Moving Your Company to the Cloud

April 20th, 2017 by TCC No comments »

The buzz word is out there and everyone is doing it.
Now it’s time for you to take the first step.

Today users can work without knowing the location and other details of the computing infrastructure. Cloud computing services and cloud storage deliver software applications, data access, data administration and storage for everyday businesses saving time and money. Because your server will be part of the cloud you will access your data from anywhere at any time.

Do you require a hosting company that is flexible enough to meet your unique environment? The Computer Company will work with you to architect a design that provides the necessary bandwidth, processing power and storage so your business can seamlessly operate in the cloud.

There are many benefits to moving your business to the cloud:
  • Flexibility of connection options. Access to your data while you are off-site, employees can connect to their virtual office, quickly and easily.
  • Automatic updates. Latest technology, up-to-date software, servers upgrades and computer processing power.
  • Reduced costs (everyone’s favorite!). Moving to cloud computing usually will reduce your cost of managing and maintaining your IT systems.
  • Flexibility for sizing. Your business will have the flexibility required as your needs change for your software and storage.
  • Business continuity. You can relax knowing that you are protecting your data and systems.
  • Collaboration efficiency. Employees can communicate and share work more easily.
The points below are from an article written by James A. Martin, PCWorld contributing editor

Cloud Computing.

For some, the term is wildly nebulous. For others, cloud computing instantly raises concerns about security and reliability. After all, Gmail, a popular cloud-based e-mail service has endured some high-profile outages.

Before you dismiss the cloud as a lot of vapor, though, listen to what small-business people told us about their experiences with it:

  • “We saved over $4000 in up-front costs by moving to an entirely cloud-based solution [for e-mail, Web hosting, virus protection, and more]. We were also able to substantially reduce our power bill and the costs needed to maintain and upgrade hardware.”
  • “As a non-IT person, I find cloud-based applications easier to set up and use than many computer applications, and I don’t need to rely on internal IT support as much for assistance.”
  • “A power surge nearly destroyed our in-house e-mail server. Had we not recovered it, a great deal of historical knowledge and valuable information would have been lost forever, not to mention the lost productivity for days or weeks. Now we have a secure, redundant, cloud e-mail system we can access anywhere, anytime, with a consistent interface, and it’s made our business stronger.”

Small businesses looking to cut computing costs and improve efficiency are finding the many benefits of Internet-based software and services increasingly attractive. Cloud computing evolved as a term to describe free or subscription-based services delivered in real time over the Internet.

Cloud Computing can refer to software as a service, to file storage, synchronization, backup, other utility computing, and to infrastructure as a service.

 

Email Encryption: Ensure Your Communications Are Safe & Confidential

April 12th, 2017 by TCC No comments »

When sending emails to customers, employees, or business partners, your business has to ensure that any sensitive information you send is completely secure.

Every industry in today’s marketplace has a need for encrypted email communications – simply hoping that no unwelcome eyes are viewing your information is not enough. Keep your emails completely confidential with The Computer Company’s encrypted email services.

Encrypting Your Emails is Easy.

Once our email encryption services are implemented, securing your emails is simple. With a click of a button, your emails can be encrypted and decrypted. Receivers of your encrypted email only have to go to a secure site and create an account to view your email. Once your email receiver has an account, they just login to view any of your subsequent encrypted emails. Your email encryption is easy, simple, and fast thanks to The Computer Company. Best of all, it’s guaranteed to be secure. While other companies may have to worry about hacking, phishing, and other digital threats, your company can rest easy knowing your communications are under lock and key.

Email Encryption Is Especially Important For…

Finance

Whether you’re in the finance industry, or simply handle a lot of money in your day-to-day business dealings, email encryption is key to ensure financial information is secure.

Government

Government entities need to be more concerned than the average organization about security and privacy of information. Our email encryption services can handle thousands upon thousands of encrypted emails and receiver accounts. The public trusts you – and you can trust us.

