All too often, supporting the work of charities can seem like something better left to businesses who have the time, money and resources to spare. In fact, supporting charitable work can impact your business in more ways than you might expect. Aside from the most obvious benefits – the direct impact of the philanthropy itself – there are a number of ways in which it can play an important part in helping your business, and the wider business community you find yourself a part of.


Creating a Positive Company Image

Supporting charitable causes can help to create a positive brand and corporate identity that engages consumers. This can prove to be a particular boon when attempting to engage with younger audiences – the much-discussed millennial cohort. According to one article from Inc. Magazine, as many as seventy percent of millennials claim that they are more likely to support a brand that backs specific social and charitable causes.


Over the years, a number of companies have benefitted from this positive image. For some companies, a focus on charity and community engagement is new avenue to explore. For others, it will have been a part of their approach since they began. Sometimes, these social causes are directly related to the company itself – in recent years, clothing behemoth Levi Strauss have been reducing the amount of water used in their production in an attempt to tackle water scarcity, and raise further awareness of the issue.


Boosting Morale Within Your Team

Just as consumers are more likely to deal with a business who demonstrate a community-focused ethic, employees are also happier when working for a company that they believe has an ethical and sustainable approach. The team morale that this can engender is an important element of business that should not be overlooked, and can help with team building and employee retention.


Rakesh Dua of Dua & Co, a team of business advisors in Watford and London, believes that an ethical business culture, with an inspirational leader at its head, can play a significant part in improving overall performance. He points to research carried out by Bain and Company showing that companies with a culture and ethos that emphasise community and charity often find that their work force are up to two times more productive as a result.


Fostering a Better Business Culture and Community

The benefits of an ethical, charity-focused approach to business don’t have to be limited to your own company. By contributing to your wider community, you can help to boost the entire business culture that you exist within, opening up new opportunities for networking and creating new contacts and business relationships. Even outside of the immediate business community, the public like to see their community being looked after by ethical businesses, ensuring that you remain a vital and highly respected part of their day-to-day lives.


At the end of the day, the real focus of supporting a charity should always be helping them to deliver the positive change and outcomes that they are aiming for – but that doesn’t mean that you can’t also experience the numerous benefits that come from supporting your community through charity.

The VoIP system has been designed keeping in mind small business infrastructures as they are easy to use, affordable and reliable. This system, also known as “Internet telephony”, offers big value for small business budgets and is the most effective business tool offering many features including free technical support and uncomplicated installation.

VoIP allows multiple location integration and this characteristic of the business phone system makes it a handy tool for business enterprises. Commercial establishments are able to avail of both traditional telephone network as well as the VoIP where they can connect to any single medium according to their preference.

The two basic varieties of VoIP require a regular phone, adapter, broadband Internet connection and a subscription to VoIP service. VoIP phone system streamline the business in-house phone network, while giving customizable features at no extra cost. It saves money by routing calls over the internet and is accessible globally wherever there is broadband connection. VoIP is based on digital package configuration which indicates that numerous Internet phone calls can be simultaneously and can be dispatched through the same Local Area Network (LAN) that facilitates Internet access. This methodology makes it highly cost effective.

This makes the business phone system a great investment for entrepreneurs as they can unite multiple offices on a single phone system irrespective of the remoteness of various locations. The VoIP phone system eliminates long distance calling charges and is suitable for both small set-ups and large establishments.

Buying VoIP for business from a local authorized outlet is the best suggested option. The licensed and certified dealers with proven expertise and manufacture support have the ability to respond quickly to urgent problems even those requiring on-site visits.

This business phone system should normally not be purchased from those vendors who have a background in data networking as they may sell “VoIP only” system. Such a purchase may increase costs unnecessarily when a hybrid / traditional VoIP system may be found to be more suitable.

The business VoIP system price structure varies based on the features chosen by the client, existing telephony infrastructure and the state of data network. Before committing to install VoIP as a business phone system, it would be judicious to evaluate the potential savings around toll-free calling between all locations. The licensed outlets are the best choice for buying this as they possess the ability to access the manufacturer directly for VoIP equipment upgrades or complicated installation problems.

VoIP equipment supplies reduce administrative overhead and increases productivity. This device is preferred by frequent travelers as phone connections can easily be accessed through their laptops. Even pictures and documents could be sent while talking over the phone. Call center VoIP is the latest technology breakthrough that combines geographically dispersed call center locations into a central functional unit.

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So you finally invested on a franking machine. You might think that franking is easy. Just put your mail into the machine and voila, you’ve got franked mail. Wrong! The Royal Mail has standards that every business using a franking machine should know and apply to their process. Here we give you the basics.


1. You must have a Mail Franking Licence. This means that you need to familiarize yourself and comply with the terms of Royal Mail Scheme for Franking Letters and Parcels 2008 and follow the rules in preparing your mails. You will be suppliers with a licence from your franking machine supplier.


