Getting Started with Twitter’s Bootstrap

Twitter’s Bootstrap is one of the most popular front-end frameworks and is used by more than 4.8 million websites (source: BuiltWith). Its collection of production-ready HTML, CSS, and JavaScript code helps to greatly reduce the time you must spend on coding and allows you to put together a functional and sleek website within minutes. It also takes care of all browser quirks—all while providing reusable components for navigation controls, form elements, and media objects that deliver a consistent look and feel across all modern browsers.

Bootstrap is a responsive, mobile-first grid framework that takes away much of the pain involved in developing for multiple devices. Unlike other frameworks, Bootstrap requires minimal learning time and comes with great documentation and third-party resources.

In this month’s featured article, ‘Getting Started with Twitter’s Bootstrap,’ we have a compilation of great resources (tutorials, screencasts, plugins, and builders) to help you get started with and make the most of Bootstrap.

Getting Started

Official Bootstrap Documentation

Nothing beats the official Bootstrap documentation. It is extremely detailed and well organized with ample examples and sample code. The ‘Getting Started’ section gives an overall overview of the framework with some example templates that use some of its components. To better understand Bootstrap, you’ll need to dive into the CSS, Components, and JavaScript help sections.

 

 

 

TutorialRepublicBootstrap Tutorials

A series of tutorials that will help you learn the essentials of Bootstrap—from the fundamentals to advanced topics—so that you can create webpages with much less effort.

 

 

 

Twitter Bootstrap Button Generator

A simple, handy tool that allows you to generate buttons for Bootstrap. You can specify the size, type, color, and even the icon for your button.

ownCloud

ownCloud is an open source software for creating file hosting instances. ownCloud is functionally very similar to the widely used Dropbox, with the primary functional difference being that the Server Edition of ownCloud is free and open-source, and thereby allowing anyone to install and operate it without charge on a private server. It also supports extensions that allow it to work like Google Drive, with online document editing, calendar and contact synchronization, and more. Its openness avoids enforced quotas on storage space or the number of connected clients, instead having hard limits (like on storage space or number of users) defined only by the physical capabilities of the server.

[button link=”https://owncloud.org/download/” type=”icon” color=”green” newwindow=”yes”] Download ownCloud[/button]

GroupList

Summary: GroupList.io is a email marketing solution, similar to Mailchimp, Aweber and other email systems on the market. It uses Amazon Web Services for deliverability and is very inexpensive to use with charges cheaper than major playersCheck out Sendy, a self hosted newsletter web app that lets you send emails 100x cheaper via Amazon SES.

Email Marketing alternative to Mailchimp, Zoho, etc

There are many email campaign software systems out there, but they are quite expensive. For example, with Zoho, unless you use a CRM Plus subscription @ $50 USD per user per month for yearly subscription or $60 USD per user per month for month to month, they will slap you these charges:

These prices are high. For example, if I have a database of 2000 subscribers, I need US$25 per month to use the campaign function. That means on a Zoho enterprise price month to month @ $40 a month, will balloon to $65 a month, forcing you to go to a higher tier in the CRM, to the CRM Plus package at $60 per user per month. Such costs are unsustainable unless your business pushes enough volume.

There is a better way… with GroupList!

Group List is the cheapest email newsletter service I have come across. You can send thousands upon thousands of email newsletters with extremely low costs. Just look here:

Sending 10,000 emails? No problem, you only pay $10 USD!

How they do it

The primary reason that GroupList is able to do this so cheaply is because of Amazon’s Simple Email System (SES). This system is designed for cheap emails with high volumes.

Upon joining the Free Tier of this service, you can send out 10,000 emails per month – and then$10 for each additional 10k emails. That is why GroupList is the most affordable email newsletter campaign service I have found.  See below:

What features will you get with GroupList

The whole suite of newsletter campaign services are available in GroupList.

