Cool Uses of .ME: Tungle.me

We love to see uses of .ME in the wild, and in the past we’ve mentioned a few sites we like that are using the increasingly popular .ME extension (flavors.me, boulder.me, formspring.me). Recently we’ve come across another service that’s embracing .ME: Tungle.me. The tagline of Tungle is “scheduling made easy” and it really does just that. When you sign up, you create a profile, add your availability and “voila!” people can easily schedule calls or meetings with you.

I’ve only just started using it and I already really dig the service. Of course I’m all for anything that helps simplify certain annoyances, like long email strings where you try to schedule a meeting and you both have an insanely busy schedules.

Speaking of .ME, if you’re looking to register one for yourself we’re running a pretty sweet special at the moment — you can register a .ME for the super low price of $7.99! You can also transfer your .ME to Name.com for just $15.99, which also renews your registration for another year. No promo code is needed to receive either of these awesome rates.

Have you seen any other cool services using the .ME extension? If so, let us know in the comments and we’ll check them out!

Name Tip: Better SEO with WordPress Permalinks

We’ve seen quite a few blogs recently that are running WordPress and using the default setting for permalinks. It’s unfortunate that this is the default, because it really does nothing for you in the way of SEO. However, there’s a quick fix for this that should help your blog posts get a little more notice.

If you log in to your WordPress blog and scroll down, you will see a “Settings” section on the left hand side. Clicking the arrow will drop down a menu and one of the options will be “Permalinks.” Clicking that will take you to the Permalinks page where you will see the different options you can choose.

The default looks something like http://blog.name.com/?p=167 and that doesn’t really tell readers or search engines anything about your post.

This can be easily changed on the Permalinks page by selecting either the Day or Month options, or even adding your own custom structure using the syntax that WordPress provides. You probably want to stay away from the Numeric option, as that won’t do much for your SEO either.

After saving your changes, your blog URL will look like http://blog.name.com/2010/06/name-tip-better-seo-with-wordpress-permalinks/, which is not only better for SEO, but now your readers have information like subject and date just by looking at your URL.

We hope that helps some of you out there that may not have even known this setting existed. Cheers and happy blogging!

Name.com Now Offering Investor Pricing!

We’re excited to announce that we are launching a new investor pricing program that starts on July 1, 2010! This is something many of you have been asking for and we are very happy to be able to offer it to our loyal customers. The details of the program are as follows:

  • You only need a minimum of 25 domains in your account to qualify as a domain investor.
  • There is no monthly or yearly charge to receive this investor pricing, it is based solely on the number of domains you have with Name.com.
  • Higher levels of the program will include free private whois on the entire account.
  • Official pricing will be revealed on July 1, 2010.

This launch of our investor program also coincides with our new retail pricing for .COM and .NET domains. As you may have heard by now, VeriSign is raising prices across the board for all registrars, and unfortunately this cost is passed on to our customers as well. However, we are still extremely competitive with our new pricing.

Starting on July 1, 2010 our new price for .COM and .NET registrations will be $9.99, one of the lowest retail prices available after the VeriSign price increase. In addition to keeping our prices as low as possible, we will continue to offer great promotional deals on registrations and renewals. Your best bet to catch these deals is to keep an eye on this blog or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Our current promotions include:

  • SIZZLING – $7.99 .COM & .NET registrations
  • SAVENOW – $8.15 .COM & .NET renewals
  • SHOWTIME – $29.99 .TV renewals
  • $6.99 transfers to Name.com (no code needed)
  • $10.99 one year .TV registrations, $9.99 multi-year registrations (no code needed)

We continue to provide the best prices, tools, and services to our customers and, as always, we thank you for choosing Name.com! If you have any questions about the investor program or the new pricing, please do not hesitate to email us.

Twitter joins the .CO party!

Twitter is now the latest company to join the .CO Founders Program with T.CO — its official URL shortener. This is great news for our friends at .CO and also good news for Twitter users, as Twitter has revealed its plans to use T.CO to protect users from harmful activity like malware and phishing attacks.

How it works

Basically any link that is sent in a Direct Message will be passed through Twitter’s link service and converted to a T.CO link in your SMS or email notification.

If the link is matched with a potentially dangerous site, you will get a warning when you click on it. Twitter says they are also testing this link for their tweets and that ultimately every link on Twitter will be wrapped.

What does this mean for other URL shorteners?

If you are bit.ly fans like us, you can still use it or your URL shortening service of choice. Tracking will also continue to work on those links. Twitter notes that the “link service at http://t.co is only used on links posted on Twitter and is not available as a general shortening service.”

So really Twitter users won’t notice much of a difference, other than a few more T.CO links flying around. But kudos to the awesome team at .CO for striking this deal, with new extensions the more exposure the better and they’ve been doing a great job so far!

