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Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation

Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation takes effect on July 1st, 2014. The law requires that an email newsletter contains an unsubscribe link and your business contact information (we have always included this info in newsletters we send out on your behalf).

On your part, you need to make sure you have the consent of the person that is receiving the email. Implied consent may be a customer that has provided their email address to you, in the last 24 months, as part of your business relationship with them.

If you are collecting new customer email addresses at your business, please have the customer sign a slip and check a box that states they are aware they will be reciveing email newsletters from time to time. Keep these slips for your records.

More info:

Mailchimp (the program that we use to send out your email newsletters): http://kb.mailchimp.com/article/about-the-canada-anti-spam-law-casl/

Canadian Government info: http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/030.nsf/eng/home

If you choose, we can send out a permission email to your customers that will state the following:

“On July 1, 2014 Canada’s new anti-spam law came into effect. In order to follow the legislation, we respectfully request your consent, so that we may continue to share with you, by e-mail, relevant news, events, and promotions from us. We value our clients and want to protect your privacy.

At one time or another, you gave us your email address. We want to make sure that you really want the information and offers that we send, so we are asking for your permission to continue to receive our email newsletters. We don’t want you to miss out on any of our sales or special events, however you will always have the option of unsubscribing from our newsletter by clicking the ‘unsubscribe’ link that is included in every newsletter.

If you no longer wish to receive emails from us, please click the ‘unsubscribe from this list’ link at the bottom of this email.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have an questions.
Email: your email address
Phone: your phone number

Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have an questions.”


Adding a Link to Your Email Address

The mailto link is not recommended as it is not widely supported:

Mailto clickable links do not always function correctly for the site visitor. The software mechanism activated by the link requires that a default email client be established on the computer. This must be a local program, typically using the SMTP protocol to send outbound mail. With the rise in use of webmail-based email, many computers lack local email client software. Alternatively, email client software may have been preinstalled by the computer vendor, but never used or configured. When such a visitor clicks on a mailto URI in their web browser, either the browser will display an error to the effect that no default email client exists, or the user will be subjected to a volley of technical questions by the unconfigured email client. Neither is a desirable outcome. Some web browsers such as Opera, Firefox, and Chrome may be able to redirect clicks on mailto links to a chosen webmail service, but Internet Explorer as well as other browsers have no such capability.

Hacked accounts

Many websites have been “Hacked by hacker” Two hosting services seem to have been affected: Netregistry in Australia, Hostpapa in Canada.

Hostpapa says: “We’re aware of a WordPress vulnerability that has impacted some customers & we’re working to resolve ASAP. Thank you for your patience.”

Contact e-motional web design if you would like us to clear the hack from your website and add additional security. We will send you a quote.

Passwords

Despite constant warnings about cyber security and the importance of hard-to-guess passwords, Internet users still seem to think that “123456” and “password” will keep hackers away, according to SplashData’s annual “worst passwords” list.

Read more: CTV News

Malicious Complaint Email Claiming It’s From BBB

A new scam using the BBB name popped up this morning, and has been received by consumers and businesses across the U.S. and Canada…including many BBB offices!
This is a phishing email that has a dangerous hyperlink contained within the email.

Legitimate complaints from the Better Business Bureau of Mainland BC will have local contacts from our BBB in British Columbia. You will see in the email signature a BBB employee name along with an email with name@mbc.bbb.org. There is a 604 phone number in the email. Additionally, the complaint link that appears to be that of BBB in New York. However, if you hover your mouse over the web address (the part that begins with http), you can see that the real address is not BBB at all. DO NOT CLICK ON THE LINK! The link actually takes you to a rogue website that downloads a Trojan virus on your computer. For the latest updates visit our scam email page on the BBB website: www.mbc.bbb.org

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How to Stay on Google’s ‘Good’ List

Published on 7/17/2012 by The Editor in: Hosting Reviews Gurus

If you are planning to enter the arena of online marketing, there is one entity you definitely will have to please – Google. Yes, we all are very aware of Google’s fortunate monopoly over the search engine market, and it is imperative that we act channel our online promotion activities in a way that pleases not only our target market but Google too. Wondering what steps you will have to take in order to do so? Here are four essential things you should take care of to enjoy search engine optimization.

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Website Security

To help prevent malicious coding attacks on your website by hackers, please make sure:

  1. You change your  passwords often
  2. Use strong passwords with number and letter combinations
  3. Know who has administrative access to your website
  4. Only access your website with a computer that you know is virus free
  5. Keep all of your website programs up to date

Dear Web User: Please Upgrade Your Browser

Everyone that accesses Web pages on a desktop computer uses a Web browser. Without a Web browser you cannot view or interact with websites. How do you personally access websites like Facebook and YouTube? You might commonly use the program that opens when you click the big blue “e” icon on your desktop.

