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The 5 Most Common Mistakes Made by eCommerce Professionals and How to Avoid Them

It is almost impossible to keep up with the world of ecommerce. New stores come and go as quickly as the blink of an eye. Each new startup is full of excitement and enthusiasm but most never get to the point where it becomes rewarding. So what sets those stores that are successful apart? Simply put, they offer the highest quality shopping experience and are dedicated to details. Furthermore, they don’t make any of the following five mistakes.

  1. Slow Hosting 

One of the key factors of importance for an ecommerce store is their website. Online shoppers are notoriously unforgiving of slow hosting times and will happily move elsewhere if it takes too long to load a page or to check out. The result of this is abandoned shopping cards and lost clients. To combat this, ecommerce stores must research the best web hosting solutions out there. When researching, they should pay particular attention to mobile solutions as well, since so many people shop on the go and want the process to be very quick. New ecommerce startups have tight budgets, however. As a result, they usually choose the cheapest webhost they can find. In the long run, however, this will only cost them money as those solutions can’t cope with growing demands and expanding stores.

  1. Bad Security

While security is crucial, most retailers do not have any expertise in this field. They are salespeople, after all, and that is what they focus on. The result is that security is often not implemented correctly, leaving the store vulnerable to cybercriminals. In fact, ecommerce stores are prime targets, because hackers know how easy it is to get in them. If their customers’ credit card details are scraped, which is common, they will be completely unforgiving, and it often means the end of the store.

  1. Poor Search Facilities

In most cases, when a prospective customer travels to an ecommerce store, they know what they want to buy. Hence, they want to be able to simply search for the product, filtering the availability, so they don’t have to look through thousands of items. If an ecommerce store doesn’t enable this or does so poorly, shoppers will be more likely to go elsewhere.

  1. Frustrating Payment and Checkout Processes

One of the greatest killers in conversions for ecommerce sites is a poor experience at checkout. Ecommerce stores should focus on creating a quick and easy solution, only asking for the pieces of information that are absolutely necessary. The goal should be to get people through the process in as few steps as possible. One way to achieve that is through social media sign-ons, meaning that they can link any of the popular social media sites and get their details from there automatically. When ecommerce stores remove the need for any manual completion, they set themselves at an advantage.

  1. Generic Product Pages

Last but not least, product pages on ecommerce stores must be unique and compelling. This requires a lot of time and resources, which is why it is often avoided. However, unless the store offers something that isn’t found elsewhere, customers will go to the competition. Investing that time and those resources is a must.

A final thing that ecommerce stores should remember is that without new tech, they won’t get new customers. They must, in other words, always keep their sites, individual pages, functionalities, and optimization fully up to date. Without that, their store will be yet another one that bites the dust.

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The Consumer Convenience Of Smartphones Has Arrived In The Business World

As a consumer, your smartphone has transformed your world. It condenses gadgets that would once have filled an entire house down to something that’s the size of a deck of cards. Your smartphone is your radio, GPS, phone, computer, gyroscope, TV, torch and on and on. But now that same level of convenience is coming to the business world. Yes, businesses can benefit from all those consumer-facing products too. But there are also some rather specific needs that businesses have that consumers don’t. Now the smartphone is gobbling up these functions too. Check this out.

Quick Response Codes For Customer Outreach

A QR code is essentially a form of advertising for your business. QR codes are usually sent out on flyers or plastered on posters. Customers scan the QR image, and then they’re forwarded to your site or get shown a map of your event. The idea is to get passing customers to see your advert and then take an action themselves to directly get involved in what you’re doing.

Here’s the cool thing. Businesses are leveraging the phone’s ability to do the job of a barcode scanner. This opens up countless opportunities to do business better. Take estate agents for instance. Estate agents can use QR codes on their “For Sale” signs. This mean that people who are just passing by the property can instantly be directed to information about it on the web. All they have to do is point their camera at the sign and then get forwarded to the correct information on the internet.

The Death Of The Till

In the past, if you wanted to take payments, you had to have a till, or at least payment terminal. But now smartphones can double up as a credit card reader too. That’s a big deal for businesses. Up until now, travelling companies have had to lug around bulking payment terminals. They’ve also had to install separate systems and pay for the units themselves. But now simple software in smartphones is causing terminals and tills to “dematerialize.” They’re just not needed anymore. Currently, payments accepted by smartphones are on the rise. According to the data, 11 percent of payments were taken by a smartphone last year.

The End Of Human Personal Assistants

Perhaps the most interesting development of the last few years is the fact that we’re no longer dematerializing gadgets. We’re dematerializing people. Business smartphones already take a significant chunk of legwork away from accountants and secretaries. After all, business users already have software that removes the need for a lot of accountancy work.

But new developments in artificial intelligence look set to change the game yet again. Rather than requiring a team of support staff, many business leaders may opt to use the AI on their phones. Smartphone AI will be able to do far more than it is able to do today. For instance, it’ll be much better at understanding voice command. In fact, according to a recent press release from Google, voice recognition is now almost as good as humans. It’ll also be able to other cool things like fill in your diary, just from monitoring your emails or from voice command.

