMCS comes in. It provides solutions in terms of all you need to run your hosting business. It is a WHM (Web Host Manager) plugin that provides billing and general support mechanisms. It is a one stop shop client management system.

WHMCS can be used for many purposes namely, web hosting, ISP billing, software development, cloud hosting, web designing and domain registration.

It is a self-hosted platform that provides you with control over customer data and installation, which is easy to customize and merge into your website. It is able to perform its functions by setting up hosting packages, domain registration, server provisioning APIs, fraud protection services, billing and payment gateways.

Why WHMCS is popular

For one it offers a complete solution to billing. Tracking hours, invoicing customers for services and products and other expenses related to your business are easily handled by its software, giving you time to concentrate on your work, and worry less about everything else.

  • It can handle domain registration, so you will not have to find ways of doing it yourself, something that can be hectic.
  • Development of websites is made easier because it is integrated with web hosting control panels.
  • It gives you a seamless way for the creation of packages and setting up a cart for your website.
  • It is created with domain registrars which enable automatic provisioning and management.
  • It is able to manage your support requests, products, clients and invoices among others.
  • With its fraud protection services and other safety measures, it provides security to all its users.
  • By performing tasks which would otherwise be time-consuming if done by the person, it helps with time management.
  • It is associated with a client portal which is a support tool for its users.
  • With one centralized login, you are provided with an extensive list of services.
  • It is completely automated.

Installation requirements

WHMCS has different installation requirements for PHP and Database.

For PHP, you will need version 5.6.0, memory limit of 64M, PDO data extension and the following extensions: curl with SSL, image library, JSON support, XML, GD2 and MB string.

For database you will need to have the strict mode disabled, my SQL version 5.1.0 and the following ion cube loaders: 5.0.21 for PHP 5.6 and 6.0.2 for PHP 7.

Advantages of WHMCS

  • Can be used with every major payment gateway.
  • Makes statistical reports and tracks payments.
  • Has a wide range of languages for the control panel and email.
  • Provides different templates for customization of your control panel.
  • Deals with account creation and dissolution automatically.
  • Automated billing.
  • Provides client support.

 

When dealing with web hosting, work can be overbearing and time will almost never be adequate enough to handle the excess of your work. Hosting websites is not an easy job, even if it is yours alone, it requires time and dedication in order to grow in terms of traffic, which is the whole point of websites in the first place. A website is only as good as its uptime and traffic. So having divided attention, might hinder success in one field or the other. It would be impossible to succeed if a part of the whole service is compromised. So it is always possible to hire a WHMCS Expert to help you out.

Hosting websites on behalf of third parties needs a certain level of concentration which cannot be available with distractions. Again, selling hosting services, which is the main part of reseller hosting will mean that a lot of time needs to be dedicated to concentration on finances. With WHMCS all this will be made easier for online businesses. Its offers are great too. It has low entry commit with 5 license keys, it’s tiring pricing is 55% off of retail prices and you get API automation. Clearly, this is at the top of the game and partaking in reseller hosting will require you to have this. Clearly, web hosting is made easier with this management system, so you won’t have to look further for your needs.

5 Highly recommended billing tools for web-hosting today

Congratulations on your new online business venture!! I bet you are now looking for the best tools to use to ensure great quality as well as handle bill management for your clients. I know you have set up your goals and you are looking for the most hassle-free billing panel integration for your site. I have done just that and decided to take your mind away from a headache by finding 5 of the most efficient billing platforms to help manage your businesses online.

The following are both commercial and open source billing systems: –

  1. WHMCS
  2. HostBill app
  3. Ubersmith
  4. Blesta
  5. ClientExec

I bet you that these are the hot 2017 billing web hosting tools; below l will go ahead and show you what your return on investment will be.

WHMCS (Web Host Manager Complete Solution)

This is the most commonly used and most raved about platform credited to its flexibility, compatible application (3rd party mostly) integrations, and extendibility. WHMCS recently changed it’s all time pricing fee of 15.95$ ( No limitations ) to 18.95$ ( up to 250 clients ).

What can it do? 

It’s billing options to include credit card processing, handling any recurring bills, tax support, invoice generating capabilities. Again, it has over 10 language translations available, ability to print reports in different formats- extensive reports. Very well integrated with most of the common hosting technologies including cPanel, Virtualizor, SolusVM and a bunch of payment gateways such as PayPal, 2Checkout, Skrill and Authorize.net just to name a few.

My take:

WHMCS is the current market leader for hosts, domain registrars, and other similar industry business entities.

HostBill App

HostBill, when compared to the other billing platforms, is known for its great design to support large institutions and hosting business enterprises manage all matters billing. These include cloud service providers, hosting service providers among others. Hostbill is fairly cheaper on the long run since the license fees is a one time fee starting at 999$. With no limitations in regards to a number of users/orders.