2. Set your machine. Always do a test print. Set your machine to £0.00. This will ensure your machine has enough ink. If your mail has marks that cannot be read, your mail might be delayed or surcharged. You will be able to claim back mistakes in franked printing, but there is a 15% charge, so you want to make sure you are getting this right.


3. Set the correct price, time and date before you start printing. Always double check. many machines will do this automatically, but it is still worth checking to make sure the machine is correctly synchronised.


4. If you have envelopes and packets of different sizes, shapes and colours, you can frank these by using labels to give a clear and legible mark. Again, illegible marks can cause you problems. You can get labels from your franking machine supplier or a variety of places online. It is worth shopping round for franking machine labels and ink, since prices can vary greatly.


5. Always include a return address on your envelopes. It can be a part of your franked mark or on the back of your mail. Ask your Franking Supplier about the latest specifications on return addresses or ‘slogan blocks’. Incorrect mail can be delayed or returned to you.


6. Always use red ink for franking marks unless you are using Cleanmail® products which should be blue. Marks must be clear, complete and printed on the top right-hand corner of your mail.


7. Items can be franked in advance to avoid missed collections. Just set the next day’s date on your machine.


8. Remember that you cannot use a franking mark to prepay return mail to your company. Mail must be postmarked with the date it is posted or collected on as part of the presentation requirements of Royal Mail.


A franking machine can save you up to 40% on your postage fees. There are many different types depending on your business needs. Go to Compare Franking Machine to find the right franking machine for your business.


If you need a business franking machine you can compare prices with and save up to 40% 

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The analogy between marketing and a business is similar to the relationship of body and food. Marketing is the heart of the business. Every business is different so each business has to offer marketing and development, which fits each unique business’s need. There are many ways of developing and marketing for any business, but first let’s find the true concept and definition of marketing.

Marketing definition:

“Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large”.

1- Thinking advertising is marketing:

The biggest mistake most of the business owners make is to think advertising and spending money is the only marketing way exist. This group only focuses on advertising, which when the desire result is not achieved at the end of the month, they complain of how much money they wasted away. Advertisement is merely one of many ways of marketing.

2- You don’t enjoy what you do:

As stated above Marketing has many ways and approaches. The main marketing for your business is to love what you do. Nothing is better than your “Love what you do” attitude since it brings out your creativity, shows your talent and tells everyone how devoted you are to your business. Your daily positive attitude defines the successful future of your business. The love of your business construe in your daily interaction with new clients, employee’s moral and making important and effective marketing decisions. To be a good marketer for your business, first rule is your love for what you do.

3- Don’t have a good business plan:

What is business plan?

“A written document describing the nature of the business, the sales and marketing strategy, and the financial background, and containing a projected profit and loss statement”.

Having a business plan is like having a map. Many businesses start their business ignoring this very effective tool and get lost in the middle of the road. Every business plan states the exact details of the business’s concept and outlines clearly the marketing strategies, profit and loss, demographic, place of business, finances and targeted niche market. In order to make a solid business plan:

A) Know your business inside and out

Knowledge of your business is important to know the answer to all the categories of business plan. If you do not know the concept of your product or service, business plan and the pillar of your business does not exist.

B) Study, analyze and scrutinize

When you know the back and forth of every detail in your small business, you can access all the required information needed to project your business in a business plan. In order to access all this information you need to study, analyze and scrutinize every file and information in libraries, city records and valid informative site on the Internet.

C) Print it and have it accessible

When you put all the info together and created your fully detailed business plan, print a copy and keep a file handy and accessible.

Your projected analysis for the business works as a map to your success. Don’t drive to an unknown destination, not having a map on hand.

4- Don’t have any plans:

Marketing and developing its strategy is vital for every business. Marketing works as fertilizer to boost the lawn of your business. Even more importantly, marketing acts like sun to shed light and direction to your business for finding leads for the potential clients. Marketing is like having your open sign on in the dark street. I think I emphasized enough and you understood how important marketing is for any business, small or large.

5- Not analyzing the market for correct pricing.

Every business offers products or services. Then producing and providing the products and services involves certain cost and fees. Setting the price according to the market is very important and cause for a major failure for small businesses if done without market awareness. The root and source to find a perfect price is your business plan. It is necessary for every small business owner to investigate:

A) The demographic income of the targeted niche and audience:

The business plan states the average income of the targeted audience and the niche market. Set prices based on the factual statistic and spending ability of potential clients.

B) Market needs and economy balance:

An involved business owner is always aware of the market needs and the economy balance. Based on your niche market, be on top of the factors of change in economy that can impact your client’s ability to spend. If you deal with bankers and investors, keep up with stock market news and its daily changes and adjust your prices regularly.

