Eleven $6 Dollar Shirts

Well, I’m very excited today because my shirts finally arrived today. I purchased 11 shirts from 6 Dollar Shirts.com, and they finally arrived. With shipping, the total price came to less than $7 for each shirt!

They came in a surprisingly small box:

My 6 dollar shirts arrive

I laid them all out and took some pictures:

My 6 dollar shirts arrive
Click Here for larger picture.

I hope they last a very long time. I’ll post again later with an official review of how they last, but I’m sure they’re well worth the $7.

Here’s one pic of me sporting the “Old School” shirt:

Ashton Sanders wearing an Old School Nintendo shirt

Enjoy,
Ashton Sanders

Humor: “how many your webisite”

On my Free Website Quote page, I have a cool little AIM chat box that allows visitors to chat with my AOL Instant Messenger account.

Just a few minutes ago, I had the funniest conversation I’ve ever had over a chat program. Here’s the transcript:

aimguest56199364
hi

WebsitesinaFlash
Hi

aimguest56199364
sandy

WebsitesinaFlash
Hi Sandy

aimguest56199364
how many your webisite
to build your web site

WebsitesinaFlash
I’m sorry?
How much did it cost to build my website? (ie. WebsitesinaFlash.com?)

aimguest56199364
ADoes it cost for a web sites
yes

WebsitesinaFlash
I didn’t charge myself to build my website so I don’t know how much it cost.
Are you looking for a website?

aimguest56199364
how many

WebsitesinaFlash
How many what?

aimguest56199364
just
just one

WebsitesinaFlash
What kind of website are you looking for? Every website costs a different amount to make.

aimguest56199364
Ashton are you here
Jewely

WebsitesinaFlash
You want to sell Jewelry online?

aimguest56199364
yes

WebsitesinaFlash
So you’re looking for a fully e-commerce website with website design, development, shopping cart, security system, online merchant, etc.?

aimguest56199364
SandyIs there a phone number that I can called to

WebsitesinaFlash
What?

aimguest56199364 signed off

HAHAHA. I have no idea what just happened.
-Ashton Sanders

What CMS Fits Your Website Needs?

This is a question I’ve been asking for a few years.

Recently, I’ve heard a lot about WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal, but it’s practically impossible to find someone who knows all three and is unbiased enough to tell you the pros and cons of each.

Through Montana Programmers, I’ve been able to find a very unbiased Polson Website Developer who has been an excellent resource for asking all sorts of random questions. Although he knows more programming languages than I have fingers and toes, he hasn’t spent years of time testing out CMS’s. 😉

As you can tell, it’s pretty hard to find a unbiased website developer who knows a lot about many of the Content Management Systems, who could give me a good comparison of the Pro’s and Con’s of each. There are a few problems here:

Website Up Time Checker

I have a couple websites that I need to make sure is always up and running. And I’ve found that using Site Up Time.com is a great way to do it.

For absolutely free, Site Up Time will check your website every 30 minutes, and email you if it is down!

Sounds like a deal to me,
-Ashton Sanders

Let it Snow, Let it Snow

On a separate hobby of mine, I came across Tom’s Boring Mordheim Blog. Tom is a very skilled miniature painter and modeler. After joining his online community, I helped him to make his home page “Snow.”

Check out the link to the blog above to check out (EDIT: see what his header image usually looks like. Now that he has taken down the snowing animation, click here to see the same image Christmas Style. It used to be just a plain .JPG. I replaced it with a Flash Animation, and amazingly, it is a smaller file than the .JPG!

Enjoy,
Ashton Sanders

SEO – Where to Host Your Blog?

NOTE: This post is over 2 years old and is no longer totally correct.

I know that a blog can really help to increase your website content. A blog shows the Search Engines that there is actually someone behind this website, and they actually care about their website.

When I started this blog at the beginning of this year, I was trying to research whether it was better to have two medium-content heavy sites that link to each other, or one site with all of the content.

The Setup

My main Website Design Website is Websites in a Flash. This site has 20-30 pages of content, and got approximately 400 unique visitors a month. (This is primarily from Search Engines.)

I knew that this blog would have many pages of website-terms, so I decided to host it on my Ashton Sanders website as a subdomain. The purpose of this was to see if two medium sized sites linking to each other would create an increase in unique visitors for both my Main Website and my Blog.

Results

Obviously, my Blog had an increase in visitors (because it didn’t have any before). Surprisingly, it has totally surpassed my normal website, although I guess it shouldn’t be surprising.

My Websites in a Flash website increased to about 650 Unique visitors. It also finally got back to PR4, but I’m not satisfied with that product. So, I’ve moved my blog to my Websites in a Flash Site, 301 redirects and all. I will now be testing my statistics/results on this new server, and will give you another update after 4 or 5 more months.

My findings, so far, from this test lead me to believe that it is best to have your blog on the same domain as your main website, but a final verdict will come in early 2008.

Note: After this Search Engine Optimization test, the only thing I have to test for myself if whether a blog on your website is better as a subfolder or subdomain.

-Testing the Bounds of the Internet
-Ashton Sanders

How to Create XML Sitemaps

The purpose of XML sitemaps are to help tell the search engines about all of the pages on your website. It also helps to tell the search engines which pages you think are most important. (They won’t necessarily listen to you, but you can tell them.)

