Please donate to Japan; you can do so on the following sites. It’s extremely important that you try and help the people of Japan as they are so important to the world economy and it’s simply the right thing to do. I don’t like donating to charity’s in general due to misuse of funds so I’ve helped select some reputable ones below, so please please donate to Japan.
These are tax deductable in the UK and the USA (please check with your accountant). So please help with the tsunami relief you will help save lives.
If you know of any other worthwhile charities please leave a comment below and I will add them to the list. I’m only interested in ones currently helping Japan
It’s the end of the month folk’s and My lovely dell account manager “C” has been doing me some mega deals. Dell’s on a huge revenue drive which ends Monday so get your orders in quick. Hopefully it’ll end up a revenue quarter which means they’ll kick out kit at silly prices to get their Q1 revenue results right up top. So if you need servers/laptops etc from dell now is the time to buy! I imagine this is Dell Ireland only so if you don’t have an Irish account get in touch as the prices are far more competitive vs dell India.
Most people know what a SLA (Service Level Agreement) is but they don’t get how it actually relates back to their business.
The whole point of an SLA really isn’t to compensate the client (you) for a loss, it’s to make it unprofitable for the service provider to keep making the same mistakes.
In other words, let’s say our margins are 15%. If we have a serious problem during a month, we have to pay out for technician time and cough up to all of the affected customers which could cost us say 25%. In other words, we lose 10% instead of making 15%.
Hopefully that helps make sense why SLAs are so highly valued. That’s why it’s in ours as the “IT service provider’s” best interests to make sure those mistakes don’t happen, or if they do come up with a prevention plan.
One often overlooked free feature of google is “google places”, or “google local”. Any company be it a support company like our own or a baker should really get themselves a google places page. It’s free! One small tip is don’t write your own reviews ask your customers to write honest ones for you. The reviews help you get up in the google places rankings and honest ones don’t end up getting you removed. Go get yourself listed now @ places.google.com/business
Again on the SEO front user comments and critique can be a fantastic ego boost. However a lot of the comments you get when writing a blog unfortunately will be spam. This is of course until you build up a good readership and relationship with your readers. Spam comments are bad for your site, especially if Google “sand boxes” them. What this means is the sites have done something so bad Google has felt the need to manually remove them and you having a link to them isn’t a good place to be in.
So always check the comments and if you’re worried remove any links to external websites before you accept them. (Yes you should review EVERY comment by hand!) Once your happy go and get that nice ego boost, you deserve it a blog takes a lot of commitment and time!
Computer First acts as a subcontractor for SEO work for several firms. What always amazes us is how many people miss the basics on their sites, even the ones doing the SEO! Today I’d like to cover what’s called the “Alt Tag” in the industry.
First off to keep this simple if you hover over this image with your mouse:
Doesn’t do much right?
Now try this one:
You see the text “Computer First Logo” correct?
This is what an alt tag does, for the techy people the code looks like <img src=”http://www.computerfirst.org/itsupportblog/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/logo.jpg” alt=”Computer First Logo” width=”234″ height=”73″ />
The other key thing to notice here is the name of the image file “logo.jpg” mean much? Not really does it?
The simple concept here is that images now come up in Google results to get the traffic from those results you should meet the following criteria:
- The content (text) around the image should describe the image.
- The “Alt Tag” should reflect the contents of the image and the content around the image.
- The name of the file of the image should also match the content, i.e. describe the image.
- The whole page itself and the content of it should be related to the title of the page and the images within it.
What does this all give you? Well a damn good spot in Google image search for starters.
We’re still developing our own SEO on the images but to give you an idea have a look at http://www.google.co.uk/images?um=1&hl=en&biw=1659&bih=844&tbs=isch%3A1&sa=1&q=site%3Acomputerfirst.org&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&oq=&gs_rfai=
We’re there, were indexed now we just have to tune them to what our clients are searching for and then we get traffic.
I hope this gives you a good insight into how an Alt tag works and a basic understanding of how it relates to Google. This one subject alone can be very in-depth so be careful if you do use alt tags. Please don’t stuff them with keywords it’ll end up having the wrong effect on your Google position.
Everyone at computer first would like to say happy New Year to all our readers and customers. Let’s hope it’s a bright 2011 for all!
Sometimes getting a new supplier can be a nightmare. What might be a simple change in your head might involve a myriad of information gathering and cost. The simple advice here is look before you leap or contact a firm that does vendor management.
For the uninitiated vendor management is where a firm has a pool of suppliers that it has built up relationships for many years. This is usually Telecoms, Network, Customers, Internet provision, Internet Hosting, Web design, Programming and a few more. A lot of these now tie into the IT ecospace in the corporate world and the “all in one” firms tend to be trying to be doing too much, the old “Jack of all trades”. An experienced firm will know you need to talk to firms that specialise in each of the areas. While it might be nice to have “one bill” it’s most likely you’ll be losing out decades of experience from firms that know their industry inside out.
Heres ten tips to help you pick a new supplier:
- Check for reviews on the internet and look for “fake” reviews as it’ll give you an example of how “moral” the company is.
- Do a credit check, you need to make sure the company is not about to “go under”.
- Make sure they are local and don’t just treat you like a number i.e. a lot of nationals.
- Get a third party in to verify their sales claims.
- Ask to speak to actual clients.
- If possible test their service and reaction times. This will always be better during trials but it can show you what they can be capable off.
- Get two competitive quotes and make sure there in the right ballpark, cheapest isn’t always best.
- Get reviews of the equipment they recommend to you to make sure there not just doing high margin/poor quality items.
- Have a look at their offices on Google maps or better yet go pay them a visit there office will tell you a lot about the company.
- Make sure you like them as people when you first talk, this will go a long way in developing the relationship.
I’m sure there’s many more and would welcome any comments in regards to your experiences with new suppliers.