About the author  ⁄ Darryl Rappa

When you’re going abroad on a business trip what do you worry about? Getting to the airport in time? Missing luggage? Getting food poisoning from trying out new food? These are all legitimate concerns, especially if you’re not yet used to a whole lot of travelling.

However there is something else that business travellers should be wary about: getting your devices hacked. The country you’re travelling to may not have the same privacy or confidentiality laws as Australia. Hence, when you connect to public Wi-Fi, there’s always a chance of your devices being hacked into. This can be especially worrisome if you’re carrying sensitive company data on your laptop or phone.

It’s always best to protect yourself from hackers when travelling abroad. How? Here are some great tips to help you with that:

Make Sure to Back up Your Data

Perhaps the whole point of your business trip is to give an in-person presentation to a prospective client. So losing your presentation file can have a disastrous impact. You may end up losing the client and get in trouble with your boss as well. Hence, we always recommend uploading all of your important documents to a secure cloud. Make sure you do this before you leave your house and not using public Wi-Fi.

It’s always great practice to backup data regularly to multiple sources. This way if one source is corrupted, you can retrieve it from another.

Your company may have its own protocol when it comes to backing up data. If it doesn’t, you should bring it up with upper management and stress the importance of it. If the company does not have its own cyber security department, hiring a reliable firm like Gridware can truly help you put together an effective data protection strategy.

Install Device-Locating Applications

With these applications, you’ll be able to find the exact location of your device if it gets stolen or misplaced. Both iOS and Android users have native device-locating features pre-installed. So all you need to do is to enable them before you leave the house.

Update Your Software

Before you leave for your business trip, make sure all your software, including operating system and anti-virus guards are up to date. This is important because developers send software updates in order to fix gaps in the previous one. Often these may concern cyber security vulnerabilities.

If you don’t already have security software installed, do it right away.

Practice Strong Password Management

If your passwords are easy to guess, then you’re just asking to be hacked. Good password management is a very effective barrier against cyber-attacks and will ensure the protection of your data in most scenarios. Hence, when putting up passwords, make sure they are:

  • Not obvious and quite difficult to figure out.
  • Not the same across all of your devices and accounts.
  • Changed regularly.

Use Two-Factor Authentication

With two-factor authentication, you need to provide an additional detail such as your phone number or an answer to a security question in order to log in. It’s an additional layer of security for your social media and other private accounts.

Don’t take cyber security lightly, especially when it comes to company data. Practice these tips and ensure data confidentiality at all times.

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Australia’s coworking scene has been described as “sleeping”, but that is soon to change with foreign investors looking to add their twist to the country’s coworking scene. A favourite of the start-up, Australia’s coworking industry has grown to include various types of coworking spaces, some industry-specific, some niche space, and then the general coworking space. Even investors from as far away as Europe and Asia see the country as fertile ground for establishing global coworking spaces.

The reason Australia’s coworking scene is catching the attention of major players in the global coworking scene is because of the country’s diverse professional scene, and more importantly, its location in the Pacific. Moreover, the chance to take advantage of the government’s project to refurbish old buildings in some of Australia’s major cities makes this the most opportune time to invest in coworking spaces in the country. Professionals who choose coworking as an alternative to the traditional office space can only benefit from new spaces that will allow them more options in shared workspace.

Let’s take a closer look at the Australian coworking scene and how it is developing.

Why Are Australian Professionals Coworking?

In addition for a need to find cost-effective office space, Australian professionals are attracted to coworking for a variety of reasons. One major draw is coworking allows businesses in Melbourne or Sydney access to beautifully fit out offices in some of the more attractive, prestigious business districts. Please visit the following site at http://www.servcorp.com.au/en/coworking/ to see how one major company provides professionals with coworking spaces in prime locations around Australia.

Another reason businesses are attracted to coworking is because the office setup provides businesses with industry diversity, which can make networking, getting referrals, and meeting mentors very simple. Furthermore, these offices come with important amenities like meeting and boardrooms.

Coworking spaces are also attractive to this group of professionals because many of them are in close distance to major transit, and if not taking the train, tenants have access to hassle-free parking. Professionals are also attracted to the fact that many of these offices have moved to a format that allows tenants to access the building 24/7. As coworking has become more popular, many spaces are focusing on quality of life while at work and have invested in shower and changing rooms, in addition to bike racks.

Who Are Australia’s Coworking Professionals?