C) Competitive market prices:

A business person is always on a lookout for its competitors and is aware of their side of story. It is necessary to know your competitors and adjust your prices based on their offering and similar services.

D) Demand of the product or service:

Investigate the demand before putting the price tag on your product and service. You can find this information through the data in your business plan. Balance your prices based on the market demands;

  • If you projecting a good volume of sale, price it lower than competitors.
  • If the demand is lower and the project of volume is slow, price higher to accommodate the distance between each sale.

E) Uniqueness of the product or service:

A unique product and service in the market attracts more attention. Price it higher than other regular products.

F) Acceptable profit margin range in the area:

Profit margin’s acceptability is always decided based on the market and economy as well as the market demand for the product.

  • Consider a big city. If you have a product or service that is unique, but projecting a high volume of demand, based on the economy and your targeted niche, the profit margin should set higher than normal.
  • In a small community, If you are investing on a product with limited demand, go conservative on your profit margin.

6- Not having any budget

Many small business owners make a big mistake and do not place any budget for daily, monthly or yearly marketing plans. Whatever the profit and loss data projects on your business, it must include certain amount of budget for marketing plans that are realistic and traceable. Unfortunately small business owners mostly have no budget and deduct the cost of marketing plans from their profit data. This particular budget assignment is very effective in the future of business growth. Increase the marketing budget with business slowly reaching the peak of demands for your product and services.

7- Spending money on non-traceable ads

As the market changes, so as the marketing plan, pricing and target audience. Invest and assign marketing plans that are traceable. Traceable marketing means follow-up charts to analyze data.

The worst mistake of marketing is to spend money on a plan that cannot be traced and measured. This marketing mistake is wasting money or in other terms is shooting in the dark.

8- Do not trace the result

Many businesses have assigned a budget for the traceable marketing plan but sadly do not follow-up on the result and do not trace it. This is just the same as spending wasteful money on non-traceable.

9- Think in a closed box:

Each business is unique. Even if the business offers a same product as other business few streets down the road, the two are still unique and different in many ways. The biggest mistake small business owners make is to follow other businesses’ footsteps. Marketing and its strategies should not have any limitation. Think of marketing out side of the box and do not limit the marketing strategies to a cliché approach others do. Be creative and design a plan unique and suitable for the very business.

10- Don’t know what plans to set:

Everyone is familiar with the word marketing. The first conversation when opening a new enterprise is “Lets do marketing!” But do we all really realize the core meaning of it?

I compare marketing strategies and its unique approach to our fingerprints, which is distinctive. Many understand the word marketing but are not familiar with how to set the strategy and the game planning related to the business.

It is a big mistake not knowing how to set the strategies while being fully aware of marketing important role in the business. Since setting the marketing plan requires research, analysis and knowledge of he market, hire a professional researcher and marketer to create the necessary game plan.

11- Assuming the product or service will sell itself:

One of the biggest marketing mistakes is to assume your product or service is going to sell itself. This assumption is misleadingly translating marketing into advertisement. I have met many small business owners who declared that quote-to-quote “I don’t spend money on the marketing, to me I only rely on word of mouth”.

Word Of Mouth is the strongest way of marketing. So what this small business owner was under impression that he does not do any marketing because he thought marketing was spending money on advertisement. So he was counting on the most effective marketing, the word of mouth. Word of mouth consists of two factors:

A) Product or service:

People have to like the product or service to continue talk about it and refer their friends.

B) Customer service

Another major difference between businesses is the level of customer service. I didn’t say the level of good or bad. What I mean is each business owner or employee that has been fully trained to look after a client as a customer service has his or her own charm. This specific charisma and character make the business unique to others and is a major influence for word of mouth.

Let me give you an example of how powerful the word of mouth and spreading the word is to any business. While ago, I worked as a junior manager in an up-scale restaurant. The general manager identified his target niche as young professionals in downtown area. So he hand-picked few employees in the same age range as the targeted niche to use public transportation and talk about the restaurant among each other. His decision, although was not directly traceable, but yet had an amazing effect. How did I analyse the result and witness the proof?

The restaurant offered comment cards, asking “How you hear about us?” and many without any surprise responded via word of mouth in public transportation.

Even if the business owner is avoiding any advertisement cost, they still rely on spread of word about their service and product via the community and the word of mouth marketing.

12- Don’t know the target audience:

To plan and set a marketing strategy, any small business has to have a direct target niche as an audience. Analyze everything about the niche audience. The list certainly is not limited to the audience’s income, age, interest ratio to the product, sex, education, commitment ratio and their loyalty.

13- Don’t know the competition:

The best way to analyze the market is to get familiar with the competition and rivals. It might sound cliché but as the Godfather movie suggested, “Keep you enemy close“. Or if I may rephrase ” Keep your competition close and be aware of their moves”.

