Tag Archives: Amazon

Network Monitoring for Serious eCommerce

In the real world, businesses come in every size, from self-employed entrepreneurs like me to mega malls like Wal-Mart.

On the Internet, companies come in every size, too, from a stand-alone ebook sales page with webmaster and owner all in one, to 300 pound gorilla like Amazon, with over a million pages requiring the entire population of a small country to serve as webmaster.

If your site is a single page, it is its own network. But if your site is any bigger, and you have plans to grow, it is a network or is fast becoming one. You need network monitoring.

Most ecommerce webmasters are at least somewhat familiar with website monitoring. Many use a website monitoring service or software to keep track of “uptime” and “downtime”.

At your local shopping mall, serious business requires more than just knowing when the front doors are open and when they are closed. Serious ecommerce needs to know more than just when the site is accessible. That is what network monitoring is all about.

Chances are, your e-business owns one of the following, or uses one of the following remotely:

DNS servers: These are used to translate your site name, like www.mycompany.com, to the numbers called “IP addresses” that computers understand. If DNS servers are not working properly, end-users will not be able to find your site and will get an error. Usually only an external or remote monitoring service will detect such a problem.

An FTP server: File Transfer Protocol servers are used to help you
exchange files with remote users. If you use FTP, a monitoring
service can make sure it is always up and running.

POP3 and SMTP servers: These are used for exchanging emails. If you are using email, chances are you are using SMTP and POP3. If your SMTP server is down, everyone who sends you email will receive an error, stating that your mail
server is down and cannot accept incoming email. To say that the impression this leaves your customers is bad would be an understatement. If your POP3 server is down, you will be unable to retrieve email from your mailbox. Once again, only external monitoring will prevent such a problem.

Firewalls: Many businesses use firewalls to protect their internal network from un-authorized traffic, such as spyware, viruses and sabotage by competitors. Furthermore, a firewall is your first line of defense. If your firewall goes down, your whole network may actually become inaccessible from outside. In other words, if you host your own web site and mail servers, those will become
inaccessible to the outside world if your firewall goes down. Once again, remote network monitoring is required to detect that a problem exists and quickly get it repaired.

Internet connections: Users come to your network from multiple backbones, depending on the company they use to connect to the Internet and their location. It is important to ensure that your connection performs well for each user. A remote monitoring service can ping your networks from multiple locations around the world, thus testing most major routes to your web server or network. Before hiring a network monitoring service, check to see that they have both your customer geography and the Internet backbone layout covered.

Very few websites of any size and functionality are anything less than a complete network, and many networks rely on servers in different parts of the world.

A good network monitoring service can ensure, as a base, that all servers are properly functioning, that data can be sent to and received from each server, and that each function sharing the server responds as required. An advanced network monitoring service can even remotely monitor the temperature of your servers.

What you need to monitor depends on how extensive your network is. A network monitoring expert can help you determine what needs monitoring. If you own the servers, or are remotely hosted on dedicated servers, you most likely need everything monitored. If your site is hosted on shared servers, you might need fewer functions monitored.

Use Your Hobby To Launch A Successful Website

When you study the really successful websites, you will quickly notice that many are based on seemingly strange subjects, many of which may not easily pass for a serious business.

This clearly underlines the fact that when it comes to online enterprises and ecommerce, the possibilities are endless and you can actually succeed at virtually anything. There seems to be just one condition. You need to be passionate about whatever it is your website is about.

Jeff Bezos had a passion for books and that is one of the reasons why he borrowed money from his parents and launched Amazon.com. The rest is history and today Amazon earns Bezos and his associates millions of dollars.

This is precisely the reason why the first place you should look for an idea for your online enterprise and website, is your hobby. What are you passionate about? Or what do you really care about?

Establishing a successful online venture is hard work and it helps a lot if the subject matter that you are dealing with is close to your heart. It helps transform your chores from work to having fun. The facts are that people usually become wildly successful doing things that they enjoy doing. The more fun you have at your business, the higher the chances of success.