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The Importance of Power Supply for Your Computer

There are ideas floating through your mind and you are comfortably putting them down on your computer, busy typing them on your keyboard. However you are completely unaware of what is about to happen to you in a matter of seconds. At the brink of the moment, the lights go out you notice your computer dies since your monitor is all black! With this, all your necessary documents go unsaved as you were busy focusing on typing. Nevertheless this untoward occurrence could have been averted if you had interruptible power supply to your system; Right?

The need for power supply to your computer

If the system shuts down in an abrupt sequence, there are chances that you may get a warning about losing your necessary data. Conversely, in case there is an unprepared shutdown, then you will end up losing the data you were working on. This is why the need for continual power supply is must. Not only it is useful for gaming purpose, but for everyday work as well. There are several companies that provide interruptible pc power supply solutions, which is a necessity today.

What more do you need?

In fact, together with high-end power supply services there are companies that provide excellent computer cases, gaming supplies, accessories, which are made in keeping quality in mind. It is essential for you to have a reliable best computer cases as well as unswerving towers for your technological devices. These companies online provide you with state-of-the-art power supply towers and technological accessories which are the need for the day keeping craftsmanship and quality in mind. With the assistance of gaming PC cases, dependable towers and accessories for your computer, your experience will be ensured to be seamless and as comfortable as possible.

How is uninterruptible power supply useful?

Make the most by using a reliable power supply as it will help in providing continuous power to your monitor and computer. When the power shuts down unexpectedly, you will, at least, get adequate time to save and shut down the system the right way. At the same time, the length of time available would also depend on how much power you may require.

With a reliable uninterruptible power supply or UPS, your system will be safeguarded from power fluctuations. You might be aware of those small little flickers of light, occurring from time to time. They may seem to be mere flickers to you however they have the power to create havoc especially on sensitive built-in electronics of your computer or PC. The line voltage will be continuously monitored through the UPS and the moment it senses any kind of voltage fluctuations it will get activated. They are generally measured through milliseconds. A consistent and good UPS would ensure that the changes are made from your direct current and will be directed to its power supply. It would ensure that everything gets done in a jiffy, to avert any sort of data loss.

There are several companies online which sell some high-end UPS and at a cost effective rate. The price of UPS has become cost effective and much reasonable over the past few years as the cost of batteries and technology has much come under control. Always make sure to check and ensure that you are armed with a UPS as we never know when the power goes off and your computer is saved from power fluctuations and your system is kept safe no matter what the circumstance is.

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From Epic Fail To Runaway Success: Fix Your Online Store In 5 Easy Steps

These days it’s fairly simple to create a new online store. Unlike traditional bricks and mortar stores, online versions can take just minutes to create. There is an almost limitless array of hosted and self-hosting platforms that one can use.

The trouble is, some people that are new to e-commerce make the wrong choices. As a result, they end up with an online store that is, quite frankly, an epic fail. The stores I’m talking about suffer from high rates of abandoned carts and low visitors.

Does that unfortunate scenario sound familiar to you? If so, don’t worry because you’re not alone. There is some good news to come out of all this: you can put things right! Check out these five simple strategies to find out how:

  1. Move over to a decent e-commerce platform

Believe it or not, the problem may be down to the online store software you are using. There’s no denying that one can select from a variety of solutions for their e-commerce needs. Sure, one solution might sound good in theory. But, if it limits what you need to do, it’s not the right platform for your site.

Unsure which platform to use? I suggest talking to a Shopify or Magento 2 agency. They can discuss your needs and help you determine which platform is right for you.

  1. Get some professional product photos taken

Some e-commerce retailers cheat and use the photos supplied to them by manufacturers. The problem with that approach is that product manufacturers don’t always take good photos! With that in mind, I suggest paying a product photographer to take some snaps for you.

They can ensure that the photos show the products you sell in the best light. They can even take good “action” shots, showing your items getting used as intended.

  1. Hire a copywriter to come up with your product descriptions

When people visit your online store, they’ll usually look at your product photos first. Next, they’ll read the descriptions before making a buying decision. If your text content isn’t up to scratch, they might go elsewhere. And that’s something you want to avoid happening!

To overcome that issue, I recommend hiring a copywriter. They will come up with text that helps your products to sell themselves. Plus, they’ll use “power words” to make people feel good about spending their money with you.

  1. Convert your site’s design into a responsive one

Have you ever looked at your site on a mobile screen? No? Go and do so right now. If it looks great, you can avoid this step. But, if you have to zoom on the content, you’ve got a problem.

To solve that issue, you need to have your site’s design and layout converted into a “responsive” one. In a nutshell, this is where page layouts automatically adapt to different screen sizes.

  1. Don’t just offer PayPal as a payment method

You might have a fantastic-looking site. You may even get lots of visitors to it each month. But, one reason few people buy from you is if you don’t offer any payment options.