Healthcare

Patient information is one of the most sensitive issues in the medical field. This is true whether you are a hospital, a clinic, or an insurance company. Allowing this sensitive information to fall in the wrong hands can lead to legal troubles, emotional harm, and even patient illness or death.

Law Firms

Email is the staple of a law firm’s internal and external communications. We provide you with the security you need, the ease of use your partners, associates and staff want, and robust support to keep everything running flawlessly so you can concentrate on running your practice.

Your company can’t afford to have your private and confidential information hijacked by a hacker or a competitor. Don’t risk your security – call ( 800) 418 2358 today to learn more about our secure email encryption service.

Get both Spam and email Encryption for $4/per user.

info@computercompany.net

 

Hundreds of various sized businesses and organizations in 30+ industries utilize our services in MA, CT, RI, NY, NJ.

The Computer Company (TCC) enables organizations to gain full advantage of IT to increase efficiencies, improve effectiveness, and reach new goals. Our TCC team of highly experienced, knowledgeable technology and design professionals will work closely with you. We provide the analysis, expertise, tools, and monitoring to help you solve your toughest business challenges through IT solutions.
Find out how you can save thousands of dollars a year by choosing The Computer Company’s server co-location packages.

We offer dedicated servers, data backup, migration and managed hosting services.

 

 

Lights, Camera, Video; How to Add Videos to Your Marketing Mix On Your Website

April 5th, 2017 by TCC No comments »

Should You Add Videos to Your Website?

Stop and think for a minute, how many online videos have you watched lately?

Online videos are a key part of your small business marketing plan. A recent survey by ta consulting firm found 90% of consumer respondents watch video content over the Internet. And that’s not surprising, considering video giant YouTube is the second largest search engine behind Google and it boasts millions of viewers. So how can you make video marketing a part of your promotional efforts? How can you secure a share of that viewership to promote your content and boost your sales? Let’s find out.

Keep it short:

Viewership online may be high, but attention spans are low. With all the quick links and promotions floating around any given page of the Internet, users very quickly tune out when watching long, drawn out lectures or sales pitches. Your video should focus on a single and simple call-to-action. What do you want your viewer to know or do? Then find a way to present that idea in a short and entertaining way. Creates a six-second looping video and can be used to show off the best parts of your product quickly.

Pull back the curtain:

One of the best opportunities you have when using video is to put a human face to your business. By filming your videos  around the office, you give people a better sense of the company they’re interacting with and purchasing from. Consumers love seeing the inner workings of a business, even if it’s just a glance. Additionally, if you have a fun work environment or an interesting product creation process, show it off.

Video tutorials are a great way to bring consumers to your content while teaching them ways to succeed with your product. For  example, if you’re a florist and want to show people easy ways to create a bouquet, make a video tutorial about it, this not only shows potential customers how you go through your process, but also showcases your  talents. Then end the video with your brand and business info. Tutorials are one of the best uses for video and will bring consumers who are searching for how to do something right to your page, where your product or solution is waiting.

Creating videos for your small business marketing has never been easier with video on smartphones, and apps like Vine or Instagram. You can create short, fun and helpful videos to post on your YouTube page or embed on your website. To learn more about using video to promote your business, contact us for a free evaluation of your web marketing efforts and how we can increase your sales.

Discover the overall strength and effectiveness of your website.

30 Second Test – Things to look for:

  • Does your website communicate your message clearly?
  • At the end of the day, what do you want your website to do?
  • Does your website effectively explain your product/service?
  • How do your clients react to your website? Do they like it?
  • What does your sales staff say about your website? Does it help or hurt them?
  • Do you know If people are even using your website?
  • What do visitors do while on your website?
  • Bottom line, all websites have a call-to-action, even if it is to click on the next link or read the next page. Is your call-to-action getting you results?

If one or more of these questions cause you concern, call today at

1-800-418-2358

 

What You Don’t Know About SEO Can Hurt Your Business

March 30th, 2017 by TCC No comments »

Search engine optimization–the use of keywords and other techniques designed to elevate a website to the top of a search–is the make-or-break factor for many new businesses. It is also the web’s unfolding, and unregulated, frontier.

