JustCloud.com Online Cloud Storage Review

With everybody looking to ensure their computer’s documents and folders right now, this truly is an unique opportunity to do that for FREE. Full unlimited Cloud Storage, with a whenever cash back insurance from JustCloud.com.

There are a lot of sparing backup services accessible for individual and small business users and JustCloud is a solid alternate of those choices. It allows you to choose from three different account levels so chances are, you can discover a bundle that meets your needs for backing up all the files on your computer. Should you go ahead and purchase a backup account? Here’s the information you need to determine if JustCloud is just the right service for you.

Justcloud

JustCloud is piece of the Just Develop It! group of Backup storage brands that offers web facilitating and online backup services. As the name suggests, there aren’t a great deal of frills with their products but they do offer simple and affordable services for the individual or very small business user. According to the organization, they offer “premium products and budget prices”.

JDI Backup is also the parent company to similar brands MyPCBackup, Backup Genie and ZipCloud.

It’s easy to start a free trial account and see how JustCloud works before committing to a longer term. The free account allows you 15MB of storage – not a lot of space, but enough to try transferring a few files.

But First, Is Backing Up Files Easy with JustCloud?

On the off chance that you store the vast majority of your documents in your machine’s “My Documents” folder, JustCloud already has an option to select that folder and similar ones, such as “My Pictures”.It then naturally duplicates them to your online cloud distributed storage. It will also automatically schedule daily backups. This is an easy process for any user.

JUSTCLOUD.COM ONLINE CLOUD STORAGE REVIEW - Backup

There are several different ways you can add new files to your online storage. The first is just as depicted above; simply set the program to automatically backup on a regular basis and it will do just that for you. The second route is to use the “drag and drop” feature, where you can simply drag files from your computer into the program when it is open on your desktop. The third path is to access your account online and drag and drop files into your Sync folder.

In order to see which files have been backed up, or to restore those files, or to sync them so they are available on other devices, you must access your online account. That happens automatically when you click on the “My Files”, “Restore” or “Sync Folder” tabs of the program.

 

From the “Setup” tab (shown above), you can adjust the backup schedule, change or add file folders and types to the backup selection and configure security settings. By selecting “Volume Shadow Copy”, even files that are currently in use when the backup starts will be transferred to your online storage. You can also set parameters for the amount of system resources to use during a backup and indicate that you don’t want backups to start unless your computer is idle.

JustCloud allows you to back up photos, documents, .pdfs, music, video and email. It is preset with the following file types automatically excluded from backups: LNK, WAB~, VMC, VHD, VO1, VO2, VSV, VUD, VMDK, VMSN, VMSD, HDD, VDI, VMWAREVM, NVRAM, VMX, VMEM, ISO, DMG, SPARSEIMAGE, DL_, WIM, LOG, DB. If you do want to include these files, you must first remove them from this list, using “Settings/File Types“.

24×7 Phone & Email Support

Online help is offered via emails, a catalog of video tutorials, FAQs,demos and a JustCloud user community. Unfortunately there is no technical support available through telephone. The telephone support is only to provide help with billing, unrecognized charges and renewal enquiries. If you encounter technical issue, the support email will be: support@Justcloud.com

File Sharing Made Simple with JustCloud

Need to collaborate or share files with colleagues, friends or family members? You can click on the “share” option at the folder or file level to add an email address that allows others to access your online storage space. Alternatively, you can click on “share” and create a public URL for access to a single file. You can also post directly to social media sites such as Facebook and Pinterest – a nice feature if you enjoying posting lots of photos.

JustCloud offers a mobile app you can download. This allows you to access files from any of your mobile devices, such as a tablet or smartphone. Supported devices include iOS, Android, Kindle and Blackberry. If you have additional computers, Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems are supported and you can add devices to your account, including an external hard drive, although we couldn’t tell exactly how many devices you can have on a single account. Separate licenses are required to back up files from additional computers other than the one where the software was originally installed.

If you simply have a personal computer and a mobile device, then JustCloud will work just fine for you and you can easily select the amount of storage space you need from the account options listed. The control panel is user friendly and you can simply set it and forget it. However, for business or commercial applications, a more robust backup plan is recommended. Below is the round up and do check out JustCloud at their site.

Summary: Here are a few advantages of using JustCloud:

  • 24/7 customer support via email or phone
  • Inexpensive pricing
  • Drag & drop backup features
  • Operating systems are widely supported (Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, Blackberry)
  • Easily sharable files
  • User friendly control panel

But, the disadvantages of JustCloud include:

  • Inability to restore entire folder – It has to be done 1 file by 1 file
  • Download & upload speed is merely acceptable.

