Tuesday, 12 September 2017

How-to choose a hosting provider for web and email services?

Your Yorkshire business badly needs a hosting provider for web and email services but who do you choose when they are so many?

This is a question that many business owners have to grapple with - the fact that there are so many of them makes it very hard to pick one.

There are some that are big and others that operate out of garages. It is up to you to do some research and find out what you should be looking for in such a service.

Here are some tips to get you started:
  • Find out how long the service you are looking at has been operational. The longer the better - it means that they have been doing a good job which has enabled them to keep their doors open. The company that you choose should be operational for at least 5 years.
  • Ask the company to give you references. They should be able to provide you with contact details of at least 3 businesses that they are currently servicing. When you call ask them if they are happy with the web and email service that they are receiving and whether they would hire the same company in the long term.
  • How much downtime do they experience? Downtime is time when servers are offline and if it happens often it means that you are losing business. The company that you hire should have very little downtime if any at all. Also, in the event of server failure how long does it take them to get things back up and running?
  • You should be very careful about security especially if clients leave you their personal information or if they are able to buy directly from your site.
  • Are they able to support mobile platforms? With so many people buying items through their smart phones and tablets it is important that you hire a web hosting company that has the capacity and the ability to work with mobile devices.
  • The best companies provide a comprehensive service - they are able to provide you with hosting services, a domain name, email addresses and even web design and SEO services. This means that you will not have to shop for these services from other providers.
Lastly, make sure that you compare costs before you hire - you want a web and email host who is affordable but who provides a top-notch service.

Total SEO Services comes with all of the above and more.

For more information on our hosting offering please visit https://www.totalseoservices.co.uk/hosting/.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

Why you should use a proxy server when optimising content for SEO

SEO’s use Proxy Servers to hide or change their true IP address. There are several reasons you might want to do this:

  • If you access competitor websites a lot for research, their web servers log your IP address and may be able to trace your activities back to you. By routing your requests via a Proxy Server, your true identity is hidden
  • If your agency manages lots of Social Media accounts on behalf of clients, eg Facebook and Twitter, your agency will be making lots of requests for many different accounts but all from the same IP address. Facebook and Twitter may accidentally detect this legitimate activity as if you are spamming, and so block you. Routing each of your clients’ Social Media activity via a different Proxy Server makes it look like normal activity with each account’s activity coming from a different IP address.
  • SEO agencies tend to send lots of queries to Google, Bing and other Search Engines. If you’re all on the same office network, all that activity from the same IP address, especially if you use keyword ranking software, looks like a potential Denial of Service attack to the Search Engines. They might then block your IP address, preventing you from further searching. Sending your queries via different Proxy Servers mitigates that, and can thus also be used to speed up your keyword ranking reports.
  • To surf as if you are in another country. Many websites, especially Search Engines, serve up different content depending on your country. They determine it by detecting your IP address and looking it up in a commercial Geo-IP database (Google being Google of course are believed to use their own proprietary algorithms for working it out). For example, if your SEO Agency was based in the UK but you had a client in the USA, the results you get from Google.com are going to be different than your client’s results. This is because Google is very helpfully trying to “personalise” the results. Several SEO packages like Advanced Web Ranking, WebCEO and Rank Tracker can mimic this by tweaking the parameters it sends to Google to “trick” it into thinking you’re in another location. I’ve seen SEO’s report different levels of success with this technique, with AWR getting the best results in my experience. But as Google particularly seeks to “personalise” more and more, they are suspected to increasingly be taking your IP address into account when they personalise the SERPs. And this technique doesn’t work with all search engines or software. Therefore we see a lot of SEO Agencies who have clients overseas use Proxy Servers based in their clients’ countries, to ensure they get the same personalised results as their clients.
Total SEO Services

Monday, 14 August 2017

How can my business protect itself against 'Ransomware'?

Ransomware is becoming a real threat to businesses in the Britain and abroad - not too long ago the NHS and many businesses came under attack and lost substantial sums of money (Wanna Cry, Wanna Crypt).

As a Yorkshire business owner it is important that you take the necessary steps to protect your business and customers from such malicious attacks.

Start by implementing the following steps:

  • Make backups on a regular basis - the reason why many businesses have to pay to get their computers operational after a ransomware attack is because they cannot access their data.
    This is something that you can easily prevent by making regular backups and implementing a  company wide backup strategy, policies, guidelines and rules.
    It is not enough to back up your data every month any more - you should look into doing automatic and scheduled backups every few days, and if you hold very sensitive information at the end of every day.
  • One of the most common mistakes made by businesses is keeping their backups in the same location as the original data. Malicious people and 'black hat hackers' can still gain access through the desktops that you use every day, lock the data down or even worse destroy the backup servers before they lock down your desktop systems. All backed up data should be secured off-site in for example a fire proof safe. Alternatively you could employ the services of specialised companies who will come and collect all data and store it off site for you in specially secured locations fit for this purpose of data storage.
  • Make sure you desktops have up to date virus and malware protection. Also make sure your firewall, web and database servers and email servers have similar protection. Yes, this is a ongoing exercise where the spam and malware rules need adjusting for each and every business use case when for example looking at emails or web services hosted in house.