There are countless SEO strategists, consultants and self-professed experts who will claim they can raise your site up into Google’s top 10 search results–for a price. Unscrupulous SEO firms not only make promises they can’t keep, the worst of them also use shady practices that might produce no traffic, deliver the wrong traffic or even get you banned from Google. For the startup owner who isn’t well versed in SEO, hiring an SEO consultant is one of the more vulnerable moments in launching a new business..

The Right Keywords
Google, of course, is the web-search alpha dog. But all the others Bing, Yahoo, Ask.com, Lycos–are sniffing out the same stuff.What gets their attention? Good, fresh, focused content. Adding a blog is one of the easiest and most straightforward ways to bulk up on content. If you sell hair-removal devices, for instance, start a blog that explores all aspects of waxing, plucking, threading, electrolysis and so on. Over time, your site will accrue searchable heft.

The trick is to be hyper-conscious of your keywords. For example, if you want web surfers on the prowl for “eyebrow waxing” to find your site in search engine results, organically work the exact phrase “eyebrow waxing” into each blog post (maybe multiple times), and use it on all static pages related to eyebrow waxing. Lather, rinse and repeat with every term and phrase you want to rank for.

Before you start writing content, though, research and plan your keyword attack. Is geography important to finding your customers? Then maybe “Connecticut eyebrow waxing” is the phrase you want to home in on. How do you size up keyword quality? One method is to use Google’s AdWords Keyword Tool , which reveals how many monthly searches are conducted for a word or phrase. If a search term produces more than 50,000 searches in a month, it will be difficult for your site to compete for Google’s attention using that word or phrase. But you can also use AdWords like a thesaurus: It handily delivers a list of alternatives for you to sift through to find lower-volume, but more focused, keyword phrases. Using those, you’ll have a better chance of rising up the ranks. Google also has a search-keyword tool that will scan your existing site and suggest keywords.

Relevant Page Titles
So now it’s page titles–the line of text that appears at the top of your web browser–that are believed to be the most important few words in the SEO universe. (The title is also what shows up on Google’s search result.) A page title tag field is standard on most blog programs, including TypePad and WordPress ; any web programmer should be able to customize one for sites built on Drupal or Joomla , two popular content management systems. Another place to plant keywords is each page’s description field. Customize the description for each page of your site, and write them with some care, because the first 120 characters show up on Google, tucked between the page title and address. Plugging keywords into all these critical spots is time-consuming–but it isn’t rocket science. Getting it done, even if you need to update existing pages, shouldn’t be expensive.

Getting the Links
So what might be a good use of your SEO dollars? One word: Links. Google uses about 200 data points when sizing up your website. But one of them is whether you’re popular with the in crowd. If reputable websites link to your content, Google smiles upon you.

Need more information or would you like a
free SEO evaluation of your website, please contact us today

Telephone: 800 418 2358 or info@computercompany.net

Top 7 Real Security Threats You Face

March 23rd, 2017 by TCC No comments »

 2017 Security Predictions – The Threats Are Real

While 2016 was a banner year for cyberattacks, hold onto your boots, 2017 should be a wild ride as well. We’ll see escalations of current threats and brand new attack vectors.

  • Will the first ever Ransomworm spread through networks like wildfire?
  • Will your IoT device become the de facto target for zombie botnets?
  • Nation-state hacking and the Cyber Cold War have gone mainstream following the recent U.S Presidential election, and the public’s’ interest is at an all-time high.
  • Will we see the first civilian casualty in the Cyber Cold War?

Find out what WatchGuard’s Chief Technology Officer, Corey Nachreiner, thinks are the top 7 threats we face in 2017.

Check out the infographic to see the top 7 threats we face.


Source: 2017 Security Predictions (Infographic)

Future-Proof Ideas for Websites

March 15th, 2017 by TCC No comments »

When you’re talking about the future it’s hard not to get carried away. The future of almost everything seems exciting. Futuristic cars, houses, television, and of course, websites, will seemingly be able to perform almost any function, thanks to creativity and advances in technology.