Australia’s coworking professionals comprise of a number of professions, but in recent years, digital, IT and software companies have increasingly used coworking as an option for office space. In addition to this group, marketing and creative arts industries are attracted to coworking, which has presented many opportunities for these industries to work, network, and collaborate. However, other industries are beginning to take an interest in coworking.

Those who belong to legal services, a group long associated with the white-shoe corporate image, has also taken advantage of the coworking scene, and these companies generally work in industries described as legal sales. Accounting and finance firms are another group of professionals in Australia who are moving toward the coworking concept. Finally, in line with global trends, corporate interests are looking toward the coworking concept not just as a money saver but to co-opt some of its ideas related to making work more productive.

Coworking Australia

The coworking scene in Australia is looking to mix things up in the next few years. By providing professional-grade office space, this scene has managed to attract a good portion of businesses who need office space without the protracted, often rigid, contracts. Ultimately, you cannot beat office space that can give you access to resources and people needed to promote business growth.

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Today’s businesses are reliant heavily on being flexible, available and of course cost efficient. Your customers will need to get whatever they want, anywhere that they want at a price that they can afford which is why you as a business needs to stay creative if you want to stay ahead of your competition. The receptionist services that are available today is exactly what the global marketplace needs and that explains why many businesses are now turning to them for their services. In fact, having their services can open up an entirely new world of opportunities and possibilities for both you and your clients. So if you are still considering making this investment, here are some great advantages that will help you make up your mind.

It Can Save You Money

If you hire somebody in-house to answer your calls you will end up paying them an hourly salary, benefits, taxes and of course, there will be overhead expenses too. When you add up all of these costs the bills that you have to pay at the end of the month are going to accumulate pretty fast. But if you hire an Australian virtual receptionist company you will be able to save money because you have no overhead costs for facilities and don’t have to pay them an hourly wage, taxes or benefits. In fact, you will only need to pay when somebody in that service answers your calls and you can choose a plan get billed based on the call volume or the time. Even then you can actually get them to answer calls all day every day as opposed to just eight hours a day.

You Get Better Flexibility

If you were to handle all your calls by yourself you would have your hands full and then some. But with a service like this, you will be able to handle everything seamlessly through peak hours, times that are not office hours, while you are away on holiday, at meetings or anything in between. This makes your business immediately so much more approachable and flexible to customers that they will give your business.

You Don’t Have To Worry About the Training

In any case that you hire professional services to handle your calls, they will be well trained and there is no doubt about that. Just make sure that you choose the right service though with a good track record of what they have done before for other businesses. You could argue that you can actually hire somebody with a lot of experience in-house too and that is true. But in a service all agents are not just experienced. They are constantly trained, evaluated after the calls that they take and are given the knowledge on the latest tricks of the trade that make them so much more impactful when they speak with a customer. These are just a handful of the advantages that you can enjoy really but there are so much more benefits than just this to hiring a professional service to virtually man your reception.

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SEO is something that can help small businesses create efficient and user friendly sites that can rank higher in the search engines. This will in turn help these businesses attract more potential customers into the sites and will eventually increase the conversion rate as well. If you are a small business your targets should include building a good site with great SEO presence so that you keep attracting customers. If you want to know why you should invest in this, here are some of the main benefits that you can expect with really good SEO.

You Will Have a User-Friendly Website

You will be able to create a much faster and smoother website that is also very user-friendly with the help of good SEO. The old terminology was only restricted to helping the brands gain more visibility but today, SEO has become a powerful tool that also drives a better user experience. If your site is well laid out and has no clutter, visitors will stay on it for longer and could potentially even end up buying from you. It is a great way to decrease your bounce rate and increase the page view numbers. Look for a good search engine optimisation Melbourne provider or in any other location based on where you are and you will see that your page performs better. Also target to have relevant content only that can help customers go through the process faster and answers their inquiries.

You Will Be Bringing In More Customers

What is the main reason to have a website? To bring in more business and to make sure that you are not getting overcrowded by your competition. If that was not the case why would companies want to invest their money in a process? Having a site with great SEO will help you do just that and will get you more customers than a company that does not have one. It is also one of the most efficient and cost-effective advertising strategies that are there today. It is also very accurate since it will only bring in customers who are exactly looking for the product that you offer. Therefore know that whatever time, money and effort that you invest in this, will bring you returns always.