  • Letting you manage multiple distinct brands
  • Unlimited email lists
  • Unlimited email deliveries (possibly bound by your email service provider, see below)
  • Sign users up through a form or through a multitude of embeddable widgets.
  • Optionally require users to go through a double-opt-in flow
  • Templating system with built-in tags (i.e. “unsubscribe”, “name”, “email”, “date”, etc.) and custom tags (similar to Mailchimp’s “merge tags”)
  • Open and click tracking
  • Reporting of deliverability-related stats like unsubscribe rate, bounces, “marked as spam”, etc
  • Integration with Amazon Simple Email Service (SES) AND any email service provider that exposes an SMTP interface (which is nearly all)

Analytics and reporting

 

GroupList has comprehensive reporting throughout. Once you have sent a campaign, you will get a well-structured graphical report encompassing opens, specific link clicks, bounces, unsubscribes and even a geographical breakdown. Furthermore all of this data can be easily exported in CSV format.

You get similar reporting at the list level. For each of your mailing lists you get a rich graphical representation of active subscribers, subscribers who never confirmed, unsubscribes, bounces, and incidences of being marked as spam.

Campaign and template editor

Both MailChimp and AWeber have highly polished default templates, and template editors that are very advanced. This is something that I really think is important to have in mind when considering GroupList.

You can certainly construct highly polished and professional campaigns with GroupList, but it will require some technical knowledge. This is because there are zero supplied default templates, and the campaign/template editing interfaces are basic compared to those other email services. To achieve professional results, in my opinion, you will likely need to get a hold of third party email templates (such as through ThemeForest and ThemeDorks) or code your templates in some external environment.

Summary

I love Group List for my own needs and I believe it could suit many others’ needs. I do think that anybody considering GroupList should take into account their priorities. If you are a commercial operation for whom the $10s-$100s (or more) a month you might spend on a more expensive alternative are a drop in the bucket, you may want to go that route as I believe you will have an easier time achieving polished results and stellar deliverability and you will probably save quite a lot of time overall. Similarly I’d say that if you are relatively non-technical and have a desire for very polished campaigns you also might be best off with tools like Mailchimp so long as your list isn’t in the many hundreds of thousands (see here for pricing of Mailchimp’s “Growing Business” plan at various volumes – you can also use Mailchimp’s “Forever Free” plan as long as you have fewer than 2,000 subscribers). With Group List there is no limit to how many subscribers you have, so you are not charged more when your list grows.

Pros:

  • Cheap email marketing
  • Abundant features
  • Automatic unsubscribe, bounce and complaint handling

Cons:

  • From my experience, as the system is rather simple, you may have to download or code responsive templates separately.

Thexyz Webmail

Thexyz offers four email hosting solutions to meet individuals, small business, as well as enterprise-grade needs. Thexyz Webmail plan is billed at $2.95/user/month or $29.95 for the year, which is really affordable even when compared with other best email hosting solutions on the market.

Thexyz makes it easy for teams to connect, communicate and collaborate with a wide choice of industry-leading email and productivity solutions. Thanks to a dedicated team of email and productivity specialists from Thexyz, customers can leave the  deployment and management of email hosting to Thexyz and concentrate on their own businesses.

Given that business runs on email and email often runs on Outlook, Thexyz makes its email hosting fully compatible with Outlook in addition to many other email clients. It can be used both on Windows and Macs and plugs seamlessly into email applications on tablets and smartphones.

With Thexyz Webmail, customers receive huge 25GB mailboxes, domain aliases, email forwarding, unlimited aliases and group lists, 50MB attachments, easily recover deleted email, and auto-setup tools. Other more, customers can benefit from the powerful Webmail such as:

  • Easy to use: Webmail is simple, straightforward and intuitive, yet powerful enough to handle any business email accounts thus requiring less support than desktop email clients;
  • Anytime, Anywhere Access: Not only is Webmail a full-featured email client, but because it’s accessed via the web. Customers can always have all their email, accessible from anywhere, with any web browser;
  • Email that’s Always in the Cloud: Since Webmail stores all the messages in the Cloud, there’s no need to worry about losing data due to a lost or stolen computer, etc.;
  • Collaborate with Shared Calendars, Shared Contacts & Chat: Customers will have access to Contacts, Chat, Calendars, Tasks, and Notes, making work quickly and efficiently with their co-workers;
  • Mobile Sync for Webmail: With Mobile Sync for Thexyz Webmail, customers can keep their Email, Calendar, and Contacts sync’d between Webmail and their iPhone or Android device.

