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If you’re just getting started with databases, the process of creating and managing databases can feel overwhelming. By learning a few database tips and tricks, you can improve efficiency and make your life easier. 

You may also find it helpful to hire a database developer who can create and implement a database for you. This way, your database will have everything you need to be productive, and you can start working in it right away. 

Below are five of our best database tips for beginners. Don’t worry – you’ll be an expert in no time! 

1. SQL is the core of all relational databases.

The Structured Query Language (SQL) forms the core of all relational databases. It provides a uniform interface to SQL Server, Microsoft Access and others. All aspiring database users must learn SQL if they want to have a solid foundation in the world of databases.

So how can you learn SQL? We recommend taking an introductory course. Thankfully, it’s very easy to learn SQL, and most people pick up the basics in a few weeks or so. It will take longer to become fluent, but you’ll have the basic concepts down quickly.

2. Selecting primary keys is a big decision. 

The selection of a primary key is one of the most important factors in database design. A primary key is a table column that serves a specific purpose. Each database table needs a primary key, which can have one or many columns. Number data types are the best choices for primary keys. 

3. Save time by converting spreadsheets into databases. 

Being new to databases, you’ve probably been using something like Microsoft Excel to store your data. Fortunately, you can convert these spreadsheets into databases and save yourself a great deal of time. All you need to do is import your spreadsheet and set up your database. If you need help, contact Arkware. 

4. Not all database platforms are the same. 

It’s important to know that not all database platforms are the same. There are many different platforms out there, and they all offer unique benefits. Microsoft Access, for instance, works only on Windows, while MySQL works on almost all platforms. But MySQL is just the database, whereas Access also provides tools for macros, reports and forms. 

5. NULL does not mean ‘zero.’ 

NULL is something that often confuses users because they think it means ‘zero.’ In reality, it means ‘unknown.’ For instance, if you’re unsure of what one of your customer’s birthdates is, you could enter in NULL as the placeholder. Obviously, the customer has a birthday, you just don’t know what it is. 

These five tips will help you grow more comfortable using databases. And Arkware is here to help along the way! We can create, manage and optimize your databases for the best performance. Contact us today to learn more!