Having selected the hobby you want to turn into a business, It will help tremendously if you carefully analyze the potential online demand for the various businesses related to your hobby. This is easily done by studying popular keywords statistics and is a very important thing to do before launching any online business or website.

For example your hobby could be golf. By studying keywords, you may find that Golf stretch exercises are a very popular subject. This would be a pointer that the right business to start would be something to do with golf exercises. You can, for example, sell golf exercise equipment at your website.

This is the way to cash in on your hobby or passion and birth a hugely successful website or online enterprise.

Make Money Blogging

You have created a blog and your blog is dedicated to a niche industry. Have you ever thought that the blog could make money for you? We would look here in this article, ways and means, to make money blogging. Lets first have a look at what are the prerequisites for a blog needed to make money:

1. Blog needs to be dedicated to a niche market.
2. Updated regularly.
3. Enough back links (Don’t worry for it. Directory submission would be enough to begin with)
4. Good blog host or application (blogger, Xanga or typepad recommended), and
5. High quality articles or news items supported with images.

Get the above criteria in place and Hurrah… You are ready to Make Money Blogging.

Top 5 Ways to Make Money Blogging

Lets now take a look at top 5 ways using which you could make money blogging:

1. Google Adsense

Google Adsense delivers text and image ads to the authorized websites/blogs depending on the content of the website. Small code is required to be pasted at proper locations on a web page and Google automatically recognizes the page. Google shares the revenue it gets from the advertisers whenever a visitor clicks on these ads.

Google bills advertisers on price per click basis (PPC). Advertisers are required to pay only when any visitor clicks on their ads. They bid against each other for the keywords in order to receive better placement and thus prices for each keyword differ from one another. It is better to choose keywords for your blog which pays high $ per click.

2. Amazon
Amazon Associate program is another important way to make money blogging. The Amazon Associate program gives opportunity to website/blog publishers to promote any product from its inventory by adding a predefined code to their website/blog, which, when clicked by a visitor, takes them to the relevant product page. Once the visitor buys the product, the blog owner will be compensated with a commission.

3. Blogads
You can use Blogads as an effective tool to have a better control over the advertisers in your blogs. You can analyze and compare your profits with any one of your online agencies. Blogads can be simply specified as an advertising service used for the web logs or blogs. From the total money generated by Blogads, it retains 20% of it and the remaining money is paid to you through PayPal or checks.

Alternative Services:

• Crispads is another useful network focused on the blogs. You can put your advertisements in their blogs using Crispads. You can move through their RSS/ATOM feeds that help in generating revenues.

Users can place their text-based ads in the site within minutes and the ads will be displayed instantly on the website.

4. Affiliate Programs
Your affiliate programs can help you earn a lot of money for selected products and services. Lot of websites offers you to become affiliate members. These affiliate programs can provide a better reach and an in-depth exposure to the products. The commissions for the sales differ according to the quality of the product, sales and marketing strategy involved. You can gather information related to the commissions by looking into the catalogues of Link Share and Commission junctions.

5. Text Links
Text links has emerged out to be the best form of moneymaking source that you can use instead of cluttering or crowding the page with ads. You don’t have to make these text links prominent within your website. This link can act as an extra value to your site and will also help to promote the rankings of other sites. In most of the cases you will find these text links placed in the bottom of the web pages. The best part of this strategy is that the publishers send and accept links as the market continues to grow.

Amazon announces Kindle DX ship date: June 10th

Amazon has just made a whole lot of Kindle DX owners-to-be very happy campers. Back when the super-sized e-book/e-magazine/e-newspaper/e-text book reader was announced, “Summer” was as close as we got to a release date. Pre-orders were open of course so that anxious e-bookers could reserve their spot in line, but Summer can be a pretty long season — you know, global warming and all. Amazon has just made the Kindle DX ship date official however, June 10th to be exact, so the mystery is over. Those of you who were quick to throw down $489 on a pre-order will likely receive your DX shortly after the 10th and orders are first come, first served. Translation: if you haven’t gotten your order in at this point, expect Hartsfield-Jackson style delays.


