UK Business Software Vs Globally Sourced – What Are the Risks of Buying Non UK Business Software?

There are many owners of small businesses that buy software from abroad each year. The growth of the internet has meant that software packages are becoming widely viewed by a global audience. There are some great advantages to why you would consider buying some business software from abroad. But unfortunately there are also some very high risks to buying software from abroad. We are not here to say buying software from abroad is bad – far from it. We just feel that people should go into the buying decision knowing all of the risks involved. This article aims to explore the considerations and information required to provide you with the information to make the right decision for your business.

Main considerations when UK business software vs. globally sourced technology

1) Regulatory

First and foremost the product you buy must comply with the laws of the land. When you consider buying accounting or CRM software it is imperative that the chosen supplier understands the UK market. This is clearly pertinent within the accounting software industry. It is crucial that any accounting software that is purchased keeps up to date with UK laws in order to keep the administration of annual returns to a minimum. If you choose to buy a package sourced outside the UK the software may be designed to satisfy the returns and administration of a foreign jurisdiction. Business software made in the UK will mostly be tailor made to ensure that all returns and related administration is related to the standards set by the UK government. Having software that is aligned to UK law prevents you from having to spend unnecessary time amending annual returns allowing more time to be spent on driving value for your business.

2) Financial

There are financial advantages and disadvantages to be considered when buying software from non UK sources. It is possible to get very good value exchange rate opportunities when buying non UK software if buying software for an upfront fee. However, it is important to consider when buying software on a monthly tariff that exchange rates fluctuate and what starts off as a very cost effective solution can become very expensive if the exchange rates take a turn for the worse. Buying a software solution from the UK removes the risk of the risk of having fluctuations in international exchange rates.

3) Cultural

Cultural differences that are generated from time zones and geographical differences have an impact on your ability to get the best out of your chosen software. Whatever software you buy will require some support at some stage. Whether you have a technical problem or simply want some advice on how to get the best out of your software it’s very important that you are able to easily contact your supplier. This is where UK business software can offer more flexibility than business software sourced outside the UK. Trying to phone the US can be both inconvenient and costly whilst non English speaking countries can offer their own obvious challenges. In order get the best out of your software it is critical to have the opportunity to contact your supplier and receive quality support.

If it was me, i would always feel safer buying UK based software for my business. It means a lot to me to be able to contact my supplier whenever I need them and be able to speak about UK specific content that they understand. I also feel that it would be a huge risk keeping up with UK laws – changes happen every year and I want to be safe in the knowledge that my returns will be up to date and inclusive of any changes to UK legislation.

That said, I do realise that there are great value deal to be had from purchasing globally sourced software and choice is certainly wider. Ultimately it is you call to weigh up the pros and cons and do whatever is right for your business.

Internet Marketing Strategy – How to Create an Endless Stream of Referrals

The internet, like television, radio, or newspaper is considered as a mass medium. Today, internet is one of the most popular mass medium. Unlike the television, information is disseminated across the globe, Unlike the newspaper, news can be updated in just minutes. It’s no doubt, that even the popularity of a famous blogger can be compared to an international artist. Companies and businesses see that as an opportunity that is why internet marketing was born.

Internet marketing is anything that is related to promoting products, businesses and services using the World Wide Web. If you have a blog that promotes products like for example you want to tell the world what iPhone 4 is; or you sell your business online then you are already an internet marketer.

The advantage of marketing online is that there is a wide reach of customers because it is showed globally and the startup cost is low.

Internet marketing before was just a way to share information to people across the globe. Television was the top in marketing before because it was the most widely used mass medium. But now, because of social networking and with the popularization of netbooks and inexpensive laptops and computers, internet became the target of businesspeople.

Internet Marketing has several ways to reach customers:

Blogging and Article Writing

Internet marketers publish blogs and articles to provide information to people. The internet today is a large gateway of information. People wants to learn, be informed of the latest news and be up to date with the latest trends.

Bloggers not affiliated with internet marketers make blog out of the company or a specific product and publish it online. In that way, they get free advertising and when the blog becomes popular businesses will sponsor them.

Affiliate Marketing

Some businesses use people to let their products be known. A product is introduced to prospective sellers to sell it and gain a percentage of the sales. To be able to garner more sales, the seller introduces the business to another prospect. The prospect if agreed on the business will now be an affiliate of the seller. It is a cost-effective in a business because payment only happens when there are results.