This is especially important for small business owners in small community to have a good relationship with other competition. To share my experience in the same restaurant I used to manage, the general manager always encouraged me to go to other local restaurants and dine. He even offered to pay the bill. All I had to do was to analyze everything from the greeting, staff knowledge, manager’s presence, client’s relation and the overall quality. My report helped him to understand his competition strengths and weaknesses.

14- Hiring wrong person to do marketing:

Many small business owners out of desperation and lack of networking, hire wrong people to do their marketing. As we said earlier, every business has unique offering and services so must focus on unique planning for its marketing strategies.

It is the small business owner’s responsibility to hire a professional firm who can relate to the business’s need and offerings.

A good reputable marketing firm whose focus is to promote books and authors in not a good fit for a small local bistro.

15- Underestimate the value of existing clients:

A good businessperson always knows the value of the existing clients;

The best way of follow-up with the existing clients is to create informative data about them. Many small business owners lack this very important source of information. To avoid this mistake, keep a record of every client’s information. If the information requires certain personal data, keep it in a safe and secure place.

A client whom already has experienced your product and service knows about the quality of it. Always do follow-up calls and do not be afraid to ask how they liked the product or service. Even if the client responses back with dissatisfaction is a perfect opportunity for the business owner to fix the problem.

Gain a new customer is costly. I am gong to explain this by an example:

Nancy enters Joe’s café because of a coupon she found in a local magazine offering 10% discount. She solely relies on a menu attraction, prices, quality of the food and customer service. Joe the owner spent lots of money and time for marketing after analyzing the community needs, price affordability and the targeted niche market.

Joe has three ways to collect emails or phone calls for follow back:

A) placing a note pad in front of the cashier’s desk asking new clients to write email or contact info for special promos.

B) Placing a glass bowl by the cashier’s desk offering the weekly draw of free lunch from dropped business cards.

C) Offering comment cards and asking for contact info.

Joe has three ways to accumulate client’s information and follow-up with them. So everyday he goes through all the information and creates a secure data.

Nancy finds the place charming and the food great but not a good customer service. It is Joe’s responsibility to follow-up and gain back Nancy’s business once again to avoid spending all the money and time all over to attract another new client.”

Existing clients are the perfect way to promote every business. Send special offering, communicate with them and even ask them to share your business with their friends. Respect the boundary between proper communication and spamming.

16- Not offering giveaways and novelty items:

One of the most effective ways to attract clients is to giveaway your product or service for free.

A) Test run: Offer a monthly test run of your product and service and giveaway a free sampler. People love to get samplers. It gives them information about your business and its quality.

B) Propose monthly contest: Proffer a monthly contest and giveaway prizes based on participating in your business. People love contest and it excites them to know they can win something. If it didn’t work, Lottery and Casinos didn’t exist.

C) Give out novelties like mugs, pen, key chain, notepad, calculator, shirts and hats with the business information printed on it.

17-Wrong niche:

As a business owner recognizing correct niche market target is necessary for further marketing planning and budget assignment.

To explain this better lets picture a shoe store that carries high-end fashion shoes for women. The first thing that comes into the mind, high-end fashion niche is only younger generation and teenagers. A good business owner will explore the possibilities to analyze further more into the data from business plan to understand the local community needs.

If selling high-end, then its higher quality and higher prices. A teenager on a student living budget cannot be a direct and only target niche. So the correct niche is a professional and higher income spender who is more interested in quality without considering the price tag.

This example clears how a business owner distinguishes the certain target audience by analyzing the local market data from business plan. With enough knowledge in market research, the business owner avoids wasting the marketing budget on a wrong niche.

18-Not participating in community:

“Every big things has small beginning”

Regardless of the geographical target of any business, whether global or corner store in a small village, it all begins with local community.

Who are the first people you would share news with in your everyday life? Family and friends are the strongest link to marketing and spreading the word. It starts from friends and family and spreads to their friends and family and before you know it, is a snowball effect and cumulative.

The local community is the test run before spending a time and money on a dead-end marketing plan.

19- Do not own an informative and representative website:

Internet plays a great deal of connection in people’s life everyday. Many customers use the Internet to search and review local businesses. No matter what kind of business, it requires an informative and user-friendly website. A good business website is a gateway that welcomes customers to enter and experience the business offering.

Many small business owners making mistake and assume their line of business does not need a website. With daily development of technology, people get more connected via Internet and do their shopping online. Search engines get stronger everyday by developing codes and programs to bring up the exact and precise inquiry.

20- Do not appreciate the value of the Internet:

With a vastly growing competition on the Internet and the increase in demand for business development, simply having a website that offer information is not enough. Popular search engines are only producing websites in their search result, which have better ranking. Many small business owners simply making a big mistake by avoiding the presence on the Internet and ignore the growing highway to success. Every business must have an informative website and optimizes the business on search engines, social media and popular relevant forums. This subject of Internet marketing and its highly effective marketing plans is a lot of subject to cover in this article.

