Prepared for StumbleUpon high traffic spikes?

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We love high traffic spikes at our site and thanks to you, our postings/photo blog reviews are regularly Stumbled. The use of StumbleUpon generates a large influx of new viewers who are introduced to the many great featured photographers. Here is a snapshot of our traffic from the other night…notice the number of users trying to access the site!!

274 visitors currently on site

After a closer examination of my traffic sources, that I found out many of our visitors are getting an error message like the one listed below:

“Your Web server is currently unable to handle the HTTP request due to a temporary overloading or maintenance of the server. The implication is that this is a temporary condition which will be alleviated after some delay. Some servers in this state may also simply refuse the socket connection, in which case a different error may be generated because the socket creation timed out”

At the time of the error, there were 274 visitors trying to access my site at one time! In speaking with my hosting company, they informed me that my shared hosting plan would only support 50 connections at one time. That would explain why the average StumbleUpon visitor is only on my site for 8 seconds…they are never able to access it…Damn! …and I was thinking they were just passing through. While our traffic is growing, it is dominated by daily spikes as opposed to a slow rolling curve. Here is a snapshot of our traffic over the past seven days.

ilovephotoblogs-visitor-details-wordpress

I am presently looking for a web host provider who has flexible grid plans to deal with the bursty traffic patterns frequently encountered with Digg and StumbleUpon and experience dealing with WordPress migration issues, if the site needs to be moved to a different server. There are a few dedicated hosting plans I would love to purchase and would serve us well into 2009, our revenue stream is not in a position to support the expense.

I am amazed at the number of web hosting companies which have no expertise or knowledge in working with WordPress related issues. One hosting company stated that I needed “to call WordPress for support”..WHAT?…Want more, both reps I spoke with (company shall remain nameless) had never even heard of Digg or StumbleUpon…WTF.

At this time…yes, on turkey day…I’m looking for a hosting company that understands the blogging world of 2008-2009…and can provide technical support beyond password resets.

Supercharge Your Photography Website

Sell Your Photos Online Use SmugMug

Many photographers would love to turn their passion for photography into a profession. However, the thought of creating a photography blog, dealing with web hosting, and collecting payments, leads most photographers to put this dream on the shelf. Fear no more and Take the SmugMug quick tour!

What is SmugMug? SmugMug is a photosharing site with a beautiful interface, that allows you to show off your photos to the world and if you choose, turn your passion for photography into an online business with ease.

SmugMug allows you to easily upload your photos, create galleries, or sign up for their Pro account and use their tools to create your own e-commerce photography website.

Here are just a few of the many features the SmugMug Pro account has to offer:

SmugMug’s mantras are ease of use and style . Easy for you to upload and arrange. Easy for your admirers to navigate and buy prints.

Upload 100s of photos with a few clicks. Bulk caption, bulk move, and bulk delete. If your captions are embedded in your photos as IPTC (International Press Telecommunications Council) data, we automatically use them.

Our prints are provided by a professional lab in Georgia named EZ Prints with outstanding quality, quick turnaround, broad selection and consumer prices. We chose them after an extensive shootout and consulting with our professional customers.

We provide calibration prints and ICC profiles for color management. Our catalog includes hard-to-find print sizes in matte, gloss and lustre.

Print what you want on the backs of prints. Use our proofing feature to delay shipping so you can retouch and replace the images ordered.

SmugMug won’t ask you to delete photos to make room for new ones because your quota at SmugMug is unlimited .

Set your prices and make 85% of the markup. You can even sell digital downloads in three sizes with personal or commercial use licenses. SmugMug will take the order, pay the credit card processing fee, ship prints to your customer, provide customer support and real-time reporting of sales.

…and much more

Make Web Hosting Your First Photoblog Priority

Web hosting / image hosting should be your first photoblog priority when deciding to get started with your online photography website. Nothing is more frustrating to your website visitors than slow server times or lower than expected server up-time. Poor server quality or server response time should not be an issue with the proliferation of web hosting service providers.

The first step in selecting your web hosting provider is to determine your needs. If you already have a hosting provider and just need remote file access , I highly recommend Mozy to everyone I come in contact with. Yes, I’m a Mozy-freak and can’t live without it. They offer great customer service, dependable up-time, fast downloads, and an easy to use interface. The prices are a bargain for the services they provide. I tried out their 14 day free trial and signed up soon afterwards.

Beyond the large webhosting services, which are excellent, I would recommend taking a look at these top rated web hosting providers. Each offer tremendous packages at affordable prices, so you can focus on what you do best:

HostPapa Green Energy Web Hosting . HostPapa is a privately-owned company located in Niagara Falls, NY and Oakville, Ontario, Canada. They pride themselves in outstanding customer service and excellent performance. For me, a key selling point was the use of renewable energy usage and would prefer to see more companies go in this direction. I also liked that they were headquartered not too far from my residence. Hostpapa offers some of the lowest prices in the industry. I love their unlimited domains hosted under one account. Their entry plan includes 1700GB web hosting, 17000 GB data transfer, no setup fees, and free domain for life !

Last, but definitely not least is Host Gator. Host Gator web hosting offers fast, affordable web services hosting over 5 million domains around the globe! They offer a complete web hosting solution which features huge space and bandwidth, Cpanel, PHP, CGI/Perl, website builder with 1000 pre-designed templates, 110+ one-click install php apps along with 24/7 support and premium Tier-1 bandwidth.