We all know that PayPal is an easy payment method to set up. But, most people prefer to use their debit or credit cards to pay for stuff. In other words, they don’t want to use a digital wallet. Be sure to offer card payment facilities on your site to increase conversion rates.

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The Most Common Internal IT Security Threats Businesses Face

While cyber security is something even very small businesses are starting to take serious consideration of, there’s something they’re slower to shield themselves from, and that’s the internal threats they’re facing. While businesses might utilize cybersecurity measures aimed at external threats, it’s often the internal issues that can wreak the most havoc on an organization.

Research from the US Computer Emergency Response Team showed that nearly 40 percent of all IT security breaches are carried out by people within the company. According to ZDNet, another study showed that employees committed 90 percent of criminal cyber activities. What’s also important to note is that not all of these internal threats are even malicious. Some are incidental but can be no less damaging.

The first step to preventing against insider attacks and threats is to understand what you’re up against. Below are five of the most common insider IT issues facing businesses right now.

Peer-to-Peer File Sharing

Increasingly P2P is becoming a problem for companies, even if it’s something they’ve prohibited in their IT policy. Whether your business doesn’t have a specific P2P policy in place, or employees are ignoring it, it can become incredibly problematic. There have been numerous incidents of not just businesses having their information leaked as a result, but even government entities. Educating employees on P2P file sharing is important.

Outdated Operating Systems

This top internal security issue isn’t malicious, but it can certainly be problematic. For those companies that use a Windows operating system, if it isn’t updated regularly with the newest versions it can cause issues. It can be a big undertaking to make sure every desktop, laptop, and mobile device is updated accordingly, but it’s also something that’s worthwhile.

USB Devices

One of the number one internal threats businesses face regarding cybersecurity comes in the form of their USB devices. Viruses can be transferred via these devices, whether knowingly or unknowingly on the part of employees. There isn’t a lot of protection you can put in place when it comes to a USB device, but many businesses are looking at more secure means of storing and sharing data, documents and information, such as virtual data rooms from companies like FIrmex.

Unaware Employees

Just because an employee isn’t doing something to be purposely damaging to employees doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. A lot of cyber criminals are realizing they can exploit employees to get the information they need, so it doesn’t even matter if there are rigorous technical security measures in place. What a lot of security experts are seeing are issues where employees are giving out passwords and other information by email and phone during phishing attacks, and it’s becoming harder for employees to recognize they’re being scammed as these plots grow increasingly sophisticated. A strong training program is the best way to combat against this. If you don’t have the time or resources to create an internal training program, you can rely on eLearning courses such as the “PhishProof Assessments and Training” program from Inspired eLearning.

While there isn’t a 100 percent safeguard against internal cybersecurity threats, awareness is the first step in securing your business, your customers, and your employees.

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Why Strong Passwords Aren’t Always Good Enough

Security breaches happen so often these days, most people are probably sick of hearing about them. With loads of tips and tricks about how to beef up your accounts and make sure that your data stays secure, it can often be difficult to try and figure out which ones are the best to use. Even if you think that you have probably heard it all before, there are always new tips coming out when it comes to keeping passwords strong, secret and un-guessable. But, the password-cracking tools of today are becoming more and more advanced, cutting through many of the password strength tricks that many of us use for both personal and business accounts.

Passwords are Easier to Crack than Ever

These days, the passwords that we use for both personal and business use are far less secure than they were just a few years ago, due to advanced hardware and modern techniques used by password crackers and cyber criminals.

Some inexpensive graphics processors enable password-cracking programs to attempt billions of different passwords in just one second, meaning that something that could have taken weeks or months to achieve just a few years ago can now be done in a simple matter of minutes. Enterprise password manager software is quickly being implemented by many businesses who understand that simply using strong passwords isn’t always the answer to preventing security breaches any longer.

Training Your Employees Regarding Passwords

The biggest problem with passwords is that even when using all the relevant password security tips, many employees are all padding their passwords in much the same way. This results in passwords being generated using a common pattern, which often consists of a memorable word with a combination of numbers and special characters, usually at the end of the password. No matter what combination is used, this common pattern has made it easier than ever for professional password guessers to crack even those passwords that you thought could never be deciphered. The solution to this is to train your employees to not do what everyone else is doing when it comes to creating their passwords. Certain things such as mixing the numbers up within a word, using symbols at the beginning of the password instead of the end or deliberately misspelling a word can all be things that make a password much more difficult to crack, even with a professional system.

Password Security

A large number of security breaches come to be due to passwords not being kept as secure as they should be. This is often seen in the case of internal security breaches, where passwords are discovered due to employees writing them down or storing them in electronic devices in order to easily access them.

Because of this, it is vital that all employees receive complete security training in order to make them aware of the various risks and vulnerabilities involved with writing passwords down or storing them anywhere which could potentially be accessed by others. Passwords should also be regularly updated to keep them secure; especially in the case of an employee leaving or being fired – many security breaches occur as a result of a disgruntled former employee who still has access to company systems and data. Just as you always update security software, ensure that passwords are too updated every few months.

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