21- Expecting too much in short time:

Do not expect too much in a short time. There is always cause and effect but it requires proper time period to produce best effect. A seed needs time to open the surface and grow to a strong tree. But it requires water and good fertilization. Marketing is the water and fertilization to the business. It takes time for a good marketing plan to spread the roots and make a strong holding ground.

“Rome was not built in a day”

It took generations and much hard work of skilled engineers, planning and proper budgeting to build the mega city of Rome.

Can you hold a roof without building the pillars and the walls?

Marketing is the pillar of the business. Without marketing and planning, business lacks a foundation.

Many business owners place the marketing and development in their last page when the business opens its door to the public. Marketing starts when the business idea takes shape. It begins before the business is even called a business. Avoid making marketing mistake and start your marketing with knowledge and strategy.

Marketing is the heart of every business and keeps the health of the company in balance. But treat the heart right. Eating healthy, exercise and lack of stress are keeping the heart healthy to beat the life into our body. Practicing and implementing the right marketing strategies keep the business in shape. Don’t make mistake if you had a good run. Many small business owners get too excited for this temporary beat of recognition and look at it as everlasting. To keep a good balance in business, marketing and planning should match the flow of the business. Increase your strategies as your business grows and increases.

Marketing is the pillar of every business and is the only foundation to go further, faster. Imagine a boat with no engine crossing the Atlantic. The marketing to a business resembles the engine to a boat. The planning and strategy of the marketing to the business is the safety gear of the boat that keeps it balance and not to tip over. provides business quotes for phone systems, card machines, franking machine and many more. Save up to 40% on these services with a quote today.

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Running a business that requires fleet management is not a simple task. Without knowing the location of the vehicles in your fleet, a number of problems could come along your way. This includes the failure to monitor your drivers’ performance, theft, fuel management, and productivity problems.

This is why several businesses install vehicle tracking systems to help them operate smoothly. These systems have two types — the passive and active vehicle tracking. In passive tracking, the system collects and saves all the necessary information which can be retrieved later. Active tracking, on the other hand, collects and sends information immediately. Both types have their own advantages, which is why some businesses us both systems. If the signal is down, information is saved and sent later. If the signal is stronger, information is sent immediately.

How can this contribute to better fleet management? The benefits of vehicle tracking include the following:

Increased Productivity and Efficiency

Investing in a vehicle tracking system will help you see which routes are the best ones to take in order to save time and money. A proper fleet management system will save your drivers from getting stuck in traffic and delaying their services.

An essential factor to improving your business’ productivity is reducing downtime. By installing a vehicle tracking system, you will be able to make better decisions for trip schedules so there is less downtime for your vehicles.

With the help of tracking systems, fleet managers can plan the trip schedules better. If the system reports a number of idle vehicles, managers can assign them with more trips in a day. This not only increases productivity but also boosts your business.

Better Resource Management

Getting a fleet management system will allow you to keep track of all your vehicles and monitor their fuel usage, engine movement, and even the drivers’ behavior. These data will help you determine aspects where you can save more on and use your resources more effectively.

Reduced Expenses

  • Fuel

A vehicle tracking system will help reduce fuel costs and other unnecessary overtime expenses due to traffic and other unexpected circumstances.

One of the causes of increased fuel consumption is speeding. If a fleet management system is installed, it would be easier for managers to track down and get alerts on which drivers have been over speeding. It also reduces the chances for drivers to get over speeding tickets.

Another reason for an increase of fuel consumption are idle vehicles. Tracking systems can prevent this by notifying managers so they can take the necessary actions and preventive measures.

Vehicle tracking devices also indicate routes that have no toll fees so businesses can avoid those extra charges.

  • Insurance

Businesses can get discounts from insurance companies on vehicles that have tracking systems. You can get a huge discount plus enjoy the benefits that this system provides for fleet management.

  • Maintenance

The latest tracking systems can provide advanced features including indicators for engine temperature and fuel levels, and vehicle diagnostics. These devices also make it easier for fleet managers to monitor the engines and overall health of the vehicles.

Investing on tracking systems would mean that you won’t have to spend much on constant routine inspections. The data you get from the system will help you determine when it is necessary to get your vehicles checked.

Improved Customer Service

Keeping customers happy and satisfied with your services is an important aspect to keeping a successful transportation business. Vehicle tracking can help improve customer service by providing routes and other information so that vehicles can reach customers quickly.

Tracking and management systems also make it easier for businesses to be more accurate in giving delivery schedules and other time details to customers. Installing it would make your business more reliable and can increase your loyal clients.

Better Staff and Driver Management

Fleet management systems provide a more effective method for managers to monitor their drivers. They can easily get data that indicates driver behavior — such as over speeding and idling — and analyze those information so they can give the necessary corrective actions.