You Will Have Better Conversion Rates on the Site

The best part about having good SEO is that they will help your pages load faster and they will also be extra easy to read and surf through. They will also be easily accessible across a range of devices like laptops, smart phones and tablets. When you pages are easy to read and navigate through they will keep your customers there for longer than they would otherwise. Customers who stay will go on to subscribe and be loyal to your brand. At the very least they will be returning visitors, and the more visitors you get the better you will sell. These are just a few of the benefits that you can enjoy by implementing good SEO to your website.

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Digital marketing refers to any marketing efforts that go through the web or electronic devices. These can be through emails, social media platforms, search engines and websites where you can reach target consumers online. Lots of people are in to online shopping due to its convenience which is why it is best to meet them in that digital world. Although traditional marketing is still utilized today, it is best to incorporate digital marketing strategies if you’re aiming to increase revenue at a remarkable level.

There are lots of internet marketing services to choose from depending on the nature of your business. Content marketing utilizes blog posts and online content to generate leads. Social media marketing then aims to promote this content by sharing it in various social media platforms. No matter what tactic you choose, its overall goal is to increase your profit. Here are the most common digital marketing tactics used by businesses all over the globe.

Search Engine Optimization

This technique aims to optimize your website so it will rank high in the search engine results. By landing on the first page results, your website becomes more visible to consumers thus increases traffic. Always use relevant keywords to your online content to make it more searchable.

Content Marketing

This technique refers to the creation of informative and interesting online content. The goal of content marketing is to generate leads, increase traffic and promote brand awareness to your target audience. Content marketing is done through blog posts, eBooks, infographics, white papers and digital brochures.

Social Media Marketing

This tactic is similar to content marketing in terms of its goals. However, you promote online content through social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. People spend most of their free time browsing through their social media feeds which makes it a great venue for marketing.

Pay-Per-Click Ads

It is one of the most cost efficient ways in driving traffic to your website. You only pay the publisher every time your ad is clicked. One of the popular platforms of PPC ads is Google AdWords but you can also try other alternatives such as Facebook sponsored ads, Twitter promoted tweets and LinkedIn paid messages.

Email Marketing

Emails are convenient ways to communicate with your target audience. You can use it in digital marketing by sending newsletters, follow-up messages, warm welcoming messages, product promotions and discounts and other information that might interest your audience.

Online PR

A successful digital marketing lives on good customer feedback. You can increase customer trust by actively engaging their messages through email and social media. Keeping your online content fresh and engaging also helps build their interest and awareness about your brand. The more positive reviews you gain, the more consumers get attracted to your brand.

Does Digital Marketing Work For All Kinds Of Businesses?

Although digital marketing works for any industry, the type you should implement greatly depends on the nature of your business. B2B companies focus their strategy on generating high quality leads via different channels and your website. On the other hand, B2C companies focus on turning audience into customers which need stronger call-to-action tactics.

Talk to the experts first if you haven’t decided yet which one will work for your company. Investing in digital marketing is a great way to push your company better than it was before.

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Most successful businesses in the world today have the responsibility of keeping confidential information in various kinds of databases. This information might comprise of corporate secrets within the company or even more importantly client-related information which the company would be fully responsible for safeguarding. Whatever the case, with the advancements in hacking software’s and data breaching viruses there has never been so much of risk facing information security. Cyber security is something large scales multinational companies are looking at very seriously right now due to the huge loss in revenue client confidence and not to mention severe legal repercussions a breach in data can cause.

The Threat is real

Understand that no company involved in maintaining databases is safe from a cyber-attack on data. While the norm is to believe that only large-scale companies are at risk, this couldn’t be further than the truth. Recent statistics in the year 2015 indicated that 43 percent of companies targeted as primary targets for a cyber attack were actually small-scale companies. This figure is expected to grow in the future. The sooner we get rid of the notion that our company is not sufficiently large to make a cyber-attack worthwhile, the more protected we would be. The initial investment in safeguards for a cyber-attack would be less costly than the losses incurred due to a breach of data.

Seek professional advice

Technology continuously grows and so too are the defenses for cyber-attacks. Each business is different in nature, so seek out professional help in finding the best cyber security solutions for your company. Not only will a professional be able to tailor-make you security options for your data but also stand as a testament that your company has sufficient security safeguards in place in the event of any legal actions against your company. There are many professional companies specializing in cyber security options all around the world. For example, Cyber security companies Australia have given businesses the breathing space to focus on what matters, the business itself. These companies would worry about safeguarding any confidential information while you get to focus on the core functions of the business.