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Promote your Website

The main purpose of advertising your web site to is attract clients and bring awareness to your product offerings and the services you provide.  The benefits include marketing your goods in your potential customer’s home while you have long closed the doors and set the alarm. In other words you are open 24/ 7.

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Bank Phishing Scam

Phishing is a way of attempting to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an email.
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Search engine keywords – Does Google use them?

Q: I’ve heard that I need keywords in the web site coding. Does Google use the keywords meta tag?

A: About a decade ago, search engines judged pages only on the content of web pages, not any so-called “off-page” factors such as the links pointing to a web page. In those days, keyword meta tags quickly became an area where someone could stuff often-irrelevant keywords without typical visitors ever seeing those keywords. Because the keywords meta tag was so often abused, many years ago Google began disregarding the keywords meta tag.

Read the article directly from Google

5 Tips to Glue Your Site to Google Page One

The only thing harder than getting your Website to the first page of the Google search results is keeping it there through all of these aggressive Google updates. You’ve probably noticed that even the “white hat” SEO practices which used to get the job done are quickly becoming old hats.

At the same time, there’s still a few “magic rules” that can keep your  site glued to the first page of the Google search results, even if you do nothing else. Let’s check these out, and while we’re at it I’ll give you a “do this starting today” action step for each one so you can see for yourself…

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Advertise Sales on your Website

These days, there’s a whole generation of people  who visit a website to find products and services or just to check things out before they ever visit a shop or purchase a product.

If you’re spending time and money on catalogues, sale flyers and print advertising, don’t forget to add promotions, sales, events and new products to your website too.  Adding graphics or changing colours on your homepage or sidebar wont take you or your web designer long. Make sure you write a newsletter for your email subscribers.

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Friends, Relations and Keeping Control of your Business

We often hear “My friend can do it for me or I’ll contact my brother to help me . Intentions are great and nobody really wants to say no.

When we have no experience in the field, those that have limited ability look like geniuses. Such is the case with the world of the Internet. We watch as a friend or family member conquer a Wii game , make birthday cards using Photoshop or post an article on Facebook and assume they must have enough programming and design experience to build a business web site.

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Better Business Bureau Accused of Biased Ratings

The Better Business Bureau in B.C. is being accused of favouring members over non-member businesses in its online rating system.

The consumer agency brought in a new international grading system two years ago, where both non-members and members are rated on its website, with a score ranging from A-plus to F.
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Phone Book or Booster Seat?

Should your company invest in a web site and/or a phonebook ad? Well, lets take a look.

Who owns a phone book these days?”
I overheard at lunch the other day, well as it turns out that many of the people I know, my co-workers, friends, or associates don’t have a phone book. In fact after I started to think about it, neither do I. I went on a hunt to find this book. 15 years ago it was indispensable in every home, and every desk. Now I am sure they are still being delivered to all of these places. I finally found one hidden in a hallway of my apartment building, all bundled up, unopened. Apparently, my entire building does exactly what I do, ignore them or throw them away (ok, be green, recycle them). Even before all of this investigation, I was always shocked by businesses that don’t have a Website. Do enough people actually have a phonebook, and use it for these places to survive?

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Canadians lead in time spent online, says CBC report

Canadians lead in time spent online, says report – Business – CBC News

Canadians are spending more time online than users in 10 other countries, a new report has found.

The report, 2012 Canada Digital Future in Focus, by the internet marketing research company comScore, found Canadians spent an average of 45.3 hours on the internet in the fourth quarter of 2011, up from 43.5 hours during the same quarter a year earlier.

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How to Get Started with Pinterest

Pinterest is currently one of the hottest sites on the internet, exploding in users and fans since its inception in March 2010. With over 6 million active users, Pinterest drives more referral traffic than Google Plus, YouTube and LinkedIn put together, growing to become one of the largest social networking platforms. Given this explosion, it is highly likely that you’ve heard the word “Pinterest” tossed around.

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Building Your Brand with Social Media

You have to build an audience to cultivate an online community of brand supporters. You have to focus on your existing fans to gain new fans. The more often your fans interact with your brand, the better chance you have at their friends seeing it in their newsfeed and deciding to become a fan as well. Every time someone interacts with your page, it’s free advertising for your brand. That’s right: Free. You don’t have to drop thousands of dollars into Facebook PPC to grow your online community. Just use the 7 ‘A’s of Fan and Follower Acquisition:

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Yelp accused of burying good customer reviews

The owner of a Vancouver electrolysis chain is accusing Yelp, the customer review website, of filtering out positive reviews about her company — skewing the rating system against her — for no good reason.