But instead of focusing on the technology side of the future, focus on the human side. Human behavior is a more consistent bet than technology. If we prepare our website for the future with human nature in mind, we will put our organization in a good position regardless of how the flood of technology leaves things.

Future-proof ideas for websites

If we bet on technology, we can either be really right, or really, really wrong. But if we bet on human nature, we can count on consistency and know that our website is going to be well-positioned for the future.

The website of the future must be:

  • Simple
  • Mobile
  • Fast
  • Human
  • Useful and/or interesting

1. Make it simple

People value simplicity. Every day, more than 100 million pieces of content are shared on Facebook. More than 90 million Tweets are Tweeted. About 50,000 new blogs are created to get stacked on top of the 150 million+ that are already out there. As you read this, some of the 294 billion emails that are sent each day are being written.

We’re in an era of information overload. Our audience members are busy people who are overcommitted *outside* of their Internet lives. It’s a small miracle each time they make it to our sites so we shouldn’t overwhelm them once they get there.

The first step in preparing your website for the future happens offline. Websites are often a reflection of the organization that created them. If our organization is disorganized, and poor at communicating, our website will be, too. Design by committee often results in a battlefield of compromise where your visitor is the casualty. As an organization, we must go through the difficult task of truly answering some basic but powerful questions:

  • What kind of person is my audience member?
  • What’s the one thing they actually want from me?
  • What one action do I want them to take?

There are no Swiss army-knife sites We need to simplify, specialize and stick to our core mission or risk becoming irrelevant.

If the future of the web is simplicity, here’s how you can prepare:

  • Boil down your organization’s core offering
  • Conduct a website audit: check for competing initiatives on your own site
  • Check your analytics to see where you are losing visitors

2. Make it portable

People value convenience.

The world is going mobile in a hurry. You’ve heard the stats. By 2015, 63% of U.S. citizens will browse the mobile web. Nearly 150 million people will own smartphones and mobile traffic will increase 26-fold.

Mobile isn’t a trend. Mobile is the trend.

But the web isn’t just going to mobile devices, it’s going to any screen that can present the internet. Think kiosks, augmented-reality digital signage, screens we haven’t thought of yet. The web is going to be portable: found wherever a digital screen exists.

When you’re creating a mobile version of your website (which should be your priority over running out to create a mobile app just to create one), the simplicity you gained in step 1 (“Make it simple) will help pave the way for you to create a simpler menu that satisfies your audience members desires on your site.

To prepare your site for mobile:

  • Start thinking now about how you’d simplify your navigation menu and site content
  • Discontinue developing Flash elements into your website, focus on HTML or JavaScript
  • Focus on mobile-friendly first

3. Make it fast

People hate waiting

Nobody likes to stand in line. Waiting is tough for people. That’s why 40% of web users have abandoned a page after 5 seconds of loading.

Taking the steps to making sure our sites load quickly will have benefits to user experience and SEO. People are more likely to click through more on quickly-loading sites. And Google has mentioned that they take load speed into consideration in their algorithm.

Remember, simple sites load faster. And this is even more true (and more important) in mobile.

To get your site sped up for the future:

  • Check site load speed
  • Create a checklist of tweaks to apply to your current site

4. Make it human

People crave human interaction

We’ve heard the statistics on social media. And to be fair, a lot of organizations are at least trying social media. But the humanization of your website shouldn’t be limited to your social media pre-approved channels.

Social media – or the human element – should be a layer across your digital presence, not channel-based. Humanity evokes emotion from people. Showing the human side of your organization can have many benefits.

For instance, during a Fund donation drive, an A/B split test was conducted to see which donation form was more effective and generating donations. One form had a photo, the other did not. The one with the photo – the human – element – converted 10% better and resulted in $1 million more in donations.

The social side of your organization can come out anywhere you have content. Your email subscription thank you, your administrative copy, your error messages can all incorporate the human element.