  • Train your employees to spot suspicious emails. The most common way that businesses get infected by ransomware is through email. While these emails may be hard to spot at times there are ways that you can tell real emails from malicious viruses or malware. If, for example, they don't recognise the sender, or the address itself looks suspicious they should immediately report the incident to the in house IT department and our outsourced IT services provider.
    Ideally your company deployed a policy and training for staff to help understand and fight this problem better. Make sure the policies are reviewed on a regular basis.
  • Make sure you have robust firewalls in place. Choose products that are hard to penetrate - hackers are smart and come up with new ways to attack firewalls all the time. You should be keen on updating all protection software in time. Again, dont count on your ISP to do all this for you, nevertheless try to chose one which offers some form of guarantees or outsource your firewall to a specialist in the field.
  • Have formal protection policies in place. They should be developed with the help of an IT expert or your IT department and should be implemented on all desktops, mobiles, applications and servers which contain or have access to your or your customers' data.
  • Make sure that your employees including agency and temporary staff all understand the value of strong passwords, which are updated on a regular basis. Every password should include letters and numbers at the very least and it should not be something that can easily be guessed.

Total SEO Services can help protect you from ransomware threats as we are a Yorkshire based SEO and web services provider. We strive to stay ahead of all these issues and have invested considerable efforts in achieving these goals and are confident to be able to offer you an outsourced service package which would benefit most businesses in Yorkshire.

You can read more about this on our website which explains all services we offer in detail. https://www.totalseoservices.co.uk/hosting/

Feel free to give Total SEO Services a call on 01142 667 996 if you need help, advice or a consultation, this might put you on the right track to ensure your company too can surf the web safely and with confidence that your customers' and business data is safe.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

GoDaddy Revokes 9,000 SSL Certificates due to their own 'Software Bug'

Users of GoDaddy SSL certificates may have been in for a shock over the last 24 hours as news breaks that they have been obliged to revoke 9,000 SSL certificates with almost no notice.

UK users were among the most inconvenienced due to the time zone here as many clients were notified at 3:30AM that their certificate was about to be revoked. By 9:00AM the news arrived that the certificate had indeed been revoked and users of secure websites and email services were all being notified that they were attempting to use a potentially unsafe service.

An excerpt from the notification from GoDaddy notification email:

"Due to a software bug, the recently issued certificate for your domain was issued without proper domain validation. In accordance with industry standards as a Certificate Authority, we were required to revoke your certificate as a precautionary measure as of January 10 at 9pm Pacific Time.

Please note that the software bug that created the issue has been remedied. We continue to closely monitor our system."

Essentially, when you buy a certificate from GoDaddy, they have an obligation to verify that you are the owner of the domain that you are trying to secure. It transpires that this crucial step in the order process has been getting completed automatically for some time.

The email goes on to state that "Your website will not go offline and should continue to resolve without issue even though the certificate is revoked. However, visitors to your website might see error messages and/or warnings, which are issued by the browser used by your website visitor".

By now, owners of websites secured with GoDaddy SSL certificates will know that this is likely not the case as most browsers will point blank not allow you to continue to the website.

Total SEO Services uses GoDaddy SSL certificates to secure some of our services and have been hit by this inconvenience. All mail web services affected should now be back up and running, please don't hesitate to contact us should you have any enquiries about the issue or if you need assistance reinstating your own GoDaddy SSL certificate.

And don't forget to ask for compensation for the inconvenience. At the very least you can expect GoDaddy to re-issue the certificate with an extended expiry date!

Total SEO Services

Saturday, 31 December 2016

The importance of having a mobile friendly website

More and more people are now using mobile phones to shop and interact online. What this means for you is that if you don’t have a mobile friendly website you are losing a lot of leads. It is very important that you pay a web development company to convert your website and make it mobile friendly. Failing to do this will cost you a lot. Think for a minute about how many Sheffield residents have mobile phones and tablets – almost everyone, right? That means that if every time everyone tries to raise your website on their phones and fails they are going straight to your competition.

If you hire the right mobile friendly web development service they will not just optimise your website for you. They will audit it to see if there are any additional improvements that they can make in order to bring you more leads. These audits are standard. If the audit reveals any additional problems you should be very keen to fix them. Keep in mind that Google rewards websites that have a mobile friendly version available. By optimising yours you will gain several points in ranking. Is there any particular Sheffield web development company that comes preferred for this job?

As a matter of fact there is – Total SEO Services. This is a company that has been serving businesses like yours in Sheffield and the surrounding areas for several years. They have all the necessary expertise and experience to optimize your website the right way. They are well known for getting their clients results. In fact, they are happy to give prospective clients references so that they can hear what others have to say. Their customer service is also legendary – they do not leave until the client is happy with the results that they were seeking.