Social Media Marketing

Social media greatly contributes to the world wide web. YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and MySpace is a way where internet marketers can interact with its customers, share news and information, and be in touch with them always. The more followers/friends the business has, the more leads they have.


Goods or services are sold directly to the customers. These are usually business or company websites that has their product on display so that customer can directly purchase the products from them.

And this is how internet marketing is done:

One-to-one approach

In this business model, the internet marketer targets users browsing the internet to promote a business or service. This approach is used in search engine marketing, for which the advertisements are based on search engine keywords.

Appeal to specific interests

This approach place emphasis on appealing to a specific behavior or interest. Rather than giving or digging into what the world wants in general, this approach separates itself according to age group, gender, geography, and other general factors.

Niche Marketing

Niche marketing is about finding a smaller segment of a market and creating a product or service on that market. An example of a market is “cars”, a niche market could be “hybrid cars”, “electric cars”, or “Toyota”.

Geo Targeting

This method determines the geo-location of website visitors using a geo-location software and deliver different content to that visitor based on the location, country, region, state, zip code, Internet Protocol(IP) and other criteria.


  • It is inexpensive compared to other advertising methods. It does not require a very large capital to start your business.
  • There is a lot of free resources online. Experience is not necessary in internet marketing because there is a lot of internet marketers that can share their experience to you.
  • The store is open 24 hours a day. You can still make money even when you are sleeping.
  • Your customers are across the globe. It is not limited to your neighborhood, your city or your country.


  • The demand changes from time to time. The demand can change based on the latest trends, what is in trend today can change after a month so keep watch and make changes when new trend arrives.
  • There is a wide competition online. You are not the only one who offers or sells products.
  • People are cautious because of the scams spreading online.
  • In the buyer’s perspective, the inability to touch, smell, try on tangible goods make them doubtful. Compensate by having return policies or providing in-store pick up services.
  • Internet marketing is not a get-rich-quick scheme and it requires a lot of effort to make it work.

Is Your Business Technology-Strategic or Technology-Dependent?

Security in the IT arena is not a new topic, but corporate awareness of its presence (or lack thereof) is at an all-time high. Not a day goes by without seeing a headline somewhere relating to stolen data, hacked company computers or leaked private information. When Sony’s Playstation® Network got hacked, there were estimates reported around $24 billion in losses. Then there were security breaches at Citigroup or Lockheed Martin. They were both juggernauts of industry with hardened defenses and yet were victims of stolen sensitive information. It appears no one is safe, but does obscurity or anonymity still qualify as protection for your small organization?

A few weeks ago I was sitting in a board room discussion with a couple of partners at a smaller private CPA firm and the topic of their network security came up. Mind you, these two gentlemen had a basic understanding of technology as most business owners do, but could not wrap their heads around why it was so important to purchase and install a firewall. A firewall! The most basic of network security devices and here I was trying to justify such a basic, yet mandatory, investment to any business, much less a financial firm.

It was a confirmation of a truth that is common no matter the size of the company. That truth is simple – most business owners have a difficult time appreciating or valuing technology unless they have experienced some type of pain relating to technology. That pain may be lost data, bad support, frustrating software… etc. Whenever I meet with prospective clients, one of the questions I ask in the beginning is “Are you ‘technology dependent’ or ‘technology strategic’?” This sets the tone for what direction we recommend.

Technology Dependent - This is most common among small, private firms. Your business may rely on your computers and networks, yet your decisions regarding technology are typically reactive and cost is commonly the biggest factor on whether or not you proceed. The inherent problem with technology-dependent firms is the unseen lack of efficiency and super high risk factors. Time and productivity are commonly overlooked as assets to the company. Here are some factors common in technology dependent firms:

a. Computers are older (4+ years old) and sometimes are even beige or off-white (a sign of age).

b. Few important proactive tasks are being performed, such as testing backups, patches and risk assessments.

c. There is no guidance on how to leverage technology to contribute to profits or increased productivity.

d. The company is still paying someone to fix things when they break on an hourly basis.

e. There is little to no network security.

Technology Strategic - A business that has seen the true purpose of technology and has enabled itself to do more is strategic. “More of what?” you may ask. It can be more productivity, more efficiency, more revenue and/or more contented staff. Firms that I work with that are “technology strategic” appreciate what technology can do for them and are not resistant to change. Here are some factors that make up a technology strategic firm:

a. Computers are maintained (optimized, clean and typically under 3 years old).

b. Network operations and security is being actively monitored.

c. Security policies are in place both in hardware and software.

d. An IT budget exists and is fixed.

e. The IT solution is a regular topic in your business planning meetings.

