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How Much Does Downtime Really Cost Your Business?

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Many SMB owners think IT downtime only costs them a few productive hours, but there’s a lot more at stake when your systems go down. Customer satisfaction and loss of brand integrity are just two of the key losses apart from the more evident costs such as lost productivity and a temporary dip in sales. Here’s a few other ways downtime can hurt your business: 1. Customer Loss - Today’s buyer lacks patience !important; They are used to getting everything at the click of a mouse, at the tap of a finger. Suppose they are looking for the kind of products/services that you offer and your site doesn’t load or is unavailable—even if temporarily-- you are likely to lose them to a competitor—permanently.2. Damage to Brand Reputation - Customers are now using Social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter and blogs to vent their bad brand experiences. Imagine an irate customer who doesn’t know if their card was charged on your site, or not, due to a server error. If it’s your bad day, they could…

Has Your Website Been Optimized for Mobile Users?

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Did you know that this year there will be more mobile web surfers than stationary ones? That means more prospects are accessing your business website more through their smart phones, tablets or other mobile devices than with a laptop or PC. If you thought you had time to make the switch this year, you may want to reconsider in light of new research. A recent study revealed that around 40% of prospects move on to a competitor if they have a poor mobile experience. How prepared is your business for this change? Well, if you are just starting out, the following checklist will help... 1. Make sure your mobile site is different from your regular website - While you must stick to your branding standards, your mobile website should be simpler than your web version. The reason being is that complicated designs that load well and look good on computers are often distorted when accessed through a mobile device. Plus, mobile surfers don’t really have the time to sift through a lot of content. Bot…

Five Ways Your Business Can Improve Its Search Engine Rankings

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In an age where most business happens online, not showing up in Google search results can really hurt you. While there’s no real shortcut to showing up consistently on web searches, there are a few quick fixes to get your site to show up on your potential customer’s search results... 1. HTML tags - Important HTML tags include the title tag, meta description and meta keywords. Make sure each page of your website has appropriate HTML tags. The title tag of each page should be unique and relevant to that particular page. 2. Alternative text images - Ensure that most of the images on your website have alternative text tags. Alt tags are basically descriptions for images. By adding relevant alternative tags to images, you are allowing search engines to recognize them, which will improve the likelihood of your page showing up in search results. 3. File hierarchy - How simple is your HTML file hierarchy? Check to see if your website’s pages are logically situated and avoid too many unnecessary …

Five Things You Should Do Right Now to Preserve Your Network and Systems

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1. Backup Files Every Day - As catastrophic as data loss is, the number of businesses that still are not backing up their network is unbelievable. According to the Symantec Small to Medium Size Businesses (SMB) data, only 23% of SMBs are backing up their data on a daily basis and fewer than 50% are backing up data weekly. Any number of events can result in data loss, so the importance of frequently backing up your network cannot be overstated. 2. Ensure Backup Procedures Are Checked Regularly - Many times business owners think that they have a backup system in place only to find out after it’s too late that it hasn’t been working properly. It may seem like your files are being backed up daily, however, the backup could have become corrupt or it is not backing up huge chunks of critical data. Check your backup procedures regularly to ensure they are working properly in order to be sure that ALL of your data can be recovered. In the age of BYOD (Bring-Your-Own-Devices) it is also importa…

Data Loss Can Cause You to Shut Down

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Small and medium sized businesses today are relying more than ever on IT systems to efficiently run their business, support customers and optimize productivity. These systems house sensitive digital data ranging from employee and customer information, to internal emails, documents and financial records, sales orders and transaction histories. This is in addition to applications and programs critical to daily business functions and customer service. While corporate-level data losses and insider theft are well publicized, many smaller businesses have also become casualties of data loss and theft. Following a significant data loss, it is estimated that a small-to-medium sized business can lose up to 25% in daily revenue by the end of the first week. Projected lost daily revenue increases to 40% one month into a major data loss. According to The National Archives & Records Administration in Washington, 93% of companies that have experienced data loss, coupled with prolonged downtime for…

Can You Really Afford Not to Have a Backup Plan?

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According to Symantec SMB, 50% of SMBs admit to having no backup and disaster recovery plan in place. 41% of those surveyed confessed that they had never even given much thought to implementing a disaster recovery or business continuity plan. If you are one of them, then you really need to think about whether you can afford the status quo. Answering these questions will help you decide. 1. How often is employee productivity and customer accessibility or service stalled each day from a downed network or system? 2. How much downtime can your business truly afford and what kind of backup or recovery solutions are in effect when systems are unavailable? 3. What level of IT support can be accessed? Can it be accessed quickly enough to minimize damage? Are you confident that your business can either be back online or be able to access lost data with minimal disruption, no matter what? 4. Is your most critical data frequently backed up? Is the data on the personal laptops, iPads or Blackberrys o…

Can You Really Afford Not to Have a Backup Plan?

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According to Symantec SMB, 50% of SMBs admit to having no backup and disaster recovery plan in place. 41% of those surveyed confessed that they had never even given much thought to implementing a disaster recovery or business continuity plan. If you are one of them, then you really need to think about whether you can afford the status quo. Answering these questions will help you decide. 1. How often is employee productivity and customer accessibility or service stalled each day from a downed network or system? 2. How much downtime can your business truly afford and what kind of backup or recovery solutions are in effect when systems are unavailable? 3. What level of IT support can be accessed? Can it be accessed quickly enough to minimize damage? Are you confident that your business can either be back online or be able to access lost data with minimal disruption, no matter what? 4. Is your most critical data frequently backed up? Is the data on the personal laptops, iPads or Blackberrys o…