Once again, for the casual, personal computer user, JustCloud works perfectly to back up a few files and cherished photos. Looking at their inexpensive price, it’s surprising that how JustCloud manages to offer so much. If any of their disadvantages bother you much, I suggest you to check out our business-use cloud storage for more advance features (for example SugarSync). Otherwise, do sign up JustCloud’s free trial and try them for 14 days.

Shopify – eCommerce Platform

Shopify, founded in 2006, is a commerce platform that allows anyone to easily sell online, at their retail location, and everywhere in between. Shopify offers a professional online storefront, a payment solution to accept credit cards (such as Authorize.net and PayPal), and the Shopify POS application to power retail sales. Shopify currently powers over 60,000 retailers in 100 different countries, including: Tesla Motors, Gatorade, Forbes, Amnesty International, Encyclopedia Britannica, CrossFit, and many more.

SHOPIFY – ECOMMERCE PLATFORM - Dashboard

Features (compared vs Magento)

The Shopify platform includes a content management system that allows users to manage inventory, edit HTML and CSS code, create coupon and discount codes, and accept online payments online with Paypal and major credit cards.

Shopify Magento
Proprietary Free and Open Source
Relatively easy to set up with excellent customer support Requires skilled and experienced developer
Minimal Customization Extremely customizable
App Store with about 400 apps Huge community of developers and extension companies
Better for smaller businesses with limited sales Ideal for larger online sellers with lots of room to grow
Pricing starting at $14/month Free
Hosted Managed Solution Requires dedicated server specializing in Magento hosting
One storefront on one platform Multiple storefronts / languages / currencies on one platform
Configure apps within third party admin Integrate extensions into Magento Admin
Products organized by tags Heirarchal organizational structure for products (categories and subcategories)

My Review

One of my favorite Shopify features is the manage products page.   The ability to create a simple product on one page is an ease of use.  You can add your pricing structure, SKU and UPC (if you are selling on a 3rd party or you are doing Google PLAs, you must have this in product feed).  There is a decent search engine module that features the page title & meta description (both seen in Google organic results) and you can update the URL handle and slug to be more SEO friendly.

SHOPIFY – ECOMMERCE PLATFORM - Products

The ease of use of the Shopify platform is great for the first time eCommerce store owner.  It makes it easy for your management and associates as well.  To merchandise products you simply have to select “Collections” and great your category listings.   Be careful to hit the finer details, and Shopify makes that easy.  Add a powerful description, image and Search engine information.  It may take time to do this manually, but over time you will want to have this as you grow your small shop to a hopefully strong brand.

The other sizable perk of going with the Shopify platform is their plethora of preinstalled applications.  There are some solid providers in the marketing place, from Mailchimp (email marketing), Beetailer (Social media ecommerce – 3rd party sales), Shipstation (Fulfillment service), StoreLocator, and eCommHub (inventory management).   The applications can be as little as a two click installations and provide an easy API connection to the service.

Negatives

Some of the negatives that I have come into contact are the lack of styles and look and feel that you have access to.  While you have small modifications you can make to preexisting themes such as logos, colors, and fonts you can not brand the website for hi-fidelity designs.

Another negative is the users are a bit upset with how expensive the add-ons can become. Since Shopify is focused on minimalism right out the box, most store owners have to buy add-ons to increase the functionality of their store.  While I said the access to the applications is great, almost all the “good” applications need a monthly subscription to run.

Lastly, and this is from the developer within me (yes, I do development as well) is that the checkout of any store is NOT on your domain.  Rather it forwards to the checkout.shopify.com URL. It’s possible that seeing the domain change may scare off some customers, but I haven’t seen any studies to verify the claim.

Pricing

If budget is a concern, you’re just getting started, and don’t have a relationship with a developing company (like me), then Shopify is your best bet. If you want to get started right and are willing to invest some money, as one would invest to open an appealing physical store to sell products, then go with Magento, it is a better long-term investment overall.

Shopify has four levels of monthly payment plans: Basic, Professional, Business, and Unlimited. Depending on each plan, the company charges fees ranging from 0-2% on each transaction. All of Shopify’s plans include unlimited bandwidth and free setup. The company also offers a free 14 day trial.  I have personally seen a website do $199,100+ dollars in a day so the bandwidth is not an issue.