If you want to have growth in your firm, confidence in your IT security, and the best return on investment, you need to find ways to start moving to the strategic side of the spectrum. It will not happen overnight but the process needs to occur or risk falling behind your competition.

Where do you start? You need a trusted technology resource whether it’s a friend, your nephew, your executive assistant, or an established IT firm. Much like your clients rely on you for the best in professional financial advice and guidance, you should expect the same in terms of technology advice from a trusted technology partner. That said, have a look at this technology grocery list. If you don’t have these 10 items in place, you should seriously consider implementing them:

- Documented and tested backup process both local and off-site. You should be getting regular reports of these backups.
- Network security policy (passwords, data access, acceptable usage policy are examples).
- Basic alerts when there is a failure on your critical systems, such as a server or email.
- A firewall
- Antivirus and Antimalware software
- Anti-spam for email
- Data and email encryption
- Regular computer and network maintenance
- Secured wireless access
- Internet filtering

Implementation of the technology solutions above can get your company on the road to reaping the benefits of becoming “technology strategic”. An IT firm with certified engineers can develop a strategic and tactical plan to ensure you are getting the most from your technology.

The Best Way to Market Business Online

Many people are learning how to stop waking up early to punch in a clock, and avoid staying in jobs they hate. The best and easiest way to quick working the cubicle world or dead end jobs that steal away passion is to start a business. Once you’ve started a business you’re ready to learn the best way to market business online.

First and foremost it should be noted that to market business online doesn’t mean to start an e-commerce store. This is one of the misconceptions that people have in regards to business online. If you do not have an e-commerce store, do not worry; you’re still able to make a lot of money while marketing online.

A good website is the first step to promoting your business. A good website doesn’t need to have a ton of pages, nor does it need to be too elaborate. All you need is a few pages that give new users all the information about your business. If you have a brick and mortar store, make sure you post your hours, phone number, contact information and what it is your business does. A good photo of the outside and inside of your business can really go a long way too.

After you’ve established a website, you can learn how to market business online through several arenas. The first is through pay per click campaigns. This option involves paying for ads on several websites that you only have to pay for if someone clicks on. This could be really cost effective and your ads will only display on relevant websites and search engines. A great new option to this type of marketing is that you can choose to display ads based on geographical location, so if you have a store that is only for a certain community, you can ensure that your ads only display to people in your area.

Some have said that the best way to market business online is through social networking websites. These websites are frequented by millions upon millions of people, and are a great option for people looking to connect with new customers a personal level. The downside to this type of marketing is that it’s easy to be labeled as spam. When you venture forward into this type of business promotion, make sure that you are honest, sincere and offer information that is not necessarily hitting people in the face with the fact that you’re selling something, promoting something. Giving people a variety of information will help establish a good relationship with others, and can help create customers over time.

If you’re confused as to what to do after you’ve set up a simple website, or you have started to promote your company online, consider getting marketing training packages. These can help you out greatly with step-by-step guides to how to implement a winning marketing solution. Remember, that millions of potential customers are surfing the Internet on a daily basis, and without a solid online marketing plan, you will miss out on the potential that is out there.

Essential Features of a Mobile Website for an Automotive Business

A website is highly beneficial for any automotive business, as automobiles are one of the most popular products searched for on the Internet. Although a website can be a good promotional tool for these businesses, the quick rise in mobile device sales and increase in mobile Internet use has generated a new need and opportunity to reach customers. In fact, mobile websites are proving to be quite valuable for every business interested in maintaining and then expanding its customer base.

When developing a mobile website business operators have to be a bit more creative considering the limitations of mobile devices. Unlike PCs, phones have limited screen space, no key board, no mouse, and less bandwidth. With that being said, creating a mobile specific site that provides value and functionality within to the above said constraints is crucial in order to continue reaching current and potential customers.

Below highlights the specific features that should be included in an automotive business’s mobile website.

Mobile friendly design – minimum content and graphics: The design of a mobile website specific to an auto business should maintain focused content. Include only specific information related to the vehicles which is useful to the customers such as unique features, price, deals, and follow-up services. Owing to the less screen space of the mobiles, images of the vehicles should be made small and of low resolution. Avoid or limit the flash animations, videos, columns and navigation so as to give a cleaner look to the website. This also facilitates quick and easy loading.

Additionally, you can even add a click-to-call button to your mobile website. This directly initiates a call to the business, creating a great opportunity for lead generation.