Join the .CO party!

You can pre-order your very own .CO domain with Name.com for $28 general availability and $278 landrush. The landrush starts June 21 and the public launch is July 20, so you still have some time to try and secure your name before the launch.

UnseenDenver

This is a first in a series of posts where we’re going to highlight members of our community and the cool things they are doing. To kick things off we chose a site from one of our local customers, Rick Ramos, who has been registering his names solely with Name.com for five years. Rick has described UnseenDenver as a labor of love, and if you look at the about page on his site you’ll see that the first thing it’s described as is a “romance” — a romance between the great city of Denver and the people that live here.

UnseenDenver is not about posting grand pictures of the skyline, but more about the little details. The details that any number of us walk by without noticing, or the things that make some of us stop and say “huh” and then keep on walking without a second thought. In the age of the camera phone, it’s incredibly easy to snap a photo of these little hidden-in-plain-sight gems and share them with other people in your community. Rick has given us Denverites a great place to do just that.

Wherever you may live, the next time you’re out walking around, stop and glance at your surroundings..you never know what you might find.

.TEL IDNs Launching June 15, Preorder Now with Name.com!

Starting on 2010-06-15 14:00 UTC, companies and individuals will be able to register IDNs in the TEL domain extension. Registrations will be on a first come first served basis and they will be available in the following languages: Chinese, Danish, Finnish, German, Hungarian, Icelandic, Japanese, Korean, Latvian, Lithuanian, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish and Swedish. Of course if you want to be a step ahead and make sure you get the name that you want, you can preorder your .TEL IDN with Name.com between now and the June 15 launch!

The launch of these new IDNs gives you an opportunity to secure your digital business card in your native language and for businesses this means an improved user experience for your customers and the opportunity to expand and maintain your brand in foreign markets.

It’s projected that by 2015 there will be 2.5 billion smartphone sales and in a world that’s going mobile, .TEL is thinking ahead. With this extension you can penetrate markets where people are primarily accessing the internet from smartphones and markets where English and ASCII are not primarily used. You can also fully manage your .TEL from your smartphone, making it easy and convenient to make changes on the fly.

Speaking of easy and convenient, remember that with .TEL no hosting costs are required. You just purchase the domain and you’re good to go! Setup can also be done in minutes, so if you’re looking for something low cost and low maintenance, then .TEL might just be the right solution for you.

Your TV is Next in Google’s Quest for World Domination

This fall Google hopes to solve the disjointed relationship between the web and TV with Google TV. Using both Android and Chrome, Google TV is basically a search engine for your TV — integrating with your cable box and indexing however many hundreds of channels you have with whatever is available on the web. It lets you watch what you want when you want.

While this will no doubt have an impact on TV, some are also wondering what this means in the world of domains. For .TV it’s probably not too bad a thing. The idea of a one stop shop for your video content is essentially what the .TV extension is made for, and Google is taking the concept mainstream. This can only help drive awareness for the already popular extension and we think you’ll start to see it crop up in a lot more places.

As big believers in .TV we hope that with the best prices and best support you’ll think of Name.com when you go to register your .TV, and our new pricing should definitely help in that regard! Starting today we are now offering one year .TV registrations for the low price of $10.99! But wait..it gets better. If you register a .TV for two or more years, you get it for the super low price of just $9.99/year. Still want more? For the month of June you can use the code SHOWTIME for $29.99 .TV renewals!

This brings the pricing for .TV registrations within a couple bucks of .COM and breaks down the $10, $20, and even (at some registrars) $30 price difference that may have prevented you from jumping on the .TV bandwagon. With that barrier gone, now’s your chance to join the fun!

goMobi Go!

If you’re one of the half a billion people accessing the internet on a mobile device, then you’ve probably had the frustrating experience of a website that either doesn’t work or is just plain hard to use. This can be especially trying when all you want to do is view the menu of a restaurant nearby and see if it will satisfy your grumpy hunger goblin of a spouse. Well goMobi is here to help.

goMobi is the latest innovation from the folks at dotMobi, an extension that’s made for mobile websites. Using goMobi, it’s a cinch to get your website converted to a mobile friendly version that makes all of your important details visible and easy to navigate. It offers a basic setup for the everyday person and there’s even advanced features for designers and developers. The best part is Name.com is the only registrar currently offering this easy to manage service and you can try it out for 30 days with no obligations or feature limitations. If after 30 days, you find that goMobi is the right fit for your business, it will only cost you $5.99/month.

What about all the different mobile devices with different sized browser windows? Not to worry. dotMobi has this nifty technology called DeviceAtlas that automatically detects the different devices and optimizes your website for viewing on that device. So whether your customer is viewing your website on an iPhone or an older Nokia, they’ll be getting the optimal experience for their phone.