I recently found a great website that will create XML sitemaps for websites of up to 500 pages! And the best part is, it’s absolutely Free! You can by the program they made as well if your site has more pages, etc.

Check it out:

XML Sitemaps

Ashton Sanders

Ashton Sanders – Interview

This is more of a Question and Answer with me, Ashton Sanders. Enjoy.

Q: What caused you to end up working on the Internet?

Ashton Sanders: Computers have always been my forte, and I greatly enjoy working and creating on the Internet. There is no other industry like it, and it will be one that I know I will always be learning new things about. There is no ceiling to how much I can learn and do.

Q: Why did you buy www.AshtonSanders.com?

Ashton Sanders: Ha! I bought www.AshtonSanders.com because I thought it would be a lot of fun to have and create with. I am the only Ashton Sanders who works on the Internet, (from what I could tell from the Google search) and I knew I would never forgive myself if some other Ashton Sanders bought it… or even worse, someone bought it just to spite me.

Q: What do you feel is your greatest strength in regards to Website Design and Development on the Internet?

Ashton Sanders: There are many aspects of the Internet that I am very proficient at: Website Design, PHP programming, ActionScript, Flash Animation, CSS, HTML, XHTML, etc. If I must choose one part of the Internet that I am the most proficient at, I would have to say it is Search Engine Optimization (SEO). For the last couple years, I have been under the tutelage of Jere Matlock of www.WordsinaRow.com. He is the greatest SEO resource anyone could ask for, and the things that he has accomplished with his client’s websites is truly amazing. With his help, I have begun to create some equally amazing products in the field of Search Engine Optimization. I look forward to all the SEO accomplishments that I will achieve in the near future.

Q: What is your favorite aspect of Website Design and Development?

Ashton Sanders: I love it all! I love taking a blank page, and creating a place that is pleasing to look at, and entertaining to use. I love using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) to simplify a website’s infrastructure and HTML Coding. I love the accomplishment of programming an elaborate PHP website that does all sorts of fun things. I love putting together an extensive Flash Movie that is entertaining, but most of all I love having fun, and giving my visitors something they can enjoy.

Q: Do you have any company policies that are different from other Website Design Companies?

Ashton Sanders: Yes, definitely! First and foremost, I always answer my cell phone. I am probably the easiest-to-reach web master on the planet. Even if I am behind on a project (not likely), I am not afraid to tell my client. I will never avoid a client for any reason. That brings up another company policy: “If you ever do anything, do it ‘In a Flash!'”

Q: Any Closing Thoughts?

Ashton Sanders: The mind can never be full. No matter how much you learn, there will always be space for more. It my personal policy to never stop learning. It doesn’t matter if I’ve never heard about the subject before, I know what everyone has to start somewhere. Why not here and now? I love expand my information on any subject!

-“Never Stop Learning… Ever!”
-Ashton Sanders”

Google Webmaster Tools

Yet another reason why Google is awesome: Webmaster Tools

Webmaster tools is the greatest tool for anyone wanting to get their sites up in the search engines. Search Engine Optimizers who don’t know about this tool, aren’t really search engine optimizers.

You prove to them that you own your website in one of two ways: 1) uploading an .html document to the server with a certain name like Google2903ncvd90nk30.html or 2) add a meta tag to your home page with a similar random name. After that, Google will get you all the information that they have about your site!

The program will tell you all of the crawl errors that the Google bot has while crawling your site! So if your site has gone through a couple redesigns or upgrades, I guarantee there are pages that used to exist that Google can’t find. And everyone of those pages create a 404 error for the Google bot – which, by the way, is not good. But you’ll never know unless you get this tool and find out!

Its got endless tools like that. It has a robot.txt analysis page that will tell you if you have any problems with your robot.txt.

It will tell you how your pages are ranked by Google. It will tell you like 50% of your pages have medium page rank and the other 50% has low page rank. It will also tell you how many links you have directed to your website, and where they are coming from.

Google Webtools also has a place for you to submit your website’s site maps! (Get gsite crawler to create your sitemaps… It makes it as easy as pie.)

And I barely scratched the surface on all of the different tools available to you through webmaster tools.

Check it out
-Ashton Sanders

Web Hosting for Websites

This is always an interesting topic because there are at least a million web hosts out there. If you do a search on Google for “web hosting,” it brings up 208,000,000 sites. (Granted, not all of those sites do web hosting, but that is still a lot of sites.) In this mess of web hosting sites, it’s actually very easy to end up with an expensive provider who provides less than others. Here are some web hosting providers that I’ve had a lot of success with:

GoDaddy: These guys have a very comprehensive website, and they are always updating it. Their website makes it very easy to do just about anything to your site. You won’t have to call tech support ever, as long as you know how to use a FAQ. Everything is there, and if you do have to call tech support, they will quickly handle your problem. They are also very cheap: Web hosting $4/month and domains $10/year. I have used Godaddy for a very long time, and have not had any major problem with them.

1and1.com: I was just introduced to this company, and they seem to have the sweetest deal on the internet. Their web hosting program allows you to host many (25 for the beginner) websites on the same hosting account. Which is amazing if you are a web designer and you have a lot of websites. To top it off that beginner account is only $3/month!! Domains are also the cheapest I’ve seen at $6/year.

It really seems too good to be true. And if it is, I’ll update this post very soon.

-Until then,
-Ashton Sanders

Click for an Updated Service Review on 1and1.com