Amazon Kindle 2 gets some ColorWare love

Ok ColorWare fans, it’s time to get your e-book on. Forget about the massive Kindle DX for the time being, as ColorWare has just added the increasingly popular Kindle 2 to its roster of kit begging for some high-quality color-customization. There are a total of 11 separate areas on the Kindle 2 ready for various combinations of ColorWare’s 35 different color choices. We opted to stick with our favorite colors as you can see above, but feel free to get as crazy as you like. Considering how popular the Kindle line has become, this is definitely the best way to separate yourself from the pack while you fight through Oprah’s next recommendation at the beach this Summer. As always, you have the option of sending in your current Kindle 2 (starting at $199) or purchasing one new (starting at $599).


Amazon Kindle DX gets official

Amazon has definitely had some issues keeping the wraps on its readers and it looks like the Kindle DX fell victim to the trend. Of course these most recent leaks weren’t quite as bad as the Kindle 2 we scooped over four months ahead of its official launch, but never the less we basically knew all there was to know about Amazon’s super-sized e-book reader ahead of today’s announcement. Well actually, there were a few surprises tucked away in Amazon’s pocket — namely automatic screen rotation which is certainly a welcome addition. The rest, such as its specs, annotation capabilities, device size and its new education-centric features were already pretty well covered. Pre-ordering is now live and the DX ships this Summer — Price of admission: $489.


Details on the soon-to-be announced Amazon Kindle DX surface

When it rains, it pours and information is pouring out about the rumored “super-sized” Amazon Kindle. The upcoming Kindle, now known as the Kindle DX, will pack a full-featured 9.7-inch electronic ink display, 5-way navigation button and a QWERTY keyboard into its large white housing. It basically looks like the designers took a Kindle 2 and stretched its screen from 6 inches to 9.7 inches, and then squished the keyboard in the process. The new Kindle DX will reportedly feature an improved web browser, the ability to add annotations in addition to notes and highlights and a long awaited native PDF reader. In addition to newspaper and periodicals, the Kindle DX is designed to support textbooks and, according to the Wall Street Journal, a special edition packed with pre-installed textbooks for chemistry, computer science and a freshman seminar is being released as part of a college trial. Lev Gonick, chief information officer for Case Western Reserve University, claims that a lucky bunch of select college students at Case Western Reserve, as well as Pace, Princeton, Reed, Arizona State, and the Darden School at the University of Virginia are signed up to test out this new device starting in the Fall semester. Sweet! Hit the jump for a few blurry images of the Kindle DX seemingly snagged from a slide show presentation.

Read (Kindle Dx)
Read (College Trial)

Amazon press event on Wednesday, big Kindle announcement imminent

Amazon will be hosting yet another press event, this one slated for Wednesday May 6th at 10:30AM ET. In the recent past of course, Amazon press events mean one thing — a Kindle announcement. Ironically, this latest event will be held at Pace University, the historical location of the the New York Times 19th century headquarters and the same company rumored to be working with Amazon on a “big-screen” Kindle designed for newspapers and magazines. We place this rumor in the “highly likely to happen” category and look forward to unveiling Amazon’s latest Kindle offering.


COWON S9 32GB now available from Amazon

We were filled with envy when COWON announced that its higher capacity S9 would grace South Korea’s gadget freaks, but it looks like it’s finally going to be our turn. Better yet, the bump to 32GB only sets you back $299 compared to $239 for the 16GB version. There is really no complaining with this one because we were practically gleaming with our review unit. Audio quality from the S9 is tops and the AMOLED screen just pops. As you can see, the COWON S9 is being shipped and sold from JetAudio, Inc. and while the actual JetAudio site shows 16GB as the largest capacity S9 you can get, we’re not going to argue with what’s shown on sale through Amazon. Grab one while you can because these units are just so PMP.