What can it do?

HostBill is best known for its updating- the easiest there is. Its core role is to ensure that all the billing services are automated.

My take:

HostBill is a powerful billing system however, I personally feel it be superior in terms of WHMCS IF you plan to provide Cloud Services ( Cloud VPS etc ) or Sell Dedicated Servers. For the price tag, it isn’t worth just selling shared hosting services.

Ubersmith

Ubersmith is a well-known billing application great for online enterprises with the need for online support (ticketing) and infrastructure management. It can support 3rd party integrations, supports SSL providers, is a great support to merchant providers and can handle electronic payments. Ubersmith license starts at 200$ per month for 50 devices and clients. It is the costliest billing system in comparison to all the ones mentioned in this post.

What can it do?

It has some amazing features like the ability to manage all your hardware/infrastructure including your IP blocks as well as your routers present in the datacenter. Built in integration for KVM/ILO and MTRG graph generations.

My take:

I totally love Ubersmith for its seamless API and customizations features. Used by the most elite web hosting companies mainly because of its scalability, good performance and the ability the customize it inside out.

Blesta

Blesta is also a fairly popular Billing system for web hosting companies in mind. They start at 12.95$ Monthly or 250$ Owned One-time License Fee.

My take:

Blesta has no support for neither colocation services nor dedicated servers but the best thing is the developers are always listening (great!).It is a simple billing platform which can help you grow your hosting business. Integrates well with cPanel and has a bunch of popular payment gateways.

ClientExec

Clientexec is the most accommodating management platform for hosting providers. Comes with a clean UI and easy to use administrative end. Nothing new compared to Blesta. They start at 12.00$ Monthly or 499$ Owned One-time License Fee.

What can it do?

It has live-chat, and revenue growth features as well as the ability to integrate 3rd party applications. Its API enables third party applications to streamline everything smoothly for you especially handling plugins like ISP managers and web panels like cPanel.

My Take:

It is a personal choice, to be honest. Blesta and Clientexec are pretty much the same.

Feel free to choose from any of these 5 amazing and responsive billing platforms for your web hosting needs. If you plan to only sell shared hosting or VPS services I would highly suggest sticking with WHMCS. I have been working with WHMCS, HostBill, and Ubersmith for a couple of years now. Both as a developer and as a consumer for each product. Based on my experience WHMCS is the most user-friendly and easy to use billing system without losing major functionality. In the long run, however, I would choose Ubersmith mainly because of it isn’t just a simple billing system when compared to WHMCS or HostBill, Ubersmith is a mammoth for IT related infrastructure management and billing with an option to provide support as well. Web Hosting is just a small functionality that Ubersmith incorporates.

HostBill, on the other hand, is a more locked up solution. You need to spend forever feature it can provide. I never liked their pricing model, however, in the long run, it is certainly the cheapest of them all. HostBill has an extremely good user-friendly frontend can’t say the same for their administrative end.  So you have 3 options based on your requirements, affordability, and technical understanding.

You can always contact me for consultation related to your company. I have a combined experience of around 6 years in the Web Hosting market.

How to Hire the Best PHP Expert?

What is PHP?

You are probably most familiar with the language of HTML. It is the most commonly used web development coding system that describes how texts, scrolls, paragraphs, images and other objects displayed on a web page. It is not used for programming and is not a programming language. PHP, however, is a scripting language that can create web pages with information that has been written in HTML format. It is, in fact, a programming language and runs on web page’s server. PHP pages also process noticeably faster because they run smoothly in the background of your website. It is also effective for communicating with web databases.

Think of PHP almost as a blender. It can take an enormous amount of code written in HMTL and blend it together in order to make a simple output such as “Hello, My Name is PHP Script.”

Why Use PHP?

PHP and HTML work together in order to create a cohesive website. The benefit of using PHP in combination with HTML is that it can communicate with many different types of databases, which makes it user-friendly across the board. This helps when you are trying to connect your website to others for your business or personal use. It is lightning fast at retrieving information, which can help your website grow and improve. Using PHP development also helps reduce the cost of starting up your website because it is free and generally user-friendly. The benefit of bringing in an expert, however, is so that he or she can navigate through the language for you to yield the best results.

PHP is convenient for clients to receive, as well. The PHP Expert can take all of that information and condense it so that when the client receives it, all they see is the PHP information, rather than all of the HTML coding behind it. It has a wide range of benefits and can be understood and used by even the most beginning of programmers, but still, has the best and most modern tools to be used by the highest professionals in the field. The latter is the kind of person you will be looking for to help your business grow.

What Do You Need To Look For in a PHP Expert?