Fore securing each email hosting account, the web host continuously updates the spam filtering system in a multi-layered process that eliminates 98% of spam—with nearly zero false positives.

If needed, Thexyz has additional Hosted Exchange service to allow for even larger 100GB mailboxes and enterprise-level sync with Outlook Web App and mobile devices. Other solutions like Microsoft Office 365 Management & Support, Email Archiving, and G-Suite are also available through Thexyz.

Verdict—Thexyz Webmail is Recommended

We highly recommend Thexyz Webmail. It has extraordinary services and features to help any business get the most from using a professional email service. For whatever type of customers, they can find the most suitable email hosting solution to suit.

Vanilla Forums

Vanilla Forums is an open source self hosted forum software as well as a paid hosted option. It has become a popular community software application as it has concentrated on the core of its business as a community software application. It is a Canadian company and was voted as the top forum software application by CMS critic.
Some popular examples of companies using Vanilla for their community include, Thexyz.
Getting started with Vanilla Forums
You can download the package and install it on your domain for free. It has a simple installer process and requires a MySQL database. There is also a very well put together migration tool of you are coming from another forum software application.
Here at ScriptDorks we tested the migration tool from a phpbb forum and it was impressive how it kept all the posts and setup redirects to the new vanilla URLs. Vanilla has a much improved SEO friendly URL structure than phpbb.

UkuuPeople

UkuuPeople turns your WordPress site right into a CRM system which is simple for WordPress site owners.

UkuuPeople helps you manage your contacts in a master list. You can then segment your contacts into tribes (groups) and initiate interactions with them using touchpoints. You can add team members, assign them tasks, schedule meetings, from your WordPress dashboard.

The core plugin is available for free. It also offers paid addons to integrate your UkuuPeople CRM with MailChimp, Gravity Forms, G-Suite, etc.

Visit publisher’s site: UkuuPeople

phpBB

phpBB is a fast, efficient discussion board program built in PHP with a muti-database backend. Features include: posting, replying, private messages, polls, username/ip banning, strong encryption for storing passwords, user rankings, very advanced access control for private forums, full templating, simple yet robust translation system and much more.

Visit publisher site: phpBB

JS calendar

Popup or flat calendar for selecting date/time. Can show week numbers. The look is fully customizable by CSS. It can dynamically change month/year and first day of week (any day can be it). You can also select month/year from drop-down menus. Several state-of-the-art color themes. Can display adjacent months. Smart positioning algorithm. Provides date formatting and parsing functions. Shows help tips. Available in lots of languages. Fully documented.

Visit publisher site: JS calendar

MailJet

Our unique algorithm boosts your deliverability and our platform provides in-depth insight so you can optimize more than ever. Because 20% of emails never reach the inbox Mailjet is a logical choice! Get Ready – Create your free account, download our library and change your SMTP parameters. Start Sending – No warm up or manual validation process. Pay as you go and scale up or down. Cruise & Optimize – Leverage Mailjet’s analytics and integrate further with the API.

https://www.mailjet.com

Perfect Dashboard

Perfect Dashboard is far from perfect and is mostly designed to sell ads to get you to subscribe to do something that is available for free. It may have been installed via spam, ad-ware or other malicious means. It should be uninstalled.

The App is a WordPress & Joomla plugin that lets you update with One-Click, perform Automated Tests after each update and automatically verify Backups. There are serious security risks in using such a plugin and it should be avoided. There are far better ways to secure your website and automate backups.