“There’s a huge market that we are missing because of their filter system,” said Jennifer Desloges, owner of Jade Electrolysis, who has been in business for 23 years.

Desloges signed a contract with Yelp — for $350 a month — to enhance the page where her business is listed on the site. She also wanted to boost the reviews, so Desloges asked her customers to post genuine comments. Glowing, five-star reviews were put up by 17 of her customers.

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Google Fonts

The days of being limited to a handful of fonts on the web are very close to being a thing of the past.

On May 19, 2010 Google announced announced that they have created a repository of free fonts that can be used on web sites.

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Fonts on the Web

The fonts you use for your web site are an important decision, as they will often reflect your site’s tone and affect its visual impact  This is a list of the common fonts that we can use on web sites:

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Picture Resolution Defined

So, what is resolution exactly?

In very simple terms, an image’s resolution is measured by the number of pixels or dots per the unit of printed size in the image. When talking about screen images, resolution is stated in pixels per inch (ppi), and when talking about printed images, it’s stated in dots per inch (dpi). Why, you ask? Simple … screens use pixels and printers use dots.

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Preparing Your Digital Camera Images for the Web

After transferring your images from your digital camera to your computer, delete any blurry, out-of-focus or badly composed shots. Then rotate any sideways images.

If your hard drive failed, you would lose all your pictures, so it’s always a good idea to backup your pictures to a CD, DVD or a removable drive, just in case.

Create a new  folder to save your web site images into – create the folder in a place you will easily find again (like on your desktop) and give the folder a descriptive name for identification (e.g. My Web Site Photos).

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Smart Tips for Brilliant Writing

Do you sound smarter when you use big words?

According to a study published in Applied Cognitive Psychology , the answer is no.

In fact, complex writing makes you sound small-minded. Just consider the title of the study: Consequences of erudite vernacular utilized irrespective of necessity: problems with using long words needlessly.

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How to Open an Online Store

You’re ready to start selling your products or services over the Internet, but what’s really needed?

Here is a quick look at what you need:

  1. A web site
  2. Shopping cart software
  3. A way to collect payments
  4. A shipping carrier

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Credit Card Processing For Online Merchants

In today’s world of technology, everyone is doing business online.  While some companies conduct all of their business online, others have an online presence to back up brick-and-mortar locations.  In any event, online merchants have unique advantages and disadvantages over those who are not operating on the web.  They do however share a common concern, which is how to incorporate credit card processing services into their budget.  Consumers buying products and services online expect a fast and efficient check out process.

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How does my web site rise on Google and other search engines?

Give visitors the information they’re looking for…

Provide high-quality content on your pages, especially your homepage. This is the single most important thing to do. If your pages contain useful information, their content will attract many visitors and entice webmasters to link to your site. In creating a helpful, information-rich site, write pages that clearly and accurately describe your topic. Think about the words users would type to find your pages and include those words on your site.

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Do I need a website if I already have a Facebook page?

A web site creates a focal point for your customers.

In other words,  if I meet friends in a bar or a coffee shop, then they will get a certain picture of me through a number of different factors: what I am wearing, what I look like, where we are meeting, what I’m drinking, who I am talking to and about what etc. All of these things give a certain picture of me as a person but it is still a superficial one.

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Canadian online shopping tops $15B a year

Canadians ordered $15.1 billion in goods and services on the internet last year, up from $12.8 billion in 2007.

More people bought more stuff online in 2009 than 2007, Statistics Canada says, but the average internet purchase dropped in value.More people bought more stuff online in 2009 than 2007, Statistics Canada says, but the average internet purchase dropped in value. (iStock)

Statistics Canada attributed the increase to a rise in the number of online shoppers and a higher volume of orders.

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Collect Email Addresses

A good quality customer  database for an email newsletter  can mean the difference between business survival and failure, especially during times of slow growth. The same list, combined with smart communications, will make the good times even better.

It costs more money to find new customers than it does to nurture repeat customers through regular contact, so you need to make accurate list building a daily habit.

Here’s a checklist of ways you can effortlessly source new names:

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Benefits of Email Marketing

Its the easy, effective and affordable way to market to existing and new customers. Email marketing is one of the most cost effective marketing mediums, yet provides great results and is a great compliment to any online marketing strategy.

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Tips for writing an effective Marketing Email

Always include an “unsubscribe” link in your marketing emails. This is required by anti-spam laws and is also a good customer service policy.

You should only send marketing emails to people who have opted into a mailing list. Otherwise, many recipients will consider it to be spam. At best, they may just delete it without reading it. At worst, they might complain to your email provider or internet service provider.

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