When you are thinking about hiring a PHP coder, there are a number of factors that need to be taken into consideration. Your PHP Developer needs to be well versed in custom software development, and have at least 3-5 years of experience building websites. You will also need to see some statistics of how their website development helped the businesses they were working for, for example, statistical increases, improved designed, high generated traffic flow etc…

Since most businesses use some sort of database to keep track of information such as clientele, merchandise inventory and so on, you will need someone who has a good deal of experience generating online database solutions for clients. They should be able to develop search bars, create forums, set up register and login in options for new and existing users, and be able to pull those database results for daily, weekly, monthly or annual analysis.

Your Expert should have a wealth of understanding concerning classes and objects. This will determine how the information you want on your website will show up on your page. If you have ever seen a poorly executed website, often images or graphics do not load correctly, banners are broken and the common user can even see bits of code from the front end rather than the back end. Your expert should be able to not only resolve these issues but be able to develop original software to eliminate the issues and enhance your current web content and coding.

As far as other programs are concerned, your developer should know how to use SQL databases and OPcache to make your website run faster. Mastery of at least one PHP framework such as Zend Framework, Laravel or Cake would also be a plus, as long as it is an MVC framework that uses the most up-to-date PHP.

Lastly, your freelancer needs to have some experience involving web security and risk. They should be able to find loopholes in your code that would make it easier for hackers or other dangerous viruses to enter your website. If such a terrible situation occurs, your website could be wiped, locked, or get taken over by an anonymous user who can do whatever they want with it. They should at least know what the most common vulnerabilities are in terms of web security and how to circumnavigate it.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are many benefits to not only using PHP in order to code your website but hiring a PHP freelancer to ensure that everything is running smoothly, securely and efficiently. There are many different places where you can post jobs to find the right candidate, but remember to be selective and ask for samples of their work. A person may look great on paper, but without the web content materials to back it up, it won’t help your business grow and succeed. You can always hire me for your development requirements 🙂 not to brag but I am an experienced developer myself.

7 Reasons You Need to Take Your Business Online Right Away!

Developing a business needs both your time and money, but sometimes even a well-funded business venture seems to struggle to hold its ground. True entrepreneurs keep up with the latest techs and tactics to ensure a flourishing venture for their undertaking; developing an active business website is one of such aiding tactics. Are you among those entrepreneurs who believe in doing a business the old-fashioned way? Do you struggle to contemplate the benefit of building a business website?

Here are some reasons, why you should seriously consider building a small business website for your company:

  1. It is 2017: in this internet savvy era, people prefer to make most of their important purchasing decisions online. Around 81% of potential customers carry out an online research before they actually decide to purchase something. Even though an item is sold in a store, customers tend to do a thorough research online to decide the worth of contemplated product. If you do not have a business website yet, you are limiting the horizon of your business and restricting its growth at the same time. Start with a small business website and reach out to the major portion of potential buyers today!
  2. A customer asks where to find you on the web: at this digital age, people expect that the company they are involved with must have a web presence. A website helps your potential associates and customers to look up your company address, its location and active hours to find out a more suitable time and way to reach out to you in person. A company that has its own verified websites tends to garner more confidence of the customers. Have your customers asked you, your company’s website address? Take a cue from it and start developing a website immediately!
  3. The current business marketing tactics are mostly web-oriented: the marketing world is buzzing with the merits of content marketing, social media marketing, and the SEOs. Although billboards and radio ads are also effective means of marketing but web marketing is gradually leaving them behind. If you want to stay ahead of your competitors, utilize the power of web tactics to flourish your business, but first, start a small business website.
  4. The younger generation is oblivious to the existence of your business: the motto of this generation seems to be, “if it’s not online, it’s not real”. The young generation spends too much time on the internet and since to ‘see is to believe’ stands true for most of us, it’s time for you to cater to the younger lot by making them aware of the existence through a website. Having a business website will not only increase your market existence but will also help you attract a new and young set of customers.
  5. Everyone likes to invest in a legitimate venture: most people consider a company to be legitimate only if it has a verified business website. Potential investors and customers tend to look up a company’s website, to establish facts about its credibility. The fact that you don’t have a business website will raise questions about your venture’s legitimacy and credibility.
  6. The evil of oblivion: visibility is extremely important to survive the brunt of competition. The longer you sustain the more visible you shall be. Since most of your competitors are battling it out on the digital platform, their visibility is more than yours. To avoid becoming obsolete in the eye of your old and new customers, start with a small business website today! Appoint a professional to aid and advise you on your website and learn a few ABC of the online marketing, for a new dawn of your business venture.
  7. It is cost effective: most small scale businessmen dismiss the idea of starting a business website because they believe that starting a business website is going to burn a hole in their pocket. It is completely a wrong notion; you will be surprised to find out the minimum amount that you have to spend to start a small business website. In fact, if you have a tight budget situation, you can even start a website for free! So stop procrastinating and go and start your own business website today!