Plan on it

With information being an integral part in most businesses, every company must have its own policies and conduct regarding the safekeeping of its information. Official guidelines on the safeguarding of private information should be shared amongst all employees working in a company and even to the public to some extent. Marketing how much you place importance on information security is one way of looking attractive to a prospective client. There should also be guidelines and procedures in the unfortunate event of a data breach. These plans should be detailed, leaving no ambiguity to creep in when there is a difficult situation. This would allow your company to minimize the damage caused in a data crisis as well as maintain some kind of professionalism within the company. Be vigilant when operating a company in times like these when a breach of information is considered an offense and is punishable by law, not to mention the significant damages it causes your company as well as your clients.

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Are you feeling a bit disheartened because your social media isn’t performing as well as it should be? Well it is not something that is only true for you. There are billions of users on social media for both personal and business pages and not all of them do really well. In fact how many really truly good influencers can you see on social media these days? So why is your page not performing well despite what you may try to do? Here are some main reasons why and how you can get rid of these issues.

Are You Paying Attention To Your Insights And Targeting Accordingly?

Your insights especially on a business page are there for a reason. You have to make use of them read them and then apply them to the kind of boosting and targeting that you do and you should also know who your market is for this purpose. If you do not know how you can read the analytics and then target the feed to accordingly, you will need to think about getting the help of professionals who handle social media to do this for you. They would have all the knowledge and the tools along with the skills needed to make sure that you get the best out of the money that you invest in your business social media.

How Good Is Your Creative Content?

Every page on social media needs to have that X factor that will keep people coming to see it and even follow it. What can you offer that is different to the other pages that fall into the same genre as you do? This is another good reason why you should probably think about outsourcing your page to a content marketing agency Melbourne or depending on where your business is. Basically they will have a fresh perspective on the kind of content that is needed to propel your brand to the next level and they will definitely invest their talent and their knowledge in completing this because their business is basically your business and the success of it. Essentially, if you take a look around some of the leading brands in the world that have really won it with their advertising owe it to the agencies that have come up with some massively successful campaigns for them.

How Responsive Are You?

Your responsiveness on social media is important. No matter how good your content is, if you do not market it correctly, they will not work for you. A big part of the right marketing also includes the right attitude and that means not keeping your customers waiting. If your customers are kept on end for hours and hours before you find the free time to get back to their queries, you will not have good responsiveness ratings and that would discourage a potential customer from contacting you about the services that you can offer them. These could be some of the reasons why your social media is not performing as well as you think it should be.

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How many of us think about our monthly expenses and worry? We are almost always stressed about not knowing how much the bills are going to come in at the next time and what we can do to keep our monthly household expenses as a whole from running too high. Be it for food, travel, utilities or other necessities, running a house is not easy and one of the things that most people find unable to do successfully of saving something at least. However as an individual and as a family saving is very important and whenever possible you must try your best to save something that can come in handy in the future. Therefore, what if there was a way in which you could turn some of your monthly expenses into savings? Here are some of the ways in which you could try to do that.

 

Cutting Down On Monthly or Quarterly Utility Bills

One of the best ways in which you can start saving more and more on a monthly basis is by cutting down on your utility bills. There are two ways to accomplish this. One is to start using   commercial solar power  where you know that you will not be getting electricity bills that make you break out in a cold sweat. The other is to actually try and be responsible for the usage of appliances, what kind of and how many appliances you use and the likes. The second method is going to be challenging especially if you have a lot of family members and children in the house. Are you going to be able to keep an eye out for all of them and see if they are being responsible? Therefore one of the best things that you could do is to actually start using green energy that will allow you to keep using everything that you are now with no cost and no harm to the environment as well.

Shopping Smart

One more area where a lot of families lose money is when they go shopping for food and other groceries. Not having a planned out shopping list and not having a shopping budget is what causes all of this. You should also stop going to the supermarket once a day or a few times a week because that will result in you finally spending more thanks to all those impulse buys. Instead plan ahead for the month and do the majority of your shopping in one go of course, with the exception of fresh produce, meat and eggs which you can get maybe once a week or the likes. You will see how much money you begin to save once you get into this routine.

Allocating a Monthly Budget

Not having a budget for your overall monthly expenses will also make you spend a lot more than you really should be spending. There should always be a budget that is a strict limit so that you learn to curb your expenses around that amount. The rest of it, should go into your savings before anything else.