Now is your chance to turn your frustrated mobile viewers into loyal customers!

This Week is National Small Business Week!

For all the entrepreneurs out there, National Small Business Week is upon us! A tradition that has been around since the ’60s, National Small Business Week is an event that honors the 27 million small businesses in the United States and some of the top entrepreneurs in the country. This year it falls on the week of May 23-29, and while the main event is held in Washington D.C., there are a number of other cities that celebrate this week with their own events, Denver being one of those cities.

The Denver Metro Small Business Development Center has posted a schedule (pdf) of the events they have lined up next week. There are some interesting sessions ranging from the effects of healthcare reform on your business to the future of technology and marketing. We’re looking forward to meeting and networking with some of our fellow Denver businesses!

Now it’s no secret that we love small business at Name.com, so in honor of Small Business Week we’ve decided to put together some discounts for our small business customers. Until May 30th, if you purchase a hosting plan, and/or any SSL certificates and use the promo code SMALLBIZWEEK, you will get 25% off off either of those items!

Cheers and happy Small Business Week!

YOURSTORY.TV – How to start your own video blog

So you’re thinking about starting a video blog, huh? Well these days it’s incredibly easy to start posting videos. Where before you needed a camera and editing software before you could even get started, now you can upload video directly from your phone or livestream right from your computer. Since the technical barrier is almost non-existent, where do you begin? An idea is always a great place.

Pick a topic you’re passionate about

What are your hobbies and interests? Maybe you think beer is the greatest thing man ever invented. Or maybe you’re an expert on the benefits of sustainable cooking. Whatever the topic may be, pick something you know and something that you enjoy talking (and learning) about. The more interested you are, the more that will reflect on to your viewers.

Choose your method

How will you record your video? Right now there are a number of inexpensive options available, with Flip Cameras starting at $150 and a number of HD camcorders coming in at $500 or below. But if you have a smartphone that does video or a laptop with a webcam, you can skip the extra purchase and just jump right in. It really doesn’t matter what type of camera you use, so don’t let your budget (or lack thereof) discourage you, the quality of your content and consistency are far more important than video quality.

Upload your videos

Speaking of content, where are you going to post these awesome videos you’re making? Well, before you can post a video to your blog you’ll have to figure out where you’re going to upload them. The three sites we use are Youtube, Vimeo, and Viddler. Youtube is kind of the obvious and most popular choice, but Vimeo and Viddler are pretty darn cool as well. If you want to take the time to upload to all three, that gives more eyeballs a chance of finding your videos. Once you have your video uploaded, you can go ahead and post it to your blog.

Choose your blog platform

The three free blog platforms that we tend to lean towards are WordPress, Posterous, and Tumblr — and really it just comes down to your needs and preferences.

Posterous is the easiest of the three, allowing you to post your video via email by simply pasting the link to the video in the body of your email. All of the embedding is handled by Posterous and they support just about every major video site out there in this regard.

Tumblr is another great microblog option that gives you more freedom with the design of your blog, but requires a little bit more effort when posting your videos. Instead of emailing, you will actually have to log in to your blog and embed the video yourself when you post. They’ve also recently announced a video upload option, which allows you 100MB of video per day and you can skip the whole Youtube step and host it directly on your blog.

WordPress, being a full-fledged blog platform, will allow you complete freedom with the look of your blog. Like Tumblr, you will have to manually embed your videos in your posts, however you don’t have the option to upload directly to your blog. If you’re not a shoot from the hip type of person and like a little more control, this is probably the type of blog for you.

What’s in a name?

Now that you know what you’re going to shoot, how you’re going to shoot it, and where you’re going to upload/post it, it’s time to talk about a domain name. If you’re on a budget, any of the free blog options above will work just fine for you. The only catch is your URL will look something like ilovebeer.posterous.com, which works but doesn’t do much for you in the way of SEO and it just doesn’t look as cool as having your own domain.

If you go the Posterous/Tumblr route, you just have to worry about the cost of the domain, no hosting required. So for as little as $9/year you can have a .COM for your blog. Or, if you want to spend a little bit more and really scream “video!” when people go to your site, you can snag a .TV for $20 for the first year and $35/year to renew. We have some more info here on how to set up a custom domain with Posterous.

If you go for WordPress, you’re going to have to pay for your hosting as well. At Name.com we offer hosting plans for as little as $5.99/month and up to $24.99/month, so depending on what you’re doing you can find a plan to fit your needs. And if you need help setting anything up, our support team is here to help.

Now start posting!

Hopefully that’s enough information to help get you started in the wonderful world of video. We’ve had a lot of fun with our Beer Fridays video blog and we hope you have just as much fun with yours!