The process that Total SEO Services uses is designed to keep things simple for their clients. When you get in touch with them the first thing that they will want to do is understand what you are looking to gain – in this case it will be optimising your website to become mobile friendly. They will also talk to you about any other problems that you may be having. Before they embark on the optimisation they will evaluate your site to see if there are any other improvements that can be made on it – oftentimes there are. This way they can make all the changes at once. They work fast to make sure that you see results as soon as possible.

You can find out more about Total SEO Services on their website, https://www.totalseoservices.co.uk/webDevelopment/

Thursday, 29 December 2016

The benefits of having your bespoke client database

The best way that any organization can keep up-to-date information and data on customers is by maintaining a customer database.  A customer database provides the company with access to the clients, encourages repeat business, and builds loyalty. A customer database includes information that is gathered from each person or customer. It contains information like the names, address, e-mail address, and phone number.

The Benefits of a Customer Database
It offers a platform through which businesses ask their customers questions that assist them in providing better services.  By this, the database not only keeps valuable information about the customer but also assist the business in identifying ways in which to improve and better meet the needs of the customers.

A database helps in maintaining contact with the customers.
This is a great way to building customer loyalty and repeat business. Customers that are consistent, as well as repeat customers, can be quickly pointed out and contacted and given special offers that are targeted towards active customers. It also assists in identifying customers who haven’t made any purchases for a long while or who have made a single purchase. This helps in selecting groups of clients that can be sold to specific offers to entice them back.

A database provides access to contact information
This makes it easy for tracking down of customers, confirmation of appointments, and customers to be reached. With the customer information stored in the customer database, calls be made and emails delivered with much ease.

You will need to hire a web development and design company to create the customer database for you. Total SEO Services have the potential of creating a bespoke client database.  These agents assess your customer data that your company stores, the products, and services that you offer and from this information work in close collaboration with you to create a platform that can increase the productivity of your employees.

Some of the services available at Total SEO Services include the following:

Secure hosting
They can host your Client Management System Software on their secure server. They have multiple online backup servers and connections on different internet lines ensuring that your database is always accessible. They ensure that all data is encrypted to ensure its safety.

Automated Workflow Management
The developers at Total SEO design a workflow that matches the logic of your site.  They incorporate a forced workflow in your management software ensuring that all tasks are carried out in the right manner.

Automated Generation of Standard Documents
It allows you to generate standard letters automatically whenever you need them.  This Ensures letters or files sent have the right dates or being written in the wrong customer folder.

For client database building works, do not hesitate to call the experts at Total SEO services.  They have the knowledge on what needs to be done to ensure that you gain maximum benefit from the database https://www.totalseoservices.co.uk/clientManagementSoftware/

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Database driven websites - how to structure your URLs

Database driven websites get information from the database and insert that content into the web page each time they are loaded. Through programming, the web page gets connected to the database. A change of information on the database automatically leads to the variation of the same on the web page. This is an automated process that does not require the intervention of a human.

The most common scenario of a database-driven website is online banking. You can view your bank account balance by logging in to your account. All your account information is stored in a database and is programmed to connect to the web page allowing you view your banking information.  

Database-driven websites store all information in table format of databases on the server. The script then generates pages that are displayed on the site as usual HTML.  These sites have an admin panel that has an interface that is user-friendly allowing you to manage the content of the site easily/. You can add content, edit or remove it by yourself, create new pages or delete the out-dated ones.

Benefits of Database Driven Websites
As a business owner, there are numerous benefits that you will reap from using a database driven website. As mentioned earlier, you can quickly and easily change the contents of the site as well as add or make changes to the products in case of an e-commerce website.

It also has a benefit in that the user can easily navigate. It also offers you with the ability to engage customers both existing and potential by creating social platforms like community blogs and forums.

Additionally, there are other numerous SEO benefits linked to having an individual web page for every product. For instance, it is possible to share, link or bookmark a page individually and therefore drawing traffic on its own.

For database driven websites sheffield, Total SEO Services has the solution. They have qualified personnel that will build a database driven website that has a high performance as well as one that is well ranked in the top search engines. The experts here ensure that they plan a database structure that will be created alongside your website.
Some of the features of a database are driven website has included URLS that are rich in keywords that are automatically generated each time a new product is added to the site.  It also has an intelligent search functionality which allows the users to filter, search and sort the products based on the database stored information.  The experts at Total SEO can also generate dynamic product feeds. These can be updated in real time and ensure that there are no incorrect prices quoted or items that are out of stock included. They also create user accounts for your customers.

Sheffield web development is now comfortable with the Total SEO Services. You can call them or visit their website to get more information: https://www.totalseoservices.co.uk/webDevelopment/databaseDrivenWebsites.htm