 

 

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Having a dedicated auto mechanic for your vehicle is simply a sign of good maintenance. It’s like having a family doctor to see on a regular basis. Your vehicle requires monthly and annual maintenance, such as changing engine oil or rotating the wheels. Instead of going to a different mechanic each time your vehicle needs professional care, it’s simply convenient and cost-effective to settle down on a single auto mechanic. Here are several tips that will help you choose the best auto mechanic for your vehicle with suggestions for avoiding the common pitfalls on the process:

Check Qualifications

In Australia, not all states or local governments require auto mechanics to actually have professional certification. Anyone can be a mechanic with the appropriate license. However, there are vocational training courses for auto mechanics. Obviously, you can get better services if you find an auto mechanic who is professionally trained by an institute, rather than someone who learned the trade in his uncle’s garage. Therefore, do check qualifications for the mechanic before you settle down. You can call and ask pointed questions about licensing and accreditation if the website or the marketing material for the auto shop is vague on these aspects.

Find a Mechanic Shop with Loyalty Programs

Once you settle down on the best auto mechanic for your vehicle, you will be visiting this professional on at least a biannual basis. When you are seeking regular care, you can save money and enjoy certain perks with a loyalty or VIP programs. An auto shop or a mechanic that offers a loyalty program is definitely a major win over a mechanic that isn’t. If loyalty programs are available, go see what types of perks are available for returning customers.

Is the Shop Manufacturer Certified?

Some mechanics and auto shops have a labelling called “manufacturer” certified. This means that you can obtain genuine car parts from this seller. It goes beyond that too. Some mechanics specialise in servicing certain models of vehicles and may partner up with the manufacturer to offer bespoke services. Vehicle owners can benefit from the superior knowledge these mechanics are ready to offer. Also, a partner auto shop can offer you better rates for branded products.

Look for Guarantees

Ask the mechanic of he or she offers guarantees with the service. For example, repair jobs may be guaranteed to be completed under a certain time frame. But is this a marketing claim or is the guarantee really there? Call the mechanic and ask about what the shop can guarantee before setting down on a vehicle mechanic.

Do They Offer Free Quotes?

Free quotes or estimates are a good sign of a mechanic shop that puts customer needs first. If you need any type of service, you should be able to call and ask for an estimate before you commit to the auto shop. If the estimate is freely given without seeking an advance or something of the sort, then you are in the hands of a good mechanic.

You can also ask for recommendations from friends and family. In any case, keep the above tips in mind when hiring a new car mechanic.

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Education is one of the biggest growing sectors in Australia today. There is a generation of students out there with parents who want to send their child to the best school possible. Just being a well-equipped school is no longer sufficient for attracting new students. Academic institutions would have to engage in marketing tactics to lure students away from competing schools in the area. Here are several ideas that will help the process:

web developer for education

Create an Attractive Online Portal

Even academic institutions these days require an online presence. Therefore, one of the first steps towards being a more attractive option for new students should start with finding a website developer for education Melbourne or in the local area. Build a great site that is easy to and loads fast. This would be the first place potential students go to for looking up information. Therefore, the site should be well build with user convenience in mind. Make it visually appealing with beautiful photographs. Present information in a highly reader friendly manner. Keep in mind that you are addressing potential students and their parents, not fellow teachers. Invest in creating a mobile responsive online portal fully optimised for search engines to benefit the most.

Market to Parents, Not Necessarily the Students

The marketing material the site designs should be intended for potential students, but don’t forget the parents either. In some cases, targeting parents would be more sensible, especially if the students are under 12. Present facts that would be most appealing to parents first. Parents would want to know more about amenities the school offers, academic achievements of current students, and the overall convenience. For example, emphasize after-school child care facilities the school might offer, which would be an important deciding factor for parents of potential students.

Offer Perks Other Schools in the Area Don’t Have

The best way to market your school or academic institution is really to stand out above all other similar institutions in the local area. Does your school have anything special that makes it distinguished from other schools in the area? If so, market it. The feature could be a student winning a national competition or an important historical fact. Whatever it is, don’t hesitate to flaunt it as long as it’s flattering. Being unique is the best way a business can attract clients. When you market your school, it is like a business looking for clients. So don’t be too afraid to use various customer-oriented business tactics in the promotional material.

Promote Academic Achievements of Students

When it comes down to it, most parents want to send their children to a high-achieving school. The most marketable feature of your academic institution as a result is the academic standing of current students. If the students have any notable achievements, whether acquired recently or in the past, it should be emphasized for parents of potential students.  Make showing academic information a priority above everything else.

Last but not least, consider offering a free online course in any subject. Online courses attract international audiences, but you can optimise the course for attracting local kids who are most likely to attend the school.

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