Amazon Kindle 2 costs about $185.49 to build, $359 to own

iSuppli is the authority when it comes to manufacturing cost estimates and the firms latest victim is Amazon. According to a new report following iSuppli’s teardown and analysis, the Kindle 2 costs about $185.49 to build. In other words, Amazon’s margin seemingly approaches a sky-high 50%. Of course iSuppli’s numbers do not include expenses such as distribution, marketing and whatever Amazon pays Sprint for unlimited access to its data network, but it’s no wonder Amazon is doing everything it can to lead incite an e-book revolution. Should owners feel shafted? We think not — any Kindle 2 owner will tell you that WhisperNet is a pure joy. Just tell yourself Amazon’s seemingly huge profit margin is your WhisperNet subscription fee. If you own your Kindle 2 for 18 months before upgrading, WhisperNet comes in under $10 per month. $10 beats any unlimited data plan we’ve ever heard of, that’s for sure. Hit the jump for iSuppli’s press release.

El Segundo, Calif., April. 22, 2009-Amazon.com Inc.’s new Kindle 2 eBook carries $185.49 in materials and manufacturing costs, according to a dissection conducted by iSuppli Corp.’s Teardown Analysis Service.

The direct material cost of the Kindle 2, consisting of all parts used to make the product, amounts to $176.83. When adding in the conversion costs-i.e., manufacturing expenses and the battery-the total rises by $8.66 to $185.49.

The total materials and manufacturing costs reported in iSuppli’s teardown analysis of the Kindle 2 reflect only the costs for direct materials, manufacturing and basic tests. Not included in this analysis are costs above and beyond the material manufacturing of the core device itself-i.e., the cost of intellectual property, royalties and licensing fees; those not already included into the per component price-software, software loading and test, shipping, logistics marketing; and other channel costs. These costs are not included because teardowns cannot reveal this type of information.

The combined manufacturing and materials costs represent 51 percent of the Kindle 2’s $359 retail price.

The attached table presents a summary of the major cost drivers for the Kindle 2.

Black ink for E Ink
iSuppli estimates that $60, or 41.5 percent of the materials cost of the Kindle 2, is accounted for by the E Ink Corp. display module, which represents the centerpiece of the product.

“The showcase feature of the Kindle is its E-Ink display, which not only is easy on the eyes, but also employs electrophoretic bistable technology that allows it to show an image even when it’s not drawing power,” said Andrew Rassweiler, director and principal analyst, teardown services, for iSuppli.

“The new version of the E Ink display in the Kindle 2 supports 16-level grayscale images, rather than the 4-level version used in the previous-generation hardware. This makes the Kindle 2’s display look like a printed page.”

Rassweiler noted that the bistable display for the Kindle 2 obtained by iSuppli continues to display the warning message “Critical Battery” even after the product was completely dissembled for the teardown. With no power or electronic control to refresh the image, the display will be frozen in this state forever.

Kindle 2 takes turnkey wireless approach
After the display, the next largest cost driver in the Kindle 2 is the wireless broadband module, provided by Novatel Wireless Inc. Priced at $39.50, the module accounts for 27.3 percent of the materials cost of the Kindle 2. The module supports the CDMA2000 1X EV-DO Rev A air standard.

In the first-generation Kindle, the wireless functionality was provided by an integrated chipset that was an integral part of the main printed circuit board. In the second-generation Kindle, the wireless functionality has been divorced from the core design and instead uses Novatel’s turnkey module.

The use of a standard module like this makes the Kindle 2 easier to design. Furthermore, since Novatel manufactures many different wireless modules, it buys components in high volume, which represents leverage it can use to negotiate prices down with suppliers such as Qualcomm Inc., whose device represents the integrated circuit core of the wireless module.

Qualcomm Inc.’s MSM6801A single-chip baseband processor is priced at $13.18, iSuppli estimates.
The wireless connection runs behind the scenes, providing an always-on invisible link to Amazon’s library of electronic book content.

Another key element of the Kindle is Freescale Semiconductor Inc.’s MCIMX31LVKN5C multimedia application processor, priced at $8.64. The Freescale processor is based on an ARM11 microcontroller core, which runs at a clock speed of 532MHz. Freescale also contributed its MC13783VK5 audio circuit and power-management IC.