Vehicle tracking systems also help promote safety for both the drivers and the trucks. Road problems, traffic accidents, and theft can be reduced since fleet managers are immediately alerted before any of these problems worsen or begin to occur. A two-way communication system can be installed so that fleet managers and drivers can easily communicate and drivers can get the necessary assistance in case of a problem.

Better Financial Management

Data from the tracking system’s logs will give you all the information you need to analyze fuel costs, maintenance expenses, and driver routes. Using these data will help you create a more comprehensive analysis of profit losses and gains so you can allocate your funds better.

Easy Tracking of Lost Vehicles

With vehicle tracking  systems, locating your lost or stolen vehicles will be made faster and more convenient. Since all the tracking is done through a fleet management software, critical data such as vehicle status and location can be easily accessed by managers through their smartphones, laptops, and tablets.

Digitization of Alerts and Information

Investing on tracking systems will save your business from a lot of hassle. It can send fleet managers alerts via SMS or email whenever a vehicle leaves the business point. The system also notifies the managers of any accidents and other problems — drivers won’t have to worry about calling and making a quick report on the incident while on the scene — so managers can respond to them immediately.

These systems are also equipped with digital timekeeping features so any billing discrepancies and dispatch inaccuracies can be avoided.

Since information is stored in the system, drivers, managers, and other personnel will not be burdened with too much paperwork. It will be easier for them to track minute details and other data which can be easily presented whenever necessary.

There are several advantages to investing in vehicle tracking systems for fleet management. However, before you make use of this system, be sure to conduct a through research on what your business needs so that you can select the best type of system that works for you.



Are you thinking of making some extra money on the Internet just like the online site that sells the niche product – waist trainer corset? You definitely would not be the only one. Millions of individuals are turning to the Internet to discover ways of making an extra income from the comfort of their own homes and some are even hoping to be able to give up their day jobs and work online full-time.


There is no place like the Internet. No country can offer the same entry to a global market for such little cost as the Internet. Being online can cost less than a dollar an hour and for that dollar, you can have access to hundreds of millions of people through their computers. That is access to several tens of millions of people percent of outlay.


That makes an Internet-based business the most cost-effective in the world and it permits you to work from a laptop or cyber cafe anywhere in the world. The one thing that working online cannot do for you though is stopping the stress that builds up from owning any business. Therefore, how can you reduce the stresses of running an online business? I do not mean financial stress or delivery problems, they are common to all business set-ups.

Changes occur very quickly on the Internet. A new style or method of doing things can happen within a week or even less, whereas it may take months or even years in a land-based business. This means that you have to devote some time every week to keep up with ‘current affairs’.


The easiest way of doing this is to subscribe to a few forums. Join say two forums that are relevant to the industry that you are in and one general ‘techie’ forum. That way, you will always be aware of the latest developments and cannot be caught sleeping.


The Internet can be pretty flimsy when you think about it. You might spend years constructing a couple of hundred websites, but if you host goes down, so do you, unless you are ready. In 2009, that happened to me twice, so it is not that unusual. It is very simple for someone to set himself up as a web space reseller, but if he stops paying his bills, he can take hundreds of website owners offline with him, and you may not even know it for a few days.


There are several precautions that you should take to dispel the stress of going out of online business overnight through no fault of your own.


Take regular, very regular backups and do not put all your backups on the same medium. I backup everything every time I modify anything. One day the backup goes to a CD and the next day it goes to a portable hard drive. If I had a large enough flash drive the third day would go there. That way, you can never lose more than two day’s work, and believe me, that is nauseating enough.

Sign all your websites up to a ‘pinging’ service. These services check to see whether your website is on or offline several times a day robotically and tell you if they are down. You can get this free, but otherwise, it costs just pennies per site per month.


Have a second host ready. You can get a year’s hosting for a $60 or a few dollars a month. Have your account open and ready, and you could even load your websites on to it, so that if calamity strikes, you only have to modify the name servers, and you are off again

When you’re starting a new business, it is easy to be swamped by the huge amounts of work that is needed to get the job done. Especially if you’re starting this business from scratch and investing your own time and money into the project it can seem like there is always ‘one more thing’ to do before going to bed. However, if sometimes you feel like you’re burning the candle at both ends and working well into the night but not necessarily at your best, then this article is for you. Here are 5 tips to helping you stay on top of your game and maximise your productivity.