For instance, a error message was written in a more human-friendly way and decreased the bounce rate by 66%

If the future of the web is social, here’s how to prepare:

  • Take inventory of your social media outposts: are you acting like a logo or a person?
  • Investigate where your audience socializes online
  • Start monitoring social media to keep tabs on influencers and your audience

5. Be useful or interesting

People love a good story

An article this long has to include the cliché “content is king” at least once so here it is: content is king. In a recent survey, 73% of people said they preferred to learn about organizations through articles as opposed to ads. Content is 61% more likely to drive someone to make a purchase than ads, and content can live forever on your website.

  • The power of a good story is strong.
  • And content can pay dividends down the road for your site. A Tweet or Facebook post usually only lasts for hours. A blog post can last for years.
  • The future of the web is storytelling, so start generating content that captivates your audience because it’s useful or interesting (or both!)
  • If you want to prepare for the future of the web, focus on human nature. Make it simple, portable, fast, social, useful and interesting you’ll be ahead of the race.

Put your website to the test!

30 Second Test – Things to look for:

  • Does your website communicate your message clearly?
  • At the end of the day, what do you want your website to do?
  • Does your website effectively explain your product/service?
  • How do your clients react to your website? Do they like it?
  • What does your sales staff say about your website? Does it help or hurt them?
  • Does your website sell for you the way you want it to?
  • Do you know If people are even using your website?
  • What do visitors do while on your website?
  • Bottom line, all websites have a call-to-action, even if it is to click on the next link or read the next page. Is your call-to-action getting you results?

If one or more of these questions cause you concern, call us today at 1-800-418-2358 and let’s get your website ticking again.

The Computer Company, Inc.
15 Commerce Drive, Cromwell, CT
(860) 635-0500

Turning Small Business into Big Business with eManagerSite

March 1st, 2017 by TCC No comments »

If you’re like most small business owners, you’re constantly fighting 3 battles:

You’ve got too much competition.

There are a limited number of customers out there, and you will need to find them and get them to your website.

You have a budget that is not unlimited.

Basically, this means you have to come up with ways to make your business stand out — all without spending a small fortune. Let the Computer Company review how this can be accomplished.

All you have to do is succeed at content marketing.  Content marketing has become a buzz term lately. However, it’s not some passing fad. Instead, it’s a proven way to turn your small business into a big business. In fact, if you do it correctly, your small business will be right up there with the big boys.

How can you do it?

Whether you have one employee or 1,000 employees, all businesses share one very important responsibility — to make life easier for their customers. Whether you sell websites, sell car parts or dry clean clothes, potential customers want to know how working with you benefits them. By publishing content that showcases your expertise, you can do just that.

Let’s say you run a small business that fixes computers. If you started up a blog that explained ways to prevent spyware from infiltrating people’s hard drives, wrote about the pros and cons of the newest processor to hit the market and gave out tips that could help make computers last longer, anyone who read your blog would see that you really know what you’re talking about. Thus, they’d be a whole lot more likely to call you when their own computer needs a repair.

Some ways to become an expert in a subject would be if you own a small interior design firm, talk to the local hardware store about writing a guest post for their website. If you write about the latest home renovation trend, that’s something that the hardware store’s customers will be interested in and if they want some expert help to tackle any of those projects, they’ll know you can be of service.

Publish truly great content both on your own site and off, and you’ll have more people seeing your name. You’ll have more people linking to your website. You’ll have more people talking about you on Facebook and Twitter. You’ll rank higher in the search results. You’ll make your mark on the Web.

But what about the expense?

Ah yes, the third challenge we talked about. You may be inclined to think that content marketing can only generate big business results if you have big business money to spend. However, nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, content marketing is the ideal choice for small businesses, because you can succeed with virtually any-sized budget. And, the money you spend will provide long-term benefits. Let’s say you publish a great article that offers a detailed analysis of one of the developments in your industry. That article will be on the Web forever meaning that people will be able to read it six hours from now, six months from now and six years from now. It’s common for content marketers to still get traffic from pieces they published months or even years prior. Consider it the gift that keeps on giving.