5 Essential-cum-Amazing Tools for Entrepreneurs

5 Essential-cum-Amazing Tools for Entrepreneurs

In this age of Digital Entrepreneurship, young entrepreneurs juggle between, work, life and loads of responsibilities. With ease of internet usage, resources are becoming handy and easily available for newbies. There are so many great tools available in the market to help startups or small enterprises with their responsibilities and work and for a minimal cost in order to increase their business.

There are enormous challenges an entrepreneur faces from the day one of their work. Starting a new business can be tough as it involves management of many different tasks, fundraising and maintenance, managing employees, teams and also, being efficient in everything.

Here are some tools out there which are essential and powerful that can help you meet your deadlines and manage things productively. Also, the cost involved in each of them is minimal.

  1. Trello:

Trello is an amazing project management tool that helps you organize your tasks, projects and makes collaboration easy.This tool helps you visualize every single thing in a project and lets you customize, create and organize things in a fun way.

Trello basically has a visual board with lists which are also called cards. These cards are individual components on the board that can be created, dragged and dropped onto each other or placed horizontally or can be reordered with each single list according to your need.  Individual cards can also contain images, checklists, dates, colored labels, document attachments and notes to make things even richer. These cards can even be created simply by using email.

In Trello, you can create different projects to manage everything from work projects, to plan your week, plan a marriage or vacation ahead, organize day to day tasks and almost everything that needs planning and management. Trello boards are wonders if you are using Kanban or Agile project management methodology. Using this super versatile project management tool, you can even share plans with team.

You can get a wholesome picture and time to time update on everything using Trello.

  1. Google Docs:

Google Docs is a tool or can say a service from Google which is very powerful and offers almost every necessary abilities that a new startup or small business can use and afford. The important and best thing about Google Docs is if you have created an account in ‘gmail.com’ you are automatically eligible to use google docs with a good amount of storage. If you want to raise the storage, Google has different packages for that which are really pocket friendly.

Google Docs offers cloud storage where you can keep your documents, presentations or spreadsheets safe. Along with storage it also offers collaboration of storage and stored components. You can share them with anyone you want with assurance of safety for other documents which you don’t want to share.

Services like Word processing, Spreadsheets and presentations that can be created, uploaded, downloaded and shared makes this tool such an amazing opportunity for online Entrepreneurs. It even provides collaboration other tools of google like email, calendar, hangout and many more that helps you manage, work, organize, plan or collaborate at the same time. Smartest thing is you can use it on gadgets like laptop, mobile, tablet anytime  from any location if you have internet connection to keep a bird’s eye on everything all the time.

  1. Asana:

Asana is a project management tool that makes the management, planning, execution and collaboration of projects more effectively. It is free to use and simple, to begin with. This tool works for every department of the organization and helps make an interconnection with everything.

In Asana, you can create projects, tasks, conversations and dashboards that enables teams to flow smoothly from project start to finish. You can visualize the project progress at a glance with visual graphs and pointers. Conversations between teams and team members can be turned into actionable tasks. You can get every notification right in your inbox as per your preference.

Asana offers project management features like Tasks, Projects, Sections and Columns, Project Templates, Subtasks, Due Dates and Times, Attachments, Hearts, Task Conversations, Project Conversations, Team Pages, Inbox, Search and much more. If you want to use more features you may use Asana premium which also will not create a hole in your pocket.

  1. Dropbox:

Dropbox is a storage service that enables space on the cloud to keep your business documents safe. It is like having a folder on all your devices from where you can update, add or remove anytime. It provides a power of using web client as well as the desktop client to install in any computer.

You can just drag and drop files to the dropbox folder. It is like accessing another simple folder on your hard drive. The only difference is as soon as you add, edit or remove anything within the folder it just syncs your action online. This means all the updates can be accessible from every device. Dropbox can also be shared with team members.

  1. Slack:

Slack is a wonderful chat application for all your teams within an organization. You can create channels for group discussions, for different teams or projects or smaller groups etc.

To begin with Slack, you have to sign up on Slack’s website and you’ll become a Super Administrator user who has access to everything. Slack offers different hierarchies to manage users and access restrictions. Settings like Messaging Restrictions, Channel and Private Group Management etc enable you to manage all teams, channels and users effectively.

Using Slack, collaboration becomes easier within organization and conversations are recorded as well as clear which is a most important thing in business. Also, you get to know what is going on within teams or projects, get notified and become inspired by your peers.

Manually managing things can be costly, tough and wastage of time and money. Using these tools you can be in-charge of everything in your business and at the same time, you can focus on other things better without wasting your time and energy.

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