SEO – for mobile search applications and engines: It isn’t enough just to be accessible through mobile search engines. Your automotive business should be visible when potential customers search for your products and services. Remember, search engines operate differently for traditional websites and mobile websites. Bots and algorithms used for mobile search engines are different from those used for traditional search engines. Hence it is necessary to optimize the website for mobile access.

You need to concentrate more on automotive-specific meta tags, title tags, and keywords in your description of the vehicle. This improves your brand visibility and also gets potential customers through mobile search.

You can even optimize your website for local search which will enable your business to appear when the customer is looking for auto dealers or services within a specific area or through their GPS units.

Incorporate links in social media and blogs: Almost all Smartphone or mobile device users are active on social media websites such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc. Taking that into consideration, it’s a good strategy to incorporate sharing capabilities and access to all of these social platforms from your mobile website. Additionally, take the time to create fan pages so that your auto business is reinforced through multiple marketing channels. Since social media and blogs are strong marketing tools, your online mobile presence will be effectively felt by the customers. However, make sure that these features are small so that they don’t inhibit the loading of your mobile website’s pages.

You can even give access to your existing automotive blogs by installing specific plug-ins that will automatically customize the normal blog for mobile users.

High browser compatibility: Generally, an automotive business’s mobile website is very complex due to the number of vehicle models, specific features pertaining to each one, and the variety of auto services offered. Any number of these features can make the site difficult to load. In addition, not all mobile phones support the same format for downloading the content. Lastly, make sure that your auto dealership’s mobile website is compatible with browsers used by different phones like Android, iPhone, etc.

Mobile users are becoming more and more dependent on mobile sites and applications as these provide instant access to information, deals and product research. Hence, it is necessary for any company, but particularly one in the automotive business, to develop an improved, simple, and yet functional design for their mobile website so as to enhance the user experience and engagement.

Natural Skin Care – Know Which Natural Ingredients Can Help Protect Your Skin

Now that winter’s harsh weather is finally beginning to wane, it’s time to assess your skin’s moisturizing needs. The harsh and arid climates produced by indoor heating and outdoor wind may have diminished somewhat, but their effects on your skin likely have not. Flaky legs, hands that resemble tiny road maps, and cracked lips serve as reminders of the past dry months. Just as you may change your wardrobe to accommodate the warmer weather, it’s time to “dress up” your skin for spring!

Human skin is an incredible feat of nature. Not only does it protect our organs from the elements and help to regulate body temperature, but it’s our first barrier from infection, as well. Actually, the skin is considered an organ in itself — the body’s largest, in fact. And, since moisturizers and creams account for nearly 23 percent of the cosmetics market, it’s apparent that we care a good deal how our largest organ looks to others. But, before you slather on that oil-laden cream or lotion, it’s important to understand how the skin functions and to dispel a few myths about moisturizing products to boot.

What is Natural Skin Care?

Just place, ‘natural skin care’ is helpful for your skin in a natural and chemical-free manner. ‘Natural skin care’ supports to facilitate the skin to take care of itself. A lot of natural skin cares procedures are essentially the similar as those for body care in general.
Eight Leading Ways For Natural Skin Care

* The first and the most important natural skin care action are – ‘Drink a lot of water’. Almost 8 glasses of water is an essential each day. It helps in redden out the pollutants from the body, in a natural way. It helps in the general maintenance of the body and endorses good health for all organs (not just skin).

* Overall cleanliness is also a valuable way of natural skin care. Everyday shower, wearing clean clothes and sleeping on a clean mattress/pillow are all concerned with overall cleanliness. After all, clean skin is the most essential thing to keep the skin disorders ward off.

* Habitual exercise is the next thing for natural skin care. Exercise improves the flow of blood that helps in getting liberate of body pollutants and keeping you hale and hearty. Exercise also facilitates in thrashing stress, which is the most terrible foe of good health.

* Vigorous food and eating routines are also suggested for natural skin care. Some sort of food (e.g. oily food) is known to basis acne and should be stayed away as much as possible. Your food intake should be a healthy combination of a range of nutrient-providing foods. Crude fruits and vegetables are known to give bloom to your body and help out in getting free of body pollutants

* A fine sleep is also helpful in sustaining good health and in defeating tension. As a natural skin care actions, a good sleep delays drooping of skin.

* Defeating strain is one more natural skin care treatment. Stress affects overall destruction to body and health. Drinking a lot of water, getting a sound sleep and exercise has previously been declared as strain busters. Pampering in a temperate bubble bath, snooping to music and playing your desired sport are also good ways of thrashing stress.