  1. Scheduling and timetabling

Now this might seem like a ridiculous and obvious tip but honestly it isn’t. If you are self-employed or starting your own business, you don’t have normal working hours. All hours are working hours. This makes it really easy to never switch off and to constantly be reaching for your phone to check your sales, profits or networking circle. It is also easy to find that when you’re not working you feel guilty because you feel like you should be. Switching off becomes a thing of the past – even when you aren’t doing anything. The guilt consumes you in every relaxing moment spent with family or friends. Scheduling allows you to switch off and achieve the most within your allotted time. During that time switch off from family calls and Facebook – after that time you are free to do as you wish! Make sure you timetable tasks and switch off when they’re ticked off. People work in different ways so choose a method that works for you. You can choose an allotted time to work or an allotted tas to complete – but if you stick to it you’ll b more productive during work, more motivated to get the job done and most importantly, enjoy your well deserved down-time!

  1. Lists

Often when faced with a huge task like starting a new business the task can start to feel overwhelming. Sometimes it is difficult to know what to get done first. Make a list and start to organise your thoughts. Once that’s done you can start to categorise your list based on different categories such as order of importance, urgency and time required to completion. That way you can select tasks that are suitable for your particular day. And all those jobs you’ve left for another day? You’ve chosen to leave them because you selected more urgent and important tasks and they’re on the list! So you can relax and not try and conquer Everest all in one day.

  1. Legal etc.

When you have a brand new start-up you aren’t always sure it’s going to go anywhere so it’s easy not to take the appropriate measures to ensure that your documentation is clear and up to date. Often these things don’t feel urgent and so you feel like you can get to it at some point in the future once the business properly takes off etc. Believe in yourself! Many a small business has been scuppered by Trademark issues or Tax returns that become unstuck. Make sure all the small details and loose ends are tied up nicely before you invest marketing money in a name that might be taken or copyrighted. Make sure you keep your paperwork and you’re up to date because your small business deserves the best shot!

  1. Wellbeing

You’re embarking on an amazing journey and it’s easy to feel that you need to put in your all at all times. The truth is that those who work longer don’t necessarily work harder or work better. Work smarter rather than longer by increasing your productivity. The best way to do this is to ensure that your mind is sharp and focussed. Take time to sleep properly and identify when you are most productive. Some people work better in the morning and some better late. If you’re a morning person set your alarm half an hour earlier and go to lunch half an hour earlier. You may not have worked longer but you’ll work better if you tend to fade near lunch time. If you need a little 10 minute tea break then give yourself one – especially if you know you’ll work better after it. Remember, your business relies on you – your entrepreneurship, creativity and hard work so treat your mind and body like the work tool that it is and ensure it is fed and watered well.

  1. Enjoy the journey!

Lastly, make sure you’re still enjoying it! Starting a new business is an exciting, exhilarating and amazing journey. Enjoy every moment of it as you put your vision into action. Remember that your small start up or new business idea has brewed for a long time. Remember that when you’re feeling frustrated. It takes time to be successful and there will be knock backs – but with perseverance and positivity you can make it succeed. Enjoy the challenge and new opportunity and take pleasure in every small step in the right direction.

So there you have it 5 tips to help you towards your business success. Hope you enjoyed the read – Visit our main site to get business comparison quotes for your business and save up to 40% on products such as a phone system or a card machine to take payments.

For many online startups one of the main issues they face after they launch their new website is getting visitors through the search engines such as Google. This can be a long wait and unless you are an Search Engine Optimisation guru getting traffic through organic search in the first 6 months of your website can be extremely difficult.  This can be taxing on many business owners. You spend months getting your online store ready for launch and after the excitement of launch you are left in. dismay as nobody visits your website. Luckily If faced in this situation there are ways you can still drive traffic to your site. Below we will list the top 3 free tactics your business should implement todrive traffic and generate ecommerce sales without organic traffic from the major search engines.


Get active on all social media platforms. It’s really simple!


Social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest are widely used by websites to promote their products and services to a vast audience that sit on these platforms. Social Media plays a key role in branding, awareness and sales. If you haven’t done already get yourself an account for your ecommerce store on all the major social media platforms. The platforms are easy to pick up even if you are a novice. Post regularly promoting store items, blog post and anything you think is worth sharing to your target audience. Doing this will ensure you pick up new customers as well as driving visitors to your website. Small learning and with the right social media strategy your business will definitely benefit. Let social media buzzwords like “Like”, “Follow”, “Tweet” & “Pin” into your business and you will never look back.

Find established content sites in your niche and offer to write a guest post on their blog 

Reach out to websites in your niche and ask the to place content about your new website to be published on their site. Many web owners are open to allowing another website to guest post on their blog as long as the content is of value to their username. Guest posting on established sites that already have traffic can be a big boost to any new site. Not only will that sites send referral traffic to your online store but also having your website mentioned on an external website will also improve your rankings in the search engines.


Use the big online shopping marketplaces (Ebay & Amazon) They have loads of traffic.