Even if you pay a professional content writer like the Computer Company  to review or create the article for you, if it’s good enough, it should be able to pay for itself over time. After all, if the article fetches enough extra traffic — and your sales copy is good enough to turn those additional visitors into buyers — the money you spent on it was well worth it. Happy ending for everyone. :)

That’s the exact opposite of paid advertising. If you’ve been spending a chunk of your budget on banner ads, you’re only going to see results for as long as you keep paying the bills. Once you stop forking over your money, those ads are going to disappear. You’ll never be able to benefit from them again, unless of course, you start paying for them again.

When you think about it in terms of dollars and cents — the true benchmark for any business — you just can’t beat content marketing. It’s the perfect way to give small businesses a bigger reach and a bigger slice of the pie.

Contact us today for a free evaluation of your website and get some ideas that can make your business money and for you to be successful

Computer Company

Telephone: 800 418 2358

The Best Cyber Security Advice from Experts.

February 22nd, 2017 by TCC No comments »

Some great advice from PC World Online.

  1. Set up two-factor authentication to protect their internet accounts, especially email. It can be particularly useful when stopping hackers who are trying to steal login passwords from users, whether through malware or email phishing schemes.
  2. Businesses need to first think about what assets they’re trying to protect from cyber threats, as opposed to blindly buying the latest security products.
  3. Many people still think hackers will never target them, but that assumption is wrong. Everybody’s information is valuable.
  4. When a company gets hacked, it’s largely because there’s a computer, a box, a website that they didn’t know they owned.

Read the full article here:

http://www.pcworld.com/article/3171280/security/experts-at-rsa-give-their-best-cybersecurity-advice.html

 

Think Your Computer Might have a Virus?

February 15th, 2017 by TCC No comments »

Yes… It happens. How can you be sure though?

We found this great article on the Kaspersky website and we thought we would share it with you this week. Here it is:

There is a number of signs or symptoms indicating that your computer is infected.

If you have started to notice weird things happening on your PC, such as:

  • unusual messages, images, or sound signals;
  • CD-ROM tray opens and closes voluntary;
  • programs start running without your command;
  • messages are displayed informing that one of your programs is attempting to access the Internet without your command.

Then it is likely that your computer is infected with malware.

Additional signs of email infections:

  • Your friends or colleagues tell you about having received emails sent from your email box which you did not send;
  • A lot of messages without a sender address and subject in your mailbox.
  • It must be admitted that such signs are not always explained by presence of malware. They may have some other explanation. For example, the issue with weird emails may be the result of somebody sending infected emails with your sender address from some other computer, not necessarily yours.

Read the rest at: http://support.kaspersky.com/us/790

Guest Wi-Fi Can Measurably Improve Customer Engagement for Brick and Mortar Businesses

December 19th, 2016 by TCC No comments »

guest wifi brick and mortar
Brick and mortar companies that want to access the same level of customer insights as online shops need look no further than their own Wi-Fi networks. Advancements in Wi-Fi engagement and analytics tools can unlock goldmines of data on customer behavior, preferences and sentiment to support businesses’ marketing and sales programs.

Online shopping for retailers, mobile ordering for dining franchises, and online booking and mobile check-in and out for hotels. These are just a few examples of ways brick and mortar businesses have lost a direct connection with their customers. Unlike online businesses, organizations with physical locations haven’t traditionally had access to data on traffic, conversions and other analytics to help optimize their marketing and sales programs. However, since the vast majority of the world now carries a Wi-Fi-enabled device at all times, brick and mortar business can access all kinds of invaluable information on shopper, guest and employee behavior.

With the right Wi-Fi management tools, store-provided wireless access can help businesses successfully carry out initial engagement, engagement analytics and targeted marketing. Following are a few examples of in-store marketing powered by Wi-Fi….

Read whole articel by  https://www.secplicity.org/2016/10/18/guest-wi-fi-can-measurably-improve-customer-engagement-brick-mortar-businesses/