* Keep away from unnecessary contact to sun (by wearing long sleeved clothes, hat and umbrella etc), is another natural skin care way. Sunscreen lotions are also suggested as essential

* A lot of customary and homemade natural care products/ procedures are also renowned to be very successful. Such actions are not only natural and easy-to-follow, but also comparatively cheap. In addition that, a lot of natural skin cares products are accessible in the commercial market. These contain things like lavender oil, aloe Vera etc., which don’t have any side effects

Personal Skin Care’ Is A Routine

We all comprehend the significance of ‘personal skin care’. Though, personal skin care is not that difficult and neither is it that costly (in view of how useful it is). Personal skin care is subsequent a routine or a process for attendance to the needs of your skin. Even before you start with a routine, you have to clarify your skin-type (oily, dry, sensitive, normal etc) and choose the personal skin care products appropriate for it. Here is a routine that should work for most people with normal skin.

The primary thing on personal skin care routine is ‘Cleansing’. The three main features of a cleanser are oil, water and surfactants. The second thing on the personal care routine is exfoliation. Skin pursues a natural preservation process in which it eliminates the dead cells and substitutes them with new skin cells. Exfoliation is just a way to smooth the progress of the skin in this process.

After that, the thing on personal skin care routine is moisturizer. This is one of the most significant things in personal care. Even people with oily skin require moisturizers. Moisturizers not only stop the moisture in your skin cells, but also magnetize moisture (from air) when required.

The very last thing on personal care routine is sunscreen. A proportion of moisturizers come with UV defense – so you can acquire twice over benefits from them. Such moisturizers are suggested for all days (irrespective of whether it is sunny or cloudy).

Yet again, testing with a variety of personal skin care products and also with the amount you need to apply, what give you most excellent results are the best personal skin care guidelines for you.

Vigorous skin is actually one of the most significant ingredients for beauty-enhancement.

Nursing Home Design

Nursing homes are designed to serve patients who require preventive, therapeutic, and rehabilitative nursing care services for non-acute, long-term conditions. Usually residents are elderly and frail, but not bedridden, although many will require canes, walkers, or wheelchairs to help them get around.

Patient stays are on the whole relatively long, with the majority of residents staying for the remaining months or years of their life. Most UK Nursing homes will also care for a number of convalescent patients who are in recovery from acute illnesses, but no longer require hospitalisation.

Nursing homes present special design challenges in that for most residents the nursing home is not just a facility, but indeed their home. The reality is that in most cases the residents will live there for the rest of their lives and, moreover, rarely leave the premises at all. The nursing home therefore becomes their entire world. The challenge is to design an environment that is sensitive and responsive to long-term human needs and well-being, both physical and emotional. Thankfully there are a growing number of companies who specialize in the manufacture and supply of stylish yet practical Nursing Home furniture, which means designers are no longer limited in terms of interior décor.

Building Attributes

Nursing homes are primarily patient care focused rather than medically focused, and consequently its more important attributes are those focusing on the general happiness of its residents rather than high-tech considerations. Features of a well designed nursing home are as follows:

Homely environment

The impact of surroundings and environment on the recovery of Nursing Home patients cannot be underestimated. Both the building’s architect and interior designer needs to gain a thorough understanding of the function of the venue and the profile of its patients. Attention must be paid to ensuring that the exterior and interior design cater for physical and mental disabilities along with loss of sight. This should all be packaged in such as way as to suggest a home away from home as opposed to a medical institute.


In order to create the most efficient space possible for both staff and patients, the nursing home’s design should promote efficiency by minimizing the distance it is necessary to travel between spaces that are most frequently used such as recreational rooms, dining areas and toilets.
Ease of supervision is another essential feature, as allowing supervision of patients by minimal members of staff can reduce the total number of employees required by the nursing home, and can free up nursing staff to perform other tasks at any one time.

Cleanliness and Sanitation

Odour control is a priority for all nursing homes, since many patients are likely to experience occasional incontinence. The resulting odour can give the impression of poor hyginene and uncleanliness to family and other visitors. In addition to operational practices and careful choice of nursing home furniture, the following design features can also help:

Highly visible toilet rooms in key locations near spaces where residents congregate

The use of appropriate, durable finishes for each space used by residents

Proper detailing of such features as doorframes, casework, and finish transitions to avoid dirt-catching and hard-to-clean crevices and joints

Adequate and appropriately located housekeeping spaces

Effective ventilation, which may need to exceed nominal design levels.