Have you tested your products in your store? Do you know what price the items should be sold for and which ones will be your top selling? If the answer is no take this time to promote and test your products on already established shopping websites such as eBay and Amazon two of the biggest traffic websites in the world. Think of it like a test spin. Pick several products you see as your top sellers, list them on both platforms and see if there is demand in the market and hunger to buy the product you are selling. In doing this you will learn alot about your products as well as the best price point to sell them at.


Take action now…

So there you have it our top 3 way to get traffic to your website whilst waiting for Google to show you some organic love in their search engines. Use social media, partner with similar sites that have the same target audience as you and make use of the big shopping sites eBay and Amazon. When your website kicks off you may need a payment gateway provider. You can compare the prices of the top online payment gateway providers today (click link).

May 25th sees the introduction of the new EU Data Protection regulations GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). This new change represents the biggest change in data regulations since the Data Protection Act of 1998 was launched. One of the main objectives of GDPR is to give citizens more control over how businesses use their personal data as well as simplifying data regulations for businesses. The change in regulation will affect all EU businesses no matter the size, country or industry.

The change although expected is still causing chaos for businesses who are rushing to ensure they are completely ready to meet GDPR requirements by May 25th 2018. So what is GDPR and how do you prepare – the ICO has laid out steps to ensure you are complaint.


  1. Awareness – Business decision makers should be fully aware of the changes and the impact that it is likely to have
  2. Information You Hold – You should document personal data you hold where it came from and who you share it with. Customers can request all the data a company holds on them at any time.
  3. Privacy information – You should review your pivacy notices and plans in place to ensure the necessary changes are made to meet GDPR.
  4. Individual Rights – You should be clear on how you use individuals data including how long you hold data, how data is deleted and be able to provide individuals with all data you hold on them when requested.
  5. Subject Access Request – You will need to update procedures and plan how you will handle requests within the new timescales to provide information.
  6. Lawful Basis for holding processing personal data – You should have a lawful basis to process any data, document it and update your privacy policy to explain these step.
  7. Consent – Your business needs to ensure that you have consent to use customers data, you should review existing data and re-verify consent if required.
  8. Children – You need to put a process in place in regards to verifying individual ages and getting consent from parents or guardians to process a child’s data.
  9. Data Breaches – You should have a system in place to detect, report and investigate any personal data breaches.
  10. Data Protection Officers – Businesses should consider having a Data Protection Officer in the business structure to oversee and ensure that GDPR laws are met by the organisation.
  11. Data Protection by Design and Data Protection Impact Assessment – Be aware of the ICO’s code of practice on Privacy Impact Assessment and work out how and when to implement it in your organisation
  12. International – If your company operates in more than one country you should determine your lead data protection supervisory authority. Article 29 Working Party guidance will help you do this.

Whilst GDPR has been quite daunting to companies the key aims of GDPR is to ensure that companies take more care and are much more transperant with how they are using customer data, how long that data is held for and are accountable should anything go wrong such as that data being mistreated. Companies need to audit their current use of data to ensure they are complaint by May 25th 2018 which is fast approaching.  Most businesses should be fine and GDPR should not pose much of a distraction to the everyday activities. It just calls for more care and responsibility in how customer data is used.

Every business that sends letters need a franking machine and here is why…

mailbase speed franking machine1. You can preselect the postage to be paid, so if you are sending out hundreds of invoices that all weigh the same and going out in the same sized envelope you would not need to reset the price after each one. You can also attach a conveyor stacker to more modern models.

2. Consumables such as ink, printer ribbons and toner can often be ordered by using the control panel of your equipment.

3. Increase the productivity of your post room staff by improving time management and reducing time wasting opportunities for your staff, no longer will they need to run around the office looking for the 1 remaining stamp, it’s all there in your equipment. If you run out of credit most machines can be topped up online. The post stacker that you can order as a handy extra to your machine, will ensure that envelopes are printed neatly and stacked ready to go to the post office rather than having an employee fiddling with the pile of post and then the letters coming through with the address lines not straight, it’s not a very professional image to present.

4. This type of office equipment is very cost effective, not only are you are likely to benefit from a discount from the post office on all your post. This is simply because they pass on some of the savings to you, because it is much cheaper for them to handle franked mail rather than stamped mail.

5. Another nifty little attachment you can add to your franking machine, if it is not built already in, is the electronic postal scale that will provide you with the most accurate weight for your item saving you money on guesstimating the correct amount of postage for the unusual item, which can cost you money by creating bad will with a customer who, has had to traipse to the post office to pick up a letter that has not had enough postage on it, or by saving you the pounds that pile up in expenses as you try to avoid the underpaid letter and end up over paying on a lot of your mail.

6. You can build your brand; many of the newer models have a feature that will allow you to print your logo, company name, a special offer, or even seasonal greetings to add that personal touch.

7. The digital element of the most modern franking machine will also make audit time go a lot smoother, because the date and postage paid will be available as a report, this feature can often create several work folders so that you can tell which department sent what.

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