Overview

Shopify is a good platform to get started selling online, without assistance from a web design or development company. The downside is that websites running on Shopify look too generic and don’t allow for much customization. To verify this go on Shopify’s website and see that even some of the best websites that Shopify showcases and prides it self on are too general and non-comprehensive.  For a startup, $14 is worth the chance to see if you can get your idea off the ground.  I have completed Project Management contracts using Shopify and the speed to market is hard to beat in the industry.

Product Review: Basecamp

Basecamp at its very nature is a simple, straightforward, no nonsense Project Management online software.   Basecamp is ideal for small to midsize web projects in the web design, web development, eCommerce development or other digital marketing or digital projects.   While Basecamp may be “simple” to some, it’s flexibility is unrivaled in the industry.   Here are a few things to consider.

The Beginnings: 37signals launched Basecamp Classic back in 2004. It was extremely lightweight only offering a handful of features.  However the one thing that 37signals did create was the industry of online project management. While creating Basecamp, they also released the framework they created to write it: Ruby On Rails.  37Signals’ founders (Jason Fried, Carlos Segura, Erneset Kim) also wrote bestselling books, which focus on the message “Keep things simple, stupid” (the KISS principle) and on how to run business in a sensible manner. I have read Keeping It Real about 10 times and I STRONGLY recommend you read it. It will make you think about a few internal processes that you do on a daily basis that are just plain wrong.  Buy Keeping It Real on Amazon.

The inner workings of Basecamp allow you to create projects, tasks, to-do’s, discussions and notes.  The beauty of the software is that there is only so much you can do with it.  The flexibility comes from you and your team.  If you need to place an “URGENT” message into a to-do, DO IT IN TEXT! Create a tag to signify it is important.  An example to-do would be “[URGENT] Please go to The eCommManager Facebook and like their page [1 hour scope]”.

Top Features:

Projects

You can create projects for each project type.  I typical take the billing (quickbooks) title or the estimate name and place it in the as the project.  This will allow a 1 to 1 comparison for your team and your client for work = dollars.   In this example you can use, KEEN Retail: General, KEEN Retail: Project 1, KEEN Retail: Project 2.  This will allow you to add stakeholders to one project without seeing important or sensitive data in another project.

Basecamp review - Projects

Stakeholders

It is very simple to add the proper stakeholders to your project.  You can invite your internal team to one side of the project and there is even a segmented “client” invitation so you can “hide” certain conversations from the client.   I’ve used this when the conversation might get confrontational or create a long drawn out conversation with my internal team.  The client is most likely already stressed with the project so hide things when you can (it is a simple checkout box selection) to stop the unnecessary stress.

Basecamp review - Invite people to your team

Project Messages & Discussions

The best part of about Basecamp is documentation.  You can start a thread in 2013 and continue it through the months all the way till today and still be able to search and find previous conversations.  In the world of web project management, with 20 concurrent clients or more, if it is not written down we will most likely forget about it (or the client will forget about it).   I have used the messages for many different aspects of PM.  Design reviews, internal scope conversations, billing updates, tutorials, and more.   By design messages are an empty slate.

Basecamp review - Project messages

Full Project in One Place

The holistic view of a project is a thing of beauty. The real beauty of Basecamp is the centralization as you can see in this screenshot. All discussions, information-dissemination, scheduling, task-assigning, and questions live alongside the project.  This will cut down on the ambiguity of “Where is this and that?”

Basecamp review - Full project

Pros & Cons

Pros:

  • Manage several projects at the same time. This really helps when you have several projects that directly influence each other.
  • Deploy resources to a project only when they are needed. This improves efficiency and effectiveness and helps reduce costs.
  • Keep all the documents and conversations you need for a project in a single place where you can easily search, tag, and share them with everybody involved.

Cons:

  • Basecamp does not provide any reporting tools, which could make analyzing your data and making informed decisions about projects a bit difficult. However, if you are just looking for a software to help you keep your tasks organized and and on track, Basecamp would make a good choice.
  • Basecamp does not support milestones (very well), and so there is no way to track these major events from within the system. Milestones can be very useful for keeping your projects on track, so if you’re looking for a software with this capability, it would probably be wise to consider other options.  While there is a calendar feature, it is very lack luster.

Price

Pricing is relatively inexpensive.  $20 will buy you 10 projects and 3GB of space (but for the most part you can use Google Drive or Dropbox for large files).   See the additionally pricing below.

Basecamp review - Price

Who can use it?

  • IT / Digital Project managers
  • Web Developers
  • App developers
  • Designers
  • Traditional static project management